by Mel Baggins
"Relax, he’s not due back for another hour!"
"So? What if he’s early? Adar will kill us if he finds out…"
"Which is exactly why he won’t. Trust me, Elrohir."
"Shh, someone’s coming…"
Glorfindel strode through the halls to his room, lost in thought. His
report for Elrond had been well received and he was feeling rather
pleased with himself. He decided to reward himself with a few choice
delicacies from the bakery, but first he would pay a visit to his
favorite advisor. He had to thank the author of his report, after all.
As he rounded the corner he found the twin sons of Elrond loitering in
the corridor outside Erestor’s room. His eyes rested on Elrohir, who’s
expression most definitely reflected guilt, if ever he saw it. The
younger twin could always be counted upon for the truth- the elfling
was not yet as adept at deception as his brother, who’s features
sported a look of pure innocence.
"Good afternoon, Lord Glorfindel," the older twin greeted with a bow.
The elder elf looked back to Elrohir and saw that the look of guilt was
now thinly veiled with a smile that could cause cavities. He looked
between the brothers, and then at the advisor’s door. Something wasn’t
"And just what are you two doing?" he demanded.
"Doing?" said Elladan. "We aren’t doing anything, are we brother?"
"Nothing at all," agreed Elrohir. Glorfindel gave each of them a good
long look, and they smiled all the more sweeter, if that were possible.
"Why are you lurking outside Lord Erestor’s room?" he asked. Something
was going on, he could feel it. There was a pause, and Glorfindel was
sure he saw Elrohir glance nervously to Elladan, but it was so quick
that another might have dismissed it. A smirk graced the older
"What are you doing outside Lord Erestor’s room, Lord Glorfindel?" he
asked craftily. The blonde warrior wasn’t phased in the slightest.
"I am here to pay a visit to the chief advisor," he retorted.
"Well, you are out of luck. He is not here," Elladan said, a bit too
quickly. Glorfindel raised a delicate eyebrow.
"Really," he said. It wasn’t a question, more a statement of
disappointment. Now he would have to search for him, cutting into his
time at the bakery. He walked closer to the two elflings, pausing when
he was nearly a handbreadth away from Elladan. He looked down his nose
at him before moving to stand the same distance from Elrohir. "So what
are you really doing out here," he asked. Elrohir shook his head
nervously and shrugged his shoulders.
"Nothing," he said. "That is, we were...talking." Elladan nodded his
head to back up his brother.
"That’s right, we were...discussing the decorum of this hallway. It
could use a touchup, do you think?" Glorfindel narrowed his eyes at him
and backed away from the younger elf.
"Have you two finished your work for our class tomorrow?" he asked
"Yes, seneschal," they said in unison. Yes, there was definitely
something wrong here. He looked sternly at Elladan.
"Something is going on. You are plotting something."
"Why would you think that?"
"Because you are always plotting something!" he growled. He raised a
hand to point sternly, first at Elladan, then at Elrohir. "Just because
I can not prove my suspicions, it does not mean you are not hiding
something." Elladan raised his eyebrows in what almost could look like
"Hiding something? Surly you do not believe tha-"
"Just be warned," continued the blonde elf, "Lord Erestor will be told
that some twins may have tampered with the door to his room." With that
he made to leave, heading to his own room. As he did the twins smiled
at each other until he was out of sight.
"Do you think he bought it?"
"He so bought it." The two left the corridor, snickering to each other.
In the opposite direction, Glorfindel reached the door to his own room,
not far away from Erestor’s. He produced a small key, fit it in the
lock and turned. The door did not open. He tried again, putting the key
in a different way, and still the door would not budge. Crouching on
his knees, he examined the offending device and saw the telltale
scratch marks around the metal plate affixing the lock to the door. The
twice-born Balrog slayer let his head fall heavily on the door in front
of him, letting out an enraged cry of frustration.
Outside the two culprits ran away, giggling with glee. They could hear
the angry shouts all the way outside which only made them laugh harder.
They passed by many other elves who looked at them suspiciously, but
did not hinder their escape. Finally they entered the stables and
collapsed on a mound of hay, laughing until they were lightheaded.
"That was fun, Elladan, but I think it’s time for something far more
devious," said Elrohir. The older twin raised himself up on an elbow
and regarded his brother.
"What do you suggest?" he asked, more than interested. For the next two
hours they sat in the far corner of the stables fleshing out their next
plot and giggling wildly to themselves the whole time. Their plan was
perfect- nobody would even know what was happening until it was too
late. He would never find out.
"And you are sure we will not get caught?" asked Elladan. Elrohir
"How could we if all the evidence points to our dear cousin?" This sent
them into another fit of laughter.
"Okay, okay," Elladan attempted to calm them down, "So what’s first?"
The next day Arwen sat by herself in the gardens reading a book. It was
her favorite spot to be alone and listen to the birds, and the gentle
wind, and the murmuring of the pond, and the giggling from behin-
She turned abruptly to find her two brothers watching her from behind a
tree. Realizing they’d been spotted they walked up to her and sat, one
on each side of her on the bench.
