21. Chapter 21
People are crowded around the stranded whale. As we move through the crowd of people I notice some are staring at Maglor, for what reason I have no idea. He looks fairly ordinary tonight, his hair tied back in a ponytail, and like me wearing old jeans and a T-shirt. Nicky is talking her head off, terribly excited about getting close to the whale.
‘Will we get to touch the whale?’ she asks me at the top of her voice.
‘Only if you keep your voice down. Yelling will upset the whale. We have to be quiet to keep it from getting upset, and maybe making it sicker’, I say.
‘Ok,’ she says in a much quieter voice, then ‘What have we got to eat?’ this last was said to Maglor.
‘We shall see’, he replied to her, sitting down and going through the things he carried. He gave her some sandwiches he’d made, and Nicky ate like she was starving. She ran off to say Hi to some girls she knew, and Maglor watched her with a big smile on his face, as he repacked the food he’d brought along.
‘Where can I put our things?’ he asked me quietly.
‘Everyone seems to be putting their things over there, so I guess we’ll do the same, then take a look at the whale’.
As we walk down the beach to look at the whale, Nicky and two of her friends come tearing up. ‘We’ve seen it, it’s a boy, and it’s tail is hurt. A vet is coming!’ Nicky yelled.
‘Ok, did anyone say where the vet is coming from?’ I asked, but the girls didn’t know. They raced off again, after telling me someone called Susan was looking for me.
We are close enough to see the whale clearly; it is the smaller, younger whale that we saw the previous night. Its tail is badly injured, from what looks to be a shark’s bite.
Maglor is deeply concerned by the whale’s injury. He looks for a long time at the whale, making no attempt to touch the animal in any way. Many people are looking hard at Maglor, for not only is he tall, and remarkably handsome, there is a subtle air of authority about him, not surprising as he said he was once a prince of his people, and trained to command others.
An older woman, her hair silver, has approached Maglor, and is speaking to him. Smiling, I turn my attention to the whale, and note that the tail injury has been covered with wet towels to keep the sand out, and that people were taking turns wetting the whale with water from buckets. Children were let in close occasionally to look at the whale, but of course not being allowed to touch it.
‘Bronwyn, this lady is Susan Myers, she has been looking for you,’ came Maglor’s soft voice beside me.
‘Dr. Johnson, it’s good to meet you. I’ve been in charge, but I’m only the head of the local wildlife rescue organization, and this is the first time I’ve dealt with a stranded whale, so I’m rather pleased to see you. Have we done everything correctly?’ said Susan.
‘Please, don’t call me Doctor. My name is Bronwyn, Susan. And yes, you and your people have done everything correctly. The animal seems well cared for, and now all we can do is wait for the Vet to take a proper look at its injured tail.’ I smile at Susan, for she was nervous, ‘You can take a well earned break if you like’.
‘Thanks, I will. If you or your friend are interested the children have a camp kettle boiling on their fire if want a hot drink. That’s where I’ll be if you want me.’ She is watching Maglor in a speculative way, ‘strange fellow, your friend’.
‘He is a bit different, but nice, he has a wonderful way with animals, that’s why I brought him along. He seems to be able to make nervous animals settled.’ I answered, looking at Maglor as he walked along side the whale, his fingers trailing along the animals side, then he stopped by its head, and laid both hands flat on the whale’s head.
Susan watched as intently as I did, ‘Does he think he’s communicating with it?’
‘Maybe he is’, I said, wondering if he was.
Susan gave a shrug, and went to get her hot drink; I saw her standing by the fire, still watching Maglor, as I examined the whale again. Personally I thought there was little chance of sending the injured animal back into the sea as it was, it almost certainly couldn’t swim with a tail injury like that.
I walk up to where Maglor stands by the whale’s head, checking the animal for other obvious injuries at the same time.
Maglor is still standing by the whale, but has finished whatever it is he was doing. He smiles at me as come up to him, and I notice that he is looking very pleased with himself.
‘Why do you look like the cat that stole the cream?’ I ask him
‘I have speaking with this animal’, he said, his voice too soft for the others to hear, ‘He is the smaller of the two we saw last night, in fact he remembers us!’
‘Remembers your singing’, I say, and he smiles, nodding, ‘but he does remember you too, and was surprised to see us both,’ Maglor replied
‘Did you ask how he came to be injured?”
