Title: Relatives and Revelations
Pairings: implied Thranduil/Dís
Word Count: 3877
Disclaimer: If I owned the Hobbit it would probably be a comedy.
Summary: Kíli meets his real father and discovers that family is family no matter your blood.
The elf king is staring at him.
Thranduil is subtle about his glances but every few moments the dwarf feels his eyes again and it's starting to freak Kíli out. This whole situation is actually a bit strange since he was pretty sure that he was supposed to be in the dungeons with the others and the dwarf had been headed that way until the pretty elvish guard captain had pulled him to the side.
Although the rest of the company had protested fiercely they couldn't stop the separation, but instead of taking Kíli off for some nefarious torture she just led him to another chamber and made him wash his face and hands.
When the young dwarf was scrubbed to her satisfaction, the captain brought him here for the most uncomfortable meal of his life, which now that he thinks about it could be considered a form of torture on its own. No one is in the room but Kíli, Thranduil and a few scattered guards and no one has said a word since he arrived. While there is a great deal of delicious food, the elf king seems to prefer staring at his guest to eating anything at all and the dwarf can only ignore his gaze so long.
“Okay, look that's enough. Did you actually want something or are you just going to eye me up like a creeper all night?” The dwarf finally asks in annoyance when Thranduil ogles him one too many times. “If this is some kind of weird romance thing I should tell you now that it is not going to work because I don't do elves and you're far too old for my taste.”
Perhaps Kíli shouldn't be talking to his captor in this manner but it is rather hard for him to take the elf king seriously when he's dressed in a flimsy translucent robe, and any punishment he receives will be worth it to have seen the gobsmacked expression on the other's face.
“No! No. I assure you that I am not trying to court you,” Thranduil replies, attempting to gather his shreds of dignity together. “There is simply something that I must know.”
“You do realize that I won't tell you anything about our journey, not without my leader's permission.” The dwarf says, leaning back in his chair and eyeing the elf with suspicion.
“Of course, of course,” the other reassures him. “I simply wish to know your name.”
My name? Well I suppose that can't hurt by itself. “It's Kíli,” he mutters shortly, leaving off his parentage in case the elf king wants a hostage.
“Kíli, son of some similarly named dwarf I am sure, descendant of another. Víli or Jíli, perhaps? Or maybe even Quíli, there would be a proper dwarvish moniker.” There is a strange bitterness to the elf's mockery but prisoner or no, Kíli will not stand for this disrespect.
“If you just brought me here to mock my name and my parentage I think I would prefer to be back in the dungeons with the others.” The dwarf says angrily and starts to rise but Thranduil quickly motions him back down.
“Please sit. I apologize for any disrespect, there are deeper matters here that you do not understand.” The apology is only half sincere and almost seems to pain the elf king, but even this poor attempt shocks the dwarf back into his chair. “If you would answer just a few more questions?”
At the Kíli's wary nod, Thranduil actually smiles faintly and then continues in his odd interrogation. “You must be young for a dwarf, how many years have you seen? And your mother, who was she?”
“I assure you I am old enough to be here,” He answers hotly, his age still somewhat of a sore point as the youngest on their journey. “But if you must know I have lived nearly seventy-eight years, and my mother is called Dís.”
The dwarf can see the impact of his words upon the other's shoulders as though a burden he long suspected has finally settled there. Yet the elf king smiles down at him, a fond and reminiscent smile, and Kíli decides that this is definitely the weirdest conversation of his life.
“That would be Dís, daughter of Thráin, Princess Under the Mountain would it not? Did she ever decide to remarry?”
“Yup, that would be her, though she generally only goes by Dís these days since there's not much to be princess of anymore. And no, she never remarried; after our father died she just didn't have the heart.” Kíli answers the elf honestly since there's no point in hiding his ancestry if Thranduil already knows. However, he really does not understand the purpose of these questions and decides that he might as well try to get some answers of his own.
“I'm sorry, but how exactly do you know my mother? She has certainly never mentioned you.”
Thranduil smiles again, that creepy reminiscent smile which makes the dwarf's skin crawl. “Dís and I were well acquainted with each other back in the day though I am afraid we did not part on the best of terms.” Now the elf king turns more serious and he stares at Kíli with intent eyes. “But I am surprised that she never told you the truth about your father.”
