At length the day of Turuhalme was come, and the company from Mar Vanwa Tyalieva went into the snowy woods to bring back firewood on sleighs. Never was the Tale-fire allowed to go out or to die into grey ash, but on the eve of Turuhalme it sank always to a smaller blaze until Turuhalme itself, when great logs were brought into the Room of the Tale-fire and being blessed by Lindo with ancient magic roared and flared anew upon the hearth. Vaire blessed the door and lintel of the hall and gave the key to Rumil, making him once again the Door-ward, and to Littleheart was given the hammer of his gong. Then Lindo said, as he said each year:
‘Lift up your voices, O Pipers of the Shore, and ye Elves of Kôr sing aloud; and all ye Noldoli and hidden fairies of the world dance ye and sing, sing and dance O little children of Men that the House of Memory resound with your voices...’ Then was sung a song of ancient days that the Eldar made when they dwelt beneath the wing of Manwe and sang on the great road from Kôr to the city of the Gods.
It was now six months since Eriol went to visit Meril-i-Turinqi beseeching a draught of limpe, and that desire had for a time fallen from him; but on this night he said to Lindo: 'Would I might drink with thee!' To this replied Lindo: 'Do not think to overpass the bounds that Iluvatar hath set, but consider that not yet hath Meril denied thee thy desire for ever.' Then Eriol was sad, for he guessed in his deepest heart that the savour of limpe and the blessedness of the Elves might not be his for ever.
Then Gilfanon told a tale, saying: 'I tell but as I may those things I have seen and known of very ancient days within the world when the Sun rose first, and there was travail and much sorrow, for Melko reigned unhampered and the power and strength that went forth from Angamandi reached almost to the ends of the great Earth.'
When at length Gilfanon had spoken his fill the time for the lighting of candles was at hand, and so came the first day of Turuhalme to an end; but on the second night Gilfanon was not there, and being asked by Lindo one Eltas began a tale, and said: 'Now all folk gathered here know that this is the story of Turambar and the Foalókë, and it is,' said he, 'a favourite tale among Men, and tells of very ancient days of that folk before the Battle of Tasarinan when first Men entered the dark vales of Hisilome. In these days many such stories do Men tell still, and more have they told in the past especially in those kingdoms of the North that once I knew.
Maybe the deeds of other of their warriors have become mingled therein, and many matters beside that are not in the most ancient tale — but now I will tell to you the true and lamentable tale, and I knew it long ere I trod Olore Malle in the days before the fall of Gondolin. In those days my folk dwelt in a vale of Hisilome and that land did Men name Aryador in the tongues they then used, but they were very far from the shores of Asgon and the spurs of the Iron Mountains were nigh to their dwellings and great woods of very gloomy trees. My father said to me that many of our older men venturing afar had themselves seen the evil worms of Melko and some had fallen before them, and by reason of the hatred of our people for those creatures and of the evil Vala often was the story of Turambar and the Foalókë in. their mouths — but rather after the fashion of the Gnomes did they say Turumart and the Fuithlug.
For know that before the Battle of Lamentation and the ruin of the Noldoli there dwelt a lord of Men named Urin, and hearkening to the summons of the Gnomes he and his folk marched with the Ilkorindi against Melko, but their wives and children they left behind them in the woodlands, and with them was Mavwin wife of Urin, and her son remained with her, for he was not yet war-high. Now the name of that boy was Turin and is so in all tongues, but Mavwin do the Eldar call Mavoine. Now Urin and his followers fled not from that battle as did most of the kindreds of Men, but many of them were slain fighting to the last, and Urin was made captive. Of the Noldoli who fought there all the companies were slain or captured or fled away in rout, save that of Turondo (Turgon) only, and he and his folk cut a path for themselves out of that fray and come not into this tale. Nonetheless the escape of that great company marred the complete victory that otherwise had Melko won over his adversaries, and he desired very greatly to discover whither they had fled; and this he might not do, for his spies availed nothing, and no tortures at that time had power to force treacherous knowledge from the captive Noldoli.
Knowing therefore that the Elves of Kôr thought little of Men, holding them in scant fear or suspicion for their blindness and lack of skill, he would constrain Urin to take up his employ and go seek after Turondo as a spy of Melko. To this however neither threats of torture nor promises of rich reward would bring Urin to consent, for he said: "Nay, do as thou wilt, for to no evil work of thine wilt thou ever constrain me, O Melko, thou foe of Gods and Men." "Of a surety," said Melko in anger, "to no work of mine will I bid thee again, nor yet will I force thee thereto, but upon deeds of mine that will be little to thy liking shalt thou sit here and gaze, nor be able to move foot or hand against them."
And this was the torture he devised for the affliction of Urin the Steadfast, and setting him in a lofty place of the mountains he stood beside him and cursed him and his folk with dread curses of the Valar, putting a doom of woe and a death of sorrow upon them; but to Urin he gave a measure of vision, so that much of those things that befell his wife and children he might see and be helpless to aid, for magic held him in that high place. "Behold." said Melko, "the life of Turin thy son shall be accounted a matter for tears wherever Elves or Men are gathered for the telling of tales"; but Urin said: "At least none shall pity him for this, that he had a craven for father." Now after that battle Mavwin got her in tears into the land of Hithlum or Dor Lomin where all Men must now dwell by the word of Melko, save some wild few that yet roamed without. There was Nienori born to her, but her husband Urin languished in the thraldom of Melko, and Turin being yet a small boy Mavwin knew not in her distress how to foster both him and his sister, for Urin's men had all perished in the great affray, and the strange men who dwelt nigh knew not the dignity of the Lady Mavwin, and all that land was dark and little kindly.
The tale tells however that Urin had been a friend of the Elves, and in this he was different from many of his folk. Now great had his friendship been with Egnor, the Elf of the greenwood, the huntsman of the Gnomes, and Beren Ermabwed son of Egnor he knew and had rendered him a service once in respect of Damrod his son; but the deeds of Beren of the One Hand in the halls of Tinwelint were remembered still in Dor Lomin.
