Legolas’s shoulders stood directly in Tethcelebel’s line of vision. If she listened carefully, she could barely hear the sound of Elwen’s soft footsteps behind her. The horses were no longer with them, they had been tied to a tree a couple of yards back while the three elves proceeded alone.Legolas stopped suddenly, and Tethcelebel ran into his back. He turned and glared at her while Elwen came up.
“Must you always look so grumpy, Brother?” she questioned softly.
“Nay,” he responded in the same tone, “only when Celebel runs into me from behind.” Tethcelebel rolled her eyes and Elwen smiled as Legolas continued, ” There is a fire up ahead. Methinks it to be the Naugrim. Draw your swords, but do not slay unless one arouses and is about to give the alarm. We will find Ohtarwen and Miredhel and leave with them. All right?”
“Amin weera*” Tethcelebel spoke and Elwen nodded her assent. Legolas drew his swords as did the others and they crept along until they could see, by the light of the fire, two forms on the edge of camp.
The two dwarf guards were fast asleep, and snoring loudly. One of them held a nearly empty bottle in his hand, while a pipe hung loosely from the lips of the other. The three elves slipped past the dwarves, unnoticed and picked their way, through the slumbering form of the dwarves, towards the fire circle. There lying beside the fire were two bound, and sleeping forms. Legolas nodded to Tethcelebel and they each picked up one of the sleeping forms. Tethcelebel took Miredhel, as she was smaler and lighter, while Legolas took the other. They walked quietly back to the edge of the camp followed by Elwen, weapons at ready. As they passed the guards on their way out, one of them stirred and began to move. Elwen motioned for Tethcelebel and Legolas to keep moving, while she bent down and laid a hand on his head.
“Sleep Saurar*,” she whispered in the tounge of men, “Sleep sweetly, for you are sure to be in trouble on the morrow!” The dwarf grunted and settled himself against a tree. Elwen watched him, staring at his beard and a look of feindish delight came over her features as she rose.
Legolas and Tethcelebel arrived at the trees where the horses were tethered and set their burdens down.
“Where is Elwen? She should have been back by now!” Legolas sighed impatiently.
“Don’t worry about her,” Tethcelebel grinned, “she can hold her own. Ah, look, there she is now.” Elwen walked towards her companions smiling merrily.
Legolas looked at her and growled deep in his throat, “And what do you have to look so happy about?”
“I had some fun with the sleeping dwarves!” she giggled. Legolas arched his eyebrow, Tethcelebel crossed her arms over chest waiting for Elwen to continue, “Since they kidnapped our friends, I though I’d do them a little revenge.”
“Elwen what did you do? You didn’t kill them did you?” Tethcelebel asked.
Elwen grinned rougishly and shook her head, “Nah, I wouldn’t do that, I just cut off half of the beards on most of them. I would have gotten them all, but I didn’t want you to leave without me!” Legolas burst out laughing at her comment causing the sleeping two to rouse.
Tethclebel looked shocked, “Elwen, that was mean! Legolas stop laughing! It is NOT funny!”
“Oh, but it is.” Legolas was bent double with laughter, “Can you imagine what they are going to act like when they wake up tomorrow?” Tethcelebel burst out laughing too until something smacked her leg. Looking down she saw Miredhel squirming on the ground. Both girls were gagged so legolas cut the constricting cloth free. Both girls sat up right and the moonlight shone on them illuminating their faces.
“hey, you are not Ohtarwen!” Elwen exclaimed, in the common tongue, pointing to the girl at Miredhel’s right.
The girl turned to face Elwen. Her face was dirty and had a sad look on it. Big, green eyes, stared into Elwen’s blue ones unblinkingly. Long, dark brown hair, fell in curls to the middle of her back. She was dressed in a dirty and torn garment that had once been a navy blue dress. She looked to be about as old as Tethcelebel, but her whole body was bent and broken from hardship. Though the light was dim and the girl dirty, Tethclebel, Elwen and Legolas could see that she was beautiful and, that she had the pointed ears of the Elven kind.
“Lle quessir*!” Elwen whispered in astonishment.
Legolas rolled his eyes at Elwen and knelt down until he was level with the elf’s face, “Please forgive my sister, she lacks manners sometimes. I am Legolas, son of Thranduil of Mirkwood. The shorter one is Elwen, my sister, and the other is Tethcelebel of Lothlorien. Who are you? And why were you in the company of dwarves?”
“My name is Elnar, daughter of Celebsir. We lived at the base of the Hithaeglir*. Three months ago, the dwarves attacked our home. They killed my fahter, mother and two brothers, while they slept. The took me and my younger sister as slaves, but she was slain by them soon after. The dwarves are slavers and so they have been moving down from the mountains searching for more slaves. They did not find any until the two this afternoon. Where your other friend is, Icannot say.” the elf maiden explained.
“Slavers!” Legolas exclaimed, “To whom would they sell? No elf would purchase a slave, and certainly not off of a dwarf!”
“They were journeying to the south, where the dark men live. They were to sell us there.” Elnar explained and then abruptly asked, “Have you any food? I have not eaten for days.”
“Run, Elwen, get her some Lembas from my saddlebags!” Legolas ordered. Elwen did as she was told while Tethcelebel attended to Miredhel. Elwen brought back the bread and Legolas broke it into small, bite sized chunks for Elnar. Elwen rolled her eyes; Legolas was smitten with this elf, sure enough.
After Elnar had finished eating, the five elves made ready to return to Lothlorien. Tethcelebel mounted her horse and Miredhel sat behind her. Legolas was preparing to do the same wioth Elnar when Elwen spoke up.
“ah, Legolas, Elnar should ride with me.” She said.
“And may I ask why?” Elnar questioned, “Your hands should be free to provide protection from any harm that might befall us.”
“Perhaps, but I think that Legolas should be the one to provide protection. Seeing how he is older and more experienced than I.” Elnar and Legolas still did not look convinced and Elwen added, “Brother, if Father finds out that you were shirking your duties and riding horseback with a elf maiden, and he is sure to, he will have your head!”
“You’re right, Elnar, you had better ride with Elwen.” Legolas sighed, “Come lets get back to Caras Galadhon before we get in anymore trouble.”
“But what of Ohtarwen?” Tethcelebel asked.
“Yah, we just can’t leave her out there!” Elwen added.
“We’re taking Elnar and Miredhel home. We will tell Galadreil about Elnar, she will begin talking to her and we will go put our horses away.” Legolas explained. Elwen and Tethcelebel smiled, they both knew what Legolas had meant; get Glaldriel occupied with Elnar and Miredhel and then the three could go back out after Ohtarwen. They began the ride back to Caras Galadhon. Meanwhile…
Amin weera – i agree
Saurar – Foul one
Lle quessir – you’re an Elf
Hithaeglir – Misty Mountains