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by Khestra on Jan 28, 2015 at 06:12 AM
The word 'knight' always brought connotations of her childhood with it: sitting in her family's hall, with the rest of the Took younglings crowded around, listening to fairy tales and children's stories about good and evil, ones with magic swords, dashing heroes, terrible monsters, and a happy ending where the knight found what they were searching for.

Never in her life had she dreamed the word could apply to her.

She sat on the bear skin that served as both pallet and blanket to the small human girl. Corvi, her best friend, preened himself as he sat on the desk. He looked rather smug.

Khes was still in something of a state of shock.

As far as misunderstandings went, it was a large one. Her offer of help, to repay the food and lodgings granted to her, somehow became her agreeing to actually join the Knights of Eriador.

It was, as far as her seventeen years went, the most important decision she has ever made. And made in the space of a heartbeat, as well.

Looking into the fire, though...

...I don't regret it. At all. And that was true. It just felt right.

But then...

If you keep pulling at your feather-thoughts, you'll pluck them out, Corvi observed.

"Sorry. Just-"

You wonder if your wings are big enough to fly with them.

"Well, yeah."

He hopped over to her, sitting on a knee. Silly chick. How will you know if you don't try?

Khes smiled and chuckled, a little rueful. "That's... a good point, I guess. I'm just- did you SEE them?"

I was there, yes, he said sarcastically. My eyes still work.

"They're all warriors, and hunters, and... then there's... me. The hobbit. Sort of. And the only thing I know about fighting is how to hit things with my walking stick. I want to help- to learn to do what they do. But I'm small, and... not much of- of what they need, I think." Khes sighed.

Not the only thing. Corvi fluttered up to sit on her head. She sobered.
"I... don't really want to talk about that."

You will eventually, chicklet. To do this, you will. He nibbled her ear affectionately, softening his words. His human looked down and to the side, remembering.

"I- well- Probably. But! That day is not today! So pass me that roll, please. I want to finish the book on rare animals tonight." He shook his head, but followed her change of subject. Like ravens, his human could be QUITE stubborn if she put her mind to it.

I think it will stop raining tomorrow. I can feel it in the air. A chance to stretch my wings would be lovely, Corvi mused.

The girl grinned, bright eyes dancing in her freckled face. "We'll head out first thing then! I saw some farmers who might could use some help..."
by Khestra on Jan 28, 2015 at 02:00 AM
The bear fur was warm and soft, and Khes was perfectly content to wrap herself in it. A stack of books, illuminated by the cottage's fireplace, sat to the left, and a smaller one to the right. Against the wall, her backpack sat, and her walking stick beside it. A raven perched on one of the book stacks, his keen eyes reflecting the firelight. Though the floor was bare and cold, the fur served well as both bed and blanket for the girl, especially after some time on the road. The hunting cabin wasn't exactly luxury, what with the bear fur serving as a bed and all, but she cared not.

Khes was happy to be warm and dry and indoors as the moon began to rise on this drizzly winter's night.

Turning a page, she reached absently for a roll on the plate of food she'd brought from the main hall back to the hunting cabin. A mug of hot mulled cider rested carefully away from the tome, with still within reach. Cross legged in front of the fire, she continued reading.

"It was so nice of them to let us use the library."

The elf, especially. Corvi nodded, clacked his beak. She'd gotten used to being the only one who could hear him, a facet of... whatever it was she had that enabled her to do a number of unusual things. Though why he never spoke to others -surely he could- remained a mystery.

Personally, I think he likes having people underestimate him.

"Yeah, she was super nice about it. I like her- what was her name agian?"

Hethan, he reminded her.

"Right, Hethan." She turned the page. Old, leatherbound, and smelling of age and wisdom, this particular book wasn't on magic, but did list and describe several rare species of animals in Middle Earth. It was handwritten, and translated from elvish, so some of the references she didn't understand.... but it was fascinating nonetheless.

The Knights of Eriador were as well. A mix of species, but all of them devoted to keeping darkness at bay- she hadn't thought such things existed outside fairy tales, and yet, here she sat in the guest house of the Order's head (and as far as she knew, only) librarian.

I'd be lying if I said I didn't admire them. They look like such warriors! The weapons they have- I've never seen the like. They protect and help people. I like that. I like that a lot.

In fact, it was more than like. There was a tug, there, a calling of some kind she wished she could follow. But she was too small, and too young, and far too... well, squishy.

Except for the fire, of course. That had served her well on the way to Bree. But that particular power scared her. Until she could extinguish flames as well as create them...

This library has to have SOMETHING, though. It's so big! I'll find something, I just know it.

Then she stopped, and stared at the current page.

Drawn there in elegant hand was a raven, much like Corvi, artfully colored to bring out the blue sheen in black feathers, and the mischief in those eyes. The title of the page was "RAVENS OF THE NORTH".

"....Ravens of the North are a mysterious breed. Like the Great Eagles, they are extremely intelligent, and are rumored to be capable of human speech- though those who have met them say they prefer not to converse with humans. They are larger than other ravens by half as much agian on average. They live for up to -Oh my goodness- 120 years!" She stopped, read further.

Then she turned to look at her friend.

Corvi managed to look completely innocent, FAR too innocent to be actually so.

"I knew you weren't ordinary," she said without thinking.

He cawed his laughter at her. Says the human raised as a hobbit who can talk to animals. Yes, I am one of the Northern Kin. Somewhat far from home, but then I was always a wanderer.

"Can you talk? Out loud?" she asked eagerly, eyes wide and curious.

As if that is any measure of intelligence, chick. Honestly! You should know better than that.

Khes blinked, and looked down. "...That was rude. I'm sorry, Corvi."

"I forgive you, chick."

She gasped. "You-!"

But this is much easier. And safer. You humans, always so easily frightened.

"Right. Right. Sorry." She hugged him impulsively. Corvi flapped his wings and struggled in vain. "You're the best, you know that?"

Yes, yes, I love you too now put me DOWN! I was eating cheese!, he huffed in her mind, and she nearly fell over laughing as she released him and he gathered himself int a fluffed up annoyed ball of feathers.

Grinning, Khes turned the page, eager to discover something else she never knew from the Knights of Eriador.
by Khestra on Jan 26, 2015 at 11:57 PM

went bare feet on the road. Recent rains turned the hard dirt to soup in some places, with hidden knee deep pools of muck that sucked at toes and heel. Covered in mud to the knees, she was, and she shivered briefly as she took another step and more spurted between her bare toes. It was just as well; boots would not last three steps in this, and would stay soaked and dirty far longer than hobbit feet. Rain came down still, had been since this morning, and her cloak -too small, really, she needed a new one- did it's best, but wind ensured that she was soaked through.

She pulled the cloak tighter around her, ensuring that one part, at least, stayed dry. A satchel at her side held a raven, a rather large one, tucked miserably under the cloak to keep himself dry, abandoning his usual claim on her shoulder. He clacked his beak and hissed.

Spring green eyes squinted through the deluge, auburn hair plastered to her head. What was that?

Lights, in the distance, winking bravely in the rain. Lanterns, and... windows, lit from within.


The man at the gate was rather nosy, but let her in. The city remained bustling despite the rain, horses and carts throwing up muddy water, men passing by and threatening to bump into her, sellers hawking wares even on this cold rainy evening as the sun went down. One stall directed her to the inn, a place called the Prancing Pony, where the prices were reasonable and the ale good and the fire warm.

That last part is what made her weigh her coins and give in.

The Pony was well kept, if busy this night, and blessedly warm. For a moment she hesitated at the sight of all the strange folk. Men and women of all kinds, some what looked like merchants, others wary eyed with weapons near as they sat and ate with singular intensity. There was even a few dwarves in a corner, and a figure lounging like a cat that may have even been an elf!!
Reeling in her jaw, she swept the hood from her head and shook herself, politely trying to scrape most of the muck off of her legs using the doorframe before she went inside.

"I, um, excuse me?" she asked. The man at the counter turned to look at her.

"Why, hello there, little mistress! You look soaked through t' the bone, girl- let me guess, food an' water an' a seat by the fire for you, I think," he said cheerfully. It made her smile a little, reassured. "House dinner, then? Will ye be wantin' a room as well?"

"What's for dinner? I don't know. "Possibly, but- not yet I think. And may I have some ale, please?" she asked, fishing for her belt pouch.

"Soup -good and thick on a night like this- bread, cheese, and my wife makes a good cheese, and for an extra five coppers you'll get a fruit pastry. The special is better, but it's a silver." He paused. "...Ale, you said, lass?"

"Yes please. And the regular dinner. Two, actually, if you please." She placed the coins on the counter and ignored his look.

"Right then. Name?"

"Khestra Hobbitheart."

"Ainche a little young t' be on your ownsome, lass?" he asked kindly.

She gave him a smile, bright and wide. "Not really. Thank you very much, sir!"

With that, she moved to the fire. Most were seated at the tables nearby, but a small one by her chair would work. She put down her pack (it, at least, wasn't soaked completely through) and took off her coak, hanging it on a peg by the flames to dry. With a shake like a dog, she pushed her hair out of her eyes. The raven squaked to be let out of his pouch.

"Oh, yes, sorry Corvi. Here, look, fire, and food is coming." She flipped up the lid and he immediately went to fluff himself in front of the fire, briefly preening his feathers then sitting there on the warm stone.

Bree. Finally. Now her search could begin. Briefly she closed her eyes, exhaled, long and slow.

A cat hunted mice somewhere nearby, cool clear intelligence focused and keen. The horses stabled outsideate grain and hay, happy to be out of the rain and unburndened, stolid senses of contentment. Not too far away a mother hound nursed her pups in the shelter of the same barn. Chickens in thier roost were bedded down for the night, fussing over thier eggs.

She shook herself violently and shivered, despite the fire.

I really, really need to figure out how to NOT do that.

Corvi look at her and hopped over, landing on her knee. He made a small, soft croak.

Silly chick, he said, his voice so much clearer than that of normal animals. She preened him, much as one of his own kind would, and lifted him to her chest in a gentle hug. You will find your flock. Have faith in the winds that carry you.

She sighed. "...Thanks." He knew her fears as well as she did, maybe better.

"Yer dinner, little miss." Two plates of food arrived. She thanked the man and took one of the rolls and cheese, crumbling it up and ladeling a few spoonfuls of soup over it. Then she set it down by the fire, so her bird could eat as he dried (he was still damp, she felt).

The other roll, cheese, and the rest of the soup went to her. Both girl and raven ate quickly and intently, demolishing it down to the last crumb quite fast for someone so small. It was the best meal she'd had in some time, and Khes burped.

"Woops! Excuse me."

"...them, an' they saved the farm. Those Knights, well, they're right handy inna pinch, they are." Her ears pricked up at the conversation. Knights?

"Not sure how I feel 'bout somma 'em. Not just men they are, but dwarves, even elves." Elves? REAL elves? "And what with all them other strange folk about..."

"Now you shut your cakehole! I've a cousin in Hookworth, an' 'e only speaks th' world of 'em. That whole village is thiers, an' ain't nobody have any trouble with 'em, not once. Good folk! Good trade, too, an' schoolin', an' even a real library."

That made her stop.

A library?

Only she must have said it out loud, because the man, an smithy by the looks of his apron, turned to her.

"Aye, little lady. Big 'un too, run by an elf, they say."

A library, run by elves. Elves were magical. These knights- maybe they would know...?

See, chick? Trust the winds, Corvi said, and ruffled his feathers, laughing at her some.

"Shut up, Corvi, she said with a laugh, even as the men started and then turned away from the strange girl talking to a raven.

"Anyways, like I was sayin', them Knights of Eriador- good folks. Good folks," the smithy added finally, setting down his tankard. "Good folks."
by Ramield on Jan 07, 2015 at 12:23 AM
“I wanted to say no; I wanted to say, I don’t know you, so how can I trust you? But looking at her steady green eyes, I realized that I knew all I needed to. Only now, looking back, am I able to fully articulate these thoughts which at the time showed themselves as merely impressions and gut feelings. I knew she was not from one of the small nearby towns or villages. By the confidence and evidence for her words, I knew this tribe was also not from here. I knew that Reord’s pride would prevent him from taking an outsider’s advice and acknowledging the threat. Finally, I knew that she had encountered this tribe and situations like this by her calmness and sense of familiarity with the situation. So, while I was still apprehensive toward the stranger, I had no reason to disbelieve her.”


“Yes.” The word came out calmly, almost like a sigh, to Amelthia’s slight surprise. She studied the woman’s angled features, hoping to glean some expression or reaction to gauge this stranger’s character. She was disappointed.
“Good; I am no longer alone in my endeavors.” The stranger extended her hand. “My name is Ramield.” Amelthia returned the greeting with what she hoped would be a hearty handshake. She couldn’t tell; she was too focused on the conundrum presented to her. For the stranger had turned toward her and under the hood which had slipped back somewhat, she could see the shadowed tips of pointed ears. However, this was one of the lesser mysteries this Ramield had presented her with.


Ramield smiled inwardly. After all this time and so many towns, here was someone who had trusted her enough to listen to her. Now, she needed to understand the woman’s character. “So, tell me about yourself.” The girl Amelthia looked flustered.

“Um, well, I’m an excellent rider, I use a sword and shield…” It seemed the woman thought that Ramield was asking about her fighting capabilities. These she already knew from the fact that Amelthia was carrying both items mentioned. She could also tell that Amelthia bred horses from the multicolored horse hairs adhering to her clothing, which would undoubtedly also mean that she was an excellent rider, and that she had a sister by the clearly sentimental handmade bracelet she wore. Ramield tried to steer the conversation in a different direction. “Why?” she asked, “What brought you to that?”

