500-word drabble, set about 2 to 3 years after Legolas bade farewell to Thranduil in BotFA.
Continuing with my processing of BotFa, which also included doing a fangurl!meme, or two, of Thranduil (I’m not sorry though). This is a one-shot fix-it ficlet on the follow-up of the final scene between Thranduil and Legolas in “The Hobbit: The Battle Of The Five Armies”, how Legolas got his knives back, and that missing burial ceremony. Because: book-canon, timeline (yes, I am aware of the advancement done to Strider’s age in the movies), and what-the-heck?!
Yup, this here is one for us movie-going book-readers, who may or may not be fangirls. Merry Yule/Post-Yule, everyone.
– revised as of 28 Dec for word count issues, proper quote citation and clarity
– final revision revised again 21 Jan
– final!final more revision on 23 Jan
– Yup. Again on 24 Jan.
-tweakies on 15 Feb.)
Within the chamber dark a shadow moved, quick keen-eyed familiarity amidst bladeglint shards. As it reached for a pair of white knives on an ornate stand, a sudden flare accompanied the keening of a great sword swiftly unsheathed. So close was the blade to the shadow’s heart, but for the swordsman’s mastery blood would have been drawn.
A voice, rich in timbre, spoke: “Hail.”
“Mae govannon,” answered the shadow evenly, “Adar.”
A lit candle was already in Thranduil’s hand. For the first time since Ravenhill, he looked upon his travel-worn son.
Legolas bowed, and striding past Thranduil, claimed his knives. “I deemed them lost forever,” he marvelled, smiling. “How come they to be here?”
In Thranduil’s eyes his joy was reflected. But still looking over his knives, Legolas did not see. “And Orcrist?”
“Under the Mountain, forevermore.”
In wonder Legolas gazed at the Elvenking.
“As the Bowman laid the Arkenstone upon his breast, I laid Orcrist upon the tomb of the Dwarf*.”
Silent moments passed.
Then: “Your counsel was false**.”
“I know,” Thranduil said, a languid tone Legolas knew well.
“You knew. And yet you sent me on a fruitless quest?”
With an elegant tilt of his head, Thranduil looked long at his son. “I knew, only after returning to the Realm.” His sword sighed in its flourished return to the sheath. “Suffice it to say my trust was… misplaced.”
Few were those beyond the Forest Thranduil heeded. “You were given false information?”
“It involved a device which shows things that were, and things that are, and things that yet may be***.”
“And what went awry, that I sought one even the Dúnedain claimed they knew not?”
“The missing note that told of ‘things that yet may be’.”
Still suspicious, Legolas asked: “Whence did this report come?”
“Let us dwell not upon that,” replied Thranduil, though his eyes gleamed with fey fire. “But hist, we must speak anon.”
Legolas frowned. “It grows late.”
“Indeed.” Thranduil’s gaze was hard. “Long has your quest been.” Already, he was at the door. “Do not look still to dispensation, king’s son.” Wordless, Legolas followed his tall father out of the armoury.
There the waiting guardsman bore away instructions for Galion.
“Mithrandir sent word,” Thranduil said then. “There is a creature wandering the region he wants captured.”
“Why the interest in this creature?”
“Of greater concern is the growing rumour of a blood-drinking ghost that robs cradles and nests. Naught, neither beasts nor birds, or even Woodmen, are safe****,” said Thranduil. “I do not think it mere chance this new terror haunts the Forest now.”
Legolas returned a look as dark. “I am to join the hunt.”
“After,” said the Elvenking, “the morning meal.”
Content with the long-missed heft of the knives sheathed upon his back, Legolas nodded. “As my lord commands.”
“Now indeed it grows late. Come,” Thranduil beckoned, leading with long strides to his study. “Ere dawn, I would know how you fared these seasons past.”
Within the chamber dark again shadows abounded.
- The Battle of the Five Armies took place in late Autumn/Winter of Third Age 2941.
- Gollum left his home under the Misty Mountains sometime in Third Age 2944 to go after the Ring.
