Character: Estel [Elladan, Elrohir & Glorfindel]
Source: Pre-Ring War
Disclaimer: All of Middle-earth and its denizens is Tolkien’s.
Estel had left Imladris... but Imladris did not leave Estel; his foster-brothers still sort him out. With his Captain’s permission, their small band took him south: through Eregion, Dunland, crossing the Isen, and beyond the White Mountains – a winter’s journey ending in early summer... and the sea. For the brothers the waters held no fear, nor to Glorfindol, but to one it held enticing dread – Estel.
Sunset - a long, straight path of amber-gold beckoned towards a low globe filling the glorious fire-gilded sky. Estel stared, transfixed.
“Men hereabouts call it orange.”
“What’s that?” Estel asked, entranced by the restless waves.
The elves laughed.
“But what is orange?” persisted Estel
“Sweetness robed in bitterness.” Elladan would say no more.
They rode among cultivated trees bearing white flowers... and small globes, like setting suns. Estel inhaled their fragrance: sharp, sweet, heady... intoxicating. Glorfindel picked some strange fruit, sliced and offered it. Estel tasted the soft flesh - but when he put the whole slice in his mouth, he winced, spitting out bitter rind.
Later, camped beneath the boughs, he sighed, “They’re beautiful, I wish I might gift some to Arwen.”
The brothers glanced at each other.
“Sweetness robed in bitterness.” Elrohir whispered.