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Anthology for short pieces set in or associated with Rohan. Most of these either feature Eowyn or draw on the material on...
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Spiced Wine
11/13/18 10:42 pm
And it will still feel like a last-minute rush!
Spiced Wine
11/13/18 10:41 pm
I do not believe we’re already thinking of Christmas. Yet here I am ordering pressies, buying cards, making sure I have addresses...
11/12/18 02:03 am
11/11/18 11:12 pm
Cheeky! Hi! Hope you're well :D and never mind putting up with, we need you to provide crazy plot tangles and lighten things up!
11/11/18 06:56 pm
Hi there, I’m happy to do the advent story again as long as you can put up with my ridiculousness disrupting your attempts at a more somber mood :-)
11/11/18 04:45 am
11/11/18 03:03 am
Nooooo! Ziggy! Please don't! (a look of horror on face) What about the people trying to stay impartial, trying to see the good in Imrahil! (slips on rose colored glasses) Pleeeeease think about th
11/10/18 11:23 pm
I agree with Spiced that you're meanies to the lovely Imrahil. I am adding a torrid sex scene in my next chapter just to annoy you.
11/10/18 10:16 pm
few months so a bit of advance notice might help!
11/10/18 10:16 pm
I have cheekybeak's contact info and can let her know. I'd love to be involved in the advent story again. I wouldn't mind Naledi's idea--I've committed myself a bit over the next f
Shout Archive

Time Present, Time Future by Narya

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Story notes:
“Time present and time past
Are both perhaps present in time future
And time future contained in time past.” - T.S. Eliot, Four Quartets
“Well, cousin, how did I do?”

Tyelkormo smiled. Findaráto was growing fast; they were nearly of a height now, although his cousin still had the look of a young tree that would bend with a breath of wind. Still, he was no child, and he had made a shot from horseback today that Tyelkormo had envied. “Very well,” he allowed.

The boy grinned as he opened the gate to the rose garden. On a stone bench at the other side, Nelyo and Findekáno were engrossed in a book. Golden light pooled around them and flashed in their hair. Tyelkormo smiled and raised his hand in greeting but neither one looked up, evidently too fascinated by some deep mystery of the universe to pay attention to their family. He rolled his eyes and glanced back at his young cousin, intending to share a look of exasperation – but Findaráto had frozen in the gateway. His eyes were fixed on Nelyo and Findekáno, and his already-pale skin was the colour of soured cream.


Findaráto gave a strangled cry and fled.

Tyelkormo's stomach plunged, and he followed his cousin at a run. He heard Nelyo and Findekáno in pursuit, gravel flying under their feet, but he ignored their anxious calls.

He found Findaráto on all fours in the avenue of sycamore trees, retching and sobbing.

“Ai, sweet one.” Tyelkormo dropped beside him, rubbing his back with one hand. The jagged pebbles from the pathway dug into his knees. “Hush, now. I am here.” Behind him, Nelyo and Findekáno slowed and came to a halt; he felt Maitimo's concerned touch on his mind, like a feather's kiss.

What ails him, Tyelko?

I do not know yet, he responded, easing Findaráto upright. A sweet green-scented breeze drifted through the foliage, and the boy shivered; Tyelkormo unclipped his own cloak and slipped it over the shaking shoulders. Findaráto looked up and smiled, then his eyes widened at the sight of Nelyo and Findekáno. He tensed under Tyelkormo's touch.

Us, it seems. Nelyo's voice in his mind was troubled.

“Easy, now,” Tyelkormo murmured, as he might to a frightened horse. Would you leave us for a few moments, brother?

Of course.

Nelyo and Findekáno retreated down the avenue, back towards the big summer house. Tyelkormo sent a light touch of power towards Findaráto's mind, just enough to read what was at the surface.

Blood...bone, a sickening crack like the breaking of a fowl's thigh...sickness, sulphur...yellow sky...blood...sweat and dirt on white skin...screaming, pleading, blood, blood, blood...

Frowning, he drew back from the mental link before his cousin detected it. He held the boy until his racing breath slowed.

“How do you feel?” he asked gently.

“Better.” Findaráto coughed, and Tyelkormo passed him the waterskin he still carried from their hunt. “Forgive me, Tyelko, I couldn't help it.”

“There is nothing to forgive.” He squeezed his cousin's shoulders for a brief moment, then pulled them both to their feet.

“Nelyo and Káno...will they be offended?”

“I very much doubt it.” He led Findaráto over to a patch of soft grass, shaded by the protective curves of one fat, knotted tree. “Though I'm sure you saw their concern.”

“Yes.” Colour was returning to the pale cheeks, but the boy's legs trembled, and he sank back to the ground. “Ai, Elbereth...”

