8. Chapter 7 - Truth Will Out
Warning : Intimate and sexual scene in this chapter
Lothestel walked so fast it deemed almost impossible for Legolas to catch up to her. She was angry and felt betrayed by her own brother. She was now caught in a tangled web of deceit and there was no way she could back out from the marriage now. The honour and glory of Mirkwood were hanging by a thread. But how could Legolas have lied to her? If he had just explained to her his predicament, she would have understood. Lothestel shook her head. Who was she trying to fool? Even if Legolas did tell her the truth, she would vehemently deny the proposal. She hated Haldir with all her heart! There was no way she could spend a lifetime with him.
Legolas was trying hard to keep up with her. After Haldir arrived at the dinner and was introduced properly to Lothestel as her fiancé, she had been quiet throughout the night. Once in a while she would give him an evil stare but Legolas pretended not to see. Nyonna on the other hand was worried at how Lothestel must be feeling right now. She knew about the proposal but she thought Legolas told her friend the truth. She too felt a bit disappointed with Legolas' actions.
Legolas was forced into a run before he finally managed to catch a hold of Lothestel's wrist, "Sister, please, wait! Let me explain. You owe me that much..."
Lothestel stopped as the tug on her wrist felt painful. She turned around to face her only brother, "I owe you? I cannot believe you Las! You lied to me and tricked me into making the worst decision in my life and you say I owe you?"
Legolas fell down to his knees, "I did not lie to you. Every time I tried to tell you that Haldir was no longer a mere warden, you always managed to change the conversation at hand. That day, I tried to tell you and you stopped me, telling me you made up your mind. I tried Lothestel. I tried my very best and it seems my best is not good enough..."
Legolas' voice trailed off. Lothestel took a along deep breath. Legolas was right. He did try to tell her about Haldir and each time she dismissed him. Alas, it was her lack of patience that placed her in this predicament. Tears fell from her eyes. The pain she felt inside was unbearable. How could she continue with this marriage? In her heart she knew Haldir was in love with another.
She knelt down beside her brother and brushed his hair, "You know how I feel about Haldir, Las. You also know how he feels about me and about Elwen. Tell me, how are we supposed to deal with this arrangement? He will never love me..."
Legolas shook his head, "Do not say that. You do not know what the future has in store. You possess all the qualities any ellon would be attracted to. Haldir is no different..."
Lothestel huffed and stood up, "There are things you do not know about me and about Haldir. Your misjudgement and my impassive actions will take a toll on my life. I will never be happy but alas, this is not something to be taken lightly. You have given your word to the Lord and Lady. As did I unbeknownst to myself. Our word is our honour. I will marry him but Las; I will not speak to you again..."
Legolas was taken aback by what his sister said, "Such a steep price for my mistake... Nay, do not punish me thus..."
Lothestel said nothing. She bent down and kissed his forehead before walking back to her chamber. She did not do it to punish Legolas. By the looks of it, she and Haldir would have plenty of problems that she would like to withhold from Legolas. She will not be able to control herself if he was being the loving and affectionate brother he was. Legolas loved Haldir too much. She would not want to be the reason for any animosity between them. It was better this way...
Legolas watched his sister walked away. His heart was breaking for in the attempt to fulfil his duty as the crown prince; he neglected his duty as a brother. Pearly droplets of clear water rolled down from his cheeks. A soft but firm hand held his shoulder. Legolas looked up and saw Nyonna. He grasped her hand tightly and silent tears fell from his eyes. Was this what was to become of the bond Lothestel shared with him?
At the very moment Haldir entered the dining area, he knew Lothestel was not expecting him. He knew in his heart, she agreed to the marriage without fully knowing who she was marrying. She was civil throughout the course of the night but said nothing. She remained quiet for the rest of the night. Haldir looked at Legolas across the table. He had a pained expression on his face and that confirmed his suspicions. The night ended in a sombre tone leaving Lord Celeborn and Lady Galadriel in questions.
