The Power of Magic and Elves
Disclaimer: Sigh... still not mine...
Chapter 12: Spring Clears the Mountain Pass
Glorfindel must have recruited help as Aragorn, Elladan and Elrohir all approached him to teach him to fight with swords, knives and a bow and arrows. But each time his reply was the same and he turned away from them. He had to hand it to them though. They were becoming more creative in their persuasion. This morning he had come across the twins fighting with swords and mocking each other. Somehow he could imagine the marauders having duels in much the same fashion.
He could understand Glorfindel's desire to teach him to fight. The elf didn't know that he could defend himself with magic if he had to. He had been right and their conversation had carried into the kitchen the other day. He had admitted to having had to kill his captures in order to get away. The elf had dropped the subject after that and agree to not try until he wanted to learn.
He had leaned against and tree and watched Elrond's twins in their irreverent fight but left before they turned their attention to him. His walks into the woods were becoming longer and more frequent.
This time however, it wasn't Glorfindel or one of Elrond's sons that had driven him into the shelter of the trees however. Cera had finally worn him down. How the griffin managed to make puppy eyes so effectively with an eagle head he couldn't fathom. But he collected the length of wood and stole out to the workshop for a few tools.
After Diagon Alley was attacked Harry, Ron and Hermione had spent a day collecting salvageable items from the streets. Potion ingredients had been the most prized collectables among the vultures that came to the Alley. Most of them were ruined though. Harry had his eyes set on a different prize that day. While Hermione scrounged around for useful books and Ron cast about for weapons and armor, Harry investigated the ruins of Olivanders. The odd little man had moved out previous to the Alley's attack but had left supplies and papers behind. Harry pocketed any spare wand material he could find and tracked down notes Olivander must have made in the creation of his wands. From these Harry had been able to piece together the process of wand construction. His was a crude method to be sure but none of them understood until later how valuable that information would be however simplistic.
With the borrowed tools and supplies he and the griffin walked out to the first few trees outside the city of Imladris. The guards were watching him. They were accustomed to his forays into the woods and wouldn't intervene unless he went too far. The snow was definitely melting now and green grass was poking through the white. He walked until he could sense the guards getting anxious and went only a few paces more before he stopped and laid out his supplies.
Very carefully he used a thin blade to hollow out the core of the holly wood Cera had brought him weeks ago. He collected the shavings on his cloak and covered them to keep the wind from scattering them. The griffin looked on approvingly.
He was still resolved to not use magic, to not stand out or be this world's hero.
"I'm only doing this because you insisted and won't stop with the pouting looks until I do you know." He lectured the griffin. Cera seemed entirely too pleased with herself and unconcerned with his words.
"Well fine, what did you want me to use as a core?" He asked the smug griffin.
Cera promptly got up and lifted the feathers of the crest on her neck. She shook until one golden feather fell out.
Harry arched an eyebrow at the arrogant look on Cera's face and picked up the feather. Carefully he inserted it into the narrow opening in the middle of the wood. This still left the bottom hole to be covered and the core to be absorbed into the wood. He cast a furtive glance back at the guards. None had moved any closer to him but he was being watched.
"Well, hopefully this will be the only magic I do." Harry said softly. He kept his back to the guards and placed his hands along the length of wood, quickly muttered the incantation that pulled heavily at his own magic. Wand creation was not an easy task or one suited to wizards with even average levels of power. In a fashion it blended the creator's magic and the magic of the wand core at an intimate level. Harry was convinced that the hundreds of cores that Olivander had blended himself with had affected the wizard's mind. It did however, lend to his ability to remember the wand any wizard had purchased.
Slowly the golden feather dissolved into the very magic contained within it, leaving a glowing golden powder in the shaft of the wand. This was wand would be more temperamental than his phoenix feather wand but would also allow more brute force to be channeled through it. Much like the differences between a phoenix and a Griffen, it was a wand for fighting and large scale magic; exactly what Harry didn't want to do. Harry took a few second to rest and covered the open end with the shavings fusing them back with the wood.
"I hope you're happy." He directed at the Griffin who did seem immensely happy.
