Disclaimer: I don't own Lord of the Rings or any of the characters I used in this story. It was written for pure fun and no money is/was made with it.
Summary: When the twins fight too much, Elrond and Celebrian decide to separate them for a few months…How will Elladan and Elrohir find life without each other?
Notes: This idea popped into my head while writing 'When the Snow Falls'. In the fourth chapter, Elladan refers to a childhood experience where he and 'Ro were separated for several months. *g* Somehow this idea didn't leave me, and then other people asked to write this and well...the first chapter was written very quickly, because I love to write about the twins as children. Since the next chapter of 'When the Snow Falls' will take its time, I decided to post this, that way you have something to read.
Elladan and Elrohir are about ten years old in this story. I know that their ages in human years would probably much older, since elves don't age that quickly, but nonetheless I will refer to them as ten-year-olds – it will make the story more understandable, I think^^
Many thanks to Dragon for beta-ing!
Part One: The Fight
"Don't your friends want to see you anymore?" Elladan smirked, seeing his brother sitting under a tree and reading a book. He had just gotten back from the training grounds of the guards, where he and his friends had watched the sword practise of the elven warriors. Feeling quite unsatisfied by the fact that he hadn't been allowed to pick up a real sword, Elladan wanted to vent some anger, and Elrohir seemed like the first likely person.
"Or why else would you be reading?" He circled around his twin, not understanding why his brother read voluntarily when it was such beautiful weather.
Elrohir glared at him. "We played, and then they had to return home to help their father, so I picked up my book."
"Ahh, really?" Elladan seemed uninterested, despite the fact that he had asked. "How boooooring…"
"Well, it wouldn't be that boring if you learnt to read properly." Elrohir replied annoyed.
The twins had been quarrelling constantly during the last few days, and it was going on his nerves. Either Elladan would take his books or Elrohir would take his toys, and it always ended in vicious fights. Even worse, they would insult each other's friends, and since both twins were very loyal to their friends, they didn't accept this.
Elladan watched as his brother returned back to reading, narrowing his eyes. "I can read!" he insisted. "I just don't want to waste my time with it – after all I want to become a great warrior when I am big, and if I waste my time reading, I won't have enough time to train!"
"But a warrior without brain is never a good warrior."
"Maybe, but a warrior without muscles is even worse!" Elladan slapped his hands down on the sides of the book, forcing Elrohir to look up. "You know what they said? The soldiers on the training grounds? They said that I would once become a good warrior! Probably one of the best….but they didn't say anything about you!"
The truth was that the guards had mentioned that the twins, if they took after after their father, would be some of the best warriors Imladris had ever seen, but Elladan refused to mention that tiny little detail.
Pain was visible on the younger twin's face, although he quickly masked it. "They didn't say anything because it was clear that I'll be a good warrior!" he claimed.
Elladan snorted. "Stop dreaming, 'Ro! You will always be a bookworm, never a fighter!"
"What's wrong with you?" his twin shouted, slapping the book shut and nearly squishing Elladan's fingers. "Can't you find another person to annoy? Your stupid friends will certainly enjoy the dull jokes you make!"
The older twin narrowed his eyes again, anger passing over his face. "Don't insult my friends! At least the know how to play in the gardens and don't sit in the house all day, reading books and staring at dumb maps like the boring children *you* call friends!"
Elrohir rose out of his sitting position, eyes flashing with fury. "You're just talking like that because you are angry that Glorfindel scolded you once again, yesterday in the lessons, because you weren't able to read that part!"
Elladan gasped, feeling slightly hurt at this response. It was true, he had felt miserable yesterday because his twin had been able to do the exercise very quickly, while he had had difficulty in understanding the text, but that only increased his anger. "At least I am not the one who can't even lift a sword!" He shouted back.
"But you are the one who's stupid!"
"Yes, you are!"
"That's not true!"
"So, and why is Ada sighing disappointed every time Glorfindel complains after one of his lessons?" Elrohir said triumphantly. "He wants a smart son, not a dumb one!" He hugged the book in front of his chest, feeling victory wash over him as he saw the stricken look on the face of his twin.
Elladan screamed in rage and lunged at his brother, trying to grab the book. But he stumbled over a rock and fell forward, accidentally shoving Elrohir so that he fell rather painfully on his back.
"Let me in peace!" the younger twin shouted angrily, for he believed that Elladan had done this on purpose.
"There's no need to shove me!" And he shoved his brother as well.
