Swansong 25

Revelation Part V

Standing outside the room Halmir had been given I wondered whatever I was going to say to him. Would he be more embarrassed than pleased that the Queen of Rohan had sought him out to try and explain his mother's actions? Not an easy situation for any of us: it would take Elfwine some time before he could really accept that he had a half-brother, hitherto unknown. How would they deal together, I wondered. There might always be discord between them. Although I did not really believe that, thinking that even if he did not realise it himself at the moment, Elfwine would come to relish having more blood-kin, and Halmir would need a friend. But I was being premature with my thoughts, for if Halmir went home and chose not to come to Rohan, they might never meet again.

And Éomer, would he be able to build the relationship with Halmir that he hoped for? Resentment might run too deep in his bastard son. Possibly Halmir might think that Éomer should have gone against Guleth's wishes and claimed him sooner, introduced him to the advantages his position could command. I hoped not, because Éomer wanted this so much, and I wanted it for him. For however much I had pushed it deep into my inner self, the guilt and longing still festered. I might have saved Éomer's life all those years go, but it was my wild ride that had destroyed my chance of giving him more children – and knowing I could have done no differently didn't assuage the remorse, or ease the shame I felt when those ignorant of the facts whispered their condemnations.

But Éomer, my loving, constant, understanding husband had never, by word or deed, shown to any that he felt deprived of the brood he might have once expected. So at that moment more than anything I wanted to help facilitate a bond between him and his first-born.

The guard announced me, not because I felt the need for formality, but because knowing Halmir's equanimity must be badly stretched, I wanted to give him the chance to compose himself. When I entered he was standing opposite the door; it took a few seconds before he bowed his head and in that short time my senses rocked. Accepting! Sympathetic! My stomach cramped with jealously. Or maybe envy. Facing me was a younger version of Éomer. True he might not be as solid and muscled as the man I had first fallen in love with, but the likeness was uncanny. Up to that moment I had never given true thought to the reality that it had needed two people to make him – together. My husband and another woman! One he'd had feelings for. Seeing the physical product of that union raised anger that tore at all my noble intentions, and I could not utter a word.

Reddening as he witnessed the tumultuous emotions passing across my face, Halmir dropped his eyes to the floor. 'He said you would welcome me, but you wouldn't, would you, lady. You'd rather have me go.'

'No...'I stuttered, trying to get control of myself. I forced a smile. 'It's just that seeing you came as a shock. You look so much like your father.'

His chin jerked up. 'The king, you mean?'

'Of course.' A genuine smile this time. 'Were you hoping there was some mistake?'

He nodded, full of apprehension. Immediately my ire lessened slightly and my heart went out to him. A shock for me, but he must be dazed beyond measure at the impending changes to his life. I had to put away my resentment. After all, it would be surely worse had he looked like his mother, providing a constant reminder to Éomer of a past love. Making a supreme effort I managed to speak normally. 'Halmir, do you mind if I sit down?'

Blue eyes opened wide, and he grabbed a chair. 'Yes...of course, my lady.'

Sweeping my skirt under me I sat down. Halmir stood uncertainty for a moment, not quite sure what to do. I pointed to the other chair. 'It is easier to talk if I don't have to look up to you. Won't you sit as well?'

'You want to talk to me, my lady?'

'Yes, I do.'

Halmir ran his hand through his long hair – such a typical Éomer gesture that I had trouble stopping the gasp that rose in my throat. What fate had decreed that Elfwine would take after me and my family and this love-child be so like his father? But I had to put all that aside and concentrate on the reason I had sought Halmir out. Nothing had changed: Éomer wanted a fulfilling bond with Halmir, and in spite of my misgivings, I suppose I wished that too. I loved my husband very much and would normally do anything to make him happy. But the decision to intervene and help had seemed a simple one to make at first, faced with actuality made it inherently more difficult.

