She never truly belonged here, Elessar‘s queen. Heart-wrenchingly lovely she was, but distant and solitary, with star-bright eyes that pierced through words to pin men’s souls. Now our Elessar has performed the Mystery, after the manner of the Sea Kings of legend, and left us – he was raised by the Fair Folk and although beloved, his ways were his own – and she slips away like morning mist, leaving Gondor once more to the will and governance of men.
She is Other, not fostered by the Fair Folk as he was, but a princess born of their most high lineage. To Gondor those strange, bright people brought her after the War, not unlike a victor’s trophy for our king. My Nan once waited on their queen and said she was kind enough, spoke our tongue cleanly and had a laugh like water falling into silver. Queen Arwen though – always grave, she seemed, strange and far-seeing, her laughter only for the King and her children, or so it is said.
The children all have that hint of Other about them. Not just a ‘something behind the eyes’ as is common in the old families of Dol Amroth, but the pale skin, silvered voices and grace that are marks of the Kindly Ones. It will breed out in time, my Nan says. Eldarion’s wife comes from one of our noble Houses and their children’s children will slowly shed that strangeness. Though in truth, the youngest daughter wed the King’s steward in Annúminas and went singing and dancing north, eager for lands where her elven kin are said still to linger.
After the King’s passing, we thought Queen Arwen would retire to some quiet corner of the palace, close to her children, her grandchildren, but in the end she too must have seen there is no place here for her kind. I was on early watch this morning when she rode through the lower city with neither attendant nor escort, which was how I alone came to see her leave. She glanced my way as she passed through the great gate, her eyes inscrutable, her horse’s hooves sharp on the still air, then she turned her face to the north. It is a tale to share with my unborn children, a sight stored up in my memory, never to be forgotten: Elessar’s Evenstar, going home.
AN: possible mini prequel to Star’s End.
Artwork: Artist unknown. If yours, please contact me so that I can either credit you or remove it.