The Hobbit Who Was An Elf - Part Two: A Handsome Stranger

Arinae spent that week preparing and packing for the journey to Rivendell. Arinae said goodbye to all of her friends.

This day she was visiting Elanor. Elanor was the same age as Arinae. She was a beautiful hobbit like her mother. She had long golden curls and blue eyes. Arinae told Elanor who she really was.

"So you are an elf?" Elanor said to Arinae."

" Yes."

" And you will leave?" Elanor asked pouring a cup of tea for herself and Arinae.

" Yes Elanor. I will leave tomorrow."

" But you don't want to live and die in the Shire?"

" I can not pretend to be something I am not. I want to find out where I came from and who my family are."

" I understand," Elanor said sadly. " You are my dear friend, Arinae."

" And you are mine. I shall deeply miss you."

Arinae and Elanor embraced each other. It was then that Elanor said the most dangerous words of her life."

" I am going with you."

" What? No, you can't," Arinae objected.

" Of course I can and I will. I will not let my best friend go alone to Rivendell. There is nothing you can say or do to make me change my mind."

When Arinae saw that Elanor had firmly decided, she stopped urging her to stay. Elanor immediately told her family and friends and began packing for the trip.

Sam came to her that night in her room while she was packing.

" Elanor, are you sure you want to do this?" Sam asked his daughter.

" Yes, father. I must go with Arinae. You of course must understand with your loyalty to Frodo."

" I do my daughter. I made a promise to Frodo to never leave him, and I never did until we were forced to be separated by the orcs. That is why I will not stop you from leaving. Here, I want you to have this," Sam gave Elanor a sharp sword. " It was given to me at Amon Sul by Strider. You might need it."

" Thank you father. I will keep it with me always," Elanor said. " I must get some sleep. We are leaving early tomorrow."

" Goodnight, Elanor."

" Goodnight. father."

That night Arinae tried to sleep as best she could. She was very nervous about the next day, which gave her troubling dreams.

She saw herself in Rivendell walking in the garden. Suddenly a horrible face of and orc appeared in front of her. He pointed a sword at her and told her to turn around in the common toungue of a harsh gravely voice.

Arinae walked out of the garden and out of Rivendell into the woods. She saw a party of orcs in the woods circled around a fire. They tied her up against a tree. The hugest ones closely guarded her. They pawed at her clothes reaching for her neck. A whistle was suddenly heard. Arinae's mother and father were brought out. She knew somehow that they were her parents. They said something to her father, which Arinae didn't understand. One of the orcs inched near her face. She could smell and feel the creatures foul breath upon her face. He clutched at her neck where her neckalce rested and tried to rip it off. He squealed back in pain as if it had burned him. Suddenly the necklace gave off a bright light. Arinae's bonds were returned. The light from the jewel grew so bright that Arinae shielded her face and closed her eyes.

When she opened them, the orcs, the fire, and her mother and father were gone. Arinae stood alone in the woods clutching the necklace.

Arinae awoke with perspiration running off her brow.

" It was just a dream," she said to herself.

Arinae picked up the necklace which sat by her bed. She looked into the white jewel. All Arinae saw was herself reflecting in the jewel. She aid it back down and put her face against the pillow. Arinae fell back into a deep sleep and dreamed the same nightmare over again.

That night Elanor also had a dream.

She saw herself and Arinae going on a long journey. They passed Bree, Amon Sul, and Rivendell. Once leaving Rivendell she wondered why they were going in the direction of Moria. If they went in it somehow, they would never see the light of day again. They did enter Moria but by a different secret entrance. In the shadows, Elanor kept looking back and saw a pair of eyes watching them. She stopped Arinae. The figure came out of hiding. It was an elf man. But instead of attacking them, he embraced and hugged them. Elanor wondered who it was. Arinae seemed to know him.

They continued on until they reached Balin's tomb. The Cave Troll had upset the grave. Elanor remembered the story Sam told. Arinae could make out a few words upon the grave.

" Here lies Balin son of Fundin," she read.

Then Elanor heard a noise. It was the sound of a bonfire and orcs eating. For when orcs eat, they eat noisily and throw bones to their appalling dogs.

