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Lost (PG) & Midsummer Memories (G) by Zhie

Author: Zhie :: zhiester@gmail.com
Beta: Nuinzilien
Title: Lost
Rating: PG
Theme: Summertime
Element: "Do you have any idea of where we are?"
Author's Notes: Stand alone; Bunniverse compatible
Summary: Three elf lords of Gondolin debate whether or not they have lost someone, and if they are lost themselves. First age. Ecthelion, Glorfindel, & Egalmoth.
Word Count: 1755
Archive: http://phoenix.zhie.us

"Do you have any idea of where we are?"

It was quite obviously a rhetorical question, for not only had Egalmoth delivered it in such a way as not to expect an answer, but he also spurred his horse forward once the question was asked.

Ecthelion shouted loudly at him anyhow. “Of course I know where we are! What sort of captain would I be if I managed to get us lost?” He cleared his throat and pulled his horse back. Behind him, Glorfindel rode silently and remained unbiased. Once Glorfindel caught up, Ecthelion hissed to him, “Do you have any idea where we are?”

“You are lost,” replied the blond lord, neither accusing nor amused. He brought his horse to stop beside Ecthelion’s. “You should tell Egalmoth before he gets too far ahead. It would be worse if we lose him as well.”

“We did not lose Aredhel,” insisted Ecthelion. “She wandered away from us and would not listen to reason. There was nothing we could do. Nothing.”

Glorfindel simply nodded.

Now that Egalmoth was far ahead, Ecthelion did not worry about whispering his words. “This is just impossible. How am I supposed to know where we are if I cannot see the sun to find which way north is?”

The slightest smile pulled on the corners of Glorfindel’s mouth. “Just as we do not need the sun to know it is summer, we do not need it to tell us which way we are facing. North is that way.” He lifted his arm and calmly pointed to his right.

Ecthelion disbelievingly narrowed his eyes. “How can you be so certain? There is no sun, not even a glimpse of light. The stars that might guide us are absent from the sky, or else the clouds cover them.”

“The mountains are to the north of where we are,” explained Glorfindel. He pointed once in each of the other three directions. “No mountains, no mountains, no mountains.” He paused when Ecthelion gave a huffy sigh, and when he had the other lord’s attention again, pointed north once again. “Lots of mountains. North is that way.”

“Then we are going in the wrong direction,” realized Ecthelion. He whistled sharply, and Egalmoth slowed and turned around. “Wrong way!” he bellowed. Glorfindel squinted his eyes closed and rubbed the ear that had been closer to Ecthelion.

Egalmoth coaxed his horse into a canter and joined his companions. “Gondolin is still in that direction, is it not?”

“Of course it is,” answered Ecthelion matter-of-factly. Glorfindel was still trying to get his ears to stop ringing.

“And we still live in Gondolin. Correct?”

“Yes, Egalmoth, but we cannot return without the princess. Turgon will have our heads!”

“I would rather take my chances with the king. I am sure he knew it was a hazard to allow her to leave in the first place. We have no idea where we are, so it makes the most sense to go back to Gondolin to gather reinforcements before venturing any further.”

Ecthelion scratched behind his ear, a sure sign to those who had played poker with him that he was bluffing. “I know exactly where we are, and Aredhel cannot be more than a day ahead of us. If we ride all day and night, we are sure to find her.”

“Alright.” Egalmoth crossed his arms over his chest and looked Ecthelion squarely in the eyes. “If Gondolin is that way and Princess Aredhel is that way, then just where are we?”

“Uh, yes, Glorfindel and I were just discussing that,” explained Ecthelion. “We appear to be in...” His voice trailed off as he mumbled something that sounded like ‘Hithhimangdoldorion’.

Egalmoth pulled his steed closer. “What was that?”

“Obviously, we are in Dor—“ The rest Ecthelion covered up with a cough.

Glorfindel, having managed to shake the ringing from his head, frowned at Ecthelion. “Doriath is that way,” he said, pointing south. He was shot a stern look of rebuke from his fellow lord.

“And just where exactly is Hithimdringdolion?” questioned Egalmoth.

“Hithhimangdoldorion?” asked Glorfindel. “I think he made that up.”

Ecthelion growled under his breath. “Fine, Egalmoth. If you are so intelligent, you tell us just where we are.”

