Title: Son Rise (Sequel to Fortunate Son)
Codes: Lord of the Rings, ElrondxLegolas with others, Slash, AU, Mature
Disclaimer: I do not own them. I play with them. All rights are preserved for the Tolkeins
Summary: What happens after Fortunate Son. (I am bad at summaries)
Feedback: Welcomed and answered.
=0= It was quiet at the house, no one really too enthused about much. The situation along the frontier was grim and the skirmishes had become a daily fact of life. Most of the men who were able to fight were gone, necessitating much of the drudgework to those who were left behind. Things therefore didn't get done and among those who labored, frayed nerves were a fact of life.
In Imladris and the Lorien Wood, the rings of power, hidden by their wielders, were powerful protection against the tide of evil that was lapping around their shores. In the Great Green Wood however, no such protection existed. They bore the brunt of orc aggression and with skill and courage kept them at bay.
Legolas rode with the men, lending his bow to the protection of their lands and in the doing of it became cold and dangerous. He sought out the enemy in reckless ways and no amount of commands from father and captains could change his ways. That he often turned the tide in battle was secondary to the danger he attracted by his actions.
"I don't want my son going out with the riders," his mother said one night.
Thranduil, preoccupied by that worry and others, turned and sighed, once more marshaling his arguments. "We have our duty. All of us. I cannot keep him out of battle just because it might make it dangerous. I have ordered him to be careful and he won't listen to me."
"Why is that, Thranduil?" she would demand. "Why is it that my son's heart lies in ashes on the ground and that he sees no reason to be safe anymore?"
Most of the time he wouldn't answer. Most of the time he would stalk out, as frustrated as her about this most enigmatic of sons. This time however he turned on her, offering an anguished expression of his own.
"You would have him chattel of the Lord of Imladris? You would have him whore himself to the man who more than any drove my father to his death?"
"Your father! Your father! How sick I am of hearing about the grievances against your father! He made his decision, Thranduil, and he died for it. He didn't listen to reason then and you aren't now. How can you demand of his heart not to feel what it does?"
Thranduil stared at her and sighed. "I can demand what I demand because I am his father and his king. He is my son, in his minority and until the day comes that he can make his own decisions without the spells and conjuring of those who wish him ill, he will abide by what I command."
"You believe what you will," she said, tears in her eyes. "You will drive him to his early death and when you do I will leave you and go west."
He stared at her, at the only woman he ever loved and blinked. For a moment he wavered and then he sighed, shaking his head sadly. "You speak as if I don't love him. He is my boy, my youngest. I have not always been the father to him that I wished to be. I know that. But I love him and seek for him only the best."
"And his heart?" she demanded.
"His heart ... what knows he of love? There are many among our own and in the kingdoms lying elsewhere that would take his name as their own. I have looked and have found many."
"You cannot betroth him to others."
"I already have," he said, staring at her with anguished eyes. "I have made inquiries with a family on the coast, a family with a good heritage and a beautiful daughter. I ask that you support me in this. I think our boy needs to have a goal beyond his own misguided infatuations. This will do it."
She stared at him, frustration rising in her. "You didn't seek my counsel on this matter? You have already sent embassies to them?"
He nodded. "I was clear in my head, in the state of mind you feel now, that you would not support me. I have done what I have done with love for my son. I wish you could see that."
She stared at him, sorrow filling her. "And when do you expect to tell him?"
"When the time is right," Thranduil replied. "Promise me that you won't tell him sooner. I claim that right."
She turned and wiped a tear from her cheek, sighing sadly. "You do what you want, Thranduil. You will anyway. Just don't expect my support. My son is too dear to me for me to play god with his affections. It will end in ill, your efforts, I assure you."
She walked away, leaving him alone and he sighed painfully. There was no easy road with his youngest child and he felt the pressure ever more to save him from himself. He turned and walked out, heading for his war room and the battle to protect his kingdom from the rising tide of evil from the south.
They were near to moving, taking an army to the Lorien Wood and beyond that to the edge of Mirkwood. The hosts from the Havens and the coastal plains were moving toward them, their leaders in liege to the commander of the Rivendell forces. Glorfindel, a warrior of great note and fame, was chosen by Elrond to lead their combined forces. He himself would stay in his valley, doing his part from behind lines.
"Your father is too valuable to risk at the front," Erestor said, helping with Elladan's packing. He handed him his shirts, watching as the youngster stuffed it into a battered pack and sighed. "You are ever the sloven aren't you."
He grinned. "I am. Though from which parent I received such an inclination I know not."
"Neither," Erestor assured him.
"Father was a great warrior," Elladan said. "I wish I could have seen him."