Wherefore it came into the heart of Mavwin, for lack of other counsel, to send Turin her son to the court of Tinwelint, begging him to foster this orphan for the memory of Urin and of Beren son of Egnor. Very bitter indeed was that sundering, and for long time Turin wept and would not leave his mother, and this was the first of the many sorrows that befell him in life. Yet at length when his mother had reasoned with him he gave way and prepared him in anguish for that journey. With him went two old men, retainers aforetime of his father Urin, and when all was ready and the farewells taken they turned their feet towards the dark hills, and the little dwelling of Mavwin was lost in the trees, and Turin blind with tears could see her no more. Then ere they passed out of earshot he cried out: "O Mavwin my mother, soon will I come back to thee" — but he knew not that the doom of Melko lay between them. Long and very weary and uncertain was the road over the dark hills of Hithlum into the great forests of the Land Beyond where in those days Tinwelint the hidden king had his abode; and Turin son of Urin was the first of Men to tread that way, nor have many trodden it since.
In perils were Turin and his guardians of wolves, and wandering Orcs that at that time fared even thus far from Angband as the power of Melko waxed and spread over the kingdoms of the North. Evil magics were about them, that often missing their way they wandered fruitlessly for many days, yet in the end did they win through and thanked the Valar therefor — yet maybe it was but part of the fate that Melko wove about their feet, for in after time Turin would fain have perished as a child there in the dark woods. Howso that may be, this was the manner of their coming to Tinwelint's halls; for in the woodlands beyond the mountains they became utterly lost, until at length having no means of sustenance they were like to die, when they were discovered by a wood-ranger, a huntsman of the secret Elves, and he was called Beleg, for he was of great stature and girth as such was among that folk.
Then Beleg led them by devious paths through many dark and lonely forestlands to the banks of that shadowed stream before the cavernous doors of Tinwelint's halls. Now coming before that king they were received well for the memory of Urin the Steadfast, and when also the king heard of the bond tween Urin and Beren the One-handed and of the plight of that lady Mavwin his heart became softened and he granted her desire, nor would he send Turin away, but rather said he: "Son of Urin, thou shalt dwell sweetly in my woodland court, nor even so as a retainer, but behold as a second child of mine shalt thou be, and all the wisdoms of Gwedheling and of myself shalt thou be taught."
After a time therefore when the travellers had rested he despatched the younger of the two guardians of Turin back unto Mavwin, for such was that man's desire to die in the service of the wife of Urin, yet was an escort of Elves sent with him, and such comfort and magics for the journey as could be devised, and moreover these words did he bear from Tinwelint to Mavwin: "Behold O Lady Mavwin wife of Urin the Steadfast, not for love nor for fear of Melko but of the wisdom of my heart and the fate of the Valar did I not go with my folk to the Battle of Unnumbered Tears, who now am become a safety and a refuge for all who fearing evil may find the secret ways that lead to the protection of my halls. Perchance now is there no other bulwark left against the arrogance of the Vala of Iron, for men say Turgon is not slain, but who knoweth the truth of it or how long he may escape? Now therefore shall thy son Turin be fostered here as my own child until he is of age to succour thee — then, an he will, he may depart."
More too he bid the Lady Mavwin, might she o'ercome the journey, fare back also to his halls, and dwell there in peace; but this when she heard she did not do, both for the tenderness of her little child Nienori, and for that rather would she dwell poor among Men than live sweetly as an almsguest even among the woodland Elves. It may be too that she clung to that dwelling that Urin had set her in ere he went to the great war, hoping still faintly for his return, for none of the messengers that had borne the lamentable tidings from that field might say that he was dead, reporting only that none knew where he might be — yet in truth those messengers were few and half-distraught, and now the years were slowly passing since the last blow fell on that most grievous day.
Indeed in after days she yearned to look again upon Turin, and maybe in the end, when Nienori had grown, had cast aside her pride and fared over the hills, had not these become impassable for the might and great magic of Melko, who hemmed all Men in Hithlum and slew such as dared beyond its walls. Thus came to pass the dwelling of Turin in the halls of Tinwelint; and with him was suffered to dwell Gumlin the aged who had fared with him out of Hithlum, and had no heart or strength for the returning. Very much joy had he in that sojourn, yet did the sorrow of his sundering from Mavwin fall never quite away from him; great waxed his strength of body and the stoutness of his feats got him praise wheresoever Tinwelint was held as lord, yet he was a silent boy and often gloomy, and he got not love easily and fortune did not follow him, for few things that he desired greatly came to him and many things at which he laboured went awry. For nothing however did he grieve so much as the ceasing of all messengers between Mavwin and himself, when after a few years as has been told the hills became untraversable and the ways were shut. Now Turin was seven years old when he fared to the woodland Elves, and seven years he dwelt there while tidings came ever and anon to him from his mother, so that he heard how his sister Nienori grew to a slender maid and very fair, and how things grew better in Hithlum and his mother more in peace; and then all words ceased, and the years passed.
To ease his sorrow and the rage of his heart, that remembered always how Urin and his folk had gone down in battle against Melko, Turin was for ever ranging with the most warlike of the folk of Tinwelint far abroad, and long ere he was grown to first manhood he slew and took hurts in frays with the Orcs that prowled unceasingly upon the confines of the realm and were a menace to the Elves. Indeed but for his prowess much hurt had that folk sustained, and he held the wrath of Melko from them for many years, and after his days they were harassed sorely, and in the end must have been cast into thraldom had not such great and dread events befallen that Melko forgot them.
Now about the courts of Tinwelint there dwelt an Elf called Orgof, and he, as were the most of that king's folk, was an Ilkorin, yet he had Gnome-blood also. Of his mother's side he was nearly akin to the king himself, and was in some favour being a good hunter and an Elf of prowess, yet was he somewhat loose with his tongue and overweening by reason of his favour with the king; yet of nothing was he so fain as of fine raiment and of jewels and of gold and silver ornament, and was ever himself clad most bravely. Now Turin lying continually in the woods and travailing in far and lonely places grew to be uncouth of raiment and wild of locks, and Orgof made jest of him whensoever the twain sat at the king's board; but Turin said never a word to his foolish jesting, and indeed at no time did he give much heed to words that were spoken to him, and the eyes beneath his shaggy brows oftentimes looked as to a great distance — so that he seemed to see far things and to listen to sounds of the woodland that others heard not.
On a time Turin sate at meat with the king, and it was that day twelve years since he had gazed through his tears upon Mavwin standing before the doors and weeping as he made his way among the trees, until their stems had taken her from his sight, and he was moody, speaking curt answers to those that sat nigh him, and most of all to Orgof. But this fool would not give him peace, making a laugh of his rough clothes and tangled hair, for Turin had then come new from a long abiding in the woods, and at length he drew forth daintily a comb of gold that he had and offered it to Turin; and having drunk well, when Turin deigned not to notice him he said: "Nay, an thou knowst not how to use a comb, hie thee back to thy mother, for she perchance will teach thee — unless in sooth the women of Hithlum be as ugly as their sons and as little kempt." Then a fierce anger born of his sore heart and these words concerning the lady Mavwin blazed suddenly in Turin's breast, so that he seized a heavy drinking-vessel of gold that lay by his right hand and unmindful of his strength he cast it with great force in Orgof's teeth, saying: "Stop thy mouth therewith', fool, and prate no more."
