Like blood and fire

A battle of wills

Elrond had felt very tired, he had been fighting that strange force with all that he had, it had been a rather terrifying experience for the thing didn’t have what others explain as moral. It didn’t know good or bad, evil or benevolent. All it knew was what it wanted and what it wanted was to know everything about everyone, to live and explore and experience what all living beings feel and do.

It wanted to pull all that he was into itself, suck up all his knowledge, all of his experiences, all of his memories. It was strong, terribly strong and yet it had the maturity of a disobedient toddler. But it wasn’t unintelligent and that was the most terrifying thing about it, there was a keen intelligence in it and it was learning so very fast. It had probably been dormant most of the time, only being activated whenever Halariel had been in jeopardy, but when Glorfindel tried to search through her mind he did inadvertently unleash it.

Elrond just hoped that the twins understood what he had said, and he was eagerly waiting for anything to happen. He couldn’t protect himself that much longer. He was starting to lose hope when he noticed that the part of the thing that was Halariel’s soul suddenly burst into a bright light, then it sort of tore itself free from the entity and disappeared and the thing shrieked and squirmed as if in pain. Elrond gasped, he blinked and then he felt something pulling at him, almost violently. His ring felt like it was made from burning lava and he yelped as everything suddenly went black.

The twins stared as their father suddenly jerked, he let out a loud gasp and the ring glowed so brightly it hurt looking at it. Glorfindel couldn’t move yet but the twins grasped their father and shook him gently. “ Ada?”

Elrond took a deep breath, his eyes were blurred and he looked like he had fought a hard battle but he was alive and back in his own body. “ Oh Gods, Halariel?”

Elrohir tried to smile.” Glorfindel has gotten her fëa, now it’s just a matter of getting that thing out of her.”

Elrond was staring in disbelief at Maedhros, he couldn’t believe what he was seeing but his eyes were not lying. The tall red head was shivering, he stared at the light from the ring and Elrond felt that the fëa of his foster father was commanding it still. “ Bring it forth, flush it out, show it to me!”

His inner voice was determined, it held a great deal of authority and Elrond remembered hos Maedhros had commanded others, he had such a presence and it wasn’t just because of his enormous height. It was just who he was, he could have been a midget and still have dominated every room he entered.

Maedhros felt the power from that entity, felt it searching for him, trying to determine who or what he was. He gritted his teeth together, then he brazed himself for he sensed that the entity was making an appearance in the physical world. He just hoped that the ring would obey him still. Elrond was panting, he pulled the ring off and tossed it to Maedhros. “ Here, use it, It obeys you, you’ll need it”

Maedhros put it on and not a moment too soon for suddenly a very strange orb could be seen appearing in the middle of the room. Elrond shouted to the others. “ Get out of here, now!”

Elrohir grasped onto his father and lifted him away and Glorfindel did the same with Halariel, now that the entity had left her it would be safe for her to return to her own body and as he ran out of the room he did release his hold of her fëa and allowed it to return home. She jerked and moaned but didn’t wake up yet. Erestor helped Elrohir and Elladan get Elrond out of the room and they shut the door behind them. The entity was beyond all of them, now anything could happen.

Maedhros stared at the glowing figure that stood in front of him, it was very strange and it had the shape of an elf but there were no facial features to be seen, as if it wore a mask. That was slightly more frightening than any face, no matter how hideous it was. The thing stood there, hissing slightly. “ You took them away from me”

Maedhros nodded. “ Indeed I did, they were not yours to keep”

The entity tilted its head, it changed, now he was looking at a very glowing version of Halariel, she had to be very beautiful indeed if this was how the entity pictured her. “I was protecting her”

Maedhros forced himself to remain calm, he somehow felt that this thing had used that argument before. “ You tried to protect her yes, but by doing that you endangered her. You have no business taking over her life thus.”

The thing stared at him, the eyes were deep and frightening, held a light that was otherworldly. He had seen it before. “ I am superior to her, to you all.”

He had to hide a smirk. “ I hear you saying that, but what are you really? Nothing but light and energy.”

The thing leaned forth, bared its teeth. “ That is all that is needed, flesh is not necessary”

Maedhros tried to confuse the thing. “ It can come in handy.”

The entity cocked its head. “ There is something familiar about you, who are you? Tell me, I demand it!”

Maedhros smiled, a grin that wasn’t pretty at all. “ I am surprised that you don’t know me, we are kin.”

The thing backed off a little. “ Kin?”

