May 18, 2021 4:20 AM
lay of leithian, or, why decima is no longer allowed to propose thread ideas while manic
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"If that's what it takes."

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"It'd be practically useful, too. At least somewhat."

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"Less so as we get further south."

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"We might have to just seize opportunities when we see them."

...She is quite tempted to do a mass murder run if she ends up stuck repeating a section for several dozen loops and needs a break like sometimes happens. Dark Lady Luthien...

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Small shiver.

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She laughs, pleased, and continues working.

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They get everything ready by the time Finrod and the released prisoners catch up to them. Mygwainor ranges ahead with Luthien a lot, scouting and taking whatever opportunities they can go be absolute terrors to the local orcs.

The Isle of Werewolves is ominously quiet as they pass, and Mygwainor gets a distant look once they're through, mentally nudging the tangle around Angband - the edges of her claim extending even here - to give Sauron rights over it, her simulacrum to let Sauron take more political power within Angband.

The road splits not long after. Finrod will by necessity continue on with the released prisoners into his territory; Mygwainor and Luthien can accompany him, or take the Silmaril and head straight to Doriath's nearest border. 

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They'll be continuing on.

Luthien is ready to be done with this Quest.

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Mygwainor is too.

They get the Silmaril secured in Luthien's pack, say goodbye to Finrod and Serendipitous Kill and the people they rescued, and then -

To Doriath.

It's a good hike, though shorter than the distance they've crossed since Angband, and faster since they're moving alone in more hospitable lands. It's getting to early winter, the cold bite of the wind threatening snow, by the time they reach the border. 

The guards seem rather surprised and relieved to see Luthien.

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She was always coming back.

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They're very glad to have her back! 

One splits off to offer them an escort back to Menegroth, informing them in low tones than King Thingol has been in a mood. 

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Somehow that's not very surprising. Perhaps she can cheer him up.

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He'll certainly be gladdened that she's safe.

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They had best make haste, then.

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The guard nods.

Onward, then, moving swiftly through the forests of Doriath until they reach the gates - and from there to the throne room, as court is in session right now. 

Thingol appears wan, stressed, and he rises from his throne in a sharp motion when Luthien is announced. "My daughter," he says, voice tight. "You are returned to me."

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She does not bow. "We have, Father."

She takes the still-wrapped Silmaril from an inside pocket.

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"You asked that I retrieve a Silmaril, if you were to bless our union. We have, my Lord, though the journey was long."

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He - and the rest of the court - is clearly shocked at that. "...A mighty accomplishment," he says after a long moment. 

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She pulls the cloth away to let the gem sparkle.

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It catches his gaze. 

"I am glad you came through uninjured," he says at length, then dismisses his court and gestures to a side withdrawing room. "Come, tell me of your journey."

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She covers the Silmaril back up and goes to join him in the room.

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Mygwainor sits by Luthien and gives a - fairly inaccurate, but not provably so - account of their quest, praising Luthien often throughout. 

(Notably, she leaves off everything related to her identity, including the deal they struck with Sauron - instead claiming they snuck past him.)

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Thingol listens with a troubled expression. 

Then, to Luthien: "I was made aware that I have been... Remiss, in much of my behavior to you, and that I brought you harm. I... apologize."

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Wonder if that was the guards or Mother.

"Thank you, Father. I accept your apology."

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