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History Lessons  by Nilmandra

Lessons continue…..with a little review to help us all. Glorfindel is a very good teacher that way. Elladan gets the point of the genealogy trees - and I'll think you'll find that you did too….

Special thanks to Daw the Minstrel for beta reading this chapter (and the last one).

Chapter 3: The Silmarillion for Elflings Part II

Elladan and Elrohir squirmed and watched the time, finally dashing in delight from the room when their father appeared to take them to lunch. Istuion flopped ungracefully into a chair and buried his face in his arms. His first tutoring assignment, to the progeny of the Lord of Imladris no less, and he could not make the children learn. Speaking to their father was not an option for him either, as he was encouraging them to spend time listening to Lord Glorfindel tell stories. Stories. He had studied the history books available to him in the great library of Imladris, carefully planned the timelines and lessons they would learn and they were off listening to stories instead. He sighed and stood and went again to re-arrange his lesson plan.

Elrond watched Istuion for a few moments after the twins left the room. He had chosen Istuion for his youth and the initiative he had shown in teaching himself many subjects. The young elf had lost father and grandfather at Dagorlad, he himself being too young to fight. Elrond smiled to himself. Perhaps he would invite Istuion to join Glorfindel and the twins for the story.

* * *

Elrond arrived to find the twins breathless and still sweating after their first sword lesson. Glorfindel had sent them to wash and clean up upon entering the house, and now was inventorying bruises and sore muscles.

"It does not hurt," Elrohir insisted as Glorfindel carefully inspected the darkened spot on his upper arm.

Glorfindel smiled as he squeezed gently and saw tears form in the elfling's eyes.

"I did not mean to hit him so hard," Elladan said quietly, hovering near his brother.

"I know you did not mean to," Glorfindel agreed, "but do you now understand why I told you not to swing the sword at anyone yet?"

"Yes, Glorfindel. We are not ready for that yet," Elladan said contritely.

"You must start at the beginning and learn how to hold the sword and how to stand properly before you learn to swing. When you do first learn to swing, it will not be at your brother either," Glorfindel admonished him gently.

Elrond watched the scene from the door, then left to obtain cool glasses of lemonade for his little warriors. He carefully mixed a slight painkiller into one glass and returned to the study.

"Ada!" Elrohir blinked back tears and ran to his father. "We had our first sword lesson today!"

Elrond set the tray down, and scooped the elfling up in his arms. Elrohir did not realize it when his father examined his bruised arm and shoulder, or when he imparted some of his own healing energy into the child. Elrohir only knew that he felt better after being hugged by Ada.

"I have heard that your new swords will be ready within the week," Elrond said as he sat down with Elrohir in his lap and patted the seat next to him for Elladan to join them.

"Yes, Ada." Elladan wrapped his arms around his Ada's middle and snuggled next to him. "Ada?"

"Yes, Elladan?"

"I hit Elrohir with my training sword."

"Did you hurt him?" Elrond asked.

"Yes, Ada. He has a big bruise and it hurts."

"Did you tell him you were sorry?"

"Yes, Ada, and he forgave me," Elladan buried his face in his father's robe.

"That is good," Elrond replied, cuddling Elladan close. He paused for a moment, then asked, "Did you disobey Glorfindel?"

"Yes, Ada," Elladan sniffed, the sound muffled in the heavy robe.

"Did you tell him you were sorry too?"

Elladan's tear-stained face looked up from the robe. "No, Ada." Elrond gave him a little nudge and Elladan rose and walked to Glorfindel with his head bowed. "Glorfindel?"

"Yes, Elladan?"

"I am sorry I disobeyed you," Elladan said with his head down. "I promise I will not do it ever again."

Glorfindel stifled a chuckle. "Is that a promise you can keep?" he asked the headstrong elfling.

Elladan thought for a moment, his head still bowed as he fingered the hemmed edge of his tunic. "I promise to try to never disobey you again."

Glorfindel tipped the elfling's chin up with a finger. "I forgive you too, and I will hold you to your promise to try," Glorfindel replied.