“If I were the leader of this party,” said Egalmoth in reminder of Ecthelion’s position, “I would have made sure I knew where we were going in the first place so that I knew where we were later on.”

“So in other words, you are lost as well,” stated Ecthelion.

Egalmoth shrugged. “We are all lost. You, me, him, the princess—“

“The princess is not lost!” argued Ecthelion. “She knows damn well where she is going, and I am sure she meant to separate herself from us from the very... Glorfindel what are you doing?”

The youngest of the three lords was now sitting sideways on his saddle searching through one of the bags on his horse. “Getting the map.”

“The map?”

Glorfindel brought out a rolled up piece of parchment and unfurled it. He held it up so that both of his comrades could see it. “This is a map,” he said quietly with little emotion. “Has places on it. You read it, to find out where you are. Match up landmarks to see where you are going. Mountains to the north, forest to the south, rivers on either side. Welcome to Nan Dungortheb.”

“I was wondering why King Turgon sent him with us,” said Egalmoth to Ecthelion as Glorfindel rolled the map up again.

Glorfindel shook his head, the first sign of frustration he had shown. “He did not send me to read the map. He sent me along to keep the two of you from killing each other.”

“So if those are mountains, and that is a forest, and this is Nan Dungortheb, then what are those?” asked Egalmoth, pointing toward a skittering group of creatures that were kicking up dust and dirt in their wake.

“The welcoming committee,” replied Ecthelion as he dismounted and drew Orcrist from its sheath. Thankfully, the sword did not glow blue, but it did seem to shine radiantly in the darkness anyhow, as if ready to serve its master in slaying any foe who dared attack.

Egalmoth dropped down beside him, sabre soon in one hand and a curved knife to match in the other. “I was beginning to wonder where all of the allies of the enemy were hiding.”

Remaining on horseback, Glorfindel drew his first arrow. “I count about forty of them. Most of them are nymphs. I am going to try to pick off the imagoes if I can.”

“Good plan. Egalmoth, you and I should meet them halfway to keep them from reaching the horses,” suggested Ecthelion. Egalmoth gave a nod, and the two lords jogged toward the spider swarm.

Each arrow that Glorfindel fired was accompanied by his personal mantra. “I hate spiders.” An arrow pierced one in the prosoma. It stumbled but kept moving. “I hate spiders.” The next shot directly into one of the spider’s many eyes and it dropped to the ground, convulsing. “I hate spiders.” Knowing the urgency of the situation as the spiders plowed forward, he drew back two arrows, taking out one of the young ones and injuring another adult. He cursed his luck and dismounted, for the equines were voicing their displeasure at how close the arachnids were getting.

“Look who decided to join us!” shouted Egalmoth as Glorfindel ran towards the beasts.

Ecthelion looked briefly over his shoulder and called out some extermination advice. “Stop slashing at their legs, Glorfindel! Just stab them! If you have your knives, put your sword away first chance you get and use those instead!”

Glorfindel raised his sword and launched it like a spear into a particularly devious looking spider who was crawling over the others, pedipalps twitching and mouth salivating. It shrieked and fell back while Glorfindel drew his shorter blades and plunged them into the next one that leaped toward him.

“I am starting to rethink my plan!” admitted Ecthelion once he had managed to squash a spider who had wrapped itself around his leg. “Maybe we should go back to Gondolin. I am sure the princess is fine!”

“There are no giant spiders in Gondolin,” Glorfindel added. He tried not to shudder as he took out another one with disgust.

“Good!” Egalmoth swung his blade and sliced another beast in two. “We should be able to ride back quickly, gather our forces, and return with enough soldiers to make short work of any other creatures that are lurking out here in the shadows.” The final spider was taken down, and Egalmoth looked around with concern as Ecthelion cleaned his sword. “Glorfindel?”

The blond was carefully navigating through the carnage. As he took hold of the hilt of his embedded sword, the legs of the spider it was lodged in became reanimated. He leaped back, waited for the movement to cease, and then quickly yanked the blade from the beast. “What?” he asked as he hurried back to his companions.

“Where did you put the horses?”

“I...” Glorfindel looked around. “I think they must have started home,” he said as he noted tracks leading west.

