Thranduil glanced at his son with surprise, not believing what he had heard.
"A-da?" Greenleaf called again with a sweet voice that seemed to melt his father, leaving him open mouthed.
Thranduil moved his eyes from his son to Galdor in wonder.
He spoke with excitement, "He called me 'Ada'! Did you hear him? He called me 'ADA'!"
Thranduil seemed to forget about the unexpected visitors, his attention now on his son, as he spoke his first word; it made Thranduil cry.
The King could feel the tears burst from his eyes, as he trembled yet smiled. He knew then...the tears were cries of happiness.
Galdor knew that the guests still waiting, though he did not want to ruin the king's happiness, so he remained silent, only smiling at the sight.
The door was opened as Saelbeth entered in, only to find his king cheerful with the princeling in his hands, and Galdor smiling at the couple.
"My King?" Saelbeth asked, aware that he might disturb them.
Thranduil looked at him, still smiling, and answered: "He called me Ada!"
Saelbeth smiled, noticing his king's own smile. Saelbeth could feel the change in his king; he hoped in his heart that this elfling might give all blessings to the widowed king, and filled his life with smiles and laughter.
Saelbeth coughed: he wanted his king to know he was still there, so he waited as patiently as he could, knowing that the guests were waiting more impatiently than he.
At that point, Galdor walked over to him, and whispered in his ear that he would take care of it.
Saelbeth nodded and left the room, smiling, the sight of his joyful king brightening his face.
As Saelbeth left, Galdor walked over to his king, and touched the king's shoulder; he spoke softly. "Your Highness, the guests are waiting for you. Would you like to show them your son?"
Thranduil smiled with pride as he heard Galdor's last words, and decided, "I will come with my son. Let them know, that I am coming to them soon."
Galdor nodded and left.
Thranduil looked at his son, and whispered to him as he softly stroked his cheeks, "I love you, ion-nin, I hope you will not forget it, my…my…ion-nin."
Greenleaf moved his little hands over his adar's face, and tickled him, murmuring that strange, unknown language; his adar found difficulty translating his son's meaning.
"Let us see who the visitors are, my sweet Greenleaf," Thranduil said softly, as he continuously moved his hand over Greenleaf's cheek.
Greenleaf giggled at his adar, and moved his own hands to feel his adar's skin, and to smell his scent.
But before Thranduil left the room, he felt the need to hear his son say the word, only to him, alone in the room.
"Say A-da…A-da?" Thranduil spoke softly, scanning his son's eyes, noticing more the shade of blue than gray that he had seen before.
"A-da?" Thranduil kept asking when he only saw his son smiling at him; he smiled back.
Greenleaf did not say the word that his father wished, instead he moved his hands over his adar's chest and played, giggling.
Thranduil was disappointed that his son had not called him Ada again, and it is hurt him a little. His heart ached.
That little smile reminded him of his wife, and the pain...he could still feel the pain... it felt like it would never let go.
End of Chapter 5A.
Thranduil waited for his son to say the word, but Greenleaf only looked at him, and giggled.
Thranduil sighed in defeat and went to find the guests, his son in his hands.
He saw Lord Elrond, his old friend, who came to him first and clasped his shoulders; he could see the way Thranduil looked at him, it was different. But then, he noticed his son.
"Is this your son?" Elrond asked in wonder and excitement at the sight of the elfling.
Thranduil nodded, and answered, "His name is Greenleaf, for the fallen green leaf from my father's tree."
Elrond took another look at the elfling and said, "He is copy of your wife." Elrond then turned around and called for his own sons, to meet the King's.
"Elladan, Elrohir, come see Thranduil's son!" Elrond called in excitement, and soon Thranduil could see the twins, that he had known from their birth, though it had been long ago.
The twins approached their father, and smiled as they saw the elfling.
"He is so cute…" Elladan said softly.
"He took my finger…" Elrohir exclaimed, as a smile covered his face.
Elladan too, had been caught by the elfling's little hands, and said in defeat, "He took mine too. That is it, I give up."
Elrond glanced from his sons to Greenleaf, then to Thranduil. He noticed the smile that appeared, he saw the sparkles in his eyes. It seemed to be a moment of laughing, and yet it also seemed to be a moment of remembrance; perhaps Thranduil was remembering his wife.
"He did what?" Elrond re-joined them, and laid his hand over Thranduil's shoulder.
Thranduil glanced over him, nodded and smiled.
"He took our fingers, Ada…" The twins spoke at once.
Greenleaf's face turned from side to side, making Thranduil think that something might have disturbed him.
"Wait, my friend…" Elrond said softly.
Thranduil waited uncomforted, wishing to know what wrong, hoping everything was all right with his son.
Greenleaf's face stopped, as his eyes lay upon Thranduil. The elfling moved his hand over his adar, and stuttered, "A-da? A-da…"
Thranduil could only smile, a large smile that covered his face, and tears of happiness fell upon his cheeks.
The twins found their fingers free, and looked down at the elfling in amazement.
"What did he say?" Elladan asked, still not sure of what he heard.
"A-da…" Greenleaf said, as he affirmed his adar's presence.
Thranduil could not stop smiling; he seemed at loss in the moment as his son kept saying the word, again and again.
If the elfling knew what happiness this only word meant, if the elfling only knew what this word meant for his adar…
"I think we will stay…mellon-nin, as your son might need some company to play with, and I might guide you more with the sweet elfling…" Elrond said, knowing that his sons would be pleased with that decision.
The twins were happy, as they thought of what things they would teach the elfling, or what adventures would happen when the elfling would reach his maturity. They smiled indeed.
Thranduil raised his head from his elfling and looked deeply into his friend's eyes; he nodded and spoke, "So be it! Stay as long as you wish…your company is always welcome in my kingdom."
As Imladris' elves left, the guards guiding them the right way, Thranduil moved his head back to his son, and smiled.
Greenleaf smiled back, still pointing out his adar; he said in a sleepy voice, "A-da?"
Thranduil answered, the smile still covering his face, "Yes, ion-nin, I am your Ada…"
Thranduil left the guest's room, walking to his own, and laid the elfling in the small bed, and tucked him in.
"I will take care of you, ion-nin. I will be there for you when you need me." Thranduil assured the sleepy elfling; he kept looking at the little one from his own bed, till at last his eyes dropped, and dreams came.
Thranduil dreamed of Greenleaf saying the word; he smiled in his sleep and moved his lips.
If only his wife could see, he thought in his dream, but soon that thought faded, as Greenleaf awakened him.
Thranduil woke, and went to the little bed, and thought smiling, 'Fathers' work never ends.'
Galdor heard the screaming; he trotted to his king's room, and opened the door, only to find his king held in tight embrace by the elfling, being sung a lullaby.
Galdor closed the door, leaving father and son alone with each other.
The time of grief had come to end.
The time of happiness had started; the people rejoiced, for their king could now begin to heal.
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.