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Old March 28th, 2009, 07:42 PM
Guin Sparrow Guin Sparrow is offline
Orlando's Shadow King
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Estel&Meleth (PG-13)

Title: Estel and Meleth
Author: Guin Sparrow
Disclaimer:I do not own anything. This fanfiction belongs to the films of Peter Jackson and J.R.R. Tolkien
Category: Lord of the Rings, Lord of the Rings(Book)
Type: adventure, romance, drama, tragedy,
Rating: Pre-Teen
Characters: Solorfainiel(OFC), Rumil, Orophin, Haldir, Prince Legolas, Aragorn, King Thranduil, Gollum, Arwen, Elrond, Gandalf, Sauron, Frodo, Theoden, Eomer, Eowyn, Galadriel, Celeborn, Gimli, Merry, Pippin, Boromir, Faramir, Maldor(OMC), Melethainiel,(OFC), Meldarion(OMC), Saruman, Wormtongue,
Warnings: wedding comsummations, character death, violence,
Brief Summary: Solorfainiel, daughter of Elros, falls in love with Haldir of Lorien. After his passing at Helm's Deep, Solorfainiel is grief-stricken. She learns to love with the help of Prince Legolas.

Chapter 1
The Union
The great Shadow was stirring in the land of Mordor. The Mountain of Fire exploded, and the Eye of the Dark Lord Sauron, was ever watchful. His gaze fell on the One Ring, yearning to have his power again. The fate of Middle-Earth was in the balance.
Amidst the Shadow, a great joy sprung in the East. In the land of Lorien, there was much rejoicing. Solorfainiel, cousin of Lady Arwen of Rivendell, was to be engaged to Haldir of Lorien. The meeting of the couple was one of instant love. Solorfainiel had journeyed to Lorien after many journeys in Middle-Earth. Haldir was taken aback at the sight of the Elf-maid, her dark braids and eyes as blue as the morning sky.
“Nin heryn, man eneth lin?” asked Haldir keenly.
Solorfainiel turned and smiled to Haldir. “Im Solorfainiel. Man eneth lin?”
“Im Haldir a Lorien,” Haldir replied, “What brings you to the great woods of Lorien, my Lady?”
“I have journeyed far from the land of Imladris,” explained Solorfainiel, “I take rest in the land of Lorien.”
“Imladris?” inquired Haldir.
“I am kin to Lord Elrond of Rivendell,” Solorfainiel said, “Lady Arwen is my cousin.”
“I am a friend of Elrond of Rivendell,” Haldir told her.
Solorfainiel laughed merrily. “Then I am certain we shall meet again.”
“I eagerly wait to meet again, my Lady,” Haldir told her sincerely.
Solorfainiel smiled once more before turning away. She took her leave of Lorien one week after her fateful meeting with Haldir of Lorien. From that fateful meeting, Haldir felt a lightening of his heart. A great love swept over him as a wave sweeps over sand. After that meeting, Haldir of Lorien loved Solorfainiel of Rivendell.
A month later, Solorfainiel and Haldir met again. Though it seemed foolish, Haldir was determined to ask Solorfainiel for her hand in marriage. In that one meeting, he knew that he wanted to share his life with no one else but her.
“My lady,” Haldir greeted, “Mae govanen.”
“Mae govanen, Haldir a Lorien,” greeted Solorfainiel with a smile.
“It gives me great pleasure to be in your company again, my Lady,” Haldir said earnestly.
“I am overjoyed to be in your company,” Solorfainiel replied merrily.
“I’ve anticipated our meeting for a life-age of Men, it seems,” Haldir said.
“So have I,” Solorfainiel told him.
“Is it possible to be entranced by another after only one meeting?” Haldir asked earnestly.
“I believe it to be a certainty,” Solorfainiel replied, “Why do you speak in riddles?”
Haldir took Solorfainiel’s white hand in his. “Since our first meeting in Lorien, my heart has been lifted. I love you. If we Elves are to live all the ages of this world, I do not want to live them alone. Will you wed me?”
“Your feelings are shared by me,” Solorfainiel said merrily, “If there were anyone I would wish to spend an eternity with, it would be Haldir of Lorien. Yes, I will wed you, Haldir of Lorien.”
Haldir took Solorfainiel into his arms and kissed her as the sun rose. Haldir broke away from the kiss and slipped a silver ring shaped like an Elven star onto Solorfainiel’s finger. Solorfainiel did the same. Now they were to be one, Solorfainiel of Rivendell and Haldir of Lorien. They sealed their proposal with a kiss once more.

Last edited by Guin Sparrow; August 8th, 2009 at 10:12 AM. Reason: correction
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Old March 30th, 2009, 10:05 AM
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nuit nuit is offline
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Ah so a step away from pirates and into the lofty Tolkien then Guin! I always liked Haldir, so is good to see him turn up. I would like perhaps to have more of scene set though- your intro suggests there is much tragedy and sorrow, and that usually works best when the reader identifies with the characters through 'knowing them' a bit. Will see how you manage that X

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Last edited by nuit; March 30th, 2009 at 09:25 PM.
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Old March 30th, 2009, 09:19 PM
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KiwiGirl KiwiGirl is offline
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Interesting start Guin and I am looking forward to you laying out all the background to this.

A bit of a change from pirates indeed.....

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Old April 4th, 2009, 12:54 AM
Guin Sparrow Guin Sparrow is offline
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Thank you, nuit and Kiwigirl! I appreciate it very much!

*credits to Mrs.LeighBloom of the OBFiles

Chapter 2: The Betrothal and Meeting of Legolas and Solorfainiel
After they broke away, Solorfainiel could feel her heart beating so fast she could dance to its rhythm. As she lost herself in Haldir’s gentle and sweet embrace, Solorfainiel noticed that the heart of her beloved was the same. She felt as if her happiness would last her beyond the breaking of the world and all life ages of men.
Haldir was just as elated as his sweetheart, if not more. He had only met her once before and he was certain he wanted to spend his life with her. At last Haldir knew he would have that joy of taking the hand of Solorfainiel of Rivendell in marriage.
“We must go, hir meleth,” Solorfainiel whispered.
“We are alone,” Haldir replied, “Why can we not tarry a while longer?”
“We must tell our kin of our union,” Solorfainiel told him merrily.
“I have no foresight, but I know the joy of my brothers’ hearts when they learn of our union,” Haldir said happily.
“And I see the same with my Lord Elrond and Lady Arwen,” Solorfainiel told him, smiling with all the love in her heart, “Come, hir meleth. We must give the tidings of our union.”
And so Solorfainiel took the hand of her love Haldir and they went down to give the news of their engagement. Solorfainiel and Haldir entered the house of Lord Elrond with much joy. Elrond, neither young nor old after nearly three-thousand years, paced in his house.
“Uncle,” Solorfainiel addressed with a smile.
“Beloved niece,” Elrond greeted, “What brings you to my house?”
“I bring tidings, Uncle,” Solorfainiel told him.
“What such tidings do you speak of?” Elrond asked her.
“Tidings of the most joyous nature,” Solorfainiel announced, “Haldir of Lorien has asked for my hand and we shall wed.”
Elrond’s ageless face brightened as he laughed gaily. “This is wondrous indeed!”
Haldir bowed low. “My lord Elrond, I’ve met Solorfainiel only twice and I have loved her since our first meeting. I do not wish to spend my life in this world with anyone but her.”
Elrond smiled. “Then it shall be so. Haldir of Lorien shall wed Solorfainiel of Rivendell. This union is blessed. There shall be a feast in honor of this merry day.”
Haldir and Solorfainiel quitted Elrond’s house for the woods. They danced and twirled merrily. The celebration of their union and its joy was to be felt by all of their kin.
“I feel as if this happiness can overtake any Shadow,” Solorfainiel told her love.
“Now it shall be shared among our kin,” Haldir told her.
One week later, Haldir and Solorfainiel traveled to the fair woods of Lorien once more to have their feast. They decided to wed and celebrate their engagement where their love began.
Haldir took Solorfainiel before two Elves. Both were similar to Haldir with the same hair of white gold and grey eyes.
“These are my brothers, Rumil and Orophin,” Haldir addressed, “You must forgive them. They do not know much of the Common Tongue. I teach them to speak it.”
“Lin Haldir im nin meleth,” Solorfainiel told the fair Elves in their Sindarin tongue.
“Le suilon,” greeted Rumil and Orophin, “Im gerlir an le.”
Solorfainiel and Haldir smiled lightheartedly. “Hanon-le.”
Before the feast, Solorfainiel came across another Elf. The Elf was clothed in green and brown and his hair was of gold. His eyes were as blue as midsummer night.
Solorfainiel approached this strange, fair Elf. “Mara aure. Im Solorfainiel a Lorien. Iston-le ?”
“Lau, heryn,” replied the Elf, “Telin o Mirkwood. Im Legolas Thrandulion.”
“Im Solorfainiel o Rivendell,” Solorfainiel replied, bowing low, “You are the son of the Elvenking Thranduil. I am glad to meet you. You are most welcome, my Lord Legolas.”
“I am happy for you, Solorfainiel,” Legolas said earnestly, “Haldir is a great friend of mine. My heart is lifted to know he has found one to love for all the ages of this world.”
“My heart is lifted by your kind words, Lord Legolas, son of Thranduil,” Solorfainiel said graciously.
So it was that evening that the feast was held. The night was merry, full of music and dancing. The night was also full of love for Haldir and Solorfainiel.
Lord Elrond tapped his glass. “Tonight, we celebrate the union of Haldir of Lorien and Solorfainiel of Rivendell. May the grace of the Valar be upon them in their marriage and may they spend the ages of this world in peace as they wed January 4, 3018 of the Third Age. To Solorfainiel and Haldir!”
The company of Elves raised their goblets, toasting to Haldir and Solorfainiel. “To Solorfainiel and Haldir!”
Solorfainiel turned to Haldir. “May our love be as blissful as this wine.”
“To our great love and life,” Haldir toasted.
Linking arms, Solorfainiel and Haldir drank to their love and engagement. In only one year, they would be joined by the bonds of marriage. At the moment, they had all the merriment and love that would last them for that one year. That night, Haldir carried Solorfainiel to her bed in the house of Elrond. As lightly as he could, Haldir set Solorfainiel upon her soft bed of fine pillows.
“It is only a year before we wed, but I feel as if we are,” Solorfainiel said wistfully.
“The year will fly and we shall be as whole as we are now,” Haldir told her.
Haldir leaned down and his lips met with the fair lips of Solorfainiel. Their kiss seemed to last forever as they took in each other’s company.
“Now you must sleep,” Haldir told her, “Sleep and dream of our life in this world. When you wake, I shall be by your side.”
With one last kiss, Solorfainiel laid her head back to her pillow. Haldir then began to sing her to sleep in his Silvan tongue. Comforted by his sweet voice, Solorfainiel strayed into sleep with her beloved fiancé at her side.
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Old April 11th, 2009, 02:29 AM
Guin Sparrow Guin Sparrow is offline
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Chapter 3: Elrond's Warning and Journey to Mirkwood

Solorfainiel found herself in the lands of Lothlorien. Many winters had passed, she saw. To her merriment, she saw herself run into the arms of her beloved, Haldir. As if the moment wasn’t enchanting enough, a little Elf-lad flew into her and Haldir’s arms. Haldir took the child in his arms and spun him about, kissing his cheeks as he did so. Solorfainiel’s heart lifted as she, too, embraced the child. The moment seemed to last as long as an age of the world.

Alas, Solorfainiel awoke to the sun shining on her fair face. The moment was a dream, but she knew it was not all a dream. Solorfainiel knew that moment would be real in a year. As she looked over at Haldir sleeping next to her, Solorfainiel knew for certain that she would see that child and Haldir together. Solorfainiel peeked over the shoulder of her beautiful fiancé and smiled as she watched him dream.

Haldir stirred and gazed into Solorfainiel’s grey eyes. “Good morning, hir meleth.”

Solorfainiel met Haldir’s lips. “Haldir, hir meleth, i anor hilol.”

“And the She shines down on us this morning,” Haldir replied sincerely, “Come, let us eat and enjoy this day.”

Haldir rose from the bed and took his fiancée’s white hands. Solorfainiel sprang lightly to her feet and followed her beloved downstairs to eat breakfast. The couple feasted on eggs and toast with hot tea.

Haldir turned his eyes to Solorfainiel. “Is breakfast satisfactory to you, my love?”

Solorfainiel smiled merrily. “Quite satisfactory, hir meleth. Did you prepare it yourself?”

“Do you have the gift of foresight such as Lord Elrond does?” Haldir laughed.

“No,” Solorfainiel giggled, “But I am right about most things.”

“I agree,” Haldir said.

Solorfainiel reached out and took Haldir’s hand. “I do not have foresight like my uncle, but I have a certainty that we will be happy.”

“Indeed,” Haldir agreed.

“I had a dream last night,” Solorfainiel explained.

“I can tell it was a good dream,” Haldir observed, grinning.

“It was a good dream,” Solorfainiel replied lovingly, “I found myself in the lovely woods of Lorien with you. I saw a child. It was our child that I saw. Our son. I saw him as I see you before me. We made merry just as we are now. It felt as if it were real.”

Haldir squeezed his fiancée’s hand. “It will be real. I promise you that it will be.”

“You do not have to promise it,” Solorfainiel told Haldir, “I know that we shall be happy together, in Rivendell or anywhere in this world. I need no foresight to know that.”

“Nor do I,” Haldir replied.

Solorfainiel smiled and kissed her beloved’s white hand. “Let us prepare for the day, hir meleth. I shall visit my uncle in his study.”

“I wish to walk in the woods of the land,” Haldir said, “I shall meet you towards the day’s end.”

“You shall,” Solorfainiel declared, kissing Haldir’s lips.

Solorfainiel hurried off to Elrond’s study. She knew in her heart that she and Haldir would be blissful together, but she was too curious to know what her dream meant. Solorfainiel saw Elrond writing in his book and raced up the stairs.

“Uncle, you have the gift of foresight,” she began, “I must know if my dream is real to my mind as it is to my heart.”

“What dream do you speak of?” Elrond asked.

“Haldir and I dwelt in the land of Lorien. I saw us as I see you. I saw a child, our son,” Solorfainiel explained.

Elrond did not smile as Haldir had done.

“Uncle?” Solorfainiel asked, uncertain.

“Your dream is what it is,” Elrond said coldly, “It is nothing more than a dream.”

Solorfainiel’s face was troubled. “You have the gift of foresight and I know that is not true.”

“You believe it because your heart tells you it is so,” Elrond argued, “But it is not what your mind tells you or the future.”

“Tell me what you have seen of Haldir and me!” Solorfainiel cried.

“What I saw in your future with Haldir is not the same as what you saw,” Elrond replied, “I did not see happiness or a child.”

“That is a lie,” Solorfainiel said crossly, “I am of your blood and I saw what is to come. You saw a child in my future. I am certain you saw my son.”

“I did not see what you claim I saw,” Elrond said grimly.

“Then what is it you saw, Uncle?” Solorfainiel demanded.

“I saw death in your future,” Elrond replied sadly.

“That is not in my future,” Solorfainiel said with certainty.

“Solorfainiel, there is a shadow growing in the East,” Elrond said gravely, “The Mountain of Fire roars to life. The Tower of Barad-Dhur is rebuilt, and the Great Eye of Sauron is ever watchful again.”

“Sauron has returned?” Solorfainiel gasped in disbelief.

“He has come out of hiding,” Elrond replied, “The One Ring made in the fires of Mount Doom has awoken. Sauron is seeking to claim the Ring once more.”

“And when he does he will cover the entire world in darkness,” Solorfainiel added.

“It has already begun. The creature called Gollum bore the Ring. He has been released from Mordor and torture by the Orcs. Nine Riders have been sent out from Mordor. Sauron’s war on Middle-earth has begun,” Elrond said grimly.

“This must mean the Elves will fight for Middle-earth, as we did long ago,” Solorfainiel concluded.

“Yes,” Elrond replied, “I have seen death in your future. Haldir will fight in Middle-earth and he will die.”

Solorfainiel was taken aback. “How can you say this?”

“I have seen it all,” Elrond told her, “Haldir will come to death in the fight for Middle-earth, as our people came to death beside Men long ago.”

“I cannot believe that!” Solorfainiel exclaimed, “I will not!”

“It must be believed,” Elrond told her.

“Why do you tell me such dark tidings?” Solorfainiel asked, tears in her eyes.

Elrond took his niece’s hands. “I don’t want to lose you. Arwen loves Isildur’s heir, Aragorn, son of Arathorn and she will give up her immortality for him. You are as near to a daughter to me as she is. I can’t lose you as well.”

Solorfainiel said nothing, and tears fell on her white cheeks.

“You love Haldir, but do you love me?” Elrond asked gently.

“I do love you, Uncle!” Solorfainiel cried, her voice impaired by her tears.

Elrond enveloped his niece in his arms and comforted her. He could not bear to see her in tears.

“What is to come now?” Solorfainiel asked, her voice still hindered by her weeping.

“Go to the kingdom of Mirkwood,” Elrond told her, “Thranduil will need your guard over the creature Gollum.”

“What other duty shall I be charged with, Uncle?” Solorfainiel questioned quietly.

Elrond took Solorfainiel’s hands. “I wish you no duty. I only request that you shall be happy in this world.”

Solorfainiel smiled a diminutive smile. “I shall acquiesce to your request, Uncle.”

Solorfainiel turned away from Elrond and left the house. She found Haldir outside in the garden, singing to himself in a beautiful, clear voice. Slowly, Solorfainiel approached her husband.

“Hir meleth,” Haldir greeted, “You look as if a shadow has come over you. Are you well?”

“I’m quite well,” Solorfainiel reassured him, “but I must go.”

“Whither must you go?” Haldir asked.

“The creature Gollum has been taken to King Thranduil. I am charged to go there to guard him,” Solorfainiel explained.

“I shall go with you,” Haldir declared.

Solorfainiel smiled. “I know you will. We travel light. Mirkwood is not far from here.”

“Let us go, hir meleth,” Haldir declared.

Solorfainiel took to the stables and fetched her steed, Beinewen. Taking her reigns, Solorfainiel led Beinewen to Haldir. She then sprang lightly upon the horse and Haldir after her.

Solorfainiel then whispered in Beinewen’s ear. “Noro lim, Beinewen. Noro lim!”

With that, the steed sped off into the day. Haldir and Solorfainiel flew with great speed towards Mirkwood. They dashed over the Great Forest Road and passed the Mountains of Mirkwood. By nightfall, Haldir and Solorfainiel arrived in the company of Thranduil’s Elves. Solorfainiel and Haldir dismounted from Beinewen and were greeted by a company of Wood-Elves. Among this company was an Elf of kingly features. His hair was of fluid gold and his eyes were a shining grey. Upon his head, he wore a sparkling circlet.

“Mae govanen, Solorfainiel a Haldir o Rivendell,” the elf greeted.

“Mae govanen, Aran Thranduil o Mirkwood,” Solorfainiel and Haldir greeted together, bowing low.

Also among this company was Prince Legolas, who wore a circlet and a silver shirt.

“Mae govanen, Solorfainiel a Haldir,” Legolas greeted.

“Mae govanen, Legolas Thrandulion,” Solorfainiel and Haldir returned.

“You must be weary after your journey. Come, let us rest,” Thranduil told Haldir and Solorfainiel before turning to his servants, “Take the horse to our stables and tend to it well. We shall need food for our guests as well.”

Beinewen was taken down to the Elven stables to be cared for. Solorfainiel and Haldir joined King Thranduil and Prince Legolas in their palace among the many trees. Food was brought to them as well as wine.

“You shall rest comfortably tonight, my friends,” Thranduil said kindly.

“We are grateful to you, my Lord,” Solorfainiel said graciously.

“You are among kin here. It is only fitting,” Thranduil said with a smile.

“Since we speak of kin, Haldir and I have something to tell you,” Solorfainiel said, her eyes shining.

“What do you speak of?” Thranduil asked keenly.

“Prince Legolas knows already, but you do not. Solorfainiel and I are to wed in January,” Haldir said gleefully.

King Thranduil laughed heartily. “Well, what great tidings these are! Let us drink to this union!”

Thranduil poured some wine into his cup, as did Legolas.

“To Haldir and Solorfainiel!” Thranduil praised, raising his cup.

“To Haldir and Solorfainiel!” repeated Legolas.

Haldir and Solorfainiel raised their cups and they four drank to the joyous occasion. Later in the night, Legolas escorted Solorfainiel to her sleeping quarters.

“You shall sleep soundly tonight, Solorfainiel,” said Legolas.

“Within these fair woods I am certain of it, my Lord,” Solorfainiel said gratefully, “Haldir and I are most pleased by your courtesy, my Lord.”

“You are gracious guests,” Legolas said with a smile, “Come, rest now, Solorfainiel.”

Solorfainiel then took to her bed. “Good night, my Lord.”

Legolas smiled. “Good night, Solorfainiel.”

Legolas then went away to his own bed. As he did so, Solorfainiel could hear uncertainty in his voice. She also noticed that he trembled when he spoke. That night, Solorfainiel lay next to her precious Haldir. She held tight to him, as if he were a precious stone she did not want to part with. As she held him, Solorfainiel quivered.

“You shiver, hir meleth,” Haldir said attentively, “Is anything the matter?”

“Not at all,” Solorfainiel said dismissively.

“I do not need foresight to see that you are troubled,” Haldir told her, “What troubles you?”

“I consulted my uncle on the meaning of my dream,” Solorfainiel sighed, “He told me it was nothing more than a dream. He told me…that you would die in battle.”

“That shall not come to pass. You need not fear,” Haldir reassured her.

“My uncle has foresight,” Solorfainiel said.

“But we cannot know what is to come,” Haldir countered, “You and I promised to be together. So we shall live all the ages of this world and the next together. You believe in your heart what you saw in your dream, and so do I. Your dream is in my heart, as are you.”

“Were you blessed with the gift to comfort me with such speech?” Solorfainiel asked lovingly.

“I believe I am blessed to be with you,” Haldir countered, smiling.

Solorfainiel kissed her fiancé’s lips, and Haldir kissed her head. At ease once more, Solorfainiel slipped into the peace of her dreams as she was comforted by the beat of Haldir’s heart.
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Old April 22nd, 2009, 03:04 AM
Guin Sparrow Guin Sparrow is offline
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Chapter 4: The Arrival of Gollum

As the sun rose above the tall trees of Mirkwood, Haldir awoke beside his sleeping bride-to-be. He noticed how fair she was in her slumber. As quietly as he could, Haldir crept out of bed. Solorfainiel awoke slowly and took his soft hand.

“Hir meleth, (my love),” she whispered, opening her bright eyes.

“I was trying not to disturb your slumber,” Haldir told her, kissing her hand, “You looked at peace in your rest. I know you are troubled.”

“When you are at my side, I am at peace,” Solorfainiel said lovingly.