Arinae and Elanor walked out of Balin's tomb and saw a fire in the distance. They neared it with the elf man. Arinae saw her mother and father tied to a wall. The orcs were watching them closely. The elf man fitted an arrow into his bow and shot it at the hugest orc leader. Instantly the orcs drew their weapons. The two orcs guarding Arinae's mother and father picked them up and began to carry them off. Arinae held up her necklace to the fire and shouted out, " Halt!"

The necklace suddenly gave off a bright light. With a great flash, the Moria orcs disappeared. The three travelers were left alone in the great darkness of which there was no end.

Elanor woke up. It was already morning. She climbed out of her bed and washed herself for the journey. She put on traveling clothes and picked up her pack which was filled with food and clothing. She reached for a walking stick.

After saying goodbye to her family, Elanor walked out into the sunshine to meet Arinae. She sang a song as she walked to Arinae's hole.

" The Road Goes Ever On and On down from the door where it began now far ahead the road has gone and I must follow if I can."

When she reched Arinae's hole, she saw her sitting upon the stone steps ready to leave. Tom and Posy were at the door ambracing her.

" Come back to us someday, Arinae," Posy began to cry.

" I will swear to you that i will return unless death overtakes me," Arinae said hugging Tom.

" For an elf?" he smiled.

Merry came down the path whistling. He had packed as well as if he was accompanying them far more than Rivendell.

" What are you doing?" Arinae asked him.

" I am joining you upon your quest," he smiled.

" But I thought you were simply seeing us to Rivendell?" Arinae said puzzled.

" No, I made a decision last night to accompany you. I have nothing better to do in the Shire. There is nothing you can say to make me stay either."

" Very well," Arinae sighed. She knew she couldn't argue with Merry.

The great journey began. It was simply to make it to Bree. Arinae suggested staying at the Inn of the Prancing Pony. Merry sat at the table drinking a pint of ale. Arinae simply took hot tea as well as Elanor. Barliman Butterbur brought their drinks.

" This is a strange world when two hobbits and an elf come into my tavern. But my tavern has been known for strange occurances. Here are your drinks."

" I think I am going to go upstairs soon. I'm very tired," Arinae said letting out a yawn.

Merry added, " We'll have a big day tomorrow. I'll turn in soon, too."

Arinae glance over at the corner. A man cloaked sat in the corner staring at Arinae. He never took his eyes off her. She stood up from the table.

" I'm going to sleep," she said.

Arinae walked up the stairs. She didn't know that the cloaked man was following her. She reached the door of her room when the man overtook her and pushed her inside.

" Who are you? she asked, lying upon the floor.

The man uncloaked himself. He wasn't a man but an elf. He had a handsome face with no beard. He had dark brown hair with blue eyes. HE gazed at Arinae for some time then helped her to her feet.

" I'm sorry about that. I've just returned from Rivendell. No more elves dwell there. Nor in Lorien. You couldn't have traveled from Mirkwood. Where do you come from?"
Arinae answered, " I've been living in the Shire for fourteen years. The people that lived there thought I was a hobbit. I thought I was a hobbit."

" You, a hobbit? I knew you were an elf the first time I saw you."

" You did?"

" Of course. I've never seen a hobbit as fair as you."

" Did you say that there are no more elves in Rivendell?"

" That's right," he said folding his arms. " It's deserted."

" I don't understand," she said looking down.

" Maybe you should tell me who you are."

Arinae felt she could trust him. She related her story to him. He paced around the room blowing out the candles as she spoke.

" I see. I knew your father, Arinae."

" You did?!"

" He was a good elf. I've been on a long journey. I just returned to Rivendell. No one was there. I do believe orcs were though."

" Orcs?! Why? What did they want?!"

" They took your parents, Arinae."

" What why?"

" They were sent by someone. I don't know who. But they want somehting. I followed them. They want something your father has or had."

Arinae clutched at her necklace nervously.

" Can you take me to them?"

" I can, but I don't know what they would do to an elf maiden like yourself."

" I know what they want. I have it."

" What is it?" he asked.

" This!" She held up her necklace with the white jewel.

" The Firestone?!" he gazed at it.

" What?"

" Nothing. I will take you, Arinae. And I will remain with you until your journey's end."

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