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Chapter 16:

There is more to love than sex, but not today or Thranny, you rascal, you!

***

I want your roughhouse baby

I want this night in your ear

Let me feel your danger

I want to make this feeling clear…

(Adam Ant – You’re so physical)

***

Her words rang in his ears.

“Because, my love. I am not through with you yet.”

His gut sank. He needed rest, he desperately needed sleep, but if he allowed this she-devil one toe-hold, one iota of even a thought that she bested him, he would lose much footing with her, Lord of her Heart or not. He took a deep breath and scowled down at the brunette in his arms.

“You are not through with me? Perhaps it is I who is not through with you!” And with that he rolled, moving atop of her and settling between her legs. She immediately slid her feet to the backs of his knees and began to stroke the tips of his ears. He shuddered as his exhausted body responded and his head dipped to her neck, where he nipped and suckled, marking her as his. His hands went to her breasts, where, surprisingly – NOT – her nipples immediately responded, hardening in his hand. He slid into her easily and he designated a painstakingly slow rhythm. His mouth moved from her neck, where his lips descended on hers and she was reminded of the sweetness, the gentleness of the afternoon by the river. Tongues and lips interplayed for many minutes, before he finally moved to her ear, making her squirm. He could feel her convulsing on his length and he held back, enjoying her ecstasy, listening to her moan. He continued his assault on her ear and her nipple, rocking into her body, until her quaking ceased. She clung limply and she could feel him smiling against her ear.

“Are you finished with me yet, Baraermin?” His subtle movement did not cease.

“Nay.” It was a whisper. It took all of his self-control to keep from sagging. He looked down at her in controlled disinterest.

“Then what is your pleasure?” She mirrored his look. In truth, she was exhausted, but she was not about to allow him to think he had tired her out so quickly.

“Roll over. I wish to try something… different.” His eyebrow arched and he rolled over on his back. He watched her stand and walk away from his eyesight, above him. He tilted his head back to watch her lower herself to her knees. She leaned over and kissed him, her chin on his nose and her hair tickling his chin and neck. He smiled at the odd sensation of their upper lips lingering on lower and her tongue snaked around his teeth. He inhaled sharply as her fingers searched down for his nipples and he responded likewise to hers, reaching up. The unusual love play continued for several minutes, before she moved downward, her mouth and tongue replacing her fingers at his chest. Her breasts lay heavily on his face and he did not pass up the opportunity to succor on what was so generously laid before him. For not the first time, he quickly imagined their children seeking nourishment from these same globes and was disturbed at the momentary jab of jealousy. He put the thought from his mind and simply continued to enjoy the hardening nubs. His own had hardened as she had become a master of coaxing them high, her tongue and fingers both nibbling, flicking, stroking. He felt himself grow harder – by Iluvatar’s Balls, how did she manage to get a rise out of him, when he was beyond spent? – when she began to move downward, straddling his body. Her tongue dipped into the indention of his stomach, momentarily, nipping and marking him, before continuing her downward plunge to where he desired her mouth the most.

She did not keep him waiting for long. Unlike at the beginning, where she had ignored his rod, she pounced on it like a starving urchin, inhaling him as far as she could. His head caressed the back of her throat and she gently scraped her teeth up his staff. Slowly, she drew him out, her lips kissing the engorged head and her tongue swirled around the weeping slit, her lips then sucking the foreskin around her muscled tastebuds. Her hair tickled his thigh and one hand reached and cupped heavy balls while the other thumbed and stroked the vein that ran along the bottom of his shaft. He knew he was reaching the end of his rope, the end of his patience and he leaned up to give her a taste of what she was doing to him, only to realize she was to far forward to reach. The back of his head hit the dirt floor with a thud and his curse was amazingly becoming familiar.

“Dammit to hell, the Valar have SUCH a sense of humor!”

Her mouth released his prick with a pop. “What?” She looked back, looking over her shoulder, never ceasing to stroke with her hand, to see him laying, hair fanned out, with his arm thrown across his eyes.

“I cannot reach you! You are too short!” And with a mighty growl, he rolled her over, reversing their positions. Bowing up and settling on his knees, he was now able to reach the feast spread before him, while she laughingly continued her ministrations with her mouth. He drank the sweetness oozing from her flushed red walls and lapped at her clit, silently savoring her body and mouth bucking around him. They knew each other’s desires well and they came simultaneously in each other’s mouths, the sounds of not – so dignified slurping echoing through the room. He felt her totally relax in exhaustion and smiled in self-satisfaction, his head resting on her thigh, as the question escaped his lips, certain of her affirmative answer. “Are you through with me yet?”

It was a moment or two before she answered. It was an exhausted whisper.

“Nay. Not yet.”

His head hit the floor between her legs with a whack and a feeble groan slid from his throat.

***

I want the touch of your charms

The heat of your breath

I want to say all those things

(Dirty things)

That would be better unsaid

(Adam Ant – You’re so Physical)

***

An hour later, they lay wasted, spent, completely unable to move. He lay flat on his back, quietly admiring the complete and total destruction and annihilation of the room. The table was now splintered in many pieces, collapsing when, while he was leaning against it, watching her spread and pleasure herself, – by Melkor’s Chains, could she talk dirty! (so this was smut!) – she suddenly jumped up and attacked him, knocking both him and herself through the table and after making sure he had his wind back and not seriously injured, joyously impaled herself on him, riding him until her knees gave out. The bed, decrepit thing it already was, was also completely broken down. After destroying the table, and deciding HE was not through with HER, he had bent her over the bed, and taking her from behind proper, had pounded her until the bed gave. He grabbed her shoulders just in time to keep her from going through with it to the floor as well and they had ended up back in the furs, her legs over his shoulders, toes tickling his ears as he pummeled her into orgasmic oblivion. Sometime during the ‘festivities’ he had, for some perverted reason, showed her how to find that little gland up through his own hidden walls and she took great pleasure spitting and licking and probing and making him come again and again.

She lay on his wrist, on her side away from him, careful that her back and bottom did not touch him. Her breathing was heavy, labored. She looked at the palms of her hands.

“Please, are you through with me?” Her voice was quiet, heavy, exhausted. Please, she begged to herself silently, oh God, please be through.

He was too tired to lift an eyebrow. “Why? Are you through with me?” Oh, by the Valar, please be finished with me, his thoughts echoed.