But Orgof's face was broken and he fell back with great weight, striking his head upon the stone of the floor and dragging upon him the table and all its vessels, and he spake nor prated again, for he was dead. Then all men rose in silence, but Turin, gazing aghast upon the body of Orgof and the spilled wine upon his hand, turned on his heel and strode into the night; and some that were akin to Orgof drew their weapons half from their sheaths, yet none struck, for the king gave no sign but stared stonily upon the body of Orgof, and very great amaze was in his face. But Turin laved his hands in the stream without the doors and burst there into tears, saying:
"Lo! Is there a curse upon me, for all I do is ill, and now is it so turned that I must flee the house of my fosterfather an outlaw guilty of blood — nor look upon the faces of any I love again." And in his heart he dared not return to Hithlum lest his mother be bitterly grieved at his disgrace, or perchance he might draw the wrath of the Elves behind him to his folk; wherefore he got himself far away, and when men came to seek him he might not be found. Yet they did not seek his harm, although he knew it not, for Tinwelint despite his grief and the ill deed pardoned him, and the most of his folk were with him in that, for Turin had long held his peace or returned courtesy to the folly of Orgof, though stung often enough thereby, for that Elf being not a little jealous was used to barb his words; and now therefore the near kinsmen of Orgof were constrained by fear of Tinwelint and by many gifts to accept the king's doom.
Yet Turin in unhappiness, believing the hand of all against him and the heart of the king become that of a foe, crept to the uttermost bounds of that woodland realm. There he hunted for his subsistence, being a good shot with the bow, yet he rivalled not the Elves at that, for rather at the wielding of the sword was he mightier than they. To him gathered a few wild spirits, and amongst them was Beleg the huntsman, who had rescued Gumlin and Turin in the woods aforetime. Now in many adventures were those twain together, Beleg the Elf and Turin the Man, which are not now told or remembered but which once were sung in many a place. With beast and with goblin they warred and fared at times into far places unknown to the Elves, and the fame of the hidden hunters of the marches began to be heard among Orcs and Elves, so that perchance Tinwelint would soon have become aware of the place of Turin's abiding, had not upon a time all that band of Turin's fallen into desperate encounter with a host of Orcs who outnumbered them three times.
All were there slain save Turin and Beleg, and Beleg escaped with wounds, but Turin was overborne and bound, for such was the will of Melko that he be brought to him alive; for behold, dwelling in the halls of Linwe about which had that fay Gwedheling the queen woven much magic and mystery and such power of spells as can come only from Valinor, whence indeed long time agone she once had brought them, Turin had been lost out of his sight, and he feared lest he cheat the doom that was devised for him. Therefore now he purposed to entreat him grievously before the eyes of Urin; but Urin had called upon the Valar of the West, being taught much concerning them by the Eldar of Kôr — the Gnomes he had encountered — and his words came, who shall say how, to Manwe Sulimo upon the heights of Taniquetil, the Mountain of the World. Nonetheless was Turin dragged now many an evil league in sore distress, a captive of the pitiless Orcs, and they made slow journeying, for they followed ever the line of dark hills toward those regions where they rise high and gloomy and their heads are shrouded in black vapours.
There are they called Angorodin or the Iron Mountains, for beneath the roots of their northernmost fastnesses lies Angband, the Hells of Iron, most grievous of all abodes — and thither were they now making laden with booty and with evil deeds. Know then that in those days still was Hithlum and the Lands Beyond full of the wild Elves and of Noldoli yet free, fugitives of the old battle; and some wandered ever wearily, and others had secret and hidden abodes in caves or woodland fastnesses, but Melko sought untiringly after them and most pitilessly did he entreat them of all his thralls did he capture them. Orcs and dragons and evil fays were loosed against them and their lives were full of sorrow and travail, so that those who found not in the end the realms of Tinwelint nor the secret stronghold of the king of the city of stone perished or were enslaved. Noldoli too there were who were under the evil enchantments of Melko and wandered as in a dream of fear, doing his ill bidding, for the spell of bottomless dread was on them and they felt the eyes of Melko burn them from afar.
Yet often did these sad Elves both thrall and free hear the voice of Ulmo in the streams or by the sea-marge where the waters of Sirion mingled with the waves; for Ulmo, of all the Valar, still thought of them most tenderly and designed with their slender aid to bring Melko's evil to ruin., Then remembering the blessedness of Valinor would they at times cast away their fear, doing good deeds and aiding both Elves and Men against the Lord of Iron. Now was it that it came into the heart of Beleg the hunter of the Elves to seek after Turin so soon as his own hurts were healed. This being done in no great number of days, for he had a skill of healing, he made all speed after the band of Orcs, and he had need of all his craft as tracker to follow that trail, for a band of the goblins of Melko go cunningly and very light. Soon was he far beyond any regions known to him, yet for love of Turin he pressed on, and in this did he show courage greater than the most of that woodland folk, and indeed there are none who may now measure the depth of fear and anguish that Melko set in the hearts of Men and of Elves in those sad days.
Thus did it fall out that Beleg became lost and benighted in a dark and perilous region so thick with pines of giant growth that none but the goblins might find a track, having eyes that pierced the deepest gloom, yet were many even of these lost long time in those regions; and they were called by the Noldoli Taurfuin, the Forest of Night. Now giving himself up for lost Beleg lay with his back to a mighty tree and listened to the wind in the gaunt tops of the forest many fathoms above him, and the moaning of the night airs and the creaking of the branches was full of sorrow and foreboding, and his heart became utterly weary. On a sudden he noticed a little light afar among the trees steady and pale as it were of a glowworm very bright, yet thinking it might scarce be glowworm in such a place he crept towards it. Now the Noldoli that laboured in the earth and aforetime had skill of crafts in metals and gems in Valinor were the most valued of the thralls of Melko, and he suffered them not to stray far away, and so it was that Beleg knew not that these Elves had little lanterns of strange fashion, and they were of silver and of crystal and a flame of a pale blue burnt forever within, and this was a secret and the jewel-makers among them alone knew it nor would they reveal it even to Melko, albeit many jewels and many magic lights they were constrained to make for him.