“As am I,” Haldir whispered.

Solorfainiel rose up and embraced her fiancé. “We must go. Lord Thranduil will be expecting us.”

“Can we not linger?” Haldir asked, wistfully.

“Not yet, meleth,” Solorfainiel whispered.

Taking her fiancé’s hands, Solorfainiel rose from her bed and followed Haldir to the halls of King Thranduil. King Thranduil sat at a long table with Prince Legolas next to him.

“I anor hilol, Solorfainiel a Haldir, (The sun is shining),” greeted King Thranduil, “Are you well this morning?”

“Quite well, my Lord,” replied Haldir.

“Would you care for breakfast?” Legolas asked attentively.

“That is most gracious of you, Lord Legolas,” answered Solorfainiel.

“Come, sit,” beckoned Thranduil, “Bring food and wine for our guests.”

A company of Elves poured wine into the goblets of Thranduil, Legolas, Solorfainiel, and Haldir. Eggs, toast, and fruits were than laid out on the table.

“Solorfainiel and I thank you for your hospitality, my Lord,” Haldir said gratefully.

“I am happy to give it,” Thranduil said kindly.

“You are kin to us and always welcome,” added Legolas.

“Hanon-le (thank you),” replied Haldir and Solorfainiel together.

“You best eat to your fill and take what strength you have,” King Thranduil said.

“I have received word that the creature Gollum is to be our prisoner for a time,” Legolas explained.

“Gollum?” Haldir questioned.

“Gandalf the Grey discovered him after he was set loose from the land of Mordor,” Legolas said.

Solorfainiel’s eyes widened. “Mithrandir?”

“Yes, the Grey Pilgrim,” Thranduil replied.

“Aragorn has taken the creature and he shall dwell with us to escape the enemy,” Legolas continued.

“Aragorn?” Solorfainiel asked, “Of the Dunedain?”

“Heir to Isildur,” Legolas added, “He has long dwelt in the West.”

“Will Sauron be aware of this creature’s capture?” Solorfainiel asked apprehensively.

“He does not bear the One Ring,” Legolas said, “Sauron’s eye will not be drawn to him.”

Solorfainiel shuddered at the naming of Sauron and took Haldir’s hand.

“Do not be troubled,” Thranduil reassured her, “Eat and take your rest. These forests are well-guarded.”

“No harm will come here,” Legolas declared.

“My heart is lightened by your kind words,” Solorfainiel said graciously.

“As is mine,” Haldir agreed.

“I am glad to know,” Thranduil said happily.

“If you wish, go now and rest or spend the day as you will,” Legolas said gently.

Solorfainiel and Haldir rose and bowed. “Hanon-le, hir-nin (thank you, my lord).”

Hand-in-hand, Solorfainiel and Haldir strolled about the woods of Mirkwood. Solorfainiel kept close to Haldir and she trembled constantly.

“Hir meleth, you are trembling,” Haldir said attentively, “Something is troubling you.”

“The more we are together, the more I feel you can read my thoughts,” Solorfainiel sighed.

“What is your trouble?” Haldir wanted to know.

“I fear what happens when that Gollum creature is brought to us,” Solorfainiel said fearfully, “Sauron’s eye is ever watchful. All of his thought is bent on retrieving the One Ring of Power. I fear what happens if Sauron discovers a former Ring-bearer here.”

Haldir gazed into Solorfainiel’s bright eyes. “Le baur u-gosta. Im na nan le. (You need not fear. I am with you.)”

“A Im gelir le na nan nin. (And I am glad you are with me.),” Solorfainiel said in comfort.

“I gave you my word that you would be happy,” Haldir whispered, “I intend to fulfill that promise.”

“You make me happier with each passing day,” Solorfainiel said with a smile, “And most of all, you shall make me happy next week.”

“As will you,” Haldir said, “I do not need Lord Elrond’s foresight to see that our wedding will make all the ages of this world worth living.”

“I could not have chosen a better man to spend an eternity with,” Solorfainiel told her fiancé lovingly.

By nightfall, Solorfainiel was awakened by shrieks. She looked out her window to find Legolas greeting a man and an amphibious creature. The man was tall, with dark hair that touched his shoulders and grey eyes. The creature was skinny and bald with two lights for eyes. Solorfainiel raced down to the door to find this man in the King’s halls.

“Is something wrong?” Solorfainiel asked in concern as she descended the stairs.

Legolas turned and bowed. “Solorfainiel, forgive me if I woke you.”

“No need to forgive, my Lord,” Solorfainiel said lightly, “Who is this man?”

“Im Aragorn Arathornion (I am Aragorn, son of Arathorn),” replied the man.

Solorfainiel’s eyes widened. “So it is true! You are the Heir of Isildur!”

“Indeed,” admitted Aragorn.

“You are one of the Dunedain! You are blessed with long life and speak in the Elvish tongue,” Solorfainiel gasped.

“That I am,” Aragorn said, “Who are you, Lady and where do you come from?”

Solorfainiel bowed low. “I am Solorfainiel, daughter of Elros, my Lord.”

“Then you are akin to Lord Elrond of Rivendell,” Aragorn said wisely.

“I am. Like my father, I was born to the Eldar and given the choice to belong to Men or Elf-kind. After my father’s death, I chose to belong to Elves,” Solorfainiel explained.

“I have not seen you in Rivendell, my lady,” Aragorn told her.

“I journey far and dwell in the woods of fair Lorien,” Solorfainiel told him, “But Rivendell is my home.”

“I see,” Aragorn said.

“Tell me, what were those terrible shrieks I heard?” Solorfainiel wanted to know.

“It was the creature Gollum,” Aragorn explained, “After his release from Mordor, I captured him to be held under the vigilance of King Thranduil. I am glad to be rid of the wretched creature.”

“Why is that?” Solorfainiel asked.

“Why else do you think? The creature wreaks the scent of dead fish and makes a racket,” Aragorn said in jest.

“So you leave the Elves this burdensome thing,” Legolas laughed.

“That seems like the ways of Men,” Solorfainiel added with a smile.

“I believe it is the way of Men,” Aragorn said with a laugh.

“Come, my friend,” Legolas beckoned, “You have journeyed long and carried a heavy burden.”

“Actually, the gangling creature isn’t what you call heavy,” Aragorn quipped.

“Either way, you need your rest,” Solorfainiel said attentively, “These forests are well-protected and you shall find refuge here.”

“Thank you, my friends,” Aragorn said graciously, “I go to rest. Good night, Legolas. Good night, Solorfainiel.”

Aragorn disappeared down the hall to the sleeping quarters.

Solorfainiel was in awe. “That is Isildur’s heir for certain.”

“Indeed,” Legolas agreed, “He is a great leader of Men. He will bring peace when he takes the throne of Gondor.”

“I do not doubt that,” Solorfainiel said with certainty.

For a moment, Legolas and Solorfainiel gazed into each other’s eyes. Legolas’s eyes were shining like stars on midsummer’s night. After a moment, they spoke.

“You need your rest, my lady,” Legolas said.

Solorfainiel bowed to Legolas. “Good night, my Prince.”

“Good night, Solorfainiel,” replied Legolas.

The next afternoon, Solorfainiel was alerted to more shrieks from the wretched creature Gollum. She descended down to the dungeons to find Gollum in a cell, bound, with Haldir as his guard.

“Ach, sss!” hissed Gollum, “It burns us! It freezes us! Let poor Sméagol go! Gollum, Gollum!”

Haldir did not acknowledge the creature and Solorfainiel did her best to keep her composure. She did not trust this Gollum character and feared for the safety of her fiancé.

Gollum continued to wail. “It hurts us, Precious! It bites us! Nasty Elveses twist it! Sméagol twists them!”

Solorfainiel could take no more of this creature. Quicker than sight, she flew in front of the cell with a bow drawn.

“You’d be dead before you touch him, foul creature!” Solorfainiel warned.

“Solorfainiel,” Haldir gasped.

“Nasty She-Elf hurts us! We hurts nasty She-Elf, Precious!” Gollum spat.

Solorfainiel fired a warning shot into Gollum’s cell. “You will not hurt me. I can do worse to you.”

Gollum finally cowered and coiled around himself. “Cruel Elves hurts Sméagol. Sméagol never hurts them!”

Solorfainiel lowered her bow.

Haldir took her hand. “Come, hir meleth.”

“I am sorry, hir meleth,” Solorfainiel apologized, “I fear for you. That creature is deceitful and murderous. I couldn’t bear to lose you.”

“I am here before you now and I always will be,” Haldir reassured her, “You should go and rest. You will need it.”

“Will you follow me?” Solorfainiel requested.

“As you wish,” Haldir said with a loving smile.

So Haldir followed Solorfainiel to her lodging quarters and lay down to rest with her.
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Old April 22nd, 2009, 07:51 AM
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I like the slightly jokey/friendly way that they speak with Aragorn, a change from the formality of Elvish court.
So I wonder what trouble Gollum will bring!

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Old April 27th, 2009, 03:49 AM
Guin Sparrow Guin Sparrow is offline
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Thank you, nuit!

Here's Chapter 5!

Chapter 5: Journey to Lorien

Many times the sun rose and fell on Haldir and Solorfainiel in the land of Mirkwood. Despite the presence of the vile creature Gollum, the couple was at peace. As the last few weeks of December came, Solorfainiel grew merrier by the day; Haldir was just as merry as his fiancée, if not more.

“Meleth-nin, do you know what is to become of us next month?” Solorfainiel asked wistfully.

“Do you not have the foresight to see it, niece of Elrond?” Haldir jested.

“Not if you cannot be my eyes for me,” Solorfainiel replied with a laugh.

“I know that we are to wed in the lovely woods of Lothlorien,” Haldir told her, a wide smile on his face, “I see us living in peace once Sauron’s evil is vanquished and bearing children as fair as you. Is this in your eyes, too, my lady?”

“We are not wed yet and every day I am certain you know my thoughts,” Solorfainiel said lovingly.

“Though we are not wed it does not mean that we are not one yet,” Haldir said sagaciously.

“You are right,” Solorfainiel agreed, “I have felt one with you since we agreed to wed.”

“And I with you,” Haldir replied.

Solorfainiel smiled, but turned her bright eyes downward.

“You are troubled,” Haldir said knowingly.

“Sauron’s wrath upon Middle-earth will be swift and unrelenting,” Solorfainiel said glumly, “If I should be parted from you-”

Haldir held his finger to her lips. “Do not speak any more, meleth-nin. Nothing shall ever part us, not even the Halls of Mandos. Let us not speak of this trouble now. Let us be merry now, as if there were no Shadow.”

“With you at my side, that is not a difficult task,” Solorfainiel whispered.

Solorfainiel and Haldir enjoyed their last few days in Mirkwood, despite the hissing and cries from the prisoner Gollum. At breakfast, they announced their plans to King Thranduil and Prince Legolas.

“My lords Thranduil and Legolas,” Haldir began, “It is this week that Solorfainiel and I shall be parted from you.”

“Haldir and I have planned to wed in the woods of Lorien,” Solorfainiel added.

“What wonderful tidings these are!” King Thranduil exclaimed, “I hope that you are blessed in your marriage.”

“That is most kind of you, my Lord,” Solorfainiel said humbly.

“We shall part today and sail down the Forest River and down the river Anduin,” Haldir told them.

“I can provide you with boats on your journey,” Thranduil said.

“For now, eat and gather your strength, my friends,” Legolas said kindly, “It will be a long journey to Lorien.”

“Thank you, Lord Legolas,” Haldir said appreciatively.

After breakfast, Solorfainiel and Haldir prepared for their journey. They were provided with a boat as promised by King Thranduil. Legolas gave them packages of lembas, the Elvish way bread. At last, they said their farewells to King Thranduil and Prince Legolas.

“Thank you for your hospitality, my Lords,” Haldir said appreciatively.

“May you be happy together for all the ages of this world,” Thranduil said happily.

“My heart is full of joy for both of you,” Legolas said kindly.

“Hanon-le,” Haldir and Solorfainiel said together.

At last, Solorfainiel and Haldir made their way down the Forest River. As they rowed down the river, they saw Thranduil and Legolas raise their arms to say farewell. The journey was long, but Solorfainiel and Haldir endured. By nightfall, they camped out and rested. When the sun rose again, they ate the lembas they were given and continued. By the fourth morning, Haldir and Solorfainiel sailed down the River Anduin. At last, by nightfall on the fifth day, they arrived in the woods of Lothlorien.

“Meleth-nin, welcome home,” Haldir whispered lovingly.

“I shall be happy to call Lorien my home now,” Solorfainiel whispered.

As they docked their boats, Solorfainiel and Haldir were greeted by Haldir’s brothers, Orophin and Rumil.

“Honig-nin! (My brothers!)” Haldir greeted.

Haldir helped Solorfainiel from the boat and then ran forward to embrace his brothers.

“Mae govanen, hir hanar!” Rumil and Orophin greeted gleefully, “Men gelir ceni ad lin! (We are happy to see you again!)”

Haldir stepped back and presented his bride.

Solorfainiel bowed low to Orophin and Rumil. “Suliad, Orophin a Rumil o Lorien. Le suilon na dae glass. (Greetings, Orophin and Rumil of Lorien. I greet thee with great joy.) ”

Rumil warmly embraced his future sister-in-law. “Mae govanen, Solorfainiel o Rivendell. Im gelir an gar-le, hir neth, (Welcome, Solorfainiel of Rivendell. I am happy to have you, my sister.)”

“Gerich veleth nin, nan (You have my love),” Orophin said lovingly.

Solorfainiel smiled lightheartedly. “Hanon-le, honig-nin. (Thank you, my brothers.)”

It wasn’t the most she could’ve said, but it was the most meaningful. Solorfainiel could barely comprehend that she and Haldir would soon be joined forever, especially as night fell over Lorien. Solorfainiel and Haldir lay snuggled in their bed. Solorfainiel listened to the sound of her fiancé’s heartbeat and felt her own skip a beat.

“Meleth-nin, do you know what tomorrow brings?” she asked sincerely.

“Though the wisest cannot tell what is to come, I know that tomorrow brings us together for all the ages of this world,” Haldir whispered adoringly.

“And what of the days beyond tomorrow?” Solorfainiel questioned.

“It is not difficult to see beyond,” Haldir told her, “Beyond tomorrow, we shall be one and live in this good earth while we may in peace.”

“That is what I saw in my dreams,” Solorfainiel sighed, “At last, my dreams come to life!”

“Indeed, our union will be more than a dream,” Haldir whispered with adoration.

“Le melon (I love you),” Solorfainiel whispered.

“You do not need to tell me, meleth-nin,” Haldir said, “I know you love me as I knew I loved you when you rode into Imladris.”

“I loved you then, and I shall love you for all the ages of this earth,” Solorfainiel whispered with utter passion.

Haldir held his fingers to her mouth a moment and gazed into her eyes. Solorfainiel stared into the grey pools of her husband-to-be. At last, their lips became one. With love and glee for what was to come, Solorfainiel and Haldir held each other close, lulled by the rhythm of their hearts.
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Old May 8th, 2009, 03:37 PM
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A very happy chapter Guin, I fear this isn't going to last though..

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Old May 9th, 2009, 05:45 AM
Guin Sparrow Guin Sparrow is offline
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Originally Posted by nuit View Post
A very happy chapter Guin, I fear this isn't going to last though..
Just you wait!
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Old May 16th, 2009, 05:39 AM
Guin Sparrow Guin Sparrow is offline
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Thank you, nuit!

Here's Chapter 6! Enjoy!

Chapter 6: The Wedding of Haldir and Solorfainiel

Dawn came swiftly as the sun spread her rays across Lorien. The rays flooded the bed-chamber of Haldir and Solorfainiel.

Solorfainiel felt the warmth of the sun and awoke with a smile. “Minuial na tol. (Dawn has come.)”

Solorfainiel turned to her beloved husband-to-be. “Meleth-nin, the sun has risen. She shines down on us this day.”

Haldir awoke and gazed into his fiancée’s eyes. “Indeed, She shines for us today.”

“Never has my heart been so light,” Solorfainiel sighed, “I feel as if I could be this merry forever.”

“You shall be so forever, meleth-nin,” Haldir told her, “I have promised that and I shall promise it today.”

“As will I,” Solorfainiel said, “And I know I shall be happy. No matter what may come, if I have you, I have everything.”

“I’ve not heard you speak like this before,” Haldir said.

“You shall hear it every day once we are married,” Solorfainiel said gaily.

“I greatly anticipate that,” Haldir said happily, “Come, let us enjoy this day we have been blessed with.”

“As you wish,” Solorfainiel agreed with a grin.

Solorfainiel and Haldir descended down to the banquet hall in Lorien and were greeted by Rumil and Orophin.

“Maer aur, Haldir a Solorfainiel, (Good morning, Haldir and Solorfainiel)” Rumil greeted.

“Aniral maded? (Do you want to eat?)” Orophin asked attentively.

“Tancave, hanon-le, (Yes, thank you.)” Solorfainiel replied politely.

Haldir pulled out a chair and Solorfainiel sat at the table beside her future husband. Breakfast consisted of buttered toast, eggs, and sausages as well as tea.

“I anor hilol an le, (The sun is shining for you)” Rumil said happily.

“Im gelir an le, (I am happy for you)” Orophin said, “Im gelir na cen hir hanar na in dis (I am happy to see my brother with his bride.)”

“Le vi milui, Orophin, (You are kind, Orophin)” Solorfainiel said humbly, her white face turning red.

“Le vi milui far na car nin gelir (You are kind to make me happy),” Orophin said poignantly.

Haldir raised his cup. “To us and this glorious day.”

Though they did not know their brother’s tongue, Rumil and Orophin raised their goblets tenderly.

“To us and this glorious day,” Solorfainiel repeated, raising her cup.

She and Haldir then drank to the joy of the day.

“I shall hope all of our days will be glorious,” Haldir told his bride, squeezing her hand.

“And in a few moments, they will be,” Solorfainiel said gaily.

“Let us not waste a moment. Go and prepare. I shall be waiting for you,” Haldir said eagerly.

“And I will be anticipating you,” Solorfainiel said tenderly.

Slowly, Solorfainiel released Haldir’s hand and dashed away to her chamber, followed by two Elven maids. Once in her chamber, Solorfainiel slipped out of her nightclothes and into her bright green wedding dress. With the help the Elf maids, Solorfainiel’s tresses were braided and a silver circlet was set upon her brow. Solorfainiel smiled as she glanced down at her ring that would be replaced with her wedding ring. Without another moment to lose, Solorfainiel hurried outside to her wedding.

She was met by Elrond outside.

“My lord Elrond,” Solorfainiel greeted joyously, “I’m overjoyed to see you, Uncle.”

“You did not think I would miss my niece’s wedding, did you?” Elrond asked slyly.

“No, I certainly did not,” Solorfainiel replied, smiling wider.

With her uncle at her side, Solorfainiel proceeded to Caras Galadon for the wedding. Solorfainiel’s eyes sparkled with love and gaiety when she beheld her future husband. Haldir was dressed in a silvery tunic that brought out his beauty and shone in the day’s sunset. Solorfainiel’s heartbeat increased as Elrond laid the hand of his niece in the hand of Haldir. From the moment they took each others’ hands, Solorfainiel and Haldir’s eyes never separated.

“I swear that in living or death, in shadow or light, I shall love you for all the ages of this world in the name of Eru Iluvatar, I swear to love you and no other,” Solorfainiel promised.

“And I you. Whether my life be as long as a life age of Men, or I live all the ages of Middle-earth and vanish to Valinor, I shall love you and no other in the name of Eru Iluvatar,” Haldir swore.

Haldir and Solorfainiel then placed new rings of Elven stars on their fingers to signify their love and union. The couple was then blessed by the grace of the Valar. It was then that both of their hearts could take no more. Feeling that their hearts would soon burst, Solorfainiel and Haldir swept each other into their arms and shared their first kiss as a wedded couple. As they kissed, their heartbeats were one. Solorfainiel seemed to have tears of joy in her bright eyes and the most luminous smile was upon her face. The smile and mirth were mirrored by Haldir. Overjoyed, Solorfainiel let out the laughter that she had been keeping inside of her.

At night, a feast was held in honor of Solorfainiel and Haldir. Elrond made a speech praising Haldir and wishing well for Solorfainiel. After that there was a toast to the newly married couple. Haldir and Solorfainiel linked arms and drank to their love and future together.

“Now and forever, I shall love you,” Solorfainiel whispered.

“And I you,” Haldir breathed.

At last, after the feast, Haldir swept Solorfainiel into his arms and carried her to their home. As soon as Haldir set his bride to her feet, her arms were about him again.

“Oh, Haldir! Never again will I be this joyous as I am now!” Solorfainiel gasped.

“Then let us live in this moment now as if it were as long as the ages of this world,” Haldir whispered.

Eagerly and with much passion, Solorfainiel’s lips embraced Haldir’s. With hands that moved quicker than sight, Solorfainiel removed Haldir’s shimmering tunic and tossed it away. She let her hands roam around her husband’s flawless body. Haldir took in the sweet scent of his wife. The two lovers then lay down on their soft bed, kissing as they did so.

“Forever,” Solorfainiel whispered.

“Forever,” Haldir repeated.

The wedded couple kissed again. And so it was that Solorfainiel and Haldir’s dreams came true. They were joined now until the breaking of the world. Not even the impending Shadow could separate them now. They were now joined, body and soul, forever.
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Old June 7th, 2009, 10:28 PM
Guin Sparrow Guin Sparrow is offline
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Chapter 7: A Joyful Announcement and the Attack on Mirkwood

The bright sun shone over Lorien once more and its golden rays flooded the bedroom of Solorfainiel and Haldir. The sun warmed Haldir’s face, informing him that morning had come. Haldir turned over to see his beloved wife still in sleep. He noticed how beautiful she was as she lay in her slumber. Haldir dared not wake his wife from her sleep, so he arose from bed as silently as possible. His attempt to elude his wife failed, as he felt the warmth of her hand against his.

“Did you think you could slip away so easily?” Solorfainiel asked slyly.

“I did not want to wake you,” Haldir said apologetically, “You looked beautiful just sleeping there.”

“There is no need to apologize, my beloved husband,” Solorfainiel said with much love in her voice.

“How are you this morning, my darling wife?” Haldir asked casually.

Solorfainiel giggled.

“Why do you laugh?” Haldir asked.

“You called me your wife,” Solorfainiel replied, smiling brighter, “It amuses me that you call me that.”

“I’m glad you’re pleased, my beloved wife,” Haldir said pointedly.

“You don’t need to make my heart swell with more love. You already have,” Solorfainiel laughed.

“I’m as happy as you are, if not more,” Haldir told her. “I never thought we’d see this day.”

Solorfainiel looked puzzled. “Why do you say that?”

“The Shadow upon us. I was afraid it held sway over our fate,” Haldir replied honestly.

