Alagos Adu by BJ Malata

Story notes: Series: Alagos adu. Best order to read them: Yanking practice, Waterplay, Catching a cold, Riding lessons, Visits
Betaed by Rawly, thank you!
It has been two years since the twins were born. Recently they have managed to make a big step in their development. They rose and walked. Having terrorised their surroundings while still toddlers, now they were really dangerous.

I was standing around innocently when suddenly a sharp pain made me jump. Surprised I looked down and found Elladan standing beside me, hitting my leg with a spoon. Nice, yes, I really love the children.

A careful kick sent Elladan to his diaper-protected butt. First he looked up at me in total shock, wide blue eyes staring, plush lips gaping.

"Elladan! Do you want to be hit? Do you want to be hurt? No? So do I. Stop attacking me, it's not nice!"

Immediately a wall-shaking scream alerted the whole Homely House, especially the blond guardian angel, who instantaneously came over to the living room. "Elly! What's wrong?"

Cute little Elly promptly ran to his saviour, let himself be lifted to the broad chest and pointed angrily at me, effectively wiping away his tears with the other stubby hand. "He hurt!"

I received a dismayed blue glare. "You have hurt him?" asked Glorfindel threateningly.

I sighed. "He forgot to mention that he attacked me with a spoon."

"Hurt! Hurt!" screeched Elladan.

"Yes, you hurt me!" I snarled, angry about this nonchalant usage of his saviour against me. You should never let children get away with such things, they only grow worse and worse! But guardian angel Glorfindel hugged the pretty little one tight, petting him and pampering. "Hush, Elly, hush. It's alright now. He won't hurt you again."

I was ready to burst. Glorfindel pretended I was a danger for the children! I loved them just as much as he did, and that's why I don't let them get away with these things!

Cursed poor innocent Elly stuck his tongue out to me from Glorfindels' broad shoulder. Yes, there you feel safe, right? There you can hide and he doesn't notice that he spoils you into brutal little brats. Damn, raising children is really hard sometimes.

I was working in the study when Celebrian went to Elrond with the twins. They passed me and Celebrian smiled at me in greeting. I smiled back and promptly received another stuck out tongue from Elladan, unnoticed by his mother. Oh how I loved him.

Whilst Celebrian was in Elronds' study, eventually the door opened slowly and a little elfling padded inside with insecure steps. Elrohir looked up at me with wide eyes. I smiled and stretched out my arms. He giggled happily when I lifted him to my lap. And observed curiously what I did on my desk.

"Da! Da!" He wanted to grab the quill, imitating my behaviour. But I couldn't allow that. Ink is poisonous and a quill sharp.

"Sorry, little one, I can't give you that." I looked around in the study for something for him to play with. I knew children loved to imitate the adults. So I found him a thick paper and a pencil, which I rubbed blunt before I gave it to him. "Here, look! You can write, too!" I encouraged him to take the pencil. He grabbed it with his fist and scribbled at the paper.

Whilst he was well-occupied with that, Celebrian left Elronds' study with Elladan on her arm and smiled at me again. "Ah, already educating a helper for your work?"

I looked at the wild scribbling on the paper and laughed. "Yes, he'll definitely be of much help for us one day."

"Come with me, Elrohir?"

"No! Work!" Elrohir beamed with joy.

Celebrian chuckled. "Can I leave him here a bit?"

"Yes of course." I said, gently rubbing Elrohir's back. So his nana left and I resumed writing my letter to the wool-traders of Gondor. Elrohir paused for a moment and looked at my hand, securely writing even rows of Tengwar with the black ink.

Suddenly he leaned forward without warning and scrabbled at the letter with his pencil, shrieking: "Work! Work!"

I should have known it. Suppressing a groan I left the letter to him and began a new one, this time placing it so far away from him that he couldn't reach it with his short arms. But he seemingly grew bored by his work, because suddenly he looked up at me, then drew back and rammed the pencil into my thigh.

"Ai! Little bastard, what are you thinking?" I wrenched the pencil from his hand and poked his thigh, too, careful not to injure him but causing pain nonetheless.

He wailed.

"So you don't want this? Then why do you do it to me?" I asked sternly and shoved him from my lap, placing the screeching child on the floor. He rubbed his thigh and wept heartbreakingly. But I stayed firm. I don't surrender to children's tears. They simply use them too often for their very egoistic purposes. And I was not willing to let myself be punched and poked and hair-wrenched only because they would cry when you punish them. They had to learn that it was not right to hurt other elves. When they needed to learn that the hard way, then they should get it. Therefore I ignored him even when he cried louder to gain my attention and only hoped that Elrond wouldn't mess up the educational measure by busting in and "securing" his son from me.

But oh Valar be blessed, he didn't. And eventually the wailing stopped and I looked down to Elrohir, who now stood there, insecurely looking up at me.

