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The Horror of the DarkFinwë has known shadow in his life.
He has known the quiet peaceful shadows that bring only rest. He has known the waiting shadow of a world still waking itself to life.
And he has known the fearful shadow that creeps beyond the fire’s light, that steals away mothers and fathers, husbands and wives, sisters and brothers, sons and daughters and friends, from those who are left behind. Knowing that shadow, he has loved the light more dearly; he has treasured loved ones in Aman, knowing no shadow will deprive him as it deprived others.
Those born beneath the Light of the Trees have not known this shadow, but he is grateful for that. Even when they cannot understand him, he is grateful; their innocence, their happiness, their joy ever untainted by apprehension… these things are gifts.
They have always lived in light.
One day, the light goes out. The gold and silver radiance is extinguished, plunging all into shadow.
The people cry out in their fear, but Finwë is not
ImladrisIn Imladris, in Rivendell
Are secrets more than I can tell
There ancient lore of long-lost lands
Still lingers on in elven hands
In Rivendell, in Imladris
Are love and laughter, joy and bliss
East of Sea few places remain
That grant such sure surcease from pain
In Imladris, in Rivendell
They shall not yet say their farewell
For even when all else may fade
Some light shall live, untouched by shade.
Beyond the Light - Vhaeraunite HymnI who wait beyond the light
I shall be the Hand of Night
(All masks be one
'til day be done)
See webs torn and webs unmade
Ended by the Shadow's Blade
(Their plots undone
The web unspun)
Blades in hand we stand and fight
Night Above is ours by right
(A Maskéd One
Shall fear no sun)
By our faith let shadows rise
Over all beneath the skies
(His will be done
For we are one.)
Spark - chapter 3Guilt
Turgon's voice was cold. It was always cold when Maedhros heard him speak, which was seldom. Fingolfin's and most of the others' were usually rather flat around him, even the healers'.
"His brother is at the gate."
Fingon turned from his chair at Maedhros' bed to look at his brother standing in the door. "Which of them?" he asked in surprise.
Turgon laughed without humour. "Does it matter?"
"It does. Can you imagine Caranthir walking through our camp? There'd be blood."
"It's Maglor. So there probably won't be blood. Not that he'd deserve it any less." Turgon's voice was dark with resentment. "Atar allowed him to pass. Mainly because he had the decency to request, not to demand."
"Leave him in peace," Fingon said wearily. "He is here to see his brother, no more."
"Why did you have to bring him here?" Turgon said bitterly. "He's got more than enough brothers on the other side of the lake whom it wouldn't hurt to have their share in nursing him back to health."
Spark - chapter 4Maimed
His broken shoulder was finally healing. The healers had expressed their amazement at the fact, but for Maedhros, it didn't bring that much of a change for the better. Progress and healing were still slow. He could turn his head without passing out from dizziness, and he found he could even move his right arm again, but it felt so strange, alien, and raw, that he mostly remained lying the way he was, still enduring them doing almost everything for him. And there was something else, a nagging fear of something unspoken. He had not had a look at his right hand in all this time.
"What aren't you telling me?" he finally found the courage to ask Fingon one evening, after the bandages were changed and the healer had left.
Fingon became just a bit too preoccupied with rearranging the covers. "What do you mean?" he asked.
"My hand won't heal, will it?"
Fingon looked down at his hands. It was slightly more difficult to read his face when he was not meeting Maedhros' eyes.
"Don't lie to m
Spark - final chapterBurden
The lake-shore lay under several inches of snow, the lake frozen and covered with a white blanket. Maedhros sat leaning against the trunk of a leafless willow, whose branches vanished into the ice, hung with glittering icicles like glass beads. The sinking sun threw long-fingered shadows across the icy lake and frozen fields, creeping behind the Mountains of Mithrim in the west, in what felt to Maedhros like a constant reminder that no hope would come from that direction.
He was wrapped in a warm cloak against the cold, his right arm in a sling to prevent him from jolting movements. The stump was still tender to the touch, but he knew that, in time, it would heal completely.
The lake lay to his right, the last rays of sunlight turning it into a glittering spectacle trying to catch his eye, but he was not looking at it. His gaze was to the northeast.
There, across the peaks of Ered Wethrin, lay Angband. The day had been grey and cloudy, so he could barely make out the moun
Spark - chapter 5Strength
"So Fingon has told you."
"I found out on my own."
"We thought it would be best not to tell you until you were stronger."
"That would have been quite a feat."
Maglor shot his older brother an almost anxious glance, not asking the next question: So how did you take it?
Maedhros was sitting up in bed again, propped up against pillows, as he had almost all the time since the previous day. His back, shoulder and arm weren't taking it well, but he was determined not to give up any hard-earned ground. Sitting up had meant having his right arm in plain sight for twenty-four hours. He had risen to the challenge, having spent most of that time staring at the stump, trying to accept that it was a part of him now.
He could not deny that the discovery that he was maimed had left him badly shaken. It had cast a doubt on every single thing that he had been clinging to since first realising that his ordeal was over. Revenge. Strength. Normality. Fingon's reac
Spark - chapter 2Words
Words and music. Two things that were so far removed that it took Maedhros a while to even realize they were there. His mind still did not understand them, but his heart did, at least in part. It recognized them as something to break through the endless cycle of painful heartbeats, and left him no say in the matter. He suddenly found that it had the music, and the words, as if it remembered them from a time long ago, though that seemed impossible. They came automatically, forcing themselves out of him with such strength that he couldn't hold them back. He sang the words, sang the music, without having any recollection of how to sing, or how to speak.
