prologue

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IN THE FIRST AGE OF ARDA
There was a city.  A hidden city, beautiful and glorious beyond compare;  it was like a dream world, its entrance nestled between the Dorthonion region and the river Sirion.  The entrance led to a vale in which the foundations of the city were built upon.

This city was populated by mainly Noldor elves, and some Sindar.   There were a few Noble Houses of the city, which was named Gondolin.  One House was called The House of the Golden Flower-----the second most honourable house after the House of tbe King.  The House of the Golden Flower was ruled by Lord Glorfindel, with his younger sister Lady Almadrial as second in command. 

Gondolin was a fairly well to do city, despite being hidden from most of the world.  There was peace, propserity and protection.  Nevertheless, the city was still not safe from conflict.

It was the 509th year of the First Age, and that winter, Almadrial, Lady of the House of the Golden Flower, was to wed Gildir, the son of the King.  Their union produced a son, a son who became third in line to the throne of Gondolin.

All seemed to be well, but it was not so.  Maeglin, the troublesome nephew of the King was enraged to see he had only grown farther from the crown.  The enstranged elf sought the aid of external allies to help him regain his power within the Court of Gondolin. Two winters following the birth of Raelin, grandson of the King, Maeglin lead the Dark Lord Morgoth to the hidden city, where the Dark forces brought in chaos and destruction every step they took. 

Many fell in the Fall of Gondolin, including Gildir and his son, all due to the treachery of the corrupted cousin Maeglin.  The House of the Golden Flower rose during this time, lead by Glorfindel in a quest to evacuate the city, defending escaping elves as they made their way to safety through a secret passage. 

Glorfindel himself perished defeating the Balrog, but not before sending away the Princess Idril and her mortal lover under the protection of his dear sister Almadrial.  

The golden haired elleth lead her sister-in-law out of Gondolin, and vowed to remain with the family of her husband forevermore.  They were all she had, now that her own House had fallen.   Eventually, Tuor died and Idril faded, leaving Almadrial to watch over their son, Eärendil.   However, Almadrial knew that the boy would not need her once he was grown, and that he was destined for greatness in himself.  She left the son of Idril and Tuor as soon as she heard he was betrothed, knowing a new line would start, a new age. 

The Second Age came, and Almadrial had given up on searching for any other Gondolin survivors----it was likely they had all faded from grief of losing their homes and families.  Or they had just fled all over in fear and trauma. 

She travelled Arda alone for many years, fading slowly into the world as the clans of Men rose to power.  The hopelessness and lonlieness was eating Almadrial away, until Idril's descendent, Elrond, found her by his newly built haven of Imladris.  He took Almadrial in and the Lady without a House found her new place in the Last Homely House.   She returned to service of line of Turgon, clinging to last remnants of Gondolin left in this world.

But nothing was enough.  Nobody could understand the Lady Almadrial's plight, the lost sense of purpose within her, to feel homesick for a place that was lost to history.

Not until an unlikely pack of dwarven scoundrels tried to steal from her in the middle of the forest. 

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