9. Abandoning Reason For Madness...or Love
Legolas heard Aragorn’s call and looked down to see him standing underneath the tree. “We’re fine Aragorn. I was just showing Rowena the view of the city from up here.”
Aragorn smiled. “Of course you were. Would you mind releasing her? Gandalf has been waiting for her in the archives for quite a while.”
“It would be my pleasure as soon as I can get her back on the ground.” Legolas turned to Rowena. “Are you ready for the journey back down?”
“As long as you come back with me,” Rowena replied.
“I wouldn’t do anything different.” Legolas slowly led Rowena down the tree where Aragorn was waiting for the both of them. When they reached the ground Legolas allowed Aragorn to take Rowena inside, but not before giving her hand a squeeze and a peck on the cheek.
Rowena followed Aragorn toward the archives where Gandalf had been patiently waiting. When she arrived at her destination, she saw Gandalf sitting in a large chair with another one facing him. He motioned for her to sit in the empty chair, which she did. Aragorn gave her a friendly smile before leaving the Istar and the Elf in the dark and damp. “Well my dear, I’m delighted that you actually decided to attend to your studies,” Gandalf said teasingly.
“I assure you Nimandir that I meant no disrespect. I was having breakfast with Legolas and time just simply got away from us.”
“He certainly has that way with time. Returning to the subject at hand, this will be different than what you would consider schooling. I want you to be interested in what you’re being taught, so you will be the one to decide where your learning takes you. Go ahead, ask me anything. If I cannot answer it myself, I am positive that the answer lies somewhere within these walls.”
Rowena’s eyes shined with the anticipation of just asking her first question. “Tell me about the Eagles Nimandir. They are said to be great friends of both elves and men alike, are they not?”
“Yes they are. I remember when they rescued Bilbo Baggins, myself, and the company of dwarves we traveled with on our way to the Lonely Mountain. Eagles have always been there to help when they’ve been asked.”
“And what of Bilbo? What happened to him after you were rescued?”
“That’s quite a tale Rowena, are you sure you want to hear it?”
Rowena, at first, was delighted to hear about the tale of Smaug and the treasure under the Lonely Mountain, but she soon became bored and didn’t have the heart to tell Nimandir to stop.
Soon Rowena let her mind wander to other things, things that involved a certain elf. She let her mind return to that morning and her escapade with Legolas. She remembered the tenderness that Legolas showed her and the care that he gave her. Soon the memories were turning into almost a recreation of the moment. She no longer smelled the dust of the archives and instead smelled the freshness of the outdoor air. She didn’t see the books but instead saw the river from the view of the tree.
Suddenly a voice broke her concentration, a voice that wasn’t the voice of Nimandir. “Someone should be paying more attention to their studies.”
A small smile broke across Rowena’s face. “Maybe someone should rescue me from them. Nimandir is going on about dwarves and dragons and other nonsense.”
“Nimandir’s telling you stories? Has he told you about when Bilbo visited my father?”
“He probably has, but my mind was on other matters.”
“I could tell. You have such a gift with dreams little one, so focused you were on your daydream that I began to see it myself. Only the Lady of the Golden Wood has that effect.”
“Then I must be in high respects. Please Legolas, would you come and rescue me?”
“I’m afraid I’m not at liberty to leave my post. Aragorn and Faramir have asked my opinion on dealings with my father’s realm. But take heart, your torture will soon be at an end.”
“Thank you dear one, I will. Go attend to your duties and I will attend to mine.”
“Be brave A’maelamin [my beloved]. I will come for you as soon as I can.”
Soon after Legolas spoke his words, his presence left Rowena’s consciousness and another voice came to her ears. This time, it was the voice of the Istar. “Eararma? Have you been paying attention to anything I’ve said?”
“I’m sorry Nimandir, I haven’t. I apologize.”
“It’s no matter, it was a long-winded story anyways, even Bilbo didn’t tell it much and he loved telling stories.”
Rowena and Gandalf went on with the questions and answers for the next few hours, and this time Rowena wasn’t distracted. She found it a memorable experience to scour the archives with Nimandir for information on Men long since dead and buried.
True to his word, Legolas came for Rowena and found her with her nose in a book, with Gandalf in the same position as she. “What trinkets of knowledge have you been searching for?”
