Surprises in the Greenwood 1

A/N - This story should probably be considered AU…and not taken too seriously. :p

Surprises in the Greenwood

By Nieriel Raina

Chapter One

This Strange Elf

They walked side by side, a contrast in differences Legolas thought. He tall, slender and agile, while his companion was short, stocky but also powerfully built. Two warriors as different as they could be in appearance, and yet as brothers in heart from their journeys over the past years.

As they journeyed through the forest that had once been known as Mirkwood, but newly christened Eryn Lasgalen, they traveled on foot in comfortable silence, Arod having been set free weeks ago in Rohan. Finally, the stillness was broken when Gimli turned to Legolas and spoke his thoughts.

"I just thought of something, elf.” Gimli's voice was low and gruff and rumbled through his chest.

Legolas, unable to resist the taunt answered, "Thinking is good. You should do it more frequently." His light laughter danced musically on the breeze as he darted out of reach of Gimli's swat. "All right," he ceded after a moment of enduring the dwarf's glare. "What have you just thought of?"

“That we know little of each other, apart from our roles in the quest and the war." Gimli paused to run a hand over his forked and braided beard. "We have shared adventures, been to the Black Gates and back, spent almost all our waking hours together since we met, yet we know almost nothing of each others lives before Rivendell.” The dwarf paused, his fingers dropping down to rest on the axe sheathed on his belt. “We have rarely spoken of our homes and families, for obvious reasons. I think now that we are headed that way, we should speak of them. You’ve spoken little of your father's halls and your life there, and even less of your family. I don’t even know how much family you have got, other than that father of yours!”

Legolas smiled at his friend’s ramblings. The rumbling voice so out of place amid the trees now free of the Shadow that had haunted the forest for so long as they walked leisurely through the realm of the Elvenking, headed towards Thranduil's halls. They had split with the Fellowship soon after touring the Glittering Caves, and then, in keeping with their oaths to each other, the two of them had explored Fangorn Forest. Legolas had few words to describe either place. Now, they were headed home.

Gimli had agreed to spend some time with Legolas in the Greenwood, before heading towards Erebor – the Lonely Mountain. Legolas had promised to would also visit the dwarf’s home in the near future, as well. His thoughts were disturbed when Gimli grunted.

“Well?” The dwarf rumbled.

“Well what, Gimli?” Legolas cast an innocent look down at the dwarf, knowing quite well what Gimli wanted to know.

“Blast it all, elf! Tell me about your home and your family!” The dwarf was starting to get irate, judging by the way his beards bristled. Gimli seemed to desire a serious discussion rather than word games. Legolas, on the other hand, was not in the mood for such a conversation. He had other plans.

Gimli wanted to wring the elf's neck. He was trying to learn of his friend's family so he did not walk into an unknown situation. He hated being off balance by such things, but Legolas kept skirting the subject!

“Honestly, Gimli, I don’t believe speaking of them could do them justice. I truly believe, elvellon, it would be easier to show you.”

Show him? Gimli frowned as the elf stopped walking and scanned the trees overhead.

Then Legolas smiled. “SHOW YOURSELF,” he called.

Looking sheepish, an elf landed softly next to them. Gimli jumped at the unexpected arrival, gripping his ax tighter. He narrowed his eyes and took in this new elf that had appeared from nowhere.

The newcomer was tall and lithe, about the same height and build as Legolas. Dressed in familiar green and brown, with a bow and a quiver upon his back and a knife in his belt, the stranger also had golden hair, though his eyes were a deep blue, rather than the bright grey of Legolas's.

Legolas and the strange elf looked at each other with smiles on their faces. There was no doubt in the dwarf’s mind that this was one of his friend’s kin, probably his brother, if Legolas hada brother. Could be a cousin, Gimli supposed.

Gimli could not have been more surprised when the stranger threw himself into Legolas’s arms.

Adar!” The stranger cried out, gripping his friend tightly.

Gimli stood there in shock. He knew that word and what it meant. Didn't he? Was it possible? Maybe he was confusing the words.

Legolas held the other tightly while tears streamed down his cheeks. “Ion nín,” Legolas spoke softly, his eyes full of love. Gimli had not been mistaken then. He knew those words as well. He blinked when Legolas switched to the common tongue. “How I have missed you.”

Facing the dwarf over his son’s shoulder, Legolas took in the look on Gimli’s face. That look was worth pounds of gold. The dwarf was standing there in a state of shock, mouth wide open, spluttering and turning an interesting shade of red. Unable to help himself, Legolas started to laugh.

Releasing Tirn, he stared at the dwarf shaking his head. “You really should shut your mouth, my friend, unless of course you are tryingto catch flies?” Gimli’s mouth snapped shut and he glared at the elves before him.

Tirn shook his head and said, “Really, Adar, of all the things you could have brought back from the quest, you brought back a dwarf?”

Legolas grinned, “I did not find anything more interesting or amusing in my travels.” His voice turned formal. “May I present Gimli, Glóin’s son of the Lonely Mountain, one of the Nine Walkers, and my dearest friend from my travels.”

Still taken off guard by the shock of Legolas having a son, Gimli just stared when Legolas turned to him and introduced him.

“Elvellon, this is my son, Tirn, Prince of Eryn Lasgalen.” The younger prince bowed his head in acknowledgment of his father's introduction.

Gimli found his manners and bowed low saying, “Gimli, Glóin's son, at your service.” Turning back to Legolas and glaring, he growled, "I’m going to have to kill you now!”

Immediately, twelve elves dropped from the trees surrounding them, bows drawn, arrows notched, all pointed at the dwarf. Gimli cursed once again, tightening his grip on his ax, so taken off guard as he was finding himself surrounded by drawn arrows. How had he ended up in this situation? Again?

Legolas simply laughed and waved the party down, though Gimli kept his fist tight on the axe. “I wondered where your escort was,” he cast a knowing look at his son. “You do tend to lose them from time to time.”

A too familiar mischievous grin spread Tirn's face as he replied. “And I thought I had lost them this time! It would seem they have found me again.”

More introductions were made, and Gimli tried to keep all the elves straight in his mind, but they all looked so darned alike! As they proceeded onward towards the Elvenking’s halls, now accompanied by the guards and Legolas’s son. Gimli did not think anything would ever surprise him again.

He was wrong.

Chapter 2


Name Pronunciation Guide

Tirn (Teern) 'watcher'

Adar - father

Ion nín - my son

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