Glorfindel's Darkest Hour

Chapter 24 - This time...

By Morgana

       

Glorfindel stared entranced at his sonís blue eyes. Erion was tightly cradled against his chest, cooing happily. "He is a true delight," whispered Glorfindel blissfully, briefly casting a look at his dark-haired lover, who was now seating himself next to him on the bed.

Erestor slung an arm around Glorfindelís shoulder, smiling radiantly. He had expected for the baby to wail constantly, but Erion mostly cooed and when he wasnít cooing, he was sound asleep. It almost seemed like their son could sense their love and was soothed by it.

"Elrond thinks that you can leave the Healing House tomorrow," said Erestor, giving his son a finger to play with. Erion tried to reach for it, succeeded and released a sound that closely resembled giggling. "That brings up the question of our housing. So far we have stayed in my rooms, butÖ"

Glorfindel gave Erestor a warm smile. "I like your rooms."

Erestor released a sigh, giving in easily. "Then we will make it our home." The smile that Glorfindel gave him was blinding and the blond placed a quick kiss on his cheek. "Would you like to rest some more? Or would you prefer a short walk?" Glorfindel was healing quickly and Elrond had given the blond permission to leave his bed. But so far Erion had kept them inside the room, as they didnít want to stray far from their son.

A knock on the door interrupted them, and after Erestor had called out Ďenterí, Elladan stepped inside the room.

It was Elladanís turn to offer his services as a baby-sitter. The happy parents had declined any offer to watch Erion, but he hoped they would accept this time. Glorfindel looked pale and some fresh air and sunlight would do him good. "I can watch Erion if you want to step out."

Until now Glorfindel had refused, but as he looked out of the window, he longed for the warmth of the sunbeams. "I might take you up on that short walk, nÓn bellas," he said, addressing Erestor. But he wasnít sure he could leave Erion alone. "Canít we take Erion with us?"

"In a few days," said Erestor soothingly. "Erion is in the best of hands with Elladan." He disliked the idea of leaving Erion as well, but he also realized they needed some quality time together.

"Aye, Erion is in the best of hands with me," repeated Elladan firmly. Sitting down, he extended his arms, hoping Glorfindel would take the hint and hand him Erion.

Seeing Erestorís pleading expression, Glorfindel gave in. After rising from the bed, he carefully placed his son in Elladanís arms. His own arms suddenly felt empty and he almost gathered Erion close again. But Erestor was right. They needed some time alone -- they needed to talk.

Erestor wrapped an arm around Glorfindelís waist and slowly, but insistently, guided him toward the doorway. "We will only be gone for a few minutes." Glorfindel still needed to rest regularly and therefore they couldnít go for a long walk.

After releasing a tormented sigh, Glorfindel allowed his lover to pull him along. Looking over his shoulder, he tried to focus on Erion as long as possible. When they rounded a corner, a stabbing pain moved through his heart. "I cannot believe how much I love him." He leaned against his lover, needing Erestorís emotional support now that he was away from his son for the first time.

"I love him too," said Erestor, smiling, "And I feel the same way you do." He guided Glorfindel, who was walking slowly, toward a bench and sat him down. The sun showered them with warmth and he eagerly opened his arms, allowing Glorfindel to settle into them. "I am happy, melamin. I am so happy everything turned out well."

Glorfindelís eyes darkened as he tried to recall his abduction and humiliation at the hands of Saruman and his creature, but accessing those memories proved nearly impossible. They had blurred and images of Erestor and Erion had replaced them. He could barely remember the rapes! "Did Mandos do something to my memories?"

Erestor, who never expected that question, startled momentarily, but then forced himself to tell Glorfindel the truth. "Aye, he did. He took away your worst pain. He was afraid you would fade otherwise."

Suddenly, Glorfindel said, "And he took away my memories of you reclaiming me. Why?"

"He said it was about sacrifices, at least in my case. I was so desperate, I would have done anything he wanted. I just wanted you back!"

Hearing the urgency in Erestorís tone, Glorfindel cocked his head and searched the dark eyes. Why hadnít he seen the love in them before Saruman had gotten his hands on him? "I love you, nÓn bellas." Passionately, he claimed the otherís lips. "And I want to make love to you." Erestor startled and stared at him, and the expression in his loverís eyes made Glorfindel smile. "Not now, but shortly. Once I am completely recovered."

Erestor released a relieved, yet tormented sigh. "I want to make love with you too," he explained, seeing the puzzled look in Glorfindelís eyes, which had appeared at hearing his sigh, "But not while you are still somewhat sore and hurting."

"And we already had our first time," said Glorfindel wickedly. "But I would like to make love with you without a Vala watching us."

Glorfindelís fingers tangled in his dark mane and Erestor sighed blissfully. "What would you like it to be like? Our love making?"

