10. A Warm Home for the Winter
Outside, it was raining. Niphredil was happy about that; today would be a storytelling day. She was standing on a chair in front of the window. The rain covered the sea from view, but she knew it was there, beyond the garden and the small forest. And Father would be there, too, watching the waves and getting wet.
'Niphredil, would you wash the vegetables?', Mother called her. She went obediently.
'Mother, how did you fall in love with Father?' She asked as she bent working.
'It was sunset. I stood on the seashore watching Arien descending in her glory. Suddenly he stood there behind me. I did not know who he was, but I saw he was burdened by some ethereal sorrow. My heart went out to him then, and I wished I could help him. But in his eyes I saw my own sadness mirrored. I started crying then, and he tried to comfort me.
'Fair lady, do not cry', he said.
'Am I fair in your eyes?' I asked.
'Yes you are, old and wise and fair', he replied gravely.
'All I feel is old.'
'But I see wisdom in you, and beauty beyond measure.'
'My lord, your compliments feel overwhelming.'
'I am no lord.'
'In my eyes, you are. I see you cloaked in power.'
Then we just looked at each other's eyes and understood each other wordlessly. We two were meant to be one. This moment had been waiting for us all our lives. This was our night. He took my hand in his and led me to a forest clearing. There, we watched the stars come out until I fell asleep in his arms. And when I woke up in the morning, my hair was as brown as his.'
Father came in soon after the story was finished.
'I have something for you, Niphredil!', he said.
Niphredil ran to him.
He held a large seashell in his four-fingered hand.
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.