Weeks after the incident in the woods Aaron and Cade were married, the elves of Ost-in-Edhil helped to build a small home to raise Leslie in, and soon everything began to settle down. For with elves years seem to pass within a blink of an eye. It was not long until Leslie looked about the age of a mortal young woman. Everyday she looked more and more like the woman Aaron and Cade had dreamt about when death had come for them. At first neither Cade nor Aaron were willing to show her the skills they knew to survive for fear she would one day want to fight the forces of evil, but then the idea of Leslie having no way to defend herself scared them more they decided it would be best to train her. Growing up Leslie had three teachers: her father, mother, and Galadriel. Cade taught her to wield a sword and bow as well as the skills of an assassin. Aaron taught her to wield a sword and bow too as well as survival skills in the wilderness. Lastly Galadriel taught her about spells and potion and the ability of magic which was so obvious within Leslie.
In due time Leslie also became Celebriand’s personal bodyguard even though Leslie was younger then Celebriand. The honor of being Celebriand’s personal bodyguard came when Leslie was challenged by an overconfident guard. When Leslie bested the overconfident guard the other guards stepped up to challenge her one at a time of course. She bested all the other guards assigned to protecting Celebriand and despite being younger was appointed to protecting her. Celebriand didn’t mind having someone much younger protect her especially seeing what Leslie could do with a sword or bow. Leslie and Celebriand soon became very close and good friends as time had passed.
1696 (One year before Sauron’s forces invade and destroy Ost-in-Edhil)
Leslie sat in her room getting dressed for another morning in her service of protecting Celebriand, she took her duty seriously. She braided back her hair in the one long thick braid that ran down her back before heading out of her room. As she headed down stairs she saw her mother and father at the table eating breakfast. She soon got in a playful notion and snuck up hoping to avoid her father from seeing her. She held her index finger over her lips to her mother whom had seen her and slowly got closer. Then without warning Leslie rushed up and hugged her father from behind with her giggling, her father looked over his shoulder at her, then turned slightly to give her a hug.
“You little sneak!” Cade gave his daughter a kiss on the cheek before releasing her.
Soon Cade, Aaron, and Leslie were seated eating breakfast. Each one had their own duty to perform when not at home. Cade had become an chief advisor as well as one of the head guards for protecting Ost-in-Edhil. Aaron had become Galadriel’s personal body guard much like Leslie was Celebriand’s. Shortly after the meal they left for the house of Lord Celeborn and Lady Galadriel. From there the three went about their duties which meant for them to part ways. Leslie headed up stairs to Celebriand’s room where she knocked softly and waited for Celebriand to allow her to enter.
“My father tells me there is a young man whom has come to Ost-in-Edhil a very good swordsman whom has asked to join the service of being one of the guards. Did you want to go see him?”
Normally a guard would merely follow the one to be protected, but since the two were friends Celebriand always asked if Leslie wanted to do something or not, but this new guard intrigued Leslie so she nodded agreeing to go. The two left the house and walked a ways down the street where not far away was a type of training area for the guards. The occasional guard that spotted Celebriand would give a bow before moving along but not many saw the two and so their training continued without much interruption. Soon the two came to the sword training area where not far away Celeborn and Cade watched the young man as well. Celebriand and Leslie waved at their fathers before turning back to the man demonstrating his skill by sword fighting with three other guards attacking him at once.
“So this is the new guard?” Leslie asked Celebriand, for which she nodded.
The two watched the young elven man as he fought like a master against his three opponents. Finally Celebriand leaned over and asked Leslie.
“So what do you think? Would he be a challenge?”
“Well I am not sure, he has a great and very good skill with a sword.”
“Oh come now surely you must think there is a way to best him.”
A guard whom had heard the two spoke up.
“Well now if it is not Leslie, Celebriand’s personal bodyguard. Care to try your luck against our new guard?”
“Well no not actually I was just telling Celebriand that he has excellent skill…”
The guard turned to the new recruit.
“Hey! Colin! You want a challenge? We have here Celebriand’s personal bodyguard.”
“Really that is not necessary—-” Leslie began to say as Colin had stepped forward to interrupt with his own reply.
“Why are you frightened of fighting a man whom knows how a sword should really be wielded?”
Colin threw Leslie a challenging glint, and Leslie looked over his shoulder at her father whom was already nodding giving her permission to teach the new guard a new lesson about the bodyguard. She then looked back at Colin whom was a tall elven man with blonde hair and blue eyes (Much like Legolas). She gave a wicked smile as she answered.
“No I do not fear a thought `real man’ whom thinks he knows how to use a sword, but I am worried about fighting someone that resembles a girl so much, I would not want to hurt her…”
Celebriand fought hard to hold back her giggles and laughter as Leslie drew her own sword and moved past Colin to stand in the middle of the arena.
“Leslie,” Celeborn called out, “Please do not hurt him too terribly I would prefer to still recruit him into the guards.”
Leslie looked over her shoulder at Celeborn and her father. “I can make no promises.”
Faintly she heard her father’s and Celeborn’s laughter as Colin stepped into the ring with his sword held at ready. Then the two were locked into battle Leslie at first blocked the moves of Colin then he was forced to block her attacks. For a while the two fought then blocked. Colin moved so agile and gracefully about the arena, but Leslie did so as well, at times Colin found it hard to keep up with her fast movements and slender form which was quit distracting. Then both fighter’s saw an opening to advance the other and tried to take it. The battle ended quickly with Leslie on the ground from when Colin had tripped her, his blade was held at her throat. Soon his voice came out triumphantly.
“I do believe Milady that you lost.”