"Faervel?" A voice called out.
Hurriedly, Harry packed away his materials in a sack and tucked his wand into it and buried the sack and its contents in the bush and leaves at the base of the tree. Wand and supplies hidden, he turned to address the owner's voice.
"Hello Aragorn." He called to the man. Aragorn was approaching with a bundle in his hands and something strapped to his back. As the man got closer he could identify the object. It was a bow and the ranger had a quiver of arrows on his back.
"Want to come hunting with me Faervel? I haven't stayed this long of a time in Rivendell since my youth and the warmer weather leaves one seeking the woods. Don't you agree?" Aragorn asked with a warm smile.
"I seem to remember the twins saying you were a terrible shot." Faervel replied arching an eyebrow at the bow.
"I'm not an elf Faervel, I don't have your eyesight. And the twins only remember when I was first learning. I've had many years to practice since then." Aragorn replied in his defense. "Though I could use the help of a pair of elven eyes. Perhaps I can even teach you to shoot before the twins make a mockery of your first attempts as well."
It was a clever offer. Not particularly subtle, but clever. Harry was actually tempted too. Part of him knew he couldn't reject every weapon the elves used. It just wouldn't be normal for him to do so. And he had never used a bow and arrow before.
"Alright. And what we miss Cera can catch." He agreed and shot a smirk at the Griffin he had volunteered to help.
The hunt had gone on for most of the day. Much of the time was taken up with Aragorn teaching him to hold a bow correctly and aim. He wasn't a great shot but his natural talent with weapons and the grace he inherited with his change of species had made him a quick study.
Aragorn was carrying a brace of rabbits only one of which Cera had had to help catch. She had now disappeared as though catching rabbits for them was far beneath her.
The ranger suddenly bent down and motioned for Faervel to follow. Aragorn indicated ahead. There was young buck pawing grazing in the clearing. He had never seen stag before; not that he could remember of course. Sirius said his father had transformed and Sirius had put him on his dad's back and held him while James walked around with him. This is what his father had been able to change into. He smiled.
Aragorn began to string his bow and Faervel looked up at him and laid a hand on Aragorn's arm to stop him. Aragorn was understandably confused but stopped his motion. Faervel just stayed silent and watched until the stag moved on.
"Faervel?" Aragorn asked now that he was ready to move on again.
He looked up. "I'm sorry. I haven't seen one before."
Aragorn didn't seem satisfied with the response but let it go. "It would have been a challenge to get him back to Rivendell anyway."
"Come on. The main path is just up ahead. We'll take that back into Rivendell." Aragorn said breaking Harry out of his thoughts.
They continued walking for some time just enjoying their surroundings. "You were right Aragorn. The spring does seem to come quickly to Rivendell." Harry commented as a few early spring wildflowers had managed to push their way up through the ground.
"Indeed" the man replied. Harry wasn't listening to him though. He had halted and cocked his head to better hear some strange noise coming through the trees. There was someone or something coming up the path they were headed towards.
"What is it?" Aragorn asked concerned at the intensely listening elf.
"Who is coming?" He muttered in reply and moved behind the thickest brush he could find.
"It's nearly spring. The paths through the mountains may have opened early." Aragorn replied watching the elfling's reaction to the approaching noises curiously. "It is probably elves or men coming to visit Lord Elrond." Privately he was certain it was the elves of Lothlórien and they wouldn't be coming to see Elrond.
Aragorn watched as Faervel crept away from him staying in the trees and brush and heading up the road toward the sound the elfling must be hearing.
He was sure it was the elves from Rivendell and Faervel would be safe enough with them around. He had spoken true when Faervel said spring had come early. Galadriel would come to Rivendell as soon as possible. And with her would be Arwen, Elrond's only daughter. Perhaps he would take Faervel's advice from the Room of Fire. People living with love wasn't sad even if they died with it. He would reestablish his relationship with the beautiful elf.
He began walking towards the road to meet them and looked back to see where Faervel had gone. The elfling was just ahead moving parallel to the road. The ranger was amazed when the young elf disappeared from his sight into the cover of the trees. It was a trick that had taken him years to perfect.