She whimpered, “My clit is sore. My twat is sore. My butt is sore; it feels stretched beyond imagination, my nipples are sore, my ears are sore, my neck is sore, my jaw aches beyond belief. I can still feel your bites on my shoulders.” The pitch of her voice raised in a childish whine. “I think I have a splinter in my finger. Aye, I am finished with you.”

He breathed a sigh of relief. “Good, because I believe if you touch it again, it will fall off.” He heard her derisive snort as she rolled over into his side, her head on his shoulder. He took his cloak and spread it over the two of them, pulling her in close.

“Same time tomorrow?” His heart dropped into his stomach at her question.

“Sure, why not. Go to sleep, Baraermin.” He felt her smile against his shoulder and they both fell into sated oblivion.

***

They lost track of the days, of time. They woke up when they felt like it, wandered the hills at will. A few times, they came across small stray bands of Orcs, whom they quickly dispatched. They hunted together, cooked meals together and he discovered that she was a decent cook. They made love everywhere, anywhere, anytime. More than once, they had to help each other pull hay out of the other’s leggings. There were times they were insatiable and other times they were content to lay in each others arms discussing everything from what Haldir could remember of Middle Earth’s history to their plans after Thranduil’s mereth. Deep in their hearts, they hoped that all would forget about them and they would not have to attend the fete. He knew her heart was aching to move, needing to begin her quest.

She had inhaled the few things he managed to rescue from the library. The two books had been books of poetry, written in a long-lost archaic language long forgotten, rediscovered by her. The scroll had been a marriage contract, beautifully drawn and hand painted. The four scrolls had been treatises between long-forgotten countries and a marriage proposal to an ancient princess. She mentioned going back and shifting through the rubble to see if anything else had survived. He had quickly stomped that idea, much to her dismay.

***

They discussed children. It was an extraordinarily short conversation.

“Haldir. Do you want children?”

“Yes.”

“With me?”

“As many as we can have!”

And with that, he had pounced and had his way with her on the hillside above the farmhouse.

***

She attempted to ride the feisty stallion in the paddock. Haldir sat on the fence and encouraged her. The stallion, on the other hand, head butted her and threw her twice, being a very naughty horse. She finally stood in front of him and yelled and cursed in several languages.

“I do not give a tinker’s damn if you are a descendent of the Mearas or not! You are a horse, and I am a fine rider!” She put her arm around his neck and whispered in his ear. “Besides, you are embarrassing me in front of this know-it-all Elf. Please behave!” She than climbed on and rode him around the paddock several times before he tossed her over the fence. Instead of making love that night, Haldir spent the evening healing bruises, cracked ribs and a sprained wrist. He waited until after she fell asleep to laugh at her high-handedness and went out to reward the stallion with an apple he had found on an apple tree near the house.

He told the stallion that he was not a descendant of the Mearas, as only the kings of Rohan was allowed on their backs. Mr. High and Mighty allowed a lowly elf to ride him, therefore…

They lost total track of time. Completely.

***

 

All around the world

Everywhere I go

No one Understands me

No one knows what I’m tryin’ to say

Everywhere I go

No one understands me

They look at me when I talk to them

And they scratch their heads

They say

What’s she tryin’ to say?

(What’s she tryin’ to say?)

But you –

You speak-a my language!

Ed Rollins – Collective Soul

***

She got up early one morning and wrapped herself in the red cloak, Roman toga-style. The chill morning air woke him and he rolled over on his stomach, murmuring incomprehensible vowel sounds. As she slipped through the door, he became more awake, with a sense of unrest in his chest. He jumped up and threw on his leggings.

And felt her grow cold.

The barn doors flew open at the same time as he tore out of the farmhouse, bow notched, and four Elves came tumbling out, followed by her screaming. A short… a Dwarf, came running out as fast as his diminutive legs would carry him, chased by Bronwyn, barely covered by the cloak, screaming, cursing in …French?

“Merde! Merde! Filthy Whoresons! Sneaking up on a person like that. Can’t a girl get a MOMENT of privacy…”

Haldir nudged the Elf that had fallen at his feet and Orophin rolled over, fear in his eyes. He saw his elder brother and scrambled to his feet, hands waving in supplication in front of him.

“I was asleep! I did not see a thing, I swear it. I swear it, Haldir. I was asleep and she woke me screaming!” Haldir saw Rumil, his back to all, shoulders shaking, hands covering his mouth. Heridil was on his hands and knees, hands over his head. The fourth…

“Legolas? Legolas? Is that you?”

A very pale Prince looked up to Haldir. “We were asleep. I had no idea she was in the other stall. Gimli rolled over and the next thing I know, she was screaming… and Haldir, we saw nothing. I swear it.”

The barn doors had slammed shut, but her curses – she had now switched to Italian – continued. Haldir raised his hand to hush the stammering Elves and muttering Dwarf and stuck his head into the barn door.

“Baraermin. Stay here and I will bring your clothes…”

“You are damn straight you will bring my clothes! Dammit to hell, Haldir, they scared the bejeezus out of me! I’m going to get dressed and kill each and every one of them! Slowly. Painfully! Fuck a du…”

He shut the door on her and made a mental note to ask her when she had calmed down to define ‘bejeezus’. He took quiet calculation of the extra horses in the paddock and motioned for the visitors to join him in the farmhouse.

He instantly regretted his offer.

All four Elves wrinkled their noses upon entering the small room. Their eyes instantly adjusted to the filtering light as Haldir quickly scooped up Bronwyn’s jeans and tank and with a murmured “Excuse me for a moment.” moved quickly to the barn.

Orophin took a deep breath. “You can smell what has been going on here. Do you think he has allowed her any rest at all?”

Heridil scowled. “I have seen how she looks at your brother. I think it is he that has not had any rest.”

Rumil took in the destruction of the room. “I think they both have had an equal hand in the… scent… of the room. And I am willing to lay bets that the furniture did not look like this when they arrived.”

Gimli kept his mouth shut. It was hard to believe the screaming banshee in the barn was the same pale visage ensconced on the big bed months ago. His fingers curled around the three long hairs he kept in the pouch attached to his belt.

Legolas made the suggestion of waiting outside and they followed him out. Haldir was quietly shutting the barn door. Curses now rained down in Mandarin Chinese. He moved over to the quintet and took a deep breath.

“I have been remiss in my greetings, Prince of Mirkwood.” His hand went to his heart. “Mae govannen.” Legolas smiled and clasped his shoulder.

