14. Chapter 14
Elrond stared at his friend. "We will find him; do not lose hope yet, mellon-nin."
Thranduil nodded to his friend, as he kept praying for the Valar to protect his son from any creatures that might approach him.
Thranduil was concerned about the blood that was found on the white sateen flower. He did not know how much blood his son might have lost, or if he was injured.
Elrond stared at his friend, wishing to know of what he is thinking, wanting to calm him from the troubling thoughts that might haunt him since they had seen the blood.
"Thranduil," Elrond said calmly, hoping his voice would bring some sort of comfort to ease the heart of a king and a friend.
Thranduil stared at him silently. He could feel his heart beating faster and faster, as the feeling of dread filled him.
They rode to the area where Estel, the twins, and the guards found the passion fruit. There the entire searching group took some rest.
They sat below the trees as the shadows and the fresh air gave them some comfort from the heavy sun above them.
Thranduil was restless, and walked to his horse, fed it, and talked to it as he stroked the horse's nose softly. "We will find him, even if it is with my last breath, I will find him…"
The horse groaned at him, though Thranduil found himself staring at nothing, deep in thought. He did not feel the comforting hand of his friend, tapping his shoulder.
"Thranduil?" the voice broke through.
Thranduil turned around facing his friend, who only smiled to comfort him. Thranduil nodded with understanding, though he wished to find his son right away.
Elrond wished he could find the right word to say to his friend, he grew concerned about him, staring in the space.
Elrond walked back to his sons, "We need to move ahead, my sons. Time must be against us…"
With that the twins, Estel, and the guards rose to their feet and mounted their horses.
"Where should we head next?" Elrond asked the twins, while he helped Estel.
"Over to the dead trees, those branches that almost kill Estel." Elladan replied, with deep voice.
"So be it," Thranduil said, and then he softly spoken to the twins, "Lead the way, we are all behind you."
The wind started to blow, the birds stopped singing, and the trees were silent even the whistle of the branches from the wind seemed unheard to the elves and the little boy.
Something was wrong, and Thranduil was the first to notice it.
The orcs busted in the area where they were. All of the companions pulled their swords out, though some guards used the arrows and bows they had.
Elrond whispered to the boy, trying not to scare him, "Tighten your hands over my body and never let go, I do not wish to lose you, you are my dearest boy."
Estel nodded, and held his Adar tight. The twins were settled in front of their Adar to save him and Estel from the creatures.
Mirkwood's horn was heard as the battle as started. Each elf fought to save another, to finish the battle, and to find the princeling.
As they fought, Elrond glanced at the twins, noticing how hard they fought, brother with brother against the orcs, he smiled and his heart filled with pride.
'I need to encourage them more often…' Elrond thought, while he fought.
Then when the battle was over and all the orcs that attacked them were slaughtered, the king checked each one of his guards to see if they were hurt.
Elrond watched over his sons as well, glad they were in one piece. He shared a glance with the king, as the search patrol continued on their trip, hoping to find princeling Legolas.
Estel could hear the whipping sound of the branches, not that he could ever forget the memory of what had happened, it hunted him, and this whipping sound seemed to awaken it.
Estel started to shiver, and Elrond grew concerned about him.
Elrond stopped the horse and asked, "Estel, what is it? What is wrong?"
Estel lift his head, staring at his Adar's eyes, and with shuddering and weak voice and with pleading eyes, he replied, "I… the branch… is… near… do not let it… take me… saes… Adar…"
Elrond understood, and squeezed the boy gently on his shoulder. He called to King Thranduil, warning him about the trap of the branches, and waiting for any encounters to come.
King Thranduil and the guards around them stopped, they could hear the whipping echo very well, and Elrond explained to the remaining guards and to his friend, what had happened to Estel as he encountered the branch. They nodded with understanding, and removed their swords again, locating the corrupting root and headed to destroy the dead tree.
Thranduil walked first, and almost got hit by a branch. He ducked quickly, though he felt the sharp wind blowing past his face. Elladan, who stood behind the king, got hit. The branch shoved him hard through the air, and then Elladan could feel himself falling to the hard ground. The last thing that he heard was his Adar's voice calling to him.
Elladan could not see the fear in his Adar's eyes, or his brothers, who stood in shock of what was happening.
The branch kept a fast rhythm aimed at the king, who now crawled on the ground, and tried to cut the main root of the tree before someone else was hit.
Thranduil could hear Elrond's voice, calling with fear over the motionless body of Elladan. The king could feel the guilt climbing inside his body while he used his sword to cut the tree. He knew that he had caused his own son to run away from him, and now Elladan was hurt too.
End of Chapter 14.
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.