The next morning Elenya awoke and quickly washed her face in the silver basin set out for her probably by Elise. She chose a short-sleeved white dress that fell slightly below her shoulders. It reminded her of something. Then she remembered what from. The movie Much Ado About Nothing. It reminded her of the white dresses Hero and Beatrice wore. She fastened Varda’s necklace around her neck and braided her hair in one braid. She walked out into the sunlit courtyard under the close eye of a guard. She then asked the guard if there were any stables nearby.
“The Prince thought you might ask. I am to show you them. Come.”
Elenya followed him silently passed the courtyard and made entrance to an iron gate at its northeast corner. He opened it for her, and she walked in seeing many stalls. She walked by a few of them ignoring the flicking tails until she reached the very last one. The horse faced her with eyes like bright sapphires. Elenya stretched out her hand to touch the horse’s silver mane, but all of a sudden the horse reared up on its hind legs neighing loudly. Emilie could tell she was skittish. She took the horse tightly by the mane and brought her down.
“Lirimaer, Beleger.” ((Lovely one mighty one)) “Amin sinta thaliolle.” ((I know your strength.))
“So you do speak some elvish?”
She turned slightly seeing the Prince out of the corner of her eye. She rested her cheek against the horse’s chest.
“Some a little.” She whispered in the horse’s ear, “Calm you beauty calm.”
“She is wild is she not?”
“Not when you know how to handle her. She is beautiful.”
“As are you. She’s fit for a queen if she wasn’t so spirited. I said whoever could break her could name her.”
“Where did she come from?”
“Found her as a little pony wandering in the forest. A sleek silver thing in the midst of the green trees. Even then she was wild. Do you wish to ride her? I’ll fetch a saddle.”
“No need,” Elenya said grabbing onto the silver mane and hoisted herself onto the mare’s back. She reared up suddenly, but Elenya held on and whispered some other kind words in her ear. “You do not need to prove your strength to me, mighty one,” she said wrapping her arms around the mare’s neck and gazing into her sapphire jewel eyes.
With a quick motion, the horse slowly walked out of the stall. The Prince folded his arms across his chest.
“Well, well,” he said grinning.
“I know something about horses. That is all.” It was true for in America she rode them many times.
“Then what is her name?”
Elenya looked at the horse. She looked like a winter star bright and dazzling shining upon the snow. She might grow attracted to this horse even more than Celeniel.
“Lossielen,” she said.
“The snowstar. Rightly named.”
The Prince reached into the stall next to hers and pulled out a black horse with a fiery red mane. He led it by the bridle.
“I call him Losalhuta which means Fire Flame if you were wondering because of his red mane. Let us see whether your horse can match him or not. She is spirited but I know not if she is fast.”
“I wanted to go riding alone.”
“You can never be alone.”
She sighed. He mounted the horse and took her hand. She frowned.
“Do not fear. I shall take you to a beautiful place.”
“What if I do not want to go anywhere with you?”
“Do you think you shall accomplish anything by arguing?”
She groaned. He grinned for he knew she was going to agree.
“Just this once,” she said.
“We shall not be completely alone,” he said looking behind them.
She saw a few other riders. They kept their distance as they left by the south gate. She wondered if she should try galloping for it, but she dismissed the thought when she saw them with bows and arrows, which she discovered were darts dipped in a sleeping potion.
“And my men are excellent marksmen,” he said smiling at her.
“Shall we?” he said nodding toward the wide open plane. “To the trees.”
A horn was blown, and the race began. Lossielen proved a spirited and amazingly fast horse. The Prince arrived at the trees just a gallop from her. He grinned.
“Very good. She is the swiftest in my kingdom then. Perfect for you. Come.”
They walked the horses at a steady pace. The Prince constantly stared at her to a point where she grew uncomfortable, and began to quicken her pace. He took her reigns. She looked up at him, and reached for her reigns. He held them back.
“Give them back,” she demanded unhappily.
“I must lead you to a place now.”
“I don’t want you to take me anyplace.”
He raised a hand. She felt a cloth being put over her eyes. She reached up to take it off, but a knife was placed against her throat.
“Do not fear, Elenya. Trust me.”
“Why in the world would I want to trust you?”
He leaned over and planted a kiss upon her cheek. She felt the horse move and held onto the silver mane. They walked steadily on, and she knew they were in the forest. Finally, they stopped. The Prince removed the blindfold. The men were gone, but she knew they were nearby in the trees. She gasped at where she was. A great tree stood before her. Attached to it was a swing with two ropes. Around it grew bushes bearing pretty white flowers. He plucked one from a bush and placed it in her hair. He un-mounted and reached up to take her hand. She kept it on the silver mane.
“Come on. You afraid?” he asked.
She dismounted on her own, and he walked over to the swing. He held the two ropes for her motioning for her to sit.
“You really think I’m going to fall for that?”
“Yes,” he said grinning arrogantly.
She tugged at her hair in frustration.
“This isn’t working. You’re not supposed to be nice to me,” she said.
“Why wouldn’t I? I love you.”
“Whatever,” she said taking a seat on the swing. She looked up at him and said, “This means nothing. I just haven’t done this for at least a year, and I don’t want to get shot with one of those sleeping darts if I try to go back.”
“And you know I would do that,” he grinned pushing her gently into the air.
Her white dress blew about in the wind as she swung. She still did not smile, and he wanted nothing more in the world to make her laugh. He finally stopped swinging. He turned around so he faced her, and he took the two ropes in his hands drawing closer to her.
“Will you have dinner with me tonight?” he asked.
“No,” she said simply.
“Hmm. Maybe it is time to show you.”
“Show me what?”
“No, the day has been too perfect. Please,” he said earnestly.
She closed her eyes. “No.”
“Why not?” he asked touching her cheek. She removed his hand.
“Because I do not want to.”
“Would you if your Prince joined us?”
She opened her eyes in surprise. “You would do that?”
He shrugged. “If you would come, I promise.”
“Then I will.”
“Good. Let us go. Tis near time yet, and I am sure you will want to change.”
She smiled for once happy that Legolas would come.