A/N Hello everyone! Yes I'm alive! I'm so sorry it's taken so long to publish this chapter! It started off really easy to write, but then after a couple of days away from it I was just unable to come back to the flow I'd been in, but have been working on it piece by piece. I feel like I've drawn this chapter out a bit so I REALLY DO APOLOGIZE! Especially if you get bored with it, but there's lots of feels between our characters that I felt would be important to write for it.
I must say I felt like doing a Dis with Thorin when I wrote a certain section, I can see it happening in front of me as clear as day and it made me just want to wrap my arms around him. Hope it makes you feel similar :D
Welcome to the new followers RoseDew, .1420, Mythgirllily, TheMojoJojo95, Charasmatic Mouse, BlossomHunt, jaymzNshed, I'm sane i think, , and I love all the reviews I've been receiving so far! You guys are awesome!
I PROMISE to try and have the next chapter out in about a week! (Fingers crossed!)
As much as it breaks my heart I do not own the writings or the characters of The Hobbit or Lord of the Rings, they are the wonderful and exclusive workings of J.R.R Tolkien
Thorin looked between Kíli and Fíli in astonishment, how had Kíli…? Thorin shook his head, deciding that for the time being he really didn't want to think about it. Thorin moved to Fíli's side close to his head and took a small hand in both of his.
"Breathe Fíli, that's it deep breaths." Thorin said gently.
"Unca…?" Fíli whispered in a hoarse voice, his eyes cracking open just the tiniest amount but still allowing Thorin to see a bit of blue making his heart soar with joy.
Thorin bent down and placed his lips upon Fíli's forehead, kissing him gently and running a hand through Fíli's wet and tangled hair. "Rest little one, you've had quite an adventure." He said gently with a small smile playing on his lips.
Fíli managed to nod his head weakly once before his eyes drifted shut and sleep stole him away. Thorin kept stroking his hair and looked to Oin. "Where should I take him?"
"Next door has a bed, give me a few minutes to arrange for the fire to be lit and furs to be brought in. Gloin, Bofur, give me a hand would ya?"
Gloin and Bofur nodded and followed Oin out of the room, and they in turn were followed by the young healer who went to fetch chairs and food to be placed in the room next door, after all none of them would be leaving the Healing House now.
Dís handed Kíli off to Fréya who had been tucked into the corner of the room on the floor with her head between her hands and tears streaming down her face. She took the now quiet Kíli with a nod and hugged the small baby to her gently and watched Dís move back to Fíli's side, pressing featherlite kisses to the baby's forehead.
"Don't you ever do anything like that to me again Fíli, do you hear me?" Dís sobbed quietly, placing a hand on her sons' tiny chest to reassure herself that he was still breathing. After a moment she looked down to the two elves that were still slumped unconscious on the floor then looked to Thorin.
"Who are they?" She asked quietly.
Thorin looked at his sister in confusion before following her line of sight, his face darkening when his eyes lit on the elves again.
"They are the reason Fíli is like this. He was with them when the Orcs attacked. It is because of them we almost lost him tonight." He replied, anger flooding his words.
Dís looked at the elves for a moment before looking at Thorin with a frown. "No Thorin, they are not responsible. I do not pretend to know the entire situation but it was an Orc arrow, not an Elven arrow that was in his chest," she gestured to the arrow that had been placed off to the side after being dropped near the fireplace "and it was them who saved my son, not any of us. Do not lay blame on them, especially with the state they are in at the moment. I do not believe any elf would place themselves in a vulnerable position for someone they did not care about." Dís said strongly.
She looked around the room and when she couldn't see anything she wanted she turned to Dwalin. "Dwalin would you be a dear and fetch two pillows and two furs from my room please?" She asked in a voice so firm that Dwalin didn't dare argue, choosing instead to leave the room to do as she asked.
Dwalin returned moments later and handed the requested bedding to Dís who crouched next to the elves in turn and placed a pillow under their heads and a warm fur over them, all the while doing her tasks under Thorin's scrutiny, returning his glare just as strongly.
Oin returned quickly and told Thorin that Fíli's room was ready for him. Thorin nodded and placed an arm under Fíli's knees and the other behind his shoulders and lifted him gently from the table, cradling him to his chest in order to lessen the jostling Fíli would otherwise go through and followed Oin from the room with Dís and the others, except for the elves, Fréya and Kíli, following close behind.
