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A Red Leaf Falls by lotrfan

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Story notes:
I read cheekybeak's Thranduil in her latest chapter and it made me think of my Thranduil. Thought I could share this story here.

Author note: if you've read my story "Wine and the Fellowship" you may have noted Elrond mentioning that Thranduil held Elrond somewhat accountable for the loss of Thranduil's wife. This is the back story of that event as I imagine it. All characters belong to Tolkien. Thranduil's wife is an OC here. I find Thranduil and his family fascinating characters. I have read that the character of Legolas was a late addition to the Lord of the Rings-that might explain why we have extensive genealogies for numerous Hobbit families, the Kings and Stewards of Gondor, the descendants of Eorl the Young and the line of Durin but next to nothing about the House of Oropher-which is only three generations!

Cyllessil shut the door to their chamber and leaned on it, smiling up at Thranduil.

"You cannot make that face when Lindir sings, Thranduil," she admonished.

Thranduil placed his hand on the door and leaned over his wife, pressing his forehead to hers gently. "I certainly can when he launches into one of those Noldor dirges."

Her eyes sparkled up at him. "At least he didn't give us the Lay of Gil-Galad tonight, my love."

Thranduil stepped back with a very unkingly snort. "I should hope even he would know better than to sing that when I am in attendance." He pulled Cyllessil to him and wrapped his arms around her, resting his cheek on the top of her head. "I am much happier here in our room with you," he whispered into her red-gold hair.

Cyllessil squeezed him back then pulled out of his embrace to drag him to the balcony doors. She opened them and they stepped out into the night. Thranduil stood behind her, his arms around his wife, as they gazed up into the stars and autumn moon. The crisp night air rustled the leaves of the tree at the edge of their balcony as Thranduil took a deep breath and felt his Cyllessil relax in his arms.

"I miss our Greenwood," he said to her. "There just aren't enough trees here."

Cyllessil leaned her head back onto Thranduil's chest. "In a mood to go sit in this one for awhile?" she asked.

Thranduil laughed. "Are you sure you are only part Silvan, my queen?" He paused, resting his cheek on her hair again. "No, not tonight, melamin. Tonight I would rather sit by the fire with you." He guided her back in to the room.

She curled up on the floor in front of the glowing fireplace and Thranduil lay on the carpet, his head on her lap, gazing up at her deep blue eyes thoughtfully. "I think it is time for us to return home, Cyllessil."

She gently ran her fingers through his hair, feeling his body relax as she did so. "You've had enough Noldor hospitality?" she smiled.

He smiled back at her "I just want to be home, my love."

She nodded then raised an eyebrow at him. "You're not worrying about Legolas managing on his own, are you?"

He laughed. "No, I am not. He's more than capable and it is well needed practice for him." He grew silent then added "I do miss him though. I miss my halls, my trees." He gave her a sidelong look "Not to mention my elk," he added.

Cyllessil laughed and smacked Thranduil in the chest. "Your elk! Oh Thranduil, who is acting more like a Silvan now?"

He took her hand in his and rested it on his chest. His eyes gazed into the fire. "He knows my moods," he stated, causing his wife to burst into laughter again. She leaned down and kissed his forehead lightly.

"As do I, my dear. As do I." She stroked his hair again. "You want to leave before the winter."

"I do, Cyllessil," he answered, looking up at her again. "If we do not leave soon we will be here through the winter, once the snows block the High Pass."

She nodded thoughtfully but did not respond. He sat up and moved to sit next to her, leaning into the chair behind them. He twined his fingers into hers. "But you are not ready to leave yet are you, my love?"

Cyllessil rested her head on Thranduil's shoulder and kept her eyes on the fire. "I'm not, Thranduil," she said finally. "It's been so good to be with Celebrian again. I hadn't realized how much I have missed her."

Cyllessil had grown up with Celebrian in Lothlorien. Perhaps he had not realized how many years it had been since his wife had seen her best friend. He put his arm around Cyllessil and pulled her closer. "I can stay," he whispered. "As long as Lindir doesn't sing the Lay of Gil-Galad I can stay as long as you want."

Cyllessil buried her face in his chest as she laughed again. Raising her eyes to his once more, she brushed a strand of white gold hair behind his ear. "Why don't you go back to the Greenwood, my love, and I can stay here until the spring?"

"What?" he asked, sitting up and turning to face her. "And leave you here? Alone?"

"Thranduil!" Cyllessil shook her head. "Alone? How could I be alone with all the people Elrond has here?" She turned to face him and leaned against the chair. "Celebrian plans to go to Lothlorien to see her parents in the spring," she began, then stopped as she saw Thranduil's face cloud over and his eyebrows draw together. She pushed his chest with her hand. "Stop the worrying already, Thranduil. I need not go to Lothlorien with her." She gazed at her husband as his face settled into slightly less concerned lines and he grasped her hand again, tracing small circles on the back of it with his thumb. "If I stay until the spring," she continued patiently "I can set out with Celebrian, then journey north to join you again in the Greenwood."

