update: hi friends! It's literally been five (correction, six!) years since I first started this story!
I know you have waited patiently for it to finish, so alas, I'm doing just that. Complete with
revisions. Today is Feb.13, 2011, edited chapters will be completed by Feb 20th, and story will
be completed by March 15th, 2011. For you, friends. You can follow along with the progress on my profile.
Thanks so much for the support and encouragement to finish! I left the story in an awkward place and it was
always difficult to take off from where I last left off. But I'm determined to finish now, because frankly you deserve it.
Disclaimer: I don't own LOTR
Chapter One: The Game
The King was highly amused.
She was standing a few feet away from him, her arms crossed, staring intently across the field. Her long black hair had a few braids here and there, tucked behind her ears. The very ends started to wave; she always laughed saying they were like the sea. It reached to her lower back, and to his great delight, she rarely pulled it back. She had two soft arches that framed the most unusual pair of almond shaped dark brown eyes that he swore were plum with gold specks.
Her fair skin was his favorite feature of all. He took great delight in the smooth milky skin that felt like silk to the touch. Despite her porcelain perfection, her high cheekbones were blessed with a natural pink hue. Her lips were a deep pink, naturally swollen to a sinfully delicious degree. They seemed to always be slightly parted; she always had an uncanny habit of chewing her lower lip drawing attention to her welcoming mouth.
Of course she was gorgeous, what elf wasn't? He wondered if she realized how sensual she really was. She was indeed darkly beautiful. Almost forbidden. He couldn't help but wonder if his son would find her the same way.
"You cheated." Enelya finally announced with little conviction. And apparently, to his great dismay, she had the perfect ability of a keen observation.
Thranduil glanced at the arrow that was lodged neatly in the middle of the target before looking back at the disapproving maiden before him. "Pray tell, my child, how did I cheat?"
"You are the master mind, who knows what evil ideas lurk between your eyes." She retorted with a grim look. "You cheated, and that is that."
He tried his best to be reasonable. "If I drew my arrow like so," and here the King dramatically did as such, "aimed for the center as I do now," he squinted one eye for special effect provoking an unimpressed sigh from the lady, "released," he parted his fingers as the arrow took off and, to his delight, split the first arrow with a resounding crack, "and it hits in the center as it should," he allowed himself a proud smile, "how, my child, did I cheat? Am I simply not a master of the art of archery? Am I not simply blessed?"
"Blessed with arrogance." Came the curt reply.
"You would speak to a King as such?"
"I would speak to a foolish elf as such."
Thranduil felt anger stir in his gut- much to his great delight. It was a rare event for someone to provoke him. He enjoyed a challenge here and there. Especially when it came from a particular fiery and beautiful young she-elf.
So mustering his best, 'King-like-tone', he gave her a sharp warning, "You forget your place."
Enelya easily ignored him, knowing well that he got a kick out of provoking her; it seemed to be his source of entertainment.
"You are doing something strange." She continued, unfazed from his intense glare that she knew to be all an act. Generally it would cause her to laugh but she was simply dumbfounded by the arrows lodged perfectly center in the target. He was never that good before. She doubted he spent much time practicing; he hadn't the patience for such discipline. What was he doing? The king stood with his stance slightly off, he held the bow too loose, and by the way his shoulders slouched he should have been pulling to the left.
"From your stance, you should be hitting the tree over there, not the target." She tapped a finger against her chin and studied the older elf carefully. "I have it." She turned to him and smiled slyly. "You have put silver on your arrows for weight thus the arrows pull right hitting the target!" And then, as if her realization of his actions finally sunk in, she pointed at him in disbelief as her voice dropped to a hiss, "You cheater!"
Thranduil didn't know if he should roll his eyes at the accusation or roar with laughter. Instead he tried to maintain his reputation with firm defensiveness.
"I am not a cheater." To hold his ground he added, "and you will remember whom you are speaking with. I could have your head on a silver platter if I requested it."
"Forgive me." She placed a hand on her hip, causing great amusement in the King, which he did not allow to show. "You have put silver on your arrows for weight," she paused for dramatic effect, "my Lord." She raised an eyebrow in a silent challenge knowing well the King would not let up.
Thrandiul felt outraged, and he loved it. What a lass she was to evoke such raw emotions out of him. Somewhere in his recesses of his mind he realized she was much too young for him, and his beloved best friend's daughter, but oh, how the lass provoked the depths of his soul.
Instead of expressing as much, he resolved to just cross his arms and glare. "You are accusing the King of Mirkwood, my lady, of a low and unrespectable act."