With a suspicious glance at me, Halmir at last sat on the edge of the chair. He stretched out one long leg, probably to balance himself, but it looked as if he were ready for flight. Somehow I had to ease his worries about coming to Rohan and try and encourage him to settle his differences with his mother. Why had I ever thought I could do that? For a moment I hesitated, but then realised that I had learnt a lot from the Rohirrim over the years and one of the main things was that plain speaking made for no misunderstandings. Speak one's truth quietly and clearly – an adage that could not be faulted.

'Éomer tells me that he wishes very much that you will come to Rohan, but you have to go home and let your mother know you are safe first.'

Halmir's eyes narrowed. 'Even if he makes me go home, he can't make me forgive my mother. Or go to Rohan. I will be of age by then. And whoever my father, I am of Gondor.'

Defiant; challenging; who did that remind me of? 'True, but I imagine your ancestry must count for something.'

'Maybe...,' he said after a little thought, 'but at the moment I don't know what I will do. I only know that I don't want to go home.'

'Because you are angry with your mother?'

He shrugged. 'Why shouldn't I be? She is not as I thought. And she lied to me.'

I waited until he had stopped picking at a thread on his tunic and I had his complete attention. 'So what bothers you most: that she misled you over your father's identity, or that she had a relationship with Éomer King?'

'She...she...behaved like a...'he stopped, sensing my reproach. Or perhaps remembering that Éomer had slapped him for voicing such opinions. 'I never thought she would have done that.'

'Halmir, your mother has never married again. Has she had any other liaisons over the years?'

'No...' He frowned. 'Not since I've been old enough to remember, anyway. There's a few that have tried, but she's never shown any interest. Laughed it off, saying she didn't need anybody but me.'

One could see why he was distraught. Briefly I wondered why Guleth had been so self-sacrificing. Had she been so much in love with Éomer that no one else would do? If so, how had she managed to walk away from him? But I pushed that thought aside and used the opening Halmir had given me. 'So what happened between her and Éomer was unusual, she has not made a habit of such relationships.'

'No...'Halmir pursed his lips, scowling. 'I suppose she hasn't, but I don't see that excuses anything. Especially as...her husband had just been killed.'

The man he had thought his father until recently! But in spite of the poor boy's dismay at what had been revealed, he needed to accept that his mother had not behaved so terribly.

'You know, Halmir, those were exceptional times. Now, after years of peace, perhaps a woman would be frowned upon if she took a lover within weeks of losing her husband, but back then emotions and passions were exaggerated by the horror we endured. No one really thought we would triumph against the Dark Lord, and of course thousands didn't survive. And thousands more were dreadfully injured. Imagine what your mother had to endure in the Healing Houses dealing with men with limbs hacked off and their guts hanging out. She must have seen things no woman should have to endure. Do you think you have the right to judge her? She lived through the siege of Minas Tirith, when the city was surrounded by legions of hideous, terrifying monsters, all intent on destroying everyone in it. Think what fright there must have been when the gates broke, before Rohan came.'

'You think that's why, do you?' Halmir stared at me almost accusing.' Because King Éomer came and rescued them. Is that why you think she went with him?'

No, I didn't. But maybe just because she was a woman? Or because he was soul-shatteringly attractive - at least to me. Possibly because she just wanted a child. But I deemed it better to keep those thoughts to myself. 'I don't know exactly why, Halmir, or precisely why she went home without telling him about you, but I do know that Éomer had strong feelings for her. He has told me as much and he does not lie.'

'Unlike my mother, then.'

'I know that is difficult to understand, but I can only think that she loves you so much and she was afraid you would be taken away from her if the truth was known.'

'She should have told him at the beginning, maybe he would have let her live in Rohan.'

What did I say now? That he might have missed out on being the heir to Rohan? 'I imagine she did what she thought was right, Halmir. She didn't want to put Éomer in a position where he felt obliged to marry her. I think she was very brave to go home. She knew that your uncle would welcome you and help her with your upbringing, but you cannot really blame her for letting people assume you were her dead husband's child. Both of you could have suffered from prejudice otherwise. After all, she had no idea that Éomer would find out about you and expected you would spend your life as a Gondorian.'