Haldir walked back to his talan with a slow and steady pace. He was in no hurry to return to his home. He had numerous things on his mind and one of them was Elwen. He had yet to tell her of the news. Haldir reached the path to her talan and made his way up the walkway. The torch in front of her talan was lit up.
"She is home," he thought.
Haldir walked closer and knocked on the door slowly. He could hear hurried footsteps and whisperings. Someone was inside her talan! Moments later, Elwen came to the door wearing her night apparel and her white robe, "Haldir! What a pleasant surprise!"
Haldir could see her cheeks flushed and her breathing laboured. He could smell the scent of passion on her and he knew she was with an ellon. A faint smile formed on his face, "I assume you received the news of my betrothal to Lothestel? It did not take you long to find my replacement."
Elwen blushed, "Should I not find a replacement? You are to marry the princess of Mirkwood. Who am I to even consider taking you away from her?"
"You are wise Elwen; one of your stronger suits. That makes my coming here easier. I cannot see you anymore. My love and loyalty will remain with my wife once we are formally married. I wish you all the happiness in the world," Haldir took her hand in his and kissed it.
Elwen smiled, "I wish you the best in your life as well Marchwarden. If you ever need company for whatever reason, do think of me."
Haldir bowed and made his way back down the path. His own words chimed in his mind, wife. With the state of things, he doubted that Lothestel will truly be his wife. Nevertheless, he gave his word and he would rather die than go back on his promise. It was his duty and he will see it done.
He walked back quietly towards his talan. His thoughts were still on Lothestel. He never really cleared the air with her and now with this marriage coming, she might think that he was still in love with Elwen and agreed to marry her for the sake of duty. Well, it was for the sake of duty but some part of him wanted to spend a lifetime with her. A big part of him, wanted to love her, make love to her and have a family with her. This decision was not purely in the name of duty.
As he was reaching his talan, his eyes caught sight of his brothers, Orophin and Rumil. They were apparently waiting for him. He was gladdened to see Rumil. It has been many weeks since the last he saw him. He walked closer and smiled broadly as he approached them, "Brothers! What brings you here to my talan?"
Rumil stood up, "You owe me an explanation brother..."
Haldir managed a weak smile, "Very well... Come in and I will tell you everything. Orophin you come as well."
Orophin nodded and patted Rumil's shoulder, "Come. This discussion requires wine and cheese."
The three brothers entered Haldir's talan. It was furnished modestly but it exuded male confidence and strength. Rumil and Orophin sat near the dining table and waited for Haldir who went in to the kitchen to fetch the wine and cheese. Rumil was surprised when the news of Haldir betrothal reached him at the borders. From what he had heard about Lothestel from Haldir, he was surprised his eldest brother would agree; even if it was for the call of duty.
Each time they talked after Haldir's return from his trip to Mirkwood, he had nothing good to say about Lothestel. From his stories, Rumil found Lothestel abrasive and spoiled. It was bothering him as to why Haldir agreed to the marriage. He eyed Haldir as his oldest brother placed the wine goblets on the table, "Were you pressured into this marriage by Lord Celeborn?"
Haldir was taken aback by his brother's remark, "Why ever would you say that? I am a grown ellon Rumil. I make my own decisions."
Rumil took the goblet and emptied it whole in one sitting, "But you hate her! Every time you spoke of her, it was nothing but bad experiences. Could you really spend an eternity with someone whose sole purpose is to make your life a living hell?"
Haldir sat down opposite his brothers and gave them a reassuring smile, "It would be a lie if I say I do not feel anything for Lothestel. I do care about her and for me it is enough to make me want to spend eternity with her. Worry not for me, brothers. I am after all the Marchwarden..."
Rumil was still not convinced, "You mean to tell me, you love Lothestel?"
Haldir stroked his chin and then his lips, a smile forming on them, "I care for her. I do not know if I will love her."
