Disclaimer: I do not own LOTR or the Hobbit
"Over snow by winter sown / And through the merry flowers of June / over grass and over stone / And under mountains in the moon," I sang softly as I petted the nose of a gentle mare in the stables.
"What song is that, Charlie?" Glorfindel asked curiously as he approached me. Rufus picked his head up at his approach and wagged his tail.
I looked up. "Hmm? Oh, it's just a song that Uncle Bilbo sings sometimes. It's from his journey to recapture the gold from Smaug the dragon." I gave the mare's nose one last stroke before turning to Finn. "Ready to go?"
"Only if you are, milady," he replied cheerfully as we walked out of the stables with Rufus bounding ahead of us.
"Come on," I protested as we passed under the arch. "It's Charlie, not milady."
He smirked. "As you wish...milady."
I groaned but couldn't help the small laugh that escaped me as we walked along the forest path, Rufus sniffing at everything that we passed. "So where are we going?"
He looked down at me and grinned. "You'll have to wait and see."
"Sounds like an adventure!" I replied cheerfully, skipping along. Rufus barked and danced around me, purposely trying to trip me. With a slight squeak I was sent tumbling to the ground, dry leaves scattering everywhere.
A hand appeared in front of my face, and I looked up to see Finn's outstretched arm. I took his hand and he easily hoisted me to my feet. I smiled up at him. "Thanks!"
"You are welcome," Finn replied, and with a start I realized that I still was holding his hand. Blushing slightly, I dropped it and continued on to where Rufus was sniffing at something underneath a tree. I heard Finn quietly follow me.
In a moment we were back at our usual cheery conversation. It was nice to see his walls come down and to find him enjoying himself. I was glad that I was one of the few people to be able to see his true self because he truly was an amazing person.
"Please tell me where we're going?" I begged. "I'm really curious!"
Finn laughed merrily. "Oh, no, Charlie Baggins! You must be patient. It will be a surprise, but a good one!"
"Fine, fine," I grumbled, which prompted Finn to laugh again.
"So what fine prank are you planning to create with Adasser?" Glorfindel inquired as he helped me over a large rock.
I stopped mid-step and stared incredulously at him. "How do you know about that?!"
He chuckled. "It is my duty to know about his shenanigans. He has been planning something, and I know not what! I assumed that you were involved, for Bilbo has told me much of your pranks back home in the Shire."
I slid down the rock, landing on my feet awkwardly. "I'll give you a hint; it has to do with Erestor."
Finn shook his head, mirth flitting across his face. "Ah! I suspected as much! Erestor has been the subject of many pranks by Adasser."
A roaring sound became prominent. I blinked and looked up at my companion. "What's that sound?"
He was grinning freely. "You shall see. Come!" He walked forward, and I quickly ran to keep up. Rufus easily loped in front of me, and I smiled at the sight. The trees thinned slightly, and opened up. I gasped in wonder at the sight in front of me.
A magnificent, roaring waterfall stood in front of me, leading down into a calm, clear pool. Rocks lined the outside of the pool, and moss grew on the rocks. A small, rocky shore led down to the water, and dry leaves were scattered everywhere.
Glorfindel was watching me expectantly as I turned to look at him. "It's beautiful," I managed to say.
A grin stole across his face, and he gently took my arm, leading me to a large rock. "Well, then come! Let us talk for a time."
Our conversation shifted to my life in the Shire. I told him about some of my adventures that I had with my friends, as well as some of the pranks that I pulled on the unsuspecting Sackville-Bagginses. (Bilbo may grumble a lot about the pranks, but secretly the old scoundrel was pleased about the embarrassment that the pranks brought to his hated relatives.) I had Glorfindel laughing at some points, and at others he shook his head.
"So tell me," I said at one point. "How old are you?"
Finn flashed me a smile. "Old."
"Come on!" I protested. "That doesn't tell me anything."
"Ah, but that is not the point!" my companion replied cheerfully. "The point is that we are making conversation."
"Fine," I relented, grinning. "But have you lived in Rivendell your whole life?"
Finn stared off across the water towards the waterfall. "No," he said eventually. "I used to live in a place called Gondolin."
Something clicked in my mind. Gondolin. Glorfindel. The Balrog.
Whoa, wait. Finn slayed a Balrog? I reminded myself not to make him mad. Instead of relaying what I remembered, and possibly make him go through painful memories, I said, "What was it like?"
For the next half hour or so, Glorfindel told me tales of Gondolin, and the other elves who lived there. His voice had a spark of wistfulness and longing as he spoke of his old home, and my heart went out to him. To imagine what he must have gone through...
Eventually, we wound up walking around the pool, while I threw sticks for Rufus to chase. I mostly threw them in the pool, which Rufus loved, and he would swim to get them. A while later we returned to the rock while Rufus napped in the sun, drying off his fur.
We were silent for a time, before Finn broke it. "Will you sing something for me?"
I looked up at him, and my heart fluttered at the peaceful, serene smile that he had on his face. "Sure." Thinking through the songs that I remembered, I came up with one that my older cousin, Avery, loved to listen to. I think it was called Your Guardian Angel... Not really remembering, I went ahead and started singing the song.
"When I see your smile / Tears roll down my face / I can't replace / And now that I'm stronger I've figured out..." I continued singing, looking out across the pool, but I felt Finn's eyes on me. For some reason, it made me feel a little nervous, but I determinedly finished the song.
After I cut off the last note, it was silent for a moment. The only sound was the birds singing in the trees. "That was beautiful," Glorfindel said. He sounded rather odd, but I looked up at him, and he was smiling softly.
My heart gave an erratic thump.
I wanted to stay there forever at that small pool hidden in the forest, but the sun climbed higher in the sky, and my stomach growled. Laughing, Finn helped me up and we walked through the forest, heading back to Rivendell with Rufus trailing behind us.
Hello again everyone! Another update! *rejoices*
To those of you who have read the previous chapter with Maedwen in it, I took her out. A review got me thinking, and I realized that having her in the story wouldn't achieve what I'd want to in the end. So she will no longer be in the story :)
More development of feelings on Charlie's part! She's seventeen right now, for those of you who are wondering, and we'll be celebrating her eighteenth birthday soon. Also, the story will start to again follow the book/movie's storyline again really soon, so we should be seeing some more hobbits!
Pleeeeease review? It might prompt me to put up another chapter faster :)