Hehehe.I was only kidding JediknightBalthasar, really I love your reviews, they're always so helpful. And with Trinea, I never said that he wasn't evil, then again I never said that he was good. You'll just have to wait and see what happens.

Arabella Thorne, I never really thought about the fact that jackals are African until you mentioned it. It's just everyone else was already using wolves and wargs, so I wanted something a bit different.



Chapter 8: A Welcome Home

The night grew cold, leaving Estel shivering in the darkness. He wrapped his arms around himself, in attempt to chase away the biting cold. If only he had a fire, than he could warm himself, but he did not carry any supplies with him.

He felt exhausted, yet he could not sleep. He glanced back over to Corean, who still lay unmoving, his eyes slightly closed, telling Aragorn that his friend was still alive. He had continuously checked the wound to make sure that all was well. Now he had time to check his own wounds.

To him nothing looked serious, but he had not the same healing skill of that of neither his father nor his brothers. At the thought of them, silent tears ran down his cheek, and he quietly wiped them away. In the distance he heard footsteps, and quickly grabbed a branch in case the jackals had returned.

But along with the footsteps he heard a call. Listening closely he tried to make out what was being said. After a moment he realized that it was his own name being called. He answered the call, calling out to whoever it was. He saw the glow of a torch, and recognized his father; his brothers following close behind.

He ran into his father's arms, holding onto him tightly. Tears now streamed down his face, whether it was from joy of being found, or worry for his friend, or both he did not know, nor did he care.

Elrond held his youngest son against him, quieting him, as he watched Elladan step over near Corean, placing his fingers on the youth's neck, checking for a pulse. He nodded up at his father, letting him know that all was fine. He pulled back the shirt that was tied around his shoulder, checking the deep gash. Elrohir moved over to help him.

Elrond gently pulled the boy away from him, so he could look at the boy. Covered with mud, and cold to the touch, he seemed to fine other than the cuts on his hand. He held the boy's face gently, "Tell me Estel? What happened to Corean?"

Estel wiped his face, trying to catch his breath. "Jackals. they attacked..Trinea." he stuttered, trying to explain everything at once. Elrond quieted him, pulling back into a warm embrace. Although he had not thoroughly explained, he had a good idea what had happened.

He watched as Elladan easily scooped Corean in his arms, looking toward his father and raising an eyebrow in question. Elrond smiled and nodded gently. All would be fine. "Let's go home," he told the young boy softly. Estel nodded, his face pressed into the soft warm folds of his coat, holding onto him as Elrond gently picked him up, and made his way home.

*********

When Estel awoke, warm rays of sunshine poured through his window. He sat up sleepily, rubbing his eyes, thinking about the strange dream that he had. Then he saw the bandage on his hand and he knew that last night had been no dream. He was about to jump out of bed when Elrohir walked by.

Seeing his younger brother awake, he went in and sat on the bed, forcing the young boy to settle down. "But I want to see Corean!" he cried softly. "Corean is fine, thanks to you. What did you do Estel?" He questioned his brother. Estel shrugged his shoulders, "I just used the Athelas plant like father taught me."

"A lesson you remembered well," Elrond said, coming into the room. He placed a hand on the child's forehead. "Well, your fever is gone, that's a good sign." Estel sighed. He didn't remember having a fever. In fact he didn't even remember getting home.

"How is Corean?" he asked again. "Corean is home, resting. In a few days the two of you can see each other again," Elrond told him gently. "Can't I go over and see him?" Aragorn pressed, sitting up. "No," Elrond told him gently. "The both of you need to rest, you both had an interesting night last night. One, might I add, that I would like to hear about when you've rested. However there is someone here to see you."

Aragorn turned to see someone enter the room, as his father and brother left, leaving the two of them alone. A smile spread across his face as he greeted the young elf.

"Trinea," he cried softly, as the elf sat down on the bed. His arm was in a cast, but other than that he seemed to be fine.

"Hi, Estel."

THE END

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