A Lady's duty - Book One of the Lorien Princess Trilogy (Legolas Love Story/ Lotr)

Authiel is the daughter of Celeborn and Galadriel, princess and heir to the throne of Lorien. In order to prove herself to her people and her parents, she goes to Rivendell in order to attend a secret council. But, when her duty and her destiny become entwined, she finds herself in a company of an elf, two men, a dwarf, a wizard and four hobbits. What will happen when she discovers something about herself - a mystery buried in time and darkness - and what will happen when the dark lord learns of her power in this tale? Will she survive?

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21. Chapter Twenty - The Great River

Slowly, we crawled along the river with our heads sadly hanging as we left Lorien behind us. Just as we were passing her, Galadriel lifted her right arm and bid us away; wishing us luck. Bay stood at her side and even with the great distance that separated us, I could just make out the sound of his quiet of whimpering.

White Mountains rose starkly beneath the blue skies and green trees. I was leaning against Legolas’ chest; his arm’s wrapped around me as he manoeuvred the paddle through the water. Gimli was sat in front of us, smiling sadly as we continued on our journey.

“I have taken a worst wound at this parting, having looked on my last upon that which is fairest. Haugh, henceforth I will call nothing fair unless it is her gift to me,” Gimli explained, sadly.

“What was her gift?” Legolas asked.

“I asked her for one hair off of her golden head. She gave me three.”

A smile filled my lips and I said,

“That does sound like her. The Lady of the gifts, same call her.”

“She is a wonderful Lady,” Gimli whispered with an awe filled voice.

“Indeed,” Legolas whispered in agreement.

Darkness began to descend on the river quickly and we stopped to rest on a small island. Legolas, being the proper gentlemen that he is, helped me out of the boar and when I moved to take my bags, he lightly tapped me on the shoulder and shook his head when I curiously looked up at him. I smiled at his kindness and then made my way to a drooping willow that stood hanging and I leant against it the tree; carefully sharpening one of my daggers.

Legolas sat next to me, his hand on his sword’s hilt which was leaning on his hip. His eyes flickering as he endlessly searched for something. Tenderly, I placed my hand on his arm and removed his strangling grasp from his sword’s hilt.

“Leave it, we are safe here,” I whispered, gently kissing the back of his hand.

He smiled as I wriggled my way into his side, my body leaning on his. He lightly kissed my head and whispered,

“Get some sleep, you need your rest.”

“You need your rest, not I. You are the one who has been rowing for hours on end and will be doing so tomorrow. Sleep!”

He went to protest but before he could utter a word, I placed my finger to his lips and whispered,

“It is safe, sleep.”

As I relaxed against him, I felt him stir slightly and wrap his arms around me as he drifted into his dream world. But, I knew I was wrong. For a log floated on the rover, disturbing the silvery webs of light which lay across the still water. Small hands clutched it, and the top of its head was just visible over the log’s edge; eyes glinting softly.

“Gollum …” I whispered.

A yawn slipped from my lips and I slowly closed my eyes so that soon I too was asleep.

                When daylight trickled back onto our eyelids, we lazily climbed into the boats with yawns fresh on our lips. Tensions lay heavy between Aragorn and Boromir; apparently an argument had arisen between two men of Gondor, and from the looks that Boromir was shooting Aragorn’s way, it was serious.

Aragorn, meanwhile, had lifted his head and was half-smiling at the sight before his eyes. He tapped Frodo on the shoulder,

“Frodo, the Argonath! Long have I desired to look upon the kings of old; my kin!”

I looked at awe at the towering splendour known as the Argonath. Two majestic statues, carved out of the rock, proudly standing out on each side of the Anduin. Two vast quarries lined the cliffs to either side of them, where once their stones may have been hewn for their building. Their arms were held aloft, palms facing outwards in a gesture of warning. Solemn and stern were their faces; the silent protectors of their kingdom.

                Slowly, we sailed past the statues and we neared a great, roaring waterfall. On either side of the falls, the land rose up in two hilltops crowned with distant ruins. In the centre of the rushing water, a pinnacle of sheer rocks rose from the cascade. As we disembarked on the gravel beach, Boromir looked around with a troubled expression on his face; fighting an inner conflict within himself.

“We cross the lake at nightfall. Hide the boats and continue on foot. We approach Mordor from the North!” Aragorn explained as we set up camp.

“Oh, yes?!” Gimli asked,” It’s just a simple matter of finding our way through Emyn Muil? An impassable labyrinth of razor shark rocks! And after that, it gets even better! Festering, stinking marshlands, far as the eye can see!”

I rolled my eyes at his words and dropped my hand to my waist as Pippin looked up; alarmed.

“That is our road. I suggest you take some rest and recover your strength, Master Dwarf,” Aragorn replied.

“Recover my …..?! Phrrrr …..”

“We should leave now,” Legolas whispered to Aragorn.

“No. Orcs patrol the Eastern shore. We must wait for cover of darkness.”

“It is not the Eastern shore that worries me. A shadow and a threat has been growing in my mind. Something draws near … I can feel it.”

“As can I!” I added.

Gradually, my gaze wandered over the dark pine woods, with a dark, brooding statue nestled amongst the thick needles.

“No Dwarf need to recover strength!” Gimli grumbled in anger. Breaking the silence that had fallen. He turned to Pippin and said, “Take no heed to that young Hobbit.”

The sound of something crashing on the ground filled my ears and I bolted around in order to detect the sound; my eyes wide in alarm. To my relief, it was only Merry and he had dropped the cluster of firewood bundled in his arms which he had collected. Looking around, he said,

“Where’s Frodo?”

Sam, who had been half-dozing in the corner, roused with a start and fearfully looked around the camp. My gaze flickered through the surrounding trees before it halted on a Gondorian shield that lay abandoned among the owners baggage. My heart froze in fear.

“Boromir!” I whispered with wide eyes.

All eyes fell on me in shock, and I took a deep breath before I continued,

“He is going to take the Ring from Frodo!”            

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