Vain Songs, The: 15. Lords: XIV

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15. Lords: XIV

The north shore rises with the sun. Washes its face,
looks at its plate,
and turns to the wind.

The wind bears someone.

Eyes widen.
Peer for a minute, then whip,
thump! down against the wall,
panting to keep pace with frantic blood.

Eyes glimmer and narrow.

A lone child skulks by the paling.

Now 'Scoot for my uncle, will you?'
asks a light voice behind him.

The boy beams, scrambles off. He wants to sing as he runs.

So frank, so witty, so winsome, so wise.
In all the houses of the Noldor, there is
none loved - not even Fingon,
or worshipped, - not even Maedhros,
so much as Finrod Finarfin's son.

Now he stands tall and golden, alone at the head
of the dry grass courtyard.

Finrod would be a prince even if he were
dragged out into black muck
and made to chew his own big toe.

Calm sunshine.
Maedhros approaches. He does not care anymore
for anyone. He will not smile. He will not blink.
He does not know what to say.

The morning waits to split its silence.
Finrod does not know what to say.


Smile. Smile.

The leaves go whew.

Now Finrod wants to sing. He steps up, laying fingers
at the unharmed elbow,
too discreet to say what they mean, (Here, brother,
let me steady you.)

This is why distant Amarië loves him.

Now greater love approaches on wings. 'Maitimo!'

Soft, shining.
Fingon falls to his right, charmed vambrace.
Finrod smiles. He has always known.

Now watch the eldest sons of Finwë's sons
break into their stride. Even knowing
what will happen to all three some
six, seven centuries from now, and so achieving nothing, really,
drink in the sight.
Who knows what will be again?
Hush. See them as they move
further and further away. Their backs.

That shimmering arc of God's forehead.
Look from your left to your right.
First Finrod, dawn. Then Maedhros, dusk.
And Fingon, raven night.


'Boy,' breathes Fingolfin to his nephew,
shocked, shocked, unreasonably hurt,
'you make me feel so very old.
Your eyes, child - what words from me?'

'None. Please,
kind, noble father-brother. The very first
day I came to your house, you got up from your seat,
I remember. It was the mid-gold meal. You took my hands,
called me in,
bade me eat with your sons and you. So would you do today, I know.
You have
twice my age, and more wisdom than
I would earn in a Vala's reckoning of years.

Me, apologise? It is beneath you to accept it.
Only I can offer what strength I have, what strength
your soul, your son,
has saved for me. Take, and command it.'


'Tell me what to do.'

'Stay with me.'

'Except that.'

The sun shoots up, all white out blazing.
Maedhros, jewel-headed, looks to the unseen stars.
'Lord of Eagles. Lady of Light…'

Down to the silent dust.
'…lords of Water, Earth. Queen of the Trees…'

Quiet. A light is struck.
Celegorm rolls his eyes.

'…by Eru Ilúvatar, who was before we were,
and will be when Arda is no longer…'

Quiet. He shrugs off the crown.
Then - his braid brushes Fingolfin's bare white foot.

Dull metal thunk.

'…you, Fingolfin, are my King.'

'HIGH King!'


Day done.
More quiet.

Moonshine through bleached cotton.
Lift curtain.
All moonshine.

Curtain fall. 'Oh love.'

Are the whispers of people in close embraces
like the sighing of a breeze through roses?

From a great distance, it is all the shadows will give up.

' Himring?'


A blink. 'Well.
That is not so far.'

'Not near enough.'

'Then don't go.'

Clattering stones. Night birds set off a squawking.
The morning's boy runs away from his mother.

'Sometimes I feel,' his red hair unwinding,
wine snakes out of wine snakes, 'frozen in cold,
upto and beyond my eyes.'

Long, pale fingers. 'Strange it should be so.
Was it not your name I spoke to the ice winds,
that drove their chill from my heart?'

Now the black plaits. 'I will go, Findekáno.'


'For twenty years, perhaps,
and each day of each year
twenty years in itself.'

A last jet loop. The boy is caught.


Now night falls on honeyed evening and stays fallen,
Until the curtain crimsons,

and dawn rises from a beloved dream
to sound a gentle warning at the door.

Then time begins again.

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: Ëarmírë

Status: Reviewed

Completion: Work in Progress

Era: 1st Age

Genre: Poetry

Rating: Adult

Last Updated: 07/14/04

Original Post: 08/02/03

Go to Vain Songs, The overview


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