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Tainted Snow

Author: Tuxedo Elf
Website: http://rumil.wozupdoc.net/
Rating: PG13
Summary: Maedhros realises that darkness is easily concealed - for a time.
Warnings: Angst!
Disclaimer: I own not a thing and certainly no Elves! .
Notes: For ford_of_bruinen, as only she could inspire… this.

Maedhros stepped out of his tent into the chill, crisp air. The day felt new, fresh and clean, yet he knew it was anything but. Wrapping his thick fur cloak around him, he walked slowly away from the ramshackle camp, over towards the nearby hills.

They had been too weary to move far, just out of sight of any survivors. Not that it mattered, any that were left had fled already, too terrified to stay long enough to even bury their dead.

The dead. Images came unbidden and unwanted to Maedhros’ mind and he could not push them away. Blood, terror, death. He would never forget, for he did not deserve to.

Coming to the top of the hill, he looked down at what remained of a once beautiful city. A city that by his own hand had been turned into silent ruins.

Overnight snow had fallen, covering everything in a blanket of pure white and bringing an eerie peace to the devastated realm. It seemed strange to Maedhros, that beneath the outward beauty caused by the snow, lay the frozen bodies of the slain, lying still in what had once been their life’s blood.

Darkness and tragedy, shrouded in beauty. A grim smile crossed his lips as he realised that, for it was a fitting description of himself as well.

Long he stood there, until he heard soft footsteps behind him. "Come back to camp," Maglor pleaded gently, resting one hand lightly on Maedhros’ shoulder. "You can do nothing here."

"No," Maedhros agreed bitterly. It has already been done." He shivered, though not from cold. "Of all our evils, this is the worst, my brother." Without waiting for a reply he turned and began to walk slowly back. "Even with an oath, some things should remain sacred, yet we tainted even that."

Indeed, of all the times to attack, there were none so vile as the one they had chosen. It had been a day of joy and celebration until they had come, bringing with them not happiness or good tidings, but blood and carnage to an unsuspecting people.

On Yule eve, the only gift they had brought was death.