Title: A Rainy Afternoon
Characters: Orophin/OC’s; a passing cameo by Haldir
Summary: Orophin and someone else make a rescue attempt
Genre: Things that make you go ‘Awww’
Warnings: Kinda fluffy
Disclaimer: I don’t own them (if I did I sure wouldn’t want to work)
Feedback: Would be appreciated
This is my entry in The Official Next Great Big Haldir Lovers Writing Challenge of 2004Plot Situations: 2) a failed or successful rescue attempt.
The incessant sound was what drew his attention to the rotted out log. Many years ago the tree, weakened by old age and time, had fallen during a particularly strong thunderstorm. His brother had decided that since it did not block any of the paths through Lothlorien it would be fine to leave it where it had fallen. During the years many an Elfling had played upon the fallen mallorn tree, the smooth bark inviting to the smallest members of the Galadhrim. He always would see Elflings playing their version of ‘High-King of the Hill’ or whatever game appealed to their young spirits. The tree has many uses in the play of the Elflings; it could be a ledge, high on the mountainside of the Misty Mountains or a hill that could not be taken or any imaginary thing they could think of.
The sound of laughter always rang through this part of the woods, making it one of his favorite places to come to during his leave from the border. But at this moment there was not any laughter ringing through the woods, all of the young ones had been called home by their naneths. The darkening skies brought the mothers out to collect their Elflings, afraid of what the rain and mud might do to the state of cleanliness the small ones had started out with.
He chuckled, watching a mother chase her ion through the glade, the unfamiliar sound forgotten as he watched the merry chase the Elfling led his mother on. The small Elf was determined to keep out of the reach of his mother and keep his freedom. There was just too much fun going on to be halted by the coming of the approaching storm.
“Telo si!” the mother called to her escaping child. Almost at the point of giving up and leaving the shrieking child to his own devices, she spotted the Warden resting at the foot of a giant mallorn.
“Suilad, Orophin. How are you this afternoon?”
“Fair enough, hiril nin . Are you having trouble with this one?” He pointed to the giggling Elfling hanging from a low branch of a small tree.
“It would appear your ion has been replaced with a small emlin.” The silvery golden hair of the Elfling glinted in the setting sun, casting a halo around his head as he hung upside down, and making for a deceptive appearance of innocence.
She gave a most unladylike snort before she answered. “That ion of mine is too full of energy and has a wild streak a mile long. I will be glad when his father returns from Mirkwood.”
“May I help? Perhaps I can get him down from the tree and home before the rain come,” he said as he glanced at the darkening sky. “It appears the storm is still a ways from Lorien.”
“That would be most welcomed. A moment of peace would be wonderful.” She smiled as she answered the brother of her husband.
“It seems that Haldir’s ion has much of his ‘spirit’. Haldir was just as reluctant to come in from his play.”
“Orophin! Spirit? That is what you call this?” A loud screech came from the Elfling as he swung himself down from his perch on the tree. Orophin and his sister-in-law watched as the young one chased a brilliant blue butterfly across the glade, weaving in and out of the falling leaves.
“Rawion! Rawion! Come here and say hello to your uncle.”
For once the small child listened to his naneth and stopped chasing after the butterfly. Trotting over to where his mother and uncle stood, he stopped halfway there, his attention caught by a fuzzy caterpillar inching its way across the glade.
“Rawion. I do not know what I am going to do with this one.”
“Fear not. Leave him with me. If we do not make it back before the storm, I will take him to my talan for the night.”
“Orophin, I do not mean to impose. Rawion can be a handful at times.”
“Think nothing of it. We will have a fun...” Orophin trailed off when he noticed she was not listening to him. He glanced in the direction she was staring and saw his brother. Haldir had returned a day early from Mirkwood, and went searching for his family.
Haldir nodded his head towards Orophin and with a smirk and a raised eyebrow he called his wife to him.
She looked to where her child was lying in the grass following the caterpillar's every move with his eyes. She looked back to Orophin and graced him with a smile
“Well if you do not mind...” she said as she rushed off to greet her husband.
Orophin could hardly contain his laughter as he told her to go to Haldir. He knew the two would not surface from their talan for some while. It was always like this, Haldir gone from the Golden Woods for any amount of time would result in the hibernation of the couple. Usually after a day or two they would resurface and face the rest of the world.
“Do not worry. I will keep him with me until tomorrow night,” he called out to their retreating forms.
Haldir raised his hand in answer as he guided his wife down the trail.
Orophin turned his attention back to his nephew. He watched as Rawion poked the fuzzy worm with the stem of a fallen mallorn leaf. He decided it was time to intercede on behalf of the beleaguered insect. Orophin snuck up behind Rawion and scooped him off of the ground. He tickled his nephew before he tossed him in the air. Squeals of delight rang throughout the glade as Orophin caught the small Elfling.
“You should not be cruel to the defenseless creatures of Arda, nephew.”
“Ah, but there is not anything else to do. All of the others had to go home. I am bored.”
Orophin rolled his eyes as he set Rawion on his feet. “That means we will have to find something to do.”
“What do you want to do?”
“I want to be a Warden like Ada and you and Uncle Rumil but I do not have a sword.”
“We need to do something about that then.”
Orophin searched the ground under the trees until he spotted what he was looking for. Motioning for Rawion to follow, they went to where fallen branches had been stacked for later removal. Pulling out two, Orophin stripped them of leaves and handed one to Rawion.