Aided by these lamps the Noldoli fared much at night, and seldom lost a path had they but once trodden it before. So it was that drawing near Beleg beheld one of the hill-gnomes stretched upon the needles beneath a great pine asleep, and his blue lantern stood glimmering nigh his head. Then Beleg awakened him, and that Elf started up in great fear and anguish, and Beleg learned that he was a fugitive from the mines of Melko and named himself Flinding bo-Dhuilin of an ancient house of the Gnomes. Now falling into talk Flinding was overjoyed to have speech with a free Noldo, and told many tales of his flight from the uttermost fastness of the mines of Melko; and at length said he: "When I thought myself all but free, lo, I strayed at night unwarily into the midmost of an Orc-camp, and they were asleep and much spoil and weighted packs they had, and many captive Elves I thought I descried: and one there was that lay nigh to a trunk to which he was bound most grievously, and he moaned and cried out bitterly against Melko, calling on the names of Urin and Mavwin; and though at that time being a craven from long captivity I fled heedlessly, now do I marvel much, for who of the thralls of Angband has not known of Urin the Steadfast who alone of Men defies Melko chained in torment upon a bitter peak?" Then was Beleg in great eagerness and sprang to his feet shouting: "'Tis Turin, fosterson of Tinwelint, even he whom I seek, who was the son of Urin long ago. — Nay, lead me to this camp, O son of Duilin, and soon shall he be free," but Flinding was much afeared, saying: "Softer words, my Beleg, for the Orcs have ears of cats, and though a day's march lies between me and that encampment who knows whether they be not followed after.
Nonetheless hearing the story of Turin from Beleg, despite his dread he consented to lead Beleg to that place, and long ere the sun rose on the day or its fainting beams crept into that dark forest they were upon the road, guided by the dancing light of Flinding's swinging lamp. Now it happened that in their journeying their paths crossed that of the Orcs who now were renewing their march, but in a direction other than that they had for long pursued, for now fearing the escape of their prisoner they made for a place where they knew the trees were thinner and a track ran for many a league easy to pursue; wherefore that evening, or ever they came to the spot that Flinding sought, they heard a shouting and a rough singing that was afar in the woods but drawing near; nor did they hide too soon ere the whole of that Orc-band passed nigh to them, and some of the captains were mounted upon small horses, and to one of these was Turin tied by the wrists so that he must trot or be dragged cruelly.
Then did Beleg and Flinding follow timorously after as dusk fell on the forest, and when that band encamped they lurked near until all was quiet save the moaning of the captives. Now Flinding covered his lamp with a pelt and they crept near, and behold the goblins slept, for it was not their wont to keep fire or watch in their bivouacs, and for guard they trusted to certain fierce wolves that went always with their bands as dogs with Men, but slept not when they camped, and their eyes shone like points of red light among the trees. Now was Flinding in sore dread, but Beleg bid him follow, and the two crept between the wolves at a point where there was a great gap between them, and as the luck of the Valar had it Turin was lying nigh, apart from the others, and Beleg came unseen to his side and would cut his bonds, when he found his knife had dropped from his side in his creeping and his sword he had left behind without the camp. Therefore now, for they dare not risk the creeping forth and back again, do Beleg and Flinding both stout men essay to carry him sleeping soundly in utter weariness stealthily from the camp, and this they did, and it has ever been thought a great feat, and few have done the like in passing the wolf guards of the goblins and despoiling their camps.
Now in the woods at no great distance from the camp they laid him down, for they might not bear him further, seeing that he was a Man and of greater stature than they, but Beleg fetched his sword and would cut his bonds forthwith. The bonds about his wrists he severed first and was cutting those upon the ankles when blundering in the dark he pricked Turin's foot deeply, and Turin awoke in fear. Now seeing a form bend over him in the gloom sword in hand and feeling the smart of his foot he thought it was one of the Orcs come to slay him or to torment him — and this they did often, cutting him with knives or hurting him with spears; but now Turin feeling his hand free leapt up and flung all his weight suddenly upon Beleg, who fell and was half-crushed, lying speechless on the ground; but Turin at the same time seized the sword and struck it through Beleg's throat or ever Flinding might know what had betid.
Then Turin leapt back and shouting out curses upon the goblins bid them come and slay him or taste of his sword, for he fancied himself in the midst of their camp, and thought not of flight but only of selling his life dear. Now would he have made at Flinding, but that Gnome sprang back, dropping his lamp, so that its cover slipped and the light of it shone forth, and he called out in the tongue of the Gnomes that Turin should hold his hand and slay not his friends — then did Turin hearing his speech pause, and as he stood, by the light of the lamp he saw the white face of Beleg lying nigh his feet with pierced throat, and he stood as one stricken to stone, and such was the look upon his face that Flinding dared not speak for a long while. Indeed little mind had he for words, for by that light had he also seen the fate of Beleg and was very bitter in heart.
At length however it seemed to Flinding that the Orcs were astir, and so it was, for the shouts of Turin had come to them; wherefore he said to Turin: "The Orcs are upon us, let us flee," but Turin answered not, and Flinding shook him, bidding him gather his wits or perish, and then Turin did as he was bid but yet as one dazed, and stooping he raised Beleg and kissed his mouth. Then did Flinding guide Turin as well as he might swiftly from those regions, and Turin wandered with him following as he led, and at length for a while they had shaken off pursuit and could breathe again. Now then did Flinding have space to tell Turin all he knew and of his meeting with Beleg, and the floods of Turin's tears were loosed, and he wept bitterly, for Beleg had been his comrade often in many deeds; and this was the third anguish that befell Turin, nor did he lose the mark of that sorrow utterly in all his life; and long he wandered with Flinding caring little whither he went, and but for that Gnome soon would he have been recaptured or lost, for he thought only of the stark face of Beleg the huntsman, lying in the dark forest slain by his hand even as he cut the bonds of thraldom from him.
In that time was Turin's hair touched with grey, despite his few years. Long time however did Turin and the Noldo journey together, and by reason of the magic of that lamp fared by night and hid by day and were lost in the hills, and the Orcs found them not. Now in the mountains there was a place of caves above a stream, and that stream ran down to feed the river Sirion, but grass grew before the doors of the caves, and these were cunningly concealed by trees and such magics as those scattered bands that dwelt therein remembered still. Indeed at this time this place had grown to be a strong dwelling of the folk and many a fugitive swelled them, and there the ancient arts and works of the Noldoli came once more to life albeit in a rude and rugged fashion. There was smithying in secret and forging of good weapons, and even fashioning of some fair things beside, and the women spun once more and wove, and at times was gold quarried privily in places nigh, where it was found, so that deep in those caverns might vessels of beauty be seen in the flame of secret lights, and old songs were faintly sung.
