Here you go guys, another chappie and this we see some action of all kinds! war a funny thing eh? And i kinda tactfully included something about Legolas's hair and his supposed obsession for it...its so funny if you can envision it! and Isil's naughty books get a mention...
MarauderQueen – I do watch wrestling though not as often as I like as I cant get the channels no more…..shame the story lines have taken quite a nose dive but I'm a Rock supporter anyday!
Letreen – what are you in a blur about? Maybe I could help summarise things if you want?
Brownie24 – as an answer to your question, I have written a summary about the white wraiths but I have to say this, I cannot give away too much as they are still pretty much secret….but in this chapter the many identities of the wraiths are revealed!
Arkle was present at Mirkwood despite being exiled from his home lands as he is an Estolian. This is a highly regarded rank of a superior military organisation that even over-rides Thranduil's own soldiers. As the Estolians are made of elected, highly regarded soldiers/citizens who choose to fight, they are chosen by votes of high ranking elves such as Elrond, Thranduil, Galadriel and Celeborn….though Thranduil didn't elect Arkle out of spite for he assisted Isil when it was against his laws, there was nothing to stop the other rulers voting in majority against the king. Hope that explains that people!
Don't owe anything to do with Tolkien or the films
Warrior Code – Swallow your pride and pain, it saves time and lives.
The sea of grass that stretched out before the white riders was dyed silver unmatched in the land. The stain held true the true divinity of the celestial moon and stars, the colours of night in their undiluted hues. The wind only added to the effect, the fingers of its breezes moved the grass like the waves of the sea, even causing the ground to shiver like the froth breaking upon the sandy shores. The horses galloped but their hooves were muted by the thick grass of the land that lay between Lothlorien and Eryn Lasgalan. A message was to be bought to the king within his palace of stone and gold, and the messenger was the lady leading her charges behind her.
Out of the corner of her eyes, she saw one of her wraiths abruptly halted as he looked down the slope of a hill to some unseen land below them. At her silent command, she raised her hand and all the white garbed wraiths halted and silently watched their lady as she urged her horse to the side of the wraith that held her attention.
"What is it?" she asked, her eyes surveying the land before her for evidence of something that made a trusted comrade halt in his actions.
"There is fell evil in the air and I should know for I've been slain by one in another life." The wraith's voice whispered, his gloved hand pointed to the island of trees in amongst the sea of silver grass and Isil looked to see the slim, meandering column of an army marching in the dead of the night towards Lothlorien.
"Orcs!" another wraith hissed his dislike for the creatures was heightened at the immense threat they proposed to his homeland, the lands where he was march warden alongside his brothers.
"That's where they've been hiding! I knew that even when we killed a great many, that armies were unaccounted for. Trust them to not give in when their battle is long over." Isil signed, almost with pity at how her plans were once again interrupted by an outside force. With one mission forgotten and another more urgent one arising, Isil turned her horse and face the twenty, trusted few that were her wraiths.
"We return home and go to war!" Isil commanded, with a firm kick to her horse's flanks, they thundered home, the land they loved offering them silence and darkness as they raced against the last gathered source of threat.
The funeral procession walked at a steady, weary toll for an impatient toddler as he obediently clasped his father's hand. Ahead was his mother's casket upon a carriage drawn by white horses as the elves followed their former queen on her last stretch of the journey upon the land she loved.
"Ada?" The child looked up at his father's grim face; he didn't hear the child speak and only had eyes for the casket ahead of him.
Legolas stared ahead to see the mourning party with their black banners and forlorn beat of the drum, throbbing like one giant heart, they all turned the corner on their road they walked and he could see the sea. The glassy ripples that upheld boats and ships upon its pure surface. The cry of the gulls in their wheezy, mocking laughter as they floated on the sea's spray.
The party halted before a white boat, this was to be the barge that took Hilona back home to the sacred lands where elves were all destined to return to. Legolas watched as a group of black garbed soldiers slid the coffin from the carriage and bear it well upon their shoulders, slowly walking up the gang plank to where it was laid upon the decks of the ship. Though dead in body, Hilona's spirit could journey the fateful journey all elves were to partake one day once they felt the sea longing calling them home.
Songs of lament arose from the gathered crowd as Thranduil lead his son up the gang plank to say their farewells to the lady that once was in their lives, a wife and mother which was taken from them.