Glorfindel understood the question perfectly. "My memories of Saruman and the Uruk-Hai have faded and I would gladly give myself to you, though I must confess my greatest desire is *claiming you*."

"Then you will have me," said Erestor breathlessly. "I am yoursÖ I always will be."

His fingers caressed Erestorís face, marveling at the other Elf. "You defied Mandos for me, nÓn bellas. That makes me yours as well. We are bonded to one another until the end of Arda." Amazement appeared in his azure eyes. "You upended my life, Erestor." Claiming his loverís lips, he easily lost himself in the sensation and his body responded accordingly. Panting slightly, he released Erestorís lips and gave the raven-haired Elf a possessive look. "I *will* claim you shortly, nÓn bellas."

Tingles of eager anticipation coursed through Erestor at hearing those words. "Claim me whenever, wherever you will, melamin."

A wicked expression appeared in Glorfindelís eyes. Erestor deserved to be loved, to be claimed, and he would make sure his lover would thoroughly enjoy their lovemaking.

       

Haldir felt slightly nervous, opening the letter. It carried Celebornís official seal and he knew that this letter would decide his future. If the Lord and Lady commanded him to return to the Golden Wood, his heart would break.

"NÓn naur?" Elrond walked toward his lover and came to a stand still behind him. "Is the letter from Celeborn?"

Haldir nodded, not trusting his voice. Breaking the seal, he unfolded the letter, devouring the words with fearful apprehension. His gaze hurried down the lines and suddenly he turned to face Elrond, who had discretely taken a step away from him, giving him his privacy. "They give me permission to stay! And my brothers are allowed to visit me whenever they like!" Feeling incredibly relieved and happy, Haldir flung the letter onto the desk and then hugged Elrond close. He showered the half-Elfís face with kisses and then laughed warmly. "Now I am truly yours to command, Lord Elrond. I am your new seneschal!"

A gigantic burden was lifted from Elrondís shoulders, hearing those words. A part of him had been worried that Celeborn would call Haldir back to Lothlůrien. He wholeheartedly returned the embrace, enjoying his loverís happiness. Holding Haldir tightly, he allowed his love to blossom fully. His lover was here to stay and now they were free to commit to each other and build their life here.

       

A few days later, Elrond finally allowed the couple to take their son outside for the first time. Elrond smiled fondly, seeing Glorfindel cradle his son against his chest. The blond had been incredibly fortunate that Mandos had helped him; otherwise Glorfindel might have given birth to a creature part Uruk-Hai.

"Thank you," whispered Glorfindel softly, so as not to wake Erion who had just fallen asleep again after drinking another bottle of milk. Erionís appetite had even surprised Elrond, but the half-Elf had assured them it was a good sign. Elrond had been there to attend to him these last few days and he was constantly thanking the other Elf for delivering his baby. "I had not thought it possible, but Erion is perfect."

Erestor, who was watching his lover from across the room, smiled. He had taken Glorfindel and Erion to his rooms yesterday and the two of them seemed completely at ease here.

"What are you doing?" Glorfindel frowned, realizing Erestor was girding on his sword. "We are merely going to the gardens."

Erestor shook his head, determined to carry arms as he worried about their sonís safety. It surprised him that so far Saruman hadnít tried to get to Glorfindel and Erion, and he was worried that the Istar might still try. "I just want to be prepared."

Glorfindelís frown deepened; he hadnít considered the threat Saruman still presented. Seeing Erestor hide a dagger down his boot, he said, "Do you think it is safe for Erion to be close to such dangerous weapons?"

"I will make sure he wonít get hurt," vowed Erestor; making sure Erion was safe was the very reason why he was taking his weapons with him. Saruman would not catch them off guard. The stakes were too high. He had lost Glorfindel once before and it wasnít happening again. Nor would the Istar get his hands on Erion.

Rising from the chair, Glorfindel continued to hold his son close. "Are you ready?" He was eager to sit in the sun. He had been locked up inside for much too long.

Erestor exchanged one more glance with Elrond. The healer had assured them that Erion was strong enough to go outside, but he still worried about his son.

"Go," said Elrond, smiling, "Enjoy yourselves whilst Arien still warms Imladris." In the meantime he would see to the paperwork that had piled up on Erestorís desk and Haldir would take care of Glorfindelís duties.

Erestor wrapped an arm possessively around Glorfindelís waist and then led his lover into the corridor. Taking the shortest route, he guided them into the gardens. He noticed Glorfindelís distinct sigh of pleasure once Arienís beams engulfed him.

Glorfindel let himself be led to an old oak tree, where they sat down. Erestor rested his back against the trunk of the tree and Glorfindel lay down, resting his head on his loverís thigh. Erion, who had woken by now, blinked his blue eyes and then smiled. His tiny hands reached for warm, golden beams and he cooed happily.

