Chapter 1: Enter the Prince
Alright, so this story is a little bit different. It started as a slash idea of a friend of mine, but since I am not particularly into writing slash, I modified the story line to my liking. Anyway, in this story Legolas uses something akin to sign language to communicate. The story behind it is that he created the language himself, and few people actually know it. Now I know some readers aren't going to be particularly happy about this liberty, but I hope that you all are able to enjoy my story anyway. You know that I always love your reviews!
*The text in italics is essentially what the signing would be if it were being said out loud.
Four hobbits and a man stood peacefully upon on of the balconies of Rivendell. The sun warmed their skin and provided a security which had been missing from all of their lives recently. The group was standing in their current position in order to watch the comings and goings of the elves within Rivendell. However, today the Hidden Valley was receiving special guests, and the hobbits wanted to see and learn about the visitors before the counsel they knew was coming. To do this effectively, the recruited the ranger for information.
"Who are they Strider?"
The ranger smiled and pointed to the group of men, who were currently galloping in through the gates of Rivendell. They quickly slowed their steeds and dismounted, congregating into a tight circle as they whispered to each other.
"They are the representatives from Gondor, Pippin. Do you see the man with the shield over his shoulder?"
The hobbit looked up to Aragorn as he waited for the man to elaborate.
"Well, he is the son of Denethor, who is the steward of Gondor. His name is Boromir."
Pippin nodded with a sense of thoughtfulness, before turning his attention back to the receiving courtyard of the hidden valley. The short being was leaning up against the railing in an attempt to see what was going on down below with a clearer view.
By now the group of men had moved inside, escorted by Lord Elrond, so the courtyard was once again empty. Bored by even the minor lull in events, Pippin sighed and rested his chin upon the top of the rail. He spared a quick glance to his kin at his left, and seeing that they were busy conversing with each other, he turned to the man instead.
The man looked down upon the hobbit and quirked an eyebrow.
"Yes master hobbit?"
"Is anyone else coming, or are the dwarves and men the only ones?"
Aragorn chuckled lightly and shook his head.
"Nay Pippin, there are others, albeit only one more group. They should be arriving any minute now in fact, for their journey was the most treacherous of all."
This peaked the young hobbit's interest. His eyes widened slightly and he raised his head a little bit.
"Really? Who are they?"
"They are elves, from Mirkwood. It should only be a small battalion, maybe three or four soldiers. They had to travel over the passes of Carahdras, which can be particularly treacherous this time of year. Not to mention the fact that the forest they call home has become infested with danger. The wood-elves have suffered much in recent years."
The ranger gained a certain far off look, as he released a saddened sigh. Confused by the man's sudden change in demeanor, the hobbit voiced a question.
"Do you know any of the elves personally Strider? You seem to know a lot about them."
Aragorn nodded slowly as a small smile danced over his features.
"I do know a few of them on a rather personal level. In fact I consider myself a very close friend of one in particular. I have known him since I was a mere child and we have been through many trails together. Unfortunately, he has been on the receiving end of a good many of said troubles. I say with a heavy heart that some of them have brought much grief upon him."
Suddenly the man scoffed and pointed out into the distance.
"And what do you know, here he comes now."
The hobbit turned to look at what the ranger was gesturing to, and his expression turned to one of wonder as he watched the golden haired elf riding fiercely at the front of his three elven soldiers. The grouping followed a behavioral pattern to that of the men—dismounting swiftly and forming a tight grouping—but instead of anxiously looking about them, the elves seemed completely at home in the Hidden Valley.
"Those are the elves from Mirkwood?" Pippin inquired quietly.
The man flashed the hobbits a smile and gripped Pippin's shoulder, gently pulling him towards the stairs which led to the main courtyard.
"Come my friends, there is someone I would very much like you to meet."
With that Aragorn pulled Pippin, who dragged Merry and Frodo, who grabbed Sam, down to greet the arriving elven company. After their two minute journey, the five beings entered the courtyard and approached the elves. When they were about ten feet away, Aragorn called out to one of the elves, who turned around sharply at the noise.
The hobbits watched as the blonde haired elf smiled broadly and quickly turned back to his soldiers. The four couldn't be entirely sure, but the being seemed to be making hurried hand gestures to the others. The group of elves nodded and stood patiently as the blonde made a move towards Aragorn.
As the being approached Aragorn's smile grew and he called out again.
"Legolas, mellon-nin! It has truly been much too long since I have seen you. How have things been for you gwador-nin?" (my friend; my brother)
This was where things became strange for the four halflings. Instead of replying to the man's question as they thought he would, the elf smiled and made a string of rapid gestures with his hands. Their confusion only grew when the ranger laughed as if he understood the soldier.
It was then that Merry stepped forward, hoping to gain some clarity on the situation.
"Uh excuse me Strider, but I believe that you have forgotten to introduce us."
The man chuckled and moved to stand beside the elf.
"Ah, you are right Merry, my apologies. This is Prince Legolas Greenleaf of Mirkwood."
Once again the elf made one or two gestures and rolled his eyes. Honestly Estel, is the title necessary? Aragorn shrugged and lightly cuffed Legolas on the shoulder.
"My apologies, but they were going to figure it out sooner or later."
The prince cocked his head to the side and began with the signs again. Very well, but could you please tell them they need not use it. To them I would prefer to be known as just Legolas. Aragorn nodded and turned back to the hobbits.
"He would like for you to know that to you he is just Legolas. He hates titles."
Merry, Pippin, Sam, and Frodo all nodded, but then they fell silent. None of them were entirely sure what to do about the communication issue which had arisen. Sensing the awkwardness, Legolas smiled at the short beings and dipped his head. When he straightened, he tapped Aragorn on the shoulder and pointed towards the hobbits. The man immediately got the message and looked towards the hobbits.
"Please forgive me, I have been blinded by the joy of seeing Legolas again. We haven't been together for far too many years. You all must be rather confused by this point with the way that Legolas communicates."
The group nodded in a signal to continue on.
"Well, you see Legolas doesn't speak, he can't…"
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