Genre: Humor, AU
Summary: Elrond has work to do and six year old Estel is quite bored.
A/N: Thanks to Rhonda, who beta read it, and Kar for the help. Sorry it took this long to get it out. Errmm ... work, Stargate SG-1, and SG fanfic will keep one far away from writing. :g: Hope you guys enjoy it. :)
'Traders coming in tomorrow ... ' Elrond thought to himself, looking over his papers. He had decided to do his usual deskwork outside today, as the sky was clear and it was absolutely beautiful. However - every few moments a sound from behind him would cause his attention to snap up. It wasn't a normal sound that one would expect from a garden bush. No. This was more ... human. A six year old human, to be exact, who kept giggling to himself behind Elrond's back. The elf rolled his eyes, glancing at the next document he had to look over.
'Hmm ... ' Elrond's brow furrowed. 'I'm almost positive I didn't authorize buying twenty barrels of sweet wine. Must have been Elladan.' He scribbled something and flipped to the next page, murmuring under his breath now and then.
From behind the sculpted back hunched over the garden table, there came a great sigh. And then ...
Elrond jumped, rubbing his head where the small acorn had impacted. He slowly turned to the quivering, snickering bush, with one eyebrow raised. Giving the bush a stern glare, he turned back to his work, intent on at least making a dent in the large stack of papers.
'I'm just going to ignore it ... ' Elrond grinned. 'He'll soon get bored and find someone else to play with.'
:Plonk ... plonk ... SPLAT:
The small, innocent acorns could be ignored. The large, squishy, and very juicy berry that had landed square on the back of his head however, had to be addressed.
"Estel!" Elrond turned, wiping off the red goo.
"Yes ada?" The boy's voice floated from the bush.
"What, exactly, are you doing?"
"I'm having target practice. Like 'Dan does."
"Throwing acorns and berries at my head does not sound like 'target practice', my son." The elf lord had finally managed to wipe the mess from his hair, and now straightened up his documents.
"Oh. I'm sorry, ada." The tone of the voice said the small boy clearly was NOT sorry, however. Elrond rolled his eyes, standing up from his sunny spot.
"Come, Estel. Perhaps we can find something for you to do."
"So you ... wish for me to do ... what?" Erestor eyed the small, berry-covered boy.
"Simply entertain him." Elrond shrugged. "Keep him busy, for a few hours at least. I must get this paperwork done."
"Ent-er-tain?" Erestor said the word slowly, as if it came from a foreign tongue in which he could not pronounce.
"Yes, Erestor! You can be the dragon that I, brave knight of Rivendell, slay! And I free all the people of Middle Earth from the bad orcs - you can be the orc too right? - and all the pretty maidens flock to me, the most handsome and brave warrior in all the land!" Estel hopped around, brandishing an invisible sword and making overly-dramatic battle sounds.
"Take that, you evil beast! Hah! Wounded you!"
"-you can't be serious, really-"
"This is where you fall down Erestor and scream with your dying breath!"
"-there must be someone in Rivendell-"
"Wheee! And the brave knight swoops down on his prey from above, taking him by surprise! Die evil orc, die!"
"No Estel, do not jump from the tree!"
"-that can watch the - AGH!" Erestor was sent sprawling onto the pathway as he was full-body tackled by the six year old.
Elrond grimaced, watching his friend attempt to untangle his hair, which had gotten caught in Estel's belt loop. Of course, it didn't help matters that Estel kept attempting to free himself, screaming "get back you evil demon of Mordor!" and whacking Erestor with a pointy stick.
When finally the situation had calmed down (though one really couldn't call the situation calm by any means, what with Erestor practically on his knees now that his hair was completely tangled up in one big knot around Estel's belt) Elrond helped Erestor to stand by picking Estel up, coming face to face with him.
"My lord ..." Erestor muttered, glaring. "You are aware that I hold only the upmost respect for you and your rule. However, I must also RESPECTFULLY decline the offer to watch your son, for I fear one of us shall come to great physical harm if I do."
"Alright, I understand. Perhaps Glorfindel can free himself for a little while. In the meantime ..." Elrond, with a small tinge of sadness, cut the belt from Estel's pants and handed it to Erestor. "Go and erm ... get your hair straightened out ... terribly sorry, my friend."
Erestor grunted, stiffly walking off. Sighing to himself, Elrond set Estel down again and took his hand. "Come, my son. Let us find Glorfindel."
"Glorfindel, there you are!" Elrond shouted, dragging a pouting Estel along side him as he made his way to the riverbank.
"Yes, my lord?" Glorfindel turned from where he was studying a small book.
"I have a favor to ask, friend." Coming to a halt, Elrond released his son, who immediately ran to the water's edge and began tossing stones across the slow moving surface.
Estel frowned, looking around for another stone. The last two were far too small, he needed something bigger.
