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Valesse 06-21-2007 01:18 PM

Valesseka kept consciously near to Eomerleo and the dwarf Darin while they rode. Though silent her quiet concentration on Jenfried spoke volumes of her inner criticism. That, however, was extended to the elf Arianna, who though nearly slain by this miscreant awarded her for... for what? Staying the night in that man's home? We certainly didn't pay -him- for keeping us!

She snapped back to reality after noticing that Brunn started to pick up speed. Tugging a little on his reins she corrected the animal and out-and-out glared at Jen's back. She's probably considering robbing us when we sleep, and those elves are all to quickly falling for her act. Valesseka tossed her hair over her shoulder, I'm not fooled, you little theif...

What a joy kill... Valesseka had been hoping for a light-hearted romp with the ever-dashing Gondorian and now another girl, another -human- girl, might end up being her competition. What a horrible adventure this was turning out to be.

Crystal Heart 06-22-2007 09:39 AM

Arianna looked back at Jen who was perched behind her on the horse. She gave her a gentle smile. "You need not worry about buying a horse. You can ride with me if you'd like. I really don't mind it at all," Arianna reassured. She looked over at Glirdingo who was leading. He clearly wasn't pleased by what was going on here. He had always been a suspicious man, always wary of others. Arianna wasn't naive. She didn't trust easily either. It wasn't the elf way. Yet, she could read people, see the goodness within them. This girl was good, just confused and had gotten caught with the wrong crowd. Perhaps, with a little guidance, she would become a truly good and honorable woman. At least Arianna had to give her the chance to try to become such.

Marieme watched as Arianna rode with Jen behind her. She kept a close eye on her. If she even made a move to hurt her friend Marieme knew she would be ready. There would be no bloodshed on this last leg of the ride. At least, no blood shed from their party. The only blood that would be shed would be the girls. That much Marieme was sure of. If it came to that, that is. She hoped it wouldn't, for Arianna's sake more than the rest of the company's.

Their horses walked on. They traveled far and long. Marieme felt like they would never be done with this trip. She hoped they would be soon for she was tired and wanted to be safe. It had been far too long since she was last truly safe. She wanted at least a month of safety, if not more if she could get it.

Glirdingo led them on, knowing where his former companion was. They marched on, like silent soldiers. He turned often to ensure that Arianna was safe and still with them. Each time she gave him a smile and knowing look. He hated the fact that she was trusting this girl so wholeheartedly. She had been almost mortally injured by the human! Certainly, in her weakened state, it wouldn't take much to finish off his beloved.

His heart yearned for all of this to be over quickly. He wanted to save his former companion and then go off into the sunset with his beloved Arianna. He wanted to head back home, marry her properly, and give her the quiet, gentle life that she deserved. He only prayed that it would be possible.

Eomer of the Rohirrim 07-01-2007 01:09 PM

Éomeléo rode alongside the rest of the company, interested in the possibilties presented by this rogue Jen character. He didn't suppose David the housekeeper was too upset by their departure, although he may have regretted not being rewarded in any way. Before he left, the Gondorian had promised to repay him somehow. But that probably depended on the outcome of their treasure-hunt.

"I say, Dárin" as he turned to the Dwarf beside him, "we could, it seems, get use out of this youngster on this journey."

"Aye" replied Dárin, "although I'm unconvinced about the Elves' methods of treating our prisoner."

Éomeléo nodded in agreement. He looked at Valesseka, who was nervously eyeing Jen herself. Éomeléo casually directed his horse to the Arnorian.

Glirdan 07-04-2007 11:58 AM

Glirdingo continued to look over his shoulder at Arianna, making sure that she was alright. Every time he did, he could tell that Arianna caught him and he smiled widely at her every time. But that was not his only reason for looking over his shoulder. Even though Jenfried had the respect of Arianna, Glirdingo was still not convinced. Perhaps because there was still some animosity for attacking him and his friends, or perhaps for wounding Arianna, or maybe even a combination of both. Whatever it was, he wanted to keep his eye on her.

He looked on straight ahead and could descry the peak of Isengard approaching slowly. We must be close the gap of Rohan...he thought to himself, a little joyed by the appearance of a well-known landmark. They rode on, the sun slowly traveling with them.

Arianna looked at her beloved Glirdingo, smiling back at him every time he looked at her. She longed for this adventure to be over. She wanted to head home to Lorien with him and Marieme, and settle down for a peaceful life. Would that happen? Could that happen with the two of them being as adventurous and rambunctious as they were? And what about Marieme? She was younger than either Arianna or Glirdingo and would probably cause a little mayhem yet!

Arianna then smiled to herself, remembering happier times. But she had grown up since those times. They all had.

Marieme continued to follow Arianna and Jenfried, keeping her eye on the young woman. She trusted her friend's judgment, but she did not know about it this time.

The sun slowly started to sink in the West. Now the could all descry the peak of Isengard and the end of the Misty Mountains. They traveled on, running into no further trouble for the day. They traveled into the night and only stopped once the moon had begun to rise. By that time, they could see half of Isengard.

Glirdingo turned to Éomeléo. "You have travelled this way before, right? How far way are we from Isengard itself?"