"Good day, dear sister!" said Elladan.
"Good day," she greeted, already aware that they wanted something.
"My, what a fine morning, is it not?" asked Elrohir.
"Why yes it is, my dear brother," she chided, closing her book and
standing. Elladan pulled her back down to the bench. "You wouldn’t
happen to...want something, would you?" she asked. Elladan performed
his well practiced look of innocent shock.
"Whatever would make you think that, dear sister?"
"Because, you are only ever so formal with me when you require my
services for one of your childish pranks," she said sweetly. Elladan
spread his arms in supplication.
"I promise, it is nothing illicit," he vowed. Then after a moment of
thought, he revised the statement. "Not excessively so." She sighed and
rolled her eyes.
"Alright, what is it?"
"We just need you to keep Estel busy for a few hours," Elrohir
explained. Arwen narrowed her eyes at them.
"It is a surprise," Elladan said with a grin.
"Hmm, a good one, I hope."
"My dear sister," said Elrohir as he draped an arm over her shoulders,
"They are all good surprises!" She let out an amused grunt and folded
"Like the time Adar ended up with his hair full of honey?"
"We already told you, that jar was meant for Glorfindel," Elladan
defended. "Elrohir heard someone say his hair was the color of the
finest honey, so we decided to check if it was an accurate statement!"
She sighed and pinched the bridge of her nose, a habit that ever
reminded the twins of their father. At last she looked up.
"Alright, what did you want me to do?" she relented. Her brothers’
faces brightened immediately.
"Like we said, just keep him occupied for a few hours," Elladan
instructed. "‘Till midday should suffice." She nodded reluctantly and
stood, looking around her.
"He’s in the library," Elrohir said, pointing to the right door. She
pressed her lips into a thin line and then left, muttering something
about why she does things like this for them. The twins grinned at each
other and headed through the opposite door. For the next few hours the
twins split up, so as to better execute The Plan.
Elladan stealthily slipped into Glorfindel’s room with the key to the
new lock he’d installed the day before. After quietly closing it he
looked around at his seneschal’s home with a playful grin before
setting to work. Soundlessly he glided to the mantel where several
beautiful hand-carved bows were displayed. Quickly and carefully, as
the owner would be finished his morning meal soon, he took each one
down and carefully ran his small knife over the string, fraying the
delicate cord just enough to snap upon use, but to still appear whole
to satisfy a cursory glance. His work done, he gently lay each bow back
in place and exited the home. Lord Glorfindel’s archery practice was in
While Elladan was busy with the bows, Elrohir had slipped into
Erestor’s study. He too had to be quick, for the meal was nearly over,
and everyone would be resuming the previous day’s tasks within moments.
He practically floated across the floor to the desk of extremely neatly
stacked papers and row of quills, each feather of a different bird,
each ink a different color. With a sly grin Elrohir reached into the
small bag he’d brought with him for several small bottles, half were
empty and half were full. Into the empty ones he poured the four
different inks that Erestor used for the documents and manuscripts he
ceaselessly worked on. Then, looking over his shoulder as he worked, he
poured the contents of the other bottles into the ones just emptied. He
then quickly stowed the evidence and replaced the quills in their pots
and left as quietly as he’d come.
The meal ended and the two victims returned to their daily tasks.
Elladan watched from his hiding spot down the hall as predictably,
Glorfindel took his favorite bow and headed off for archery practice.
Now in stealth mode, he shadowed the golden warrior to watch the fruit
of his labors unfold.
Elrohir stood outside the door leading up to the study to greet Erestor
as he approached. He bowed and made small talk, the advisor clearly
attempting to avoid conversation with the known prankster in favor of
his work. After several minutes of discussing the weather and the
differences between their handwriting, the advisor finally got away and
headed to his office. Elrohir waited for several heartbeats before
following, sitting himself down outside the advisor’s door.
As Elladan looked on, Glorfindel raised his first arrow and took aim,
as several elflings looked on, enamored by their teacher’s grace and
perfect stance. As the arrow drew back, the twin fancied he could even
hear the cords snapping under the strain. Further and further he pulled
the arrow, until it finally reached the breaking point. The string
broke and the arrow fell uselessly to the ground. The little elflings
erupted in howling laughter and a rather sheepish looking Glorfindel
collected his arrow and began to examine the string of his bow. Fixing
a bowstring was no small task, and instead the Golden Lord retreated to
his room. Elladan knew well that the Lord avoided such tasks like the
plague, and he would be going to his room in search of another bow. He
grinned as he left, remembering the beautiful display of fine elvish
bows in the Seneschal’s room, every last one of which he had tampered
Elrohir could not see Erestor through his door, but he could hear the
advisor humming as he got to work. His plan, he knew, would take much
longer to happen, and he feared he would not have time to wait for the
other elf to figure it out. They had other people’s days to ruin, after
all. Just when he thought he would have to go without the pleasure of
hearing the anguished cries, they came. On the other side of the door,
Erestor crumpled a page he had just written in frustration. Again he
set pen to paper. He wrote an experimental word- his own signature- and
then put the pen down. Within minutes the dark ink vanished as if he
had never touched it. The scream of frustration rang out through the
halls. It would be some time before the advisor would find a jar of ink
that hadn’t been tampered with. With barely stifled laughter Elrohir
got up and ran from the hall, lest the advisor come out looking for
someone to blame. With Phase One firmly established, it was now time
for Phase Two.