Stroking his loverís golden hair, Erestor had never before felt more at peace. "I love you, melamin, and I want to thank you for having Erion. You did not know he would be fully Elven when you decided to give birth to him."

Glorfindel deeply looked into his loverís eyes. "It was your promise to love me and Erion that made me follow through. Having your support and unconditional love helped me through this ordeal. And look what we have been rewarded with!" Erion, who was seated on his fatherís stomach, was trying to catch a butterfly, but it elegantly danced through his fingers.

Bowing down, Erestor placed a kiss on his loverís lips. /This is perfectÖ Too perfect./

       

A dark cloud obscured the sky, making it impossible for Arienís beams to reach the ground. The sentry immediately sensed the evil that was sneaking closer to Imladris. Attaching a note to one of his arrows, he shot his bow, knowing the next sentry would relay it further until the message eventually reached Lord Elrond.

Keeping one eye on the darkening sky, the sentry now also heard the roar of approaching Uruk-Hai. The beastsí growls echoed through the valley and he released a second arrow, relaying more information to the next sentry. Suddenly, strong hands settled around his throat. He had never heard the monster sneak up on him! It snapped his neck, sending his soul to the Halls of Waiting. His last thought was that he hoped that the warning would reach their Lord in time.

       

"Elrond!" Haldir rushed into his loverís study, ignoring the advisors who shot him irritated glances. It was important that he informed the half-Elf now!

Seeing the urgent expression in the silver-haired Elfís eyes, Elrond rose from behind his desk. "Haldir?"

"A wave of Uruk-Hai is moving over the land, quickly approaching Imladris. According to the last message that I received the pack will reach the Last Homely House within minutes! We must arm ourselves!"

Elrond nodded, immediately assuming command. "Gather all remaining guards close, and make sure all women and children are safe." Suddenly his eyes widened, realizing what the reason for the attack was. "GlorfindelÖ Erion!" He cursed loudly, realizing the couple had taken their son outside for the first time. "We must make sure they are safe!"

Haldir, reacting at once, hurried from the room to join the guards, knowing that the upcoming battle would be an ugly one.

Elrond followed him and together they gathered the remaining guards. "I suspect Glorfindel and Erion to be their target."

Haldir understood perfectly. "Saruman is behind this. He wants the child, but why? Erion is fully Elven."

"Saruman might not know that," replied Elrond, grabbing hold of a sword when one of his guards handed him the weapon. It had been centuries since he had last wielded one, but now that he felt its familiar weight in his hand, the nearly forgotten knowledge returned to him, as did his fight lust. His eyes darkened with anger, hearing the first roar that announced their enemyís arrival. "We wonít let them defile this sanctuary," he growled angrily. "We will stop them!"

His guards, eager to drive away the intruders and to extract revenge for their fallen comrades, followed Elrond and Haldir into battle.

       

The hair at the back of Erestorís neck stood rigid as his instincts kicked in, alerting him to danger. Rather unceremoniously he got to his feet and his unexpected movement caused Glorfindel to groan frustrated, as he now lost his comfortable pillow.

"NÓn bellas, whatÖ?" Glorfindel grew silent, seeing the alarmed expression on Erestorís face. Following the direction of his loverís gaze, his breath caught and he instinctively crushed Erion protectively to his chest. "NoÖ" In the distance a dark cloud of dust had appeared and from it rose growls, which he only knew too well.

Glorfindel realized their predicament. They were alone in the gardens and all they had to defend themselves with were Erestorís sword and a dagger. "What shall we do?" He doubted they would reach the safety of the Last Homely House in time.

Drawing his sword, Erestor quickly made up his mind. "Run for cover. I will try to stall them."

But Glorfindel shook his head. "They will kill you."

"We are losing time! Run! Now! Take Erion into safety!" At the same time, he pressed a dagger into Glorfindelís hand. "Go!"

Glorfindel continued to hesitate. His every instinct told him not to leave Erestor, but Erion was now wailing softly. Their son had to come first! Running toward the Last Homely House, Glorfindel didnít dare look over his shoulder. Erestor faced an overwhelming enemy!

Erestor gritted his teeth when the dark cloud of dust lifted, revealing the first Uruk-Hai, which he beheaded with one swift stroke of his sword. Concentrating on his attackers, he managed to take out one after the other, but there were too many of them. /By the Grace of the Valar, I will walk the Great Halls once more./ There was no way that he could defeat this hoard!

       

"Elrond! Haldir!" Glorfindel called out to the two Elves, who were leading the guards into battle. "Erestor is still out there!"

Elrond came to a halt, but Haldir and his guards continued, running toward Erestor. "Glorfindel, take Erion inside and stay there!" The blond was still somewhat weak from the birthing process and he wanted Glorfindel to stay clear of the battle.