'And now he expects me to go to Rohan and everyone will know he's my father. And that I'm a bastard.'

'You will find that the Rohirrim tend to judge a man by his actions and not by his birth, Halmir. You must talk to Éomer about that, he will help to make sure you do not suffer from it. But you must also talk to your mother. You must talk openly, without anger or accusation. I am sure you both will feel better if you do so.'

Silence! It seemed a long few moments; the only reaction Halmir made to my homily was another rake of his fingers through his unruly hair. Eventually he let out a long sigh. 'I still don't know if I want to go to Rohan, but I suppose I had better go home anyway. I said some awful things to my uncle, and he has always been good to me.'

'And your mother?'

Another lengthy pause before he said, 'I have listened to your words, my lady. I still feel aggrieved, but maybe the ride home will give me chance to give my mother's actions more thought and to understand her reasons better.'

Probably the best I could achieve at the moment. And underneath the anger and the shock I saw a fine, sensible young man. Hopefully his love for his mother would prevail. Not thinking my presence would improve things anymore I got up to go. 'I will tell Éomer you want to go home; he will arrange an escort... Only to keep you safe, Halmir,' I put in quickly seeing his chin go up and his eyes harden.

He said nothing, only nodded, but as I put my hand on the door handle he stopped me. 'My lady.'

I turned, to meet eyes that penetrated deep into mine. So much like Éomer's way of seeking the truth. 'From what you have told me it seems that King Éomer might well have married my mother, had she told him. That would have changed everything.'

I had thought I had got away with that one, but of course the possibility of missed opportunities would be niggling away at him. 'I think Éomer would have wanted to marry her, Halmir. And she knew that. But his advisers and friends would have opposed it strongly. True, he had not even taken up his seat in the Golden Hall, and had not been crowned, but he was the Lord of the Mark and as such his actions impinged on a whole people. I think in the end he would have listened to counsel. But as I said, you must talk to your mother: I doubt she wanted the responsibility of helping to rule Rohan. Especially if there was likely to be opposition.'

He dropped his gaze, and his shoulders relaxed. 'No, I suppose not.'

'We cannot change what we are, Halmir, none of us. We can only make the best of what we have been given. Your father is a just and honourable man and he will do all that he can for you. I hope you give him the chance to get to know you.' With a quick nod I pulled the door open and let myself out into the corridor.

After a few polite words to the guard I hurried away, waiting until I was out of sight before stopping to lean against the cold marble wall, my heart beating madly. I needed to compose myself before I reported back to Éomer.


Deep in thought, Éomer barely acknowledged the guards' salutes as he entered the tunnel, for in spite of Lothíriel telling him she thought that Halmir would eventually come to Rohan, he was not at all sure. The conversations he'd had with the lad over the previous couple of days had been stilted and non-revealing. Halmir had given away nothing. In fact he had closed in on himself, hiding his hurt and shock behind a non-caring demeanour which reminded Éomer of his own reaction to Théoden's approaches after he and Éowyn had been orphaned. The anger and resentment had led to many clashes with his uncle and it had been Théodred who sorted him, by spending hours every day teaching him how to fight with every conceivable weapon. Well, it was up to him to do the sorting on this occasion, but he hadn't managed to convince Halmir to visit Rohan yet. And he didn't have much time left.

There'd been no hint that he wanted to be a warrior, although Halmir had joined in the fight alongside Elfwine quickly enough, but that was probably a result of his temper. So Éomer knew he had to come up with something other than warfare to attract the lad. He'd tried to reach him through their love of horses, but he was still not convinced it had worked. Éomer had no doubt the word was out and Halmir's identity was known amongst his guard, and all the comment he'd received centred on the lad's natural horsemanship. That was certainly the best hope he had of finding common ground between them, but there was not much more he could say. Lothíriel had done her best to convince Halmir he would be welcomed, but even though she was trying desperately to keep her disquiet from him, Éomer knew his wife was finding the situation difficult to deal with. Who could blame her? What woman would choose to have her husband's by-blow in close proximity, reminding her daily of a past liaison? Thankful for her loyalty that had never wavered, Éomer could only continue to reassure his wife of his abiding love for her.

