Elven Ranger - Chapter 10 - To War
I just thought if you have never seen this story you could catch up with these links if you felt like it:
Chapter One - Bringer of News:
Chapter Two - A night at the Prancing Pony: http://www.theonering.com/docs/8912.html
Chapter Three - Into the Wilderness:
Chapter Four - The House of Elrond:
Chapter Five - The Council of Elrond:
Chapter Six - Lothlórien:
Chapter Seven - Eyes Wide Open:
Chapter Eight - Young Beginnings:
Chapter Nine - For the Love of the Land I Live In:
+ Elven Ranger - To War +
"Good bye Lina." Eleniel bent down and kissed the child on the top of the head. Lina sniffled and hugged Eleniel, Eleniel hugged her back. "Can I come and see you go? Can I watch you all ride away? Elrohir and Elladan are going to aren't they?" Eleniel nodded her head. She stood up from her chair and walked to the door; Lina hurried up beside her and took her hand.
"Ok, come and watch us leave if you must. Now, make sure you take care of our rooms. And Arwen will be here to keep you company, and Elrond, and many other elves you have become friends with." Eleniel threw a riding bag over her shoulder and held her helm under her arm. Eleniel walked with Lina by her side. They came into the main courtyard where the elven soldiers were gathered.
Arwen came up to Eleniel and took Lina's hand from her own. Eleniel smiled and bowed her head to Arwen. "Navaer, Undomiel melon nin. Hannad le." (`Farewell, Evenstar my friend. Thank you.')
"Navaer, cuio a no mae, melon nin!" (`Farewell, live and be well, my friend.'). Arwen replied as she lifted Lina into her arms. Eleniel smiled at Lina and Arwen, "Goodbye, for now." Eleniel put on her helm, and then turned and mounted Celebnaur. Eleniel sat high on her horse, and was as bright and tall as any of the other princes in the courtyard. Elrond said words of departure, he wished them strength, and the elves then set forth.
Eleniel rode beside Elladan and Elrohir; none spoke that day as they rode. They rode for a week. Then night came, and they camped in the shadow of the mountains of mist. The next day they would take the pass of Caradhras, and come to Lorien three days later. They sat down in a secluded clearing; they made a few small fires to keep themselves warm.
Eleniel sat about a small fire with Elladan, Elrohir, Lindir and Aldon. They ate and spoke little, then lay down to sleep. Eleniel sat at the fire for a little while the others lay asleep; she was on first watch, with some others about the campsite. She stood up, and paced about the outskirts of the camp for a long while until Elrohir came and told her to sleep and took her place. Eleniel walked back to where Elladan was sleeping. She sat down beside, her knees up under her chin, with her arms wrapped about her legs. She watched him for a minute, he then turned and looked at her with a smiled, "It is quite annoying knowing you have someone watching you while you are trying to rest."
Eleniel smiled, "Diheno anim" (`I'm sorry'). Eleniel lay down in Elladan's arms and then they both fell asleep. They were woken early the next morning, it was dawn. They packed up camp and rode forward again, the journey upon the cruel Redhorn was not easy, but they were all strong elves and made the journey without loss.
They came down the Dimrill stair and rested briefly by Mirrormere, and then set off again. It was not a slow journey, but seemed it. Every step, even though if coming to a land of surpassing beauty meant they were coming closer to war, and they may never see loved ones again in Middle-earth. Their spirits were sad. "We come now to the land of Lothlorien! The March Warden awaits us, look!" Elrohir announced as they came closer to the borders of the land, Haldir stood tall with his brother's Orophin and Rumil, he bowed to the sons of Elrond then clasped both Elladan and Elrohir's hands. "Eleniel?" Eleniel laughed, "Yes that is my name as you know well March Warden. Do not look so shocked to see that I go to war." He just smiled and nodded his head. The army was lead into Lorien, and were given food and sleep for the night. They would leave for Rohan tomorrow.
"Now, you three are to see the Lady and the Lord before you retire for the night." Haldir informed Eleniel, Elladan, and Elrohir. He led them up the great stairs to the great hall, and left them there. Soon after he left, Galadriel and Celeborn appeared.
"Mae govannen!" Lord Celeborn said as he walked into the large hall with Galadriel from a higher level in the great tree. The three younger elves greeted the Lord and the Lady politely and happily, though underneath they were sad as would be expected before war. Lord Celeborn and the Lady Galadriel talked of events in Middle-Earth, and then Galadriel came to the reason why they were called up here. And she recited:
"Where now are the Dúnedain, Elessar, Elessar?
Why do thy kinsfolk wander afar?
Near is the hour when the lost should come forth,
And the Grey Company ride from the North.
But dark is the path appointed to thee:
The Dead watch the road that leads to the sea.
These are the words I sent to Aragorn, he knows them and I wish to put them in motion. To do this I will need you, if any of the Dúnedain are in Imladris at the moment go back and get them, have them help you search out the others in the wilderness. Aragorn will need them before the end, and you also he will need. Find them and you will find Aragorn in Rohan, the land south of here." Galadriel finished and looked at them for their answer.
"Who will lead the elves?" Elladan asked. "My father sent us, but I will do as you wish my lady." Galadriel tilted her head, as though she had a change of heart, "Elladan and Elrohir my children you will search for the Dúnedain. Eleniel you will lead the warriors to Helm's deep along with Haldir." Eleniel nodded her head, "As you wish my Lady." Elrohir, Elladan and Eleniel were then dismissed, "Go now and rest and eat. You will need your energy for whichever path you are taking." Celeborn said, and they left.