" ... Yes?" A wary look passed the blond elf's face, causing him to look from Estel to Elrond.
"I need for you to watch my son. Just for the day so that I know he won't get into any mischief, and I can complete my work in peace."
Spotting the perfect sized rock, wedged under what seemed to be a small mountain of them, Estel grabbed it and began wiggling it loose.
"Watch Estel! My lord, this is the same Estel who spooked my horse and caused me to be thrown into a bee hive, yes?"
Almost there! The rock was just about out, only a few more inches ...
"Well, I'm sure nothing like that will happen again, mellon nin. He's only six! What harm can he possibly do!"
THERE! Got it! Estel held the rock up triumphantly.
Glorfindel frowned when his footing suddenly became loose, the rocks he was standing on starting to shake and tumble. With almost sudden clarity he knew exactly what had happened, and somehow Estel was the cause of it. Pitching backwards and flailing his arms in an unelvish manner, he let out a large squeak before toppling over and falling into the cold water below.
Elrond winced, hiding his expression behind his hand. When he looked up, he came face to face with a very angry, and very wet Glorfindel, holding a grinning Estel. Glorfindel thrust the boy into Elrond's arms, before making several grunting sounds which sounded like "Must not kill, must not harm ... " before stalking off.
"I guess you will have to find someone else ada." Estel said cheerily, grinning at his father.
Elrond pondered. Surely, there must be SOMEONE in Rivendell capable of watching the boy! However, it seemed that word had spread like wildfire, and every available elf was out-of-sight. Could no one - wait a minute! Elrond grinned. Every available ELF was out of sight, however ... there was one ranger, currently staying in Rivendell, who owed Elrond a favor. The elf snickered slightly to himself, delighted with this new-found scheme.
"Estel, come. I have an idea."
"Uh oh." Estel muttered, looking up. Usually when his ada got those ... those evil grins ... someone was in trouble.
"Sawyer." Elrond greeted the sitting man, causing him to jump and twist around sharply.
"Elrond." Sawyer bowed, his blond hair falling in his eyes.
"You remember that favor you owe me?"
"... Yes. How could I forget? If not for you, me and my company would surely be dead!"
"Right, anyway. I need you to watch Estel for the rest of the day, and we will be even." Elrond smiled warmly.
Eyeing the innocent-looking boy, Sawyer frowned. He looked back up to Elrond, then sighed. "Alright, my friend. I will do this for you."
"Good!" Elrond clapped Sawyer on the back, whistling to himself. "Have fun. And for the love of the Valar, don't let him get into the sweet cakes!"
" ... Okay ... " Sawyer blinked. He looked back down to Estel, quirking a grin. "Come, little one. Let's go have fun, shall we?"
"Oh yeah." Estel snickered. "We shall."
'Aaaahhhhh.' Elrond sniffed, settling down on a blanket next to the bridge. 'Peace. Finally.' The wind that rushed by threatened to sweep away his papers, if not for the rock holding them all down. Elrond grabbed the one from the top, fully immersing himself back into his work for the day.
A blessed, uninterrupted half hour later, he startled, having heard what sounded like a scream. But of course there were no orcs in Rivendell. So what ...
Ah. Elrond frowned, watching a terrified looking Sawyer run at him full on. It would have to be that, wouldn't it?
"Elrond!" Sawyer panted, his shirt torn in spots (was that blood! ... no, no. Just berries ... ), his leggings ripped almost to shreds, and his feet bare. Elrond raised a delicate eyebrow towards his friend, wondering whether to smirk in amusement or hide his head in shame.
He chose the former. "Sawyer! What happened?"
"Your ... brat ... berries ... slingshot ... roof ... briar patch ... " The man leaned over and braced his hands on his knees, desperate to catch his breath back.
"Ah. My friend, did I not warn you to not play 'Berry in the Bushes' with my son? He has scarred many elves with that game of his." 'Poor Glorfindel ...' Elrond mentally added.
"No! You did not warn me! And as a matter of fact, you didn't warn me that this son of yours was the essence of evil itself! Why, we should send HIM into Mordor and let the orcs have at him. Surely the boy would succeed in running them all out of Middle Earth for good!"
"Are you quite done?" Elrond asked, grinning slightly.
"... Yes. However I must say, I cannot complete this task for you. I fear for my health, mentally and physically. You may say, I am still in your debt." Sawyer winced, standing back up. "And now, my lord, I take my leave. I shall go play with the happy little orcs who would sooner frolic in grassy meadows than attempt to play 'Berry in the Bushes'!"
The man limped off, his pride hanging by a simple thread. Elrond watched him leave sadly, knowing that this meant Estel was under his care again for the remainder of the day. He sighed heavily, looking up in time enough to see Estel enthusiastically tackled the man, which in turn caused the remainder of his leggings to succumb to gravity. Elrond snorted behind his hand, turning away as Sawyer rushed off looking much like a beet.
