3. Chapter 2 - Sacrifices
A/N Thanks once again to my lovely beta Ellisk and to Viv and Maram for their advice on this chapter. Thanks to Tolkien for letting me play in his world and I am making no money doing so.
Melethen - My love
Melethrilen - my beloved -feminine
Melethronen - my beloved -masculine
Meleth i guilen - love of my life
Laurëanna – Golden Gift
Indil – Iris
28th Day of May
Fourth Age, Year 24
Ship to Aman/Tirion, Aman
Indil and Glorfindel had spent their whole time on the ship together. As the elves that knew Glorfindel smiled at the change in the serious and distant lord, Indil enjoyed every moment she was with him. Her hearted ached with the pain she saw in his eyes and she tried to overcome that sadness rather than discuss it with him. She knew he would not open up to her until he was ready. Until then, she made it her mission to make him smile as often as possible.
"You are not telling the truth, Indil. I refuse to believe you," Glorfindel shook his head. They were sitting on the deck near the bow of the ship late one afternoon.
"I am telling the complete truth. Lord Cirdan taught me how to swim by throwing me into the ocean," Indil laughed.
"I find that hard to believe. And why would your parents allow such a thing to occur?" Glorfindel smirked.
"Apparently, Lord Cirdan taught my father the same way and his father before him. He seems to believe that is the only way to teach a child to swim," Indil laughed, as she brushed a lock of hair behind her ear.
Glorfindel studied her for a moment.
"What is it?" she asked with a smile.
"I was just thinking I am glad he was right," Glorfindel grinned running a finger lightly down her arm. "For if it had not worked, you would not be here to tell me this story."
Indil laughed for a moment.
"Well, it did not actually work. He and my father had to come in after me. After that my mother decided to find another way to teach me how to swim," Indil shook her head. "Which is why Lord Cirdan had to throw me in the water again years later. I still had not learned. Luckily for you, I learned the second time, for my father had already told me he would not come in after me. He said it was too humiliating for him to have a daughter living in Mithlond that could not swim"
Glorfindel chuckled. She had the most cheerful and warm personality he had ever known. Even when he felt like withdrawing back into his shell, she managed to pull him back out. She had a stubborn streak as well and refused to let him shut her out.
"Indil, you know we will arrive in Valinor tomorrow evening," Glorfindel began. He could not believe how nervous he felt.
"Yes I know. I must be honest. I am so relieved. This boat has gotten smaller on the way or the people have gotten bigger," Indil giggled.
"Indil," Glorfindel said and her eyes flew to his. Her smile faded seeing how serious he was.
"What is it?" she asked softly.
Glorfindel cleared his throat and looked away for a moment. Finally, he looked back at her and smiled lightly at her concerned eyes.
"There is nothing wrong. At least I hope you do not think of it that way," Glorfindel reached down and took her hand. "Indil, I have enjoyed spending this time with you and have grown to care for you deeply."
Indil's eyes brightened as she smiled at him. Leaning forward, she kissed him lightly.
"Stop trying to distract me," he grinned.
"I am trying to make this easier for you," Indil smiled as she lightly tugged on a lock of his hair.
"Make what easier for me?" he asked with one eyebrow raised. "What is it you think I am about to say?"
"I think…" She leaned closer. "No, I am quite sure that you are going to tell me you have finally fallen in love with me as I did with you, the first day I saw you."
Glorfindel smiled and kissed her. "Yes and?"
"And you are going to tell me how you cannot live without me and as soon as we reach Aman, you want me to bind myself to you forever," she finished nervously.
"No. That is not what I was going to say at all," he smiled mischievously and shook his head.
"Oh," Indil said sadly.
"I was going to say that you cannot live without me so I might as well bind myself to you or you will be miserable and lost without me," Glorfindel smirked.
"You are so arrogant, do you know that?" she asked playfully slapping him on the arm.
"I have been told that before. Is that a yes?"
"No. It most certainly is not a yes," she responded. "You, Lord Glorfindel, must tell me your true feelings or the answer is no."
"Fine. Forget I mentioned it," Glorfindel said lazily looking away.
He tried not to smile at her indignant gasp. When she jumped up to leave, he grabbed her around the waist and pulled her back to sit on his lap. He chuckled at her angry face. He had never seen her angry and it was most unbecoming on her sweet face.
"If you insist Lady Indil, I will tell you," Glorfindel smiled. Turning serious, he looked deep into her eyes as her anger visibly melted away.
"I had thought I was too old and too solitary to ever find someone to make me happy. I thought I did not need to be loved or love anyone else for I was a warrior not a minstrel in need of love songs. It was not until I met you that I realized the part of me that needed love was not dead, it just waiting for the right time and the right person. During this time on the ship, my hardened heart has begun to lighten somewhat," Glorfindel's voice had dropped to a sultry depth that made her heart flutter. "After all that we have been through in Middle Earth, I do not want to let go of something that brings me true happiness for the first time I can remember. Indil, I love you and I do not want to live a day without you."
As soon as the words crossed his lips, she threw her arms around him and kissed him happily. She had loved him for so long, she had only dreamed that he would ever love her. Ignoring others nearby, she kissed him passionately burying her hands in his long golden hair. He returned her kiss with equal passion. After many moments and kisses, they reluctantly pulled apart.
Glorfindel looked at her as the setting sun glinted on her pale hair, appearing to give her an extra glow of happiness. She was happier than he had ever seen her and he smiled knowing how much she loved him. Becoming suddenly serious, he looked away for a moment.
"Indil I need to be honest with you before you commit yourself to me," Glorfindel looked at her solemnly.
"It is too late for that," Indil said tenderly. "Whatever you say will not change my feelings for you."
"Perhaps not but I feel it is only right that I tell you," Glorfindel replied looking into her green eyes. "I have experienced many things and seen things that have caused me to be who I am now. What I mean is, although I am happy now, there will be difficult times and I am not always the easiest person. I am arrogant and stubborn. And I can be sometimes withdrawn and I have a temper, if provoked. I would never hurt you intentionally but sometimes I say things rather harshly without any thought to who I might hurt. You are so tender hearted and I worry how my darker times will affect you."
When she started to respond, he placed his finger lightly on her lip. "When we arrive in Aman, I must meet with the Valar to discuss Middle Earth. This will be difficult and may make me seem more distant."