There was a long moment's silence in which Thranduil stared at the coffin, a tear here and there rolled down his face to drop on to the cream wooden deck of the ship. Out of boredom, Legolas looked at the tiny puddles of tears he father shed till he spoke, "Say your farewells son; for this is the last time you'll see your mother."
And at those words, Legolas realised the finality of this moment. Though the maids told him that his mother was with him in spirit, he knew he was to say farewell to the body that held him when he was scared, the voice that sang many a ditty and ballads to make him smile, laugh or sleep. The way her river of hair made him want to twirl it round his fingers, inhale her scent that made him safe from all harm. And at that realisation that the memory of how Legolas's mother was to depart, he let out a high pitched wailed as he banged his fists in fury against the coffin, "Wake up!"
Sobs broke out amongst the crowd as they watched this heart rendering scene, as Legolas tried to unsuccessfully call back his mother from the dead.
"Wake up! Wake up! You can't go! Come back! Wake up!" sobbed Legolas, his father crouched down beside him and drew the small elven boy into his arms, where his sobs died away into tiredness.
He picked him up, asleep in his arms for the stress of these pass few days was enough and more for a small soul belonging to his son.
And the sounds of the sea were the only melody Legolas had to listen to in place of his mother's sweet voice. And now even the waters were calling him home, to journey the ways his mother took thousands of years before.
Legolas stared up at the ceiling, his mind mulling over the memories that were his, the things that made him who he was right now. The absence of his mother made his heart barren in maternal love, his father though was a good, doting parental figure was often absent in his times of need.
Too busy to sooth cuts and bruises, working all night to sing him a song to sleep, too tired to wake him from his bed with a smile.
His father has done much for him in allowance of his role as a king but this wasn't enough.
He became rebellious and stubborn at an early age, joining his father's army before the usual age required of a recruit, hoping that the long drills, training and patrolling would fill his wanderlust and the absence of close companionship.
But even then, he found himself utterly alone; his comrades regarded him with a cautious smile due to his royal blood.
And it was as he grew up he realised an old saying he once regarding with a scoff was true.
As we grow older, we find it harder to admit we are alone.
And he can admit it now, the absence of his fellowship brothers was sorely missed, as too was Isil.
A curse for being Legolas, a being who many thought had it all.
And he didn't.
Pity sank his soul further within himself as he laid on his side, watching the night grew darker and soul-less.
The trees stirred in a clattering hush as the leaves rattled against each other, carrying far off sounds from occupied areas.
The sounds of laughter as the drunks spilled from their taverns.
The occasional lover's tiff as many a curse is fired like a barrage of catapults.
The shouts of night sellers in their night markets, making the most of their fresh products.
And the clink of armour from somewhere further away, this was accompanied by the dull pounding of feet as soldiers drilled their way into the night.
And Legolas lay alone, not caring nor heeding the mad scrabble of feet upon the ladder as someone climbed up to the talan.
"Go away!" Legolas snapped, he refused to rise from this bed, wanting very much to be alone in his own starvation of the mind and soul, but whoever it was ignored him and stomped into the room.
"Get up!" the voice snapped and jerked the prince to his feet.
"Leave me be!" Legolas argued as he jerked his arm from the soldier's hands. He looked and looked again to see it was the white wraith…..or rather one of them.
"Get up your royal arse!" the voice snapped again, clearly with no respect but with urgency as the intruder scoured the room for weapons that could come handy.
"How dare…." Legolas started but the intruder pulled down his hood and regarded him with a hard stare, "We're under attack and we need your assistance."
"Glorfindel, why are you wearing that robe?" Legolas asked, then shaking his head, he asked, "Under attack? From whom?"
"Orcs! Hundreds of them, Isil believe them to be the last armies that have gathered together in one effort to overthrow us." Glorfindel grabbed a quiver full of arrows then decided that out of the best archers, they best suit Legolas.
Holding them out in his hand, he asked, "Are you coming?"
Legolas took them, "Try and stop me."
With two quivers strapped to his back, both loaded with arrows as well as his white knives, sword and his bow, Legolas was kitted out and was racing to where the soldiers were hurrying to.
The horns blew and the pandemonium of the elven citizens as they ran away from impeding danger was chaotic.