Eomer of the Rohirrim 07-07-2007 07:05 AM

Glirdingo's question amused Éomeléo, who had always had a terrible head for lengths and directions and other such features of travelling; but he did not want to appear without knowledge, so he summoned an answer.

"I say, Glirdingo, it should take three hours at the most from here." Utter guesswork on his part, but he thought the Elf had a similar time in mind. The business with the rogue-attack was still troubling Glirdingo, but he looked the better for having something to focus on. Thin-Gloomy yet waited for their rescue.

Whispering now to Glirdingo, Éomeléo asked "And what of our camp this night? We can't take any chances with our security."

The Sixth Wizard 07-08-2007 07:02 AM

"And then to the old South Road, I believe," Dárin joined in. "Miles and miles of riding in a straight line on the open road. How easy would it be for a larger force than our motley party to ambush us? How easy would it be for the ambushers in question to round up a large force of gold-hungry brigands in these wild parts? How could we hope to avoid them?" Dárin began to doubt their reason in the quest again.

But how well defended will Thin-Gloomy be? wondered Dárin. These elves claim it is better to die in a just cause than live in shame, but how do we help righteousness by killing gold-hungry mercenaries and falling far short of the rescue?

How how how. The dwarf was especially worried that Glirdingo had to check for directions from Éomeléo. It resounded a lack of knowledge and planning, at least to the cautious Dárin. Plagued by unrest, he shifted uncomfortably and ground his teeth.

Glirdan 07-08-2007 11:33 AM

Glirdingo looked at the Dwarf and Man, pondering to himself. "Thank you master Dwarf for your input. I have been in Rohan only once before and do not know the way as well as I would like. However, I do remember most of the way from Isengard."

He then turned to Éomeléo and said "As for your question my friend, I have not quite decided on what to do. Should we go forth until we reach Isengard and possibly be shut out? Should we stay out in the open and risk another attack? For there is no cover between here and Isengard."

He turned to look at the rest of the group who were huddled in separate groups, speaking to one another. He then turned back to Éomeléo and Durin and asked "What do you think my fellows? Any idea on what our current course should be?"

Eomer of the Rohirrim 07-09-2007 06:09 AM

Éomeléo raised his eyebrow at Glirdingo. He seemed to be avoiding the issue most heavy on the Gondorian's mind. "Glirdingo, we should camp here for the night and rise at the coming of Dawn; but you misunderstand me."

He ever so slightly turned his head in the direction of their new associate, Jenfried, who was staring up at the stars.

"I know not her situation, nor the Elves' judgments on rights and morals; but I do know that she has tried to kill us already!" How can we be safe tonight? We ought to tie her up, and still set two of our own to watch her."

Éomeléo, unwavering, awaited response.

Valesse 07-21-2007 01:43 PM

"Yes." Cut in the Arnorian, still close by. The entire day she had been quite uneasy and though doing her darndest to keep in her fitting role as a lady adventurer, Valesseka could not contain her opinion here, not in the open arms of twilight. Instantly she chided herself for the outburst, and hoped, more than likely in vain, that the elf Gllaaadrinn.. something didn't hear.

She keeped her eyes set straight ahead of her, looking as detached from the conversation as possible. Even glaring at the star-gazing girl seemed to tie her too closely to her interjection. 'It wasn't my place to say anything.' She thought, investigating a clump of tall grass in the distance. 'It isn't proper for a lady to place her opinions on such matter... even if it -IS- the correct one to have.'

Thinlómien 08-22-2007 09:16 AM

The stars. They were always there. They had been there, guiding her path at night as long as Jenfried could remember. She was deep in her sentimental moment. Moments like it were rare to her.

Still, her schooled awareness didn't fail her. She felt someone looking at her. Suddenly, she was not dreaming anymore. It took all her willpower not to turn from the sky to see who had focused his or her eyes at her. Still, at a quick glance from the corner of her eye, she could see no one looking at her. Weird, she thought. She was just about to lower her gaze from the starlit sky, when she heard the Gondorian speaking. "I know not her situation, nor the Elves' judgments on rights and morals; but I do know that she has tried to kill us already!" Jenfried didn't need to guess who were they talking about. She pretended she was still interested in the stars and reacted in no way, even though she wanted to shout, or at least flinch a little.

Even worse, it seemed the Arnorian angreed with the Gondorian. Once again the Rohanian girl wondered that why those who were closest to her own kin of these people, would be most vehemently against her. She could see their reasons, but she still wondered at the cruel or bizarre fate that made just them think that way, compared to the Elf's, Arianna's, almost too friendly behaviour.

Valesse 09-29-2007 02:53 PM

Huffing ever so slightly, Valesseka urged Bruinn on. Too uncomfortable to stop with Jenfred along, the Arnorian tried to hold herself in a manner that would tell those around her that she was more than willing to continuing riding for the rest of the night.

There was another mist growing over the world, though not as thick as the fog they had encountered before but she kept close to her fellow riders just incase. The stars of Varda were blurring in their black drapery until finally the girl was unable to discern them through the chilly mist. "Are we sure we're heading the right way, still?" Valesseka murmured to break the long silence.

Crystal Heart 10-24-2007 02:34 PM

Arianna heard what Éomeléo had said about the young woman named Jen. She came over silently, making no sound as she moved. Just as a proper elf could. She came up behind him and cleared her throat, causing him to jump in surprise.