“We have been friends too long, mellon, for such formalities.” He nodded to the barn. “She is quite…spirited.” Both brothers and Heridil rolled their eyes.

Curses could now be heard in German. Disintegrating wood could be heard.

“Dammit! Another splinter!”

Rumil eyed the farmhouse. “So… this is the love nest? Funny, I imagined something more…romantic.”

“It has sentimental value… to her.” Haldir was pulling on his unbraided hair. He strained to change the subject. “When did you arrive last night? Why did you not wake us and let us know.”

Gimli was perusing the fields of grass and Legolas was searching the clouds for something. Heridil scuffed his toe in the dirt like an Elfling caught at doing something naughty. Rumil and Orophin, being the brothers they were, spoke up.

“You were…awake. We did not wish to… disturb you.” Rumil had the decency to color up.

Orophin looked at him in disbelief. “Disturb? Disturb?” His voice rose to a higher pitch, in mimic of Bronwyn. “Oh Gawd! Haldir! Yes! Yes! Harder! Har…” he received an elbow in the gut from Heridil.

“If you wish to keep your teeth, I strongly suggest each and every one of you keep that information to yourselves when she comes out. And it better not reach my ears in any way for the duration of your lives!” Haldir’s voice was a hissed whisper.

“Truly Haldir,” Legolas’ voice was a whisper, “we could hear the both of you clear over yonder rise. If there were Orcs nearby, you would have been surrounded and attacked in a heart beat!” He shrugged. “Still, it did sound like you were having a wonderful time.” His eyes lit up. “Ah, Bronwyn, lirimaer. How fare you?”

She had come storming out of the barn and stopped short upon seeing him. A grin split her face and she ran to him arms outstretched and kissed him soundly on the mouth. “Legolas! How fare you?” In the back of her head, she registered… jealousy? She turned a drop-dead stare to Haldir. “Do not go there!” she wagged a finger at him. A cultivated eyebrow arched and he shrugged as if not to know what she spoke of. Legolas caught the entire exchange and inwardly grinned, knowing they had both chosen the correct path. She had turned back to Legolas. “Why did you not tell us of your arrival last night? Chances are likely you would have ended up in the barn, still, however, it would have been nice to know!” Her smile had never dimmed as she looked into the Prince’s eyes.

 

“It was late and we did not wish to disturb your slumber.” he diplomatically answered. Orophin choked back a snicker and both Gimli and Haldir glared him into silence. She was so busy looking into the grey eyes of the slender Elf, she did not catch the silent interchange. She grabbed him by the hand in attempt to pull him towards the door.

“Come, please tell us of your exploits. I know the Ring was destroyed, I saw it, but tell us of the battles, your victories and exploits.” Her voice dropped and her gaze saddened. “Tell me how Boromir died.”

Legolas stroked her chin, his eyes saddening as well. “I have much to tell you, but it must be said in travel. We passed through Caras Galladhon and all are going to Mirkwood for the mereth. We have been sent to escort you and Haldir to the festivities. My father throws a wonderful party, when forced. It should be quite memorable!”

Bronwyn looked back at Haldir and saw his stony look of indifference. She shrugged. “Ah, Legolas, can you just say you could not find us?”

“And incur my father’s wrath? Nay! Bad enough I am bringing a Dwarf to his home.”

“I do not have to go, Elf, if my person will cause that much problem with your father!” Gimli was as grumpy as ever and Bronwyn smiled at him.

“Nay, my father can get past his prejudices for a short time! Truly, Bronwyn, he has personally requested your presence. I do not know what he wrote, but it set Lord Celeborn into a rampage I have not seen in over a millennium. Could someone possibly enlighten me what is going on?”

She turned him loose and approached Haldir. “I’m not a very good diplomat. Would you care to take over?” He took her into his arms and nuzzled the top of her head.

“Your father is a swine herder. He thinks Baraermin is a pet.” Bronwyn collapsed against him in exasperation.

“Oh! Is that all? Nothing new, then? I thought it perhaps would be something major.” Legolas shrugged in the way only Elves could.

“Your father has no idea she is the Vessel. He thinks she is a seer and desires her for his own uses. Needless to say, he and his emissary have insulted her, Haldir and Celeborn.” Rumil was as judicious as possible.

“Who did he send? Lialidrul?” He rolled his eyes. “That Elf has the stealth, the finesse of… a rock!” His hand went to his heart. “Bronwyn, you have my deepest apologies. If there is anything I can do to make up for his short-sightedness…”

“She threw up on your father.” Heridil illuminated. “It is her reaction to battle.”

“It did not help that Haldir made sure she was aimed in the correct direction.” Orophin chimed in, using a hand chop to drive his point home. “He made certain that Thranduil would be in the direct line of … fire.” He used both hands now.

“Well, young warrior! Seems you have found a weapon to be reckoned with!” Gimli grinned at her.

“Oh Gimli!” She stepped away from Haldir’s embrace and in turn hugged the Dwarf. “You do not begin to know the half of it!” She looked at Legolas. “Well? Where is our baggage? Surely we are not expected to arrive at your father’s court dressed in the same clothing we wore into battle?”

Legolas scratched at his neck. “Unfortunately, yes you will. The Lady has your things and has taken them with her, in order to have your accommodations ready. There is a stream a few hour’s ride out and we can rinse off the grime, but she stated clearly that she would make sure your rooms and a bath were ready when you arrived.” He looked at Haldir. “How long before you can be ready to leave? We will barely make it in time, if what I heard was correct.”

“If Baraermin will consent in helping me put my armor on, not long. We have nothing to pack.” He held his arms out for her. “Unless you would like to take a table leg or a fur for… a souvenir?”

Four Elves and a Dwarf immediately put their heads together, deep in muted conversation while she stared at them in consternation.

***

 

I would walk a million miles

To give her what she needs

And she would walk a million more

To do what she please

She had a perfect day…

Ed Rollins – Collective Soul

 

***

They brought her her own horse to ride, a beautiful grey mare with black mane and tail, aptly named Sea Spray.

“The Lady said you rode and rode well. She should be a good mount for you.” Legolas brought her to Bronwyn when they exited the home for the final time.

Bronwyn stroked the sleek neck and whispered in her ear. “You’re a good girl! A much better ride than that stuck up stallion Haldir is riding!” The mare tossed her mane at Haldir. His Arrogance snorted and Haldir patted him on the neck.