Amelthia looked puzzled for a moment, then shrugged and began. “Well, my father didn’t approve of my becoming a shield maiden at first, but I convinced him that while my sister and I were on our own that we – well, I should know how to defend myself.” Accompanying the shift in conversation came a shift in mood. Amelthia became visibly more relaxed as she continued her tale. Ramield listened as she went on, talking about riding, the town, and frequently mentioning someone named Cara, whom Ramield naturally assumed was the sister she had predicted or a close friend. She inserted a comment or question here and there, enjoying the pleasant conversation, a rare occurrence of late.

“Well,” she interjected, “Shall we go find something to eat?” Amelthia’s eyes widened. “Cara! I forgot, I should have met up with her by now; she’s probably worried. Come, there’s a tavern nearby where we’ll find her and some food.” Ramield adjusted her hood to make sure it maintained its position covering her ears and followed Amelthia down the watchtower and through the crowded streets. Ramield was relieved by the smallness of Thornhope; her senses were not so assailed by the racket and chaos as they would have been in a larger town.
Knowing exactly which areas and people to avoid, Amelthia swerved here and there and veered to the left toward a tavern, entering the adjacent stable. Ramield peered around, hoping to get a first impression of Amelthia’s friend.

“There you are, Cara.” Amelthia gave her friend a tight hug around the neck. “I’m glad you made it all right.” Ramield was visibly surprised; a short burst of light laughter quickly escaped her lips before she could stop it as Cara, the white mare, lightly lipped at her partner’s face.
“Is something wrong, Ramield?” The elf let a rare smile brighten her face. “A horse.” she replied, “The way you spoke of her made her sound human, as if she were your sister or closest friend.”
“Well, your impression is half true; she is practically my closest friend – she’s my partner and has been with me through everything.” Amelthia shrugged. “I mean, I guess you could say we grew up together. My father had me train her as soon as I had mastered riding. But there’s more than that,” She rubbed the mare’s neck. “Far more than I am able to tell. We’ve been through so much together; sometimes I think she understands me better than any human being.”
“I suppose this is the source of the loyalty of the horse lords’ steeds, if all of Rohan’s riders are so close to their mounts as you.”

Amelthia shrugged as if unsure how to reply. Ramield went and ordered them some food, bringing it back to the stable. They ate in relative silence, Amelthia working with Cara, Ramield strategizing, and both occasionally conversing.

by Ramield on Oct 19, 2014 at 12:13 AM
“This is the account of Amelthia, written in my own hand, as a telling of the events of my life. My life began April 5, 2980 T.A. It was a simple life; my father, my sister, and I raised horses, some of the best in the Eastemnet, and lived fairly well off. However, the only interesting events were the attacks: first the minor skirmishes on our town by a small tribe of Dunlendings still trapped on this side of the guard at the Fords of Isen, the second being the attacks on my patience by the occasional suitor.”

Amelthia put down the quill and pinched the bridge of her nose, regretting the last line, a habit she just realized she had picked up over time. Tickled by the realization, she couldn’t help but chuckle. The last line no longer seemed like such a mistake, for if she was to make a full account of events, especially of her own change, she would have to show the coarse clay before its refinement.

Leaning back in her chair, Amelthia relaxed and let her wavy blond hair hang down freely. She thought then, perhaps, she should start with the day the clay began to be molded, October 9, 2999 T.A.


So at home was she on horseback, it seemed to Amelthia that it was the landscape that moved as she and Cara sped across it. Amelthia let loose a peal of laughter to the free air. “Isn’t it glorious, Cara?” she shouted to her partner over the noise of hooves. Cara was silent, as usual, but Amelthia could tell that she felt the same. How could one not feel so with the sun, the wind, and a cloudless sky?

One thing out of place caused the two to slow to a stop: a single cloud, or rather a column of white smoke. The nearby tribe of wildmen was passing by Thornhope. Without a word, the two altered their course west. Their home soon came into view, coming slowly at first, but quickly accelerating toward them. They rode up and slowed to a trot. Amelthia dismounted, sprinting toward the house. “Cara, I’ll meet you at the stable.”

Back in her room, she knelt by the trunk at the end of her bed and pulled out a green Rohirim hauberk and a sword. It seemed that with all the murmurings in the world, everyone needed protection. At least, that was her excuse. The simple chain links were nothing fancy, but they had been reliable. The only ornate piece she bore was her shield, which was crimson with a gold horse head silhouetted on the front. After donning every piece and securing every strap as quickly as she could, she returned to the stable where Cara was already ready and waiting. Amelthia mounted her horse, and they were off at a gallop.

Thornhope was merely a spec on the horizon at first, but it rapidly grew in their field of vision and it did not take them long to reach the gate. Her chest swelled with pride when she saw the wall around the small town. The two slowed significantly and they entered the gate into the now crowding streets. A short ways in, Amelthia dismounted and she and Cara split, Cara going to the tavern and adjacent stable on the immediate left and Amelthia going on further on foot up the hill to inform Thane Wulfrad and the captain of her presence, and to volunteer for the defense before joining her once more. By the time since the initial smoke signal, she assumed they still had some time, though not much; therefore, the relatively casual behavior of those around her perplexed her.

Thornhope was too small to have a standing guard, but it made up for it in its decent wall, necessary to fend off the year’s recent attacks. It had served its purpose, for the buildings remained standing, and the few towers and more numerous watch platforms provided a vantage point for archers, not to mention an excellent view. The mead hall inched up in front of her and beside that the barracks, the size of a small dwelling, mostly used for housing weapons for those who should need them.

Amelthia arrived just as another left, a newcomer or passing traveler it seemed. Dark hair flowed from under her dark, forest-green hood which rested on her head but did not cover her face. She noticed the last remains of frustration fade from the woman’s expression as she passed. The change of mood was so swift that had she not been so close, Amelthia would have doubted she saw anything but the passive expression she assumed in its place. When she entered the mead hall, Captain Reord wore an expression of exasperation, the kind he could not help but display when training a novice in how to properly hold a sword or spear. Amelthia made him aware of her presence and found out that they had more time than she had anticipated. She gathered by his nonchalant attitude that it was likely another small, ill-planned, and ill-fated raid on our town in an attempt to remove the “usurpers.”

Intending to join Cara once more, as she normally would, she plunged once again into the crowd, maneuvering her way down the snaky streets toward the tavern; however, the green hood caught her attention as it glided in and out of the masses. The woman walked purposefully, and Amelthia had to move swiftly to keep up, though she avoided contact with the stranger. When the green cloaked woman ascended one of watchtowers, realized that there would no longer any way to avoid conversation. The woman merely looked out over the wall as Amelthia came up onto the platform to stand near her. The guard that stood in the corner cast wary glances in the direction of the hooded woman but said nothing. Amelthia sighed; once again, she was in some business she had no right to be, but her curiosity would not be sated. She approached the woman and opened her mouth to speak, to ask who the stranger was and what was she looking for, but was cut off before a word left her mouth.

“You may be wondering where I am from.” The woman’s voice was smooth and even, revealing no emotion, and her eyes never left the horizon. “But let me ask you something first: over there, what do you see?”
Amelthia was at once taken aback. She came to stand next to the woman and peered in the indicated direction and noticed a small band of wildmen that seemed to be examining the town. “I see a scouting band of wildmen. But…” Amelthia trailed off. The woman turned her head and raised a fine, angled eyebrow, encouraging her to continue. “But why should they? This tribe has been here for ages, hiding just outside Fangorn Forest since the guard at the Ford was set up, cutting them off from Dunland. And they have attacked us before; they should already know what to expect.”
The woman nodded. “Then what would you say is the cause of the Dunlending presence?” she asked. “Look closer.” The small band was now leaving, thus their diminishing figures were hard to see. There were two things clear to Amelthia, though.
“Their skin is darker and their war markings are different. That doesn’t make sense, unless –“
“Unless they are not your local tribe.” The woman turned back to the horizon to watch them go. “I’ve been following them for some time now, trying to predict their path and warn the approaching towns. One I missed, one ignored me, but this has been the only town to blatantly oppose the idea that I might be telling the truth.” She gave a disappointed sigh. The silence held for a moment before the woman turned to Amelthia. “Now, I am no captain, no leader, but I do know a few effective ways to strike against them. Will you help me?”
by Zargodon on Oct 01, 2014 at 09:09 AM

The stench of blood and fear hangs in the air, but it is the appeasing fear of these creatures that stirs in him the brutal anger that boils inside. The thought flits across his mind. He realise the irony of it all. From behind him the huge axe swoops down. Glancing back, he jumps forward, he's been expecting it. Ducking as the edge pass over his head, while with one of his curved daggers he slashes in a wide arch behind him, head held low, connecting against the ripped, filthy leggings of the abomination. The feel of the dagger sinking with ecstatic pleasure into the flesh, causing the familiar, yet half guilty delight of vengeful satisfaction. The euphoria that he feels with the kill frightens him, has been doing so for a long while now already.

The orc’s axe swings in a desperate swoop above his head. His knees sinks to the ground while, the weight of the axe carries his arm wide, exposing his front. Just for second he affords himself a satisfied smirk. He swings other blade around and plunges the blade deep into the soft, giving flesh of its neck, leaving the blade embedded. With his life seeping out, the orc's dirty hand grabs for Sear's neck. Fingers, powerfully grips his throat. The vile filth of the orc’s talons makes him cringe. This is cutting it to close, the elf thinks as he pulls back his blade. The orc falls forward, letting his grip on him slowly loosen and slide down his darken leathers, the blood leaving a black smear.

He has been coming here often - Practicing - he told himself. But he knew better than that. He wanted to kill. The anger, hatred that he harbors inside him for these filth, these vile abominations. How he hated them. He despise them with his very being, it feels sometimes as if in him a monster awakens to demand an audience. Even just the sight, just the thought of them causes himself to wrench with disgust. No, he didn’t want to kill, he wanted to slaughter. The body of the orc falls down lifeless down in front of him, the blood that pours freely out of it’s neck stains the ground a puddle of crimson void, an abyss, in the night. Next to it lies another, on the battlements there's a few as well, with arrows through their hearts and skulls. This was a good night in some ways. At least his rage has been stilled tonight. He bends down and inspects he orc’s arm, turning it around, he sees what he was looking for. A hand painted in white stands out an in unholy contrast against the dark, gruesome skin of the defiled.

The thoughts of death and life is best kept out of mind. Cleaning his blades against the rags on the creatures back, he does his best as to turn his thoughts away. Yet they intrude so easily when he faced this. Sheathing his daggers, he walks away. There was a few fires scattered around the camp. It was in these old Rohadur forts that the orcs have been making their camp in. So close to Bree. So close to those that he so desperately wants to protect. Dour thoughts of an onslaught has been plaguing him for a while now. Ever Since Boengarn mentioned that they would be attacking their camps, had he been thinking about it.

A few weeks ago the Order went scouting their hideout to the East of town to plan their attack. There was talks about another order joining them, too. House Tha.... he can't remember. Boengarns says. He as has had the pleasure to have met their commander before.

His horse, old and grangy, watches the elf walk slowly closer. He is nearing his journey’s end now, Sear knows. But how can he let Leaf go. this was all that he had? All that makes any sense to him now. For some reason Leaf has been an anchor since he came to Bree. Lifting the old, sturdy flap of one of the two saddlebags that hangs on either side of his horse, the elf takes out a bundle of cloth before he produces a carrot from within. Leaf's eyes have been following his every move. The deep black eye of his horse, pleading, asking, begs the elf to hand over the carrot. It's snout shaking its head against his chest, he nudges Zarg impatiently to stop his teasing. "What will I do without you?" he chuckles, the ancient words of his tongue, the Sindar, rings lightly in the air.

With his rage stilled. The want for spilled orcish blood, sated. He makes his way to Hookworth. To his home. To the Knights of Eriador. He should stop these nightly visits to the Lone-Lands. He knows that the others wouldn't understand, and he does not expect them to, either. It's that just his rage and anger builds up in him, when he thinks of what these brutal, heartless monsters has caused and done to his people, these people. How many have they not slain? How many women and children have they not killed? The anger surges inside him again as he thinks about it. In some ways he can control it. It's just when he needs time alone, when he comes here in hunt of them, that he feels festering hatred rise like bile in his thought, The only way to get rid of the bitterness is with his bow and arrow, steel of his blades.


The gates to Hookworth, such a joy he feels when he sees it every time. He can still clearly remember that first night that he came through them.

The guards escorted him (With a lot of protest ) to the hall of the Knights. Now he is part of the High Nine. Others look up to him. The elf gives a half bemusing, unbelieving snort. He never thought that would even be possible. He has enough trouble looking up to himself. All that he can see is a ... Must he think of these things now. Shaking his head he tries to focus on something else. One of the guards. Brend, he thinks was his name, bows down halfway "Evening, sir. I hope you had a pleasant hunt" he says in his gruff voice.

He was an old man with a wife and children, the children have all left them, in search of their own destiny. The Order looked after him and Gretta, and they help the Order. That is how it has been from the day that the order has started. Together they stand as brothers. “It was fine, thank you, Brend. I brought you something." the elf replies. On the back of his horse hangs the carcass of a freshly slaughtered deer. Normally he would come back with some game and give it Brend to skin for him. It is just the skin that he wants and the guard is more than happy to be of assistance. "Would you mind?" he smiles with a jerk of his head to the back. All thoughts of slaughter now from his mind. "How's the wife been doing? Is she still ill?"

