Noldolante - Maglor
The Fall of the Noldor
It is over.
Truly, that is all there is to say. It is over, now. And I do not know if I am glad.
Once, centuries ago, Amme laughed and ruffled my hair. I had just played her harp for the first time, and I was entranced. "Macalaure," she laughed. "Macalaure, someday you will be the greatest minstrel in Aman."
"Really?" I asked softly, still in a daze from the music I had found in the strings, at my fingertips.
"Yes," she said. "And then, Macalaure, I will watch you play before the Valar."
I wish I could have done that, for her.
And so it went on, and so it went on. I learned, as did my brothers, though none of them were fascinated and bewildered by music as I was. Metalworking was their love. I would use the harp-strings and instruments they made, pulling music out into the air. Amme would listen, often, but I do not know if Ata ever really tried to hear it. I don't know why we loved him as we did. He was never there for us. And yet we stayed.
He was fell; we all knew that. His fire was too hot to be near to, to feel comfortable with the protection of a father. He loved Amme, but some things will never last, not for eternity. And our family was one of those things.
It began simply enough. He had always held a grudge against his brothers...and them came the Silmarilli, and Melkor, and so many other small things, tensions and misgivings and squabbles, evenings passed in silence because of the air between them and none of us daring to speak.
Even the youngest of us were full-grown when it happened, of course, but I wonder, now, how we ever felt we were our own. Because we followed him. And we barely even thought to question.
Because so many things were wrong. At the distance of centuries, I can see that. I can see with eyes unclouded, because I have been stripped of all the things I thought were right and true and noble; I have seen my people and my brothers and my kin and enemies falling. I can see so clearly now.
It is all over. Done. The past cannot be changed; I can only think of it, and dredge up grief in my weary, broken, numbed heart.
Then came the darkness. I think I first began to realize when he would not even try to make the sacrifice, but I could not see clearly. Not then. And so we revolted. Revolt against the Valar.
And so we left, in the night, left Amme and all the others. Left and tried out hardest not to look back, but that was in vain. We had our chances to return, and the wisest ones knew what lay behind them, in the shadows, and knew that it was for the best. Namo's warning. And Alqualonde.
The sea was rough during that passage. And tears fell into the ocean, raindrops in all that was to come.
The fires burned, the moon rose, the stars were obscured, the sun blazed in the sky. And then his flame was gone.
It was so sudden. He was gone. The one who had driven us, whom we had followed, whom we had loved, who led us into exile. He was gone, and only ashes remained. And perhaps he returned from exile. Perhaps.
I made a song, you know. Telling the tale of the fall of the Noldor. But what tale or song or dream can really tell of it?
And so, life went on. Alliances, battles, and unnumbered tears. So many times. Nirnaeth.
They were always hot-tempered, those three. We lost friends because of them, but still, they were our brothers...even when their deeds cried out in shame. Even then. And there was the Oath.
Of all, that is the farthest from my understanding now. Why, why, by the Sea and stars and heavens, why did we call upon Eru and the everlasting darkness? Because some things are too high to swear upon, for us fallible children...we did not know of what we spoke. None of us. And even now we have only seen the edge of that night. No oath should condemn a soul to that. None.
But perhaps I have always been a fool.
And so the oath drove us on. And so we parleyed and battled and apologized; and so we fought and killed and wept. And so my brothers fell, sometimes alone and sometimes together, and I could not even rage against those who killed them.
The Kinslayings run together. And then the wrath of the Valar.
"We have to, Makalaure," he said. "We called upon the darkness..." And he found the pain too great and the darkness what he wanted, in the end. Or perhaps merely oblivion, but how to reach that I do now know.
The tide is high, now, as I stand at the shore, looking out in the night to where Beleriand has fallen. I do not know where it rests, somewhere in the Sea, but it is beyond everything now. I wonder if the power of such creations was ever meant for the Elda, for I do not believe they can ever bring good.
This is what I spent my life for. This is why I left my home, betrayed my friends, why I spent these years in war and sorrow.
All-Father, if you hear me, tell me why.
I've forsaken it. What I've spent my life striving for, believing. I let it go - I cast it away. It was my life no longer. It was my right no longer, if I ever had a right to begin with. I am the last one and perhaps, perhaps, for the others, those who are gone, maybe I can find another purpose. For it is all over and maybe, if this is the end...
This is the end, and so perhaps, one day, there will be a beginning. One day....Though it may be that none of this will come.
It may be that beyond the setting of the sun the night can be everlasting.