Solorfainiel kissed her husband’s lips to comfort him. “You need not worry anymore. The Shadow does not hold sway and never will. We are together now and neither Shadow nor darkness will change that.”

Haldir stroked his wife’s dark locks and smiled placidly. “How is it you know how to ease what doubt I have in my heart?”

“We are wed now. My heart is yours. You should know that,” Solorfainiel laughed.

“Indeed, I do,” Haldir replied.

Haldir cupped the white face of Solorfainiel in his hands and brought her face up to his. His lips then twined with those of his wife once more.

“How shall we spend this first day of our new lives?” Haldir inquired.

“I do not know. I only planned to be with you,” Solorfainiel replied smartly.

“Well, shall we start with breakfast and let the day take us where it may?” Haldir asked.

“Certainly,” Solorfainiel agreed.

Haldir helped his wife out of bed and helped her put on her silk robe. Solorfainiel then turned and replaced her husband’s bare, beautiful skin with his silvery tunic. Wasting no time, the couple hurried down to breakfast. They feasted on tea with eggs and sausage. Solorfainiel squeezed Haldir’s hand.

Haldir raised his cup. “To our new life.”

“To our new life,” Solorfainiel repeated, grinning once more.

Just then, a messenger came bearing a letter.

“What is this?” Haldir asked.

“A message from Lord Thranduil of Mirkwood,” replied the messenger.

Solorfainiel took the letter. “Hanon-le.”

The messenger turned and left the room. Solorfainiel opened the letter and read silently to herself. Once finished, the paper flew from her hands to the table below her. The entire colour seemed to drain from Solorfainiel’s face after reading the message.

“What is it, hir-meleth?” Haldir asked, concerned.

Solorfainiel could not speak a word. It was as if she had no ability to speak by some spell.

“Solorfainiel?” Haldir asked, his voice rising anxiously.

“Mirkwood…has been attacked,” Solorfainiel said at last, gasping out the words.

“Attacked?” Haldir asked, shocked.

“Orcs from Mordor,” Solorfainiel continued, “They attacked without warning. The creature Gollum has escaped. Lord Thranduil and his people cannot hold the Orcs back for long. And…Prince Legolas is missing.”

“We must go, then,” Haldir declared. “We’ll take our fastest horses and ride to Mirkwood with all haste. Grab whatever weapons you can find. Come!”

Without another word, Haldir and Solorfainiel raced up to their rooms and dressed in light armor. Both armed themselves with elegant quivers and bows and long, shiny knives. Without wasting a moment, the couple ran to the stables and leaped up on their horse, Beinewen.

“Noro lim, Beinewen, noro lim!” Solorfainiel whispered she leaped behind Haldir.

The steed sped away faster than Solorfainiel could speak. Through the day and night, Solorfainiel and Haldir rode on, rarely stopping along the way. As they rode on, Solorfainiel couldn’t take her thoughts from Legolas and the suffering of his people. She also wondered what this tragedy would do to her and Haldir. One they stopped once, Solorfainiel couldn’t help lingering on those thoughts.

“Solorfainiel? What is it, hir meleth?” Haldir asked in concern.

“Did you ever think of this tragedy?” Solorfainiel asked glumly.

“I try not to,” Haldir said.

“I worry what this means for us,” Solorfainiel said sadly.

“What do you mean?” Haldir asked.

“What if my uncle is right? What if we have no future together?” Solorfainiel asked, her hope waning.

“We are together now,” Haldir said pointedly, “It does not matter what Lord Elrond has said. We are together and we will have our future.”

“I was certain of that before, but not now,” Solorfainiel said forlornly.

“Do not say such things!” Haldir protested. “We will be together forever. There is always hope.”

Solorfainiel smiled and kissed Haldir once more. “Come, we must ride.”

Solorfainiel and Haldir leapt up on Beinewen and continued on their journey. After many days and nights, they reached the kingdom of Mirkwood. When they arrived, their breath was taken. Many Orcs and Elves lay on the ground, slain. Blood stained the earth and the stench of Orc could be smelled everywhere. Solorfainiel wanted to turn her eyes, away but she could not.

“Courage, Solorfainiel,” Haldir whispered.

Solorfainiel nodded. Faster than sight, she and Haldir leapt off of Beinewen and raced to battle, armed with knives and bows. The battle was still raging when they arrived and the two plunged in.

“Solorfainiel, take cover!” Haldir shouted as he notched an arrow in his bow.

“No!” Solorfainiel protested.

“Go! Get to safety now!” Haldir told her.

“I’m not leaving you!” Solorfainiel said firmly.

“I can’t lose you!” Haldir said, his bow singing.

“You won’t!” Solorfainiel said.

Haldir nodded and the battle continued on. Bows twanged and sounded like music amidst the chaos. Both Orcs and Elves fell together and stained the earth with their blood. Haldir and Solorfainiel fought side-by-side, taking down many foes. Once their arrows were spent, knife work began. Their knives clanged through the tough armor of the Orcs, taking them down with ease. Haldir separated from Solorfainiel’s side to challenge the leader of the Orcs. His knives met with the huge Orc’s in perfect timing. Haldir blocked a deadly slash from the creature and slashed him with his knife. Haldir smiled at the creature in triumph and continued to parry with the monster. However, the creature gained more advantage than Haldir expected. As Haldir tried to slash the monster once more, the monster used his shield to hook away his weapon and slashed Haldir. Haldir stabbed the creature with his knife, but alas, the Orc did not die. The Orc yanked the knife from its belly and punched Haldir, its iron fist sending him to the ground. Defenseless, Haldir looked up at the creature ready to kill. Suddenly, the creature was stabbed from behind and fell forward! Solorfainiel pulled her newly blackened blade from the Orc’s body and helped her husband to his feet. So they continued to battle on, killing as many Orcs as possible. By nightfall, the Orcs were dead and had taken many Elves with them.

Solorfainiel raced to meet King Thranduil. “My Lord Thranduil!”

“Solorfainiel, thank you for your aid,” Thranduil said gratefully.

“You do not need to thank me, my Lord,” Solorfainiel said, “Has Prince Legolas been recovered?”

“No, he has not, and I am worried for his life,” Thranduil answered, the fear marking his voice.

“Let us not waste a moment looking for him,” Haldir chimed in. “Find the King’s son!”

“Thir an ni aranion! (Look for the King’s son),” cried Solorfainiel.

An army of Elves searched the blood-stained earth for their lord. With the large number of casualties from battle, finding Legolas would be difficult. Something ill was against them. The numerous bodies that lay scattered about proved no help to finding Legolas and neither did the setting sun. Legolas’s very life depended on both of these components. When the sun was sinking in the sky, hope of finding the prince was waning like a flame.

“Where is Legolas? Where is my son?” Thranduil asked fearfully, wringing his hands in despair.

“My Lord,” Haldir said solemnly. “We are doing what we can, but we are failing.”

“Obviously!” Thranduil snorted.

“It is possible that Prince Legolas has been captured,” Haldir said grimly.

“Possible or certain, Master Haldir?” Thranduil demanded.

Haldir did not reply.

“Even you do not know the answer,” continued Thranduil. “Do not give me such sad words unless you know them to be true. Continue to find my son!”

“My lord, the sun is nearly setting and we have not found him,” Haldir said.

“I said find my son!” Thranduil commanded.

“Yes, my Lord,” Solorfainiel said at last.

“Solorfainiel, there is no hope left,” Haldir gasped. “How can we find Legolas now? We’ve looked for ages and we have not been successful. Why do you obey?”

“We cannot give up hope for him,” Solorfainiel argued.

“There is no hope for Legolas now,” Haldir protested.

“There is always hope, Haldir,” Solorfainiel replied, “We cannot let Thranduil suffer like this. We must give him peace, whether Legolas be alive or dead.”

“Find him!” Thranduil cried.

Haldir nodded. “As you wish, my Lord.”

So the search continued on for Legolas, even with hope dwindling. Stars illuminated the sky, giving faint light in the darkness. Throughout the night, the search party scoured the forest for Legolas. All seemed lost until an Elvish warrior gave a cry.


Down in a narrow stream, Haldir and Solorfainiel saw the warrior pointing to something below him. With a sudden burst of hope the couple raced down to the stream to investigate. Both of their hearts leapt as the color left their faces at their discovery.

“Prince Legolas,” Solorfainiel gasped.

Legolas lay motionless in the water, his eyes unclosed, as was the way of the Elves. Blood gushed from his mouth and belly. Solorfainiel looked down to see the shaft of an Orc spear protruding from Legolas’s body and she shuddered.

Haldir put his hand on the prince’s heart. “He’s alive!”

“He’s alive?” Solorfainiel asked, shocked.

“Yes, but only just,” replied Haldir gravely, “We must get him back to the King. He needs medicine. Come!”

Solorfainiel turned to the warrior. “Help us take Lord Legolas to the King.”

“Right away,” said the Elf compliantly.

As gently as possible, the three Elves helped carry the maimed Legolas back to King Thranduil.

“My Lord!” Solorfainiel shouted.

“Have you found my son?” Thranduil asked.

Solorfainiel turned to reveal Haldir and the Elf warrior carrying the unconscious Legolas. Thranduil froze and the light left his eyes.

“Do not be troubled, my King,” Haldir said in comfort, “He’s alive, but he needs medicine immediately.”

“Take him inside!” Thranduil said hastily.

Without wasting a moment, Legolas was carried inside Thranduil’s palace and laid on a soft bed.

“What happened to him?” Thranduil asked worriedly.

“He has been stabbed by an Orc spear, it seems,” Haldir replied.

“Please, save him. He is my only son and heir to my throne. Please, do not let him die!” Thranduil begged, shaking in apprehension.

“We can save him, my Lord,” Solorfainiel reassured him. “Please, leave us so we may tend to him.”

“I want to be with him when he wakes,” Thranduil declared.

“And you will, my King,” comforted Solorfainiel. “But not now. With the terror you are in, we cannot efficiently save your son.”

“You cannot separate me from my child!” Thranduil cried.

“Please, my Lord! If you do not let us work alone we cannot help Legolas. I ask you to go for his sake,” Solorfainiel said firmly.

Thranduil went hush and gazed at his dying son. He then left the room without a word. Solorfainiel sighed deeply as she and Haldir prepared to operate on Legolas.

“Open his shirt,” Haldir said.

Solorfainiel released the fastenings of Legolas’s tunic and opened it. Blood continued to ebb from Legolas’s gaping wound.

“Haldir, I need you to get me some bandages and water as fast as you can,” Solorfainiel instructed.

Haldir leaped up and ran to fetch the tools Solorfainiel requested. As he did, Solorfainiel bent down and whispered in Legolas’s ear.

“My Lord, if you can hear me, we are going to save you.”

Haldir then returned with linen bandages and a large bowl of water. “What now?”

“I need to remove the spear,” Solorfainiel said. “Hold him down.”

Without waking Legolas, Haldir held him tight. Solorfainiel then tugged as hard as she could. Legolas screamed and writhed, but Haldir held him firmly. Solorfainiel tugged again and Legolas continued to thrash about. At last, the broken spear was free. She tossed it away and proceeded to bathe the wound with water. After that, she bound the wound in the many bandages. Legolas stopped writhing and his body relaxed. Haldir and Solorfainiel sighed deeply in relief. Just then, Thranduil burst in the door.

“How is he?” asked the King.

“He will live, my King,” Haldir said confidently.

“When he wakes, you must tell him he is to rest,” Solorfainiel instructed.

“Thank you both!” Thranduil cried, overjoyed.

“We were glad to be of service to you, my Lord,” Haldir said humbly.

“Both of you must be exhausted. There is a bed chamber upstairs. Go now and rest,” Thranduil said kindly.

“Thank you, lord,” Solorfainiel said graciously.

Hand-in-hand, Haldir and Solorfainiel climbed the stairs to a large bedroom with a bed big enough for two. As they lay down together, Haldir couldn’t help but be amazed at Solorfainiel’s skill in finding and saving Legolas. He was also puzzled by her need to find the Prince at all costs.

“Hir meleth, I noticed that you were desperate to find Prince Legolas,” Haldir said.

“I could not leave King Thranduil to suffer,” Solorfainiel explained.

“There is more reason to that.” Haldir said knowingly. “I know there is.”

“I was simply doing as my Lord commanded,” Solorfainiel said dismissively.

“You are hiding something from me. You have failed in keeping it, so tell me why you wanted to help Legolas.” Haldir told her.

Solorfainiel sighed and gazed into her husband’s grey eyes. “In the midst of this tragedy, there is some hope left. I was elated to hear this wonderful news.”

“What is it, my darling?” Haldir gasped in wonder.

Solorfainiel squeezed Haldir’s hand and placed in on her belly. “We have a child, Haldir.”

“A child?” Haldir asked, his eyes wide with delight.

“Yes. Haldir, I am pregnant,” Solorfainiel whispered, a gleeful smile on her face.
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Old August 30th, 2009, 10:17 PM
Guin Sparrow Guin Sparrow is offline
Orlando's Shadow King
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 1,066

Chapter 8: The Bitterness of Mortality and a Glimpse of Hope

Haldir’s eyes nearly bulged out of his skull. “Pregnant?”

“Yes,” Solorfainiel replied with joy.

Haldir did not smile. He felt as if he’d been punched in the stomach. He turned his eyes away from Solorfainiel.

“Haldir? What is it?” Solorfainiel asked in concern.

“When did you know?” Haldir inquired.

“The morning after our wedding night,” Solorfainiel replied.

A sudden anger rose in Haldir. “And you rode to Mirkwood knowing this?”

“What else could I have done?” Solorfainiel asked hotly.

“Why did you not tell me?” Haldir demanded.

“If I had you would not have let me ride to battle,” Solorfainiel argued.

“And rightly so!” snapped Haldir. “Do you know that you could’ve endangered yourself and our child?”

“Yes, but I could not risk the lives of King Thranduil’s people,” Solorfainiel said as if justifying herself.

“You risked your life as well as the life of our child!” Haldir gasped exasperated.

“I chose the lesser of the two evils. My death over the deaths of thousands of our kin,” Solorfainiel said firmly.

“Do you understand what you’re saying?” Haldir demanded in shock. “You would rather die than live with your children.”

“I am the daughter of Elros,” Solorfainiel said bitterly. “My uncle and my father were given a choice to which race they desired to belong to. My uncle chose Elf-kind. My own father chose to belong to Men, and thus abided by the Doom of Men. I am no different from my father, it seems.”

“You are the daughter of Elros. You are not Elros at all. You do not have to choose as he did,” Haldir said, softening a little.

“Why do you grow angry with me? Would you rather leave Mirkwood to torment?” Solorfainiel asked.

Haldir sighed. “I do not want to lose you. If there is one thing I fear most in this world, it is losing you.”

Solorfainiel touched her husband’s smooth cheek. “You will never lose me.”

Haldir placed his hand on his wife’s belly. He thought about the new life growing inside of her. Though he knew the child was blessed with immortality, he felt the bitterness of mortality about the child. Haldir thought about how vulnerable the child would be as well as Solorfainiel while the child was still unborn.

“I’ve never had to taste the bitterness of the Doom of Men,” Haldir said. “But in a strange way, it feels as if I’ve had my first taste of it.”

Solorfainiel squeezed his hand. “I know. Our child and I are prone to death just the same as Men.”

“Let us think no more of this,” Haldir said comfortingly. “We have been given a gift. We are truly blessed today.”

The next morning, Solorfainiel awoke and began to tend Legolas the first thing in the morning. The first thing Solorfainiel did was change Legolas’s bandages. Solorfainiel’s uncle, Lord Elrond was an expert healer; he taught her how to care for wounds such as those worn by Legolas. Solorfainiel remembered the lessons well. She remembered how to remove bandages daily and keep the wound clean. She knew that the bandages should be taut, but just loose enough to circulate blood. Solorfainiel was also instructed to reassure the wounded and comfort them. After many centuries, Solorfainiel remembered these lessons and skills. Now she kept them in mind as she operated on Legolas.

By this time, the white bandages were dyed red with Legolas’s blood. Solorfainiel turned white as she gazed at the amount of blood absorbed by the cloth. When she removed the cloth from Legolas’s wound, she would’ve been ill if she were a Mortal. Legolas’s wound was black and ugly and the stench was like the carcasses of the Orcs that stained the earth the day before. The sight and stench of the wound made Solorfainiel cringe but she remained stout. Solorfainiel willed herself to continue and she did so. She removed the blood-soaked bandages from Legolas’s belly and began to dress the wound. Solorfainiel took some lukewarm water and bathed the wound as gently as she could. After washing the wound, Solorfainiel wrapped fresh bandages around Legolas’s belly. When she finished, she was dismayed that Legolas did not wake or stir.

As she looked down at her injured prince, Solorfainiel began to have thoughts about mortality as Haldir had while he placed his hand on her belly. Legolas was whiter than the bandages that were wrapped about him and he trembled and moaned helplessly. To see her lord reduced to this state Solorfainiel was reminded of the grim fate of Men that the Elves did not share. Solorfainiel had not seen battle and to watch the slaughter of her kin and to look down at the wounded Legolas made her quake. Tears began to leak from her eyes and she could not help but weep for Legolas. He had suffered so much and he was tasting mortality for his efforts.

Hir nin, i amarth o uin firiath i ava na lin amarth (My lord, the Doom of Men will not be your fate), Solorfainiel thought to herself as she wept. Solorfainiel looked out the window and saw many funeral mounds being raised for those brave Elves that died protecting Mirkwood. She wept for those souls going to the Halls of Mandos. She realized in that moment that Elves and Men were no different. They were still bound to the same doom, by sword or by the slow pace of time.

Haldir entered the room and saw his wife in tears. His heart broke for her. He could not bear to see his wife like this. Solorfainiel’s grey eyes were stained red from her tears and she quaked helplessly. Haldir shuddered as he saw the state she was in.

“Hir meleth, why do you cry?” he asked compassionately.

“I saw them, Haldir! I saw them being buried!” Solorfainiel cried. “All of those Elves who now rest in the Halls of Mandos now. It frightens me to see them be buried and to see Lord Legolas in this state.”

Haldir held his wife close and whispered pretty Elvish nonsense in her ear. Solorfainiel felt the warmth of her husband’s skin beneath his clothes and the strong beat of his heart. She was soothed by these things as well as the gentle, warm breath of Haldir as he whispered.

“Lord Legolas does not improve,” she sobbed. “He hasn’t stirred since yesterday and he looks like death itself.”

“Hir meleth, it will be all right,” Haldir reassured her. “Legolas is a strong Elf. Death by an Orc spear will not be his fate. Not for the son of a king.”

“I am sorry I did not tell you of our child before. I never thought of the consequences that could’ve come. Elves and Men are bound to the same fate and I did not consider that. Forgive me,” Solorfainiel said forlornly.

“It is all right, hir meleth,” Haldir comforted her. “You and our baby are safe now. Everything will be fine.”

Just then, King Thranduil entered the room. His face was exhausted and grim. He had buried his own people beneath the earth of his kingdom and the scars were left not only on his heart, but on his despondent face.

“Is my son well?” Thranduil asked with faint hope in his voice.

“No, my Lord,” Solorfainiel said sadly. “He has not stirred since yesterday.”

“What new villainy is this?” Thranduil gasped as if in torture. “My son will not be taken from me!”

“Calm yourself, my Lord,” Haldir said coolly. “It has only been one evening. Let us not assume the worst too quickly.”

“Do you have children, Master Haldir?” Thranduil asked pointedly.

“Not yet,” Haldir said.

“Then do not speak to me about matters you cannot understand!” Thranduil countered irately. “By the grace of the Eldar, save him. Help us!”

“I am sorry, my Lord,” Haldir apologized.

“My Lord, you have buried too many of your people today. You should take some rest,” Solorfainiel suggested.

“I will not leave my son,” Thranduil said firmly.

Solorfainiel nodded. “Very well, but I do not know if there is any hope.”

“There is always hope,” Thranduil said with determination in his voice.

Just then, Legolas’s fingers twitched. Only Solorfainiel and Haldir noticed it. They believed their eyes to be cheating them until Legolas’s fingers twitched again. Then his hand began to coil and relax and his chest rose from under the blankets that layered him.

“My Lord,” Haldir gasped, pointing to Legolas.

Thranduil gazed at his son and to his relief, Legolas was breathing and alert!

“Oh, Legolas!” Thranduil gasped, weeping.

The wounded prince fought to speak. “…Ada.(Father)”

“I ion nin,(My son)” Thranduil replied happily. .

“I am sorry. I have… failed you,” Legolas said, his voice raspy and racked with pain.

“No, you fought bravely,” Thranduil whispered.

“Solorfainiel?” Legolas whispered.

Solorfainiel leaned in closer to Legolas. “My Prince?”

“Am I dying, Solorfainiel?” Legolas asked weakly.

“No, you are going to be fine, my Prince,” Solorfainiel said.

“I…do not feel like I am fine,” Legolas said in his sickly voice.

Solorfainiel smiled. “Not at the moment, but you will soon.”

“You may be in pain, my Lord, but it is good to know you are alive,” Haldir laughed.

“I...I am sorry, Haldir of Lorien,” Legolas said earnestly.

“For what?” Haldir asked, puzzled.

“I know you and Solorfainiel only just wed. I am sorry for…bringing you into this,” Legolas explained contritely.

“My Lord, you fought bravely and were only asking for help to defend your people and received a wound for your valiant efforts. If I were you, I would not be apologizing,” Solorfainiel said good-naturedly.

“Thank you, Solorfainiel,” Legolas said with a smile, “Are…are you well?”

“With all due respect, Lord, we are feeling better than you do right now,” Haldir said lightheartedly.

“Which reminds me that you need your rest, now, my Prince,” Solorfainiel said maternally.

“When last I knew… I was the ruler of Mirkwood,” Legolas chuckled. “I’m not dead, you know. At least, I hope I will not die.”

“Well, even Elvish princes of Mirkwood must follow orders,” Solorfainiel said shortly. “You are no use to us with a wound to your belly. Without your rest, you will not be able to kill many Orcs.”

“And that, for you, would be even worse than your death,” said Haldir cheerfully.

“I don’t know what I would do if I could not kill Orcs,” Legolas laughed. “My fingers would forget the feel of the string on my bow and their own strength.”

“Which is all the more reason for you to rest, my Lord,” Solorfainiel said firmly. “We will let you rest. Sleep well, my Prince.”

Legolas took Solorfainiel’s hand. “Thank you, Solorfainiel. My people and I are in your debt.”

Solorfainiel trembled at Legolas’s touch, and Legolas did the same at hers. Without a word, Solorfainiel turned away and left the chamber with Haldir and King Thranduil following.

“I told you there was always hope, did I not?” gloated Thranduil as he beamed.

“You have certainly proved us wrong,” Haldir admitted.

“It brings great joy to my heart to know my son is alive,” Thranduil said, “Knowing you assisted makes me all the more content.”

“That is very kind, my Lord,” Haldir said humbly.

