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Reflections from the Paradise of Elves  by Bodkin

The Paradise of Elves – Part 68: Reward


‘How do you feel?’

Legolas raised a single eyebrow and pursed his lips, then relaxed and grinned.  ‘Elerrina is not altogether sure whether or not she should be scandalised,’ he said.

‘I think she would be wiser not to be,’ Elladan suggested helpfully.  ‘I cannot see your Adar reacting very well to a scandalised daughter-in-law.’

‘She is torn,’ Legolas smiled.  ‘She knows that her adar will be horrified – and she knows that she will have to put a lot of energy into defending the uncontrolled, irresponsible ways of Wood Elves, but at the same time she is looking forward to the event with the delight that ellyth always seem to feel under such circumstances.’

Elrohir leaned back and put his booted feet on the elegantly wrought rail.  ‘I think it is a good thing,’ he said amiably.  ‘I am rather hoping that it gives ideas to certain other people, as well.  After all, why should we be required to follow the traditions of those who have been divided from us over three ages and more?   We have our own ways.’

‘True enough,’ his brother agreed.  ‘We have had limitations put on us by our experience and the dangers of the land in which we lived – it has imposed ends on us that were never an intended part of the lives of elves.  Why should we not do things differently?’

‘Taryatur cares little what the elves of the forest do without his knowledge and beyond his sight,’ Legolas admitted, ‘as long, Elerrina says, as they refrain from doing it in public and shocking the sensibilities of the refined.  But this will be a little difficult to hide.’

‘Your parents have the confidence to carry it off,’ Elladan commented.  ‘And you never know – they might start a fashion.’

‘It does seem to be infectious,’ Elrohir added.  ‘You only have to look at us!’

Legolas looked at him quizzically.  ‘Is there something you are not telling us?’ he enquired.

Elrohir looked pained.  ‘Please!’ he protested.  ‘Give us credit for some sense.’

‘Why should I be the first?’ Legolas ducked as his friend seized an apple from the bowl beside him and made as if to hurl it.

‘Hah!’ Elrohir bit into the fruit. ‘We are chock-full of sense, I will have you know,’ he announced.  ‘Just because we do not choose to put it on display all the time . . .’

‘Ever,’ Legolas interrupted.

‘I beg your pardon,’ Elrohir said with dignity, ‘I was speaking!  You are insulting my wife – who is one of the most sensible people I know.’

‘I would have to debate that,’ Elladan objected.

Elrohir threw him a wounded look.

‘Well, she did choose to marry you,’ his twin said reasonably.  ‘There are some – not including me, of course – who would say that is not an indication of good sense.’

‘Others might insist that was a sign of her excellent taste,’ Elrohir told him.

‘Some might say that your naneth is hardly an impartial judge,’ Legolas teased.

They lapsed into comfortable silence, watching the dance of sunlight through the leaves as the small brown birds called to each other.

‘So, how do you feel?’  Elladan repeated mildly.

‘You are not going to give up, are you?’

‘Do we ever?’ Elrohir asked.

‘You are persistent,’ Legolas conceded.  He smiled reflectively.  ‘I feel fine,’ he said.  ‘Why should I not?’

Elladan shrugged.  ‘It is not always an easy transition to make.’

‘How would you react?’

The twins exchanged glances.  ‘I think we would be pleased,’ Elrohir told him.  ‘It is hard to be sure without actually being in the situation, but intellectually – yes, we would be happy about it.’

‘About time, I think I would say,’ Elladan added.

Legolas’s smile brightened the afternoon.  ‘I think I would agree with that point of view,’ he remarked.  ‘It has been a long wait – and something I never expected after all these centuries.’

‘Much here is not what I expected,’ Elrohir mused.  ‘I was not hopeful – of anything, really, other than that Naneth would be here and healed – but it would seem that there is always something round the corner to anticipate with joy.’ 

‘And here is another.’

 ‘An opportunity,’ Elrohir suggested.

‘A reward,’ Elladan decided.

‘A gift,’ Legolas said with satisfaction.


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