A/N: I don't own any of Mr. Tolkien's world, I am only blessed to spin my tale with the places and characters he has provided. This story has been my "baby" for many years and I am finally letting her stretch her wings. I'm sorry if things seem to get heavy with facts in later chapters but it will all work out in the end. :) So please enjoy.
A/N: January 29, 2013- I feel I need to add this note in response to a few reviews that I have received. First I would like to answer a few questions: "Am I anti-Darwinism and a Creationist?" Yes, I am. "Does being a Creationist mean that I believe in God?" Yes, it does. In light of those two responses, yes, my writing does reflect my worldview strongly. I am mostly writing this story for my enjoyment and I decided to start posting it on a whim, not to cause any offense. I'm glad to have found those of you who enjoy my story and I am also thankful for the few negative criticisms that I have received. So I leave it up to you, my readers, if you decide to continue on with my story or not. If not, I wish you well. If so, please enjoy.
Wishing you all the best,
A/N:February 6, 2013- I must apologize for an egregious error on my part. Something was just not sitting right with me about my heroine's name! I would research and research and could not find out why until I found a reliable Quenya dictionary. "Hodoer" is not Tolkein elvish. At all! I am horrified and embarassed and must beg all my readers pardon! Her name is Tára now, which still means "wise." Once again, I apologize and grovel at my reader's feet. Beware the fallacies of the internet! Now, on with the story!
The sixth age of Middle Earth, though few use that name now. Hobbits, Dwarves, Orcs, and even Elves have passed into legend. Some even believe that elves never existed, that they are only mythology, conjured up to give meaning to our past. The reigning king, even, does not claim, or seem to want elvish blood in his ancestry.
The mention of the names, Frodo Baggins, Samwise Gamgee, Meriadoc Brandybuck, Peregrin Took, Boromir, Aragorn, Legolas, Gimli, and Gandalf only earns you a bemused look and an admonishment not to spend so many hours among the mythology texts.
The Quest of Mount Doom is believed to be a fanciful tale, invented to bring renown to the first king of the reunited kingdom. Elessar, the king is said to have existed but Aragorn, one in the same with the latter is looked upon as a hoax.
With the progression of knowledge, men have harnessed the power of the earth. Coal, gas, and steam now power the kingdom of men. Weapons of the great ages and their arts have been usurped from their honored positions. Black powder, once the device of the enemy, has been refined to power weapons that can take a strong man's life without a fight. Men have narrowed the space between life and death to the width of a small trigger, some abusing this power on those who are undeserving.
The children of this age are taught the ways of this earth, not by their parents but by an appointed teacher. Their vital young years are spent squelched inside a lifeless building, all chance of renown or valor snuffed out by the blanket of encouraged mediocrity and pessimism.
Most painful to my heart, though, is the complete denial of our creators. Ilúvatar and the Valar are publicly declared as nonexistent by many peoples. Those who still hope or believe are labeled as social misfits.
This story though is not about the misdeeds of an ungrateful people but of someone who could change people's view forever.
Tára looked down on the streets of the lower levels. The assortment of ancient stone buildings and newer wood and stucco never failed to divert her thoughts.
"Tára, can you state Rondirion's theory of earthly existence?"
Tára turned her head sharply towards the front of the room, her daydreams dissolving before her eyes. The headmaster scowled at Tára, slapping his pointer against his palm. Tára was obviously too quiet for the headmasters liking, causing the man to repeat the question.
"Rondirion's theory of earthly existence is that our earth was created by a great cataclysm. After the solid mass formed, eons passed before minute life forms were created by the proper conditions and reactions. Thus eons later- again,"
A snicker escaped the lips of Tára's friend, interrupting her for a moment.
"Thus eons later, mankind was formed." Tára's ire flared at the haughty look the headmaster threw her.
"Now, in light of our scientific knowledge and progress, would you endorse that theory today?" the headmaster looked pointedly at Tára, who having no choice answered.
"I would never endorse such a theory. To think that this earth happened by chance would only name you the fool."
A hush settled on the classroom, a typical sign that the other students had caught on to the signs of an oncoming verbal sparring match. Tára watched the headmaster's knuckles whiten as he clenched the wooden pointer in his hand.
"Then, Miss Tára, how would you explain the earth's existence?"
Tára's anger flared at the way the headmaster said her name. It was well known about the schooling campus that Tára's name was supposedly from the ancient Elven language.
"The song of the Ainur, the fulfillment of the valar's vision by Ilúvatar. Many texts from ancient authors bear the same account of Middle Earth's creation. As I said before, anyone with even the smallest amount of intellect can see that this world has to be designed by beings greater than our understanding."
"You are drawing your knowledge from mythological texts. There may be only grains of truth in those writings, if any." The headmaster turned away from Tára smugly, mouthing the words Middle Earth incredulously.