"Glorfindel, perhaps you do not know. I love all of you, both good and bad. I shall enjoy reminding you how very much you are loved. I know you have your darker side. We all do to some degree. I can see past that. I see your heart and your fëa and I love you," Indil said as she traced the outline of his lips with her pinkie finger before kissing him again. "You cannot scare me away, Glorfindel. And I always knew you were stubborn and arrogant."
Glorfindel chuckled. "I am sorry I do not have a ring to give you. I will remedy that as soon as I can."
"That does not matter as much to me. Just knowing that you love me is all that matters," Indil said kissing him lightly. "I suppose I better remove myself from your lap and withhold my passionate embraces. I think Rumil almost fell overboard because of that last kiss."
Glorfindel looked to see Rumil of Lórien standing with other ellyn trying not to stare but failing miserably. Rumil gave Glorfindel a weak smile then looked quickly away when Glorfindel glowered at him.
"Ah, now I see why everyone is scared of you. Perhaps you should not assault people with that glare so often and your reputation might change," she teased.
"I worked very hard to get my reputation and I have no intention of changing it," Glorfindel replied.
When they arrived in Valinor, after a couple of days to get settled, Glorfindel and Thranduil spent three days with the Ainur discussing the events that took place in Middle Earth. Both Indil and Glorfindel were staying at an inn in Tirion. It catered to elves arriving in Valinor with no family to live with, providing them with a place to stay until they found their own homes. Indil's father and mother had been killed during an orc raid on a small party traveling from Rivendell to Mithlond. Indil had lived alone for many years and was quite used to it. Lord Cirdan and her friends in Mithlond had been her family after she lost her parents. With Glorfindel close by, she was still able to spend time with him once he was through with the conferences with the Ainur.
During the day, Indil spent time in the library making sure the scrolls that Cirdan had sent were properly cataloged and archived. Often she walked through the city and the gardens surrounding it just soaking in the splendor of Aman. She knew it would be beautiful but nothing had prepared her for the magnificence of the Undying Lands. It seemed as if everything was perfect. She saw many of the Lórien elves in the city and they appeared to be awestruck as well. It was as if Middle Earth was just a bad dream. She wished it could be that way.
One day when she was walking, she saw King Thranduil's wife, Tavaril. She had met her once the first day they arrived but had not seen her since then. She knew that Thranduil told her about Legolas and she would be hurting.
Indil watched her for a moment. She seemed to be completely unaware of anything around her. She looked so sad, Indil felt unable to walk away from her. Taking a deep breath, Indil walked to her.
"Lady Tavaril?" Indil said softly. Tavaril looked at her surprised. She did not appear to recognize her. "I am Indil. We met the first day we arrived from Middle Earth. I sailed here with your husband."
"Oh yes, I am sorry Indil," Tavaril said quietly.
"No, I understand," Indil smiled. She paused before continuing. "Lady Tavaril, forgive me for intruding but I just wanted to tell you how sorry I am about your son. I know it must be very hard for you and if there is anything you need, well… I know I am a stranger to you but I just could not walk away seeing you so sad without at least offering assistance if you need something," Indil stammered feeling awkward for intruding.
"I appreciate that Indil. You are very kind to offer comfort," Tavaril said softly. "I was thinking about my son. My husband has not been with me for the last three days so it has added to my sadness."
"I am certain it has. Facing this loss alone must be very hard. Perhaps you would like a friend to share some of these feelings with, if you feel comfortable doing so, of course. Or if you would prefer I could just sit here with you so you do not feel alone," Indil smiled sympathetically.
Tears filled Tavaril's eyes. "Did you know my son?"
"No, I did not. I have heard much of him. He sounds like someone that I would have liked to have met though."
"Legolas was… special. He was very unique. He was terribly brave and honorable yet he had such a gentle heart. He loved all living things: plants, trees, and animals. He would often disappear for hours into the woods and hated to be inside. He was a child of nature. He would always do his duty but that is not where his heart lay…" Tavaril drifted off. Indil waited until she continued.
"Legolas was one of the best archers in Mirkwood, perhaps the best. But it was only because it came naturally to him for he rarely wished to practice. If he had not been such a great warrior, Thranduil would have been more strict with him but Legolas just naturally excelled."
"I have heard how brave and honorable he was. He died trying to protect a friend," Indil said tenderly.
"Yes. A dwarf," Tavaril laughed slightly. "Only my son would become such good friends with a dwarf. He was never one to judge others and he truly cared for them. It does not surprise me that he died that way. It was his nature."
"Thranduil will never forgive himself. He blames himself for Legolas going to Rivendell for the council," Tavaril sighed. "I never thought that he would not come here. Perhaps I would have said more when I left. Or maybe I should have stayed."
"You could not know what would happen. No one did. Your son was brave and honorable. A son you can be proud of. I can imagine how hard this must be for you," Indil said taking Tavaril's hand in her own "And I am sure your son knew how much you loved him."
Indil sat with Tavaril for most of the day talking about Legolas. Indil felt as if she knew him and was sad that he was not here for her to meet. She hated seeing Tavaril and King Thranduil so hurt.
Coming back to the inn hours later, Indil knew that Glorfindel would have returned from meeting with the Ainur. She knocked on his door but there was no answer. She decided to look for him for she knew he was nearby. He had not left the inn other than to go to the Ring of Doom and did not appear ready to venture out into the city. She found him in the courtyard of fountains behind the inn. She could see the tension in his body and knew he was hurting. Walking up behind him, she wrapped her arms around him and kissed him on the ear.
"I have missed you," she said softly. "Will you meet with them again tomorrow?"
"No. I have finished," he said, absentmindedly. Once again, he was silent and withdrawn.
Indil was quiet as she continued to stand with her arms around his neck and her head resting on his shoulder. She lightly stroked his hair.
"Glorfindel, the horror is over now. All that remains are our memories of it. Once all of the elves have returned from Middle Earth, our nightmares will begin to fade even as we mourn what was lost and those who died. For now, we have each other to lean on. You do not always have to be so strong and hold it in. You are allowed a moment of weakness."
"No, I am not. If I allow myself to try and be free of it, it will destroy me and rip me apart," he said sadly.
"Holding it in is destroying you," she whispered. "I know you are not ready to discuss this yet but I will always be by your side when you are ready. Once day you will stop excluding me by shutting me out of that part of your heart. I will be beside you when you do. But now, I am here to love and comfort you."
Glorfindel reached up and held her hand and they sat there for a while in silence.
"I have something for you," he said finally.
