A/N: Gimli, the neglected. Gotta give my dwarfy-poo a little sugar, huh? :P *huggleglomps Gimli, carefully avoiding the axe* 'Cos we all know he's a sensitive soul beneath that gruff exterior.

Disclaimer: Gimli, to my chagrin, doesn't belong to me. Neither does Legolas, or Galadriel. More's the pity. They all belong to J.R.R Tolkien, to whom I owe a debt of profound gratitude for flinging me headfirst into geekdom. ;)

Of the Naugrim

By Thalia Weaver

This love of beauty that lies in my heart- sometimes I do not know if it is a curse or a blessing, to lust after treasure, gold, silver, jewels. My race is famous for our smiths, our hoards, our mines. And yet sometimes, as I run my fingers through a pile of gold, there is a wish within me, deep down, for something other than treasure, I know not what. But as I look towards the sea, I feel as though on the other side lies rest for my soul, my heart, my anger. Somehow I know that therein lies my destiny. I have felt this before- when I looked upon the face of the Elven-queen Galadriel. I knew then that my heart lies with the elves and that their destiny is mine.

Yet I must wait until this quest is over, until the Ring is gone. I stand with the bravest, the strongest and noblest, and we must destroy this evil that is the Ring. The one who bears it is as innocent as the day, yet his heart grows ever more burdened with this devilry. Many others look upon his burden with lust, but I have no wish to bear the torturer of hearts, this thing that leaves such scars. It is strange that I, a dwarf, should have no wish to bear this thing of beauty, of power, and yet I see the malice, the hate and horror that lies behind its gold. I watch as it destroys Frodo, rips him in two, and leaves wounds so deep upon his heart that they will never recover. No, the treacherous band of gold is not mine to bear, and as one of the race of the Naugrim- for so we were called by the Elves so long ago- I know metals; I am familiar with their touch, their feel. This Ring is twisted. The metal burns, and I know that if I touched it I would burn as well.

Legolas, I think, understands some of what lies in my heart. He does not speak often- indeed, that is a trait shared by both our kindreds- but in his voice is music that I could listen to for all time. We both understand the evil that is the Ring. And if I have caught him glancing at it once or twice, it is no crime that was not reciprocated- neither Elf nor Dwarf is perfect, and it is that imperfection that draws us together. I think, unlikely as it may be, we have forged a bond stronger than any metal.

The only gold I desire to look upon now is her hair, flowing like a river. In her eyes is peace; in her voice is compassion. I, Gimli, Son of Gloin, would fight a thousand battles for one glance from those heavenly eyes. I would travel over sea and under stone for her, and for my friend Legolas. Indeed, for all this Fellowship; the fate of all Middle-Earth rests in our hands, yet- somehow- I do not think the wise Lord Elrond has made as foolish a choice as it seemed at first.