Fury raced through Elladan, who was already short-tempered, and he quickly swung his fists at his twin. It didn't take long and the two were involved in a real battle, trying to punch, kick and bite each other whenever it was possible.
And of course, they shouted insults, aggravated by the heat of the moment, not really knowing what they said, like all children when they are furious.
"You are just jealous because I'm smarter!"
"I'm not jealous! Why should I be jealous on a bookworm who doesn't know how to have fun?"
"I have fun!"
"Oh yes, sure…"
The rolled on the green grass, their grey robes soon stained with mud and grass. Elrohir grabbed Elladan's hair and pulled hard, causing his twin to wince in pain. But the young elfling quickly turned around and kicked Elrohir's legs so that he loosened his grip.
"I bet father likes me better, because I will be a warrior like him!" Elladan shouted angrily.
Elrohir hesitated for a moment as he considered those words, pain in his eyes. Then the pain was replaced by wild fury which one saw rarely in the eyes of the normally so sensible child. "Don't say things like that!" he cried and attacked his brother once more. "Ada likes me more than you! You only make problems!"
"But you are dull and boring!" Elladan replied, dodging a blow. "Nobody likes such a boring child!"
Tears burned in Elrohir's eyes as he refused to believe these words, and his anger increased. "I'm NOT!" and he smacked his brother right in the face.
Elladan fell to the ground by the force of the hit and gasped in surprise. Elrohir usually never got that angry; he must have said something really bad! Pain radiated from his nose, and when he touched it, his hand came back blood-covered.
Elrohir himself stared in horror at the blood on his brother's face and froze. He hadn't meant to do that, but he couldn't find the words to say that he was sorry, or even to ask how his twin was, not after what Elladan had said.
"I'm bleeding!" Elladan wailed, staring horrified at the red spots on his hand. "You hurt me!"
He touched his bleeding and aching noise, still in disbelief that his normally so peaceful twin had done this. It was true, he had been quite nasty to Elrohir in the last few days, but usually his twin had accepted it, not resorting to violence. To get a reaction like that there must be something badly wrong.
But Elladan wasn't sensible enough to think about this; all he cared for was the fact that his brother had injured him deliberately and he felt hurt. Tears, both of anger and disappointment, slid down his cheek, as he stood up again.
"You will regret that!" he shouted and jumped at Elrohir, throwing both to the ground. They rolled down the hill in a heap, throwing nasty words at each other's faces, blinded by rage.
Lord Elrond was strolling through the gardens, humming contently, when the peaceful silence was disturbed by rather loud shouting. The elf frowned and decided to investigate, locating the source of the noise with his elven ears.
The closer he came, the more he recognised his sons' voices, and they were obviously quarrelling with each other. Elrond sighed; sometimes he wondered where they had inherited their stubbornness from. They could fight about the smallest of things and make a big scene out of it. He turned around a corner… and froze. Not far away were his two sons, fighting viciously against each other and using physical violence. Elrond's eyebrows shot up at this and he couldn't suppress an irritated frown as he rushed forward. He and Celebrian he had taught the twins to talk things over instead of fighting.
"Elrohir! Elladan!" he yelled, startling the two elflings. Their heads shot up and they stared at their father with identical looks of horror on their faces. Quickly they untangled their limbs and stood up, trying to avoid their father's gaze.
"What do you think you are doing?" Elrond inquired sternly.
"Elrohir took my-"
"Elladan didn't let me-"
"I just wanted to…"
"He beat me…"
"But he started it…" The twins interrupted each other, accusing the other one, a stubborn pout visible in each of their expressions.
Elrond closed his eyes in frustration and held up his hand to stop them. "Alright," he said, as they had quietened down, and eyed them closely. Elladan's nose was bleeding and Elrohir's shirt was dirty and torn.
"Elladan come here and let me look at your nose." The Lord indicated that his son should come forward and knelt down on the ground.
Unwillingly, the older twin stepped closer and the elf quickly examined the small nose. Luckily nothing was broken, it just would hurt for the next few days.
He gave them both a scolding glance. "I would like to hear what happened, but obviously you are not in the mood to talk now, so I will wait until later. However, I want you to know that I don't approve of this. Fighting doesn't bring a solution – you could have come to me or your mother and we would have talked with you; then Elladan wouldn't be bleeding right now."
He sighed. "You will both not get dinner today."
The twins opened their mouths to protest, but were stopped by their father's warning glance. "I don't want to hear anymore of this. You both disappointed me today!"
Elladan and Elrohir both dropped their heads, but still glared at each other. The battle was over, but the war had just begun.
