The first true hunt

Adventure in Misty Mountains

The next day Legolas, Luin and Haldir were woken up two hours before dawn. Haldir was woken by one servant.

Legolas and Luin were woken up by Eluwien.

The elven maiden stepped in her younger brothers' chamber, sat on his bed and placed a light kiss on the young elfs' forehead.

"Wake up tithen gwador." she smiled and stroked her brothers' golden hair.

Legolas moved and whimpered. "Just few more minutes." and he rolled to other side.

Luins' ears flickered at the presence and the voice of the golden brown white haired female elf and opened her eyes. The feline moved her tail and placed it on the elf maidens lap.

Eluwien felt the touch of the cats' tail and directed her ocean blue eyes on her. "Good morning to you, Luin." she said with a smile.

The feline stood up, Legolas slid down her side, and she jumped down of the bed.

Legolas had no other choice just to get out the bed too.

"That is better." Eluwiens' smile brightened like the soft rays of the morning sun.

She got up as Legolas did and left the room, for Legolas to have his privacy.

Legolas changed his sleeping robe for traveling clothes and went to have his breakfast.

Luin was just sitting near the door and was watching her 'brother' and when the young elf was ready she left the room with him.

After breakfast Legolas went back to his room, took his quiver and strapped it on his back. The same he did with his twin knives, a gift from his father, and grabbed his bow, a gift from his sister. Then he took his and Luins' packs and went to the stables.

Legolas entered the palace stables and the young prince was greeted by happy neighs of his and Haldirs' stallions.

Legolas walked to the bigger white one. This stallion with green eyes neighed once more and pressed his nose against the young elfs' hand.

"Good morning and welcome to you too Ulios." the young prince greeted the huge stallion. "I think Haldir will be here any minute." Legolas smiled, looked to those clear green eyes and patted the horse.

Then he walked to Ninim.

The smaller white stallion shook his head and neighed. Legolas smiled at him and patted Ninim on the neck.

Just as Haldir walked into the stables Legolas took a hard brush and cleaned his stallions' coat.

Then he placed a light green blanked, which the young prince took from a stake near the stall, on the white stallions back. The next thing was the bridle.

Haldir was doing the same with his great stallion, Ulios.

Then they tied their packs on the backs of their stallions. And they led them out of their stalls and from the place stables.

Luin was patiently waiting front of the stables. Her bags were laying in front of her paws and she was merrily chatting with Legolas' older siblings.

Legolas smiled at the giant feline.

Luin stopped chatting with Legolas' family, rose from the ground, grabbed her packs with her mouth and walked to the young prince and Haldir.

"Are you ready to put this on your back?" the youngest prince asked.

Aye, but I think that Haldir has to help you. She chuckled.

"Are you saying that I am small?" Legolas asked.

Maybe? And her smile widened.

"So you can strap this to your back alone." he turned around pretended to be hurt by the felines' words.

I am sorry Legolas. I did not mean it. Please I can not do it by myself. I have no hands. The cat pleaded, stepped closer to the young elf and licked his hand affectingly.

Legolas turned and smiled. "You know I can not be mad at you." and he stroked the great felines' head.

Then Legolas took Luins' packs and threw one end on the other side of the feline, where it was caught by Haldir.

They carefully strapped the packs on Luins' back just behind her shoulders, not to get in her way when she will be running, where one pack was on one side and the second on the other side of the feline.

"How is it?" Haldir asked.

I feel like caught in a rope loop. The feline said. But I will get use to it in time. And all the elves around laughed.

Thranduil stepped out of the place and walked to the group of elves that was standing far away from the stables. He was holding a message for his friend. Lord Elrond of Rivendell.

When the king got near them they all bowed.

Thranduil stepped to his youngest child and hugged him tightly. Legolas returned the hug of his father.

"You must be very careful, ion nin. Also take this to my friend Lord Elrond of Imladris." the King said and handed Legolas the letter he wrote this morning.

"I will deliver it ada, and I will be careful, do not worry." Legolas softly smiled at his father.

We will take care of him my King. Luin stepped closer with her head down in submission.

"You do not need to do that, Luin." Thranduil smiled at the feline and gently forced her to look to his eyes. He saw just love and affection in the feline eyes. But also insecurity what to do and think about the gesture he did. "You are part of the family. I told you long ago."