Pushing past a cart loaded with belongings, Legolas saw the line of white wraiths, all with their hoods down and identities revealed. Haldir and his brothers barking orders to their own armies. Elladan and Elorhir stood restlessly, gesturing to the open lands that lay beneath the trees as Glorfindel nodded and jogged away to report to his own warriors, garbed in the uniform of the Estolians.
Amongst them was a large amount of white garbed elleths, all armed and lethal, all with their own unique war braids in their hair that made Legolas wonder who was leading them, and who were they?
Isil too, stood by, arguing with Arkle, it wasn't until he grew closer to her did he realised what they were arguing about.
"…and I'm not having you fight here and that's final." Isil scowled but Arkle argued his case.
"Please, take Keay and your child to safety and lead them towards Gondor, take ten warriors with you and listen for the horn. It'll signify the all clear for you to return our people back home." Isil commanded once more, this time Arkle paused for a moment and commitment for his young family drove him to change his mind, "That I'll do."
She turned after watching the young, new father leave the scenes of the battle, her eyes rose to see Legolas watching her with concealed emotions.
"Legolas….I am sorry." She spoke, but he said nothing as his eyes rose from her face to look behind her as he took in the sight of the elves preparing for battle.
A moment passed , then two as Isil watched him with growing unease.
"Fine." She muttered, he hasn't anything to say and why did she hope he would? After what she revealed to him? She wouldn't think so.
She turned to see Glorfindel watching them with a cautious eye and she nodded silently for him to cease worrying.
Trust the legend to look out for her, Glorfindel has always been there. It was in his arms she reawakens from death's grasps and it was him who put her back on her path when ever she strayed from it.
She owed her life to him but even then, he wouldn't accept it.
Glorfindel nodded his reply and turned to shout another command that was heeded to in a matter of seconds.
Quickly and efficiently, the armies of Lothlorien and the Estolians rounded up and stood waiting for the threat nearby to reveal their tactics.
Isil walked down the ranks, archers with their bow upon their shoulders stood to the back, ready to fire their first volley. It was them who would launch their attack first.
Riders stood nearby, prepared to move out to take on any sudden surprises, the horses agitatedly pawed the ground and bickered to one another in their series of small neighs and grunts as the riders readied themselves.
Several ranks of hundreds of warriors stood patiently, their armour perfect as they ignored the wind that flapped their clocks and brought the smell of the vile creatures they were to fight once more.
And at the very front stood blades-men, and it was with the faintest humour, Isil noticed Gimli situated himself amongst the elves with huge weapons that looked to be a sword-like axe that could cleave an orc's head off in seconds. (These we have seen in the films, where if you look in some battle scenes involving elves, they wield swords that have features of axes, such as having a shorter pommel for leverage and speed and a thinner blade like a samurai's sword yet stands taller than a sword and curves for more cleavage when severing. Good thing my bro is a weapon's expect heh?)
The long elongated blades shimmered in the rising sun with a foretelling malice, beckoning whatever force to try and defect such a perfect army.
"Elladan, Elorhir…take the horses and divide into two. Each of you will launch an attack from each side of the woods when Celeborn gives the signal." Isil commanded, both twins nodded and playfully bade their farewells in the forms of catcalls and mock arguments.
Isil then ordered Haldir to lead the first wave with his brothers and Gimli, this was greeted with much enthusiasm for if any elf who loved the prospect of war especially when it threatens his home so close, it was the March Warden who commanded as much respect as the Lady Galadriel whom he proudly serves.
"Glorfindel…we lead our Estolians and the rest of them." Isil smiled to the golden haired elf who inclined his head, "It is with great pleasure to do so."
"And what does the lady command of me?" Spoke Legolas as he joined the pair.
"That is up to you though I do suggest the archers need to be guided by such an elf who remains the unchallenged archer in this land." Isil spoke, her eyes only for the fields below which have yet to reveal her battle strategy. Let the orcs make the first move and let them pay for it.
She was shaken from her dizzying chain of thoughts by Legolas's hand upon her shoulder as he gently pushed her away from Glorfindel for a moment's privacy.
"What is it Legolas, now isn't the best time." Isil objected but Legolas moved towards her, placing him so close that when he breathed out, his warm breath tingled her skin as she breathed in his scent uniquely his; of open air, pine and leather.
He looked at her with those blue orbs that made her wish to look away, anything to break free from this tranquilising spell he placed her under.
