Okay, another ficlet done during the slow wheels of work:

What if:
Elrond decided that staying in Rivendell during the War of the Ring was counter productive (okay so, someone has to watch Rivendell, but, he (and all of us know), Rivendell will be a thing of the past shortly (Wahhh!!) and that his skills as a warrior, but more importantly, as a healer were needed in Minas Tirith. (I am figuring with all the nasty traffic about between Rivendell and Minas Tirith, he asks Gwaihir the eagle for a BIG favor)

And what if:
He decides to show up incognito: the Lord of Imladris would find too much attention directed his way. But a slightly mysterious healer from the far east named Dolengil might have better luck and prove useful in this, the last great battle for Middle Earth.
There may be more tales about him.

(and if I haven't screwed up too far, Dolengil means hidden light in sindarin)








In the Halls of Healing of Minas Tirith, things had settled down for the evening.


The last of the wounded from the day's skirmish had been tended to and bedded down. Aragorn looked around with a heavy sigh. So many affected by the Black Breath! Almost a whole troop of Rohirrim. And there had been several badly wounded Gondorians. One of whom, Aragorn glanced at a corner bed where the young soldier lay, his left thigh heavily bandaged, might not make it through the night after having the main artery in his leg nearly severed. He would need watching. And because they were short-handed right now, as most of the healers were out on the battleground in the field hospitals, he would sit by the young man.


He wiped his hands on a towel the linen maid had brought and gave her a smile of thanks. She bowed slightly and disappeared into the shadows. Stretching to pull the kinks out of his shoulders, Aragorn walked wearily across the hall through the beds of the wounded and recuperating, looking forward to a bite to eat. And maybe just a little rest before his all night vigil.


Just as he was about to leave, he noticed that the new healer, Dolengil, was still wrapping the shoulder of a soldier. The instruments that lay on the table at his side told Aragorn another embedded arrowhead had been removed.

Walking over, Aragorn said stretching again, "Neatly done Master Dolengil."
The healer looked up at him, his sharp grey eyes catching a flicker of light from the nearby candle. Aragorn blinked, still not used to the tall healer's strange attire. His dark grey robes, with an under robe of deep red, were wrapped about him in an intricate pattern, his hair and lower part of his face were also wrapped in the same material. A leather band with bits of gold sat on his forehead, keeping the head cloth in place. Aragorn idly wondered if it was the same piece of cloth or two? It was hard to tell in this light, especially now, when the only light was a thick fat candle at the injured soldiers bedside.

The healer bowed slightly and said in a well-modulated voice with an untraceable accent, "My thanks, my lord. He will recover."

Tiredly, Aragorn nodded and went past, commenting as he did, "One less for the Dark Lord to claim."
"Indeed."


Aragorn, rubbing his neck as he exited the Hall, thought back to when the healer had appeared. It was what, a week ago? Two? Shaking his head slightly, he remembered how grateful he was for the stranger's presence. How much his help was needed here in the White City. In times of war, there were never enough healers. But as to where this stranger had come from, he said nothing more than he had come from the far east. Grateful for another pair of hands, Aragorn let it go. Especially when those hands had proven over and over how skilled they were. Many lives were saved due to Dolengil's expert ministrations. If he wanted to be mysterious, so be it.

Finishing up with the wounded soldier, Dolengil put a hand on the wound and closed his eyes to speed the healing. A minute later, sighing, he stepped away from the sleeping man and gathered up his instruments. The linen maid came over from her shadowy corner and took the tray for washing. Dolengil smiled at her. "Thank you Calla for your help. You will have dinner soon, yes?"

"Yes Master Dolengil," the woman replied cheerfully. "As soon as I clean these and put them away."

Nodding, he went over to a basin of slightly steaming water where he washed his hands thoroughly. Taking a towel from the pile of clean linen stacked nearby, he dried them, glancing around the Hall. He contemplated his own meal and a brief rest before joining Aragorn in his vigil.
Smiling at the thought, the tall stranger went out to the dining hall.


Dolengil returned to the Halls of Healing before Aragorn, and went about checking the sleeping inhabitants for any signs of distress or problems.
As he went slowly through the ranks of sleeping men, Dolengil thought back to the many field hospitals he had worked in over the millennia and sighed heavily. The Light willing, this would be the last battle, the last time Sauron would arise. This battle would see the end of this Age and the start of a new one. One led by the young man soon to join him. His eyes softened at the thought, but just then a young man started thrashing in his sleep and Dolengil went to settle him.