Yet did the dwellers in the caves flee always before the Orcs and never give battle unless compelled by mischance or were they able to so entrap them that all might be slain and none escape alive; and this they did of policy that no tidings reach Melko of their dwelling nor might he suspect any numerous gathering of folk in those parts. This place however was known to the Noldo Flindirig who fared with Turin; indeed he was once of that people long since, before the Orcs captured him and he was held in thraldom. Thither did he now wend being sure that the pursuit came no longer nigh them, yet went he nonetheless by devious ways, so that it was long ere they drew nigh.to that region, and the spies and watchers of the Rodothlim (for so were that folk named) gave warning of their approach, and the folk withdrew before them, such as were abroad from their dwelling. Then they closed their doors and hoped that the strangers might not discover their caves, for they feared and mistrusted all unknown folk of whatever race, so evil were the lessons of that dreadful time. Now then Flinding and Turin dared even to the caves' mouths, and perceiving that these twain knew now the paths thereto the Rodothlim sallied and made them prisoners and drew them within their rocky halls, and they were led before the chief, Orodreth. Now the free Noldoli at that time feared much those of their kin who had tasted thraldom, for compelled by fear and torture and spells much treachery had they wrought; even thus did the evil deeds of the Gnomes at Copas Alqalunten find vengeance, setting Gnome against Gnome, and the Noldoli cursed the day that ever they first hearkened to the deceit of Melko, rueing utterly their departure from the blessed realm of Valinor.
Nonetheless when Orodreth heard the tale of Flinding and knew it to be true he welcomed him with joy back among the folk, yet was that Gnome so changed by the anguish of his slavery that few knew him again; but for Flinding's sake Orodreth hearkened to the tale of Turin, and Turin told of his travails and named Urin as his sire, nor had the Gnomes yet forgot that name. Then was the heart of Orodreth made kind and he bade them dwell among the Rodothlim and be faithful to him. So came the sojourn of Turin among the people of the caves, and he dwelt with Flinding bo-Dhuilin and laboured much for the good of the folk, and slew many a wandering Orc, and did doughty deeds in their defence. In return much did he learn of new wisdom from them, for memories of Valinor burnt yet deep in their wild hearts, and greater still was their wisdom than that of such Eldar as had seen never the blest faces of the Gods.
Among that people was a very fair maiden and she was named Failivrin, and her father was Galweg; and this Gnome had a liking for Turin and aided him much, and Turin was often with him in ventures and good deeds. Now many a tale of these did Galweg make beside his hearth and Turin was often at his board, and the heart of Failivrin became moved at the sight of him, and wondered often at his gloom and sadness, pondering what sorrow lay locked in his breast, for Turin went not gaily being weighted with the death of Beleg that he felt upon his head, and he suffered not his heart to be moved, although he was glad of her sweetness; but he deemed himself an outlawed man and one burdened with a heavy doom of ill.
Therefore did Failivrin become sorrowful and wept in secret, and she grew so pale that folk marvelled at the whiteness and delicacy of her face and her bright eyes that shone therein. Now came a time when the Orc-bands and the evil things of Melko drew ever nigher to the dwelling of this folk, and despite the good spells that ran in the stream beneath it seemed like that their abode would remain no longer hidden. It is said however that during all this time the dwelling of Turin in the caves and his deeds among the Rodothlim were veiled from Melko's eyes, and that he infested not the Rodothlim for Turin's sake nor out of design, but rather it was the ever increasing numbers of these creatures and their growing power and fierceness that brought them so far afield. Nonetheless the blindness and ill-fortune that he wove of old clung yet to Turin, as may be seen. Each day grew the brows of the chiefs of the Rodothlim more dark, and dreams came to them, bidding them arise and depart swiftly and secretly, seeking, if it might be, after Turgon, for with him might yet salvation be found for the Gnomes.
Whispers too there were in the stream at eve, and those among them skilled to hear such voices added their foreboding at the councils of the folk. Now at these councils had Turin won him a place by dint of many valorous deeds, and he gainsaid their fears, trusting in his strength, for he lusted ever for war with the creatures of Melko, and he upbraided the men of the folk, saying: "Lo! Ye have weapons of great excellence of workmanship, and yet are the most of them clean of your foes' blood. Remember ye the Battle of Uncounted Tears and forget not your folk that there fell, nor seek ever to flee, but fight and stand." Now despite the wisdom of their wisest such bitter words confused their counsels and delayed them, and there were no few of the stout-hearted that found hope in them, being sad at the thought of abandoning those places where they had begun to make an abiding place of peace and goodliness; but Turin begged Orodreth for a sword, and he had not wielded a sword since the slaying of Beleg, but rather had he been contented with a mighty club. Now then Orodreth let fashion for him a great sword, and it was made by magic to be utterly black save at its edges, and those were shining bright and sharp as but Gnome-steel may be.
Heavy it was, and was sheathed in black, and it hung from a sable belt, and Turin named it Gurtholfin the Wand of Death; and often that blade leapt in his hand of its own lust, and it is said that at times it spake dark words to him. Therewith did he now range the hills, and slew unceasingly, so that Blacksword of the Rodothlim became a name of terror to the Orcs, and for a great season all evil was fended from the caverns of the Gnomes. Hence comes that name of Turin's among the Gnomes, calling him Mormagli or Mormakil according to their speech, for these names signify black sword. The greater however did Turin's valour become so grew the love of Failivrin more deep, and did men murmur against him in his absence she spake for him, and sought ever to minister to him, and her he treated ever courteously and happily, saying he had found a fair sister in the Gnome-lands. By Turin's deeds however was the ancient counsel of the Rodothlim set aside and their abode made known far and wide, nor was Melko ignorant of it, yet many of the Noldoli now fled to them and their strength waxed and Turin was held in great honour among them.
Then were days of great happiness and for a while men lived openly again and might fare far abroad from their homes in safety, and many boasted of the salvation of the Noldoli, while Melko gathered in secret his great hordes. These did he loose suddenly upon them at unawares, and they gathered their warriors in great haste and went against him, but behold, an army of Orcs descended upon them, and wolves, and Orcs mounted upon wolves; and a great worm was with them whose scales were polished bronze and whose breath was a mingled fire and smoke, and his name was Glorund. All the men of the Rodothlim fell or were taken in that battle, for the foe was numberless, and that was the most bitter affray since the evil field of Ninin-Udathriol. Orodreth was there sorely hurt and Turin bore him out of the fight ere yet all was ended, and with the aid of Flinding whose wounds were not great he got him to the caves.