Thorin entered the room and moved to the bed. He pressed his lips to Fíli's forehead and hugged him before placing him down gently on the mattress. Once Fíli was settled he placed several furs over him to keep him warm before turning to Dís and holding out a hand.
"Come, there is no more we can do here, he will sleep for some time and rest is something you require as well, you did just bring another child into the world after all."
Dís looked like she wanted to argue, but instead sighed and allowed Thorin to lead her out of the room towards her own chambers. When they entered Thorin shut the door behind him as Dís moved to her bed.
"Oh! Fréya still has Kíli!" Dís remembered.
"I will fetch him." Thorin said in a quiet voice.
Thorin's quiet tone surprised Dís, so she turned around and saw her elder brothers' gaze fixed on the floor. But what concerned her most was that he seemed to be trembling.
"Thorin…" She said gently, moving in front of him to place one hand on his shoulder and the other to cup his jaw and tilt his face up to look into his bloodshot and tear filled eyes.
"We almost lost him Dís, we almost lost him. I… I can't go through that, not again…" Thorin whispered, now crying freely and finally allowing himself to show his true emotions without fear of scrutiny.
Thorin fell to his knees and wept, Dís kneeling down in front of him and wrapping her arms around his neck, placing a kiss to the top of his head before resting her cheek there. She rocked them back and forth gently as Thorin wrapped his arms around her middle and pressed his face to his stomach, just wanting the touch and reassurance of the only woman he had left to love.
Dís knew that if Fíli had died it would have been what killed Thorin. They had already lost so much, Erebor, their grandfather and father, their beloved brother Frerin and her beloved husband. Fíli was meant to be the end of their grief and suffering, a step forward for their family and the Dwarves of the Blue Mountains, and coming so close to losing him… if he'd died there would've been no way for Thorin to pull himself out of the darkness, not again. Kíli might have been a saving grace but Thorin didn't know him all that well, and the loss of a child that is like your own would be too hard to come back from.
After several minutes Thorin quietened. He took a deep breath and pulled away from his sister. Holding his face she used her thumbs to wipe away his stray tears and gave him a sad smile.
"You were always stronger than me." Thorin said with a quiet chuckle, leaning into her hold.
"The luck of the Durin females I guess." Dís replied gently with a smile.
Thorin rested his forehead against his sisters and sighed.
"Thank you Dís, for giving me two beautiful nephews, for giving me hope, and for giving me the strength I need to carry on." Thorin whispered, looking into his sisters eyes.
"You will always have my love Thorin."
Thorin nodded and stood, extending his hand to his sister.
"Come, let's get you into bed and I will fetch Kíli before I check on Fíli."
Dís nodded to Thorin and let him lead her to her bed where she settled in nicely. As Thorin went to open the door she called out.
"Thorin, if the elves are awake, please bring them here. If anyone knows what happened to Fíli it will be them. And I want to thank them for what they did."
Thorin hesitated at the door before nodding when Dís glared at him.
"Alright alright! I will, I promise."
Fréya stayed sitting on the floor, hugging Kíli to her as he slept peacefully. She was surprised by how much noise had come out of his tiny lungs but not by how tired it had made him, after being only a day old for Mahal's sake! She shuddered at the images that kept flashing in front of her eyes, seeing Fíli on the table with an arrow sticking out of his chest, Thorin's pain-filled eyes as they entered and suddenly understanding what it meant when Dís screamed, the tightness in her chest when she struggled to breathe when the elves were chanting and the relief from hearing Fíli gasp for breath.
Whilst thinking about all these things she failed to hear or notice Thorin enter the room until he was crouched in front of her causing her to jump slightly.
"Thorin! I… How is Fíli?" Fréya asked, looking at the ground and refusing to meet Thorin's gaze. How could she look at the dwarf who had entrusted his nephew to her? How could she look him in the eye without knowing that what had happened had been all her fault?
"Fréya, I need to talk to you, but first I need to return Kíli to his mother." Thorin said kindly.
Fréya nodded, of course he'd want to get Kíli away from her, and she didn't blame him. After all she hadn't been able to look after a five-year old dwarfling so what made her qualified to look after a day old baby?
