Aerandir Gil-Agladhel

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Aerandir Gil-Agladhel

Post by Aerandir Gil-Agladhel on Fri Dec 23, 2016 10:21 am

You wanted to know more about me and about how I came here. For you my dear Margaret, I shall take it from the top then: Being born in the Southern Elven Kingdom, in my younger years I strived for perfection. In the fine arts, history, shipbuilding, architecture and engineering, smithing and jewel crafting and in the arts of war I was educated. The more I learnt, the more crafts and knowledge I found out there were to learn, which would take an eternity to master. An eternity that we elves no longer had in our disposal, as our forefathers did, back in the times of old. “As long Death is looming above us everything is vain”, were my words and I took it upon myself to find the lost way and to sail to the Deathless Lands so as to restore our lost immortality. That took place in the beginning of the second century of my life.
I took the name Aerandir, which is Sea-Wanderer in the High tongue, and upon aboard Tintallë, the Kindler, the last vessel of Tillion the Shipwright, the most skilled shipbuilder of our age, I sailed time and again to the endless seas of the west. My crew and I discovered many lands and Uncharted Territories, but to no avail: the Deathless Lands were nowhere to be found. 


Aerandir, latter known also as Gil-Agladhel


And then the War of the Antagonist, the Dagor Morgdûr in the High Speech, which means the War of the Dark Enemy, was upon us. The elven realm was divided between whether we should fight alongside the younger races or hold to our own, defending only our realm if and when the darkness came to our door. I wholeheartedly believed that we should have faith in the younger races, the old strives should be put aside for only then there was hope: “Beware, distrust and arrogance serve the Dark One and no other!”, I said. 

I was one of the captains of the Elven Host that fought along with the rest of the Free Peoples in the Battle of the Plains of Death. We prevailed, as it is known, but the losses were grim. It was after that battle that I saw life in a different perspective: Since the way to the Deathless Lands could not be found and Death could not be escaped, I would live each moment to its fullest, and I would do all within my gasp to protect this land from death and darkness. Having set my inner compass anew, I didn’t sail for the Deathless Lands again, nor did I go to the Elven Realm of the South. I had to find a new home: even though in the Southern Elven Kingdom knowledge and arts and many things beautiful were preserved, it was a dying star, our light slowly dimming. The hearts of its people always clung to our glorious past, looking ever back, trying to stay apart from this world. However, since the Blessed Realm is lost forever, we elves are also are part of this world, whether we want it or not, and as such we have to move along with it, or else we shall perish and be forever forgotten; or considered a figment of imagination, stuff for bedtime stories and for tale-weaving youths.  

So, I visited the newly founded Forested Kingdom, having heard that it had a Light which was warm to the heart, like in the Elven Realms of Old. And like that it was indeed; and a youthfulness there also was it, promising of Life and of New Hope.

My visit became prolonged and it came to be my new home. My time there was happy indeed: I made good friends, I learned new things and taught what I knew and I spent time doing things that I like. But the most important reason for which those years were so happy, was that I was ready to be happy: as I found out happiness is as much a decision and a mental state as it is a product of choices and of sequence of events.

In the Forested Kingdom I became a good friend of Panthalas Half-Elven, the First King of the Realm, whose passion, liveliness and spirit was the flame that burned in the heart of this Kingdom. We both greatly enjoyed our sparring matches, even though most of the times I was the one with the most bruises. I also cherish the conversations with Ringerir, the Archmage of the Realm, an individual of an intellect that very few, even between the Firstborn, could match; a shining example of the potential of the human race. 

In the Forested Realm I held the position of the General, being responsible for its defense and thus fulfilling my second promise to myself: that I would protect that which is dear in this world.  I also was teaching in the Academies of Defense about Strategy, Tactics, Sword Fighting and most importantly about the Light and of the Songs of Power. Here I have to add that even though in my long journeys I may not have found the Blessed Realms, I came upon a fragment of them at least; and a mighty fragment it proved to be. It was night and we were returning from yet another long journey, which proved to be our last and everyone aboard was asleep; I was alone in the mast of Tintallë when I witnessed something that was not of this world: At first, the sky became unnaturally clear and the constellations changed, becoming different than that anywhere in the world and shining much brighter than ever. Then I observed that the wind had died out as well, the air being totally still, as was the sea, which was crystal clear like a pond in a square of a king’s palace, but it retaining its depth. The bright light from the stars that fall on the translucent sea made it possible to see up to great depths, almost up to its bottom, and Tintallë was more like flying than sailing upon it. Then I caught glimpses of a Great White Tower in the distant horizon, in the top of which Bright Light could be seen, which carried a warmth straight to the very soul of my being. And I started hearing music and songs, sung in the High Speech! But they were no mere words and melodies; there was a warmth and a gentleness to them that inspired and uplifted the heart, taking the weariness both of the body and of the soul away; yet there was a power in them, which was deep and old like the ocean. And then abruptly everything disappeared and there were clouds in the sky and waves in the sea and the high wind of the ocean was blowing again. As much as we had searched for the tower and for that magical place, which should have been the Blessed Realm, it was nowhere to be found. But neither it was totally lost; because the Light and the Song had left their mark on me and I could upon them in hours of great need to instill hope in the hearts of people, or to make the servants of darkness cower in fear and even smite them! Those amongst other things I was teaching in the Academy of the Forested Realm.

