TITLE: Prompt #160: Blood (499 words)
AUTHOR: Marethiel/ThinkingLady
RATING: PG-13 (for potentially disturbing images)
CHARACTERS: Aragorn, Elladan, Elrohir, Legolas, Elrond
DISCLAIMER: Don't own 'em, drat it. Many thanks to Professor Tolkien for creating these wonderful souls to populate my imagination.
BETA: The incomparable and generous Cairistiona, who turned on a dime to help me out here. Thanks, dear one!

I hurriedly rip off my tunic, tearing strips as rapidly as I can. Elladan has done the same, using a longer strip and slipping it rapidly around your thigh while Elrohir grips your gory hands, ready at his twin's order to wrench them away from your wound.

"Now!" Elladan commands, not even acknowledging the gore spraying him as he wrenches tight the knot. Your strangled, bit-back scream all but rips out my heart. Anyone looking at your brothers would think they were unmoved by it, their faces are so stony and concentrated. I know better.

I am grateful; you have lost consciousness. Your face is white, though. Far too white. "So much," I whisper.

Elrohir glances at me, questioning.

"So much blood."

"As long as it spurts, his heart beats," Elladan growls, checking the rest of you.

"Our father has aided wounded elves and men with this injury before," Elrohir reassures, as much for himself as for me. "Come. While Elladan finishes, help me fashion a litter."

Reluctantly, I nod, gripping your hand gently. "Hang on, Estel. We shall bring you to your father," I whisper, not even caring how my hands are now covered in your blood as well. Valar! It was a simple hunting trip! There were no orcs, no trolls. Naught but a maddened boar! Surely three elves and a human should have faced that down without injury?!


Unfortunately you awaken on the way back to Imladris. Elrohir does his best to soothe you as Elladan and I carry the litter, and you bite your lip trying as hard as you can to stifle your groans of pain. "Sorry… such a … weakling…"

"Do not feel a need to show bravery among us, brother," Elrohir chides you grimly. "If it hurts, yell."

"I… cannot," you pant. "Once I … start… I fear... I shall not… stop…"

Elrohir grips your shoulder in comfort. "You may scare away all the game you wish now, Estel."

A gurgled laugh-cum-sob can be heard from you.


Word of your plight has reached Elrond. At the steps of the Last Homely House, he stands like a coiled spring, his outer robes stripped, outwardly showing naught but a healer's concern. Those who understand him know it is all he can do not to run to the litter. He calls back to the attendants to get the doors open and clear the path, listening as Elladan pants out your condition. Elrond nods and clasps your hand, walking beside the litter. "All will be well, child, relax."

"…Ada," you murmur weakly.

Elrond doesn't take his eyes from you as he dictates ingredients for a tisane. I recognize some of the herbs; he wants you asleep for the work he needs to do. One healer melts away from the group, heading toward the apothecary.

The others seamlessly transfer you from the litter to the table, and we step back.

Now, three elves who love you stand helpless, watching, while a fourth strives to save your life.