I hadn’t expected my training to begin so soon. The next morning, Mother woke me up very early, rushing me out of our semi-large home and out into the bright sun. I blinked a few times and looked around.
Elrond was standing right there, beside the door, waiting patiently.
“Ah, Adara, good morning,” he said, nodding his head in greeting. “Are you eager to begin learning?” I nodded, a smile spreading across my rosy cheeks. “Then let us go.”
I did not know I would be learning in the very halls of Elrond’s elegant home. He led me into his personal armoury. As I trailed in behind him, he smiled down at me.
“I have had two swords made, both dulled so that we cannot hurt each other,” he said, speaking as he lifted a small sword- light enough for me to hold- off of a small shelf.
He handed me the sword led me out of the armoury and through the halls, out into the gardens. They were beautiful, and I held my weapon close for fear of bumping into the plants and breaking off petals or cutting the stems on accident.
Suddenly Elrond halted and turned to face me. I stopped just before I knocked into him, and then looked up, waiting for him to speak.
“You are young, Adara,” he said, speaking softly. “Only six years. But your mother wishes for you to learn to defend yourself. Over the next season, you will learn every possible battle trick you can, and I will be teaching you myself. First, you will learn how to wield a sword.”
I smiled brightly, and looked down at my own sword, denying everything Baird had told me. Everything he had said about Elrond being a much weaker warrior than Father, about how he never learned anything in his lessons. Elrond would teach me as much as he could, and I knew that.
This first lesson carried on for a few hours. I learned the proper way to hold a sword, the stances, and Elrond actually attacked me- only pretending, of course- so that I could learn how to handle the strength of my enemies. He also taught me some names of the beasts, and weapons they would use commonly.
I already knew of orcs, trolls, and wargs, of course, but I also learned of the elephants, wild men, and wizards. Of course, not all wizards were evil. Elrond told me about Gandalf, who I now respect very much. Ah, but why? I will save that for a later chapter.
By the end of the lesson, I felt like I could easily defeat any creature that dared to approach me. Elrond took my sword and put it back in the armoury, tucked away into its sheath. He then led me outside, where there was a horse waiting for us. Since I was only a child, he offered a hand for me to use as a step so that I could lift myself onto the creature’s back. He sat behind me, and, as we headed for my home, he taught me how to ride.
As soon as I jumped down to the ground, I burst through the door and went to tell Mother everything I learned. But she would not have it. She told me I would need rest. We went out to thank Elrond for the time he spent teaching me and even offered for him to stay for Supper, but he just shook his head politely and thanked us. As he rode away, I smiled, then turned to face Mother.
“I learned so much, and-“
But she, once again, would not let me tell her anything. “You have had a busy day,” she said, pressing a finger to my lips. With that, she sent me off for a nap.