"I'm afraid so, sir. The fever has been a hitting her hard" the guard heaves as he lifts the kill from the horse. Herrond helps him from the other side. Herrond doesn't talk much, if at all. It's only been to Brend that he has seen him talk to so far. Great companions they have become, it wouldn't surprise him if Brend was his only friend. Nodding to himself, he makes up his mind. He's going to invite Herond for supper tomorrow night, that is if there's not some pressing matters that he first needs to attend to. Although the last few days has been quite busy. Thinking it's going to get pretty quiet here now with everyone preparing for the attack.

Brywyn has sounded his own wishes the last time that they were in the Knight's Hall. It was not just himself that feels so helpless just standing by while the others prepare.

Then there's his sister that has returned on top of it all. For goodness sake, he didn't even know that he had a sister. And he has only been able to speak to her a few times since he has seen her. The love that he feels for her is as deep as it would have been if he knew her from the start. There was always something missing in his soul, something that tucked at his spirited, letting him feel that there's always a loss. He never knew what. At founding her some of the feeling has disappeared, though a portion still remains. It is something else that is troubling him.

"I'll go speak to one of our healers and send her over there immediately" Zarg says, his eyes falling kindly on the man. "Just the skin as usual" he then speaks as he makes his way into the village. The guards already had the carcass propped against the wall, debating who gets what. After a few paces down the old cobbled road, the elf hears the faint echo clinging of a coin in the air. Heads or tails it seems.

by Oronir on Sep 29, 2014 at 07:17 PM
Fragments from the past (Roleplay story:)
These short pieces of story should be seen as flash blacks. Look at Oronir and picture a heavy tome opening behind him and pages seem to come loose from the bindings, falling slowly to the ground. The ground fades, Oronir fades and the story unfolds.

Page 3508
Its a clear day in the great city of Minas Tirith. Behind its sturdy walls peace and normal life passes by day by day. In the well known tailor shop “Silk needle” Thoranor works as an apprentice under the tutelage of his father, himself a successful tailor in the city and of the upper middle class. For he has his family crest under the lower nobility. The family is doing very well and money I never a problem. Life is good…

Page 3814
On the family lodge in the Ithilien forest Thoranor stares deeply into the dark haired Gilwen, daughter of Halreth, her white wedding dress with silvery and gold threads makes her a queen beyond dreams. The priest speaks the last words: “ you may kiss thy beloved as man and wife”.
Gilwen comes from Minas Tirith`s middle class and thus approval was quick on both sides of the family. Life could not be better now Thoranor has the woman of his dreams at his side and an apprenticeship nearly finished.

Page 5239
Blistering heat and flash rainfalls have destroyed crops time and again. An epidemic has weakened the citizens and the lands of Gondor are no longer safe. Thoranor has fulfilled the apprenticeship several years ago and is living together with Gilwen in the great city. But trade is declining and times are hard. Sitting by the fireplace they discuss the possibility of moving to the countryside. Their two young sons sleeping silently unaware of the time they are born in. “Gilwen my love, you can learn to dye the hides and spin the threads. Father and myself will go hunting ourselves and can sew the clothes.”, Gilwen stares at him wondering what life would really be like outside these walls. “Anyways, it will be only for a few months…a year at the most. Then these hard times will change and we will move back into the workshop in the city. Father has a good feeling about this”

Page 7586

The cottage became a farm and Thoranor standing before a tree beckons his sons and daughter to his side. “He was the greatest man I have ever known. Remember your grandfather children as a kind man who always took the time to talk to people from all ranks of life. As a practical man and he loved you all very, very much” A simple wooden post stands amongst the trees decorated with flowers. In memory of the grandfather of the now 5 year old Oronir.

Page 7631

Oronir stares at it daily because It gives him comfort. Oronir hasn`t mastered reading and has never found out his grandfathers name. As a 5-year old he does not care if he knows or doesn`t know what the pretty signs mean. Grandfather was…grandfather.
The name 'Oronir I' was cut into the beautifully decorated pole.

Page 14 340

Oronir stands on the roof of the farmhouse. “ I know he is going to come today. I just know it.” Oronir mumbles. “ He might be busy brother, cause he is a famous warrior fighting for the safety of gondor.” , says his brother Geogar.
“Thoranor my brother, it is good to see you in good health”, uncle scans the farm and spots the boys. “Look at you two”, he shouts good naturedly , “ Oronir growing almost as strong as Geogar. And you Geogar, did you practice the sword maneuvers I showed you last time? Good to see you all.”
(uncle) tries to come each year and each time he brings gifts and stories from the warfront. Geogar looks up to (uncle) and, as he is older than Oronir, sees himself becoming a strong and invincible warrior.

Page 19 340
Thoranor, Gilwen, oronir and Geogar stand outside their farm. Huddled in warm clothes against the chill of early winter. Oronir`s sister is to be send to Minas Tirith, she is after all of a marriage age. Her finding a suitable spouse might be the fund boost the family needs to once again start their old prosperous business in the city. Thoranor and Gilwen will join their daughter in a few weeks to help support her and possibly regain the family honour although that is kept secret from their children.

Page 38 470
A cry is heard through the darkness. Within the enlarged farm the noise of a new born baby can be heard. Oronir and his young, beautifully dark skinned wife Kira have become the proud parents of a new born girl. Thoranor, Gilwen en Geogar pour the wine and cut the fresh meat to celebrate the new life.
by Ethelond on Jun 17, 2014 at 12:26 AM
Few people were permitted to tread this sacred space during the day. And at night? Even most elves were not to enter the place. Tarothelion was one of a small few permitted to enter Galadriel's personal garden at any time, and tonight, it was his duty.

The golden mellyrn leaves far above could be heard rustling in the wind as Tarothelion made his silent walk through the garden, lit only by the ethereal blue lanterns. He was one of the Sunguard: Lady Galadriel's detachment of personal guardians, selected from among the most utterly skilled soldiers of the Malladrim, who refused promotion to positions of command within the Golden Host.

Tarothelion and the other elves of the Sunguard protected the Lady of Light. Often, unseen as they did so. Not that she could truly be under threat within Lorien. But, nevertheless, she, her home, her garden, and other places of special significance to her were protected as though orcs could slip into Caras Galadhon at any moment.

And tonight, it was Tarothelion's assignment to patrol Galadriel's Garden until dawn came. It was a duty that came only once a month, usually. He treasured the time whenever he was assigned to it, for the Lady's personal garden was perhaps the most beautiful place in Lothlorien.

He walked among the twisting paths., the moonlight and lantern light reflecting off of his armor. All the Sunguard wore heavy armor of bright elven-steel with gold filigree relayed into it; but the most telling part of the armor was the fully masked helmet that offered the highest protection, and concealed his identity to all but his fellows and the Lady herself.

Tarothelion, like all the Sunguard, wore this armor and mask during all waking hours, except to eat, drink, and bathe.

He had been wearing the armor every day for nearly 300 years now. He almost felt naked without it.

His mind wandered as he continued his rounds, keeping a perfectly timed pace, and making a perfect pattern through the intertwining pathways. He looked at the individual plants as he passed them. Each flower, vine, or sapling was more beautiful than the next. There was, however, one particular plant just ahead, that was his personal favorite.

Tarothelion came to a halt and admired the young cherry tree. He had had a personal say in the planting of this tree in the garden. It was a gift from Lady Galadriel, for his third century in her guard. The tree had grown strong, as did everything in the Golden wood. Now, for the first time, Tarothelion could see the formation of tiny buds. Soon it would be covered in white and pink blossoms for the first of many times in its life.

He smiled beneath his mask. When that happened, the tree would be, to him, the most beautiful in the Golden Wood.

"A rare opinion in Caras Galadhon, Tarothelion."

Tarothelion whirled around, drawing his sword of steel and white gold as he did. But as soon as he saw who stood behind him, he immediately dropped the blade and fell to one knee.

"Forgive me, my Lady!" he said, "I did not recognize your voice quickly enough to stop myself!"

Shameful! To draw a sword against his Lady?? He should be punished for his careles-

She laughed warmly and smiled down at him. "Come, Tarothelion, I know you better than to think you would harm Galadriel! Even through mistake."

She extended a hand down to him. He took it, with some hesitation, but then rose to his feet. The Lady of Light never ceased to amaze him with her insight, mercy, wisdom, and indeed, beauty. She was as radiant as she always was. No elf in Lorien disagreed, and certainly not Tarothelion.

She gestured to the cherry tree behind him. "It will indeed be a thing of beauty, Tarothelion. Most in this wood would favor the mellyrn. You surprised me when you asked for a simple cherry tree."

He bowed his head. "It has always been a favorite of mine, My Lady."

She smiled again, not looking away from the tree. "You appreciate the beauty in humbler things, as well as the magnificent. This is a good quality."

He said nothing. Indeed, what was there to say?

Nevertheless, words came from his mouth. "What brings you to your Garden at this hour, My Lady?"

Galadriel returned her gaze to him. "You do. You have served me faithfully for many a year. And for many years before that. Did you not also fight beneath Barad-dur?"

Tarothelion remembered that day. A dark day with much loss, but also with victory. Images danced through his head. Gil-galad and Elendil, both slain in his sight. The price paid for the fall of Sauron. Of the three kings that walked onto the field that day, only Durin IV of Khazad-dum was fated to return to his home.

"You know I did, Lady Galadriel. Why do you ask?" Tarothelion said.

She began to walk toward the center of her garden, her white gown flowing behind her. She beckoned him to follow. "Because one who has seen the shadow knows it best. Sauron has risen again; you know this. Yet there is something else as well..."

Galadriel stopped in front of her mirror. The dish of water in the center of the Garden was the place she spent much time in meditation.

"Even Galadriel cannot see from all angles," she said. Then she turned and stepped aside, gesturing toward the mirror. "Will you look into the mirror?"

He could hardly believe his ears. Galadriel was asking Tarothelion for his wisdom and perspective?

This time, his wits did not forsake him. "It would be the greatest of honors, My Lady."

Immediately, he stepped forward and up onto the steps. Then, he peered down into the water through his helmet, and the world faded around him...

"Hold your ground, Knights!" The call rang out over the fields. There was a woman. A Warden, by the look of her armaments. She planted a rolled banner into the ground and took a ready stance.

Suddenly, from all directions, she was joined by dozens of other folk. Soldiers, mostly, but also, sailors, craftsmen, merchants, scholars, and healers.

Elves, Men, and Dwarves. All manner of Free Folk. Even the little folk of the Shire flocked to this banner.

Their Lady then chose that moment to unfurl the banner. And Lo! The banner was a White Crown beneath Seven White Stars, upon black. The banner of Arnor.

Tarothelion blinked, and Behold: the woman and all those who had come to her banner were suddenly clad as a battalion of Ancient Arnorian knights. And all around were Orcs, Goblins, Uruks, and wicked Men, surrounding them from all sides on that grassy field.

He blinked again, and the Arnorian armor was gone, and the banner was changed. The Knights once again wore their own simple clothing. And the banner bore a device that Tarothelion had not seen in all his years. Knightly Heraldry of northern design, but unfamiliar.

Then, in a flash of light, the scene was gone. Other scenes danced through Tarothelion's head. Images from all different places of Middle Earth. Almost as if still paintings. They came, were burned into his mind, and were gone in a moment. In each were some of the faces he had seen standing under the banner in his first vision.

In one, a soldier from Dale led his companions against the gates of a great fortress, in Angmar.

In another, a dwarf and an elf stood together to lead other dwarves and elves against a goblin army in the western mountains.

In another, a woman of Bree led some of the Knights through the twisted labyrinth of a lost dwarf kingdom, seeking something of great value to their enemies.

In another, a Swan Knight of Dol Amroth led a battalion of his companions, standing on a great wall, amidst many Rohirrim, with a vast army beneath them.

In another, a girl of the Little Folk led a group of followers beneath the shadow of Dol Guldor. Could it be?

In another, an elven scholar stood with her companions beneath the tower of Orthanc. Only, the surrounding area was ruined in a way Tarothelion did not remember. Nevertheless, she stood resolute, with her companions behind her, ready to face the tower.

In yet another, a man of Gondor stood beneath the shadow of Mount Gram, desperately holding off an unyielding tide of horrific creatures with his fellows.

Finally, their Lady Captain stood upon the walls of the White City of Minas Tirith. Some form of chaos abounded that Tarothelion could not see. But she stood firm and resolute, surrounded by all the others he had seen in his visions so far.

And then, as quickly as Tarothelion had fallen into this dream, it faded.

Tarothelion lifted his face from the mirror. His mind was reeling from what he had seen. And for an elf who had seen so very much...that meant something.

"I know what you have seen," said Galadriel, "Now tell me how you perceive it."

Tarothelion thought quickly. "Arnor rises again? No. Impossible. But some memory of Arnor has been awoken in Eriador, and the Free Peoples who have been called into it have a fate deeply tied to many things in the world."

"Not all of what the Mirror shows may come to pass," Galadriel said, "And yet, it is of great importance to be shown at all."

Tarothelion nodded. "But they are under some danger, are they not? The first vision..."

Galadriel nodded her head. "Yes. I have perceived that they are surrounded by great peril. If they can defeat it, however, they may rule the fate of many."

"Will they find that victory, though?" Tarothelion questioned rhetorically.

Then, Galadriel's voice came to him within his mind.

You are a mighty warrior, Tarothelion, and wise. I entrust you with this task: Find these 'Knights of Eriador' and serve them. Serve them, and serve their Lady as you serve Galadriel. Do whatever you may to bolster their strength against the coming storm, for it will shake Middle Earth to its very core.
by Ethelond on May 23, 2014 at 02:17 PM
"Are you sure you're alright, Ethelond?" someone called out the tavern door.

He didn't turn to see who it was. "I'm fine!" he said.

After what happened at the tavern, he had told Edme and the others that he had to go to the barracks and take care of some paperwork. Surely none of them would believe that story, but he didn't care.

