Mother's Day Challenge

First Flight

1. one

She’s gone. Gone to Rohan. My baby has left me, gone to live in Edoras.

She’s never gone alone before.

How did I allow this? She’s too young, too untried. I’ve not taught her half of what I should.

This will be her fifteenth summer, but it seems that it was only yesterday that she was first in my arms. My precious Míriel. She was so small, so delicate when she was born. We weren’t sure she would survive her infancy, she was so little. But she was stubborn even then, and faster than I knew; she was taking her first steps, riding her first pony. Her first word was mama, and my heart bled with happiness.

And today I put her on a horse and sent her to my brother and his sons.

Éomer better take care of her. His life will not be worth living if he does not.

Lothriel will be there. Meduseld is no longer the province of men alone. Míriel will at least have a surrogate mother while she is there. Lothriel always wanted a daughter.

When I first broached the subject, Míra thought it was an excellent idea. She has long loved Rohan, since we first visited with her, as soon as she was strong enough to withstand the journey. It seemed a wonderful idea, that she would spend a year in Rohan, learning the ways. We swayed her father with the words “history” and “saga”. She promised to sing them to him when she returned. I cannot sing the sagas for the life of me, but I have managed to teach her one of the simplest ones, which she sings beautifully. Even without that, I doubt she would have had to asked long, Faramir cannot deny her anything. She has her father and brother wrapped around her little finger.

But she’s gone, gone for a year and I want my Míra back. I want the beautiful babe that was first laid in my arms back. I want my impetuous rapscallion of a girl back. I want the blossoming woman who rode off this morning, laughing as she raced her brother.

She’ll blossom while she’s away. My daughter will grow up without me. I’ll miss so much of her life.

Going to the Riddermark is a good idea, no matter how my heart worries. She’ll become a better horsewoman, she’ll be able to get some training in arms, she’ll learn thrift, she’ll learn her history the way it is meant to be learnt. She is of an age to start thinking of boys and there will be many for her to think about without anything untoward happening.

I must fight this urge to saddle my horse and chase after them. Míra cannot be thinking of boys!

When I was her age, I was thinking of boys. I know I was. There are some fine men among the Rohirrim, and sparring will raise the pulse of anyone.

I wonder if she will find her husband among the Rohirrim. There are no plans for a political match from Gondor yet. A rochir would make her an excellent match. He would certainly have experience with headstrong creatures like my daughter.

Headstrong barely begins to describe her. Thankfully, her father’s calm temperament has come to the fore, so we do not argue like we did when she was younger.

We argued about everything. I was frequently accused of being cruel and uncaring for making her stop reading by candlelight, worried as I was that she would fall asleep and burn the house to the ground. Asking her to care for her tack was mean when she’d put it away damp. I was stupid to put in so much yeast while making mead. Little things that became big arguments.

Yet we were lucky, I suppose. Many of the ladies of Minas Tirith have spoken to me of the troubles they have had raising headstrong daughters, and none of these tales were news to me. But they are still reporting such struggles, while Míriel has calmed, become a far nicer person to be around.

She still does not believe I can brew well though. Pah! I have been brewing since I could totter. The yeasty ales and meads are not for her consumption, so the fact that she does not like the taste is not a concern of mine. It is not the season yet to make the delicate metheglin, which I suspect she would like more.

I’m sure Éomer would like a case of elderflower honeywine over the usual bottles of heavy ale I send.

The thought of Éomer and Erkenbrand sitting down to such a bottle would usually have me laugh, but today my lip is quivering and I bite back tears. It’s all so still. There’s no laughter, no shouting, no running wild. The tumultuousness she can exude drives me to my wits end, so how can I hate the quietude she leaves behind?

Faramir comes and wraps his arms around me, kisses the top of my head. “She’ll be back before you know it, even more of a hellion than when she left, a hellion with a sword at that. You’ll wish for the peace again.”

I know he’s right. Soon enough Míriel will be home again, tearing through the house and gardens, terrifying guests and racing horses. I will long for the peace. But I must brindle at his words, for the sake of propriety.

“And what is wrong with a hellion and a sword?”

This is a work of fan fiction, written because the author has an abiding love for the works of J R R Tolkien. The characters, settings, places, and languages used in this work are the property of the Tolkien Estate, Tolkien Enterprises, and possibly New Line Cinema, except for certain original characters who belong to the author of the said work. The author will not receive any money or other remuneration for presenting the work on this archive site. The work is the intellectual property of the author, is available solely for the enjoyment of Henneth Annûn Story Archive readers, and may not be copied or redistributed by any means without the explicit written consent of the author.


In Challenges

Story Information

Author: kerosene

Status: Beta

Completion: Complete

Rating: General

Last Updated: 03/23/03

Original Post: 03/16/03

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