Characters/Pairing: Aerin, Broddun (OFC, Aerin's sister-in-law)
Warnings: self-induced miscarriage (abortion)
Book/Source: Silmarillion, Unfinished Tales (CoH)
Disclaimer: Middle-earth is all Tolkien's (except for Broddun)
A/N: This one was a bit like a motorway accident: I could see that prompt coming a long way off, but failed to dodge the subject. (Chronologically, this double drabble is set earlier than the last one.)
She was taking precautions, knew they were not infallible. Now she faces a decision; it must be made before Brodda realizes.
She would gain status in Easterling eyes as mother of Brodda’s heir. If she sought power for herself—power to do good—this might be her chance. But Aerin remembers the sombre face of the true heir of Dor-lomin. She remembers her father’s pride in the House of Hador—and Morwen.
The deliberate fall off the top of the ladder to the hayloft almost kills Aerin. Brodda’s child, her child, becomes a red smear on the hard earthen floor.
Broddun grimly nurses Aerin back to health. The two women hardly talk for months. Come winter, they are out late, gathering wood. Aerin looks up at trees delicately outlined against a golden sunset.
‘So much we inherit and bequeath is enriched only by sharing—still we remain deadlocked in a struggle over possession’, she murmurs. ‘Broddun, I wouldn’t have hated my black-haired child—feared for it, yes…’
Broddun makes an inarticulate sound, throws her wood on the ground and stumps off. Aerin, aching, stiffly bends to pick it up.
Broddun, returning, says sharply: ‘Give me that! No, all of it.’
A/N: As it's not explicitly addressed here, maybe I should add a reminder that Aerin is nominally married to Brodda, but has never consented to the marriage. In other words, Aerin's pregnancy has been violently forced upon her.