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Page 18

It was springtime in the garden of Galadriel's Mirror. The faint sound of tinkling bells and elven voices raised in song floated on the warm, flower-scented air. The weeping cherry trees that overhung the stream cast their branches, heavy with flowers, over and into the bubbling stream. The morning sun shone down, sparkling on the elanor and niphrodel that blanketed the glade, and on the raiment of those gathered along its banks. Near the mirror stood Lord Celeborn, and to his side Elessar, King of Men, and Arwen Undomiel his Queen.

Celeborn raised his hands and spoke: "Though this fair land that we love, and these two children of Light before us must someday bow to the tides of Time, let us now rejoice! For only three times before in the circles of the world have Men and Elves bound themselves to each other. Through Grace that we do not understand, when souls have so joined, great and valiant deeds have they wrought which have changed our world forever. First Beren and Luthien, of whom in the Lay of Leithian we treasure to sing; Earendil and Elwing, who petitioned the Valar to send aid to Men and Elves. At the end of this Third Age, Aragorn and Arwen here before us, who begin the Dominion of Men on the earth, yet through whom the Elves will not be forgotten. And now, a great and joyous mystery, for in this one moment in all the ages of the world will be bound an elf and a woman, who have found each other from afar. What destiny awaits them in the beginning of this Fourth Age none can say, yet we know that their love and their deeds will be great."

And so Haldir of Lorien placed upon Kalin's brow the Star of Galadriel, and they were wed. Their lives were long and rich, and legendary was their love. Of great renown were the deeds of the Lord of Lothlorien and his Lady, and greater still the deeds of their children, who, with the children of Aragorn and Arwen, carried long among Men the remembrance of the Elves in Middle Earth. But these great tales elsewhere are told, and this tale is ended.