"Have you thought about it? Will you hurt me again?" He hung his head. Finally my heart softened. I smiled. "Have you understood this? Don't hurt others and they won't hurt you. Alright?"

He nodded and stretched out his chubby arms, signalling for me to lift him up. And I did, gathering him to my chest and stroking him lovingly. "Alright, Elrohir. I'm sorry I poked you, but I think you needed to understand what you cause by ramming pencils into me."

"Sorry" he muttered quite prettily and stroked my thigh for emphasising his will to be nice.

I smiled and kissed his dark head. "Love you."

He smiled up to me and stroked my chest, never ceasing to prove his good will. "Love too!" Pretty little one. I only hoped this would last.

Finally Elrond appeared in the doorframe. "Everything alright?"

He received a simultaneous smile from his chief advisor and his younger son. "Yes, everything fine."

From then on Elrohir often stayed with me in the study. But it was difficult to find him something to play with. One always has to jump and say: "No! Leave that!" because nearly everything is dangerous for the child or visa versa. Ink, books and scrolls simply are not to be played with. So I thought hard what I could give Elrohir. I could guess it must be most frustrating when you may not touch anything and I didn't want to quench the interest he had in the study. Therefore I went to the tailors one day and fetched soft leather. I cut pages from it to make a soft and stabile book completely made of leather. Using fruits and berries I mixed edible colours.

I winced when I suddenly felt Elrond behind me, watching me whilst I painted a simple horse on one page. A pretty blush covered my face. Yes, I knew I was on duty and in the study...

"What is this?" asked my Lord with an amused smile.

"It's a book for Elrohir. He want's to "work" in the study, but there is nothing I could give him. He rips every book into pieces. His mind's simply not yet ready for such delicate things. So I made a book of soft leather he can't rip."

Elrond smiled warmly. "That's a very good idea! He'll love it."

I hoped so, too. After filling the pages with nice, simple pictures I placed the book in a drawer of my desk. And when Elrohir came to me that afternoon, I greeted him cheerfully, lifting him to my lap like I always did. "I have something for you, El!" I said and he looked up at me curiously. I opened the drawer and pulled out the book. "A book for you." He watched it with wide eyes but didn't reach out. So I placed it on the desk and opened it. "Look, a horse!" I tried to encourage him. He twisted and looked up to me.

"My book?, he asked.

I nodded. "Yes, yours. I give it to you."

I was rewarded with a beaming smile. "My book! Ellohies book!"

"Yes, Elrohir's book."

Now he eagerly flipped the pages. "Oh! Flower!"

"Yes, right! Very good. And what's that?"


"A butterfly." He impatiently turned the pages. Elrohir isn't very quick with speech, and he didn't know the most things in the book and grew a bit frustrated. But then we came to a page were I had drawn a feather. His eyes lit up and he stretched out to point at the quill on my desk with his short fingers. "Da!"

"Yes! Right. That's a feather."



"No, da!" He vehemently pointed. "Da!"

"Yes, it's that." I took the quill and placed it beside the drawn feather to show him it was similar.


"Yes, feather."


I was confused. Why not? "What do you mean, little one? Isn't that a feather?"

"Fesa?" He pouted and his eyes swam. Oh what have I done wrong this time?

"Yes, a feather. Or a quill."

Suddenly his eyes beamed. "Quill! Quill, right!"

"Ah! I'm sorry. Yes, you're right. It's a quill, too."

I sighed. Sometimes it's really hard to please little children. It's so difficult to understand them and prevent disappointing them.

The next morning when Elrond came to the study, he greeted me friendly. "Good morning, Erestor. Already at work?"

Yes, I had to be. By spending so much time with Elrohir I had neglected my "real" work and had to make up for it. "I have plenty to do."

"Right. You have." He laughed. "For example you have to make another children's book. Or Ell and El will soon kill each other for the one they have."

"The one Elrohir has. I gave it to him. Don't encourage them to share it in this case! I wanted to reward Elrohir for his interest in the study. Elladan didn't show such and so he won't get a book either."

My Lord sighed. "Well. Oh Valar, I haven't thought it so difficult to bring up children. I still ask myself if Elros and I were tiring like them at times."

I smiled. "They have to be. They wouldn't be children otherwise."

They wouldn't be children if they hadn't fought for the book. And when we were in the living room, Glorfindel and I baby-sitting the two for Celebrian and Elrond needed some time off, I had a hard time with them again. And with Glorfindel. I sometimes hate him as much as I secretly love him.

Elladan was quicker and as we already know more brutal than Elrohir. He had wrenched the book from his little brother's hands within seconds, running off and to Glorfindel with it, quickly hiding on the blonde's lap. I saw the devious grin on him while little Elrohir helplessly wept, dancing around Glorfindel and not daring to approach him. So it was up to me again.

