They chose me, murmured Eowyn.
Legolas raised his head.
She was wild and wanton like a woodland sprite and he wanted
her again. Pressing his erection against her, he whispered, I
took you before you could drink the potion, melmenya, but Ioh!
Oh Valar,he was trembling, trying to hold himself
in checkoh, Yavanna, Ioh!
Do not fight it, Lassui, she whispered, reaching
down between them, and grasping him tightly. Instantly, the ache
turned to sweet relief, bringing a sob of gratitude to the elfs
lips. Eowyn shifted beneath him, drawing his penis between her
thighs. Justoh,he drove himself
inside heryes, my darling, she cried, yes!
And, though he needed no further encouragement, she slid her hands
down his back and, clutching his buttocks, she urged him on. Take
me, Lassui; take me
Legolas rose up and, arms shaking, thrust and held himself deep,
ground hard, and withdrew, savouring the tight velvety grasp of
her body; and, immediately, he felt the delicious ripples of release
building in his testicles. Oh, he moaned, I
But the potionor Herals charmdecided otherwise.
And Legolas kept thrusting, riding the edge of orgasm, something
deep inside him pulsing in exquisite waves; then Eowyn grabbed
his shoulders and he realised that she wanted him to change position;
and, as the blanket fell from his back, he found himself sitting
up, with Eowyn straddling his lap, and his erection grew bigger
and harder; and Eowyn, impaled upon him, leaned in and kissed
his mouth; and he clasped her close, burying his face in her golden
hair, his heart bursting with love for her; and, at that same
moment, he climaxednot explosively, but in a long series
of intense, dry spasms, whilst his belovedsobbing Legolas!
Oh, Legolas, my Legolas,writhed upon him.
All around him, his gueststheir shadows dancingwere
groaning and straining, and crying out in satisfaction, as they
made their own sacrifices.
Legolas, surrounded by sex, smiled triumphantly.
His testicles were heavy with unspilled seed but he was too tired
to go on. With the last of his strength, he laid his head upon
Eowyns shoulder. She slid her arms around his waist and, hugging
him fiercely, tightened herself around his still-hard penis
And, to his complete astonishment, with a deep shudder, he burst
Legolas felt Eowyn stir and, kissing the top of her head, whispered,
Maer aur, híril nín.
Mmmm. She snuggled closer, murmuring, You
are lively this morning, Lassui.
The elf smiled. I am happy, melmenya. He kissed her
again. But I think we should go up to our chambers as soon
as you are ready. I have been thinking
You are lively! She sat up and, stretching,
glanced around the Banqueting Hall. The ring-shaped table was
still scattered with the remains of the previous nights
banquet. Beneath it, couples and triples of every combinationand
in every state of undresslay sleeping. Any dead bodies?
Melmenya! Legolas chuckled.
Eowyn noticed a familiar blond elf, already beginning to stir,
and, curled up beside him, a dark-haired elleth. Poor Haldir,
she thought. Yes, I think we should go up straight away.
She scrambled to her hands and kneesand her efforts snapped
the last few threads of lace holding her bodice together. Oh!
You have ruined my gown, Lassui.
Ruined? Legolas smiled. It looks very nice
from where I am sitting, melmenya.
Eowyn blushed, pulling the stiffened fabric closed across her
breasts, and grinned at him.
Valaina will mend it for you, my darling, said Legolas.
She took his hands, and he helped her to her feet.
Eryn Valen, Godiths parents house
Hentmirë hovered anxiously upon the stairs.
Godiths mother had carried a large bowl of warm water up
to the sleeping room and was preparing to bathe the two babies
Legolas had left in her care. Hentmirë watched her strip
a soiled napkin from the tiny elfling. How is he?
The woman looked up from her charge. I cant see nothing
wrong with either of them, my Lady, she said.
Are babies usually so loud?
The woman laughed. Yes, my Lady.
Are you ready, lass? called Gimli from below.
Excuse me, said Hentmirë, leaving Godiths mother
to her work.
We have set up a table for you by the door, said
the dwarf. He led the little woman to her station. And Berryn
has finished the map.
Frowning, Hentmirë examined the bed sheet spread across
It is as accurate as I can make it, said the cartographer,
given the information we have. He pointed to the features
he had inked onto the fabric. This is the village,
he said, indicating a cluster of rectangular shapes, and
the river,a thick black line winding from right to
leftthe Eryn Carantaur and Caras Arnen roads,two
narrower, straighter lines, intersecting at the villageand
these are forest trails. We have divided the Forest,a
scatter of tiny fir treesinto twelve areas.