"How did he do that?" The man muttered to himself.
It sounded like bells and horses; like music and spring time and stories told before the fire. It reminded him of a potion Slughorn had shown them that smelled different for each person. Even pleasant smelling potions were something to be very wary of. The only pleasant tasting potions were poisons.
Harry didn't know what he was hearing but he was certain he wanted to be able to see it before it saw him. He crept along the side of the road only getting as close as the tree and bush cover would allow.
The sound grew louder and he could see something reflecting or casting light of its own around the bend in the path. There were horses. He could hear their hoof beats providing a base to the tinkling of elvish laughter.
Aragorn had been right. However much comfort that was to him now. It was elves; lots of elves.
Two rode at the head of the procession on white horses. The rest seemed to follow them reverently. The pair had long blonde hair and grey eyes.
One of the pair glanced up and seemed to pin him in place with steely grey eyes.
Harry ducked further back into the bushes and away from the path.
"Welcome to Rivendell." Lord Elrond intoned to the large gathering of grey clad elves from Lothlórien who were being greeted by many elves in the courtyard. He had made rooms available for this group of elves as soon as the snowfall had ended. He knew Galadriel would do anything in her power to pass through the mountains as soon as possible. He had marked Aragorn's return just before the arrival of the grey clad elves and briefly wondered where Faervel was but knowing that elfling he had disappeared before the newcomers' arrival.
His eyes strayed to his daughter who was being helped from her mount by Aragorn as the two greeted one another and walked off hand in hand.
"Grandmother!" Elladan and Elrohir burst into the courtyard from behind Elrond.
"Greetings Elrond." The stately elf at the head of the procession answered before turning to the running dark-haired figures of her grandchildren.
"Ah, Elladan and Elrohir. Your ventures in the wild have matured you I see." Her eyes laughed and a wide smile appeared on her face.
"You will have to tell me of your travels but first I need to speak with Elrond." She leveled her gaze at the Lord of Imladris, eyes no longer laughing.
"Of course my Lady." Elrond replied and gestured her into his home. This would not be a pleasant conversation. He noticed that Celeborn, the less dynamic of the two had not shown an interest in participating in this discussion and remained with Elladan and Elrohir.
Upon entering his study Galadriel closed the door behind them.
"I see little has changed in Rivendell since last we spoke." She commented coldly enough to clearly express her displeasure. "Still permitting an elfling to venture unprotected into the woods, Elrond?"
"I did not know he was still in the forest. Aragorn was with him when they set out." Elrond's brow creased in confusion as to how the two had gotten separated.
"And yet the ranger returns alone." Her stare pierced his through his confusion with anger.
"I know you do not approve of Arwen's relationship…" He began.
"I do not disapprove of my granddaughter's love for the ranger. She will follow her own heart in the end, not ours." She added more lightly.
"And I left Haldir and Rumil to guard the elfling until he returns." She interrupted, ignoring his interpretation of her anger.
Elrond met her eyes in astonishment and fear. Haldir was the marchwarden of Lothlorien and he would not be deterred from his task. Two unknown elves sent to follow Faervel could not end well. He only hoped the elfling would return and did not run. What would Haldir do if he did?
They were following him.
He had backed into the cover along the side of the road until he could just barely make out the passing elves and horses. Once they had gone he had left the road and trailed behind them towards Imladris.
Cera had been anxious and alert, swiveling her head from side to side as if to locate a disturbance. Harry sent her into the air and backed into a thick bush of evergreen and concentrated on not being seen, heard or noticed. He held his breath.
There were two of them. Cloaked in grey and carrying swords and bows; they suddenly appeared confused as they scanned the land around them. These must have separated from the recently passing group of elves.
"Where could he have gone, Haldir?" One addressed the other.
"Quiet" the second, Haldir, answered.
They were tracking him? The elves had always seemed to take an unnatural notice of him but this was more than he could tolerate.
He would wait until they left and return to Rivendell without them. The sun was beginning to streak the sky purple and red. It would be easier to travel without their presence by night.