"Excuse me, Éomeléo but you are highly mistaken. You have no idea what that girl has gone through. I do. I have been where she has been, abandoned and frightened. She got into a bad group. Nothing more. She will not harm us. Besides, think logically. Why would a mere girl with her lack of fighting skills want to hurt all of us when she is clearly in the minority? Your argument is neither logical or sound. Listen to reason, Éomeléo. If anything the best the girl could do is take a horse and run away. However, she won't do that. No one would listen to her. Especially a girl like her. Believe me and trust me. I have wandered this earth longer than you have," Arianna replied.

She spun quickly and walked over to the young woman that was looking up at the stars. Arianna looked up herself, noticing her favorite constellations immediately.

"I love the stars. They are the only constant thing in this world. That and the sunrise, sunset, and the change of seasons. What do you think about when you look at the stars Jen?" Arianna inquired of their new companion.

Eomer of the Rohirrim 10-25-2007 01:37 PM

Éomeléo bristled in anger at the insult he had just been dealt. Who was this Elf to insult his mind? A wolf remains deadly, though her companions be defeated, and this young girl had given him no reason to trust her. Arianna's willingness to jeopardise her companions for the sake of this mysterious stranger had now gone beyond the odd, and into the realm of recklessness.

The Gondorian looked with distaste on the two of them, quiet in the starlight. Vicious untruths being circulated in their secret pact, undoubtedly. On this night his bond with the Elves was rent. He headed to the west, alone and with his belongings. He looked for Valesseka, but he could see her nowhere. This troubled him, but he continued walking.

Valesse 10-25-2007 07:14 PM

Valesseka had been too busy with her thoughts to pay attention to what was happening around her and completely missed Arianna's private conversation with Eomeleo, but now the silence of the camp was settling in on her uncomfortably. Skimming over the dower faces of her companions the Arnorian's count came up short. But he was right... right near me.

There, on top of a little dark lump moving slowly over the undulating plains sat the bobbing plume of a very familiar hat. She stood up, breaking the complete lull of activity within the camp "Eomeleo?". Valesseka looks around and noticed another thing missing-- actually a few. Everything except for Eomeleo's horse was gone. Right! He isn't going to sleep near this girl. Smart thinking! Throwing her belongings onto Bruinn quickly she wasted no time in trying to catch up to the tiny faint figure in the grass without another word to her 'inferior' colleagues.

Thinlómien 10-26-2007 01:09 AM

"I love the stars. They are the only constant thing in this world. That and the sunrise, sunset, and the change of seasons. What do you think about when you look at the stars Jen?"

Just a moment ago poetic and dramatic thoughts about the stars had been running in her mind, but the Gondorian's distrustful comment and the discussion about herself had ruined Jenfried's mood. She hoped Elves could not read thoughts, because otherwise she would be severely ashamed - what would Arianna think about her childish musings on stars?

"When I look at the stars, I think it's good that they're there because otherwise you'd see nothing in a darkness like this", she said and stood up. She kicked a little pebble (clearly hurting her foot more than the pebble) and walked away.

She sat down, her back against a tree and hugged her knees. She was so sick and tired of all this. She didn't know why she was suddenly angry with Arianna, but she didn't care. What a mess I've made of my life, she wondered.

Crystal Heart 10-29-2007 06:22 AM

Arianna smiled at the girl's musings. They were simple yet so profound. She had promise. That much was clear.

"You are a deeper thinker, Jen. Tell me, do you want a different life than the one you have been leading lately?" Arianna asked, noticing the young woman's body language change. She had always been good at reading people and their body language. They gave so much away.

Glirdingo stood off to the side, watching Arianna talk to the girl and he wondered why she was being this way. He had grown up with her and he thought that he knew everything about Arianna. Yet, now he was finding that he didn't. She had a different side, one he had never been priveliaged to know. What was this side? And where had it come from? Had she learned this during her travels? Or was it an aspect about herself that she had not allowed him to see before. Either way, he was troubled. Deeply troubled. However, he still trusted her with all his heart and soul. She had never steered them wrong before.

Eomer of the Rohirrim 10-29-2007 02:00 PM

Éomeléo strode through the long grass, scouting the area ahead. It was dark but the starlight illuminated the magnificent shape of the surrounding land. The Misty Mountains surveyed a grand space which would take days to escape. Tharbad lay far away.

He heard an approaching horse and wondered who was following him. He felt uneasy about leaving Valesseka, but knew that the girl was clever enough not to compromise herself. He expected her to be the rider closing in on him; but he didn't know whether she would stay with him, or desert him. Slipping between a few trees, he waited for the horse to get nearer. He didn't want to be caught in a bad position. These were still suspicious lands, after all.

Valesse 11-03-2007 02:50 PM

Valesseka and Bruinn broke through the sparse tree line, overtaking Eomeleo without knowing it. She slowed the gelding to a stop and tried to take in where the Gondorian might have disappeared off to. It made her ill at ease to lose sight of the only party member she was in shouting distance-- especially after the previous events.

Quietly, she squeaked out his name and as the seconds flew by like hours, she prayed that her guess was the correct. If that figure was not her partner in travels then she was, indeed, in a very poor situation.

