The Trees Were Burning: 1. Prologue

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1. Prologue

Author's Note: Tolkien was a bit vague on the time line of events in Mirkwood and Erebor. I have taken some liberty to make them coincide enough for this story to take place.

The Trees Were Burning

In the North also there had been war and evil. The realm of Thranduil was invaded, and there was a long battle under the trees and great ruin of fire; but in the end Thranduil had the victory...

At the same time as the great armies besieged Minas Tirith a host of the allies of Sauron that had long threatened the borders of King Brand crossed the River Carnen, and Brand was driven back to Dale. There he had the aid of the Dwarves or Erebor; and there was a great battle at the Mountain's feet. It lasted three days, but in the end both King Brand and King Dain Ironfoot were slain, and the Easterlings had the victory. But they could not take the Gate, and many, both Dwarves and Men, took refuge in Erebor, and there withstood a siege.

~ JRR Tolkien, Appendix B, Return of the King


March 14, 3019 Third Age


It began with a page of King Brand arriving on the doorstep of the Lonely Mountain, begging the dwarves to send aid, to help fend off a great host of Easterlings who had crossed the River Carnen. King Dain Ironfoot responded by mustering his army, and joined Brand, who had been pushed back to the Mountain's feet. Seeing the host set upon them, and sensing the battle would not go well, Dain acted upon a strange urge. As the dwarves forged into the foray, joining the Men of Dale in their bloody battle, a lone envoy spurred his pony into a gallop, hurrying towards the distant tree line of Mirkwood. Dain wished him all speed and that his mission be successful.

The fighting was fierce. Dain kept an eye open for any sign of relief, hoping against hope that help might come. It was a fool's hope, he knew, and yet, even as he pulled his axe from the body of another slain Easterling, he searched the distant horizon. Instead, what he saw caused his heart to sink.

The trees were burning. Mirkwood was aflame!

"The trees!" someone cried above the clash of weapons and screams of the dying. "Mirkwood burns!"

Smoke rose over the distant trees, wispy and scattered over various parts of the wood, then darkening the skies even to a few leagues of where Dain knew the Elvenking's Halls could be found. And it was then Dain knew that there would be no aid from the elves; and as sure as he knew that, he knew before the battle's end that he would breathe his last.

With a grim smile, he lifted his axe once more with the thought that though he might meet his end here, he would take as many enemy heads with him as he could. With a loud bellow, Dain added his voice to the cacophony of sound. "Baruk Kazâd! Khazâd ai-mênu!"

To Be Continued…

"Baruk Khazâd! Khazâd ai-mênu!" – "Axes of the Dwarves! The Dwarves are upon 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.

Story Information

Author: Nieriel Raina

Status: General

Completion: Complete

Era: 3rd Age - Ring War

Genre: Drama

Rating: General

Last Updated: 06/05/14

Original Post: 11/19/09

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