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Author Topic: i will keep you safe and strong  (Read 240 times)

Galadriel

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i will keep you safe and strong
« on: June 10, 2017, 11:44:44 AM »
~all that there is, i wish for you

timeline: 2936, Third Age.

It was not often Galadriel gave way to eagerness these days, but she often found herself incapable of resisting where family was concerned. Or, more specifically, the family that was her grandchildren-- the rest of them were a give or take, some centuries more than others. But Elrohir, Elladan, Arwen...she could deny very little, and certainly not her presence. Less so if it was deliberately sought out above all else and all others.

He was bothered though, was her little scholar. He was bothered a lot more than he often let on, more worrier than most realised, but Galadriel knew. Not, mind you, that she knew because she'd taken pains to read his mind -- hadn't needed to when the boys were children anyway, open little beings that children were. Mostly though, it was simply good sense and experience; you did not spend thousands of years helping raise a child to simply ignore them when they didn't suit your whims.

Something she planned on having strong words with her son-in-law about, in fact, if this time spent with Elrohir proved enlightening.

Her mind's touch was a gentle brush against her grandson's though, a chord of soothing, softly piped affection to both inform him that his arrival had long been noted -- as if the fog clearing from the woods and the girdle opening willingly earlier in the day had not been welcome enough -- and that Galadriel was, indeed, concerned and so seeking to smooth at least the most frayed edges of the knots that tickled about his mind and so into the barest glimmer of her own.  Inviting him, now that evening was upon them, to seek her out without fear of real interruption.

~Come along, precious boy. I have an urge to cool my feet in the river.~
« Last Edit: June 10, 2017, 11:46:42 AM by Galadriel »


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Elrohir

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Re: i will keep you safe and strong
« Reply #1 on: June 12, 2017, 05:34:42 AM »
His journey to Lothlorien had been as much a whim as anything he’d ever done, but even whim for Elrohir was given its fair share of careful consideration.  Still, he’d set off with little warning given to his father, his only explanation that he found himself thinking of and missing his grandparents of late.  In truth, he sought council that, as much as it pained him to admit, even if only in his own mind, his father could not provide.  As much as his scholar’s heart ached to admit it, it was more feeling than logic that made it seem such, and perhaps if he had asked, Elrond might have had just the wisdom he needed.  But he didn’t ask.  He doubted.  And that doubt had carried him over the old, familiar roads, over the Misty Mountains and at last down into Dimrill Dale. 
 
His steps meandered from there, straying from the path so that he might ride along the rushing banks of the Celebrant, following the river’s course until at last it met with Nimrodel and flowed into Lorien.  It was in that final leg of the journey that Elrohir lost himself in the pleasant nostalgia that always struck him when he heard those rushing waters and first came into view of the Golden Wood.  The wood may not have been home in the same way Imladris was, but it was home of another kind.  Free from the cares of lordship that came with his duties in Rivendell.
 
He’d been welcomed most warmly, as he always was, and he was given food and rest and all the tender cares any weary traveler might want, though he found himself more than once forced to reassure those who had come to see to his needs that he’d taken no offense at being asked exactly which twin he was. 
 
And now, as evening fell, that gentle affectionate summons served just as intended, and his heart swelled with the warmth of affection that was distinctly and entirely for Galadriel.  He’d never quite tried his mind at defining it, for there were no terms equal to the task.  It was simply her particular way of loving and welcoming him exactly as he was, with no more expectation than he simply be. 
 
And so he’d followed that call, guided more by his heart than his head, and just as he had upon his arrival, he followed the banks of the river.  He’d come barefoot, feeling much as he had in his much younger days when he’d traveled the length and breadth of the wood without his shoes, climbing trees and splashing through the riverbanks.  Keen eyes sought her out, though he half suspected she would find him before he found her.

Galadriel

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Re: i will keep you safe and strong
« Reply #2 on: June 12, 2017, 05:56:08 AM »
Galadriel wasn't trying overly hard to hide herself; it was an impossibility for her to do so anyway, short of donning a cloak, for her hair shone even amid the lights of the mallorn trees whether the rest of her was clad in dark garb or no.