“Baraer, you did insult him, calling him ‘just a horse’.”

She jumped up on her mount and gazed balefully over her shoulder. “He had already tossed me twice and butted me before I called him that! He deserved to be called just a horse.” And she galloped off, riding next to Legolas and Gimli.

Orophin rode up to her and holding it by the ear, handed her her Teddy.

“We found it in the dirt after you left. The Lady has had it cleaned and stitched up… again.” Bronwyn accepted it gratefully and all fell silent as she nuzzled it and then placed it in her back waist band.

They rode for several hours at a trot, Bronwyn alongside Legolas and Haldir with his brothers and Heridil, behind them. Haldir and his companions spoke of the aftermath of the battle, the dregs of Orc parties, still roaming. Legolas and Bronwyn spoke of…life.

“You look well, you have color in your cheeks. Haldir has been good for you.”

She smiled and leaned over. “Haldir has been very bossy to me!”

His smile was angelic in its beauty. “And most certainly, you have been his bane.” She laughed with him and Haldir looked up and closely monitored the two horses riding so closely together, Bronwyn’s and Legolas’ heads almost touching.

“She named you Lord of her Heart, brother, and I do not believe she would lie to the Valar. Do not deny her her friendship with Legolas. She is not Liandrien.” Rumil touched his arm and Haldir relaxed in the saddle. Bits of the conversation drifted back to them, but they paid little heed to it.

“You have accepted your destiny and chosen your Guardian well, Bronwyn. Allow him to guide you and you will accomplish great things.”

“I had a choice in Guardians? That is news to me!” She shrugged in a Haldir-like manner. “Ah, no matter! I have given up my weapons. The bow you gave me will be my connection with my children, the future, my sword is my guitar,” she nodded to it, slung on her back, “as for my knives, they are how we will know when it is time to go.”

“I hear you killed a dragon, young warrior!” Gimli’s tone was jovial. “That is no small feat!”

“I had help, Gimli. I could not have done it without Haldir. Damn lizard burned up the library! A library! Haldir saved some and I have asked to return to see if anymore can be salvaged, but he has denied me that.” Her mouth fell into a small rue. “I hope this does not become habit. I might have to drug him or tie him up.” She quickened the pace. “Come, Legolas, tell me of Boromir. Tell me of the Hobbits, Merry and Pippin. Tell me of yours and Gimli’s exploits. Tell me of Aragorn!”

Legolas and Gimli talked and talked. They spoke of the trip to Parth Galen, Boromir’s death, tracking the Uruk-hai, the Ents, Saruman’s Army, Helms Deep, the Paths of the Dead, Gondor, Faramir, Eowyn. And Bronwyn listened and remembered, filing all away.

***

They reached the entrance to the Forest at sunrise the next morning. Bronwyn had begun to nod off late in the evening and Haldir had pulled her into his arms, while Heridil took the reins to Sea Spray. They had not gotten far when they were stopped by the Mirkwood Watch.

“What?” Legolas laughed. “Have I been gone so long that you do not recognize your Prince? Stand down, mellon and lower your bows, for I come and bring old and new friends.” The Mirkwood Elves knew the Brothers Lorien and Heridil, but they were immediately distrustful of Gimli and only at Legolas’ demand was he allowed to continue forward. They treated Bronwyn in a very stand-offish and in a touch – not manner. It distressed Legolas and was just fine with Haldir. They arrived at the fortress of Mirkwood, buried deep in the side of a mountain, at mid-day and were warmly greeted by Galadriel and Celeborn. Their horses were led away and the group entered a gardened foyer. Thranduil was there, but he only had eyes for his son. The joyful reunion however did not last long when he realized his son had brought home a Dwarf and was calling him friend. Raised voices were heard across the way and the Lothlórien Elves made their way away from the ensuing argument.

“I have arranged to have your things taken to your rooms.” Celeborn whispered. “I believe they are down the corridor from ours. I know the two of you would like baths and I have arranged for them as well.” All the Elves were travel stained and Haldir and Bronwyn reeked of dirt, grime, and other things. “Tithen aras, if you will go with Galadriel, she can help you get settled and situated. Haldir, if you and your brothers and Heridil will follow me…” and Celeborn led them down the corridor. Haldir’s hand touched hers briefly before following The Silver Lord down the cavern path. Bronwyn looked into serene, sparkling blue eyes and followed Galadriel down another hallway, down steps and into a cavern with a steaming heated springs.

She sank gratefully into the hot water, the steam sluicing off weeks of scum and other nastiness. The aches and pains of her body, left over from Haldir’s frequent lovemaking and the drawn-out travel slowly seeped from her bones and muscles and she sighed a groan of bliss. Galadriel’s hands kneaded tight shoulders. She noticed the various fading marks along her shoulders and had been sure she had seen some on Bronwyn’s thighs and hips, before she had dipped into the hot water.

“I hope you marked him as well as he marked you.” Bronwyn smiled and hummed.

“You are well rested?”

Bronwyn leaned her head back, in order to wet her hair and she was handed sweet rose-smelling soap. Oh, it felt good to be female again. She lathered everything.

“Yes. Haldir was wonderful. I just wish we had more than a rain barrel to bathe and drink from. I wish we had had more time alone.”

“We gave you as many days as possible. It is not often one gets eight days with their beloved to themselves. You are quite lucky.” She handed Galadriel the soap and she lathered Bronwyn’s back and hair. Her hands were different from Haldir’s, firm, yet gentle. Her nails were long and Bronwyn was reminded of a remark Haldir had made about bathing with females back so long ago. She smiled at the memory and enjoyed the attention. “Have you regained any of your powers?” Bronwyn sighed deeply.

‘No, My Lady, I have not. I cannot even create music in the air. I wonder how long it will be before they begin to return.” She was quiet for a few moments. “Or if they will ever return.”  She then changed the subject and proceeded to tell her of the scrolls and books Haldir had managed to salvage from the library of Dol Guldur. “I know it was so very little, but the fact he picked up any at all while that damned dragon was throwing fireballs at us, I did not think I could love him any more, but I was wrong. It was such a wonderful gesture.”

“It is amazing, how little things can mean so much, sweetness.” She patted her shoulder. “Quickly, dip under and rinse. I have brought special creams for your hair and while they set and absorb, you can do my back! Then we will find your rooms and have a quick lunch.” Bronwyn ducked under and allowed Galadriel to coat her hair with a sweet smelling salve and traded places. It was quiet for several minutes.