At least Elfwine had come round a bit, got over his prudishness and probably matured in the process. Perhaps if he added his voice, Halmir would take notice, but Éomer knew he couldn't force Elfwine to do that. He would have to do any more persuading needed himself.

Emerging out of the dark onto the road, Éomer quickened his pace. He'd been delayed by writing a letter to Guleth, not finding it easy, and the sun had risen well above the Ephel Dúath. They'd be leaving soon. He strode into the stable yard, surprised when he saw many more men than he was expecting hovering around. He cast his eyes over the group of Rohirrim; Éomund was already mounted, so were the other three Riders he had detailed to escort Halmir. They had dispensed with their uniforms, so as not to instigate too much talk when they arrived in Lamedon, but still looked like Rohirrim warriors in spite of the commonplace clothes they wore. For Guleth's sake Éomer didn't want to cause a lot of talk, but he'd dismissed the idea of sending Halmir home alone. Worrying too much, he supposed, but Halmir was not like Elfwine – trained to fight. He didn't even have a sword, and there were still a few brigands that preyed on travellers using the lonely mountain roads.

Éomer picked out Halmir amongst the group, holding on to his mare and standing next to Déor. That didn't surprise him, in fact he wondered if the lad would have been happier if Déor really had been his father. But surely being a king didn't make him that intimidating. He'd tried so hard to be normal – fatherly...Éomer stopped: Déor had moved and beside him he saw Elfwine, talking earnestly to Halmir, and whatever the words, Halmir was listening to them attentively. A warm feeling spread through him, more than anything he wanted his two sons to be friends. And they could be, because they had liked each on their first meeting. Only the unusual situation had got in the way for a while, but perhaps Elfwine really had grown up.

Reaching the trio, Éomer casually dropped his hand on Elfwine's shoulder. 'Saying farewell, son?'

Elfwine nodded, looking straight into his eyes. 'I've told Halmir that I hope he comes to Edoras. And that he doesn't need to train to be a warrior.'

'No...No, of course he doesn't.' Éomer frowned; surely he had not given that impression. He turned to Halmir who stared at him warily. 'Just come and see the home of your forebears. Learn a bit about your heritage. See the huge herds that graze the plains, the Mearas stallions that are our lifeblood. That's all I'm asking.'

Halmir said nothing, and Éomer realised that Déor and Elfwine had moved away. He was alone with his first-born and had never felt so tongue-tied in his life. Suddenly though, he felt irritation rising. Eorl's bones! He'd had enough of this pussyfooting.

'Halmir, I want to get to know you. I want to make up for the years we've missed. But if you don't want that then there is nothing more I can do or say.'

'It's a strange position, lord,' Halmir said at last. 'Already people are looking at me differently and treating me awkwardly. I do not speak your language and I am not sure how to behave. Life was simple before.'

'It will be a little awkward at first,' Éomer agreed. 'But languages can be learnt and so can customs and history. Maybe you will have to put up with some tittle-tattle, but I cannot change that. You will have to rise above it. Whatever the circumstances, you are my son and most will be friendly and respectful. I will help you all I can, but in the end it is you who will carve out a position for yourself in life, Halmir. And from what I have seen, you have the strength to do that. You have the opportunity to work with the best horses in Middle-earth, the chance to get to know your brother as well as me. Do not throw it away because of the fear of a few tactless remarks. Hold your head up high and take what is being offered to you.'

