Eloné: Forgotten Daughter of Rivendell - Chapter Fifteen
She strode across the courtyard of the Deep, passing inside, through the stone rooms. She wasn't sure exactly where she was going. Walking quickly and silently, she was pensive, deep in thought.
"Eloné Elengwath! Daro!"
"Legolas Thrandulion. You startled me."
"Where are you off to in such a state? Where have you been?"
"Up on the wall. Where are you going? What's been happening? Why, you're wearing armor!"
"I am off to speak to Aragorn." He was ashamed. "I grew angry with him in the armory. I was frustrated and angry, and spoke quickly in my resentment. I said what I should not."
She nodded. "May I go with you? I think we should speak. If the Rohirrim see us in despair, there will be no hope for them."
He paused, thinking. "Aye. Come along."
They stopped before an open door. Legolas motioned her to be silent. Aragorn had his back to them, his hand upon a shirt of chain mail. He was worried, Eloné could sense in the heavy silence that filled the room. Legolas took a step forward in absolute silence. Suddenly, Aragorn came to himself and pulled the mail over his head. He fastened his vest over it; tightened his belt. He reached for his sword. It was not there. He turned. Legolas stood behind him, the sword in his outstretched hand, offering it to the Man.
"We have trusted you this far and you have not led us astray. Forgive me. I was wrong to despair." The prince's voice was soft and smooth, but his words were not. They echoed about the chamber with the tenacity he placed upon them.
Aragorn accepted the blade. He smiled.
Placing his arm on Legolas's shoulder, he answered. "Ú-moe edamed, Legolas. There is nothing to forgive."
The Elf smiled back. Aragorn turned to the doorway, seeing
Eloné standing there.
"Hail, Lady of Imladris."
She smiled sadly. "Do not mock me, Aragorn of the Dunadain." She shook her fair head. "What now? What are we to do?"
He opened his mouth to answer, but was interrupted by a gruff voice down below.
"If we had time, I'd get this adjusted..." the Dwarf paused in his mutterings. He had slipped in unnoticed; his mail fit him worse than the children's. Gimli glanced up at the tree. Legolas's mouth twitched slightly. He met Eloné's eyes across the room, and it took all her control to keep from laughing.
"It's a little tight across the chest!"
Eloné turned her head out the door, snickering.
The breeze down the corridor brought with it a faint sound. She looked up. She heard it again. Behind her, Legolas
breathed, "That is no Orc horn!"
I know that sound...
She was out the door before the others, sprinting across the courtyard and to the gate as she heard the men cry.
"Open the gate!" she yelled at them. The heavy doors creaked open. She arrived at them as Théoden did. He was speechless at the sight before him.
"How, how is this possible?"
A legion of Elves, cloaked in richest blue, stood within the gates of the Deep. On their heads were helms of magnificent silver, bows were in their arms and quivers on their backs. At their head was a face she knew full well. So well...
She ducked her head aside so he noticed her not. His face was uplifted and his voice proud as he answered the king.
"I bring word from Elrond of Rivendell..."
A sharp intake of breath from Eloné.
"..an alliance once existed between Elves and Men. Long ago, we fought and died together."
He paused at the sudden arrival of Aragorn and Legolas.
Gimli waddled behind. The rush of feet made the Elf look up, and smile.
"We come to honor that allegiance."
Aragorn rushed down the steps, crying. "Mae govannen, Haldir!" He grasped the Elf in an embrace. "You are most welcome!"
Haldir seemed uncertain at the sudden greeting from Aragorn, but returned the embrace. Legolas and Gimli stood at the top of the stairs. Legolas also greeted Haldir with an embrace; more reserved than Aragorn's, however.
Haldir lifted his head and spoke to the Rohirrim.
"We are proud to fight alongside Men once more."
Darkness was falling. The sun was growing into a deep blue, mingled ever so faintly with pink at the last rays of the setting sun. The Elves of Rivendell were stationed on the wall; their dark cloaks a regal sight against the crude stone of the Deeping Wall. Haldir stood with them; he wore no cloak, but bright armor instead. Eloné had not spoken with him since he had arrived. She had not spoken with him in many years. She stood in the courtyard of the Deep, unsure of where to go or what to do. Éowyn was with the women and children in the caves; Théoden was separate from his men, and Aragorn was on the wall with Haldir. The voice inside her told her to go up on the wall.