Tyelkormo sat down next to him. For a moment he hesitated, then reached for the other, smaller bottle he kept hooked to his belt and unstoppered it with a woody pop. The sweet, heady smell of wine drifted up from its neck. “Here.”

Surprised flashed in Findaráto's blue eyes as he accepted the bottle.

“Go easy with it,” Tyelkormo cautioned as his cousin drank deeply. “It's very strong.” Perhaps water was the better choice after all, he thought ruefully. Well, it was too late now. “Now, tyenya - tell me what happened.”

The boy straightened at the endearment. It was a term the older cousins used between themselves, but Tyelkormo realised he had never used it with Findaráto – it conveyed equality and respect, after all, and the boy was so much younger. Still, it seemed to rally him, and he smiled wanly. “You will think it foolish, cousin.”

“I will not, I assure you.”

“When I saw Nelyo and Káno in the garden, for a few moments it seemed...” He swallowed. “It seemed I wasn't there any more. I was somewhere else – and yet nowhere at all, watching from the air like a bird, but I had no body.”

His voice shook. Tyelkormo rested a hand on his forearm. “What did you see?”

“Nelyo. He was older – much older, and badly hurt. There were gauges across his face as though some terrible beast had clawed at him. And then – then I saw Findekáno.” He took a sharp breath. “He was torturing Nelyo.”


“I saw it! He was hacking at Nelyo's wrist with a blade. There was so much blood, and Káno...his face...his face...” Findaráto shivered again. “He was like a demon from the ancient tales.”

Tyelkormo gripped his cousin's arm. The boy was truthful, that much he knew, and his fear of what he had seen was genuine, but it made no sense. He sent another thread of power into Findaráto's mind, this time applying a gentle pressure, asking for entry. He felt his cousin's surprise, then acceptance of the contact, and he smiled a little as their souls touched along the bond. Findaráto felt exactly like his sound in the Song – the stillness of deep water, and the warmth of light-drenched stone.

Can you show me? he asked.

I think so. His cousin's voice was clear in his mind. Tyelkormo let himself be led into the memory, closing his eyes to concentrate on the sounds and images the boy shared. He saw flashes of their hunt together, and felt the boy's glow of pride at the easy banter between them – then there was the walk back from the stables, the exchange at the garden gate, and suddenly a bolt of fear at the sight of Nelyo and Káno, a certainty of something terrible to come. The garden dissolved around him and he saw three black peaks against a smoky yellow sky – Nelyo's face, savaged and ruined – a terrible glimpse of metal slicing into tendon and bone – and Findekáno, face blazing and spattered with blood...

It faded. Carefully, he disentangled their minds.

“Have you seen anything like this before?” he asked.

“No – not like that.” Findaráto turned his head away, blue eyes only half-focussed. “Other things, though...I knew when my horse foaled that it would be a black filly...I knew that Mother would cut herself with her sewing scissors a few moments before it happened...”

Tyelkormo exhaled, and found himself wishing he had not sent Nelyo away. This was not a subject he was learned in. “Have you told anyone of this?”

“No.” The boy frowned. “I thought everyone could do it.”

“Not everyone. Our Grandfather can, a little.” Tyelkormo tilted his head, unwilling to ask the next question – but he had to know. “And what you see always comes true?”


A chill prickled along Tyelkormo's arms, but he would not show doubt. He pulled his cousin close. “It may not be what it seems, my dear.”

“But you saw...”

“I know, but think for a moment. You have seen Nelyo and Káno together, you know what they are to each other.” Or perhaps not, he thought wryly. The boy was growing up, but how much did he really see? “Is it likely that one of them would ever suffer harm to come to the other – let alone cause it?”

“No,” Findaráto admitted.

Tyelkormo kissed the top of the golden head. “The future takes many shapes, cousin.” He tried to remember how Finwë had explained it. “If everything is already laid before our feet, then why do we make choices, or think at all? What would be the purpose in it?”

His cousin smiled at him. Shadows of fear still prowled in his eyes, but his face wore the same look of trust it had held when Tyelkormo first placed him on the back of a horse. “What indeed?”

The certainty in the boy's look, his absolute faith in his older cousin, unsettled Tyelkormo. “We should speak to Grandfather about this – and perhaps Makalaurë's friend Olórin. They can help you to understand your gift, and control it.”

“Should I tell Nelyo and Káno what I saw?”

“No.” Even if the vision never came to pass, Tyelkormo reflected, it would do no good to share it. He got to his feet and offered his arm to Findaráto. “We'll think of something else to tell them.”

And together, as the light faded from gold to red and the summer air cooled, they returned to the house.
Chapter end notes:
A little something I drafted on holiday; this is probably the end of my current purple patch, I don't have anything else drafted and ready to go! Fellow Finrod lovers, over to you to take up the challenge.

Tyenya - "Dear kinsman."
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