Elrond sat in his study, pouring over the hundreds of invitations that he had ordered issued to the spring festivities, to be held in one week’s time.
Elven lords from Lothlorien, and the Greenwood had been invited, including the Lord and Lady of Lothlorien themselves, and the enigmatic but little known Sylvan Prince Legolas Thranduilion, who would be representing his father.
Rumour had it that there was something very special about this elf; a certain affinity with nature, his ability to sense it around him - his allies - the trees and animals of the woodland. All this of course, intrigued the Lord of Imladris, and indeed his entire household, which by now, was fairly ripe with rumour of the Sylvan forest lord, for that is how he had come to be known, although none in Imladris, or indeed in Lorien, had even met him. The Greenwood was far away, and had lived in self-imposed exile for many centuries, enough for the king to sire a child and see him well into adulthood, losing his queen along the way
It was also rumoured that no other male elf could surpass his ethereal beauty and bodily strength, for he was a renowned warrior, skilled in archery, twin swords and the long sword, master of the three arts and said to be as yet, unrivalled. Of course he had not crossed blades with Glorfindel yet, thought Elrond, become flustered at the simple thought of that spectacle.
Whatever truth there was to be had in these rumours, the house of Elrond was fairly bustling with the preparations for the Spring Festival, and the arrival of such exotic guests.
He had spoken with Galadriel a few weeks ago. She had warned Elrond that she had sensed a certain magic radiating from the Greenwood. Not a ring like the ones they themselves possessed, but something else, some natural magic that pulsed strong, but that she could not quite identify. She had confessed that it was with much anticipation that she would join the festivities, and see for herself if the forest prince had anything to do with what she had perceived, for it was not evil, – green magic perhaps.
Downstairs, Elladan lounged in the Hall of Fire, observing the preparations that had already been set into motion, albeit there were still three days before the festival was due to start, and the feasting, dancing and general merry making would begin. The elves were bursting with anticipation, and as he sat observing his surroundings, he listened to the incessant chatter going on around him…
“What shall you be donning Elaniel?”
“Ah, I have procured myself a new dress of the most stunning quality, perhaps enough to lure the Sylvan forest lord for a dance or two…”
“What know you of this son of Thranduil, Tandathion?”
“As much as any, I suppose, but if he is as fair as rumour would have him, I will endeavour to appear at my best, long has it been since I had a Sylvan between my sheets, or indeed between my legs…”
Elladan was amazed at the conjectures flying around his home, be they true or false, they certainly gave a certain perverted kind of thrill to the upcoming procedures, indeed it was all becoming fairly contagious, and he found himself wondering about this prince of the woods. Why, the entirety of his beloved people had suddenly turned into debauched, prattling perverts.
As he continued to ponder, his brother joined him on the sofa, plopping himself down with little dignity.
“Brother, what think you of this ridiculous talk? I can barely believe it… I am sure they will be sorely let down when this Legolas - thing, makes his appearance…”
“Well Elrohir, we will just have to wait and see. Have you spoken to Findel or father on the matter?”
“Nay, nor will I! This all seems fairly ridiculous to my mind. If he is worthy, I will see it in his manner, his morale and disposition, but not by renown or beauty. ‘Tis all very well and good, but not sufficient, I tell you.”
“Aye, well brother, let us visit the study all the same, for I confess to be just a little curious on the matter.”
“Come then, let us have your curiosity sated.”
With that, the two brothers left the Hall of Fire and the bustle of pre-festival preparations behind and made their way to their father’s study.
The Lord of Imladris sat at the hearth, pouring over various scrolls that had been sent ahead by many of the visiting dignitaries due to arrive as of the morrow. Diplomatic issues, petitions and invitations to trade talks, apart from the festivities; this promised to be a busy and lucrative time for Imladris, and, he hoped, an unprecedented opportunity to re-establish diplomatic relations with the Greenwood. Thranduil he had not seen for nigh on two thousand five hundred years, when Elrond had travelled to the woods to visit the ecstatic couple after the birth of their first and only son, Legolas. Never had Elrond seen such a beautiful child. Bright golden hair and piercing blue eyes set in the sweetest face that Elbereth could kindle. Elrond was surprised not at the rumours of his beauty, for he very well imagined they would be true.