"Isil……" He spoke, his voice no more than a whisper. "Do you know what you're doing?"
"This isn't the first time I done this you know Legolas."
"I know but nothing like this though."
"Why are you telling me this? What's your point?"
"My point is….." he looked to say something more but he raised his eyes upwards and looked to his right to see several of the elves in their ranks have turned and were watching this close, intimate exchange with open curiosity.
"Eyes front!" Isil bellowed, where almost comically all those guilty jerked back to face the front with stiff backs and a nonchalant air.
"….Just be careful." He said, the powerful aura between them was gone to be replaced by a stiffness that made Isil shake her head in confusion, "That's it?"
"No, and there's this." And before she could put two and two together, he kissed her.
Though a brief kiss, it warmed her through every nerve ending and made her feel as if she was cackling with the energy he fuelled in her.
And all too quick, he pulled away and regarded her for a few seconds as she drunkenly, like a love sick fool stood with her eyes close, reluctant to open them in fear of facing the awful reality of the situation.
And when she did, he was gone leaving behind the bare air that held the faintest scent, the only clue he ever occupied that space. She looked and watched him jog to the front lines, pausing once to look back at her.
Glorfindel walked up to her with a small smile upon his lips.
"He kissed me!" Isil whispered.
"I saw, and so did half the army." Glorfindel replied, "Shall we take our places?"
She did so, reluctantly following him as she fought the temptations of running over to Legolas and back into his arms.
It was only when she stood at the very front line, a few paces down from Legolas did she chastise herself for her very thoughts, as before her laid sprawled like a crude tattoo upon the earth were the armies of orcs filed into their positions as they marched closer.
Lost were their crude drums and banners for every hand was filled with a weapon of some sort, and today it was their last chance to redeem what they lost.
And it was there, Isil felt the first strains of panic.
She had lead armies before but only out of chaos, midway in battles where she knew what strategies have been tried and failed, this one laid like an awaiting chess game, where every move had to be calculated and every outcome had its own downfall.
The orcs moved closer, their feet filling the void of sound as the tempo of their march thudded and vibrated in the very air and soil.
Foreign grunts and howls were emitted and from this, orcs moved to those inaudible orders to reveal their plan. And they halted, the chess board was set up but unlike chess….who was going to move first?
Isil drew her swords in a clammy manner, her fingers trembled slightly as she swallowed hard, the very air seemed to have drained from around her and her legs threatened not to support her.
She looked down the lines on her left and right to see soldiers awaiting her orders, staring ahead in a taunt yet complacent manner.
She took a deep breath and exhaled it quietly, no army need to see its leader shaken to her boots and she said to Glorfindel in a quiet voice, her first order.
"Ready the archers."
Glorfindel nodded to Legolas who yelled, "Archers! Ready!"
"Quite a voice you got there laddie." Gimli spoke; his booming voice broke the silence as he couldn't resist taunting his friend.
What ever Legolas said in reply to Gimli's comment, Isil didn't hear as she watched the orc army before her, her mind a whirlwind of battle tactics and plans, lives were the price of her mistakes if she made any and at that thought, she closed her eyes once more and calmed herself to an almost eerie like state where she spoke to Glorfindel, "Have the archers fire one volley at a time on my words."
"What's your plan?"
"My plan is to draw them away from the trees then launch the attack via the horses, effectively surrounding them."
"We done things like that before, surely we need to evolve one step ahead of them for they must have worked out our tactics." Glorfindel argued.
"Did I mention I positioned two armies on each side of the orcs as well as the horsed riders? This way we box them in."
"That would work, the orcs will become too confident with themselves for guessing our battle strategies."
Isil didn't say no more. She wanted to remain silent for a brief moment as she formulated her plans.
"Why is it me doing this?" she whispered, "I shouldn't be here."
She blinked and fought the rising frustration of her personal war within her, fighting the temptation to give in and run, leaving this battle to someone more capable.
Forcing herself before she could change her mind, she rose one hand as a signal of the all ready and the creak of leather and the shrill scrape of swords filled the silence as an ominous threat to the orcs.
She brought her sword down and the archers let loose the first volley, the whoosh of the arrows in their deadly flight filled the void between the two armies, as they headed like black hornets towards their targets.
The air was soon filled with the sounds of agony and cries as the lethal rain hit their mark and were followed in successful successions of arrows, each archer firing at will, depending on his speed to load and pull back his bow.
