Wanderer: 31. Chapter 31

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31. Chapter 31



Chapter 31 W

The moonlight shining through a little gap in the curtains was what woke me. Or
was it? Maglor was lying facing me, his eyes unblinking, but I could tell from
his breathing that he wasn't asleep, but rather thinking deeply.

I blinked a couple of times and stretched carefully, which was difficult with
one of Maglor's long legs draped over me, but I saw awareness return to his
eyes. Instead of moving away as I expected, he did what he'd done earlier that
night; cuddled right up to me, his arms tightening about me in a very close
embrace. He didn't speak, but I could feel that he was very distressed over
something as his mind touched mine and he buried his face in my neck.

'What's wrong?' I asked quietly.

I got no verbal response, but if it was possible Maglor pressed himself even
closer to me, and in my mind there was a soft mental whisper of 'nothing,' to
which I replied with disbelief. That drew the tiniest of mental chuckles and
that he did have a problem, but one I couldn't help with, and no he didn't want
to discuss it, what he wanted was comfort. That both surprised and concerned me,
as I felt he did have a big problem. I had learned a few things about my magical
houseguest, and one was that when he was in 'silent mode' pestering him about
his problem was counter productive. He'd talk when he was ready, and not one
second before hand.

So I held him, and managed to get one hand free to rub his back, which seemed to
soothe him. After a while he spoke, 'You are good to me, Bronwyn, and in return
all I seem to do is bother you.'

Puzzled I asked what he meant, 'I woke you up, I didn't mean to, I was trying to
keep my mind quiet but I couldn't,' he said his eyes shadowed and frightened?

Then I understood, 'Have you had a nightmare, Maglor?'

'Yes, in a way. Elves don't dream exactly as mortals do, it's more like living
through the experience and retaining a memory of it. Or reliving something
terrible from the past.'

'Why didn't you say so?' I sighed, 'I know, you didn't want to bother me. Silly
elf, are you going to tell me what you dreamed of?'

'You don't want to know,' he said.

'Come on, it can't be that awful, can it.'
'It can,' he said sitting up and folding his arms about his knees. 'There is a
lot you still don't know, and I am..'

'You're worried how I'm going to react.'

'I am.'

'And that's what giving you the nightmares,' I shook my head at him. 'How old
did you say you are? 8?'

'Please, Bronwyn, this is not funny, don't joke.'

'Ok, sorry!' I grinned at him, and noticed his right hand was clenched tightly
into a fist. That was clearly bothering Maglor and I could do something about it
for him. I slid off the bed, and made to leave the room.

'Where are you going?' a distressed almost panicked elf asked.

'To the kitchen, and I'll be back in a minute.' Hells bells, he sure was upset
over something!

In the kitchen I made us both a hot chocolate, and grabbed a bottle of massage
oil, I had what I thought might be a brilliant idea for Maglor's sore hand, and
juggling cups and bottle I trotted back to Maglor's room, where I found him
staring out the window through the gap in the curtains.

'Here you are, this might make you feel better,' I said as I handed him a cup.
'No, use your left hand, and give me the right.' I'd put my cup down, and I
poured some of the massage oil into my hands, and then set to work on his hand,
feeling the muscles and tendons carefully till I found what I was looking for.
Maglor's face registered surprise and then relief as the pain left his hand.
Finished with his right hand I took his left hand, and repeated the process and
as I seen him using his left hand more than usual over the last couple of days
and I wanted to be sure that he hadn't hurt it.

'How does that feel now?' I asked.

'Wonderful,' he sighed, 'for the first time, all the pain is gone, completely
gone!' His fingers were tangled with mine, and I had trouble freeing one hand to
drink my chocolate, which I quickly finished. We lied back down and Maglor
pulled the curtains apart a little and looked out at the moonlight.

'I remember when the moon first rose, I thought how beautiful it was, and how
wonderful it was to have light, real light again,' Maglor's voice was incredibly
rich and beautiful in the softly lit room.

I snorted disbelievingly, 'The moon's always been there!'

'No, Bronwyn, have you not listened to me? Did I not tell you that the world was
changed in the second age of the Sun? That the world became round, and Valinor
was removed? It was then that the Sun and Moon took the forms they now wear, and
like Venus I can see those heavenly lights as what they really are, and as I
showed you Earendil, I could show you the true forms of the Sun and Moon.'

'No thanks, I've had enough of that for one evening,' I laughed at the elf, and
asked 'I suppose the stars aren't stars?'

'They are just as you see them,' and then he told me stories of the making of
the stars by one of the mysterious Valar, one called Varda, apparently female.

I dozed a little listening to him, and woke to hear him singing again. I
wondered that his parents hadn't named him Nightingale or something; for once he
told me that he sang before he spoke.

And as he sang, once again as on the night we spent watching the whales, his
voice made images and those images were translated to words in my mind. He sang
of the conversation between he and George the whale that day, and how George
reminded him of something that he'd not forgotten but put into back of his mind,
how in the Fourth Age he had wandered the shores of a country called Gondor, and
how the people of the tiny fishing villages had called him The Guardian of the
Waves, for he'd been often seen on the sea shore at night. Often he had used his
song to calm storms, and to lead those lost down by the seaside caves to safety,
and he sang to the fishermen, putting in their minds where the best fishing was to be had.
Sometimes, too he'd spoken to the children of the villages when his loneliness
became too great.