"He was. He stood beside Gil-galad and rode at the head of hosts. It was astonishing I tell you, the glory of it all."
"I almost wish he would come and work off his great grief on the necks of the enemy."
"Your father would get himself killed, so great is his grief. I worry of his future if he cannot accommodate it in his heart."
Elladan sat on the bed, staring at the floor. "My mother was a good woman. He loved her and so did we. I remember how much of a family we were, the three of us and them."
"You were," Erestor said, squeezing Elladan's shoulder.
"My brother and I ... we are driven to revenge. I don't know how to keep the images of my mother's suffering from my mind. They lurk there like shadows and when the urges become too great we ride out and excise them on the enemy. It's a sickness, we know."
"It worries your father greatly, so much does he love you. He wishes you could redress this wound so that it vexes you less."
"We don't know how. We are of one mind on this matter," Elladan said with a sigh. "I can only imagine my father's hurt, that he can still do what he must around it. He doesn't go off and kill something to assuage it, to remove the festering of it from his heart."
"Your father is of a different mind about much," Erestor replied, rising. "His grief is a private thing which makes it much worse. He buries it under a facade of dignity and normalcy and in the end when it overtakes him, the sorrow of it will be much worse."
"He should come with us. I have asked him and he demurs, stating that he can do more from here than on the field of battle."
"Then give him that illusion, if illusion it truly is," Erestor said, walking to the door. "Dinner will be soon. Do not be late. When you leave he will have no one to dine with but me and I am poor company since the loss of our Prince."
Elladan nodded and watched as he left, the image of Legolas in his mind. It was a different house, a house subdued as if a death had occurred in the family and he felt the pressure of his concern for his father war with the need to leave and fight the common enemy. He was too skilled a warrior to stay behind and he knew that his father would not allow it.
With a sigh he rose and finished his tasks, determined to make light of things at dinner. It was all he could do for his father's grief.
Celeborn sipped his wine, the reports of the battles nearby in his hands. Galadriel had reviewed them, offering her suggestions and he had taken her wise counsel to heart. Thranduil was holding his own and their offers of more help had been given a polite thank you, but no thank you. Yet. He knew that when Thranduil required it that he would ask. His stubbornness really had its limits, this Celeborn knew.
As he sat reading, a lovely girl walked in, staring at her grandfather quietly. He noted her presence and smiled, watching as she walked toward him. She kissed his cheek and sat on the floor, resting her head on his lap.
"You have been long away from your home, Arwen. I will miss you when you leave but your father needs you."
"I wish I had been here when he came last. I don't know what I could have done but try and comfort him."
"He is beyond comfort now, I believe. The grief that informs him is vast and deep. You can begin what healing you can by being his shadow."
"I will do my best, Grandfather," she said, images of her father's grief, written across his face at the passing of her mother, filled her mind. "I have not met this Prince of Mirkwood. What is he like that he captured my father's heart so completely?"
"I have seen him but once. He is remarkable in his beauty even for those among us. It's as if the light of the two trees shines from his face."
"I am sorry for this," she said, closing her eyes as her grandfather stroked her hair.
"We all are, child, everyone of us," he replied, sighing softly.
He stood on the terrace, staring at the stars. They shown above him as silent witness to the futility of his life. All about him was unchanged but all he could see was in darkness. The light of his life had disappeared, going back to a place where he was only marginally well treated.
Here in this place, Legolas was the center of his thinking, the first thought on his mind and the last at repose. The magnitude of his power over the Lord of Imladris has shaken Elrond. He had given his heart so completely to the youngster that he didn't know how to cope. Retreating into silence and work had been his refuge and so he committed himself to both to the sorrow and worry of all around him.
He knew they were concerned, their many attempts to draw him out meeting polite resistance and so they watched him with anxious eyes, something almost worse than if they pursued him.
He took the news everyday, asking of the situation in Mirkwood, aware that a bowman of Legolas' caliber would be used for the defending of their kingdom. He lived in a deep and mortal dread of hearing that some fell arrow had pierced his heart. In his dreams he saw this and it made him restless, the endless pacing of night and day a by-product of his grief.
It was now his lot to toil for others, to work for the common good, to direct the strategy of the enemy even as he felt nothing but cold and sorrow in his heart and his mind. He would do what he did best, counsel and lead and advise. In the end it would be that which would lead them to victory, something he had done more than once in the past.
In the end this threat would pass and all would fall back into normalcy, or what passed for normal now. If the warring ended, it would be as all the same to him. He was alone and the only one he loved far away. Nothing would change for him but the task at hand.
With a heavy sigh, he turned and walked back inside.