Elrond passed out glasses of lemonade, pleased when Elrohir drained his glass without noticing any odd taste. Glorfindel yawned as he took the offered beverage.

"I guess we are done for the day then," he said, eyeing the elflings.

"Glorfindel!" Elrohir exclaimed. "You promised!"

"Oh my, so I did." The elf-Lord rubbed his nose. "I guess I cannot have elflings being held to their promises," Glorfindel said, watching Elladan grin, "if I am not held to mine. Let us begin by seeing how much you remember from yesterday. I am going to drill you pretty fast. Call out your answers if you know them. Who created Arda?"


"Who did Ilúvatar create first?"

"The Valar!"

"Who was the mightiest of the Valar?"


"Was Melkor good or evil?"


"Who fought Melkor and chained him up in Mandos?"

"Manwë and the other Valar!"

"Who did the Valar ask to make the Great Journey west?"

"The elves!"

"Which elves went?"

"The Noldor," Elladan said first.

"The Vanyar!" Elrohir put in second.

"And some of the Teleri!" Elladan finished.

"What is the name of the elves who were unwilling to make the Great Journey?"


"What is the name for elves who have never seen the light of the trees of Aman?"


"Who was the first King of the Noldor?"


"Who was Finwë's oldest son?"


"What did Fëanor make that Melkor coveted?"


"What did Fëanor call Melkor after he stole the Silmarils?"


"What did Fëanor swear when he heard that Morgoth had taken the Silmarils to Middle-Earth?"

"An oath!"

"What happened when the Noldor went to the Teleri and asked for their ships to travel to Middle-Earth?"

'The Teleri refused," Elrohir said more solemnly and Elladan finished, "so the Noldor fought and killed some of them. The first Kin-slaying."

"What did the Valar do?"

"Exiled Fëanor and all the Noldor who followed them."

"Where did the Noldor go?"


"Who was already in Beleriand?"

"King Thingol and Queen Melian at Doriath!"

"What do we call the time after the Noldor arrived?"

"The First Age!"

"What is a great hidden city that was built by the Noldor in Beleriand?"

"Gondolin! Where you lived, Glorfindel!" Elrohir reminded him.

"Who came to Beleriand for the first time in the year I 305?"


"Now for the toughest question: to whom are you two related?"

Elladan and Elrohir exchanged glances. Elrohir was already mouthing words and counting on his fingers.

"Everyone!" Elladan broke in.

Glorfindel and Elrond laughed aloud. Istuion had slipped into the room quietly at Elrond's bidding. He smiled and sat back in his chair, amazed at how much the elflings remembered.

"Then I think we can begin the story," Glorfindel said dramatically.

King Thingol and Queen Melian lived in the kingdom of Doriath. Born to them was Lúthien, the most beautiful elf-maiden who has ever lived. Lúthien was dancing in the wood one day, and Beren, a man from the House of Bëor, saw her and fell in love with her. Their love story was tragic, but Beren eventually won the right to marry Lúthien when he retrieved one of the Silmarils from Morgoth. They had a son, Dior, who became the heir of Thingol. Dior fell in love with Nimloth, who was also from Doriath, they married and in the year I 503 their daughter Elwing was born.

King Turgon of Gondolin had a daughter named Idril. She married the man Tuor, who was from the houses of Hador and Bëor. A son named Eärendil was born to them in I 503. Both Eärendil and Elwing were half-elven.

Tragedy befell Doriath when the dwarves attacked, killing King Thingol and taking the Silmaril that Beren had recovered. Queen Melian returned to the gardens of Lorien in Aman, and she has not been seen ever again in Middle-Earth. Before she left she sent word to Lúthien and Beren, and their son Dior and his wife Nimloth, of what had occurred. Beren and Dior returned and fought the dwarves, killing them and recovering the Silmaril. Beren and Lúthien held the Silmaril until their death; it was then sent to Dior in Doriath.

