21. EXT. OUTER COURTYARD/CAVERNS. EVENING
The Troop rides into outer courtyard and there is now much activity of Elves getting their horses, and even before the Troop has a chance to dismount, Thranduil and Mr. Edmond come striding into the courtyard. The Troop dismounts and some Elves bring a litter to carry Lymon on into the Caverns. Gladellon gives the puppy to some Elvish children gathered near and they run off with it.
THRANDUIL: (worried/to Legolas)
Is everyone all right?
We are all okay except for the boy.
Mr. EDMOND: (runs up to Mira)
Thank the stars you are safe!
THRANDUIL: (to Legolas)
Was it a big horde? Where was it?
A hundred maybe, we only saw their black breath cloud…on the far side of the lake. When we were on our way back, we came upon this boy.
And women were taken by them?
His mother and two sisters. By your leave, I would like to take a company and see if we can rescue them?
They will be quite far away by now.
If they were Elvish-maidens you would not hesitate.
That remark requires an apology.
LEGOLAS: (hands head/then looks up)
I am as evil with my tongue as Narbeleth at times…I’m sorry.
Gather thirty archers and mounts…that’s all I can spare if I must double the guards about…choose wisely.
With that said, Thranduil strides off into the Caverns and the rest of the Troop, Mr. Edmond, Mira and Baret gathers around Legolas.
Mr. EDMOND: (to Legolas)
You are really going to go and try to rescue those women? Fight those Orcs?
What would you suggest we do, Mr. Edmond? Do you have any idea what will happen to that woman and those girls?
I can guess.
Then…would you like to be one of our company?
I wish to go! Father is handy with wood…I am handy with the bow and knife!
Baret! Please do not!
Yes, I will!
If the company will have me?
You are of an age where you can speak for yourself…if you wish to go, you will be welcome…but as you are a guest here, I would still like the leave of your father.
Mr. Edmond looks afraid for Baret.
As you said…he is of age…
(Then he looks to his daughter.)
Come Mira, we will go see how that boy is doing.
They walk off into the caverns.
LEGOLAS: (to Baras)
You and Tarag know the best archers and riders as well as I. Gather me thirty quickly.
They go off.
Brui and Gladellon come forward.
You two gather supplies and extra weapons.
Elanor and Alfirin approach.
You two and Erinelleth are staying here this time.
If some get wounded, we…
No argument! I have not the time or patience for it right now…help take care of the boy.
Elanor, Alfirin and Erinelleth walk off disgruntled but obediently and the faerie, Lilac, is seen flying off toward a stand of willow trees about a hundred yards from the Caverns.
Narbeleth just stands, waiting for him to speak.
Well? You think I’d tell you to stay behind?
No. I’m just waiting. My quiver is full. My knife is sharp. I could use a fresh mount, as we all could.
Then see to that. And bring three extra mounts for the Edian women should we be so fortunate.
She strides off.
What about me? What can I do to help?
Throw away the knife you have and get an Elvish one.
BARET: (frowns/takes his knife out)
But it is sharp…and nearly new.
Legolas flips out his own knife out and it is longer and sharp as a razor and it shimmers even in the dusky light.
This is what you need. Find Brui and Gladellon and they will get you one. and…do not argue with me or you will be staying here with the maidens.
Baret walks off frowning some, but obeying.
Legolas puts his knife back into the sheath at his wasit and mutters:
Men and their hunting knives…good for bears and wolves…not much use for the hide of an Orc…
22. EXT. LEAVING OUTER COURTYARD. DUSK.
There are thirty Elf-archers mounted, plus Legolas, Baras, Tarag, Narbeleth, Brui, Gladellon and Baret…plus three empty-saddled horses for females if rescued. They head out and a small crowd watches as they pass but have solemn faces. Legolas leads, then his Troop comes, then the thirty archers. As usual all the Elves ride bareback with their bows and an arrow strung loosely, ready to use swiftly if necessary.
23. EXT. PLACE MEN WERE BUTCHERED. NIGHT
They arrive at place where men were butchered and now Elves bury the bodies under a pile of leaves and dead tree branches. Baret stands by their burial place. Tarag approaches him.
Have you ever been in battle with Orcs before?
No, I have never even seen an Orc, but they have been described to me. They look pretty hideous?
They look evil, and they are evil. Their blood is black, their skin is black, their breath is black. They have yellow mouths and jagged fangs for teeth. Their tongues are red and thick. Their eyes are glowing slits that seem to burn like coals upon a hot fire. They are short with long arms and have claws for fingers. They are hairy and smell more foul than rotting flesh.