Haldir was being cocky and proud. Why would he assume Lothestel be like other ellyth he had been with? Rumil shook his head. There was no way of convincing Haldir otherwise. When the Marchwarden had made up his mind that was that and there was no saying otherwise. But Rumil was truly surprised when Haldir told them of his feelings for Lothestel. When did this happen? There was so much he missed and Rumil was hell bent on finding out more!
It had been five days since they last spoke. Legolas was restless and consumed with guilt with what happened to Lothestel. Their parents were to arrive in a matter of days. He needed to reconcile with his sister or else, it will end badly for all. Legolas knew how much his father adored Lothestel.
But what was he to do? She was avoiding him and she did it well. It has been five days and Legolas had not seen even a glimpse of his sister. He went to her chamber but she was not there. The only person he could trust to help him was Haldir. Perhaps, he could knock some sense into Lothestel's head. Legolas rose from his chair and made his way to Haldir's talan which was not far away from his own chamber.
Legolas could see Haldir standing atop the platform of his home, high in the Mallorn tree. He seemed to be lost in thoughts. More often than not, he would leave his friend to his own thoughts but today Legolas' need was dire. He needed to make Lothestel understand his actions and he was hoping Haldir was one to help.
From the corner of his eyes, Haldir saw Legolas walking up to his talan. How odd, he thought. Legolas would usually visit at night and not in the evening since evenings were the times he reserved for Nyonna. He watched closely as his friend climbed the stairs and reached the platform wearing his steel blue tunic and leggings, "I am surprised to see you here Las. You usually do not visit me in the evenings."
Legolas managed a weak smile, "Indeed I do not. But I have a difficulty that needs your expert hand."
This was odd. What did Legolas want from him? "Whatever do you mean Las? You are capable in everything you do. Why would my help be needed?" Haldir asked his old friend.
"I take it you know the true story behind your marriage proposal?" Legolas looked at his soon to be brother in law.
Haldir nodded, "I figured as much. It was not easy to disregard Lothestel's expression the minute she saw me. Is that why you are here, Las?"
Haldir watched as Legolas nodded weakly, "Yes, Haldir. Lothestel has not spoken to me since that night. She swore to never speak to me again. I cannot find her, Haldir. She is not in her chamber or any other regular places she loves to visit. I need you to find her for me and perhaps talk some sense into her. Our father and mother will be arriving in a few days. It is not a pleasant thing to see their children in a cold war."
Haldir shook his head, "She hates me as much as you right now. Why would you think she would consider listening to me?"
Legolas took a deep breath, "I do not. But hope is still with me as yet. Will you help me?"
Haldir saw his friend's expression changed from worry to guilt. He could not say no to Legolas now, after he came to him for help, "Very well. I will do my best. I will find her and return her safely into your care."
Legolas smiled with a slightly cheerful smile than before, "Thank you, my friend! I know you will not let me down."
Lothestel walked along the pond near the waterfall. It was a place she stumbled upon by accident a few nights ago and since then had been her favourite place to hide. Her mind was a mess and her heart was troubled. She has been avoiding Legolas for a few days now. She had managed to elude him thus far. But Lothestel did not know how long she could keep it up. Her parents were to arrive in a few days and wedding was to proceed a few days later. By the end of next week, she would be Haldir's wife.
Each time she thought of Haldir, her heart raced. It was bothering her, how much she was affected by him. It boggled her mind as to why Haldir agreed to the proposal. She thought he hated her. It would seem that way by the way he treated her. What of Elwen? Did he only agree to this because it was his duty? Did some part Haldir felt for her? These questions lingered in her mind and made her restless.
Lothestel sat on a dead log in front of the pond. It was already night time and the stars twinkled on the surface of the rippling water. Lothestel stared at pond for a long time before finally decided that she would fancy a swim. She stood up and walked to the edge of the pond and slowly took of her clothing. She scanned the area a few times for signs of intruders and when she was satisfied she took her camisole off. She dipped her dainty toes into the water and slowly descended into the pool.
