“Do you think we’d be friends if we weren’t like, stuck together in the same town? Like we were stuck together in girlscouts? Like… uh… is this just… what’s the word?”
“I don’t know. I honestly don’t. My entire life feels like running after something that keeps moving away into the distance, while I stay in the same place. … And I guess proximity counts for a lot right now.”
AU Thingol lives how do the murder bros go about regaining the silmaril while the girdle still stands?
“We need a new plan,” said Curufin, apropos of nothing. Or not - the Oath was never far from any of their thoughts. “The letters aren’t working.”
There’d never been any hope they would. Maedhros only continued to write them because he found the process of ordering his thoughts and then masking them with layers of false courtesy to be therapeutic.
“Her mortal got through,“ said Celegorm bitterly. He always sounded bitter these days. “Why don’t we send one of our own?”
“Because Men are treacherous, scheming, lying dogs,” said Caranthir, too loud within the confines of the command tent. “They betray you and fail you and even when you save their worthless, mayfly lies they don’t even pretend to be grateful, how dare she scorn m-”
“It’s not like we have any of the Secondborn to hand anyway,” said Maglor quickly.
“If we could contrive a way to overthrow Thingol’s pet Maia-” Curufin began.
“We’ve spent the past five hundred years doing nothing but scheme to slay one of the Ainur. I don’t think we’re likely to solve that problem now.”
“Burn the damn forest down around them,” said Caranthir.
“Because burning’s worked so well for us in the past,” Maglor hissed with a pointed look at their youngest brother, huddled unspeaking upon his camp chair.
“It is all very well,” said Celegorm, lips drawn back from his teeth, “to sit and pick holes in the plans of others. What would you have us do, O noble bard?”
“I would have us abandon this folly altogether,” Maglor said primly. “But I know none of you care to hear that, so I shall hold my tongue.”
“A first time for everything,” said Caranthir. “Maedhros, what shall we do?”
Maedhros stared down at the stained and yellowed parchment of the map before him. Oh, to demure as Maglor had, but already a plan was forming and he had sworn an oath. “Tol Galen, where Thingol’s daughter dwelt, lies beyond Melian’s protection.”
“So?” said Maglor. “The Silmaril is there no longer.”
“His grandson is.”
In the light of the tent’s brazier, his brothers’ smiles showed red.
“We can be ready to decamp by first light tomorrow,” said Maglor.
Maedhros nodded and waited for them to leave to their appointed tasks before balling up the parchment upon his desk and feeding it to the flames.