Evenstar and Ithilian - Last chapter of this story!

The wizard stopped at a small tunnel that led deep into the ground. Eiliandel shied away from the opening, Arwen ducking back, eyeing the hole uneasily. Elves did not like being underground, and Eiliandel and Arwen were no exceptions. He forced the women down the small tunnel. It opened into a cave that continued far beneath their feet. They were standing on a ledge which led around the whole cave. There were several openings located just beneath the ledge, Arwen wondered what their use was. In the middle of the bottom of the cave, was a glowing yellow stone perched on a stone table - all of which was submerged in water. The wizard cackled with glee, "Oh, yes, the time has finally come!" he turned to Eiliandel and Arwen, "Ithilian, remove the water, let me get to the stone! Evenstar, you shall help her." the wizard did not know which woman was who, but he knew what he wanted. Eiliandel moved closer to Arwen, "Get ready." she whispered. Arwen looked at her. Eiliandel closed her eyes and began to breathe deeply. Arwen watched in amazement as water began to move toward the surface - towards the openings Arwen had seen earlier. Arwen suddenly realized what Eiliandel was doing. She was draining the cave, lowering the water for the wizard. A stairway to the bottom began to emerge from the water. Eiliandel suddenly gasped, causing Arwen to look at her in concern. Water began to flow back in, enraging the wizard, "Oh no you don't!" he bellowed in anger. He raised his staff as though to hit Eiliandel, "Don't you dare stop!" He glared at Arwen, "Help her." Arwen began to shake her head, but he suddenly pushed her to the edge, "Help her." he ordered. Arwen caved and went back to Eiliandel. "Here." Arwen offered Eiliandel her hand. Eiliandel took her hand, and Arwen suddenly felt Eiliandel's power. She joined her own control over the water, just as she'd done to save Frodo. She began to feel the strain immediately. This was much harder than the water at the river had been, and heavier too. Eiliandel was doing the majority of the work, lifting it up for Arwen who tried to force the water to the opening. Approxiamtely 15 feet of the stair now showed, "Come."the wizard began to go down the stairs, the guards forcing the two women to keep going. Two guards followed them down, while the rest remained on guard at the top of the stairway, obviously there to keep the women from trying to make a run for it. Eiliandel muttered something that did not sound complimentary and glared at the back of the wizard's head. She was still lifting the water up, even though her attention was now elsewhere. Arwen was amazed, she'd had to stop when she'd started walking for fear she'd walk right off the open stairway. Eiliandel was multi-tasking to a degree Arwen had never seen.

Aragorn had seen the lights disappear down into the ground. He immediately got the others attention and they all ran toward the opening. Novrion,Legolas, Elladan and Elrohir eyed it suspiciously while Aragorn promptly went down the opening, "Hurry! I hear voices!" and he disappeared. The elves looked at each other and then followed Aragorn. The men came out onto a ledge and nearly fell off in shock. Nearly 25 feet down, Aragorn saw Arwen and Eiliandel and three men on a stairway. He looked up in even more shock. The water seemed to be lifting upwards in very neat bands towards openings under their feet. Awen and Eiliandel both glanced up in their direction, but looked back down suddenly, Legolas grimaced and Aragorn wondered why.

Arwen and Eiliandel had seen Aragorn, Novrion, Legolas, Elladan and Elrohir's arrival. Through mind-speak, Eiliandel told Arwen,"Look down. Pretend you have not seen them. They will be in danger if they are noticed." Arwen immediately looked down again. Eiliandel was getting tired, she knew she could not hold the water for much longer. Now that Aragorn was here, along with Arwen's brothers, and Novrion, Eiliandel felt that Arwen stood a better chance. Eiliandel stopped. The wizard turned on her, "What are you doing?" Eiliandel did not move. Arwen looked at her, Eiliandel had a tiny smile playing about her lips. "Eiliandel?" Arwen asked slowly. Eiliandel turned to look at her, and smiled, "Uuma dela." She tilted her head and then turned up the stairs, "Rima!" she ordered. Arwen did not ask, instead she turned and ran up the stairs alongside Eiliandel. "STOP!" the wizard hollered, when neither woman showed any sign of slowing, he looked to his guards, he only had 5-6 feet to go and then he'd have the crystal, he could reach it on his own, "Kill them!" he ordered. The guards armed themselves and pointed arrows at the women. Eiliandel continued going, grabbing Arwen's hand and forcing her behind her. The men released the arrows. THere was a yell from Aragorn, but Arwen had no time to think. The arrows flew towards the women, but suddenly they stopped in mid air and clattered harmlessly to the floor. Arwen suddenly realized what Eiliandel was up to, she was using her control over air to protect them. She was trying to reach freedom.