“Master Haldir, you told me that you are not a parent yet. Whatever do you mean? Are you and Solorfainiel expecting?” Thranduil inquired.

“We are indeed, my Lord,” Solorfainiel answered, grinning.

“By all the leaves in Lorien!” Thranduil gasped. “You rode here carrying a child?”

“I know it seems foolish, but I could not bear to leave your people to suffer,” Solorfainiel told him.

“Foolish, yes. But nevertheless, a brave effort,” Thranduil said. “Congratulations and may you be blessed.”

“Thank you, my Lord,” said Haldir and Solorfainiel together.

Just then, an Elvish warrior came barging in to the hall. “My King! My King!”

“What news, Authion?” the King asked.

“Reinforcements, my Lord! The Orcs have come back!” replied Authion.

“Come back?” Thranduil gasped in horror.

“They are coming in waves, my Lord! We need reinforcements!” Authion cried.

“We have no reinforcements!” Thranduil said in distress.

“What are your orders, Sire?” Authion asked.

Thranduil paused. After a brief glimmer of hope, his world came crashing down around him again. He had only just buried his brave warriors and his heart ached if he had to bury more. He knew what had to be done, yet his heart was against it.

“My Lord?” asked Authion in uncertainty.

“Send everyone able to wield a weapon immediately! Get the weak and wounded inside these halls and barricade the door! Go!” Thranduil commanded.

Authion hurried away to gather his men and the injured. Haldir and Solorfainiel prepared immediately for battle. Despite his unwillingness to bring further suffering to his people, Thranduil was filled with determination as well.

“Sauron’s gaze must be short if he thinks he can crush me!” Thranduil said, the anger and resolve in his voice.

Haldir and Solorfainiel prepared to head out to battle. Before they could join the battle outside, Haldir stopped.

“What is it?” Solorfainiel asked.

“You know very well what it is,” Haldir countered.

“Haldir, no. I would be ashamed if I could not fight,” Solorfainiel begged.

“You have done your part. As a mother, you cannot continue. I would be ashamed to lose you,” Haldir told her.

“You will not lose me!” Solorfainiel cried in protest.

The raging chaos outside brought the argument to a close.

“All right, come, but stay in sight,” Haldir ordered.

With bows drawn, Solorfainiel and Haldir charged outside into the battle. The scene was pure pandemonium and disarray. There seemed to be music as bows twanged and the metal spears of the Orcs clashed. There was a foul smell of the vile creatures, particularly when they died. Many Orcs and Elves were slain already, staining the earth with their blood. Undaunted, Solorfainiel and Haldir tossed themselves into the melee, killing as many Orcs as possible. None of them wasted arrows. At close range, the arrows would be used as if they were knives and stabbed into the beasts. Solorfainiel engaged in combat with multiple Orcs and killed them with ease and no mercy. Haldir, too, showed no mercy as he took down foe after foe.

Solorfainiel did not notice it amidst the madness, but she had lost Haldir somewhere in the fray. Desperately, she battled her way through and searched for him.

“Haldir! Haldir!” Solorfainiel cried as she cut down foes.

Solorfainiel then noticed Authion was wounded. Desperate to save the Elf, she raced to his side and challenged the big Orc before he could deliver the killing blow to Authion. Solorfainiel engaged in fierce combat with the huge Orc. She parried and slashed at the creature with her silver knives. Though she had the grace, Solorfainiel was fatigued by the battle and her condition. She barely managed to block every blow. The foe seemed to knock her backwards with every swing of its blade. Suddenly, the fell beast brought the hilt of its blade down onto Solorfainiel’s head. Solorfainiel gasped in pain and fell to her knees. She barely registered the second blow to her head. All she knew was her need to find Haldir before darkness took her.

The Orc towered over his enemy. “This She-Elf isn’t dead yet.”

Another Orc came to his side and kicked Solorfainiel, who did not stir. “She’s as limp as a dead Elf. Always a good sign.”

“Why?” the first Orc asked.

“There’s no pleasure in it for us if she’s dead. She’d make a good captive and maybe even meat,” replied the second Orc.

Both of the villainous creatures cackled.

“Take her now!” commanded the first Orc.

“If she’s not dead yet, she’ll be wishing for death soon enough,” chortled the accompanying Orc.

Cackling, the terrible creatures hoisted Solorfainiel’s limp form up and carried her away.

Later in the evening, when the Orcs were subdued, Haldir failed to notice Solorfainiel was not with him. A great wave of fear washed over him as he desperately searched.

“Solorfainiel!” he cried, his voice growing louder and more frantic as he looked.

“Haldir!” a voice cried.

Haldir noticed Authion heading toward him.

“Authion! Where is Solorfainiel?” Haldir asked desperately.

“I do not know. She saved me from an Orc and that is all I remember,” Authion said grimly.

The coarse laughter from a dying Orc sounded from below them. Haldir held his knife to the dying creature.

“Tell me what I want to know before I kill you,” he demanded darkly.

“She-Elf…is gone!” spat the creature in his awful Common Tongue, “Going to be a nice little prisoner, I heard. If she’s not dead, she’ll beg to die later!”

In fury, Haldir stabbed the creature in the heart. Releasing his blade, he tossed it to the ground in defeat.

“No!” Haldir cried.

“Come, we must return to the Halls of Thranduil,” beckoned Authion.

Upon arriving back at the King’s halls, Haldir could feel nothing but coldness and despair. He did not know if Solorfainiel was alive and he did not know where to look for her. He only knew that though she was strong, Solorfainiel would not last long in the cruel imprisonment of the Orcs.

He slowly approached the King, whose face was glummer than before.

“Too few of you return,” he said sorrowfully.

“The battle is won, my Lord,” Haldir said tonelessly.

“Only for now, Master Haldir,” Thranduil corrected him. “Where is Solorfainiel?”

Tears glimmered in Haldir’s eyes. “She has been captured, my Lord.”

Thranduil froze. His heart seemed to stop beating for a moment. If the suffering of his people weren’t enough, it would be the torment of Solorfainiel.

“We will find her, Master Haldir,” Thranduil declared.

“Please, my Lord, I must go alone,” Haldir begged.

“No, Haldir,” Thranduil said, “It is too dangerous for one Elf. I insist you let me follow. Solorfainiel and you gave everything to protect my people. It is only fair that I help rescue her.”

“Very well,” Haldir declared. “We must be swift if we are to find her. The sun is still high, and that leaves plenty of light to find Orc prints.”

“Orcs breathe so loud we can shoot them anywhere. Once we find their camp, it should not be difficult to kill them all and rescue Solorfainiel,” Authion said.

“Call for the men. Get as many able men we have. When we find the camp, we will show no mercy,” Thranduil declared.

“Let us say no more, my friends,” Haldir said hastily. “We must make haste. We are fortunate to have light. Let us hurry and destroy these foul beasts.”

With that, Haldir, Thranduil, Authion, and a gaggle of strong warriors sped off on their light feet in pursuit of Solorfainiel and her Orc captors. As he ran with all his might, Haldir never tired. His thoughts were on Solorfainiel and their baby. He only thought of saving them before it was too late.

“Hold on, hir meleth,” Haldir whispered to himself optimistically.
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Old November 3rd, 2009, 11:25 PM
Guin Sparrow Guin Sparrow is offline
Orlando's Shadow King
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 1,066

Chapter 9: Meldarion

When Solorfainiel awoke, all she felt was cold. She was out in the elements, and her light armor had been stolen and replaced with a dirty white shirt and brown pants. Solorfainiel felt something cutting into her wrists and looked to see that her hands were bound tightly. Immediately, Solorfainiel’s thoughts went to Haldir and Thranduil. Did they survive? She could only fret over their fate. Solorfainiel worked her bound hands down to her pregnant belly. She only hoped that Haldir would save her and their unborn child. Solorfainiel knew she had to be strong if she was to survive.

“I hen nin, men boe na thalion (My child, we must be strong),” Solorfainiel told her child in a voice lower than a whisper, “Lin ada lu tol. Hebo estel, hen. (Your father will come. Have hope, child.)

Solorfainiel felt something move in her belly, and it told her that the child understood her words. Having a new life growing inside of her gave Solorfainiel courage. She then tried to wriggle free of her bindings, but the ropes were coarse and stained her wrists red with blood, causing her to cry out.

“Hold your tongue before you lose it, She-Elf!” snarled the raspy voice of an Orc.

“Are you certain it will be my tongue that will be lost?” Solorfainiel spat. “You will lose yours for certain!”

“I’m not so sure of that,” said the Orc in a slimy voice. “You are meant to be a prisoner here, but you can also be meat as well. We haven’t had Elf for a long time.”

The Orc drew a black knife and placed it against Solorfainiel’s throat. “My gut is tempted to carve you up right now. But I was ordered to keep you alive.”

“I suppose you will have to starve,” Solorfainiel said defiantly.

The Orc violently seized Solorfainiel by the throat and raised her off the ground. Solorfainiel gripped the hand of the Orc and fruitlessly kicked and fought for freedom. Alas, the Orc’s hold was of iron and there was no escaping it.

“I was told to keep you alive so that you’d suffer,” spat the Orc.

The Orc dropped Solorfainiel to the floor, and Solorfainiel sputtered and gasped for precious air.

“Let’s give this Elvish rat her torment!” the Orc declared.

Solorfainiel was lifted to her feet and her hands were tied to a tree. Her dingy shirt was shredded at the back.

“What makes you think you won’t be carved up?” Solorfainiel asked bravely.

“No one is coming to save you, you Elf scum. You’ll be dead soon enough,” threatened the Orc.

Suddenly, crack! Solorfainiel gasped in surprise as an Orc whip struck her flesh.

“That is the terror you’ll endure. Let’s see how long you last,” the Orc told her.

“You are foolish if you think you can break me, foul creature,” Solorfainiel said stoutly.

“I believe it is you who are the fool,” corrected the Orc.

Crack! Snap! Solorfainiel was bitten over and over again by the unfeeling whip. Though the pain was like being struck with fire, Solorfainiel refused to cry out. By now her back was oozing blood and decorated with many stripes. Solorfainiel was weakening, but she refused to show it.

“I must say, you’re quite a challenge,” marveled the Orc.

“If…if you want to break me, you will not succeed. I warned you,” Solorfainiel warned, catching her breath as she spoke.

“You will beg for mercy sooner than you think and you will be granted it,” the Orc said wickedly.

Crack! The Orc’s whip stung Solorfainiel’s skin with no mercy.

“Had enough, She-Elf?” chortled the Orc. “You’re going to die here. Take the Elf and drown her!”

With their steel hold, the Orcs hoisted a struggling Solorfainiel up and dropped her in front of a cauldron of water. Solorfainiel had no time to breathe before she was dunked into the water repeatedly. Solorfainiel would not give in to her enemies. Nevertheless, she was afraid. She feared Haldir might never make it or that he was already dead. She prayed that he was alive and that he would save her and their child.

Haldir, please come. Please be alive, Solorfainiel thought to herself.

“It is a good thing Orcs are so heavy on their feet or this would be impossible!” Haldir jested as he scanned a large footprint in the earth. “Lord Thranduil! Authion!”

The two Elves came and inspected the footprint that Haldir pointed out.

“It is an Orc-print for certain,” Thranduil declared. “No other folk make such a trampling.”

“This is a fresh track,” Authion observed.

Trekking through the fast wood and numerous tall trees, Haldir and his company found many Orc footprints in the soil. They knew for certain that they were closer to finding Solorfainiel.

“Do you smell that?” Thranduil asked. “It is a foul smell.”

Haldir and Authion sniffed the air and grimaced in disgust.

“Now I’m sure we are close!” Authion said.

“If it were not for my wife, I would wish to be away from these creatures to elude their stench!” Haldir exclaimed.

“We will just have to stomach it a little longer,” Thranduil declared. “What use are we to Solorfainiel if we turn back because we could not endure the fell odor of the Orc?”

After hiking through the forest a few miles more, Authion knelt down and noticed something strange.

“There is blood here. It is Elvish blood,” he noticed.

“Solorfainiel!” Haldir gasped, his heart leaping. “She is still alive!”

Just then, the group heard a cry from within the woods.

“Do you hear that?” Thranduil asked.

“That is not the cry of an Orc,” Haldir said wisely.

Creeping through the forest, Haldir, Thranduil, and Authion beheld a horrible site. An elf maid was bound and forced to her knees before a cauldron and her head was dunked in numerous times.

“Solorfainiel,” Haldir said breathlessly. “We must go now!”

“Authion, take the men and get in there,” Thranduil commanded.

“You mean commit suicide?” Authion asked, puzzled.

“No, but you will get the idea when the moment comes,” Thranduil said slyly. “Go!”

Authion and his men hurried off and dashed into the camp. Immediately, they were spotted by Orcs.

“Elvish scum! Kill them!” cried the Orcs.

Bows twanged and metal clashed as Elf and Orc engaged in combat. In the surprise attack, the guards holding Solorfainiel abandoned their posts and joined the melee. Haldir then saw the brilliance of the King’s plan as he moved in to save Solorfainiel. Haldir shuddered in horror as he freed Solorfainiel and cradled her in his arms. She was bruised, bloody, and cold. Haldir then raced to get to safety. Following behind him came Thranduil, Authion, and the rest of their warriors.

“My Lord, you are a genius!” Haldir praised.

“The bright side of having Orcs attacking my kingdom is that I know how to beat them back,” Thranduil replied. “The foolishness of the Orc which gave us a victory.”

Authion gazed at Solorfainiel, who was pallid and seemingly half-dead. “How is she?”

“She’s fading,” Haldir said gravely. “She needs medicine right away.”

“Hurry!” Thranduil said urgently.

“Gar or, meleth-nin! (Hold on, my love!)” Haldir whispered to the dying Solorfainiel.

Haldir could not help the rapid beating of his heart as he raced back to the King’s Halls. Fortunately, he was light of foot and faster than any Orc. He could not bear it if his wife and unborn child perished. At last, he reached the King’s Halls and Solorfainiel was operated on. Much to the surprise of the three, Legolas was awake and looking as if his wounds never existed.

“Legolas! You should be resting!” Thranduil said.

“I assure you that my wounds no longer trouble me, Ada,” Legolas reassured him.

Legolas then caught site of the fading Solorfainiel. “What can I do to help you, Master Haldir?”

“Find me some water and cloths. These wounds must be bound immediately,” Haldir instructed.

Legolas hastily fetched a basin of water and long strips of cloth. Slowly, so not to do harm to Solorfainiel, he rolled her on her stomach and shuddered at the sight of her maimed back.

“Haldir, if you would, let me tend to Solorfainiel,” Legolas said. “You are weary and have seen your wife suffer enough. Go and let me tend her.”

“My Lord, you are weary enough,” Haldir said in protest.

“I have my strength again, Master Haldir,” Legolas said. “It is only fitting that I save her life since both of you saved mine. I have been trained by my father and he has taught me well. You need not worry.”

At last, Haldir nodded. “Just take caution. She is with child.”

Legolas nodded grimly as Haldir, Thranduil, and Authion vacated the room.

My lady, what have those monsters done to you? Legolas thought in horror as he washed and bound the lash wounds that decorated Solorfainiel’s back. Just as Solorfainiel did with him, Legolas remembered all of the lessons in tending such wounds. Tenderly, Legolas sponged the wounds and bound them as he had been instructed years ago. He then gathered many blankets and draped them over Solorfainiel to keep her warm. Legolas was relieved as he saw Solorfainiel’s chest rise and fall beneath the blankets.

“I suppose we are even now,” Legolas laughed.

The prince smiled as he saw Solorfainiel tense slightly at his words. With that same smile on his lips, Legolas proceeded to find Haldir and the others.

“How is she?” Haldir asked anxiously.

“She is well, my friend,” Legolas reassured him.

“The baby?” Haldir inquired.

“Your child is unharmed, I assure you,” Legolas said.

Thranduil and Authion breathed sighs of relief, as did Haldir.

“Hanon-le, hir nin, (Thank you, my Lord)” Haldir said appreciatively.

“You have no need to thank me. It is I who should be thanking you,” Legolas said pointedly.

“You are right, my son,” Thranduil declared. “Haldir, as a reward for your services, I ask that you take refuge here for as long as you like.”

“I appreciate that, Lord,” Haldir said contently.

“I pray that Solorfainiel makes a swift recovery,” Thranduil said earnestly.

“As do I,” Haldir agreed.

For the next two weeks, Solorfainiel lay in slumber, yet her condition began to improve. She grew warmer and her breathing was normal. In this time, Haldir, Thranduil, and Legolas grew more hopeful, as the Orcs had not attacked for some time as well. At last, at the beginning of July, Solorfainiel awakened.

“Haldir?” she asked, scanning the room with her grey eyes.

“I am here, hir meleth,” Haldir reassured her, sitting by her bed and taking her hand. “And you are quite fortunate to be here as well.”

“I do not remember much. All I remember is the Orcs torturing me,” Solorfainiel said with a shudder.

“Thanks to the wisdom of King Thranduil, you were rescued and those Orcs are slain,” Haldir told her, beaming.

“Is Legolas-” Solorfainiel asked concerned.

“He is fine, hir meleth,” Haldir said. “It was by his skill that you are here now.”

Legolas then approached her bedside. “Welcome back, Solorfainiel.”

“I’m happy to be back, my Lord,” Solorfainiel returned. “I must thank King Thranduil for his part as well.”

“I will tell him for you,” Legolas replied. “He has allowed you to stay here however long you wish.”

“That is very kind,” Solorfainiel said warmly.

“Now it is you who needs to rest,” Legolas said.

And so, Solorfainiel and Haldir took their rest in Mirkwood. After nearly two weeks, Solorfainiel regained the strength she had lost from her encounter with the Orcs. Yet she and Haldir remained in Mirkwood until October. By this month, Solorfainiel grew larger and the pregnancy became more overwhelming. It was this month that Legolas took his leave for Imladris. Elrond had sent word to all the peoples of Middle-earth about the existence of the One Ring. Thranduil trusted his son to go and tell of their plight. By October, Solorfainiel and Haldir also left Mirkwood.

“Farewell, my Lords,” Solorfainiel and Haldir said. “We have been most appreciative of your courtesy.”

“I feel we shall meet again, my friends,” Legolas declared. “May the blessings of the Eldar be upon you!”

With that, Solorfainiel and Haldir parted from Mirkwood, never to return to those woods. After a week-long trip, Solorfainiel and Haldir arrived back home in Caras Galadon.

“Welcome back home, meleth-nin,” Haldir whispered.

“It feels like an age since I have walked in my own woods,” Solorfainiel said contently.

“Indeed,” Haldir agreed.

Just then, Solorfainiel gave a cry of pain and fell into Haldir’s arms.

“Meleth-nin, what is wrong?” Haldir asked empathetically.

“The baby!” Solorfainiel cried.

“But you are not due until March!” Haldir gasped.

“No, there’s something wrong. I need to be inside,” Solorfainiel said urgently.

Without a moment’s hesitation, Haldir took her in his arms and carried her back to their home. After that, he consulted an Elvish physician. Haldir explained that they had been through battle and Solorfainiel’s torture. After hours of examination, the physician observed that Solorfainiel nearly lost the baby. In order to ensure the safe birth of the child, Solorfainiel would be forced to be bound to her bed until the birth. Solorfainiel was not happy with this idea and neither was Haldir.

“I have gone through battle and peril but yet now I cannot even get out of bed!” Solorfainiel said indignantly.

“I know it is hard, meleth nin,” Haldir comforted her. “But remember why you are doing this and it becomes more bearable.”

“Indeed, it does,” Solorfainiel agreed.

“And I will be by your side, I promise,” Haldir swore.

Solorfainiel smiled. “I am glad you are with me, my love.”

“I’m glad to be with you,” Haldir countered.

February had come swiftly and it was in this month that Solorfainiel and Haldir were reunited with Legolas. He and his Company of Gimli, Aragorn, Boromir, Frodo, Sam, Merry, and Pippin had been caught on the border of Lorien.

“The dwarf breathes so loud we could’ve shot him in the dark,” Haldir said astutely. “You have entered the realm of the Lady of the Wood. You cannot go back. Come, follow me.”

Blindfolded, the Fellowship was led deep into the woods of Lorien.

“Mae govanen, Legolas Thrandulion, (Welcome, Legolas son of Thranduil.)” Haldir greeted.

“Govannas vîn gwennen le, Haldir o Lórien. (Our Fellowship stands in your debt, Haldir of Lorien.)” Legolas said humbly.

After greeting Aragorn and being rudely greeted by Gimli, Haldir caught sight of Frodo. He knew the tales of the Ring-bearer and his eyes widened.

“You bring great evil here,” Haldir warned. “You can go no further.”

Aragorn then protested that the Fellowship was in need of protection and rest after their trials in Moria.

“I cannot risk bringing evil to my people here,” Haldir protested. “I have seen the evil that stirs in the woods of Mirkwood and I will not have that peril here.”

“I beg you, Haldir, we seek your protection. Your borders are well protected. No peril will come to you. We seek to destroy the One Ring of power. We cannot continue our journey if you do not allow us to pass,” Aragorn said.

“Very well. You shall pass into Caras Galadon,” Haldir declared.

The Company was led by Haldir to the beautiful Caras Galadon.

“Caras Galadon,” Haldir said, “The heart of Elvendom in the world. Home of the Lord Celeborn and Galadriel, Lady of Light.”

The Company sought an audience with Celeborn and Galadriel and Haldir returned to Solorfainiel. He found her asleep in their bed. By this time, Solorfainiel looked as if she could give birth at any minute. Haldir sat by her bed and took her hand. Solorfainiel’s eyes fluttered as she woke.

“I was dreaming,” Solorfainiel said groggily. “I saw us with our new child.”

“How do you feel, hir meleth?” Haldir asked.

“As if I have a boulder in my belly. She gives me no rest,” Solorfainiel replied in jest.

“Your strength and wit never cease to amaze me,” Haldir laughed.

“This is only carrying our child. Wait un…” Solorfainiel chortled, but she lost her words.

“Solorfainiel?” Haldir questioned.

Just then, Solorfainiel gave a cry of pain. She then noticed water spilling onto her blankets.

“Haldir, the baby is coming!” Solorfainiel cried. “Get help! Hurry!”

“I cannot leave you,” Haldir protested.

“If you do not, I cannot have this baby. Go!” Solorfainiel said as she cried out once more.

Without another word, Haldir raced off to find help.

“Help me! Anyone!” he cried as he ran.

“Easy, Haldir,” Aragorn said calmly. “What is it?”

“My child is coming. I need someone to help deliver the baby,” Haldir explained.

“Show us to her,” Legolas commanded.

Haldir led Legolas and Aragorn back to his house. Before they approached the house, Solorfainiel’s screams of anguish could be heard everywhere.

“Please, help her,” Haldir begged.

Legolas and Aragorn knelt by Solorfainiel’s bed, as did Haldir.

