Blood and Water

Middle Child Sorrows

cont. from chapter 10.) "Elrond, Elrohir isn't breathing!"

Elrond whirled around to look at Elrohir his face paled at the sight as his heart leapt into his throat. But he quickly pushed aside his feelings of terror and went to work to save his son. First thing he needed to do both as a healer and to assure the father in him was to make sure if he had just stopped breathing or if the heart no longer beat. He feared greatly for the other. He placed two tentative fingers to the young elf's throat searching for the artery that moved and pulsed with the heart. Panic began to set in when he had trouble finding it. There was an easier way to find someone's heartbeat he only hoped he would find it.

Elrond refused to despair until he could no longer find the beat of life within his son. For no amount of healing can return that precious rhythm once the heart permanently stopped. He bent down low placing an ear above Elrohir's heart and listened as silence filled the room. When hope seemed to fade he heard it. The beat was soft and light, hardly any strength left in it. If he didn't do something soon Elrohir would die in moments. Elrond balled up his fist and pounded on his son's chest. This only worked for a short time before he was back to where he started. He tried every method he could think of, but each try met in failure and despair. Then something occurred to him.

'It's worth a try.' he thought.

He took a few short moments to prepare for the task he was about to perform. It was a trick known only to the most prominent of healers. Only the best could use it. It would leave him tired, physically, and mentally drained, but it needed to be done. He had only done this one other time when his wife had first been brought back home and delivered into his arms. Problem was it had only done so much and Celebrian had left for Valinor not long after.

'It would be worth it.' thought Elrond placing one hand on his son's forehead and the other over the fading heart. 'At least he would still be alive.' With that he relaxed his entire body and cleared his mind, entering Elrohir's mind.

Elladan sat up in bed staring in shock of what he had woken up to. How could things go wrong so quickly, at this rate he would lose everyone he held near and dear to him. It would easily kill him should his twin die. How could he go on without either of his brothers for that matter? Through the bond they shared he could feel his brother fade, leaving them for the Halls of Waiting. Right then he wanted to jump from his bed and shake Elrohir until he awoke. But sadly that was not possible, Glorfindel's hand was rested on his shoulder in a gentle hold, but one that was strong enough to hold him down should he try to rise out of bed.

"Elrohir." he said his voice in choked whisper.

Glorfindel looked at the older twin. 'He should not be seeing this.' Thought the balrog slayer. He patted Elladan's shoulder saying, "Do not fret young one your father will soon have everything under control."

Elladan could only nod, not trusting his voice to do nothing more then whisper when all he wanted to do was scream. As he watched and waited for Elrond to announce Elrohir's health one way or another he felt darkness creep into his line of vision as figures faded and blurred. He wouldn't be conscious for much longer. But he didn't want to, not until he knew his twin was alright. To bad he didn't have a say in the matter.

Glorfindel watched as Elladan's eyes slid shut the poison once again sending him into unconsciousness. He would watch over the older twin for any signs or warnings that would prove ill for the noldor elf. Elrond was troubled enough; he didn't need Elladan to start having problems as well. Erestor was now standing by his side, tears threatening to fall; he put the book open on the nightstand near the blonde elf.

"Here, read this it tells how to cure them, if it's any use now." he began to choke as he watched his once students.

As he turned to leave Glorfindel stopped him.

"Please Erestor stay. They will need you soon." Erestor turned to look at him. Glorfindel smiled, but it didn't reach his eyes, "Keep me company mellon nin. I could use some right now." Erestor nodded thinking on how he could use the same. The two odd elves, whose fights and bickering were common between them, both had a deep friendship no one understood and so they sat together side by side as all friends do as they watched their other friends fight for life.

He was in a room, he thinks, it was swirling clouds of gray and black with walls of a dark gray. Elrond walked around for a while searching for his lost son. He had no idea where he was or what this was supposed to be. It was Elrohir's mind this he knew, but what was this. He had no idea. Finally the sounds of sobbing reached his ears from a door that appeared from nowhere beside him. He entered knowing what he would see on the other side. It was a dark room. No light touched it for what seemed like forever. He could feel the sadness of the room as it stifled him. His son was despairing he could feel it.

Looking around he saw him. Elrohir was sitting in a corner his knees drawn up tight against his chest, his arms locking them in place; his face was buried in his legs as he cried into them, his ebony locks spilled out over them. Elrond tried to run to his son's side but something held him back. Soon Elrohir stopped crying.

"What is my worth to you ada?" Elrohir's voice was soft and dripped in emotion. Elrond could almost make out his eyes through the dark hair that surrounded his boy.

Elrond was taken aback by this question, he loved his son dearly, surely he knew that. Elrond loved all his children more than life itself, never had one, not even little Estel, questioned that fact.

"What do you mean ion nin? You know I love you. Why ask such silly questions? I value yours, your brothers, and Arwen's lives over myself and all I have."

"That's not what they say." whimpered the noldor elf retreating once again into his knees.

"Who?" asked Elrond.