“Galadriel?” The elegant elleth looked over her shoulder. “It is nice, to have a girlfriend. I have never had one.”

“A girlfriend?” She looked puzzled.

“Yes. A girlfriend. Someone to talk… girly stuff to. Paint your toenails with. Rub sweet smelling things into your hair. If it was Haldir in the bath…not a lot of bathing would get done. And we would smell like him, as I do not believe he should smell like roses.” Galadriel smiled at her admission and agreed. Any time Celeborn bathed with her, it was the same story. Bronwyn’s hands were strong on her back and she was amazed at the tense spots she found and worked out.

“Oh, I do not know. A sweet-smelling Elf might be nice. But I must admit, one that smells of sweat and Earth is just as…erotic.” Bronwyn laid her head on the slender shoulder and nodded in agreement. She took a deep breath.

“A sweet-smelling Haldir. Might be interesting. Too bad, the rest of him could not be sweet as well.” Galadriel gave her a funny look over her shoulder.

“Do you truly want him to be sweet?”

It was quiet for a minute. “Nay. I suppose not. He would not be… Haldir if he was.” He would be wrapped around my finger and that would be no fun, she thought to herself. There was no sound except that of hands, bodies, and hair being rinsed in the hot water.

“Come, Bronwyn.” Galadriel stood up, her long wet hair, covering her nude body. “This mereth is to last several days. It should be interesting to see how Thranduil welcomes Legolas’ friend, Gimli.” She took Bronwyn by the hand, helping her to her feet. There WERE fading bite marks on her thighs and her stomach, as well. Haldir had marked her. “Stay away from Thranduil. He is known for his… appetites and his smooth, fluid tongue. Many an elf and elleth have been seduced by him and while none have complained of harsh treatment, I do not think Haldir is willing to look the other way if he gets you drunk and takes advantage of your sweeter nature.”

Bronwyn took the hand offered and started up the steps in the pool. There were thick towels and robes waiting for them on large, warm rocks. She wrapped her hair and belted on a long robe that went to her ankles. “I do not think that will happen. I am not fond of the King of Mirkwood and happy drinks or no happy drinks, I will not allow that pig near me.” She checked to make sure everything was covered. “And what sweeter nature are you talking about? I do not have one as you well know!” Giggles could be heard echoing through out the cavern.

The two females exited the pool, never noticing the small, hidden alcove set in the far side. The acoustics were wonderful and Thranduil frowned at the Lady Galadriel’s obvious attempt to interfere. He had suspected they hid a jewel under the weapons and dirt of Haldir’s pet – and yes, that was all she was, no matter her seer abilities. He had heard some fanciful stories from some of his archers, but it mattered not. She was not beautiful, as the Elves, but there was something different about her. And those glorious curves… Well! Haldir or no Haldir, wine or no wine, he was determined to sample his pet regardless of his feelings. And he was self-assured enough in his prowess that no matter how unwilling she was to begin with, she would be screaming his name when it was over.

***

Bronwyn and Galadriel swept through the cavern halls, giggling like school girls, dressed in robes and head turbaned with towels, following the elleth that Thranduil assigned to Galadriel.

“I brought several of your outfits, including that black dress you wanted secretly made for Haldir. I also brought your make up bag and all the nail tints I could find. I think Rumil was happy I was packing for you and not him.”

Bronwyn started to giggle. “I am sure. He would have just brought me a clean pair of jeans and one of Haldir’s tunics.” She looked around at the hallway. “Excuse me, but exactly where is mine and Haldir’s room at anyway?”

The Lady of Lorien never stopped walking, her pace brisk. “Her room is connected to yours, my Lady.” she replied rather haughtily to Galadriel, totally ignoring Bronwyn.

Galadriel was outraged. “Madam. You have treated this woman with great disrespect. She is respected among us and I will not tolerate rudeness towards her!”

“My apologies. It is not our habit to speak to pets.” She never stopped moving, never turned around. Before Bronwyn could curse, the Mirkwood elleth stopped and opened a door. “This is her room. Please let me know if she needs anything.” And with that, the elleth moved quickly down the corridor and out of sight. Bronwyn entered the room and gasped in outrage. Galadriel was close behind.

” I will speak to Thranduil about this! This will never do!”

***

The Elves had finished their bathing ritual in the large spring, just outside the cavern. Haldir received much good-natured ribbing when they saw the fading love bites on the back of his neck and backside. They asked if he had marked her as well, among other jovially annoying things, personal, that he refused to discuss.

“All I will say is she is Baraermin. My Fiery One. Mine!” The quartet of Elves with him moaned and pleaded and begged for more details. Comments were made on the smell of the hovel, the destruction of the room, but he just smiled and shook his head. “It is between Baraermin and myself.” The jesting from the younger three Elves rose in mock indignation. Celeborn thought quietly to himself.

He knew, had known for a while that Haldir had given his heart to her. And although his heart sank for his own loss, he was happy for his grown fosterling. Deep, abiding love was normally only found once in a lifetime and that Haldir had found one in a woman who would openly spar and battle with him would only make it sweeter. He knew that from personal experience. He cleared his throat and broke into the chorus’ of ‘More, Haldir.’ and ‘Sadist!’. “Where are our clothes? Are we expected to tramp all over this mountain wearing nothing?”

As if waiting to be called, a Mirkwood Elf, showed up with a stack of towels. “Lord Celeborn, your things are in yours and your lady wife’s room. The others are in the warden’s bunk with the others.”

Haldir strode up and looked down at the Elf. “I am Haldir. Where are my things?”

The Elf look non-plussed. “As I stated, they are in the bunk house along with the others.”

Haldir raised an eyebrow. “You were not listening.” It was a voice that made even his brothers back down. It was the commanding voice of the March Warden of Lothlórien. “My things should be with Bronwyn Morgan ap Powell’s. We are together.”

The Elf smirked. “Yes. All know of your ‘pet’.” Added stress was put on the word. “She has been housed next to the Lord and Lady, but you are being housed in the bunks.”

“Why?” The voice was low, quiet. Celeborn’s head raised; he knew this tone well and the Mirkwood Elf had no idea how close he was to being thoroughly throttled. “We are together.”

