Chapter 15 “Arien?”
Elrond turned to see his granddaughter staring out the window of her white room. He approached her from behind, joining her in watching whatever had caught her attention. He could see her outside the window as well. She was with a woman: a soft and kind looking woman. But Elrond wasn’t deceived.
“My name is Dawn,” she said dangerously. “Don’t call me that again.” Elrond was taken aback for a moment.
“We need your help now, Dawn,” he said despite her unwelcoming tone. “We’re here for you. We’re just outside.” Dawn lifted her hand, touching the window. Joyce was hugging her outside the window.
“Go home,” she said. “I’m staying here.”
“You don’t mean that,” Elrond said. “You’ve been waiting for us. You been wanting us to come.” Dawn turned around quickly, shoving Elrond from her. He stumbled backwards, but kept his footing. His blue eyes widened unnaturally for his usually calm demeanor.
“Don’t tell me what I want!” she screamed, standing to her feet, her eyes that matched his ablaze. “You have no idea what I wan or who I am!” she raged, giving his chest another shove. She turned back to the window to, looking for the living room of her house in Sunnydale, tears falling from her eyes. She was met with a vision of her and Buffy. They were ice skating.
“Come on, Dawnie!” she heard Buffy calling to her. She watched as her self outside the window cautious skated over to her sister.
“I want to stay here,” she said, placing her hand on the window again.
“We took too long,” Elrond said. “That is our fault, not yours. We should have been able to save you sooner.”
“I don’t need saving anymore,” she said, still staring out the window.
“Dawn,” she said carefully. “That is not your mother and sister. That is the demon that took you from us. He kidnapped you. He knocked Connor unconscious. He stabbed Lindsey in the stomach. Then he brought you to this dungeon so that they could kill you.”
“I was made to die,” she whispered. “Death was my gift, not hers.” Elrond frowned in confusion until he remembered how her sister had died to save her.
“You were never meant to die,” Elrond said. “Quite the contrary, actually.”
“Everyone dies,” she said shortly. “Eventually.”
“But not you, my granddaughter,” he said. “You will not die. As my daughter’s daughter, the immortality of the elves still lingers in your veins, should you accept it.” Dawn was silent a moment.
“Who would want to live forever in this world?” the girl whispered.
“You don’t have to live forever,” he paused. “In this world.” Dawn smiled callously.
“You want me to go back with *you* then?” she questioned, finally turning her eyes to him. “Wouldn’t that be lovely? You go looking for a baby you bring her back me? It’d probably be less painful to just tell her that I was dead, not some worthless, emotional baggage-packing teenager. Just leave me here. At least I can die happy.” Elrond suddenly grabbed her shoulders roughly. She screamed in surprised until she met his eyes burning into hers.
Legolas watched as Lord Elrond’s body fell to the ground. Aragorn the rest of the head of the party looked back in concern, Aragorn rushing back to his father.
“He will be fine,” Elrohir said. “He is with Arien. He has given his power to her for strength. He will return when we see her.”
Dawn opened her eyes. For the first time since she had been in this dungeon, she had the strength to rise up from the floor. She knew they had kept her sedated with something, making her even more prone to her captor. A strange, warm, humming tingled through her body. She knew her Elrond’s spirit was with her. Fighting her disorientation, she stood, walking over to the door to her cell. They were near. She stared at her door. She could handle a measly little lock, now that she has the strength to examine it. She laid her hands on the door. She had studied many spells for telekinesis. She concentrated on the lock until she heard the insides of it turning and moving until the door popped open. She knew there would be one guard around. One they kept to open the barrier up when they wanted to enter.
She slowly tiptoed down the hall. There he was, sitting in an uncomfortable looking chair, reading what was probably a Playboy magazine. Figures. She supposed it didn’t take much more than a dimwitted security guard to watch over and unconscious chick. Good thing about being in a leaky dungeon: there were a lot of pieces of the rock fallen onto the ground. Shame they didn’t keep the place in better repair in this part of the club.
“Do you have the spell?” Legolas asked Aragorn.
“The Valar themselves could not pull the words from my mind,” the King replied, withdrawing Anduril from its sheath. Aragorn frowned. “I hear something,” he said suddenly.
“As do I,” Legolas seconded. “It is Arien.”
“How do you know?”
“She’s whispering,” Legolas said. “It’s so faint, I can barely hear it, but I can. She’s looking for us.
“Dawn!” Lindsey called in a loud whisper down the corridor. “Dawn, come here. We’re over here!” The footsteps the elves heard picked up speed as they became louder and louder. When they stopped, they would call again and eventually they could hear her calling back.
“Aragorn?” she called “Is that you all?”
“We’re here, Dawn!” he said. She suddenly rounded the corner that was about ten feet away from the invisible barrier. A relieved smile fell across Dawn’s face as she ran to the party. She, too, was knocked back by the invisible wall.
“Oh,” she said. “That explains why you weren’t running to find me.”
“We must hurry,” Aragorn warned as she stood to her feet.
“Okay,” she said. “I’m ready.” Aragorn stood with extended forth in his hands. Dawn stared at it they began the words they had both learned so well.
“Achatsha merwak nol unil hak
kolab awes seyt telu baktar gerwesh bev.”
