Summary: Estel remember a special day
Disclaimer: I still do not own them sadly
A/N: Of course this is AU
Estel sat on the bed, his small feet dangling over the side. Today was the anniversary of his Ada's wife leaving Middle Earth and sailing to Valinor. Usually the day was filled with great sorrow and three elves who only left their rooms for mealtime. Estel, even at twelve years old, understood their pain. He, too, had lost someone close to him, his parents, though the others would see Celebrian again someday.
Estel had been planning this for sometime now and had hidden the gifts from his Ada and the others. No other time had he ever been able to keep a secret this long. Jumping from his bed even before anyone came to get him, he rushed down the stairs to breakfast.
As he walked in, his suspicions were solidified. There at the table sat Elrond and his brothers, heads down, tears barely held back. Even Erestor and Glorfindel seemed sullen. Estel sat down, finished his meal quickly, and then asked to be excused.
"I want you to be back inside before dark, Estel." Estel shook his head and ran quickly out the door before his Ada realized he had not asked where Estel was going.
Running first to the stables, Estel did not lead his horse out, but instead climbed the rafters inside and retrieved the small item that lay atop them. Tucking it securely in his bag, he ran out the door and over to the gardens that lay beyond the house. No one ever ventured back here anymore, for it had been the Lady Celebrian's private garden and held too many painful memories. After finishing his task, Estel ran back to the stables. Leading his horse out, he jumped atop him and slung the satchel over his back.
Two hours later, he left the safety of Imladris and slowed his horse. Dismounting, he waited, but it was not long before a blond elf jumped down from the tree above him. "Legolas! You have scared me almost into the Halls of Mandos."
"Forgive me, Estel. I did not mean to frighten you," he said, but the smile creeping over his face said otherwise.
"You shall pay for that tomorrow. Did you bring it?"
"Of course I did. You do not think they would simply have let me have it if your letter had not arrived a month ago requesting it."
Estel snickered. "Yes, I believe you would have been full of arrows before you made it more than a few feet. I must hurry back before Ada realizes I have left Imladris."
"I shall take my leave of you then," Legolas said, turning to go.
"Are you not coming to join us?"
"I do not wish to intrude on family."
"Legolas, you are family! Do not be silly."
With a smile between them, the lanky twelve year old boy and the blonde elf took off in the direction of Imladris. For hours they worked together preparing for the evening and, when it finally came, Estel was exhausted. Going back inside, both got cleaned up and raced down to dinner.
The salutations were cut short as the mood once again turned somber in the room. Estel was getting anxious, wanting to hurry the meal along so that they could convene to the Hall of Fire. Soon, the scrapping of his Ada's chair alerted the others and they too followed suit, joining him for songs, but when they stepped into the Hall of Fire there was no one there.
Even in his saddened state, Elrond recognized room's darkness and his eyebrowsot up. "Where is everyone tonight, the minstrels, the others?"
"I sent them away, Ada," Estel said from just inside the doorway.
"Estel, why would you do this?" Elrond asked, as he and the twins stared at the small boy. When Estel showed no signs of revealing the answer, they looked to Legolas. The sindarin elf put his hands up.
"I have been sworn to secrecy, milord."
Elrond was about to question him further when the sound of Estel clearing his voice made him turn.
"Ada, Dan, Ro, if you will all have a seat, I will explain.'
When the three of them took their seats, Estel came to the center of the room, while Legolas ushered in Erestor and Glorfindel.
"Today has been a day of sorrow for far too long. Ada, the love of your life left and sailed away -- your mother Dan, Ro -- but she should not be mourned, for she still lives and waits for you over the sea. Knowing this, I have prepared a gift for you all that I hope you enjoy."
Elrond wanted to throttle Estel. This day was reserved for his Celebrian, what did Estel know about his pain? He loved the child, but Estel had no idea the anguish this day brought. He would be sure to speak about punishment later.
Estel left the room and came back in carrying something under a cloth. He then walked to Erestor. "To you, Erestor, I give this book."
"I thank you, Estel, but why have you given me this book?"
"Grandmother said you have never been without one, and this one was left here by Lady Celebrian. It is the history of Middle Earth, and I would be honored to learn of it from you."
Erestor bowed his head before the child could see his tears, and Estel walked to Glorfindel. Pulling a string from his pocket, he handed it to the balrog slayer.
"To you, Glorfindel, I give this mighty gift."
Glorfindel stared down at the string and noticed that it was not string at all, but the hair of a horse woven in a strand. "I do not understand, Estel?" he said, staring into the eyes of the child.