“Meleth-nin, they are going to help the baby. Everything will be fine,” Haldir whispered, taking his wife’s hand.

Legolas inspected the birth canal and nodded to Aragorn.

“Solorfainiel,” Aragorn said soothingly. “You must breathe slowly. You are not ready to push yet. Steady, now.”

“I have to push!” Solorfainiel protested in agony.

“You must not push until I say,” Legolas said firmly. “Your baby is fine.”

“Just breathe, hir meleth. I’m here and I won’t leave you,” Haldir comforted, kissing his wife’s hand.

Gradually, as time inched on, Solorfainiel relaxed and her breathing was even and calm.

“Good, Solorfainiel,” Aragorn praised.

Legolas inspected Solorfainiel once more and nodded. “Solorfainiel, I need you to push right now. You are ready. Push, Solorfainiel!”

With a cry of unspeakable pain, Solorfainiel sat up and pushed her hardest. Her knuckles went white as she held Haldir’s hand as if her life depended on it.

“Good, Solorfainiel, push again,” Legolas said softly.

“Easy, now. Breathe,” Aragorn said soothingly.

Breathing hard, Solorfainiel pushed again, using every bit of strength she had. Solorfainiel could not think of anything but the pain she felt as she labored on, shrieking in anguish. She continued like this until morning the next day. Haldir, Legolas, and Aragorn never left her side.

“This is it, Solorfainiel,” Legolas reassured her. “One more push.”

“You can do this,” Haldir said.

One last time, Solorfainiel sat up and pushed, screaming in pain as she did so. After what seemed to be an age, Solorfainiel sank back to her pillow and a baby’s cry filled the room. Solorfainiel and Haldir laughed in glee, as did Legolas and Aragorn. Legolas cleaned the child and wrapped it in a blanket before giving it to an exhausted Solorfainiel.

“Congratulations to you both. It is a boy,” Legolas declared proudly.

“I am happy for you both,” Aragorn said contently.

“Haldir, we have a son!” Solorfainiel breathed in ecstasy.

“He’s a beautiful boy,” Haldir praised breathlessly.

“Have you thought of names yet?” Aragorn inquired.

Solorfainiel turned to Haldir, who nodded as if in approval.

“His name is Meldarion, son of Solorfainiel and Haldir,” Solorfainiel said, grinning at her child.
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Old January 4th, 2010, 03:50 AM
Guin Sparrow Guin Sparrow is offline
Orlando's Shadow King
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 1,066

Chapter 10: A Word from Elrond

“He is so beautiful,” Solorfainiel breathed in awe and exhaustion. “I have never looked upon anything fairer in the millennia I have walked this earth.”

Haldir cleared his throat sharply and raised an eyebrow. “Have you? He is my son.”

“He’s our son. All right, all right. I have looked upon fair things,” Solorfainiel corrected herself, smiling at her husband.

“Indeed you have,” Haldir laughed, kissing his wife’s lips and his son’s head. “Now I have all the beauty on this earth.”

“Indeed,” Solorfainiel agreed.

Just then Legolas entered the room. “I thought you would be sleeping.”

“I cannot sleep when I have my son and husband with me. I cannot stray from them into my dreams,” Solorfainiel said contently.

“I’m afraid to ask you to do so, Solorfainiel, mother of Meldarion,” Legolas countered. “You labored on throughout the night and received no sleep. You must be tired. You must rest. You are no use to your son and husband when you are exhausted like this.”

“Must I?” Solorfainiel asked with a sigh.

“I’m afraid you must,” Legolas replied.

“He is right, meleth-nin,” Haldir said comfortingly. “You need your rest. You have given life to another. You deserve your rest. Sleep now. Meldarion and I will be with you when you wake. I promise.”

“I do not like being forced to stay bound to this bed, but if you insist, I shall do what is asked,” Solorfainiel declared.

Haldir then took Meldarion from Solorfainiel and into his arms.

“Hello, ion-nin (my son),” Haldir breathed as he held his child.

Solorfainiel beckoned Haldir, and he bent forward so Meldarion’s head was close to Solorfainiel’s lips. Solorfainiel then kissed Meldarion and then Haldir. With that, Solorfainiel fell asleep. Haldir watched as his wife slept with much content. All of the fear he had the day before melted away as he looked upon his sleeping wife and down at his beautiful son.

“Mae govanen, Meldarion,” Haldir whispered to his son. “No matter what comes of this Earth, I shall be glad to have you. You are the joy in my life.”

Little Meldarion yawned and dozed placidly. Haldir smiled and rocked Meldarion in his arms as gently as possible. Within minutes, Meldarion was fast asleep. Gingerly, Haldir laid him beside Solorfainiel. He then departed the room after one last glance at his wife and son.

Haldir then went outside and met with Aragorn and Legolas.

“How is she?” Aragorn asked.

“She and Meldarion are resting well, thanks to you both,” Haldir said appreciatively.

“I’m glad, Haldir,” Aragorn said contently.

“It is only fair, I think,” Legolas said humbly. “Solorfainiel saved my life. I feel it was necessary to return the favor.”

“I am grateful, Lord Legolas,” Haldir said.

“Haldir, we must move our Fellowship on. We cannot linger here for long,” Aragorn said. “Your borders are well-protected, but it is only a matter of time before the Orcs come to Lorien to track our Company.”

“Very well,” Haldir agreed. “My Lord Celeborn shall give you provisions for your journey.”

And so Celeborn and Galadriel were informed of the Fellowship’s decision to leave Lorien. Before they parted, the Fellowship was given gifts by the Elves. Each of the eight members of the Fellowship was given a grey cloak with an Elvish brooch as well as Lembas. Lady Galadriel then gave gifts. To Legolas, she gave a bow of the Galadrim; to Merry and Pippin, she gave knives; for Sam, she gave Elven rope; to Gimli, she gave three locks of her golden hair and to Frodo she gave the Light of Elendil.

The boats were then filled with the necessary provisions. Legolas was not yet ready to part with Lorien. Before departing, he went to the house of Haldir and Solorfainiel. He saw Solorfainiel sitting up in her bed, feeding Meldarion. She looked as stout and beautiful as she had before, Legolas noticed. His heart leapt to see her in good health.

“Lord Legolas,” Solorfainiel greeted warmly. “I never thanked you for helping me give life to Meldarion. I am grateful.”

“I was repaying my debt to you, Solorfainiel,” Legolas said humbly. “My Company is departing now.”

“Where?” Solorfainiel asked, taking Meldarion from her breast.

“We are going down the Falls of Rauros,” Legolas told her, a slight wince in his eyes.

“What is troubling you, my Lord?” Solorfainiel asked as she rocked Meldarion.

“It has been long since I walked in these woods,” Legolas said grimly. “I do not wish to leave.”

“You shall live to walk in these woods again, my Lord,” Solorfainiel comforted him.

“Lady Galadriel gave me the gift of an Elvish bow, but that gift does not still my heart,” Legolas said, his heart beating faster than a drum.

“What does?” Solorfainiel asked.

Legolas’s heart was beating so fast that he could dance to its rhythm. He felt a desperate need to say what he had been holding for so long. A wave of passion came over him as well. He feared that he may never see Solorfainiel again and he could not bear to part with her without letting her know his secret. Legolas felt the courage and tenderness in his heart and it gave him the strength to speak.

“I knew it when I met you. Do you not know now?” he asked, his lips quivering.

A sudden realization came into Solorfainiel’s eyes and her heart skipped a beat as she trembled. She knew what Legolas spoke of and it brought comfort and remorse at once. Solorfainiel was remorseful that Legolas felt so passionate about her and she could not feel the same. She also was glad that he cared for her in that way. To comfort Legolas, Solorfainiel gave him a warm smile. It was the most she could do to overpower the bitterness of the bittersweet moment.

Trembling, Legolas took Solorfainiel’s hand. “I know how happy you are with Haldir and I do not wish to spoil that. I only wanted you to know. I fear that I may not return from my quest or the coming Shadow. My greatest fear would not be death, but death without telling you that I love you. Though your heart may belong to Haldir, I love you and always will. The true reason I do not wish to leave fair Lorien is because I do not wish to leave you.”

Solorfainiel clasped Legolas’s fair white face. “You know that I cannot give you what you seek.”

“I know,” Legolas replied.

“I cannot give you what you seek, but you must know that there is always a place for you in my heart,” Solorfainiel said lovingly.

“Le melon (I love you),” Legolas whispered, kissing Solorfainiel’s hand.

“Namarie, Ernil Legolas, (Farewell, Prince Legolas)” Solorfainiel said gently, kissing Legolas’s brow.

Slowly, Legolas rose and gazed once more at Solorfainiel. He then turned away and thus parted from Lorien. As he rowed with Gimli, the dwarf realized that Legolas was vexed.

“What is troubling you, Master Elf?” Gimli asked.

“My heart burns to leave these fair woods,” Legolas said gravely.

“As does mine,” Gimli agreed. “I have looked upon Lady Galadriel and I have never seen anything fairer.”

“You and I have something in common then, Gimli,” Legolas said. “I desire the love of Solorfainiel daughter of Elros. I have always desired it since I met her. I will never give my love to another unless it be her, though I know she will not give it. My heart aches to be away from her.”

“Your heart will mend in time, Master Elf,” Gimli said comfortingly.

“That is very kind, Gimli,” Legolas said appreciatively.

Back in Lorien, Solorfainiel sat with Meldarion and thought over everything that had just happened. It was now that she knew that Legolas carried an unrequited, deep love for her. Solorfainiel remained true to Haldir and there was nothing that could change that, not even Legolas. Despite that, a part of her heart did go with Legolas. That part broke at his parting. She then let those thoughts melt as Haldir joined her in bed.

“How is our son?” Haldir asked, stroking the dozing Meldarion’s white cheeks.

Solorfainiel rocked her son. “He is very tired. And you look weary as well. Come to bed, meleth-nin.”

Haldir took Meldarion in his arms for a moment and crooned a soft Elvish lullaby. Soothed by his father’s voice, Meldarion fell asleep. Haldir then laid him in a crib next to his bed with Solorfainiel. He then removed his shirt and crept into bed beside his wife.

“How are you this evening, meleth-nin?” Haldir asked tenderly, stroking Solorfainiel’s dark tresses.

“I’m very well with you and Meldarion by my side,” Solorfainiel said in comfort.

All of her doubts and troubles dissolved as she held her husband in her arms and slept beside him.

For the rest of the month, Solorfainiel dwelt in Lorien with Meldarion and Haldir peacefully and lovingly, regardless of the dangers approaching. Solorfainiel had all but forgotten Legolas’s pledge and her heart was at ease. By the next month, Solorfainiel’s life would change. It all began with a letter.

Solorfainiel and Meldarion sat beside Haldir under the enormous mallorn trees. Solorfainiel sang a soothing Elvish song and Haldir smiled in pleasure.

“You know, I believe I get to say ‘I told you so’,” Haldir bragged.

“Do you?” Solorfainiel laughed.

“I told you this would happen. I told you that we’d be happy,” Haldir said happily.

“I never doubted it,” Solorfainiel said earnestly, kissing her husband.

“We are together now, and there is nothing that will upset that,” Haldir reassured her.

Just as Haldir spoke, an Elven messenger approached him. “Haldir, a message from Lord Elrond of Imladris.”

“Thank you,” Haldir said, taking the letter.

The messenger left Solorfainiel and Haldir to read the message. Haldir read the letter long and hard. When he finished he looked up and sighed bitterly.

“What is it?” Solorfainiel asked, holding tightly to Meldarion.

“Lord Aragorn and his Company are aiding King Théoden at Helm’s Deep,” Haldir replied, his voice expressionless.

“Helm’s Deep?” Solorfainiel asked, puzzled.

“King Théoden is leading his people to safety there,” Haldir explained. “Saruman the Traitor has bred an army of ten-thousand strong. He seeks to destroy the world of Men.”

“I do not understand,” Solorfainiel said in bafflement. “What does Lord Elrond want of us?”

“Long ago, there was an alliance of Elves and Men to defeat the Dark Lord Sauron,” Haldir said. “Lord Elrond wishes us to honor that alliance and aid Helm’s Deep.”

“No!” Solorfainiel shrieked, unable to contain herself.

“What?” Haldir asked in surprise.

“We can’t honor that allegiance,” Solorfainiel told him.

“We must or Saruman will take the world of Men in blood,” Haldir told her.

“I will not go!” Solorfainiel protested.

“What has gotten into you, meleth-nin?” Haldir asked in concern.

“We have only just found peace with Meldarion,” Solorfainiel said forlornly. “I nearly lost you. I will not do that again. I fear neither death nor pain. I only fear losing you. I can’t do that again, Haldir. Not again.”

Tears rolled down Solorfainiel’s white cheeks. She couldn’t stop herself from shaking in fear. The doubt that had stemmed from Elrond’s warnings was beginning to take her again.

Haldir took her hand. “Remember what you told me when we aided King Thranduil? You said your life was less important than Thranduil’s people. This is the time to embrace that thought. We must do our part to defeat Saruman and stop his evil from spreading. Are you with me?”

Tears sparkling in her eyes, Solorfainiel nodded. “I will follow wherever you go, meleth-nin.”

The next dawn, Solorfainiel, Meldarion, and Haldir rode out to Helm’s Deep with a company of their finest Elven warriors. The journey was long and Saruman’s spies lurked everywhere. They rested only when necessary and the journey was difficult carrying their baby son. Nevertheless, Solorfainiel and Haldir lead their army. After one week, they approached the stone fortress at nightfall.

“Give the signal,” Haldir commanded to one of his men.

The Elvish horn blew clear through the night, alerting the men of Rohan of their presence. Elegantly, they marched into the keep. They were met by a man of kingly features. This man was King Théoden.

“How is this possible?” Théoden gasped in wonder.

“I bring word from Elrond of Rivendell,” Haldir explained, bowing low. “Long ago a lasting alliance of Men and Elves existed. We fought and died together. We come to honor that allegiance.”

Just then, Aragorn, Legolas and Gimli descended to the keep.

“Mae govanen, Haldir na Solorfainiel!” Aragorn greeted, embracing them both. “You are most welcome!”

“Lord Legolas,” Solorfainiel greeted. “It is good tidings to see you well.”

“Same to you, Solorfainiel,” Legolas said warmly.

Haldir and Legolas embraced, as did Solorfainiel. At his touch, Solorfainiel trembled.

“We are proud to fight alongside Men once more,” Haldir said with great humility.

Later that evening, Solorfainiel sat alone with Meldarion. She began to fear for her son. She did not know if she or Haldir would survive this battle. With Saruman’s army far away, Solorfainiel made it her priority to treasure these few moments with her baby. Just then, Haldir and Legolas approached her.

“Solorfainiel, the enemy is approaching,” Legolas warned her.

“Can I not tarry longer?” Solorfainiel asked sadly.

“No, meleth-nin,” Haldir said glumly.

Legolas eyed Meldarion. “You must take your baby to the Glittering Caves. Lady Eowyn will watch over him.”

Without emotion, Solorfainiel nodded, as did Haldir. Together, the three approached the Glittering Caves. The caves were a marvel to see, as they shimmered and sparkled like stars in the sky. The ambiance would’ve been a comfort if not for what was to come. Hundreds of women and children were huddled in the caves. They were just as frightened as Solorfainiel was as they waited for the battle to begin. The presence of these apprehensive women did nothing for Solorfainiel’s nerves. Haldir shuddered as well. He knew not what would become of him or Solorfainiel. He did his best to appear as calm as possible for Meldarion and Solorfainiel.

Lady Eowyn approached Solorfainiel and Haldir. “Hail, my Elven friends. I pray that the battle goes well. I have faith in you all.”

“Lady Eowyn, we need you to protect our child. He will not be safe outside the caves,” Haldir asked, his voice shaking.

“I will protect your child with my life, Master Elf,” Eowyn swore. “No harm will come to these caves.”

“Solorfainiel, give Meldarion to Eowyn,” Haldir whispered.

Slowly and unwillingly, Solorfainiel took in the scent of her baby boy once more, as did Haldir. The couple then kissed his head as if for the last time and Solorfainiel reluctantly placed him in Eowyn’s arms. Before Eowyn could turn away, Solorfainiel called to her.

“Lady Eowyn!” she cried. “His name is Meldarion, son of Solorfainiel and Haldir.”

“I will remember that, my lady,” Eowyn said kindly.

With that, Eowyn turned and to mingle with the refugees in the caves and comfort them. Solorfainiel watched tearfully as her son passed from her sight and she felt as if she had taken a ghastly wound.

In the name of Eru, what have I done? Solorfainiel gasped in her mind. My boy! My son!

A sudden fury took Solorfainiel as she watched her child leave her eyes. Haldir watched in sorrow as his son disappeared. Solorfainiel held onto Legolas as if her life was dependent upon it. Haldir held her shaking hand as if it gave him strength to endure leaving his child behind. Unable to let her son go, Solorfainiel struggled fruitlessly to get to Meldarion. Her child was beyond her sight and Legolas held her firmly.

“Solorfainiel, no!” Legolas said in protest.

“My boy! Do not take my son from me! Give me my son!” Solorfainiel shrieked as if in pain as she continued to fight Legolas’s hold on her.

Haldir turned his eyes away and he wept in silence. Like Solorfainiel a piece of his heart had left him and it was difficult to endure.

“Where is my son?” Solorfainiel cried hopelessly.

“He is safe now, Solorfainiel,” Legolas whispered. “Let him go.”

Solorfainiel sank into Legolas’s arms as if all of her strength had abandoned her. She wanted to weep, but she knew that it was not the time for tears. If she was going to fight Saruman’s hordes, she had to be strong. She had to show her strength for Haldir and Meldarion. Solorfainiel did not know if she would ever see her baby again, but she knew she had to trust to hope now. She had to keep faith that she would live to see her beloved son. She found the strength to let go of Legolas.

“Come,” she beckoned, her new strength in her voice. “Saruman’s hordes will come soon.”

“You are among friends, Solorfainiel,” Legolas reassured her.

Together, the three raced up to the walls. As they waited for the approaching enemy, Haldir held Solorfainiel’s hand tightly.

“Whatever happens, I will love you. There is always hope. Hebo estel, meleth-nin (Have hope, my love),” he whispered tenderly.

“You are all the hope I need,” Solorfainiel breathed.

She and Haldir continued to wait for the enemy. As they did, they did not know what would come. What would come would test Solorfainiel’s will in the cruelest way.
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Old January 4th, 2010, 09:06 AM
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KiwiGirl KiwiGirl is offline
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A lot of catching up to do here!!!

Very bittersweet the realisation of love unfulfilled and the dignity in which it was spoken and understood.

The conversations are great Guin. You have a rhythm there and a style that is very consistent. Well done.

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Old January 5th, 2010, 02:29 AM
Guin Sparrow Guin Sparrow is offline
Orlando's Shadow King
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 1,066
Thanks KiwiGirl!
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Old June 18th, 2010, 10:21 AM
Guin Sparrow Guin Sparrow is offline
Orlando's Shadow King
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 1,066

Chapter 11: Bitter Loss

Lightening flashed and thunder roared in the sky as the rain pounded the earth. From the battlements, the army of Elves and Men watched and waited for their enemy.

I wish I was not here, Solorfainiel thought glumly. I wish to be under the fair trees of Lorien with my dear Meldarion and beloved Haldir. How did it come that I should meet an uncertain fate before this stony stronghold?

Solorfainiel trembled with fear. She let her quaking hand slip from her bow to clutch Haldir’s hand. Haldir noticed her trembling and was quick to ease his wife’s troubles.

“Do not be frightened, meleth-nin,” Haldir comforted.

“What makes you certain that I fear death?” Solorfainiel asked, her voice filled with doubt.

“I know what you fear, my beloved. I fear it as well,” Haldir told her, a shiver running down his spine.

“I did not think that we would meet such an end here,” Solorfainiel said glumly, turning her face away from Haldir.

“Solorfainiel, look at me,” Haldir said gently.

Solorfainiel turned her grey eyes to look into Haldir’s.

“Whatever happens, do not give up hope,” Haldir whispered. “Whatever happens, I will be with you. There is hope in this battle. We will be together. Our son is in the Glittering Caves waiting for us. He will see us again. I promise.”

“Even with the enemy approaching, my heart is lightened with you and my brothers by my side,” Solorfainiel said earnestly.

“You are all of the courage I need,” Haldir whispered.

Solorfainiel and Haldir gazed into each others’ eyes and forgot about the imminent battle for a long moment. They did not know their fate during this fateful battle. For all they knew, this could’ve been the last time they’d look upon each other. In the brief moments, they treasured the time they had been allotted.

“No matter what may come, I love you, Solorfainiel, daughter of Elros. No peril will stop my love,” Haldir told her lovingly.

“And I love you, Haldir, son of Nedhudir,” Solorfainiel replied with just as much passion.

With their hearts at ease, Solorfainiel and Haldir waited with their watchful eyes for Saruman’s army. Thump! Thump! Thump! Thump! All too soon came the dreadful drumming of Uruk-hai marching towards their prey. Solorfainiel and Haldir gazed upon the terrible creatures and their numbers with trepidation. Haldir paled and shut his eyes for a moment, as if to block the enemy from his sight. Solorfainiel’s heart beat along with the tumultuous footsteps of the Uruks. She knew that the time had come now.

From the battlements, she heard Aragorn shout orders, “A Eruchîn, ú-dano i faelas a hyn an uben tanatha le faelas! (Show them no mercy. For you shall receive none!)”

“With my bow, they will see no mercy!” Solorfainiel said fiercely.

“I’m certain that is true,” Haldir laughed. “I would curse this day if I were one of those creatures fighting Solorfainiel of Rivendell.”

The Orcs then began to pound the earth with their large spears as they shrieked and growled. Solorfainiel wanted to cover her ears to drown out the sound of the creatures, but alas, she could not.

“String your bow, meleth-nin,” Haldir told her.

Quicker than sight, Solorfainiel drew her bow and waited for the signal to fire. Her hands trembled as she waited. It seemed like a lifetime of Men that she waited to release her deadly arrows on the foul creatures.

Solorfainiel then heard Legolas shout, “Faeg i-varv dîn na lanc a nu ranc! (The armor is weak at the neck and beneath the arm!)

“Aim for the neck or the arm,” Haldir told her.

Solorfainiel nodded, not looking at Haldir. She could feel her heart beating against time. Once she fired her arrows, there was no turning back. Suddenly, an arrow flew down and killed one of the Uruks by accident.

“That’s not good,” Solorfainiel said.

In rage, the Uruks howled and charged toward the fortress.

“The battle begins,” Haldir declared.

“Tangado a chadad! (Ready arrows!)” Aragorn commanded.

In unison, the Elves and Men drew their bows and waited for the right time to strike. Solorfainiel and Haldir’s hearts were beating as one. This was the time. This was the battle that would decide their fate.

“Hado i philinn! (Release arrows!)” Aragorn cried.