There died Orodreth, reproaching Turin that he had ever withstood his wise counsels, and Turin's heart was bitter at the ruin of the folk that was set to his account. Then leaving Lord Orodreth dead Turin went to the places of Galweg's abiding, and there was Failivrin weeping bitterly at the tidings of her father's death, but Turin sought to comfort her, and for the pain of her heart and the sorrow of her father's death and of the ruin of her folk she swooned upon his breast and cast her arms about him. So deep was the ruth of Turin's heart that in that hour he deemed he loved her very dearly; yet were now he and Flinding alone save for a few aged carles and dying men, and the Orcs having despoiled the field of dead were nigh upon them. Thus stood Turin before the doors with Gurtholfin in hand, and Flinding was beside him; and the Orcs fell on that place and ransacked it utterly, dragging out all the folk that lurked therein and all their goods, whatsoever of great or little worth might there lie hid. But Turin denied the entrance of Galweg's dwelling to them, and they fell thick about him, until a company of their archers standing at a distance shot a cloud of arrows at him.
Now he wore chainmail such as all the warriors of the Gnomes have ever loved and still do wear, yet it turned not all those ill shafts, and already was he sore hurt when Flinding fell pierced suddenly through the eye; and soon too had he met his death — and his weird had been the happier thereby — had not that great drake coming now upon the sack bidden them cease their shooting; but with the power of his breath he drove Turin from those doors and with the magic of his eyes he bound him hand and foot. Now those drakes and worms are the evillest creatures that Melko has made, and the most uncouth, yet of all are they the most powerful, save it be the Balrogs only. A great cunning and wisdom have they, so that it has been long said amongst Men that whosoever might taste the heart of a dragon would know all tongues of Gods or Men, of birds or beasts, and his ears would catch whispers of the Valar or of Melko such as never had he heard before.
Few have there been that ever achieved a deed of such prowess as the slaying of a drake, nor might any even of such doughty ones taste their blood and live, for it is as a poison of fires that slays all save the most godlike in strength. Howso that may be, even as their lord these foul beasts love lies and lust after gold and precious things with a great fierceness of desire, albeit they may not use nor enjoy them. Thus was it that this loke (for so do the Eldar name the worms of Melko) suffered the Orcs to slay whom they would and to gather whom they listed into a very great and very sorrowful throng of women, maids, and little children, but all the mighty treasure that they had brought from the rocky halls and heaped glistering in the sun before the doors he coveted for himself and forbade them set finger on it, and they durst not withstand him, nor could they have done so an they would. In that sad band stood Failivrin in horror, and she stretched out her arms towards Turin, but Turin was held by the spell of the drake, for that beast had a foul magic in his glance, as have many others of his kind, and he turned the sinews of Turin as it were to stone, for his eye held Turin's eye so that his will died, and he could not stir of his own purpose, yet might he see and hear.
Then did Glorund taunt Turin nigh to madness, saying that lo! he had cast away his sword nor had the heart to strike a blow for his friends — now Turin's sword lay at his feet whither it had slipped from his unnerved grasp. Great was the agony of Turin's heart thereat, and the Orcs laughed at him, and of the captives some cried bitterly against him. Even now did the Orcs begin to drive away that host of thralls, and his heart broke at the sight, yet he moved not; and the pale face of Failivrin faded afar, and her voice was borne to him crying: "O Turin Mormakil, where is thy heart; O my beloved, wherefore dost thou forsake me?" So great then became Turin's anguish that even the spell of that worm might not restrain it, and crying aloud he reached for the sword at his feet and would wound the drake with it, but the serpent breathed a foul and heated breath upon him, so that he swooned and thought that it was death.
A long time thereafter, and the tale telleth not how long, he came to himself, and he was lying gazing at the sun before the doors, and his head rested against a heap of gold even as the ransackers had left it. Then said the drake, who was hard by: "Wonderest thou not wherefore I have withheld death from thee, O Turin Mormakil, who wast once named brave?" Then Turin remembered all his griefs and the evil that had fallen upon him, and he said: "Taunt me not, foul worm, for thou knowest I would die; and for that alone, methinks, thou slayest me not." But the drake answered saying: "Know then this, O Turin son of Urin, that a fate of evil is woven about thee, and thou mayst not untangle thy footsteps from it whitherever thou goest. Yea indeed, I would not have thee slain, for thus wouldst thou escape very bitter sorrows and a weird of anguish." Then Turin leaping suddenly to his feet and avoiding that beast's baleful eye raised aloft his sword and cried: "Nay, from this hour shall none name me Turin if I live. Behold, I will name me a new name and it shall be Turambar!" Now this meaneth Conqueror of Fate, and the form of the name in the Gnome-speech is Turumart.
Then uttering these words he made a second time at the drake, thinking indeed to force the drake to slay him and to conquer his fate by death, but the dragon laughed, saying: "Thou fool! An I would, I had slain thee long since and could do so here and now, and if I will not thou canst not do battle with me waking, for my eye can cast once more the binding spell upon thee that thou stand as stone. Nay, get thee gone, O Turambar Conqueror of Fate! First thou must meet thy doom an thou wouldst o'ercome it." But Turambar was filled with shame and anger, and perchance he had slain himself, so great was his madness, although thus might he not hope that ever his spirit would be freed from the dark glooms of Mandos or stray into the pleasant paths of Valinor; but amidst his misery he bethought him of Failivrin's pallid face and he bowed his head, for the thought came into his heart to seek back through all the woods after her sad footsteps even be it to Angamandi and the Hills of Iron. Maybe in that desperate venture he had found a kindly and swift death or perchance an ill one, and maybe he had rescued Failivrin and found happiness, yet not thus was he fated to earn the name he had taken anew, and the drake reading his mind suffered him not thus lightly to escape his tide of ill.
"Hearken to me, O son of Urin," said he; "ever wast thou a coward at heart, vaunting thyself falsely before men. Perchance thou thinkest it a gallant deed to go follow after a maiden of strange kin, recking little of thine own that suffer now terrible things? Behold, Mavwin who loves thee long has eagerly awaited thy return, knowing that thou hast found manhood a while ago, and she looks for thy succour in vain, for little she knows that her son is an outlaw stained with the blood of his comrades, a defiler of his lord's table. Ill do men entreat her, and behold the Orcs infest now those parts of Hithlum, and she is in fear and peril and her daughter Nienori thy sister with her."