Thinlómien 11-03-2007 03:01 PM

Jen did not feel like answering any questions. She didn't meet the elf's eyes, but instead her eyes scanned for the others. The dwarf was standing by his mount, streaking it's mane and neck. The two other elves were wtching Arianna. But Jen couldn't see the two humans anywhere. Now where are they? Are they traitors? Are they fleeing? Or are they having some sort of a romantic meeting..?

Jenfried could not restrain her curiosity. She met Arianna's gaze and shrugged apologetically as an answer to her question. She stood up. "I have to go to pee", she announced bluntly. Without a single look back, she disappeared to the bushes. She hoped the elves would realise she had not run away because she had left her things behind. She could see a horse and a rider far away, half hidden by the trees. Quickly, she stalked closer. She put all her skill in the effort for she wished to remain unseen and unheard. Smiling bitterly, she thanked the Valar for having been a servant and a rogue: that was probably the best training someone wishing to be a good stalker could have...

Eomer of the Rohirrim 11-24-2007 01:28 PM

The rider approached and Éomeléo immediately recognised her as Valesseka. He walked out from behind the trees and gestured to her. She slowed her horse and met him again.

"Where exactly are you going?" she asked. Éomeléo stood there with a look of unwilling uncertainty on his face, because, of course, he had no idea how to respond. He was glad to see her though. He already felt terrible about leaving without saying goodbye to her, and now he was happy he could put things right.

"I can't stay with that band" he replied "for I trust them not. I was never one for getting along with people; that's why the quest for the gold was so wonderful to me. I was alone, for the most part, and the remaining time featured welcome interludes with you." He smiled at her, hoping she wouldn't yell at him and draw attention. He did not want the others to find them, and hoped that Valesseka would come with him and hide on a different road.

Valesse 03-19-2008 07:13 AM

Valesseka cringed inside, imagining for a moment that Eomeleo had finished his comment lingering with how he longed for sollitude when she was so blatantly seeking his companionship away from their fellow adventurers. Looking up from Bruinn's mane, she blinked at the Gondorian for a moment. "So he's pleased with me following him?"

"Why did you not tell me that you were going to try to head off alone?" Despite initially feeling a sweet glow of girllish emotion, slowly she grew hurt. "I also do not trust them... I don't want to be left in their protection..." It was no use trying to hide it at this point, Valesseka thought of herself as a damsel, and here she was in distress.

"How could he leave me with them if this is what he feels? ... Thats too much. I'm thinking too much about this."

She looked back at those still in camp, "...I don't believe they're even considering following me... not for a while. If we hurry..." she turned her eyes back to Eomeleo "we can escape their company for the majority of our trek."

"He needs to shave."

Eomer of the Rohirrim 03-24-2008 06:02 AM

Éomeléo shifted uncomfortably from side to side. He knew he was wrong to leave Valesseka; but how to explain his decision, where in the heat of the moment he had chosen the merits of one honour over another?

"Well.... I was really mad." Perfectly done.

"I suppose they annoyed me too at times, but we sort of knew that Elves are really different from us."

"Yeah, well, I've stormed off now and I'm not going back, although I guess we might see the rest of our company before the end." He surveyed the surrounding land and assumed a thoughtful stance. "Now you are with me we can plan our next move. I think we should keep moving where we were going but probably on this side of the forest." At this, the Gondorian made a vague gesture, waving his hand over this way.

Valesseka looked unsurprised but not too worried by the itinerary. Éomeléo adjusted his hat and began walking.

Thinlómien 03-24-2008 08:19 AM

In Arthedain, near the hills of Evendim
The prison was a silent place. Occasional rapping of rats' feet and the steady small sound of small drops of water hitting the stony floor. Once a day Thin-Gloomy could hear footsteps in the corridor, the sound of the door unlocking and the filthy tray being left on the floor, but nothing more. They didn't talk to him anymore. It had changed to a battle of wills. Their weapons were violence, threats and starvation. His only weapon was his endless Dwarven stubborness.

Thin-Gloomy had decided not to lose this battle. He had always lost before the Quest for the Great Golden Hoard. When you win once, it's not easy to lose anymore. One night he had sworn to himself that he would rather die than lose. Now, he still clung to that thought, although he was not keen on dying, not now when there finally was a future in front of him. But he could not see this battle ending soon. He would not give up and they thought they could still win.

If they have found my map they indeed can...

Valesse 03-26-2008 01:16 PM

Despite her silence for the following hour of travel, Valesseka's mind was all but a raging storm. "Angry! He left because he was angry! Well now -I'm- angry! Maybe I should..." She looked to either side and frowned. The attack had rattled her nerves, and now the wild and lonely landscape did nothing to comfort them. It seemed impossible at that point to even think of mustering the kind of courage Eomeleo must have to make such a decision.

Looking once again to their course the Arnorian sought out the best comfort she could give herself: "If we have any argument remotely even close to this I won't ever let him forget that." Strangely, it seemed to work.

As the second hour came and went, she found herself incapible of keeping silent and allowed herself to suddenly erupt into conversation. "We have to be out of their range of hearing by now..." she turned her head toward Eomeleo. "Where are we going to sleep? I have some food... I don't know if it'll be any good if we can't cook it, and I know we don't want those elves seeing any fire or smoke or anything... If theres jerky we could have that, but I really don't care for it too much." If he found her conversation unpleasant, this journey was certainly going to be a long one.