She came around to stand in from of him. Reaching into his pocket, he pulled a small silver ring out and placed it on her finger. Tears filled her eyes as she looked at it. He looked up at her with a slight smile but his eyes were sad.
"Glorfindel… I would prefer you to give this to me when you are not so sad. Even if I have to wait," she said softly touching his face gently.
"I do not know when that might be but I want you to know I am committed to you."
"I do know that," Leaning down, she kissed him softly.
Reaching up, she pulled a chain off her neck. Removing a silver ring and held it out to him. She had been waiting for this moment. It saddened her that it was not the happy moment she had wished for.
"Indil, those are not tears of joy," Glorfindel looked at her intently not taking the ring from her hand.
"I just wish it were a time of happiness for us. I do not wish us to exchange these rings while you are filled with such…" Indil paused. "sorrow."
"My sorrow is lightened by you," Glorfindel took the ring and pulled her to him. She sat beside him and they spent many hours holding onto each other silently.
Indil went with Glorfindel the next day to visit an old friend. She knew how difficult it would be to make this visit. He had half-heartedly tried to persuade her to stay behind for he knew this would be difficult but she knew he needed her. Also, he would not be able to provide the comfort to Lady Celebrían that she would need when she learned the news of her daughter.
24th Day of September
Fourth Age, Year 88
Laurëanna did not remember the return journey from the Máhanaxar to her parent's home. Everyone had updated Elladan as to what had happened as she sat by quietly. She had twisted a lock of her hair into knots and was now trying to untangle it. Her thoughts were so frantic, she could not even focus on one thought long enough to remember what she was thinking. When the room went completely silent, she looked up and all eyes were on her.
"Laurëanna, I know you are scared but we will find a solution," Indil said, patting her hand.
"I am not scared. I am not … anything, right now. I do not know what I am, I mean," Laurëanna stammered.
A flood of emotions washed over her. She was panicky because of what might happen and sad because this was causing those she loved such grief after all they had suffered already. She was angry that evil could exist and could actually continue to exist. Shame overwhelmed her because she was frightened to do what Eru had asked her to do. She was a coward because she was not honored to be making these sacrifices for the elves that had suffered enough. In her life, she had not suffered and she felt guilt for her own selfishness to not want to.
Finally, she could not stand their eyes on her anymore. Jumping up, she fled to the balcony where she took deep gulps of air. She stood in the most beautiful land in Arda and she did not have the strength to protect it.
Glorfindel started to follow her but Elrohir stopped him. Stepping out on the balcony with her, he closed the doors behind him. The breeze was blowing through her hair and he was reminded of the day that he had first seen her on this very same balcony. Coming up behind her, he wrapped his arms around her waist and pulled her close. They were both silent but he could feel the tension in her body. He rested his chin on her head and sighed.
"Laurëanna…" he began.
"Please do not say anything. Just hold me for a while without speaking about it. I need to forget for a few moments." She turned in his embrace and wrapped her arms around his waist burying her head in his shoulder. In his arms, she could almost forget all.
"Elladan broke one of your favorite glasses the other day," he murmured. She giggled. "He told me not to tell you and perhaps something much worse would happen that would make you forget."
"This was all Elladan's doing then?" She smiled as she looked up at him.
"Did you expect anything less?" He smirked. Looking at her for a long time, he grew serious again. "No matter what happens, Laurëanna, I love you. I have loved you since the day I first saw you on this balcony."
Lowering his lips to hers, he kissed her softly. Moving his hands behind her neck, he rubbed her jaw line with his thumbs as he kissed her again lingering longer. He lightly sucked her bottom lip in between his then tilting his head slightly; he covered her open mouth with his own. Teasing her tongue, he savored the sweetness and heat of her mouth.
She always reminded him of strawberries. He could never explain but since the first time he kissed her, he had thought she tasted like strawberries. No one had kissed her as he had. Never had another ellon's passionate kiss touched her lips nor had they held her this way. He had taught her all that she knew about kissing and passion and she had taught him all he knew about love. She was his, and his alone. He would not lose her.
When he kissed her, she felt like her fëa was being spread across the ocean's breeze. It was such an exhilarating experience to her; it was like falling yet knowing she would land safely. His kisses created such emotional and physical reaction for her, she could not think rationally when his lips touched hers. She allowed herself to escape from all of the sadness and the shock of the day to the place she felt secure, in his heart.
Hearing raised voices from inside the house, they finally released each other's lips. Resting his forehead against hers, he sighed. They could no longer hide in their own little world. The reality of this one was crashing into it. Hearing her father's raised voice, he looked at her pointedly.
"I loved you even though I knew you were Glorfindel's daughter." Despite the seriousness of it all, she giggled again and kissed him quickly before going back inside.
Where she had left a quiet room, it was now in an uproar. Her father was furious, more furious than she had ever seen him.
"This is madness. They expect me to allow my daughter to do this. It would be just as easy to toss her into Mount Doom myself. I absolutely forbid this," Glorfindel raged to no one in particular.
Laurëanna looked around the room and saw those that she loved more than her own life and realized her fate had already been decided. She must do this. No one in this room would reject this task if it fell upon them. She must do it for them and for those in Aman. She owed this to her people.
"No, Laurëanna, understand me when I say this. I will not allow you to do this," Glorfindel held her arms making her look at him.
"Ada. You cannot forbid it. This is not about you. It is not even about me. It is about what happens in twelve days if I do not do this," Laurëanna said softly to him. "Ada, please calm yourself. You are not making this easier for anyone here. This is not something you can destroy with your anger nor conquer with your will."
"Laurëanna, you do not know what it is like there. You cannot do this. It is worse in Middle Earth during that time than your worst nightmares. You cannot even imagine. Do not be a fool. It is complete madness for them to even suggest such a thing," Glorfindel said dismissive as he turned away from her.
"Is it madness because it is dangerous? Or because I am too foolish and weak to do this?" Laurëanna replied with a hurt tone. Glorfindel turned around and looked torn between his anger and his desire to comfort her.
"Or is it just madness that it was asked of me and not you? Why send the daughter of a great lord when you could instead send a great lord?" Laurëanna's eyes were darkened by anger.
"Laurëanna!" Indil gasped.
"That is why you are so shocked, is it not Ada, that they would choose me rather than you. Trust me, Adar, it is not an honor by any means but just because I am only your daughter does not mean I feel this is any less than a duty than you did when you returned to Middle Earth. Perhaps I am just a messenger rather than a warrior; it matters little to me. The Ainur have more faith in me than my own father," Laurëanna replied.