“What about my father? I though that he died when Smaug attacked and I was born out on the road. Unless...you didn't kill him or something?” The dwarf asks. Maybe I'd be safer in the dungeons after all.
“What? No, Kíli, I am your father.” The elf king replies and though Kíli tries he cannot find any falsehood in the other's voice. So he tries harder.
“You have to be joking! Tell me you're joking. This is some kind of weird elf prank isn't it and as soon as I freak out your whole court is going to jump out and laugh at me, right? Right?!”
The dwarf looks around wildly but there doesn't seem to be anyone hidden in the shadows and indeed Thranduil seems rather taken aback by his assumptions. “Oh Mahal, you're serious. You really think that you're my father, but that's ridiculous. Of course it is,” Kíli says with a shaky laugh. “I'm hardly going to believe something like this without proof.”
“If you desire proof of your parentage you need only look at your own skin.” The elf king tells him, obviously deciding to ignore the rest of the dwarf's babbling. “All of the Sindar are born with a crescent moon upon our skin for the Valar chose to mark us as one people, and as one of my children you should bear this sign as well.”
Kíli feels a chill run through him, for how could the elf have known of his birthmark to lie about it, but he is not ready to give in just yet. “That still doesn't mean anything. You could just be a creeper who had someone watch me change.”
However, Thranduil simply looks at him with that condescending gaze and pulls aside his collar to reveal an identical crescent on the elf's own skin and at the sight the dwarf cannot run from the truth any longer.
Oh, fuck! Kíli slumps back against his chair as his body gives out in shock and he can feel hysteria bubbling up within him. “You're actually my father. You! Crap, this is the reason I can't seem to grow a beard, isn't it, and no wonder I'm decent at archery. But shit!...m- my mother had a sordid affair with an elf! You can't tell anyone about this. No one, you hear me?! Oh the shame....does my uncle know about this? He can't know about this, he hates elves and he'll hate me. Fuck, everyone will hate me!”
This last is almost a wail and the elf king seems rather at a loss, reaching out to pat the dwarf awkwardly on the hand. When Kíli looks up, startled at the contact, the other gives him what would have been a reassuring smile in other circumstances.
“I promise you that Dís and I did not have an affair. Your father was already quite dead by the time we came together. I only wish that we had had more time and things hadn't ended as they did.”
While this is one worry off of the dwarf's mind and he manages to calm himself slightly, all he can think about now is Thranduil and his mother having sex. This is not something Kíli ever wanted to consider and he shakes off the elf's hand as he shudders with revulsion.
“Thanks for that mental image, eew. Anyway, I'm sure you're a perfectly nice guy or whatever, although the whole imprisonment thing is really not cool, but if you're expecting a happy family reunion that is not going to happen. At least not for awhile. So can I just go and think things over?”
The elf king agrees quickly, probably as uncomfortable with this discussion as his child and summons the guards to take Kíli away. Although Thranduil offers his long lost son a proper room, the dwarf asks to just be put in with the others and shortly later he is led into a crowded cell.
As prisons go it's a rather nice one, more of a cellar than a dungeon, and perhaps the elf was trying to be somewhat gracious to his in-laws after all. However, at the moment Kíli really does not want to think about these new revelations, preferring to pretend that the conversation never happened. Instead the dwarf wraps his arms tightly around his brother and he buries his head in Fíli's shoulder, trying to shut out the world. Fíli hugs him back just as hard and the others gather around their companion, asking worriedly if he's all right.
“He didn't hurt you, did he?” Thorin growls, though his face eases slightly when Kíli shakes his head. However, the young dwarf refuses to talk anymore about it because he is terrified that the others will reject him if they find out the truth. After awhile they leave him alone and he quickly falls asleep tangled around Fíli, worn out from the worry and fear that filled his day.
Kíli wakes to Thorin threatening someone and he lifts his head to see another elf standing outside their cell. Upon seeing the blond hair and fancy clothes, the dwarf thinks it might be Thranduil and nearly panics before he realizes this one is too young for that. The new elf is currently glaring at Thorin, who must have warned him to keep away from the bars, but when he sees Kíli stir the blond rushes over to stare at him instead.
The dwarf's head is still muzzy from his nap but he's pretty sure they've never met and so the elf's delighted smile comes as something of a surprise.
“Hah, it is you. It has to be, no wonder father's been in such a tizzy. What's your name, then? I'm Legolas, Thranduil's youngest, or at least I was. How old are you? Do you like archery?”
