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Reflections from the Paradise of Elves  by Bodkin

The Paradise of Elves – Part 18:  To Boldly Go

‘Are you content to remain here – forever at your adar’s side with little to occupy you?’ Elladan asked seriously, his grey eyes dark.

Legolas regarded him consideringly, but remained silent.

‘In his absence, those of Lasgalen looked to you as their leader.  Now, once again, you are subordinate to him,’ his friend continued.  ‘Do you not sometimes want your own authority, as you had in Ithilien?’

‘Is this just about me?’  Legolas regarded him narrowly.  ‘Or is this a question from one of the Lords of Imladris?’

Elladan smiled wryly.  ‘It was a small realm – even smaller once most had sailed – but for a time the responsibility was ours. It was long enough to become accustomed to a certain level of independence.  I find our current life somewhat – claustrophobic.’ He stopped and looked at his hands. ‘Elrohir,’ he added, ‘seems content to act as adar’s aide in his activities here – but I wish for us to have our own lands.’

‘It is not that I do not wish to spread my wings,’ his brother protested.  I am just more prepared to make accommodation and do what is here to be done.’

Legolas sighed.  ‘I suppose that is what I am attempting to do,’ he said.  ‘Thranduil is not altogether settled – he is not one to relish living by another’s rules and he finds it very boring to spend time twiddling his thumbs – but he is happy in our reunion and he enjoys having Elerrina as a daughter.  I suppose we are both frustrated – neither of us is making the best use of our talents. However, I do not feel we can leave him.’

‘That will be even worse if you have elflings,’ Elladan informed him. ‘Believe me – any suggestion of separating grandparents from their precious little ones makes you extremely unpopular.’

They turned in unison, reminded to check on the small ellon who was lying on a blanket busily chewing on a wooden horse.  He cooed at them, waving his hand in the air and they beamed an instant brilliant response to their new lord’s condescension. 

‘I cannot blame adar and naneth for that,’ Elrohir admitted. ‘Or Miriwen’s parents.  He is delightful.’

Elladan inspected him with the proud but slightly more jaded view of an adar.  ‘He is rather nice to have around,’ he conceded, ‘but he causes a lot of fuss and there is more involved in looking after him than I would have thought possible.’

‘If you had a tail, you would wag it,’ Legolas repeated the old saying. ‘Do not try to fool us into thinking you would change him for anything.’

‘He needs a real home in which to grow up.  A place of his own.  It is not,’ Elladan reverted to the former topic, ‘as if there is not land in plenty. We would not want to take anything away from those who are already here.  We could all move to the empty lands and establish our own states.’

‘Would it be necessary to hold it from the High King? Thranduil would not care for that.’

Elrohir spread his hands.  ‘Do we not accept his authority anyway, purely by being here?’ he asked.

‘Would Elrond stay here?’

‘I believe,’ Elrohir said slowly, watching his brother lift the elfling above his head and pull a face to make him giggle, ‘that our elders – among whom I include your adar – are much further along this path than we are.  We have been somewhat – distracted from politics recently. And if Lasgalen and Lothlorien make new havens for themselves, then Sirithiel’s parents and Miriwen’s are likely to be among those who journey to the new lands.  We ourselves would go with our parents to build a new Imladris.’

‘That would leave Elerrina further divided from her parents,’ Legolas mused.

‘Would she mind?’

‘They would,’ he answered honestly.  ‘I am not sure how she would respond.’

Elladan glanced away from his game of peek-a-boo, grinning at them.  ‘Miriwen would tell you not to be patronising,’ he told him.  ‘That you should not treat your wife as mindless and helpless, but involve her in the decision-making.  I think you would find that she is far more aware of these plans than you might think.’

‘You have discussed this with your wife?’ Legolas was slightly surprised. ‘You have changed! When you are worrying over something, you are usually like a clam.’

‘Miriwen does not care for clams,’ his friend replied dryly. ‘Or indeed, any shellfish.’

They laughed, and Elrohir declared, ‘Sirithiel has her own ways of finding out what is happening.  I find it is a mistake not to talk over what is in my mind, because she usually knows it anyway – and she has a way of clearing my head and easing my heart.’

‘You are right,’ Legolas admitted. ‘We need to talk about this – not just with our wives, but with our parents. If they are excluding us from their discussions, then they are guilty of patronising us.  We are none of us elflings.’

‘Except you,’ Elladan commented lovingly to the crowing ellon, as a trail of dribble fell from his open mouth to land in his adar’s eye.


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