Title: Adar nîn
Author: Del Rion (delrion.mail (at) gmail.com)
Fandom: The Lord of the Rings
Era: The Third Age of the Sun
Rating: K / FRC
Characters: Legolas, Thranduil
Summary: Thranduil reflects his memories about his father and ponders how he has succeeded as one himself.
Beta: Kitt of Lindon
Disclaimer: This story is based on J.R.R. Tolkien’s stories about Middle-earth (mostly on the Lord of the Rings). The characters are not mine - except for those whom I have created. The story is written to honour Tolkien’s creations.
Have a good time and enjoy the ride (at least I hope you do!)
Feedback: Yes, please, be so kind! Please review, I would love to know your opinion.
Author’s Notes: English is not my mother tongue, so it isn’t perfect. Please inform me of spelling and grammar errors, so I can correct them!
About Adar nîn: A short fic that I just wanted to write. Idea struck me and here it is! Hopefully you enjoy.
Too many times you can see that Thranduil is shown as a stern, abusive father, and I think that is somehow wrong for the Mirkwood’s King: surely he is stubborn and determined (how else you could make both yourself and your people survive in a place like Mirkwood).
Legolas is very young in this, and he hasn’t yet begun the training of warriors.
Story and status: Here below you see the writing process of the story. If there is no text after the title name, then it is finished and checked.
Adar nîn (updated 19th of March)
Author’s Note: All speech here is Sindarin, of course. There is no reason as to why Elves would speak Westron with each other, I think…
King Thranduil of Mirkwood stood in his chambers, his eyes following the patterns of a rug covering his wall. He had been doing this for some time already, time floating past him without further notice. It was not unheard of that an Elf didn’t keep count of a track of time, but this wasn’t that kind of nonchalance: Thranduil was merely deep in thoughts.
He had taken care of his duties of this day earlier, and now he had hours to spend with naught to do. Later, there would be great celebration, but at the moment, Thranduil was forced to entertain himself.
Today was an anniversary of Thranduil’s crowning day. A day the King himself would have gladly forgotten. It brought him little but bad memories, and every year when this day was near at hand, Thranduil felt strange melancholy take over him. Memories he had tried to bury deep came back to surface.
At these days, he often thought about his father.
Oropher had been a great King, his wisdom great and love for his people unquestionable. He had died defending his people: fighting with honour, and falling like the great Kings of past.
Thranduil felt a need to sneer. He had been there, fighting beside his father that day, and he had seen a horrible mistake done. As a son of his father, he of course never said this aloud. But in his heart he knew his father had made a mistake: attacking the enemy’s army in the Battle of Dagorlad, only with the strength of the Elves of Greenwood and Lothlórien, had been a doomed attempt.
A mistake of which Oropher paid with his life. As well as so many of his warriors.
Thranduil sighed. A proud, stern Elf had his father been. Thranduil himself had been brought up in discipline and order: a kind of upbringing he hadn’t always appreciated. Later on as he thought it, he felt some kind of bitter remorse about those years. He had been young, then, and had accepted his father’s excuses maybe too easily.
When it had been his begetting day, and his father hadn’t been able to come and join the celebration because he had to meet with some councillors, Thranduil had accepted it, because his father was a King, and a King served his people first. Even when Thranduil had an important day in his training, and he wished his father could have spared a moment from his work to come and watch him, he had kept that wish only in his heart; too may times he had been disappointed when his father didn’t visit him on the training fields.
Oropher had been a King for him, not a father. Thranduil saw it now. Maybe Oropher himself hadn’t been aware of that, and so he hadn’t changed anything. Or maybe Thranduil had grown up faster, accepting this hierarchy in their house without too much protesting. However it was, Thranduil avoided thinking it.
But today it was hard not to think of those years, and especially the years after Dagorlad. After the Battle Thranduil had returned home with the remnants of his army, and he was crowned King. Within a few years, Thranduil had adapted his new position, but never did he forget the days when his father ruled.