The room was completely silent as the two faced off. Laurëanna had never spoken to Glorfindel this way and it was obvious it was hurting both of them. Glorfindel had a look of shocked rage on his face but his eyes showed he was hurt. Laurëanna had the same hurt look in hers and her features were marred with uncharacteristic anger.
Finally, Elrohir said, "There is no one doubting you, Laurëanna…"
"This does not concern you, Elrohir," Glorfindel interrupted.
"Does not concern me?" Elrohir looked at him incredulously. "She may be your daughter but she is my wife. How could you say it does not concern me? I have always treated you with the utmost respect as was befitting your position, Lord Glorfindel, but do not dare tell me that my wife's future, my own future, does not concern me."
Laurëanna felt instantly panicked. They both looked as if they wanted to kill each other.
"Elrohir. Lord Glorfindel," Elladan began only to be interrupted by Glorfindel and Elrohir simultaneously saying, "Be quiet, Elladan."
"Elrohir. Ada. Do not let this get out of control. We are all upset and saying things we do not mean. Please do not fight," Laurëanna slid in between her husband and her father. "Ada, forgive me for speaking to you so hatefully. And Elrohir is just concerned."
"Laurëanna, are you forever going to allow your father to control your actions? I grow weary of his constant need to remind me that he was a renowned lord long before I was even born and I am even more weary of his desire to prove to me that in your eyes, he is the stronger, the better of the two of us. But I will not allow his hardheaded desire to be lord and master of you push you into an equally stubborn decision to prove him wrong," Elrohir said under his breath.
Lord Elrond jumped up quickly and took Elrohir by the arm.
"Elrohir, let us go outside so you may calm yourself before you say something we will all regret," Elrond said cutting his eyes at Galadriel as he pulled a reluctant Elrohir onto the balcony.
"Glorfindel, please calm down," Indil said quietly. "You are just upsetting everyone."
"That child has the nerve to speak to me that way in my own house? Is he a fool? I should have taught him some humility when he was younger. If I had, I might not have the strong need to do so now," Glorfindel began towards the balcony only to be stopped once again by Laurëanna coming in between her father and her husband. Her eyes pleaded with him to be calm.
"Glorfindel, you and Elrohir are both upset out of concern for Laurëanna. Do not let fighting amongst the two of you hurt her. Laurëanna is your daughter yet she is also his wife. You both love her," Lady Galadriel said soothingly as she stood and put her arm around Laurëanna's shoulders while facing Glorfindel. "It is hard for you to realize I know but Elrohir has as much say in Laurëanna's decision. That does not mean that you have less say either. Perhaps everyone is forgetting that it is Laurëanna who must make this decision for herself."
Glorfindel was calmed very little by her words. Normally her words would sound wise and rational but now they did not. Looking at Laurëanna though made him feel horrible. He had hurt her out of his own anger and pain. For a few moments he was silent as he looked at her.
"Laurëanna, forgive me. I cannot lose you," Glorfindel said quietly.
Laurëanna's eyes filled with tears as she rushed into his embrace. For a short time, perhaps she could pretend that she was a child again and let Ada make everything better. Until she had married Elrohir, he had protected her from everything.
As a child, if she was scared or had nightmares, it was her Ada that brought his sword into the room and looked under the furniture and in the closets then sat beside her bed, sword drawn, protecting her until she fell asleep again. She ran to him when her mother was cross with her and he would end up making her laugh instead. While her mother taught her to always be proper and clean, it was her father who would chase her down the beach in her best dress and when he caught her would throw her into the waves. He knew Indil would just shake her head if he did it. It was her father that taught her how to swim, ride horses, and shoot a bow. Despite the fact that she almost stabbed him a half dozen times, he taught her how to wield a sword.
When she married Elrohir, it was a constant battle between the two of them for dominance. It took Laurëanna a long time to learn not to run to her father for protection from the smallest slight. It took even longer for him to let her grow up.
Luckily, they had Indil, who was their voice of reason. She could calm Glorfindel as well as remind him to let his daughter grow up. She reminded Elrohir often that he was a welcome part of the family despite whatever Glorfindel had threatened him with that day. It had been a long bumpy road between the three of them but Indil had smoothed feathers and frayed nerves the whole time. As Laurëanna grew up, she matured greatly and reminded everyone of her mother.
Watching them now, Indil lost her composure completely. She knew that Laurëanna would do as she was asked. Everything they had now would be gone. She did not even know if she would meet and marry Glorfindel. She would lose her daughter without a doubt.
Laurëanna saw her mother dissolve into tears and pulled away from her father quickly. He followed her gaze and came to his wife. His wife was strong, a pillar of strength. She rarely cried, much less cry so openly in front of others. He gathered her in his arms and held her as she wept. Everyone else was silent. Elrohir and Elrond returned from outside and Elrohir stood with his arms around Laurëanna.
When she finally gathered her senses, Elrond looked around the room and said, "This has been a trying day for everyone. Unfortunately, it will not get any easier. Either Laurëanna goes back and we have to handle the trauma of her departure or she does not and we face the trauma of an upcoming war. The days of peace are numbered now. We have at most twelve days. So we cannot be fighting each other."
"I agree. We just need to prepare Laurëanna for what she is about to do," Thranduil added.
"You are assuming she is going," Glorfindel said.
"Yes, I see there is no option other than that," Thranduil replied.
"So if it were Legolas being sent back to save my daughter instead of the other way around, you would accept that?" Glorfindel responded darkly.
"This is not about saving Legolas. This is about saving Middle Earth as well as Aman. But yes, if it were Legolas, I would do so. And he would not question my decision or his duty," Thranduil said.
"And if I recall, it was his duty that got him killed. I am glad you are willing to sacrifice my daughter as well," Glorfindel rose, as did Thranduil.
"Stop it, both of you," Lady Galadriel said.
"Why should your daughter be more important than my son? Why should she not make a sacrifice for the good of Arda? She will most likely live through her sacrifice. It will be my son trying to keep your daughter alive so I would not so lightly…" Thranduil began.
"Stop!" Lord Elrond said and moved between the two who were glaring at each other. "This is not helping anyone. In fact, it is making things worse."
"It is easy for everyone to say that Laurëanna should go because she will only be a messenger but she is not delivering this message in a time or place of safety. She might die before the message is even delivered. Then we would have to battle Sauron here in Aman while knowing that our sacrifice of our daughter was for nothing," Indil said angrily.
