Morinehtar moved through the streets of London as fast as he could, relieved to have escaped from Eonwë once again. He was very aware that he shouldn’t have followed Daeron here, but he needed to make sure that the Elf was all right. After all, he had lost control and hurt Daeron. He had not meant to do it, but Daeron had resisted his attempts to take him to safety. Rómestámo was coming for him!
It had all gone wrong, and in the end, Morinehtar had been forced to leave a dazed Daeron behind. It had been difficult to escape Eonwë; Morinehtar could not leave his physical form, being still an Istar and his powers were diminished. It had been sheer luck to find a boat and be able to sail away; that was strange. Eonwë could have easily followed him in his spiritual form…
Maybe there was a reason, Morinehtar mused when he realized that Eonwë had materialized at his side. The Maia had hidden his presence, and now Morinehtar was trapped.
“Come with me, Morinehtar,” Eonwë said in the language of the Valar and Maiar. “It is time we speak about your mission, and your failure. You and Rómestámo will return to Aman.”
Morinehtar nodded and followed Eonwë in silence. They entered a café and sat in a corner, where they could speak quietly. They switched to Old Westron, which would sound more familiar to the other customers’ ears.
“Why did you attack Daeron?” Eonwë asked after they ordered a couple of cappuccinos.
Morinehtar paused for a moment to gather his thoughts. “Rómestámo is after him, so I wanted to take Daeron to safety. He resisted, and I… forced myself into his mind so he came with me calmly.”
Eonwë’s expression hardened. “Why is Rómestámo after Daeron?”
This would be difficult to explain, but maybe Eonwë might help him to convince Rómestámo that it was time to let go and return to Aman. They had both lost their paths, and things might get worse now that the Song had changed.
“Can I tell you about our mission first? Our failure is what led to what happened with Daeron in Portnahaven.”
Eonwë paused to sip at his cappuccino. “I am listening.”
“We were assigned to work in the Eastern Lands, as you well know. At first everything went all right, and we managed to help those who wanted to escape the darkness to either escape to the West, or resist in their homes. Sauron’s influence was great over there, as the descendants from the Men of Númenor never made it to those areas. The lives of the Eastern Men were short, and when we had managed to secure a safe haven for those who wanted to stay in their homes, something happened.”
“A mighty warrior gathered many of the Clans in one nation shortly after most of the Firstborn had left Middle-earth. Rómestámo was already too immersed in the politics of a few clans, which meant being engaged in such negotiations.”
Eonwë nodded, “Which means giving something as long as you get something back.”
“Yes, so sometimes Rómestámo felt that the end justified the means. That was the beginning of his fall, and mine.”
“I see. What is Daeron of Doriath’s role in this? Why is Rómestámo after him? Did he collaborate with you on those pacts?”
“No, he was never aware of our impending fall. When I found him, Daeron was… He had lost his mind due to the pain of losing Lúthien’s love. He did not speak or sing. I found him wandering alone and unable to remember who he was… who he had been. So I took him in.”
Morinehtar sighed. He had loved Daeron, but he had also abused him. It pained him too much to speak with words, so he let Eonwë see it all in his mind.
At first Daeron had been like a wounded bird, accepting the food and shelter Morinehtar gave to him. Rómestámo had been away, and so Morinehtar had started to love Daeron, who was still dependent on him. The Elf had slowly healed both physically and mentally, but he was no longer the lore master or the wonderful singer he had been before. Daeron had started to speak, and help Morinehtar with his work, but not a note came from his lips.
“The birds stopped singing too,” Morinehtar said out loud. “I wanted Daeron to sing, to be happy again, so I brought him to my bed. It was rape, even if he consented to it, for how can a wounded spirit consent to such act? I abused him, and when Rómestámo returned, I sent Daeron away.”
Eonwë looked sick. “So you raped him, and then abandoned him?”
“Is this why Rómestámo is after Daeron? Is this some sort of revenge because he was… because you took him to your bed?”
“No. I sent Daeron away so Rómestámo didn’t hurt him, but something happened decades later.”
The waitress came to ask them if they wanted something else. Morinehtar asked for more coffee.
“What happened decades later?” Eonwë asked.
“Rómestámo was trying to help a chieftain to eliminate his rivals, and I… I was sick of so much bloodshed. I… convinced Daeron to help me to stop it.”
“You mean to say that you manipulated Daeron into helping you?”
Morinehtar looked down briefly. “Yes. I needed to create a diversion, and Daeron could change the Secondborn’s perceptions with his song, the minstrel’s gift.”
“I understand,” Eonwë said. “I have heard enough. Lord Manwë wants you two back in Aman, to be judged for your crimes.”
“I am willing,” Morinehtar said. “I am tired, Eonwë. It has been too long, but I am worried about Rómestámo and his plans.”
“I will keep Daeron safe,” Eonwë said. “You will come back with me now.”
Morinehtar’s eyes widened. “You mean, right now? What about Rómestámo?” Eonwë looked at him calmly, and when two of Lord Námo’s Maiar came into the café, Morinehtar realized that his fate was sealed.
“I will look for him. Go now, Morinehtar, and may Eru have pity of you, for you have done wrong both to Elves and Men.”
Morinehtar had no choice but to go with the two Maiar, and once outside, they lead him to a dark alley when they shed off their bodies and allowed Morinehtar to do it. He could not help but feel relieved at being rid from the encasing flesh, but for now he was not yet free. That freedom he had millennia ago was lost, and would only be regained if Lord Manwë and Lord Námo allowed it.