"Whimsy is not usually your poison, Elrohir." Her voice was both bland and carrying so as to guide his ears to her place by the water, invitation to speak by being so, though by no means allowing it to slip by that she had, indeed, sensed his preoccupation. It was not a far cry from the truth, though; he shared her comfort in family, yes, but not her flair for rolling with spontaneity. And note or not, this was indeed something like it for him.

Still, Galadriel at least gave the illusion of not being overly concerned, certainly not by a visit from, admittedly, her favourite grandchild. Troubled, concerned, or whatever the other was, her smile was gregarious even as it was giving, before she turned her attention once more the silver fish now hovering about her feet, curious and cautious all in one.

"Like little kittens," she chuckled softly.


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Elrohir

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Re: i will keep you safe and strong
« Reply #3 on: June 16, 2017, 07:07:05 PM »
Whimsy is not usually your poison, Elrohir.
 
“Aren’t we all entitled, now and again, to bouts of whimsy?” He answered with only a hint of a sheepish smile, acknowledgement of his uncharacteristic behavior, and though he found no shame in it, there was no escaping the slight discomfort of walking on such uncertain ground.  Treading carefully, avoiding the water’s edge just enough so as not to disturb the fish, he drew up beside her, a striking contrast, for where her hair caught the light, his seemed only to drink it in, a dark mantle of shifting shadows. 
 
“But you’ll find I had plenty of time on the journey to overthink the entire matter several times over.”  This time the smile was less sheepish and more sincere, for he knew very well his own weaknesses and it would do him no good to deny them to the one person left in Middle Earth who would know him immediately for a liar should he deny it.  Better to fess up right away to the mess he’d made of it than to pretend otherwise!
 
“And as much as it may mark me as a terrible grandson for admitting I’d have never made the trip otherwise, I find myself in great need of advice,” he explained, the gears of his mind rapidly turning, seeking the best course to navigate what was undoubtedly the most confounding of circumstances he had encountered in all his years.  And all of his scholarly habits and analytical solutions crumbled under the weight of it, unsuited to the task as they were. 
 
Had circumstances been changed, he might have sought out his mother instead…  And her absence was felt all the more keenly in that silent acknowledgement. 
 

Galadriel

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Re: i will keep you safe and strong
« Reply #4 on: June 21, 2017, 10:01:36 AM »
"Now that, I can believe."

Not, surprisingly, because of who his sire was. Or even his grandsire, he who was called The Wise and so encouraged so by herself. No, overthinking was a malice afflicted on all sides of the family; her own, in kind, worsened and tempered in one fantastic mess few were privy to into something like tormented pride and impulsive long-suffering. A daft way of putting it, Galadriel knew, but the gift of centuries had (finally) granted her one reprieve: the ability to examine and control both her wayward thoughts and her impulsive desire to both follow them and then balk at them-- and more, the thoughts lent her by others.

She made no comment, though, on Elrohir's claim to that of terrible familial relations. It was not something she felt was in need of nagging, though nor did she seek to validate the feelings of even her grandchild. He would reach his own conclusions, as he already had in this, and she, Galadriel, would weather it with the good-natured kind of heartache that was part and parcel of raising children, a weathering that had only seemed to grow more indulgent with grandparenthood indeed. She was not self-centered in that respect, and nor was she inclined to make jokes or tease about such a thing, whether in warmth or wryness or indeed, passing whimsy.

Besides, only the most malicious hearted of spirits would do such a thing, when Galadriel's need to once again step into the role of her own daughter was felt all too keenly.

Galadriel sobered suitably in that moment, and after several more of those had passed by-- in which Elrohir did not follow up, and her head cocked to the side as she regarded him intent and unabashed over her shoulder-- her voice added its tones to the music of the river.

"You're missing someone quite keenly, it seems. Don't fear, I didn't truly pry. Such an ache is both familiar and easy to touch upon in its familiarity, whether the one who misses is an adept at reticence or not." A wonderful flavour, yet sorrowful too, all melancholy and sweetness and every ache in between; that was missing another.

"Why do you find this confusing, Elrohir?"