As Elrond sat pondering, Erestor and Glorfindel walked through the door, deep in their own discussion.
“… come now Glorfindel, let us not get carried away by all this drooling babble going around. All our citizens, of both genders, are throwing wobblies at the prospect of this woodland sprite. It cannot be warranted, for all that is holy,” he cried, throwing his arms in the air to accentuate his point.
“Ah, Erestor, but what if it is?… surely you would be among those willing to give him a warm welcome to the Last Homely House…” replied his golden-haired friend, snickering audibly as he swaggered over to a chair, thoroughly enjoying himself.
“Glorfindel, you know well my taste in lovers, and beauty is high on my list of priorities, but I refuse to take for granted these rumours, it is all getting a little too much, for the love of the Valar!”
“Aye, perhaps you are right. However, if he is as good a warrior as they say, I eagerly await my turn on the practice field…”
Approaching the pensive Elrond, Glorfindel plopped himself down beside him and placed a light hand on this thigh.
“Elrond, what has caught your conjecture?”
“Well Findel, the same as all of Rivendell, the enigmatic forest lord, of course.”
“Oh no, Elrond, I thought I would have some peace from this incessant chatter,” chafed Erestor. “Is there no escape?” he hissed, throwing his robe-clad arms into the air yet again.
“It would seem not, but perhaps my slant is somewhat different from the rest.”
“How so?” asked Erestor, leaning forward in his cushy chair to the left of his lord.
“Well, I would have you both see this under a different light. As you know, Greenwood rears its young in the ways of war, as necessity dictates, for many warriors perish every year I would wager, if there is any truth to the darkness that is said to avail those once green woods. Imagine, my friends, giant spiders, orcs, Uruks and other foul monstrosities, lurking the bowls of the forest, no protection other than what their warriors may provide, I would wager their culture is fairly built upon warfare and the way of the warrior. Fierce they must be, yet passionate in their aim to continue living in a land besieged by darkness. ‘Tis a tantalizing mixture.”
“Your description reminds me of Gondolin, Elrond, in more ways than one. Aye, I cannot fault your conjecture, if indeed this is the case of the Greenwood,” said Glorfindel.
Funny you should mention that Fin, you know of his heritage?” enquired Elrond.
“Well, I know his father is of Sindarin origin, cousin to Celeborn, and his mother a Sinda,” replied Glorfindel.
“Aye, go on, what about his grandparents?”
“Well there is Oropher of course, Sindarin himself, and…, now, his wife I can tell you nothing about.”
Elrond held Glorfindel’s eyes, with a certain look of triumph shining in his silver orbs.
Glorfindel realised there was something he should know and did not, and was certainly not about to wait to hear it.
“Enlighten me, by the Valar, Elrond, what have I missed?”
Erestor sat, pensive, working his mind back to when he had met Oropher’s lady wife. But he could recall neither name nor heritage. He could, however, recall that she had the colouring of the Sindar, and had assumed that that was what she was.
“Was she not of the Sindar?” asked Erestor.
Elrond turned to Erestor, then back to Glorfindel.
“Her name was Adeniel, of the house of the Silver Tree.”
Glorfindel started visibly and whipped his head round to meet Elrond’s, golden braids slapping the side of his fair face.
“The Silver Tree? The silver… that was the house of Legaelair – Legolas, by the Gods he is a descendant of Legaelair?”
“Tis little known here, and much time has passed without relations with the Greenwood, but I do remember my first and only meeting with Adeniel, daughter of Legaelair, wife of Oropher and grandmother of Legolas."
“Sweet Lady, I shared many days of friendship with Legaelair - I wonder now, if this prince has been trained and instructed in the ways of Gondolin…”
“Well if there is any truth to his prowess in battle, this would not surprise me,” interjected Erestor.