The cool liquid against her warm skin was refreshing. She swam around the pond a few times and later settled herself by a rock. She closed her eyes and enjoyed the night's breeze and the hoots of the owl. It was a blessing undeniably, not to have anyone disturb her peace. Unfortunately, Lothestel spoke too soon.
Haldir emerged from the trees from where he was hiding. He had been there since Lothestel sat on the log, watching her. It was very easy to find her since Haldir had his wardens patrol this area and one of them reported seeing her near the pond every day since the past week. He watched her sighed and watched her shook her head. She was obviously restless and Haldir could deduce that he had some part in causing it.
He continued to watch her up until the point she stepped into the pond. Yes, he watched her undress and took a sharp breath when he saw her naked form. She was very beautiful and she had no thought of how much he wanted to have her. His gaze never left her form until she finally rested near the rocks in which Haldir finally emerged from the trees, "I would not stand up if I were you..."
Lothestel opened her eyes and saw Haldir standing by the pond. Instinctively she wrapped her hand over her chest trying to cover her modesty, "Haldir! What are you doing here?"
Haldir eyed her from the top of her head to the height of her chest that was not covered with water, "Your brother was looking for you. I am here to take you to him."
"Legolas was looking for me? Why is he not here?" she asked the ellon before her.
Haldir smiled, "He trusted my skills in tracking to find you and here I am. Come, get dressed. He will want to see you soon."
"No. I would rather stay here than meet him. How can you stay so calm about this? You too were thrust into an arrangement you do not want I presume? What of this Elwen?" Lothestel asked him all the questions that were lingering on her mind.
Haldir shook his head, "You would rather have this conversation whilst naked under water?"
Lothestel blushed, "Yes! I would..."
"Very well then. If you will not come out, I shall go in and fetch you," Haldir spoke as he took of his cloak.
Lothestel stared in disbelief as Haldir stripped down to nothing but his breeches. She swallowed hard when he walked closer to the pond and stepped in the water to get to her. She tried to move but the weight of the water made her movement slow. Alas, Haldir managed to get a hold of her wrist, "Would you stop this nonsense and please get dressed?"
Lothestel was annoyed. Here they were betrothed and not yet married, Haldir was already bossing her around, "No! I will not!"
Lothestel raised her arm and bit Haldir's wrist that was holding her captive. The Marchwarden groaned in agony and held his wrist which in turn set Lothestel free. She jumped clumsily out from the water and made a run for it in naught but her skin. Haldir would have found this very amusing if not for the pain she had caused him. He turned around as fast as he could and went after her.
Lothestel only managed to run a few feet from the pond before Haldir jumped and pinned her to the ground. She struggled against the sheer weight of the warrior and felt his body grinding into hers when finally she realized that she was naked to her bones. Lothestel froze immediately and she sensed that Haldir noticed the change in her.
Haldir was panting from the chase and struggle. He lifted his head and looked at the elleth beneath him, "Why are you fond of making things difficult for others? Can you not do what you are told?"
Lothestel said nothing. She was in a vulnerable position and she did not want to give Haldir the satisfaction of an answer. Haldir lifted his body slightly but still had her wrists in his hands. At that moment he noticed her nakedness and some part of him came alive. He wanted her and there she lay, helpless and so alluring. Perhaps a kiss would not do any harm, he thought to himself...
Lothestel lowered her gaze from his deep grey eyes. Moments later she could feel his lips on hers, engaging her into a kiss. Lothestel did not know how to respond. She wanted to reciprocate the kiss but she afraid of getting hurt. She still did not know where she stood in Haldir's life and whether Elwen still had some part in it. But all was forgotten when Haldir deepened his kiss, forcing her lips apart. He relished the feel of her soft lips against his. He wanted to taste more of her, so much more.