'Where was this Gondor anyways?' I asked.

'The seashore was the Mediterranean. The coast has changed, but the nearest
modern equivalent is around the Cannes area. Lots of things have changed, but at
least the old legends still speak of me, The Guardian of the Waves, and how I
can calm storms.'

'You can't really calm the sea, can you?' I asked at length.

'Oh, yes, if it's only a mild storm I can. I can use song to calm it,' he said
insistently. Then he noticed my sceptical look, 'you would probably call what I
do 'magic', I don't think of it like you might.'

'Why, with the magic at your disposal did you and your family find it necessary
to kill other elves?' I asked.

'They had their own magic too, and we were consumed with a need to fulfil our
Oath to recover the Silmarils and avenge Grandfather.'

'Oh,' was all I found to say.

'We shall speak more of this tomorrow,' he said. 'For now I think you should
sleep again, Bron.'

I couldn't argue as I was yawning, so I pulled the covers well up and settled
down. Maglor still gazed out the window, but now as I drifted off he was silent
instead of singing.

It was daylight when I woke again, and rain beat against the window. That blew
my plans for the day out the window, so I got up and went looking for a tall,
handsome elf and found him in the kitchen making porridge. I sat down to watch
TV, and discovered that it was earlier than I'd thought for the early news was
still on, some reporter rattling on about the war in Iraq. Not wanting to watch
bombs and shooting over breakfast, I turned over and found all the channels were
showing the same thing. In disgust I put on my favourite video, ET, as Maglor
brought me my breakfast; I had to admit he was spoiling me but it very nice to
have such a considerate houseguest.

I watched Maglor as he watched the movie, and was highly amused to notice he was
utterly fascinated, and sat motionless and silent watching carefully. He didn't
even move when I took his empty bowl away, but thanked me when I gave him coffee
ten minutes later. I decided the time was right to ask him about last night, and
why he been so very upset.

'Maglor, last night. When are you going to tell me what was wrong?'

He looked surprised, 'I didn't think you'd remember that!'

'Well, I do. And I think you should tell me what's wrong.'

' I noticed that you didn't really want to watch the news this morning either,' he said quietly.

'Is that your problem? The war?'

'Yes,' he said, nodding. 'I've seen too many wars, and fought in too many to.
It's just bringing back unpleasant memories and last night I was remembering my
brother's deaths, all but one died in battle, and well, I just don't want to
watch any more people die the same way.'

He put his cup down and I took his hands in mine, 'I can understand that. I
really don't want to watch either. If Mark had still been alive he would very
likely be in Iraq right now, and I know many of his friends are. Perhaps we
should try not to watch the TV, or talk of this much?'

'I think that would be best, for a few days anyway.' He seemed to want to say
something, but was hesitant. I pushed him a little, and he finally told me,
'Today is also the anniversary of the day my youngest brothers died. They were
twins, and especially close to me, and our oldest brother, Maedhros. It is
thousands of years since they died, but it still feels as though it happened
yesterday. I actually saw them killed in front of me, and I was unable to help
them. I let my little brothers down.'

'I'm sorry, Maglor. I can't imagine how awful that would feel, to see your
brothers killed in front of you!'

He squeezed my hands, and smiled a little, 'I'll be fine, Bronwyn. Later, I'll
go down onto the beach and sing for them as I have every year. Then I'll be all
right again.'

'Are you sure?'

'Yes, when the rain eases a bit I'll go to the beach. In the meantime, is there
something we can do? I don't want to sit about today, I'd rather do something.'

I thought for minute, 'I always make my own soap, and it's getting low so we
could do that.'

Maglor agreed enthusiastically, and soon we were in the semi-detached laundry
setting out the supplies. Nicky appeared, and when told what we were doing,
insisted on joining in, as she'd been bored at home. Her mother was in one of
the odd moods that she got into at times, and in those moods she didn't want
company, not even her daughter's.

So, we made soap. A lot of soap, scenting some of it. We made lavender, rose,
sandalwood and my favourite, orange. Maglor wanted cederwood, and pine, so we
made those too, and it was early afternoon when we finished and put the finished
soap aside to set and harden.

Lunch was toasted sandwiches, and it had stopped raining. Nicky and I moved the
horses into fresh paddocks, for Maglor had disappeared to sing on the beach,
refusing company. I knew why, he wanted to be alone and mourn for his brothers
by himself. I hoped he would feel better as he said he would, because he'd been
quiet and withdrawn all morning. Even Nicky couldn't raise a smile from him!

I came back inside, wondering again at how quickly my leg had healed in such a
short time. It was almost completely healed! I could walk without pain, and I
was thinking that by Rodeo time it might be right for me to ride. Nicky only
thought she'd have the barrel racing to herself and Cocaine!

