Don't Shoot The Messenger


Don't Shoot The Messenger

Joined: 24 Jun 2014, 02:33

20 Nov 2014, 10:16 #1

Failure suited her poorly, even when not her own. Very little managed to unsettle the lieutenant, but Marillel would prefer being anywhere but this unwelcoming city. Adding to the oppression of waiting for rejection was the fact she outright cared little for Menegroth and less for its inhabitants. That they should seclude themselves while the world burned around them left a bitter taste in her mouth. Were they so haughty as to think they would not ultimately be touched by the shadow? Or were they simply ignorant? Either attribute gave little reason for her to find commonality with the Grey Elves who never knew the Light of the Trees that had illuminated her long passed youth.

Soft but troubled footsteps scuffed at the stable floor as she attempted to pace away her troubles to little avail. Thingol would not give them aid. She knew it to the depths of her core even though no final word had been given. For all her devotion to her liege, Fingon’s efforts were wasted here. The High King did not make the journey himself, of course, but had sent an emissary group of which she’d been so unfortunately drafted. Fortunately, the entirety of her role while within Doriath required an ample amount of silence. Ensuring that the actual ambassadors, the elves Fingon sent far better with words than she, reached the protected city constituted her primary concern. Getting them home was her next obligation, but until then, the current situation forced her into waiting for the inevitable. She’d rather be on the edge of battle – without Thingol’s army – than waiting for the coward king to cast them out like mangy cur dogs. Melian’s attempts at maintaining some civility could only last so long, and it was a brittle peace at best.

Rather than pretending to be some sociable creature with the Sindar, false pretenses abound on this adventure, Marillel stuck to overseeing the horses of her party. Not that any of these Sindar stablehands would know, but she’d managed to establish a good deal of renown for her horsestock, of which composed the majority of the Noldor mounts. They were better horses than any other stabled at present. In her opinion at least, and her opinion on horses rarely faltered. But perhaps there was some dormant bias (indeed there was) and lingering insult at the mild uproar their arrival had caused. Messengers they were, and it was a sacred act to welcome bringers of news but no that damnable girdle kept them out, begging to be let in like one of her brother’s cats on a cold night. They had been let in –eventually and after being stripped of any and all weaponry much to her vexation – but the message was clear enough: they were far from welcome.

Just how long they would be permitted to linger in Doriath remained unknown, but Marillel hoped for a brief stay even though it was supposedly an honor (so described by the lead ambassador) that any Noldor should be allowed within its boundaries. A good sign, as well so they said, but Marillel knew better. Those had just been hopeful words, ultimately wasted ones, but such was the nature of orators she supposed, wordsmiths in their method of political seduction. Marillel did not have the patience for such back-and-forth or the desire to bring others to her point of view. Having Doriath’s armies would be a blessing, but it was as likely as Erestor giving up wine, and the world might end before that came to pass.

Despite wearing an expression to rival the calm of a statue, Marillel felt the edges of her patience beginning to fray. The hand that tightly gripped the thick braid tossed over her shoulder held it with a white knuckled intensity. Her blue roan mount tossed his head in agitation, sensing his rider’s distress, and in the next moment, she glided to comfort him, tenderly stroking his muzzle and whispering sweet nothings in Quenya. To the best of her knowledge, she was alone in the stables so what harm could cooing the banned language to the horse bring, but admittedly, she might have done so anyway out of sheer spiteful pride.
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Joined: 16 Nov 2014, 23:00

23 Nov 2014, 15:11 #2

It hadn't been long before everyone living in Doriath had heard the news about Fingon's messengers coming to their homeland. There was much speculation among them whether or not King Thingol would even allow them inside his realm. Thranduil never once doubted that he would. It was the Sons of Fëanor who were the only Elves who would never be allowed to set foot in Doriath and rightly so but, as any good king should, Thranduil knew that Thingol would listen to the words of Fingon's messengers.

Would he offer whatever help that the messengers asked of him? Just as sure as Thranduil had been that King Thingol would let them in, he was just as sure that he would graciously say no to whatever Fingon wanted of him. Melian protected them in his realm, kept the evil at bay, why should he risk the lives of those he ruled for what some might deem to be a hopeless battle? And Thranduil was still not sure how to feel about that. On the one hand, he could respect a ruler wanting to keep his people safe from all harm; on the other hand, they lived in this world and, as such, was it not their duty to help protect it with the others who lived in it with them?

But Thranduil was only four hundred years old, a few centuries past maturity for his kind but still very young in mind. No one, lest of all King Thingol, would care to listen to what he had to say. The King would do what he wished to do. The only one who might be able to sway his mind one way or the other would be Melian, and she was not likely to disagree with her husband. So the outcome was already decided and most seemed to know that. Yet, Fingon's messengers would linger until they were sure that Thingol was not going to miraculously change his mind.

While they continued their game that could end only one way, Thranduil found himself walking towards the stables. Not often did the Elves of Doriath wander past the Girdle of Melian, usually only in hunting parties, but Thranduil was still young enough to be unafraid of what might happen to him every time he ventured outside of Doriath's protected borders. He had yet to encounter anything other than small groups of orcs that were no match for him.

When he stepped inside, he heard a female's voice whispering in a forbidden language. Along with the messengers had come many to protect them on the dangerous journey. Any other Elf might have had no second thoughts about dragging her before the King for her offense but Thranduil stood still, listening to the language that was quite foreign to him. It was beautiful and a shame that such beauty had to be banned because of one bad group of people.

