“Wake up, Elerrina. Wake up.”
Elerrina opened her eyes to see her father shaking her. She said, “What is it father? It is still night time.”
“No it isn’t, Elerrina. It’ been twelve hours since you fell asleep last night.”
“What?” she sat up and looked out her window.
He was right. It was still dark out, but she knew that it was not night for the stars were not in the sky. She hated it. She also realized something else. There was a blizzard outside. It was in the middle of summer.
“It is not supposed to snow in July,” Elerrina said.
“Come. We are leaving Rivendell.”
“Rina, this may be hard for you to understand. We must leave as soon as possible. A messenger from Gondor arrived this morning. The king has called everyone to the safest nearest city. For us, it is Minas Tirith. Rivendell is no longer safe. And there is also something else.”
“Goblins have crept out from their hiding places. They are roaming the land now. Everything is night. It is not safe to be here.”
“But surely the elves can do something.”
“I do not know what is happening, Rina. But the elves are powerless. A council was held early this morning by the Princes of Rivendell, Elladan and Elrohir. We must go to Gondor.”
Kaylin left his daughter’s room. She understood, but she was not happy. She looked up at the sky. There were no stars. She prayed to Varda to set stars in the sky to give the elves of Rivendell light in the sky. But no stars came. All she could see was the ever growing darkness and the freezing snow. She quickly changed into a warm green dress for their travels. It would be hard to travel in the snow. She wondered if they could go by boat down the Anduin. But she realized they couldn’t when she saw the Ford of Bruinen and how it had turned to ice in just one night. The elves would be careful. They were wise and good with weapons among all things.
Suddenly, as Elerrina finished packing for her trip, a figure appeared in her window. It was gruesome and horrifying. She had heard of these awful creatures called orcs but never had come face to face with one. The orc appeared at her window and began to crawl through. She instantly retrieved her elven dagger. Elerrina had been trained in well odds with the weapons of war. The orc came through the window and spoke in the common tongue in a harsh voice.
“A pretty lass. I shall enjoy you pretty one indeed.”
He made a snarling laugh. But she quickly silenced him and slashed her elven dagger through the creature’s chest. Black blood issued forth and spilled upon her dress.
“Pretty indeed,” she said.
“Pip, why must I do this?” Merry asked.
“Because Father said so.”
“No, why must I do this? You’re the one who started it. You wouldn’t be quiet, so Farmer Maggots dogs heard us and barked.”
“No, you’re the one who wouldn’t shut up.”
Pippin picked up a clump of dirt and threw it at Merry, which resulted in retaliation. They began rolling around with each other in the dirt when Merry stopped.
“What is it?”
“Look you half wit! It’s snowing!”
“But it’s not even August,” Pippin said. “Maybe winter has come early this year.”
“No, you idiot. This isn’t right. It’s July. Father will know. Come.”
“Father!” Eldarion burst into the courtroom.
“What is it my son?” Aragorn asked his enraged son. “I am occupied.”
“It is snowing out.”
“What? Don’t be ludicrous. It is July, Eldarion.”
“It is snowing out. And darkness is coming on Minas Tirith. It is true. Come see.”
Aragorn instantly followed his son outside. Eldarion was not lying. The sky was being enveloped in a dark cloud as well as the snow falling.
“There is some sorcery involved here,” Aragorn said. “I am going to the tower.”
“Do you think it is that serious?”
“I must look.”
Eldarion knew his father was going to the Palantir. He knew his father came out of the tower looking grim after looking through it. He didn’t know what to think about the snow and darkness. He just hoped his father could conquer it.
“I can’t believe this!” Elenya cried out. “It’s snowing. This is supposed to be July.”
“I don’t know what to think either, Elenya. But I know someone who will. We shall make a journey to Minas Tirith.”
“Where are we right now?” Emilie asked Legolas.
“I believe we are in one of the forests of Rivendell. Do you see the houses in the distance?”
“Yes. I am an elf again.”
“You were never not an elf. Even in your world. Come.”
Legolas and Emilie hurried to the houses. She unexpectedly saw a large gathering of elves leaving through the forest. It was then that Legolas yelled out.
“Kaylin!” he said.
An elf-man turned to face him.
“Legolas, what in the Valar’s name are you doing here? I thought you were in Mirkwood,” Kaylin said.
“What is happening here?” Legolas asked.
“We have been summoned by the King. Goblins are crawling out of their hiding places. They have come into Rivendell.”
