For Phyncke is a series of three double-drabbles about Fingolfin and how one finds his way through grief, exile, and darkness. The idea came to me while listening to the Blind Guardian song "The Eldar" and considering the line about how many of the Elves witnessed the first sunrise. The symbolic implications of this event at such a dark time in their history was impossible to resist, and I was bitten!
We made a lot of clichés in Aman without much of an idea of what they really meant. "Blinded by love," we said. Or: "Blinded by rage." Grief, beauty, deception.
In Aman, we were always blinded by something.
We had no idea.
What was it like? I was often asked when we met the first Moriquendi, about crossing the Ice. Not the lovely, coddled people of Elwë but the Moriquendi of the cold north, who had gone so far as the Helcaraxë, seeking loved ones ensnared by Melkor, but quailed and turned aside. There was no cowardice in turning aside, I learned. They were a hardy people who feared little yet would not step upon the Ice.
The Ice? How was it?
I remembered little of it. Just a narrow vision of the east. The east, and a particularly delicate pattern of stars on the horizon. I saw only that. I was blinded to all else.
Blinded by what? I did not know.
I remembered only the sound of my breath, too loud in a land otherwise without sound, and the pattern of stars on the horizon.
And a hand upon my arm. I remembered that too. But who-?
I dreamed of it-the Ice and him, my herald.
He'd been but a boy when he'd knocked upon my door, eyes wide with hope. He was not an attractive boy; he had freckles and overlarge elbows. "I want to be your herald," he said.
"You are far too young for that." I closed the door in his face.
Not long after, I needed a herald, for I was king. I pondered this but how does one go about getting a herald? It seemed a job unworthy of being trusted to a stranger.
He came knocking again. He was still freckled but had grown into the awkward elbows. "You need a herald," he said, "and I wish to serve as one."
At times, I will admit that I wondered why I'd agreed. He was ugly and didn't even look like a Noldo. His hair was golden and his skin too pale and his voice wasn't quite strong enough to announce me. When we reached the Helcaraxë, I told him to stay behind, convinced that he would die otherwise.
Yet he had not. It was his touch upon my elbow, as constant as the stars that kept my course.
Turukáno had protested him the most. "He is ugly," he said. "And he makes a fool of us."
Yet it was for Turukáno that he'd disassembled my banner, to wrap him as he'd clutched Idril, weeping for Elenwë lost to the Ice. When we'd marched onward, he'd guided Turukáno and me. "I have two hands," he'd said.
I saw only the stars on the horizon. Not him and not Turukáno. I spared no thought for love, to have it lost upon the Ice.
Or lost to treachery.
Do I need a herald in this dark land? I wonder sometimes. Still, he is there, at my side, as we ride to my brother's camp. Though my brother is gone; Macalaurë's banner flies in its place.
Upon the eastern horizon, the stars are growing faint. We stop-my herald and I-and wonder at the quivering fire that eases slowly out of the darkness at the end of the world. The light strikes him full in the face and sets his hair aglow like molten gold.
His hand-lacking the banner-clutches mine. The stars are gone but in the light of the first sunrise, I do not fear losing my course.
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.