Deciding that it would be rude of him to linger there silently, Thranduil took a few more steps forward to the point where the Elf-maiden could not help but notice his presence. "You should not be speaking that tongue here," he said, not in a threatening manner but as if he was merely stating a simple fact of life, "but it can be our secret." No one else was anywhere near the stables, everyone being gathered together anxiously awaiting news of their King's decision. The fact that the two of them were the only ones here could only mean they were the only two who were not fooling themselves that Thingol would choose anything other than to remain safely behind the Girdle. "I am Thranduil," he introduced himself.
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Joined: 24 Jun 2014, 02:33

28 Nov 2014, 11:00 #3

One of these days, Marillel might just get it through her thick skull not to be muttering inappropriate things aloud. Not when it might insult royalty or go against the laws they’d established. However, she’d proven fairly stubborn so that day might come for a long, long while. At the sounding of the warning, Marillel tensed a fraction of a hair, unused to and incredibly unhappy at being caught off guard. Thin lips pursed ever so slightly in a show of her displeasure, but her expression quickly smoothed over in a mask of practiced composure.

“Forgive me, my horse does not speak Sindarin…” She spat back with more of an edge than a wiser Elf would use in such attention, her attention still on the stallion. A heavy sigh followed – the last thing this mission needed was a high-ranking officer being imprisoned for breaking a relatively easy law to follow. Worse than the repercussions that would come from her higher ups, Marillel feared her brother’s response at such a digression. It would not be pleasant. Thinking of her sibling, she spared a moment to hope he didn’t acquire any more cats during her trip. Without question, there’d at least be one more, but if there was any mercy in this world, it would not be pregnant. They had too many cats already. Perhaps that was one thing about Menegroth she didn’t dislike – there did not seem to be too many cats about shedding on everything.

As for having a secret with a Sinda, Marillel supposed it could be abided by for now. It was far better than the alternative. Finally shoving away her pride (no easy task) and turning to face Thranduil, she offered a surprisingly respectful dip of the head in thanks. “I do appreciate your understanding,” A thick accent muddled her pronunciation of the Sindarin words, even after four hundred years of learning the language she could not shake the Quenya lilt. Admittedly, she had no desire to do so, which no doubt fed the issue. “First Lieutenant Marillel Erëasariel,” While taking a Sindarian name became a popular among many of the Noldor that crossed the Ice, Marillel clung fiercely to her given monikers. They were the last she had of her parents, the mother and father names gifted to her at birth, and she would not be parted from them for any reason. Of course, her stance on the matter would change in time, but she could not know that now.

“Marillel will suffice,” She added as an after thought, again sharper than necessary. This entire situation had put her on edge, and a slight nagging feeling of guilt chided her for being so curt. Another sigh. Another stolen glance at her horse who affectionately lipped at her hand, acting more a curious foal than a ware house at present. “This is Luinësarta. You will probably find him far more pleasant company than you will me.” A smirk tugged at the corner of her lips at the jest grounded in honesty, pale blue eyes sliding away from her horse and back to Thranduil. There was something distinctly regal about him, beneath the cloak of youth – she assumed both a product of actual age and life within the safe boundaries of Melian’s Girdle. However, if Thranduil was of relation to Thingol, he most likely would not be here while Fingon’s ambassadors’ begged for aid. A strange thing indeed that he was in the stables and not in the meeting halls, to the best of her knowledge it had been made somewhat public, and most residents awaited the final word (Eru knew how long that would take, days, weeks, Thingol seemed to be enjoying this game). But not him. And why was this? And why did his eyebrows not match his hair coloring? That was odd, indeed. It seemed there were many odd things about this Sinda, and she was intrigued enough not to simply dismiss herself to escape his company.

“You are not interested in hearing your king’s decision first hand?” She addressed the issue without further adieu, watching him with a hawk’s focus.
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Joined: 16 Nov 2014, 23:00

02 Dec 2014, 04:00 #4

With youth came innocence. Thranduil knew as well as any other Elf what Fëanor, his sons, and many of his followers had done and what the latter two groups would continue to do in the years to come. But that could not mean that every Noldor needed to be shunned. There were many who had not participated in any kinslaying and many more whose only goal was to help overthrow Morgoth. Just because of the actions of a handful of the Noldor, the others did not need to suffer because of it. The older Elves of Doriath would think those thoughts foolish but Thranduil saw no reason why they should not establish an alliance with the Noldor.

While Thranduil did not hold any particular ill feelings towards Fingon's messengers and those protectors that had come with them, it appeared that the same could not be said of this Elf-maiden. The Sindar had done nothing to her and her people, which was the problem here. While her and her kind were busy fighting against all of the evil in the world, the Sindar were sitting safely behind their Queen's girdle, feasting and not having any cares in the world. It was unfair but wasn't that how the world liked to work most of the time?

He might have left if she hadn't offered him a thanks of some sorts. She was lucky that it had been Thranduil who had caught her. No one else living in Doriath would have been half as understanding as he was. Most of his kinsmen seemed to believe that their King and Queen could do no wrong. Not many dared question any of their decisions. As far as Thranduil was concerned, though, there was no point in outlawing such a beautiful language when one was hard pressed to find beauty in the world today.

Thranduil managed a small chuckle at her jest. "Perhaps," he readily agreed, "but I will bear your company as best as I may, Marillel." Anything was better than sitting through the farce that was going on right now. Why did so many wish to delude themselves into believing that King Thingol might finally decide that now was the time to help the Noldor? Thranduil did not need to be there to see their disappointment (or, in some cases, relief). He would rather spend his time with a Noldo Elf-maiden, even if she was currently being far from pleasant company.

He had been wondering when that question would come up. "Why would I be when I already know what his decision will be? Is that not why you are also here?" Everything King Thingol was doing was just a show. As soon as he had heard that Fingon was sending messengers to him, the King's decision had been made. All of the time he was taking to announce that decision out loud was only him making it appear as if he had taken the time to carefully consider all that Fingon's messengers had had to say to him. It was all a farce that had gone on for too long now. At least it would all be over soon.
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