Hannon le, my King. The feline smiled at him.

"Luin is right. We will take care of him. Nothing will happen to him." Haldir smiled at the king and then looked at his young friend.

The King released his youngest, walked to the feline and gave her a hug too. Then he went to Haldir and grabbed his hand in typical warrior style. Then he took a step back and said.

"May the Valar protect you on your long journey." Thranduil said.

"May the Valar protect you too, ada." Legolas said and bowed.

"May the Valar protect you, my King." Haldir bowed.

And may the stars and the moon look after you, your family and your realm. Luin said and bowed.

Legolas then mounted Ninim, and Haldir mounted Ulios. Luin was standing now in the middle of the stallions, between which she was almost as high as them. They all were shining like the moon on the night sky.

The horses turned. Legolas the last time waved to his father and sibling, and they galloped through the gates and to the still dark forest.

Slowly the sun rose from the horizon and two elves and a feline were making their way through dark and almost quiet forest of Mirkwood. No birds were singing except those which took off with them from Mirkwoods' palace. It was the red robin alongside with its' family, amusing the travelers.

It took them three days to reach the borders of Mirkwoods' forest, and they entered the plains of Wilderland.

Here they slowed their pace to a light trot and their hearts lighten. It took them half a day to reach the Great River and they follow it down the stream for a day and a half to reach the ford and cross it.

During their travel Luin started to jump around in the sun like a kitten and she started to sing. What surprised the elves traveling with her and also amused them.

There's a Road calling you to stray. Step by step pulling you away.

Under Moon and Star Take the Road no matter how far.

Where it leads no-one ever knows Don't look back follow where it goes.Far beyond the Sun Take the Road wherever it runs.

The Road goes on Ever ever on Hill by hill Mile by mile Field by field Stile by stile. The Road goes on Ever ever on

The Road goes on Ever ever on Hill by hill Mile by mile Field by field Stile by stile. The Road goes on Ever ever on

Mountain and valley And pasture and meadow Stretching unending For mile after mile. Fenland and moorland And shoreline and canyon Bordered by hurdle And hedgerow and stile

One more mile then it's time to eat Pick some pears, succulent and sweet. To the farthest shore. Take the Road A hundred miles more.

Sweet pink trout Tickled form a stream Milk a goat, Churn it into cream.

Far beyond the Sun Take the Road wherever it runs.

The Road goes on Ever ever on Moor by moor Glen by glen Vale by vale Fen by fen The Road goes on Ever ever on.

See the Road flows past your doorstep Calling for your feet to stray Like a deep and rolling river It will sweep them far away.

Just beyond the far horizon Lies a waiting world unknown Like the dawn its beauty beckons With a wonder all its own.

Númenna! Auti i ré. Yallume! Hilya!

Númenna! Auti i ré. Yallume! Hilya!

Hilya! Hilya! Auta. Hilya!

Númenna! Auti i ré. Yallume! Hilya!

Mountain and valley And pasture and meadow Stretching unending For mile after mile. Fenland and moorland And shoreline and canyon Bordered by hurdle And hedgerow and stile.

Somewhere behind the Great River Luin stopped running, raised her head high and sniffed the air. A strong wind is blowing.

"It is blowing like this the whole day." Legolas smiled at the feline.

"What is the matter, Luin?" Haldir and Legolas asked.

There is a storm coming.

"How can you tell? I can see no clouds in the sky now, not even one whole day." Haldir said..

I can smell the water in the air. The great bluish feline smiled at the elves. We should seek shelter for tonight.

Before the sun set they camped at the foot of the Misty Mountains, under a thick layer of trees over them, near a little stream, where they left their horses. Luin looked for dry branches for the fire. Haldir prepared the fire and the food and Legolas prepared their bedrolls and warm blankets. Elves were not affected by weather, but there was an exertion and that was when an elf was badly injured or poisoned.

They took their share and then the Mirkwood prince and the Lothlórien march warden leaned on the side of the great feline and covered themselves with their blankets.

"Where did you learn that song you were singing, Luin? I never heard it from you." Legolas said.

"I also did not hear it from you." Haldir said confusion written in his face.