Maedhros nodded slowly, he felt the ring burn his finger, its powers were working like never before. “ Yes, as she is too. She is of my blood you know”

The thing looked shocked. “ You are her creator? She let me rule her because of you, of your name and who you are. She wanted to forget, why?”

Maedhros had a plan now, he had to contain this thing somehow and he just hoped that he had the strength to do it. “ Yes well, I am not shocked, after all I have quite a reputation.”

The thing got closer. “ Tell me, tell me who we are, why are we special?”

Maedhros felt how it was trying to enter his mind, force the information out of him. “ Because of our father, we both have something of him.”

The thing was confused, he could see it. “ I am made, and yet not whole, why am I not whole, where is the rest of me?”

Maedhros realized that this shard of the Silmarilli wanted to feel as one with the finished results. It wanted to take part of their powers, it was greedy and jealous.“ Some in the earth, some in the water and a piece way up high”

The entity that was the soul of a silmaril growled. “ Bring them back, bring them here to me, I wish to join with them, to be one.”

Maedhros shrugged. “ Sorry, no can do. I bet the Valar would be rather pissed off if I tried to do that.”

The entity backed off a few step. “ I have heard your name, I remember it now. So long ago, kin slayer, warrior, king.”

Maedhros tensed up, it tried to throw him out of balance. “ Why didn’t father make me complete? I want to embrace the whole power, I want to live!”

He heard the longing in that otherworldly voice. “ You are just a shard, a left over, nothing”

The thing almost roared and bright light shone from it again, sharp enough to hurt his eyes. “ I am not nothing, I am power, I am light, I am…forever!”

Maedhros had to agree that the thing had some things right, it was eternal. “ Oh but that won’t do you any good, you are basically not even a fëa. You are a ghost of times long passed, and it is about time that you let go and return to nothing.”

The entity glowed slightly red. “ What?! Never! I am stronger than anyone else, I will have a body, I will live!”

Maedhros snickered. “ Oh? Halariel didn’t want you, she didn’t ask to contain you, not your self-developed personality nor your powers, and I don’t know of anyone who would volunteer to carry you within their flesh. You are lost, just admit it.”

The thing got closer. “ I can possess you, you are strong, I can do much with a body like yours.”

Maedhros just grinned. “ No shit, but here is the problem. You could possess Halariel for she wasn’t even aware of herself, she was reduced to an animal stage. No sane person would let you inn. No, you are a mistake, an abomination. Your powers could perhaps be welcome but not that cocky personality you have developed. You remind me too much of certain people in the family.”

The thing grew, it was taller than him now, and a frightening sight. “ I do not care, I will not be beaten, I will live and rule and all shall bow to me”

Maedhros managed to laugh, he wanted to tick the thing off. Make it do mistakes, ruin its focus. “Oh I do remember that tone, you do have some pieces of father still inside of you but do you know what he didn’t give you?”

The thing tried to claw at him but the ring had formed sort of a protective shield around him, it couldn’t get through. “ It is a lie, I am strong, I am perfect! I have it all!!”

Maedhros snickered. “ Oh but didn’t you complain about being incomplete? It was just moments ago? You see, father was rather paranoid, and hungry for power yes, but he wasn’t stupid. No, he was far from stupid, but I would dare to say that you are, or rather, uneducated!”

The thing lost all shape, it became light, burning pulsing light that made him shield his eyes, he held the ring up high. “ We were all given gifts you see, special abilities, some for good and some for worse but we failed to see that, to value it all. My brother Maglor was a master musician, Celegorm could talk to beasts, the list is long. And it all came from him, but our mother gave us something too.”

The entity hesitated, it didn’t follow his train of thoughts and Maedhros gathered all of his courage. This would be hard. “ She gave us patience, wisdom and love. And love you see, that is incredibly powerful, even more so than you are”

The entity sputtered, light that felt like fire filled the room and he knew that it had managed to snatch some of his memories, of his final moments. More than one can play the game of distraction but he didn’t let it affect him. He forced the fear and the memory of the agony he had experienced away. “ I will own you and then I will find the rest of me and I will become one and whole and alive”

It attacked the sphere of protective energy violently, clawing at it from every direction, the ground shook underneath them and the house was rattling as if a violent storm was attacking it. Maedhros knew that without the ring he would have been in great trouble already.

He groaned and stared at the shining light. “ Arrogant aren’t you? And sure of yourself too, but know what? If you are alive then you have a soul and souls can be collected by the doomsman.”