Celebrían came and sat with her. Taking Indil's hands in her own, she said, "Indil, it is not easy for us to even think of saying Laurëanna should go. We love her as well. I do not know what the best decision is but we will all suffer for it. And we will suffer together, not apart," Celebrían hugged Indil for a long time.
"I simply do not think there is a lot of reason to think she should go. We do not know it will change anything and the Valar can defeat Sauron here. Bring the elves of Tol Eressëa off the island into Tirion and defend the beaches at Alqualondë. We will have the advantage plus they will not be aware that we are expecting them. Between that and the Valar's assistance, Sauron never has to set foot on these lands," Elladan said confidently.
"Elladan, if it were that easy, they would not have suggested this in the first place," Lord Elrond shook his head. "No, I fear this will not be an easy time. I do not yet know how I feel about Laurëanna returning to Middle Earth but if Sauron is to come to Aman, it will be devastating."
"Then I must do it. There is no other choice. At least this way we have chance. If I stay here, I can do nothing to perhaps make this any better," Laurëanna replied.
"That is madness Laurëanna. You will not be returning to Middle Earth under any circumstances. This is one thing I completely agree with your father on," Elrohir warned her.
"You are ordering me not to go?" Laurëanna turned around quickly to face him.
"It appears that at last Elrohir and I are of the same mind when it comes to what is best for you Laurëanna," Glorfindel watched the couple.
"This is her decision and hers alone," Lady Galadriel reminded them.
"And she has already made her decision," Thranduil said.
"Thranduil, will you be departing now or will you be departing now?" Glorfindel said darkly.
Thranduil smirked at the insult seeing the rage in Glorfindel's eyes. "How subtle, Glorfindel, not unlike your negotiating skills. If memory serves me you were always much more at home planning battle strategies rather than seeking resolutions."
"Perhaps we should send a band of heavily armed elven warriors to Rohan to walk Aragorn along the Paths of the Dead at sword point," Thranduil continued as Tavaril looked at her husband in shock.
"We could use one of your methods and lock in him a dungeon," Glorfindel responded dryly. "But in times such as these, we do not have time to lock him up just so he can escape and save Middle Earth to spite you."
"This bickering gains us nothing," Lady Galadriel said loudly.
Thranduil and Glorfindel continued to glare at each other.
Elrond, trying desperately to keep the peace, took a deep breath before saying. "Galadriel is right. This cannot be decided through a battle between the two of you nor do we need a reenactment of the kinslaying to find the best solution."
"Everyone understands you are upset Glorfindel, and rightfully so. Thranduil, you should be more understanding to his pain as you and I lost a child during the dark years. It is still painful and would be wonderful to fix it simply. But this is not simple," Elrond said looking between Glorfindel and Thranduil. "If I knew for certain that she could change the past and undo all that was done, I might be of a different mind. But there is no guarantee. Even if there were, it would be difficult to encourage her to do this. She is part of my life now and my son's wife. She is the daughter of a very dear friend as well."
"Unfortunately, there are no guarantees and, while I do not want to be the one to encourage her to go, it needs to be carefully thought through Glorfindel and not to save Arwen or Legolas. Because if she is successful, it could possibly prevent the loss of lives both here and in Middle Earth. We cannot lightly say that it is not worth it to consider it," Elrond said looking sympathetically at Glorfindel and Indil.
Everyone was quiet for a long time. Glorfindel and Thranduil relaxed and stopped glaring at each other.
"Glorfindel, forgive me for what I have said here today. I do know the pain of losing a child so I cannot imagine why I would think it would be any easier for you. If I had known that Legolas would be killed, I would have done all that I could to prevent it including keeping him out of the fellowship. It is always difficult when you are torn between your duty to your people and your own family. As I have said, forgive me for the insensitivity I have shown you here today," Thranduil said softly.
Glorfindel nodded. "Forgive me for being so disrespectful to your position as well as to our friendship."
Glorfindel wanted to be strong and honorable but inside he was dying. He wanted to protect her. Everything in him screamed out to protect her. If he let her do this, it would kill him even if it saved Middle Earth. Sadly, he realized if she did this, he would no longer have a daughter and possibly not a wife. The peace that he had finally reached was beyond shattered. Sauron had already done his damage to him.
"I need to take a walk. The fresh air will help me think and perhaps calm me," Laurëanna said as she walked towards the door.
"I will come with you," Elrohir followed.
"No. Please. I need a few moments to myself." She kissed him quickly then left the room.
"Lord Elrond, I have done all that has been asked of me as was my duty. I even returned to Middle Earth to fulfill my duty. Have I not done enough that the Valar would ask this of me?" Glorfindel asked painfully. "To ask me to willingly give up my one and only child; to say goodbye to my daughter forever. There must be another way."
"If there was another way, it would never have been asked of her. You know this, Glorfindel," Galadriel said softly.
"And if she refuses?" Elrohir asked quietly.
"Then we all must prepare for the invasion of Valinor by Sauron's forces. We must accept the loss of all that once lived on Middle Earth," Lord Elrond said looking grimly at his son. "Elrohir, I know you do not wish for her to go but there is no other way."
"What if she fails? She will have to live through what we have all did while abandoning Middle Earth but she will go with the knowledge that she failed. Could you live with that knowledge?" Glorfindel replied angrily. "For I could not. Nor can she. They ask too much of her."
"I was there. If she cannot change Aragorn's mind about going to Isengard rather than Minas Tirith, then history will repeat itself. She has never set foot outside Valinor and you expect her to go back at a time so close to the fall of Men, the same day as a battle at Helm's Deep. You expect her to walk along the ruins of the Deepening Wall after living her whole life in Valinor. She is to do this and we do not even know if it would change anything," Elrohir said disgusted. Elladan squeezed his twin's shoulder in a show of support.
"I saw in the mirror before the battle in Rohan. If he traveled the Paths of the Dead, Aragorn would have been able to summon the army needed to win the battle at Pelennor Fields. If that battle had not been lost, our visions would have been right. Sauron would have been defeated and the One Ring destroyed," Lady Galadriel said. "Your father's visions had also shown this to be true. Eru has shown the Valar that this is true. Aragorn not going to Isengard brought disastrous results to himself and all of us."
"He paid a price for that as well. One man, no matter how honorable or noble he is, should not be responsible for saving all of mankind," Elladan argued.