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Elrohir

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Re: i will keep you safe and strong
« Reply #5 on: July 03, 2017, 05:34:25 AM »
It was equal parts comforting and unsettling, that uncanny ability she had to know exactly what he was feeling.  It saved him the trouble of finding some way to put his feelings to words.  He might have styled himself as a scholar, but he had not been blessed with the mind of a wordsmith.  He had a head for facts, and his words were more suited to that than to real eloquence.  Still…
 
“It is a long way to come when it would have been simpler to ask father,” he began, feeling a bit of sorrow in admitting that reluctance.  “But there are times that I wonder, wise as he may be, if father’s wisdom is somewhat compromised where his children are concerned.” 
 
He hesitated, his eyes following the gentle current of the river, the shallows winding their way ever so lightly, and yet persistent enough in its course that the stones beneath his toes were worn smooth.  With a heavy sigh, he took a single step forward, letting the water wash over his feet as he turned his gaze upward, seeking the stars beyond the high branches above them.  Seeking out one star in particular, that under a vast, clear sky was unmistakable, but here beneath the boughs of Lothlorien, was hidden from his sight.
 
“Father has lost so many people he loves,” Elrohir hesitated again, having the good sense to feel at least a touch of shame for speaking so critically of his father when Elrond was not present to speak in his own defense.  “That I fear he would advise me in such a manner that suits his own purpose, and this is a thing far too important to leave to that.”  Eyes squinted for a moment, but remained above, searching the sky.  And that intent focus brought forth his next words as almost an afterthought.
 
“Mother would have known exactly what to say.”
 
Having failed in their search, his eyes descended again to the river, and he seemed for a moment to be focused intently on nudging one of the little pebbles that decorated the shallows out into the stronger current beyond.  “You see, for some time…” another hesitation, searching for the right words…  “There is a certain elleth.  We have been friends for years… and of late I find myself thinking of her in more…”  His toe caught another pebble, nudging it forward.  “More, um…  sentimental terms…”
 
Having crossed that hurdle, he seemed to gain more confidence, and lest he lose the ability, Elrohir plunged forward with the entirety of it.  “I am afraid that I mistake companionship for something more.  That in missing her presence I’ve invented these feelings, and I do not know how to tell if these thoughts come from my heart or only from my head.  I don’t think I’ve imagined it, but then I’m not so sure…”  Another river stone found itself dislodged and nudged into deeper water as if he meant to dig himself a hole in the riverbed  in which he might hide.
 
“And it’s not only that,” he acknowledged, at long last giving voice to the thoughts beneath the thoughts.  “If I choose her, it also means I’m choosing…”   Words trailed off, and he cast an almost helpless glance over his shoulder at his grandmother.  It was not like Elrohir to struggle to find the proper words, but in this case especially, perhaps he might have been forgiven.  It was a thing well known to all, the choice granted him by virtue of his half-elven heritage, but it was never so much a thing that anyone ever spoke of.  Yet it was always there, hanging over them like some dark harbinger of doom.  And perhaps they never spoke of it because it was abundantly clear what choice Elrond would prefer them all to make, and not a one of his children dared to dredge up memories of the ages old wound that had been dealt their father when his own brother had chosen to grow old and die as a mortal. 
 
That story alone was enough to send Elrohir’s thoughts fleeing from the entire idea of it, for it was his own greatest fear that, when all was said and done, Elladan (and to some lesser degree, Arwen) would also choose differently than he did.
 
“That is really why I can’t ask father…”
 

Galadriel

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Re: i will keep you safe and strong
« Reply #6 on: July 03, 2017, 06:10:48 AM »
"Parents are...often susceptible to such a failing. They place too much of themselves, or rather, the beliefs they have fabricated themselves, on their children."

It was said evenly, and with not a little pity for the father in question. Though Galadriel felt, as she often had following the loss of her daughter, that so too was a solemn talk with Elrond overdue, raw though it would likely be. The children were not, despite the fact that she herself still called them as such sometimes, children any longer, and Elrond would do much better for both himself and they if he simply stopped condescending to them as though they were, whether it was done in fondness and jest or not. It had clearly already damaged Elrohir's trust in his sire -- and her heart ached at the thought -- and Galadriel had a rather unpleasant feeling that Elladan, being rather like his grand-dam -- wouldn't be far behind his brother's feelings on the matter should it ever come to that. Arwen...well, she was the daughter, and the sweetest little thing even as she was wilful, so conflict might be avoided there.