Rowena looked up and smiled. “We were searching for information on Amroth, Lord of Lorien. He was the Lord before Celeborn and Galadriel became Lord and Lady of the Wood, correct?”
“Ay, that he was. All he ever did was serve the people of Lorien. It was a loss to elven kind when he was called to the Halls of Mandos.”
Gandalf turned to Rowena. “I think we’ve had enough bantering for one day. Why don’t you go with Legolas into the sunshine like elves should be. I’ll be down here for a few minutes longer if you need me.”
Rowena kissed Gandalf on the cheek. “Thank you Nimandir. Today has been a very pleasant experience.”
“As it was for me my child. Go on now.”
Rowena rose from her chair and took Legolas’ extended hand. They soon made their way up the winding stairs to see the sunshine peeking through the windows of the main floor of the castle. When they reached the landing, Rowena turned to Legolas. “Can we go riding today? I haven’t seen Shadow since the day before yesterday.”
“Of course we can. It would be a pleasure.”
“I’ll need to change out of these clothes, royal dresses are not meant for the Wild.”
“No they are not. Go ahead and change; I’ll wait for you here.”
Rowena started up the stairs, but not before she wrapped her arms around Legolas’ neck and kissed him on the cheek. “You are so good to me.”
“I do try. Go on now, or we’ll never make it in time.”
So Rowena went up to her room and changed back into the traveling clothes she wore on her way to the White City. When she looked at herself in the mirror, she looked like a wood elf except her clothes were a milky white and beige instead of the greens and browns that Legolas wore.
When Rowena finished, she quickly made her way to the bottom of the grand staircase where Legolas waited for her. When he saw her come down the stairs, he smiled. “Are you ready?”
“I am now. Lead the way Legolas, I am more than eager to have the wind in my hair.”
Legolas and Rowena soon found themselves in the stable of the Citadel. Rowena soon found Shadow and ran up to meet her. The horse was delighted as well, giving its owner a welcoming nudge. “Such a good girl,” Rowena said to her steed. “Have they treated you well?” The horse nodded its head in response.
“Your horse understands you,” Legolas wondered aloud. “How is that possible?”
“She is a descendant of the Mearas, like Nimandir’s Shadowfax. She was a wedding present from King Eomer of Rohan when he married Imrahil’s daughter Lothiriel. I was a member of the wedding party and so accompanied her to Edoras. I found myself in the royal pastures, and Shadow found me as well. We have never been parted since. To mark the words of a wretched creature, she is precious to me.”
“I can see why you value her so much. My horse was also a present of Eomer, but under not so pleasant circumstances.” Legolas found his own horse across from Rowena’s. “Arod has been with me through long journeys and wars; haven’t you?” Arod’s eyes were seeing, but didn’t have the understanding that Shadow’s possessed. “Good boy.”
It didn’t take long for Rowena and Legolas to bridle their horses and be on their way. They didn’t saddle them, because as elves, they didn’t see the need to be set apart from their steed. Traveling through the lower six circles of Minas Tirith; they received strange looks from the locals. It wasn’t every day that they saw two elves traveling alone without some sort of escort.
It took some time, but soon Shadow and Arod were galloping across the Pelennor toward Osgiliath and Ithilien. Legolas could see the joy in his riding partner’s eyes and hear the pleasure in her laugh. It certainly was the opposite of what had happened on that same ground nearly three decades earlier. It was hard, but he put away the pain he felt in his heart and tried to enjoy the sound of Rowena’s laughter.
Soon they had left the Pelennor and the Rammas Echor behind them and entered the forests. Legolas was glad that they were back among the trees. Minas Tirith was a wonderful place, but it could never live up to the forests that he had lived in all his life. He loved the forests more than anything, well…almost anything. Legolas turned to Rowena and smiled. “I hope that was enough wind for you.”
“Oh it was Legolas. I’ve always loved the wind in my hair, although it gave my handmaidens the fear of death when they would have to brush it out. Usually I would just do it myself.”
Legolas jumped off his horse, lifted Rowena off hers, and set her on the ground. “I’ve seen worse cases than this.” Legolas ran his fingers through Rowena’s long dark hair. “Have I ever told you how beautiful you are?”
