Author’s note: I had a hard time writing this chapter. It took me 3 days. I was not able to go back through and reread it for grammar mistakes so if spell/grammar check did not pick up on it I will have missed it also. Sorry. I tried my best to see problems as I wrote. I hope it is not too bad and you “like” the chapter.
Gilraen and Raion decided they had enough partying for this night. They were ready to go home now. So they went to find Sermë and let her know they were leaving and they would see her at home when she was ready. Elrohir assured them she would be seen home safely. Raion nodded, and so he and Glraen left. They had a nice walk home and though they would have liked to go to the falls for a short while before heading home they knew that Linwë and Amras were there so they wanted to leave them in peace. They had plans of spending the next day there anyway as part of their Anniversary celebration.
So they headed home and once they got to the house Gilraen threw her arms around Raion’s neck and whispered in his ear, “It’s time I gave you a proper thanks for the beautiful necklace my dear husband.”
Raion bent to kiss her and before the kiss was done he picked her up and carried her to their bedroom. She let out a squeal but happily threw her arms around him as he laid her on the bed. They both happily fell asleep in each other’s arms though they were not intending for sleep to claim them until Linwë came home.
Much later, around 2 am, Sermë came home with Elrohir on her arm. “This is where I must leave you until tomorrow my love.”
Sermë Wrapped her arms around his neck and kissed him, “I wish you did not have to go, but I know it would not be right for you to stay. I want you to know you were the best part of this midsummer celebration.”
“I want you to know I have missed you every day since I last left you. I could not wait to return. I am so glad for an understanding Captain.”
Sermë giggled, “Well I will have to give him a big hug next time I see him. When will that be by the way?”
“I am not altogether sure. You know Aragron he will come when he is ready.”
“I know I just get to missing him sometimes. Though not as much as I miss you,” She said teasingly. She reached for the kiss she knew was coming and was not disappointed. The kiss ended all too soon in Sermë’s thinking. Then he said those dreaded words,” I must go love. I will see you first thing in the morning. I promise.”
“Sleep well my love,” She said as she kissed him once more before he turned toward home.
She walked into the house happy for his return and yet sad for lack of presence. She was not tired so she went to see if Linwë was still awake to talk to. She was in for a shock though when she found the bed UN slept in. Where was Linwë? Shouldn’t she be home by now?
Sermë went to her parent’s room and gently touched her momma on the arm. Gilraen turned sleepily to her, “Oh hi sweetheart how was your night?”
“Fine momma but wasn’t Linwë supposed to be home?”
“Yes! You mean she is not here?”
“No momma, I just checked her room. She is not at the hall anymore Elrohir and I were the last ones to leave besides Elrond.”
Gilraen Jumped from the bed waking Raion as she did. “What is wrong?”
“Linwë is not home.”
“What not yet?”
“Sermë was just in her room and she is not there.”
Raion threw on his cloths and ran to Amras’ house. Amras’ father Arensel greeted him. Arensel had no idea where the `children’ were either. He threw on some clothes and went with Raion to the meadow below the falls but they were nowhere in sight. Raion cursed the fact that he did not think to bring a lantern.
“Well there is nothing to do but go back and get the things we need.” Arensel said practically. This made Raion upset. He wanted to go right now and find his daughter. He knew Arensel was right but being right only made him angry this time. “We can also pick up our gear and some help.” Arensel added.
Raion reluctantly left the field but he knew it was the right thing to do. His first stop was the house of Elrond. He wanted to enlist the help of Elrohir. Of course Elrohir agreed immediately. He also got a squad together to go with them. One never knew what they might find along the way.
Raion went to his home though he hated the idea of breaking the news to Gilraen. How could he face those dark blue eyes and see the fear that would immediately jump into them. He had to be strong for her though he felt no strength in himself. He opened the door and was greeted by her right there. He did not even have to say anything though for her face to show the fear that was there. He took her into his arms and tried to show her some comfort. He whispered things to her that only she heard and she did seem to gain some strength from it. At least she felt able to stand on her own.
Sermë was not doing as well. She was leaning on Elrohir so that it was only his strength that was holding her up. She could not seem to wrap her mind around the fact that something bad could happen to Linwë. He world seemed to be spinning out of control but then she looked at her parents and suddenly realized they had to be hurting also. She gains some measure of strength just from looking to them. She went over to Gilraen and they watched as the men left for the search.
“We won’t loose hope just yet. Anything is possible yet and hope still remains.” Gilraen said as much for herself as for Sermë. Sermë nodded and they sat together waiting for what would be coming through that door next.