"We are not saying that he is to blame for the loss of Middle Earth. There were so many things that could have changed the course of history, yet we know without a doubt that is a defining moment that was not supposed to happen as it did. We all have our regrets regarding the loss of Middle Earth and the rise of Sauron. Just as Isildur should have destroyed the Ring when it was cut from Sauron's hand, Aragorn's choice, although not evil or weak, was enough to change the future forever," Elrond said.
"Then send someone else. Send me," Glorfindel said.
"As the Valar have explained, none of us can go without creating a paradox. We were all there at that time. She is the only one who has been born in Valinor since Middle Earth's destruction. She is the only one who can possibly go back. If she chooses not to go, there is no other who can," Sighing, Galadriel sat down beside Glorfindel and took his hand. "I know what we ask of you is unfair. We have burdened her with much and we ask you to sacrifice much for her to go. This is hurting all of us very deeply. But there is no other solution."
"If she goes back, I will lose her forever. Even if I have another child, another daughter, she will not be Laurëanna. And they will not allow her to tell me when she goes back who she is. So she will lose me and her mother as well," Glorfindel said adamantly. "She could be killed walking the Paths of the Dead or before the walls of Minas Tirith. Many died doing so. Her skills with a sword are fair at best yet she has been taught in a time of peace. Her life has never depended on her ability."
Lord Elrond looked at his old friend wrapped in grief. He knew the pain of losing a daughter and understood what Glorfindel was going through now.
"We must depend on Legolas' ability to keep her safe. Once he knows who she is and why she has come, he will protect her with his life," Elrond said assuredly. "There is great risk involved in doing this, no one has said otherwise. If she chooses not to go, there will be more risk for us all including her."
Indil's soft cries were the only sound in the room. She held on to Glorfindel's hand tightly. Thranduil and Tavaril stood by the windows overlooking the garden and both were lost in thought. Watching her son's inner turmoil, Celebrían came and sat beside him. Taking his hand in hers, she watched Elrohir with concerned and sadden eyes.
"Elrohir, no one wants to lose Laurëanna. No one in here wishes this on her even if it would bring back our loved ones: no one wants her to suffer for it. This is more than just our loved ones. It is many races on Middle Earth that would be spared as well as those here. The Valar think it must be done. So we must prepare her if she chooses to do as she has been asked. And we must bear the suffering of losing her," Elrond said in soothing tones.
"But we will not remember her for long," Elladan said thoughtfully.
"What?" Elrohir jumped up and faced his brother. "Explain yourself, Elladan."
"As soon as she changes one thing in the past, we will no longer remember her at all for our pasts will all change. She will not even be a memory to us. It will be if she never existed," Elladan said, sadly watching as Elrohir realized what he said was true.
Elladan had gone to check on Laurëanna. The debate continued and seemed no closer to a resolution then before she had left. Finally, there was a pause in the conflict as everyone collected their thoughts.
Before anyone could say more, Elladan returned. Observing the sadness and shock in everyone's eyes, he wished he did not have to say what he must. He had seen Laurëanna in the gardens and she had left him moments ago.
"She has gone to speak with Eönwë," Elladan said.
"She has made her decision without talking to us first?" Glorfindel jumped up and began towards the door only to be stopped by Indil. Shocked, he glanced at her and was surprised to see her so calm.
"This decision was hers to make and she has made it. We must trust her to do the right thing by what she feels in her heart to be true," Indil stood beside Glorfindel and kept her hand on his arm until he relaxed. His look of sorrow hurt her deeply. She had never seen him look so defeated.
Elrohir got up and stormed out of the room with Elladan close behind him. Lord Elrond sighed and reached for Celebrían's hand. Once again the room was quiet, each wrapped in their own thoughts and feelings. Eventually everyone drifted out of the room to their own home leaving Glorfindel and Indil to cope with their pain.
Elladan was having a hard time keeping up with Elrohir and an even worse time trying to stop him.
"Elrohir, stop! It is too late. You cannot change her mind now and you should not go against her in this. We must be there for her, to support her through this, not question her decision," Elladan said, desperately grabbing Elrohir's arm.
Elrohir whirled around and jerked his arm away from Elladan so forcefully that he almost unbalanced him. In all their years, they had never come to blows but Elladan felt that if they were to resort to that, this would be one of those few times Elrohir would have chosen to do so.
"How dare you try to stop me? How can you even begin to understand how I feel? Can you envision her there in Middle Earth? See her there at Pelennor Fields. Imagine her dying, as many warriors did before her. But they had a chance, for they knew how to fight. She does not. She has not had to fight for her survival. Her life has been full of beauty and love," Elrohir paused for a deep breath. "She will die, defenseless and alone."
"Elrohir. Her decision has been made. You must accept it whether you wish to or not," Elladan replied softly.
Elrohir looked away from him and Elladan could feel the rage and pain flowing from him as if it were tangible. Finally, Elrohir walked away towards his home rather than towards the Ring of Doom. Elladan let go the breath he had been holding. He did not want to imagine what Elrohir would have said if he were before the Maia now. His temper was completely out of control and he might have shown the full force of his wrath to Eönwë, which would only end poorly for Elrohir and, possibly, Laurëanna as well.
Laurëanna walked slowly to the Ring of Doom to see Eönwë, needing the peace and serenity of the gardens and beautiful fountains along the path. She barely noticed anyone else passing her as she walked in a daze. When Máhanaxar came into view, she stopped, trying to gather her courage. She felt sickened by the fear of what she was doing and felt guilty for not seeing her parents or her husband before coming here. She knew that in the face of her father or her husband's power, she would not be able to do what should be done. She did not wish any of this to be true. Yet even now, the skies were darkening as evil grew and the threat came closer to Valinor.
A chill ran down her spine and she wrapped her arms around herself. The thought of the Dark Lord coming here to destroy all that was beautiful in Aman made her sick with worry and dread. She knew that if Sauron came here that Elrohir and her father along with the rest of her family and friends would be forced to fight and possibly die. The thought of orcs in Swan Haven made her ill. She could not imagine the beautiful white beach overrun with foul creatures and the blood of elves covering the sand. If she could in any way prevent that, she would be horrible and weak for not trying to do something. Her worst fear was failure.
Laurëanna was not her father. The Witch King and the Nazgul would not cower in the face of her wrath. She could not slay a Balrog to save others. Their blood was the same but their lives were not. He is one of the mighty Firstborn elves, an elf lord of a House of Princes. She was merely his daughter. She was a descendant of the House of the Golden Flower. A descendant of power but not powerful herself.
