I'm sorry to say this, but this is the last chapter. Wow! You guys review a ton! Thanks SO much! I've never had 74+ reviews before!
Glorfindel stood at Elrond's side as they waited in the Grey Havens. He rejoiced in hearing the shrill song of the gulls at last. He had always been a patient elf, except in dealing with Elladan and Elrohir as elflings, but he could not wait much longer. Mithrandir had gone to gather Bilbo and Frodo for the journey, and it was taking longer than expected, but "wizards are never late, nor are they early". He smiled wryly at the thought.
Elrond turned to him and put a hand on his shoulder. "Just a little longer, Glorfindel. Then we shall go home." He said, a note of longing in his voice.
"To Celebrian." The Balrog-Slayer smiled in return.
"Yes, to Celebrian." A look of pain passed over Elrond's face and he turned his head to look over the sea. His heart was moved by the song of the gulls, almost to the point of letting a tear fall, but he could hold all his emotion for a little longer. Only in his wife's loving arms would he let out his pains and fears and frustrations. "I pray that she is well."
"Well, except for want of you." Glorfindel reassured his dearest friend. He longed, too, for one who had passed over. Erestor had left with the last group of elves and Glorfindel missed him terribly. Erestor had been able to rescue him from his pain, but not entirely. Perhaps the last wounds were his alone to heal, but he had been unable to do so.
Glorfindel watched the waves lap against the dock, but his attention was drawn away as the hobbits arrived with Mithrandir. He smiled gently at the sight of Bilbo. He seemed to have aged decades, but he did seem up to this last adventure, as he said. His heart ached for the four friends who would be forever parted. He knew their pain, and how separation after so many years would bite at them for the rest of their lives. He closed his eyes. At least there would be rest for him in Valinor.
Frodo approached them and boarded the ship, his hobbit feet padding softly on the wood. Glorfindel waited for the others to board before turning to see Middle Earth for the last time. He silently said his farewells to the twins, and to Aragorn and Arwen. He closed his eyes and let out a sigh. He swallowed and stepped onto the boat, turning around. He did not turn around to see Middle Earth fade into the distance. It was too painful.
The sun was shining brightly as the Undying Lands came into view. Glorfindel's eyes blazed with excitement. He could see the white shores that faded to green forests, and he could see the crowds of elves waiting to greet them. His laughter rang out when they got close enough to recognize faces and Elrond saw his beloved Celebrian. Though one of the most stoic and controlled elves, the years had been too long and too many for the once Lord of Imladris.
"There she is, mellon-nin." Glorfindel whispered. "She's been waiting." He slung an arm around Elrond's shoulders for a moment, and then released him. A broad grin came to his face when he spotted Erestor.
"Who is waiting for you?" Came the small voice of Frodo Baggins.
"A good friend." Glorfindel told him. "A very good friend." He smiled at the hobbit.
The boat finally reached the dock and it was tied there. Glorfindel stepped up onto the sun-warmed wood of the dock and held out a hand for Galadriel. He gave her a small bow and then helped Bilbo and Frodo, before following behind them. He looked around in awe, his heart heavy, and he was at a loss for words. The undying lands held all of the beauty of the raw wilderness of Middle Earth, but there was no evil to taint the land. It was safe and it was peaceful. He looked into the faces of all the elves he had known and he was overcome with a feeling of peace. He embraced Erestor tightly.
"I have missed you, mellon nin." Erestor whispered.
"And I, you." Glorfindel replied.
"There is someone who has been waiting to see you." Erestor told him and held the blonde at an arm's distance.
"Who?" He asked, bemused.
Erestor grinned broadly.
"Don't smile like that. Its frightening me." Glorfindel joked.
"Just come with me after supper at the New Imladris." Erestor waved it off as the crowd started through the woods. It was not far at all to New Imladris, and everyone wished to be settled before any of the celebrations began.
Supper was a celebration in itself. The tables outlined the room and the middle of the room was for dancing, but even in his joy and peace, Glorfindel was still troubled. He thought it would have simply fallen from his being when he stepped onto the shore, but it hadn't. Things didn't seem to ever work that way. He took a sip of his wine and watched Erestor get pulled into a fast dance with a pretty maid that he had grown up with. He laughed as the tune melted into a slow rhythm as Erestor's ear tips were red with embarrassment. He smiled contentedly as Celebrian and Elrond got up to dance and were wrapped in each other's arms.
Glorfindel stood up and entered the warm night air, entering the gardens. The stars were shining with a brilliance he hadn't thought possible. He leaned against a mighty tree and closed his eyes. Finally, he was home. He could leave his life in Middle Earth behind and simply be who he was that had been hidden by the layers of pain.
"Oh, pardon me, my lord."
Glorfindel glanced away from the stars to look upon a lady who had not known he was there. He smiled and bowed to her, though her face was hidden by the shadow of the tree. "Tis not your fault." He waved it off. He looked back to the stars. "They are beautiful."
"Yes, they are." She sighed, a smile of joy on her face.
Glorfindel looked back at her face illuminated by the starlight and felt a rush of emotion. "Nieriel?" He questioned softly, his soul screaming for her. "Is that truly you?"
"Yes." Nieriel smiled up at his face. "I have missed you, Glorfindel."
He could not help but grin. She actually said his name, and did not address him as though he was her better. The formality between them had disappeared and they could stand together as friends. He took a step closer to her and they both watched the night sky together.
"You know I have always loved you, right?" Glorfindel looked down at her.
"I know." She replied, her eyes meeting his. "I love you too."
Their hands intertwined secretly. He did not feel the fire of love, but a simple acceptance that he needed and wanted her for the rest of eternity. He did not feel the attraction of lust, but he felt the need to have her know that she was the only elleth he would ever love. He did not need to kiss her, but standing at her side was enough for him. It was all he had hoped for.