5. Chapter 5
I follow the cat into a large room, chairs, and bookshelves, and a large table covered with books and papers. There are several pieces of modern furniture, things like a Television, which I have seen once or twice before, and what I think is a computer. Photographs I am familiar with, there are quite a few in frames scattered about the walls and on the furniture. A photo of an older man and woman, maybe Bronwyn’s parents I think. Another of a red haired young man beside a military plane, Bronwyn’s dead husband. A third took my eye, of Bronwyn sitting on a beautiful chestnut horse, a young girl held on her lap. Bronwyn’s child? If so, where is she?
No answers are forthcoming from pictures of course. I am curious, but I realise that I cannot ask Bronwyn, but maybe she will tell in her own time.
The cat has seated itself in one of the chairs, and I join it. The television is on, and while the volume of the sound would be too low for a mortal to hear, I can do so clearly. The television is speaking about Egypt, a place I have been to many times. Like mortals I find the ancient culture of that country fascinating, and I sit listening to the various theories being discussed. Suddenly, Bronwyn appears on the screen, introduced as Dr. Johnson, an expert in Egyptology. In the screen, she holds up a parchment scroll, found in a chamber under the Great Pyramid, and to my shock, I recognise it as an Elvish script. One that should not have been left on Earth. Then, I think I saw it on the table! So I did, or rather a copy.
A chill sweeps through me, and I am starting to realise that Bronwyn is linked to my fate, maybe she is not the woman I have searched for, but her finding this script, and my arrival in her life can hardly be coincidence.
I hear her feet on the floor boards, and she enters the room from another doorway, her short curly red brown hair still damp from her shower, dressed now in a long blue skirt, and a loose shirt. Like mine, her feet are bare. ‘Oh here you are, I was staring to think you had left without saying goodbye’.
‘I would not do that. After all your kindness, it would be very rude.’ I reply to her.
She smiles and points at the Television, ‘look’ she says grinning, ‘I’m on TV’. She turns the sound level up, and listens intently,’ Gosh, I actually sound as if I know what I’m talking about’.
‘And do you, Bronwyn?’ I ask.
‘What?’ She asks me.
‘Know what you are talking about’, I answer.
‘All I know is the damn thing isn’t Egyptian, and it should not have under the Great Pyramid. And that I can’t translate it, well not yet’, she says.
Cautiously, I reply to her, ‘Well, I dare say someone will manage to unlock its secrets eventually’.
‘Yes, I suppose so’, she says. ‘Anyway, dessert is nearly ready, I don’t suppose after the way you put away your food before, that I don’t need to ask if you want some?’
‘No need at all.’ I change of subject suits me; I do not want to talk about the scroll again until I have time to look at it. ‘May I assist you, Bronwyn?’ I ask her.
‘If you like’, she says smiling. We go into the kitchen, and she takes the dish out of the oven, after directing me to a cupboard that I remove bowls from. I’d give you a double helping but you mightn’t like it. You can always come back for seconds’.
She starts to dish up the dessert, which is apples with a topping of some kind, it smells very nice, and I tell her so. She grins, and just remarks that I am probably hungry enough to eat nearly anything. I take my dish and spoon, and follow her back into her living room, and we sit watching the finish of the piece on Egypt, as we eat. To Bronwyn’s amusement she does not have to push me to accept seconds of the dessert, which was as nice as the smell had implied.
As she hands me back my dish, filled for the second time, she smiles, and asked ‘Do all Elves eat like you?’
‘Not usually, except on special occasions. We can go long periods on little food, but then we need to make up for it,’ I answer.
‘And let me guess, it’s been a while since you last ate a decent meal’, she says.
‘Yes, it has’.
‘How long?’ she asks.
‘A few weeks’.
‘Oh,’ she arches one eyebrow up, and looks unconvinced.
Giving in to the inevitable, for I am realising that I am in the company of determined person, I answer ‘About five, I think’.
‘And how long since you had a bed to sleep in? No, let me guess, about the same? And would I be right in guessing Elves can go a long time without much sleep, and then need to catch up on that too?’ She is staring at me again, the concerned look back on her face.
‘Bronwyn, why are so concerned about me? I have wandered this planet for longer than you can imagine. Please do not think me ungrateful, but why do you worry so about someone you only met a few hours ago?’ I stare back at her now, interested in her reactions.
‘At first because I’m a sucker for a hard luck case, and now because I find you fascinating. I meant what I said about you staying until I solve the mystery. That is, if you will’, she has sat down now, and is patting the cat. ‘Anyone Cherie takes to so quickly is worth befriending’.
She takes my empty dish and asks ‘Coffee?’
‘Yes please’, I reply. Bronwyn brings in two steaming cups, and a jug of milk, and some sugar on a tray. ‘Forgot to ask you how you like your coffee’, she says with a smile.
I took a little sugar, as I like coffee black, and I noticed Bronwyn did the same. ‘Have a chocolate’, she asks holding out a dish containing chocolates and some kinds of sweets.
I take one, remarking as I did so that it has been years since I last had chocolate. ‘God,’ she said laughing, ‘I doubt if I could survive without it’.
She encourages me to help her finish all the sweets because the neighbours will over tomorrow and will eat what we leave. ‘I will have to leave, it is too dangerous for me to reveal myself to many people’, I say dismayed, for I was hoping to stay and see where Bronwyn lead me.
‘It’s Ok, Maglor’, she says, her hand on my arm by way of reassurance. ‘These people are trustworthy, they will not cause you trouble, or I wouldn’t be willing to let you meet them’.
‘Very well, I will trust you.’ Her hand on my arm is warm; it has been a long time since another has touched me.
‘I’m going to have another coffee, do you want one?’ she asks. I answer in the affirmative, and we spend the next few hours talking and watching the Television. Finally, Bronwyn starts pulling her sofa apart, and I am surprised to see that turns into a bed. ‘I’m off to bed, here’s a pillow and some blankets, make yourself comfy. Cherie will probably sleep with you, so don’t get a fright if she jumps on you during the night’.
I thank her and bid her goodnight, and settle down on the bed. The cat does jump up on me, and I soon convince it to lay down by my chest, and I lay stroking its soft fur, listening to it purr. Soon enough sleep overtakes me, and for the first time in many months I feel safe enough to sleep soundly.
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.