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This story is No. 1 in the series "Idle Hands". You may wish to read the series introduction first.

Summary: There is a sense of grace in the way she moves. 700 words. Post-series, pre-books.

Categories Author Rating Chapters Words Recs Reviews Hits Published Updated Complete
Lord of the Rings > Buffy-Centered(Past Moderator)FaithUnbreakableFR13170211225,4586 May 076 May 07Yes
Disclaimer: Don't own. I'm all play and no money. Buffy belongs to Joss Whedon and LotR to Tolkien and Co. I make no money off this.

A/N: Guess what sentence sparked this little baby? And then have a nice Sunday, everyone.




There is a sense of grace in the way she moves.

One no elf can hope to match. She spends most of her days out in the vast gardens, just walking. Her hands trail over this petal and that, painting a trail of something that none of them quite understand. But they are drawn by it. Elrond watches from high balconies as she wanders and hours later one of his sons will follow in her footsteps, touching the flowers she touched, stepping the way she stepped. Some days he thinks it’s beauty she leaves in her wake. On others he can see the blood dripping off the rose petals her fingertips stroked so carefully.

Some days he looks into her face and instead of green eyes and golden skin he sees a rotting corpse with hollows for eyes that suck life from all things living.

Some days he fears this creature of ancient beauty. But be that as it may, he also holds deep respect for her. They all do. When she enters a room, they feel the need to offer her food and drink, to bow before her. And when she leaves they feel a sadness that stings deep in their chests.

Where she came from no-one knows. Oh, they know where they found her, in a cave as deep as the deepest ocean and as dark as Sauron’s heart. They found her lying as if asleep, yet they could not wake her. For years they tried and for years they failed until their wisest decided to simply keep watch over the sleeping beauty, this still riddle and wordless queen of men because human is what she seemed to them in her magic sleep. Until, one day, her eyes opened.

They opened and never again did anyone who had met her call her a child of man for no human eyes hold such wisdom, such age and grief and such brutality. Galadriel says her eyes are the colour of young saplings, of new life. Elrond calls her eyes the colour of fading bruises but sometimes he isn’t quite sure he’s right. There is, he believes, no one way to describe this blonde woman, a girl by appearance and a spirit, a god, on the inside. No one title to tag to her lithe form and she answers to too many names to know which one was the first.

They call her the Sleeping One, call her the Queen of the Cave. There is a word she gives as her name, a word that holds no meaning in their language but the sound of it, it feels like summer rain and sunshine on their tongues. And yet there is another name, a word that escapes her lips only in nightmares, on days when the flowers drip with blood. A word that does hold meaning. Slayer. So which name is real? Which one describes her insides? Sunshine or death? Or might she be both?

He doesn’t know. What he does know is much simpler. She is old. As old as this world, if the bottomless green of her eyes speaks the truth. Older than Galadriel and Galadriel is one of the oldest beings to walk this world. No matter where she comes from, it is from a time and place beyond their understanding. She is half demon half goddess and her hands can heal as well as they can break. She is, perhaps, the original contradiction. A child in one second, a ruthless woman with bitterness in her voice and death in her heart the next.

But no matter where she came from, who she is, there is darkness rising now, a darkness beyond any and she still walks the gardens. That, more than anything, tells him about who she is. It tells him that she will not cower in fear and if there is any one creature he believes will be able to stand against the darkness of the one ring, it is her, this eternal, ethereal, estranged woman and it might just be her gentle hands, formed to fit a sword that will save them all.

After all, there is a sense of grace in the way she moves.


The End

You have reached the end of "Grace". This story is complete.

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