Faster than the eye could see, a flurry of arrows rained down and fell upon the Uruk-hai, felling many of them. Solorfainiel raised her bow and fired, killing as many Orcs as she could.

“This will not be our end but theirs!” she declared fervently.

“Indeed! Courage, meleth-nin!” Haldir cried in approval as he fired.

With as much courage as her heart could muster, Solorfainiel continued to fire her bow in time with Haldir. In the flurry of arrows, the Uruk-Hai fell in droves.

Perhaps this battle will be shorter than I thought, Solorfainiel thought hopefully.

She thought too soon when she saw ladders being raised to the walls.
“Pendraith!” Haldir cried. “Pendraith! Ortha-lin i megil! (Ladders! Ladders! Raise your swords!)

With lightening speed, Men and Elves drew their swords and prepared for combat. Soon the clashing of metal filled the night air as the Uruk-Hai climbed the walls. An Uruk-Hai climbed the ladder and attempted to decapitate Solorfainiel. Just as the creature raised its sword, Solorfainiel quickly stabbed it with her sword. She saw another Orc felling many of her Elven warriors. Solorfainiel raced over to the creature, ducked under it, and plunged her blade into its stomach before beheading the beast.

Haldir fought just as fiercely as Solorfainiel. He slashed an approaching foe, sending it crashing to the ground. He spun like a dancer and cut off another foe’s arm before stabbing it. He turned to see an Uruk-Hai threatening Rumil. He quickly sped up to the creature and cut its throat.

“Stay away from my little brothers, foul creature!” Haldir boasted over the dead Uruk’s body.

“Hanon-le, hanar! (Thank you, brother!)” Rumil said gratefully.

Haldir nodded as he continued to kill more Uruk-Hai.

In all of the chaos, Solorfainiel and Haldir did not notice that they had been swept away from each other. They were far away and separated by the numerous Uruk-Hai.

“Haldir!” Solorfainiel cried out to no avail.

Desperately, she slashed her way through her foes to find Haldir. Solorfainiel did not know if she would live to see the sun. She thought that if she fell before sunrise, she did not want to die without Haldir by her side. With her thoughts bent on finding Haldir, Solorfainiel’s heart leapt as she encountered more foes and defeated them.

Haldir, too, noticed that he was far away from his wife. He also made great efforts to rejoin Solorfainiel.

She will live this night, Haldir promised himself. I will not die unless Solorfainiel is safe. I will die for her!

“Solorfainiel!” Haldir shouted desperately, as he killed more Uruk-Hai.
As she battled her way to find Haldir, Solorfainiel was afraid that she would be too late. Slowly, Elrond’s words of warning echoed in her head. Haldir will come to death in the fight for Middle-earth.

No. No, that will not be, Solorfainiel declared determinedly. Haldir will not die. I will not allow it!

Solorfainiel willed herself to go on with those thoughts in her mind. With that thought, she found a new strength.

Suddenly, she noticed something sparkling from below her. An Uruk-Hai was racing toward the fortress with a torch of explosives. Alas, Solorfainiel saw the Uruk too late. KA-BOOM! The great wall was shattered in a flash of light. Stone scattered about in the explosion. Solorfainiel was tossed from the wall down below and into darkness.

Haldir saw the wall break and noticed the Uruks that began to stampede where the wall once stood.

Now I must find Solorfainiel! She must be alive! Haldir thought desperately.

Solorfainiel awoke moments later with Legolas at her side. “My Lord?”

“Come, Solorfainiel! We must pull back to the Keep!” Legolas said, pulling Solorfainiel to her feet.

“Where is Haldir?” Solorfainiel asked.

“He is still on the walls,” Legolas told her. “We must go. Come!”

“Go, my Lord. I will follow,” Solorfainiel said.

Legolas nodded. He then snatched a kicking and screaming Gimli up and followed Rumil and Orophin back to the keep. Solorfainiel then continued to search for Haldir.

Haldir was still fighting his way to Solorfainiel when he heard Aragorn shout up to him.

“Haldir!” Aragorn cried. “Nan barad! (Pull back!)”

Haldir nodded and shouted the command to his warriors. “Nan barad! Nan barad!”

Haldir’s only hope now was that Solorfainiel, Rumil, and Orophin made it to the keep. He slashed at another foe as he made way back to the keep. Suddenly, an Uruk-Hai thrust its wicked blade into his belly! Haldir cried out and killed the creature immediately. He then looked down and saw blood emerge from his wound.

From below, Solorfainiel was watching as Haldir was struck. Her grey eyes bulged and her racing heart all but stopped as she watched her husband fall prey to the Uruk-Hai. All over again, the words of Elrond came to her mind and she couldn’t drown the words from her mind.

Haldir looked down to see Solorfainiel. He then turned to run to her down below. He trembled and his clear Elven eyes blurred as he turned to find Solorfainiel. Then, an Uruk struck him from behind with a deafening clang of metal meeting Haldir’s armor.

From below, Solorfainiel froze where she was. Her Elven eyes fearfully noted the blood ebbing from her husband’s armor. Too late she noticed the cruel Uruk behind Haldir.

No! Haldir!” Solorfainiel screamed as if in utter pain.

Haldir barely heard Solorfainiel’s cries or Aragorn’s. He stared at his fallen men and remembered the fallen Elves in Mirkwood. He then realized that despite the immortality and strength of the Elves, they were no different from Men. They still fought the same and died the same. They were all fighting for the same purpose. Haldir then recalled Solorfainiel and Meldarion. He briefly remembered the happiness they shared together for such a short time. With those warm thoughts in his heart, he allowed darkness to take him.

Solorfainiel watched him fall and her heart shattered into a thousand pieces. “NO! NO! HALDIR!

One of her Elven warriors took her arm and forced her to return to the keep.
“No!” Solorfainiel cried. “No, I will not leave!”

Alas, her cries were for naught. Solorfainiel was dragged from Haldir and back to the keep. There, she continued to fight out of grief and hatred of these odious creatures.

I will fight for you, Haldir, Solorfainiel declared.

Suddenly, an Uruk-Hai’s spear plunged into her shoulder. Solorfainiel did not cry out. She furiously stabbed the creature and beheaded it. With a cry of pain behind her teeth, Solorfainiel broke the spear and pulled it out. Blood gushed from her mouth and shoulder. Solorfainiel would not fall. She remained determined to see Haldir avenged. By early morning, all hope had faded. The fortress was taken by the Uruk-Hai and many Elves and Men were slain. Solorfainiel’s thoughts shifted to the women and children in the Glittering Caves.

Meldarion! My boy! She gasped to herself.

She then heard Aragorn question King Théoden.
“Is there another way for the women and children to get out of the caves?” Aragorn asked.

King Théoden said nothing.
Solorfainiel approached him. “Lord Théoden, my child is one of those in the caves. Please, is there another way out?”

“There’s a passage into the mountains, but they will not get far the Uruk-Hai are too many,” Gamling explained.

“Tell the women and children to make for the passage and barricade the entrance!” Aragorn commanded.

Amidst the fear and despair, Solorfainiel noticed that the sun was rising. She felt a new sense of hope. Théoden and Aragorn felt a new hope as well.

“The horn of Helm Hammerhand shall sound once more!” Théoden declared. “Fell deeds awake. Now for wrath, now for ruin, and a red dawn!”

Solorfainiel immediately sprang upon a horse and drew her sword. She knew this was to be the end of the battle. She knew she would see the end of the Uruk-Hai. The sound of the horn gave her strength and will. She would not let Haldir die in vain.

“Forth, Eorlingas!” Théoden shouted.

With a deafening cry, the soldiers charged forth and out of the keep. They rode with all speed, felling many Uruk-Hai.

This is for you, Haldir!
Solorfainiel thought as she killed her foes.

Then, she looked up to see a wizard in white. “Gandalf. Mithrandir!”

As the sun spread its rays, Gandalf and lead the numerous Rohirrim in a charge against the Uruk-Hai. The Uruks were overwhelmed and easily trounced by the added numbers. When the sun rose, victory had been declared! The Uruks fled to return to Isengard. Suddenly, the Uruk-Hai was overtaken as they fled into the forest. The trees seemed to strangle the Uruks as they went into the forest. The Uruk-Hai of Isengard would never torment Men or Elves again. Overwhelmed by the wounds she sustained in battle, Solorfainiel allowed herself to fall. She barely heard Legolas cry out to her.

By the afternoon, Solorfainiel could hear singing. She awoke to find Legolas at her side, cleaning her wounds and changing her bandages and singing in his clear, beautiful voice as he did so.

“Prince Legolas,” Solorfainiel whispered groggily, attempting to raise herself.

Legolas settled her on her pillow. “Rest now, Solorfainiel. You are lucky to be here.”

“Or unlucky,” Solorfainiel said bitterly.

“What do you speak of?” Legolas asked, sponging her wounds.

“My husband is dead, my Lord,” Solorfainiel said, choking on tears. “Haldir…is dead.”

Just then, Rumil and Orophin entered the room. Solorfainiel’s heart leapt with joy to see them alive.

“I am happy to see all of you alive,” Solorfainiel said with faint contentment.

“I thought you would be glad to know someone missed you,” Legolas said contently, presenting Solorfainiel with a bundle.

“Meldarion!” Solorfainiel cried. “I was so worried, meleth-nin. I am here now. I will look after you.”

Rumil then whispered to Legolas in his Elven tongue. He then exited the room with Orophin.

Legolas looked up at Solorfainiel. “There is something in the hall that you must see.”

Solorfainiel painfully sat up and walked the short distance to the hall, aided by Legolas. When she saw what was in the hall, Solorfainiel fell to her knees and gasped.

“Haldir!” she breathed. “Haldir, it is me, meleth-nin. It is Solorfainiel.”

Haldir blinked his grey eyes and gazed upon Solorfainiel. “Solorfainiel,” he whispered, his voice full of pain and love as he reached up and stroked Solorfainiel’s white face. “My heart is glad…to see you alive.”

Solorfainiel kissed Haldir’s hand, tears falling from her eyes. “As is mine. I knew you would make it. I knew we would be together.”

“No, meleth-nin,” Haldir said gravely, fighting with his pain to speak. “You and Meldarion will be together. My body is broken.”

Solorfainiel’s heart was in her throat. “No. I will save you.”

“You have,” Haldir whispered weakly. “Where is our son?”

Solorfainiel brought Meldarion forth. Haldir then kissed his son’s brow and stroked his cheek.

“Namarie, meleth-nin (Farewell, my love),” Haldir whispered, his voice growing fainter. “I go to join our brethren in the Halls of Mandos.”

“Don’t leave me, Haldir. Don’t break my heart,” Solorfainiel begged.

“I will not leave you. I am always with you, meleth-nin,” Haldir said lovingly. “Forever.”

“Forever,” Solorfainiel whispered.

Haldir raised his head and Solorfainiel leaned down. Haldir managed to leave a kiss on Solorfainiel’s lips before he sank back to his pillow.

With a faint smile, Haldir whispered one last time. “I love you…Solorfainiel.”

“I love you,” Solorfainiel whispered.

Haldir did not speak again. The light of his grey eyes was gone and his white face was now grey.

“Meleth-nin? Haldir?!” Solorfainiel gasped, her voice rising. “No. No, meleth-nin. Don’t leave me. Don’t leave me, Haldir! Haldir, come back! Come back! Please, come back!”

Legolas closed his eyes and laid his hand upon his breast. “Hiro ith, ab wanath(May they find peace after death.)”

Legolas then proceeded to rouse Solorfainiel. “Come, you must rest.”

“No,” Solorfainiel said numbly.

“Solorfainiel, please,” Legolas pleaded.

“NO!” Solorfainiel shouted. “I can’t leave him! I can’t…I can’t leave.”

Sobbing, Solorfainiel fell into Legolas’s arms, burying her face in his silvery tunic. She heard Meldarion’s cries and it seemed like the child knew of his father’s passing. No comfort would come for Solorfainiel on this day. Elrond’s foresight was correct. Solorfainiel wept and felt as if her heart was gone. Indeed, her heart was gone. It was with Haldir. Haldir was dead and Solorfainiel’s heart was with him.
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Old July 23rd, 2010, 07:36 AM
Guin Sparrow Guin Sparrow is offline
Orlando's Shadow King
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 1,066

Chapter 12: Letting Go

Victory had come to Helm’s Deep. All throughout the city, the people of Rohan as well as the Elves shouted cheers of rejoicing. The Age of Men had not seen a brighter victory than at Helm’s Deep. Elves and Men joyously guzzled down ale. Helm’s Deep was alive with song, dance, and hope. There was never a happier sight.

Alas, not all were celebrating this victory. With triumph came great sacrifice. Helm’s Deep was not won without the blood of both Elves and Men. King Théoden was first to admit this. Most affected by the lives lost at Helm’s Deep was Solorfainiel. She had lost not only her own people, but also her truest love. For Solorfainiel, Helm’s Deep felt like the end of her life. Haldir was her life, her heart, her everything. Without him by her side, she felt hollow and lifeless. For that entire night since Haldir departed to the Halls of Mandos, Solorfainiel refused to abandon his body. Not even the dire pain of her grave injuries could tear her away from her fallen husband.

Legolas came to her and tried to persuade her. “Solorfainiel, you are gravely hurt. You must rest. Come with me.”

“No, my Prince,” Solorfainiel protested numbly.

“Please, Solorfainiel,” Legolas pleaded gently.

“No!” Solorfainiel snapped.

“Haldir is dead. He is resting in the Halls of Mandos in peace now. Let go, Solorfainiel,” Legolas comforted.

“You find no trouble telling me that my husband is dead and he is not suffering anymore,” Solorfainiel said bitterly, the tears in her voice. “Tell me, my Prince; have you ever lost someone as dear to you as my Haldir was to me?”

Legolas felt a cold shiver run down his spine. He remembered his mother before the days of darkness came. He recalled with great pain how she was struck down by Orc arrows many years ago when Sauron’s spirit had awakened.

Legolas choked back the painful memory as he replied. “Yes, I have. My mother died under the trees of my kingdom years ago by the black arrows of the Orcs. I have lived with that memory the rest of my life, but I have moved on with my life. You must learn to let go.”

Solorfainiel turned to Legolas, the tears falling from her grey eyes. “Perhaps it was too long ago that you lost your mother that you have forgotten that it takes time to heal such wounds that I have endured.”

“Those wounds can only be mended if you let them be,” Legolas said wisely.

Just then, Aragorn approached. “Solorfainiel, what are you doing here?”

“I wanted to be with my husband when he departed for the Halls of Mandos,” Solorfainiel said sorrowfully.

“He lived through the night?” Aragorn asked in surprise. “I thought he was dead. When I reached him, he appeared so.”

Solorfainiel’s eyes widened in shock. “You reached him? You were with him last night when he was struck down?”

Aragorn nodded. “I saw him fall.”

Solorfainiel furiously shoved Aragorn. “And you did nothing to protect him! You were with him and you did nothing to save him from those terrible Uruk-Hai!”

“Haldir fought bravely, Solorfainiel,” Aragorn said quietly.

“But if you had saved him, he would still be alive!” Solorfainiel cried.

“Solorfainiel, there was nothing I could do. If I could have been at Haldir’s side last night, I would have done everything in my power to save him,” Aragorn said apologetically.

“Then where were you if not by Haldir’s side last night?” Solorfainiel demanded.

“I was thrown from the wall when it was breached. I was making my way back to the keep,” Aragorn replied.

“And you did not think at one moment about Haldir, did you?” Solorfainiel asked angrily.

“Solorfainiel, you need your rest. Come,” Legolas beckoned.

He attempted to lift Solorfainiel to her feet, but she refused.

“No! I can’t leave him!” Solorfainiel sobbed. “Do not take him from me!”

Suddenly, a great pain overtook Solorfainiel and she fell limp into Legolas’s arms. Legolas gingerly held Solorfainiel in his arms. He was taken aback to see that Solorfainiel’s white face was now ashen grey. Legolas placed his ear on Solorfainiel’s heart and to his horror, Solorfainiel’s heart was slow and barely noticeable. Her breathing was too shallow and weak.

“Help her, Aragorn!” Legolas cried in panic.

“We need to get her to the healing places,” Aragorn said.

Legolas took Solorfainiel in his arms and raced off to the healers. Once he reached his destination, Legolas hastily laid the ailing Solorfainiel on the bed.
“She is so cold,” Legolas gasped, feeling Solorfainiel’s cheeks. “Please, help her, Aragorn!”

Aragorn bent over Solorfainiel and began to examine her. After a few moments, he looked up at Legolas.

“Is she-?” Legolas asked, choking on his words.

Aragorn listened to Solorfainiel’s breathing. “She is not dead, Legolas. She lives still, but barely.”

“What is wrong with her?” Legolas questioned.

Aragorn continued to examine Solorfainiel before he gave an answer. “She’s been poisoned.”

Legolas’s blue eyes were humongous. “Poisoned?”

“By an Orc spear, it appears,” Aragorn continued, revealing Solorfainiel’s maimed shoulder. “The spear pierced her shoulder.”

Legolas turned his eyes away from the black, ghastly wound on Solorfainiel’s shoulder and to Solorfainiel herself. She looked so helpless, so sickly. Legolas felt as if he wanted to switch places with Solorfainiel and endure her pain.

“Can you save her?” Legolas asked.

“I can heal her wounds, but I do not think I can save her,” Aragorn said pointedly.

“What do you speak of?” Legolas gasped.

“Solorfainiel has lost Haldir and it seems she’s lost more than that,” Aragorn explained. “It seems she has lost her will to live.”

Legolas felt as if he had been punched by the iron fist of an Uruk-Hai. “She is…dying?”

Aragorn nodded and patted Legolas’s shoulder. “I will use whatever power I have to save Solorfainiel, Legolas. I know your heart is with her. Hebo estel, Legolas. (Have hope, Legolas).”

“Hanon-le, Aragorn,” Legolas said gratefully.

“I will need some help. Get a nurse,” Aragorn said.

Legolas nodded and fetched a nurse in the house.

Aragorn turned to the nurse. “I need water, blankets, and athealas.”

“Athealas?” asked the nurse.

“Kingsfoil,” Aragorn replied.

“Right away, my Lord,” said the nurse.

The nurse hurried off to fetch the tools needed. Aragorn then went to find blankets for Solorfainiel.

“Watch over her. Let me know if she turns for the worst,” he told Legolas.

Legolas sat next to Solorfainiel and took her cold hand in his. “Solorfainiel, if you can hear me, please stay with me. Do not leave me and go where I cannot. As dear as Haldir was to you, that is how dear you are to me. I cannot love another as I love you. Please stay with me, Solorfainiel.”

Aragorn and the nurse returned with blankets, water, and kingsfoil.
“I need you to step aside so I may tend to Solorfainiel,” Aragorn said to Legolas.

“May I stay by her side?” Legolas asked.

“You may,” Aragorn replied.

Legolas then watched as Aragorn began his work. Aragorn remembered well his teachings from the Elves in his younger days. Treating poisoned wounds was difficult, but it was not impossible. Aragorn began by layering Solorfainiel in blankets. Tenderly, Aragorn moistened a rag and placed it on Solorfainiel’s brow. He then began to bathe Solorfainiel’s wounded shoulder in water and kingsfoil. After that, Aragorn removed the cloth from Solorfainiel’s head and turned to Legolas.

“I can do no more. We must trust to hope now,” he said grimly. “All we can do is keep her warm and comfortable.”

Aragorn then left Legolas to tend to others wounded in the battle.

Legolas nodded and took his place beside Solorfainiel once more. “Come back, Solorfainiel. Come back to me.”

Just then, Legolas heard the tiny wail of a baby.

Eowyn came rushing in carrying little Meldarion in her arms. “Solorfainiel, Meldarion needs you.”

Eowyn stopped and looked down at the pallid Solorfainiel. She then turned to Legolas.
“Will she live through the night, Master Elf?” Eowyn asked gravely.

“I do not know,” Legolas said sadly. “Only she can tell us.”

“This couldn’t have come at a worse time,” Eowyn said glumly. “Young Meldarion needs his parents most of all. Where is Master Haldir?”

“He is dead, Lady Eowyn,” Legolas replied gloomily. “He died just this morning with his wife and son by his side.”

“And what of Solorfainiel?” Eowyn wanted to know.

“She has been poisoned, Lady,” Legolas said, the pain written in his eyes.

“This is gloomy news for the child. He needs those who love him now. He will not stop crying,” Eowyn said, disheartened.

“Go to your people, Lady Eowyn. I will take the child,” Legolas said kindly.

“Are you certain, Lord Legolas?” Eowyn asked.

“I love Solorfainiel and I love Meldarion,” Legolas said simply.

“Thank you, my Lord,” Eowyn said graciously.
Eowyn carefully placed baby Meldarion into Legolas’s strong arms. Instantly, Meldarion stopped crying.

“It seems you have a gift with children, Master Legolas,” Eowyn said with a tender smile. “I will keep Meldarion and his parents in my prayers today.”

With that, Eowyn went away to tend to her people. Legolas sat by Solorfainiel’s side with a soothed Meldarion in his arms. He looked back and forth at Meldarion and Solorfainiel. There was a great contrast between them. Solorfainiel was grey and her life was waning like a dying flame. Meldarion was full of life. Legolas felt it painful to watch them and know that Meldarion could potentially be an orphan.

They should not need to suffer like this, Legolas thought. If only I could trade places with Haldir, I would do it. If only to spare Meldarion and Solorfainiel the pain of losing their one companion.
Legolas gazed into Meldarion’s grey eyes. “I will not let you suffer, little Meldarion. I love your mother, and I shall love you as if you were truly my son. If I could take your father’s fate I would do it to give you a family you need. I shall always be by your side and I promise to look after you and your mother.”

Meldarion cooed and reached his tiny, white hand to touch Legolas’s fingers. Legolas was touched by the gesture and he smiled at Meldarion, feeling comforted by his presence.

“It is not your fate to depart for the Halls of Mandos, Solorfainiel,” Legolas whispered. “You have everything to live for. Your son needs you to be his mother. I need you. Please come back. You cannot leave.”

Suddenly, Legolas noticed Solorfainiel move a tiny bit. His heart leapt as he sat on her bed.

“Solorfainiel? Can you hear me, mellon-nin?” he asked in anticipation.

Solorfainiel twitched again, making Legolas’s heart and hope soar. Legolas listened and put his ear by Solorfainiel’s nose and mouth. He rejoiced to feel Solorfainiel’s breathing become stronger.

“Aragorn!” Legolas called.

Aragorn flew to Legolas’s side. “What is it?”

“Solorfainiel. I think she is waking!” Legolas said excitedly.

Aragorn put his ear on Solorfainiel’s chest, listening for her heartbeat. Aragorn was reassured to her the steady rhythm of Solorfainiel’s heart.

“Her heart is getting stronger,” Aragorn said happily.

“Tolo dan na ammen, Solorfainiel, (Come back to us)” Legolas whispered with great hope.