Aragorn shouted "ARWEN!" just as the arrows were released. Had he arrived in just enough time to watch her killed? To his amazement, the arrows stopped and fell to the floor. He and the others watched breathlessly as the two elves continued their break-neck run for freedom. More arrows were fired, but they too dropped. The women had about 10 feet of stair to go, but they stopped, gasping for air. They were too tired to keep going, Aragorn could not figure out why, Arwen had run farther before, why was she tired now? Legolas shook his head, "Stop now. Protect yourself!" he muttered. Aragorn looked at him questioningly. "How do you think the water was rising?" Legolas asked pointedly, "Eiliandel was lifting it, no doubt with help from Arwen." Aragorn looked back in shock, Eiliandel and Arwen had lifted all that? No wonder they could not go on!

"Eiliandel................I can't run any farther!" Arwen collapsed against Eiliandel. Her sudden release of her control on the water startled Eiliandel, who whimpered as the extra weight hit her. She staggered a bit, but held both the water and the arrows back. "Arwen." Eiliandel whispered, "Get ready." Arwen looked at her and suddenly realized what Eiliandel planned. She gritted her teeth and nodded. Eiliandel was shaking, she couldn't hold it anymore. She looked up towards Novrion and Legolas, "I'm sorry." she sent through mind-speak. She turned back and, along with Arwen, knelt down and she let go. Arrows shot over their heads and suddenly Arwen felt water hammer down on everything.

Aragorn watched in horror as Eiliandel let go of the water. The deluge caused him to lose sight of Arwen and Eiliandel's forms. "Arwen." he whispered. He doubted anything would come out alive. The water had covered everything and was beginning to calm on the surface. He scanned to surface vainly searching for Arwen. Novrion and Legolas were looking for Eiliandel and Elladan and Elrohir were trying to get closer to the water to try to find their sister. Suddenly, Aragorn saw a flash of black hair. He reached forward and his hand caught someone's arm. He pulled and slowly Arwen's form emerged from the water. Elladan and Elrohir darted over and eased their sister onto the ledge. Aragorn cradled her head, desparately searching for life. Her eyes were closed and she showed no signs of waking. Elladan pulled off his cloak and wrapped her frame in it. They heard a small gasp. They looked up, to see Eiliandel hauling herself onto the ledge. Novrion and Legolas grabbed her arms and pulled her all the way up. She looked weakly at Novrion, and then seemed to fall asleep. "We must get them back to Rivendell. Elrond can help." Legolas stated. They carefully carried the two to their horses, which they had abandoned at the edge of the rocks. Aragorn held Arwen as they raced toward Rivendell. "Hold on." he whispered as they ran, he did not wish to lose her. Elrond met them at the gates and immediately retreated to the Houses of Healing.

"Aragorn?" Arwen whispered as she opened her eyes. Where was she? Aragorn was immediately at her side, "I'm right here." he said soothingly as he came into her view. She smiled and sighed as he expalined what had happened and where she was. Eiliandel appeared in her view, "Arwen? Are you alright? I am so sorry to have hurt you!" the other elf looked guilty. "I am alright. "Arwen said, smiling, "You have nothing to feel guilty about!" Eiliandel smiled gratefully, she'd recovered much faster than Arwen. Legolas and Novrion appeared, smiling. They all heard a loud bang as Elladan and Elrohir ran in, "ARWEN!" they yelled happily. Pretty soon, all Elrond heard was laughing.

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