Thinlómien 04-16-2008 03:53 AM

This was more interesting than anything that happened this far. The two humans were planning something. They are going to run away, Jenfried realised, they're going to leave me here with these Elves and the dwarf. They're going to do the quest on their own and get more glory. Unfair.

I'm going with them, she decided on a whim. It felt better, more interesting than staying with the Elves. There's nothing for me here, she thought. Quietly, she crept back to the camp. The male elf and the nasty she-elf were kneeling beside Arianna and the dwarf was further away, keeping watch. The Elves were talking in low voices and they seemed worried. Jenfried suspected Arianna's state was worse. She was not a religious person, but she wished that there was someone out there, some Vala or something, who could help the Elf, and she also hoped that she had not wounded the kindly woman fatally.

Still, she did not go to see what was happening. Movingly silently as a cat, she went where most of her possessions lay. Quietly, she gathered them. The elves were too occupied to pay attention and the dwarf had gone away to check something. It took all Jen's self-control not to break into a run when she had gathered her things. Easy now, she told herself.

She reached the shadow of the woods and allowed herself to breathe freely again. She turned to see where the humans were, but they were not there. You can't have lost them! You idiot! At that moment she saw two figures at a distace, walking away in silence. Good, she thought and followed them. She was accustomed to moving unseen and unheard, and put all her skill in use.

Eomer of the Rohirrim 04-22-2008 05:43 AM

They had travelled for two days alone now. The rest would be far behind, and possibly covered in regretful tears. The landscape had changed somewhat: they were getting into the hills now. Éomeléo wished his geography was better. Real outdoors-y sorts knew about that stuff, didn't they? He wondered if he was leading his companion to a bad place. Well, he hadn't asked her to come along. He wished she was safer, actually. The idea of responsibility was just...

''Do you think we are near?'' he asked.

''Oh yes, certainly'' Valesseka answered. ''We've been aiming to reach the hills; probably these ones. It can't be much further; we've been on this journey forever.'' She winked.

It was true: they had been doing this forever. Éomeléo had that feeling inside that suggested something big was going to happen very soon. But what?

Then they heard it.

''What was that?'' Éomeléo muttered.

''Not sure. Sounded like a clang, to me. Way over there''

''What's a clang?''

''A noise of metal sounding on metal'' declared Valesseka, a tad excited for the Gondorian's liking. ''We must investigate.''

And so they made for where the noise came from. It was easy to see, for many birds had been startled by it, and had flown upwards, creating a sort of arrow to the destination.

Valesse 05-02-2008 10:48 PM

"It's definitely someone... the kidnappers?" she whispered to the Gondorian excitedly, perhaps again a bit louder than fitting, "They should be somewhere nearby, shouldn't they?" she paused "I can't see anything." Without further word-- something bizarre in and of itself concerning Valesseka-- she made her way down an incline to some heavier wild shrubbery below.

"That sounded like swords clashing with one another. Is there a fight going on? Who would be fighting out here? Or maybe it was pots.. but why would someone bang pots together? Wh- What if it's some kind of ogre or orc who just killed a traveller!?"

From where he was standing Eomeleo tried signalling Valesseka back, but received no response. Her shoulders had started trembling at the thought of ogres and orcs, why did she go so far away from her brave, blue-clad protector? The distance she moved downhill now seemed like such a risk. What would happen to her if she became trapped in this patch of scraggily bushes? Perhaps.. "Ahh!"

She saw something move, a definite humaniod form behind her. The problem was, they, whoever they were, had seen her as well.

Eomer of the Rohirrim 05-15-2008 09:51 AM

Valesseka crept about the undergrowth, down the small hill. Éomeléo stood and fidgeted, unsure whether to go after her or not. He was worried by the noises they had heard. Who could it have been? It was the clash of steel that pierced him most: undoubtedly, there was a man, but more likely men, here. What kind of people should be in this area?

And then he saw what kind of person. A scruffy-looking man had shuffled to the shrubs Valesseka had parted half a moment ago, and was peering into the gap. He had a brown cloak, and was clutching what looked to be an iron rod.

''Hi!'' the Gondorian called out, loud as he could, and then, because he didn't want to shout Valesseka's name, ''Man! There's a man!''

Said man promptly turned and growled up the hill at Éomeléo. His snarling face the last sight before the hard ground came crashing up to meet him. He had been struck, hard, on the back.

Valesse 05-28-2008 07:18 AM

What was that? She had heard Eomeleo calling out "Hi! There's a man!" but that thump-thud right after it? It was good to know that these were men, not trolls or that lot, but even Valesseka knew that men could still be dangerous. The Arnorian slowly peeked out from her hiding place and could finally clearly make out... two men? Then a third...

"Bandits?", she whispered to herself, starting to become so entwined further into this new drama that she stopped counting the heads and voices appearing in the brush. The men were discussing something for a moment before one finally bent down and hefted something large, and something with a big blue-feathered hat. Eomeleo!! They were carrying him off now toward where the adventurers had heard the clanking metal. Clearly, something had to be done. Valesseka the 'fair' was started to realize that she was needing to become Valesseka the 'somewhat-stalwart'.