Leslie smiled as she cleared her throat and soon Colin felt the tapping of her blade against his inner thigh. He looked down to find a large cut made on his shirt where Leslie would have killed any other enemy had this not been training. She would have sliced him wide open and now her blade hung dangerously close to what any man might hold sacred. The other guards began laughing and hooting at the battle some paid each other gold for the bets made. Leslie smiled up at Colin with a light hearted laugh.
“I am so sorry to disappoint you Milord but it seems you would have lost a great deal had this fight been real.”
Colin smiled and removed his sword from Leslie’s throat as had she from Colin’s body, and Colin then helped her stand up. Now having dust in her hair, Leslie shoved her sword into the dirt to hold it there while she removed the braid and rubbed her hair to get the dirt out. Colin watching her the entire time, his eyes unconsciously looking her over carefully. Celebriand seemed to be the only one to notice the look Colin wore or where his eyes roved, for Celeborn and Cade were talking and laughing over what had previously happened, and Leslie was not even looking at Colin at that moment to see how he looked at her. However before Leslie looked back at Colin he had averted his eyes and was heading back to put his sword in his seethe. Celebriand ran up wanting to tell her friend what she had seen.
“Leslie he was looking at you!”
“Yes many people do that when they look at someone.” Leslie replied sarcastically.
“No, no he was looking you up and down. Like he was enjoying the sight of you, I think we know who has a crush on you!”
“Oh stop it, he does not! I just beat him and probably dragged him threw the mud! You know how any man is when it comes to being bested by a woman.”
“I do not think he cared that you bested him Leslie he was too busy looking you over to notice!”
Leslie shook her head at the idea glancing up at Colin whom sat on the benches resting.
“I am a bit dirty, Celebriand perhaps could we stop by the pool and go for a swim?”
“Yes sure we can Leslie.”
The two ladies left heading just outside the village of Ost-in-Edhil but not beyond it’s protection to a small rocky area with a small water fall and circular pool which some ways away led to a stream. The two girls stopped at the pool and removed only a few articles of clothing keeping themselves from being completely exposed. The two began their swimming as Celebriand started in.
“So what do you think of him? Do you not think he handsome?”
“Well what do you think?” Leslie asked.
“He is handsome, but not for me…” Celebriand replied.
“Why do you believe he is not for you?”
“Because I wait for the one I `know’ is right.” Celebriand answered so sure of herself, then added. “But for you he is handsome, and he almost bested you!”
“That does not mean he is the one for me simply because he almost bested me.”
“Then who do you wish to be with?”
Leslie stopped at the question thinking it over then answered.
“Someone whom can make my heart skip a beat; leave me breathless just by him drawing near. Someone that I will feel absolutely and completely safe when in his arms as if no evil could harm me when I am in his arms. Someone whom can make me feel weak in the knees as well as alive in such a way that you wish yourself only to live just to be with him. And someone that you do not care if he has or has not this history or if he is different from you, because you both love each other so much that anything else does not matter.” Leslie smiled briefly before asking. “Does that sound strange?”
“No it sounds like you know exactly what you want.”
Just then a small cracking sound was briefly heard and Leslie rushed out of the water for her sword. She drew it quickly looking back at Celebriand to make sure she was safe. Then she went behind some brush, moving stealthily about the brush Leslie spotted the intruder and snuck up on him carefully before tripping him to the ground and holding her sword at his throat. The hooded cloak fell back revealing Colin.
Colin laid there on his back before a shocked Leslie whom had been swimming and now her clothes clung to her slender form not leaving much to the imagination. Colin found himself looking her up and down carefully remembering her every curve and feature. He had snuck out following Leslie and Celeborn his curiosity had brought him out here to see her and he had overheard the conversation knowing now what Leslie desired in a suitor. He cleared his throat softly as he noticed Leslie still shocked.
“Milady I know what this must look like, but I—-” Colin swallowed hard and shook his head at the idea of lying or making up an excuse. “I came to see you, Milady. I am sorry for eavesdropping on your conversation, but I wanted to see you.”
Leslie looked bewildered and a bit skeptical as she asked. “Why?”
“Because I have never met a lady quit like yourself and you intrigue me to be curious.”
Leslie tilted her head at the response not sure what to make of it. Slowly she lowered the sword allowing him to stand up. She watched him carefully as he brushed himself off. As he stood and brushed himself off he found himself looking her over again in her wet clothes which clung, and after a moment he regained his manners and removed his cloak.
“Milady your appearance is a bit inappropriate.”Colin said as he wrapped his cloak around her, but had not expected her response.
“Your intrusion is inappropriate. If you desired to see me or speak to me you could have easily done that in the village, and not when Lady Celebriand and I desire a lady’s private moment to clean up!”
“I am sorry for intruding, but I wanted to see you again. As a common guard I will probably see very little of you in the village and when I do I will probably be on duty so that I can not drop my duties to try and see you.”
“It is called requesting to see me, or asking where I live.” Leslie said in a cool tone. “Now what is it you wish to see me for?”
“Well Milady, I have heard of a celebration that will happen in a few weeks, and I was recently told by Lord Celeborn that I will have that day off. I was hoping that I could accompany you to this?”
Leslie sighed thinking a moment then to be nicer she spoke in a sweeter tone. “On such occasions Colin I have to protect Lady Celebriand. After all I am her personal bodyguard.”
“I understand then perhaps I could persuade you for a few dances?”
Leslie frowned not sure what to say or do then she sighed nodding,. “Very well a dance or two could not hurt I suppose.”
Colin smiled at her reply and said his farewell before leaving Leslie to return to swimming. He almost forgot his cloak until she rushed to catch up and handed it back to him. For a moment he stared at her figure again admiring her curves, then when he noticed that she had noticed so he averted his eyes and quickly left. Leslie looked down at herself wondering why he had stared at her, but saw nothing wrong with herself as she turned back and went back to swimming.