The Elfling

A/N: I need at least five reviws before i update this story so if you read it PLEASE review it! Thanks in advance!

Chapter 1: A song of sorrow

The fellowship had been travelling through the dark mine of Moria for sometime now when Legolas, a tall blond woodland elf who also happened to be the Prince of Mirkwood, stopped abruptly tilting his head as if listening for something.

"What is it Legolas?" Aragorn, a tall dark brown haired Ranger and true king of Gondor, asked

"I can hear a voice" Legolas said after a moment

"An Orc?" Boromir, the tall, broad-shouldered son of the steward of Gondor, asked

"No… It sounds like a human a young one…a child…" Legolas said straining his ears

"A child? What would a child be doing down here?" Merry, a hobbit, asked

"I don't know, how about we find out, hmm?" Gandalf the grey wizard asked looking around to see what the others thought.

So following Legolas, who followed the sound that he soon realized to be singing, they made their way through the many corridors of Moria. It wasn't long before they all could hear it as well; though by the time Legolas had reached a point where he could start to make out words, the song had finished and there was just humming to follow.

"It sounds so sad" Merry said softly and the others nodded in agreement

They were nearly there when the humming stopped leaving silence for a moment before the sound of sobbing was heard. Looking at each other for a moment they turned the corner and Gandalf held his staff up illuminating the dark corridor. Before the fellowship was a small dark haired child who shrunk back away from them.

"Shh little one… It's okay we mean you no harm" Aragorn said gently as he kneeled down in front of the child

The child looked at him then everyone else his legs pulled up in front of him eyes wide "Wh…Who are you? Are you going to hu…hurt me?" he asked tentatively and in elvish

The fellowship all looked at each other in shook before Legolas also bent down before the child "No tithen pen we mean you no harm" Legolas said softly "What are you doing down here tithen pen? Where are your Adar and Naneth?"

The child whimpered slightly "Ada and Nana…they are dead…" the child said softly

Legolas, Aragorn and Gandalf sighed sadly when they heard that

"Come tithen pen," Aragorn said, holding his hand out "we mean you no harm"

The child hesitated for a moment before taking his offered hand and moving farther into the light. It was then that the fellowship saw the child clearly.

"An elfling…" Legolas whispered in shock "How can this be?"

While Legolas, Aragorn and Gandalf appeared to be in shock over this development the others in the fellowship didn't really see what was so shocking.

"What is it Gandalf? What is wrong?" Merry asked

"The Elves longevity dose not come without a price, Merry," Gandalf said after a moment, "And that price is in the precious few children born to them. While the birth of a child was an almost common occurrence to the other races of Middle Earth, the Elves rarely enjoyed that blessing. A precious few youths are born to the immortals, and as such, the Elves are very protective of their offspring. Children mean more to them then any other race could possibly understand..." Gandalf trailed off for a moment before continuing, "Whenever an elfling is born there is much celebrations for all elves… the thing is though the last elfling born was over five-hundred years ago…"

"Well it seems you figures are wrong as the little one there can't be over five and is defiantly a elfling" Boromir said

The elfling looked between them all nervously, his hand still in Aragorn's.

Aragorn seemed to sense his new charges nervousness "Perhaps we should continue on, at lest until we find a good spot to stop for the night," Aragorn suggested and the others agreed "We will be continuing on with our journey tithen pen, and we would like it if you accompanied us…Will you come?" The child nodded that he would go with them, and Aragorn smiled at him still holding his hand.

After awhile of walking in silence Pippin broke it "Strider what is his name?" he asked Aragorn motioning to the child with his head

Aragorn thought for a moment before realizing he didn't know "What is your name, tithen pen?"

"I have many names…" the elfling said softly

"What do you want us to call you?" Aragorn asked

"I do not mind…you may call me what you want…I don't know my real name…" the elfling whispered sadly

"Well we will just have to think up one," Aragorn said, "Are you tired?"

The elfling shook his head but Aragorn noticed that he was stumbling more often then before "It's ok to be tired," Aragorn said as he scoped the elfling into his arms, noticing how light and underweight he was.

"There is a good spot to rest not far ahead, if I remember correctly," Gandalf said to the company "it should only be five possibly ten minutes walk."

After the fellowship had set up camp they all sat down around the campfire to eat, Aragorn and Legolas then filled them in on what they knew of the elfling so far.

"Well he needs a name," Sam said as he looked at the young elfling sitting in Aragorn's lap watching everyone with his big impossibly blue eyes.

The fellowship thought for a moment coming up with many names, mostly of relatives, but none really fitted.

"What of Carlin?" Legolas suggested finally, and the others agreed, "So tithen pen, how do you like the name Carlin?" Legolas asked the elfling, the elfling thought about it for a moment before nodding and smiling at Legolas shyly.

The next day Carlin walked with hand-in-hand with Aragorn and Legolas who kept an eye on him to make sure he didn't tire too much, when they reached a large, very large, hall and in a side room a tomb.

