The Last Journey - Chapter 9

~Chapter Nine~

Galadriel turned away from her mirror with tears in her eyes. She knew the events that were about to unfold, and she was powerless to stop them, even though she desperately wanted to. She slowly walked back up to her great home in the majestic mallorn tree. Celeborn was there, waiting for her. He held out his arms and she readily accepted the warm and comforting embrace. She couldn't even imagine ever having to deal with the death of her true love. She knew Gythien would soon be faced with that very problem and the young elf's immortal soul would be tested. She looked up at Celeborn, her vision clouded with tears for the two innocent lives.
"I love you." She whispered to him. "I love you so much." With that the two embraced again, each one giving the other much-needed comfort. They just stood there for a while, wrapped up in each other, before going silently to bed, and some greatly looked-for rest.
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Haldir silently cursed himself as he stood on top of the wall in the pouring rain. How did he get into all this? He knew he had wanted it earlier, but that was before Gythien had come back, before he had learned of their child. He wasn't sure if he wanted the same things as before.
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Gythien waited in the gloom of the night. Suddenly she heard the sound of an arrow being loosed from its bow.
"Dartho! [Hold!]" Aragorn cried. Gythien peered over the wall and saw that one of the Uruk-hai had been shot in the neck. The roaring and thumping stopped as the shot creature groaned and collapsed t the ground. The others looked furious and, with a fierce cry from the leader, the massive army charged. Gythien gritted her teeth and prepared for battle.
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"Tangado halad! [Prepare to fire!]" Aragorn yelled. All the elves notched their arrows and took aim at the black mass that was the dreadful army.
"Leithio i philinn! [Release the arrows!]" Aragorn commanded. Haldir let loose his arrow along with all the others and they killed many, but the remaining Uruk-hai kept charging. Haldir was shooting as fast as he could, but it didn't even seem to make a dent in the invading army.
"Dendraid! [Ladders!]" Aragorn shouted. Haldir drew his sword and prepared to fight. He watched as the ladders wee pushed up with many Uruk-hai already on them. As the ladders reached the top of the walls and the fighting began it seemed as if someone had dimmed the sound around him. He couldn't hear anything but his own beating heart and the faint sound of those dying and fighting in battle.
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"Togo hon dad, Legolas! [Bring him own, Legolas!]" Aragorn shouted. Gythien turned and saw an Uruk-hai running towards the wall with a burning torch. Legolas shot it in the shoulder, but the foul creature kept going. "Dago hon! Dago hon! [Kill him! Kill him!]" Aragorn was yelling. Legolas shot the Uruk-hai again and it stumbled. As a last ditch effort the Uruk-hai threw itself, and the torch, at the culvert hole in the wall of the fortress, the only weak point of Helm's Deep. There was an enormous explosion that blew away a large portion of the wall. Gythien looked on in shock as rock, water, and bodies were thrown onto the air. The Uruk-hai were streaming into the fortress through the vast hole.
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Haldir faintly heard a great thundering noise and turned to look as a part of the wall was blasted away. He saw Aragorn and the others fighting as the Uruk-hai streamed in past the wall. He turned his attention back to the enemies on the wall. After a while he heard Aragorn shouting to him.
"Na Barad! Na Baraad! Haldir, na Barad! [To the Keep! Pull back to the Keep! Haldir, to the Keep!]" Haldir nodded to him and turned back to finish the creatures near at hand. Suddenly he was stabbed in the arm! He quickly killed the creature and just stared at the wound in disbelief. How could he have gotten hurt? He then felt a sharp pain in between his shoulder blades. He fell to his knees and Gythien's words came back to him. She was right. Why hadn't he listened? He looked around and saw all the carnage of battle. He finally fully realized the scale of this war. This was but one small battle, and his last. He faintly heard Aragorn shout his name, but he didn't have the strength to respond. He was falling backward and then he felt himself being caught by someone. He looked up to see Aragorn's face. He could feel his life slowly slipping away. He wanted to tell Aragorn to look after Gythien and tell her what had happened, but he couldn't Aragorn put his hand to Haldir's chest, then he was gone, leaving Haldir alone among the pile of dead elves and Uruk-hai.
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Gythien saw Haldir get stabbed in the arm and she screamed as she started fighting her way toward him, but she was too late. She looked up just in time to see him receive his fatal wound, just as she had seen it in Galadriel's mirror and her dream. She faced a new fury as she was filled with rage. She was determined to get to Haldir and see if she could be saved. Tears clouded her vision as she fought her way to his still body. After what seemed to be an eternity she got to him. She kneeled down and put her head to his chest. He was still breathing! She looked into his face.
"Haldir!" she cried. He slightly opened his eyes and weakly smiled at her.
"Gythien." His speech was labored. He was steadily growing cold and pale.
"Haldir," Gythien was sobbing, he couldn't die, he just couldn't. "Haldir, I love you! You can't leave me now!" She was weeping into his chest. He smiled at her. His breath caught in his throat as he struggled to stay alive. He was close.
"I love you, Gythien." He sighed and closed his eyes. He struggled to look at Gythien again. "I will always love you, now and forever." His head fell to one side and he stopped breathing. He was dead.
"No!!" Gythien cried. She had lost her love. She was overcome with grief. She leaned over and nestled her head on his armor-clad chest. All of a sudden everything was quiet. She looked up and gasped. The battle, that just moments before had been raging around them, was gone, and there was a bright light ahead. She stood up and looked around. Then she saw the shadow of a person in the middle of the light. The person was coming closer and closer and she saw who it was. She gasped in surprise as he smiled at her.
"Haldir?" she asked in astonishment. She had just seen him die, what was going on? She realized she was holding something and looked down. It was the baby from her dream, her baby. She looked back up in shock. Haldir smiled and held out his hand to her. She suddenly realized what had happened. She smiled back and took his hand in hers. They walked into the light together and came upon a white beach. The water was the most beautiful thing they had ever seen. They stood on the beach, just holding hands and waiting. A ship with glorious white sails appeared on the horizon. Gythien looked into Haldir's eyes with all the love she could give and then she looked down at the beautiful child that lay peacefully in her protective embrace. She was brimming with happiness. Haldir looked down at her and their baby with adoration. He knew he loved them both with all his heart. They were going someplace safe. The ship came right up to the beach and the little family boarded. There were tears of joy streaming down Gythien's cheeks as she watched the small beach shrink into the distance. Then she turned around and beheld a wonderful island with green shores. She sat down and Haldir came up to her and embraced her from behind. She looked down and just stared at their little baby girl. The baby looked like Gythien, but it had Haldir's eyes. Gythien smiled and reached out to the small child. The baby grabbed her finger and smiled at Gythien. Gythien looked back up at the green island which was growing ever larger. She knew where the ship was bearing them, and she knew that she would have eventually gotten there, but she was glad beyond relief she was there now, with the ones she loved. This was their last journey, and they were all truly happy.
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