Title: Treasure Trove
Author Name: Linda Hoyland
Prompt: For many people, summertime brings the chance to travel for pleasure. Take your character on a trip to a place he or she has always wanted to visit. Write or create art about what happens. Also inspired by an idea of Shirebound's.
Summary: Aragorn shows Faramir around the library at Rivendell
Author's Notes: For Shirebound as a token of gratitude for all her support during the BTMEchallenge. This is the first in a series of short stories written for BTME 14 that take place when Aragorn, Faramir and their wives and children visit Rivendell, which I intend to publish as a single story.
Disclaimer: The characters are the property of the Tolkien Estate. No profit has been, nor will be made from this story.
Faramir stood on the threshold and looked round him in amazement. He had long dreamed of visiting Master Elrond's library. Today he was actually standing within its walls.
Aragorn nudged him gently, "There is no need to hold your breath! Enjoy exploring my foster father's collection."
"I hardly know where to begin," said Faramir. He finally dared to take a deep breath.
"I will show you around," Aragorn said. He smiled indulgently at the younger man's obvious delight in his surroundings. He walked over to a cabinet at the far side of the room and opened it. He carefully lifted out some ancient, yellowing parchments and placed them on a low table. "These are scrolls that Elendil brought with him from Númenor," he said.
"These came from the Star Island?" Faramir sounded amazed.
They did indeed. I believe some even came from Valinor and were brought to Númenor by the Elves."
"You can touch them if you wish. I know you will be careful."
Faramir reverently ran a fingertip along the edge of one of the scrolls, an expression of sheer reverence upon his face.
Aragorn watched his friend's joy with considerable satisfaction. "You can spend as long in the library as you wish during your stay here," he said. "Feel free to treat it as your own. There are many manuscripts here that are found nowhere else, such as the story of the tragedy of Gladden Fields. There are also many books of Elven lore and of First Age history. When I was a boy, I used to love the illustrations of the Two Trees in one of the scrolls."
"And I thought my father's library was extensive!" said Faramir, finally tearing his attention away from the ancient scrolls."
"It is indeed the greatest library in the South," Aragorn replied.
"You were so fortunate to grow up surrounded by these priceless treasures," said Faramir.
"I suppose I was, but I fear I just took it for granted," Aragorn replied ruefully. "When I first left Rivendell, I was shocked to find how few books most folk owned. I am thinking of creating public libraries in Minas Tirith and Annúminas to give more of my folk a chance to enjoy books."
"An excellent idea!" said Faramir. "Maybe we could employ some of the soldiers who were maimed in the war to copy books."
"We could indeed," said Aragorn. "Many books here and in Minas Tirith could be made widely available to all who wished to read them."
"It was so kind of Master Elrond to leave his library behind," said Faramir.
"He only took anything that had sentimental value to him when he sailed," said Aragorn. "He can easily replace books and scrolls in the Blessed Realm. He felt that many of the volumes here, such as his books about healing, could yet do much good on Middle-earth long after he departed. He cared deeply for Men as well as Elves. I was honoured to have been raised by him and to know him well. One day, I shall have these books moved to a new home in Annúminas, but for the time being they are better off remaining here, at least until the rebuilding is complete. As you know, I have brought a few of the books with me in Minas Tirith, especially those about healing and a handful about lore."
"You have often lent those to me and those few volumes filled me with awe," said Faramir. "To think, though that I am standing today in Master Elrond's library! I have dreamed of visiting here for years. I shall spend most of my time here while I am at Rivendell."
Aragorn laughed. "You can indeed come here whenever you want, but do not forget that Éowyn and your little ones might wish to see you occasionally!"
"I have promised Éowyn to go riding with her on the morrow," said Faramir. "Maybe I can find new lore here to share with the children?"
"There is a feast of stories on these shelves," said Aragorn. "I shall leave you now to enjoy them." Still smiling, he went in search of his lady. Faramir was so engrossed in a volume of First Age history that he hardly noticed the King's departure.