The entity was darker now, like a mist of blood and light and darkness, swirling and hissing and terrifying. “ The Valar hold no power over me, for I am stronger than they are.”

Maedhros shook his head, he felt scared but he knew now why the Valar had sent him back, after all, he had been a very strong soul, he had endured Angband and come out of it without having been transformed to an orc. His spirit was wilder and more fierce than any other, stronger too. And he was unafraid, they had seen how far he was willing to go for his family, of all the brothers he and Maglor had done what they had out of love more than just duty, and as he had said, there is nothing stronger than love.

“Sorry, now this is where I think you may be wrong, the valar created the trees from which you have gotten your light and so in essence one may say that they created the main ingredients of you”

The entity took a shape again, elf like but so huge, so terrifying. Yet another image from his mind, Morgoth! Maedhros swallowed, cold sweat ran down his back as he heard that voice once more, laced with evil and so seductive, so smooth like poison masked with the sweetness of good wine. “ You will be mine beautiful one, you will beg me for it in the end, they all break down finally”

Maedhros wasn’t strong enough to shield his mind completely against the entity, but he knew a trick or two. He had feared that he would go insane as he hang there on the mountainside and so he had managed to create a sort of sanctuary within his own mind, a place where he created his own memories, fake ones that were comforting and sweet. He still had that gift, he quickly conjured up some rather insane images that didn’t make sense at all and the entity took the bait. It transformed itself into a strange fluffy creature that looked a lot like a mixture of a dragon and a sheep that hasn’t been sheared in a long time.

Maedhros tilted his head. “ Oh my, that was…you look smashing, now get out of my thoughts before I send you some truly disturbing images.”

The thing roared with rage, Maedhros was silently whispering to himself, feeling how the power of the ring prepared for what he wanted it to do. He wanted to help Halariel, and he didn’t want to bow before the Valar like some lap dog. He was going to fight for what was his and he had a plan ready. He just hoped that he was strong enough to endure this for it would be absolutely terrible and he knew it.

The thing attacked again and this time he pretended to be weakened, the thing found a weak spot in the protective energy and rushed forth.

He felt a jolt of energy from the ring, this was it. “ You know what I said about love? The strongest one there is is the love between parent and child and there isn’t anything that I won’t do for my daughter even though I don’t know her.”

The entity forced its way into him, tried to merge with his soul and that was what he had waited for. He gasped the last command to the ring and the light surrounding him became so intense those standing on the outside could see through the walls. The ring did what he wanted of it, it separated the power of the silmarilli from the entity and what was left was the personality it had created for itself, its soul.

Maedhros was fighting, the power from the stones was trapped in the ring and he used all of his strength to let some of it merge with the power of the ring to strengthen it, some of it he sent off using the bond he felt he had with Halariel and let it return to her, she deserved it. He did also absorb some of it and the entity was suddenly without powers, it was just a houseless soul and very weak. And yet it fought him, it tried to possess him with a ferocity that was terrifying, he let the ring form a shield once more, now trapping the entity within a cocoon together with himself. He screamed in agony as the thing tried to access his every memory, to devour the very self of him. It tried to become him, to erase his soul and take its place.

Memories raced through his mind, he could not stop this onslaught of energy but he hadn’t planned to. If need be he would willingly sacrifice this new life of his for her, and he had a feeling that this had been the plan all the time. But he had a trick up his sleeve and he grinned as he collapsed onto the floor. The battle of wills strong enough to stop his heart, to ruin the fragile shell of flesh housing both him and the absolutely furious entity.

The others wouldn’t enter, he just knew it. They were aware of the danger and would stay away, they wouldn’t see what he was about to do. He grinned, the audacity of what he was about to do was something not even his father would have dared thinking about. He could just endure and wait and he didn’t have to wait for long.

Suddenly a tall figure appeared in the room and got closer and he was once more staring down at his own body on the floor, not quite dead yet but close. The doomsman tilted his head. “Maedhros son of Fëanor. I am here to collect.”

Maedhros stared at Namo with narrow eyes. “ I see, but there is a catch this time.”

The tall vala looked confused. “ I don’t understand? You have done what we sent you back to do, the entity is contained within you, I will bring you both back.”

Maedhros crossed his arms over his chest. “ Oh I don’t think so, I am no spit licking thrall, I do not bow to anyone, not even you and you know it.”

Namo bowed his head. “ You are as bold as ever, they told me you would be defiant”

Maedhros growled. “They don’t know even half of it. They did this just because of the power within Halariel didn’t they? That was what they were after all the time, a shard of the silmarilli.”