Thinlómien 06-16-2008 11:52 AM

Jen knew a rogue when she saw one. And now these had attacked the couple she had been following. She shook her head lightly. Morons to run off just by the two of them - especially if they're losers like that. She was almost amused. I might have to help them.

Jen crept closer. The bandits were carrying Éomeleo away and Valesseka was hiding, staying very still. She did not notice Jen coming. The girl put a hand on her mouth to prevent her from screaming when she laid down next to her. Valesseka's eyes were wide, if because of fear, surprise or anger, Jen could not tell.

"Shhh... It's just me, Jen. I've come to help you. You can't rescue him alone." She took her hadn from the woman's mouth and smiled apologetically. She hoped she had the sense not to start shouting at her when the bandits were still quite close.

Eomer of the Rohirrim 06-25-2008 12:18 AM

They were in an underground passage. It looked as though it could collapse at any moment, and certainly did not seem to be professionally built. The earth and iron support were illuminated by torch-light. Éomeléo was being carried, and not very quickly. He was a fairly large man (though skinnier than he had been when he left home) and, though he felt three sets of arms supporting him, he could tell that they did not belong to Ogres or Trolls.

He heard them grumbling and making stupid jests. They had no common accent, but to be sure a pervading tone of vulgarity at which, despite his situation, he had to roll eyes.

After a short journey, they stopped and dropped him to the floor. Éomeléo landed on his arm, but was glad of it being his left arm. If he should chance upon an occasion ripe enough to punch one of these thugs right in the nose he would prefer to make it a good one. As he landed, he heard a more pronunced voice. ''Nah, Bones, don't leave 'im 'ere, 'e's to go with the rest. Open the door and drag'm inside. Bones duly obliged.

The rest? Éomeléo thought, as his eyes adjusted to the darker room he had just been offered.

Valesse 07-02-2008 06:30 PM

Valesseka's face was red with a kind of rage which made her head spin. That girl! She's probably working with these low lives too! Help! Hah!. She found no reason to shout or make noise. She was as good as caught now, and the girl -- even as much as the Arnorian hated to admit it-- was right. One maiden as fair and delicate as Valesseka would not stand much of a chance against these thugs.

In a very clipped tone she whispered back "What in the name of Manwe are you doing here?" -- Just play along like you trust her, Valesseka, she'll keep her guard down that way so if I need to run... -- "Why are you holding me down? We need to go after them!"

The sound of her voice was biting and cold. Clearly the girl wanted results, no matter how grand, and wanted them quickly.

Thinlómien 07-09-2008 05:36 AM

"What in the name of Manwe are you doing here? Why are you holding me down? We need to go after them!"

Jenfried suppressed a sigh. So this was one of those "fine ladies" with no common sense at all.

She tried to be patient but avoid seeming exceedingly so when she replied. "We cannot go after them right now. Wait a moment. If we dash after them now, they notice us and kill us. We must move so that we're out of their earshot, or at least far away enough that they can't hear us properly if we're moving as silently as we can. The ground is soft here and there's long grass, it will be easy to track them even if they get out of our sight."

Before Valesseka could interrupt, she added: "And as to why I'm here... I spied on you and the guy, I must admit... but you're far more interesting than the Elves and the Dwarves! They're never going to get anywhere with their endless discussions and oaths of love." Jen smiled smugly yet a little apologetically. "And one of them is wounded so they can't move fast," she added.

"I wonder why she's wounded," Valesseka hissed.

Jen didn't bother answering that and tried not to blush. "So, do you have anything against my plan?" she asked.

Valesseka looked at her, not very friendlily. In the end, she said nothing. Jen assumed that meant she agreed with her. So they waited until the bandits and Éomeleo were only three brown and one blue spot in the horizon. Then, they started following them as quietly as they could and as quickly as they dared.

Eomer of the Rohirrim 07-24-2008 05:06 AM

Éomeléo was thrown through the doorway; his arm hit the side of the door, and he twisted round in a violent yet comical fashion. He landed face down on the floor, though he managed to get his other arm in the way. That would be bruised, but he didn't want to lose any teeth. This action was illuminated, but when the door closed complete darkness ensued.

He heard people breathing. Assuming they were also prisoners, and being exceedingly hacked off at the situation, he threw caution to the wind and said: "So, who are you?"

"Wow! Someone who can talk!" came a reply, full of exaggeration. "Oh, er, pardon me, I didn't quite mean to sound rude; it's just that, well, no-one else talks in here, and I get so bored! You understand?"

Éomeléo said that he did understand. The voice belonged to a grown man, from somewhere up north maybe.

"I mean, it's not all bad down here; get used to it, I mean, the sitting and the lying down and the dark, but I dearly miss having a good natter! These other chaps seem to loathe conversation. Oh! I'm sure you have so much to tell me! And I have lots to tell too!"

Éomeléo wondered how much longer he would prefer being irritated to being physically threatened.

