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CHAPTER I
The Meeting

A long time ago when Legolas of Mirkwood was young he often attended the grand balls and parties of Rivendell. As a young child he would often get together with his companions and practice archery. On one such occasion the fifteen year old Legolas was joined by a young elven girl of about the same age. She was quite strange because unlike a valley elf with brown hair or forest elf with blonde hair, she had light brown with blonde streaks. And unlike all elves, she had striking green eyes instead of brown. Her name was Arinya Fleetbough. Her mother was of Lothlorien and hr father of Rivendell. She was unknown to the young male elves because on such occasions of parties and gatherings she was often found in the company of Arwen Undomiel, Evenstar of her people. Arinya often found Arwen's endless talk of how handsome some of the Men were and especially the one called Aragorn tiresome.

Arinya was a pretty fair shot with a longbow so the decided to try her skill against the boys. They were just warming up when Arinya walked over to Legolas' friend Parlan Surefire and asked if she could try her luck against the best. Parlan directed her to Legolas and told her to ask the best if she could compete. Legolas looked up and found himself looking into the eyes of an extremely beautiful elven girl. She asked him if she might try to shoot against him. Legolas stammered a yes. He got up, retrieved his bow and quiver from Parlan and fitted and arrow to his bowstring. He sighted against the shaft and let it fly. Gasps from Arinya and a cheer from Parlan and his gang announced his success. He looked to see his arrow embedded in the very center of the target. He smiled triumphantly at Arinya, who gave him a mocking glance. She walked up to the line. She dealt the tree next to her a savage kick as the sighted along the shaft. As soon as a leaf fell in range. She let her arrow fly. She looked and saw what she wanted. The shaft had passed through the center of leaf and was stuck to the center of the target. "Whoa!" both Parlan and Legolas exclaimed. Whispers flew around the group of young elves gathered around. Not to be outdone Legolas lay down on the ground and sighted up towards the target. He pulled the bowstring back and let go. The arrow passed through the hole in the center of one of the wild lemban flowers, which lembas, the elves waybread, comes from. He retrieved the arrow and handed it to Arinya for examination. She looked admiringly at the flower for a second before she put it behind her ear. She stepped up to the line and aimed up into the flowers of the orchid tree above her. She let go of the string and the arrow sailed up and came down with a graceful arc. It landed in the center of the target with six wild orchid flowers on its shaft. She gave the arrow to Legolas for examination. He had run put of ideas. He whispered to Parlan and went back to his spot as Parlan took an apple from the buffet table. Parlan threw the fruit up into the air as Legolas fired. Too late! The apple fell to the ground as the arrow sped off into the forest. Arinya approached a crestfallen Legolas and placed her hand on his shoulder. She looked into his brown eyes with her green ones and said softly,"I believe I have won." He looked back into her eyes and a strange feeling swept over him. A strange pain around his heart stung at him from inside. He did not know it yet, but from that moment on he was in love with the beautiful young elf by the name of Arinya Fleetbough.

Parlan interrupted the awkward silence by asking Arinya if she would like to dance. She flushed a deep crimson and said yes. Legolas felt a sudden pang of jealousy as her eyes sparkled and her laughter filled his ears as Parlan swept her around in a lively reel. All of the young male elves were quite taken with the elven girl who could outshoot the best of them. On the last waltz she approached Legolas and asked if he would dance with her. He looked up surprised. He stammered yes and took her hand in his. Legolas loved the feeling of his heart as he led her around the floor in a graceful waltz. He felt content with his hand on her waist and her hand on his shoulder.

CHAPTER II
The Parting

The next day Legolas looked for Arinya but could not find her until he ran out to the main gates. Her caravan was getting ready to pull up, final good-byes being said. She sat alone looking around. When Arinya looked up and saw him approaching her, her bright face split into a grin. She motioned for him to sit down beside her.

"I have heard that you are not leaving with us to return to the woodlands. Is this true?"

"Yes," Legolas replied, "Elrond has heard rumor of a full scale orc invasion of the Shire and needs all available soldiers to stand by ready to fight to go on the defensive."