"Actions reflect the actor." Was the quick reply. She shifted her weight and gave him a hard look.
He was shocked to say the least. Did she just insult the King of Mirkwood, yet again?
It took him a moment to find his voice, "Are you calling me unrespectable?" He wanted to cringe at the way his voice dropped to a whisper. She merely smirked before folding her arms across her chest and shifted her weight once again. She knew she was pulling him down.
"No." Good, he thought. But then she added, "I was leaning towards low, my friend."
For her sake he ignored that remark.
"Besides, I never use silver. To hard to mold to the arrow, makes your aim always pull too far to the right." He too crossed his arms, mustering up a mischievous smile.
Whenever he had that look she had to remind herself that this was no young man but a man who have lived beyond her time. Though she had lived two hundred winters pass, she could not comprehend the thousands that he had endured. She felt a warm smile come up as she realized once again, that this young man with boyish features was yet an old and wise elf.
"I use gold lining, it's more fitting for a king, don't you think?" Well, wise in the matters of cheating.
He was delighted as she broke into soft laughter that was perfectly feminine and sweet. It was moments like these he would forget his title- she had the ability with just her laughter to make him feel young again.
"Let me see how you did it." Enelya reached for an arrow, to which he intervened and pulled her reaching hand into his elbow. He ignored her disapproving glare and led her towards the human-like cabin where she lived with her father.
"Nay, my lady, I am afraid that the secrets of a king are plentiful and best kept unknown."
"Indeed," Enelya rested her head against his shoulder, allowing him to pull them along the dirt path. He was much more respectable when he kept his mouth shut she thought grimly. But the King, still trying to defend his actions, decided against keeping his mouth shut. He was one to speak, and she, god willing, would be one to listen.
"How else am I to hold up against my son in the sport?"
She sighed, would he never give up?
"From what I hear, no one can hold up to your son in the sport. Is he truly as good as the legend creates him out to be?" She looked up to him in question. When he saw her gaze on him he felt something in his chest tighten- guilt poured over him in a swift wave of dizziness. He tightened his hold on her arm, grateful that she didn't seem to notice. How could he go behind her back and arrange her future without her knowledge?
She had known the King since her birth. Her father had served as his First Advisor before stepping out office with the death of her mother. She had died just days after Enelya came into the world. The death of her mother was a strange event since no one could explain it. Her father, when asked, would shrug and merely respond with a light heart that only one of the two beauties could remain, since the world was not big enough for them both. Her father then decided it was best to move away from Mirkwood. He took his daughter to the mountains to reside, hoping the trees would heal his soul. King Thranduil would come and visit as much as he could, treating Enelya as his own daughter.
How could he deceive her in such a fashion?
"When do you return to Mirkwood, my Lord?" Enelya asked after a moment of silence, curious at the King's sudden somberness.
"When I please." He lifted a brow, "Have you decided to come visit on your own accord?"
"Have you decided you could stand my presence in the halls of your home?"
He snorted. "Hardly. A lady of your caliber would do nicely though among my servants."
"The day I clean after you is the day I -"
"I would have you meet my son though." She rolled her eyes at the interruption. Of course he would have her meet his son, he's only been suggesting towards a union between the two for years now. "The two of you would get along nicely."
"Indeed." She pushed a few stray hairs out of her face and shot him a dirty look. He always made comments of the like, however this particular trip him and her father had been acting strange. They brought Legolas up in every conversation, pointed out all of their similarities, even went as far as discussing a trip for her to go meet him. "Did it pass your observation that the Prince is but a few thousand years older than me?"
He waved his hand in the air to dismiss the thought. "What is age but years of repetition? We are all the same age really. Though I have wisdom beyond your years, you have maturity that matches my own. Are we not the same?"
"I'm flattered, but your maturity matches an elf that is but three winters old, my Lord. Meanwhile, your son I hear is engaged."
Ah, that he was. Legolas was indeed engaged to a pretty little number from Rivendell- strictly a political binding, yet, beneficial all the same. It was beyond time for the Prince to marry, and while Thranduil would have desired to see his son fall in love, he was pleased he could expect little runts running around the palace in the following years calling him Grandpa. "You speak the truth, my child, it is about time."
Enelya caught a strange tone in the older elf's voice. Did he sound disappointed? "Are you not pleased with the match?"
"I am well pleased with the match, I just wish I could bend political rules so that my son would have the chance to fall in love with you." But, he thought, perhaps that could still be arranged. Thrandiul smirked at her annoyed look. She wore her emotions so openly; he admired her greatly for such a risky habit. She tried to pull away from the stubborn elf, who merely tighten his hold on her.