Halmir nodded, but Éomer wasn't sure that meant he agreed. 'Talk to your mother and your uncle. The next shipment of wine will be coming in a few months; if you send word I will arrange an escort for you.' Éomer fished in his pocket. He had intended to give the letter to Éomund, but it would look as if he didn't trust Halmir to deliver it, and there had to be trust between them. 'Pass this to your mother, will you, Halmir. It's only really an assurance that if you do come to the Riddermark I shall make sure you return regularly to see her.'

'Unless she's changed she won't want me to come,' Halmir said, as he slipped the letter inside his tunic.

Éomer privately thought that she might feel differently now Halmir had actually run away. Anyway, he had done his best in the letter to tell her that he would not encourage Halmir to stay away for good.

Minutes later, watching Halmir's back as the small group trotted along the road from the stables Éomer wondered if he would ever see his son again.


Edoras FA 53

Elfwine squeezed my shoulder. 'Mother, you never showed how much it bothered you, that you were upset by having to contend with Halmir's existence. I thought you fully supported Father.'

'I did,' I assured him quickly. 'And I tried to persuade Halmir to come here. I was just a bit jealous, I suppose. Not a nice emotion. I knew that your father had been very fond of Mistress Guleth, and although it was better for Halmir to think there was some love between his father and mother, it made it a little difficult for me.'

'I suppose. Although I am glad there was some attachment between them rather than just...'

'Lust,' I supplied with a laugh. 'Elfwine, I do believe that you have never quite lost that priggish streak.'

Elfwine sighed, slanting me an indulgent smile. 'Perhaps I am just a one woman man.'

I leant my head against his warm body. My son, how I loved him. 'Ceolwen is a very lucky lady.'

I felt his hand smoothing gently across my hair as he bent towards my ear. 'I think I'm the lucky one; she was quite young when she agreed to marry me.'

That made me smile: remembering how I had tried to interest him in one of Aragorn's daughters. 'I don't know how I missed it, but your attachment was obvious to everyone when we returned from Gondor that time.'

Elfwine laughed. 'As I said, a memorable time in our lives. And I like to think that seeds sprouted for Eldarion during those weeks, too. Although it was a couple of years before I could collect my winnings.'

'Hmmm... I don't suppose I ever thought I would have a niece who might one day live to be Queen of Gondor. Amroth and Devoran were quite stunned when he turned up in Dol Amroth on her twentieth birthday. I think it was only my father and Elenna who weren't surprised.'

'Grandfather always did see things very clearly. I had another talk with him about Halmir, you know. Which was what made me try and encourage him to come here.'

'Now that I didn't know. But I do know that your father appreciated that you'd tried very much. He had done all he could, and as the months passed, I think he had given up. He tried to hide it, but when the wine arrived and there was no word, it upset him greatly.'

'I can see why it wasn't easy for Halmir,' Elfwine mused. 'To suddenly find out that one's father, besides being a king, is one of Middle-earth's great warriors and not be interested in fighting oneself at all, would be difficult. He thought he would be judged against his father in that respect and...'

'But no one expected him to become a warrior,' I interjected. 'Least of all your father.'

'I know, but Halmir was surrounded by them in Minas Tirith – me, Éomund, Déor, all the guard in fact. He must have felt a bit strange.'

'Maybe, certainly men think differently about those things. But whatever the reasons I would have saved your father the months of worry if I could have.'

Elfwine smiled. 'But it all led to another unforgettable day...didn't it?'


Edoras FA 18 – October

Éomer and I had been for an early ride along the banks of the Snowbourn. Dry for weeks, the leaves of the alders had turned from deep yellow to orange. Still hanging on to the boughs, they glowed in the early sun, glistening like the finest amber beads. But the long, slender willow leaves had already fallen, providing a soft carpet for our horses' hooves. I, for one, would have loved to ride until the sun sank again, not wishing to spend a moment indoors on such a beautiful day when winter crept ever nearer. Reluctantly though, as the sun rose above the tall pines, we turned for home, knowing we were in for a good few hours confined to the Hall, it being the day the populace could petition King or Queen.