The Elf sounded bored, totally unimpressed with Haldir’s consternation. “It is King Thranduil’s orders. You are not joined and…”

“She and I have ‘joined’ more in the past five days than I suspect you have in your entire life!” Rumil and Orophin looked at each other with lecherous grins. Ah! In-for-ma-tion! The Elf blushed and backed down, albeit, only a small bit.

“Haldir of Lothlórien. I am well aware of your reputation as a warrior and have the utmost respect for you. I understand your… consternation at being separated from… your lady. I am only following my liege’s orders. And his orders were to house you separately. If you wish for this to change, you may either take the matter up with him or move on your own. In the meantime,” he looked at the group, “I will be more than happy to take you to where your belongings have been taken to.” And with that, he turned on his heel and strode off, forcing the Elves to follow him quickly.

Celeborn walked shoulder to shoulder with Haldir. Although he showed no emotion, Celeborn could tell by the set of his shoulders that Haldir was holding himself in check. “Come, let us get dressed. We will stop by our rooms and pick up our ladies and I will talk to Thranduil. If nothing else, we will simply move your things to Bronwyn’s quarters.”

A muscle in Haldir’s jaw ticked. “Talk to the King all you like. I am getting dressed and moving my things immediately. I do not trust him and will not wait.” He stopped and turned to Celeborn. “And if he does not like it, we will leave. I will not risk her to his subterfuge.”

***

 

Sing for the day

Sing for the moment

Sing for the time of your life

Come for an hour

Stay for a moment

Stay for the rest of your life

***

Celeborn and Haldir walked into chaos. Clothes were strung everywhere. Galadriel and Bronwyn were sitting on the narrowest of beds, still wearing bath robes and painting each other’s toenails. Haldir could feel her fury, had felt her fury, rising to a boiling point since he had arrived in the archers’ bunks. He had decided her anger stemmed from the point she had found out about the ‘sleeping arrangements’. He did not expect this.

She had been put in a servant’s room.

It was tiny, with a doorway attached to what he suspected was Lord Celeborn and Lady Galadriel’s room. The bed would barely fit an Elfling and looked uncomfortable.

Very uncomfortable. Her eyes had narrowed to slits.

Bronwyn heard him come in and looked up from Galadriel’s toes. She had wanted nothing but to return to their talan in Lothlórien or at the very least, back to the farmhouse. After looking at him, she decided that could wait until after she…

Haldir’s eyebrow arched and the look he gave her was positively heated.

Lord, she decided, she loved him in blue. He was wearing a moderately dark blue tunic, that shone as if polished, the collar high, mellyrn leaves embroidered on the collar and cuff, cream-colored leggings and black leather boots. His hair was neatly braided and…

Those ear cuffs.

“Sweetness, one does not have to be a mind reader to see what you are thinking.” Galadriel whispered. “Please, pay attention. You have dribbled nail tint on my toe.” Bronwyn’s eyes jerked to Galadriel’s laughing eyes and murmuring an apology, used a dabbing cloth to remove the errant drop. All heard Haldir drop his baggage to the floor.

“Celeborn, this is not right!” His hiss could have easily been a bellow. “One does not treat a guest like this!”

Celeborn was furious. He quietly perused the accommodations and looked at his Lady Wife. Her anger was simmering. “Come,” he said to his fuming former March Warden, “the ladies are not ready. We will go find Thranduil and correct this situation.” And the two strode out, slamming the door behind them.

Galadriel and Bronwyn sat quietly on the bed for a few moments.

“Are they truly gone?” Bronwyn’s voice was a whisper. Galadriel got up and took a surreptitious peek from the door.

“Yes.” Robes came off, to show the two females fully dressed. Galadriel looked closely at Bronwyn.

“I ask you again, sweetness, are you absolutely certain you wish to wear that particular dress tonight? You will attract attention from those you might not wish it from.”

Bronwyn bounced around the room, digging under discarded clothing. “I do not care about anyone else. Haldir has seen me in nothing but jeans and a tank top for the past ten days and I just want to… take his breath away.” She bent over and picked up a black high-heeled sandal. “Ah-ha! There is one! Now for the other…” She continued on her quest.

“You will take not only his breath, but every other Elf’s as well. Including Thranduil! Child, how are earth are you going to walk in those?” Bronwyn had found the other sandal and had sat down to put them on.

“Oh Thranduil, Schmanduil!” she waved her hand in a dismissive manner. “I do not want him and as king, he should have better manners than what you give him credit for! Honestly, in my world, this dress is not so scandalous as you would guess.” She struggled for a moment with the sandal, waving her foot in the air . “And as for how will I walk in these, you do it with a sway! I would love to know how your shoemaker managed to create these. I had no idea they would turn out so perfectly!” She stuck out her foot and wiggled it from side to side, admiring the look.

“Please, do not ask him to do so again.” Galadriel stood over the sitting woman. “Never in all my years have I heard that Elf swear like that!” She towered over Bronwyn and peered closely at her face. ‘Tell me, do I look painted?” The two females had been playing in Bronwyn’s make up bag.

Bronwyn chuckled. “Nay, My Lady. You are beautiful without it!” She took in Galadriel’s white beaded gown with train, her golden hair flowing down, down, down her back. “Celeborn will pick you straight up and carry you directly back to your rooms and I will be forced to lie here all night listening to the two of you squirm!” The two’s laughter filled the small room. “So, shall we go in together? Or shall I go first?” Bronwyn had finished tugging the straps of the sandals on. She stood up and thunked around the room. “It has been a while since I have been in a heel higher than an inch!” She grinned. “So, what is the verdict? Together or what?”

Galadriel looked at the unusually dressed woman. “I want to see the looks on everyone’s face. I will go first!”

***

 

We’re gonna move real good – yeah right!

We’re gonna dress so fine – OK

It’s dog eat dog eat dog eat dog

Leapfrog the dog

And brush me daddy-o!

(Adam Ant – Dog eat Dog)

 

***

Thranduil swirled his wine leisurely in its crystal goblet and held back a yawn. The moment he entered the garden, that smarmy so-called Lord of the Silver Wood and his Needs-to-so-desperately-get-fucked-in-the-Ass former March Warden descended on him about the room accommodations. Celeborn had attempted to use gentle persuasion, while Haldir had just… glared. Thranduil heard them out, listened patiently to the quiet complaints, wondered if Haldir had ever managed to yank his hair out with all the braid tugging, and then as gently as possible informed them there was no more room, no where else to move her, no way for the two of them to be together. Haldir did not tell him he had moved his belongings into her room. He was still swirling his wine, when Celeborn’s face lit up with a genuine smile.