“Lovely. The princess is missing, our horses are gone, and we are stuck lost in the middle of nowhere,” complained Egalmoth.

Glorfindel corrected him. “We are lost in Nan Dungortheb.”

“Oh, shut up,” mumbled Egalmoth. “You and your stupid map.” For a moment, Egalmoth brightened. “The map is with your horse. I bet you have no idea where everything is now.”

Glorfindel was silent at first, but as Egalmoth began to grin smugly, the younger elf said, “Beyond Nan Dungortheb is the river Esgalduin, and past that, Dor Dinen, and Himlad to follow. I do not need a map to know where the princess has gone.”

“That is all well,” announced Ecthelion, “but without horses to carry us she may well have gone to Nevrast. We have little choice but to turn around and return to Gondolin.”

Ecthelion and Egalmoth started on the long return journey back to Gondolin as Glorfindel stood amid the dead spiders. His look of disappointment was unseen by them as he asked, “Are we just going to give up on finding her?”

“We could always find a few more of these spiders and ride them to Himlad,” suggested Egalmoth.

Glorfindel ran to catch up with the other two lords. “We probably should return to Gondolin,” he replied with a shiver.


Author: Zhie :: zhiester@gmail.com
Beta: Smaug
Title: Midsummer Memories
Rating: G
Theme: Summertime
Element: Anor at her noontide zenith, on the longest day of the year, beat mercilessly down from a clear sky, not a cloud in sight, nor a hope of rain.
Author's Notes: Stand alone; Bunniverse compatible. I subscribe to the notion that Fingon is Gil-Galad’s father. Just because I do. That is all.
Summary: Glorfindel spends his first midsummer after his rebirth in Lindon. Second age. Glorfindel, Erestor, Elrond, Gil-Galad, and three semi-persistent ellyth.
Word Count: 2708
Archive: http://phoenix.zhie.us

“There you are! The parade is about to start and—“ Erestor backed up and turned around. He frowned as he looked at Glorfindel. “You are not dressed yet.”

Glorfindel looked down at himself. “I am dressed,” he stated, which was true.

Erestor sighed and shook his head. “Yes, but you are not dressed for the festival. Where are your robes?”

Glorfindel slumped down further. “I left them in Rivendell.”

“Are you serious?” Erestor groaned when Glorfindel nodded. “I sure hope we can find something proper for you,” said the advisor as he wandered into one of the bedrooms. Due to the vast amount of visitors in Lindon, many of the guest rooms were holding double or more their normal capacity. The suite they were in was being shared with Elrond as well, who had left at dawn in order to help Gil-Galad with any final preparations for the midsummer festival. “Why is everything in here for traveling? Did you not bring anything formal to wear?” called out Erestor.

“I was not planning to attend the festivities.” Glorfindel waited until Erestor emerged from the room to further explain. “I agreed to come to Lindon and scout the path as we traveled. I never agreed to be any sort of dignitary. That is a position reserved for you and for Elrond.”

“And you,” countered Erestor. “What am I? Just an advisor.”

“Chief advisor,” corrected Glorfindel. “Second in command of Rivendell, and that is nothing to scoff at. I just shoot the bad guys that try to come into the city.”

“Which is not to be played down either,” Erestor assured his friend. “Besides, you are—“

“Do not say it,” warned Glorfindel.

Erestor paused and studied Glorfindel. “What do you think I was going to say?”

“Same damn thing everyone says.” Glorfindel sat up as Erestor sat down next to him. “Be it ‘balrog slayer’ or ‘hero of Gondolin’ or whatever other nonsense, I would prefer not to hear it. Elrond said this was a vacation. If that is true, then leave me be and let me rest in peace.”

“Alright,” replied Erestor. “I will not broach the subject again.”

“Thank you.”

“Do you want to go and sit with the general assembly? I am sure there are seats near the back.”

“I am just going to stay here,” said Glorfindel.

Erestor nodded as he stood up. “If you change your mind, I am sure there will be a place for you somewhere.”

Glorfindel sighed after Erestor left. As a second thought, he locked the door. Erestor would leave him alone, but it was always possible that Elrond would be more persistent. The festival was still hours away, giving Elrond more than ample time to come back to the room. Glorfindel was still getting his bearings of this new Middle-earth, and he was unaware of whether Elrond would leave him alone or drag him out by his hair.


