Title: To Arathorn, My Father… 1/1

Author: Sivan Shemesh

Beta:Michelle

Rating: K+

Warning: Minor angst, family fluff.

Disclaimer: Not mine.

Scenario: Eldarion finds something that belongs to the past.

AU Story.

1.

Fourth Age

Gondor

I sat on the balcony, smiling as another brighter day came.

My wife, my Queen Arwen sat next to me.

We wondered about our friends, and then shouts were heard.

"Father, father…" I heard my son, and let him know that I was on the balcony with his mother.

"Father…" He was breathing very fast, as he seemed to have been running and searching for me.

"Easy son, relax, and tell me when you are ready," I assured him and cupped his face.

"Father, I…" he began to say, and then he just stopped to catch his breath.

I waited as patiently as I could. I mean, if I can manage to wait nine months for him to be born, then I can wait for him until the end of my time.

"What is it, ion?" I asked softly of my son.

"I found an old letter, with an unknown name…" Eldarion handed the letter to me, staring at me, waiting to get some answers.

I glanced at him and caressed his cheeks.

I opened the letter, recognized my handwriting and then I figured out what was strange to him.

Arathorn

It was my father's name.

"Eldarion, where did you find this?" I asked in concern. I did not wish him to know my father, because to me, my father was not himself, as he was tempted by the ring.

"I… I…" he stared at the floor, not daring to look me in the face. I felt a tear leaving my eye and wondered if now my son feared me, as he seemed afraid to answer me.

"I found it on the floor, in your room."

'What?' I asked myself, glancing at my son, and asked in curiosity, "What did you do in our room?"

"Legolas gave me a gift, and I hid it in your room, when you were in a meeting, and I wanted to give you…" Eldarion answered softly.

"What gift?" I asked, now becoming curious.

"For you and mother, for your silver wedding, for loving me and taking care of me when I was stubborn, for being there for me always." Eldarion looked at me and his mother.

"When will we see the gift?" I asked, curious.

"Well… not yet. It will be a while, My King and My Queen," he answered softy as he bowed to us.

I felt my tears flowing, not from sadness, but from happiness and I found that I had nothing to say. Then I glanced at my wife, to save me from this situation.

"We do not know how to thank you. As you can see, your father…" Arwen hinted to me as she smiled. I smiled back.

"Well… I know…" Eldarion answered, and looked at me. He took the letter from me as he read…

"To Arathorn, my father…

Today, early morning, at dawn, 25th October, 3018, was the first time my Lord Elrond let me know that you were my father.

It was a council day, something about evil… and a ring…that reminded me of an adventure that I took with Legolas once.

I waited in the room with the painting of Isildur, with his broken sword raised against Sauron. There I saw who you were. It was the day that you killed Sauron, it was the same day that you let to some ring control your mind.

The Shards of Narsil! The blade that cut the ring from Sauron's hand! It was in front of me… and it still looked sharp, father.

Then, if you are my father, by what name should I call My Lord Elrond, as he was the one that raised me, and was there for me when I got into trouble? For me he was a father figure.

I never saw you with my own eyes, talked to you, telling you how my day was. The painting was the only thing I could look upon.

My Lord Elrond told me that I need to choose, if I will follow your way as a king, or take up another path. I told him that I need to think about that, because this fell on me like thunder on a bright day, and I feel that I have no answer.

My Lord Elrond is now beside me, looking at me as I write in my Journal. He smiles at me, and then I see him as he comes over and places a kiss on my forehead to let me know that he loves me as a son.

Is that how a father acts? Is that what you are supposed to be to me?

My Lord Elrond also said to me that I need to thank you for being my father, but I do not really know what he meant. I do not know you, so what should I thank you for?

What I do hope is that, if I will follow your example, I will never let anything tempt me, and control my mind. That is a promise, father, Arathorn.

From your lost son, the one that you never knew of…

Estel as known as Aragorn as known as Strider and also known as Thorongil… yes those are my names that I adopted from time to time.

You see father, if you were there for me, I would have only one name, but then, you are not, and I have many names.

Your son,

Strider, son of… yours I presume, after all I am not an elf, as I thought at first that I was Lord Elrond's son, and so deeply thought that I am his."


I could feel new tears in my eyes as I read the letter that my son thought he had found. It was no letter, only what was left of my journal…

I could feel my wife's hand on my face, as she wiped the tears away. I looked at her with love, my eyes thanking her for being there for me, and then I stared at my beloved son. I noticed his look, it was unreadable. I tried to read him but he blocked me in fear.

"Eldarion," I called to him, trying to control my voice, trying to hide the pain as the memory came back to me, but it seemed that I failed in doing that.

I could see my wife and my son, staring at me in worry. I must have been crying again, thinking of the past, of the day that Lord Elrond said that to me.

"Father?" my son asked, moving closer over me and then gave me a hug.

I could feel his hands rubbing my back and I heard him mumbling that he did not mean it to happen, as he let curiosity take control of his mind.

I pulled away from the hug and cupped my son's face and said to him softly, "It is alright, nothing bad happened." I looked at him and noticed that he opened his mouth to say something, but I moved my finger over his mouth and added, "I guess that it awoke the past which I try to forget and I know that you meant well. I know that and your mother knows that too."

Now I could see my own son crying and I guessed that he was crying because of his love for us, crying because he was happy.

I embraced him again and kissed his forehead. Then I wiped his tears away and asked him about my journal. "What is it that you want to ask me?"

I saw him, staring at me, scanning me, hoped that I would not break down.

I encouraged him to ask me the questions that he had and I smiled at him.

"It is about Arathorn…" I heard him say and stared at him, then nodded, waiting for him to proceed. "Go on, my son."

"Why do you not accept him as your father?"

I stared at my son, knowing that his question caught me off guard.

My eyes were frozen, and my mouth dropped open as I asked myself the same question. 'Why do you not accept him? He is your father after all…'

"Father?" I heard him and blinked.

"Estel?" I heard my wife calling me and I blinked again, when I finally set my eyes on them and closed my mouth.

"I…" I started to say, gazing at them and then continued, "Eldarion, you must understand that I was raised by elves, and not by my kind…," but I was cut off by my son.

"I know that father, my grandfather told me, or should I call him my uncle?" Eldarion looked at me when he asked me.

I looked at my beloved wife and grinned at her. After all, Lord Elrond was truly her father.

"It is your choice, my son." I smirked.

"I think that you should thank him, father," he said to me, noticing that my face changed from a smile to a frown. He continued, "Could you imagine yourself with pointy-ears?"

No, I could not.

I nodded, and saw them as they grinned at me.

"You see father, I am glad that I descend from both of you, your inner and outside beauty, as I know and heard the rumors, and from what I believe, mother and father, who knows, I might be wed soon." he giggled.

"So, my son," I grinned and added, "when will this wedding be?"

"Soon," he answered, and then his face became serious again. "Can you accept him, at least be your father, as you're his heir?"

"I can do that. You showed me another point of view that I did not even consider, and I thank you for that," I said to him and gave him a long and tight hug.

I do not know what I will do without them, all I know is that this is the family that I love and I thank them each day.

Now I know that I need to think about Arathorn too, being myfather despite his errors. After all he was my father, as I am father of Eldarion, my prince.

The End