Elrohir looked up, "The voices adar. Can you not here them?"

For the first time Elrond got a good look at his son. His hair was matted to his face and neck, he was pale and his glow was gone, but what got attention the most was his eyes. Those blood shot, tear filled gray eyes. They looked back at Elrond with such sadness, so much they broke the elf lord's heart to see. The depth of the void of sadness was too deep for his liking. How anyone could feel such emotion so deep was inconceivable, but something in them spoke as clear as day. They were dulled, dark, and glazed as they begged to be released. It only had one meaning. Elrohir wanted to die.

Elrond was frightened by the haunting eyes, but he would be damned if he lost one of his

own.

"What do these voices say Elrohir?" he asked wishing to put a stop to whatever was causing this. If that meant fighting off the demons of the mind then so be it.

"They say I am nothing to anyone…"

"That's not true!" bellowed the might elf lord horrified by such thoughts.

Elrohir looked stunned at his father's voice; he had only heard him speak like that when he was … well now that he thought about it he never heard shout like that. It was disturbing.

"But ada, Estel is out in the woods with dangerous men that can do anything to him. It's my fault he's out there. If I had only been a little quicker, or left for a different part of the river. And Elladan is dying because of me." he paused burying his face yet again. "I am sorry ada. I have failed you, I failed as Estel's protector, as Elladan's twin brother, but most of all I have failed you. I am no longer worthy of the Peredhil name."

To say Elrond was shocked by this admission would be an understatement, but no other words can describe what he had heard. "Why do you say these things?"

"Because the voices say it's true." Elrohir fell to his side and curled in on himself, "Please ada leave me, I am not fit to be among you or any others. I have no great path set before me, no thrilling history to tell to others. I am just Elrohir, the younger twin of Elladan, heir to Rivendell, older brother to Estel, heir to Gondor. I am nothing more and nothing less, only a being that exists." he then feel quiet and Elrond could move again.

Elrond rushed to his son's side and pulled him into a loving embrace. "Elrohir, never utter such words again." he said in his sons hair. "They are not true, nor shall they ever be. You mean so much to everyone, they need you, and though you do not yet see it, there is a path for you. It only needs to be found, or perhaps you walk it already. What would Elladan do without you to help him with his pranks? If I recall you're the one who comes up with the better ideas. Do not forget all you have done for Estel. Whenever he needed help in his lessons you were the one he turned to. Not to mention how much of a joy you are to have around. The ideas you place into councils are almost always worth considering. You see many different sides of life that so many others seem to miss. I know you hurt, this poison has not been easy for anyone to fight and I cannot guarantee anything as of yet, but please return they need you… we all need you. Without you everything will fall apart."

Elrohir was quiet as he pondered over his fathers words. Memories flashed through the dark room giving it a little light as he remembered all the good times.

Elrond smiled as he watched the memories play, his son was coming back.

"Yes, that's it ion nin. You will be fine now."

Elrond looked over Elrohir's and saw the ones who had put the vial thoughts in his sons mind. They were shadowed figures, with no form only black wraths with glowing red eyes. They were angry with him for stealing away their prize.

Elrond tightened his hold on Elrohir, "You can not have him." he said through gritted teeth. His voice and growled hidden speech brought Elrohir to attention.

One of the wraiths bent down and whispered into Elrohir's ear the elf's eyes dulled again. He was returning to the way Elrond had found him. Elrond moved quickly to swat the wraith away. It turned into smoke as Elrond's hand passed through it he watched as it resumed its shape near the other wraiths.

"Keep away form him." Elrond growled, "Elrohir, listen to me. This isn't real, these demons don't exist, they lie to you everything they say and do is a lie. You must not believe them. Think of everyone waiting for you when you wake. Fight them Elrohir you are stronger then you think right now you can defeat them if you stand against them."

And listen Elrohir did, but not to the wraiths he listened to the one he called father. Because he knew his words to be true, his memories had shown him that. The wraiths had somehow been able to block all his good memories from him it wasn't until his father had come had he been able to see them again. Now he knew the strength he possessed, he only hoped it would be enough.

Elrohir turned to face the ones who plagued him. He only had this one chance to defeat them.

Standing up he spoke to his father. "Ada, I thank you for everything, but I want you to leave."

"What! No, I will not leave you to fight alone."

"Nay ada, this is my fight, in my mind, I don't want you to be hurt. You will have others to tend to do not forget them."

Elrond would have protested, but something was pulling him back, away from here. He didn't want to leave Elrohir to fight alone; what if the wraiths took him again he may never get another chance at life.

"Ada, they call for you, go back something may have happened. Don't worry about me."

Elrond bowed his head in defeat and stopped fighting the urge to return. "As you wish, but always remember we love you dearly and to lose you would be unbearable."

Elrohir smiled "I know, don't worry. And ada I love you."

Elrond smiled as his heart swelled. "And I love you Elrohir. Return to us."

With that he could no longer stay and Elrond turned back to make his way back to his own body and mind. His heart filled with hope and worry.


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