Thranduil frowned. "Celebrian will take the Redhorn Gate to Lothlorien, Cyllessil. You will journey far south and then far north again if you set out with her. The High Pass would get you to the Forest Road more directly, my love. And more quickly." He gave her a puzzled look. "If you plan to journey south with Celebrian, is it not far better to make a visit to Lothlorien before you follow the Anduin north?"

"Could you spare me for that long, Thranduil?" she asked. "I would so love to visit there again, but I do not want to be away from you and Legolas for so long."

Thranduil gathered her in his arms and pulled her into his lap. "Melamin, it has been many long years since you last visited your home. Since before Legolas was born." He stroked her hair as he frowned at the fire. "I have kept you to myself, my love, and kept you from your home. I am sorry."

"Come now, Thranduil. Don't be so hard on yourself. Do you really think if I had wanted to go I would have hesitated to tell you?" He started to protest and she put her hand on his lips. "No, melamin, I will not have you blame yourself for this." She leaned in and kissed him gently. "I suppose I just wanted to keep you to myself as well, mela en'coiamin." She snuggled into his chest as he went back to stroking her hair.

"I have no objection to you visiting Lothlorien," he said after a long pause. "Celebrian will enjoy the company and I can see it has been too long you have been away." He kissed the top of her head and added "I will leave here before the winter snows but send word to me when you set out for Lothlorien and I will ride south to meet you there."

"Would you, Thranduil?" Cyllessil smiled up at him. "I would like that."

"I will, love of my life. I would do anything to make you happy," he answered.

"Anything?" she said giving him a sidelong look.

"Anything," he answered, laughing now as she pushed him down on the floor and leaned over to kiss him.

_______________________________________________________________________

Thranduil stood on the steps of Elrond's house. He had taken leave of Elrond and Celebrian and now only Cyllessil and the bulk of the Greenwood guard he was leaving with her stood on the steps to see their party off. The few members of his guard that Thranduil was taking with him were already mounted on their horses and waiting for their King.

Elladan and Elrohir stood near, pointedly looking everywhere but at Thranduil. The Peredhel were to escort the King's small guard to the borders of Elrond's realm.

Thranduil was leaving the better part of their original escort with Cyllessil. She had argued that he needed them more than she did, as Elrond would send a large party to accompany his wife, including his twin sons and Glorfindel as well, but Thranduil insisted.

He held Cyllessil in his arms now, as he said farewell, kissing the top of her head as she hugged him to her. Looking up she smiled. "I shall miss you, my love."

"And I you, melamin. Cormamin niuve tenna'ta elea lle au'." He breathed the words as he leaned down to kiss her fervently on the mouth, causing the Peredhel to busy themselves with their horses.

"Amin mela lle." Cyllessil whispered back as the kiss ended. "Namarië, melamin. Give Legolas all my love," she added.

"All of it?" Thranduil asked, raising one eyebrow at her.

"Pe-channas!" she exclaimed with a laugh, grabbing the front of his tunic and pulling him to her to thoroughly kiss him again. "I have more than enough for you both," she laughed as she let him catch his breath.

Thranduil laughed with her, picking her up and spinning her around in his arms before he hugged her long and hard one last time. "Until the Spring, my love."

"Until the Spring," she repeated, smiling. He hurried down the steps and headed to his horse, near the twins.

"What are you two looking at?" he asked imperiously.

"Nothing, hir nin." Elladan answered with a smile and a look at his twin.

"I didn't think anyone could be worse than Ada and Naneth," Elrohir said, getting on his horse and giving Thranduil an amused sidelong look. "But I was wrong." He shook his head.

"One would think they were newly bonded, eh Elrohir?" Elladan said, winking at his twin brother.

"Instead of parents of a near thousand year old Elf!" Elrohir finished.

"Watch your mouths, you two!" Cyllessil called from the steps. "You still have to ride with him today!"

Thranduil raised his hand, placed in on his heart and bowed his head to his wife as she laughed at them from the steps. The small party moved away from the house at Thranduil's command, towards the path leading out of Imladris. "Your day will come, you scoundrels," Thranduil said to the twins, "Just wait."

Cylessil watched until they disappeared towards the mountain pass and then she went into the house. "Until the Spring, my love," she repeated to herself.
Chapter end notes:

Cyllessil: red gold leaf

Melamin: my love>p> mela en'coiamin: love of my life

Cormamin niuve tenna'ta elea lle au:' my heart shall weep until it sees you again

Amin mela lle: I love you

Namarie: farewell

Pe-channas: idiot

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