First Steps Of A Long Journey
Rivendell was far in the distance when Nymeria looked back to the lovely hidden city. There the memory of all that is good has been preserved. Her hard darkened as she left the great refuge for the weary. It disappeared completely as the sun fell down.
Lord Elrond has asked that the Fellowship travel only after the sun's falling, at least till they were far from Rivendell. The keen eyes of the enemy, would find them if one mistake was made.
The stars were bright, and Gandalf knew how to follow them. Nymeria walked alongside Merry and Pippin, they reminded her of the Dwarvish brothers, Fili and Kili. The sophomoric jokes and tales they told to make her smile, just like Fili and Kili, perhaps she could see them again. That was if this journey was a success and if she did survive.
"My lady," Boromir called to her, "how do you fare, you look distressed." She looked and observed him, grey eyes were in his noble face, framed by dark hair that hung about his shoulders. The garments he wore were of great value, on belt a silver tipped horn hung. He seemed proud to her, mainly because he had not talked to her, not until now.
"I am quite alright." She pulled the strings of her pack tighter as she replied. Boromir grabbed the straps of the bag.
"You are quite kind, but this is unnecessary." She placed her hand on his and eased it away, he bowed his head slightly.
"If you do tire of the weight, my lady, then do call. The weight would not be a burden." He began to quicken his pace.
"My Lord Boromir," he faced her once more, eyes meeting hers, "This is going to be a long journey, perhaps we should go without the formalities.”
"As you wish my" he stopped himself, "Nymeria."
Many days the Company had traveled by night and rested by day. Always keeping an eye open for servants of darkness. Gandalf and Aragorn were often talking of the paths that they might take. Gimli had bonded with Nymeria, and told her all the things that her old friends did not have time to speak of.
She knew that Kili and Tauriel had married and had children, but she did not have the gall to ask what they looked like. In Gimli's eyes they were looked like Dwarves, but with the glow that Elves had upon them, they lived in Dale. The marriage between Kili and Tauriel had not bound the people. Tauriel, after all, was just a commoner and the union was frowned upon by many.
Legolas grew cold at the mention of Tauriel. Nymeria knew that he had cared for her; the hurt that it caused him that she had chosen another, Nymeria could not know. Every person suffers in a unique way, but Nymeria wishes that she could help, but she knew that topic was not one for discussion. So she stayed her voice.
"Miss, here is your dinner."
"Thank you Mr. Gamgee."
"Please, Miss, call me Sam."
"Only if you do not call me Miss." She smirked as she bit into the food that was exquisitely prepared. She praised Sam for the excellence of the food, complements were met with bashful denial. Nymeria had scarfed down her food then decided to rest her eyes for a while. The clink of metal blades drew away the tiredness from her body. She joined Aragorn in sitting atop a rock watching Meriadoc Brandybuck and Peregrin Took spar with Boromir.
"Good, very good." Boromir praised
"Move your feet" advised Aragorn
"You look good Pippin." Teased Merry and Pippin looked to him and thanked him, as he came to join the practice. Sam and Frodo grinned. She could hear the serious talks between Gimli and Gandalf who sat close to them as Legolas kept watch. Moved her hearing to that conversation.
"If anyone was to ask for my opinion, which I note that they're not, I'd say that we were taking the long way round." Gimli's Dwarvish accent permeating the air, "Gandalf, we could pass through the Mines of Moria. My cousin Balin would give us a royal welcome." Her ears perked at the name that was Balin and an excited heart longed to see that old friend.
"No Gimli, I would not take the road through Moria unless I had no other choice." Pippin's cry of pain brought her back to the sparing in front of her. Boromir had cut Pippin's hand, and now his small sword was upon the ground. Boromir, sorry for his slip, stepped forward out of concern.
"Sorry!" He spoke as he tried to look at Pippins hand. Pippin kicked the leg that Boromir had set for on,
"Get him!" Merry threw himself at Boromir the two Hobbits brought him down to the ground, laughter rose up from deep within Nymeria, Aragorn join her with amusement. Pippin in a battle cry like voice called
"For the Shire. Hold him, hold him down Merry!" Boromir was now laughing, and Nymeria had tears in her eyes when Aragorn stood to free Boromir from the Hobbits.
"Gentlemen, that's enough!" Merry and Pippin seemed to think otherwise and grabbed Aragorn's legs making him fall backwards onto the ground. Nymeria could hear the OOMPH! sound that he made as he hit the hard surface. Nymeria could feel her cheeks burn hot, and her abdomen become sore as her laughter grew harder.
"Excellent teamwork gentlemen!" Nymeria complemented they stood and bowed to the laughing woman. Sam smiled slightly at the tom-foolery, paused and looked up, noticing a quick moving dark wisp called attention to it
"What is that?" he pointed to it, and Gimli was quick to dismiss it.
"Nothing, it's just a wisp of cloud." Boromir looked up.
"Its moving fast... against the wind." Boromir observed.
Legolas looked up and told of what it was, "Crebain! From Dudlan!"
"HIDE!" Aragorn shouted grabbing his sword, Nymeria jumped from the high rock
"HURRY!" Boromir rushed them, he took Nymeria by the hand and guided her to a crevasse below the rocks. The fires were put out, and the others dashed to hide from the black crowes that soon swarmed their campsite.
Boromir still held Nymeria's hand in his, she tightened her grasp on his fingers. All he could do to comfort her fears was to tighten his grip and run his thumb over the back of her hand. The black crowes screams lasted for but a few seconds, and in an instant the chaos turned to tranquility.
Nymeria's heart settled and her grip slacked. Boromir let her hand fall from his and emerged from his hiding place offering his hand to her, just to feel that soft touch. But his hand went unnoticed as she pushed herself from the narrow rocky crevasse. In his embarrassment he quickly withdrew his hand. The Fellowship had all emerged. Gandalf announced bitterly,
"Spies of Saruman. The passage South is being watched." Frodo's brow furrowed, "We must take the Pass of Caradhras." The Fellowship looked to the mountains that rested East of them. Snow covered the tops of the mighty mountains, and the Fellowship grew cold thinking of the ice that waited for them.