And out of the fray, came the un-missable cry of the orcs as they charged towards the elves, crying their blood chilling cry as they wielded their weapons for their first blow.
"Prepare to charge!" Isil screamed, her voice was accompanied by the chorus of more swords been drawn and the lone shouts of individual commanders as they raised the morale which was dangerously at balance.
With one scream of prolonged fury, venting all the pain, anger and frustration she been feeling for so long, Isil grasped her sword with both hands for more levity and ran towards the oncoming traffic of orcs. She was joined by her armies, none leaving the lady of the sword to her own device as each soul screamed his own battle cry and charged to certain death.
Where the two forced collided, there was a mad moment scramble where the force of impact caused the unsteady to drop their weapons and the space needed to parry a sword or to lift an arm was reduced to knife stabbing distance.
Those who hesitated were hacked and stabbed with no mercy and the ballad of war was in full production as the heavens watched on. The dry ground was soon muddy with the kaleidoscopic patterns of war, weapons laid in red and black mingled blood, strewn with a variety of organs and bodies.
The living stood and trampled upon the dying and the dead as they fought and hacked blindly.
Isil wheezed as another orc bought his sword down on her armour, causing it to crush inwards sharply against her body, forcing the air from her.
With one agitated stab, she finished his life and shrugged herself out of the useless armour where it fell with a clang on the ground.
With more agility now the restricting armour was removed, Isil found herself parrying and slashing with more ease, making the orcs around her fall like the blades of grass caught in the farmer's scythe.
With that moment free of danger, she ran to a lone archer she ordered to remain to one side and grabbed the archer's arm, his pent up face looking at her with horror then relief once his mind realised it wasn't an orc who threatened his life.
"Fire the arrow!"
He clumsily complied, his fingers slippery with nerves at such an important task as she drew his arrow alit with flames and aimed it high into the sky.
Pointing into the sky, she screamed, "Fire!" yet he didn't release the string, and it wasn't until she turned did she see in place of where once stood the brave elf was a sneering orc, his sword wet with the blood of his latest victim who still grasped the bow in his hand.
Cursing, she hacked at the orc, who eyes widened in surprise at underestimating the female elf and he realised his fatal mistake came too late when the cold blade of her sword pierced his ribs.
With shaking urgency, Isil scrambled for the fallen elf's arrow and bow and once she held them in her hands, she notched the arrow and drew the string back with all her might.
She let it go with a loud, satisfying twang, ignoring the sharp sting of the string against her thin, cotton clad arm as she watched it climbing path flying higher in to the sky, where it shone like a fiery star.
And at that wonderful sight, came a succession of horns as they blew, signalling the horses to ride to battle, the hoard spilling through the trees, slashing and hacking as they infiltrated from each side into the battle.
But this was foiled for the orcs had a surprise too, with a sound of their ghastly horn, with the wild howls that echoed across the battle, making the elves look up to see Warg riders thundering in, snarling and biting at anything that crossed it's path.
Though there was roughly twenty Wargs, Isil knew they could cause immeasurable damage before being stopped and she screamed for the elves to group together. Horses screamed and they and their riders were clawed to the ground, as the rabid pack of Wargs tear round the battle field, disregarding their master's call as orcs clung pathetically to their backs.
She watched as elves speared half of the hoard down, but not after causing some much loss of life.
She heard a low growl and turned to see charging towards no less than fifty feet was a Warg, its putrid breath she could smell even from here as she went to jump but its cruel, sabre like teeth slashed her back, her shirt catching on its jagged edges, pulling her along like a ragged doll in bone jarring jumps.
As if suddenly the ground disappeared from below the Wrag's feet, the great foul beast tumbled and fell to one side where dazed, Isil stared up at the sky for a while wondering how she got there and why she was in great pain. And if the great heavens took pity on such a pathetic moment, it cried for fat tear like rain droplets fell and revived Isil from her brain numb trace to see the Wrag was felled with a spear and she was staring at the person who did it.
He was breathing hard and by the looks of it, appeared unharmed, he swung his sword and downed another orc to his countless tally then looked back over to Isil who tried to stand up as she wrenched her shirt from the dead creature's mouth.
"Isil!" he roared, as he spied the orc rider of the fallen beast clamber over the beast's corpse to attack Isil and with little regard to his surroundings, he ran for his life as he swung his sword and aimed his blade at the orc's neck.