Anor at her noontide zenith, on the longest day of the year, beat mercilessly down from a clear sky, not a cloud in sight, nor a hope of rain. It was a blessing to be in Lindon, where sea breezes brought a welcome respite from the heat. Glorfindel opened all of the windows of the suite in order to cool off. The beach was crowded, mostly with children and their nannies, or he would have considered a swim.

Most everyone else was in the courtyard, where the Gates of Summer was being celebrated. Just the thought of what day it was put Glorfindel on edge. Now he lounged on the couch, a book resting open across his chest as he stared up at the ceiling. He could hear the trumpets in the distance and voices raised in song.

Having skipped breakfast, his stomach was very interested in what was on the menu for lunch. However, it seemed he would need to navigate his way into the kitchens or the dining hall or out to the courtyard in order to sate his hunger. The courtyard seemed the safest idea; if he needed, he could disappear into the trees or around a corner.

All of the hallways were empty, and in the courtyard everyone was focused upon the raised platform situated behind the head table. Trees encircled the courtyard, towering elms and oaks, and swaying willows, giving Glorfindel ample cover. The music was loud, violins and flutes, that gave way to excited drumming and percussion. It was all more than enough to aid Glorfindel in staying unseen and unheard, and when a group of servers passed by with trays of food and drink, he plucked a glass of wine and a meat pie without being noticed.

The music increased in volume and speed, and Glorfindel wandered a little closer. The head table was mostly empty, save for a few diplomats whose names he did not know. On the stage, performing to one side, was Erestor. He soloed on his fiddle while the rest of the Lindon musicians on the other side accompanied. Glorfindel was astonished to see the king among them, aiding jovially on tambourine.

Another scan of the table showed it was lacking Elrond. Glorfindel hoped his absence had not caused Elrond to return to the suite and miss the opening of the event, but as he considered returning to the rooms to check, Elrond leaped up onto the stage. In each hand he held a long sword, and he began to dance with such unerring precision that Glorfindel found it hard to believe him only half-elven.

The drums rumbled, and Erestor seemed to match Elrond’s movements with his bow work. The crowd rose to their feet, some having to be persuaded by their partners and friends, until they were all dancing in the wide aisles between the tables. Even the servers, as they weaved in and out of the merriment, were light on their feet as they skipped from table to table.

“This is not a midsummer festival,” mumbled Glorfindel to himself. He looked around, seeing no stadium for the feats of strength and boxing matches. Dancing was something that the elflings might have done, but not the adults, who would have solemnly waited for the rising of the sun to sing after a night of reflection.

As Glorfindel ate, he watched Elrond finish his dance as the song ended. Applause rang out, both Elrond and Erestor took a bow, and Gil-Galad snapped his fingers to count off the next song quickly before anyone had time to sit down again. Once more, Erestor’s fiddle sang and led the band in their playing. Elrond now joined Gil-Galad on the opposite end and clapped his hands in time while he and the king exchanged some words, appearing to be teasing each other. Finally as the music took on a tempo too fast for either of them to keep up, Gil-Galad relinquished his tambourine to one of the percussionists and jumped down from the stage with Elrond. They seemed to size up the two ends, and with some laughter, each strolled to one side.

Each of them pulled a maiden from the crowd, and while the music swelled, they started chains of elves dancing. It seemed to be a competition, for each of them to get the more to join their lines. Even Erestor seemed to be in on the contest, for he sped up and slowed down as he pleased, ever keeping the dancers literally on their toes. When Elrond started stealing dancers from Gil-Galad’s chain, and the king sent some of his group to dance around the trees in order to avoid Elrond, Glorfindel decided it was time to leave, lest he be caught up in the festivities.

“Oh! Did you lose your place?”

Glorfindel turned to find two giggling young ellyth behind him. “No, no, I am quite alright,” he lied as he took a step backwards and nearly stepped into another elleth who had now come up behind him.

“Ai!” She laughed when he turned around, startled. “Oh, I like you! Come dance with me!” She reached out for his arm, but he stepped back, only then recalling the two on the other side.

“We found him first!” argued one of the pair. “Go find your brother and dance with him.”

The lone elleth pouted. “There is only one of him and two of you. I should get to keep this one.”

