21. The Battle
Celeborn was furious. "You have done ill, my Lady."
"My Lady", hardly a heart-name, was a certain sign her husband's anger was serious. Galadriel, caught off guard and unprepared to respond properly to this unexpected assault, met it with a tentative rejoinder: "My Lord?"
"Do you truly not know of what I speak?" the silver-haired ellon demanded.
Confused, Galadriel replied "No, my Lord." She had done enough ill for twenty lifetimes; what was it now? Something regarding the Enemy's Ring? Oh, how tempting it was!
"You have beguiled our Dwarven guest. Gimli will never have children now. Do not say that you are an innocent maid, and knew not what you did. That excuse worked two Ages ago, but has long since grown stale."
"You are correct, of course. But do you not see my purpose? Too long have Elves and Dwarves been at odds, thanks largely to your great-uncle's foolishness. If you know another way of helping to restore friendship between our peoples, I suggest you implement it."
The Lord of Lorien's face twitched. He suppressed a caustic remark about whose family had made the cursed Jewels in the first place. Once more his wife undertook the impossible, and seemed likely to succeed. This battle was not worth it. Relenting, he sighed. "Well, if you will blame Elu, then I shall blame Aüle."
"Indeed! Blame the Valar! I shall make a Noldo of you yet." Galadriel retorted, but now teasingly, having named the last thing she would ever wish to do. She closed the distance separating them with a kiss.
"Beloved mistress of manipulation." Celeborn managed to have the last word as he briefly came up for air, before husband and wife ended the battle in the best of ways.