Namo nodded, he never lied and there was something that perhaps could be a glimpse of sympathy in his eyes. “ Yes, I was ordered to bring you back because of it, so that you could contain it. You are the only one strong enough, the only one with enough of your father’s fire to dare to attempt that.”

Maedhros nodded, a strange light flickering within his gaze. “ You are right about that, I am the only one. But Halariel is my daughter, my own child and I do not leave her freely, I will not go. I deserve this second chance.”

Namo was frowning. “ Do you? How can you be so sure?”

The tall redhead leaned forth. “ Oh but I am, I served you well didn’t I, like an obedient little errand boy. I will not go!”

Namo crossed his arms. “ I do not think you have much of a choice.”

Maedhros snickered. “ That is where you are wrong, I am not my father Lord Namo, but I am not stupid. I knew there was something you wanted. “

Namo stared at him, eyes narrow and face very stern, “ Go on?”

Maedhros pulled the soul of the entity out of his own, like a glowing replica of himself. “ See, here it is, the thing you were after, but as you also see it is only a soul now. It has no powers, it is a houseless fëa, no less no more.”

Namo gasped. “ What have you done?”

Maedhros smiled, a slow devilish grin. “ Put the power to good use I must say, you will find that you are unable to leave this room again, without my consent that is.”

Namo faded a bit and then he returned, obviously distraught and also impressed although angry. “That is unwise, it is never a good thing to play with such powers!”

The red head nodded. “ I have never claimed to be wise, just to be bold, and reckless. So here’s the deal, you take that soul and whatever is left of the silmarilli powers and let me stay here with my daughter.”

Namo sighed. “ Or else?”

Maedhros lifted an eyebrow. “ Or else I will force you to stay within this room forever, nobody will die anymore, I bet people will be very grateful for that.”

Namo sighed and rolled his eyes. “ Alright, fine, I believe you. You are mad enough to do that, I never wanted this to happen in the first place, you were already repentant and doing well so I guess we deserve this, for interfering.”

Maedhros nodded. “Damn right you do. You can tell them that it wasn’t all that powerful after all, Halariel will keep the powers she now has, and so will Elrond’s ring. I give up the powers I claimed willingly.”

Namo pressed his lips together. “ At least you are fair, I respect that. And yes, you do deserve to live with your daughter, to get to know her. But I am warning you, she may not want that at all. “

Maedhros just shrugged. “ Then I will accept that and stay away from her, but I need to try.”

Namo took a deep breath. “ Of course you do. I understand that believe it or not. But life will not be easy for you.”

He stared at the doomsman with a fierce gaze. “ I can handle it, whatever fate throws at me.”

Namo stared at the glowing figure, it looked as if it was in shock. “ So, here we have a piece of the spirit of the silmarilli, a shard of their splendor. I bet this one is haughty yes.”

The entity growled and tried to smack the doomsman and he evaded the strike and touched the fëa that immediately shrunk to a small tiny spark. “ You will spend some time with me I think, learning about things like humility and compassion. Yes, there are many lessons to learn.”

Namo stared at Maedhros while tucking the fëa of the silmarilli shard away. “ You did serve us after all Maedhros. This thing would have overpowered Elrond, have consumed your daughter’s soul and ruined everything in the end. The dark lord would have become aware of it, tried to control and claim it. It could have been the undoing of all we have fought to achieve over the centuries.”

Maedhros hissed. “ I did it for Halariel and Elrond, not for you”

Namo nodded. “ I know, but I have a gift for you Maedhros. The answer is yes. And there is yet something more but that you will find out about later.”

Maedhros gasped for air, he felt how his soul almost soared hearing the answer to his question. Namo smiled. “Now, release me so I may return with the fëa and tell the others of this mission”

Maedhros grinned and whispered a command to the ring and the doomsman reached out and touched him, it was a very gentle touch but it made his very self shiver. He remembered having been touched thus before, and only his sheer stubbornness prevented him from calling out in a mixture of awe and fear. “ Be whole son of Fëanor, I never wanted this for you remember, I will give you this extra gift.”

Namo pulled the remaining silmarilli light out of his soul and faded away and Maedhros found himself laying on the floor, gasping and shivering and feeling as though he had been run over by a herd of mad balrogs. He wheezed and coughed and the room stank of smoke and something undefinable. It reminded him of crushed rocks and he struggled to get up onto his knees. His head was spinning, he was nauseous and every limb felt weak.