Tára took a deep breath before she spoke again. Frustration only seemed to loose her tongue. The headmaster turned quickly as Tára began to speak.
"With all due respect, headmaster, if the texts that I draw my knowledge from are pure mythology, why do they all agree?"
"Those texts were clearly written by the same authors under a false title." The headmaster said quickly. Tára could not help but roll her eyes.
"You know as well as I do that noted scholars and historians have proven the authenticity of both author and text." Tára tried to stop herself but her next words seemed to have a will of their own. " Only those who are unsure of their beliefs and convictions, perhaps even of their social station, would believe something a man invented, just to fit into the mold of today's society."
Tára leaned back into her chair, knowing she had dug herself a deeper grave. The look on the headmaster's face seemed to confirm Tára's fear. The man was about to open his mouth to speak when the bell of the campus tower rang the end of the school day. The headmaster had no choice but to dismiss the class.
Tára gathered her books quickly, rushing for the door. As her foot crossed the threshold, a claw like hand grabbed her arm.
"Just because your father is employed by the king does not mean you are free to behave against the rules of this campus."
Tára felt the urge to speak well up in her stomach, the urge that caused her more harm than good.
"Be thankful that I have not mentioned your dictator like qualities to my father. I do not think that he would take lightly to the thought of you detaining me by force."
The headmaster let go of Tára's arm, an open look of contempt in his eyes. Tára took her opportunity and walked away from the classroom.
Tára turned, spotting her friend Emiliana. The younger girl ran towards Tára.
"You really showed the headmaster what you thought of him!" Emiliana giggled in delight.
"Please, Emiliana, do not follow my example. I will not be here next year to protect you if you choose to loose your tongue on the wrong person. I am just glad that I only have a few weeks left before I can be free of the schooling campus."
Emiliana nodded in agreement. Tára would soon be graduating with a few other collegiate students. Even for her wayward tongue, Tára was still the top of her class.
"Do you believe what I said today in class, Emiliana?" Tára looked to her friend, hoping for an affirmative reply.
"Oh, I don't know. What you said was good for an argument, but I don't think even the past can hold up to our modern knowledge."
"I would gladly punch modern knowledge in the teeth sometimes."
Emiliana turned shocked eyes on Tára.
"How can you say that? Modern knowledge and science has given us many luxuries. Why, if scientists hadn't discovered the power of coal, gas, and steam, we would still be in the dark ages!"
Tára rolled her eyes as Emiliana laughed at her own pun.
The palace complex loomed before Tára. The servant's tunnel to her right would take her home, though Tára resisted its call. Tára felt the need to be alone, she always felt this way after a trying day at the schooling campus. Tára turned to her left moving as stealthily as she could up the cobbled path.
"Its true, it has to be true." Tára said to herself, pushing the nagging of doubt away. The sound of Tára's voice echoed off the marble pillars around her.
The hall of kings. Though it was a place filled with death, Tára felt the most peace when she was surrounded by the great kings of old, as if part of her resided in the halls waiting to be found.
Tára quickly made her way to the most ornate monument. Awe always stopped her before she climbed the steps to the crypt. The words upon the monument were so familiar to Tára but she read them anyway.
"Elessar, High King of Gondor. The line of Isildur renewed."
Tára stepped up to the edge of the crypt, brushing the leaves and dust away from the face of the great king, forever encased in bronze. Tára then walked around the inside of the monument, touching every pillar as she walked by. Nine pillars, upon every pillar the likeness of a face cast in bronze, each with a name underneath. Tára's scouring of historical texts had made her intimately familiar with each person's notable deeds.
Legolas Thranduilion, Gimli son of Gloin, Gandalf the White, Frodo Baggins, Samwise Gamgee, Meriadoc Brandybuck, Peregrin Took, Boromir son of Denethor, and Arwen Undomiel.
The latter image always caused Tára to sigh, a feeling of sadness coming over her. The face of the most beautiful woman she had ever seen looked down into the face of the passed king. The look preserved upon the woman's face was of deepest sorrow and love.
Tára sighed again. The earth seemed to have such a glorious past but it was locked away.
Tára looked across the monument noticing that Legolas Thranduilion's image was at the feet of Elessar. Though she had seen it before, the coincidence seemed to stick in Tára's mind.
Elves were denied to have even existed, yet here was proof that they really walked this earth. One of Elessar's closest companions and Elessar's bride was said to be an elf.
A sound snapped Tára out of her musings. Something white flashed behind a tomb across from Tára. She walked down the steps, hoping she had not been found out.
The entrance gate to the graveyard suddenly creaked open. Tára held her breath waiting for someone to come haul her away. Her anxiety turned to relief when her brother's head peeked around the gate.
"I thought I would find you here. Come on." Tára's brother waved a hand to follow then disappeared behind the gate. Tára quickly followed feeling as if she were being watched.