Aragorn kept a close eye on Carlin as Gimli sobbed over his cousin's grave and Gandalf read from an old tomb. He removed his eyes though when Pippin knocked an old skeleton and bucket down a well creating more noise then is sensible.

"I'm scared Aragorn…" Carlin said as drums sounded in the deep

Aragorn glanced down at the elfling for a moment, spearing a quick smile "It's okay to be scared tithen pen. Now I want you to go over there and stay hidden, okay?" Aragorn said, glancing nervously at the door where Boromir was trying to enforce it.

"They have a cave troll," Boromir announced as he dodged an arrow

"O…okay Aragorn," Carlin said hesitantly

"Go on," Aragorn said shooing him away before turning swiftly to face the doors and on coming enemy.

Carlin ran over to where the hobbits stood with their small swords ready; he hid in a dark corner of the room just as the doors broke and the evil creatures charged forth. The fellowship seemed to be there match, until the large cave troll showed its ugly face. While they where distracted by the troll, an orc cornered Carlin a wicked grin on its face. Carlin was about to yell out when he noticed what the others were doing and realized that if he called out now he would distract them and it could mean there death. So instead of calling for help he dodged the orcs attacks though that could only last for so long before the orc got in a rather nasty hit. Carlin fell to the ground not even able to get his throat to cry out in pain. The creature raised its sword and Carlin did the only thing he could think of he kicked up hitting the orc and knocking him off balance with sudden unexpected attack, Carlin then jumped up grabbing a nearby sword and stabbed the surprised orc. Carlin stood there a moment just staring at the fallen orc he had just killed. It wasn't his first kill but he still felt wrong taking another's life.

"Come we must go!" Boromir shouted to the rest of the fellowship and Carlin glanced over to them, they had killed the mountain troll and the rest of the orc, Aragorn was holding a limp hobbit in his arms and Carlin's heart plummeted at the sight.

"Hurry there will be more we must reach the bridge!" Aragorn called already running out the door, the others followed him, and Carlin found himself alone in the dark tunnels once more. Slowly he stumbled towards the door one hand clutching at his wounded side and the other ready to catch him if he fell.

He stumbled along keeping to the walls, staying out of sight of any orc that may come. After a few short moments that felt like years he could see light ahead, perhaps he had caught up with the others… Coming closer he saw that was indeed true though the others were surrounded by orc and goblin so there was no way to get to them, anyway. Carlin sighed and sunk to the ground, there was no way for them or he to escape this one.

All of a sudden he sat bolt upright there was a dark, very dark presence coming closer and it seemed the orc and goblin sensed it to as they quickly fled. Carlin got to his feet as fast as he could and started towards the fellowship when a creature of flame and shadow came forth…A Balrog was upon them and the company did the only sensible thing to do in such a situation: they fled.

Carlin drove himself on there was a pulling at his soul and he followed it as fast as he could, ignoring the burning of his wound, ignoring the pain of having broken rib bones slicing his insides; there was nothing but that pull. He took many hidden turns and tunnels reaching the stairs that led to the bridge just in time to see the fellowship race across.

Legolas seemed to glance his way as he crossed, looking for orc and goblin archers but when his eyes fell upon Carlin he cried out something that made the others glance up too. Gandalf was the last in the line crossing, glancing at Carlin he didn't see the Balrogs mighty whip lash out until too late. Gandalf fell into the dark chasm. This spurred Carlin into action; he could not allow the Balrog to escape out into the world. Not even thinking of himself he leapt down the stairs to the bridge and waiting Belrog. He ignored the shouts the fellowship sent him he had only eyes for the Balrog. As he stared at the Belrog Carlin felt fear, not fear for his life, but fear of failure, of allowing the Balrog into Middle-earth.

If the Balrog was to escape then the world would change, and not for the better, the dark would spread quicker and become stronger and the light would fade. Carlin did not know how he knew this only that he could not allow it to happen no matter the price even if that price was his life.

The Balrog was on the bridge now heading across it to where the fellowship was on the other side, it hadn't really noticed Carlin or if it had it didn't care. Carlin thought desperately about what he could do when his eyes locked on the bridge…

Carlin quickly ran to his edge of the bridge and traced symbol after symbol into the dirt hurriedly yet carefully so not to make a mistake. When the symbols reached across the whole area of the bridge at the joining to the land on his side, he put his hands above it and chanted quickly, the language he chanted in was neither elvish nor common tongue it was a strange language filled with power and magic.

As he finished his chant the symbols glowed softly for a moment, as did his hands, before the sound of rocks braking was heard and the bridge broke falling into the seemingly bottomless chasm the Balrog followed it screaming in fury.

Carlin scrambled backwards away form the deep opining, looking up he saw the fellowship standing there staring at him sadly; with the bridge gone he had no way to reach them. A movement caught his attention and he noticed orc and goblin archers entering the room aiming at the fellowship.

"Flee you fools!" Carlin yelled across to them, before taking his own advice and fleeing into the depths of Moria.

A/N: At least 5 reviews before the next chapte! Hope you like!