The door opened slowly, almost hesitantly. Glorfindel peeked in and then he ran forth and knelt down, supported the tall ellon and helped him get up. “ Oh Valar, the sounds, and the light?! We thought it was the end of the world!”

Maedhros slipped the ring off, put it in Glorfindel’s hand. The balrog slayer stared at it. “ Elrond will be glad to have it back yes, how do you feel? Is it gone?”

Maedhros stroked his own throat, it felt sore, he made a croaking sound. “ Gone!”

He almost jerked, and stared at the golden haired ellon with shock. “ I…I can speak?!”

Glorfindel grinned from one ear to the other. “ Indeed you can, how wonderful”

Maedhros hawked and sat down, the room soon became filled with the rest of the group and Elrond approached him slowly, wide eyed and still in disbelief. “ I can’t believe that it is you, are you for real?”

Maedhros nodded. “ Most certainly, I feel very alive at least”

Elladan coughed and opened a window, the room stank. “ What happened?”

The red head leaned back, closed his eyes. “ The entity is gone. Namo brought it back to Aman, to be examined I am sure. But they didn’t get all they wanted.”

Elrond frowned. “ What do you mean?”

Maedhros laughed, his deep soft voice was one you could listen to forever. “ They wanted the powers it held, but they are no longer in the entity. They are in your ring Elrond, and in Halariel too. And I refused to leave so I am still here, alive.”

Glorfindel whistled. “ How did you convince the doomsman that it was a wise move to let you stay alive?”

He cocked his head. “ Easy, I used the ring to trap him here, he had to let me go or remain imprisoned here forever.”

Elrond gasped. “ Oh Eru, I have never…But it doesn’t surprise me, you would have spat in the face of Morgoth himself I am sure. “

Maedhros sent his foster son a rather dark glance. “ Oh I did, many times over.”

Glorfindel looked nervous. “ Halariel has the powers still?”

Maedhros sighed “ Yes, some of it, not much but I bet she will find a good use for it one day. It is the smallest thing I can do for her, after all, I am her father, I owe her that.”

Elrond looked at the red head with narrow eyes. “ Yes, I remember that about you, you were willing to go far for your kin, to do whatever it took to keep them safe, even protect them against themselves, too bad you failed.”

Maedhros sighed. “ Yes, Doriath, I remember. I couldn’t stop my brothers, they didn’t have patience and they didn’t think, the oath had consumed them. They were weak, twisted, and yet I miss them.”

Elrond smiled, a sad smile. “ I missed you too you know, both you and Maglor. I wonder what fate he faced.”

Maedhros stared at Elrond and his gaze was distant. “ He is alive you know, Maglor. Namo confirmed it. When I have done what I can here I will go searching for him.”

Elrond took a deep breath, there was a weird light in his eyes. “ Oh Eru’s mercy, then I will do whatever I can to help you, anything you want, just ask for it”

Maedhros just lowered his head in a gesture of gratitude. “ I will.”

He turned towards Glorfindel. “ Halariel, how is she?”

Glorfindel smiled, but he was a bit pale still. “ She is sleeping, I guess she is exhausted. After all, she was a captive within her own mind for quite a while, I do not know how she will react when she wakes up. If she will be normal or still…weird”

Maedhros leaned back, he looked at Glorfindel with trust in his eyes. “ She will be alright, if it takes an age, she will become normal I am sure. I will help you and her in whatever way I can.”

Glorfindel felt a bit embarrassed. Here he sat with her father, her freaking father and it was a person he had thought to be dead ages ago, a person both hated and revered. He had to forget about who Maedhros had been and remember that he too was re-embodied, that it was a new fresh start for him too. “ I am most grateful, I am sure it will be needed.”

Elrond was still a bit weak but he felt how he got new energy from the ring and he soon felt well enough to get up on his own feet. Erestor supported him and the counsellor had never looked that relieved before. He was almost crying. Elladan and Elrohir hesitated for a few seconds, then they both ran forth and hugged Maedhros who looked stunned and then he smiled and hugged them back. Elrohir had a very cheeky glimpse in his eyes. “ So, you were ada’s foster ada, is it alright then if we call you daeradar? “

Maedhros coughed and rolled his eyes. “ Eru no, that makes me feel as though I am ancient!”

Glorfindel snickered. “ Oh but you are!”

Elladan slapped Elrohir across his back, rather playfully. “ We cannot call him that, it will feel just weird. “

Maedhros turned to Elladan. “Thank you Dan, that was thoughtful of you”

Elladan had a vicious grin upon his handsome face. “ So we will have to come up with another name we may use, oh the ideas, the ideas!”