Lindsey and Legolas watched as the father and daughter recited the ancient dialect several times, wheeling their power into Aragorn’s sword
Light suddenly emanated from Anduril. Aragorn, not wasting any time, plunged his faithful blade through the wall between him and his daughter. She quickly and carefully grabbed the blade. Together, they pulled downwards, tearing through the magical barrier. She stepped through the hole created. The instant she was across the barrier, she collapsed into Aragorn’s arms. Elrond, regaining his consciousness, coughed a little as he raised himself up.
“I think it worked,” Lindsey said. They looked at her folded up in Aragorn’s arms. The king looked up at his companions, then at his sword so that one of them would take it. Legolas bent down to take it, allowing Aragorn to stand with his daughter as Legolas placed Anduril back in the sheath attached to Aragorn. They group quickly moved into action around the hall.
“She sleeps?” Legolas asked.
“She has no strength left,” Elrond said, walking over to the group. “Her mind has been weakened by the demon. I don’t know how she will be when she wakes.”
“We just need to get her out of here,” Lindsey said, opening his cell phone as they all walked back to the entrance of the club. “Angel,” he said. “We got her. Get back in here.” Lindsey snapped his phone shut. “They’re on their way back in. Let keep moving.”
“Atar,” a familiar voice said behind them. They suddenly turned back from where they came.
And there stood Dawn. Or at least someone who looked identical to her. Aragorn’s mouth fell open. Never did he think he’d ever hear his daughter call him the Elvish word for ‘father,’ as he would have taught her to call him, had she been with him always. He looked at the still unconscious girl in his arms. His companions seemed equally surprised.
“It’s not her, Aragorn,” Lindsey said. “It’s a demon. Let’s keep moving.”
“No, wait!” Dawn said. “That’s him,” she said pointing to unconscious girl in the now incredibly confused kings arms. “She’ll kill you once you get outside. Put her down. Take me with you.”
“She lying,” Lindsey insisted. “Let’s go!” Aragorn hesitated. She even had his wife’s jewel around her neck.
Aragorn could feel doubt creeping into his mind like an unwanted guest. It was foreign and strange; as if it was not even his doubt, but someone else’s.
“I know you are not my daughter,” he said. The demon smiled. A smile normally beautiful on Dawn seemed ugly on his face.
“Do you really?” the demon said. “How, because you know me so well? You watched me grow up my whole like and could spot me if I were right under you nose?” He paused in a Dawn-like fashion. “Oh wait: You don’t and you couldn’t.” Legolas winced at the nerve he knew the demon had struck. Aragorn gathered what was left of his nerve and turned his back on the demon in Dawn’s form, walking away as his companions followed.
“You abandoned me once. Now you’ll do it all over again?
“I never left yo-” Aragorn gasped, realizing what was doing. “I never abandoned my daughter,” he said. The fake Dawn smiled.
“You think I believe that?” he said. “I was all alone. One by one everyone I ever relied on died or left me-”
Aragorn felt a jerk, his sword leaving his side. Suddenly, the fake Dawn didn’t have a head. He looked down to see Dawn groan as she dropped his sword.
Dawn,” Aragorn breathed out.
“I’m fine. Get us out of here,” she said. “Burn the body.” Aragorn’s eyes widened as he quickly turned to leave. Lindsey found a torch giving light to the hallway and way for once glad Wolfram and Hart’s sometimes archaic style. He set fire to the demon that was finally in its own shape; albeit a little headless. He left once he was sure it would burn. Legolas and Elrond, too surprised by everything that had suddenly happened, lead the way to finally reaching his sons at the gate of the first barrier. Elladan and Elrohir stared at the figure in Aragorn’s arms that now kept her eyes open.
“You have found her,” Elladan whispered to himself.
“Yeah, yeah: big moment, I know. Escape now: reunions later.” The entire crew seemed to agree as they slowly made their way back into the club. They quickly ducked into shadows, as the security bouncers were headed their way. The giant window that served as a rather elaborate front wall suddenly caved in with Angel’s GTO left under the pieces. Patrons were screaming every which way, finally deciding that after the second attack, they might have to call it a night.
“Oh, man, they’re desperate,” Dawn groaned.
“Just run for it!” Lindsey shouted. The five of them wasted no time in booking it towards the car now in the middle of the dance floor. They vaguely heard “They’ve got her!” being shouted, but didn’t look back. Tranquilizer darts suddenly started coming their way, one of them catching Elrohir in the back. Aragorn quickly but carefully tossed Dawn in the backseat and jumping in the vehicle as Elladan not-so-carefully tossed his now lagging brother in the back with her. He then jumped in the front seat with Aragorn and Angel as Elrond launched himself to the back with his unconscious son and near unconscious granddaughter. Lindsey had somehow acquired a firearm and was shooting behind him with Legolas firing arrows as his side as they finally jumping into the car wherever he could fit as Angel screeched his way out of there. When they backed up at least fifty feet, Angel donuted so that he was facing the other direction. Angel quickly flipped open his phone as he sped off.
“Gunn! Now!” Angel started as she turned around to hear the explosion engulfing the building she had been held captive in for a week. The six in the car not driving all turned to stare at the handiwork of their physicist and Watcher.
“Bazarias is closed for construction,” Lindsey said, throwing the empty gun into the street.