The Lord of the Rings: The Last Battalion - Part 3-Nien

"I am Nieninque, you can call me Nien," she stood up and pulled Pippin to his feet.

"I am Pippin. I am sorry I ran into you."

"That's alright," she laughed. "Well I suppose we better find the rest of your party. They'll be looking for you."

"How did you know..."

"Hobbits do not travel in this land alone and I doubt you would go anywhere without your friend Merry now..."

"How did you know..."

She winked at Pippin, "I have lived in this forest for 400 years. I know most of what happens in it. Now we must get out of this place."

She looked up and so did Pippin. They were in a deep ravine with dead wet leaves all around them. The hill was too steep and slippery to climb up.

"Hop on my back, we will be out of here soon."

Pippin did as he was told and climbed on her back. She stretched up her arms and grabbed a hold of a tree branch above her head. She climbed the branches of trees with ease even with a heavy hobbit on her back. As Pippin watched her slowly climb their way out of the ravine he realized how much she wasn't like Galadriel. She had similar features but her face was dirty and her hands slightly calloused from climbing trees. The light in her eyes was different yet deeper, possibly deeper then Galadriel's. She seemed younger and more reckless. He couldn't imagine Galadriel climbing trees like this. Pippin supposed she couldn't stand the silence because she began to sing.

"The ample heaven of fabric sure,
In beauty does surpass
The crystal and the silver pure,
Or clearest polished glass.

The shadow of the earth anon
Removes and draws by,
Sign in the east, when it is gone
Appears a clearer sky.

Which soon perceives the little larks,
The lapwing and the snyp,
And tune their songs, like Nature's clarks
Our meadow, moor and stream.

The time is tranquil and is still,
That not where shall ye find,
Safety on a high and barren hill,
And air of peeping wind."*

"That was beautiful, where is it from?" asked Pippin.

"I don't know," she replied.

Before Pippin could question her more she jumped from a branch and landed on the edge of the ravine. She stood still and silent for a minute, listening. Suddenly, there was a rustling in the leaves in front of them and Pippin remembered the beast which had attacked his friends earlier. He was about to run when the head of a handsome, brown horse appeared.

"Ah, taurë lerina, good to see you. Have you brought friends?" Nien went and caressed the horse's nose.

The leaves rustled again and out emerged Pippins four worried comrades.

"Pippin!! I thought a Huorn had got you! Thank goodness you're all right," Merry ran up and slapped Pippin on the back. Then he added slyly, "or did a certain horse scare you?"

Pippin was about to retaliate when Gandalf spoke, "good job Pippin, you found who we were looking for. Good to see you Nien, humph!"

Before he knew it Nien had embraced Gandalf in a hug which caught the company off guard.

"Good to see you Gandalf. Treebeard told me you changed, I hardly recognized you," she released him, a huge smile across her face.

Gandalf laughed, "Yes a lot has happened, and I say, you haven't changed at all. How have you been?"

"Wonderful Gandalf!" then her smile faded as she looked around at the company. "What is going on?"

Gandalf's smile also faded, "we have much to discuss. Is there somewhere more comfortable we can go?"

"Yes, my grotto. I do not like that expression on your face Gandalf. What is happening?"

"I will explain all later."

* this poem is "A Summer's Day" by Alexander Hume
don't worry this isn't going to turn into another Legolas love story, I just thought there needed to be more women in the book and possibly one in the fellowship

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