Ethelond's new suit of armor clinked as he climbed the hill up toward the Great Hall of the Knights of Eriador. And the late afternoon sun shined dully off of the blue and silver.

He marched past the statue of Gil-Galad and threw open the door. He hoped nobody was here, but neither would he care if someone was.

As soon as he was inside, he removed his swan-helm and threw it across the hall with a shout. It crashed somewhere in the next room. It sounded like it knocked over some metal objects, and Ethelond paused, but quickly forgot about it.

He plucked the largest mug he could find off of the shelf and poured one of the Order's strongest dwarfish stouts into it.

He took a deep draught. "Ethelond, you daft twit." How could he have been so stupid? Edme didn't love him, she never had! The girl didn't have the slightest clue what she wanted in the world and he had always known that in the back of his mind.

But why wasn't he good enough? He sat on a bench and took another draught. He had come so far! Hadn't he? He was certainly not the man he had been when he awoke under the shadow of Brywyn's home. He had truly come to care for Edme. And she had gone out of her way to tell him that it was alright to fall for her. As if to allay his fears that he was wrong for doing so.

Ethelond laughed. Then he downed the rest of the massive ale and laughed more. He laughed at his own stupidity. He laughed for hoping against hope. He could read between the lines. Edme loved someone else. But for how long? Most of all, he laughed for allowing himself to believe that a peasant girl born and raised in the slums of Bree, who liked a rat-hole hovel like Bree could ever have responded to chivalric advances or courtly love. He had believed her to be like his dear, sweet, Ioriel; and he was a fool for it.

That made two loves lost.

Now what? What was left? He had been a Knight of the Swan. He had been a Knight of Eriador, for whatever that was worth. Now he was a Squire of Eriador again, and an outcast of the Swan. A nobody.

He blinked, thoughts turning to the shield he had emblazoned with the Star of Elendil. The Knight of the Star, he was still. A creation of his own imagination, yet endorsed by Iolanthryth.

Ethelond stood up. That's what he would be. That's what was left for him.

He went into the kitchen and retrieved his thrown helmet. It had knocked over a stack of pots, but it was not damaged in the slightest. He strapped it on, then he quickly stole away to his guest home, and collected that shield with the Star of Elendil emblazoned on it.

Shortly after, Ethelond was riding out of Hookworth on his dapple-grey horse. He would give these Breelanders the hero they deserved.

That night, one of the smaller brigand encampments, that had been a thorn in the Breefields, went up in flames. A young cutpurse-boy, who was the only survivor, told the Bree watchmen what had happened and showed them what was left: ten criminals hacked to ribbons, piled, and burned along with all their supplies and equipment.

By the next morning, rumors were already circulating through Bree about a demon in blue armor and with a black shield who had come to avenge Breeland, shouting the name of a long dead King.
by Zargodon on Apr 23, 2014 at 07:58 PM
He takes a deep breath, "You might not return” he says with a sigh. “The lands outside the protection of our people is not meant to be faced alone, but we need eyes and ears that we can trust", his soft, rich crimson robes stirs in the breeze, "You would need to be brave my young ones, may the Valar watch over you"his voice as soft as the rustle of leaves. Zargodon nods as he meets his father’s eyes.

The wind blows heavy through his hair as he rides hard with ecstatic ecstasy while the countryside slides past him like a blur of paint. He was not at all sad about leaving Seeing the world meeting dwarves, hobbits and men, being part of something bigger is what he wanted. What he needed. That is why he joined the rangers (Elven rangers of Celondim)
The wall peaks out from behind the hill. This is it, this is Bree, excited and afraid, he dismounts and slowly walks closer. The wind blows through his fair blond hair. What to expect. The walls enclose the town like a cocoon, he feels unwelcome, not like the wide open cities of the elves.Two guards standing in front of the gates eyes every one distrustfully. Zargodon leads his horse closer while staying as far from everyone as he can manage
The stink of man. The dirt on their faces, the loud noises, it all seems so strange. Where should he go, to his left a man creams aloud next to him, selling his wares, the cobbles under his feet feels too hard and the oppressive atmosphere intrudes on him. He just wants to go back, back to his home. This is not how he thought this would be. Everything so strange and unforgiving, he is alone here. Hesitantly walking down the road giving way for the carts and children, he looks around confused and scared. Where should he go he thinks again. Reforming his thoughts, he focuses on the mission.
After leading his horse around town for like seems forever, he comes across a fountain with a few people standing around an elf playing the flute. A small smile crosses his face as he walks a bit closer. Uncertain of what to do next, he stands behind the crowd listening to the bard play patting his horse, more to comfort himself than the beast.

Standing there losing track of time he realize what time it must be The skies darkening as a chill seeps into the air. He needs to find a place to rest. Looking around him, he spots a couple of drunken dwarves exiting what looks like an inn. The building looks old and rough like so many others in Bree. Or maybe all human structures looks like that. He maneuvers past the dwarves making sure as not to draw to much attention to himself.
He hears them arguing about some coins they lost, their clothes stained with oil a and their beards unkempt and dirty. Just as he reaches the door a group of men burst out almost knocking Zargodon down the steps, he moves quickly to one side letting the men pass . Their voices loud with laughter. Cautiously he opens the door standing well back for anyone ells that might want to come out.
The smell of sweat and ale hits him like a gust of hot wind. The inn was full, clattering. All these strange people, he can see their bodies glister with sweat in the light of the fire. A hobbit was dancing drunkenly in front of a minstrel by the fire. Her body swaying to and through as her feet just barely keeps her upright. At the counter in front of him stands a crowd all shouting at the barman. Zargodon moves slowly closer. A hot flush crosses his face, turning his face a brighter red matching his robes. This is going to be a long night. Standing behind the crowd, he tries to get the barman’s attention.
“Barman” he says, the crowd just keeps on shouting
“Barman” he says a little louder. His head hurts his feet is sore, the world begins to spin
“Barman” he shouts loudly above the others.
The patrons turns towards him. There’s a moment of silence before it all continues.
He turns around defeated and starts to leave the inn. As he steps to open the door the little hobbit runs towards him from the minstrel. “Your new here aren't you, ” she asks. Her face flushed and her voice sounded to thick. “Yea, I am” he replys looking distraught, shaking his head as he makes for the door again. The hobbits run in front of him almost tripping him. “Aye, I can help. I know a few people around here, can at least get you a room.” She says with a toothy smile
“I can not” he says to soft, stops and begins again a bit louder squaring his shoulders “I am afraid, I cannot pay you for your services my lady” he bows slightly before turning to the door. She grabs him by his pants and half drags him up a few steps and down a corridor, passing a couple kissing next to one of the many tables that line the hallway. Her green tunic shines slightly in the light of the torches. Zargodon tries to protest. “It is not necessarily my dear hobbit”
She runs around him and starts to push “I will be the judge of that.Pointy” she says giggling, shaking her head.
by Ferallas on Aug 09, 2013 at 04:04 PM
(From my Laurelin Archives Profile at


Ferallas is like many of the Dúnedain in that he has sharp, gray eyes set against a stern face, unkempt black hair, and is taller than most Men. He is a man of little emotion, and is a level-headed and strategic fighter.

At all but the rarest of times, he can be seen wearing the garb of the Rangers and wielding a great halberd that shines with an incandescent scarlet glow, an heirloom of his family since the time of his Great-Grandfather.

Ferallas is the youngest member of his family of four. His father, Túllas, is a sentry at the walls of Esteldín; his mother, Araleth, is a cook; and his brother, Andras, is a skilled warrior. His parents cared for and loved their children much, and his father took it upon himself to teach the brothers the use of martial weapons, a skill they learned slowly, instead of giving them formal training. Despite the slow start, chronicled best by the scars left on each of their bodies, they eventually acquired skill befitting their people.

Throughout Ferallas' life, however, one thing was more prevalent than his skill in arms. His charisma, established throughout his whole life, earned him some measure of respect in Esteldín, on and off the battlefield. Even during the games of his childhood he showed a natural propensity for leadership, able to win the trust and respect of those around him, a quality that was easily translated to times of battle. It is for this reason that the watch-commander of Esteldín, sent him south to Bree-land late in his 42nd year, being still quite young by the standards of the Dúnedain. The Rangers wanted him and his innate charisma to establish trust between them and the notoriously untrusting free-folk of Eriador, a duty he is actively carrying out. He is very proud of and dedicated to this charge, understanding that the Free Peoples of Eriador shall fare better united than estranged against the growing shadow.

Ferallas shows very little emotion when not in combat, yet he is outspoken nonetheless. The respect he has in Esteldín has made him at times overproud, and this serves to impair his judgment. In combat, he is brave sometimes to the point of foolhardiness. He despises inaction, so one could imagine the wave of relief that washed over him given his duty.


Thanks for reading!

If anyone has any suggestions on how I could improve, please do say so.
by Salladh on Jun 19, 2013 at 07:02 PM
Salladh was born in the first age as a silvian elf,decedent of the nandor and resided in mirkwood for a good while of the first age, however when his only king; Denethor was killed and many of his people suffered loss from morgoth attack on beleriand, being just a farmer at the time he had no real fighting skills, once most of his kin died, he debated traveling to valinor, but could not because he felt he wanted to learn more, instead of blending into the background of other elven cities he left and became a hermit in the forest of fangorn.
He became very good at farming and started adventuring far out in the beginning of the third age because of his thirst for knowledge and curiousty of the worlds changes, while he was gone for almost an age and a half he does greatly lack the graces of daily social interaction with humans and other folk.
He remains as he was in the secound age, kind, reserved and willing to assist others. salladh is tall and pale, with light blond hair, he searches for new kin and someone to help him discover what he has missed and pursue a scholarly view of the 2nd age and 1st age that he missed.

(Forgive me for anything that doesnt make sense, i only know so much ^_^, but if anyone DOES find holes let me know, otherwise this is my starting)
by Vanthryth on Jun 14, 2013 at 10:37 AM
Vanthryth of Rohan, son of Eorthryth, appeared into a noble line, an only son. His childhood was considered privileged and under these circumstances he thrived. He was educated under the care of many great Horse Masters and excelled in the arts of stealth and other subtleties, He mastered the ways of the knife with finesse that's rarely seen and gained the agility to manoeuvre at speed. His peers saw promise.
When he was seventeen, things changed abruptly for him. He found himself alone and for the first time in his life, fearful. His Mother had died years ago after giving birth to his Sister, who was not destined to survive a few days after her Mother. Not long after his seventeenth appearance day his Father Eorthryth died when he was ambushed by an unknown assailant in the narrow streets of Edoras. Rumours spread that he was assassinated on orders from the highest authorities whilst others played it down that it was just done by an opportunistic member of the underclass that fill the many side streets.
It was later discovered that Eorthryth owed much coin to loan sharks and was in such financial difficulties that he went to Edoras to secure more loans to balance out his financial woes.
Vanthryth had always been protected by his Fathers reputation but after his Fathers death that had all changed . He had inherited his Fathers huge debts with all the anxiety that was to bring and after a few years of hardship and scratching a living, he sold his Fathers estate on the plains and the herd of prize Horses but it still was not enough. He tried to gain time but the money men had decided there was no more time . The enemies grew and the money dwindled away until Vanthryth reluctantly decided to leave Rohan.
So he found himself one early dark morning sneaking away from all he was accustomed to. His only possessions, his knives and trusted steed, Midnight. He headed across the plains seeking sanctuary.
Vanthryth was now twenty five years old and after many trials and tribulation he found himself drinking ale around the town of Bree, trying to forget. it was there his luck was to change when he came in contact with an elite Order of Knights called The Knights Of Eriador and was recruited into their ranks by the Elf noble Ancardil . Vanthryth felt great admiration for giving him such a chance and eagerly awaited a better turn of events.
by Ahn'nai on Jun 09, 2013 at 11:14 PM
Ahn'nai is a very rare and special kind of elf, the sort no longer often seen - even by those of his own kind. He is not a great hero, warrior or sage, he is not a renowned crafter, nor is he a skilled archer or hunter - in fact he has never laid so much as a finger on a bow in his life. He is not one of those millenia old Elves who have seen the passing of the Ages with their very own eyes; he is not even one of those centuries old Elves who have lived to see the many failures and successes of both Men and Dwarves - in all truth he has not yet seen the passing of so much as a single century. What Ahn'nai is, is young; he is not 90 years old, nor 80. No indeed, the fact of the matter is Ahn'nai has only just barely reached his 70th year of life - roughly the Elven equivalent of a 15 or 16 year old. Being so young he has not yet developed the typical distrust, perhaps even at times downright dislike, for the races of Men and Dwarves that so many of his elders are prone to. Though it can be said that he is often uncertain and awkward around them, being so inexperienced with their rather erratic behavior and tempestuous mood swings.

Raised beneath the pale golden treetops of Lórien, it is uncertain whether or not he was actually born there, though it has been his home for nearly the entirety of his young life. When Ahn'nai was but a child of three he was left in the care of two loving Guardians by his parents. He did not remain with these Guardians, however, for soon due to reasons unknown to the boy they were forced to leave him with an Elf Sire who was an old friend they had long known. Ahn'nai grew up believing that the ones who had left him with his Guardian were his parents, having been told that they had been summoned away to aid against the oppressive darkness that still corrupted the Mirkwood. For despite Sauron's defeat and expulsion from Dol Guldur at the hands of the White Council several years prior to Ahn'nai's birth his corruption of the once fair Greenwood still remained. And so his believed parents allegedly departed to battle the lingering darkness of Sauron's corruption. They never returned and their fates remain unknown.