The sons of Fëanor heard of Dior's possession of the Silmaril, and they remembered their oath when they left Aman: that they would pursue whoever withheld a Silmaril from them. Fëanor was dead, but his sons organized an attack on Doriath in I 505. This is the second kin-slaying. Three of Fëanor's sons were killed, but so were Dior and Nimloth. They had two sons, Eluréd and Elurín, who were reported to have been left to starve in the forest. Maedhros, one of Fëanor's sons, repented of this action and tried to find them, but to no avail. Some of the people of Doriath did escape, taking young Elwing and the Silmaril with them. They escaped down the River Sirion and settled near the mouths of the Sirion.

In I 510, when Eärendil was just seven years old, Morgoth attacked Gondolin. For almost four hundred years the city had been hidden in the encircling mountains, and Morgoth was unable to locate it. Sadly enough it was Maeglin, King Turgon's nephew, that betrayed them to Morgoth. When the city was sacked, Idril and Tuor, with Eärendil and some of their people, escaped out a secret but dangerous exit. While escaping they were attacked by orcs and balrogs.

"Is that when you fought the Balrog, Glorfindel?" Elladan jumped up.

"That is where I fought the Balrog," Glorfindel confirmed.

"You saved their lives," Elrohir said in wonder.

"Actually, I did not," Glorfindel corrected the child gently. "I fought the Balrog and it died, but if the great Eagles had not come and destroyed the orcs, those fleeing would still have been caught or killed."

"You fought the Balrog for no reason?" Elladan was crushed.

"No, Elladan. The Balrog would have killed them if I had not fought it. I think the Eagles found us by seeing the flaming whip of the Balrog as we fought. If we had not fought, the whip might not have been raised and the eagles might not have come in time."

"What did you do after you beat the Balrog? Did you go back and fight more or did you escape too?" Elrohir asked.

"I did not exactly beat the Balrog, Elrohir. It died, but so did I. The great Eagle Thorondor carried my body away and buried it. My spirit went to the Halls of Mandos."

Elrohir sat up straight in his father's lap where he had been comfortably held. Elladan had been sitting next to Glorfindel. He now stood. Both children stared at Glorfindel openmouthed.

"But how. . . . ."

"When did . . . ."

"All elves that die go to the Halls of Mandos. Namo and Manwë determine how long you must stay there. I was released for the purpose of returning to Middle-Earth. Elves who are released and given new bodies normally stay in Aman," Glorfindel explained simply.

"I am glad you came back to Middle-Earth," Elladan said resolutely, arms crossed on his chest.

"Did you have to come back here?" Elrohir asked.

"No, tithen-min," Glorfindel replied. "I was asked if I wished to return, and I did. Now, let us continue the story."

Elladan sat back down next to Glorfindel and Elrohir relaxed back into father's arms, wincing a little as his arm touched his father's shoulder. Elrond shifted him so he was cuddled on his side, his sore arm out.

Tuor, Idril, Eärendil and their people escaped down the River Sirion, settling near the mouths of the Sirion with the remnant of people who had come from Doriath.

With Turgon dead, Ereinion Gil-Galad was named High King of the Noldor elves. He was born in I 445. When he was only ten years old, his father Fingon sent him to live with Cirdan the Shipwright. His grandfather Fingolfin died that same year at Dagor Bragollach, the Siege of Angband. His father, Fingon, died sixteen years later at the Nirnaeth Arnoediad (Unnumbered Tears) where he was a slain by a Balrog.

Gil-Galad was very young when Gondolin and Doriath fell. He was just into his majority when he was named High King. He sailed with Cirdan, who had raised him, and Cirdan eventually moved some of his people to Sirion to join with the survivors of Doriath and Gondolin.

Eärendil's parents, Tuor and Idril, built a ship and sailed west. Eärendil was Lord of his people at Sirion, and he married Elwing of fallen Doriath. In I 532 your father and his twin brother Elros were born.