This was little tasks meant to distract key people that may interrupt
them in their real goal. Elladan snuck into Arwen’s room and took her
favorite hairbrush, depositing it in Glorfindel’s room. Elrohir took
Lindir’s harp and snuck it into Erestor’s room. In turn they gave
Glorfindel’s diary and placed it in Lindir’s room, while taking
Erestor’s favorite book and putting it beside Arwen’s bath. Phase Three.
Elrohir stood guard outside their father’s private rooms as Elladan
slipped in. He swallowed thickly in fear, as this was the most risky
part of the entire plot. Their father’s schedule was always erratic,
and he could come back at any minute. Also, playing a prank on their
father was never a good idea, but if they don’t get caught...
The young twin caught his breath as he heard movement down the hall,
but released it again when he found it was just another elf, going on
about their business. He heard sounds from the door behind him and felt
excitement flutter in his belly. This was the best plan yet – their
father was so attached to that sword. At last Elladan appeared with the
item in question, a beautifully ornate, and very old, sword. The twin
had wrapped it in a cloth until it was practically unrecognizable and
carried it under his arm. The two looked around guiltily before setting
off down the hall as stealthily as they could.
That afternoon all three Phases of their plan were realized. The two
brothers lay languidly on the grass in front of the house, listening to
the petty bickering between all they had entangled. While Erestor,
Glorfindel, Lindir and Arwen were busy arguing amongst themselves about
who took what, the unfortunate Aragorn walked in among them to try to
break them up. In the ensuing scuffle, the blame was slowly but surely
placed upon him, not for taking the items, but for being a ‘meddling
At almost the same moment, Elrond returned home to find his precious
sword missing. In his fury the first thing he did was check Elladan and
Elrohir’s rooms, expecting to find it there. When he came up empty, and
quite surprised, he then checked his daughter’s his advisors, thus
being brought into the entanglement of their argument. After attempting
to calm the others down he asked about his sword, and came up empty. He
left to continue his search and almost as soon as he was out of sight,
the arguing began anew.
Thus it was that after long searching, he found the sword in the most
unlikely of places- Aragorn’s room.
"Now how did you get there," he cooed, lifting the blade from its perch
on the ranger’s mantle. As he did, Aragorn opened the door, surprised
to see the Lord in his room. He bowed, though taken off guard.
"My Lord Elrond," he said.
"Ah, Estel," he replied, "I believe you have been the target of some
particularly cruel mischief." At Aragorn’s confused stare he held up
the sword in his hands. "This sword belonged to my father Earendil long
ago. It is my most prized possession, and this is well known to many in
my house, except you of course." Rather than explaining things, the
human looked the more confused. Elrond stepped closer and laid a hand
on the human’s tense shoulder. "I had planned to give it to you for
your coming of age celebration which is why you did not know of it. My
sons, however..." he paused then, listening to the bickering in the
hall. "Where are they?" Aragorn frowned at Elrond, but then slowly a
smile spread on his face.
Elladan and Elrohir watched the house from the gardens below, enjoying
a pitcher of lemonade between them. "Not a bad day’s work, is it
"Not bad at all,"
"I’d say it was terrible," they heard behind them. The two jumped and
turned around to see Elrond standing behind them with crossed arms and
an expression of mingled displeasure and amusement.
"Don’t ‘Adar’ me, young elfling," he scolded as he strode forward. "Do
you have any idea the trouble you’ve caused? Because of your foolish
prank, Erestor and Glorfindel have hours of tedious work ahead of them,
which you two will help them with." The twins slowly sank into their
chairs, lemonade tasting decidedly sour all of a sudden. "Lindir will
likely be sulking about the mistreatment of his harp for the next age,
and on top of all that," he bent so that he was nose to nose with
Elladan. "You left Arwen alone with Aragorn ALL afternoon! Do you have
any idea what would happen if they were to...fall in..." the lord
stopped, unable to say the word.
"But that is silly, Adar!"
"That could never happen!" Elrond sighed.
"That’s quite enough out of you two, now I expect one of you to be up
there copying manuscripts with Erestor and the other helping Glorfindel
re-string EVERY bow." When they didn’t move, he let out a long
suffering sigh. "Now!" The twins jumped up out of their chairs and
"You help Erestor."
"Why me? The invisible ink was your idea!"
"But you pulled it off."
"This is so unfair."
"I know. As if anything will happen between them!"
"He is acting as if it was our fault or something!"
As the two elflings disappeared into the house, Elrond sat back on the
vacated chair sipping lemonade with a satisfied grin.