With a muffled 'Oof!', Legolas was forced from his path as a searing heat entered his shoulder where he looked down to see an axe was protruding from his shoulder where it too have severed half of his long blonde hair with fell to the ground. With a yell, he stabbed the orc who loomed above Isil and threw himself over Isil, knocking her against the greasy fur of the Wrag as he turned and pulled a knife from his boot and threw it with calculated aim at the orc who dared touched his hair.
"You alright?" Legolas panted as Isil looked at him with surprise at his sudden arrival from what seemed no where.
"Let's get out of here!" Isil cried as she went to move but Legolas threw himself over her as a trio of orcs stood above them on the mini mountain of the Wrag's body.
With a wet hack and a chorus of screams, the trio were downed by Gimli who stood smiling down at the injured elves, "Saved yer!"
"We had that under control!" Legolas yelled to him over the din of the dying battle.
"A thank you would suffice blondie…..and speaking of your hair…..I never though I see you sport a style like that!" Gimli laughed as he looked at Legolas's hair where one side remained his original length whilst the other side was cruelly severed at a haggard angle to his shoulders.
"Don't remind me." Moaned Legolas as he drunkenly with pain, stood to his feet and helped Isil next to him.
"Think we won this one?" Gimli asked, as they watched Elladan and Elorhir trample a small group of orcs beneath the hooves of their horses as elves wandered the battle field and stabbed any dying or wounded orcs who still remained a hazard if they grabbed a sword.
"I think we have." Legolas nodded as he propped his weight against Isil and looked out across the damage.
"Lady Isil, your wounds need seeing to." A maid spoke, her voice rising above the silence that fell across the field below them where the orc bodies left unclaimed scattered. They were to be burned tomorrow in the light of day but for now, the dead were taken home for honourable burial rites and the victory was being toasted by the side of many fires.
Isil said nothing as behind her another cheer went up as soldiers recalled their individual moments of victory which were added to the gathering stories surrounding the night. Wine flowed freely and by the sounds in the tree canopies above her, Isil knew that her soldiers would not sleep alone tonight.
"Milady?" her servant asked once more and this time Isil turned with a weak smile to face the young elleth, who asked, "You don't look too pleased with your success of your victory."
"One never considers it a victory when lives are loss." Isil spoke and her maid remained silent at her wise words. Instead she escorted her lady back to her tent which has been erected some way from the gatherings in the woods.
Away from the cheering and the laugher of her soldiers, Isil with muted agony shrugged herself out of her clothes to allow the healers their chance to attend her, where she refused before. She ordered them to attend to the wounded and the dying first as she stood over the tragedy that was her battle, mulling over the many ways she could have done things.
A sharp pain to her back caused her to loudly hiss in pain as the healers cleaned and applied their potions to the elleth's back. With a careful grace, they sewed her wounds shut to reduce the chance of infection and gave her maids swift instructions to accompany her on her path to healing.
She was guided to a bath where she slipped into the hot water and bathed, where her tears mingled with the steam off the water as she cried for the lives that died under her hand.
"……And I place my final tally at 103, master elf! And an intact head of hair." Gimli grinned beneath his bushy beard as he greedily drank the free wine on offer.
His friend stood quietly with his arms crossed as he watched his comrades drink and merry make before him, he smiled at his friend's teasing and had to admit he was right.
He was still getting use to the openness his new hair style revealed.
It was now expertly cut to fall to his shoulders and already some maids crooned that this particular style suited him best, where a hard look in the mirror proved correct.
His gold locks now framed his face, giving his cheeks a sharper look, making him leaner to look at. Choosing to ignore Gimli's teasing, he silently grinned that maybe he was to relish the new found style if it brought him much female admiration.
But his heart cruelly kicked him, reminding him he already loved another despite the awkwardness between them he placed there.
After the battle he went his own way after making sure Isil was alright, helping to carry the dead to their own families and gather fallen weapons.
His arm throbbed in pain but much of it was eased by his consummation of wine, and now he was standing like an idiot to one spot where his heart yearned to be elsewhere.
"…..wonder how's Isil faring?"
"That I am curious at myself." Legolas replied his fingers adjust the bandage round his shoulder; he straightened his open robe that the healers made him wear over his bear torso and breeches and walked towards the tents erected for the officers including his own.
