A series of drabbles in response to Dwimordene's drabble quintet Civitas Mundi.
1. The Sins of the World
King's Man, he swore, and he holds himself to that promise. Tar-Palantķr looked too much to the past, he thinks, Ar-Pharazōn too little. But is not their land the greatest, the most glorious of all the works of Men? Who could not but serve such a vision?
Armenelos tarnishes under the canopy of smoke. He is at Lond Daer, stripping the land of trees and people. Anadūnź needs the timber, Ar-Pharazōn needs the men.
Then comes the time when the sea boils and rages, and the western sky bleeds. Later, he bends before Elendil. King's Man, he swears, and weeps.
2. Storied Webs
Her people write no words. The men sing their deeds, the women stitch stories. Her hanging adorns the new-minted hall; Eorl's ride from the North. In the corner she has sewn a canopy of trees, honouring the White Lady that guided her people to their new home, that lit their way south.
Seven mounds upon the left, and nine upon the right. A boy points to the dark trees and scares his sister with stories of the Witch that lives in the Wood. Later, legends will rise up from the grass before him. Later, he will tell the tale differently.
3. After Such Knowledge
Malbeth is blind now. In his youth, he saw further than any other, and told kings all that he could see. He spoke plainly, and did not care to gild his words.
Too late, but Malbeth perceived his vanity. Too late he understood why men do not care to hear the truth, nor care to hear their faults, nor care to hear their fates.
Malbeth is blind now, as they are deaf. His voice dries, and he speaks only in whispers. Who cares? The world he has known is passing, and he passes with it. Only the dead are listening.
4. Sic Transit
"Hallas, I have only a little time left now...
"Such dreams I dared for Gondor in my youth! And yet not one will I see come to pass. Such it is with all the works of Men, I deem; they are begun before us, they are ended after us, beyond our sight...
"And yet... there we stood, together on the hill of Awe, and as the sun sank westwards we swore such an oath that none since Elendil himself have dared... Hold to it, Hallas! Hold to your faith and what we serve!"
Thus passes Cirion, twelfth Steward of Gondor.
Nienna has wept tears uncounted, since first brother turned against brother. Nienna has wept for every drop of blood. Ever she will come to Mandos, and the cries of those who wait come unto her.
Vairė hears them too, but keeps to her loom. Vairė holds to Mandos.
Nienna weeps, and at times her sister weeps with her. But Vairė still keeps to her loom. For she has learned from Lórien; has learned from the master of the power of visions and dreams. And so Vairė will keep to her loom - for even Mandos, once, was moved to pity.