Chapter 23: Liquid Silver

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By the end of the week, the great city of Tirion rose up before them. Eve gasped audibly at the sheer beauty of it. Dark clouds hung on the horizon heralding rain to come, but the waning light of Laurelin mixed with the waxing glow of Telperion created a wash of colors across the clear sky like her water bowl after washing paint brushes. Alassë halted and Káno, beside her, asked her how she felt.

"I'm fine, I'm good. It's just... wow." She pointed at the sky. "I mean look at that."

"Truly magnificent, no?" He nodded as they continued forward to catch up with Tyelko and Moryo.

"It will rain soon," Findekáno remarked as they hurried towards his house to drop off Alassë. Nelyo and Káno remained with them, Tyelko and Moryo having ridden ahead. Finno turned to Eve. "Let us hurry."

And so they walked their horses more quickly, but still the rain had started already once they reached Findekáno's house. Eve hurried inside out of the downpour alongside the two sons of Fëanáro while Finno took their horses around the back. Eve watched out the window as the lightning flashed and thunder roared. The rain fell in torrents. She certainly wasn't eager to continue on to Nerdanel's just yet.

As Findekáno finished up the horses, Nelyo made himself useful in the kitchen. He heated water to make tea for they all felt chilly from their wet clothes in the autumn air. Eve stood at the window still, watching the falling water through the still present glow of silver from Telperion.

"Caravaggio would have a party here," she chuckled. "The shadows and light, their interplay. He'd love it."

Káno stood up and came next to her. "Who do you speak of?"

She shrugged. "Caravaggio, the master of light and shadow. He was a famous painter. He specialized in people, in Chiaroscuro." Eve turned to Káno and smiled up at him. "An art term. It has to do with light and shadows on skin."

"Intriguing." Káno nodded slowly and watched the rain fall with her.

They both turned when a great clamour arose from the back of the house. The quick opening and closing of a door startled all of them. Findekáno grumbled inaudible curses about a Manwë and an Ulmo as he wrung out his shirt. His wet hair was plastered to his skin and across his face.

Eve laughed and covered her mouth. "You're an absolute mess."

Findekáno's face brightened. He shook his head and smiled, scoffing at her statement. "Lord Manwë picks inopportune moments for rain. Always."

Nelyo turned the corner from the kitchen area and gave a hard laugh as he leaned in the doorframe. "Go change, Finno. You look like a bedraggled rat."

"Thank you, kind lord," joked the elf in question. But he already made his way up the stairs, boots squelching. He shouted directions. "You three are welcome to change as well. Use the guest room."

Eve, wringing out her own hair and trying desperately to untangle it, looked at her riding outfit. She realized immediately that she wasn't much better off than the elf she'd teased. Picking up her backpack, she turned to Káno, as Nelyo had gone back to make the tea.

"Where's the room?" She asked quickly.

"Straight down that hall." He pointed to the hallway that went left of the stairs.

When one entered the house of Findekáno and Turukáno, there stood a sitting room immediately left of the door. A table and chairs in the dining room went right. Behind the dining room, a small kitchen sat as a hallway went straight back to a backdoor and flanked by the stairs. But to the left of the stairs and behind the sitting room couch there was a guest room after a hallway.

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