They drink blood and any flesh, animal, Elf, or man…even their own kind.
Baras walks up and has heard.
BARAS: (to Baret)
Is he putting enough fear into you? I hope so for you should fear them, though most are stupid, they are strong until they lose heart and run. But it is time to go.
They have left an easy trail to follow, even in the darkness. They have trampled much grass in their haste. Come!
TARAG: (to Baret)
Have you rested enough?
I am a bit tired, but I can go on.
Tarag and Baret follow Baras and the rest of the company is getting mounted also.
24. EXT. EN ROUTE. MORNING
It is daybreak and Baret nearly falls off his horse from weariness and so they halt and they get off horses and stretch and Baret flops to the ground and lays on his back rubbing his eyes trying to stay awake.
BARAS: (to Legolas)
Perhaps we could all use a little lembas and even a sip of miruvor? Baret especially needs it if he is to continue?
Break them out. Then we need to be on our way. The horde is only a few hours ahead and with the sun coming up, they may stop to rest, unlike yesterday.
Baras nodded, and gives some orders in Elvish and they all stop to partake of some lembas but refuse the drink, not needing it; but Baras brings both to Baret.
Here, sit up, I have something to refresh you.
(Baret sits up)
This is what some call lembas or waybread and this is a special drink called miruvor. Both will give you strength and energy…and even hope if you feel despair. Eat. Drink.
Baret eats half a piece of the waybread and drinks a gulp of the drink, and almost immediately he begins to feel more awake, more alert, and is amazed.
Are these things of some magic potions?
Nay, but they are Elvish to be sure. Usually only a Realm Queen makes them and distributes them, but since we do not have a Queen in our Realm, the King has blessed the hands of a virgin-maiden who dwells in the Caverns for their making. Only Thranduil and Legolas knows who she is. Seldom are they offered to any but Elves…so you are being offered rare treats.
Men might kill to know the recipes?
It would do them no good for they only work when they are made by Elvish hands that have been blessed by the Queen or a King for their making. to force the making would become a doom upon the thieves for certain. Some have even tried in other places and none succeeded then and none will ever. How do you feel? Better?
Yes! I feel like I have slept for hours!
He stands, so Baras does.
You have all been most king to me. And I thank you for letting me come with you.
That was the decision of Legolas, our Prince. If it were up to me, I would have left you behind. You may well be slain, you know. You are not experienced.
Then how will I learn if I am ever left behind?
There you have me. Come, we will tell Legolas you are ready to ride.
They walk off.
25. EXT. ORC CLOUD SIGHTED. NOON
They spot low-lying black cloud and stop. Baras rides up to Legolas.
Orc cloud…they have stopped.
Legolas nods, then waves a hand for whole group to gather about and they do, dismounting but keeping their horses near them, speaking softly in Elvish to them.
The horde is just ahead. Baras and Tarag, go forth quietly and see what lays before us, then a plan will take shape.
They go off ahead on foot.
LEGOLAS: (to group)
Rest while you can, keep your steeds close and quiet.
The group spreads out in small groups of twos and threes.
LEGOLAS: (to Narbeleth)
Stay with Baret and his steed.
Then he walks off to speak to some of the other Elves.
It is amazing how your horses obey you all, they seem to even know exactly what you say to them.
They understand Elvish…it is a gift to both Elf and steed.
(strokes his horse)
We are mostly one with nature, trees, beasts, flowers, water…unless they have been made evil by the Dark Enemy…those things we gladly kill.
The Dark Enemy, some of us call him the Devil and the creatures he created, his Demons.
He created nothing! He can only take something already alive to his fiery pits and dark dungeons and torment and torture them and use his black power and cunning sorcery to twist and turn them into such things as Orcs and Werewolves and dragons…and Balrogs! He turned Maiar into them! He hates everyone and everything good and bad. He is the master of lies and deceit. He cannot ultimately win! Iluvatar will prevail!
Someone once told me that the first Orcs were…Elves…of long ago?
Ai! Now look at them! They are Elves no longer!
She seems so distressed, he stops talking and follows her off to a side with their horses.
26. EXT. NEAR ORC CAMP. NOON
Baras and Tarag look the situation over. They are quite a number Orcs encamped mostly resting under eaves of a rocky cliff outcrop of a hill. They see the woman and two girls tied separately to three trees, each having three Orcs guards about each tree. Baras and Tarag edge back from hiding place and hurry off to report.