Not about to stick around for the outcome, Glorfindel flashed the single elleth a smile and handed his empty glass and plate to her. “Do you mind?” he asked, placing them into her hands before she could answer. “Thank you. Ta.” He jumped straight up into the air, grabbed hold of the branch above, and used it to swing up onto another one.

“Wait! Where are you going?!”

Glorfindel did not look down to see which one was protesting. There were some trees close enough to climb into, and soon he had disappeared into them and managed to get far from the trio he was avoiding. Unfortunately, he was now in a tree close to many of the other festival goers, and he settled himself comfortably in order to wait until the crowd thinned.

As it turned out, Gil-Galad and Elrond were both accomplished singers, and for the next few hours the crowd was entertained by those on stage and kept fed by the constant stream of servers. As afternoon gave way to early evening, the tables were moved away so that couples and groups could sit on the grass together. The music became softer and more reflective, and unexpectedly, Glorfindel drifted into reverie.

It was much later when Glorfindel awoke, finding the courtyard mostly empty. Stars shined down from a clear sky, and with the sun gone there was some relief from the heat. Glorfindel slipped down out of the tree, stretched his limbs, and walked back to the suite. Before he even made it to the doorway of the building, he changed his mind. The main crowd has dispersed, but smaller groups congregated here and there, two in the path he would need to take. With his head bowed, Glorfindel walked briskly through an alleyway to the beach. There were a dozen bonfires in the sand, but the elves on the beach were staying close to the fires.

Glorfindel walked past them, all the way to the shoreline. Water lapped at his boots as he looked out across the sea. It had been less than a year since he had taken the small boat back from the west, and he wondered some days if his decision had been the right one. It seemed that not a day had gone by that someone hadn’t made some reference to the balrog. In fact, there was some bloody awful phrase he heard people use, ‘Ai! ‘Tis Glorfindel and the Balrog!’ he had heard people shout. The only consolation seemed to be that they mentioned him first, but he decided in short order that he would have preferred not to have been mentioned at all.

Footsteps shuffled up behind him, and he closed his eyes and sighed. There was always one. Always someone so curious that they could not just leave him alone. Plastering a false yet friendly smile on his face, Glorfindel turned and found the most unlikely person standing beside him. “Your majesty,” he said, bowing his head slightly.

Gil-Galad waved this off with a frown. “Just call me Gil-Galad. Ereinion, if you prefer.”

“Which do you prefer?” asked Glorfindel.


“Then why do most people call you Gil-Galad?”

“Which sounds more commanding: King Ereinion or King Gil-Galad?”

Glorfindel did not ponder this long. “The second, without a doubt.”

For a little while they stood silently, looking out past the docks to the west. Finally, Gil-Galad cleared his throat and said, “I was hoping I might ask you a question.”

‘Here it comes,’ thought Glorfindel. He slowly nodded, for there was hardly any way he could deny the king from asking him something, and even more insulting to refuse to answer.

“I know you had some contact with my father. What was he like?”

Glorfindel blinked. “Uh... did you not know your father?” The question blindsided him. As he dug into ancient memories the tale of the balrog was thankfully shoved out of his mind in order to make room for anything he could recall regarding Fingon.

“I only knew him briefly. He sent me to the Falas when I was a child, and we did not have much contact even before that. I wanted to ask you about him earlier, but Erestor said you were not feeling well. I am glad to see you have improved.”

“It was the heat,” apologized Glorfindel.

“Ah. Yes, it tends to make things uncomfortable, especially if you are not used to it.” Gil-Galad turned over a rock in the sand with his bare foot. “If you would rather not talk about the past, I understand. I imagine it could bring about some unpleasant memories.”

“I do not mind, depending on the subject. There is not much for me to tell you, for my contact with your father was limited. I will do my best to remember everything I can.”

They spent the next few hours walking along the beach, with Glorfindel reminiscing as Gil-Galad listened intently to every word. Fires burned to ash and the beach was eventually deserted, save for the pair strolling along the shoreline. It was only when grey skies heralded the dawn that Gil-Galad excused himself, leaving Glorfindel alone on the beach.

Glorfindel plucked a long, slender piece of driftwood from a tangled patch of seaweed. He gouged it into the wet sand and dragged it along. The waves washed over the sand and dragged down again to cover up his mark.

