Ice and Tears: 1. Ice and Tears

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1. Ice and Tears

          She is cool in the days after their marriage. Calm, collected, and every bit the proper lady she was raised to be. Her eyes have no emotion, and her face reveals nothing.

          She goes about her day with an expression that could mean anything. She doesn't smile; she doesn't frown.

          The ice-queen, the people begin to call her. They say she has no heart. Perhaps she does not.

          At mealtime she is silent and cold; during council session she is wordless and stoic. And at bedtime she is hushed and grim.

          In the days after their marriage, he doubts himself

          It is late one night, some weeks after the wedding. As always, she arrives to their shared bedchamber just after midnight. She offers no excuse for her tardiness.

          She is silent, sliding between the icy sheets without comment. The rustle of the bedclothes dies down, and all is still.

          A chasm separates them, wider than the feet of untouched bed that lies between their bodies. She has no interest, and who is he to protest?

          But a tearing sob breaks the icicles in the air. She is crying—wailing into her pillow.

          And he lays next to her: strained, stiff.

          When next her weeping interrupts the death-like slumber they share, he reaches out to touch her. His gesture is timid, for he does not know how she will respond to his overture. Perhaps she dislikes any witness.

          Yet it does not seem right that even the ice-queen should suffer alone.

          Her shoulder is tense beneath his palm, and he squeezes.

          She makes no sign. The sobs continue just as before.

          The following day, she makes no mention of it. Her face is inscrutable over the morning meal, and void of feeling at night.

          He thinks perhaps he dreamt her tears.

          Days later, he completes his evening ablutions as usual, and climbs into their great bed. As usual, she is not there.

          But she comes within minutes, before the candles have even burnt low. Her unlined face is serene while she slips between their sheets.

          And to his horror, one hand claws in his nightshirt while the other grasps his neck. Her emotionless face presses into his chest, and only then do the tears come.

          The weeping does not last as long tonight, and as they drift to oblivion, her hair mingles with his.

          Even the ice-queen has a woman's heart.

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: Adonnen Estenniel

Status: Reviewed

Completion: Complete

Era: 3rd Age - Post-Ring War

Genre: Romance

Rating: General

Last Updated: 02/13/12

Original Post: 06/30/11

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