1. Arrival at Imladris
When you came to Imladris you were only two years old - young even in Númenorean years. You were tired for you rode for days to get here. It was a long journey for a little boy made worse by its urgency. You were clever enough to know something was wrong but not why this was the only place you were safe.
You were dirty from the trip so Elladan and Elrohir bathed you; my sons, your brothers, although you didn't know it yet. You were so small they were afraid you would vanish in the water so Elrohir got in with you, held you up and played with you. There was water all over the floor when he had finished but I did not mind. It was enough to see you smile.
There were rooms being prepared for you and your mother but you were too young to sleep in a strange place on your own. Until she arrived I took you into my room as I had my own sons when they were young. You had nightmares that night, calling for your mother and father, so I took you into my bed and you slept long after that.
In the morning Elladan and Elrohir left to fetch your mother. You were sad to see them go but glad of their purpose. Every morning after that you asked me if your mother would arrive that day.
At first you were bored. In the rush to bring you here your mother had no time to pack your toys and I no longer had the ones my children played with, a long time ago. I had to tell you that you would never see your father again. You thought he had left. I could not explain death to a child - I did not know how.
You ran away when I wasn't looking. I did not remember raising children being this difficult. I missed my wife and I wished your mother had come here with you. I wished your father was still alive. You had drunk some wine and forgotten why you left when I found you. You were sick, so I stayed with you the rest of the day and the night. I sung you songs and told stories and you were better when you woke. You asked me if your mother would come that day.
I found a toy for you I had forgotten I had kept. It was a spinning top that Elladan and Elrohir made for Arwen. They had worked on it for days, getting it to spin just right. When I showed it to you you were fascinated by the way the colours made a pattern as it spun. You were determined to try it for yourself and it took you hours, but by the end of the day you could spin it as well as I.
After that you were happy to spend your time with me, waiting for your mother to come and your brothers to return. You were clever for a two year old and you would wake when I came to bed and insist on tucking me in with you. I grew to know you and to love you in the time we spent together.
You spoke to me of your father and your old life in the Angle. I tried to make your new life in Imladris as little of a change as I could, so I did things with you your father would have done. We explored Imladris, played games and sang songs.
You helped decorate your rooms. You told me your mother's favourite colour was yellow, so her bedroom was yellow. You liked green, so we chose some greens for yours. We messed up your clothes and mine doing that and since you didn't have many we had to wash them. You fell in the soapy water while we were washing the clothes so you declared you no longer needed a bath and tried to pull me in when I pulled you out.
We had much work to do preparing your rooms, making you new clothes and toys; creating your new life. I hadn't had much time to do so before you arrived so you helped me. You would tell me what your mother liked and didn't like but you didn't mention your father again. I knew I would have to explain what had happened one day but it was not this one.
I think you appreciated the gift I had given you. I was certainly grateful for the one you had given me and I never regretted taking you in, not even when I dreamed you were king. There was a sorrow associated with it but I did not know what it was. It seemed inconceivable at the time that your crowning would bring me anything but joy. You brought light into the dark and love into my heart.
The seventh day you were awake early. You must have known - perhaps your brothers told you - although you were too young to count the days. When you woke me you were excited. You didn't even have to ask. Mummy is here, daddy you told me.
When you arrived you were still Aragorn, son of Arathorn. In seven days you became Estel, son of Elrond.
Inspired by Forgotten Memories by Avon
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.