"Ada." Estel asked, walking up towards his father. "Why did he not wish to play with me? I only asked him to get on the roof with me, and it is not my fault I hit him in the eye with a berry. He didn't have to fall down the roof and into the briar patch though." Estel grumbled. "Nobody likes to play with me."
"There there, Estel." Elrond patted Estel's shoulder. "I'm sure we can find SOMEONE around here." But where?
Almost as if on cue, he heard a shrill call behind him. Wincing and resisting the urge to cover his ears, Elrond turned and forced a smile for the elf maiden who was now heading his way. Normally, he would love to speak to another who lived in his realm ... however this particular maiden made him want to run screaming into Mordor stark naked.
"Eyrean, how nice to see you."
"Lord Elrond! Oh, bless the Valar. I am sorry I could not find you last week, your advisor said you were unreachable. Imagine that!" She tossed her hair, almost slipping in the wet grass as she did so. Straightening her dress - horribly mismatched as it was - she beamed up at the elf lord. Estel rolled his eyes and sighed loudly, causing Elrond to give him a good whack.
"Yes, yes, terrible timing on my part. What can I do for you?"
"Oh, no Lord Elrond." Her laugh made Elrond wince again. "It's what I can do for you! Do you require anything? Anything at all? I'm always happy to help, and proud to serve a mighty lord such as yourself."
"No, I don-" Elrond stopped. He looked down at Estel, who was now watching him with horror filled eyes.
"Ada, please! No!"
"Actually there is one thing ... " He glanced back at Eyrean.
"Anything, Lord Elrond! You have but to ask!"
"No, no, no! I'll give up eating the sweets! I'll stop putting snakes in your bed! I'll tell everybody that the rumor of you and the dwarf was all made up!"
"Could you watch Estel for me, for the remainder of the day?"
"Absolutely!" The grin that had at first seemed impossible to get any larger, grew five times in size. Elrond sincerely hoped Estel could forgive him.
"Come, young one! We shall have fun; just the two of us! I can think of many things for us to do, let us hurry before the day wanes!"
Estel shot Elrond a nasty look that promised retribution as he was dragged away by the elf maiden.
Elrond sighed. Then grinned. Then sighed again. He had work to do.
It couldn't have been more than an hour later when, as Elrond was now seated in a secluded sunny spot, he heard screaming and crying. Headed his way.
'No! Not this early! Valar! ... Well at least she lasted longer than the ranger ... '
"Elrond! Lord Elrond!" Eyrean screamed, running to him frantically. Tear tracks led down her face as she sobbed into his robe. "I ... I can't take it! That's it! I'm ... I'm leaving! Vacation! Yes, vacation! Somewhere warm, like Mordor. Your son is EVIL! I must flee, now, before he finds me!" She screamed again, then dashed off into the woods. Elrond shook his head.
"Yes, ada?" Estel asked innocently, appearing from behind a rock.
"What did you do to the poor girl!"
"To her? Nothing!" He shrugged. "We just ... had a tea party."
"Well ... tea parties are for GIRLS ... and they're boring ... "
"... Yes ... "
" ... Her stuffed bunny looked at me wrongly, I swear it!"
"I'm almost positive you can sew the head back on."
Elrond groaned. "Estel, is there one person in Rivendell who possibly isn't afraid of you?"
Estel thought for a few moments. "'Dan and 'Ro aren't ... "
"Yes I know, and they would be watching you had they not decided to go on a hunting trip. Either way," Elrond said wearily, glancing at the sky. "It's almost dark anyway, time to go in and get ready for bed."
"No. You've had enough fun for the day anyway, come on. Bed."
"Fine. Oh ada, you should have seen the look on her face when the bunny head rolled across the floor ... " Estel snickered. He immediately stopped when Elrond sent him a stern glare. "It ... it was horrible. No elf maiden should ever be put through that again. Ever." Estel coughed.
"So who's watching me tomorrow, ada?"
"I am, apparently. I'll have Glorfindel do my deskwork. He can surely handle that ... "
"Didn't he accidentally mix up your trade papers with your recipe for baked noodles last time?"
" ... Yes well, let's hope he's learned from his mistakes, shall we?" Elrond muttered as he and Estel walked back in their home.
Tomorrow was going to be a long day.
There:) Hope you guys like that, haha. For any waiting for the next chapter of Innocently Accused err. It's coming, just give me time. Work and things like that (as well as my parents forgetting my birthday on the 10th ... so nice of my father to get himself a new rifle scope - an expensive one at that - yet not get me one thing and make me pay for my cake myself ... ) have been putting a pause on my writing. And I couldn't just leave this little bitty on the backburner! It was too cute not to write. ;) Reviews are always welcome!