An Ada's Kiss
Disclaimer: The Lord of the Rings Trilogy belongs to J. R. R. Tolkien. I'm writing this for fun, not money.
Author's Note: This story is not related to my other story, Poisonous Friends.
Nordri observed the negations quietly. For over twenty years he had advised the Master of Lake Town on matters of trade. Now, in his advanced age, he had decided that it was time for him to step down and allow his son, Sudri, to take his place. That was why he had brought his son with him on this trip to the Elvenking's stronghold to negotiate the higher tax that King Thranduil intended to set on timber from his forest. The Master did not expect this trip to be successful. He knew how much the wood elves valued trees. Nordri knew this as well having had much experience with wood elves in the past. That was why he had choose this trip to bring Sudri along. So that he could observe his son's skills without risking losing too much in the negotiations. Now he was attempting to remain silent and allow his son to haggle with the headstrong king.
"My lord," Sudri argued trying to control his temper. He wanted to be successful in his first trade meeting and impress his father and the Master. However, it seemed the rumours he had heard of the stubborn Elvenking were true, for he seemed completely unwilling to cooperate. They had been at it for awhile now, and had surely missed lunch.
Sudri broke off in mid-sentence and glanced at the great doors leading out of the hall. He could hear voices shouting even through the thick doors. He couldn't help but tense. His had heard that the wood elves were a wild bunch, but surely they would not get into a fight right outside the great hall!
The Elvenking had noticed the commotion as well. Based on the small frown on his face he was not pleased by it.
At that moment the doors burst open and Sudri saw a small blur running toward the end of the hall.
Sudri could not help but stare. He never seen a young elf before. Even more surprising though, was the thought of the fearsome king he sat before being a father.
The little blond elfling ran up to the king, and reached to sit in his father's lap. The king pushed the child away with a frown. Sudri's heart broke for the poor little one. The thought of having King Thranduil as a father was frightening for him.
"First of all," the king began in a voice just as firm as the one he had just used to debate the price of the timber, "You know better than to burst into the hall while I am working." Legolas' face fell as he remembered that rule.
"Second, you should not disobey the guards." Thranduil continued, glancing at the flustered guard who had entered the hall after the prince.
"Lastly, I believe you should be at your lessons right now." He concluded, looking at him sternly.
The small prince appeared ready to cry.
"Yes, Ada. But I got an ouch." Legolas said, sounding downtrodden. He presented the finger as evidence. "You need to kiss it to make it better."
Sudri thought his heart would melt at the sight. Apparently the Elvenking felt similarly. His cold face softened, and he picked up his child to place him in his lap.
The Elvenking looked at the small cut on his son's finger. The blood that slowly oozed out of the wound must have seemed traumatic to the tiny elfling. He brought the hand up to his mouth and kissed it. Sudri recalled his father healing his hurts in a similar manner many years ago. He couldn't believe he was seeing this fey and wild ruler doing the same. Sudri's skill in diplomacy prevented his jaw from dropping, but couldn't stop his eyes from widening at the sight. He needn't have bothered though. Thranduil was focused only on his son.
"All better?" He inquired with a raised brow.
Legolas examined the wound critically.
"No," he determined. "It's a very bad ouch. It needs a lot of medicine."
With a small smile the ruler brought the hand up to his lips and delivered a series of quick kisses.
"All better," the prince affirmed with a grin at his Ada.
"Then you should go back to your tutor and ask him to bandage it for you." Thranduil ordered, once again stern.
Legolas would rather have stayed with his Ada. He knew he had broken the rules by running into the hall though, and thought it best to leave before Ada got angry about it again.
"Yes, Ada." The prince delivered a kiss of his own on his father's cheek before obediently leaving the hall.
Watching his baby leave Thranduil once again felt the fear he often felt while watching his son. He knew better than any that his forest was growing dark. The idea of Legolas growing up under the tree's dark boughs chilled his heart. Legolas was not afraid though. He knew that Ada's kiss could fix everything.
Thranduil turned back to the two men. The loving father was gone, replaced with the austere king. Sudri couldn't help but feel admiration for him. The Elvenking could be stubborn certainly, but apparently he was not as cold and heartless as the rumours say. Sudri may not have been able to lower the tax on timber. However, he would be speaking with the Elvenking again soon enough. Perhaps then he would be able to impress his father and the Master.
1. Ada is Sindarin for father.
2. I got the names Nordri and Sudri from the "Völuspá", an old Norse poem, from which J.R.R. Tolkien got many of his dwarves' names.