Rianatu sat beside Arinae and Arien. Arinae had many questions to be answered.
“These cloaked ones who are following us,” Arinae asked. “Who are they?”
“They are ten dark elves who have turned to the Shadow. They were promised great powers from the One. And so they fell into darkness.”
“I thought dark elves the Morquiendi were good.”
“Good hmm,” he pondered the word. “Anyone can turn to the Shadow if his will is not strong enough. The One turned their minds.”
“The One who took your parents.”
“Who is it?”
“You must listen carefully. There is one who took your parents. He is far powerful than you could ever dream of. He has the power to resurrect the old ones from their graves. That is if he obtains the Isilen Crystal. It can match the Simaril, Arinae,” Rianatu told her.
“Why have they kept my parents so long?”
“He is waiting for a time to strike. He has kept them believing your father still has hidden it. I do not know what they have done to them, but it must be awful.”
“What could he do if he had the Crystal?”
“I would not want to think of it. It is our duty to make sure it doesn’t happen.”
“But I-we have to find my parents.”
“Our parents,” Arien broke in.
“I know they are being held by him,” Rianatu continued.
“Are you sure you wish to hear this?”
“They are being held in the fortress of Dol Guldur.”
“But that’s impossible! It was destroyed!”
“No it wasn’t. And it has been rebuilt. He is gathering all armies to him.”
“Who is this exactly?”
“I cannot say. You will know soon enough.”
“We must go there?” Arinae asked.
Arinae thought for a moment. “Will you two leave me alone for a little? I have some thinking to do.”
“Of course,” Rianatu said standing.
“Are you alright Arinae?” Arien asked.
“Yes. Diole lle Mellonaminn,” she said to Rianatu. Thank you my friend.
Rianatu bowed and slowly issued out along with Arien. What Arinae really wished to do was explore Rivendell on her own. She wished to think in the midst of the trees. She stood up and walked to the closet. She pulled out a flowing silver gown with no sleeves. She tried it on loving the silky feel and how it fell beneath her shoulders allowing the cool breeze to fall upon her back. She fastened the Crystal about her neck so attention wouldn’t be drawn to her low chest line. She washed her face and braided a few strands of her hair. She walked out of the house and down the stairs careful not to go by her sister and Rianatu in the garden. She fled past the houses and made her way into the woods and the rivers. She walked a familiar path and came to a sloping bridge and a waterfall. She sat on the edge staring at her reflection not knowing an evil presence was watching her profoundly.
“Rian?” Arien asked looking up at him as they walked through the garden.
“Do you think there is hope to rescue them?”
“There is always hope, but I cannot see that far into the future.”
“What shall happen if we do?”
“Then Middle Earth will be safe.”
“No, I mean to us. With you and I.”
Arien stopped and faced him. She had long loved Rian. This he knew, but he had never been able to share her feelings. He considered her a great friend but did not love her. He knew they were not meant to be. She brushed a soft hand across his cheek. He took it in his.
“Shh,” she said putting a hand across his mouth.
Slowly she inched toward his face and brusher her lips across his in a soft kiss.
“I think we should go to your sister.”