4. Begetting Celebrations
“Forgive me, I seem to be moving a bit slow these days.”
The Lady of the Golden Wood laughed. “Come,” she said taking his arm, “I wish to introduce you to Rumil’s brother and cousin.” Celeborn followed silently. He was not certain that springing this on Haldir was a good idea. He hoped his presence might keep the Marchwarden’s temper in check.
“Ah, Haldir.” Galadriel approached a tall elf. The Marchwarden bowed to his lord and lady, eying their companion. “A moment of your time, please,” she continued, motioning that Orophin should join them. They moved to a small table, set a bit apart from the rest of the feasting area. Once they were all seated, Galadriel began. “Haldir, you know what it is your brother truly desires, do you not?”
Haldir tightened his jaw and only nodded.
“Well, I can understand your concern for him. I too would be unwilling to let him explore Arda on his own, or even with my grandsons.”
The younger elf looked up a slight smile gracing his face. “I am glad to hear that. Perhaps you can reason…”
Galadriel held up her hand to silence him. “Please, hear me out. I said I understand, not that I entirely agree with you. My lord and I have discussed this matter. We are aware that you would not grant him leave, and like I said, I understand why. However, he can do as he pleases, and fearing that he might simply leave on his own, I have made a decision. For his begetting day, I am granting him leave to explore Arda with one I trust more than nearly any other.” Haldir’s eyes went wide. “May I introduce Lord Gildor of the Wandering Company?” Gildor inclined his head and smiled softly. “Gildor knows Arda as no other and will be an excellent teacher for Rúmil.”
Although what Galadriel said was true, there was a greater reason Haldir did not want his brother to leave…Haldir feared being alone, feared losing Rúmil…like his father and mother. Yet Haldir knew there was nothing he could do about it now. Galadriel had made arrangements. He looked to Orophin who remained silent. “This explains why you insisted on what we give him for his begetting day. You knew, did you not?”
Orophin looked at his cousin, guilt flashing in his eyes before he nodded, “Yes, I did. I was the one who spoke to Lord Celeborn, so if you wish to be mad at anyone, let it be me. Rúmil never spoke a word to anyone about his wish. I am sorry to have gone behind your back, over your head, but you were being unreasonable.”
“I promise,” Gildor cut in, “he will be safe traveling with me.”
Haldir sighed. “I know. And I am not mad.”
At that moment, Rúmil approached the group, albeit hesitantly. Gildor turned and was stunned by the vision that approached. He had thought Rúmil a handsome young ellon, but as the Silvan walked to the table, a new appreciation for the elf crept into Gildor’s soul and that strange fluttering began again.
“Is everything alright?” Rúmil asked, keeping his eyes on Haldir.
His older brother smiled, “Yes, penneth, everything is alright. Happy Begetting Day.” Haldir rose and embraced his brother. “Lady Galadriel was just sharing with us her plan for you. I am very happy; you will be in good company.”
It was then that Rúmil noticed Gildor at the table. His heart stopped at the vision before him and heat began to flow in his blood. “My lord,” he said with a bow.
Gildor smiled and nodded in response, “Happy Begetting Day, Rúmil.”
The guardian smiled and Orophin called for a round of drinks. “A toast to Rúmil!” He called out in a very loud voice. Those within earshot turned to the small group as Orophin stood on his chair. “A toast to my young cousin! Happy one hundred fiftieth begetting day! May your every wish come true and may Ilúvatar bless you on your journeys!” A loud cheer arose from those gathered and the feast began in earnest. Hopping down from the chair, Orophin excused himself from the group and ran from the clearing. Haldir sat in discussion with Celeborn while Galadriel spoke softly with Gildor. Rúmil was accepting best wishes from friends. Orophin returned with the most stunning dapple mare Rúmil had ever seen.
Haldir stood with Rúmil. “Happy begetting day,” he said as Orophin handed over the reigns to a stunned Rúmil. The surprised elf looked from brother to cousin and back to brother.
“I know you always wanted a horse. Orophin thought this would be a good year to get you one. I believe he was right.”
“She is beautiful!” Rúmil breathed. “Hennon le,” he said stroking the mare’s nose. He turned suddenly and embraced his brother tightly. “Hennon le for everything. I promise I will make you proud.”
“You already have,” Haldir replied.
Gildor, who had been examining the horse, was touched by the tender moment. His heart constricted and melancholy flashed in his eyes before he smiled again and commented on the fine animal. Galadriel however did not miss the fleeting change and she squeezed his hand in silent support.
Rúmil spent the rest of the evening thanking well wishers and accepting congratulations. He spent some time with his fellow guardians and his cousin, until Orophin set his eyes on a pretty elleth and began his hunt. Rúmil laughed as she played most hard to get. He caught himself steeling glances at Gildor, who had moved on to sit with a group from his company. The elf lord had awakened a strange feeling in the young elf. Rúmil found himself as curious about the Wandering Lord as he was in Arda. Gildor was a mystery which Rúmil wanted to solve. He wanted to spend the evening with him, talking about the upcoming journey or life or anything, actually. The guardian’s heart fluttered every time a beautiful elleth approached Gildor. He felt his pulse quicken and a heat flow to his groin, the more he thought about the tall, handsome elf-lord.
Gildor felt uncomfortable in the ‘family’ circle so he excused himself shortly after Rúmil received his begetting day gift. He knew that Rúmil’s leaving was a tense subject and decided to let the brothers come to terms with it. From where he sat, however, he had a perfect view of them…Rúmil especially. The ancient elf was caught staring at the younger elf by one of his companions.
“So, the pup is going with us? He is quite a fine looking addition to our happy band.” The elf next to Gildor elbowed him.
Startling, the elf-lord quickly agreed, before truly focusing on what was said.
His friend laughed. “So this is why we skipped our journey to Greenwood. I think your kinswoman is plotting something.”
This got Gildor’s attention and he quelled the conversation quickly. “Hush! You know no one is to know. Anyway, there is no plot. The young one wanted to see Arda, she fears he would do so on his own, against his brother’s will, and she thought of a compromise.” His tone was a bit cooler than necessary. The elves with him, though, were long time friends and knew that Gildor only hid behind his often times lofty exterior. They new he was lonely, missing family long ago parted. He had all but stopped seeking intimate company and many who knew him best feared he could fade. Elves were not meant to be alone!
So the autumn festival passed, Gildor and Rúmil stealing not so secret glances at each other; Orophin pursuing a coy maiden; Haldir imbibing a bit too much and being ushered home by Authion, his Captain. Galadriel saw all and was pleased. Everything would be just fine. She smiled to herself.
“You know something.” A deep voice spoke and strong arms wrapped around her waist as she giggled.
“I do not know of what you speak, my husband.”
Celeborn, however, knew better.
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.