Valesse 08-03-2008 01:57 PM

"So, do you have anything against my plan?" she asked before setting off after the bandits and blue-clad Eomeleo

"No." She wanted to spit out at Jen, but another part of her didn't want to speak to the girl at all... and it was that side which won out here. Her arms were folded so tightly across her chest it forced her back to hunch giving to her uncomfortable feeling. Her feet were falling heavily on the ground with soft squishing sounds each jerky trudge Valesseka made. This definitely not the kind of 'sneaking' Jen had in mind, and did give her unamicable company warning looks about. Looks were returned and ignored.

They stopped in one of the few patches of long grass left before the sundered landscape degraded into stunted weeds over pale orange, irregular rocks. The men had disappeared underground with the Gondorian. Valesseka straightened up, squinting her eyes at the scar in the earth in front of them. If only she should get closer without risking being seen!

A minute or two had passed as the girls were assessing the situation when Bones and his companion emerged once again, both wearing smirks on their leathery faces. "Couldn'ta risked 'em see'n, Jorgen, is that why we brought 'em here?" -- "Ow!" Valesseka whispered harshly, as Jenifred pushed her down and out of sight in the grass.

Jorgen nodded and looked annoyed, "Of course! Thats why we bring all of 'em here, yeh knucklehead! Gah... Sometimes ye say more stupid than that chatty guy we got down there. How long do yeh think he'll be till he asks ta be moved ta another cell?" They laughed and stretched some. "It's been too hot, lets get us some'un ta drink." With a nod, Bones lead Jorgen into another cave, one used for storage.

"What do we do now? How do we get him out?" Valesseka the somewhat-stalwart whispered, now ignorant of the fact that 'the villianous' Jenifred was her only company in this situation. "We can't leave him in there for the bandits, he's too... Eomeleo."

Thinlómien 08-15-2008 02:00 AM

"We can't leave him in there for the bandits, he's too... Eomeleo."

Now that was the stupidest reason for anything Jen had heard for a while. It did confirm her suspicion about Valesseka and Éomeleo. She shook her head. She had never seen the point in romances - by what she had seen they were always first disgusting and sweet as syrup and then painful like an inflamed wound. This Valesseka woman was already a bit slow-witted, really bad at sneaking and if her thoughts were clouded by a silly infatuation - that was just too much. Jen cursed her luck.

"We rescue him."

It was not very smartly said, but Jen couldn't think of anything else to say. She had to admit she was getting excited. This was an adventure! Thoughts started whirling in her head.

"First, we wait until nightfall. They will have a guard or two, but we have to deal with them. Distract them, kill them, seduce or bribe them, whatever. I think distracting might be the best idea. Seducing or bribing is too suspicious - it will probably fail and then we're in trouble. Killing is a bit difficult but I can handle that if necessary." Jen tried to sound careless and self-confident. In truth, she had never killed anyone and the thought of it made her shaky.

"Distraction sounds good." Jen thought there was relief in Valesseka's tone, even though she sounded sulky and unfriendly. Fair enough, she didn't like the Arnorian either.

"Okay, so when the night comes we... start a fire in the woods. You will be there and feed the fire. Try to get the bandits come after you but not catch you. I go and rescue your boyfriend. No, don't protest! Everybody knows I'm the one of us who can sneak, pick locks and even handle bandits if it's necessary. So I'll go. I'm sure he'll be delighted to know that you're taking a dangerous part in his rescue."

"And what do we do now?" Valesseka asked rather tartly.

Jen's reply came easily. "We wait."

Eomer of the Rohirrim 08-29-2008 07:41 AM

Éomeléo was becoming seriously annoyed. His captors had devised quite the ingenious method of slow, grinding torture in placing him in the dark cell with Miko, a character who appreciated silence less than any other living thing. The Gondorian was curious as to who else resided with them here, but not curious enough to go poking about blindly.

Miko, to no-one's surprise, spoke: Horrible, grating noise, isn't it? That drip, I think it's a drip. Water, or a burst pipe, or something, water outside I think. Hmm, doesn't it just tear at you? When it's all quiet like this but there's a noise that just won't go away? Isn't it just dreadful? Hated that back at my house, always something going wrong. Always up about five times a night checking on things, making sure they're still working, trying to fix things. Dislike it greatly, hmm, I must say. Horrible, grating noises."

At this, Éomeléo knew he was being tested, toyed with, and mocked, because there was no way this Miko could be that dull. After considering this possibility for the best part of twenty minutes, he settled on the conclusion whereby the robbers were trying to teach him a metaphysical lesson. Only a band of philosopher bandits with too much time and resources on their hands could devise such a scheme; it had to be a scheme because Éomeléo could not be this unlucky.

Miko changed subject, to "those ungrateful Shirefolk and their ways" and Éomeléo pondered how best to utilise Miko's tremendous power to his advantage.

Valesse 09-01-2008 08:37 PM

"But what if they decide to do something to him between now and nightfall? I don't want to risk it!" Valesseka obstinantly stomped her foot, the ground below it making a hollow sound. She frowned, looking down at it. Not wanting to disappear inside a kind of sink hole the Arnorian side stepped.

Jen's 'boyfriend' comment rolled off her back mostly unnoticed, or if anything with a glow of pride. At least the girl recognizes we're -together-. The Arnorian gloated inwardly. What did bother her was this idea of Jen doing the rescuing while she would be busy buring down the forest. Sure, she could sneak better but the 'dangerous' part of the rescue mission was far more 'dangerous' than Valesseka felt she could handle.

