The Undying Lands - (chapter 68)

Ariengil loved Lorien and felt as though a part of her would always stay in the beautiful woods, but she knew she could not stay forever. Her friends were happy for a while, but aching to get away and return to the Havens. Ariengil tried to delay their return, as she was reluctant to go back, for fear of bringing up memories of Harma.
Elladan often followed Ariengil around, and she constantly turned to see the back of his cloak disappearing behind a tree or bush; Elrohir never left Elen's side, except for when the sisters were together as he respected their privacy; and the rest of Ariengil's friends wandered the woods in a bemused way.
One day, Ariengil was walking alone and trying to find a place to be alone. She wanted to think of Harma and to remember every detail about him. She dressed in green and set off, walking in the shadows in the hope that Elladan would not notice her. She walked for about half an hour, and felt very proud of herself that Elladan had not followed, but as she thought this, a twig cracked behind her. She whipped around and saw Elladan. He froze on the spot, and then looked around innocently.
`Ariengil,' he cried in a surprised voice. `What a surprise to see you here.'
`No it is not, Elladan,' shouted Ariengil in a tone that even surprised herself. `Will you stop following me around?' she screamed.
`I... er...-' began Elladan, but Ariengil cut him off.
`Why are you following me? I don't love you, and you can't love me, so just leave me alone.'
`Ariengil,' shouted Elladan loudly, before she could continue. `I don't love you.'
`Just because I'm-' she stopped in mid sentence and stared at Elladan. `What?'
`I don't love you,' he repeated, in a quieter voice. `So stop thinking that.'
`Then why are you following me?' she asked in disbelief.
`I want to be your friend, but you haven't given me the chance. Every time I'm near you, you quite obviously try to get rid of me. I haven't done anything wrong, except perhaps embarrassed you when we first met. Please give me a chance?' he asked hopefully.
`You don't want to fall in love with me or anything like that?'
`No,' he cried. `I just want to be a good friend to you. I once knew a girl like you-'
`Ha,' shouted Ariengil triumphantly. `You do like me in that way.'
`No,' cried Elladan in a pained voice. `Please let me finish my sentence. I once knew a girl like you, who was my best friend for years. Our personalities matched so perfectly and we just had a great time together, and never did I look at her in a way other than a friend. So please give it a rest.'
`Oh, I'm sorry,' replied Ariengil with a blush rising in her face. `Well let's see how it goes, alright?'
`Great, thank you. So do you want to go swimming?' he asked with a sneaky look on his face.
`Swimming?' laughed Ariengil. `In Lorien? There are no lakes here.'
`But, my Lady, you are mistaken. There is one, though not many know of it. I, however, am one of the superiorly knowledgeable members of this community who does know of one.' The two elves laughed, to Ariengil's surprise, for she did not expect for them to get on as well as Elladan had thought. Elladan suddenly ran off and left Ariengil laughing. She looked up in surprise, but gave chase quickly. He had run through the woods, so every now and again, Ariengil could see a green cloak and hear laughter, but eventually she lost sight of her friend and realised she was completely lost.
`Some friend,' she muttered sarcastically. Turning around, she began to walk back in the direction she had come, but soon she was wondering if she'd ever find a path again. `Curse him,' she shouted, and then sat down grumpily on the cold, hard ground. A deep laugh sounded behind her and she turned around in the dust. There was no one there. `I imagined it,' she giggled nervously. But there was a thump to her right, as though someone had dropped something. Standing up quickly, she peered into the trees. `Who's there?' she asked, in what she thought was a confident voice, though she stuttered a little.
A sharp sound of a sword sliding out of its sheath split the newly found silence. Ariengil shook where she stood, but again she called out. `Who is there? Tell me.' Having no sword upon her, Ariengil had nothing to do but clutch at her skirts.
The voice that laughed now uttered one word. `Tarma.' Ariengil gasped and her breath came in short, quick gasps. Her hand crept to her throat. There was a slight scar resting there, that Tarma had previously given her. She let her fingers rest on the necklace that Harma had given her and she shuddered as she recalled his death.
A hooded figure stepped slowly out of the shadows and faced the maiden. He showed Ariengil the sword tantalisingly and she imagined him smiling wickedly. He did not take off the hood, but stepped closer to Ariengil.
Holding the sword ahead of him, he grabbed Ariengil's hair and pushed her against a tree. Visions of Harma dying flashed into the girl's mind, and with a sudden anger, she pushed the elf backwards and kicked the sword from his hand. Pushing him hard, she threw him to the floor, and then grabbed the blade. Holding the point at his neck, she threw back the hood. There was no scar on this man's face, not even a wicked smile- just a look of shock.
`I found you,' laughed Elladan, looking up at Ariengil from the ground. `Now can you put my sword down please?'
`How dare you?' She cried. Slapping Elladan in the face, she stood up and walked away, not caring where.
`Now that isn't very fair,' he shouted. `It was a joke. Uh oh.' He murmured as Ariengil turned back again, with anger flaring in her eyes. She grabbed his tunic as soon as she was near, and pushed him backwards with such a force. He groaned in pain as he hit a tree.
`You couldn't possibly know what you just did to me. You brought up so many emotions. The elf- no, the dirt- that you just pretended to be killed my love. He killed his brother. He tried to kill me and everyone that I love. Every time I think of him, I think of Harma dying in front of me. I want him dead, and if you ever do that again, I will kill you regardless of whether I know it is you. Do you understand?' she shouted. Elladan nodded numbly. `Do you understand?' she yelled.
`Yes, yes,' he cried. `Look, I thought it would be funny. I never knew what happened, I just heard you say his name in your sleep a few times, so I thought maybe you loved him or knew him well. Ariengil don't let this ruin our friendship.'
`What friendship?' snarled Ariengil. `Now take me back.' Elladan nodded glumly and led the way with his head hung low in shame. As Ariengil walked off, back to her friends, Elladan opened his mouth to speak, but at the look he received, he thought better of it and was silent.
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