As Tethcelebel, Elwen, Legolas, Miredhel and Elnar rode to Caras Galadhon, Ohtarwen was running, her mind still effected by the tranquilzer, across the plains. It was dark, Ohtarwen could niether see or feel anything, but something inside of her told her to keep going. She stumbled blindly over rocks and mounds of dirt, running down into hollows and onto hills. Finally, as she crested a small hill, she stopped. Her side was aching, as was her head, and she wanted to lie down and rest.
“Elwen!” she cried out, “Where are you? Tethcelebel? Legolas? Miredhel? Arwen?Where are you?” Silence answered her calls and the realization that she was alone sunk in. She turned around on the hill top, looking for anything that would giude her home. Off, in the opposite direction than she had come, she noticed a light. The light of a fire. A smile spread across her face as she began runing down the hill towards the light.
“Don’t leave, Elwen! Stay by the fire Legolas! Don’t sleep yet Tethcelebel! I’m coming, I’m coming, I’m…” as she came to the bottom of the hill she fell foward onto her face. The tranquilizer’s effect had gotten to her again. She lay there, out to the world, unaware of the three shapes that approached.
“It is a girl!” a gruff voice exclaimed in surprise.
“What would she be doing out here? The villages of Rohan do not stretch this far!” a second spoke.
The thrid leaned down and picked uyp Ohtarwen’s unconcious form, “No,” he said, “She is not from Rohan! See here, she is dresed as an elf. I have seen her before, but where, i cannot say. Let’s take her back to the fire, when she awakes, she can tell us who she is.” The three men rturned to their fire.
“Elessar,” the head of the men adressed the one who carried Ohtarwen, “what have you got there?”
“A girl,” Elessar answered, “unconscious, it looks like. She has a wound in her neck like a dart hit her. Hand me my blanket, i want to put her by the fire.”
“And what do you plan to do with her, when she wakes up?” the head man asked.
Elessar shrugged, “Take her home i guess. But I didn’t wantto leave her out on the plains all night, she’d be orc food by morning.” Elessar laid Ohtarwen by the fire and he too lay down to sleep, mulling over in his mind, why this girl looked so familiar.
It was dawn as Legolas and the others arrived back at Caras Galadhon. Carandol stood at the gate as guard. He smiled as the five rode up.
“Well, the warriors have returned, and triumphant from the look of it.” he lowered his voice as not to be heard by the other guards nearby, “The three of you are in a whole bunch of trouble. Galadriel is ready to kill the three of you with her bare hands!”
“Like we weren’t aware of that?” Legolas rolled his eyes as he passed through the gate.
Tethcelebel smiled as she rode by, ofering an explanatiuoin for Legolas, “Pay him no mind Carandol, he’s been up all night. And he gets grumpy when he misses sleep.” Elwen laughed as she followed behind her cousin into the confines of the fortress. Galadriel and Lord Celeborn stood at the foot of the Mallorn tree flanked by Arwen Halidir and the chief elders of Lothlorien, all looking very grim.
“Look, what a cheerful bunch have gathered to greet us on our homecoming!” Elwen spoke in a whisper to Tethcelebel, her voice laced with sarcasm. Tethcelebel grimaced as all five dismounted and walked towards Galadriel, stopping a respectful ten paces from them.
“Legolas, Elwen-Lothnar!” Galadriel’s tone had a granite edge to it, “What could possibly have possessed you two to have done such a stupid thing?”
“Grandmother!” Tethcelebel skope while Legolas and Elwen shifted uncomfortably, “I went with them too. If you are to yell at them, then you had better yell at me as well!”
Glaldriel’s icy gaze shifted to Tethcelebel, “You will be silent now, Tethcelebel. I will deal with you once i am finished with these two!” Tethcelebel nodded and Galadriel continued, “I would expect two elves of your upbringing to have better sense! Why did you leave when you were told not to?”
“We went to find our friends!” Elwen spoke up. Her blue eyes were blazing with temper, “We went after Miredhel and Ohtarwen.”
“I see, but where is Ohtarwen, Elwen-Lothnar? Have you missplaced her or did you assume that elf to be her?” Galadriel voice carried a trace of taunting. Elwen’s body stiffened and she started to step foward. Legolas caught her arm and whispered something to her that Galadriel could not hear.
