Evenstar and Ithilian - Part 3 - Chapter 6

Novrion, Legolas and Aragorn had readied their troops. It was battle time. With a resounding roar, the army outside the city suddenly charged. Arrows flew, men fell and the sounds of battle filled the air. The soldiers had trouble fighting on such a dark night, so the choice had been made that they would simply try to keep the city walls from falling. Torches had been lit to illuminate the edge of the city walls, and while these helped the soldiers to defend, they also aided the attackers who more clearly could pinpoint their targets. The battle intensified. More arrows flew, more men fell and screams replaced the pauses where commands used to be heard. Aragorn fought his way over to Legolas, "We cannot hold! The defenses are weakened!" he shouted. Legolas nodded, this army was far better trained than previously thought. "Pull back. Let them have the city, but let us defend the palace from the keeps." Legolas said, aware that his decision was a painful one. Aragorn nodded, they had no other choice. Legolas went to notify Faramir and his men, while Aragorn got Novrion attention. In a mass movement, all the men pulled back to the palace's edge. They could only hope they could withstand the attack from here.

Arwen was sleeping, Eowyn was pacing and Eiliandel keot returning from 'missions'. The 'missions' entailed her sneaking out and returning with supplies such as food, blankets, weaponry and, most recently, several buckets of water. Eowyn looked at her as she put down the tenth bucket, "There will be no room for us if you continue at this rate!" she chided. Eiliandel shot her a look, "The men just pulled back to the palace walls. I'm going for more!" and with that, she vanished. Eowyn rolled her eyes and went back to pacing. Suddenly Eiliandel came bursting through the door, followed closely by Novrion, Legolas, Faramir and Aragorn. Arwen woke up with the sudden noise. "Close the door! Close the door!" Aragorn and Legolas yelled as they came through. Eiliandel responded by slamming it shut with all her might. The men barricaded the door, and then all turned to look at the startled women, "They got through," Legolas explained, "The soldiers had also retreated to form pockets of resistance. We have to try to outlast the enemy," he saw Eiliandel's collection of supplies, "We might just make it."

Legolas watched as the others slept. They were taking turns on watch. Eiliandel and Novrion were curled up together in a corner, Eiliandel's head resting on Novrion's chest. Faramir and Eowyn had claimed the other corner, and Arwen and Aragorn were sleeping along one of the walls. Legolas resumed his watch, soon it was time to wake Arwen, who had insisted that she be allowed to help. Aragorn had not been pleased, but he'd let her alone. Legolas got up to wake her when suddenly, sounds of a battle nearby erupted. Aragorn, Novrion, Eiliandel, Eowyn and Faramir were on their feet in a second, Arwen remained sitting, but had picked up a sword. "What's going on?" Eiliandel whispered. The door to the stronghold was hidden when it was closed, so it was imperative that they be as silent as possible. They stood a good chance of going completely unnoticed if they could just remain silent enough. "I don't know," Legolas whispered back, "It just started." The battle came closer and closer until it sounded like it was just outside the door, but then it continued on, passing them by. They all sighed with relief. Arwen took her turn at watch, but the rest of the night was uneventful.

Eowyn watched with interest as Eiliandel neatly burnt a very detailed picture on the stone wall. So far, she'd willingly drawn pictures of memories of Legolas' and Aragorn's time with the fellowship. She'd burnt a lovely picture of Edoras for Eowyn, and now she was busily working on Rivendell and Lothlorien. They had spent the entire day as silent as they could possibly be as battle after battle passed their hideout. Eiliandel had started her 'drawings' once she'd run out of weapons to load and clean. Arwen was sleeping again, ahving gotten too tired the night before. Legolas, Novrion, Faramir and Aragorn had studied the map, and had then switched to figuring out battle plans. Giving up, and having no candles to light, they all retired with the setting of the sun.

Arwen's eyes shot open. The baby had gotten extremely restless, kicking away. She sat up slowly, trying to change her position enough to calm the baby. It didn't work. 'Oh, no'. Arwen's mind pulled the last pieces of the puzzle together. The baby was not uncomfortable in any way, she was in labour. "Estel." Arwen whispered, shaking her husband. Aragorn opened his eyes, "What is it? Did you hear something?" he whispered back, getting ready to arm himself. Arwen shook her head, "I'm in labour." Aragorn's eyes widened, he reached for her shoulders and helped her lean against the wall. "What do you need me to do?" Aragorn asked. Why the baby had to come now, with all help cut off, he didn't know, but he was going to help her in everyway possible. Arwen took a deep breath, trying to calm herself, "Wake Eiliandel. Quietly. Let the others sleep," Arwen winced, "The baby might not arrive until morning and I do not wish to tire them out." Aragorn shook his head. She was going to give birth and she was still worried that the others might not get enough sleep! Aragorn eased himself over to Eiliandel and Novrion. Luckily, they weren't curled up together, or Aragorn would have had a horrible time waking just Eiliandel. Putting a hand over her mouth, and hoping that she was tired enough that she wouldn't throw fire at him, Aragorn gave her a good shake. Eiliandel's fist came up as her eyes opened. Aragorn yanked his head back, narrowly missing getting hit. Eiliandel's eyes widened, and she sat up, "Sorry." she murmurred as he removed his hand. "Come here, quietly," Aragorn pulled her towards Arwen. "What is going on?" Eiliandel questioned. "Arwen's in labour." Aragorn looked slightly helpless, "I don't know what to do." He finished. Eiliandel's eyes had gone wide, and she moved quickly to Arwen's side. "How long ago did this start?" she whispered to Arwen. "I don't know. I woke up to it." Arwen muttered back, gritting her teeth. Eiliandel cursed in elvish to herself as she helped Arwen settle against a stack of blankets.

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