As the search parties report back to you, said Gimli,
you must cross off the bit they have just searched, and
give them another.
How will I know that they have looked in the right place?
These areas are well known to the locals, said Berryn,
and they will be acting as guides.
What shall I do if they find something?
Mark it on the map, and send one of the young lads to fetch
me, said the dwarf.
I shall do my best, Gimli.
Eowyn lowered herself into the scented water, sinking into Legolas
arms with a contented sigh. What were you thinking?
In the Banqueting Hall,she reached for the
cake of soapyou said that you had been thinking. What
about? She worked the soap into a lather.
The missing baby, said Legolas.
Little Godwin? Eowyn smoothed the creamy foam along
The elf watched her appreciatively. Yes, he said.
I was wondering if it was just coincidence that Heral was
He leaned in, intending to nuzzle her neck, but Eowyn pulled
away in surprise, and she turned to face him, water spilling from
her luscious curves. What do you mean?
Mean? I am not sure
He stretched out a hand
and gently brushed a strand of damp hair from her shoulder. It
just seems strange.
I think that Heral gave the baby away.
Yes. Or traded him, said Legolas. His fingers slid
over her damp skin; he cupped her breast.
But for what?
What could the creatures have given him in return?
I have no idea, melmenya. Unless
forward, and kissed her mouth, slipping his other hand around
her waist. What did Heral and they have in common?
Seducing women, said Eowyn.
Mmm. He kissed her again.
Later, melmenya. With smooth, elven grace, he leant
back against the side of the bathtub and slid beneath the water,
drawing Eowyn down upon him, her knees either side of his hips.
He grasped her buttocks and pulled her against him; he was rock
You should not, said Eowyn.
I thought you were going back to the City this morning,
lad, said Gimli, drawing his axe to check its edge.
I have no desire to watchto attendthat
Ceremony, replied Thorkell bogsveigir.
Around them, on the village green, three search parties, made
up of men and elves, and a handful of dwarves, were waiting for
the order to move out.
Well, we can use every pair of eyes we can get, said
the dwarf. As long as it does not land you in trouble with
I have a pardon.
Eh? Gimli looked up at the Beorning, but the mantall
and dark as a ravenwas already stalking across the grass
to join the searchers.
The dwarf shook his head. Then, Right, he cried,
sheathing his axe and clapping his hands together, let us
Sighing contentedly, Legolas drew
Eowyn down into his arms and cuddled her. Last night was
wonderful, melmenya, he murmured, but I needed to
make love to you in private.
It was nice. She snuggled close.
Legolas smiled; but he knew they could not afford to spend the
day in idleness. We must talk to Cyllien, melmenya,
he said, as soon as possible. It has been two days.
You know that she spent last night with your father?
Do you think he will let us talk to her?
He will certainly bluster, said Legolas.
Poor Haldir. Eowyn raised her head. I wonder
Would it be cruel, Lassui, after we have spoken to Cyllien, to
visit Haldir again, and tell him about her and your father? Perhaps
it would convince him to tell us the truth.
North of Eryn Valen
Thorkell bogsveigirs search party had been assigned the
area in which Eowyn had already found the three babies. The Beorning
had struck out alone, following an almost invisible trail that
wound through the scrub on the western bank of the riverTheir
main hunting ground, if the stories are true, he reasoned.
He dismounted, and examined the ground. There were no obvious
tracks, buthe sniffed the grassthere was certainly
an odour. Goats piss, he muttered, though its
scent had an unfamiliar tang.
He took a few more steps and, eyes watering, clamped a hand over
his nose and mouth. I am standing in their bloody latrine,
he grumbled, scanning the forest to his left, they must
surely be somewhere nearbyoh, yes
The shelter was hidden amidst the bushesshaped like a beehive,
woven from living branches, thatched with grass, and decoratedThorkells
lip curled at the incongruity of itwith garlands of dried
The Kings servantlooking slightly harassedshowed
Legolas and Eowyn into the sitting room of Thranduils apartment.
Good morning, Ada. Legolas glanced around the chamber.
Lost something, Lassui?
Legolas shook his head.
Then to what do I owe this great pleasure? Thranduil
gestured towards the chairs arranged beside the fire. Good
The couple sat down. We would like to speak to Cyllien,
Thranduil raised an eyebrow.
We know that she celebrated the Rite with you, Ada,
said Legolas. And she did not return to Arinnas this
morning. So we assume that she is still here with you.
Very astute, Lassui. She is bathing, said Thranduil.
Then we will wait.
Would you like a drink?
Eowynwould you be so kind?