"I'm sure you would bend heaven and earth to have your son fall in love with me." She rolled her eyes at the thought. "Is he pleased with the match?"
"He is very stubborn about his independence; yet he is willing to fulfill his duty for his crown. He is not pleased however. It is a good match for Mirkwood. Long have we needed a secure alliance with Rivendell, this marriage is the best contract yet." And then, as an afterthought he added, "His stubbornness could rival your own, you two would kill each other I am sure."
"Then it is well, for I am not marrying your son." Thranduil stopped mid step and turned to the black hair beauty who was once again pushing aside stubborn strands that mingled with the breeze. Amused, he reached up and tucked the strands behind her ear. She narrowed her eyes, not liking at all the look on his face.
"And why do you dismiss the idea without even meeting him, my love?"
"What did you do? Your look has an illness to it, what did you do Thranduil?" She hardly ever used his name, and he was surprised at the firmness that she spoke it.
"You did not answer my question." Why did it irk him so whenever she dismissed the idea of a union between her and the Prince? Did it really step on his ego that much that someone could not be interested in his son? She felt the tension and longed to ease it.
"He is not like you, is that not so?" she asked. She looked thoughtful.
It was true. The father and son were known for their differences. "Yes."
Her lips made a sour pout. "And I'm afraid if I ever married, he would have to be just like you." And with that the peaceful mountain erupted with the thunderous laugh of the amused Mirkwood King. The two resumed their steps, both of them with content smiles.
"And what of my father?" she asked after a few minutes of peaceful silence. "Does he approve of Legolas' engagement?"
"Of course I do. It is well that the boy is getting married. It is good to have him settle down, every elf desires it." Duramin stood at the doorway, watching his friend and daughter converse up the path. "And I am pleased that I can give him such a wonderful wedding gift."
Thranduil watched as Enelya's smile was replaced by a genuine curiosity. "My lord, what gift have you to offer the Prince of Mirkwood?" How come her father had not mentioned anything before? She was slightly irritated that he always planned and arranged things without ever consulting her, yet, determined to have a good day she let the thought pass.
Duramin opened the door even further for the two to come in, glancing at the King warily. "Perhaps you should come inside and take a seat. We have much to discuss my daughter."
Enelya glanced at the King, looking for any emotion to give away what she should expect. Yet the King wore no expression and simply gestured for her to go on in first. Why would his son's engagement concern her? What kind of gift was this? Once inside the tiny cabin, Duramin gestured towards the table, which they all sat around. A moment of awkward silence hovered over the three until Enelya could not take it anymore.
"My Lord, what gift do you plan to offer the Prince? Why does it cause an ill look upon your face?" Enelya asked, watching the frown steep further in her father's brow.
He gave the King a long look, understanding that neither of them wanted to break her heart like this. "I have long thought of what I would give Legolas as a gift if he were to marry." Duramin leaned forward and place a hand under his chin. "And I am pleased that the gift I have to offer has been accepted from the King."
Enelya smiled uneasily. "That is well, but what gift would the King not accept? Enough suspense my father. What has the King accepted?"
"Mirkwood's best daughter."
A confused frown appeared on Enelya's brow and Thranduil felt like sighing. It would only get worse "I do not understand-"
"You, my daughter." This only deepened the confusion in Enelya. What did he mean her?
She looked at the King for some explanation- but he wisely kept his mouth shut. Some things were better left between families. Taking Thranduil's sudden silence as an extreme, Enelya felt panic fold over in her stomach. What was going on? Surely he did not mean to give Legolas herself as a servant on his royal staff? No, that was out of the question. She was higher up in social standards than a servant. And it wasn't a possibility that he meant her to be a mistress, that was outrageous-she paused mid thought and looked at her father sharply.
Seeing the realization settle in her eyes, he could only give her a grim, apologetic look. "My lord, surely you cannot suggest that I would be a con-"
"Concubine?" Duramin finished for her. He leaned back into his chair, crossing his arms at his chest. He tried to ignore the frighten look in his daughter's face while he continued. "There is nothing wrong with being a royal concubine. It is an honorable position."
"Nothing wrong with being a royal whore is what you mean. It is a disgusting trait found only among the humans! You can't expect that of me." Both older elves winced at the raised tone. Enelya didn't exactly have a reputation for being reasonable and patient "I will have no part of it. And you," she pointed an angry finger at the King, "should have had the decency to forbid such a low act in your court!"
Thranduil decided it was best to finally join the conversation. "Enelya-"
"That is Lady Enelya to you." She spat out brusquely.