I know you two never heard it. I learn it from my friends. They are great travelers thanks to their wings. She smiled and pointed on her back on the family of red robins now resting on her fury back.

"And from where they have it?" Legolas curiously asked.

Luin turned her head at the robin family and instead of the language she used with the elves Legolas heard just some kind of quiet meowing, low growling and hissing.

After the feline finished the red robin started singing.

They got it from little folks. Luin smiled.

"Little folk?" both elves asked in unison.

Aye, they were suppose to live on the other side of Misty Mountains, but further than Imladris is.

Legolas' eyes shone with excite. "We should ask Lord Elrond about it. And whenever it is true we should go see them." he quickly said.

Haldir laughed about Legolas excitement for this topic. "Oh mellon nin. We will go if it is safe and if Lord Elrond allows it."

The three friends did not even realize how quickly time passes when they have fun. They did not see the sky darken and the stars and moon started appearing in the sky.

Luin yawned and looked around. The fire was still burning, the horses came to them and were dozing on the other side of the fire. Then she looked at the two elves still chatting and leaning on her side.

We should go to sleep now. And yawned again.

"Oh Luin. We still got plenty to talk about." Legolas said.

The most difficult part of the journey is in front of us. The High Pass you know. The great cat said.

"Luin is right Legolas. That is a treacherous path. There could be goblins and other creatures but, also loose rocks and things like that. We should gather our strength." Haldir seriously said.

See even Haldir agrees with me. Lets go to sleep now. Luin said and lowered her head on her front paws.

"Good night Luin, Haldir." Legolas said and curled himself to the felines' side.

"Good night little prince, Luin." Haldir said.

"I am not little and am not sleepy." Legolas drowsily said and Haldir and Luin smiled.

"But who will keep watch?" Haldir suddenly asked.

Do not worry about that. I am a beast just like Ulios, Ninim and the robin family. We will are light sleepers. We will keep watch. Good night Haldir.

"Good night." the Lothlórien march warden leaned on her side and his eyes glazed over in elven sleep.

Luin curled more around the elves just to keep them safe and to hide them and she slowly fell in to her light sleep with ears up to hear the approach of the dangers.

The next day the elves woke up at dawn just look in to the joyful blue eyes of the feline.

Good morning. She smiled.

"Good morning." they said in unison.

How was your sleep? The feline asked.

"Good." Haldir answered. "I never slept like this. Surrounded by a giant feline." and he rose up.

Luin laughed. That was just Legolas' privilege.

"Aye it was." Legolas smiled and rose.

Luin was patiently waiting until the two elves rose up from her and she also stood up. She stretched her body and shook to get rid of the water drops resting on her long fur.

"Hey Luin, your storm did not cam yesterday." Legolas smiled at the feline during their breakfast.

I know but, it still coming I can feel it and smell it. The feline smiled.

"So when you are done let pack out things and lets go." Haldir smiled, stood up and placed one hand on Legolas' shoulder and other on Luins'.

You are right lets' go. The feline agreed.

They packed everything they had out and placed them to their packs on the stallions.

Haldir mounted Ulios, Legolas Ninim and Luin stood beside them. They looked up at the mountain path and walked slowly along it.

The rocks were scratching under the hooves of the stallions. Even Luin had to extend her claws not to slip on the unsteady rocks.

When the night came the three travelers did not reach the top of the High Pass and made camp under a small ledge. The two elves prepared everything what was needed, while the feline went hunting and also scouting. She was lucky. The feline was able to catch three mountain birds, from which she ate two and one brought to her friends.

"You were lucky, Luin." Legolas smiled and patted the feline. "Great job."

Hannon le. They are good. The feline said and blushed a little.

"So we will have roasted bird meat along with lembas." the blond haired elf smiled.

After dinner both of the elves curled to the side of the feline as the cruel wind picked up speed and was blowing right through the two of them. Legolas was shivering from the harsh cold wind. He was a bit smaller than other elves in his age. And still, it was spring, the weather could be cold at night in the mountains.

An hour passed when it started raining and a thunder storm begun.

Luin woke up at a start and jumped to her feet, her fur standing up, leaving the who elves fall to the hard stone floor, as one lightning struck the mountain high above them and rocks started rolling down the mountainside.

"We have to find a hiding place from this storm and the falling stones!" Haldir yelled.