Kíli finds himself rather taken aback by the endless wave of excited questions, although to be honest it's kind of nice to have someone be so glad to see him. However, he can see Thorin's face darken with each new word and so the dwarf quickly tries to stop the elf before he gives the game away. “My name is Kíli since you asked. But, um, how did you know about me? Did Thranduil tell you?”
At this Legolas just laughs and claps his hands together. “Father, no. He would never mention something like that to me. I recognize you because you look just like your mother, and I remember when she was here. The two of them were inseparable until everything went wrong but you're back now and this is fantastic, I've always wanted a younger brother.”
“Brother?!” The entire company erupts in shock at this new revelation even as Kíli tries to sink into the ground, his face burning hot when everyone turns to stare. Now they're going to hate me, the dwarf thinks miserably, watching as his uncle purples with rage.
“Enough!” Thorin roars, cutting through the clamor like a scythe and the ensuing silence is quiet as the grave. “Thranduil may have fathered Kíli but that doesn't give you or that damn elf any right to claim him. He's seventy-seven years too late for that.”
Upon hearing these words, Kíli turns wide eyes on his uncle. “You knew about this?” He asks in disbelief, Fíli echoing his cry.
“Of course I knew, I was there when they met and I was there when he broke your mother's heart.” Thorin replies, looking at his sister-son as though he were an idiot. “Thranduil deserves to rot for taking advantage of my grieving widowed sister and getting her with child but that was never your fault. We named you for her husband to keep anyone from wondering and we've raised you as son of Durin's line. So you're as much my nephew as Fíli and I've never doubted that, even if you're half an elf as well.”
Kíli runs over to hugs his uncle tightly, nearly crying in relief to have all his fears so completely put to rest. With his uncle's seal of approval, the other's gather around and pat him on the shoulders as they mutter their acceptance as well. Though when the dwarf looks back he sees Fíli and Legolas glaring at each other through the bars.
“He's my younger brother,” Fíli growls, arms crossed as he stares up at the elf prince. “I'm the one that grew up with him through good and bad and ugly so don't think that you can steal him just because you happen to share a father. A no-good absent father at that.”
“I'm not trying to steal your brother. I just want to borrow him a bit.” Legolas replies testily, hands on his hips. “C'mon, I've been the youngest for almost four hundred years and this is my one chance.”
The other blond considers this for a moment and then nods shortly. “Fine, we can share. But I have first priority and there's no way Thranduil gets to talk with him unsupervised until that damn elf shows some remorse for what he's done.”
“Deal!” They shake hands through the bars to seal their agreement and then Legolas turns an excited grin on Kíli. It's almost terrifying in its intensity and the dwarf wonders what exactly his brothers have gotten him into as he shrinks beneath that manic stare.
“We are going to have so much fun.” The elf promises, reaching into his pocket and pulling out a key. “First, we're going to go talk to father and sort this whole mess out because I just know he'll never do it on his own and then I'm taking you under my wing. We'll get you some proper clothes and I can give you a tour...and you have to let me do your hair, I know some elvish braids that would look just lovely on you.”
Legolas unlocks their cell and ushers the company out before grabbing Kíli's hand and leading him off into the halls while he continues to chatter on excitedly.
“The armory's over that way and the archery range is through there. I'll get you back your weapons and gear after we talk to father, but I think it's best if there aren't any swords around for that conversation. We'll go shooting later too, for sure.” The elf prince waves blithely at different hallways, ignoring the startled glances from all the other elves they pass.
“We're walking by the kitchens now- they're pretty busy today because father's planning another one of his giant parties, but when they aren't working the cooks always good for a snack. I'm sure they'll love you all, everyone is always complaining that they have to keep making the same old things, and now that you're here we have to throw a proper dwarvish feast to welcome you into the family. Ah, here we are...”
One more corner takes the company back to the elf king's council chamber and into the throne room where he sits in state. Thranduil's eyes widen as the dwarves walk toward him and he glares down at his two wayward sons. “What are you doing here? And how exactly did my prisoners escape?”
“Relax father, I let them out.” Legolas answers him cheerfully. “You can't go around treating family like this, mother would be ashamed.”