"Lady Enelya" he said tersely, "There is nothing-"
"Don't even say it! I will not hear it. I will not be a mistress!" She would have stood and left the table, leaving the conversation at that, but the King saw her lean forward to push her chair back and grabbed her wrist, keeping her in her seat.
"Let me go." She muttered through clenched teeth.
"You will honor your father by obeying his will." He responded just as deadly. He met her gaze head on, inwardly marveling at her challenge. She had quite the spirit.
"I will not be your son's sex toy!"
"Lover, actually," he said, smirking. Surely she did not have the role of a concubine confused with a one-night stand. "You are certainly," he lifted a brow, "not a toy."
She paid him no attention however, turning her wrath back to her father. "How do I bring you honor by sleeping with another woman's husband? How does being a royal whore-"
"Concubine," the King pointed out.
"Whore," Enelya continued, "bring you respect? And how dare you give me away in such a manner. You of all people! What of your lectures on how to make my own decisions? Be my own person? And now you make a decision on how I will spend the rest of my life without my say? I will not be allowed to have children, I cannot marry, I cannot fall in love," she closed her eyes and paused. She would never fall in love now. She ignored the sinking feeling in her gut and continued in a whisper, "And this misery brings you honor?" She did have a point, could they not see that? "Take it back, take it back right now in front of the King. I want to hear you take it back."
"My child, you should calm down." her father said softly, reaching for her hand.
"Forgive me, for I cannot. I have just been sold." Enelya felt annoyed that her voice was starting to choke with emotion, but she continued ranting away. "I have been sold by my own father."
"I made no gold off of you." Thranduil put in, gaining him a sharp glare from the angry she-elf. "Come now, surely you can see the benefits of this."
"Pray tell, what benefits will come of me being a sex toy?" Enelya crossed her arms and learned against the back of the chair. She was truly curious to see what the King could come up with.
Thranduil met her challenge to her dismay. He decided that she had spoken out of place enough.
"You will be in the court, where you belong. You will interact with elves your own age. You will learn to be a civil she-elf, and hopefully, having a master will teach you some manners. And perhaps you will learn a little about honor and respecting your elders, your father, and your King. Do I make myself clear or shall I spell it out slowly for you? You will be my son's concubine, it is already official. He has already been informed of your arrival. When I return to Mirkwood you will be ready to leave with your head held high because your father and I never taught you to act like an immature, spoiled girl. So I suggest you use these last days of your freedom wisely."
He sighed, and this time, seeing her face downcast continued in a softer, more reasonable voice, "You do not want to leave your father on bad terms, my child. Believe me."
He expected her to slap him, to scream, shriek, anything. But when she lifted her gaze to him he saw the hurt. Hurt that he caused with his words. He wasn't expecting that. He sighed again, running a hand through his hair to smooth out the tension he felt building. They had both expected her to react in such a manner, but seeing the look on her face was clearly the clincher. He would torture any other to cause such a grim expression on his dear Enelya, and yet here he was provoking such sorrow in her.
Duramin, seeing the King's resolve, hesitantly laid a hand on his daughter shoulder, disturbed when she did not pull away or snap at him. Why the sudden defeat?
"My daughter, Legolas is a good man, and this is a common practice throughout Middle Earth. There is no dishonor in being chosen for such role."
"And what role is that?" Her voice was lacking the previous fire and anger, and instead, it took on a desperate plea. "To bring sexual satisfaction to the King's son? Is that all I am good for?" However, she didn't give them a chance to respond and instead voiced her greatest fear, "And what if I cannot even do that? What if he is displeased with me? I am not a wife where I have the security of a binding vow, I can easily be thrown away and replaced. How will I live with that fear in my heart every night?"
Neither could think of a comforting answer.
"I trusted both of you to protect my well being, not sell me off. I never could have thought such deceit was possible with either of you." She stood up, looking blankly at her friend.
"Some King of Mirkwood."
And with that they could only watch as she drew her self away from the table and went into the other room, softly shutting the door behind. They could hear as she slowly let her pain fill the night with her cries. Duramin laid a hand on his friend's shoulder, murmuring it was for the best. Was it, the King thought? He felt sick at what they had done. He closed his eyes as each of her sobs drove into his heart.
Some King Indeed.
No fears friends, this is a Legolas romance, not the King's; but his relationship with our lovely lass is just as important and key in our story.
ps: I'm not very interested in all your facts about how my story doesn't fit with all real LOTR story, or how unrealistic my main characters are.
While they are interesting and informative facts, my story is not meant to match or to be an extension of the original LOTR series- nor is it meant to be realistic.
It's meant for enjoyment, friends!