‘A shark attack as we thought, he could not swim properly, or control his direction at all, and so he accidentally swam up into the shallow water, and here he is, wondering what we are going to do with him. I said I would ask you’, Maglor said.
‘If he really can’t swim, I think he’s still small enough to be moved to one of the Marine Institutes huge saltwater tanks until his tail is healed, but we have to wait for the Vet to make a proper assessment of his wounds’, I say.
‘I shall tell the whale that’, he said and went back to the animal to do just that.
While Maglor is talking to the whale again, the Vet arrives. As it turns out, he is the staff Vet from the Marine Institute, and after examining the whale, agrees with me that it can’t possibly be put back to sea in its current condition. It is decided a huge low loader will come in, and an attempt will be made to shift the whale to the Marine Institute’s tank, where it will be properly treated.
‘How’d you get on?’ I ask Maglor, who had been listening to the conversation between the Vet, Aaron Donaldson, and I, and I had no doubt repeated everything to the whale.
‘He understands what is going to happen, but he is very frightened’, Maglor replies.
‘Sensible of him, I’d be scared too’, I say.
‘Do you think it is possible for me to travel with the whale?’ asks Maglor, ‘I can talk to him, and help keep him calm’.
‘I’ll do what I can, but I can’t promise anything’, I say. ‘Can he understand what we say?’
‘Yes’ was all Maglor said, once again it appears he has slipped into silent mode. I wonder what else the whale and he said to each other, for Maglor does seem worried about something.
The Vet is indicating that he wants to speak to me, and I go to see want he wants, ‘I’d like to ask for you to stay, and help with the transfer of the whale to the Institute. By the way, someone’s named the whale George, Dr Johnson.’
‘Call me Bronwyn, and I if know anything I’ll bet that my friend Nicky is behind naming George’.
‘The blonde girl? Over there?’
‘Uuhh, yes, that’s her. Anyway, when’s the truck due?’
‘In about an hour. We’ll need people to help get the lifting equipment in place, and keep George cool, and we’ll need to keep him as calm as possible.’ Aaron is watching the activity about George, and has noticed Maglor still standing by the whale’s head, his hands again flat against the animal’s skin, but this time he was singing softly, ‘What on earth does that guy think he’s doing?’
‘It’s Ok, he’s a friend of mine, he’ll be calming poor George down. I’ve seen him do some amazing things with a couple of wild fillies I own, and he’s very good at calming and settling animals too. That’s why I brought him along’, I answer.
‘Hhhmm, well I think I’ll just examine George again’, said Aaron as he walked towards the whale.
Examine the whale indeed! Aaron is going to check out Maglor. At first I feel a bit concerned, but then figure Maglor’s a big boy, I’m sure he can handle talking to a suspicious Vet. Aaron quickly finishes his examination of George, and has introduced himself to Maglor. The two are talking, Maglor seems very relaxed as he talks, his hands still on the whale.
After a while, Aaron comes to me, a stunned look on his face. ‘Who is he?’ he asks pointing back at Maglor.
‘Just a guy. No one special.’ I answer, looking at Maglor, who still seems very pleased with himself.
‘He’s managed to bring the stress level waayy down on George by singing to him, of all crazy things. I don’t understand it, and I don’t want to, but when we shift George, your friend has agreed to stay with him until we get him to the Institute.’ Aaron is staring back at Maglor with a curious expression on his face; I would almost say he’s jealous of Maglor’s abilities.
‘Well, I don’t understand what he’s doing either, but as long as it works!’ I answer.
I wander off to get some coffee, and check on Nicky, who I find happily making a giant sand castle with some other kids. I get two cups of coffee, and head over to Maglor, who takes the coffee gratefully.
‘What are you up to?’ I whisper to him.
Without taking his eyes from the whale, Maglor takes my left hand in his right, and answers with his mind, *talk to me this way, I do not want others to hear*
* So what are you up to? And don’t say nothing * I reply to him, slowly, as I am not used to communicating this way.
* Very well, I will not say nothing*
*Well, what are you doing?*
*He says he knows what happened to the Silmaril I threw in the sea, he knows where it is*
Stunned I stare open mouthed at Maglor, who is smiling at me.
* You want to go find it, or a least look at it, don’t you?*
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.