Harry woke the next morning a little later than he intended. During the night he and Cera had snuck into Rivendell without their elven guards. Today he intended to figure out just why they had been followed and who had been doing the following. It seemed naïve to believe that all elves wished him well and wouldn't hurt him despite the reassurances he had been given. Far better to avoid unknowns until he knew more of them.
He made his way to the kitchens; breakfast was sure to be over by now.
"Good morning Elhadril."
"Faervel! Where were you? Half of the house was out looking for you until Elrohir found your tracks coming back. Quiet the commotion you caused." She exclaimed. Her face softened into a smile a second later. She couldn't seem to stay angry with him. "If you want breakfast I'm just sending it out to the hall. Everyone got a late start this morning." She added helpfully.
He approached the dining hall only to hear voices coming from the room.
"It is not so easy to keep a guard around him. As I am sure Haldir and Rumil will attest to."
"Have you at least determined how he came to be in such ill health as he was?"
"He has told us enough to imply that he was captured and tortured for food. We haven't asked him further. He is untrusting and cautious among us."
"He distrusts the Eldar? Surely not"
Harry decided that was enough. One of those voices may well know who had followed him though perhaps the female.
He stepped toward the entrance and stopped. There were more elves here than just the voices he had heard. Elrond's family was there including a dark-haired female elf sitting next to Aragorn that he assumed was Elrond's only daughter Arwen. As usual, Glorfindel and Erestor were included but there were several fair-haired elves sitting in the company as well, including the two blonde elves that had led the group into Rivendell. And they were nothing like Glorfindel. These were stately and cold and seemed far removed from the kindly elvin warrior despite their similarity of appearance. The conversation halted as the group realized he was there. Eyes turned towards him.
The grey eyes of the Lady that had led the procession into Rivendell locked with his own and he could feel his neglected occulmency shields being torn. Harry's eyes widened at the attack and he flinched backwards. He focused on strengthening his shields and trying to break eye contact with the elf. Just as his shields were about to crumble the familiar blonde warrior of Rivendell passed between him and the strange new elf that had captured his gaze. His shoulder's sagged in relief as the attack was broken.
"Glorfindel?" he asked shakily; grateful, though wondering why he had approached.
"Are you well, Faervel?" The elf looked concerned.
Harry just nodded slightly. The blonde elf glanced back at the company of silent and watchful elves. Glorfindel placed himself between him and the other and guided Harry to an empty place at the table beside him.
"She is Galadriel, the Lady of Lothlorien" Glorfindel addressed the unspoken question as they claimed seats at a table separate from Elrond and the leaders of Lothlorien. Conversation restarted but Harry could feel eyes following him.
"We were worried when you didn't come back with Aragorn yesterday. And he couldn't find you once you separated." Glorfindel obviously wanted to know what happened. From the quieting of conversation so did the other elves.
"I heard someone coming down the path toward Rivendell and left Aragorn to see who it was." True enough though it didn't explain why Aragorn, an accomplished tracker, hadn't been able to follow him. The only answer he could find was magic, albeit unintended magic.
"After I saw the elves pass by I started to follow them towards Rivendell but someone was following me and Cera. I heard one of them address the other as Haldir and wonder where I had gone." Also true though it begged a similar question.
"I didn't know who they were or why they were following me so I waited to return until it was dark and they couldn't follow me back." Harry said quietly and without glancing up to the contingent of blonde elves.
"Haldir is the marchwarden of Lothlórien, little one. I asked him to guard you when I saw you beside the road without escort. He would never harm you and you should not be in the woods unprotected." A voice spoke from the head table.
It was the golden haired lady of Lothlórien and Harry while not wanting to be rude refused to look up at her and risk her legimency again. "I'm sorry." It was a response that always worked with the Dursleys.
"You have no need to be sorry, little one. Caution has no doubt helped you before but no elf would harm you." Glorfindel has quietly from his side.
A/N: I truely thank everyone that has taken the time to review. You've given me some great ideas. I appoligize for not getting this out very quickly. School and life caught up with me and probably will continue to do so. I will not abondon this fic or any other that I start but updates will probably not be regular in coming. If you are follow my other fic as well it will soon be updated too.
Please feel free to leave a review or a suggestion.