"Glorfindel, please, give me the book."


"It belongs to Elrohir. Elladan has no right to steal it from him." Elladan furiously stuck his tongue out at me. He had even begun to make sound as he did that. Really pretty, yes, very lovely.

"Mine!" he said and pressed the book to his chest.

"It is not" I sneered dangerously. "I made it and I gave it to Elrohir. Now give it back!" But with huge, warm Glorfindel in his back there was nothing that could intimidate Elladan.

"Erestor, leave it, it is child's play," argued the seneschal. Bah. I can tell real and useful tears apart. And I saw how real the tears of my poor little Elrohir were now. He had stopped trying to influence and blackmail me with his tears since the incident with the pencil, realising they didn't work with me.

I rose and stepped up to Glorfindel. Holding out my hand to Elladan I growled: "Give me the book!" The dangerous little brat promptly bit me.

"Ai! Bastard!" I snapped.

Glorfindel quickly rose to rescue his sweetling from sinister Erestor's unfair wrath. "Erestor! It's a child! You are scaring him!"

Yes, I saw how horribly I scared the little monster when it stuck out his tongue again, giving me a proud grin. "I have won!" it told me, "You can't harm me!"

You'll see. I was on Glorfindel and had him down with a knee-hook within a second, wrenching the child from him and immediately kneeling on his back to keep the warrior down. Elladan looked at me in open horror. "And now?" I asked levelly. "What will you do now without your big saviour? Elladan, stop relying on him You can't always run to Glorfindel for rescue. You have to stand for your own actions. Now give me that book." A few seconds' hesitance, a cold black glare from my side and the child whiningly gave the desired object to me.

"Fine!" I said, "Thank you. That's very nice." I smiled and put him down. As soon as I rose Glorfindel immediately turned, looking bewilderedly at me. I smiled quizzically at him, too, and turned to Elrohir. "Now, here you have your book back. Don't let Elladan anger you with it. If he takes it again, simply ignore him. He's only envious." I gathered him in my lap and he clutched the book to his chest, smiling gratefully. I petted him and we began "reading" the book as if nothing had happened before. But when we finally brought the twins to bed, Elrohir going to sleep with his beloved book in his arms, Glorfindel grabbed me by the shoulder in the living room, angrily glaring at me.

"Erestor, you can't do this! They are children! You have to let them play!"

"You're blind, Glorfindel. They don't play. They fight. Fight for dominance, for attention and their place in the world. They are much less harmless than you think. Elladan plays you off against me! Have you never realised how he subtly uses you for his purposes? Stop believing they are witless! They are our Lord's children, and children don't use their wit for good things from the beginning. They have to be taught what's good and what is not. So kindly stop pampering Elladan when he does something obviously wrong. I even saw you patiently suffering him yanking your hair out. Why do you let him do this? You spoil him."

"Nonsense. Children need comfort."

"Children need limits."

He shook his head.

I sighed. We would never come to an agreement in this.

Funny, funny. The next day it was Elladan who sought me out in the study. He looked up at me with big eyes. I smiled. Now, what was he up to? He observed me for a while. Then he stretched out his arms. Alright. I lifted him to my lap. He did nothing else, so I returned to writing reports. He looked up to me. "Want book. Please."

Pretty. "You want a book like Elrohir has?"


"Alright. You kindly asked me, so I will make you one. But I will need some time for it. I have to prepare it first. Alright?"


I felt he was watching me closely whilst I wrote. His little mind was obviously working hard. So what was troubling him now? Suddenly he rose to his feet, grabbed a strand of my hair and yanked at it.

"Aiii! Off of me, brat, how do you always come to such things?" I grabbed his collar and yanked at a strand of his soft, dark hair too, making him screech, and put him down to the floor. I shook my head angrily. "Now, do you think I like that? No! Remember that for the rest of your life, I don't like to be hit, bitten or yanked at, understood? What do you think you're doing? Now leave me!"

He had stopped screeching and looked up at me, fuming. No, little beast, I won't pat you saying "Nice little one" whilst you rip my hair out. Go to Glorfindel for that. I childishly stuck my tongue out at him. He fumed even more and stuck back. But he didn't leave. His mind was still working. Suddenly he stepped up to me stretching his arms out again. But I only raised an eyebrow and turned away. No, you won't have it that easy, little Elly. He promptly broke out into tears. Unfortunately he's quart human and in opposite to elven children he can be really loud. I stayed strict anyway. But to my horror the door to Elrond's study opened and my Lord came in, arching a questioning eyebrow at me. I furiously shook my head and mouthed words at him. "Don't interfere! He tries me!" Elrond sighed and walked over to a shelf, taking a scroll with him and leaving again without paying attention to his wailing son, who only wailed louder for that. Yet thank the Valar, Elrond ignored him. At least he understood.

