5. The Rescue
Legolas half-carried and half-dragged Gimli over to lean against a pack, leaving Maedhros to guard the cave mouth. Hurriedly he dug through his small pack and produced a long strip of cloth and a flask of water. Crouching next to Gimli, he gently pulled away the ripped leather, and began to clean the wound, wincing at each hiss of pain from the dwarf. When he was finished, he began to bind the leg. The bleeding had slowed and was only a sluggish trickle of red now. Suddenly a clamor ensued outside the cave and he heard gruff cries in a strange tongue. The whimpers and growls from the Wargs grew in volume and suddenly stopped.
Gloin thundered down a small rise and nearly collided with a large furry body. He heard a growl and plunged his axe into the Warg’s belly. Whirling, he beheaded another, crying,
“Baruk khazad! To me! To me!” The Dwarves fearlessly plunged into the Wargs’ ranks from behind. He glimpsed a tall white shape on a hillock locked in combat with one of the creatures briefly, but paid it no heed in the heat of battle.
Gloin swung his axe and took out the fifth Warg that was foolish enough to stand in his way, the keen steel biting deep into its neck. He turned to deal with another, only to find that there were no other Wargs left. The plateau was strewn with the corpses of the Wargs. He counted nearly three score of the foul things.
Gloin swept the scene before him with his eyes, looking for his son, but to no avail. In the faint light from the fire and the growing dawn, he saw many Elves standing above Warg-bodies, shoulders slumped wearily. Also on the ground were the torn bodies of two Elves.
One of the elves came towards him. His face looked vaguely familiar, but Gloin couldn’t recall where he had seen the elf before. He dismissed it as unimportant and stepped forwards, still clutching his axe.
“Who are you that wander in our lands and where is my son Gimli?” Gloin demanded. The elf bowed slightly.
“I am Maedhros. Your son was wounded and is within the cave. My brother is tending him.” Gloin brushed past him and hurried into the cave. There was his son, lying propped against a pack, and an Elf was kneeling next to him. With some resentment, Gloin recognized him as the son of that Elven-King of Mirkwood. Apparently, the elf-Legolas, he recalled from some hidden memory- had just finished binding up Gimli’s leg.
All this he observed in a moment as he started forwards.
Legolas wrapped the bandage around Gimli’s leg for the last time. He was tying it off when he heard unmistakable heavy steps. Glancing up, he saw a Dwarf framed against the growing dawn. He immediately recognized him. Last time he had seen Gloin son of Groin, he had been standing as a prisoner before Legolas’s father.
Gloin hurried forwards.
“Gimli! What are you doing here? How badly are you hurt?” Gimli attempted to sit up, but Legolas pushed him back down.
“Gimli, DON’T MOVE. I will sit on you if I have to. That wound must heal, and it won’t if you keep on trying to rise.” He turned to Gloin.
“I am afraid that he is badly wounded. We need to get him somewhere warmer and better situated to tend him.” Gimli glared at Legolas.
“Nonsense. I am perfectly capable of moving. Don’t be ridiculous.” Legolas shook his head in exasperation at his friend.
“I am not the one being ridiculous, you are! That wound is large, and too deep for my liking. We are going to take you somewhere where you can rest and heal. Now stop arguing.” He turned his attention to Gloin, who was trying hard to keep from laughing at the way Legolas subdued Gimli. This was a strange pair before him.
“Can we take him to a better place?” he asked. “He needs rest and some tending before he can heal.”
“The Mountain is little less than half a day’s march from here,” Gloin replied.
“We might reach there by noon,” Legolas mused, “after the other wounded are tended as best we may. Though Gimli must be carried.” Gimli began to protest angrily, but was cut off by a sharp glare from Legolas. Muttering something under his breath that did not sound like a compliment by any stretch of imagination, he grudgingly subsided.
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.