“Well, well, boys look who has wandered to far from the protected lands. An elfling and his girl.” a slimly voice slithered around Linwë’s ear. The knife pointed in her back pushed a little more into her skin causing some blood to trickle out. She stifled a scream for she would not give them the pleasure of hearing her pain. Fast as lightening Amras whipped out his knife he always carried tucked into the back of his trousers. He stabbed the orc, who held Linwë, right in the arm causing him to drop his knife. Amras grabbed Linwë’s hand and pulled her back toward the border, or at least where he thought the border was. He was all turned around and he ran the opposite direction. The orcs were in hot pursuit and soon they had the couple surrounded again.
Amras held Linwë behind his back with his knife pointed at the orcs. “Touch one hair on her head and I will kill you.” he shouted at them.
“Oh look the elfling thinks he is a man. Let’s see how much of a man he really is.” One of the Orcs sneered. The orc lunged at Amras, but Amras slashed him across the face. This made the orc angry and he fought Amras with his sword. Amras fought well but a knife against a sword did not go well for Amras and eventually the knife flew from his hand. The orc sword plunged into Amras’ arm disabling him. The orcs laughed at him as he picked up his knife again with his good arm.
The fight ensued again and this time Amras knocked the sword out of the orcs hand. He did not waist any time in plunging his knife clear to the hilt into the orc’s cold Black heart. Amras was immediately assailed by two more orcs. This time he could not fight both at the same time. He slashed one of the orcs across his belly spilling his black blood but this left his back open. The other orc stabbed him in the kidney area causing Amras to fall to his knees. Linwë screamed as she saw him fall and this brought the orc’s attention to her.
Linwë raced from the scene but soon realized her mistake in doing that because she now had no weapon. Suddenly an orc jumped on her back and she fell face first into the ground. She was not helpless yet though because she did a trick her dad once taught her. She back kicked the orc hitting him in the kidney. His head came up as he howled and she elbowed him in the nose successfully breaking it. Then she could flip him off her and she hit him in the nose knocking him out.
She then ran back toward Amras and picked up his knife She turned just in time to drive the knife into the heart of the last orc. She knelt down by Amras taking his head in her arms. Tears spilled down her face as she held him. He stirred at her touch and weakly told her to leave.
“No, not without you. I won’t leave you here to become some orc prize.” She answered.
“Linwë you have to leave. I am not going to make it. My father will come find me if you tell him where to look.”
She wiped the tears from her eyes and was about to get up when she was surprised by an orc knife sticking out right under her rib cage. The orc who she had knocked out came back and attacked her. Amras with a cry and using all his strength threw his knife. The knife sailed true to his target and hit the orc square in its heart. Amras fell dead lying beside his girl Linwë.
Raion and Elrohir crept through the meadow looking for any sign of Amras and Linwë. What they found was disheartening. So many people had been there this evening that you could not tell one-foot print from another. As they scoured and combed for anything they came close to the edge of the forest. Elrohir looked at Raion and a silent groan passed between them.
“Do you see the signs?” Raion asked apprehensively.
Elrohir sighed, “Yes.”
Raion shook with the thought of what could happen in those woods. Elrohir put his arm around him trying to give him strength. Amras’ father also shuddered as he neared the 2 men knowing what they had to do. They all stood straight and gathered their strength and plunged into the forest. They could see where the `children’ had danced and still they kept going. AS they got deeper into the forest Raion kept muttering to him, “This is too far Linwë, too far.”
Amras’ father had the same thoughts though his face just kept getting whiter and whiter. They came to the clearing and they soon discovered the tracks they had dreaded seeing this whole time. Hope was rekindled as they saw elf tracks running from the clearing but they soon realized they had run in the wrong direction. Raion would not give up hope but it faded with every step they took from the right direction. Suddenly they came across a dead orc and as they lifted their head from the dead orc they saw the two bodies they did not want to see.
Arensel fell beside his son searching for a pulse but he found none. “Oh Mandos no not so soon!!! He is way too young for this to happen yet. He is not even of age to go to war!!!!” Arensel practically screamed his anguish to the unseen Valar. Raion approached Linwë half afraid to touch her. Her face was as pale as her dress and blood covered the ground in front of her. He could not breathe as he fell to his knees before her body. He picked up her head ever so gently and she let out a small imperceptible groan. His heart seemed to jump back into his chest at that sound. There was still hope!
She opened her eyes just enough to catch who had touched her. “Ada” she barely whispered, “You….came.”
“Of course my darling, Aren’t I always there for you.” he said stroking her face as he held her.
“Ada it’s my ….. Fault.” she whispered as a single tear slid down her cheek and she turned her head to see Amras.
“No sweetheart it’s ok. I forgive you. Just stay with me.” he pleaded.
“I love…you ada.” She touched his face just before her hand fell forever in death.
Raion felt as if his very being had fallen to the ground with that hand.