Ahn'nai was raised by his new Guardian's House, though the Elf sire was dominantly responsible for the child's care. However, now that he is outside of Lórien the youth utterly refuses to speak of him, unwilling even to say his name. Though well cared for, as the boy grew he soon began to feel oppressed by his Guardian's often restrictive, perhaps overprotective, rule and yearned to see the world outside of his forest home. For most of his life the only things he knew of the outside world were taught to him by his Guardian's many books or the tales told to him by his elders, tales of the rise and fall of the many kingdoms of Elves, Men and Dwarves and tales of the many betrayals his kin suffered at the younger races' hands. The more he read, the more he heard, the more he began to envy his elders their many long years of life upon Middle-Earth. Most of all, he lamented that he would never see the world he had only read about in books or heard of in the songs of those who had actually seen it. The world his elders spoke of with such love, and such sorrow and regret; for soon the Elves would fade away, forever departing into the West.

All too soon the day Ahn'nai had long dreaded finally arrived, the day his Guardian told him that they and their House were to join the next company of Lórien Elves leaving for the Grey Havens and from there sailing away into the West. Despite the boy's many heartfelt pleas to be permitted to remain Ahn'nai soon found himself amongst those Elves who would begin the long journey to the Grey Havens together with his Guardian. Being so young the boy was much loved and cherished by those he traveled with and oft times they would try to console his sorrowful heart, to no avail. It grieved them deeply to see the once bright and cheerful young Elf displaying even a hint of the sadness which they had been burdened with for so long. Though the company of Elves stayed well away from all the settlements, towns and cities of Men - much to Ahn'nai's great disappointment - they always delighted in showing the Elven youth the many ruins and monuments of both Men and Elves, always sharing with him the long histories that went with them. The stories were meant to brighten the boy's heart, but all they managed to do was make him lament all the things he would never see or experience for himself.

During their journey the company of Lórien Elves visited the Halls of Lord Elrond in Imladris, where the boy was delighted to meet more of his who had seen so much more of the world than he. For a time Ahn'nai once again regained his cheer and youthful enthusiasm, delighting in the vast library of Lord Elrond and in the songs played by his kin. Most of all, he relished the stories told to him by Elrond himself, who had witnessed so much during his time on Middle-Earth. All too soon, though, they departed from Imladris to continue their journey West and Ahn'nai once again fell into quiet despair as they drew ever closer to the Grey Havens. Seeing the boy's sorrow, the Elves in his company thought it best to avoid anything that might further darken the youth's mood. Keeping to the forests and fields they were soon to make their way into Lindon when by chance the lad overheard two of his company mention a small, rarely visited settlement of Elves by the name of Celondim. The two Elves had not realized that the boy had been listening in and so had no way of knowing what was soon to come. For on the morrow, when the company was preparing to continue their journey, they found to their great surprise and worry, that their company's youngest member was gone.

During the night Ahn'nai had slipped quietly away from his companions, none thought anything amiss for the boy had often left their sides to be alone during the night, and made his way for Celondim, the Elven settlement he had heard two of his company mention. Though unfamiliar with these strange lands in the West Ahn'nai was able to make his way to Celondim, avoiding the Elves there as much as he could for fear his obvious youth would lead to too many inconvenient questions. From Celondim the boy eventually made his way to Duillond where, whilst buried in the books of the study there, he would meet the Elf sire who would show him the way to what he had yearned for for so long, to a town of Men.

Though he managed to slip away from the company that would have brought him to the Grey Havens, Ahn'nai is ever afraid of discovery. His greatest fear is being made to resume his journey West, never to see the world he had so desperately longed to be a part of. Even more than his fear of discovery, the boy fears being found by his Guardian, whose anger at him is sure to be great.
by Ancardil on Jun 01, 2013 at 10:08 PM
First Age

Ancardil was born in the third century of the First Age, Years of the Sun. His parents were of the Noldor who rebelled against the Valar after the Dark Lord Morgoth took the Silmarils for himself and were dedicated members of the Kinslaying at Alqualonde. In the midst of conflict with this evil, a son was born to them in the Hidden City who they named Ancardil, and they raised him in the hidden city of Gondolin. At this time, the hair of the child was short and brown. Here in the city the city he dwelled for one hundred years until it was sacked by Morgoth's host. His parents were forever proud, which would eventually lead to their downfall. Never doubting that evil could pass through the many gates of the Hidden City, they felt that the Noldor were superior to the other kindreds. Within the great walls of the city, Ancardil found a love for the beauty of natural things and the keeping of history's secrets, both light and dark. Whilst others took advantage of the Elves great power, Ancardil preferred to remain within his family home surrounded by his books. One author he became very interested in was Talafion, who was a master of history within Beleriand. On many occasions during his youth he would visit this Elf's revered library that stood a short distance from his home, after some years of acquainting themselves, Talafion apprenticed the young Ancardil.

He taught Ancardil his craft, book-keeping, schooling and scribing. Talafion was noble in the eyes of Ancardil, with his silver hair and pale grey eyes, his white and gold robe shining clear in the sunlight along with his glowing winged circlet. Much wisdom was given by him, including compassion and mercy. Gentle and skilled became the hands of Ancardil, for he did not seek to join his kindred in battle. Within the sanctity of Talafion's home they were safe, cut off from the ever coming woes from the Dark Lord. Together they began to piece together fragments of lore left behind on battlefields. Many books they wrote with one another, some of which can be found in the Elven libraries of the present day. On envoys he would send Ancardil, to the Edain where he would gradually learn their tongues and written languages. Here in the homes of Men he became accustomed to their culture and odd ways. Many friends among them did he gain, for they found him wise and subtle whilst he felt there was much strength amongst them. Upon his return to Gondolin he was welcomed by Talafion with open arms. A vast library had they built over the years which had relics added to it every day. A son he saw Ancardil as, for his own had been lost to the darkness of Morgoth. And a father is what Talafion was seen as; his own parents had become disappointed in him for his other kindred were off fighting battles whilst he 'Dusts of their bodies looking for words which cannot be found'. Yet content he was with his life and despite only being apprenticed for sixty years, Ancardil had become wise and compassionate. Many years passed and Ancardil began to match Talafion's knowledge due to his many teachings. They were also scribes to the noble Elves and of King Turgon's council, together they were entrusted with many great secrets. "Before you go, my son, know that my only pride in this life is spent on you." These were the last words that Ancardil heard from his master before he went home, never to look upon him alive again.

For it was after that evening that the sacking of Gondolin began due to the city being betrayed to Morgoth by Maeglin, King Turgon's own nephew. Houses burned and people fell dead to the ground. Among the smoke and death, Ancardil fled from his burning house with his kin who headed out of the city for safety. Yet his cries for his master were not answered. Through the burning streets he went, evil was all around him. Up the pale steps towards the library of Talafion where he saw the roof had collapsed and the innards had become engulfed in an inferno. Books and treasures coiled up in the heat and upon the desk that had split in two he saw him, lifeless and cold. He made several attempts to revive his fallen master yet they were not successful, no manner of Elven 'magic' could save him now. Out upon the veranda he took Talafion, who was now spent. His white and gold robe was charred, his skin was paler than ever and his silver hair had become blackened. Yet upon his head his circlet remained untarnished, still shimmering in the fire light. From him he took this and placed it upon his short brown hair, blessed him with a short yet feeling lament and ran out of the falling city. He joined a small group of Elves that were heading to the secret tunnels built by Idril, which led out from the city. From there he and the rest of the surviving Elves looked on at Gondolin, once a place of power and beauty taken to evil by the will of the darkness. Saved only by the bravery and strength of Tuor, Idril and the great Glorfindel. He was grateful that his life had been spared, yet sorrowful because so many others had not been so fortunate including the great Turgon, King of Gondolin. Fire and death was still strong in the memory of the young Ancardil, and away with the remains of his kindred he would go. He presumed that his parents had also escaped and would find their way to the refuges. For what seemed like a life age, the surviving Noldorin Elves wandered together, searching for respite in Beleriand.

Now into a refuge they went, of Sirion. Here Ancardil began to lose faith in the world, for much was lost for so little care. As many departed back to Valinor, Ancardil considered this deeply but was too overcome with sorrow to think about any journey. Ruled now by Tuor and Idril, there was a time of peace and hope for those who had fled there. Ancardil began to rebuild the knowledge that was lost in Gondolin, yet his grief for Talafion made it difficult. Tears would flood from his blue eyes whenever he opened a book, for the memory and pain of him was still too close. But from the library of Talafion he was able to grab several books and relics before departing which he now cherished for they were the last pieces of knowledge from Gondolin. Yet now more strife was to come, but not from the Dark Lord Morgoth, but their own kindred. The sons of Feanor, who came seeking the Silmaril, ravaged the refuge, killing many whilst trying to claim it. Elwing, who had possession of it, cast herself into the Sea where the jewel was saved by the Valar Ulmo and passed on to Earendil whilst he searched for Valinor to beg for aid. All was silent now, for there was no one who could speak in such a catastrophe Ancardil was once again lucky to be spared throughout the assault. The brother Maglor, seeking forgiveness for his actions raised Elrond and Elros as his own, as Elwing was their mother and Earendil was their father. Ancardil looked on as this happened, his hope in the world had come crashing down once again on this day, as Elves had turned on their own kindred to accomplish their own ends. Here in the refuge they waited for news from Earendil and the arrival of the Host of Valar. Ready for war was Ancardil, a lust for revenge had overcome him and his gentle thoughts vanished and black blood was on his mind. His books were now nothing to him, only Orc-blood would supplement his great anger.
At last, the Host had arrived from the West. Great they were, graceful and mighty. Even the great kings of the land were humbled by them, let alone Ancardil who felt strength come to him in their great presence. All the forces that answered the call for battle had arrived, the largest force ever to have walked upon Middle-earth. Men, Elves and Dwarves from across the lands came and prepared for battle, the War of Wrath had come. Away were his light robes and on came heavy armour, golden it shone in Valar's light. Off went his circlet and on came a helm. His books were out of hand and in their place was a mighty sword and shield. He was ready to be battle. With the great host he assembled, the great Elven clans, houses of Men and colonies of Dwarves made up the ranks. Never in all his years had he felt such rage than now. Together with the rest of the Host they went forth into battle, the greatest ever to have taken place on Middle-earth. A long march preceded the battle which began upon their arrival. The sounds of horns was almost deafening though among them Ancardil could still hear the roars of battle-cries and the ring of weapons being drawn. Despite never being in battle before, Ancardil slayed many Orcs and other evils with no mercy during the early stage of the battle, his rage released and his master being avenged. He looked on ahead as the Valar crushed the forces of Morgoth, and victory was almost at hand. The Elf kept in his given formation which meant the undisciplined Orcs were swiftly swiped out. As the Host pushed onwards, the Dark Lord was all but defeated. Battered was Ancardil, his mouth tainted by the foulness of those he had cut down, weary he was becoming as well. Yet Morgoth still had some dark crafts to play: Dragons he released upon them, these had not been seen before and they began to push back Host. Ancardil felt as though this was the end, he would surely die and end up in the wretched stomach of one of these beasts, yet hope was restored with the arrival of Earendil who was backed up by the Great Eagles of Manwe. They fought the dragons in the sky as the Host looked on and fought what force that remained on the ground. This beacon of hope spurred Ancardil on to the end, along with those of the Host that remained fighting. The Host were victorious, and Morgoth himself was captured in the deeps of Angband and was then taken to Aman to be tried for his crimes. The remaining Silmarils were recovered.

Celebrations swiftly followed, along with great mourning for those who had been lost. Ancardil looked upon his blackened sword and felt not victory, but disappointment. Despite those who he had slayed were unfeeling and evil, he felt that his rage was unnecessary and his lack of mercy were revolting. On his looked at what was once Beleriand now lost to war. When all the Elves were bidden to return to Valinor, away from the broken world, Ancardil was among the few who refused, feeling he had much work to help with still and that times that are equally as trying are still ahead. He learnt that his parents had perished in the Hidden City, though he had previously believed that they had fled; in their pride they returned to the burning Gondolin and were slain. The last of his kindred in Middle-earth was he. Yet content he was with his choice. His memories of Talafion were in these lands, not any other. He looked on at the ruined lands, and helped in the rebuilding that formed the realm of Lindon, a haven for all Elves.

Second Age

The Second Age had begun, a time where the tainted past could be forgotten to some extent, where the Eldar could rebuild that which was destroyed in the previous Age. Lindon was now a symbol of the Noldor, of beauty and power. Ancardil lived under the rule of Lady Galadriel, who served under the new High King Gil-galad. In this bliss land he was again at peace after the years of strife and pain. As was his ambition since the construction of the land, Ancardil began to collect knowledge and other relics once again. Of the Lady Galadriel he thought much of, with her subtle wisdom and beauty. It was she who he saw as a leader and lord, though he still revered and served Gil-galad loyally. Towards the sea his library looks to, and the sun would beat down upon the golden roof and shimmer as did all buildings around the lands. Within the open windows would the fresh sea air seam through during the morning, and Ancardil would walk along the vast beaches there deep in thought. In the daytime he would study in his library, guiding those who came to him with his written treasures. When the sun went down and the bright lights that came out of the houses were lit, Ancardil would sit upon his balcony and listen to the fair minstrels that sung of hope and peace. A far cry this was to several years prior, where the land was in the midst of war; a broken world and broken spirits of the people there. Now a life of bliss and tranquillity was laid ahead, with Galadriel as their guide. From the few occasions that he was able to speak with her, Ancardil learnt more wisdom and compassion than any book could ever provide. "To you, Lady, I am forever at the disposal of your will. If there is anything you wish for me to do, then simply say the words.” This is what he told her on several occasions, and she would reply: "Then to that I shall hold you, your time will come when you are needed more than it seems now, though this peace you should enjoy without servitude". Thus centuries would now go on with the peace and enjoyed it he did, as the Lady had said.
With the time that went on, Ancardil became ever wiser and more at peace with himself, after a period in which his actions in the War of Wrath began to disgust him. His library became ever vaster, with more and more knowledge being added. His more adventurous kindred would return from their travels with special relics in which they entrusted with Ancardil. Many trusted his skills with 'book-keeping', his self-named craft. Though lonely he was in truth, no one to share his interests in. Yet in Lindon this was changed, for a student of the past had come to him, seeking a mentor. Gildarián was her name, of the Sindar. A beauty she was, even among the Elves. Quiet she seemed at start, and timid when approaching Ancardil. He accepted her request almost immediately, and in the guest room of his library home she moved that day. So began to relationship of Ancardil and Gildarián, he mentored her in the vast lore of Middle-earth, of history and language. Together they became close friends, exchanging their most inner thoughts with each other. Several years past, and she had become a proficient scholar, pride of Ancardil, as he had been to Talafion. Her mentoring had finished now for she was as wise as he, yet she decided to remain in the library, much to Ancardil's delight. As two, they enriched each other’s knowledge with new findings and theories. Lovers they became, and soon after exchanging their feelings they were wed in the bliss of Lindon. They kept their library for many years to come, together and loving all through the days and nights.

