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2
Hope of Spring

Title: The Hope of Spring
Author: Linda Hoyland
Characters/Pairing: Gilraen Aragorn
Rating: G
Warnings: none
Book/Source: LOTR book-verse
Summary – Gilraen and Aragorn go for a walk.

Written in honour of Aragorn’s birthday and as a belated birthday gift for Estelcontar


~~~

Spring was in the air, despite the lingering chill. It came early to this Elven haven. Gilraen looked out of the window and was greeted by the joyous singing of the birds. The crocuses were in full bloom, covering the ground with a brilliant carpet of yellow and purple.

Gilraen dressed her young son warmly. Aragorn; or Estel, as she must how call him, chattered happily as she led him by the hand outside. His childish fingers already grasped hers with an unusual strength for a child so young. He laughed happily as she let him lead her to where the young lambs were frisking in a nearby field.

Despite the lingering sorrow in her heart, Gilraen felt a sudden surge of joy. Her child was thriving and had reached his fourth birthday unscathed, and safely hidden. Every day her love for her son increased until it almost overwhelmed her. He was growing tall and strong, a lively child with a warm and loving heart. “Hope” they called him, and if any hope remained for their people, it was through this child. How could any mother not rejoice in such a son?

As winter gave way to spring, she had borne him; and like the spring he had brought new life to the weary Dúnedain. His smile had melted the frost that had threatened to engulf her heart when Arathorn fell. Spring though, must give way to summer; a child must become a man. A flash of foresight came upon Gilraen and for an instant; there was no longer a child before her, but a man, robed in splendour, a star blazing upon his brow, a green jewel upon his breast and a mighty sword in his hand.

Gilraen swayed as if she were about to swoon. She blinked and rubbed her eyes.

“Naneth, don’t be sad, Estel will make it better!”

Gilraen smiled as Estel’s warm fingers pressed a flower in her hand. She stooped and he reached up to kiss her cheek. Maybe her son was destined to break the grip of the Dark Lord’s winter? She scooped him up in her arms and said, “ No, I am not sad, Estel. Your naneth is happy today for it is your birthday and who could be heavy of heart when spring is almost here?”

A skylark soared above, flying ever higher, singing exultantly as it sought its mate.

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