1. Himring (I)
'Amazing, Curvo', he murmurs, 'absolutely amazing. What did you do, tie your right hand behind your back for a day?'
'I didn't quite manage a whole day', I reply a little absentmindedly, as I try to figure out why he seems less than wholly pleased with the apartments I designed for him.
He turns round and looks at me searchingly. 'You really did!'
'You weren't about to tell me anything much yourself, were you?'
'I suppose I wasn't', he agrees.
Lines of defence, yes. We discussed geography and fortifications: moats, palisades, stone walls, towers, battlements, gates, drawbridges. He organized an army of masons, carpenters and smiths, and another army to guard them as they worked and then saw to it that they all got equipped and fed. The ditches were dug and barriers of earth and quarried stone rose at amazing speed. But he was still sleeping on a pallet on the floor. It didn't seem appropriate for the head of the family. So I offered to see to his private rooms, and he accepted. I got to work. He was hardly around at all in the interval—patrols, negotiations. This is the first time he's having a proper look at the results.
I'd forged the first left-handed swords and daggers for him in Mithrim. Handedness was an issue that, of course, I was aware of—I produced a passable first effort without even consulting him. The next attempt was tailored precisely to his developing skills.
One-handedness required more thought. Anything in his rooms that my brother could not manage with one hand only, with his left hand, he would need a servant to help him with. I needed to consider each handle, each grip, each fastening and lock. I strapped my right hand to my side one morning when I got out of bed. Under other circumstances, it might have been an interesting experiment.
By the early afternoon, my mood was so foul, that Tyelpo said to me: 'Atar, I know you're doing this to help Uncle Nelyo, but I'm out of here and not coming back before tonight. If I hang around, we might end up saying things we'd regret tomorrow, both of us.'
Now my brother is doing his first tour of his new rooms, and it seems he's spotted the thought and planning that went into it practically right away, but there's an almost imperceptible frown on his face. Perhaps he feels I was watching him too closely?
'Truly, Curvo', he says with a faint smile, 'you've managed to make this castle almost completely Maedhros-proof!'
'Don't call yourself by that chopped-up name! It's bad enough that those Sindar insist on doing it...'
'Oh, I don't know, it seems suitable somehow, don't you think?'
No, I don't and I've already made that clear enough. But he isn't waiting for an answer. He's looking at the furnishings again. Then he puts his arm around my shoulder and slowly turns me all the way around, three hundred sixty degrees.
'You're still so very angry.'
At first, I'm puzzled; then I see what he means. I guess it's not the left-handed gadgetry that is worrying him. Without even considering it, I've designed these rooms for the dispossessed king of the Noldor.
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.