Aragorn and Legolas waited with bated breath for Solorfainiel to rouse. It seemed to be a life of Men for Solorfainiel to wake. After several more hours, Legolas remained optimistic, but Aragorn’s hope waned.

“I do not think she shall wake,” Aragorn said gloomily.

“No, she must wake. She is getting stronger,” Legolas protested.

“Perhaps she is happy in the Halls of Mandos with Haldir,” Aragorn said.

“No, I will not let her give in! Fight, Solorfainiel! Wake up!” Legolas cried, gripping Solorfainiel’s cold hand.

“I think it best to let her go,” Aragorn said. “There was only a fool’s hope for her.”

“I cannot let her go! I swore to look after her and Meldarion. I cannot believe she is gone!” Legolas cried.

He gripped Solorfainiel’s hand harder. “Come, Solorfainiel. You must wake up! Wake up, Solorfainiel! Please wake!”

“She’s gone, Legolas,” Aragorn said.

“She is not!” Legolas shrieked. “Please wake up, Solorfainiel! You must come back to us! Come back! Come back!”

Solorfainiel remained as still as stone.
“No. No!” Legolas wailed, kissing Solorfainiel’s brow.

Aragorn bowed his head in respect. Legolas held Meldarion close and kissed Solorfainiel’s brow again before rising to his feet.

“Come, my friend,” Aragorn beckoned.

Suddenly, before Legolas and Aragorn could depart, they heard a faint voice.
“L…Legolas,” it whispered.

Legolas leapt to Solorfainiel’s bed once more. “Solorfainiel? I’m here!”

Suddenly, Solorfainiel turned to Legolas and awoke!
“Solorfainiel!” Legolas gasped. “Thank the stars you are alive!”

“Prince…Legolas,” Solorfainiel said weakly. “I-I could not leave…I could not leave Meldarion… or you.”

“Shhh. You do not need to speak,” Legolas whispered tenderly. “You are alive and that is all that matters.”

“Everything hurts,” Solorfainiel moaned.

“You will get well soon and I will help you. I am going to look after you,” Legolas declared. “Rest now. I will be right here with you.”

With that, Solorfainiel slipped into peaceful sleep once more. Legolas’s heart soared and he was greatly comforted to know Solorfainiel would live. Legolas felt that he kept his promise and he intended to continue to keep it.
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Old August 30th, 2010, 09:57 AM
Guin Sparrow Guin Sparrow is offline
Orlando's Shadow King
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 1,066

Chapter 13: Saying Goodbye to Haldir
Many days went by after the glorious victory that was paid for with many lives. The people of Rohan as well as the Elves began to bury their dead. The day was filled with luminous sunshine which was the sole comfort on this day of mourning. King Théoden, Lord Eomer, and Lady Eowyn lead the people in their mourning.
Elsewhere in Helm’s Deep, in the healing houses, Aragorn and Legolas had to hold on to their grief as they tended those wounded in the battle. Aragorn provided his skill in the medicine of Elves and Men. Legolas gave Aragorn aid, but he did not stray far from Solorfainiel. Since her awakening, Solorfainiel rested and she was in and out of consciousness since that day. Legolas could not bear to stay away from her for any length of time. As the days went by, Legolas began to wonder about Solorfainiel’s words. She told him she couldn’t leave Meldarion or him. Legolas did not know if Solorfainiel shared the same feelings for him or if her wounds had gotten the best of her.
Legolas did not dwell on these thoughts for long. He had wounded people to look after, particularly Solorfainiel. He also had to tend to Meldarion, as the baby was left without a proper guardian and he made a promise to the child. The day’s activities took their toll on Legolas as he waited for Solorfainiel to regain her strength.
“Master Elf, you are certainly putting quite a passion with your healing skills,” Gimli gasped.
“I am only doing what is best for these people,” Legolas said hastily.
Gimli grabbed Legolas’s arm. “I meant that you should be taking time for yourself. You’ve done nothing but tend to these people for days. You need rest. You must help yourself before you aid these people.”
“I wish I could, Gimli,” Legolas said wearily.
“Why can you not?” Gimli countered.
“Aragorn cannot help these people alone. Solorfainiel and Meldarion need me,” Legolas replied.
“I understand Aragorn needs you, but why do you say Solorfainiel and her child need you?” Gimli wanted to know.
Legolas sighed. “You know I love her and I would have given my life for her in this battle if I had to. Solorfainiel is wounded and she has lost her truest love. Meldarion is only a baby and he has already lost his father and he could lose his mother. I swore to protect them and love them.”
Gimli patted Legolas on the back. “You have a noble cause, Master Elf. Yet you cannot fulfill your oath if you do not rest.”
“That is very kind, Gimli,” Legolas said before pushing past the Dwarf. “I must see Aragorn.”
Legolas met Aragorn inside the Golden Hall. Aragorn sat at a table, smoking from his long pipe. Unlike Legolas, Aragorn was calm and rested.
“Aragorn,” Legolas greeted, taking a seat with Aragorn.
“Legolas, I believe it is my turn to say it,” Aragorn said slyly.
“What?” Legolas asked, his fair brow wrinkling.
“You look terrible,” Aragorn commented.
Legolas laughed as did Aragorn.
“My friend, have you not rested?” Aragorn asked in concern.
“I have not,” Legolas replied. “You needed my aid tending these people and I cannot turn away from Solorfainiel and Meldarion.”
“Go, my friend. Take some rest. You deserve it for your noble deeds. I will take the child,” Aragorn said gently.
Legolas rose and made for the healing houses again. He then found Solorfainiel’s bed and pulled up a chair next to her. Solorfainiel retained her beauty, despite her wounds. Legolas was comforted by her beauty and that it had not been altered.
Legolas then took her hand in his. “I do not know if you love me, but I shall love you. I swear that I will not be far away from you. Please do not be far away from me.”
Still holding onto Solorfainiel’s hand, Legolas allowed sleep to take him, drifting off into a more pleasant world.
Solorfainiel was also dreaming for the past few days. She could not turn away from her dreams. In her dreams, she was happier and in a place she wanted to be but could not.
“Haldir, meleth-nin, I thought I would never see you again,” Solorfainiel sighed as she kissed her husband.
“As did I, meleth-nin,” Haldir agreed. “It brings me great joy to be with you.”
“I want to stay here. All I want is to be with you,” Solorfainiel breathed, holding Haldir tight.
“Meleth-nin, you cannot stay here,” Haldir told her.
“Why can I not?” Solorfainiel asked sadly.
“Your place is not here,” Haldir replied remorsefully.
“My place is with you. It always has been,” Solorfainiel said earnestly.
“I have gone to a place you cannot follow. You are not meant to follow me here,” Haldir said.
“What if I am?” Solorfainiel asked in protest.
“Solorfainiel, le gar estel a meleth. Le garant awartha-hain (you have hope and love. You cannot abandon them.),” Haldir said in comfort.
“Istannen le i estel a meleth (You are my hope and love),” Solorfainiel said with love in her voice.
“And you are mine,” Haldir said lovingly. “We are not meant to follow each other. I have given my life to bring light to darkness and give a better world for you and Meldarion. You have a chance to finish what I started.”
“I do not want to leave you,” Solorfainiel said, tears in her eyes. “I have found you again and I do not want to leave you.”
“You will never leave me,” Haldir promised. “I will be watching over you and Meldarion from these Halls. As long as you remember me, I cannot leave you. You must go on, Solorfainiel. Tell Meldarion about us. Let him know I loved him.”
“I will,” Solorfainiel promised tearfully.
Solorfainiel kissed Haldir for a long moment. She knew she would never see her husband again after this moment and she wanted to live in his kiss, his embrace. Solorfainiel then gazed into Haldir’s eyes, memorizing him.
“Go, meleth-nin,” Haldir whispered. “Go to our Meldarion.”
“I love you,” Solorfainiel breathed, kissing Haldir one last time.
“I love you,” Haldir whispered. “Go. Meldarion is waiting.”
Legolas awoke to see Solorfainiel still in slumber and her hand in his. “You must come back. Meldarion is waiting.”
In that moment, Solorfainiel stirred. “Mel…darion. Meldarion.”
Legolas leapt to his feet quicker than lightening. “Aragorn! Aragorn!”
Legolas clung to Solorfainiel’s hand with a renewed hope.
Aragorn then rushed into the room with Meldarion in his arms. “Has she gotten worse?”
“No, she has taken a turn for the better,” Legolas corrected him. “She said Meldarion. She knows her son is waiting for her.”
“Meldarion,” Solorfainiel breathed in the faintest voice.
Aragorn put his ear down by Solorfainiel’s mouth to hear her better.
“Meldarion,” Solorfainiel repeated.
“She is coming back,” Aragorn said, his voice infused with optimism.
“Solorfainiel, come back! Wake up!” Legolas pleaded.
Miraculously, Solorfainiel’s eyes fluttered and she awoke, turning to Legolas.
“Legolas,” she breathed weakly.
“Shhh. You do not need to speak, dear one,” Legolas said with joy.
“Meldarion. Where is Meldarion?” Solorfainiel asked faintly.
Aragorn knelt beside Solorfainiel so she could see her son tucked in his arms.
“Meldarion,” Solorfainiel sighed. “I promise to stay here for you. I am going to look after you.”
“It is good to see you recovering, Solorfainiel,” Aragorn greeted warmly. “Forgive me for upsetting you. If I could’ve saved Haldir-”
“No, Aragorn it is I who should ask your forgiveness,” Solorfainiel corrected. “I know what you tried to do for Haldir and I thank you.”
Aragorn smiled in response. “You should rest. You’ll need your strength.”
Aragorn turned away leaving Meldarion with Legolas.
Solorfainiel stroked her son’s white cheek. “I cannot believe that I almost abandoned my son.”
“What do you mean?” Legolas asked.
“I was reunited with Haldir. I do not know if I was dying or in a dream,” Solorfainiel explained. “He told me to go back and stay so that Meldarion can have his mother and to let him know his father loved him. I intend to remind him of that.”
Legolas wanted to ask, but he knew Solorfainiel was too exhausted to continue their conversation. “Take some rest, Solorfainiel. We intend to march for Isengard in a matter of days.”
Solorfainiel motioned for Legolas to bring Meldarion forward. He did so and Solorfainiel kissed her son’s head. Then, she fell into sleep.
After nearly four days, Solorfainiel was alert and her strength had come back to her. Legolas never left her side in those days, tending to her wounds and looking after Meldarion. He was overjoyed and his heart swelled to see Solorfainiel well again. On the fourth morning, he saw Solorfainiel sitting up in bed, holding little Meldarion. Legolas couldn’t help the wide smile that spread across his face.
“Lord Legolas, sit with us,” Solorfainiel greeted.
Legolas gladly obliged. “It is wonderful to see you well again.”
“I have you and Lord Aragorn to thank for that,” Solorfainiel said gratefully.
“You are most kind,” replied Legolas humbly.
“It feels wonderful to hold my son in my arms again,” Solorfainiel sighed in comfort.
Legolas then took his chance to ask Solorfainiel what had been tormenting him for the past days. “Solorfainiel, when you came back to us, you told me that you could not leave Meldarion or me. What was the meaning of that?”
“Well, it is true that I cannot leave Meldarion, but I do not think I know what you speak of, my Lord,” Solorfainiel said, baffled.
“Do you not?” Legolas asked in surprise.
“No,” Solorfainiel replied. “You must have been weary from taking care of those wounded.”
“Yes, I believe I was,” Legolas said hastily, hiding his discomfort.
“When are we to march on Isengard?” Solorfainiel asked, the eagerness in her voice.
“When you are well enough,” Legolas told her.
“I am well enough,” Solorfainiel replied heartily. “I have only one wish before we leave this place.”
“What is that?” Legolas asked.
“I wish to have a funeral for Haldir. I would have wanted him to be buried in Lothlorien, but I believe he would have wanted to be buried with his men,” Solorfainiel declared.
“Then a funeral is what Haldir shall have,” Legolas said firmly.
“Thank you, my Lord,” Solorfainiel said appreciatively, rising from her bed. “I will prepare.”
So Solorfainiel rose from her bed and prepared for Haldir’s funeral. She gathered up the rest of her armor and dressed. Solorfainiel then found her sword, knives, and bow and strapped them on as well. She gathered her dark hair and bound it in braids.
“Where are Haldir’s weapons?” Solorfainiel asked, turning to Legolas.
Legolas ran to a table where Haldir’s belongings were being kept. He then presented them to Solorfainiel.
“Thank you, my Lord,” Solorfainiel said. “I feel it would be honorable to bury Haldir’s weapons with him.”
“I agree,” Legolas said with a grim smile.
“Tell King Théoden that Haldir is to be buried today before we ride to Isengard,” Solorfainiel commanded Legolas.
“I will,” Legolas said.
Legolas then took one last glance at Solorfainiel before running off to find King Théoden.
Solorfainiel was left alone with her grief. She had to leave her darling husband behind. Where Haldir was, Solorfainiel knew for certain she would never follow. The thought of not being with her husband for all the ages of the world tore Solorfainiel apart inside. She didn’t know how she could survive without him. It was then that she looked down at Meldarion. The baby elf was blissfully unaware of the loss of his father and could not feel the pain that Solorfainiel felt. Solorfainiel was grateful that her son could not share her pain; that was the last thing she would ever want for her son. As she gazed at little Meldarion, Solorfainiel could feel her heart lighten and her urge to cry ceased. She could feel a new strength growing in her.
“My dear Meldarion, do you know how special you are?” Solorfainiel whispered to her child. “You are the center of all my happiness in this world. You are your father’s son. As I loved your father, I shall love you. You give me all the strength I need.”
Meldarion took his mother’s finger in his tiny hand and gripped it tight. Solorfainiel was comforted by the gesture and she could feel a laugh springing inside her.
“Solorfainiel,” Legolas whispered. “We are ready to bury Haldir.”
“I am not so sure I am ready,” Solorfainiel said gravely.
Legolas took her free hand in his. “You are among friends, Solorfainiel. I promised to be by your side. I intend to keep that promise.”
Solorfainiel smiled in response as Legolas led her down to the funeral procession. Everyone had turned out to pay their respects to Haldir and Solorfainiel was thankful for their benevolence. Outside in the cemetery, Solorfainiel could feel the coldness of Haldir’s passing come over her again. Her heart ached at the site of Haldir passing her one last time.
Summoning up all of her strength and holding Meldarion close, Solorfainiel began to sing an Elvish mourning song: Mornië utúlië! A arth maethor na bannen!
And-dúr naun i fuin a Haldir firn. Ar sindarnóriello caita mornië,
Ar ilye tier unduláve lumbule. Ho gar rin. Ho na tur! Post Haldir i Thalion! (Darkness has come! A noble warrior has gone! The dark was too deep and so Haldir died. And out of grey country darkness lies and all paths are drowned in deep shadow. He can be remembered. He has victory! Rest, Haldir the Strong!)
Solorfainiel lost her voice and couldn’t bear to sing more. Haldir was truly at peace now and she could feel it. Solorfainiel wanted to deny it, but she could not. She knew now that she had to muster her courage for Meldarion as Haldir did for them.
Finding her voice again, Solorfainiel managed a whisper. “Namarie, meleth-nin (Farewell, my love).”
Solorfainiel gazed down at her son once more. “I promise I will not falter, Meldarion. You give me strength and I shall be strong for you as Ada (father) was for us.”
Slowly, Legolas approached Solorfainiel, gently placing his fair hands on Solorfainiel’s trembling shoulders. “You have great strength I have never seen before, Solorfainiel. You are as noble as Haldir.”
“That is very kind, my Lord,” Solorfainiel said with a small, but meaningful smile. “What is to come now?”
“We ride to Isengard in pursuit of Saruman the Traitor,” Legolas told her.
“Then let us ride!” Solorfainiel said with a nod.
Solorfainiel then saw Eowyn from behind. “Eowyn! Lady Eowyn!”
“Solorfainiel, it is wondrous to see you on your feet again!” Eowyn exclaimed.
“I want to thank you and King Théoden for giving Haldir an honorable farewell,” Solorfainiel said appreciatively.
“Haldir was a formidable, valiant Elf. He deserves such an honor,” Eowyn praised.
“Lady, we ride to Isengard. Where we go, my son cannot. I trust you to look after him until my return,” Solorfainiel said earnestly.
Eowyn took Meldarion into her arms. “I shall guard him with my life, my Elf-friend.”
“Thank you, Lady,” Solorfainiel said humbly.
“Come, Solorfainiel,” Legolas beckoned.
Solorfainiel turned back to look upon her husband’s grave one last time. She then slowly turned and left with Legolas. She and Legolas both rode upon Arod, a strong stallion given to Legolas by Eomer. While riding to Isengard, Solorfainiel remained silent as she mourned Haldir.
“Solorfainiel, I know you suffer with Haldir’s death, but do you not suffer needlessly?” Legolas asked pointedly.
“I suffer as I must,” Solorfainiel replied.
“Haldir is in the better place now. I have heard tales that it is a green country with a swift sunrise. Haldir is in bliss now. He would not want you to suffer every day,” Legolas comforted.
“What you say comforts me, my Lord,” Solorfainiel said sincerely.
“I shall help you to bear this burden and ease the pain,” Legolas declared.
“No, you cannot help me,” Solorfainiel said firmly.
“Why can I not?” Legolas asked in surprise.
“This is my burden, not yours, my Lord,” Solorfainiel said adamantly.
“But I swore to help you and Meldarion,” Legolas protested.
“Why?” Solorfainiel wanted to know.
Legolas went hush for a moment. His heart was pounding like a drummer beating a fast tempo. He had never felt this way since he met Solorfainiel. He trembled, knowing that there was no going back now.
“Have you forgotten, Solorfainiel?” Legolas asked gingerly. “Do you not recall the day I parted from Lorien when I told you why parting from Lorien brought me such pain? I could not bear to leave you.”
Solorfainiel did recall that moment. She had only pushed it back when she had Haldir. Her heart was with Legolas, but it was also with Haldir. Solorfainiel could not love anyone like Haldir. She had to be strong for Meldarion.
“My Lord, I have not forgotten,” she said gently. “But my heart is still with Haldir. Now it must remain with Meldarion. He needs me to be his mother and protect him and be strong for him. Forgive me, my Lord. I cannot give you a part of my heart.”
Legolas felt as if he had been run stabbed with his own arrow. He loved Solorfainiel since he met her and he did not have her heart. Legolas could feel his own heart breaking as Solorfainiel’s words echoed in his mind. He did not let Solorfainiel see his distress. He knew that he had to have strength now and continue his vow to look after Solorfainiel and Meldarion.
Solorfainiel’s heart did break for Legolas, even if she did not admit it openly. She had grown very fond of Legolas and her friendship with him was as deep as the sea. Solorfainiel knew she could not indulge her heart. She had to be strong for Haldir and Meldarion. Solorfainiel remained determined to go on with Meldarion, giving all of her love to the child.
I will not fail you, Haldir, Solorfainiel thought to herself.
However, no matter how much Solorfainiel wanted to deny it, she could feel the stinging loss in her heart after what she told Legolas. She knew how he cared for her when she never asked him to. Solorfainiel knew in the depths of her heart that her heart was with Legolas, she just did not know how it could be yet.
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Old December 26th, 2010, 11:47 PM
Guin Sparrow Guin Sparrow is offline
Orlando's Shadow King
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 1,066

Chapter 14: Ride to Isengard and Celebration at Edoras

Daylight crept scarcely through the abundant forest. The air was very close and hot. Riding through the forest came King Théoden's company on their journey to Isengard. Now that Helm's Deep was safe, Saruman the Traitor had to be dealt with to secure the future of Middle-earth.

Legolas rode steadily upon Arod, with Gimli behind him and Solorfainiel at his front. On this short journey, Legolas nursed his broken heart and thought of his feelings for Solorfainiel. She had rarely spoken to him since they set out, something that tormented Legolas most. It was one torture to be denied Solorfainiel's heart, but to Legolas, it was the worst torment to be deprived of her speech and her voice. Legolas was forced to keep his longing to himself as he could not share his feelings in front of Solorfainiel. Legolas did not doubt for a moment that all hope of having a life with Solorfainiel was almost gone, if not lost.

Solorfainiel, too, was tormented by her position. She had to have strength for others when she had no strength herself. Her beloved Haldir was taken from her and she had denied herself the pleasure of Legolas's love. Like Legolas, Solorfainiel was forced to keep her feelings to herself for the sake of her cherished son Meldarion. Solorfainiel was determined to give her heart solely to Meldarion. She knew, too, that her life with Legolas could not be.

As they rode through the opaque forest, Legolas took pleasure of speaking to Gimli. Gimli had dwelt in the Glittering Caves for a time in Helm's Deep and he was mesmerized by the sight of them.

"My good Legolas, do you know that the caverns of Helm's Deep are vast and beautiful?" Gimli asked, the glee in his eyes. "There would be a company of Dwarves, merely to gaze at them, if such things were known to be. Aye indeed, they would pay pure gold for a brief glance!"

"And I would give gold to be excused and double to be let out if I strayed in!" Legolas said in jest.

"You have not seen, so I forgive your jest," Gimli said wisely. "But you speak like a fool. Do you think those halls are fair, where your King dwells under the hill in Mirkwood, and Dwarves helped in their making long ago? They are but hovels compared with an everlasting music of water that tinkles into pools, as fair as Kheled-zaram in the starlight."

"Then I will wish you to return to those caves if you should survive the peril that awaits," Legolas said kindly. "But do not tell all of your kindred, for there seems little for them to do, save for marring the earth any further."

"No, you do not understand!" Gimli said passionately. "No dwarf could be unmoved by such loveliness. None of Durin's folk would mine those caves. We would tend these caves."

Legolas was taken aback by Gimli's speech. "You move me, Gimli. Never have I heard you speak with such a passion. Come, now. Let us make a pact. If we should survive the imminent dangers in our fight for Middle-earth, we shall travel together. You shall come with me to Fangorn Forest, and I shall go with you to these Glittering Caves."

"It does not please me to see those woods again, but we shall travel to those woods if I have your word," Gimli said.

"You have it," Legolas declared.

After a moment, Legolas then spotted something strange in the trees.

"There are eyes! Eyes in the boughs of the trees!" he cried.

"What eyes?" Gimli asked, alarmed. "I see no eyes."

Solorfainiel looked out to the trees. "I see them, my Lord! I have never seen such eyes."

"I do not like eyes watching us, especially if they come from trees!" Gimli exclaimed, clinging to his ax.

Legolas reared Arod to explore the source of the eyes.

Gimli was terrified. "No, no! I wish to see no eyes. Let me down from this horse first and then you will do as you like in your madness!"

"Stay, Legolas Greenleaf!" Gandalf advised him. "Do not go back into those woods!"

"You do not think those trees are a danger, do you?" Gimli asked cautiously.

"No, I believe they only hate Orcs and Uruks," Legolas said.

