Tears of Gold

By Thalia Weaver

The rumble was soft at first, though foreboding: something was happening, far beyond the Lord of Waters' domain. And yet he felt the reverberations begin: slowly but surely, they would spread to every lake and river in Arda.

What it was, Ulmo did not know. And yet it was something to do with Gorthaur, that was called Sauron: that he knew. The darkness that had spread to the waters of the East had not gone unnoticed by their Lord, nor could they: for no man can simply ignore a gangrenous limb, and the streams that had been blackened by the poison of Mordor caused Ulmo much pain. They ran sluggish and black, choked and corrupted by the foul evil of Barad-dur, and the army of abomination bred within. Mordor had become a desert, for Ulmo had withdrawn his domain from it: unwilling to bear their terrible filth, he had taken his rivers back from where they had flowed. Though still he let some trickles flow between the rocks: some of the creatures of Yavanna still grew, hateful though the place was, and it was not in Ulmo's heart to deprive them of all nourishment.

Now the rumble was gaining strength: something- yes, something was happening. A lightening of heart, almost- as though some heavy burden was being lifted from him. The black waters of Mordor's borderlands were not yet free of filth, but now Ulmo knew they could be yet cleansed. The Orc-master of Mordor had been defeated, though in what manner was beyond his knowledge.

The land would need to be cleansed. Ulmo raised his arm, and let the tears flow: a pure rain, crystal-shining in the night of Mordor- the first rain that had fallen there since the War had begun. To those that sat upon the peak of Mount Doom, drained of all their despair and hope and energy, it was a blessed downpour, anointing their wounds. And it did anoint: it fell, cleansing them of the memories of a flame-filled circle of gold.