Once again, he shoved the tip of the driftwood into the sand. He hastily drew a tree, an anvil, and a swan. As these were being washed away, he etched a smaller bird, a mole, and a snowflake, followed by a harp, a rainbow, a moon surrounded by stars, a pillar, and finally a fountain. When he tried to add the sun to the end of the row, the driftwood splintered and cracked into three pieces.

He threw the piece he still held into the receding water as someone behind him said, “That one does not belong with the rest.”

“That one still does not know where he belongs,” admitted Glorfindel as he was joined by Erestor.

“Maybe that one just needs some time to figure things out without being pressured by everyone else. Speaking of, I am sorry I was trying to make you come to the festival yesterday. I should have known better,” said Erestor.

Glorfindel shrugged. “I was there, actually.”


“I hid up in a tree.”

Erestor smiled. “Do you want to have some breakfast? The hall is less crowded this early. I was on my way there when I saw you.”

“Breakfast sounds wonderful.”

As they walked back, Erestor said, “So, you must have seen all of us acting like fools yesterday.”

“You looked like you were having fun. Maybe next year I will have the courage to get up there and act a fool with the rest of you. No promises, of course,” he added quickly.

“No promises,” Erestor parroted. “Of course, that would mean getting up in front of a crowd, which I know you hate to do.”

“There is that. I am a really good singer, though,” Glorfindel reminded him.

“Modest, too.”

Glorfindel smirked. “I just thought maybe I should. All things considered or something like that. I figure I can muster up enough courage to get up there.”

Erestor nodded, and then started to grin.

“What?” questioned Glorfindel as they approached the doors.

“I was just thinking... you deciding to be so ‘courageous’... Ai, ‘tis—“

“Do not dare.”

“’Tis—“ Erestor snickered, laughing too hard to finish.

“You had best leave it there.”

“’Tis Glorfindel and the balrog!” Erestor laughed so hard that he choked slightly and had to cough to clear his throat.

“Serves you right,” scolded Glorfindel, but he was far from angry, already mentally preparing his repertoire for the following year.


( 7 comments — Leave a comment )
Jul. 14th, 2008 08:47 pm (UTC)
lost and midsummers memory
glorfindal is always a good choice and i liked the way you partnered him differently in each. echi is okay, erestor is best. thank you for a good read.
Jul. 14th, 2008 11:47 pm (UTC)
I almost never read Elf stories, but I'm glad I tried this one. Though I don't know the history involved, I could enjoy a tale about someone having to deal with a fame he is uncomfortable with.

Well done, Zhie!
Jul. 15th, 2008 08:16 am (UTC)
At least they have the one who knows the terrain with them; and in the second one he's regaining his self-assurance, apparently.

Love to think of Elrond dancing a sabre dance!
Jul. 15th, 2008 12:32 pm (UTC)
I really enjoyed both of these, even though I'm not all that well-versed in First and Second Age.

They go together very well--I think it was a good decision to post them together: we get a good look at a cocky young Glorfindel in the first one, confident and a bit of a braggart, contrasted with the returned Glorfindel in the second one, who doesn't quite yet know what place he has to fill in his new life.
Jul. 24th, 2008 02:22 pm (UTC)
Well-written, both; what stood out for me in the first one was the contrast between the light banter of the conversation and the seriousness of the situation. I also liked Glorfindel looking to find his place again in the second one.
Jun. 23rd, 2010 04:53 pm (UTC)
review and Scavenger Hunt
I dont always appreciate the way that Glorfindel and Erestor are written, but I really enjoyed 'your' characters! :D I especially liked your description of the music and dancing, and I love how Glorfindel escaped the young ladies.

I must also thank you for including the harp in your story. When I began the Scavenger Hunt, that is the one I was sure I wouldn't find!

Jun. 23rd, 2010 05:02 pm (UTC)
Lost review and possible Scavenger Hunt
I didnt realize both stories were on the same "Leave a comment". :D

I have to say I am not at all fond of spiders, and if you left a spider-warning, I missed it. But aside from that I enjoyed the story's humor. Also, since I've been unable to find a 'scabbard' in my Scavenger Hunt, I'm tentatively counting 'sheath'.
( 7 comments — Leave a comment )


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