After some time, she realized she needed to go to speak with Eönwë. If she were not brave enough to face the Maia, she would not be brave enough to face her task.
As she walked towards Máhanaxar, she saw Eönwë sitting nearby in the courtyard with a fountain. He was watching her and she wondered if he had seen her struggle with indecision while on the path. He smiled and she walked to him.
"Sit, Laurëanna. Perhaps you have made your decision and wish me to relay your message to Manwë and Varda," As he spoke, he gestured to a chair nearby.
When she sat down, Laurëanna looked at her hands for a moment before looking at him. His face was full of kindness and she felt at once comforted.
"I wish to ask one thing of the Valar," she explained.
"Will this affect your decision?"
Laurëanna hesitated for a moment before saying, "No. But it would make my decision easier to accept for those who love me."
"What is your decision, my child?" Eönwë asked looking at her intently.
When she drew in a deep shaky breath, he reached out and squeezed her hand reassuringly.
"It is my duty to do as the Valar ask and I will do it without question. Plus if I can possibly spare lives, then it will be an honor to do so," she said. "Yet, I wish to ask for one thing. I understand that I cannot tell my family when I meet them in the past who I am. I would like for them to know when they come to Valinor that they will remember our history prior to now. If I can never tell my parents or my husband in Middle Earth who I am, it would comfort them now to know that they would remember me eventually. And if they do not know until they reach Valinor, then it will have no effect on the future of Middle Earth."
Eönwë was quiet for a moment. Looking at the girl before him, so young yet entrusted with so much, he felt pity for her and her loved ones. They are facing turmoil and she only wished to spare them one small bit of it.
"Laurëanna, I will go to Manwë and Varda now and request this be granted for you and will return with their answer," She nodded and left him.
Laurëanna worried as she began the walk home. What would she do if Manwë would not grant her this request? It would not change her decision but she would like to be able to offer her parents some comfort.
When Laurëanna came into the dark house, she thought perhaps Elrohir had not come back from her father's yet. Knowing he would be angry with her, she was secretly glad.
"Laurëanna." The very way he said her name made her cringe. She turned and he was sitting in a chair near the patio doors.
"Elrohir, I was going to look for you. I went..." she began.
"I am surprised you remembered that you had a husband at all. You do not consult me about decisions about our lives. I thought perhaps you had forgotten our vows," he interrupted her before she could say more.
"Elrohir, I know you are angry and upset but I had no choice. Would you have preferred me to be a coward and let everyone down, give up on Middle Earth completely? Allow Sauron to kill even more elves in an attempt to destroy Aman as well?"
"I would have preferred to have some say in my future. I would have preferred to discuss this with you before you made a rash decision," Elrohir stood and walked towards her.
"But..." she tried to explain.
"Laurëanna, my sweet wife, you have no understanding of what you will be going back to. You have never set foot outside Valinor nor seen the evil of Middle Earth. Glorfindel does not even want me to speak of these things with you. He has told me since we met that he wants you spared what we suffered. Now I see what sparing you has cost us all. You have no concept of what we went though on Middle Earth."
"Elrohir. I am not a child. I will not be treated as if I were," Laurëanna exclaimed.
"You are acting like a child to me. A sweet, naïve, and foolish child who has given not one thought to what this will mean to you. To us," Elrohir fumed.
Furious, Laurëanna turned and walked towards their bedroom. Before she took two steps, he grabbed her arm and turned her around. He held both arms tightly as he looked into her eyes.
"Did you think I would be proud you have chosen to do this? For once I wish that stubborn streak in you had lost to the gentleness of your heart but I see it has not," Elrohir said in a low voice and a tone he had never used before with her.
"Do you know what it is like in Middle Earth? Would you like me to tell you what we have all been through? Not just the version of the truth your father has allowed you to hear but the gory details."
"Elrohir, you are hurting me," Laurëanna tried to squirm away from him. He loosened his grip immediately but did not release her.
"Would you like to know what is it like to have to fight for your life? Or for the lives of those you love? I could tell you what it is like to kill orcs. Or, if you prefer, I could tell you about the stench of their filthy bodies and their blood permeating the air, how no matter how many times you try, you cannot get their blood out of your clothing. The way they kill and torture innocents. Would you like the details of that, Laurëanna?"
"Perhaps you should ask my mother what she suffered at the hands of the orcs. I am sure she could give you vivid details that would cause nightmares for months." His eyes were ablaze with anger.
"No. Elrohir, I am not trying to upset you. Please stop," she whispered softly.
"If you prefer, I could tell you about the Nazgul, the Ringwraiths, the Nine. What I saw them do to the warriors of Middle Earth, as well as innocent victims. I could describe the sight of what they did to my sister and her escorts, how her beautiful face was covered in blood, both hers and her companions. I can tell you how the sight of her body made Elladan and I weep like we were children. Perhaps you would prefer I told you of the sorrow my father and mother feel about her death to this day. My father feels he failed her. Galadriel did not look into her mirror one time after she saw the vision of my sister being butchered. Perhaps if she had, she would have known about the upcoming attack on Lothlórien."
"Let me tell you about the elves that were slaughtered in Lothlórien. One of the most beautiful places in all of Middle Earth was burned to the ground with the elves who lived there still within the trees that were ablaze. Dying, Laurëanna. They did not die painlessly. Their immortality was ripped from them in the cruelest of fashion. The orcs did not just kill them; everything and everyone they ever loved was destroyed. My grandfather was murdered and his body was proudly put on display by the orcs so that the Lórien elves would know that hope was lost. If it were not for my grandmother leading a handful of survivors out of there, no one would have lived from Lothlórien; all of the elves of the Golden Wood would have been just a memory. Even now, they still have the haunted look in their eyes from what they saw and heard during those attacks. Do you think they will ever forget? Nay, they will not. Ask our friends Rumil or Airemír what they remember of that time, Rumil watching both of his brothers hacked down as if they were nothing. Airemír seeing her family and friends slaughtered."
"Elrohir, I am trying to stop this. I need to do this. I need to help."
