The Willow Tree:A Story - I love trees....~

It was the peak of Winter,and a young Elf-maid was trudging home through the snow.Her name was Reyna,an orphan girl who's unloving mother had sought the Havens long ago.She had been living with her Aunt,Uncle,and 3 cousins for 3,289 years now,her age being 3,392.As has been said before,"the young who know not there closest kin have been born into a family of fools".Her Aunt Mycerlin seemed the only person older than herself whom she could find comfort in.Uncle Faundril was no help,and the little ones,the cousins,Gernaldin,Termil,and Gondthrowe would only watch the birds if she tried to tell them anything.

The reason she could find no comfort in her foster family was that she had been blessed with a rare gift;although she thought of it as a curse:She had been given the Boon of Foresight.She,even at her young age,had been known as the Palace seer for more than a century.The current King,Legolas,was very kind to her,and offered her advice on how to train her extraordinary powers.She could confide in him as she did her aunt,and,he being only a few years older than herself,was also found actually a rather striking fellow.

On this dreary day in the Greenwod(A.K.A.--Mirkwood)Reyna had been thinking of when,come Springtime,she would like to ask the King if he would be interested in joining her to visit her favorite willow tree by a serene and hidden lake.'He could finally think in peace about writing down those new laws without having to be interrupted every other moment by his minstrel and having to approve the "Lay of Legolas",and such'.This was what her mind was thinking,but she knew that her heart was elsewhere.

She knew that instead of approving the laws,she would rather be approving the Lay that the minstrel had written;a Lay about a valiant,young King who had traveled through a war to bring about the present Age,and had patched the bridge between the Estranged Races,and had always refused love,even from the most charming of women.'But then,maybe he has been loving someone,and shouldn't like to tell them for fear of refusal.'
Little did Reyna know how true her words were.

Spring came.The Wood rang with the calls of birds,and the trees had begun to bud.Reyna's willow was already full of leaves,and cast a sweet perfume across the pond.She had begged the King to come with her that day,and he agreed.Under the willow tree the two talked of days past,and of Reyna's good work with her gift and good will.

'My Lord,'She saidsuddenly, 'I had a rather strange Vision the other night.'
'Please,tell me.'Replied the King.
'Well,you were standing in the Great hall,when the doors burst open.A maiden dressed all in green came hurrying in with a veil over her face.She knelt and offered you her services.She was a Sorceress,and you asked-'her voice trailed off.
'What did I ask??' stammered the King,with a frightening look of recognition in his eye.
'You asked her hand,'Reyna mumbled,fearing that she was seeing something that would happen in the future,and the affair would be rather intimate.
'Tell me,this sorceress,what did she do??' asked Legolas,his eyes pleading now.
'She rose ,and,and you both kissed,Lord.'She said,feeling frightfuly embarassed.
'No,what type of sorceress was she??'He asked again.
'She was a seer.....'Reyna answered.

The King gasped and shuddered,but would not tell of what he had felt.Reyna,thinking he might be ill,hurried him on her horse back to the Palace.Upon return,he dashed into his quarters and would not come out.Reyna feared for her Leige,and,wishing to apologize for making her vision so frightful,although she had told of it as clearly as she had found the dream to be,promised through the door that she would return the next day to bring him again to the willow tree.

The next morning,Reyna felt a strong compulsion to wear all green that day.She also donned a green veil,though she did not know why.Upon meeting with her Aunt,she was informed that there was rumour of the King being shot by rebel archers,who had not started a revolt,only began to quietly leave the forest.Upon hearing this,she ran as fast as her legs could carry her to the Palace.She threw the doors open;there,Legolas stood.She almost choked with tears as she knelt and offered to heal him of his wounds.Very delibratly,slowly,and gently,he drew her up.He said to her:

'Now you will understand what you saw and spoke of with me yestreday,for I too had the same vision come to me.That was why I had seemed ill and become frightened;that we may be torn from each other.'

'I do not understand,' stuttered Reyna.
'You never noticed how I would always refuse the hand of every maid that offered one,however beautiful or witty?'

All the poor child could do was gape.

'As has often been said,"The flower late to bloom is most likly the most beautiful.",he said,and laughed softly.
'I made that rumuor to be sent to your home so that it would fit your,our should I say,OUR dream.And as you may not have noticed,you are clad in green,and wearing a veil,as was seen in the vision.'
'Then what of the marriage??Lord,you could not want me?!?I am an orphaned,cursed,plain-as-the-dirt-upon-which-we-stand commoner!!!I have done nothing of any importance,other than predicted the Great Storm,and that stayed rather clear of this area anyway!!'
'what I see in you,is determination,courage,love,passion,purity.' 'All of the things,'he added,'that I would wish to find in my Queen.I ask you,Reyna,will you marry me?'

Then loud shouts filled the whole hall;as they had conversed,they had forgotten the room was not empty.As they kissed,arrows were shot,wine was drunk,feasts all across the Wood had begun,and the wedding was held with great magnificence.

So,in the 247th year of the Fourth Age of Middle-earth,Queen Reyna and King Legolas were wed with no rejections or regrets.During their reign there were no wars,and the willow tree by the lake was protected by a spell that would also make it bloom every February 10;the day their Majesty's were joined in holy matrimony.Thus ends a story of true love,and how fate always prevails.

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