The Shipwright - A short story about Cirdan
The Ringbearer, a Halfling? Cirdan wondered how a being, as small as a Halfling, could journey across Mordor, with only his servant, climb Mt. Doom, and cast the Ring into the Fires when not even the Mightiest of Men could do it.
He had been there, with Elrond, the day the strength of men fell. Cridan stroked his beard as his thoughts went back to that day, the day Gil-Galad fell with the strength of men.
* * * *
Cirdan had been fighting an Orc when he heard a cry.
"Gil-Galad!" he thought instantly.
He quickly slew the Orc and turned to see Gil-Galad fall and an Orc raise his sword to bring down on the falled Elf. Cirdan let out a cry and ran to his foster son's aid. He slew the Orc before he had a chance to bring down his finishing blow. Cirdan, then, knelt down and brought the Elf into his arms. Oblivious to the happenings around him, he checked Gil-Galad for any wounds. He found one on the back of Gil-Galad's head and one on his left under-arm. The wounds were purple and puss-y. There was a poison at work. Cirdan checked for a pulse and found one. It was very small, but there nonetheless.
"Gil-Galad?" he asked, his eyes becoming moist.
Gil-Galad forced his eyes open and coughed up a black, bloody substance.
"Father?" his breathing was very laboured and sounded liquid.
"Don't speak, save your strength. We'll get you out alive yet."
But, it was too late, the light in Gil-Galad's eyes disappeared.
Cirdan, gently, laid Gil-Galad's lifeless body down and kissed his brow.
"Namarie, Gil-Galad, Im melin le." he whispered and looked up to see Elendil fall. He then saw Isildur take up his father's sword and slice the Ring from Sauron's hand. There was a great cry and Sauron fell. The Last Alliance had won the battle, but not the war. They had to destroy the Ring. Cirdan saw Elrond make his way over to Isildur and then gesture to him. Cirdan, reluctantly, left Gil-Galad's lifeless body and joined Elrond. As soon as he joined them, Elrond noticed the anguish in Cirdan's eyes.
"What is it?" Elrond asked.
"Gil-Galad...has" Cirdan could not bring himself to say the words. Elrond, though, seemed to understand.
"Oh" he said quietly, "I am sorry. He will be buried in honour. But now, let us look at the task at hand." he tuned to Isildur, "Isildur, the Ring must be destroyed. Follow Cirdan and I."
Elrond and Cirdan led Isildur to the Crack of Doom, to the very heart of Mt. Doom, and in the scorching heat and the unbearable fumes of the Mountain, they told Isildur to throw the Ring over the edge.
"Cast it into the fire!" Elrond commanded.
"Destroy it!" Cirdan yelled over the turmoil of the fires below.
Isildur looked at them with a look of malice in his eyes.
"No!" he said and walked away, leaving Elrond and Cirdan standing in the unbearable heat.
* * * *
Cirdan looked down at the grownd and shook his head and his eyes became misty. The thought of his foster son always made him teary, and his thoughts went back to that fateful day.
* * * *
Cirdan had been working hard on a boat, and had stopped to enjoy a glass of water, when an Elf ran up to him.
"Yes, what is it?" he asked.
"There is a messenger here to see you."
"Send him here."
The Elf left and soon returned leading another Elf carrying a small bundle.
"Lord Cirdan" said the messenger, bowing.
"Yes, who are you?"
"I am a messenger of the Hight King Fingon. Morgoth broke the Siege of Angband and the King wishes you take his son, Gil-Galad, in safekeeping until Morgoth's forces are driven back."
The messenger produced the small bundle he was holding. Wrapped in a blanket was the small Elven child, not more than 20 years old. Cirdan took compassion on the small child.
"Yes, I will take Gil-Galad."
The messenger smiled and said a few words to the Prince.
"This is Cirdan. You will be staying with him for a while, until your father sends for you. Now, be a good boy and listen to what he says."
"K." Gil-Galad said in that small voice all little children have.
The messenger set the boy on the ground and gave him a little nudge. Cirdan, seeing the boy was a little shy, smiled reassuringly and held out his hand, gesturing to the boy that he would not be harmed. Gil-Galad, shyly, put his own small hand in Cirdan's big one and the two walked back to Cirdan's house by the Sea. Cirdan grew to love the boy as his own and the boy grew to love Cirdan.
It wasn't until a year later when word reached them that Fingon had died in battle and that it was being arranged for Gil-Galad to live with his Uncle Turgon. Well, Cirdan would not have it and, eventually, Gil-Galad became Cirdan's foster son.
* * * *
It had always been pondered why Cirdan did not marry as he was so good with children. The truth was, Cirdan never got along females. The Sea was his true love and his boats were his children and that was the way he perfered it.
Now, as he stood, and old friend walked up beside him.
"Beautiful, isn't it?" A gruffy, old, voice said.
Cirdan turned and saw Gandalf, no longer grey.
"Gandalf" he said, "You're all white!"
"Yes, I am the most powerful wizard now. Saruman, and his forces, has been overthrown."
"Oh, it is good to see you again." said Cirdan.
"Yes, it has been too long." said Gandalf, pulling his friend into an embrace.
"I was right to give you Narya." Cirdan said as soon as Gandalf let go.
"Yes" Gandalf's booming laughter filled the Havens."Well, I best get my things on board."
Cirdan nodded and, as he watched his friend busy himself, his thoughts went to the day the Istari arrived.