Only minutes later Elladan stopped whooping. Probably because he was running out of breath. For some more minutes he was silent. Then he came back to me and when I looked down at him the defiant glare was gone and he was all big pleading blue eyes, shimmering with tears.

He held up his little hands. "Sorry! Please?"

I chuckled. "Ah, becoming reasonable, uh?"

As soon as I had lifted him up he clasped at my robes, huddling against my chest. "Sorry, sorry!" he sobbed, "Won't hurt again, promise! Please?"

I smiled. "Alright. I forgive you. But stay true to your word! One more yank or whatever and I won't be so quick to forgive anymore!" He nodded frantically and stroked the abused lock of black hair on my shoulder. I smiled to myself when he huddled into my embrace, seeking comfort. And I gave, lovingly stroking his back and kissing his forehead. Now I had a reason to be good with him. And hopefully he would learn from this experience.

In the next morning I began the second book. I had cut the pages and just stitched them together when Elrohir came with Celebrian.

"He wants to see you" explained the Lady. I welcomed him in my lap. "I will care for him."

"Thank you. I have just taken Elladan to Glorfindel and will hopefully enjoy a quiet hour now. But don't hesitate to send him back to me when he disturbs you." Now, children never disturb. It may only be that the surroundings are not right for them.

I simply said: "He won't." She shortly visited Elrond and then left.

"What's that?" asked Elrohir and curiously opened the new book, finding it empty.

"Elladan came to me yesterday," I explained, "And promised me to behave. Did he try to take the book from you again?"


"Very good. So he was kind, like you, and deserves a book now, too, don't you think?"

Pure Elrohir nodded happily. He always shared with his brother whilst Elladan tended to snatch things away from his twin. I have never seen Elrohir envying Elladan anything.

"What shall be in the book?" I asked. "Do you have an idea?"

"Yes! Quill!"

I laughed. He was pretty proud about learning that word. "Alright, a quill then. What do you want to do? Draw?"


So I placed him on the floor, giving him a paper and the pencil. "Will you draw me a circle?" I asked to prevent boredom.

He nodded and eagerly began drawing. So did I, painting another feather into the second book.

Soon I felt Elrohir tugging at my robe. "Finish!"

I looked at his paper and smiled. It was more of a shaky egg, but still he had known what a circle was. "Very good. Do you want to draw a flower?"


"You can draw a flower like this. Draw many circles around the one in the middle. See?"


And he went to "work".

I could finish a flower for myself before he waved the paper at me. "Flower! Finish!"

I praised his artwork sufficiently and then offered him colours to paint it. He eagerly made the middle bright yellow and than painted the petals in all colours of the rainbow.

While he was well occupied with that I quickly finished more pages. When I looked down to him he had even added a kind of leaves and stalk and his eyes beamed with joy. How easy it is to make a child happy. It always refreshed my heart.

When he declared he had finished his artwork, he crawled back on my lap and watched me patiently whilst I painted. With every page I asked him if he had a new idea and he came up with a fish, a pillow and a spoon. Sometimes we paused to cuddle and play and my heart filled with equal joy when he giggled and screeched with excitement when I hauled him upwards and held him in the air.

And when Elrond came out from his study to fetch me for the dinner, he found me awkwardly working with one hand, whilst the other held and stroked the tiny child settled on my chest. He smiled warmly. "I'm glad I have you and Glorfindel for my help and for them."

Right. You can be lucky to have me, because your children would have been brutal sadists otherwise someday.

But now they were nice and tender, at least with me.

Elladan was very happy and covered me with kisses when I gave him his book, and I "read" it together with him and Elrohir. Later in the evening our "family" gathered in Elrond's living room. Elrohir stayed with me whilst Elladan jumped on Glorfindel and quickly went back to poking and yanking. I sniggered to myself. There you have it, golden angel. Because as soon as Elladan came back to me to reread the book, he was all well-behaving and loving again. Glorfindel realised that and eyed me quizzically. And finally, when Celebrian and Elrond had brought the twins to bed, he asked: "What has happened between you and him?"

"I was stern with him. He came to me yesterday and suddenly yanked at my hair. I immediately punished him with scolding and put him off of me and didn't react to his screaming, either. Yes, thank you my Lord for your co-operation. Finally he saw he didn't get anywhere with his blackmail with me and asked for forgiveness. Of course I gave him and comforted him then, afterwards, as a reward for his good behaviour, and Tada, he learned. They are not stupid, Glorfindel, remember that. They are cunning and tricky. So stop treating them as if they were the most innocent and lovely children in the world."

Glorfindel snorted critically. But Elrond smiled with understanding.

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