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This story is No. 7 in the series "Return of The Key.". You may wish to read the series introduction and the preceeding stories first.

Summary: A place for occasional short stories in my BtVS/LoTR Returnverse featuring Dawn, now known as Tindómë. Mainly gap-fillers for the series. NEW - The Young Warrior - a glimpse at a younger Legolas.

Categories Author Rating Chapters Words Recs Reviews Hits Published Updated Complete
Lord of the Rings > Dawn-Centered(Recent Donor)curiouslywombatFR151423,21154711,12113 Oct 1025 Aug 13No

Love Token

This is a set of six true drabbles written for the Hairdressing challenges at Tolkien Weekly.

They feature the inhabitants of Ithilien and fit into the Returnverse series.

Disclaimer: The characters in this story do not belong to me, but are being used for amusement only, and all rights remain with the estate of JRR Tolkien.

Finders Keepers

Resting with her back against the ancient tree, amongst whose roots she had discovered this treasure, the girl carefully examined her find. Turning it this way and that she traced curves and swirls that became leaves, flowers, and birds when she looked carefully.

Such a comb would surely give great pleasure as it slid through her hair – or the hair of a lover. It was so beautiful that she could believe it magical…

Perhaps, she thought as she slipped the comb into her pocket, people were right and once, long ago, the fair folk really had dwelt here in Ithilien.

The Gift

Her beloved gave her a comb one day when he returned from the fences of this, their new home. Even here the elves kept watch; but there were many quiet times which he had filled by carving the intricate design and the small, smooth teeth.

He combed her hair for her; long, slow, sensual strokes, until she ached for more.

Then she turned and slowly curled one of his braids around her finger, reeling him in towards her like a fish on a line, until their breath mingled, their lips met and, for a little while, the comb was forgotten.

First Flowering

Tindómë looked at herself this way and that in the mirror. The pale, fine, fabric of her dress moved with her and swirled in soft pink drifts around her feet.

“Beautiful!” her friend said. Then, “Sit down whilst I do your hair for you.”

She picked up the comb and slid it through Tindómë’s thick, wavy hair, before working in first the jewels and then the roses. Roses cut that morning from the first bushes to bloom here in Ithilien; a sign of earth renewed.

“There!” she said, finally satisfied, “It is time to go out and meet your bridegroom."


It was summer. The long winter and short spring were both past and, in the warm sunshine, Tindómë felt indolent; her condition made her too lethargic to do more than lie against her husband’s chest and simply ‘be’.

He combed her hair; the act as much a token of love as the comb itself. Her breathing and his strokes became synchronised, as one.

“Will you comb my hair like this when the time comes?” she asked him.

“Of course,” he answered, “if it will help.”

“It will,” she said. “And I will be beautiful when our son first sees me.”

Farewell, My Lovely

On a whim he worked a plait into her hair and then threaded flowers through it. So many times he had done this, over the years, and this would be the last time; at least with her. But he wanted her to look her best; her and all the others.

So much they were leaving behind, accompanying their Lord to the West, so much they couldn’t take and, today, though he loved her, he would hand her to another. Trade her for gold to use when they landed.

“You will be well,” he whispered, “for the Rohirrim love their horses…”

Sail Away. Sail Away...

Everything was ready now. Trunks held items to set up a new home, somehow, somewhere, in the West; what they could not take had been given to elves who were remaining, or to men.

Tindómë looked back at their home for the last time. Her tear-filled eyes caused her to trip, dropping the bag of personal possessions. Half-blinded still she scooped everything up and walked, head high, away.

When she realised, at sea, that she had lost her comb she wept again.

“I will make you a new one, meleth,” Rumil said - and took out a piece of Ithilien wood.
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