“Maybe,” Rowena replied with a coy smile. She began to walk off but then soon turned around. “But I would love to hear it again.”
Legolas followed her and when he reached her, he leaned in closer to whisper in Rowena’s ear. “Lle naa vanima.” [You are beautiful]
She wasn’t sure if it was Legolas’ closeness or the words he just spoke to her, but Rowena shivered with what could only be described as ecstasy. “Say it again Legolas,” Rowena replied almost breathlessly.
And he did, over and over, as he drew Rowena into an embrace. He started to kiss the ear he was whispering into and moved lower down her neck, across her jaw line, and finally ending on her lips, which were more than willing to receive his affections.
He was leaving her breathless. Rowena had never experienced this kind of closeness with anyone before. She began to intertwine her fingers in his hair and pull him in closer, if that was possible. She also began to hear him in her thoughts, like she had earlier. “I would say that you’re beautiful as well, but you’re so much more than that.”
Legolas continued his ministrations. “Than what am I sweet one?”
“Strong, caring, forceful at times…but amazingly perfect.”
Legolas pulled back, which caused a small whimper to escape Rowena’s lips. “Forceful? I don’t understand. Do you not want this?”
Rowena stopped Legolas’ questions by placing a finger on his lips. “Be silent prince, for you’re asking questions that don’t need to be answered.” She soon replaced her finger with her lips and began the attack her partner had originally started. “You worry too much.”
“I have good reason. I don’t want to hurt you, you’re too valuable.”
“I thank you for your concern; but I’m a big girl, I can take care of myself.”
Legolas could only smile as Rowena started to play with his warrior braids. Soon the braids were just a memory as she took them out, leaving nothing except a head of flowing ashen blonde hair in her wake. She traced her fingers through those silken strands before they found their way to his arms. She had never noticed before how muscular they were. She looked back into Legolas’ sapphire-colored eyes and only saw love, tinged with a hint of laughter. “And what do you find so amusing?”
“Only that you’re acting like I’m a prized stallion that you’ve just acquired.” Rowena’s eyebrow rose at that remark. “And that I don’t mind that at all…”
Legolas took both his hands and brought Rowena’s forehead to his own. “You also are precious to me, little one. Tell me where to go and I will follow.”
“Just hold me Legolas, just hold me.”
And so he did. He cradled her head in his hands while she rested her head on his shoulder. To Rowena, it was the most perfect moment she could ever imagine; to be in the arms of the one she loved. He smelled of the forest; the trees, the earth, like the essence of his woods had permeated his soul. All she did was breathe it in and let it fill her senses.
She felt so small in his arms, like one false move would shatter her. Just her complete willingness to give herself freely to him melted his heart. They were like two pieces of a puzzle coming together to form an ideal union of body, mind, and spirit. Her body fit perfectly against his, and he knew it. He knew this was much more than just a physical relationship, it was…everything beyond physical, beyond mental, beyond words. It was…perfect.
“I don’t want to go home,” Rowena said in his ear.
“Neither do I little one, neither do I.”
“Can we stay like this forever?”
“Until the end of the world.”
“People will wonder where we are.”
“They know I’m with you. They know I would never let anything harm you.”
“But I wouldn’t want anyone to worry…we should go back.”
“There you go again, thinking of others before yourself.” Legolas stole a kiss from his dark-haired beauty. “We’ll go back.”
The two found their horses where they had left them. Before she mounted Shadow, Rowena ran her fingers through Legolas’ hair one last time. “You know, your hair will be as tangled as mine when we return to the Citadel.”
“Well then I’ll just have to find someone to brush it out, won’t I?” Legolas mounted Arod as fast as lightening and was soon galloping away, with Rowena following suit, desperately trying to catch up.
This is a work of fan fiction, written because the author has an abiding love for the works of J R R Tolkien. The characters, settings, places, and languages used in this work are the property of the Tolkien Estate, Tolkien Enterprises, and possibly New Line Cinema, except for certain original characters who belong to the author of the said work. The author will not receive any money or other remuneration for presenting the work on this archive site. The work is the intellectual property of the author, is available solely for the enjoyment of Henneth Annûn Story Archive readers, and may not be copied or redistributed by any means without the explicit written consent of the author.