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A Little Trip Through the Forest

Amaldeth sighed again, trying to indicate to Gliadin how really bored he was. After Beleg had left them at the border, the pair of them had ventured deep into the surrounded forest quickly and quietly, but when they had approached the edge of the forest, Gliadin forced Amaldeth to wait whilst he scouted out and around to make sure there were no servants of Morgoth present. He had been gone for hours, leaving an excited Amaldeth very very bored.
Amaldeth jumped up as Gliadin slipped down beside him, "There is a patrol of Orcs to the left of us and another patrol to the right, if we try to go across the clearing, both will see us. I need you to follow me, do exactly what I say and what ever you do, don't make a single sound."
Amaldeth nodded, his heart thumping in his chest, he had spent years as a warden of the Girdle but this was his first major venture out. Gliadin's eyes narrowed as the Orcs are finally heard by both Elves ears. Nimbly, Gliadin runs to the left, Amaldeth following closely behind. Gliadin points up a tree and Amaldeth climbs up, settling himself on a branch, his bowstring ready to be knocked. Within a few moments, the first of the small Orc party makes its way into the Elves ambush, its five companions closely behind, the lead Orc stops and sniffs the air grunting to warn his fellows that someone else was around. The Orcs start raise their weapons, Amaldeth lets loose his first arrow, closely followed by a second and a third, whilst two of Gliadin's knives flash out of a dense part of brush and land with a thunk in the other two Orcs, leaving only the leader behind. Confused the Orc turns around to look at his fellows, only just registering his imminent demise when Gliadin's knife slits its throat. Gliadin looked up at Amaldeth, "We need to move these fellows so that the other party don't see them."
With surprising strength for someone so lithe, he drags the first corpse into a dense bit of brush that was his hiding spot. Together the two Elves move all of the Orcs bodies away from sight and take a quick breather, Gliadin flashing Amaldeth a smile.
"You did good for a rookie."
Amaldeth grined back with a shrug, "You did good for a girl."
Gliadin gave Amaldeth a hurt look before bursting out laughing and quickly covering his laugh with his hand, he motions for Amaldeth to be quiet and the pair quickly climb up the tree they had been leaning on as the second party of Orcs came into the clearing, this one twice as large as the last.
These Orcs were smarter though, as the leader Orc held up his hand and looked up into the trees. Both Elves did not worry though, there was no way the Orcs would be able to find them but still it was unnerving to have such cold eyes appraise their approximate location so quickly. Within seconds the Orcs had fanned out, making it difficult for the two Elves to use confusion as a fighting technique. Feeling a little despaired Amaldeth was alarmed when Gliadin jumped out of the tree into the middle of the Orcs, effectively giving Amaldeth the confusion he needed to shot several Orcs in an instant before they closed in on his companion. The Orc leader with surprising agility for such a creature reached out and grabbed Gliadin by the throat, dragging the Elf to his face. The Orc opened his mouth to speak only to gurgle black blood and fall to Gliadin's feet with a thud, almost lethargically Gliadin retrieved his knife and shot four at once in opposite directions whilst Amaldeth's arrows took out the remaining Orcs with ease. Amaleth jumped to the ground and retrieved his arrows, even those that were bent, because he could always recycle the tips and any undamaged fletches. Gliadin cleaned his knives.
"You could've warned me you were going to do that you know," Amaldeth remarked angrily.
Gliadin simply shrugged, "Figured you'd know what to do. That and I didn't know I was going to do that until I landed on the ground, for a few seconds I panicked until your arrows took out a couple of those Orcs," he flashed Amaldeth a grin, "I think we should get out of here though, before another patrol comes our way."
Amaleth nodded, muttering under his breath, not seeing the bemused look on Gliadin's face.

Together the Elves made their way out of the dense brush tofind themselves at the edge of a human settlement, in awe Amaldeth steps on a twig causing it to crack loudly, he winced as Gliadin shot him a deadly look. Within a few seconds a large man with a bushy beard calls out in a strange accented tongue that Amaldeth couldn't make a coherent word from. Gliadin stepped forward, dragging Amaldeth forward also, speaking quietly in the same tongue, with rapid hand movements that looked like Gliadin was describing the Orcs that they had just killed so close to the settlement. The big man nodded his head after a while and motioned for the two Elves to follow him into the encampment. As the pair of Elves walked through the camp Amaldeth gazed around like a tourist, the inhabitants barely acknowledged the strangers as they went about their daily business. Their clothes were dirty and stained from use, their faces looking like they hadn't bathed since last summer, and the smell, the smell was the worst, but if Gliadin could handle it, so could Amaldeth, but secretly he wished he was in an Elven city which always smelled so sweet and the air was so fresh unlike this pig sty that these humans seemed to be living in.
"Amaldeth, I said do you want some?" Gliadin asked, his face indicating that although the drink looked like it had been passed through mud, complete with floaty bits, that he must drink it. Smiling Amaldeth takes the drink and sips at it, hiding his convulsion to spit it back up and smiling at his host who's face broadened into a large grin.
Gliadin leaned in close, "I have told Beorish here that you are my younger brother, on his first venture into human lands and that you want to experience everything."
Amaldeth shot Gliadin a deadly look as one of the village girls took him by the arm dragging him away whilst Gliadin stayed with Beorish.