"I won't worry if you don't return to out tent tonight." Gimli shouted after him over the din of the soldiers, Legolas ignored him as he walked on the guarded path where wardens watched silently.
He reached the tent he knew was his destination and he said to the white garbed guards at the door, "I wish to see Isil."
"Please wait for her inside as she bathing." The female Estolian replied as she parted the fabric doorway to reveal a lounging area where a daybed was situated next to a table where strewn scrolls of different sizes.
He heard the soft singing of a maid and the soft light of the candles told him which area of the tent was currently occupied.
A sweet fragrance teased his senses as he quietly walked to the doorway covered in a flimsy drape, leading to the bathing area.
The transparent material allowed him to see three maids within, one singing as she placed towels on a stool whilst another poured more hot water into the huge tub where bathed Isil, who was having her hair washed by a third maid. He watched Isil rise where he saw a huge line of stitched down her back where the Wrag caught her in battle and realised she couldn't bath properly because of the pain.
The maid finished her singing to the compliments of Isil and walked to the door to fetch her lady a robe, she jumped when she saw a transfixed Legolas watching the figure in the tub but was silenced by him when he silently raised a finger to his lips.
He silently walked into the bathing room and waved his hand to dismiss the maids who slipped out, leaving him alone with Isil who had her back to him and her eyes closed.
Picking up a bar of soap, he lathered the suds to frothy bubbles then placed his hands on Isil's warm, wet shoulders and began massaging her shoulders.
A low groan escaped her lips as she became lost in the trance seduced to her by those hands as they worked their way along the ridge of her shoulders, applying sweet pressure that relieved her of pain and fatigue.
"You're strangely silent Julion." Isil spoke as if to her maid but the voice which replied to her made her jump and spun around to come face to face with the speaker of soft, desirable words.
"That maybe because I'm watching you, lost for words milady."
"Legolas, what are you playing at?" Isil whispered as she looked around her to see the room was empty of her maids.
"Then why are you here?"
"I wanted to see you. To see how you fared after those injuries." Legolas lowered the soap he held to its dish as he washed his hands, sharing the tub's water with a naked isil who silently watched him.
"Your hair makes you strange to look at." Isil mused, her eyes looked at his face wondering at how come his hair which was now shorter made his appearance more becoming.
"I'll take that as a compliment." Legolas smiled a small smile as he leaned his arms against the side of the tub and watched her, "You did well in today's battle."
"Yet I can't help but think of the lives we lost. All I can think of is how I could have saved them if only I chosen another battle tactic." Isil lowered her eyes to the water, aware that Legolas watched her with an intensity she couldn't match.
"Those who have fallen were small in comparison to the vast number that fell in the wars I've been in. Believe me when I say we did very well. Did we not loose a few hundred elves to thousand orcs that we killed today? I say that's a great achievement, and whilst I can't condone the lost we suffer today, all I can say that for peace, sacrifices must be made."
"Legolas, there never is peace. We fight all the time whether in combat or in mind…..I'm tired." Isil sighed.
"I'll get you a towel." Legolas looked to find one but Isil shook her head, "I didn't mean that. What I meant is when do we stop fighting? When do we just stand there and listen to each other? Why do we duck and hide from each other? You know I love you through the bond Galadriel revealed to you…." Isil's voice trailed off as Legolas halted, his hand limply held a towel as he breathed in, wondering the same things himself.
"We so much to talk about yet I know you won't talk, you're hiding things from me like the many around me. Do you not know how that drives me insane? I haven't a decent night's rest since I come home from the wars I've been too. You don't know how much I held out hope of a sweet homecoming in your arms, to kiss the lips I sorely missed and to see the face of the woman I loved. You must forgive me if I desire some distance between us after all I have learnt recently, from your pains in my absences to the lies of my father. I fight battles but I don't know what to do when love is involved, be it love for my father or love for you. What is it you want?"
"Pardon?" Isil asked, not sure what he meant.
"What is it you want me to do, shall I walk away and leave you be? Or shall we talk and whatever else you want?" Legolas asked his eyes filled with hope yet dread as she understood his question.
"I just want you." She whispered.
"You always had me." He sighed, "And you always will."
"Pass me that towel will you?" Isil held out her hand as he responded, the towel outstretched to her, "I'll leave you be and wait for you outside." He said as she stood up in the tub and wrapped the towel around her.