Then the scourge of Drognarr the Pillager was upon us. It happened then that our King was away and he couldn’t be reached on time, which made me responsible for the realm’s defense. The Forested Realm was well prepared, its defenses and its warriors always in their posts. The militia was raised, the great eagles and all the other allies of the forest answered our call and the armies of Drognarr were crushed. But then came the Pillager himself and he was unstoppable, like a force of nature… Nothing could stand in his way, sweeping everything in his path with his sword and spells, like a demi-God; not even walls and siege engines could stop him. So I was forced to give the order to abandon the city and flee in the forest, in order to save our nation and I took it upon myself to lure the beast in a prolonged combat so as to win time for the evacuation to be completed. And my eagle, Ar-Caran, the Great Red one, fought alongside me and we harassed the Beast; but Ar-Caran was mortally wounded by the monster’s blade and I had to jump from my saddle and face the Terror in single combat. The Beast was smirking, as it knew I stood no chance against it; but the fight had taken us on Ered-Nimrais, the Lone White Peak, and I thought there was still hope if I could manage to throw my enemy down the gorge. And his arrogance was his undoing, for he let his defenses down and I charged at him with reckless abandon, invoking the Light of the Blessed Realm to guide my hand and singing the most terrible Song I knew and Light came forth, bright as daylight and my Song rang clear and strong and I was on him. Then the Darkness of the Foul One was pierced for an instant and I was on him and we both fell from the mountain top of Er-Nimrais, down to Cabed-en-Alda, the Gorge of the Trees. The Beast may not have died after all, but it took it time to find its way back to the City; time enough for the people to make their way to the Deep Forest, where they were safe. However, my own Light faded, the fall being too long for my mortal body to bear; but I was content, because my sacrifice was not in vain: it saved the People of the Forested Realm, protected Life from Death, Light and Hope from Darkness and Dread. And that is a good death, in line with my moral compass.

But as it came to pass, death was not the end: Geiravör, the Valkyrie, claimed my soul and brought me in the Blessed Realm, which so long I had sought during my life; in the Halls of the Departed, where the souls of the Eldar from all the Worlds of the vast Universe are taken when they are parted from their bodies. There I was welcomed by Elf-Lords of Old, who had died in the First Ages of our World and from other Worlds as well, which made me Great Honour; and I was given the name Gil-Agladhel, which means the Elf of the Shining Star. I also saw that the Blessed Realm is not the home only for the departed, but there also are living people there too, but I am allowed to say no more. 

Geiravör the Valkyrie
 
After a time, how long I cannot say, as time flows differently in the Blessed Realms, Geiravör the Valkyrie came to seek me again and she told me that some of the people of the Forested Realm were in dire need and prayed for help.  “I would gladly help them and die again for them, had I had another life to spare”, was my answer, “But alas! I have not.”  Then she told me that it has been decided that my fate is to walk among the living once again and I rejoiced, because I had come to love our World. But before I closed my eyes, so that Geiravör would lead me to the realm of the living, two of my friends came by: A Great King of the Elves from the World where the first Elves had awoken and from which they went to all the others, including our own. Together we had shared quite a few conversations under the white towers and the sparkling stars of the Blessed Realm and he gave to me a parting gift saying: “Gil-Agladhel, my friend, this is Ringil, the sword with which I wounded the Prime Evil of All Worlds, before I died. Take it, you will need it more than I. Farewell.” I thanked him and I told him that he did me great honour and promised to bring Ringil back, when I find my way to the Blessed Realm again.  With him also came Arien, the Kirin, with whom we were very close. She looked at Geiravör and there was a silent exchange and then I lost my senses and there was light and an indescribable sensation and I awoke in the freezing cold, looking in the eyes of old Seiveril, the pilot of Tintallë, and of his daughter, Ilsevele, and there were many other familiar faces too. 




Arien in her true form and in her elven-like one
They spoke of evil things: that Darkness had come our World; the legions of Hell were pouring from portals that were sprouting everywhere and that they were destroying everything in their wake. They told me that all that was good had perished save for the Circle of Ethir, where the Last Battle would be fought and it was that that what was left of our nation had gathered. They also spoke of our King who had grown stronger still, his might almost godlike now, and about his plan to save our world: to kill the head of the armies of Evil, Lucifer himself, with the help of a band of other powerful individuals. But because the plan was desperate and the odds not in our favor, Panthalas had chosen a few of our kindred and gave them a quest: to go to other half of the world, the Uncharted Territories, which we had discovered during our voyages in search of the Blessed Realm. That group would serve a double purpose: it would ensure the survival of our kindred in case the battle was lost and it would bring those grim tidings to the people that lived here. However, Tintallë had been destroyed in the wars with the demon hordes and Seiveril, who was in charge of the group, was left with only one choice: to cross Gurthkheliek, the Ices of Death, the uttermost north of the world, where our continent and the other one connected; something that has never been achieved… And here we were, in the midst of a frozen barren wasteland…

The tale of the crossing is a long one, which I will not recount now. Although the losses were grave, with the help of Arien, the Kirin, of the Light and of the Song, which had grown stronger in me while I was in the Blessed Realm, more than half of our original group made it. And now being in this new, Uncharted for us, part of the World, I remembered the kind, beautiful and resourceful Margaret I had met during my journeys, who lived here and I asked about her.  I learnt that she was part of the ruling council of a city and here I am now, talking with you about how my people and I can be of service to Gutenbeere, in order to make it even more beautiful and if fate wills it, to call it our new home.
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Aerandir Gil-Agladhel

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