“My Lady-Wife, Lle naa vanima.” He clasped Galadriel’s hands and kissed her knuckles. For the moment, the Elf-lord and his lady had eyes for only each other. Thranduil rolled his eyes in his wine. Melkor’s chains, they still acted like newlyweds at times! He was glad his wife had gone to the Grey Havens, leaving him to own pleasures in peace. He did care about her; missed her even on rare occasion, she had given him several beautiful children, including that errant youngest son he adored to distraction. His eyes slid to Legolas, deep in conversation with that… that… Dwarf. His eyes slid back to the current company he was keeping and noticed Haldir. Haldir, who was constantly checking the doorway.

“Looking for something, Haldir? Perhaps your…lady? What was it you called again? Bara..”

“Bronwyn. Her name is Bronwyn.” Haldir refused to allow him to bait him. He picked up another glass of wine as it was passed around and continued to stare at the opening. The musicians Thranduil had acquired played quietly in the background and several Elves on the edges were swaying to the music. Legolas had finally joined the small company, Gimli following him.

“Haldir, I do not see Bronwyn. She is planning to attend tonight, correct?” Legolas wore a cream colored tunic with leaves embroidered along the sleeves, with black leggings and boots.

“She was behind me, Legolas. She should be here any moment.” Galadriel had put her arm in Celeborn’s and was looking up at him in silent amusement. He tilted his head to the side. What on all of Middle Earth was she up to?

“Well, I for one am most anxious to see what our young warrior looks like in something besides leggings and… Oh Laddie, would you look at that!”

Conversation in the group came to an abrupt end. Conversation in the garden, period came to a halt, as eyes fell on the woman in the doorway. Even the musicians skipped a few beats, before picking back up. Thranduil’s eyes widened in appreciation. What a true jewel Celeborn had hidden. His loins tightened in anticipation. He quickly averted his eyes back to the group. Celeborn regarded her in open admiration, Legolas’ jaw was dropped in astonishment, Rumil had come behind and shut the Prince’s jaw for him and whispered to a glaring Haldir.

“What is that that she is wearing?” He alone saw the muscle in his brother’s jaw working.

“Not enough!” He downed what was left in his glass, handed it to Rumil and proceeded across the garden.

She stood under a lantern, in what her world called ‘a little black number’. It was a black beaded sheath, molded to her curves, and sleeveless. The neck was scooped low and it barely covered her derriere. Her only jewelry was the coiled snake armband with emerald eyes around her right arm. Her shoes were barely – there sandals; a thin strap around the heel and behind her toes, the slim tapering heel rising to four inches in height. The effect made her legs look incredibly long.

“She will not be able to run from him in those.” Heridil whispered to Orophin. They were standing a ways from the group in the shadows.

“I do not think she intends to.” Orophin’s voice quivered with mirth. “Oh, but is Haldir’s Baraer brave!”

Bronwyn saw Haldir stalking towards her, his scowl very evident on his face. Her beaming eyes lit the garden. When he reached her, his smile did not reach his eyes. He tucked her arm into his elbow and whispered in her ear, “I suppose it would be too much to ask for you to go and change into something a little less revealing.” He led her slowly to the group. “Something that would cover you from your neck to your toes?” She had told Galadriel right – one did not walk in those shoes; one swayed.

“Elf, your jaw has dropped again!” Gimli elbowed Legolas in the leg. “Ah, that young warrior could have been yours!”

“Nay.” Legolas still openly admired the slowly moving couple. Conversation had resumed in the garden. “From the moment I knew her as female, I knew she was destined to be tied to Haldir.” The couple finally reached the small group. Celeborn leaned over to whisper in Bronwyn’s ear.

“Tell me, tithen aras, how do you walk on those?”

Bronwyn smiled, tilting her head and retorted “Very carefully.” She greeted Rumil, Gimli and Legolas. She held on lightly to Haldir’s arm, who found quiet peace in her touch.

She pointedly ignored Thranduil.

They talked about small things, things that did not matter. They talked of the small bands of Orcs, still roaming the countryside, smaller bands,  vile groups becoming further and few between. They talked of the Easterlings, seemingly, suddenly content to return to their homelands and not harass the West anymore. They discussed whether or not peace would truly come, Bronwyn simply listened. She already knew the outcome, the future.

Man. Their rise, their fall, their triumphs, their failures, their strengths, their weaknesses, their cycles of destruction, all of it. Some pretty, some not.

Thranduil watched her, watched her follow the conversation, watched the wheels in her mind turn. There was more to this seer than met the eye and his thoughts returned to the fanciful stories some of his archers told him. Stories of a beautiful Elven woman, who appeared from nowhere, the seer declaring herself a historian, the cutting, the blood. They whispered how Haldir had carried her out of Dol Guldur and of Galadriel bringing its walls down. They whispered she had killed something monstrous with her magic. He had heard one of his archers whisper she was the Vessel.

Fanciful stories indeed. The Vessel, he snorted to himself. The Vessel was a made-up tale.

That Haldir bound himself to her, he would not believe. That he was enamored of her, yes, but to bind himself to one? And to a human? Never. She leaned over to whisper something to the Dwarf, her breasts thrown forward. Thranduil’s leggings were getting uncomfortably tight.

He wanted her. It would be for one night, maybe two. Maybe three, if she was incredibly exciting, and she would enjoy it. He would return her unharmed to Haldir and all could go on their merry way. Haldir would eventually get past it and she would have lovely memories of the time spent with him. He handed his wineglass to a servant and approached her.

‘Bronwyn. I would like to have this dance.” He stretched his hand to her.

And found himself looking into the bemused eyes of…his son?

“My regrets, Father. Bronwyn promised her first dance to me.” Legolas moved past him and handing his goblet to his father, swept Bronwyn onto the main floor, where many others were dancing. His arm snaked around her waist and her smile was genuine.

“When did this happen?” Celeborn whispered to Haldir.

Haldir’s eyes were glittering, one hand squeezing his glass, the other, yanking at his braid. “Just now. It is all right. I trust Legolas.” His teeth were gritted and his eyes went to Thranduil. He was watching his son with narrowed eyes. Haldir allowed himself a self-satisfied smile, as he lifted his wine to his lips. “Would you like to play a nasty game, My Lord?”