Grab your things and follow me! I saw a cave big enough to hide us and the horses from the storm! Luin yelled and grabbed their blankets to her mouth as another lightning struck followed by thunder.

Haldir and Legolas took their bedrolls, seized the bridles of their stallions and followed the feline.

They started running up the hill when another lightning struck just a few meters above them.

The wave and the electric shock threw them to the ground.

Luin felt a bit dizzy. She heard someone calling her name but, the voice sounded worried and panicked, but it was just too muffled. When she opened her eyes her vision was fuzzy and her ears were ringing. She looked up and saw two figures were looming above her. Another lightning struck further away from them and she recognized the two persons. It was her 'brother' Legolas and Haldir.

The feline carefully stood up on her wobbly legs, shook her head to clear her vision and headed the way where the cave was.

The three friends entered the cave followed by the stallions. They all were drenched from the rain and they all were shivering.

Luin stepped away from the elves and shook the water out of her fur.

Haldir managed to save some wood and started a fire.

The two elves took out their spare clothes, changed to them and then they and the feline huddled close to each other near the fire to obtain some warmth from each other and the fire. Haldir and Legolas were also wrapped in their blankets.

"Are you all right Luin?" Legolas worriedly asked and placed his hand on the felines head.

I am okay. Just I hate thunder storms. She answered. And the two elves saw fear in the felines' eyes.

"You were almost struck by a lightning. You should be glad that you live. And I do not blame you. I do not like them either." Haldir said.

"Hey I do not like them either. You do not have to be afraid. We are here with you." Legolas reassuringly said and hugged the feline.

The weary travelers were half asleep when Legolas spoke.

"Luin you were right."

In what Legolas? The great feline asked.

"There was a storm coming." the young prince smiled.

I know I was. The feline retuned the smile and curled to a ball hiding and warming the two elves.

Soon after this the three friends fallen asleep and were watched by Ulios, Ninim and the robin family, which was now huddled in Ulios' long and warm mane.

Dawn came quicker than they realized. Legolas woke first and gently shook Haldirs' shoulder.

Haldirs' eyes focused and he looked at the young prince.

Legolas pointed at Luin, who was still sleeping. They carefully stood up, not to jostle the feline to wake.

The two elves walked to the entrance of the cave and looked out.

Outside it stopped raining and also the storm was gone and the sky was clear.

"I am worried about Luin, Haldir." the young elf prince looked at his friend and his face fell.

"Worry not she will be okay." Haldir said and a reassuring smile appeared on his face.

"But did not you felt it during the night? She was shaking."

"I felt that she was shaking Legolas. It must be just the shock. She will get better." and Haldir placed his hand on Legolas' shoulder. And they both looked at the sleeping feline.

"Let us go and prepare something for breakfast." Haldir smiled at the young prince.

When everything was prepared Legolas and Haldir walked to the great feline and both gently stroked her.

"Wake up Luin. We have to prepare for the upcoming journey." Legolas whispered to Luins' ear.

"Also we prepared something for us to eat." Haldir smiled.

Luins' ear flickered. She slowly opened he tired eyes and she looked around. She saw a bright light entering from the mouth of the cave. She quickly stood up.

You should waken me up earlier. She frantically said and looked at the two elves. We need to be moving.

"Ohh Luin. Just breathe. We will reach Imladris in due time." Legolas smiled at the feline.

"Aye Luin. Legolas is right. We shall reach Rivendell in a day or two." Haldir reassured her.

But you should not let me sleep so long.

"Worry not mellon nin. It was just half an hour." Legolas softly said.

I thought it was more. I just thought that we all overslept. She also smiled at them and licked Legolas' face.

"Hahaha. Luin stop! It tickles!" Legolas laughed. "We let you sleep a little longer because of last night. You know the thunder storm and the lightning." The young prince said.

Oh that. I forgot not about that. And Luin felt ashamed about that.

"If you are done we can have our breakfast now and continue our journey over the Misty Mountains and head for Rivendell." Haldir said and a playful smile appeared on his face.

Haldir and Legolas had their breakfast but Luin, she refused to eat something because her stomach felt queasy. Legolas was worried about her but Haldir told him to leave her be. That it is the result of the late night shock from the lightning and that she knows best what is best for her.