Holding the stick in front of him, Rawion gave his uncle a puzzled look before he realized what Orophin was up to. Rawion brought his ’sword’ up and saluted his uncle.
Orophin raised his ‘sword’ in defense and then the battle was on. He allowed Rawion to drive him across the glade, blocking each of the clumsy attempts of the young ellon. After reaching the fallen tree, they were interrupted by a loud clap of thunder. Orophin thought the time was at hand for them to return to the city. Grabbing Rawion’s weapon he yanked it out of his hands and tossed the laughing Elfling over his shoulder.
“I think it is time to return before we get wet.” Orophin told Rawion as he tickled his nephew.
“Do we have to Uncle Orophin? This is fun.” asked Rawion as he was placed back on his feet.
A loud clap of thunder cut off any response Orophin would have made. The sound was followed by Rawion’s whimper of fear as he moved closer to Orophin.
“Hush, now. There is nothing to be afraid of.”
Before Rawion could respond a sound came from the hollowed out mallorn tree. Orophin pulled the Elfling behind him as he went to investigate the source of the sound. Motioning for the ellon to stay back, Orophin cautiously dropped to his hands and knees and peered into the dark opening of the log.
There it was again. That sound. Orophin tilted his head, the sound was a familiar one, but he was having trouble placing it. Eyes narrowing, he reached in with one arm. His fingers brushed against something soft and warm. The low growling warned of the snapping bite that quickly followed. He pulled his arm out and shook his injured fingers, a curse upon his lips before he remembered his company. Looking over his shoulder he motioned for Rawion to come to him.
“There is something trapped within. I know what it is but we need to get it out before the rain starts. Do you want to help?”
Of course Rawion wanted to help, finally a worthwhile mission of a Marchwarden-in-training.
“What do I need to do Uncle?”
“I need for you to go to the other end and stand there. Make sure it does not get past you. Can you do that?”
“Sure I can.” Rawion replied as he sprinted around to the other end. Taking up a pose that mirrored his father, Rawion guarded the other end as if it was the entrance to the Lady’s pool.
Shaking his head at the antics of the younger Galadhrim, Orophin crawled into the darkness. The fading sunlight did little to penetrate the gloom of the log. The light was enough to make out a shape in the darkness. He could see a tail and four legs and not much else. The low growling coming from the creature did not deter Orophin as he crawled forward. He tried to grab it but the animal turned and snapped at him once again. Orophin backed out of the log and sat on the ground, thinking of his next move. He looked up at the sky as the rain began to fall. Pushing his wet hair from his eyes, Orophin called out to the child to see if he was still there.
“Yes, Uncle. I have not moved.”
Orophin could hear the voice of his older brother coming from the tiny body of Rawion. ‘Ai, this one will be as arrogant as Haldir if he is not careful,’ Orophin thought to himself. The rain had turned the ground under him into a wet muddy mess. Crawling through the mud to enter the log once more, Orophin shuddered to think of the mess that Rawion would be once they reached the talan. But first there was a rescue to perform. Pulling a piece of Lembas bread from a pouch on his belt, Orophin tried to entice the creature to come out of the log with food. It did not work. He would have to try another approach. This time he did not try to grab the creature, but instead made a lot of noise, hoping to scare the animal out of the other end. And it worked.
Rawion shifted from one foot to the other, impatient. He was getting wet and cold, he was ready to return to the city. He could hear his uncle as he tried to frighten whatever it was out of the log. And it worked. A low whimpering sound came from the mouth of the darkness. He could hear something crawling towards him. At this point Rawion was starting to get scared. He really did not like the thunder and the strange noise but he was not going to tell; Marchwardens were really not afraid of anything. Rawion was going to be one when he grew up and now was not the time to let a little thunder frighten him. Squaring his shoulders, the small Elfling stood tall, waiting to stop what came out of the log. He did not have to wait long.
Inch by inch the sound drew closer until there was a set of paws visible. A black nose soon followed. The creature tilted its head before it drew back on its haunches and leaped at the Elfling.
Rawion laughed as the creature knocked him to the ground, the pink tongue washing his face. Orophin crawled out into the open in time to see his young nephew and the butter cream colored puppy roll on the muddy ground. He pulled Rawion to his feet by the scruff of his tunic and tried to brush the mud from his clothing. Orophin only succeeded in making it worse.
“You little mud pig. You are going to need a bath when we get back.”
“Aww, do I have to?” was the innocent question asked.
Orophin merely raised an eyebrow in response. Looking down at the wagging tail of the puppy, Orophin knew that they could not just leave him there.
“Yes you do.”
Reaching down, Orophin scooped up the equally mud covered puppy. Grimacing as the pink tongue darted out and kissed his face, Orophin told the puppy he could come with them but only if he also had a bath. The puppy barked in agreement.
It was talked about in Caras Galadhon for a long time about the sight of the mud-covered trio as they made their way to Orophin’s talan. Many an elleth swooned over the sight of Orophin carrying a puppy in one hand and holding the hand of the young Elfling with his other. The origins or owners of the little butter cream colored dog were never discovered. The thought was that he must have gotten lost when a band of travelers had passed close to the Golden Woods. The rescued puppy was welcomed into Haldir’s home as one of the family and lived a long life, happy and content.
THE END A/N:
Telo si!=Come here!