A line of supplicants waited for us as, arm in arm, we ascended the steps to Meduseld. After eighteen years in Edoras, I knew them all. No surprises today by the look of it – no Gimli asking for leave to delve deeper under Mount Thrihyrne, no lord wanting to explore the ancient trading routes to the Long Lake and beyond. Just the common problems that people had when they lived in peace and war did not render small worries irrelevant.

We listened to farmers who wanted to cultivate more land, and an idiot who had a plan to draw water from the Snowbourn beneath the city, which would leave high and dry the reeds that filtered the waste from Edoras. We heard from a potter who wished to construct a new kind of kiln, and the families who said it would smoke them out of their homes. But most were mundane requests for the chance of selling wares to Meduseld, or someone requisitioning leave to graze their horses on the royal pastures. The day wore on, and I saw Éomer look up longingly as the sunshine left the high windows and the hall darkened. Outside the sun would still be dancing over the meadows, but graciously, showing no impatience, he concentrated on trying to unravel a complicated tale of two warring neighbours who argued over the ancient right to dig peat.

It ended finally, the last few decisions being made as the tables were laid for supper. The hall would be full tonight as those who had come from a distance were fed, and some even bedded down. Elfwine returned just in time to eat, full of his new horse which he had taken out on an extended ride over the grasslands.

'A long ride tomorrow would be good,' I said to Éomer as everyone seated themselves. 'We must make the most of this weather while it lasts.'

'How about a visit to Aldburg,' Elfwine suggested. 'I want to go and show Ceolwen my horse and I am sure they would find room for us for a night or two.'

I answered that we should really say we were coming and not just turn up, but Éomer never got chance to add his opinion because at that moment the outer door opened. But it was not the doorward that entered that got our attention, it was the tall, blond young man who stood behind him.

'Halmir,' I whispered, reaching for Éomer's hand. He had come, and the joy I knew my husband would feel pushed away any unease that might trouble me.

He squeezed my fingers but said nothing, standing as the guard escorted Halmir towards the dais.

'Sire,' the guard addressed his king. 'This is Halmir from Lamedon, he says you are expecting him.'

Éomer nodded absently, he had not taken his eyes from Halmir. 'You came on your own? Why didn't you ask for an escort?'

Halmir bowed, but raising his head he met his father's intense scrutiny boldly. 'I needed to find my own way, lord.'

'You must be hungry.' Éomer relaxed and smiled. I could feel the pride in him as a tangible force. He looked around, but Elfwine had already called for another chair and washing water. Éomer pushed his own chair aside and went to meet Halmir, but he took time to quickly clasp Elfwine's arm in thanks as he passed. That simple gesture told me not to worry and all would work out well.

It must have cost Halmir much to step up onto the dais, the whole hall watching in virtual silence, intrigued by the events they were witnessing – their king had just stood up in deference to a young man who was a stranger to most of them. But Halmir held his head up as Éomer led him to the front of the dais.

'Rohirrim!' My husband had never had problem making himself heard, but this night he could have whispered and been heeded. All waited expectantly.

'This is my son, Halmir. Welcome him.'



Edoras FA 53

Sometimes generosity of spirit is repaid in ways we cannot imagine. My actions all those years ago when I tried so hard to welcome Halmir with an open heart resulted in a fulfilling family life as Elfwine and Halmir gradually formed a bond strengthened by common blood. I suppose that had Halmir threatened Elfwine's position as heir in any way things could have been different, but the Rohirrim would still need a warrior king to lead them for long years. Elfwine's right to rule, when his father would at last be laid in his barrow, had never been queried or questioned.

Halmir had been drawn to Rohan eventually, not because he coveted a crown, but only by the wish to know his father and his love of horses. And through the horses he had indeed found his role: breeding and training the best warhorses we could produce.

'You were right, Mother, everything did work out well. You have double the number of grand-children to cosset that you might have had.' Elfwine's voice jerked me out of the reverie I had fallen into when we finished reminiscing.