She handed Kíli over without saying a word, only kissing his head gently before transferring the sleeping baby, still refusing to make eye contact. She heard Thorin sigh but still refused to look up.
"I'll be back in a moment, stay here." He said gently before standing and leaving the room.
After Thorin left she looked up. She was alone, just like she deserved to be, well at least as alone as you can be with two unconscious elves in the room. It had been just over 10 minutes since Fíli had started breathing again and neither elf had shown any indication of regaining consciousness. Wasn't that bad? Before she could think about it anymore she heard Thorin enter the room and prepared herself.
Thorin kissed his sister, then his nephew who was bundled in his mother's arms before leaving her room allowing her to feed her son in peace.
He just couldn't shake the way Fréya had looked when he'd entered: scared, alone, guilty even. He knew of course that she'd be blaming herself for what had happened even though she was completely innocent of the blame; she was the unlucky one to be caught up in the middle.
"This is one thing I need to set straight" Thorin thought to himself as he walked back into the room and sat down next to Fréya.
There was silence between the two of them for a few moments. Fréya suddenly found the lines on her hands quite interesting whilst Thorin stared at the opposite wall trying to figure out what to say. Emotional talks, Thorin knew he had about as much experience with emotional talks as he did holding hands with Elves.
"I'm sorry." Thorin said eventually, earning himself a startled look from Fréya. Well, at least she was looking at him now.
"You're sorry? Thorin… YOU have nothing to be sorry for! It's my fault! You asked me to look after him and I didn't. I didn't pay enough attention to how he was feeling, I let him run away and I didn't come get you like I should have. Everything that happened is MY fault and mine alone!" She said, her voice becoming more panicky as she spoke.
Thorin opened his mouth but she spoke over him. "Because of my… my STUPIDITY, I know that this 'talk' is only out of kindness and I understand that you'll look for a new sitter as soon as Fíli is in the clear. I'll tell my Ma and Da what happened. I can't stay, not next door, not with this on my conscious, I'll move. Yes, yes I'll move and that way you won't have to see me and be reminded…"
"Fréya… Fréya… FRÈYA!" Thorin said, trying to interrupt the rambling dwarrow before finally yelling her name in order to silence her.
Thorin took a breath and moved so that he was kneeling in front of her. He grasped her hands and said "Fréya, look at me." He waited until she looked him in the eye, her gaze falling before she lifted it again when he squeezed her hands gently.
"Fréya, this is not your fault. NONE of this…" he said, raising his voice slightly to stop her from interrupting "Is your fault. None of us were to know that Fíli would react like this to something I said, alright? If anything it's my fault. I put you in this position and unintentionally made you suffer for what's happened and for that I am truly sorry." Thorin closed his eyes and gave Fréya a small smile.
"As for you leaving I won't allow it. Mahal, I'd chain you to Fíli if that would get you to stay! He needs you, our whole family does. You are the only one who is not related in any way to me that I have complete and utter faith in to look after my nephew… nephews now I guess." Thorin said with a chuckle. He looked at Fréya, hoping he'd convinced her to stay and to stop blaming herself.
"What about Bofur?" Fréya asked quietly, a small smile on her lips.
"What do you… Oh" Thorin said, grinning at the dwarrowdam sitting before him. "Bofur and his family are essentially Fíli's honorary Uncles, so they don't count amongst trusted outsiders." If her wit was back then he knew he had gotten through to her. But he knew he needed to check.
"Please don't leave." He asked softly.
"I won't, I promise. After all with two kids you're going to need all the help you can get." She replied with a small smile and thinking to herself It appears he does have a soft side after all. Huh.
Thorin opened his mouth to reply when a groan caused them both to look across the room towards the stirring elf.
"Well, let's go attend to our visitors, lest we face Dís's wrath." Thorin said, sounding more like himself and standing up to hold out a hand to Fréya.
Elrohir groaned and shakily lifted a hand to clutch at his head. The last time he'd felt this bad was when he agreed to take on his brother in a drinking match, not realising that Elladan was filling his own mugs with weak ale so he could get him back for the prank he'd pulled the week before that landed Elladan with kitchen duty for a week. It was safe to say that Elladan won, and he'd only found out a week later what his twin had done after having to clean all the hallways for a week after vomiting spectacularly all over his father and his right hand man.