By noon of the day, they emerged from the dense forest and into the sunlight of Isengard. The forest had been destroyed, but the land was drowned in water. The smoke that had been rising from Isengard had vanished and the air was clean. It was then that the company reunited with two familiar faces. Merry and Pippin, the two stout Hobbits, were lounging about on top of the debris, happily smoking and feasting.

"Welcome, my Lords to Isengard!" Merry greeted grandly.

"You young rascals!" Gimli said indignantly. "A merry hunt you've led us on and now we find you feasting and smoking!"

"We are sitting on a field of victory enjoying a few well-earned comforts. The salted pork is particularly good," Pippin said with a smile.

"Not until this day have I understood the cleverness and courage of the Halflings," Solorfainiel said with amusement.

"You will learn, as I have, how much Halflings can surprise you," Legolas said with a smile.

"We're under orders from Treebeard," Merry explained. "who has taken over management of Isengard."

The company then waded their horses through the water to parley with Saruman in his tower. There they met Treebeard the Ent. Solorfainiel had heard stories of the Ents and she was in awe as she looked upon them.

"Hmmm, young Master Gandalf!" Treebeard greeted. "I'm glad you've come. There is a wizard to be managed here. Locked in his tower."

"And there he shall stay under your guard, Treebeard," Gandalf declared.

"Well, then let's just have his head and be done with it," Gimli said nonchalantly.

"We can burn his carcass with his fallen Uruks," Solorfainiel suggested.

"No," Gandalf said. "He has no power anymore. We need him to talk."

Then, from atop of his tower, Saruman, the puppet of Sauron, appeared. Behind him was his skulking servant, Grima Wormtounge.

"You have fought many wars and slain many men, Théoden King, and made peace afterwards. Can we not take counsel together as we once did, my old friend? Can we not have peace, you and I?" Saruman questioned.

Théoden showed no mercy as he spoke to Saruman. "We shall have peace. We shall have peace when you answer for the burning of the Westfold and the children that lie dead there! We shall have peace when the lives of the soldiers whose bodies were hewn even as they lay dead against the gates of the Hornburg, are avenged! When you hang from a gibbet for the sport of your own crows, we shall have peace."

"And what of you, Elvish scum? Can we not have peace?" Saruman asked coldly.

"Peace between the Elves and Saruman cannot be granted until you answer for the fellow Elves who were struck down by your hordes. Until you answer for the murder of my husband. You will answer for all the families who now rest in the Halls of Mandos while their children are left behind. Peace between the Elves and Saruman will come when you hang from a tree for the crows to feast on your flesh!" Solorfainiel said fiercely.

Saruman was incensed. "Gibbets and crows? Dotard! What do you want, Gandalf Greyhame? Let me guess. The key of Orthanc. Or perhaps the Keys of Barad-dur itself along with the crowns of the seven kings and the rods of the Five Wizards!"

"Saruman, your treachery has cost many lives," Gandalf said solemnly. "Thousands more are at risk, but you can save them. You were deep in the enemy's counsel."

"You want information?" Saruman asked as he held up a flaming orb known as the Palantir. "Something festers in the land of Mordor. Something you have failed to see, but the Great Eye has seen it. His attack will come and you are going to die."

"I've heard enough!" Gimli said hastily. "Shoot him, Legolas. Stick an arrow in his gob."

"Make that two arrows," Solorfainiel added.

"No," Gandalf protested. "Come down, Saruman and your life will be spared."

"Save your pity. I have no use for it!" Saruman spat, sending a great fireball at Gandalf.

"Saruman, your staff is broken," Gandalf declared.

Suddenly, the staff of Saruman smashed into a thousand pieces. Grima then appeared behind Saruman.

Theoden tried to turn him back to Rohan. "Grima, you are not always what you are now. You were once a man of Rohan. Come down, Grima."

"Rohan? What is Rohan but thatched barns where brigands drink in the reek and the brats roll on the floor with the dogs?" Saruman demanded. "The victory at Helm's Deep was not yours, Theoden, Horse-master! You are the son of lesser sires."

"Grima, come down. Be free of him," Theoden beckoned.

"Free? He will never be free!" Saruman declared.

"No," Wormtongue protested.

"Get down, cur!" Saruman exclaimed, striking Grima. "You withdraw your guard and I will tell you where you doom will be decided."

Then, Grima pulled a knife from his sleeve and plunged it into Saruman's back several times. Quicker than lightning, Legolas drew his bow and fired, hitting Grima in the heart. Saruman then fell from the tower and his body pierced the spikes on his wheel. Everyone, even Solorfainiel, paled.

"The filth of Saruman is washing away," Treebeard declared. "Trees will soon come here. Young trees, wild trees."

Pippin then jumped from Brego and picked up the Palantir that had dropped from Saruman's robes.

"Peregrin Took, I'll take that my lad," Gandalf told him, taking the Palantir into his robe.

The company then rode back to Helm's Deep for the celebration. Awaiting them was Lady Eowyn.

"Hail, Lady Eowyn!" Solorfainiel greeted. "Is my son well?"

Eowyn led Solorfainiel into her bedchamber. Meldarion lay there, bouncing his tiny body about.

"He is quite well, Solorfainiel," Eowyn said with a pleasant smile.

Solorfainiel picked up her baby boy and filled him into her arms. "Meldarion! My beautiful boy!"

"He's a beautiful boy," Eowyn said with a smile still upon her face. "He's quite strong."

"His father was a strong man," Solorfainiel said.

"The victory celebration is about to begin. Come," Eowyn beckoned.

All of the people of Rohan and the remaining Elves gathered to honor those who had fallen. Eowyn presented Theoden with a cup.

Theoden raised his cup. "Today, we honor those who gave their blood to defend this country. Hail the victorious dead!"

"Hail!" shouted the people in unison, raising their mugs.

Solorfainiel trembled before she could drink. Like the people of Rohan, she had lost family in the battle. What was more troubling was that Haldir's victory was bittersweet as the Elves were fading from Middle-earth to Valinor. Honoring what Haldir had done for her, Meldarion, and all of Middle-earth, Solorfainiel drank to her fallen husband.

Soon, the victory celebration was in full motion. Barrels of beer and mead filled the hall. The hall was also drowned in music and cheerful talk from the people.

Legolas then approached Solorfainiel. "I have seen Meldarion. He looks well."

"Lady Eowyn did not fail to take care of him," Solorfainiel said with a half smile.

"Solorfainiel, you should enjoy this day," Legolas told her. "Haldir would want you to. Why not honor him by letting your heart be light today?"

"As you wish, my Lord," Solorfainiel said.

"That was not a command," Legolas told her. "It was a request."

"I know," Solorfainiel replied with a smile.

Just then, Eomer came forward with two mugs of beer. He then picked up a third. "No spills, no spits."

"And no regurgitation!" Gimli added, taking his mug of beer.

"So, it's a drinking game?" Legolas asked.

"What exactly is the point of it?" Solorfainiel wanted to know.

"Last one standing wins!" Gimli replied as he drained his mug.

Carefully, Solorfainiel and Legolas then drank from their mugs. Thus began the epic drinking game of Elves versus the Dwarf. The elves and the dwarf drank mug after mug of beer. It was not long before the mugs started to pile up around them. It also didn't take long for Gimli to get intoxicated.

"The Dwarves go swimming with little hairy women!" Gimli said drunkenly before belching.

The drinking game continued. Suddenly, Legolas and Solorfainiel stopped drinking.

"I feel something," Legolas said dazedly. "A slight tingle in my fingers. I think it is affecting me."

"My hands are tingling," Solorfainiel added.

"What did I say? He can't hold his liquor…" Gimli said woozily before collapsing to the ground.

Legolas and Solorfainiel smiled triumphantly. "Game over."

Eomer had been watching the drinking competition with amusement. "This is a reminder to be wary when engaging Elves and Dwarves in a drinking match."

Later, Legolas and Solorfainiel watched as Merry and Pippin gaily danced atop of a table singing their drinking song: Oh, you can search far and wide, you can drink the whole town dry! But you'll never find a beer so brown, a beer so brown, as the one we drink in this old town as the one we drink in our old town! You can drink your fancy ales, you can drink 'em by the flagon, but the only brew for the brave and true comes from the Green Dragon!

Solorfainiel applauded with the brightest smile upon her fair Elven face.

"I never expected to see one of those again," Legolas commented lightheartedly.

"One of what, my Lord?" Solorfainiel questioned.

"A smile," Legolas replied with a laugh.

"I never expected to smile again either," Solorfainiel said with a sigh. "It was not Solorfainiel, daughter of Elros, who lead the Elves to victory at Helm's Deep. When I think of all those who gave their lives-"

"Let us not be so gloomy on this day of victory," Legolas interrupted. "This victory belongs to you. This day is for you. If there is anything I would ask of you, not as a Lord, but as a friend, it is to see you smile and your heart light again."

"Then you shall have that wish, my Lord," Solorfainiel said with a radiant smile. "It is not hard for me to be merry when I think of what I have, of those I love. Meldarion soothes my heart and your company brings great pleasure to me."

Legolas smiled brighter. "I am glad I can make you smile, Solorfainiel. It brings joy to my heart."

Legolas slipped his hand into Solorfainiel's. He was comforted to know that she did not tremble or release her hand from his touch. For a moment, Solorfainiel and Legolas gazed into each others' eyes. There was so much affection between them that had only spoken through actions but not yet through words. There was a passionate longing for each other in their eyes. For one moment, the hearts of Legolas and Solorfainiel were one.

"I must go to my son," Solorfainiel whispered. "Good night, my Prince."

"Sleep well, Solorfainiel," Legolas said softly.

As she took her leave, Solorfainiel could feel Legolas's warm touch lingering on her white hand. Her heart was pounding as she memorized the touch. She felt lightness in her heart that she had not felt for nearly three years. She did not want to admit it yet, but Solorfainiel's heart yearned for Legolas.
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Old March 17th, 2011, 07:40 AM
Guin Sparrow Guin Sparrow is offline
Orlando's Shadow King
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 1,066

Chapter 15: The Ride for Gondor

Solorfainiel was awoken from a peaceful slumber. Although the day's merriment had lightened her heart, she was still troubled. Solorfainiel had made a solemn promise to Haldir on her wedding day that she would love him and him alone. Now Haldir had been stolen from her as well as her heart. Yet Solorfainiel could feel her heart coming back to her when she was with Legolas. Legolas's presence soothed her and gave her great joy, but she was worried about this. Solorfainiel greatly desired Legolas's love, but she felt that taking that love would betray her vows and Haldir.

What am I to do? Solorfainiel thought to herself.

Solorfainiel turned to watch Meldarion as he slept. She thought of him as she pondered these feelings in her heart. Meldarion was only a baby and he had already lost his father. Solorfainiel knew of how Legolas had cared for her son while she recovered from her wound at Helm's Deep. She knew that Legolas loved the boy as if he were his own son. If she gave in to her love for Legolas, Meldarion would have a father again. Yet it would not be the same as having Haldir.

Unable to reconcile her thoughts, Solorfainiel left her bed and walked about the halls. Through a small opening, Solorfainiel gazed upon Legolas, hooded and cloaked, gazing out to the stars. She could not help herself but to gaze at him.

"Are we restless tonight, Solorfainiel?" asked a voice.

Startled, Solorfainiel turned to see Aragorn behind her. "I am weary, and yes I am restless tonight."

"What is on your mind that gives you no rest?" Aragorn wanted to know.

Solorfainiel said nothing, but stared out the door to Legolas.

Aragorn followed her gaze and turned back. "Is your heart troubled?"

"Troubled indeed," Solorfainiel replied with a sigh. "I know what love Legolas carries for me. I have known it since your Fellowship parted from Lorien."

"I have heard Legolas sing your praises," Aragorn told her. "When you were in wounded at Helm's Deep, he feared greatly for your life. He never left you or Meldarion."

"I do not deny that my heart yearns for his love," Solorfainiel admitted. "Yet I cannot bring myself to have it."

"Why do you deny yourself so?" Aragorn asked in concern.

"I made a promise to Haldir on my wedding day, Aragorn," Solorfainiel explained, her voice rising the tiniest bit. "I swore to love him and no other. If I love another, what sort of wife and mother will I be?"

"You would be the best wife and mother there is," Aragorn answered, trying to convey hope. "You have been strong for Meldarion all this time. Haldir would thank you for that. He would not want his wife bound to him when his time has gone. Haldir would need you to embrace Legolas's love. He would not have wanted you to be alone in this world."

"That is a wise and encouraging thought, Aragorn," Solorfainiel said with a nod.

"If I may be so bold, I know why you truly do not seek Legolas's love," Aragorn said gently.

"You do because I have already explained it to you," Solorfainiel replied.

"No, Solorfainiel," Aragorn corrected her. "You do not embrace Legolas's love because you are afraid."

"Afraid?" Solorfainiel questioned. "Afraid of what?"

"You lost Haldir at Helm's Deep. You do not seek Legolas's love because you fear that you shall lose him in the same manner," Aragorn said knowingly.

"I made a promise to be faithful to no one but Haldir," Solorfainiel said, her voice rising. "How hard can that be to comprehend, even for a mortal?"

"Solorfainiel, you cannot argue. You know it's true just as I do," Aragorn told her.

Solorfainiel sighed and remained silent for a moment. "You are right, Aragorn," she admitted. "I do fear to lose Legolas. I do not underestimate his skill in battle, but I fear to lose him as I did Haldir. Haldir was the best warrior in Lorien, and he was slain. I cannot bear to gain Legolas's heart only to lose it. Had I the foresight, I would never have married Haldir and listened to Lord Elrond. I feel like such a fool that I did not heed his warning."

"You feel like a fool because you married Haldir?" Aragorn questioned.

"I did not say that," Solorfainiel replied.

"You regret marrying him because you lost him is what you said," Aragorn told her.

"Had I not lost him, my heart would not be broken," Solorfainiel said ruefully.

"Are you so certain, Solorfainiel?" Aragorn asked dubiously. "If you had not married Haldir, you would have regretted it. You would have rued that you never took the chance to give him your heart. You say you would rather have never married him. If you had not, you would've been alone. Meldarion, your beloved son, would never have come. You would give that up to spare yourself a broken heart?"

"No," Solorfainiel sighed. "I could never have given that up."

"Lord Elrond may have the gift of foresight, but he did not see what happiness you have now. You may not have one love, but you have another to fill your heart. You have Meldarion and you could have Legolas," Aragorn said compassionately. "If you do not embrace Legolas's love, you will regret it."

"You have wisdom in your heart, Aragorn," Solorfainiel said with appreciation in her voice.

"Do not forget what I have told you," Aragorn told her.

"I shall not," Solorfainiel promised.

Solorfainiel had known what Aragorn told her was right all along. She loved Legolas from the moment she saw him, even though she had given her heart to Haldir. The loss of Haldir had wounded her in many ways and fear clouded her senses. Solorfainiel understood what she had to do. She had to let Legolas know she loved him. If she did not, she knew that she would lament it for all time.

After two days, dawn approached the land of Rohan again. Solorfainiel woke this day prepared to confess to Legolas. She could feel her heart swelling with love. Solorfainiel could feel her white cheeks turning red as she thought of Legolas and admitting her love to him. She had not felt that way since she met and fell in love with Haldir. Solorfainiel thought that feeling felt wonderful.

That morning she went to the Golden Hall and found Legolas. He seemed to have a glow about him in the morning light that made Solorfainiel love him even more.

"My Lord," Solorfainiel whispered as she approached Legolas. "How do you fare this morning, my Lord?"

"My heart is light this morning," Legolas replied. "Your son can lift the heaviest of hearts."

"Indeed," Solorfainiel said with a smile. "Speaking of Meldarion, there is something you must know."

Before Solorfainiel could continue, she heard Aragorn shouting. "The beacons of Minas Tirith are lit! Gondor calls for aid!"

There was dead silence. Solorfainiel could only gaze at Legolas. She knew there would be more marching to war after the beacons were lit.

"Then Rohan will answer," Theoden declared. "Muster the Rohirrim!"

Solorfainiel hurried out of the halls ahead of Legolas. She felt her heart sink slightly. Riding for Gondor meant war, war that she did not know if she or Legolas could survive. Solorfainiel rued her lost moment before making ready to ride. Solorfainiel took her sleeping son and was helped onto her horse before she held Meldarion again. She could not contain herself from looking at Legolas a moment or two. Solorfainiel promised that she would let Legolas know how much she truly loved him. In her heart, she prayed she would have such a moment. Solorfainiel loved Legolas and she was determined to make that known to him.

After nearly three days of riding, Theoden and his riders arrived at a camp with all the able warriors from across the kingdom. Solorfainiel dismounted and trembled as Legolas passed her. She knew time was running out.

"If you desire to tell Legolas of your love, take the moment now," Aragorn advised her. "We ride at dawn and what tomorrow brings cannot be known."

"I will remember that," Solorfainiel promised.

By nightfall, Solorfainiel dwelt in her tent, cherishing a rare moment of peace with her precious son Meldarion. Solorfainiel's heart swelled as she held her baby boy in her arms and she could feel her heart being warmed. When she was troubled, Meldarion brought her out of such trouble. Solorfainiel could not deny the truth of Aragorn's words. She did not regret marrying Haldir and giving life to Meldarion.

"I ion nin*," Solorfainiel sighed lovingly. "I would not change any moment of our lives. Im gelir na lin naneth*."

Solorfainiel kissed Meldarion's smooth, white head. Meldarion did not understand his mother's words, but somehow he understood her message. The baby boy smiled as his mother kissed him, bringing laughter from Solorfainiel.

"Solorfainiel," a guard called. "There is a visitor who requests your presence."

"Where might I find this messenger?" Solorfainiel asked.

"He waits in King Théoden's tent," the guard said.

"Thank you," Solorfainiel said gratefully.

With Meldarion in her arms, Solorfainiel took leave of her tent to meet the messenger in King Théoden's tent. Theoden had already taken his leave and there was only the strange messenger shrouded by a hooded cloak. The messenger rose and removed his hood. The messenger was none other than Lord Elrond.

"My Lord," Solorfainiel greeted, bowing low. "Mae govanen.*"

"I bring dark tidings, Solorfainiel," Elrond said gravely. "Arwen is dying."

Solorfainiel's jaw dropped to the floor. "How?"

"Arwen's life has become tied to the fate of the One Ring," Elrond explained. "Unless Sauron is vanquished, she will die."

"I will see to it that Sauron is vanquished," Solorfainiel said with determination. "If I had the One Ring, I would thrust it into the fire myself."

"You must leave these lands," Elrond told her.

"Why?" Solorfainiel asked in shock. "I can't leave! We march at dawn. I cannot leave on the eve of battle!"

"Arwen is dying and I will not lose you with her," Elrond said firmly. "You are as near to a daughter to me."

"I will not leave, Uncle," Solorfainiel said resolutely.

"You should have heeded my warnings, my dear niece," Elrond advised her. "Haldir has died in battle as I have foreseen. You have nothing left here, save for grief and pain."

Solorfainiel gazed at Meldarion, then back at Elrond. "No, Uncle. I have everything here. I have lost Haldir, but I still have life. I have my son. Please, understand. Haldir died so that Meldarion and I would live to see the darkness lifted from these lands. I must fight to give that future to Meldarion."

"May the blessings of the Valar be with you, my niece," Elrond said gently.

"Hanon-le*," Solorfainiel said gratefully, embracing Elrond.

Solorfainiel then left the tent to find Legolas. She found him saddling up his beautiful horse, Arod. Solorfainiel knew that she couldn't waste any more time. She had to tell Legolas.

"My Lord," Solorfainiel greeted as she approached. "Where do you go? It is not yet dawn."

"Aragorn is not marching with the Rohirrim at dawn," Legolas explained.

"Where does he go to?" Solorfainiel wanted to know.

"Aragorn must summon those who dwell in the mountains," Legolas said. "A fleet of corsairs are sailing down in Gondor. Only with these spirits can Aragorn save Gondor."

"Must you go with him?" Solorfainiel asked.

"I am his comrade. Wherever his adventures take him, I must follow," Legolas said simply.

"If you must go, then I will follow," Solorfainiel declared.

"You do not have business in the mountains," Legolas told her solemnly.

"Neither do you, my Lord," Solorfainiel countered. "You go because you are loyal to Aragorn. I go because I am loyal to you."

"You are loyal, but you are not bound to me," Legolas told her.

"You are not bound to Aragorn, either," Solorfainiel countered, her heart pounding and love in her eyes. "I am bound to you, Legolas. I will not be parted from you."

"What do you speak of?" Legolas questioned.

Solorfainiel's heart skipped a beat. "I am bound to you because I love you."

Legolas's blue eyes brightened. "You love me?"

"Very much," Solorfainiel whispered sincerely.

"What of your duty and bond to Haldir?" Legolas asked, bewildered.

"It is clear to me now that I cannot deny myself love," Solorfainiel whispered. "I would regret it forever if I did not tell you how much I love you. If your feelings are the same as they were when you parted from Lorien, my heart will be filled once more. You have always been devoted to me and Meldarion even when I could not give my heart to you. For that, I…I love you as fervently as you love me. I do not know what shall happen in the morning and I wanted you to know."

"Solorfainiel," Legolas breathed, stroking Solorfainiel's white face. "My feelings have never changed since that day. I promise that I will love you and Meldarion and I intend to keep that promise."

"Le anna nin estel, Legolas,*" Solorfainiel whispered lovingly, holding Legolas's hand.

"Han ma gelir na anna ha sui le anna nin*," Legolas said tenderly.

For a moment, Legolas and Solorfainiel stood, their heads clasped together. They took this moment and lived in it, not knowing if they'd have another like it. For that one moment, there was nothing but their love. Both of their hearts were lightened as they finally listened to them. However, time would not be so kind to them.

Legolas turned away with Arod in tow. "The hour grows late. I must go."

Solorfainiel could still feel the warmth of Legolas's skin on her face. She did not want the moment to end. At least, she did not want the moment to end without having one last thing from Legolas.

"Legolas!" Solorfainiel whispered.

Before Legolas could react, Solorfainiel filled him into her arms and her lips met his at last. At least for a little while longer, Legolas and Solorfainiel's love bloomed like the flowers in the Spring. Both of them were at ease now.

At last, Legolas broke away from Solorfainiel. "Le melon*"

With one last kiss, Legolas turned away from Solorfainiel, looking back once more before he disappeared in the darkness. Solorfainiel watched him go and her heart was eased. The burden she bore was lifted and for that moment, she was at peace. She had hope and now she had love that would last no matter what the outcome of the day would've been. Solorfainiel had Legolas's love at last and for the first time since Meldarion's birth, words could not be used to describe her joy.

Mae govanen*- Well met, welcome

Hanon-le*-Thank you

Le anna nin estel*-You give me hope

Han ma gelir na anna ha sui le anna nin*- I am happy to give it as you give me

Le melon*-I love you
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