When the Lord Celeborn and Lady Galadriel moved away and settled in the area of Eregion to east, Ancardil and Gildarián went with them along with many other Noldorin and Sindarin Elves. Ancardil loved this land deeply and despite his disapproval of mining and drying up the depths of the world, he came to become greatly interested in the newly found 'Dwarf-silver' that was brought up from Moria. He saw future in this metal, for it was both beautiful and strong. Here they founded no library, instead living in tranquillity that was enhanced greatly by the trade with the Dwarves of Khazad-dum. Ancardil loved the mithril that was mined by them, and he plated his precious circlet with it, for it was becoming brittle from the many years it had been worn. Now it shined forever as bright, with or without the sun. For years they dwelt here, trading freely with the Dwarves; they also traded their knowledge of metals as well, something Ancardil was involved in. Alas Eregion was never a permanent home for him and his wife, hence why he never built a library there, though the land beheld much prosperity for both the Elves and Dwarves there in that time. Here he learnt to read and write Khuzdul from the Dwarrows there, whilst befriending many of them over the years. In 1350 of the same Age, he and his wife migrated through Maria when they heard word from a Nandorin settlement in the east. With his Lord and Lady he followed, into the woods that would later be known as Lothlórien. Under their rule would he once again serve, deep within the woods. Beauty like no other beheld the migrating Elves that came out from the long halls of Moria, for no other forest in this land could match Dwimordene.

In this majestic wood, great mallorn trees were planted; silver were the trunks and gold were the leaves. Beauty sprung up out of the ground, around Ancardil. In outer Caras Galadhon he made his dwelling. Upon one of these trees a home was built for him. A large deck it was, with a round ceiling that was half open. Under an opening in the branches it was, so the sun could pour all of its light in. Such beauty he had never beheld, not even upon the beaches of Lindon. Once again, a vast collection he built up, lore was copied from that of his collection in Lindon, for within Ancardil's head are all the books he has looked upon. Gold were the walls of this home, patterned with the great care of the Elves. Warm it was by day and cool by the moonlight, the breeze of the mountains were forever refreshing. In this land of sanctity, the dark and short hair of Ancardil become light and long, silvery blonde it was in colour. Renewed were his spirits and his love for history, along with his dear lover. Much vaster was this library, for greater than Lindon. Deeper was the lore he studied and greater became his mind; the mallorn trees that were overhead and the Celebrant from which he drank from was great for one’s mind. Here in the home Ancardil, Gildarián bore him twins; a boy and a girl, whom he named Talafion and Vistilian respectively. Cherished were his children, more so than all the books he had ever possessed. With the guidance of their parents and the greatness of the woods, they both become wise and fair. Light was their hair, more so than most Eldar. His son grew taller than he, with much more natural strength. Vistilian was as fair as her mother, with much grace flowing before her. The fairest of all the Elf-realms was his home now and that best protected in Ancardil's eyes, for he trusted the Lord and Lady's power and wisdom to keep any evil in check.

The rest of the Second Age remained peaceful for Ancardil and his family. To the Greenwood went Talafion when he came of age, to join the hunters there. East to Lindon went Vistilian, where she kept the same library in which her parents first met. Revered and great she was said to become, perhaps even advising to court of the High King. No more children did Gildarián and Ancardil have, as they felt that they have given enough to the world in that form. Still they continued with their library, which became ever greater. Filled with more and more students it was, seeking to learn from the knowledge that was kept there. Ancardil and Gildarián were known as ‘Mentor’ to many, yet humble they remained. For this was their service to the world which they had enjoyed for so many years now. Even among some Men were they known, and a handful of those kindred came to the Golden Wood, seeking a part of that knowledge for them. Though Ancardil was ever wary of the desires that Men had, so was therefore careful in what he taught; for in his mind knowledge is power. Many languages did he study, that of Westron, Rohirric and Khuzdul. Fluently did he speak the tongues of Men, though only read and write that of the Dwarves he could for he did not have the tone to speak it. A fine ambassador he would perhaps have made, yet he did not seek to leave the comfort and peace of Lothlórien. Away was he from the great wears and woes of the world: The fall of Númenor included.

Unaware was he of any ‘Rings’ being crafted in Eregion. For Celebrimbor had kept this a secret. Only when the War of the Elves and Sauron broke out did he begin to understand what had been going on in the west of his home. Yet despite the on-going strife of the war, Ancardil felt protected within Lothlórien, he sensed a power had settled within the wood that made it invulnerable to attack. When news reached the Wood concerning the fall of Eregion and the death of Celebrimbor along the closing of the Moria gate, Ancardil fell silent for a long period of time, such was the same with the rest of his kindred there. Despite this loss and pain, the War was over and peace resumed for some time. At this time following the War, many of Ancardil’s friends and former students had departed to the West, though despite having plenty of reasons and opportunities to leave he refused to, thus his dear wife also stayed loyal to him in Lórien. Though a toll the conflict had on him, despite not being an active participant, he was now more sorrowful and quiet. The Woods were also silent for most of the time, save the clear laments from the fair voices of the Galadhrim. Only through messages from Imladris did Lothlórien hear news from Eriador and from the rare times that the Sindar from Greenwood did they hear from the north. Yet Ancardil was ever aware that his defeat in Eriador would not weaken Sauron, the new Dark Lord nor his ambitions. On clear days he would look the east, where his eyes could catch sight of the Ash Mountains in the far distance. All knew that Lórien was the closest of the remaining Elven realms to Mordor, yet protected they were by a greater force, unknown to most.

From the ruins of Eriador, relics were brought to Lórien and given to Ancardil. Many of them contained remains of the Black Speech on them which he started to study, but with the sincere counsel of the Lord and Lady and the pain it placed on his heart, he decided not to go any further with the pieces and kept them well hidden from all sight. Though through this brief study he was able to recognize the Black Speech on sight, despite not being able to read it very well. Of Númenor he heard of, of their greatness and wisdom. Yet of their pride and greed he also learned, of their jealously of the immortal Eldars. News then came to Ancardil of the Númenorians banning the Elves from their lands and then the language of the Eldar, followed by a civil war and unrest. Ancardil and Gildarián took counsel together, wondering if they could do anything to lessen the strife. Yet the Lady Galadriel bid them that “The time of Men is upon the world, we must only guide them with our teachings. What they do with our counsel, I cannot tell. Though their acts are their own to fashion.” A short while after this, great tidings came of the ‘Ship-kings’ capturing the Dark Lord with their mighty force. To their island they took him, a breath of hope and possibility of peace came over Ancardil, though as many times before, this was not to be. Now whispers came of the Númenorians landing the Blessed Realm, breaking their promise not to do so. Ancardil became sorrowful, for the greed of Men had allowed them to be corrupted by ill words. Then more destruction came, for the Ship-kings were now banished from Valinor which was now removed from the world. The island of Númenor sank beneath the depths of the Sea. A grave time indeed this was for all, especially the Firstborn who had put so much faith in Men. The Undying Lands now seemed much more appealing than they had before, yet after counsel with his wife, they decided to brace the world in the safety of the Golden Wood.
News from his daughter ceased, for the passage over the Mountains had become very difficult. There in Lindon she remained or West she went, Ancardil did not know. News from Eriador became ever sparser from Rivendell. Yet of the Faithful Númenorians the Lord and Lady told them, those who remained loyal to the Valar and the Eldar. Faith was restored in Men, led by Elendil. Great kingdoms did Ancardil look on at: Arnor in the west and Gondor to the south. These people were friendly with the Elves, and graced Lothlórien with their presence, Ancardil gave them many treasures of wisdom on their visits, and they were able to converse in Elvish which the Faithful still used. For some time these Men and Elves lived in peace, no wars or strife in the world. This ended with the taking of Minas Ithil, in Gondor by Sauron who renamed the city ‘Minas Morgul’. Thus after a year of counsel among Men and Elves, an Alliance was formed which meant war was inevitable. Sorrowful was Ancardil, yet he felt ready to take up arms one last time, in order to end evil forever and rid the world of Sauron, Morgoth’s last great servant.

Several years followed of preparation among both Men and Elves. Crafting instruments of war and training any one able to fight in the art of combat. Word was sent to Lórien telling them that the Alliance had reached Rivendell and would be upon them soon. From a chest that had not been opened in over three millenniums was unlocked, and out of it came Ancardil’s armour from the War of the Wrath. Untarnished it still remained, and his sword was still sharp. Less rage did he possess this time, for no personal revenge did this war contain. The air in the Wood was also so pure that no ill thoughts would take hold. Here in a realm which has known only peace now held Elves who were heavily armed with merciless weapons and thick armour. A few days before the Alliance arrived, the Lady of Lórien gathered all her people together. “Fear not this war, for soon days of peace will follow. Have courage in the Dark Lands, for that shall see you well.” With that she gave them each a leaf of mallorn. The Alliance now marched into the Golden Wood, a host of Númenorians joined by the remaining clans of Elves: of Lindon, Imladris and Greenwood. Even the Dwarves of Moria joined the host. Here he met his son, Talafion, whom he had not seen for many years now. Even taller and stronger he was than before, and proud. The Alliance left the Wood whilst Gildarián looked on at her greatest love.

A long march now followed, south down the Anduin. Yet weary Ancardil did not become, for he was determined to fight with as much courage and determination as he could muster. After weeks of travelling, they met up with the rest of the Alliance: Elendil’s son, Anárion awaited them just before Mordor. Clearer and clearer the black land became, yet the closer Ancardil marched, the darkness became more imminent. Across the Plains of Dagorlad they marched, the air thick with foul smog. Ancardil looked up the great gates of Mordor, which slowly opened as the Alliance advanced. From this came large hordes of Orcs came from, and the Alliance began to form their ranks, as they had been trained to over the years of preparation. Part of the great line of shields was Ancardil part of, behind the banner of the Galadhrim. An unbreakable defence was now formed, and the formation was complete. Now the foul creations of the darkness charged in an unruly fashion towards the Alliance, yet the host did not falter. Most Orcs fell upon the Plains before they even reached the Alliance due to the efficient archery of the Elves and Men. The rest were felled by great sword and spearmen. The battle ensued for weeks on end, for out of the Black Gate did the Dark Lord pour his creatures out of. Yet the great discipline and strength of the Alliance was able to push them back though the gate. Ancardil now felt very weary, and the same taint was in his mouth from the War of Wrath. Yet he continued his fight on the front line, slaying many Orcs with little mercy. Of those Orcs that were pushed back, most were killed by the pursuing archers who were protected by the shield that still held. Horns of victory sounded across the land, and Ancardil was able to take some time out for a short rest and much needed food. Yet in this moment of rest, the Dark Lord himself revealed himself from his tower. Ancardil ran with all speed into position, and looked upon Sauron himself, and for the first time genuine fear took his heart. Felled was the High King Gil-galad and then Elendil the Tall, both at the hand of the Dark Lord. Yet defeat was not an option for the Alliance and Elendil’s son, Isildur cut the Ring from his mighty hand, thus undoing his evil. Ancardil looked on at this; another beacon of hope was lit within his soul. The remaining Orcs were all slain by the victors and he witnessed the destruction of Barad-dur. Yet his expectations in Men were thwarted on this day, for the Ring was not destroyed and Isildur left the Dagorlad with it in his possession.
After burying their dead in the Plains, the Alliance disbanded and those who survived began to long walk home. With the remaining Galadhrim of the battle did Ancardil join, and back towards the Wood they marched, weary and seeking a long rest. Many decided on the return journey that they would go into the West. Yet Ancardil did not feel this way, though despite he had once again lost faith in the world, especially Men, he believe that in the next Age they might call upon his help. But he sickened himself as he did during the War of the Wrath which led to one hundred years of solitude, dwelling upon the banks of the Anduin in complete silence, eating sparsely and thinking lightly. Of Gildarián he thought of often, believing that she would be disappointed in him, though after much time he yearned to return to the Golden Wood. Onwards towards his home he went. Lothlórien remained the same as it was before their departure, the Lord and Lady welcomed them back with a great honour and rewards. Yet all who dwelt there now were sorrowful, more so than before. Gildarián was among them, yet with her she brought a gift: a child conceived on the eve of his departure. Fair he was, with similarities to his father, yet his mother's Sindarin blood ran strong in him. He was named Halafien and had kept his mother company for a century, for she knew that her love had not fell within Mordor. She bid him to travel westwards with her, he declined for there was still much work to be done in Middle-earth. A last night they spent together, and she promised to remain true to him and wait for his arrival. Together they rode to the Grey Havens, where they spoke for a last time. At last she boarded a grey ship and sailed westwards into the mist. Silence fell once again upon the Golden Wood, and fewer now dwelt here. Into the Third Age he would go alone, with nought but his library for company. Halafien had followed in his brother's steps and headed north towards the Greenwood to find Talafion there shortly after his mother's departure, for he has neither interest in books nor any other study. Yet a beacon of hope filled his heart at the turn of the Age, for he knew that an evil had been vanquished for good in the First Age, so it could be done again as long as an alliance remained between the Free Peoples of Middle-earth.

