17. Chapter 17
Legolas was waking from his healing sleep, but he resisted for as long as he could. His dreams were so comforting; he did not want to wake from them. As he came to, he realized it was only a dream. Minaethiel disappeared from his life thousands of years ago but he was never able to forget her. She was his first and only love, the reason he never found another to steal his heart. They were never bound in the way of the Elves, but she held a special place within his heart. Legolas swore that he would find her one day but as the endless years passed by, she was never to be seen again. His only hope was to find her in Valinor, thinking the reason for her disappearance was that she sailed. It wasn't until he first met the Lady Galadriel, during the Ring War, that he discovered the truth of who she wad and why he was so drawn to her. She also warned him about the cry of the gull and how it would begin his sea longing if he should choose that path. Legolas never was one to listen to reason and ignored her warning. It would only lessen his time in Middle Earth so he could continue to the Undying Lands and find his lost love. This proved to be quite tragic for him. He searched every corner of Valinor but never found Minaethiel and remained alone, without a mate, a wife with which to spend eternity. Try as he might to put her out of his mind, she would never completely be gone from his thoughts.
* * *
Thranduil stood above his son and watched him as he came out of his reverie.
"Minaethiel…" Legolas whispered.
Thranduil looked at Istuion (Is-too-ee-on), his head healer and his long time friend. "He has not uttered her name in many millennia."
Istuion laid the palm of his hand on Legolas' forehead. "He has been dreaming is all. The fever seems to have broken. He will come about anytime now."
Legolas' eyes fluttered open and focused on the figure before him. "Adar, what has happened?"
Thranduil smiled. "It is alright my son. You have been asleep for some time now but your fever is gone and your wounds are almost healed. How do you feel ion nin?"
Legolas sat up on his elbows as his eyes adjusted to the light of the room. "I have been better. What happened to me? I remember stepping into the portal and seeing your angry face, but nothing after that, save for my dreams."
Thranduil chuckled to himself. "I am sorry my son. I did not know you were injured when you arrived. I saw blood on your clothes and then you passed out. I called for Istuion and we got you to the healing house. Then you apologized, mumbled something about a female, and went to sleep. You did not stir until just now."
Legolas thought about his father's words and he remembered the woman. His feelings of guilt returned to him as he thought about how he ran away without so much as a thank you or a goodbye.
Thranduil felt his reserve. "How did you become injured and who helped you?"
"I heard voices in the woods that night after traveling into their world. Some men with terribly loud weapons were about to attack her. I could not stand by and let any harm come to her. I climbed the trees and played with their minds. One of them, the leader, saw me and there was a loud explosion. The next thing I knew, my side was hot with pain and there was blood. The force from his weapon knocked me back and I lost my grip. I fell from the tree and hit my head. I do not know what happened next but when I came to, the woman was with me and the men were gone. She gave me shelter and fetched a healer. He stitched me up and gave me some terrible herbs. It looked like a small white button." Legolas made a face as he remembered the side affects of the aspirin. "The woman let me stay in her home and took care of me while I healed. But the healer was returning to examine me more closely. I managed to keep my identity a secret the first time. I did not think I would be so lucky again so I fled in the middle of the night and came back to the portal."
Thranduil looked concerned. "This woman, did she find anything out about you?"
"No, but…" He stopped mid sentence.
"Legolas, does she know what you are or where you come from?" Thranduil demanded. Injured or not, Legolas would have to confront him.
"She does not know I am an Elf. But…" He stopped again.
"Does she know how you got to her world?" Thranduil said slow and deliberate.
Legolas looked away from his father's cold stare. "I told her about the portal, though she knows not where it is."
Thranduil's face filled with worry and anger. He looked to his assistant. "Lock… no, double lock the portal." Looking back to Legolas he said, "You have behaved foolishly Legolas. Why would you divulge such information to one of their kind? Now they will come looking for us and we cannot let that happen."
"Adar, I had to tell her. We have met before. Do you remember the drowning child? This is the same person. She recognized me. I had no way of explaining why I looked the same now as I did the first time we met." Then Legolas got a far away stare in his eyes. "She understood me. She seemed relieved to learn the truth, as if it had plagued her mind for years. I did not tell her the location of the portal only that it existed on her land. I am sure she will not come looking for it. There is something very different about her but I cannot quite put my finger on it."
Thranduil looked sternly at his son. "You will not go there again. Do you understand me? We cannot risk it. These portals should have been closed a long time ago. We have searched through the years for this 'key' that will permanently seal them up. How can we find something when we do not even know what it is or what it looks like?"
Legolas' heart sunk to think he would never again visit her forest. Being there made him remember his life in Mirkwood. There was a feeling in the air that called to his being. He thought about the woman and wished he could speak to her one more time. He felt he owed her that much for saving him and taking care of him. Alas, his father had locked the portal. Only a certain incantation could open it again, but it was impossible to figure out. It was not written down and only the one who spoke it new what it was. He just had to get back there once more. He had to see her one more time.
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.