Sailor to the Grey Havens - Sequel to "Mother of the Evenstar," part one

It was one of those rare days in Rivendell: a rainy day. Celebrian stared out from the terrace and sighed. Rain was beautiful, but when she had planned a family picnic and gotten everything ready, she really wasn't in the mood to appreciate the beauty of the rain. Unbidden, she thought about Lothlorien. What was her childhood home like now? Had it changed? Was it raining there?

"Celebrian?" Elrond came up behind her. "Are you all right?" She looked at him quizzically, and he elaborated, "You don't usually just sit quietly doing nothing. I was just wondering."

She opened her mouth to say, "Yes, I'm fine," but shut it. If truth be told - and as Elrond had told her more than two thousand years ago, Rivendell Elves were honest - she was homesick. This was not the first day she had thought about Lothlorien, or about her parents. She opened her mouth again and replied, "I'm - well - homesick. For Lothlorien." Celebrian suddenly blurted out her first thought. "Could I go there, to visit?"

Elrond looked surprised, but then he smiled gently. "After two thousand years, I shouldn't be surprised that you're homesick. Of course you may go!"

Celebrian jumped to her feet and threw her arms around Elrond. "Thank you," she whispered. Then she pulled back. "I didn't even realize until today how much I missed Lothlorien!"

Elrond took her hands. "Well, now that you've realized it, I think you should go visit if you want to. Will you take an escort?"

"Only a small one," Celebrian decided. "We won't be in any real danger."

Something rang in Elrond's head, but he put it aside to be dealt with later. "All right. Probably you could be ready in two or three days, then."

Celebrian laid her head on Elrond's shoulder. "Thank you for letting me go."

***

Two days later, Celebrian tied her bag to her horse and turned around to face her family. Elladan and Elrohir, full-grown Elves, crushed her in a three-way hug before letting Arwen embrace their mother. Celebrian hugged all three of them tightly. She had never been separated from them for as long as she planned to stay now. She had to blink back tears as she released Arwen.

"Safe journey, love," Elrond said as she turned to him. He pulled her into an embrace and held her a long time. Something was warning him again, and he hugged Celebrian tighter. He felt as though he would never see her again as she was now.

Celebrian pulled back, then kissed him. "Namarie," she whispered, feeling her tears well up again. She tore herself away from Elrond and mounted her horse. She couldn't look back as she rode away from Rivendell.

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