Haldir kissed her, not once leaving her lips, rendering Lothestel gasping for air and when she opened her mouth to let the air in, Haldir used this opportunity to taste the velvety softness of her mouth. His tongue left no corner unturned as he began to feel her responding to his touch. His kisses became more passionate and sensual and he knew there was nothing she could do to resist.
Lothestel felt his tongue entering her mouth and he kissed her like never before. He was demanding and yet tender still, sending jolts of excitement and pleasure down her centre. She could not help but moan as his fingers attentively stroke her body, beginning with her neck and moving down slowly to her chest. She drew inward sharply as his delicate fingers masterfully rubbed the buds of her bosom until they stood proud with wanton. She could feel her body burning with desire and she wanted him; she wanted him so badly.
Haldir left a trail of kisses from her cheeks down to her neck, sucking and licking as he went lower. His hand gently squeezed her magnificent yet modest breasts eliciting moans and whimpers from Lothestel. Disregarding the fact that one of his wardens might spot them, Haldir moved his head lower and took the rosy tip in his mouth; rolling his tongue around them. He could feel Lothestel's body jerked upwards at this touch but soon relaxed as his ministrations brought her more pleasure. Haldir could feel his elfhood hardening with desire, the longing for Lothestel fuelling him further.
His hand instinctively travelled lower towards her centre. He gentle nudged her knees apart and slipped his fingers into her. Lothestel moaned his name and so he continued his lovemaking. She was sleek with desire and he was desperate to be one with her. He kissed her again and this time poured all his affection into his kiss, hoping Lothestel would understand. He looked deep into her eyes, wanting her permission to complete their union and as though she understood him, Lothestel blushed and nodded weakly.
Haldir rolled off her and began taking of his breeches. His gaze never left her body, looking into her eyes, assuring her that he was there for good. She never looked more beautiful in his eyes than today. Her alabaster skin shimmered in the moonlight and her passion glowed through her person. She was like a goddess and this goddess was his. Haldir came to her, now fully exposed, kneeling before her. He nudged her legs apart yet again and kissed her inner thigh.
Lothestel closed her eyes, enjoying the feel of his lips. She bit down on her own when he started to lick her thighs making his way slowly towards her centre. It was not a long wait for Lothestel as moments later; she felt his tongue licking the source of her blissful agony. Lothestel arched her back and clawed the ground beneath her. His tongue swirled around her folds, gently licking and sucking, making sounds she had never heard of before. With her own passion mounting, she begged him to take her, "Haldir... Please... It feels so good..."
Haldir lifted his body and placed himself in between her long legs. He looked into her eyes again, asking her with his own, if she was certain about being one with him. Lothestel nodded with her eyes closed, anticipating the union between them. Haldir placed his elfhood in front of her entrance and with a gaze that never left hers, tried to thrust in.
"Who goes there?"
The two elves froze. Haldir recognized the voice and knew that it was one of the wardens in charge of patrolling this area. Haldir signalled to Lothestel to stay silent before he addressed the warden, "It is I, Haldir; Marchwarden of Lorien. Forgive me Ro, please do not come closer. I am in naught but my skin. I came here to take a dip in the pond."
The unseen warden spoke back to this captain, "My apologies, Marchwarden. I shall leave you to your thoughts."
It was not until Haldir was sure the warden had left he spoke to Lothestel, "Come. We must return to the city. Your brother must be worried."
Lothestel sat up looking at with confusion in her eyes. Before she could ask anything, he turned around and answered her, "It is too risky, my dear. You are a princess and I would not dishonour you by letting you be discovered like this. Besides, now I eagerly look forward to our wedding night."
Lothestel blushed and when Haldir came to her with her garments, she took his hands, "Haldir, I do not understand..."
Haldir knelt beside her; pushing away a few strands of unruly hair from her face, "Come, get dressed. There is much to discuss and this is not the right place. Legolas must be worried sick. I promise you, we shall have a conversation before I leave for the borders."
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.