The two elves packed everything and Legolas checked Luins' packs if they are not loose and if they were he, with the help of Haldir, retied them. Then they led the horses out of the cave and mounted them.

"Ready to go?" Haldir asked.

"Aye." came the answer from the great feline and the young elven prince.

I hope we do not get to any more trouble. Luin sighed.

"Worry not mellon nin." the Mirkwood prince and Lothlórien march warden laughed.

And the three friends took off.

It did not take them so long to reach the other side of the mountains because in the night they got almost to the highest point of High Pass. After a half day they reached the border of the forest, which was surrounding Rivendell valley.

After half an hour Luin spoke. There is a change of power around here.

"What? What power?" Legolas quizzically asked.

"Aye Luin. What power? I can not feel anything." Haldir said.

A new territory starts here. You see there was a warg territory before.

"I see. And that is a good thing. Is it not?"Legolas asked.

It can be but also it does not have to be a good thing.

"Why not." it was Haldirs' time to ask.

There is a wolf territory now. I can smell it. But I do not know if they are friendly.

"Are not the wolves banded with wargs?" Haldir asked.

Not all these creatures fell to the shadows and not all wolves are supports of the Dark Lord. And these are surly not comrades with the wargs.

"How do you know?" the young prince asked.

There is just a little scent left by the wargs but, there can still be many left. We must be cautious.

"Aye lets go but keep your guard up." Legolas said.

As they got nearer to Rivendell but, still not close enough they felt something. A shadow around them.

"Can you two feel it?" Legolas asked.

"Aye. I surly can." Haldir said with lowered voice.

Luin raised her head and sniffed the air. Wargs. She angrily growled. You two must hide in the trees and shoot them with your bows and arrows. I will fight them on the ground.

"No you can not fight them alone!" Legolas almost shouted.

Aye I can.

"Stop arguing you two. If you do not wish to go to the tree we will stay on the ground and fight here."Haldir ordered and the feline and the young elf immediately stopped. Haldir then turned to Luin. "Do you know how many are there?" he asked.

I know not but, I think there are many.

The two elves jumped off their stallions and sent them away. They took their bows and both notched an arrow to the string.

Luins' fur stood up, she extended her claws and stood in position ready to attack.

Here they come. The bluish feline said and a dozen wargs burst out from behind the trees growling at them.

Luin with a fearsome roar jumped at the nearest warg, tackling it, while Legolas and Haldir fired arrow after arrow. Everyone hit their mark, in many places in wargs' bodies.

When there were just three wargs left, ten more wargs came from other directions closer to the elves, forcing them to change their weapons from their bows to close range weapons, Legolas his long twin knives and Haldir his elven sword.

Luin was just standing her ground not too far away from the fighting elves, fighting with two large wargs. Lashing the wargs with her clawed paws, growling, hissing and furiously biting the foul beasts.

Suddenly out of nowhere Haldir cried out.

"Legolas watch out!" Haldir shouted but, it was too late.

A big warg jumped out from behind a bush and sunk his teeth into Legolas' left arm.

Legolas cried out from pain and surprise and dropped one of his twin knives.

Luin heard the pained cry of her 'brother' and turned. What she saw shocked her and also angered her. Without hesitation she jumped with a loud roar on the foul beast and sunk her fangs to the back of a neck of the dark creature.

The warg immediately released the young princes' arm and squeaked in pain.

Another big warg jumped on the feline, one paw headed on Luins' head, and scratched her right under her right ear.

Luin yelped as the warg sunk his teeth to her neck not letting go. She was trashing wildly to throw the foul beast of her but, it was no use, and the foul beasts' grip was strong.

Legolas grabbed his fallen knife, hurried to the struggling feline and plunged it deep in the wargs' ribs.

Luin felt the beast jerk and it released her. In the corner of her sight she saw her 'elven brother' and she thanked him with a smile.

She saw shadow moving on her other side. The great feline turned her head and saw another warg charging on her and Legolas. With one swing of her giant front paw she threw the dark beast to a tree away from them. Luin looked around the battlefield, which was littered with corpses of dead wargs, and not far away she saw Haldir fighting another warg, and more foul beasts were coming.

She urged Legolas to back away to Haldirs' direction.