I know. I know. But I just can't. Haldir will see me. And he will make me go back to Rivendell, or send me to the caves like a silly girl. He will be angry with me, for running from Imladris. Or perhaps he will have forgotten, like everyone else. I will go and stand with Aragorn.
She turned from where she was to face the wall. Lifting her head and squaring her shoulders, she walked toward the wall. Up the stone stairs. Across the wall. Legolas stood, bow across his chest, gazing at the dark plain before him. He nodded at Eloné.
"I wondered when you were going to show."
She smiled wryly. "Doubting me, eh? I was thinking."
He looked at her, concerned. "You've been doing a lot of thinking all day. Are you all right? What is troubling you?"
She drew in her breath. "It's something, and it's nothing.
Old wounds, really. I'm alright."
He did not seem convinced. He shrugged and turned back to scanning the plain.
Eloné followed his gaze.
"When do you think they will come?"
"I have no doubt of it."
She nodded. "I thought so, too. I can feel it."
A look of wonder and concern passed over Legolas's face. "You know much, Eloné of Imladris. More than I."
Her face grew stony as she pretended to be absorbed in watching the landscape. "I see much." She answered shortly.
She felt his eyes on her, so she turned to meet his gaze. His deep eyes penetrated hers, and she found herself falling; beyond the Deep, beyond the stars, into a world of blue. And there were the voices.
A small child, garbed in floating sky blue came running out of a door into the arms of her devoted father. He swept her up in a strong embrace, swinging her around the chamber. He was smiling, years of care and worry erased from his wise face. The child's face was bright with youth, her eyes sparkling; she was laughing.
At last he set her down. They began to walk together, her small fair hand enveloped in his. Her bare feet padded softly on the stone floor as they walked together out into a well groomed garden. The father sat the child down in the green grass, and he sprawled beside her. She giggled at his un-adult like behavior.
"So, my child." His mellow voice sounded in the garden. "What do you wish to know today?"
"Ada, I have been reading," she began seriously.
"That's not new," he cut in, a twinkle in his eye.
She made a good natured face at him and continued. "I have been reading about our family history. From the library. I saw all of the books on our family. I read about Gondolin and I read about the Rings. I got a little curious, Ada, so I walked around looking at all the tapestries and heirlooms in our house. We have so many! But I read about one that I especially wanted to see but couldn't find it. So I thought maybe Mum had it, with her jewels. I didn't look!"
She grew indignant at his raised eyebrow. "Honest, Ada. I didn't. That's why I'm asking you. I love hearing about Luthien and Beren One-Hand. What happened to the Tear? Does Mum have it? I would like to see it."
"No, child. It has been lost, my dear. But I can show you what it looked like."
"Will you? Please?"
He rose and helped her to her feet. Together they strode through the garden back into the house, into an elaborate library. Reaching high into a top shelf, he brought down to her a heavy book, leather bound, and ancient. The seal of their House marked the cover. He knelt beside her and leafed through it's rustling pages.
He handed the book to her. She took it in her small hands.
The page was yellowed with age, but the drawing of the brooch on it was as intricate and beautiful as the day it was fist inked in. A simple gem, colored brilliant red, cut in an oval marked the center. It was surrounded by an intricate setting of gold, carved in mallern leaves and swirls, catching the light in it's simple radiance.
The girl sighed. "Oooh! Ada! It's so pretty!"
He took the book back from her. "Yes, Eloné. But it was lost ages ago."
"How sad." She looked into her hands in her lap. The blue of her gown expanded to fill the whole of her vision. She saw in it the innumerable stars, and then the blackness of a land she knew as Mordor. She saw Helm's Deep, overcome by Orcs and Uruks. She saw figures rushing past her. She felt the wind, a swhishing sound, and then she felt a sharp pain. An arrow in her side. She was back on the Wall, but her senses were not. They were walking the golden woods of Lórien, and her grandmother's voice was in her mind.
"This is your path, Eloné. It is not Arwen's; it is not anyone else's but yours. You must face it with all the courage you can, for none can know the ending; but my heart tells me that yours is sad, and clouded in mist and shadow. We may not meet again, Elone, my little granddaughter..."
Her senses kicked in. She was kneeling on the cold stone of the Wall, her stomach churning. She pressed a hand to her chest, hoping to still the nausea. She couldn't stand. A warm arm encircled her.
"Eloné? What is the matter with you? You are not yourself."
"No, Legolas. I am me, and I am no one. My path goes into darkness. She spoke it so. My fate is such as I dreamed it long ago. There is no hope for Eloné Elengwath. Star of Shadow."