When Arinya heard that Legolas was to go fight the orcs, her bright green eyes welled up with tears. "Why must you go? What if I never see you again?!"

"I promise that I will come back." With those words he held her to him as she wept. His arms seemed to radiate comfort and she ceased her weeping.

She gave him a leather thong with a bright green stone hanging from the end of it. "This will help defend you from any attack. It is a sign of love that I give to you. Guard it well for me." And with that she kissed Legolas and ran from him with tears streaming from her eyes.

CHAPTER III
The Waiting

Almost one year later the orcs had not come. The army of elves was still camped out beyond the valley of Rivendell.

Arinya was still waiting for news of her love. She paced her room in Lorien. The stone had called to her. It was yelling out "danger danger nearby nearby" Suddenly a burning in her head told her that the orcs were attacking Legolas' camp.

A stream of curses from the commanding officer of Legolas' brigade told him there was danger, but there was also the glowing of his green stone that Arinya had given him. He threw on his jerkin on, grabbed his bow and quiver, and kissed Arinya's stone. He ran out of his tent to join the fray.

Three days later Arinya lay on her veranda crying her heart out. She felt loneliness and sorrow from the green stone. Word had come from Rivendell on the result of the battle; it had been won by the elves, but the result was disastrous. The elven army had many losses on their side. Still no word of Legolas. Arinya feared the worst.

Legolas lay on the battlefield comfroting a dying Parlan. Parlan had been hit three times in the heart by orc arrows and once in the head by a troll club. Legolas felt him slip away after a few minutes. The last thing Parlan said was,"Go return home to your charming young archer my friend." Parlan died with a smile upon his face at the thought of Arinya and his best friend Legolas. Legolas cradled his best friend's body as silent tears ran down his young face.

CHAPTER IV
Broken Hearts Are Healed

At the party in Rivendell the seventeen year-old Arinya was inconsolable. As she watched the happy couples dance around she missed Legolas twice as much. Arwen's Aragorn gave her a courtesy dance, but she felt so alone.

During the elven version of a square dance she forgot her troubles momentarily and she was swept around quickly, switching partners to and fro. For the last part of the song she found herselft in the arms of a young elf around her age wearing a mask. He swept her off to a corner. As they sat down and began to talk, Arinya was strongly reminded of Legolas. When the young elf said her had fought in the recent orc war she immediatly sprung the question she had asked many times."Do you know what happened to a young elf around my age named Legolas?"

The stranger replied,"Well..... I don't know how to say this but........." and with that he rmoved his mask.

"LEGOLAS!!!!!!!! Oh my love I have missed you! I was so worried!" She flung her arms around him and he held her close.

"Dearist Arinya. Your green stone kept me safe. But Parlan was not so lucky." Legolas bowed his head.

"No, not Parlan!" Arinya and Legolas shared a moment of silent remembrace of their good friend.

As they walked out to the floor to take part in a lively reel Legolas was greeted with hearty cheers. After the dance Legolas said, "Let us go practice our archery. You will not beat me this time!!"

"Wanna bet?" said Arinya with a sly smile. They gathered their bows and quivers and strode off hand in hand to the grove where they had competed in archery two long years ago.

CHAPTER V
Hearts Broken Again

As they readied their shafts Arinya asked,"Where is the target?"

Legolas answered with these sweet words,"Your arrows have already found the target, my heart." With that he held her close and placed her right hand over his heart. His kissed each of her eyelids and then his lips found her mouth. They both tasted delight. Neither noticed the evil lurking in the shadows before it was too late.

Arinya heard a dull thump and felt Legolas tense up. As she backed away she heard him wince and groan. As she looked over his shoulder she saw two things that set of her screams. One: an orc arrow seemed to grow from Legolas' shoulder. Two: twoscore orcs rushed through the clearing towards them, bows and swords at the ready. She then laid Legolas down and grabbed her bow and both their quivers. The last thing Legolas saw was his sweetheart standing in front of him firing gallanty into the ranks of orcs advancing on them, before he blacked out.

