Slow Comes the Morning - Chapter Six
Don't know who to trust
Heavy thoughts sift through dust
And the lies
Trying not to break
But I'm so tired of this deceit
Every time I try to make myself
Get back up on my feet
All I ever think about is this
All the tiring time between
Trying to put my trust in you
Just takes so much out of me
I take everything from the inside
And throw it all away
Cause I swear for the last time
I won't trust myself with you
Tension is building inside
Everyone feels so far away from me
Heavy thoughts forcing their way
Out of me
I won't trust myself with you
I won't waste myself on you
Waste myself on you
"From the Inside" By: Linkin Park off the Meteora album
*WARNING---I introduce Elrond for the first time in this chapter and as a forewarning, it is an Elrond that most people probably won't like. I myself have never really liked him, so for quite a while he is portrayed as quite the meanie and a bad father to Aarynne, so I'm sorry if I offended anyone, but this is the Elrond of my stories....for a while. Just have faith.
Aarynne's intense blue eyes scanned the clear horizon. They had traveled for near three weeks and Rivendell was now, finally in view. Her stomach began to churn as they rode painstakingly slowly on, her long-disregarded home getting ever closer. Her mind's eye flashed with memories of all the bitter arguments, all the neglect , and all the hurt that surrounded that place.
Her mouth was set in a stern near-grimace as every inch brought them closer to a past she had chosen to forget.
"Is everything all right My Lady?" Rumil asked, riding up next to Aarynne on his cream-white mount.
"No," she stated simply, without turning her head, and said no more. Rumil understood that she would elaborate on it no further, and so rode ahead briskly, to join his brother.
Arwen was near the back of the procession, looking out over her home. For her, it had been much too long since she had last been here, yet she knew, with sharp clarity, what quarrels lay ahead of them. Under Aarynne's stubborn insistence, Elrond had not even been informed that Aarynne had been in Lorien for the past five years, and she was not convinced that her sister's sudden return would be well met.
Within a half of an hour, which seemed like grueling hours to Aarynne, the travelers reached the façade of Rivendell. The gate attendant's eyes widened as he saw them, running as fast as he could into the intricate inner halls.
"My lord Elrond," he breathed heavily, stumbling over his own feet as well as his words.
"Yes?" The master of Rivendell asked distractedly as he poured over a dusty old book, written in elvish runes.
"There are travelers! It is Haldir, and he has with him Arwen..." Elrond looked up from the ancient text now, a smile forming.
"Well, we should go greet them! It has been too long since my daughter has been home," He said, beginning to walk to the façade.
"Also, my lord," the nervous and breathless attendant called after him.
"Yes?" Elrond questioned impatiently.
"It is Aarynne my lord, she is with them."
Elrond raced along the corridors of Rivendell, and stepped out into the façade. He pushed his way through Haldir and the other escorts until he was face to face with Aarynne. The two stood there, staring at each other eye to eye, not speaking, not moving, barely breathing.
"Suilad, Ada." Aarynne finally spoke in a heavy whisper. Elrond barely nodded and held his hand to his chest in a formal greeting. He then embraced Arwen and led the entire procession into the dining hall.
Aarynne let out a long sigh of relief after he was well ahead of her. In that moment when he had approached her, and she saw his face for the first time in far too many years, everything had stopped. Once again, she was a small elfling, who felt even smaller than she was next to the powerful man she knew as father. Then it was over, for now, and the stifling expectations for her that he didn't even have to speak in words anymore lifted.
She took a few shaky breaths and stepped forward, following the familiar procession ahead of her.
Later that evening, as the light had just barely began to fade, and the tired escorts, including Haldir, had retired to their respective quarters, and only Elrond and his daughters remained, Elrond walked quickly over to Aarynne and embraced her.
"Oh, my daughter," he barely breathed, "we all thought you dead." Aarynne's arms still hung at her sides as she did not return the embrace. Elrond stepped back, his hands on her arms and looked at her. "You've changed," he stated simply.
"It's been a long time," she said without emotion.
"You are...beautiful," he said hesitantly.
"Thank you," Aarynne replied, looking hardheartedly into his eyes. All the while, Arwen stood silent, whispering a silent prayer.
"And Arwen!" Elrond exclaimed crossing the short distance between them and embracing her as well. "It has been much too long since you`ve been home." Aarynne looked away, hurt, then strode out of the room, already sick of being there. "She may have changed in looks, but not in character, apparently," Elrond sighed.
"Ada," Arwen began to plead.
"Hush now, mir nin, I will handle it," he said, walking gracefully out of the expansive room.
After a short while, he found her sitting against a tall, stone column in the Hall of Fire, staring rather pensively out into one of the many courtyards. A slight, warm breeze blew in, tossing her dark hair just a bit. The warm glow of the setting sun illuminated her face, and in that moment, he could see Celebrian in her...he could see the spirit, her mother`s spirit...the thing that frightened him.
"I am happy to see you, daughter," he said cautiously, approaching her. "I would hope you felt the same."
"I don`t know yet, Ada," she said quietly. Elrond nodded and sat next to her.
"Well, it is good to have you back." He said a bit unconvincingly.
"Tell me Ada, are you willing...at least to try to accept me, as I am...as your daughter?" Elrond sat silent for a moment, studying his daughter's face.
"I don't know yet either, Aarynne, I just hope that you have finally been tamed by your journey."
"Tamed?" Aarynne questioned heatedly, "Tamed? You speak of me like I am some horse! I don`t want to be here Ada, no more than you want me to be here. This place holds nothing but memories I wish I didn`t have! Even today, upon my arrival, you waited, you had to wait, to embrace me until all others were gone! As if you were ashamed of me! You may well be, but why? Because I can`t be everything you`ve tried to make me?"
"All I want, though it is evident that my hope is false, is for you to calm yourself, and learn your place!" With that sour note he walked of, his richly colored robes flowing behind. Aarynne sat, shaking her head.
"So it begins again," she said sadly.
"Aarynne," Elrond called back. Aarynne looked up without answering. "It isn't that I don't accept you, it is only that I need you to trust that I know what I am doing, as your father."
"How? How am I supposed to be able to trust you when all that has led to in the past is pain and regret?" She asked bitterly.
"Because I am your father. Most of all, because you have only proved yourself to be an insolent little child who obviously doesn't herself know what is best for her." Aarynne clenched her teeth and looked away as he left.
She once again felt herself harden towards this man that she called `father.' One day, one instance, and she once again, with sorrow in her heart, severed herself from emotion and prepared herself for another long, hard fight. What it would do to her this time, she couldn`t know.