Source: Appendices B and D of The Lord Of The Rings.
Book Quotes & Citations
* The Hobbit, Chapter XVIII: “The Return Journey”
Actually it was some days before Bilbo really set out. They buried Thorin deep beneath the Mountain, and Bard laid the Arkenstone upon his breast.
“There let it lie till the Mountain falls!” he said. “May it bring good fortune to all his folk that dwell here after!”
Upon his tomb the Elvenking then laid Orcrist, the elvish sword that had been taken from Thorin in captivity. It is said in songs that it gleamed ever in the dark if foes approached, and the fortress of the dwarves could not be taken by surprise.
** The Lord of the Rings. Appendices. Appendix A: Annals Of The Kings And Rulers. I The Númenórean Kings.
“(ii) THE REALMS IN EXILE The Northern Line Heirs of Isildur”
Chieftains. Aranarth (elder son of Arvedui) 2106, Arahael 2177, Aranuir 2247, Aravir 2319, Aragorn I 2327, Araglas 2455, Arahad I 2523, Aragost 2588, Aravorn 2654, Arahad II 2719,
Arassuil 2784, Arathorn I 2848, Argonui 2912, Arador †2930, Arathorn II 2933, Aragorn II. FA 120.
“(V) Here Follows A Part Of The Tale Of Aragorn And Arwen”
‘And it happened that when Arathorn and Gilraen had been married only one year, Arador was taken by hill-trolls in the Coldfells north of Rivendell and was slain; and Arathorn became Chieftain of the Dúnedain. The next year Gilraen bore him a son, and he was called Aragorn. But Aragorn was only two years old when Arathorn went riding against the Orcs with the sons of Elrond, and he was slain by an orc-arrow that pierced his eye; and so he proved indeed short-lived for one of his race, being but sixty years old when he fell.
‘Then Aragorn, being now the Heir of Isildur, was taken with his mother to dwell in the house of Elrond; and Elrond took the place of his father and came to love him as a son of his own. But he was called Estel, that is “Hope’’, and his true name and lineage were kept secret at the bidding of Elrond; for the Wise then knew that the Enemy was seeking to discover the Heir of Isildur, if any remained upon earth.
*** The Lord of the Rings. The Fellowship of the Ring, Book II: The Ring Goes South. Chapter VII: “The Mirror of Galadriel”
The air was very still, and the dell was dark, and the Elf-lady beside him was tall and pale. ‘What shall we look for, and what shall we see?’ asked Frodo, filled with awe.
‘Many things I can command the Mirror to reveal,’ she answered, ‘and to some I can show what they desire to see. But the Mirror will also show things unbidden, and those are often stranger and more profitable than things which we wish to behold. What you will see, if you leave the Mirror free to work, I cannot tell. For it shows things that were, and things that are, and things that yet may be. But which it is that he sees, even the wisest cannot always tell. Do you wish to look?’
Author’s note to the footnote: This was really for snark, and does not imply Galadriel was the one who provided the information to Thranduil. It was just the perfect quote that described the so well the problems I see with some of the creative decisions made in the movie.
**** The Lord of the Rings. The Fellowship of the Ring, Book I: The Ring Sets Out. Chapter II: “The Shadow of The Past”
‘Then why didn’t he track Bilbo further?’ asked Frodo. ‘Why didn’t he come to the Shire?’
‘Ah,’ said Gandalf, ‘now we come to it. I think Gollum tried to. He set out and came back westward, as far as the Great River. But then he turned aside. He was not daunted by the distance, I am sure. No, something else drew him away. So my friends think, those that hunted him for me.
‘The Wood-elves tracked him first, an easy task for them, for his trail was still fresh then. Through Mirkwood and back again it led them, though they never caught him. The wood was full of the rumour of him, dreadful tales even among beasts and birds. The Woodmen said that there was some new terror abroad, a ghost that drank blood. It climbed trees to find nests; it crept into holes to find the young; it slipped through windows to find cradles.