Legolas awoke to find the clearing littered with the bodies of twoscore dead orcs. He smiled ruefully, Arinya took no prisoners. He glanced around the clearing looking for her. Next to him lay a crumpled figure with four arrows sticking out of its back. It was wearing an elven gown. "No," he breathed. He turned the body over only to comfirm his worst fears. The body was that of his sweetheart Arinya Fleetbough. He began to weep.

A small voice spoke to him,"Hello my love." He turned and saw her with her eyes open.

"Arinya! You're alive! Thank God!"

"Not for long. Those arrows went straight through my heart."

"No, no. I'll get help. You'll be fine," Legolas said with tears streaming down his pale face.

"Legolas, please listen to me. I love you more than all the stars in the sky. I thought the orcs took you from me once and it almost destroyed me. They have taken you from me again and now my end has come."

With that Legolas felt her slip away. He kissed her forehead and lay weeping He suddenly felt an extrime weariness come over him and lay down to rest, still holding Arinya's lifeless body.

When he awoke he remebered what happened and a wave of fres tears ran from his eyes. He remembereed Arinya's green stone and went in search of it. He searched the entire clearing until he found it next to the body of a dead orc. It looked as if it was flung away in haste. He looked at it, and then realized that it had been broken. It was now in the shape of a green leaf. The sight of the stone seemed to give him new heart. The would in his shoulder was still wet with blood, but he ignored it. With great difficulty he reoved the arrows from Arinya's chest and picked up her lifeless form. He carried her back towards the ,main gardens of Rivendell, where he came upon Elrond and Arwen gravely sitting on a bench. When they heard Legolas coming they looked up with smiles, but then they saw Arinya's body. Arwen rushed to Legolas and looked at the dead elf.

"What happened?!" she asked

"I think we would all like to know that,"said Elrond.

"Ambushed by orcs....... shot me in shoulder....... Arinya fighting..............dead all......dead," he managed to get out before he collpased from the pain in his shoulder and from sorrow.

CHAPTER VI
Begin Again

When Legolas awoke he was in a soft bed with silk sheets. He wondered where he was until He saw the lifeless body of Arinya Fleetbough lying in a glass coffin. He began to weep silently, his head in his hands.

"Glad to see you're awake." Elrond stepped out of the corner.

"Oh Elrond. I didn't see you there. I must look silly, crying like a little child," said Legolas, drying his eyes.

"Even the bravest of us must weep. Your Arinya wept many times for you, yet she fought on. She died to save you. I don't think she would want to see you wasting the life she gave you by moping about with a frown on your face. She would have wanted you to stand up and protect those that need it."

"Thank you sir. What should I do with her stone?"

"The one shaped like a leaf? Well she would have wanted to have it. As a matter of fact," Elrond picked up the green leaf shaped stone from Legolas' bedside table and put it around his neck,"you need an elven name. Those who must show you respect shall now call you Legolas Greeleaf.

Two days later a full company of elves traveled to Lothlorien bearing the glass coffin of Arinya Fleetbough. Legolas rode on the right side and Arwen on the left. In Lothlorien a statue of an archery target with a bow and a quiver of arrows was set up and Arinya was buried at the base of it. After the ceremony Legolas planted a red rosebush over the site. He now wore the stone around his neck for all times. As the procession began towards Mirkwood to bear the sad tidings, Legolas Greenleaf marched in front his eyes dry. Inside he was weeping but he knew he must stand up and be brave, just like Arinya Fleetbough would have wanted him to be.

EPILOGUE

Legolas Greeleaf was never able to love again. He never cared so much about anyone again until he met Gimli son of Gloin Elf-friend. It was not the same caring. He never went back to Rivendell until the forming of the Fellowship of the Ring. Legolas felt he was fullfilling Arinya's gift of life by joining the fight to free Middle-earth. After he passed on into the west many ballads were composed of the ill fated passion of Legolas and Arinya. To this day he still wears the greenleaf stone around his neck and he always will.

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