The messenger of Elrond entered the great throne room where a powerful looking Elf with flowing blonde tresses sat upon an elaborate throne decorated with jewels. It was wrought from a precious metal that Glorfindel could not name.
The King had a weary look on his face. Lines of sorrow and worry were etched on the fair, usually smooth countenance. Glorfindel was amazed by the eternal gracefulness that emanated from the Elf.
He walked up to face the throne, saluting the leader in the manner of the High Lords of Imladris.
"Your Majesty, the Lord Elrond of Imladris wishes to express his regret in not meeting you personally. He has been kept busy by the goings-on in the world. The message he wishes to convey, however, is exigent."
He spoke tentatively in the Nandorin dialect of the Silvan Elves.
Thranduil returned the greeting, and signalled for his Guard to leave.
"Speak, my friend, for you have travelled far."
Glorfindel noted that he replied in Sindarin, and so taking in a deep breath, he started to speak.
"My lord, it has come our notice that darkness has been steadily creeping back into the world. My lord wishes to warn his kindred about the threat that is slowly making its presence felt in the nebulous places of the world."
Thranduil sighed heavily and closed his eyes. He leaned back in his throne, and sank into his private thoughts.
Glorfindel stood there uneasily. He did not dare to press on further. His news clearly had not come as a surprise. It was not something the Lord Elrond had not expected. The news he bore was more of a confirmation, than a warning.
"The Lord Elrond wishes it that a meeting be arranged to discuss the latest turn of events."
He was cut off by a wave of the hand.
"Even though our relations do not run deep, our two kingdoms have always been allies. Even if this may seem like rude and abrupt to do so, I fear I have neither the time nor the resources to spare. Lord Elrond would understand. I intend to send somebody in my place. He would have much knowledge about the situation. I pray you, to let me a few days to prepare my messenger, who would then venture with you back to Imladris."
Glorfindel was taken aback. He had not expected such an outward decline from the King.
"Mithrandir would be present."
Thranduil looked up sharply. The latest news was clearly something he was interested in. He nodded mutely and motioned with his hands.
The doors opened, and the Hunter-Elf Glorfindel had earlier seen slipped through them soundlessly. The High-Lord observed the fluidity and the gracefulness of his movements.
The Hunter bowed before the King, the firm look of determination and strain frozen upon his face.
"Your Majesty." The words that came out of his mouth were cold and hard, and there was no hiding the hardness in his eyes.
The King gestured towards Glorfindel. "This is Glorfindel, a guest from Imladris. See to it that he is well taken care off."
The hunter Elf bowed again. Showing Glorfindel the way, both took leave of the King.
Once outside the throne room, the Hunter sighed. He turned towards his guest. A brief smile flitted across his face, lighting up his features, betraying his young age. It disappeared after the shortest of times, and he motioned for Glorfindel to follow him.
"I apologise for the rudeness of my King. He has plenty on his mind." His voice was musical, but there was a certain edge to it, and the Elflord grew more puzzled as he was led through the palace, seeing the reverent looks bestowed upon him by servants who passed them by, and the sincere smiles that lit up his face time and again as he recognised a butler here and a guard there.
Upon reaching the guest chambers, the host threw open the great doors. The interior of the rooms was more beautiful than expected. The furniture was made of living vegetation, very much in the style of the houses he had seen earlier on in the day, though far more resplendent.
"I leave you to inspect your quarters. A servant will be assigned to take care of your needs. Do not hesitate to voice any requests. Your horse has been taken care of. I would be glad to bring you on a tour of our Kingdom later in the day. I expect you will be here quite a while, for the King would take his time."
"There is much to see in my Kingdom. I trust that your time here will not be wasted."
Glorfindel thanked his host graciously, and was left to marvel at the beauty of his room. He had barely done admiring the mirror made from stardust, when a knock on the door brought him out from his trance.
A head peered into the room, and he recognised the servant he had seen earlier on the steps of the palace.
He motioned for the Elf to come in.
"Is everything in order, my lord?" The smile in his eyes was clear. "I will be accompanying you on your tour of Eryn Galen later, and I expect tales of your home in return for this favour which we have bestowed upon you."
Glorfindel smiled warmly at the young Elf. He was full of the exuberance of youth and had an affable nature.
"I would gladly do that. I could even tell you stories of my adventures, for it seems that it would attract your fancy."
The servant bowed low. His movements playful and exaggerated. Glorfindel understood the earlier comment by the Elf who had accompanied him to the palace. The servant was clearly very young. "I thank you, my kind and distinguished visitor. For now, however, my Master has requested to bring you on a quick walk around the forest. I trust you would find that Eryn Galen is as beautiful as the songs we sing about it promise. There is much to be seen, and honoured to show them to you, I would be."
Glorfindel laughed. The ripples of energy emanating from the young one made him feel youthful once again. It reminded him of why he liked to keep the company of his younger kindred. They had much love to spare, and an enthusiasm that the older of their kind sometimes lost with the passing of millennia.
"If the songs are anything to go by, I am sure your King would have to keep me here for years, ere I be able to even come close to seeing everything in this blessed realm of yours. How you came to be known as Moriquendi puzzles me, for it seems that your people have clearly the joy of living among trees as beautiful as these."
"Ai, my friend. We are indeed blessed by the Valar. Eryn Galen is a place of profound beauty. I find much to marvel at as the days go by. Even though I have lived here the whole of my life, new discoveries come to me with each breaking of dawn. It is delightful indeed, and the greatness of the woods teach us many things."
"And I would love to learn of this from you. Learning is not only limited to the younger, and that is something you should remember." Glorfindel nodded at the young Elf.
The Elf grinned. A look of seriousness broke on his face suddenly, startling the other.
"Were you received by His Majesty in a brusque manner?" he said.
"Nay, I was treated with respect and dignity. Why ask you such a question?"
"And my friend? Was he rude to you?"
Glorfindel was taken aback by the urgency and worry in the other's voice.
"No. He was a gracious host. He offered to show me around the kingdom. There were things on his mind, but he did not let it affect his treatment of his guest."
"That is a relief."
"Both of them often disagree with one another, and I was worried their latest dispute might affect their treatment of a distinguished guest! Father and son do not get along well!"
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.