Several hours later Amaldeth returned, his eyes opened wider than before and his face a little paler, Gliadin offered him an Elvish drink to which he drank readily, "I don't know what it is but these people are positively barbarous! I mean, itís just that," he trails off, not even wanting to think about it. Gliadin nodded in acknowledgement, "That my friend was a crash course in human life."
"Crash course alright," mutters Amaldeth under his breath.
"But, I have learnt many things since you've been away, Beorish here, tells me that Orc sightings have increased in the past year and not a few days ago did one of the villagers see a dragon riding high in the sky. Our King's suspicions seem to be correct, we must make haste to Nargothrond quickly, unless of course you want to stay?"
Amaldeth jumped to his feet, "I'm ready to go."
Gliadin laughed and explained to Beorish who let out a booming laugh, together the two Elves bow and gather their things, Beorish lead them to the edge of the settlement, Amaldeth pointedly ignoring the village women's eyes as he passed. Gliadin exchanged words once more with Beorish before the two Elves set off again, alone in the dwindling sun.

The pair travel for a few days, approaching the approximate location of the hidden city, but they knew that they would not gain entry unless they had a 'local' show them the way. A beautiful sound is heard in front of them and Gliadin smiled, motioning Amaldeth to follow, they make their way into a clearing where a golden headed Elf is making the most beautiful music on his harp. After the song is finished the Elf glanced up at his awestruck audience and smiled, "Ah Gliadin, bored with making havoc in Doriath are you?"
Gliadin bowed, "Lord Finrod, I bring a message from my King."
With that said Gliadin drew out a small cylinder and handed it to the Elven King, Finrod read the missive, a slight frown creasing his forehead for a second before he glanced back up at the two Sindar, "Well we can't have you walking all this way without showing you the sights now can we?"
Gliadin grinned and motions Amaldeth forward, "Lord Finrod, this is Amaldeth, he will be my escort."
With that Gliadin opened his bag, letting his hair out, he then placed a cloak around his shoulders and drew up the hood, grabbing Amaldeth's arm, "Okay ready."
Bemused Finrod rolled his eyes at Amaldeth and proceeded to lead the two via winding, confusing paths, that neither Elf could remember seconds after walking. them into the great cavernous city of Nargothrond, rich in jewels and gold.
Gliadin grinned at Amaldeth, "This could be fun," he whispered.

As the trio walk through the city a number of Elves bow towards the Lord of the city and continue on their way, trying hard to cover their curiosity of the two newcomers, one Elf in particular glances over Gliadin appreciatively bowing very low to the master of disguise having no idea the gender of the Elf beneath, Gliadin peeked out of his hood demurely much to the amusement of Finrod and horror of Amaldeth. Finrod lead the pair to a particularly beautiful room with two adjoining bedrooms on either side of the opulent sitting room, Amaldeth notices a small door off to one side and realised that this would be the bathroom, he let out the breath he didn't know he had been holding. Finrod smiled at him before slightly bowing his head, "I trust that these rooms will suffice, please make yourselves at home, dinner will be served in two hours. Though I must warn you do not try and leave the city, whilst you might not be able to see my people they will know you are there, this place is hidden for a reason." Almadeth gulped and nodded his head a little over awed by everything, Gliadin slapped him on the back as the Elf Lord leaves the pair of Sindar alone.
"Come on Amaldeth, lets have a bit of fun tonight, we are strangers to this city, lets let our hair loose."
Almadeth nodded, "Um Gliadin, do you by any chance know what was in the message you brought with you?"
Gliadin stopped what he was doing and carefully looks up at Amaldeth, "Not much gets past you does it?"
He sighed, "Yes I do know what was in the message, in fact the message said very little, but what it did say was that we haven't seen anything yet. I'm sure you are aware of the numbers of Orcs sniffing around the edges of Doriath right?"
Almadeth nodded again, his neck getting slightly tired of it.
"Good, well itís a lot more than that, Morgoth's forces are growing and our King fears that he will try and strike."
"What will he do then?"
"To be honest I don't know, I know that Thingol thinks we are safe within the Girdle, what do we care about the rest of Beleraind? But still these people are our kin, exiles or not, well maybe not the Feanorians, I don't think Thingol counts them as kin after what they did, but do we leave them all? I think Thingol wants to warn the others, telling them that danger is coming whether or not he sends his forces or not."
Gliadin shrugged his delicate shoulders, "I am not sure what is going to happen, but I do know one thing."
"What's that?"
"I am so wearing this tonight!" Gliadin exclaimed holding up a beautiful gown.

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