In later days it would be remembered how Cirdan had wept openly beside the shore, and sang a dirge for the fallen, and that by the sound of his lament the Havens' survivors knew Balar's Fleet had arrived at last, and coming out of hiding they joined themselves to the High King. Seen by all was Cirdan searching the dead for signs of life as a wraith floating silently through an uprooted graveyard, and that he alone sailed Telainathar from the mouths of Sirion, coming not to Balar for many months. There was talk that he had sought for Earendil in the far waters to no avail, or that he had aged and lost his way as a man forgetful of his own affairs; for when he returned such weariness and sorrow was in his face that he appeared old in the way of mortals.

The tale was told that Elrond and Elros were taken captive by the kinslayers, and that Elwing with the Silmaril upon her breast had cast herself into the Sea. Some few maintained that Earendil's sons had been cruelly slain; though their remains were not discovered – to this it was added that they were devoured by the enemy, or thrown from the Steep Cliff to drown in the Sea. Others claimed that Elwing had emerged from the waves in the likeness of a great white bird, and flying with haste disappeared beyond the horizon, the light of the Silmaril fading as she went – to this it was added that she flew not into the West, but up to the Heavens, and a new star would appear when she perched in the sky for rest.

It was understood that Gil-galad preferred not to hear such unfounded tales – so they were whispered instead, until the stories were rumors, and the truth was obscured.

Thereafter it was known that Cirdan dwelt more often than ever by the Sea or upon it, seldom seen in company or high spirits, and his wisdom had grown strange. Queer things he spoke of, such as the changing of the word – but he came to say 'sinking' instead, and in secret they called him fey for a time.

If ever it was questioned, why the Havens' folk had not united sooner with the people of Balar, a song would be sung of the brave warriors who fought in defense of the Havens and the Silmaril, and how even faced with sure defeat they were not cowed. Only in closed thought did some wonder if the Havens' people had fought to keep the Silmaril from the kinslayers, or if they had fought to keep the Silmaril for themselves.

Now if the woods of Ossiriand rang with singing and laughter in the years that followed, none on Balar heard of it or knew of why. And that story is not here told.



Story Notes:
*It is written that Cirdan was also called the Shipwright, and Earendil the Mariner; those epesses are frequently used in this tale.
*Elrond and Elros are depicted as twins, in compliance with HoME (the Silmarillion doesn't specify).
*Aerandir, Falathar, and Erellont are canon characters: Faerior and Mallith are creations of the author.
*Some quotes from J.R.R.'s work are used with little or no changes to the original; this is done knowingly and respectfully.
*In Laws and Customs, it is stated that Elven children learn to speak and walk in their first year. If Elrond and Elros seem slower to develop than that, consider that they are partially Edain, and twins.
*I don't incorporate miscellaneous phrases/words in Elvish, with or without English translations. It makes more sense to me that the characters are speaking exclusively in their native tongue, not just saying "mellon" every now and again.
*It should be noted that for the purposes of this story Gil-galad's lineage and history complies with the version given in the Silmarillion. Therefore, Fingon sent his son Ereinion to the Falas after the Dagor Bragollach. When the Havens were destroyed circa the Nirnaeth Arnoediad, those who escaped took refuge on the isle of Balar- among them were Cirdan and Ereinion. I'm aware that J.R.R.'s final say on the matter of Gil-galad's parentage was otherwise, but I prefer to have textual references for what I write of, and the reference I have is the Silmarillion. To those who favor Orodreth as Gil-galad's sire, and/or Gil-galad as Lord of the Havens at Sirion; this is not that story.

Author's Notes:
*This is indeed a revised version of a story formerly with another title, by the same author.
*Special thanks to Lyllyn for beta reading. Any remaining errors are my own, sadly.