Elrond rolled his eyes. “ Sons, you are to call Lord Maedhros just that! No funny nick names thank you very much and now I am famished and want some food and I bet you should have something to eat too.”

There was a sudden sound of a rumbling stomach and Elrohir blushed and made a mumbling apology. Erestor supported Maedhros as they left the room, he was still slightly dizzy and he had a hard time believing that he had done what he had. He had outsmarted the vala of death, and he had saved Halariel and Elrond. That was cause for some celebration.

The dinner hall was almost empty but the cooks went into overdrive when they saw that their lord had returned to them and they quickly served the best meat and vegetables they had available. The head of the kitchens were so grateful that Elrond was back and hale that she brought up some of the best wine they had and soon the atmosphere was jolly to say the least. Elrond had only one cup and that was enough to make him rather drunk since he hadn’t eaten for days and Maedhros had three cups and felt nothing until he had to get up to get outside and take a piss, then he suddenly felt as though something had hit him in the head.

Glorfindel had to help him back to his rooms and they could be heard singing the same naughty song which had originated in Gondolin and been banned by Turgon the moment he first heard it. Maedhros managed to get into bed before he collapsed and Glorfindel had a sense of both gratitude and awe when thinking about the tall ellon. After all, he was the stuff of legends but Glorfindel just knew that they would become good friends, the Maedhros of old had been gloomy and rather somber, not very pleasant to be around. This new version of him seemed to be returned to the innocence of youth, at least in some ways and Glorfindel just knew that Halariel would discover that she had an ada that never would let her down ever.

The next morning it was raining like the skies had opened and Elrond was hung over and stayed in bed and so did most of the others too. There had been a lot of celebrating going on the night before and not all had managed to get through that unscathed. Maedhros got up at noon, he liked the fresh clean air after a rainstorm and it smelled so lovely of trees and plants. He went to the stables to visit Hammer and then he went to the rooms where Halariel was being watched over by Glorfindel. He had slept at her side and sat reading when Maedhros entered.

She hadn’t woken up yet but she was just sleeping, a deep healing sleep and she was looking better by the hour. In fact she was healing so fast it was a cause for concern, her hair had started growing back out, she was getting muscle and fat on her body again, her skin was returning to normal. Glorfindel was nervous but Maedhros was not, he was sure that the power she now held was of the healing kind, that she was fixing herself.

Maedhros sat there with Glorfindel for the rest of the day, they were exchanging tales and memories of old and to Glorfindel it was wonderful to once again speak with someone who actually remembered those days so long ago. He felt more at home right away, less disconnected and strange. When the night fell Maedhros returned to his own rooms while Glorfindel stayed and he felt that his fëa was complete when she was near him. They were bonded now, there was no going back, they were a couple even if they hadn’t done the deed yet. But they would eventually, when everything was alright.

Glorfindel had always wanted a family of his own and perhaps he now had a chance of seeing that wish come true. It would be wonderful if it did, then he truly would have a purpose with this life of his. Halariel slept for yet another day and then she suddenly stirred and woke up with a strange cry. She stared at the room and the furniture with huge eyes and Glorfindel didn’t know what to do, he was afraid he would frighten her. She blinked, pulled the blankets up closer around herself and bit her lower lip. Her eyes were distant and then they got focused and she looked at her own arms and hands. They were normal now, no longer skin and bones and her hair had to reach her knees by now. It was so thick and silky and beautiful he didn’t have words worthy of describing it.

He leaned forth. “ Halariel? Do you remember me? Do you know where you are?”

She stared at him, blinked, then she let her hand slide over his face gently, she smiled. “ Friend!”

He let out a huge sigh of relief. “ Yes friend! I am your friend, and there are many others here who are your friends too”

She giggled, the weird inhuman expression in her gaze was gone. “ Good, hungry?”

He squeezed her hand, sought her fëa gently and realized that she was like a child once more, she could speak yes but she was completely innocent and unaware of her past. It was a new start also for her, she had to start at scratch with everything. But he would be there for her, forever.

“Yes, let’s go have something to eat, I am starving too my dear. And then there is someone I would like you to meet, he is your father Halariel, and he is very much looking forward to see you”

She tilted her head and just smiled and Glorfindel sent a silent thanks to the valar, She didn’t remember, then she would learn to know her father before someone told her the truth. It was good that way and he helped her get into a dress before they went to the hall to eat. The days to come would be interesting, yes, very much so.

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