I had been going to work on the scrolls, but it was hard with Nicky there. She
wanted to play Monopoly, or was going to go looking for Maglor, and I knew he didn't
want to be disturbed right now. So, Nicky and I played Monopoly, and Nicky
thrashed me. We were just beginning a second game, and I was starting to get
worried about Maglor when the kitchen door creaked and in walked the elf. He was
soaked because it had started raining again, and when I gave him a towel I
noticed how cold he was, freezing in fact.

'You're so cold!' I remarked, 'I'll put the heater on.'

He shook his head, 'no, I'll be fine, being cold won't affect me once I put on
some dry clothes.'

'Are you sure?'

'Yes, quite sure. It's impossible for me to catch a cold like you might.'

'Oh, ok I guess you know best,'

'I do,' he said smiling as he ruffled my hair with his left hand. 'I'll put on
some dry clothes.'

He vanished into his room, and soon appeared again dressed in the old faded and
patched jeans that he'd been wearing when we first met, and a T-shirt that
appeared to have once been black, but was now a faded dark greyish colour.

Nicky had re-set the Monopoly board and was trying to get Maglor to agree to
play too. He was laughingly refusing, saying he didn't know how to play the
game.

'That's Ok, we'll teach you, won't we Bron,' said Nicky.

Maglor finally agreed, and I made us all some hot chocolate and toast while Nicky
explained the rules to Maglor. Naturally, he played very cautiously at first, but soon
beat us. Another game didn't go his way so easily, and in fact we didn't finish
as Anita came looking for Nicky, claiming they had an early morning the next
day, but I knew the truth, Anita was tired and wanted to go to bed but she never
slept unless someone else was in the house. Nicky pulled a face, but went along
quietly with her mother.

Curiously, neither Maglor nor I were hungry, so we simply had some cheese and
crackers for our evening meal. Maglor also ate several apples, I'd noticed he
had a fondness for them, and he claimed all elves did. He does and says some
curious things at times!

Later, we sat down to look at more of the scrolls, and to check maps. Maglor
spoke of Rivendell, the secret city his foster son Elrond ruled during the
second and third ages. Apparently, he believed if we could find the ruins of
Rivendell we might find either more scrolls or clues to their whereabouts.

As he talked, he spoke less of the scrolls, and more of Elrond, and Elrond's
twin, Elros. I said nothing, just relaxing and letting him talk, but I wondered
why he spoke so much of his foster sons, when it was really his brothers he
ought to talking about. Just as I was about to point that out, he abruptly
started to speak of his twin brothers, the youngest of them.

Long he spoke, telling me of his twin brothers, Amrod and Amras. Naturally, this
meant that his other brothers entered the stories, his older and adored brother
Maedhros, Celegorm who was a great hunter and who could speak to any animal,
Caranthir, short-tempered but trustworthy, and Curufin, who was a mirror image
of their father Feanor. I got two impressions very quickly, that all the
brothers loved each other dearly, and that for the longest time Maglor had not
had anyone to talk to like this, and it was doing him good. Actually, it was
rather like opening a floodgate, and I rather thought that he'd never stop
talking. Not that I really minded, most of the stories were amusing or told of
elvish lifestyle, and I was learning a lot about Maglor, probably more than he
realised.

Finally, he stopped, and looked at me, and I realised that he'd really been
talking to himself. He smiled, 'sorry for getting carried away, I must have
bored you terribly'.

'Not at all, I enjoyed hearing of your brothers, and anyway, you needed to let
all that out. Have you spoken to anyone about your family since you've well,
been alone?'

'No, not like that. You are right, it was nice to speak of my family, I do feel
rather better!' he'd been holding my hands, and now he squeezed my fingers by
way of thanks. Then he looked at the scattered maps and scrolls and began
tidying them away, explaining he didn't feel like doing any more on them right
then.

'I don't either', I said. 'In fact, the late night last night, and getting up
early this morning I'm tired. I might go to bed,' I said, giving him a rather
questioning look.

'I won't, not just yet. I think I shall read a while,' he said. Then, more
hesitantly, 'Tomorrow is the 25th of April.'

'ANZAC day, how do you know about that?' I asked, surprised.

'I was actually in the First World War, and I like to remember every year by
watching the sun rise', he was obviously expecting a response of some kind from
me.

'So do I, Grandfather Burne was in the 4th Lighthorse, and I always hold my own
Dawn Service.'

'Shall I wake up just before sunrise then?' asked Maglor, 'and we can
watch the sun rise together?'

'Yes, that sounds a lovely idea!' I replied as Maglor kissed me goodnight. Soon,
I was curled up comfortably in my bed, but long past midnight sleep evaded me. My houseguest
was disturbing me more and more, not by his behaviour or his past, but by the
disturbing fact that I had done some deep thinking during the day, and I
believed that I might be falling in love with him.

Many thank to SWE for allowing me to use her idea of Maglor as the 'Guardian of the Waves.'

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: Jillian Baade

Status: Reviewed

Completion: Work in Progress

Era: Other

Genre: Romance

Rating: General

Last Updated: 04/26/04

Original Post: 06/26/02

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