He could only liken the feeling to a horse stamping on his head, and only when he snapped his eyes open and tried to sit up did he allow himself to fall back down and close his eyes until the world stopped spinning. Elrohir noticed that there was moisture above his lip and used his hand that was still lying next to him to dab at it. He cracked an eye open and a finger appeared in his blurry vision; however there was no mistaking the glistening red that graced his finger. Now that he focused a bit he could feel the blood that trailed down his nose and around his jaw down to his neck. Clearly it hadn't stopped flowing since he'd passed out.
"Can you hear me?" A gruff voice asked; the light that was shining on him from the fire was now blocked due to whoever was standing next to him.
Elrohir turned his heard slightly towards the voice and rubbed at his eyes until his vision swam back into focus.
"Aye. Ow…" Was all he managed, massaging his temples gently in hopes to relieve some of the pressure.
"Good, it's about time." Thorin said gruffly, folding his arms over his chest to glare at the Elf that was moving slowly. Honestly, for immortal beings this elf was quite pathetic.
Elrohir clutched at his head gently and looked up at the dwarf accusingly, why did he have to yell at him? Couldn't the dwarf see he was in a bad way or were dwarves really as heartless as many believed?
"I would appreciate it if you refrained from yelling, as you're only making it worse. Now, where is my brother?"
Thorin arched an eyebrow at the elf. He'd barely raised his voice at the silly being, but clearly being immortal also meant being fragile in the head. What a surprise. He looked to the floor on the opposite side of the table, Elrohir turning slowly to follow his line of sight and spotted Elladan on the floor unmoving.
"El…" Elrohir whispered, hauling himself up to a kneeling position despite the waves of nausea still coursing through him and managed to half crawl, half drag himself around the table to his brothers' body.
Once he was kneeling at his head Elrohir placed his ear over his brothers' mouth, and placed a hand on the side of his face and focussed, trying to see if his brother was alive. There were unsteady exhales of breath causing Elrohir to sigh in relief before he shook his brother gently.
"El… El come on wake up."
Elladan gasped quietly before he began to drag in deep breathes, and let out a pained groan.
"Roh… what… are you alright?" Elladan asked, opening his eyes just a crack to look unseeingly at his brother in concern.
"I've been better but I'll live, better than I thought I would be actually. How are you feeling?" Elrohir said with a small chuckle whilst helping his brother sit up.
"I'm…" Elladan started, before he was overcome with a violent coughing fit. Elrohir looked on in horror as red began to paint his brothers lips and little droplets of blood flew from his mouth.
"You are not fine!" Elrohir whispered in horror, grabbing the cloth that Fréya handed him to wipe his brothers' mouth and rubbing a hand over his brothers back to try and soothe him.
Elladan looked at his brother guiltily once his coughing fit had subsided. "If our hands had been side by side rather than yours on top of mine, you'd be like me."
Elrohir looked at his brother in confusion before the meaning of his words struck him full force. "You took the brunt of the pain for me knowingly." He whispered, looking at his brother sadly.
"You're my little brother. I'll always protect you."
Thorin watched the exchange between the two elves with disguised interest. Here were two creatures that he hated, probably on the same level as Orcs that were showing signs of humanity that he had long ago come to believe they didn't possess.
One of them had sacrificed his own well-being to save his brother pain. He was still suffering but not as much as the older one it appeared.
Thorin shook his head before his interest became too much. They were still Elves, and they were still the ones responsible for taking Fíli and they WOULD pay for what they had done.
"Get them some water please." Thorin said, glancing at Fréya.
The dwarrow-dam nodded and moved to the pitcher of water that had been left in the room earlier leaving Thorin to glare at the Elves.
"If it were up to me…" Thorin began menacingly causing both Elves to look at him warily "I would have either ended you in your sleep, or dragged you like the animals you are and had you thrown from this town." He got some satisfaction from the way they both seemed to cower for a split second before regaining their composure.
"As it is, my sister, Fíli's mother, would like a word with you. I suggest you sort yourselves out before I lose the bare thread of control I am holding right now."
And with that Thorin turned on his heel and stormed out of the room.
Fréya watched Thorin leave the room in shock, surely he couldn't despise Fíli's healers that much, they had saved him after all.
She crouched down in front of them and saw them flinch slightly, whether their reaction was due to what Thorin had just said or her specifically she didn't know, but she wasn't bothered enough to find out.
