Disclaimer: All recognizable characters and places belong to the esteemed J.R.R. Tolkien and Tolkien Enterprises and/or New Line Cinema. I borrow them carefully and gently, and promise to return them intact and unharmed at the end of the story. Lord Elrond assures me I will make no money on this endeavor whatsoever and I believe him.

This story stems from an idea I had for a novel and a challenge to set the story in Middle Earth. I love references that Gandalf makes about forces other than evil at work in the world and how the many events leading up to the War of the Ring were not coincidences or luck. The Fellowship members and those who aided them were meant for this time and place.

This is my first story. Constructive criticism and encouragement are greatly appreciated.

May the Valar Protect Them

Prologue: Imladris

Elrond, Lord of Imladris, set down the quill pen and stared thoughtfully at the small, bound book before him. Writing this tale had been an unlooked-for joy, and he was pleased with the completion. He would allow the ink to dry, and then have his scribe begin the work of making copies. A copy would most certainly be sent to Minas Tirith, to his own daughter and foster-son King Elessar and Queen Arwen, for he was sure they would wish to know and have a copy of this tale regarding their dear friend and member of the Fellowship of the Ring. Another copy he would send to the archivist of Legolas, Lord of the elves of Ithilien. This tale was not about the War of the Ring, but a part of the story of one member of the fellowship. A story that deserved to be remembered, to remind all that the Valar, perhaps Iluvatar himself, had guided the lives of those involved in this fateful time and brought them together for just such a purpose as this.

The War of the Ring was over, and the power of the elven rings was fading. The time of the elves was fading as well, and Elrond himself was preparing Imladris for his own departure to the undying lands. Groups of elves from Greenwood the Great and Lothlorien had passed through Imladris, the Last Homely House east of the sea, on their way to the Grey Havens. A recent group had come from Greenwood the Great, and stayed for several days. Glorfindel had warmly greeted King Thranduil's captain, Rawien, and the two had spent much time in conversation, sharing stories and tales of battles fought and days gone by. Late one evening Glorfindel had come to Elrond and invited him to join them as he thought a story that Rawien had imparted to him would interest Elrond greatly.

Elrond had met the two in a small room that served as Glorfindel's study. The furnishings were comfortable and the wine of good vintage. He greeted Rawien and settled in, curious to hear the tale that had piqued Glorfindel's interest.

"Rawien has long served as captain to King Thranduil," Glorfindel began the tale. "He and I have been discussing the War of the Ring, and the Fellowship that left here last winter. Rawien has known young Legolas since his birth, and has asked what led you to include him as representative of the elves."

"The choice was proving difficult," Elrond frowned at the memory of that time. "Many elves of great renown had volunteered to accompany the Ringbearer, each a wise and strong warrior, but none seemed right to me. As I was pondering the qualities I was hoping for - a young elf, one who was still enthusiastic about life in Middle-Earth, a strong and brave warrior but one who would not attract the attention of the Dark Lord - I heard the voice of Legolas speaking with Estel and some of the young hobbits regarding their journey from Bree to Imladris. Estel and Legolas had met and become friends some years before; and I thought of Mithrandir's words of trusting to friendship when choosing companions for the Ringbearer. A strong sense came to me then that Legolas was the one I was seeking. Legolas' prowess with the bow and knife are unsurpassed, he has heightened senses - even for an elf - that would aid the fellowship, and the compassion and interest he showed in the hobbits, a people new to him, confirmed in my mind that he was the one I was seeking."

Rawien smiled, "Our Prince lived up to your expectations, then?"

"Very much so," Elrond answered. "Has Legolas returned to his father's realm? Have you seen him?"

"Yes," Rawien replied. "I could not leave these shores without seeing him, and knowing he was well. I could not leave without saying farewell, although I do hope he will come soon."

"I suspect that Legolas will linger in Arda for some time," Elrond said thoughtfully. "He has made many friendships, and promised the King of the Reunited Lands to help restore Gondor's lands to their former beauty and glory. Did Legolas speak to his Father about his desire to move a colony of elves to Ithilien?"

"Thranduil heard his request, and I believe he will grant it. Our people love the Prince, and are very proud of the role he played in the overthrow of Sauron. The King is of course concerned about the mortals that Legolas has befriended and the pain and grief he will experience when those mortals die."

"The pain and grief are real," Elrond answered truthfully, "but I believe that Legolas was appointed to this time and to friendship with these mortals. His friendship with the Dwarf, Gimli, may be unheralded in Arda through history, and the friendship between Legolas and Aragorn is reminiscent of Gil-Galad and Elendil of old."

"Do you know the tale of Legolas' birth, Elrond?" Rawien asked quietly.

Elrond thought for a moment. He knew Legolas was born near the end of the Watchful Peace, not long before the capture and torture of his own beloved Celebrian.

"I know that your Queen Narawen died at or not long after the birth of your youngest prince and the fate of the child was not known for some time, but I was much caught up in the troubles here in Imladris not long after and know not the details of what occurred," Elrond admitted.

"Then you will enjoy this tale," Glorfindel laughed, "for it will prove your point about the involvement of the Valar and perhaps Iluvatar himself in the affairs of Arda and her people."

Glorfindel refilled the wine glasses and nodded for Rawien to begin.

* * * * *

Author's Notes:
I intend on being accurate to the books as much as possible. The reader does not need to know the following to enjoy the story, but in case you are interested, here is information for those more familiar with the movies than the books:

· Imladris is the elvish name for Rivendell
· Estel is another name of Aragorn; the one that Elrond gave him as a small child when he came to live in Imladris. Elrond raised Aragorn as his foster-son and prepared him for his heritage as the last heir of Isildur. Estel means hope in elvish.
· Elessar is the name of Aragorn as King. If you have seen the extended version of FOTR, Galadriel called Aragorn by this name in the gift giving scene.
· Minas Tirith is the elvish name for the main city of Gondor
· Glorfindel is the Elf Lord who really met Strider and the hobbits at the Ford of Bruinen and fought off the Nazgul. Asfaloth is his horse; Arwen got in big trouble for "borrowing" it. For more on Glorfindel, read Camilla Sandman's hilarious Official Fanfiction University of Middle-Earth and learn about Glorfindel's charter membership (Chapter 38) in S.I.C.T.N.I.T.M.(Still Important Characters Though Not in the Movie).
· Greenwood the Great is the real name of Mirkwood, the realm of Legolas' father, King Thranduil. It was called Mirkwood when the shadows of evil descended upon it.
· Gil-Galad is the elven King, and Elendil the King of men who led the fight at the battle of Dagorlad (Last Alliance of Men and Elves) seen at the beginning of the movie Fellowship of the Ring.
· Ithilien is the strip of land between Mordor and Gondor; in The Two Towers, this is where Frodo and Sam met Faramir and saw the great Oliphants. Aragorn gives some of this land to Legolas after the war, for him to bring a colony of elves to come and live.
· Celebrian is the wife of Elrond and mother of Arwen (also the daughter of Celeborn and Galadriel). She has already sailed to the undying lands.
· Arda is the elvish name for Earth.
· Valar are the god-like beings who live in the undying lands and have helped shape Arda and are known to the high elves.
· Iluvatar is the One God.
· The Watchful Peace is a time set from 900 to 500 years before the war of the ring.