“But they cannot. The power of the elves-” Elenya began.
“The elves are powerless to stop it. There is some sorcery here of which I do not know. Will you travel with us?”
“Of course we shall.”
“Who is this?” Kaylin asked turning to Elenya.
“This is a dear friend of mine. Elenya this is Kaylin a good friend of Elrond’s.”
“Pleased to meet you,” Elenya smiled. “But I regret that it is under these circumstances.”
“Allow me to introduce my wife Tielna and my daughters Elerrina and Arias.”
When Elenya first caught sight of Elerrina, she was astonished. She knew her face somehow. She did not know. Elerrina was familiar to her. Arias was much different than her sister though. Arias had long dark hair and gray eyes. To Emilie she seemed like the fairest in the world. Arias hardly ever looked at Elenya. Her eyes fixed primarily on Legolas.
“It is good to see another she-elf my age,” Elerrina spoke to her. “Where do you come from, Elenya?”
“Far away. But I fear we must press on. I sense a presence coming our way.”
“That is not hard to believe. The goblins have come into Rivendell. I killed one but an hour ago.”
“You have skill with a bow?” Elenya asked.
“No,” she said.
Instantly, Elerrina pulled out an elven sword from its sheath. It glittered in the darkness.
“My skill is with the sword,” Elerrina said.
“My skill is increasing with the sword I hope. I look forward to knowing you more, Elerrina,” Elenya said.
“Greetings,” said Legolas to both girls.
Legolas could not deny that Arias was beautiful. He also could not deny that she looked only on him and not on Elenya even when Elenya spoke to her. A look of dismay was in his eyes. His face was troubled for he loved Elenya more than life itself.
“Oh, I’m freezing!” Merry said to Pippin.
“My tootsies are like icicles. Even my hairy feet can’t warm them,” Pippin said.
“I’m surprised you are cold. You haven’t shut your mouth the entire trip.”
“Nor have you,” Pippin objected.
“I just hope we get to wherever we’re going. How long has it been since we left the Shire?”
“I don’t know. I haven’t kept count of the days.”
“Why don’t you ask father, Pippin?”
“Alright I will,” Pippin said.
Pippin walked up to his father.
“Father, when will be there?” Pippin asked.
“We shall be there soon. We have traveled far. See, Minas Tirith is there in the distance. You will soon again sleep in a warm bed. And there shall be food awaiting your hungry stomach.”
When he saw her, he was mystified. Who was she? She was enchanting as she walked in his father’s courtyard. He did not know her. Her eye strayed everywhere to the columns, fountains, and pillars. Her green dress swayed in the snow. He noticed that there were splatters of black blood upon it. Her dark copper hair was loose and wavy. She seemed to shine. Eldarion knew that a gathering of elves and men had been summoned to Minas Tirith, but he did not know of any girls coming. He approached her slowly.
“Hello,” Eldarion said.
She turned swiftly somewhat startled. She noticed the prince’s crown and slowly curtsied.
“Oh please,” he said taking her hand. She pulled away. Then he realized who she was. She was elven. He despaired.
“You are an elf, are you not?” he said.
“Yes, I am.”
“Forgive me. I did not know.”
“There is nothing to forgive. Why should you be sorry that I am an elf.”
He tried to think of something clever. “That is not what I meant. It is awe striking that someone as beautiful as you is not a goddess. What are you doing here?”
“This is Minas Tirith is it not? My father was summoned here.”
“I believe he is with the King Aragorn. You are his son.”
“Yes, I am Eldarion.”
“Well, then. Elen sila lumenn omentielvo, Eldarion.”
“I do not understand your words.”
“They are elvish. They mean a star shines upon the hour of our meeting.”
“My lady,” Eldarion kissed her hand and began to walk away.
“Very soon my master, we may strike. I have finally found it at last. Five thousand years of searching amidst the ever growing waves of the sea. Soon I shall liberate you. We shall rule Middle Earth together. I, your faithful servant. But I have sensed a presence that has come into Middle Earth. It could destroy us. I shall find out. I will not let it destroy all that I have worked for. Darkness and winter have come upon Middle Earth. The army shall strike for Minas Tirith soon. The day of Morgoth is at hand.”
A dark cold merciless voice answered back, “It is my faithful servant. But not all of my senses have been destroyed. I know whom you watch and whom you seek. The time is coming when you shall have your desires, though I know not why you desire her.”