Here's one last update for you... or maybe there'll be another one but I'm not entirely certain... I've gotten inspiration for this now though so yay me. Anyways, here's another chapter. It may hurt.

DISCLAIMER: The characters belong to Tolkien, and the general idea of the plot as well. All suing for mental injuries is to be directed to Tolkien Estates, not to me. Not my fault.

NAMES AND PHRASES GLOSSARY
Names

Findekáno = Fingon

Fin = Fingon, a nickname

Nelyafinwë = Maedhros, his ataressë

Nelyo = Maedhros, shortened form of his ataressë

Maitimo = Maedhros, his amilessë

Makalaurë = Maglor, his amilessë

Turukáno = Turgon

Findaráto = Finrod

Curufinwë = Curufin, his ataressë

Turkafinwë = Celegorm, his ataressë

Nolofinwë = Fingolfin

Fëanáro = Fëanor, his amilessë

Itarillë = Idril

Moringotto = Morgoth

Quenya and Sindarin phrases

fëa = spirit, soul

hróa = body

mai= yes, good

háno= brother

aurë entulúva= day shall come again

le hannon = S. Thank you

BROKEN BRIDGES

Chapter Five

It was a good while before Maitimo truly awoke, pulling out of his dark, feverish visions. For a while, it seemed as though he were airborne, unaware of where he was, what was happening, why he was lying on his back. Everything looked white when he first opened his eyes. He didn't even know who he was.

Then, gradually, he started remembering. The battle, the betrayal, the white flame...

Then it hit him, with the full force of Moringotto's warhammer.

Fin is gone.

The voice seemed whispered in his mind, and it was as though he was realizing it for the first time.

The whiteness faded. He was lying in a cot inside a spacious tent. There was something damp on his forehead, and the room smelled of herbs, particularly Athelas. It still took a few moments for him to recognize that this was his tent, the one he'd slept in the night before the battle.

It seemed ages ago that the battle happened, and yet the aching still in Maitimo's bones told him it must not have been yet a few days since that terrible day. Maitimo's eyes slipped closed again. It was a mistake. As soon as they did, he was plunged back into that world of pain, blood, swords, and grief that had spun about him for days on end. Once again, he heard that faint cry of "Aurë entulúva!" and saw seconds later a white flame shooting up into the sky.

He forced his eyes open, staring at the ceiling.

"Fin is gone."

This time, he said it aloud. There was a sharp intake of breath from beside him. A hand brushed his forehead, removing the damp cloth.

"Fever's broken," Maitimo heard Makalaurë's voice say in relief.

Slowly, the copper-haired Fëanorion turned towards him. Maitimo's gaze was still a little clouded over, though this time it was from tears and not poisoned haze. Maitimo, however, did not know this until Makalaurë brushed those tears from his cheeks.

Grief and pain coursed through Maitimo's mind. Makalaurë's eyes were concerned, and he looked as though he wanted to say something, but couldn't.

"Tears unnumbered..." Maitimo finally whispered hoarsely, not quite knowing what he was saying, "Tears unnumbered shall you shed..."

Makalaurë flinched a bit, lip quirking the slight bit, backing up.

Maitimo had no idea why his brother was acting this way. He turned back to staring at the ceiling.

"Fin is gone. Fin is gone..." he murmured. Some part of his mind, some foolish part, wanted not to believe this, wanted to think that Findekáno was alive somewhere. Maitimo's face twitched. He was irritated at himself for trying to give himself false him. "He's gone, he's gone, he's not coming back," he kept talking to himself as Makalaurë sat quietly beside him, not knowing entirely why Maitimo was acting this way, and not knowing at all what to do.

Finally, Maitimo sat up abruptly, fire blazing in his eyes. "HE'S DEAD!"

The fire died, replaced by blank grief, and Maitimo lay back down, sobbing quietly.

Makalaurë rested a hand on his shoulder. "It's alright, Nelyo," he said, in a half whisper. Maitimo rolled over so that his back was turned towards his brother.

"No, Káno, it's not alright. None of it is alright," he sobbed, "Fin is dead, and it's my fault."

"Don't say that!" Makalaurë admonished him. He hated this more than anything else Maitimo would do. He hated when Maitimo blamed himself for things like this...

"Why not?" came the muffled reply a moment later.

"It was not your fault, Nelyo. You had no idea what would happen... The battle would have been won and none of this would have happened were it not for betrayal and underhandedness," Makalaurë gripped his shoulder more tightly. He felt anxious—when Maitimo was in one of these moods, it was extremely difficult to get him out of it.

To his entreaty, though, his elder brother gave no reply. Makalaurë waited for a few minutes, but by then it was clear that Maitimo was finished talking.

A heavy sigh escaped Makalaurë's lips. He knew that nothing he could say would help his brother now, and he hated feeling so utterly helpless, but, what could he, in truth, do?

Maitimo's eyes flickered closed—he was still exhausted from fighting the poison—and he drew his legs up against his body. Makalaurë's heart clenched in pain and sympathy as he watched him. The only time he'd seen Maitimo so... lost, or miserable perhaps, was when he'd visited after Thangorodrim, when Maitimo seemed to have lost his will to live. Now, he seemed much the same way.

Maitimo's closed eyes still wept, his lightly freckled cheeks becoming stained with his tears. Makalaurë wiped them away again, and as Maitimo's breathing evened out a little, he took the edge of the cotton sheet and pulled it up over his brother's shoulders. Tears were running down Makalaurë's cheeks as well. Maitimo was such a pillar to him, an unwavering, strong, unbreakable figure in his life. Now that he seemed to be collapsing, Makalaurë felt helpless.

Arathal came into the tent. "I heard that his fever had broken and that he'd regained consciousness..." the young healer stated, in a bit of confusion.

Makalaurë looked at him, and nodded. "Mai, Arathal, both things are true... he's exhausted though and is sleeping now..."

Arathal relaxed a bit. "Good... how is he, then?"

Makalaurë gave a heavy sigh. "Physically, his body seems to have completely fought off the poison... but he's... very depressed," his voice was quiet now. "His friendship with our cousin Findekáno was like nothing I've ever seen before... and now I'm not certain what will happen to him..."

Arathal was quiet. He didn't know his lords very well, and knew little of that friendship, though, of course, he knew of it—almost everyone did. But from the way Makalaurë spoke of it, it seemed more than just a simple friendship, like an unbreakable bond forged between the two of them. He quietly slipped from the tent, knowing that it would be best now to leave the brothers together.

Once they were alone, Makalaurë sighed again, brushing a few of Maitimo's copper curls out of his face.

"I only hope he can find the light again... Findekáno's dying words were 'Aurë entulúva'. 'Day shall come again.' I can't help but think that a part of Findekáno meant those words for Nelyo."

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To Be Continued...