Third Age

For many centuries Ancardil served under the Lord and Lady of Lórien. His collection grew ever vaster, yet its significance dwindled. On starry nights his mind would wander far over the mountains that towered to the west into Eriador, yet to the Sea he never looked. The ruins of Eregion lay beneath his feet and all the lands had changed since his eyes last saw them. Men had made settlements around the Lost Realm of Arnor, such as Bree-land. The River-folk from the old tales lived peacefully in their holes and Dwarves secluded themselves within the great mountain halls. This was a land that was free from outright war and evil. He loved Lothlórien and the great mallorn trees, the Lord and Lady too yet within the Golden Wood he did not feel as though he would ever find peace. Ancardil went to the House of Celeborn to seek counsel on what to do: Stay in Lothlórien, travel westwards into Eriador or pass over the Sea. "Alas, there is much work for you to do here yet. Though there might be work for you within Valinor. Follow your heart, Ancardil student of Talafion, for it will guide you into peace and greatness" spoke Celeborn the Wise. Away he went back into his beloved library and remained deep in thought for many days. Until such a time that he decided to seek service in the Valley of Imladris, within the famed Library of Elrond. He returned to the Lord and Lady to take leave from Lórien, promising never to leave the shores of Middle-earth until he looked upon the Golden Wood once more. He also bid them to keep the contents of his collection, as a parting gift for their kindness and guidance. In return the Galadhrim granted Ancardil with a horse decorated in fine white and gold dressing.

The following morning, he left Lothlórien with tearful eyes and began the long passage of the Misty Mountains. It took him weeks to make it over the other side for he had never attempted to climb it before. He reached Hollin on a pleasant and warm evening; outwards he looked across Eregion which was now a ruin of what he remembered. Just like the dream, the great Elven structures and bustling traders had vanished with the years. With his steed, who he named 'Luthien', he rode lightly to the north towards the great forest of Trollshaws. The evening sun shone on the red leaves of the trees, and Ancardil enjoyed a pleasant ride that took him several days. Refreshed by the waters of the Bruinen he rode on towards Rivendell, where he arrived on the first light. He was greeted by his Noldorin kindred and shown to Lord Elrond. As he passed the many steps and bridges on his way to the Last Homely House, he remembered witnessing Elrond's mother's sacrifice and the arrival of his father with the Great Eagles. All about him the light shone, unlike the shady Lórien. He now entered the House of Elrond and was escorted into the fabled library. There he stood, noble yet humble at the same time, Lord Elrond Half elven. "Ancardil of Gondolin, welcome. I have foreseen your coming from afar along with your intentions. Your work is known to me and we would welcome you to serve within this house of knowledge". He agreed almost immediately and the Lord bid him to begin the next day and to rest under the sun on this day. Ancardil did indeed begin the next day, working alongside other great scholars in the most revered collection of knowledge in Middle-earth. Thus began his new life in Imladris. He was entrusted with the keeping of many great pieces of lore and artefacts, great relics from Middle-earth were taken to Rivendell for safe keeping. This included the shards of Narsil and Aiglos. With his skill in linguistics, Ancardil became a notable translator in Rivendell and transcribed many books form foreign tongues into Westron or Sindarin. From Lord Elrond he learnt how to decipher Moon-runes, something that was rare even among the Elves. The Lord of Imladris also granted him a fair house within the Valley, one similar to the homes of Gondolin made of marble and fine tiles. This was a home only, not a library as well. In the mornings he would wander through the valley and along the flow of the Bruinen, much like he had done in Lindon so long ago. Many came to Rivendell from afar: travelers seeking refuge and rest, others seeking counsel and knowledge. From Eriador they were aware of the strife of Men far away and of the gathering of evil forces in the east. Though they were relatively safe where they were, the mountains keeping the darkness at bay. Here in Rivendell there was a presence of protection and sanctuary, much like in Lothlórien though the Elves never spoke of such matters as they prized knowledge greatly. Among themselves, the Elves of the library traded the lore of history freely. Yet they were ever wary of the travelers that found their way to the Hidden Valley, as they came seeking knowledge eagerly yet their intentions were often ill.

As a rule, Ancardil would ask the reasoning for their interest in the books. If he did not feel they were sincere, then he would not allow them to take anything from the library. Unlike in Lórien news was not scarce. From the edge of Eriador they knew exactly what was happening in the outer world, whether it is west or east of the mountains. From the south, a great reputation of Gondor at the height of the realm's power. Ancardil remained in Rivendell during the lines of kings, along with the civil unrest and war in that land. The Valley, specifically the library, remained a great source of knowledge to all and therefore Ancardil of Gondolin was always kept busy. His tasks included translating copies written in ancient tongues into more readable languages such as Sindarin or Westron. He also often guided Men and other Elves directly when they came seeking counsel in Imladris. He was now more social than he was in Lórien, free from the expected silence. Fair harps and flutes echoed across the valley at all hours, which was most relaxing for everyone.

Yet after a long period of peace in Imladris, it was besieged by the forces of Angmar during the war between Arnor and the Witch-king. For five decades the siege lasted and for Ancardil there was no scribing nor reading at this time for everyone there was ever watchful and prepared in case the defence of the valley failed. He now wielded a blade at all times, something he had not done for so long. Yet if the forces of Angmar did indeed enter the Valley, he would willingly fight to protect the knowledge and people of Imladris. Yet relief eventually came from Lórien and the siege was broken. Music once again played in Rivendell now that the threat had passed, and Ancardil returned to the library of Elrond. Yet the Witch-king's malice continued throughout Eriador, storming the Kingdom of Arnor. Aid came from the Elves of Rivendell and Lindon, thus Angmar was pushed out of Eriador. Now resumed a general feel of peace and control, in the lands. Ancardil heard much of the decline in Gondor and the fall of the kings. Yet he remained an enthusiastic enforcer of knowledge and continued to counsel those who came seeking advice in Rivendell. Ancardil often looked out from the verandas of Rivendell, he would smell the air and notice how much it had changed since his youth his Gondolin, yet he knew that the world was changing for better or for worse.

The changing world however did not have much toil on Imladris, nor Ancardil. Whilst plague ravaged Rhovanion and affected the rest of the West, he continued his work within the protected Valley. Many events unfolded over the next few centuries, Angmar continued to raid Arnor while the evils of the east and south continued to assault Gondor. Though whilst Gondor was able to withhold the attacks, Arnor fell in 1974 and its destruction was felt heavily in the Last Homely House. Though afterwards the Dark Lord Sauron disappeared from all sight and the Free Peoples were able to enjoy the Watchful Peace. In this time more Elves and Men came to Rivendell to use its collection of knowledge, news came from the east that 'Mirkwood' had become a slightly lighter place. Such times reminded Ancardil of Lindon, and how peaceful and bliss it was there. The residents of Imladris also looked on the prosperous Shire, and the 'Perinnath' who dwelled there. To them, the halfings were a shining example of the coming 'Younger Days'. Though they never made direct contact with these small folk, as they felt it may disrupt their peaceful lifestyles.

For the next few centuries, Ancardil's life and vocation remained very much unchanged. He was present when the child 'Estel' was brought to Rivendell with his mother. He knew, as did most Elves, who this child really was and what he could become. The fostered son of Elrond often took to the library seeking knowledge there. Ancardil would often aid him to find what he was looking for, sometimes leading to conversations between them. He was also in Imladris during the arrival of the Company of Thorin Oakenshield. On that day it was the first time he had seen a Dwarf since his time in Eregion, though he was surprised to see that the Dwarrows had not changed at all since the Second Age; resistant and courteous. There he also looked upon a Hobbit for the first time, Bilbo Baggins was his name and he was among the company of thirteen. Ancardil was aware of the nature of their quest and wished them all well as they departed. Even now he remembers all of their names: Balin, Dwalin, Fíli, Kíli, Dori, Nori, Ori, Óin, Glóin, Bifur, Bofur, Bombur and Thorin Oakenshield himself, each with their own personality and skills.

For the next sixty years, Ancardil remained at Lord Elrond's service and the collection within the library had become the largest in Middle-earth. He had taken on several students during his time in Rivendell who would then go on to work with him in the Last Homely House. But in the spring of 3018, his life in Rivendell would end. His Lord approached him in the morning when the sun was pale. "Ancardil of Gondolin, faithful servant to knowledge, you have kept this library safe for many centuries now and I feel that I have a greater task for you, if you are willing." He spoke. "I am willing to follow your bidding, my Lord Elrond" Ancardil replied, bowing his head. "Then my bidding is this: I have looked west into Eriador and have seen an Order that would seek the aid of a scholar such as you. The Knights of Eriador they are called, led by Arangilas Bloodrage, son of Eldonaar. They are an order of many colours, Men, Elves, Dwarves and even Hobbits. Within the town of Hookworth you shall find them, in Bree-land. Seek them out, and serve them. There you shall find more purpose than here, for this land is fading whilst that land is beginning to prosper. Go forth now, and all the best". Thus with that Ancardil packed a bag full of his essentials and was granted a steed from Elrond's stables. So began the long ride west into Bree-land where he will seek out Arangilas Bloodrage and the Knights of Eriador.

Present Day

Spring had now begun and after days of riding westwards, Ancardil reached the village of Hookworth. Draped in a long white gown that was gifted to him in Lórien along with his master's circlet he approached the ancient gates and was granted entry.

by Unge on Feb 22, 2013 at 01:41 PM
*The following text you read is scribbled with a fairly bad handwriting on a worn parchment with some old breadcrumbs stuck onto it, mixed with a greasy substance, lying under the feasting table in the Shelter*

It must have been yesterday. Yes I am sure that it was. I spoke to Mimosa Cotton about the recent wolf sightings and locations of cattle gone missing. It was regular stuff really, although I never can get used to the shivering breath of danger which surrounds us all. Most of the times it makes my mind wander of to a flashback of blood and gore, and I feel a strong nauseous ache slashing through my stomac. Sometimes the feeling sticks, and I can not sleep. Other times I wash the feeling away with a frothing cup of ale, and an overflowing warm meal. It depends if a person is willing to give it to me. But ever I feel lonely. Ever? Nay, not if I am at the shelter, enjoying the comforts of the company of my fellow brethren and the abundance of food and drinks. Mimosa awoke me from my dream with an inquiry if I felt alright. I answered her that I was fine, and said that I would look into it the next morning, and asked her for a place to stay. After I had made myself comfortable in the uncomfortable stable, a type of place I am used of recieving by most of the somewhat paranoid people of my own race. I had a sleepless night and howls of wolves sounded in the distance.

The next morning I packed my belongings even before the earliest local rooster could have bothered me with his voice, and I headed to the nearest forest. On the edge of this forest the most cattledisappearances have been happening, and there I was looking on the grassy floor looking for fresh wolf tracks. I do not know a lot of tracking, and I was actually more relying on my hearing, to locate the wolves. I always pretend to track because I can focus myself more and it somehow enhances my hearing. And the good side effect is that it looks very professional too. Then suddenly I heard a sound I had not heard before.
It sounded like the wind, but it was not so. I can compare it best by blending the sound of the draft created by door opening in the winter, and the sound of an arrow in flight. And somehow I felt attracted by the sound. I could not hear from what direction it had came, but I knew it had gone into te forest. I never feel at ease in forests. They provide cover for all sorts of danger, and the trees always seem to glance down on me in some way. But still I persevered yesterday, and eventually I found the pack of wolves. Their number was great.
As well as the number of their claws. I swiftly calculated the direction of the wind, and picked a piece of foliage where they would not smell me. I sneaked into that bush and awaited the right time to strike. Then suddenly I heard that sound again. I looked arround tryig to learn from where it had came. And after a short while I heard it another time. This time I could make up where it had came from, exactly on the other side of the wolf den. Now, what happened next seemed like magical to me. The whole forest somehow seemed to silence. The birds stopped to whistle, and the leaves of the trees in the wind did not make any sound anymore. Later I thought that the whole forest was mourning the fact that the wolves would dissapear. Then after a short while, their was a rain of arrows coming from where I last heard that noise. I can not remember being ever so afraid as in that moment. Then I saw the whole pack of wolves trying to get away. And a very small portion of the pack did so. Later I understood that it had a reason. Because killing the whole pack would have made unbalance in the world. After the slaughter came an appearance out of the foliage. If you read this, you have to believe me, I have never seen anything fairer than this person walking out of the bushes. He inspected the den, and then smiled at my direction.I was unsure what to do. Get out of my hiding place, or run away. I had heard of the Eldar, and I knew I would meet one of them one day, but I did not expect to do so while hunting down a pack of wolves. But while thinking of this, in the blink of an eye, he stood right in front of me, looking down on me, and said: 'Mae govannen, little one, do not be afraid!'. And while he slightly bowed for me he said: 'You can call me Aearombad, tracker of seas.'
by Ronthor on Aug 25, 2012 at 08:50 AM
(-Written from the perspective of Ronthor-)

Still getting used to this whole writtin' deal. Its worse than trying to beat an armored uruk with nothing but a stick found on the earth. But I'm'a have to get used to it I reckon, Sir Arangilas ordered it afterall. So I decided to keep a journal, to help me along my path and in the case of my death. To pass on a little bit to whomever decided to pick this book up. Think I'll start with the day I left my farm... Don't remember to much before that, besides, who wants to read about a farmer all day?