If Elrond had thought that the incident was over with this little punishment, than he had been more than wrong. Both twins were rather stubborn, and neither one wanted to speak with the other one again until they got an apology. Of course they didn't get one, and so the next days were filled with uncomfortable silence, the twins sat pouting beside each other, edging their chairs as far apart as possible.
The only words which were exchanged were swear words, and Elrond once again wondered where they had learned them from. He deeply suspected Glorfindel, for the twins usually liked to hang out with the guards, and decided to talk with his friend and advisor.
However, it made life uncomfortable when both twins were angry. They didn't speak at the table and both Celebrian and Elrond missed their friendly chatter. Even worse, they did everything they could to make each other's lives miserable. It seemed as if they indeed hated each other, a fact neither Elrond nor Celebrian could approve of.
After three days of sulking twins, Elrond finally decided that it was enough.
"We have to do something," he said to his wife on the morning of the third day, after the twins had left off, not without Elladan shoving Elrohir rather nastily against the wall.
"I agree," Celebrian nodded sadly. "They are too stubborn for their own good."
Elrond shook his head. "They seem to have forgotten how much they mean to each other."
"Unfortunately there doesn't seem a way to tell them that – we tried hard enough the last days." Celebrian swirled a strain of her blonde hair, thinking hard.
"It seems as if they must learn the hard way," Elrond scratched his chin as an idea formed in his head. "Maybe….maybe if we separate them?"
Celebrian raised an eyebrow, a habit she had adopted from her husband. "Maybe, but it wouldn't help much because there's still the chance that they will meet, unless we…"
A small smile appeared on her lips, as suddenly an idea popped into her head. "Unless we send one of them away to my parents."
"That was exactly what I thought. That way they will probably realise that they love each other and that such a stupid fight is not enough to lose one's brother."
"But…" A sad expression flew over Celebrian's face. "The idea of sending one of them away for a longer time – totally alone – seems unfair for me. One twin would still have both parents, while the other one has to stay away in Lothlorien."
Elrond sighed. "It's hard. Maybe if we split up, too? If you go to your parents with Elrohir, while I stay here with Elladan?"
"That's a good idea," Celebrian agreed. "Although I will miss you and Elladan."
Her husband laid a hand on her shoulder and kissed her lightly. "It will be only for a few months, and I firmly believe that the twins need to learn this lesson."
Celebrian snuggled into his embrace and smiled slightly. "So it's settled then. I will take Elrohir and Elladan will stay here. Let's prepare for the journey as soon as possible, for I don't like seeing our sons behaving like that!"
"As you wish, my Lady!"
This evening Elladan and Elrohir sat on their beds in their rooms, deliberately not looking at the other one, as their father entered. Elrond sighed as he noticed the awkward silence in the room. Normally the twins were never silent; they either ran around, chasing each other or playing pranks on innocent servants.
"Brooding again?" He raised an eyebrow, but his sons chose not to reply.
Elrond leant against the wall. "You'd better start packing soon, Elrohir."
That got some response, as the twin's eyes widened visibly. "Packing? Why?"
"Because you will start your journey tomorrow." His father replied, somewhat amused by the shocked expression. Elladan tried to stay impassive, facing the wall, but Elrond could tell that he was listening closely.
"Journey? Where? And why not Elladan?" Elrohir looked in confusion at the taller elf and then at the back of his brother.
"Your mother and I decided that we didn't want to suffer through your childish fight anymore and decided to separate you for a while. Maybe it will teach you something important. Elladan will stay with me at Imladris, and you, Elrohir, will travel to Lothlorien with your mother and stay there for the rest of the summer."
Mutual expressions of shock and bewilderment appeared on the twins' faces. They had never been separated in their life before, and the idea seemed, although somewhat frightening, appealing. Elrohir stood up, trying to imagine to spend the next weeks at Lothlorien with only his mother and his grand-parents. He realised with a shudder that he couldn't. As far as he remembered, his brother had always been there.
He glanced at Elladan, but his twin didn't face him, and Elrohir's eyes hardened. If Elladan didn't want to apologize, that was his problem. He would go to Lothlorien and he would have fun there, without his brother! And Elladan would be terrible bored here in Imladris.
Without another word, the younger twin started packing, not once looking at his brother. After a while, Elladan left the room and the unbearable silence. Elrond watched him leave and sighed. Sometimes he really wished that they were a little bit less stubborn.
Hopefully this would teach them a lesson.
To be continued....
Reviews and constructive criticism are greatly appreciated!