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Valinor’s Hosts returned in part, at intervals irregular, to defeat any rising fire of monsters set to burn their own vacant lands; and one goldenship descended, before the wondering gaze of Machir (and Irimë, afar off) crying in shout of promised warning, a threat that all Valinor’s Hills, every last boulder departed, would re-install herself on these lands, and so boasting, they turned westward upon a balrog-troop, and golden-light-fire went forth alashing, and burned the dread flames, consuming what heat of spirit there remained; like sweepers of trash left in sudden departure. Why then leave at all, Machir wondered, misbelieving the Vanyari feared any monster, even that He None Named, Dark Nothingness; Yet here Ki-Abroam knew by reading the lad’s open heart, and to him told all the matter of the Silmarils, then known (more revealed in your own day); and not for fear did they Great Ones depart, but to house safely that gem, and to other given.
Why not turn that gem of Earendel to Feanor’s sons? Machir inquired. Divided in loyalties, some to their father’s original claim, others to reconciliation, choosing the latter – Madhros you name him grandfather – the oath would thus sleep, being fulfilled, in part, at least; and so he might daunt the thieves of Our House, homely Tendril Isle, and we not cast off, nor awaiting our friend and kin’s return, and they neither exiled, nor fearful of those sons’ fates.
—Wise you are son, and yet simpler still are Eru’s designs. No part allows he to stand for the whole of his visionary temptation, being unsatisfied in half-measures, as with no part at all; No, all the gems must be restored to hand in Feanor’s own, and this by the action of every son willing; the others, recalcitrant and to shadow utterly committed, will have [not] nor take part in this transfer; neither shall Eru suffer one son to stand against others, causing by a gift their division, when fullness of restoration be his design;
—Simpler yet? I cannot see how.
—Recondite his ways always seem, to we who his telling inhabit, as a teller reveals but part of a tale, unfolding characters alongside deeds and aspirations to do yet more.
—Which they may not know well, fully, also?
—Verily, for in knowing all that the Teller would, the deeds are other than he might undertake, having assurance unnatural, or hubris afore, fall;
—So the mighty flee, to preserve from greater ill-wrought conclusion, those few sons of he who yet abides in Mandos’s Halls, though all else beside freed?
—Not only they, but if only a one son remained, who hoped to see again his father amid the light, crack open those lights, and pour their seeds upon the earth still kept clean under the dead trees. If one alone remained, thus would they flee, if by fleeing, keep him in hope;
—All are left to suffer, in their absence, in my home’s uplifting and downsinking; for one? Howso trade the joy of many for the forethought or wished-about comfort of one? The whole, he would trade for a sliver, not even a part!
—Recondite are his ways, son, and yet trust to their workings; Estel remains, always; and yet must also be for all in any ways not wholly outside his lore or vision, or hoped-for perceiving. You shall be restored, to all rest, delight, fabrication of hand and mind, forsooth ill at ease now abiding, so we also together endure, estel.
But these thoughts troubled Machir, indeed pushed him, as it were, from lad to aged man, doubtful and quiet, though always in rectitude, never astray the will of those about this Forsaken atoll, land patch amid the swirling, changeful tides; and in a night, as he looked upon the veiled stars, dusky, alone contemplating how the workers of evil engender delay (a second evil, it seemed) among the good, and their restoration to blessing; and thus drawn to his mind’s thoughts, was a Balrog, and the demon heard his darkness, and listened awhile, and grew hotter in feeding thus; and arising upon the plains of the continent newly washed, it to the furthest coast spread east, to find this thought, and to take its bearer under its arm; to feed that child flame, hatred and bitterness, as it had nursed; and hailing from a shore afar off, in that night, sought invitation to his (Machir’s) little home; to huddle by his fire, and to take some soup, hot or cold; and though faltering, Machir moved thus, to send forth across the open sea separating, a vessel, to hook the spirit-wandering, and take it for baiting others, to learn from, whence those gems, or his father’s linger-loitering; no evil yet sat in the boy’s heart, nor conceived he to do wicked things thereby, his power being great over vessels and even small tides;
So came in the twilight before dawn, that balrog, feeding on the child, even as it fed hate and lies, in wicked thoughts not by its own mind devised; burning it came, rising upon the waves, telling Machir and showing by vision indisputable, the habitation rude of dwellers far west, Men! On hallowed lands, to Men (as Machir and his mother) forbidden! All seeming lies devised to rob him of Father, House, and even Mother (for does not Ki-Abroam design to wed Asenath, and by new children, displace him in her love?)
See they stand proud on mountains westward gazing, across the ocean, without shame, nor repudiation of Men’s downfall first of all Eru’s children! See their master, Ulmo, ascend over all Vala by these men, riding his way roughshod, uncouth and likewise shameless, at last upon the land, perpetually marred in his undertaking, this Fish-Tailed Fool – mar-made, halfwit yet fully ensconced upon thrones to thy household promised, by covenant, and by Fate’s Iron decree.
And on the lies bent his heart, poor Machir, until receiving the Fire-demon, was himself consumed in flesh, even before the sudden aroused face of Asenath; and yet also sudden was revealed to the boy-spirit, those lies, and how true lore was bent; and he grieved, knowing fully the despair of Mortality, its leaving not more delightsome than its taking on; now marred, his spirit lingered, and was by Ki-Abroam taken in, sheltered from that demon, who seeing the ax-foe aroused, out of his sea- hiding, being troubled by what, not riddling out til too late – the demon pleaded, but was hewn, as it were to kindling; broken and scattered, embers to burn out in the vast waters surrounding;
Now the boy had no body of flesh to retake, nor would he (whose, after all? A corpse stray floating?). Yet so grieved was Machir, and Ki-Abroam for him, and more so to see Asenath-queen distraught, beyond sorrow having fled into a realm kept apart from mortals – so he devised for the lad, a suit to house his spirit, and to ballast it against a rising to Valinor, or a sinking to Pharazon’s Hole;
A garden he became embodied, bells of flowers and herbs fragrant, vines tangled up, and to send down cast their dew, flower droop; and by Asenath was he tended, living as it were, half in the Airs, and in the soil; yet no monster, nor zombie-corpse animated, and joy he gained in the hives she planted in his hair; and in time he reached even to the sea’s waves, and dipped there a toe, and then wading more so, dived in; and being wise, and healed again of all his hurts, he devised of the seas’ flotsam, a tail-fin, and in time, came near to the shore, a merman fish-tailed, boy faced, and found in those waves, delight; peace against the burning, and a forgetting of his many losses.
All these things Asenath kept written in her record, where was found also, her lover’s lore preserved alone of Numenor’s wickedness and her [Numenor’s] wisdom (if corrupted utterly at its end); and also there she kept all that Thingol told her, and what great things spoken by Ki-Abroam, over many nights’ tellings; and though to order them all aright is by your and our age (today…) beyond any to undertake – save Vala-restored – some outline of her record should here now be given, even as Ulmo ponders his own eventual taking on of flesh, and fears to do so; and while Thingol paddles a craft westward, encircling the world entire, having his end and purpose to come upon Nienor waiting on that isle of rock, and to lead her to rest, of kin and swan-song ever about; and as Asenath’s beloved Joseph himself perishes on a land-sand barge, dragged when dead for many mile, like a beast’s carcass, before (M) Ifariel sees he is no longer living;
All these Great Spirits halt, or pause in thought, or afloat the wide sea, so that Asenath’s record – in small part only given here – may find place in these promised writings, giving voice in the New Age Today, of they who slumber, speaking to those cast under;
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