Series Note: This will eventually be a collection of short pieces and drabbles in response to the newly formed Halflings board at Parma (www dot parma-eruseen dot net). My responses to the given prompts will go here, as I continue practicing to develop skill in the art of short writing. Comments of any sort are much appreciated.

Author's Note: This is based on one version of a tale of the sons of Eärendil, in which, fleeing from the Fëanorians' sack of Sirion, they are discovered: one playing in the waterfall, and the other inside the cave. Thus they are given the names Elros ("Elf of the Spray") and Elrond ("Elf of the Cave").

The Cup

The only thing they had taken away from the ruins of their home was this: a cup, wooden, unadorned and empty. It was the one the younger had drunk of that morning, when their breakfast was interrupted by shouts from the city beyond. Their mother had sent them away too quickly for the boy to remember to put the cup down; he had clutched it in his hand as they fled, forgotten until this moment.

The elder child held it in his hand, considering. He had not said a word, though the younger had wept on the long, cold journey through the rain, deep into the wood. Wise beyond his years and pragmatic, he spoke now only: "Are you hungry?"

The younger, disregarded into silence, sniffled away the last of his tears; nodded uncertainly. His brother held up the cup. "Fill this with water, and drink."

He could not disobey; amme told him he must be good. So he went, dabbling his feet in the cold pool, watching the waterfall splash into the cup.

He was not afraid when the two strange Elves came, one with red hair and one with black; he went with them willingly, and led them to the cave when one asked him in oddly-accented Sindarin for his brother.

The elder child rose to his feet, alarmed, when the three entered the cave; but by then it was too late.