She handed a cup to each Elf and gave them a small smile. "Drink, it'll help."
The Elves watched her for a moment before nodding and drinking quickly. The elf that had awoken first looked at her and asked in a quiet voice "was what he said due to us specifically or is he normally like that?"
Fréya smiled at them "probably both. But I wouldn't take Thorin's threats as being idle nor empty; he could do exactly what he said, and with the last couple of days we've had I'm sure he's looking for someone to take his frustrations out on. When you both are ready I will escort you to Dís's room. There are a few people who are interested in what you both have to say."
The Elves looked at each other with a quirked brow and the younger Elf helped his older brother to stand before looking back at her.
"Lead the way."
Elrohir pulled his brother to his feet and they leant heavily on each other whilst their bodies screamed in protest at the movement. Not only had healing Fíli drained their energy, but it had also taken a huge physical toll on their bodies to the point where they felt sluggish and vulnerable. Elladan more so because he had ensured his hand was under his brothers, taking the bigger internal physical toll where it would take several days to heal, and letting his brother only suffer the flow on effects in the form of his energy being drained. It felt as if every muscle, no every nerve was on fire and having to move around after such a huge energy usage was akin to torture.
But they endured the pain. They both knew that the sooner they explained everything, the sooner that they'd be allowed to go to an inn for a few days and recuperate.
As they followed after the dwarrow-dam Elladan let out a chuckle which was followed by a string of hacking coughs bringing blood to his lips again. "I was just thinking Roh," Elladan started when he got himself back under control "We came here to meet Thorin Oakenshield to try and repair 'dwarven/Elven relations' only I think we may have caught him at a bad time."
Elrohir grinned at his brother "Perhaps we should come back later when he's not ready to strangle us." The elves grinned at each other and looked at the dwarrow-dam in front of them who started chuckling.
"Can we pause for a moment?" Elladan asked, sagging against the wall trying to catch his breath. Truly, he had been weakened more than he anticipated, and looking at his brother made him realise Elrohir wasn't fairing much better.
The dwarrow-dam ahead of them nodded and waited patiently for them to continue.
"I've just realised milady that we are yet to learn of your names." Elladan said gently, rolling his head to the side so he could focus on the dwarf near him.
She arched an eyebrow at him. "Perhaps, you are oblivious to my name as I am yet to reveal it to you, master Elves. Pray do tell what your names are and perhaps I shall reveal mine." Talking mysteriously was something Fréya enjoyed doing to confuse people she was talking to, and these elves seemed to be no exception, although she realised she was probably being a bit unfair as they had just gone through a great deal.
Elladan and Elrohir looked at each other and grinned. "You have a very eloquent tongue milady, surely you have talked your way out of many a situation and into many a heart." Elrohir said, causing a blush to stain the cheeks of their new friend.
"Yet you are correct…" Elladan continued with a smile "I am Elladan, this is my twin and younger brother Elrohir, we are the sons of the Lord Elrond of Rivendell, and representatives of matters concerning the Last Homely House, and we are at your service." The elves managed to stand tall next to each other and bow in unison, before collapsing slightly back against the walls until their heads stopped spinning.
"Sons of the Elven Lord!" Fréya exclaimed in shock. She knew all about Rivendell, and about the Lord who lived there, but to receive both his sons and for them to suffer cruel judgement on what had happened seemed very unfair now that she thought about it. She collected her thoughts before smiling to the pair of them.
"I am Fréya, neighbour to Thorin Oakenshield, Dís and her family, and Fíli's caregiver when it is required of me, and I too, am at your service." She replied, returning their bow.
Elladan and Elrohir looked at Fréya in surprise. "Ah, so you're the one Fíli was talking about when we met him!"
Fréya frowned as she had no clue as to what they were referring, but before she could ask Thorin, followed by Balin, Dwalin, Bofur, Bifur, Gloin and Oin appeared in the hallway heading to Dís's room. All the dwarves scowled at the elves as they walked past, Thorin standing aside one Dís's door was open to look back at the elves.
"Whenever you're ready." He said venomously before disappearing in the room.
Elladan and Elrohir looked at each other with a sigh and pushed off from the wall, struggling after the dwarves, and Fréya following close behind.
It was time for some answers.