"Celebrian was brought home on the steed of Elladan, but her horse returned to Lothlorien. This is from one of her lineage. The horse awaits you in the stables. May she always lead you back home, to safety and to those who love you."
Glorfindel found he could not hold back the tear that escaped, and he wrapped Estel in a hug. Finally freeing himself from Glorfindel's grasp, Estel walked over to the three remaining people in the room. All three of them sat in shock.
"Elladan, I thought long and hard about your gift, and I hope it pleases you."
Gesturing to Legolas, he had the sindarin elf pull from his scabbard not his daggers, but an elven sword with an ebony handle. Placing it in Elladan's hand, he saw the odd look his brother gave him.
"I give to you, Elladan, this sword. It was once your naneth's, broken at the tip, but I had the elven smiths fix it. She, I recall you saying, was a mighty foe in battle. May this remind you of the strong warrior she was."
Turning it over in his hand, Elladan could see Celebrian's name and his own etched into the blade in elvish. Grabbing Estel into a hug, he whispered his gratitude to him before tears overcame him.
Estel was now starting to mist up as he walked over to Elrohir.
"Elrohir, I am afraid your gift awaits us outside."
All the occupants of the room got up and followed Estel outside. When he turned the corner to go beyond the eastern wall, they all gasped. No one had been back there since Celebrian had sailed. Estel looked back and saw that everyone had stopped in their tracks and walked back. Taking Elrohir's hand in his own, he lead him on, and the others following. Expecting to see the small garden overgrown, all were surprised to see that the entire garden was alive and in bloom. Estel turned to Elrohir.
"No one loved the simple things in life as much as you. To you, I give back a piece of your mother by way of her garden," and Elrohir's eyes followed to where Estel was pointing. There among the many blooms sat the small sapling of a mallorn tree.
"I sent for it from Grandmother. You once said Celebrian smelled like the flowers she tended in her garden. Now you can sit and remember her in this special place."
Elrohir nodded his head and then fell to his knees, running his hand over the small statues of he and Elladan as elflings with their mother. So perfect a gift, he thought.
No one had noticed Legolas slip out during the tears, but Estel turned next to his father. What he saw made his heart skip a beat. His father, his protector of bad dreams, had tears rolling down his face. Reaching up, Estel wiped away the tears with his small hand and stared into his Ada's eyes.
"You, Ada, have given me everything I could ever need. You have given me shelter, food, and clothed me. You have treated me with nothing but respect, and for that I thank you. But most importantly, you made me your son. Ada, I have thought long and hard about your gift, about what would please you most, and I know it would be to see Celebrian one more time, if only for a moment, to hold her in your arms, to place one more kiss upon her brow. So to you, Ada, I give this."
All around them, they now noticed the missing minstrels from earlier, who started to play the song Elrond and Celebrian had danced to at their wedding, and from around the corner stepped Galadriel, dressed in one of Celebrian's gowns. She walked up to Elrond and took his hand in hers.
"You gave my daughter much more than children, you gave her love, and I know she awaits you and your love over the sea. For now, will you have this dance with me?"
Elrond choked back the sob and took her hand, leading her in the graceful dance. Elladan and Elrohir watched, tears cascading down their faces, as Erestor and Glorfindel stood in awe of Galadriel's beauty.When the song ended there ,was much crying, and Elrond gathered Estel into his lap.
"You have amazed me with your gifts. I have known since the day you were born that you were special, but I shall never forget this day. Thank you, Estel, for reminding me that today should be a day that is not mourned."
Estel hugged his father, but then wiggled free from his grasp.
"Where are you off to, Estel?"
"I have one more gift to give, Ada, but I shan't be long."
Running past Elrohir and Elladan, and even Legolas, who stood over to the side of the family, Estel ran to his room, grabbed the item from under his pillow, and ran back to the waiting elves. All watched as he walked up to Legolas, and the Mirkwood elf looked at him, puzzled.
"Do not think I have forgotten you, Legolas. You have given me friendship, and your love, as well. Whenever I was alone, you came and gave me a playmate. You dried many tears and chased away many demons in the night."
Legolas watched as Estel handed to him a small brown teddy bear. "Estel?" he said questioningly.
"We all here have lost our mother, and you, too, have lost yours. I have Ada and Dan and Ro to help me when you are not here. This is for you, Legolas. My mother gave it to me, and now I am giving it to you. May you know that I am there now to chase away the demons that haunt you in the night. Now you will never be alone again."
Legolas broke down and sobbed. Never had he dreamed or thought to tell anyone of his nightmares. How had Estel known? But when he looked into the eyes of the adan child staring back, he knew. They were the eyes of one who had shared his pain and had given to him the ultimate gift -- love.