“Your mother would be far more ashamed that I'd ever lain with a dwarf, and his mother would have to be willing to talk to me to be disappointed.” Thranduil replies, leaning back against his throne with an exasperated sigh. “Yet I suppose you are right and neither of them would approve of how I've treated my guests.”
“Of course he's right! But then again your hospitality has always been lacking.” Thorin declares, striding to the front of the group and sneering up at the elf.
“Ah, hello Thorin. So lovely to see you again. None of your lot had any complaints about my hospitality last time if I remember correctly. You just showed up and ate me out of house and home.”
“Well if you had helped us fight against the dragon, we wouldn't have had to.”
“Of course, because suicide missions are the solution to all life's problems. I shouldn't be surprised to see you back again for more. But you should be thankful that I took your people in at all, I could have just left you there to starve.”
“Maybe you should have. It would have kept you from dishonoring my sister.”
With each statement the two moved another step closer together and now they are standing face to face, glowering into each others' eyes. Despite Thranduil's height advantage, the pair is evenly matched in anger and the rest of the company watches with interest as they volley back and forth.
“I did not dishonor your sister, we did nothing against her will.”
“That is not the point! You took advantage of her grief to make your own advances and when you were done with her, you cast her and your son aside.”
“I did not!”
“Really? So I only imagined her coming to me in tears and saying that you had refused to acknowledge your own child. That you accused my sister of laying with another even as she shared your bed.”
“No, you did not imagine that. But I never meant to cause her any pain. I did not realize that our union could be fruitful and I did not take the news as well as Dís deserved. However, you left before I could apologize and I have regretted that day ever since.”
“What, you couldn't write?”
“This was hardly a conversation to be had with pen and paper, and I did not wish to risk such a letter falling into the wrong hands. And I could not leave my kingdom to visit her myself, not with the darkness rising in the north and my other sons even flightier than Legolas.”
“Fine, I'll give you that. But if you want my sister back you'll have your work cut out for you. Dwarves have long memories and she's always been one to hold a grudge.”
“I know but what can I do? The circumstances have not changed.”
Thranduil sounds so dejected then that Kíli has to pipe up, even if it sounds like his father deserves his fate for being such a dick. “You could help us retake Erebor.”
“What?!” Two sets of shocked eyes turn toward him, but the dwarf stands firm beneath their gaze.
“Well, you need mother to be close by so you can convince her to forgive you and if we reclaimed Erebor, she would definitely move back. Then you could beg for her forgiveness in person, which is the only way you're ever going to get it, and if we told mother that you helped us it would be a step in the right direction.”
“I suppose that makes sense,” Thranduil mutters grudgingly and sensing his weakness, Legolas jumps in as well.
“Of course it does, father. I'm sure they have a plan and we have plenty of archers now that the spiders are dead. Just think of how impressed Dís would be if you could hand her back her mountain and then I could get to know this side of the family. Please father, you know you want to.”
The elf king looks down at his sons' pleading eyes and sighs. “Fine,” he says before turning back to Thorin. “If and I mean if I think your plan is workable, then you will have my aid to reclaim your homeland, as long as you put in a good word for me with Dís when the deed is done.”
“Agreed,” Thorin replies, holding out his hand and Thranduil shakes it gingerly as he waves his steward over. He orders the elf to find his guests some proper rooms and food if they wish it, while the two leaders are in council with their advisers. As the pair walks off toward the elf king's war room, Kíli throws an arm around Fíli's shoulder and grins up at Legolas with a sense of accomplishment. It was beautiful to see the two halves of his ancestry getting along when they'd been at each others' throats such a short time before.
“That went well,” he says, smiling at his new half-brother. “Now I believe you said something about our weapons, and an archery range.”
“Yes I think I did,” Legolas tells him, leading the company back out to the hall. When they walk out of the throne room, the elf prince stops short in surprise as he runs into the dwarves' burglar sneaking out from an alcove in the wall. The hobbit halts when he sees them and blushes beneath their stares, before he rubs the back of his head awkwardly.
“So I guess this means I don't need to rescue you after all? Because I really wouldn't say no to a good meal.”
Kíli laughs at the confounded expression on the elf's face and wraps his free arm around the halfling's neck. “Legolas meet our hobbit, Bilbo this is my half-brother. And I believe you're in luck because we've been promised Thranduil's best and I intend to take full advantage of his hospitality. Daddy dearest has a lot to make up for and I want to get my own licks in before mother takes him down.”