When they reach him Haldir said.

"There are too many of them to fight. We must flee."

"We know but how our horses are hidden and we can not call them or they get hurt." Legolas said and even with his injured arm he managed to slit another beasts' neck.

You can go on me. Luin said out of breath as she grabbed one smaller warg by its' neck and threw it to a tree.

"We can not. You will tire quickly. Even now you are tired as we are!" Legolas exclaimed.

And what do you suggest to do now? The feline asked.

"I know not." Legolas sadly said.

"We can hide in the trees." Haldir said.

"But what about Luin? We can not leave her here!" Legolas shockingly said.

The two elves and the giant feline were slowly backing away until they have reached the tree.

Go up I will be safe. The feline said.

"No! We will not leave you!" Legolas and Haldir exclaimed.

You must! Luin shouted and threw away another warg to another charging beast.

"But…" Legolas was cut by a howl.

All ate wargs stopped in their tracks as more howls pierced the air. They sniffed the air and looked at each other, terrifying look appeared in their eyes as the howling continued.

The elves used this opportunity to kill some more wargs and the remaining foul beasts turned around and flee to the forest.

Not long after the last warg disappeared behind the trees, lot of wolves ran past the three friends.

One of the wolves stopped and looked at the strangers. It had silky black fur, but his front left paw was white and also the tip of his tail was white. It was watching the three beings, which invaded his territory, with hazel brown eyes and after a while he ran after his pack and the foul beasts.

"What was that about?" Haldir asked.

I know now but we can not linger here. The great snow leopard looked at Legolas. Legolas you are injured! Luin exclaimed. The feline totally forgot about Legolas' arm which was bleeding. We must take care of that wound.

"Oh it is nothing Luin. It can wait. But you are also injured." the young elf protested and pointed at the bleeding wound under her right ear.

It is not nothing Legolas. And about my injury that is nothing. The feline protested.

"Legolas in one thing Luin is right. We must take care of you wound." Haldir said.

"And the other thing?" Legolas asked.

"The other thing Luin is not right." the proud Lothlórien warrior said.

And that would be? The feline asked.

"Your wound is also not nothing. We must clean it or it becomes infected and you will be in trouble." Haldir answered the bluish feline.

You are right Haldir. As usual. The great feline hung her head. We can clean my, Legolas' and also your wound but, not here. Just a little further away from here. Luin said and looked at the dead bodies of the foul beasts.

"Where do you want to go Luin?" Legolas asked.

Luin lowered her body to the ground. Climb on my back and I carry you somewhere.

"But Luin." Legolas started.

No buts and climb on me. Luin mildly growled.

Legolas and Haldir obeyed the feline and climbed up.

The great feline rose up, she sniffed the air and took off.

The three friends were running for a while when Luin stopped under a willow tree near a little pond where lion and Ninim were waiting.

"You knew where they were!" Legolas and Haldir exclaimed.

I have smelled them. I am a hunter after all. The great cat smiled and lowered her body, to help her friends get of her.

Haldir dismounted the great feline, turned around and opened one of the packs strapped on Luins' back. He took out some herbs and bandages, and also some clean clothes.

"Now let me see your injuries." Haldir firmly said.

Luin laid herself on the ground under the great tree allowing Legolas to lean on her side. Haldir lowered himself besides Legolas and took his injured hand. He took one clean cloth and pressed it on Legolas' still bleeding arm. Then he took some herbs and chewed them. After that he peeled the cloth a little from Legolas' arm and put the herbs on the wound.

Legolas bit his lip not to cry out and show any weakness, as Haldir pressed the herbs to his wound.

Haldir then wrapped his arm in clean bandages and tried to clean Luins' wound under her ear but she waved him away to clean his wound and that her is not as serious as his.

The march warden of Lórien hung his shoulders and sat next to the feline and resting Legolas. Luin was watching Haldir tending his wound and when he was done she allowed him to treat her own injury.

Can we go now? Luin asked and rose up. From the ground

"Aye we are." both elves nodded and also stood up.

Haldir put the remaining herbs, bandages and clothes to Luins' bags and helped Legolas mount Ninim. Legolas was protesting that he did not need help but in the end he submitted and accepted help. After that Haldir mounted Ulios and headed their original direction towards Rivendell.

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