The Dragon's Gift - Part I

Andoreth smiled in satisfaction.
He had obtained the dragon's heart! After many weeks Smaug's wisdom and power belonged to him! He stopped for a moment remembering his long quest for draconic glory.

Three years earlier he had been an ambitious criminal. He had stolen much and killed few but nobody ever took him seriously enough to spread his name around. Even though he made it obvious, he would leave one city and no one would recognize him in the next. Until one day he heard of how the dragon of Erebor had been slain by Bard the bowman of course, this news interested him and so he decided to find out how he could gain from this great deed. In the weeks that had followed he learned from reading book upon countless book about dragons that if a man roasted a dragons heart and ate it he would gain all the dragon's knowledge and wisdom. Also he learned dragons hearts did not wither away with time they had to be actively destroyed by animals or other things. So he decided that he would dive to the bottom of Long Lake and get the heart and in doing so he would become more than just a thief. But this, it seemed, would be easier said than done because he lived in bree at the time, and getting to the Lonely Mountain would be a difficult task.

Over the course of time he stole much bread and preserved meat as well as cram and other long-lasting foods. He also got his friend Bill Ferny to give him a horse on stolen money. Then he set out for the lake with his provisions and his tools of thievery, lock picks, a sword, a club, a grappling hook, his long sable black cloak which concealed him in the darkness and his most important tool which never left him, his sharp mind. The first long stretch of the journey passed without event until he reached the misty mountains.
There he was traveling up the side for six days until he reached the top.

He had to rob a camp of giants while they were eating, there were five of them and they were eating large amounts of meat and bread. Andoreth snuck over to the edge of the firelight, wrapped his cloak about him and prowled behind each and every one of the giant's backs stealing bread, meat, and ale by the gallon until he was carrying all he could and he trekked back to his horse several times in this fashion until he was done. He carried on until he reached an enclosed outcrop and slept there for the night. The following day he began his descent down the slopes and onward. Not much happened until he reached mirkwood, there he kept strictly to the path as he had read in countless travelers guides he had read during preparation for this journey.

He followed the path for several days. When he ran out of food at night he lit a fire on the path and left it to hunt and followed the firelight back he hunted with a bow made of oak and a string made from a strange web like substance he found on one of his forays from the path. Every night he came back to his fire with either a small stag or a large amount of foul tasting black squirrels and once in awhile he would shoot birds with which he fletched his arrows, he figured he had enough water and ale to last him several more days but soon enough he reached the other side. He found the remains of the lake town Esgaroth he drank from the lake every day and made his way around until he found Smaug's resting place. He drew out his short sword and after several attempts found the dragon's corpse and after several hours (and many frustrated attempts) he had managed to cut out the heart and drag it to land and here he stood with smaug's huge, heavy, black, heart in his hand.

"Halt!" a voice cried. Andoreth looked over and saw two lake men from the nearby reconstruction site of Dale. Andoreth didn't want to answer ANY questions so he ran. The two men gave chase and drew knives.

"Get back here you!" one shouted. Andoreth just ran being as well conditioned as he was to running he easily escaped them. Later that evening, he came to a small clearing in the woods not far from the shoreline.

Legolas and his friend Narindor were at the building site as were many other mirkwood elves helping with the reconstruction of Dale but they were bored, so they had gone for a walk in the woods. After walking a little while, they saw a tall man with black hair wearing a large sable black cloak, and he was soaking wet, he was obviously trying to make a fire and roast a large black object. Even in the dark the elves could see the spit over the stack of small logs.

The lake guards earlier had reported a similar man so Legolas and Narindor decided to investigate. Narindor was a female elf, taller than Legolas and dazzlingly beautiful
But unlike most elves she had a huge facility for ambition and individual gain. And sometimes she even betrayed others so she could keep all instead of sharing.

Other elves had a large amount of distrust in her but Legolas decided she could be trusted as long as nothing could feed her ambition. Legolas strode up to the man and drew his bow saying "who are you what are you doing and why are you here?" Narindor readied her knife in its sheath. He turned and stammered "h-hhow ddid you f-f-find me?"
Legolas said, "You stand out like a sore thumb and you breathe too loud."

Narindor flipped her long blonde hair out of her eyes and looked into the human's eyes she instantly read his thoughts and knew he was hiding something of immense power.
At the same moment Legolas demanded, "Answer human or I shall make you!"

The human just said, "I will never tell you elf!!" Legolas simply said "fine" and softly kicked the crouched man over and said, "Help me get him back to camp". Narindor hastily complied and the man was dragged back to camp.

Several hours later, Narindor came back to the clearing and saw the man's horse tied to a tree. She cut the horse loose and then stared at what the man had been planning to eat. The object radiated immense power and she
thought, "Perhaps this meal was what he was hiding, at any rate it isn't ordinary."

She continued his business and built a fire and roasted the object, which she recognized as a huge heart. She thought at first that it might be poisonous, but dispelled the thought because the human knew it wasn't dangerous. So she took one bite.

A century of knowledge and power rushed into her as she swallowed the chunk of meat . She gasped as it entered her body. Instantly she remembered younger days and greater things. She also began to feel as if the concern she felt earlier was beneath her. She hastily devoured the rest of the heart, when she was done she felt as though nothing could stop her, that she was the most powerful being on earth. Her sight and hearing were a thousand times sharper. She could now hear fish jumping out in the lake a mile away she could see in the dark as though it was day and she knew what her destiny was.

The very next day Legolas went to Narindor's chambers but she was not there. So he inquired around a bit and someone said she had left to talk to the new prisoner.

When Legolas reached the prisoner's room he found Narindor looking frantic and the prisoner lying on the floor with his sword in his hand and his throat wide open legolas asked, "What has happened here?" Narindor looked at him and instantly he felt she was not to blame. She cried, "I was speaking to him and I loosed his bonds because he said he could not feel his arms and then he knocked me back and slew himself!!" It seemed to legolas her voice had taken a more sonorous tone and he sensed truth in her words. The construction stopped for a few hours as elves, men, and dwarves gave the man a hasty funeral and gave him an inconspicuous grave by the lakeshore. The next day Narindor was nowhere to be found and the dwarves reported a very well made sword missing and a few footprints were found leading towards the south. Legolas later found Narindor' s favorite belongings missing.

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