I do not own these characters, J.R.R. Tolkien is a genius, etc. Please comment nicely!


"The fate of the world is being decided by Frodo and his friends," Arwen declared dramatically, as she marched into the room. "How can you just sit there like nothing is happening?"

"I'm not just sitting here," Galadriel said reasonably. "I'm eating breakfast, and reading the scrolls just brought to me by messenger. A true queen is always calm and focused."

"Are the scrolls very important?" Arwen's curiosity was aroused at once. The impetuous, raven-haired beauty from Rivendell seated herself close to Galadriel and looked over her shoulder as the golden-haired queen scanned her scrolls. Most were from other elves, seeking aid or counsel. A few were from wise wizards such as Gandalf.

"All of them are important," Galadriel sighed. "Yet very few can be answered with any real assistance. We are too few, we elves. And our time is growing short in Middle Earth."

"What's that big scroll over there?" Arwen snatched a roll from Galadriel's plate. She was hungry as well as curious.

"At least all this worrying over the Ring-bearer hasn't spoiled your appetite." Galadriel couldn't help smiling. Her young companion was impulsive, but her kindness and eagerness to do good were truly special. "That scroll is from Zuleika, the Sorceress of the Shifting Sands," the queen explained. "She rules in Zin Zaraboob, a small port city of fabulous wealth just south of Gondor."

"Blessed evening star, what a ridiculous name!" Arwen laughed, but when she saw her guardian frowning she immediately grew serious too. "Is this Zuleika an enemy of ours? Is she in league with . . . with him? The Great Eye?"

"Not yet," Galadriel said grimly. "But she demands a high price for her neutrality. We lose more money in trade with her each year. That scroll is undoubtedly a fresh list of goods and gifts she expects to receive by sea. The king of Zin Zaraboob was a true friend, but he died several years ago. This woman seized power after imprisoning his son Kassim, the last true prince. I'm sure he's dead by now as well."

"It seems there is sorrow everywhere, not just in our little corner of Middle Earth." Arwen was looking sad and rather thoughtful as Galadriel rose gracefully from the table. But then she looked up, her big blue eyes curious once again. "Where are you going, Galadriel? Is there a council?"

"No dramatic policy discussions today," Galadriel laughed. "I'm only going to walk among the trees. You're welcome to join me later. In the meantime, finish your breakfast and look over my morning scrolls. You too may be a queen someday."

"I will, Galadriel. And thanks!" Arwen was anxious to obey. She had overslept again! When was she going to become more like Galadriel?

She gulped down her breakfast and enjoyed a quick cup of morning brew. But then everything stopped. For hidden inside the big scroll from Zuleika there was a smaller scroll. A secret scroll. And on the scroll were just two words.


A/N: This story picks up right after my previous Arwen/Galadriel story, "Arwen The Wicked And Wise." Please give me suggestions and feedback!