Then was Turambar aflame with sorrow and with shame for the lies of that worm were barbed with truth, and for the spell of his eyes he believed all that was said. Therefore his old desire to see once more Mavwin his mother and to look upon Nienori whom he had never seen since his first days grew hot within him, and with a heart torn with sorrow for the fate of Failivrin he turned his feet towards the hills seeking Dor Lomin, and his sword was sheathed. And truly is it said: "Forsake not for anything thy friends — nor believe those who counsel thee to do so" — for of his abandoning of Failivrin in danger that he himself could see came the very direst evil upon him and all he loved; and indeed his heart was confounded and wavered, and he left those places in uttermost shame and weariness. But the dragon gloated upon the hoard and lay coiled upon it, and the fame of that great treasure of golden vessels and of unwrought gold that lay by the caves above the stream fared far and wide about; yet the great worm slept before it, and evil thoughts he had as he pondered the planting of his cunning lies and the sprouting thereof and their growth and fruit, and fumes of smoke went up from his nostrils as he slept. On a time therefore long afterward came Turambar with great travail into Hisilome, and found at length the place of the abode of his mother, even the one whence he had been sundered as a child, but behold, it was roofless and the tilth about it ran wild.
Then his heart smote him, but he learned of some that dwelt nigh that lighting on better days the Lady Mavwin had departed some years agone to places not far distant where was a great and prosperous dwelling of men, for that region of Hisilome was fertile and men tilled the land somewhat and many had flocks and herds, though for the most part in the dark days after the great battle men feared to dwell in settled places and ranged the woods and hunted or fished, and so it was with those kindreds about the waters of Asgon whence after arose Tuor son of Peleg. Hearing these words however Turambar was amazed, and questioned them concerning the wandering into those regions of Orcs and other fierce folk of Melko, but they shook their heads, and said that never had such creatures come hither deep into the land of Hisilome." "If thou wishest for Orcs then go to the hills that encompass our land about," said they, "and thou wilt not search long. Scarce may the wariest fare in and out so constant is their watch, and they infest the rocky gates of the land that the Children of Men be penned for ever in the Land of Shadows; but men say 'tis the will of Melko that they trouble us not here — and yet it seems to us that thou hast come from afar, and at this we marvel, for long is it since one from other lands might tread this way."
Then Turambar was in perplexity at this and he doubted the deceit of the dragon's words, yet he went now in hope to the dwelling of men and the house of his mother, and coming upon homesteads of men he was easily directed thither. Now men looked strangely at his questioning, and indeed they had reason, yet were such as he spoke to in great awe and wonder at him and shrank back from speech with him, for his garb was of the wild woods and his hair was long and his face haggard and drawn as with unquenchable sorrows, and therein burnt fiercely his dark eyes beneath dark brows. A collar of fine gold he wore and his mighty sword was at his side, and men marvelled much at him; and did any dare to question him he named himself Turambar son of the weary forest, and that seemed but the more strange to them. Now came he to the dwelling of Mavwin, and behold it was a fair house, but none dwelt there, and grass was high in the gardens, and there were no kine in the byres nor horses in the sheds, and the pastures about were silent and empty. Only the swallows had dwelling beneath the timbers of the eaves and these made a noise and a bustle as if departure for autumn was at hand, and Turambar sat before the carven doors and wept.
And one who was passing on to other dwellings, for a track passed nigh to that homestead, espied him, and coming asked him his grief, and Turambar said that it was bitter for a son sundered for many years from his home to give up all that was dear and dare the dangers of the infested hills to find only the halls of his kindred empty when he returned at last. "Nay, then this is a very trick of Melko's," said the other, "for of a truth here dwelt the Lady Mavwin wife of Urin, and yet is she gone two years past very secretly and suddenly, and men say that she seeks her son who is lost, and that her daughter Nienori goes with her, but I know not the story. This however I know, and many about here do likewise, and cry shame thereon, for know that the guardianship of all her goods and land she gave to Brodda, a man whom she trusted, and he is lord of these regions by men's consent and has to wife a kinswoman of hers. But now she is long away he has mingled her herds and flocks, small as they were, with his mighty ones, branding them with his own marks, yet the dwelling and stead of Mavwin he suffereth to fall to ruin, and men think ill of it but move not, for the power of Brodda has grown to be great."
Then Turambar begged him to set his feet upon the paths to Brodda's halls, and the man did as he desired, so that Turambar striding thither came upon them just as night fell and men sat to meat in that house. Great was the company that night and the light of many torches fell upon them, but the Lady Airin was not there, for men drank overmuch at Brodda's feasts and their songs were fierce and quarrels blazed about the hall, and those things she loved not. Now Turambar smote upon the gates and his heart was black and a great wrath was in him, for the words of the stranger before his mother's doors were bitter to him.
Then did some open to his knocking and Turambar strode into that hall, and Brodda bade him be seated and ordered wine and meats to be set before him, but Turambar would neither eat nor drink, so that men looking askance upon his sullenness asked him who he might be. Then Turambar stepping out into the midst of them before the high place where Brodda sat said: "Behold, 'I am Turambar son of the forest", and men laughed thereat, but Turambar's eyes were full of wrath. Then said Brodda in doubt: "What wilt thou of me, O son of the wild forest?" But Turambar said: "Lord Brodda, I am come to repay thy stewardship of others' goods," and silence fell in that place; but Brodda laughed, saying again: "But who art thou?" And thereupon Turambar leapt upon the high place and ere Brodda might foresee the act he drew Gurtholfin and seizing Brodda by the locks all but smote his head from off his body, crying aloud: "So dieth the rich man who addeth the widow's little to his much. Lo, men die not all in the wild woods, and am I not in truth the son of Urin, who having sought back unto his folk findeth an empty hall despoiled."