* * * *
It was just an ordinary day in the Havens. Cirdan had been busying himself with taskes here and there around the Havens whan a ship pulled into the harbour. Cirdan quickly ran over to the ship and tied it to the dock so it wouldn't drift away. On board were five old men, or so it seemed. One was clad in white, one in brown, two in sea-blue and one in grey. The one clad in white came abroad first. Then the two clad in sea-blue and then the one clad in brown. These four stood tall and proud. The last, however, was clad in grey and he seemed more aged and he wasn't as tall as the four before him. But, Cirdan saw something in him and deemed him the wisest and with the greatest spirit.
"My lords" he said, bowing, "Who are you and what business do you have in Middle Earth?"
The one clad all in white stepped forward.
"We are the Istari, Messengers sent from Aman."
"Aman" Cirdan thought, "They must be powerful indeed."
Cirdan stepped aside and allowed the five to pass. But, when the Grey Messenger walked by, Cirdan stopped him.
"I wish to speak with you."
The old man nodded and walked with Cirdan.
"I deem you have the greatest spirit and are the wisest. Take this" he said, slipping Narya from his finger, "and weild it in secret. *For great labours and perils lie before you, and lest your task prove too great and wearisome, take this Ring for your aid and comfort. It was entrusted to me only to keep secret, and here upon the west-shores it is idle; but I deem that in days ere long it should be in nobler hands than mine, that may weild it for the kindling of all hearts to courage."
The Grey Messenger took the Ring, hid it in secret, and hobbled back to the other four. They, then, left the Grey Havens and Cirdan watched them until they disappeared from sight.
* * * *
Cirdan returned to reality just as Elrond, Galadriel, three Hobbits, and some other Elves rode up.
"Ah, Elrond, Galadriel, I trust you had a safe journey?"
"Yes, thank you." Galadriel's musical voice answered.
"Cirdan, let me present to you Frodo Baggins of the Shire, the Ringbearer. Elrond said, waving a hand toward the Hobbit.
Cirdan noticed how thin, pale, and withered he looked.
"I've heard a lit about you, Frodo. Welcome to the Grey Havens."
"Thank you, sir." Frodo said, quietly.
Cirdan smiled and said "*All is now ready."
And so, they saw a great white ship. And, even as they stood there, and the Elves began to go aboard, Merry and Pippin rode up. And, amid his tears, Pippin laughed.
"You tried to give us the slip before and failed, Frodo. This time you have nearly succeeded, but you have failed again. It was not Sam, though, that gave you away this time, but Gandalf himself!"
"Yes," said Gandalf, "for it will be better to ride back three together than one alone. Well, here at last, dear friends, on the shores of the Sea comes the end of our fellowship in Middle Earth. Go in peace! I will not say: do not weep; for not all tears are an evil."
Then Frodo kissed Merry, Pippin, and last of all Sam. Then, he hesitantly walked toward the ship. Cirdan notived that Frodo looked edgy about going across the Sea, so he gave him a reassuring smile. Then, Frodo went abroad and the sails were drawn up and the ship slowly slipped away from the long grey dock.
Cirdan and the Hobbits stayed there until they could no longer see the light of the Phail of Galadriel. Then, he watched the three Hobbits turn to leave. Cirdan saw how sad Sam looked. He had heard that this young Hobbit had also beared the Ring for a short while.
"Do not be too sad" Cirdan said, placing a comforting hand in Sam's shoulder. "Your time will come for I heard you were a Ringbearer as well."
Sam nodded a tiny smile and left with his two friends.
* * * * 61 Years Later * * * *
Cirdan had been sitting in the edge of the dock, thinking, when an elderly Hobbit, with a younger one, rode up.
"What had the Hobbit been called?" Cirdan thought back all those years to the day Frodo had left. "Oh yes, Samwise."
He rose to greet them.
"Well, master Samwise, it seems your time did come."
"Yes, sir." Sam said quietly and timidly. After all his encounters with Elves, they still made him fell small and shy.
Cirdan nodded and left to prepare the ship while Sam said farewell to his daughter.
"Well, this is it, Elenor." he brought out the Red Book, "I want you to have this."
"Oh, dad, thank you." Elenor said, embracing her father. "I will miss you." she whispered into his ear.
"I will miss you, Elenor, and your brothers and sisters. You will tell goodbye for me won't you?"
"Yes dad, I will."
"And, promise me you will keep the story of Mr. Frodo alive."
"Master Samwise," Cirdan interupted their conversation, "It is time."
Sam nodded and gave Elenor one last kiss on the cheek. Then Cirdan led him aboard the great ship and Elenor was the last to see Sam in Middle Earth.
"At last" Cirdan thought, "At Sea at last."
He looked over to Sam, who was staring out at the Sea, and saw tears in his eyes. Cirdan realized what Sam had to be going through; Leaving all he knew and going to see his best friend. Cirdan joined Sam and put his hand on his shoulder.
"He'll be there, Sam, he'll be waiting."
"I know." Sam said. And then to himself he added, "Mr. Frodo, your Sam has returned."
Author's Note I hope you enjoyed this. We don't know a lot about Cirdan and no one has ever written a story about him so I decided to. I did some research on him and found some very interesting facts:
-He was the only Elf with a beard and grey hair.
-He was Gil-Galad's foster father. (the reason is in the story)
-He was with Elrond when Isildur left them in Mt. Doom.
Those are just some facts. Well, ya I hope you enjoyed it.
*-Lines taken from the fabulous books by JRR Tolkien. You may have also realized that most of the dilogue of Frodo's leaving is from the ROTK. I just wanted to say, I did not write those few lines, Tolkien did. God Bless his Soul.