Shaking his head, Thranduil woke from his memories. Giving the rug one final glance, he walked to the balcony of his chambers, wishing that the fresh air would help to liberate him of his thoughts.
As soon as Thranduil stepped outside, he was able to hear voices, his people’s happy shouts and laughter on the celebration field, preparing it for the party later in the evening. With a sorrowful smile, Thranduil walked to the railing, gentle wind playing with his hair. As he took the final step, something brushed his foot, and he looked down.
A toy lay abandoned on the floor, eyes of the dog-like plaything staring up at the King. Thranduil’s smile changing to a happy one, and he bent down, taking the toy to his hands, sweeping off the dirt from it. Shifting the toy in his hands, Thranduil’s thoughts swiftly turned to his small son. Legolas seemingly had forgotten his favourite soft toy here yesterday. Not a wonder. Legolas had had an exciting day yesterday as he had “helped” with the celebration preparations, and he had fallen asleep in his father’s lap before the story Thranduil was telling was even near to its ending. Ah well, I shall return this to my Little leaf when I see him this evening, Thranduil thought fondly.
The yesterday’s evening had been special in many ways. Thranduil had been able to leave his work earlier than usual, and he had spent his evening with Legolas. Now as Thranduil thought about it, he felt a pang of guilt in his heart: he had no time for Legolas. It was quite seldom nowadays that he was able to dedicate a one single day for his little son.
It is not right, Thranduil thought. Legolas needs a father that is around him, encouraging and watching him when he fights his first fight on the training fields. He needs a proper father: one I never had. Thranduil looked at the toy in his hands, and for a moment it seemed as if the eyes of the toy were staring at him accusingly. It seems that I have began to repeat my father’s mistakes. But maybe now that I have acknowledged the problem, I can make sure it won’t continue happening. I will be a good father. I will raise Legolas myself, not leave him to the care of tutors and maidens. I am a King, after all, and if the King himself is not able to decide what his day will be like, then who is?
As if an answer to his question, a clear voice rang through the chambers. “Ada!”
A small elfling ran through the doorway to the balcony, and Thranduil opened his arms for the child, raising Legolas easily to his arms. “Ah, here you are, my Little leaf. How has your day been?”
“My day was great, Ada! I have helped a lot in the preparations for celebration. But I haven’t found Hû anywhere.“ There was a slight pout on Legolas’ face, the young face suddenly very upset..
“Ah, do not be sad. Do you know what I just found?” Thranduil smiled, presenting the toy for his son. “I think someone had been missing you, and asked me for directions.”
“Hû!” Legolas cried happily, taking the toy from his father and hugged it tightly to his chest.
Thranduil watched as his son lifted his shining eyes towards him, and couldn’t but laugh merrily in response. Legolas was still very young, and his emotions were true and pure, unhindered. Not marred by the sight of death and despair, the King thought, his face darkening slightly.
Legolas, however, didn’t notice this as a small bird landed to a nearby branch and started to sing. Legolas listened for a moment, humming silently, and then started to sing himself, adding his bright voice to that of the bird.
Thranduil felt something shift inside of himself, and he hugged his son closer, wondering how he had been able to live without this. For now on, he was going to spend more time with his son, as was his right as a father – as well as it was Legolas’ right to be with his father.
As Legolas continued singing, Thranduil silently vowed that his son would never have to face the things he had been forced to. His son would grow up in peace, feeling he was loved. He would not know death, darkness, pain, nor despair: one of those would befall on him. At least not before it was absolutely necessary. In Mirkwood, they lived constantly aware of the shadow spreading in the southern parts of the forest, and that could be not helped. But it didn’t mean that they had to grow up accepting that there was always evil in the world.
The bird ceased singing, listened for a while, and then flew away. Legolas looked after it, and then turned back to his father, his wide blue eyes shining with happiness.
Thranduil smiled, kissed the forehead of his son, and whispered: “I love you, Legolas.”
“I love you too, Adar nîn.”
Sindarin: - Westron:
Adar nîn - My father
Ada - Daddy (affectionate form of ‘Adar’)
Hû - Dog