“Stay where you are, Kotyaer*, “Legolas murmured, “Stand up straight, hold your head high. Do not let her get to you.” Elwen took her brother’s advice as Galadriel issued her judgement.
“You both are to take care of your horses and then you are to come to my chamber. We will have a discussion and then you will be turned over to Halidir. The same applies to you, Tethcelebel. Go, I will see you shortly!” Galadriel spun on her heel and returned to the tree while elf laides came to take care of Miredhel and Elnar. Elnar struggled to get away from them and ran to catch up to Legolas, Tethcelebel and Elwen, wo were walking slowly towards the stables.
“are you going top leave your friend out there?” Elnar asked.
“Go take a bath and rest your self, Elnar.” Legolas ordered, his voice heavy and tired.
“Take me with you.” Elnar begged, “I will help you find your friend.”
Elwen turned to look at her, “We are going nowhere but to be lectured and then beaten, Elnar. I truly doubt you want to come.”
“You lie,. I knwo you are going to go after her. And if you don’t take me along I will tell that grumpy Lady-elf where you have gone.” Elnar stamped her foot down. Legolas and the pthers stopped walking and looked at her.
“she could make a problem for us there, Brother.” Elwen commented.
Tethcelebel nodded, “Aye, we could use her help, though. A diversion would help.”
“It is agreed then, she goes?” Legolas looked at the two girls. both nodded and he turned to Elnar, “Go and bathe, get dressed in something you can ride in. We will prepare you a horse. Meet us inside the stable in twenty minutes. Hurry!” Elnar sped off, having read Legolas’s mind. He intended to take her along.
Ohtarwen rolled over as a bright light shone in her eyes, “Ugh! Go away, Elwen. Put out your torch, I’m trying to sleep here! Begone you worthless piece of elf-flesh!”
“Sorry, I’m neither Elwen nor a torch. The light is the sun, sleepyhead, get up and greet the day!” Elessar smiled down on her.
“Shut up you, monster! Elwen have your brother leave me alone!” she growled. The man laughed and dumped a pitcherful of water on Ohtarwen’s head. Ohtarwen leapt up wiht lightning speed. she jumped on Elessar knocking him to the ground.
Drawing a knife she placed the blade to the man’s throat and whispered, “I don’t know who you are, but if you ever dump water on my head while I sleep…I will carve you a new smiling mouth, right across your throat!” The other men had come up while Ohtarwen spoke, and now burst into hearty laughter.
“Elessar! You have been bested by a child, and a girl at that!” One of the older men laughed, “I told you, that you were not old enough to become a Ranger!”
Elessar glared angrily at the man, “Hold your tongue, Brithon. If you think that I am not old enough to be a Ranger, I shall prove it to you by beating you wiht a blade.”
“You’re all Rangers?” Ohtarwen asked gertting off of Elessar.
“Aye,” the one called Brithon answered, “we are. And what is it that pleases you in regard to us? And what is it that they call you anyway?”
“Ohtarwen. My father was a Ranger.” She answered causually.
“What was his name?” Elessar asked.
“His name was…” she began but trailed off. “Oh, I don’t remember his name. I know he died a long time ago, though. Hey, who are you?” Ohtarwen asked Elessar.
Elessar shrugged, “My name is Elessar. Why did you want to know?”
“You like someone that I knew.” She answered, “But he lived in Ilmalderis, and his name was Estel.”
“Estel?” Brithon asked, “Elessar, were you not called Estel while you lived at the house of Elrond?”
“Yes, I was. But how did you know that Ohtarwen?” Elessar asked, his face wrinkeled in befuddlement.
“I was at Ilmalderis a while ago.” she smiled, “I remember seeing you there.” Elessar smiled, now he remembered who she was. The Rangers broke camp and prepared to leave, taking Ohtarwen with them. As Ohtarwen rode along, seated behind Elessar, she began trying to remember what had happened the previous night. To her astonishment, she could remember nothing after leaving Ilmalderis with Arwen. In fact, leaving with Arwen, seeing Estel long ago, her name and knowing her parents were dead was all she could remember. She leaned against Elessar’s back as he rode, deep in thought.
Kotyaer – hostile one