Pouring themselves a glass of dark red wine, the three sat back and stared into the flames, pondering on their conversation. Glorfindel however, was dredging up his memories of Gondolin, and his relationship with Legaelair, for although he had not mentioned it to his friends, they had been close, very close, and had it not been for the fall of their beloved city, and indeed of himself, they may very well have become even closer.
As if reading his mind, Erestor looked at Glorfindel and said, “Tell us then, of this Legaelair – what was he like?”
Had Erestor picked up on it? Perhaps he had, and if that were so, well, he would not withhold the information from his two most intimate of friends.
Taking a sip from his goblet, he began to tell them of his extraordinary friendship and the nascent attraction they had felt for one another, before disaster struck and Glorfindel had died, losing track of his friend forever.
“Legaelair was one of rare beauty, my friends, indeed he was veritably hunted by both male and female suitors. Although he never took a mate that I was aware of. He must have bonded and made his family after the fall of Gondolin.”
“I would assume that would be in Lindon, where many of the survivors finally settled,” suggested Elrond.
An agitated knock sounded at the door, to which Elrond bade enter.
Cormion, captain of the Home Guard of Imladris, stepped before the three lords in full battle gear.
“My Lord Elrond, I bring ill tidings. A group of orcs has been spotted, fast approaching our borders. Though not a threat to us in Imladris, they could well be problematic to the incoming riders from Lothlorien and Greenwood.”
Glorfindel stood abruptly at the news and further questioned one of his most veteran captains.
“Cormion, how many do you estimate in the group?”
“At least 100, General, possibly more.”
“Elrond, who is due into Imladris within the next twenty-four hours?”
Elrond thought for a moment before replying, paling as he realised the answer to the question.
“Lothlorien are due tomorrow at first light, and are probably well past the threat, but Greenwood…, they are due in by tomorrow before dusk”
“Elrond,” insisted Glorfindel, “how many make up their party?”
Erestor interjected here, as he had been more involved in the accommodation arrangements for the event.
“Apart from the festivities, the Greenwood is set to re-establish diplomatic and trade agreements with Imladris and Lorien, therefore, as you know, a cultural exchange will take place, they are well numbered. However, a good number are bards, musicians, dancers, diplomats and the like. Their total number is 50, 25 of which are warriors, including Prince Legolas.”
“25 warriors protecting 25 civilians against over 100 foul abominations are not good numbers,” mused Glorfindel.
“Thank you, Cormion,” said Elrond, “I will issue orders forthwith. Take rest and repast and come again to me in one hour.”
“Yes, my Lord,” barked Cormion, and with that he was out the doorway in a swirl of cloth.
Glorfindel turned to Elrond, worry etched on his fine features.
“I will confer with the warriors, and come back to you within the hour with my suggestions.”
“Go General, and come back with your council. Erestor, to me.”
And with that, Glorfindel rushed out to meet the incoming scouts to ascertain the gravity of the situation, while Erestor and Elrond sat together, milling over their possible plans of action.
Mithrandir had been in Imladris since yesterday morning, and had spent the entire day sleeping, after which he had bathed, ate his fill, and then slept again. He had then made his way to Elrond's study, where he had been informed of the worrying turn of events.
Due to arrive this very evening was the group of rangers, and the Lord and Lady of Lothlorien with their group of thirty, would arrive in the early hours of the morning.
'All would be safe', mused Elrond, 'save the impressive Greenwood caravan'.
Another tap on the door revealed the twin sons of Elrond. Poking their heads around the heavy wooden door, they gingerly entered their father’s haven. They found him perched on the edge of his seat besides the inseparable counsellor, sharing a glass of fine wine and running over various scrolls they had opened over the table, and mithrandir standing on the open balcony.
Both twins shared a glance, silently asking themselves whether this was a good time to talk on trivial matters, and indeed, what may have happened to warrant the serious expressions on the two hunched over figures and the pacing Istar.
“Father?” they both ventured simultaneously.
“Enter my sons, joins us if you will. Erestor and I take council on an issue you should both be briefed on.”
