Title: Creative Uses
Characters: Elladan. Elrohir, Elrond, Cirdan, Erestor
Disclaimer: All characters belong to Tolkien; I am just borrowing them.
Summary: The twins get creative when assigned a project by their tutor.
"I do not know Dan, Ada said we were never to touch that stuff," Elrohir began after hearing his brother's idea.
"Oh come on, it is the perfect solution," Elladan pressed. "We could use those open tipped wire ones that Naneth only uses for special occasions. They will fit together perfectly for joints and be movable. She is visiting her parents and will never know. We can put them back before she ever finds out."
Elrohir thought again about the project their tutor Erestor has set them for class. This was to be their last big project before the Harvest Festival. The projects were to be left out to be viewed by those of the valley. They were supposed to make skeletons of different beings for their science class. Using Naneth's lace bobbins would make their task so much easier. There was even a bunch made of bone that meant they would not have to paint them. Still hesitant, Elrohir caved to his twin's demands when he could think of no other alternative.
"You have to be the one to sneak in and take them," he said. "I will not get caught doing that, but will help build the skeletons."
"I will get them tonight, while you find something to use for the troll skeleton," Elladan told is brother. "That will leave us all morning tomorrow to put everything together."
"Oh, that is easy, I have already flinched the key to Ada's lab. He keeps bones for study there in drawers. I can take enough to build a troll from those if we use the bobbins for everything else. It will make the size scale more believable," Elrohir answered knowing he would be in less trouble for being caught there than Elladan would be in if caught.
Elladan was able to slip away to the ladies' solar just after their Ada tucked them into bed. He knew that the room would be deserted for the ladies only worked in there during the day. Placing his candle on a table near the center of the room, he quickly went to the bins he knew were his Naneth's and remove the bobbins. As he grabbed the ones made of bone, he realized they would not have enough. Thinking 'Oh well', he quickly went through the other bins grabbing all of the bone bobbins he could find. Then he spied the little balls of silk thread sitting in rows on one of the shelves. Knowing they would be perfect for the heads, he grabbed a bunch of the white colored ones and threw them in his bag as well. Quietly, he made his way back to their room and waited to see what Elrohir would return with.
Elrohir left shortly after his brother to make his way to their Ada's lab. Several times he had to dunk into dark crevices to avoid being seen. Finally he made his way to the door and quickly let himself him. He had been in the lab enough times to know where everything was and quickly grabbed the bones they would need. Just as he was heading for the door, he heard his tutor's voice outside.
"The door is open," he commented to his companion. "But Elrond is in the Hall still."
"I bet you will know tomorrow who snuck in there. How many do you think managed to borrow bones for their projects?" Glorfindel said with a laugh.
"He said all of his spare keys had gone missing when I commented on the project I set. I have a bet with Elrond as to how many, we will see who wins," Erestor said with smugness. "It was time I restocked my supply of wines."
"Oh, so that is how you talk him out of the special wines he collects," Glorfindel snickered. "I will have to remember that next time I run low."
"You travel enough to acquire your own," came the amused reply. "Come, let us continue so whoever is in there can sneak out and return to their rooms. We will know tomorrow afternoon how many braved Elrond's wrath."
"Wrath is it?," Glorfindel was heard to say as they continued on down the hallway. "More like amusement."
Elrohir waited until he heard no more noise before hurrying back to their rooms. He would have to remember to tell Elladan about what he had heard.
The next morning the twins asked to be excused from breakfast early so as to have time to finish their science project. After they had left, Elrond turned to his sons' tutor.
"Well, do you want to change the bet?" he asked brightly.
"Oh no, I know for a fact that at least one has been in the lab," came Erestor's answer. "We will see how many more braved it when they are judged for their projects this afternoon."
Laughing Elrond just shook his head, "Considering they took almost every bone in the place I am curious to see what they come up with."
Glorfindel just shook his head, "You should not encourage them. They are enough trouble as it is."
"Oh, they are just playing not stealing," Elrond answered with a smile. "Are you really going to sit there and tell me you have not done something similar?"
"We did not have such interesting science projects when I was growing up in Valinor," Glorfindel responded. "I am not sure the Valar would have been similarly amused."
"It is the consequence of growing up in a marred world," came Elrond's careful response. "We let our elflings have their fun while they can for once they step into the world of adulthood their lives become more dangerous unless they sail. It happens soon enough as it is, and that is also why we do not pronounce them adults for many years after their Amanian counterparts have achieved that status."
Glorfindel nodded his head in understanding and let the matter drop. He suspected that many had not thought out the differences caused between the two groups and wondered what kind of problems it was causing in Aman. Hopefully, that was an issue he would not have to deal with any time soon.
The twins gathered their supplies and headed for the hall set aside for the project. Many of the other elflings were already there working on their skeletons. They moved to the corner they were assigned and pulled out their diagrams. Elrohir looked over the different sized bobbins Elladan had grabbed and thought there seemed to be more than he remembered.
"El, are all of these Naneth's?" he asked.
"She did not have enough so I searched and grabbed any I saw," Elladan answered not seeing the problem.
"How do you know what to return to who?" came Elrohir's quiet question.