Thranduil was so intent on his escaping prey, he was not aware of the male chuckles coming from behind him.

***

Hours later, Thranduil was thoroughly, thoroughly exasperated. He still had yet to dance with the little minx and he knew it was on purpose. No sooner than Legolas had finished his dance with her, Celeborn stepped in. Then Haldir’s brothers had turns and their friends. The Dwarf had danced with her…twice. By Melkor’s Chains, that had been almost humorous to watch. One time, once, he had gotten to her and she begged exhaustion before being led from the floor by Haldir. A short time later, the two had moved far into the trees and in the shadows had begun their own dance; slow, close together. She had danced with several Mirkwood Elves; they had looked as if in shock that she agreed to dance with them. His eyes narrowed in fury.

And landed on Lialidrul.

The Emissary was watching the festivities with inner amusement. Haldir’s pet was quite the center of attention and he allowed a few lewd thoughts to roam through his mind. He did not notice that he had been approached by his liege.

“Lialidrul. You are having a good time?” The tall blonde Elf-Lord stood next to his advisor. His finger ran in lazy circles around the rim of his wine glass. “What think you of Haldir’s pet?”

“I think her name will be on many lips tonight and that she will be the subject of many fantasies.” Including mine, he added silently. “She is dressed most… disgracefully.” The Elf drained the dregs of his wine from his glass. “You have not danced with her yet, sire.”

Thranduil’s smile was malicious. “Apparently, the Elves of Lothlórien, along with my beloved son, are playing a rather elaborate joke on your King. It is time to put an end to it.” And as he whispered to his Emissary, a wicked smile lit on his lips.

Bronwyn was being spun around the floor by Heridil. She had drunk to much wine and her head was twirling as well. When the dance ended, she landed in the arms of Lialidrul. She sobered and stiffened immediately.

“Please. Allow me.” He moved her smoothly away from the Lothlórien Elf and onto the middle of the crowded floor. He attempted to hold her closely for several minutes, moving to the rhythm of the Elven music. She was keeping herself away from him and looked at him with distrustful eyes. He gave her a small smile. “I feel I should… apologize… for my horrific treatment of you in Caras Galladhon. I hope you will… accept it.” He spun her smoothly.

“Well… I suppose.” But she did not relax.

They did not notice the glittering blue eyes following them, as Haldir kept watch. Celeborn held him in a firm grip. “Peace, my Elfling. As long as they are in the middle of the floor, he can do nothing. The dance is ending. I will take her. Have some more wine.” He handed his glass to Haldir and turning loose, headed to the floor.

The Mirkwood King saw Celeborn bearing down on his quarry and made a bee-line to the floor. He reached the couple one step before Celeborn. Bronwyn immediately took a step back and tried to beg fatigue.

“Please, lirimaer, you wound me, avoiding me all night. I just wish one dance.” And smiling virulently at Celeborn, he spun her away. “Ah, Bronwyn. In my arms at last!” He bestowed upon her his most beautiful smile.

***

Your conversation never sticks

‘Cuz no truth in you exists

Yeah – you bite before you lick

I love it ‘cuz you’re such a prick!

(Ed Rollins – Vent – Collective Soul)

***

Bronwyn looked at him with narrowed eyes. Aye, he was beautiful, but that beauty was only skin deep. He preened under her close scrutiny, thinking the low lighting caused her to squint. He was resplendent in his velvet-like navy tunic and leggings, the color contrast showing off his white hair and light blue eyes to their best advantage. His movements were smooth, liquid across the floor. She stiffened even more and attempted to put room between their bodies. “Enjoy it while you can. It will never happen again.” He had danced them into a semi-dark corner of the garden. His people did not pay attention to his roamings, they knew him well. But Haldir did.

‘Ah… Baraer, is it not? You wound me with your words. You are most powerful, indeed.” His tone was mocking and his blatant use of Haldir’s endearment infuriated her. Across the room, Haldir felt her fury rising and it was only Celeborn’s and Galadriel’s constant touch that kept him from storming across the garden. He felt her delving, diving deep to retrieve her sound waves and felt her frustration at her inability to reach them. Thranduil continued, not knowing, and not caring if he had, of the animosity being shot in his direction. “Love him much, do you? Your Haldir’s appetites are well-known through out Elvendom in Middle Earth and you will not be his last conquest. Do you not know that variety is the spice of life?” He took advantage of the sharp intake of breath and used the moment of weakness to pull her close. “I know your bed is narrow and uncomfortable. Come to mine tonight. You will find it warm and welcoming. You will not regret a second spent in it, I promise.” His mouth descended on hers.

Haldir reared back and pushed forward, despite being restrained by Celeborn and both of his brothers. Legolas, Gimli and Heridil followed close behind, to aid wherever needed. The small group saw and was shocked by what happened next.

As the King of Mirkwood’s mouth claimed Bronwyn’s, her foot came up and slammed down on his boot, twisting with such force that the dainty high heel shattered. As Thranduil bent over in pain, her knee connected sharply into the King’s family jewels. Even Haldir’s eyes closed in sympathy pains, the memory of that same jab coming back sharply.

“You Whoreson, Son of a Bitch!” her voice hissed, only heard between the two. “Think I would have you, after Haldir? You are a worm, a maggot. I DO NOT desire you one whit and if you come near me ever again, Haldir will have to fight me to see who gets to kill you first!” She spun, leaving him wheezing, and thunking across the stones in a heel-less shoe, stormed across the floor, meeting Haldir and Celeborn halfway.

“Ah laddie!” Gimli whispered to Legolas, “She would have made a fine Dwarf!” Legolas was torn between feeling sorry for his father, feeling sorry for Bronwyn and laughing at Gimli’s observation.

Bronwyn looked up at Haldir, chest heaving. All were watching. “My Lord,” she addressed Celeborn, her teeth and fists clenched tightly, “I find that my exhaustion has reached its limits and I wish to retire to my spacious and luxurious accommodations. I have given my leave to the King and wish you good night.” Her eyes blazed furiously to Haldir. “My darling, would you please care to join me?”

One elegant eyebrow arched as he raised her hand to kiss her fingers.

“Your wish is my desire, my lady.” And with that, Haldir swept Bronwyn to their room.

 

***

TBC

***

Baraermin – My Fiery One

Baraer – Fiery One

Lle naa Vanima – You are beautiful

tithen aras – little dear

lirimaer – lovely one