Then was there a great uproar in that hall, and indeed though he was burdened overmuch with his many griefs and wellnigh distraught, yet was this deed of Turambar violent and unlawful. Some were there nonetheless that would not unsheathe their weapons, saying that Brodda was a thief and died as one, but many there were that leapt with swords against Turambar and he was hard put to it, and one man he slew, and it was Orlin. Then came Airin of the long hair in great fear into the halls and at her voice men stayed their hands; but great was her horror when she saw the deeds that were done, and Turambar turned his face away and might not look upon her, for his wrath was grown cold and he was sick and weary. But she hearing the tale said: "Nay, grieve not for me, son of Urin, but for thyself; for my lord was a hard lord and cruel and unjust, and men might say somewhat in thy defence, yet behold thou hast slain him now at his board being his guest, and Orlin thou hast slain who is of thy mother's kin; and what shall be thy doom?" At those words some were silent and many shouted "death", but Airin said that it was not wholly in accord with the laws of that place, "for," said she, "Brodda was slain wrongfully, yet just was the wrath of the slayer, and Orlin too did he slay in defence, though it were in the hall of a feast. Yet now I fear that this man must get him swiftly from among us nor ever set foot upon these lands again, else shall any man slay him; but those lands and goods that were Urin's shall Brodda's kin hold, save only do Mavwin and Nienori return ever from their wandering, yet even so may Turin son of Urin inherit nor part nor parcel of them ever."
Now this doom seemed just to all save Turambar, and they marvelled at the equity of Airin whose lord lay slain, and they guessed not at the horror of her life aforetime with that man; but Turambar cast his sword upon the floor and bade them slay him, yet they would not for the words of Airin whom they loved, and Airin suffered it not for the love of Mavwin, hoping yet to join those twain mother and son in happiness, and her doom she had made to satisfy men's anger and save Turin from death. "Nay," said she, "three days do I give thee to get thee out of the land, wherefore go!" and Turambar lifting his sword wiped it, saying: "Would I were clean of his blood," and he went forth into the night. In the folly of his heart now did he deem himself cut off in truth for ever from Mavwin his mother, thinking that never again would any he loved be fain to look upon him. Then did he thirst for news of his mother and sister and of none might he ask, but wandered back over the hills knowing only that they sought him still perchance in the forests of the Lands Beyond, and no more did he know for a long while.
Of his wanderings thereafter has no tale told, save that after much roaming his sorrow grew dulled and his heart dead, until at last in places very far away many a journey beyond the river of the Rodothlim he fell in with some huntsmen of the woods, and these were Men. Some of that company were thanes of Urin, or sons of them, and they had wandered darkly ever since that Battle of Tears, but now did Turambar join their number, and built his life anew so well as he might. Now that people had houses in a more smiling region of the woods in lands that were not utterly far from Sirion or the grassy hills of that river's middle course, and they were hardy men and bowed not to Melko, and Turambar got honour among them.
Now is it to tell that far other had matters fallen out with Mavwin than the Foalókë had said to Turin, for her days turning to better she had peace and honour among the men of those regions. Nonetheless her grief at the loss of her son by reason of the cutting off of all messengers deepened only with the years, albeit Nienori grew to a most fair and slender maid. At the time of Turin's flight from the halls of Tinwelint she was already twelve years old and tall and beautiful. Now the tale tells not the number of days that Turambar sojourned with the Rodothlim but these were very many, and during that time Nienori grew to the threshold of womanhood, and often was there speech between her and her mother of Turin that was lost. In the halls of Tinwelint too the memory of Turin lived still, and there still abode Gumlin, now decrepit in years, who aforetime had been the guardian of Turin's childhood upon that first journey to the Lands Beyond. Now was Gumlin white-haired and the years were heavy on him, but he longed sorely for a sight once more of the folk of Men and of the Lady Mavwin his mistress. On a time then Gumlin learnt of the withdrawal from the hills of the greater number of those Orc-bands and other fierce beings of Melko's that had for so long made them impassable to Elves and Men. Now for a space were the hills and the paths that led over them far and wide free of his evil, for Melko had at that time a great and terrible project afoot, and that was the destruction of the Rodothlim and of many dwellings of the Gnomes beside, that his spies had revealed, yet all the folk of those regions breathed the freer for a while, though had they known all perchance they had not done so.
Then Gumlin the aged fell to his knees before Tinwelint and begged that he suffer him to depart homeward, that he might see his mistress of old ere death took him to the halls of Mandos — if indeed that lady had not fared thither before him. Then the king said yea, and for his journey he gave him two guides for the succouring of his age; yet those three, Gumlin and the woodland Elves, made a very hard journey, for it was late winter, and yet would Gumlin by no means abide until spring should come. Now as they drew nigh to that region of Hisilome where aforetime Mavwin had dwelt and nigh where she dwelt yet a great snow fell, as happened oft in those parts on days that should rather have been ones of early spring. Therein was Gumlin whelmed, and his guides seeking aid came unawares upon Mavwin's house, and calling for aid of her were granted it. Then by the aid of the folk of Mavwin was Gumlin found and carried to the house and warmed back to life, and coming to himself at length he knew Mavwin and was very joyful. Now when he was in part healed he told his tale to Mavwin, and as he recounted the years and the doughtiest of the feats of Turin she was glad, but great was her sorrow and dismay at the tidings of his sundering from Linwe and the manner of it, and going from Gumlin she wept bitterly.
Indeed for long and since ever she knew that Turin, an he lived, had grown to manhood she had wondered that he sought not back to her, and often dread had filled her heart lest attempting this he had perished in the hills; but now the truth was bitter to bear and she was desolate for a great while, nor might Nienori comfort her. Now by reason of the unkindness of the weather those guides that had brought Gumlin out of Tinwelint's realms abode as her guests until spring came, but with spring's first coming Gumlin died. Then arose Mavwin and going to several of the chiefs of those places she besought their aid, telling them the tale of Turin's fate as Gumlin had told it to her.
But some laughed, saying she was deceived by the babblings of a dying man, and the most said that she was distraught with grief, and that it would be a fool's counsel to seek beyond the hills a man who had been lost for years agone: "nor," said they, "will we lend man or horse to such a quest, for all our love for thee, O Mavwin wife of Urin." Then Mavwin departed in tears but railed not at them, for she had scant hope in her plea and knew that wisdom was in their words. Nonetheless being unable to rest she came now to those guides of the Elves, who chafed already to be away beneath the sun; and she said to them: "Lead me now to your lord," and they would dissuade her, saying that the road was no road for a woman's feet to tread; yet she did not heed them. Rather did she beg of her friend whose name was Airin Faiglindra (long-tressed) and was wed to Brodda a lord of that region, and rich and powerful, that Nienori might be taken under the guardianship of her husband and all her goods thereto. This did Airin obtain of Brodda without great pleading, and when she knew this she would take farewell of her daughter; but her plan availed little, for Nienori stood before her mother and said: "Either thou goest not, O Mavwin my mother, or go we both," nor would anything turn her from those words.