"Laurëanna, you need to understand how you will be living when you go back. I am trying to educate you on the facts, the details. King Thranduil's son, Legolas, a simple but honorable wood elf went from his home in Mirkwood to Rivendell for the council meeting. Then he left with eight companions to destroy The One Ring. He survived a Balrog in Moria, countless attacks by orcs, goblins, trolls, and Uruk-Hai. He survived Helm's Deep and Pelennor Fields. Yet, on his way to Imladris to take news of my sister's death to my father, he was with a small band of various others including Elladan and I. We were surrounded by orcs just one day from the safety of our realm. He was wounded protecting his friends, a dwarf and two small hobbits. Elladan was also wounded in that attack. I had to fight while protecting my brother who was too wounded to stand and defend himself"
"When your father came to aid us in the attack, we fled to Rivendell with Legolas and Elladan, hoping to save them. But when we arrived in my father's home, he was able to save Elladan but it was too late for Legolas. While my father thanked the Valar that he had not lost yet another child, he had to comfort his friend. Ask King Thranduil to tell you his sorrow; how he wept for Legolas and prayed to the Valar to spare his son, his only child, from death to no avail. Ask Taravil how she felt when she learned Legolas would never come to Aman."
Tears began to roll down Laurëanna's face and she attempted to look away from his gray eyes, so full of both anger and sorrow. When she tried to turn her head, he pulled her face gently back to look at him.
"The dwarves died, slain as their caves were overrun with orcs and goblins. The hobbits, a peaceful race much like innocent children, were destroyed. Men died. All women, men, and children eventually died: not natural deaths but horrible ones full of pain, fear, and sorrow. Feelings you cannot begin to understand for you have never felt them. You have never lived outside of Valinor as I have. You have not seen anything but the beautiful wonders of this land. You have not lost someone you cared about to a brutal death or a friend who was crushed with his kingdom after he defended it for many years. You do not know the sense of failure we all felt when the Ring was not destroyed."
"You expect to go there and warn Legolas. After that, all will be well. But it will not, Laurëanna. You will still have to face the fear of the Paths of the Death. Fear that has kept those paths untouched for generations of Men. Then you will still have to witness the battle for the corsair ships foreseen by my father. If we survive, of which there is no certainty, you will still have to go to Minas Tirith, a city under siege by the Dark Lord's forces. You will have to come face to face with orcs or a troll or worse yet, a Nazgul. You will have to hear their piercing cries that bring your doom upon you."
"If you make it into the city alive, you will see the wounded men in the streets, the dead men brought in from the battle. You have never seen death: you do not know how horrifying it is. The blood, the gore, the sickening smell, the cries of the dying, the light fading from their eyes even as you promise them that they will not die." The look on his face was one of horror and it made her cringe.
"Elrohir, stop. You are frightening me." Once again, Laurëanna tried to escape his grasp.
"You need to be frightened, Laurëanna. You need to be terrified!" Elrohir shouted at her, enraged. Letting her go, he turned his back on her and walked to the window.
The tears started and she could do little to stop them. She had never felt such pain in her life and she wept. She was losing her parents to do this. She was losing all she had. She was losing him.
Once she was able, she spoke softly, "I thought you would understand why I must do this. I would not have been asked if the Valar thought that I could not do this. Yet you are angry and doubting me. You have condemned me to fail before I even begin. Perhaps it matters not that I will be leaving and you wish for our last words to be words of anger."
"What words do you want from me? Words of comfort I cannot give. What is it you wish for me to say to you?" Elrohir replied without facing her.
"I need you to tell me when I go back, you will be there and you will love me. That I will not lose you as well," she whispered.
Elrohir turned to look at her for a long time. He saw her tear filled eyes pleading with him for solace. Walking over, he took both of her hands and looked at her gently.
"Laurëanna, I cannot tell you that. I cannot promise that you will be nothing more than a distraction and a hindrance to me and all those with me. I am not the same as I was then. The very beautiful qualities I see in you now will just be viewed as weakness to me then. I cannot even promise to protect you. I remember my thoughts of those days. Your death would be viewed as just another casualty of the battle, nothing more. It would sadden me to lose a companion, any companion, but would I weep for you? I do not think I would," he said.
Though his tone was soft, his words were harsh. Laurëanna jerked her hands from his, her eyes full of anger and disgust. Gently, he ran his hand along the side of her face and moved closer to her.
"Laurëanna, if you go back, you will most likely lose me as well," Elrohir said in a shaky voice. Kissing her gently, he then turned and walked quietly into their bedroom.
The horror of what he had told her combined with the shock of what she must do caused her to sink to the floor. Covering her face with her hands, she wept in huge sobs. It was all a mistake. Tomorrow she would wake up and this will have only been a nightmare. Why had the Valar asked her to do this? She was not strong enough to do this on her own but she would be alone. Her companions would be those long dead and a husband and his brother who knew nothing of her, nor cared for her. She was not a warrior; she was only the messenger to those capable of fighting this battle.
Everyone she loved would no longer know she existed. Everything she had in her life would be gone. She would be completely and utterly alone.
Elrohir could hear her sobs from their bedroom and guilt washed over him in waves. He hoped to scare her in changing her mind but all he had succeeded in doing was hurting her. She was Glorfindel's daughter. It was in her very blood to honor her duty. She would not turn her back on that. Like her father before her, she would lose everything to help others. Even without a guarantee that she could.
He could bear the sounds of her heartbreak no more. Walking into the other room, he bent down and picked her up in his arms. As he was carrying her to the bedroom, she put her arms around his neck and buried her face in his shoulder, still sobbing. He gently undressed her and smoothed back the blankets on the bed. He lay beside her and wrapped her in his embrace.
"Laurëanna, I am sorry I hurt you. I do not wish to have our last days together full of arguing," Elrohir said kissing her softly. Tenderly, he wiped the tears from her face and pulled her chin up so she was looking at him.
"I love you so much Laurëanna. I do not want to lose you. I know you will not change your mind so I must accept that. But you will go back prepared for the challenges you will face."
"What do you mean?" she sniffled.
"You will be taught to protect yourself better and everything you need to know for you to live through this," he whispered looking into her eyes as he stroked her baby fine hair.
"What is the point if you will not love me? I will have lost everything. Once the Ring is destroyed there is no reason for me to go on," she whispered touching his face lovingly.
"You will live for me. You will live for your father and your mother. Find a way to make me love you no matter how I try to push you away. We belong together. We both know that now. Make me realize that in the past. There is no one who can do that but you. Soon I will know as I know now that we were met to be together," Elrohir said before kissing her passionately.
"You must promise me, Laurëanna. No matter what happens, you will go to Rivendell if you can. It is the safest and my father will protect you even if your father and I are not there to do so."
"But…" she began.
"Laurëanna, promise me," Elrohir said firmly.
The thought that they would soon be separated made them cling to each other desperately as they kissed and held each other through the night.
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.