Ardannon, the Gate to Middle-earth


First fragment of an experiment in a Stargate/Middle-earth crossover. All purely exploratory at this stage!

Somewhere in Eriador, 2nd Age of the Sun


We were riding along a Dwarven road at the dawning of day, at that time when the sky appears almost liquid, filling with light that fails to touch the ground, creating a brief world without shadows or colour. The morning has kissed us with dew, pearling on our cheeks and dripping down from the leaves of trees overhead. Our horses seem to smoke, steam rising from their nostrils and flanks, making them look like the magical toys that Rog used to fashion, back in Gondolin; tiny beasts of metal that frolicked across your open palm.

At the thought of my old friend long departed, an ache touches my heart and the smile slips from my face. Glorfindel notices but he says nothing, his own eyes dark with thought.

This is the hour when the morning birds should be singing and taking flight from their nests, but all is unusually quiet. Our horses come to a halt as we crest a hill overgrown with sycamores. Down below, a wide valley spills, flooded with fog that the growing morning has not yet devoured. Our road leads down and disappears beneath that blanket.

Glorfindel dismounts, wanders to the last tree to look outward. I follow, my own ears and eyes on the trees around us. There is no danger, and yet the air is pregnant with awareness.

"It is we that disturb this perfect morning, Morlothiel." Glorfindel leans against the white and grey bark, turning a half-smile upon me. "Long has it been since our kind have traveled this way. Let the creatures of this valley become acclimated to us, before we venture on. There is a kind of sacred peace here, and I want to learn the secrets hidden by the mist."

"Not since I walked in the glades of Dorthonion have I sensed such things," I answered softly. "There was once there a mighty grove of oak trees, black of bark and leaf. Sometimes I thought I saw movement there, but never did I see what it was that strode through the forest."

"You have never met the fëaorn?" I shook my head, unfamilar with the strange word. Glorfindel smiled broadly at my anxiousness. "Do not worry. Should we meet one of the Eldest, I will introduce you. They are good spirits so long as you do not threaten their trees, and if you have the patience to learn their speech, much reward can be garnered by their friendship. Let us linger here while the horses rest, and I will teach you some of what I know of their ways."

And so he spoke to me, his voice slipping easily into a deep sonourous sing-song language. It sounded like creaking of limbs in a strong wind, fluttering of leaves like laughter, moody grunt of roots forcing their way through stone. Inside these sounds were ideas, memories, foresights into what the world will become, as viewed ones so ancient that they remember a time when Time did not exist. I will confess only to you, dear readers, that at that point in my lord's narration I rather lost the train of the tale.

But I listened, and I learned. When he finished his tale, a brief history of the Eldest, the sun had set on our fog-shrouded valley, never having completely shed its occluding cloak. The horses wandered and grazed, and we sat beneath the sycamores and shared a meal of silence.

- Lothithil