They all quickly hurried after Aragorn as his strides were now long and swift as he paused for no more than a few seconds before he rushed off again. Night came and now it was harder for them to follow the broken branches of Merry or Pippin’s path when Solaris cried out that they have vanished.
“What do you mean vanished!?” asked Gimli. “We’re on their trail! Aren’t we?”
“Vanished…there are no more broken branches ahead! I looked farther ahead and nothing! We really lost them now!” yelled Solaris, as she slumped to the dirt, head bowed. “I failed them!”
Aragorn made Solaris look up at him. “No, Solaris. You have not failed them! We…have not failed them! We will find them and rescue them!”
Legolas rushed a bit ahead and returned his eyes glowing purple as Elves were always able to see at night by making their eyes turn purple. Legolas went to Solaris placed his hand on her shoulder and then turned to look at Aragorn, who still had his hand under Solaris’s chin forcing her to look at him. “She’s right. There are no more broken branches.”
“Damn. Then, we can go the path we are on and hope that they start breaking tree branches again for us to follow.” Aragorn whispered, looking at him. Something was not right with the elf or the female as she stood up looking puzzled as they both went for their weapons. “What is it?”
“Saruman is behind us.” Legolas whispered, holding his bow in hand with an arrow. Solaris held only her bow in hand and the leather coverings were off and the golden daggers were visible in the moonlight.
Aragorn went for his sword and started to draw it out as Gimli pulled his axe out. With a battle cry they all turned around with their weapons in hand looking shocked at the figure that was before them.
Aragorn whispered, “Gandalf?”
“Gandalf, is that really you?! Have you returned to us?!” cried Solaris, as she lowered her bow to the ground.
“I come back to you now, at the turn of the tide.” Gandalf stated calmly.
The weapons that Aragorn, Gimli and Legolas held dropped to the floor of the forest as they gazed towards Gandalf standing there cloaked in white. Aragorn looked at Gandalf and asked, “Is it really you, Gandalf?”
“Yes, it is I.” spoke Gandalf, as he walked towards them. “But I am no longer known as Gandalf the Gray…I am now Gandalf the White.”