Summary: In the book, Legolas is often forced to scavenge for arrows; however, in the movies, his quiver is always full. How is that possible? Before departing Lothlórien, Celeborn gives Legolas one last gift.
Spoilers: A few for FOTR.
Feedback: Welcome and appreciated.
Disclaimer: The characters and places of the Lord of the Rings are the creation of J.R.R. Tolkien, and currently licensed to New Line Cinema. All original characters, situations, and magical items belong to the author. No slash expressed or implied at any time in any of my stories.
A/N: Mixture of book and movie verse, so there are a few references to non-movie Tolkien characters, which are explained in a note at the end. :)
Celeborn's gaze wandered thoughtfully over the quiver in his hands, as his fingers lightly caressed the soft material. A gift from the great Oromë to his kinsman, King Thingol, it was a last remnant of Doriath. Closing his eyes, Celeborn reflexively tightened his grip on the heirloom, as his memory drifted back to the splendor of those days.
Few remained in Middle Earth that still remembered Doriath...so few.
A slight, melancholy smile gracing his lips, Celeborn opened his eyes at the sound of soft footsteps approaching.
"Lord Celeborn," Legolas bade. He respectfully bowed his head, then gazed at the elf lord, his eyes filled with youthful curiosity.
"Legolas," Celeborn greeted, warmly, returning a slight bow. The quiver is not the last remnant of Doriath, he reminded himself, as he gazed upon the son of his kinsman. "The fellowship is ready to depart?"
"It is." Legolas answered promptly, raising a questioning eyebrow. Celeborn knew they were ready to leave; he and Galadriel had already presented each of the fellowship with a departing gift. Legolas's hand absently drifted back to finger the beautiful bow he had been given.
Celeborn nodded, smiling slightly as he caught the movement of the young elf's hand. His own hand reflexively tightening upon the quiver, he gazed pensively, yet warmly, upon the prince of Mirkwood. Through his veins runs the royal blood of the Sindar. He does not remember Doriath, yet he stands before me, all the same, a living remnant of the glorious kingdom. Stiffened in his resolve, Celeborn stepped forward, presenting the quiver in outstretched hands.
"I have one final gift to present to you."
Legolas accepted the quiver. Holding it gingerly, he studied it. The workmanship was excellent; a perfect compliment to his new bow.
"This quiver once belonged to King Thingol, a gift from the Great Hunter. I pass it now to the last of the noble house of Doriath."
Legolas stared at the lord, too staggered by the honor to speak. Celeborn stepped closer and gently cupped the young elf's face with his hand.
"You venture now into the realm of men. Do not forget from whence you came. Stay true to that; let it be your strength and your guide should your heart falter."
Legolas nodded, lightly, holding the gaze of Celeborn as the elf lord dropped his hand and stepped back again.
"The fellowship awaits you. Farewell, child. May the Valar protect you."
Celeborn bowed, slightly. Returning it, Legolas held the elf lord's gaze a moment longer, then turned to join his companions.
Ten days later...on the west bank of the River Anduin, at the feet of Amon Hen.
Legolas's thoughts wandered as he rifled through the weapons of the many fallen orcs, searching for suitable tributes to place in the funeral boat beneath Boromir's feet. His heart weighed heavy with grief, but that did not prevent him from appreciating the number of the enemy slain by the lord of Gondor's sword. It was nearly as many as he had killed himself.
Legolas paused as the observation brought to mind a startling realization. He had shot more arrows than a single quiver could hold; yet his reaching fingers had never failed to find a waiting shaft. His brow furrowing, Legolas slid the quiver from his back and stared at it. It was full, as though he had not shot a single arrow.
Legolas abruptly remembered that it had been a gift from Oromé, the Great Hunter. I wonder if Celeborn knew of its magic, he pondered. Lord Celeborn must have known. He might have thought to mention it.
Shaking his head in amazement, Legolas settled the quiver back into place and rose, carrying an armful of orc weapons. Despite the somberness of the chore, a small smile graced his lips as he walked. Glancing toward the sky, he regretted not better thanking Celeborn. But then, how does one sufficiently show his gratitude when given a magical quiver that grants an endless supply of arrows?
By outliving the enemy. Legolas heard the wind whisper.
Turning toward Lothlórien, he bowed respectfully and vowed, "That I will do."