Ulmo, the Valar who rules the Sea, went to Valinor at this time and spoke with the Valar, pleading with them to come to the aid of the elves against the wrath of Morgoth. But Manwë was not moved by his pleas, and no aid was sent. The tale is told that until one came to speak on behalf of elves and men, seeking pardon for their misdeeds and pity for their suffering, the Valar would not aid Middle-Earth.

It was Eärendil who took up this task, building with Cirdan's aid Vingilot, a beautiful white ship, and setting sail in search of his parents, in search of Valinor. Many and long were his voyages, and yet he found them not. In Sirion Elwing sat in sorrow, for she was not with him.

Glorfindel stopped and looked at the expectant faces watching him. Elrond seemed lost in thought, his mind traveling back to his earliest memories. Elrohir's eyes were beginning to droop and he snuggled closer to his Adar. Elladan tugged on his tunic.

"Did Ada's ada take him on the ship?"

Glorfindel stretched his long legs and leaned back against the leather couch. "No, Elladan. Your Ada and Uncle Elros were just babies when Eärendil set sail."

"But Ada was excited to see his ada when he came home," Elladan stated.

"No, tithen-min, your Ada never got to see his ada again in Middle-Earth," Glorfindel said gently. He watched Elrond, but his friend's face was impassive. "Elwing had in her possession the Silmaril that Beren and Lúthien had recovered from Morgoth. Fëanor's sons had not recovered it when they attacked Doriath and killed Dior and Nimloth. Word came to Maedhros that the Silmaril was in Sirion."

"What did he do?" Elladan asked.

"Maedhros struggled mightily with the oath he had made, Elladan. But this is enough for today, pen-neth. Elrohir needs a nap and I dare say you are hungry," Glorfindel tousled Elladan's hair.

"I will go see what we are having to eat tonight!" Elladan jumped to his feet and raced out the door. Istuion bowed silently to the elf-Lords and followed the child.

"Not tired," Elrohir mumbled sleepily from his nest in his father's arms.

Elrohir's voice broke through Elrond's thoughts and he smiled down at the drowsy elfling. He ran his hand lightly over the deepening bruise on the child's upper arm and felt the heat given off by the damaged blood vessels as they worked to repair themselves. Elrohir drew away slightly from even that light touch. Elrond moved his hand to his son's forehead and closing his own eyes, imparted healing and strength to the elfling. Elrohir relaxed in his arms, and Elrond pushed him gently into sleep. He opened his eyes to see the golden-haired elf-Lord watching him thoughtfully.

"My apologies, Elrond. I did not realize how hard his brother hit him," Glorfindel said quietly.

"It is only a deep bruise," Elrond replied. "I think he will find the soreness interferes with holding a sword tomorrow, though."

"Tomorrow we will not be handling swords," Glorfindel replied, a twinkle in his eye.

Elrond raised an eyebrow. "You shall have two disappointed small elves to contend with."

Glorfindel merely smiled. "Tomorrow they shall learn how to follow orders."

Elrond smiled himself at that. Elrohir would not have a problem following orders; Elladan on the other hand. . . . Elrond shook his head, clearing away the memory that had just bubbled to the surface. Elros had been just as headstrong as Elladan showed signs of being. . .

Elrond stood and looked down at his son, sleeping peacefully in his arms. He kissed the top of the small dark head, and with a nod to Glorfindel he carried the precious bundle to his bed.

* * * * *

Tithen min------------little one
Pen-neth--------------young one

A/N: Dates of birth for Eärendil is taken from the Silmarillion; the dates of birth for Elwing, Elrond and Elros are taken from the range of dates listed in the HoME Volume 11. Regarding Glorfindel's return: nowhere is it stated when Glorfindel returned to ME or why. I have no idea if the flame from the Balrog attracted Thorondor to Cirith Thoronath where Glorfindel battled the Balrog as Tuor, Idril, Eärendil and the remnant of Gondolin escaped. But Glorfindel (cloned, v1.0, perfected) said it; who am I to argue with a mighty Elf-Lord?

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