Beneath the Light: 13. Part 13

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13. Part 13

At sundown Turgon will hold council with his lords, and the hour draws near. Blushing Vása spreads arms gold and violet across the horizon, though already her yellow face hides behind the tall Echoriath which encircle the city. Turgon stands on his balcony in king-helm and crest, hands to the stone-carved railing, face to the mountains. I move up to stand beside him, a slight wind lifting my hair off my neck as I recall a night many years ago, before the Nirnaeth, when we stood the same.

"Look at it, Lomion," Turgon has lapsed into Quenya, the ancient words rich as if carved with both exquisite pain and joy immeasurable. "Look at Ondolindë with me."

So I look, at mounds of gold and grey mallorn trees, slender birches, dark evergreens; at courtyards strewn with uilos, the Ever-white, and green-clothed hills of grass. I see the Tower of the King high and white upon pillars, the fountains as bowls filled with diamond, the mountains standing shadow guard from every perspective. Streams of pearly water tumble though tree grove and graven stone. I see the great Gates leading out: steel, gold, silver, iron, bronze, stone, wood. I see the Hidden Kingdom, the Hidden Rock of the Music of Water.

"I am an Exile," says Turgon. "In Valinor I left behind Tirion that I loved, crossing the Helcaraxë with my people. On the Helcaraxë I left behind Elenwë whom I loved, come to Middle-Earth. I was left a stranger in an unknown land with little belonging to me but a daughter and a kindred and a Curse. I may never look again on that which I left behind.

"But here in this City lives again the image of fair Tirion," his hand sweeps a pillar, his impassioned gaze arching over the city as a lover admires his bride. "I have build this kingdom of stone upon my heart, and there shall it stand forever."

A single white stroke of pity touches my heart and I do not respond, for he cares not at this moment for logic and reality. The Havens are built on the Isle of Balar, and the ships go out from there to seek the far West, but he speaks of neither, caring only for the city in which he stands.

Even I am moved by the sight of twilit Gondolin, and my gaze sweeps the King's gardens below us, for Idril knows the heart of her father and oft stays in view or sings within hearing when he is deeply troubled. But amid the flowered trellises and carven statues I do not find her, in the faint song of the wind I do not hear her voice, and my face swiftly draws to frown.

"What has become of Idril Celebrindal?" I ask without thinking.

"She walks by the city walls with Tuor," answers Turgon.

The words are frozen, slowed ,entering my ears as if through a thick wall. 'She walks--' Idril does not walk, she dances, she springs, she flies-- 'by the city walls--' why does she go by the walls, her happiness is in the waters-- 'with Tuor . . .' With Tuor. She walks with Tuor. With Tuor? Why does she walk with Tuor?

Betrayal stabs my heart as a hot and cleaved blade, and it is not hers but his, this Messenger, this Man, who when he did not take my heart in the Tower sought it to where it lies, to steal that which holds it, to leave it bruised, bleeding, naked, houseless . . .

Vása is gone, and night is borne upon Gondolin, the stars yet lending but faint silver light to the sky.

"Come Maeglin," says Turgon, turning from me. "The Lords wait in council-chamber."

I must unclench my fingers from the railing before I am able to follow his footsteps, my pulse throbbing wildly in my throat. We go to Council with no purpose. Turgon has made his decision, and I mine.

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.

Story Information

Author: Mouse

Status: Reviewed

Completion: Work in Progress

Era: 1st Age

Genre: Drama

Rating: General

Last Updated: 01/10/03

Original Post: 07/08/02

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