The three where shown to guest rooms, they stayed in Elrohir's room and ate together then departed to their own rooms. Eleniel kissed Elladan goodnight at his door and turned to her own. "Eleniel?" "Yes?" He stepped up to her and ran his hand over her cheek, "Please stay alive. I will not see you tomorrow; I will see you in Rohan." She nodded, "In Rohan." She turned to leave him but he stopped her. "Father gave me something, but I do not need it yet." Elladan beckoned Eleniel to follow him, she came into his room and he pulled something out of his bag, it was a war horn. "He gave it to me long ago; and it was given to him by his father long ago. It comes from Gondolin." Eleniel looked at the horn with wide eyes, it was beautiful. White with gold and silver designs all over it, a gold tree and a silver tree, and many flowers decorated the horn. "It is beautiful." Said Eleniel, Elladan nodded and held it out towards her. "Here." "What? It is too precious to give to me, from the hands of Eärendil to your father to you." He shook his head, "I want you to have it for now at least even if you would not accept to keep it, take it to Helm's deep."
Eleniel took it in her hands, "and you'll have it back in Rohan. Your father gave you a mighty gift." He smiled, "go and rest you will need it." Eleniel nodded, she hugged Elladan tightly then went back to her own room.
Eleniel sat down on the bed; she stared at the horn in her lap for a while. Eleniel knew Elladan was terribly worried about her going to war. Nothing could be changed, and she didn't particularly want to turn back now. She wasn't afraid of dying, she was afraid oh how it would hurt Elladan if she did. Eleniel sighed and stood up and set the horn on a table, she took off her armor and tunic and slipped into a night dress then went to sleep.
The next day started hours before sunrise for the soldiers, Eleniel ate and then got into her tunic and armor. She descended from the great tree upon Caras Galadon and there was a great mass of soldiers before her, she saw Haldir and made her way towards him. "Eleniel. Good morning." He said with a little nod of his head as she approached, she smiled and looked up at the dark sky, "Morning, little premature for that I think." He smiled, "yes I guess it is." Haldir looked at something over her shoulder, she turned and saw Lord Celeborn standing on the stairs overlooking the army, the elves became quiet and Celeborn spoke solemn words to them, "Farewell, you will be lead by Lord Haldir and Lady Eleniel. You are going to Rohan to defend its people when they cannot, as Saruman has poisoned their lands with his spells. May the Valar protect you on your path and deliver you back to us." With this Celeborn bowed low to them, Haldir and Eleniel moved to the front of the crowd and Haldir called out to them all. "You all know where you are to be, as we leave you get into your lines, the elves of Imladris will go before us lead by Lady Eleniel as she knows the lands well." Haldir looked to her, "Is that all?" She nodded, and walked through the crowd to the Imladris soldiers and there they were lead south out of Lorien.
On the borders of the wood the horses the elves rode from Imladris were there and ready to go. Eleniel mounted Celebnaur; the Lorien elves did not ride, so they marched behind. Eleniel looked at the mass of elves that issued from the wood behind her as she rode, this would be the last time in this middle-earth that a host of elves shall go to war like this. Or so many be gathered in one place altogether in Middle-Earth at the same time.
The elves traveled south, they did not stop until late that night when they came to the Limelight, a tributary to Anduin. (That is about 100 miles from Lorien, I think the elves could make that in a day because they are so wonderful and all). They set up camp by the stream for the night and they would leave long before dawn tomorrow.
Haldir came up to Eleniel and sat down with her. "Lady, how are we to cross this stream. We could swim it but is it necessary?" Eleniel shook her head, "We will turn west and travel a couple of miles along the Limelight here and about ten miles out from Fangorn there is a ford. And there you need only get your ankles wet. Then we will travel around Fangorn, not through it... Those trees are angry and old, and will hurt even an elf if they could." She paused. "Then we will travel south and when we come past Fangorn there will be another river which is about a hundred miles from where we are now. There, there is a crossing, the Entwade. There we cross and turn south- west for Helm's deep. I hope to come to Helm's deep on the evening two days from now. And pray we come in time, before Saruman makes his war."
"You know the lands well Eleniel." Haldir commented, Eleniel smiled, "Well I'd like to think so, seeing as I've spent so much time here and there wandering them." He just smiled, they ate and then Haldir spoke again. "What do you know of Fangorn? It sounds a dark and dangerous place from what I have heard, but what I have heard is little." Eleniel thought for a second, she didn't know it well. She had had one strange experience there, long ago. "Yes, it is dark and dangerous; the trees there will hurt you if they can as I said before. The trees strive one against the other, the tree herders are growing treeish and cannot control the trees as they once could." Haldir looked at her eagerly, "tree herders? Ents! Have you met an Ent?" He asked, longing for her to say yes so he could question her some more. "Fangorn, is the name of the Ent, Fangorn is his forest I have seen him." Haldir's mouth dropped open slightly, Eleniel laughed and put her hand under his chin to push his jaw back up, he laughed to. "Ah, sorry... but what a thing to see!" Eleniel smiled, "Yes, it really was interesting. But I'm tired and we need our sleep." Haldir nodded, "Forgive me, I'll try not to question you so much in the future." Eleniel smiled, "I'll tell you more about Fangorn another time." Eleniel lay down and slept.