Fell and Fair: 18. Late December, 2930 Third Age

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18. Late December, 2930 Third Age

The Angle
Late December, 2930 Third Age

Elrohir, riding with Elladan to a Dúnedain settlement

Centuries ago, Elladan and I began our campaign of righteous wrath — vowing to defend all Free Peoples after having failed our mother. But, these days, we continue the campaign in cold necessity.

Creatures of the Dark — Orcs, trolls, evil wolves — increase everywhere we ride, encroaching on Eriador, menacing the passes. They direct special malice towards the Dúnedain, our distant kinsmen, who founder under frequent assault.

We fight a long defeat.

Now Arador is slain, Chieftain less than twenty years. We arrived in time to fell the troll, too late to prevent his death.

How we weary of bearing bitter tidings!

Elladan, at Arathorn and Gilraen's home

"We raised a cairn over your father's grave in the Coldfells."

I leave much unsaid: Arador's corpse lies hidden among brambles near a rock-fall — the earth too hard to dig; the stones are heaped high enough to hinder scavenging animals, but not to draw attention from passing Orcs... except by smell.

No need to further disquiet Gilraen, great with child.

Grimly, Arathorn nods understanding.

Long has he captained the Rangers; he has borne witness that vigilance no longer forestalls sudden slaughter by the gathering forces of Darkness.

Now Chieftain, he well knows the sacrifices his people make in the Wild.

Gilraen, beside Arathorn

Elrond's sons are welcomed as brothers-in-arms by Rangers, but not so by wives. Too often are they harbingers of widowhood.

This time, 'tis not Arathorn lying slain, but his father. I stand beside my husband in support.

"And the other men?" he inquires, stern duty overcoming personal grief.

"All live, but four are wounded," Elladan replies. Looking at me, he adds, "including Gilbarad."

Still, I am relieved that Arathorn yet lives; Grandfather's injuries cannot distract from my resolve that this baby will know his father.

But by Arathorn's loss, he becomes Chieftain untimely.

My father's forebodings begin to come true.

Gilraen, with Elrohir

"How fares my grandfather?" I ask.

"Broken bones," Elrohir replies, "but Gilbarad mends quickly. Ivorwen sends word: she will help care for him — you need not travel there in your condition."

Always have I chafed at restrictions, yet my mother knows I tire easily with this heavy womb.

But I will visit Arathorn's mother. Andreth received me warmly before our betrothal, and brought me to the herb-women; they pronounced me robust, advising red meat and bitter teas to bear strong sons.

She it was who taught me the additional duties of an Heir's wife: appearing ever-hopeful, receiving visitors, comforting widows.

Arathorn, leaving the house with Elladan and Elrohir

"How did it happen?"

"Hill-trolls set off a rockslide to waylay the patrol," Elrohir reports. "One charged straight at Arador — tossing aside like rag dolls men trying to protect him — grabbed him, and fled.

"Once we reached the others, we pursued the troll.... Elladan shot out its eyes, but your father died in my arms."

Elladan adds, "Gilbarad was sorely shaken; he said 'twas as if the trolls planned to seize Arador, and lay in wait."

Dread grips me. "How could dull-witted creatures act with such purpose?"

Elrohir looks grave.

"We fear the Enemy's servants now target the Heirs of Isildur."


The men depart to speak privately; Dúnedain think to keep secrets from their womenfolk. And we return the favour....

My father foretold that Arathorn would soon become Chieftain, yet be short-lived. Young he may think me, but I know my primary duty: to produce the next Heir, ensuring hope for our people.

I may not bear many children by Arathorn; more's the need for the haste counselled by my mother.

Thus I consulted the wise women who preserve, from mother to daughter, the potent arts of birthing medicine from Númenor.

'Tis their herb-lore that protects the male line of Isildur.

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: Elena Tiriel

Status: General

Completion: Complete

Era: 3rd Age - The Stewards

Genre: Drama

Rating: General

Last Updated: 12/21/09

Original Post: 04/18/05

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Elena Tiriel - Star Gazings - 180 posts

I am a new author who is serious about improving my writing. Your comments, both positive and negative, will be treasured, evaluated, and incorporated freely!

Thank you in advance for your time and effort.

My fiction includes:

Fell and Fair (for the Sons of Elrond at the Field of Celebrant and the Alternate Perspectives Challenges)

ET's Legolas Song Parodies (for the International Legolas Month Song Parody Palooza Challenge)

Famous First Lines (for the It Was a Dark and Stormy Night Challenge)

Holiday Carols, Middle Earth-style (for the Carols in Middle-earth Challenge)

and numerous drabbles, including: Alas, Poor Ufthak!

I also compiled many entries for the HASA Resource Library, including the following small sampling:

Interesting People to Meet & Greet:
Orophin & Rúmil, The Bardings, and The Beornings

Cool Places to See & Be Seen:
The Elf-path, The Forest Gate, The High Pass of Rivendell, The Old Forest Road, Undertowers, The Westmarch, and Libraries of the Shire

Wild Fauna to Look (Out) For:
Black Squirrels, Butterflies, Hunting Dogs, The Kine of Araw, Giant Bats, Giant Moths, and Giant Spiders

Toothsome Treats to Eat:
Honey-cakes of the Beornings

Magical Powers to Admire (from a safe distance):
The Unlight of Ungoliant

Great Literature to Read:
The Red Book, The Thain's Book - Annotated Copy of the Red Book, Findegil's Copy of the Thain's Book, The Akallabêth, Herblore of the Shire, Old Words and Names in the Shire, The Reckoning of Years, The Tale of Aragorn and Arwen, The Tale of Years, and Translations from the Elvish

Important Events to Remember:
The Invasion of Calenardhon by Balchoth and Orcs, and The Battle of Dale and Siege of Erebor

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