Not so with the Twins, though.

The proof of that was in Elrohir's next words, even as the very same drove every other thought prior to the back of her mind and Galadriel fought, with surprise at the strength in the desire to do so, to gather her grandson close to her. This is no child by far.

"Your mother, I can safely say, would think rather along the same vein as I...and perhaps that's truly why you prefer my council to your father's." Galadriel didn't quite believe it, if Elrond was indeed still refusing to see his sons for the adults they were, but the words came easily enough so long as they might give Elrohir some comfort from the shame more evident in his features than he knew.

"She would be proud of you, for a start. And exasperated -- the former because of how selfless you are in this, the latter because, Illuvatar spare us all the very same selflessness in this." Galadriel turned her full attention to him now, shifting so she faced him proper and the water was left to eddy and whirlpool between their feet.

"I have lost too, Elrohir, more than I have let the world in its entirety know." Galadriel's voice was soft now, and the sorrow, so often carefully shielded, was the measure of and beyond measure again the very same pain Elrohir had so feared causing in his father.

"My own brother made the choice to die, rather than retreat...Finrod. And I was there, for every moment of it. If I had been a more sensible elleth, I would have torn myself free of my connection to him...but I did not. Your grandfather held me as I felt my brothers die, miles out of physical reach." Galadriel paused a moment, suppressing the ache in her throat until it came out as little more than a deep, quiet sigh.

"It is not something I tell you to cause you pain, my sweet boy, or to tell you that what you think is wrong. Rather the opposite, really. I do not begrudge people their choices, their loves, everything in between, because of what I have lost. Rather the opposite -- this world needs a little more love in it. Elrond is pained by his past, yes, but I believe he would also think the same as I."

"As to your mysterious elleth," she continued, and Galadriel's mouth twitched now, something more like the patient, mischievous matriarch more familiar to the children who knew her so well.  "I take it she is not unaware of what she would be in for, should she keep company so willingly with you. You are a terrible liar anyway, and so I doubt even if you had tried to keep it from her, she would have remained unaware. But tell me...Elrohir...tell me truthfully...how would you feel if she never returned? How would you feel if say...another, took your place in the world as she knows it?"

Cruel questions, especially on the heels of so raw a discourse as had just been had. But Galadriel was not known for dallying about, and even as she felt the need to comfort often did she also feel that, in such a situation as this, nothing would come of pussy-footing about.

And if it did hurt Elrohir to think about such things? Well...that would speak for itself.


played by Dory

Elrohir

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Re: i will keep you safe and strong
« Reply #7 on: July 03, 2017, 07:52:00 AM »
Though he had many a fond memory of his mother to look back on, it always seemed all the more comforting to hear her spoken of by others, to know, if only through speculation, what she might  have thought of him as he was now.  He often wondered, but it was often too difficult even to ponder what she might have thought, and even had it not been too painful to think of, it would be impossible for him to know for sure.  So this, the acknowledgement of her feelings, however small it might have been, brought more comfort than he had even expected.
 
He knew of her brothers, but only so far as one might read in books or hear in tales and songs.  He’d spent his childhood on tales of his kin, great kings and heroes and all of them long dead, passed from Middle Earth ages upon ages ago.  It had only ever been a dull, distant ache for him, the thought of all of those whom he may never know, family he might have had if not for all the horrors that had robbed him of them one by one.  But he had not, until that very moment, considered fully that his grandmother had experienced such pain at their passing… and he felt like a complete and utter ass for it. 
 
Grown though he might have been, Elrohir still often felt very much like a child when every so often he was reminded of the vast wealth of years that had been lived by those he loved most.  And what had Elrohir ever seen in his brief span of years that could even compare to all that they had?  And, perhaps, he might not have minded so terribly if every now and again he might take comfort in their arms as he had not so long ago when he had been just a boy. 
 
