8. Unable To Move
Goran did not know where his brothers had gone. He could hear them calling each other, but could not find them. Panicking, he turned and ran. But then a branch pushed him… Wait just a blasted moment! A branch pushed him? He cried out in terror as he found himself struck again.
The fact that a tree branch had just pushed him was hard enough to come to terms with, but the fact it had pushed him straight into a giant web? Caught, unable to get free, he began beseech Mahal, begging forgiveness for what they had done to the elf! If they had only tried to accept Legolas, he might have been spared such a cruel fate as death in a spider's web!
Sensing something behind him, but unable to turn or move his head, he moved his eyes. Slowly, with a slight ticking noise, a large, hairy black leg came into focus. Goran renewed his struggles against the webbing in earnest, but to no avail. The spider circled so that it faced Goran, and he screamed as it lunged.
Blackness then came mercifully, and he sank into sweet oblivion.
Gimli had not been privy to Legolas's whole plan, apparently — and the elf was going to pay for it! He wandered about, as confused as his brothers, hearing them call out for each other, but unable to see them. Eventually, their voices ceased. He swallowed the lump in his throat and looked around him, trying to determine where he was and what was happening. Legolas had said nothing about THIS! Could something evil still be lurking in this forest? Could it have taken his brothers? He gulped and fought his fear. Am I next?
He looked around in panic and backed himself against a large tree trunk. A soft sound came from behind him — small clicking sounds, many-legged, clicking sounds. Gimli forgot to breathe.
Just turn around and see what it is, he tried to tell himself. But he found himself unable to move. He jumped a good foot off the ground when something wrapped around his arm and a hand covered his mouth. Not one to go down without a fight, Gimli began to struggle.
Gimli had not been told the whole plan, and Legolas was amused at the dwarf's reaction to his missing brothers. But now was not the time to pull pranks on his friend as well. Remembering how the dwarf had assisted him in his incapacitation, he relented.
"Stop, Gimli, it is I," he whispered into Gimli's ear. Legolas released his friend and looked at him with great amusement. "If I didn't know any better, I would think you were as frightened as your brothers," he teased.
"How was I supposed to know this was a part of your plan, elf? You just said to bring them here, not what was going to happen and there ARE still dark creatures in these woods!"
Legolas chuckled, but felt a bit chagrined. "I'm sorry. I had not put it all together yet, but it is working well so far! Come, I will show you."
They walked a short distance, and Legolas ducked into some thick bushes. Gimli followed, and the two continued on hands and feet for a few moments. Legolas stopped and parted the bushes in front of them, revealing a dwarf — a dwarf caught in a giant web.
"Legolas!" Gimli whispered, "is this part of the plan?"
"Shh," he admonished. "Yes, it is part of the plan! Watch…"
Soon, a giant black spider crept from the shadows and advanced on the unknowing dwarf before them. They watched as the dwarf screamed and fought the web. And watched the spider lunge forward only to avoid the dwarf completely and climb up the web and disappear in the trees. Goran still hung from the web, unconscious. Obviously he had fainted.
The truth of what had just happened hit Gimli, and he clutched his sides as the humor of the situation gripped him. Between spasms of laughter he managed to ask, "Amluchen?"
Legolas smiled a slow evil smile and nodded. "Amluchen. But there is more, much more. Come!"
Climbing out of the bushes they advanced on Goran. Gimli, still fighting chuckles, felt relieved he wasn't the victim of the prank this time. Legolas expertly removed Goran from the web and tied his hands and feet. Then he hoisted him over his shoulder and set off through the trees.
It was not long before they entered a clearing. Legolas deposited Goran on the ground. From the trees, two small groups of elves entered from different directions. Each group also carried a bound and unconscious dwarf. All wore knowing smiles. Gimli laughed when he realized their plan, and agreed with a nod when Legolas lifted a brow after showing him the contents of a small, leather sack.
They set to work and once finished admired the fine job they had done. Leaving the three brothers bound, they moved away to begin meal preparations. As the sun began to sink in the West, the group of elves built a fire and they all enjoyed a meal as they awaited the stirring of their 'prisoners'. Prisoners they had 'saved' from the jaws of the 'spiders'.
It was just after dark that the three dwarves could be heard cursing and… Gimli snorted. Crying? Their wails rose in pitch as they discovered the ends taken by the elves to remove the sticky webbing from long beards. All night long, the trio mourned for the loss of their fine beards that had been shaven clean by the elves.
To Be Continued…
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.