Suddenly concerned if their father’s expression was anything to go by, they sat and poured themselves a conservative glass.
“A party of 100 orcs has been spotted close to our borders, and although they are not a threat to those already on their final approach, the Greenwood party will most likely run into them. Glorfindel is scouting for news and will return anon to issue his orders.”
Both twins shared a concerned glance, all talk of beautiful woodland warriors leaked out of their minds as they pondered not only the possible personal tragedy but the diplomatic consequences that a battle with orcs so close to Imladris could have on the nascent relationship with the Greenwood.
Elladan took the initiative, for he knew that he was also speaking for this brother, such was the bond they shared.
“Father, we will go and prepare, in case our general deems it necessary to intercept the group. We shall be back soonest.”
Elrond saw the determined look of his sons and knew there was nothing to be done about them riding out. Oh, yes he could order them to stay, but at what cost? Their mother’s plight, though long in the past, was still fresh in their minds, and he knew it always would be until, Elbereth permit, they were re-united in the Undying Lands.
“So be it, my sons,” he acquiesced, watching them leave before turning back to his advisor.
"You know, Erestor, we do not yet know what their objective is, it seems strange that they would march so close to Imladris, surely they know they have no profit to gain.”
“Aye, it worries me too, but let us wait for news from Glorfindel.”
After taking council with his captains, Glorfindel made his way back to the lords waiting in the study.
He found Elrond still in the company of Erestor, but Mithrandir had also joined them now, reclining in a winged reading chair and sucking on the end of his unlit pipe.
“Well, General, what have you ascertained?” asked Elrond, without moving from his position in front of the hearth.
“It is as Cormion reported. We should send a group of fifty warriors to intercept the group which are approaching from the West, our advance should be from the East. With any luck, the Greenwood will come in from the North, if they have had no need to alter the standard route. If you agree with my council Elrond, we should leave within the hour.”
Elrond sat, still staring off into the healthy flames of the hearth, sparing a sidelong glance at Mithrandir, who was doing very much the same thing. No, he could not let anything happen to the northern entourage, too much relied on the success of this festival, and he was determined to unite the three realms, both politically and commercially; no, it would not do for Thranduil’s heir to suffer harm so close to his borders. It would be the end of any thoughts of elven brotherhood between Sindar, Sylvan and Noldor.
The twins entered the study, fully prepared to ride out. They turned their faces to their general, openly defying him to prohibit their participation.
Glorfindel caught the expression, then turned back to look at Elrond. A slight nod from him and Glorfindel turned back to his lieutenants, giving them an accepting nod.
“Glorfindel, Elladan, Elrohir, go with the blessings of Imladris, protect our northern kin and our borders. Be victorious, and come back to me safe.”
“It will be done, my Lord,” answered Glorfindel, bowing together with the twins to the remaining two people in the study, and with that they swiftly turned on their heels and walked to battle.
Author’s notes: Set in the Third Age, this story was inspired by the characters of Legolas and Glorfindel, yet only loosely based on their canon characters, especially Legolas.
Crown Prince of the Greenwood, Commander of its armed forces, legendary warrior and the Protege of a Vala, Legolas travels to Imladris with his people for the Spring Festival with the hope of reestablishing diplomatic relations between the three major Elven Nations, after over two thousand years of isolation.
Follow him as agreements are made, friendships are forged, and love is found at last.
This is fiction (as you know!) and as such, I make no apologies for not adhering to canon. I manipulate places, names, facts and people as my stories may or may not dictate.
I make no claims, intellectually or otherwise, over the work of J.R.R. Tolkien, sole creator of Lord of the Rings and its characters. All other OC characters are mine.
Beta reader: Mindirith
Warning: the NC-17 rating applies throughout. This is an explicit story with both slash, het and group sex. Do not read it if you are likely to be offended.
The artwork is by the wonderful Vevecco. More on Vevecco's Deviant Art page.
All is set for the Spring Festival, and rumour is ripe in the Hidden Valley.