With an exaggerated sighWherever did you find her,
Lassui?Thranduil walked over to the sideboard, took
the stopper from the decanter, and poured three glasses of apple
She is one of a kind, said Legolas, as Thranduil
handed him a drink. Thank you.
Eowyn took the second glass. Thank you, Ada.
Thranduil sat down. What do you want with Cyllien?
he asked, suddenly serious.
Legolas and Eowyn exchanged glances. It is in connection
with the murder, Ada, said Legolas.
I thought that your March Warden had confessed to that.
He has; but we believe
Did you know, Ada, Eowyn interrupted, that
the man who attacked Cyllien at the marketthe man you
stoppedwas the same man who was murdered?
You have been listening to tales
The door opened, and Thranduil looked up at the newcomer, and
smiled. Ah, my dear, you have visitors.
Cyllien, pale and nervousBut, thought Eowyn, looking
more lovely than evercrossed the room and sat down beside
They looked like a couple, Cyllien like a queen, and Eowyn sensed
Legolas flinch, though, outwardly, he seemed perfectly calm. Ada,
he said, perhaps you
I shall stay, Lassui.
Very well, said Eowyn, patting Legolas hand.
She took out her wax tablet. Cyllien, she began, watching
the elleth closely, why has Haldir confessed to a crime
he did not commit?
If Cyllien had seemed nervous before, now she was positively
trembling, and Eowyn noticed that she glanced at Thranduil before
replying, II do not understand what you mean.
I think you do, the woman persisted. Haldir
did not kill Heral. His story does not fit the facts in several
important details. He is lying to protect someone. I think he
is lying to protect you.
Thoron? wailed Cyllien.
Legolas leapt to his feet with a cry of horror. Ada, how
Sit down, Lassui.
Sleep with her if you mustI understand thatI
have always understood your need for thatbut to tell herto
Eowyn had stood up and, although she did not fully understand
what was happening, she tried to calm him.
Listen to your Harvest Queen, Lassui, said Thranduiland
there was a hint of warning in his voice that Eowyn did not like.
Come, my darling, she said, softly. We will
speak to Cyllien another time. She drew Legolas away from
his father, guiding him towards the door.
You should not have given it to her, Ada, said Legolas.
Eowyn bundled him into the lobby, and closed the door behind
Outside, in the cool, fresh air, Legolas grasped the rail of
the flet wall, and took a deep breath.
What just happened, Lassui? Eowyn came up beside
You heard what she called him?
Yes, said Eowyn. Thoron. Eagle.
It was my mothers name for him, said Legolas. It
was a private thingbetween the two of them.
And your father
Gave it to her. Legolas turned to face her.
This is not one of his fancies, melmenya. This is serious.
But it is not thattruly it is not. It is just,a
great, gasping sigh escaped himhe should not have
allowed her to use my mothers name for him.
Eowyn reached up and laid her hand upon his cheek. I know,
Lassui; I know.
Legolas covered it with his own; then he turned his head and,
closing his eyes, he kissed her palm.
She glanced across the walkway.
Come; come with me.
She led him behind the wooden screen that hid the building site
from passers by, and onto the unfinished flet. The wood, she noticed,
had been scrubbed clean, or else the stained planks had been replacedat
any rate, no trace of Herals lifeblood remained on themso
she took Legolas up into the roofless apartment, and they sat
down on a flight of steps.
There was no point in deceiving him. I think that Cyllien
did it, she said, and I thinkLassui, I think
that your father knows it.
For a long time Legolas was silent. Then he replied, very softly,
So do I.
North of Eryn Valen
Thorkell bogsveigir fitted an arrow to his bow.
He had tethered his horse a good quarter mile down river and
had returned stealthily, keeping to the trees. He had found himself
a perch, high up in one of the young carantaurs, and now he was
sitting amidst its branches, well-screened, and downwind of the
He would get one shottwo if he was quick and very luckyand
he must be accurate: he must disable, not kill.
The Beorning waited.
What are we going to do? asked Eowyn.
A light breeze stirred the branches above her; she looked up
at the wide, curving window of the Kings apartment, which
overlooked the steps on which she and Legolas were sitting, but
could see no sign of King Thranduil or Cyllien.
We must separate them, said Legolas, decisively.
I will talk to him; you talk to her.
Is it not a little late for talking?
Legolas sighed. We still need to know what happened, melmenya;
and we need to know how far my father is involved.
Do you think he will tell you?
Eowyn took hold of his hand. I
do not think that it can have been self defence. Cyllien had no
reason to come here,she indicated the building siteunless
she followed him. With a knife.
A white knife, said Legolas. Which probably
belonged to my father.