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Of Numenor That Was: 1. Of Numenor That Was
Menelgund dove through the air, willing himself not to cough at the fumes. He was the eyes, the nose, the ears of Manwë Súlimo himself! How could one so exalted as he retch like a common gull?
Yet the smoke carried more than just the smell of brine and ash. That he had smelled in Valinór, when the Elf-children made their festival bonfires. This was different. He dared a deeper breath and a putrid scent assailed him: singed hair and scorched man-flesh.
Menelgund climbed high, through the clouds, far above his brothers. Anything to get far from that awful odor.
She would have screamed, if she could. The king's men had given her a drink earlier, to dull the pain
they'd claimed, and now her tongue lay useless against her cheek.
She was going to die; Gimilbêth felt the flames lick at her calves. Yet the priests still spoke, exalting the one true God of Men who gave them life eternal. Surely they had not started yet?
A spark caught her eye, and her soul wailed within her. So loud was its cry, she marvelled that none could hear. And then, as the Wave crashed overhead, the Flames took her.
Sakalzôr kneeled behind the altar, blinking furiously. He knew Annatar's teachings well: how, when the One returned even the dead would awake, and how those whose blood had slaked His thirst would stand at His side when Taniquetil crumbled. Sakalzôr believed those ancient truths completely; truly, his sister would join the One's harem.
So why did his eyes mist? 'Twas a good death. Sakalzôr swallowed hard and, as the officiant spoke the final words, thrust his brand into the coalbed he had lain Gimilbêth on.
Then he heard, overhead, a deafening roar. And Sakalzôr looked up, and saw, and wept.
Nénheri wandered among the wreckage. Many of Ulmo's handmaidens were content to guide the elf-ships to the hidden paths, but she had always been an adventurer. What secrets lay buried there?
She swelled the ocean's current to wash aside the crumbled entryway, and she entered. Even in decay the temple was grand; how beautiful it must have seemed at its height!
But then she saw the blackened bones, and of a sudden the gold looked garish and mottled. She gathered the girl in her arms and left to find her lord. No child of the One would be left here.
[name removed for review process] asked for drabbles involving OC's. Obviously this series of drabbles is populated entirely by such characters, but the situation and races are very bit Tolkien, especially the tragedy of the sacrifices of Númenor. The names are derived from elements of Sindarin, Quenyan, and Adúnaic taken from canon, but are not intended to mean anything. The title is derived from Faramir's statement in The Two Towers, that Gondorians look "towards Númenor that was, and beyond to Elvenhome that is, and to that which is beyond Elvenhome and will ever be."
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