I laughed. 'You have both been prolific.' But of course Halmir's children were not my grand-children although I never thought to distinguish between them. And I waved them off with a smile on my face when they regularly took the mountain road to Lamedon to visit Guleth. Often I wondered what she thought, whether she regretted the choice she had made.

'Ah...and here he is.'

I followed Elfwine's eyes. Coming up the steps, arm in arm, were Halmir and Leofcwen. Marrying Eóthain and Welwyn's daughter had made it easy for me to love his children.

'My lady!' Leofcwen dropped Halmir's arm and hurried ahead when she realised I was sitting outside the hall. She grasped my hand when she reached me. 'You must be feeling much better, I am so glad. But the sun is westering, you must not get cold.'

Elfwine put his hand on my shoulder. 'I doubt you'll get her to go in before Father returns.'

'No,' I agreed. 'It will reassure him if I am well enough to greet him. Goodness knows what the messenger said.'

'We thought the worst,' my lady.' Halmir smiled down at me. 'It is good to know our fears were unfounded.'

Not quite. But I had a little time to get them used to the idea that my Númenórean blood would not give me longer life than Éomer, something most had expected. But the gift of healing and prophesy came with a price, one I had to pay without regret. But the short time left to me I wanted to spend with my husband. Again I looked out over the plain. When would he come?

In the end it was the stiffening posture of one of the doorwards that told us the wait was over. 'Help me stand,' I said. Elfwine got one side of me and Halmir the other, holding me up until I could balance myself. A deep breath, and I stood tall, able to see the group of riders hurtling towards Edoras.

The years fell away, and suddenly I was on my father's ship watching Éomer riding across the Pelennor towards me. My heart; my destiny.

I could see him now, pulling ahead of the others, and more than all the green and gold, and the White Horse running, it was the assured, easy grace of him, the blending of horse and man, which spoke his name.

The end.

Author's note: The last quote is from Tide of Destiny Chapter 25 when Lothíriel sees Éomer for the first time.


Well, that's it – The Tide of Destiny series is finished. Four novels, over 400,000 words written.

A big thank you to all my readers, but special appreciation goes to those who have taken the time to review and those who have been with me since the beginning.

And my heartfelt thanks go to Lialathuveril, who as well as correcting my mistakes, has given me unstinting support. As she reminded me yesterday, it was a good few years ago when we sat in a car together, somewhere in Southern England, and I gave her the draft of the very first chapter of Tide to read.

Regards to you all, LBJ

List of original characters appearing or mentioned in this chapter.

Halmir Son of Guleth and Éomer.

Ceolwen Elfhelm's youngest daughter.

Éomund Son of Bergit, brought up by Éomer's cousin

Leofcwen Daughter of Eóthain and Welwyn.

Elenna, Eldest daughter of Amrothos and Devoran

Déor Captain of Lothíriel's guard

For info.


Elfwine –born FA1 Married – Ceolwen youngest daughter of Elfhelm and Wilflede

Eldarion – born TA 3020 - married Elenna, eldest daughter of Amrothos and Devoran

Elphir and Meren:

Alphros m – born 3017; Elphin m – born 3020 ; Eldir m – born FA4; plus one girl.

Erchirion and Inayah:

Two daughters and one son.

Amrothos and Devoran:

Elenna f – born FA2; Rosriel f – born FA5; Carafin m – born FA7 (became Lord of Morthond when Devoran was given her inheritance); Baranir m – born FA8; Lindis f born FA11 (married Déor and Byrde's son, Caedda)

Eóthain and Welwyn:

Leofcwen f – born Yule 3020 ; Eadrid m – born FA5; plus three more.

Déor and Byrde:

Caedda m – born FA6 (married Lindis; four children including Osmund)

Elfhelm and Wilflede

Bronwyn – f born 3019

Caedmon – m born 3021

Ceolwen – f born FA 3

Hrodgar – m born FA 5

Æbbe and Godric