Elrond opened the velvet pouch and dumped the contents into the palm of his hand. The weight of the gold and the sparkling sapphire were considerable, but the weight of power it had contained had evaporated.

With it, he had protected his stronghold and all of those who had come to him, but no more. Vilya was dead, an artifact of another Age, of a need fulfilled.

With no hesitation at all, he dropped it into Celebrimbor's open hand to join the other two rings. Free at last - and forever diminished - Elrond reclaimed CelebrĂ­an's hand and walked away.