"I need help out of this tub, my stitches are fresh and I can't over exert them." Isil shyly pointed out; with a nod Legolas walked up to her and held out his hands to assist her. He watched her wince as she tried to swing her leg over and before she could object, he picked her up and carried her to the main room where he seated her on the day bed.
"Here, let me help you." He softly said as she tried to shrug into her robe with the restrictive stitched that held her muscles taunt in her back. His cool fingers brushed against her warm skin as he pulled on her robe and buttoned it for her, sweeping her hair from her face as he smiled.
"Do you want a drink?" she asked, standing up carefully and heading over to a small table where awaited a crystal bottle with its hearty contents. She poured two drinks and handed one to him as she lowered herself to a mattress upon the floor amongst fluffy cushions in rich assortment of fabrics.
"Sit. Talk to me of what it was like in the fellowship." She patted a seat next to her to which he complied, lying out beside her as he propped his head on his hand.
"What were the Halflings like?" Isil asked, her eyes lightened as she sipped her drink with her ears peeled for his story. He dutifully obeyed, recounting moments that will always stand out in his memory.
He spoke of the lost of Boromir, the magnificent horses owed by the Eorlings in the land of Theoden. The battle with the Warg riders where Aragorn fell only to be alive at the siege of Helm's deep. The lost of Gandalf was mixed with the more pleasant moments such as the gift of his bow from Galadriel. The way he argued with Gimli yet fondness existed between the two in the final battles on Pelenor Fields where much was lost to be gained.
"…Gimli took me to the glittering caves like I promised and I'm hard pressed to find the words to encapsulate the beauty there lies within." Legolas smiled as the memory washed over him.
"And what did you dream off many nights by the camp fire?" Isil watched his face as he sipped his drink which had been refilled the third time.
"Home, peace and you. Mainly you." Legolas quietly admitted he lowered his glass from his lips to place it on a nearby low table as he felt the conversation take a serious turn.
"And what was I doing in your dreams?" Isil asked, her wide eyes locked with his own as he pondered over whether to tell her the many fantasies he lusted over, the moments he stole to relieve himself of the absence of Isil's touch, the thousand times he awoke too aroused to sleep no more and chose to keep watch to mill over the dreams that haunt him to this day.
"Why do you pause?"
"Because what I fear I will say, will be not fitting for a lady to hear. And besides, why query me on my dreams when you tell me nothing." Legolas sucked in his breath as he sat up, the mere recollection of Isil in ways she never thought was too much for him.
His face was her answer alone, as he watched her attentively for her to start, "I couldn't sleep without you by my side."
"Oh?" he raised one eyebrow as she looked somewhat embarrassed. He decided to tease her to break her taboo ness she had upon such a topic, sexual emotions wasn't disguised amongst elven circles.
"Are they anything like those books by your bedside I had the misfortune to read?"
Her face flushed as she stared at him with horror, "Why, you snoop! Do you respect a lady's privacy?"
"Well?" he laughed as she punched him on his shoulder.
"My dreams are far too lusty for a book like that." She admitted, rather boldly and this time Legolas was surprised at her admission.
"That's rather wanton of you."
"It's the truth." She smiled and Legolas felt his insides slush with desire as he thickly swallowed.
He didn't recall what happened next but they came together in a tide of kisses and caresses, small gasps of delight erupted from them both as they fondled and loved the familiar pattern of lovemaking they traced before. She was on top of him, her hands trapping his own against the floor as she kissed him deeply.
Outside called a voice for Isil but both lovers ignored the intruder's call till the guards entered then awkwardly turned their backs on the entwined lovers.
"Yes?" Isil demanded as she sat up, ignoring Legolas who laid on the floor behind her with his robe half off and a smile upon his face as he watched the spectacle.
"Just to inform you that the guards cannot find Prince Legolas on request of Lord Celeborn…..and I was wondering if you seen him." A guard asked and peered over his shoulder as he knew Isil wasn't alone. He turned to see Isil smiling over her shoulders at the unknown bed companion and spoke, "Shall I order a search?"
"Nay for he is in my capable hands." Isil replied, her words carefully chosen as she waved the guards away.
"My apologies milady." The guard apologised but Isil didn't hear; only responding to the caresses of her lover who he presumes is Legolas.