"No!" Glorfindel wasnít leaving his mate out there to fight without someone to watch his back! Spotting Lindir near the entrance of the Last Homely House, he reluctantly placed Erion in the white-haired Elfís arms. "Take good care of him!" He didnít want to part from his son, but Erestor needed him!

Lindir looked slightly shocked at suddenly finding Erion clutching his robes. He wrapped his arms tightly around the baby and exchanged a puzzled look with Glorfindel. During the silent communication that passed between them he realized that Glorfindel trusted him to guard Erion with his life. After nodding his head once he ran inside, heading for the safest part of the Last Homely House. He hoped that after barricading himself with the women and children, the Uruk-Hai couldnít get to them.

Glorfindelís heart ached, but he successfully fought the urge to run after Lindir to be reunited with his son. One of the guards handed him a spare sword and he joined them, charging as well. The mere sight of these Uruk-Hai enraged him and in his mind flashed the image of the monster that had hurt him so badly. In a blinding rage, he began to take them out, killing them whatever way he could, trying to move closer to Erestor.

Erestorís heart missed a beat, seeing Glorfindel return to his side. At least the blond was fully armed now. He would have preferred for his lover to stay with Erion, but Glorfindel was a warrior and wouldnít be denied. Fighting back to back, they focused on the second wave of Uruk-Hai. The mere force of that attack forced them to retreat, setting them slightly apart from the others.

"Ah, my pretty one. We meet again."

The sound of that voice shook Glorfindel to his core. Lifting his eyes, he met his nemesisí glare. "You!" He hissed the word with utter contempt. *This time* he wasnít helpless. *This time* he could extract his revenge. Through a red haze, he attacked the monster. "You are deadÖ You just do not know it yet!" Raising his sword, he prepared to deliver a crushing blow, but the Uruk-Hai blocked it.

Having heard his loverís words, Erestorís eyes hardened. It didnít take much to figure out why Glorfindel wanted to kill this particular Uruk-Hai and he was tempted to deal with the monster himself. But this was something his lover had to do. He continued to watch Glorfindel though, ready to come to his loverís aid if necessary.

Glorfindel moved entranced, using every tactic he had ever learned and in the end, he landed one lethal blow to the creatureís throat. Blood splashed from the beastís throat as the Uruk-Hai dropped onto his knees. Panting hard, Glorfindel raised his sword to deliver that last blow that would end the monsterís life.

Erestorís breath caught, seeing the vicious and hateful expression in his loverís eyes. This was one personal demon Glorfindel had to exorcise in order to regain his mental calm. Whilst fighting off new attackers he managed to keep a close eye on his lover.

"Sarumanís plan failed. My son is fully ElvenÖ and you are dead!" Glorfindel stated triumphantly. The scream that sounded in his ears wasnít the Uruk-Haiís; it was Sarumanís! The Istar had somehow heard his words! /Good, maybe now he will call off the attack!/

With one fierce blow, he beheaded the Uruk-Hai. He watched with grim satisfaction, as the creatureís head dropped onto the ground, rolled toward him and then came to a standstill. The monsterís grin had finally disappeared from his ugly face!

Now that heíd had his revenge, he felt strangely numb. He would have loved to wrap his arms around Erion and hold him close, but the Uruk-Hai were still attacking. Saruman was probably enraged and would try to take as many lives as possible!

Returning to Erestorís side, he and his lover exchanged a glance. In Erestorís eyes, he read understanding. His lover knew why this particular Uruk-Hai had deserved to be killed! /He probably wanted a piece as well, but I had to do this myself./

And aye, Erestor would have loved to be the one to avenge Glorfindelís honor, but taking out the Uruk-Hai had boosted the blondís self esteem. "Stay close!" he panted the words in between blows. Seeing Glorfindel nod, he realized his lover was his centered self again.

Erestor searched his surroundings, realizing Haldir and the guards were still engaged in battle as well. He saw the twins fighting, side by side. But where was Elrond?

       

Haldir tried to stay close to Elrond, but the half-Elf was moving away from him and a group of Uruk-Hai was closing in on his lover. After signaling some of the guards to move closer to Elrond, his gaze returned to rest on his loverís form and his breath caught. "Look out!"

One particularly viciously fighting Uruk-Hai had sneaked up behind Elrond and now raised his sword, ready to strike.

Elrond realized the danger too late. Terrible pain slashed through his back, and the sheer power of the blow flung him to the ground. Using his last strength, he raised his head and focused on Haldir. /Melme, I do not want to lose youÖ/

Haldir released an angry scream and charged forward. The Uruk-Hai had lifted his sword again and was going in for the kill. /Elbereth, let me reach him in time!/

Time seemed to freeze when Haldir raised his sword, desperately hoping he was in time to rescue his lover from certain death.


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