Blood of Innocents

By

Glorfindel's Girl

Day One: Eluréd

          Nimloth threw back the heavy tapestry covering the stone wall, and pushed her son behind it.  She let the tapestry drop back down and turned to leave.  There were voices growing nearer.  Angry voices, dangerous voices. 

"Amil," Eluréd cried, reaching out for his mother's hand.  "Do not leave me, Amil!"  He did not know exactly what was happening, but he did not want to be left alone.  Nimloth turned around at her child's touch.  She dropped to her knees before him.  Eluréd saw that his mother's eyes were filled with tears.  That frightened him more than the thought of being left alone.

"Eluréd," she whispered, placing her hands on her son's cheeks.  "You must stay here.  Promise me, Eluréd, that no matter what you hear you will stay here.  Promise me!"

He nodded, beginning to cry.  "I promise, Amil."

Nimloth leaned forward and kissed her child once on the forehead.  "Sshh," she whispered, placing a finger on his lips.  "You must be quiet.  I love you."

And then she was gone, pulling the tapestry back into its proper position.  Eluréd cried in silence as he heard the voices growing nearer.  Suddenly, they were right before him, on the other side of the tapestry.

"Where is it woman?" someone demanded.

"You have lost your right to it!" he heard his mother reply, with cold fury in her voice.  There was the sharp sound of someone being slapped.

"Foolish woman!  How dare you oppose us?  Stand aside or meet the same fate as your husband!"

"No!" Nimloth cried.

Eluréd bit his lip to keep from crying for his mother as he heard the ring of a sword being drawn from a scabbard.   He covered his ears, tears streaming down his face, but it was not enough to block out the sound of the sword being brought down, the sound of someone collapsing on the floor.  Then…silence.  Eluréd could feel his heart pounding against his chest, like a bird beating against its cage.  Were they gone?  Was he safe? 

Light flooded across his face as the tapestry was suddenly drawn back.  He tried to back away, but found only the cold stone of the wall pressed against his back.  A dark haired Elf reached forward, grabbed him by the wrist and pulled him roughly from his hiding place.  He closed his eyes, but not fast enough.  He had already seen his mother's lifeless body lying in a pool of blood. 

"I told you she had a child with her," the Elf said to the others gathered around.  Eluréd opened his eyes again and saw that he was surrounded by a group of grim Elves, all with cold, merciless eyes.  Then something heavy struck him in the back of the head, and he collapsed to the cavern floor, dimly aware of the angry voices above him.  Then his world dissolved into darkness, and he remembered no more.