He fell silent with exhaustion, and found that not only his song, but also the other had stopped. There was no despair. He accepted it, as he had accepted everything for so long, until a voice cried out to him.
He stood there, a spectre from a different life, a tiny figure cut out from paper and stuck into the wrong picture,
The Mirror Cracked'A blazing wave devours white shore,'
The poets muse on Feanor,
While they should wish him nothing more
Than swiftly falling ash.
In reckless words we forged our fate,
In white-hot script for cracking slate,
Each syllable the world's weight -
But gladly were we crushed.
I saw blood in the soft sea wrack;
Each sea-elf dead a mirror's crack
In our own faces staring back
From all the noble slain.
In Dior's blessed and empty face
I searched for us but found no trace.
The mirror shattered. Only grace
We bear no more stared back.
The waves closed over Elwing's head,
Dissolved the Light that silver bled
Into a face that held no dread;
So different from ourselves.
Not princes now, nor kings, but thieves,
And reckless as the falling leaves,
We take the Jewels and my heart grieves:
For all the world is stained.
For this the final Doom we bear:
In blood spilt red as Nelyo's hair;
The golden Vanyar lying there
Dead, even as our hearts.
The living Light is agony;
A shining, sharp finality:
A leap i
SparkAll light had failed.
There was only darkness. Darkness, and him, and the pain. The pain was the only thing that was not dark. When Maedhros closed his eyes, the pain even blocked out the darkness, drowning it, mostly red, sometimes white.
There were no stars; even they had failed. Maybe they were still there somewhere, above the reeking fumes and smokes of the furnaces of Angband. Maybe they were already gone. Maybe the world was already gone. He had no way of knowing. Sometimes, it would rain, but the rain was black and oily, and it stank. There was no clean thing left in the world. It burned in his eyes and in the many wounds upon his body.
There were no voices, no sounds except the wind. The Orcs did not come up here. He thought that, ultimately, that was why they had chained him here. Down in the dungeons, even when they'd tortured him, there had still been something in him that had fought. Just seeing their faces had filled him with a burning fire of hatred, and the hatred had fu
Thoughts...They wondered about him, he knew that. They couldn't understand why such a smart man, a genius some of them called him, would be that alone, but still be happy about it. And they didn't know that he really wasn't happy, that it was all an act that he put on, his last and greatest performance.
He had lost everybody now, there was nobody left that he could hold on to, that he could watch. Elrond's sons had finally sailed with their grandfather earlier in the day, and he was now all alone. Of course, they had never known he was watching them, that they were all he had that kept him from completely losing himself in his thoughts, his thoughts that just wouldn't shut up, and that kept replaying in his mind, tormenting him with everything that he had ever done or said that had caused others to disapprove of him, but really what else was there for him to hold onto? All the happy memories in the world couldn't keep his thoughts away. His singing was the only thing that did that, but when he sa
The Path Shrouded in Mist and Shadow
A note on the names: We know that the names given in the legendarium are elven variations of the original names. I decided to let these people address each other in their own language:
Ylpang = Ulfang
Bör = Bór
Yldar = Uldor
Warning: I've allowed my inner philologist/culturologist/anthropologist to run a bit wild.
The wind from the West was sweeping through the plain. Chilly though it was, it was almost pleasant compared to the vicious bite of the howling winds that usually came from the North. It was winter still, but spring was already fast approaching, and the grasslands were like matted brass, wave upon wave of yellowish mass, rustling, sighing, stretching into the horizon.
A small gathering of men could be seen amid the ceaseless undulations, sombre and firm like a rocky island in the middle of a perturbed sea. Their horses grazed not far from them, and above their heads two large eagles circled in the sky.
They were tw
Did He Not Come HereFëanor asks it of all of them. Each new soul to walk within the Halls of Mandos is sought out and given his questions. He is brilliant and he is driven, and not knowing is a thing he cannot bear.
Even those who've had no cause to wish him well answer when they see the look in his eyes, the need to know the answer to his questions.
"Where is Macalaurë, also called Maglor? How fares my son?"
Always, they do not know. And always, always, they look to Maedhros as they ask, "Did he not come here with you?"
Little Miss It“Do you enjoy her company?”
That, Avadaci concluded, had been the extent of his grandfather’s kindness. Thank the stars he had broken his neck after a failed attempt to ascend the castle staircase. Not that many were privy to this information. The official listing on the cause of death involved something along the lines of falling in battle after slaying at least a dozen demons, although this was treated with quite a bit of skepticism by the general populace. Yet, interestingly enough, a decent portion of the locals believed a tale about the cannibals of Unkhtom devouring him whole.
Not that Avadaci really cared how his grandfather had died. He was just glad he was dead. And if he was glad his grandfather had died, Avadaci wondered, why did he have to attend his funeral? In fact, the whole kingdom was glad his grandfather had died. Why did they have to attend the funeral?
“Oh Avad,” proclaimed his mother, “obv
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