"I was just going to leave them on the table when I took them back. They will sort them out. They will know who borrowed them anyway after today's judging," Elladan answered without caring.
Elrohir just looked at the pile and wondered what kind of punishment they would receive, and by whom. He dreaded the answer but it was too late to think about it now. Settling down, the twins began to put the bobbins and bones together into different skeletons.
Time flew and they were still putting together their last two skeletons when Erestor came into the Hall and call lunch. Seeing that the twins and one other group were almost finished, he told them to hurry and finish before they came to lunch. The judging would be done by Lords Elrond, Cirdan, who was visiting, Glorfindel, and himself after lunch. Then the Hall would be open to the Valley for all to come see the elflings' work. Glancing at the twins skeletons, Erestor knew major trouble was ahead. He had already fielded four complaints this morning about missing equipment. Who knew how many Lord Elrond had received?
Lords Elrond and Cirdan sent the elflings out to play after lunch while they went to the project Hall to judge.
"I wonder if the elflings here are as creative in acquiring equipment for their projects as I remember certain others being on Balar?" Cirdan asked quietly as they, along with Glorfindel and Erestor, entered the room. Elrond just blanched before quickly glancing away. Erestor just smiled as he knew what everyone had used.
The Lords split up and tackled the room from different sides meeting in the corner reserved for the twins. Upon taking a closer look, Elrond just shook his head.
"They did not," he said as he stared at the twin's use of lace bobbins and silk.
"Like father, like sons, I see," Cirdan laughed as he took a closer look and shook his head. "So, is the punishment going to be the same?"
"You did not?" Glorfindel asked as he looked at the project. He knew there was going to be big trouble. He had been hearing about the "theft" from the Ladies' solar all morning. The ellith of the house were on the warpath, and it looked like the twins were responsible.
"Yes I did," Elrond finally admitted. "It was a good solution as you can see from the twin's project."
"So, what was the punishment?" Erestor wanted to know as he laughed. "By the way, I win and you owe me three bottles of wine."
Elrond just nodded his head. Who would believe that all of those bones had been used by only three groups? As for the twins…
Elrond sat at a table in the Hall of Fire surrounded by an angry group of ladies. Lord Cirdan had awarded the prizes for the project an hour ago and opened the Hall for the public to see the elflings work. After listening to their complaints, he had ordered Erestor to fetch the twins. He was not going to face the ellith of his house alone in this. Seeing the ladies part to let the twins through, he saw the guilty looks on both of their faces.
"So whose idea was it?" Elrond asked once he had quieted the ladies down.
"It was mine Ada," Elladan answered. "Elrohir did not want to do it but I persisted. I was careful to only take loose bobbins, not any that were in use."
"But you did help your brother use the bobbins, did you not?" Elrond asked his younger son.
"Yes sir," came the quiet reply. It was clear that Elrohir understood the gravity of the situation.
"Elrond, allow me," Lord Cirdan injected when he saw how reluctant Elrond was to pass judgment for something he had done once himself without much damage.
Lord Elrond looked relieved to hand the situation over to someone else. Nodding his head in approval, he sat back to watch his sons' faces as Cirdan handed out their punishment.
"Ladies," Cirdan began with a small bow to them. "As I see it, no damage was done. Yes the twins entered the solar, which is the Ladies domain, but they are yet elflings so that is an excusable offense. I agree that taking the bobbins was wrong and that is what the punishment will be for."
When the ladies started to protest, Cirdan raised his hand for silence. "Ladies, please, I am not finished." When they had quieted, he continued.
"Elladan, Elrohir. You showed quite an imagination in using the bobbins to build your skeletons. I think maybe we should put that imagination to use. I believe that you should spend the next year apprenticed to the lace makers of Imladris. Maybe then you will have a better appreciation for what they do and their equipment."
Seeing the horrified looks on the twin's faces and the grudging acceptance on the faces of the ladies, he smiled.
"Ada?" Elladan began. He would take both a spanking, and being grounded, over this any day and was about to say that when Lord Cirdan interrupted him.
"There is no use appealing to him in this instance, little one," came the amused reply. "He will probably think I am letting you off easy as his punishment was for a two year apprenticeship."
All looked to their Lord to see a deep blush cover his face. He just nodded his head as he saw the questioning look in his sons' eyes. Then his eyes shot daggers at Lord Glorfindel as he heard him begin to snicker.
"The projects will be disassembled tomorrow and the twins will both bring the bobbins back to the solar then. They can begin their apprenticeships' come the beginning of next week. That should give you time to draw up apprentice contracts and set up lessons. Is this acceptable?" Elrond addressed the ladies.
When he saw that it was, he dismissed them all and turned to hug his sons while Cirdan watched.
"Do not worry young ones, they will calm down by then," their Ada assured them. "Besides, it is not as bad as it seems. I rather enjoyed my time with them once I had accepted being there, and the teasing stopped. You will be amazed what you can create once you learn the basic stitches."
Seeing that the twins needed the solace of releasing some energy, he sent them outside to play with their friends before retiring to his study with his friends.
"Bobbin lace?" Glorfindel asked with amusement when they all settled with their drinks.
"It is better than embroidery," Elrond shot back with a smug look on his face.
"Who told you about that?" Glorfindel demanded to know amongst all the laughter.