As he pulled up the blanket over the now resting soldier, he brushed tangled hair off the young man's face sadly. So many wounded and so many dead. It never changes.


Just then, Calla came up to him. "Master Dolengil, there is a mother and child at the street door, and, well, you had better come and see." She bit her lip and looked at him askance. "Certainly I will see them, did you not bring them in?"
"Ah yes, Master. They are in the main examining room."
"Fine. If Lord Aragorn returns, tell him where I am."
"Yes, Master."
Dolengil walked gracefully through the sea of patients and went to a door at the east end of the Hall, Going down a short corridor, from which smaller rooms branched off, Dolengil enter the main examining room.


An older woman in nondescript clothes rose from the bench where she sat with a small girl. He could see she was slightly startled by his attire, but gave him an uncertain smile anyway. The girl clutched a bundle to her and wouldn't look up.
"Good evening madam. What can I do for you?" His keen senses could find nothing amiss with either the woman or child, but the small bundle...
"I-I know you are very busy sir, that is why we waited so late." The woman said in a rush. "We didn't know where else to turn."

At this, the little one looked up, her eyes full of tears, sparkling in the light cast from the oil lamp nearby.
Dolengil immediately knelt in front of her and said softly, "May I see?" Reaching a hand out to the small bundle, the little girl pulled it away from his touch and crowded against her mother's leg.
"Come Jonna, let the healer see."
"I promise I will be very careful," Dolengil reached up this time and brushed the little girl's hair back, soothing her fear. Wordlessly, she held out her bundle, which Dolengil took and gently lay on a nearby examining table high enough for him to stand at.

Unwrapping the ragged cloth, he found an injured medium haired striped cat.


"I know, I know, it is just a cat! There are no ferriers in the city with time to see him and, and well, I had to try." The mother herself was almost in tears.
"Madam, I do not mind. Though I will admit to having had little experience in the healing of animals. But I will do what I can."

The little girl spoke up. "His name is Thomas. Tiny Thomas, but because he has gotten so big and furry, I just, just call him Fuzzy." And then the tears came out in a big hiccupping flood. "Please, he is hurt bad! He fell from the roof and hit a flower pot going down! I was very, very careful when I picked him up---" The mother came and put her arms around the sobbing child and held her in the folds of her cloak, rubbing her back.

Dolengil, examining the cat through the girl's storm of tears, discovered only a broken leg. There might be some internal injuries, but the animals breathing was sound and not breathy. He felt carefully through the soft fur and found nothing further.


"I will need to get a splint and some bandages. I shall be right back."
He bent to the little girl, his bright grey eyes catching her attention, her sobs easing off. He stared at her until she was calm again and took her hand. "You handled the situation well, Jonna. Thomas is going to be fine."

Suddenly shy, she turned her face towards her mother's leg, saying a muffled "thank you." She squeezed his long fingers and he stood and went to the supply room. Gathering what he needed, he returned to the room and while the anxious mother and child watched, he splinted the cat's back left leg. Laying a hand on the beast briefly, he sent a wave of healing energy through the animal to knit up what internal injuries there might be.
Wrapping Thomas back up in the scrap of blanket, he handed him back to the little girl. "He will sleep for the rest of the night. Tomorrow morning he will probably be anxious about his splint." He held out a small bottle to the mother. "A little of this in the cat's water will calm him. He needs to keep as still as possible. You may come and see me if there are any problems. This hour of the evening being best, as you surmised."


The woman nodded and put a hand on his arm gratefully. She whispered to the little girl quickly. Jonna came up and hugged him swiftly and then went and stood by the door, waiting for her mother. "Thank you again Master. I, we're very grateful to you."
"My pleasure madam," He opened the door to the street. "Safe journey home."
The woman nodded; little Jonna's attention was all for her cat as they left.


Sighing, Dolengil cleaned up the supplies and went back down the corridor to the main Hall, leaving the supplies in a basket to be put away. As he went to check on the soldier with the shoulder wound, Aragorn returned.
"All well Master Dolengil?" Aragorn called out as he went to check on the man with the near-severed artery.
"Yes, all is well," Dolengil smiled at the weary back of the next King of Gondor and added quietly under his breath, "my son."





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