Entry one.

I was young that day, about fourteen if I recall an' have not taken too many blows to the head. It was a calm morning, the sun had just rose. It was orange with a yellow hue to it. I was in the barn, but unlike normal, I was preparing to leave instead of work. I was garbing myself in a verity of leather armor pieces I had "gathered" an' I used the term lightly, over the years. Farmers leave useful items all over the place, eh? Most of the armor was make shift, rigged, or just plain derelict. I had no helm, I was too brash at the time to to realize the usefulness of one. Though I still hate wearing helms to be honest. I then twisted around to find my Father standing face to face with me, I froze, expecting him to yell and tell me to get back in the house, that I still had'a sit around and help him on the farm. I surprised to say the least when he told me good luck and that he loved me, he had found out that I had been preparing months early. Then somethin' surprised me even more, he said that he loved me, odd for him and then handed me a hatchet. It was my Grandfather's, he used it fend off the Dunlending when he served among the Rohirrim. Honored I took the weapon. Then my Pa went back to himself, told me in these exact words. "To get the bloody blazes off his property before Ma came out and saw what I was planing and threw a fit." I just smiled an' walked off as he told me.

Then I was on the road, the cold lonely road. It had been two days since I had departed. I was tired, I was lonely, I was flat out worse feeling than an Orc with his Taskmaster on his heels. Comin' into the ol' trading village not far from the farm I walked into the Tavern, which I had seen many-a-time with my Pa. It was... Odd. Being there without him, I'll tell ya that much! Anyways, inside huddle around the middle table on the left side of the place were Rohirrim, waving their mugs around and talkin' in all sorts of colourful language. Other than that where the regular ol' drunks, sellswords, bards, and busybodies.

I sat at the table on the opposite side of the Rohirrim, ordered myself a drink and preceded to mind my own business. However, one of the sellswords decided differently. He walked on up to me and told me to hand over all the coin I had, I of course, refused, told him he was drunk and bid him farewell. But suddenly I felt a stingin' in my cheek as a chainmail covered fist slammed face. I staggered out of my seat and threw myself at the man, smashing my fists into his gut and causing him to grunt. However, he had the advantage of age and hardly staggered, smashin' my shoulder witha' 'nother heavy handed blow. I held my ground and walloped him upside the head, this time he did stagger and sway. I took my chance, usin' what Pa told me I threw another punch only to miss and be elbowed. I hit the ground hard, body yelling at me in pain. Suddenly standin' over me was one of the Rohirrim, spear to the sellsword's neck. Hehe, the poor man looked like he was about to throw up ice.

Next thing I know is a hand is being offered to help me up, still staggered I rose to my feet and thanked the Rohirrim, the sellsword had retreated and was talkin' amongst his fellows. The Rohirrim talked among themselves and the shuffled me over to their table and offered me a drink for the one that had been split in my tussle. Nodding I agreed and drank among them. For once in my life, I felt a bit of bloody action and was now drinkin' with a group of soldiers!
by Hammarhand on Aug 22, 2012 at 11:03 AM
You know where you are with ore. One look and it give you and honest account of itself - copper, tin, rich iron... mithril! Not so with Men.

My head still spins after spending weeks in the Breelands. Enough Men to fill 40 hill forts, at least! But as divided as elusive gold flakes in bedrock! I did my best to fulfill my task and find allies against the darkness, but to little avail. The people are afraid of each other and preying on each other. There is little trust. All this must be the work of the Dark One.

I’ve come across a few men, called Rangers, who seem to be trying to fight the darkness where it can be found, but they are even fewer than the Dwarves I’ve met. So very few.

It’s good to be out here in the Lone Lands for a while, digging in the earth. It helps me clear my thoughts. You know where you are with ore…

Still, I have a direction now. It was quite a remarkable encounter. I was helping an old innkeeper in a dusty old place called the Forsaken Inn, cleaning my equipment on the porch, when I noticed a cloud of dust being stirred up by approaching horsemen.

My first reaction was to run in and warn the people inside, as I have rarely seen a great number of Men approaching if they did not have ill intentions. Something made me stop, however. There is a certain character even in the way evil Men ride. This formation did not exhibit that.

The group approached and at the command of a group leader, the dismounted and began tying their horses to the rest post. Clearly, these people were not anticipating trouble. Still, I kept my axe close.

Then I heard a burp. Now, Men burp to some degree, but no true Dwarf can mistake the sound of an honest Dwarven burp. There were some of Durin’s folk riding with these people! Spellbound, I watched them proceed into the inn. Several of the riders nodded respectfully in my directions, manners rare in a land fraught with distrust.

My curiosity piqued, I followed them inside. They seemed only to be resting there, on their way towards some great adventure. I made my way to the Dwarf, whose name turned out to be Bule, to inquire about them. Eager to hear tidings from the Iron Hills, Bule invited me to share a drink with him and tell me the latest news.

I did, and Bule repaid me by telling about the group he was riding with. They are a band called the Knights of Eriador, and from what Bule told me, they seem to be exactly what I was sent out to try to create. Before I knew what happened, Bule went to tell the leader of the group about me and suddenly, tired from the day, and comfortable from the strong ale of the Forsaken Inn, I was introduced to Arangilas Bloodrage, leader of the Knights of Eriador.

Now, I have seen many leaders of Men. I met Bard and several prominent Men of Dale. The mayor of Bree is an amiable enough fellow. Arangilas was not like any of them. He saluted me in the manner of Dwarves, which, combined with the strong drink and the months of suspicious distrust that I had faced completely threw me off guard.

I remember with horror how my words stumbled over each other. How I nearly lost my balance getting up and bowing.

Still, he put me at ease. I don’t know why, but I not only related my lord’s wish that I gather allies from all the Free Peoples against the darkness, but also my personal concern over the growing darkness.

To my great surprise, I was invited to ride with them that very day. I was not able to go, however, seeing as I had promised to help the innkeeper.
As their group leader called all knights to finish their rest and mount up again, Arangilas bid me find their headquarters in Bree.

I shall go, surely. So many months of looking for allies. So little hope to unite people. And then I find myself face to face with the Knights of Eriador.
Sometimes this life is too much for a dwarf. Thank goodness for ore!
by Hammarhand on Aug 05, 2012 at 07:55 AM
A wise man builds his house upon a rock. A wise dwarf carves his house into the rock. Durin's folk have always endured, stood against the darkness. Until now.

Our pride almost led to one of the darkest days in this Age. Standing beside our brother Thorin Oakenshield, we marched from the Iron Hills to the Lonely Mountain, ready to defend what was ours - as we always have.

That day changed my view on what is ours. That day changed who "we" were forever. There are enough songs about the Battle of the Five Armies, and I will not add my tale of that day this time.

We are the Free People of Middle-Earth. Ours are these lands, our lives and our freedom! After the great battle, I spent months together with Elves and Men, giving chase to our foes. I was saved one time by the arrow of Fendalas of Mirkwood, and another time by the valiant charge of Dale-Men. I repaid these favors in kind time and again. It was a great time to be alive - a new dawn for Middle-Earth.

That was then.

I have not seen them myself, but I have heard of dark emissaries approaching the Lonely Mountain with thinly veiled threats and promises of riches beyond belief. We know of large armies gathering in the East. Again Durin's folk needs to endure, as we have throughout the ages.

Dain II Ironfoot is wise, however. We cannot stand alone. I heard grumblings about why so many Five Army veterans are leaving the Iron Hills at this perilous time, but it is good. Those of us who were there have seen the valiance of Man and Elf. If we are to have any hope against this new darkness, it must rise from a new alliance. I set out with high hopes.

But my hope has now taken a blow I could not see coming. I stand over the body of a Dourhand - a dwarf, killed by me. In the Blue Mountains, some of our own kin, part of the very bedrock, had crumbled into darkness.

We have stood against dragons, orcs and goblins -and even Elves and Men. But we cannot stand against ourselves. Is this our darkest hour?

My task is still ahead of me. I have seen how deep the division runs. I can only we can bridge the gaps between, and within, our peoples.
by Milinea Pilin on Jul 06, 2012 at 05:37 PM
((OOC This is the first part of, what I am hoping to be, a longer story of her background. For a small and simple summary - see her profile on ))

Lyrah lay still in her bed - listening. Had her aunt gone to sleep yet? Outside she could hear the lurking sounds of the night. An owl hooting in a tree, and somewhere in the distant a cat was meowing. But there was no sight of anyone else, other than herself, being awake inside of the little house - just on the edge of the city of Dale.

Slowly she removed the blanket from her body and got up in a sitting position on the side of the bed. Still no sounds coming from her aunt’s room. She stood up, still moving very slowly, trying not to make any noise that would reveal her being awake.

She stopped to listen again. Nothing.
Carefully, she started to change back into her day wear. A light brown linen dress and a pair of worn shoes. She put her night wear under her pillow and folded the blanket, before getting down on all four - reaching for a medium sized backpack she had kept under her bed for the last few weeks.

Every now and then she had taken a few of her aunts’ belongings that she had found in different drawers and cabinets around the house. A wooden cup, a tinderbox, a dagger, a small lantern and a few other things that could come in handy for what she had been planning for ever so long. Luckily, her aunt had not noticed.

Holding the backpack in her right hand, Lyrah supported herself with her left arm on her left knee while getting back up to her feet. Lyrah clenched her teeth together from the pain. The skin on her back had yet not healed properly from the last beating she had gotten a few days earlier.

Four days ago, Lyrah had come across a hungry puppy on her way back from the well.
The little ball of fur had followed her back to the house in spite of Lyrah trying to shoo it off. Her aunt did not care for any sorts of animals. After placing the two heavy buckets of water on the ground outside of their home, she had given in to the little fellows cuteness and gotten down on her knees - giving it a good scratch behind it's ears. It would still be a little while before her aunt would return from her daily errands, so Lyrah took the time to play with him.

After a little while, Lyrah decided to go inside and get something for him to eat. The puppy was very thin, and you could see the contours of its ribs. She hurried inside came back outside with half a cram in her hand. The dog ate it all - wagging its tale like never before. Lyrah smiled and ran inside once again to get some more.

Feeding the puppy the second half, the shadow of a tall woman
suddenly fell upon them. "What are you doing, girl!? Giving away our
food to a mere dog? We hardly have enough to get by ourselves from day to day - and you waste it like this?!"

Before Lyrah could do anything she heard the heart piercing sound of the puppy’s whimper as it got kicked away. The woman took a firm grip around Lyrah’s arm and dragged the struggling and crying girl into the house. She had passed out after the seventh hit by her aunt’s stick. And she had gotten nothing to eat for the next two days. That was hopefully the last time her aunt had ever laid her hands on her...

Lyrah took a deep breath before gently putting the folded blanket into the backpack. The temperature could vary a lot. And, like this night, the cool wind from the north could even make the most warm blooded person shiver. She sneaked silently out of her room, and into the kitchen. There she grabbed an empty water skin that lay on the kitchen counter, and a handful of crams - carefully putting them inside the backpack. She did not really care much for the taste of the biscuits, but this was not the time to be picky.

What was that? Lyrah froze as she had heard a sound coming from the room to her left. Her aunt’s room. She stopped breathing, and prayed for her heart to beat softer. There it was again! A creaking sound - as if her aunt was changing position in her bed. Lyrah let her breath out slowly, and continued moving back into her own room. This had to be the night she
got away. She could not bear to stay with this monster of a woman any longer. Even though Lyrah could still hear some movements from her aunt’s room - she walked determined towards her window.

Holding her breath again, Lyrah opened the window and tossed her backpack outside - aiming for a mound of soft grass and moss. After giving the direction of her doorway a last glance, she climbed up on the widow frame and jumped out herself. Quick and silent she moved through the shadows as she headed to the closest city well - an empty water skin would do her no good. Lyrah filled it up and had a good drink. She let her heart rate drop before continuing.

She could still hear the owls, but other than that the night was silent. The stars were shining above her, and the moon was almost at its fullest. She moved around the great statue of Bard, the slayer of Smaug. The shadow from his drawn bow and arrow was pointing in the direction of the city gate - almost like it was showing her the way to freedom. Suddenly she remembered that the gate probably would be guarded by night – as it was by day. And as she got closer, she could see the silhouette of an armed man sitting on a small stool, leaning his back towards one of the pillars. Could she try to sneak past him?

Lyrah continued moving silently towards the guard. He did not move. Lyrah got a little closer and stopped to listen. She could see the man’s chest moving slowly up and down, but other than that he was completely still. Then she could hear the soft sounds of his breath, and there was even snoring sounds escaping his helmet now and then. He was sleeping! Slowly, she tiptoed past him, and once she had gotten at a safe distance – she ran.

She had no idea where she was heading - other than that she knew she was going south. She followed the river downwards, and to her right she could discern the huge forest of Mirkwood. The black silhouette of the tall trees almost got her to rethink what she was doing. She had heard stories about spiders and other creepy creatures lurking in there.. But she quickly shook off those thoughts and kept running. The only thing that was on her mind now was to get as far away from these parts as possible - in the fastest speed as she could.

With a tiny spark of hope growing in her heart, the twelve year old girl, wearing a backpack slightly too big for her, was now on her own in the huge world. Little did she know of what life would bring her after this night - of both bad and good.....