Valesseka shook her head "Think of something else! Something faster." As if expecting a miracle, she looked around behind her. "We might find someone to tell..." Her blind optimism quickly fades. "...Ooh, it's useless! What can -we- do?! You can't help but irritate people and I'm too delicate to b-ba-battle." The fair farmer's daughter sobbed an overly dainty sob. "Eomeleo... My love, I'm so sorry..."

The two could, if they were trying for it, hear soft plodding sounds, growing louder in inconsistant meter. From where they sat they couldn't feel a thing, but under the surface the disappearing portion of the ceiling would have been much more noticeable. But would cave in be an escape accessable for the imprisoned?

Thinlómien 09-12-2008 12:38 PM


Gradually, Thin-Gloomy had begun to suspect that his initial assumption of him being the only prisoner in the bandits' lair was incorrect. There was strange screaming at nights around full moon and occasionally, the jailers were talking with some people that didn't sound like they were part of the gang.

It didn't help Thin-Gloomy much to know that he wasn't the only one there. He didn't care why the other ones were there, or where exactly were they kept. He didn't get to talk with them anyway. He only talked with the bandits, who were still looking for the treasure in the false location the dwarf had given them. Thin-Gloomy considered it most amusing, but he was terrified, too, for he knew that however dim-witted the bandits were, they would eventually learn he had fooled them. He didn't exactly look forward to that day.

He was tired of being beaten, constantly interrogated and kept with little food and locked up in a cell. He was used to contempt, violence, lack of proper food and filthy places, but he had never before been a prisoner and that was what made the difference. Maybe it all had to something do with his newfound pride, too. Before, he would have given up already, known that it was not worth fighting the bullies, and he would have accepted his situation. Now all he thought about was escape and revenge. He dreamt of killing the bandits - especially the shrill-voiced cow - in goriest of manners. It was no good, though, he would still have to find a way to get out of the cell first.

It was all so frustrating. He kicked a pebble that was laying on the floor. It hit the wall. There was a rumbling sound. He instantly backed to the opposite wall. As if something had collapsed. Surely his little pebble couldn't have caused it?

Would the walls or the roof be weaker now, could he escape?



They were walking around, Valesseka first and Jen at her wake. For the second time, Valesseka stopped suddenly and side-stepped, causing Jen to bump into her.

"Would you be careful where you step!" Jen said.
"There are these kind of sink holes on the ground. Surely we don't want to get stuck on the wet ground?" Valesseka replied, rather angrily.
"Ther would be no problem if you looked at where you're walking to in the first place."
"Walking, yes - why are we even walking? We are not going to the forest to follow your silly plan, anyway."
"Make up a better plan, then, if you are so very wise and all that."
"Of the two of us, I'm not the bandit used to handling situations like this! You should know, you're in the business."
"Yes, and that's why I have a plan in the first place and you don't. You're being illogical. Very illogical - see, you even kept on walking after you said it was stupid. You are an idiot."
Valesseka cast a poisonous glance at her from over her shoulder. "Idiot? Who's the idiot here in the first place? Had you not..."

Not looking at the ground, she had taken an uncareful step and suddenly, the ground gave way below her. She fell, screaming. Jen tried to back away, but she was too close to Valesseka and the older girl was grabbing her leg. So, she too fell, swearing loudly.

After a short fall, they found themselves in a tunnel with doors at either side. It would have been very dark had they not just made a hole in the roof. "I did say..." Jen started, but stopped instantly. There were footsteps approaching fast. "Quick, let's hide!" she whispered.

Eomer of the Rohirrim 09-13-2008 07:06 AM

Éomeléo started: a loud clatter came from somewhere nearby. Through that wall, was it? Or maybe to the ri-

"Oh my! What was that? I say, what is happening? Did you hear it? That noi-"

"Quiet, you oaf!" Ah, satisfaction at last. Miko was silent for once, and Éomeléo could detect his palpable sense of surprise at being reprimanded.

The Gondorian stayed still but craned his neck forward in a ridiculous attempt to hear better. He heard shuffling sounds from through the wall, and hushed voices, female voices. Then they were quiet, though their movement remained audible to the trained ears of the prisoners. The dark of the cell seemed to shimmer and float, the excitement playing tricks on Éomeléo's eyes. But the noises had disappeared.

"Miko, I don't know who they were but they seemed scared; they weren't bawling like usual. Maybe they aren't the fiends who are keeping us here."

"Could be, could be, sir, it's all rather strange to me" replied Miko. "It did seem quite as if they knocked something over, something very heavy; or perhaps they fell. It reminded me of a time I was staying up North, somewhat -- well, I say up North; what I really mean is in the old country -- we call it old on account of its receiving trading rights from the old King, I forget which one exactly, well before the south. It was all to do with-"

"Miko, quiet!"

Mercifully, the sound of heavy footsteps was becoming very prominent. Éomeléo took a deep breath, several actually, and tried to compose himself.

"Miko, that's the guard. It's time. Do you feel capable of this?"

"If it's as easy as you say it is then of course, old chap!"

It was time for Miko's incomparable skills to be put to the test. The footsteps reached the door, and the key turned in the lock.

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