He took her words to heart, though, and there was comfort in even such a simple idea as that.  The world could use more love.  It was the type of simple thought that always so easily evaded him.  This was why he had come all this way.  And even as it still pained him, despite his grandmother’s assurances, that he found such comfort here that he could not find in his father’s halls. 
 
Put thusly at ease, it was not so surprising that he found his own lips twitching in a reluctant smile at her gentle tease.  It lasted only a moment, however, melting away into something all too revealing.  Even as he pondered the right words, his eyes had already answered for him.  How would he feel if she never returned?  If someone else were to take his place?  Galadriel was answered with first, an instant of wide-eyed shock at the very notion, followed by creased brows and distressed eyes.  And not a moment later, the return of that faint quirk of a smile; he’d understood immediately, and even through the haze of his distress, there was comfort in that clarity of emotion.
 
Meeting her eyes, he answered both truthfully and confidently, “I would feel as if a piece of myself were missing.” 
 
Though a moment later, he couldn’t help a slight chuckle at how absolutely…  cliche that had sounded.  “I suppose now you’d say I ought to tell her that when next we meet.”

Galadriel

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Re: i will keep you safe and strong
« Reply #8 on: July 03, 2017, 08:25:12 AM »
It was all there, and before he'd even said a word, Galadriel's eyes had glowed, her teeth visible briefly as she bit her lip against a smile that would have been highly inappropriate should it have been put on display before Elrohir himself had come to his conclusion aloud.

But then he did just that, and this time, there was no hiding the smile on his grandmother's face. Briefly as it crossed her mind that this beloved of his might not be elf-kind did it flit away, for he'd verified that the female in question had indeed lived long enough to know life as it was for this son of Elrond by his own words, whether he'd realised it or not. That, and there wouldn't be a little smile, nay not even an affirmation as there was in those words, if he faced the same tragedy as Luthien had.

"No, I won't tell you whether...or rather when, you should tell her. You're a grown ellon, and I'll be sorely worried if you require a maternal hand to guide you in that aspect of life." Galadriel sighed, and it was a genuinely happy sound, to match and warm the sorrow and pain that had preceded it rather than circumvent it.

"But as your grandfather likes to frequently, irritatingly remind me, there are few elleth quite like me. As such, I don't imagine she's going to single-mindedly hunt you even if she's come to the same revelation as you now have." Galadriel reached out to tug a dark lock playfully now, ending it with a gentle flick to Elrohir's cheek before wading the short distance to the shore. Once there, she sat, smoothing the soft rose pink that was the folders of the robe she'd elected for this day.

"Cliches are cliches for a reason, my little scholar, and that one is particularly apt if, indeed, one cannot see their life through without the soul of another close by. That is both the bane and the beauty of our kind, the way in which the Valar made us. Other races might say such a cliche, but still move on should love be lost to them. We, however, do not have that ability, and so I need not ask if you mean those words lightly. The very core of who you are wouldn't allow it of you, not if she is who you truly want." Galadriel saddened a little again in her smile, her thoughts turned, however, briefly, to those she knew who'd loved and lost of their kind, whether they still lived half a shadow or had faded from existence.

"As to your father...you do not love a mortal, and so I do not fear it is his reaction that might trouble you most should you decide to make this mysterious lady of yours aware of your feelings." Galadriel sighed softly now, offering a spot beside her should Elrohir take it whenever it suited him, though she would not begrudge him if he did not do so. It was more, for her, something to do with her hands while she considered, troubled in her way, the finality that would be choosing to love another Elf...a finality and a decision she doubted Elladan himself had quite made. She liked to think her other grandson would not begrudge his brother finding his love in this life and the next--- but it was not something she particularly wished to lay permanence on, either. She did not, ultimately, wish to see any of them suffer, least of all Elrohir, who would suffer the most should things turn sour in that respect now that he knew his heart as he did.

"Will you tell me her name? Not now, but before you leave again?" Galadriel smiled, all mock grimness. "Or am I doomed to fight my natural inquisitiveness and only find out the day your families need to exchange gifts between the houses? Nay, no further than that, please."


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