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Summary: When Elrond is short a courtesan for the fifteen year exchange, what will he do? Pimp out his daughter -- that's what! Thranduil goes to war, Arwen obeys orders, and Prince Legolas has a bad day. Parody, D/s, SI, slash, anal, bdsm, f/f, m/f, m/f/m, solo and general bad taste. NC-17
Introduction: Please Read First

Nine and a Half Weeks in Mirkwood
By Acharn Lend

Note: I am posting this chapter somewhat earlier than I had intended in order to address the concerns raised by a certain princeling of my acquaintance and a rather strongly worded email from Half Elf. Rape is a very serious accusation, but I just don't see it. In chapter 21, Arwen never tried to say no or ask Thranduil to stop (we will happily gloss over the fact that she had no idea whether, contractually, she could say no or not, or whether she would be punished for disobedience as she had been earlier.) I mean, if Arwen hadn't wanted to be treated like dirt, she shouldn't have taken that oath and signed that contract, and I'm sure John Wayne Bobbitt would agree with me.

I suggested to Half Elf an alternate scene in which Arwen begs off and Thranduil magnanimously allows her to fellate him, whereupon she nearly chokes and concludes that it might have been easier simply to bend over and take it. Was he grateful? No! Manwe Tapdancing Sulimo! There is just no pleasing some people! I might attempt another rewrite, but at this juncture, I feel it is best to leave sleeping huans lie.

MAJOR WARNING: I warned, in a previous note that there were some dark things coming up and it begins here. I promise I am taking very good care of Arwen, as well as Legolas. They are fine and will continue to be so! However, Ummm...*cringes*... Glavras lovers might want to cover your eyes. Sorry. Oh, the horror!

Disclaimer: Not my garden. I just play in it. So let's march an army across the lawn! Hi-ho, hi-ho, its off to war we go!

Chapter 24: Slouching Towards Erebor

After bidding goodbye to a weeping Firdal, who could not accompany the army because of his injuries, Arwen put on a fresh cream linen dress and left her long hair undone Not the smartest way to be going into a possible fight, but those were the rules of attire for those in the collar! At least this time, she wore breeches under her skirt and leather boots to protect her feet.

Down at the forest end of the bridge, all was confusion as the ranks of archers and pikemen assembled and the horses were brought round for those who would be riding. Thranduil was barking orders, and everyone was doing their job, pretty much ignoring him. Arwen took her place, three paces behind the Elvenking, and stood quietly.

Prince Legolas approached from back in the ranks, cutting a swathe with his long strides. He was dressed in the simple browns and greens of a Mirkwood Captain, and he looked harried. Arwen felt a brief stab of submissive guilt over her dreadful misjudgment of him the evening before and wished she were free to express her abject apologies to him. However, she obeyed her Elven-lord's order not to speak or interact with him in any way.

She noticed that Prince Legolas was more intent on the assembling soldiers than on where he was going, which was right toward a steaming pile of fresh manure deposited by one of the waiting steeds. She wished she could call out a warning, but she dared not. The blond archer prince stepped in it dead center and slipped.

Legolas uttered a rather crude Sindarin word for feces and began to shake his foot angrily. 'Yup, that's what it is all right, Captain Obvious,' Arwen thought with grim satisfaction. The prince stalked off into the trees and began to wipe his boot clean on the grass. Unfortunately, this brought him under the overhanging branch of a tall beech. A huge craban sat upon this branch, and Arwen briefly wondered if it was one of the same birds that had watched her charming blindfolded spank session with Thranduil and Naeglin weeks earlier. She could almost swear that the craban looked her in the eye and winked as it began to clench its tail feathers in obvious preparation for mischief.

Should she warn Legolas? Or should she, perhaps, rush over and push the unsuspecting prince out of the way? Nah! A white stain bloomed on the shoulder of Legolas's leather jacket. Arwen missed most of what Legolas said as he shot an angry glance up at the tree, but from the snatches she could hear, it involved something about the bird's mother.

He stooped to pick a handful of leaves to wipe his shoulder, and again, Arwen held her tongue obediently. There WAS an Eru! It was Poison Oak. The princess turned courtesan bit the interior of her cheek to hold back her smile. Meekly following orders could be quite enjoyable.

The call came to mount up, and Arwen's horse was again the black mare Divan, this time wearing a light saddle to tie her bedroll and effects to. Arwen's position was directly behind The Elvenking on his big bay stallion. This was just like when she and Elrond rode in state to Lothlorien. She was back in her element, although her position had changed slightly. 'Slightly?' said the voice of Sarnwen from inside her head. 'Boy, are you ever getting brainwashed, girlfriend!'

Despite holding the mere rank of Captain Legolas rode beside his father. "I see you do not bring Eliene with you, my son," Thranduil said disapprovingly

"A battlefield is no place for a courtesan," the prince replied.

"Nonsense! How many times have I told you, my son, to always bring the proper equipment with you when camping? I wouldn't be caught out in the wilderness without my cock warmer!"

Arwen, riding back a few paces, noticed Legolas wince.

"Besides," Thranduil continued, "it isn't likely to be a battlefield. Thorin and his dwarves are all eaten or burnt to a cinder, I'm sure. It will be a quick in and out to collect Smaug's hoard, and then home again before you know it. We may have to garrison the mountain so that goblins don't move in and make a fortress of it. Too bad King Girion isn't around anymore -- he was most useful in that regard. Hmmm, I wonder if that great-great-grandson of his survived what almost certainly has happened to Esgaroth?"

The train had reached the eastern edge of the forest and come out under the open sky. "Do those crebain know something that we don't know, Adar?" Legolas asked. Arwen looked up to see flocks of carrion crows circling overhead, following the course of the Elvenking's host.

Thranduil grunted. "I must admit that the last few times I fielded an army the crebain were treated to an all you can eat buffet. Dirty, opportunistic birds!"

"Tell me about it!" said Legolas, rolling his eyes.

The road towards Erebor ran off almost due east, while the Forest River veered to the south. Arwen could see the mountain itself off in the distance, huge and snowcapped. But what caught her attention was a cloud of dust approaching from the southeast, which resolved itself into a group of tired and scorched looking men.

"Hail O Elvenking! The men of Laketown seek your aid!"

"Curse it!" she heard Thranduil mutter "Why is it that the Edain of Esgaroth can never seem to remember my name and use it?"

"I dunno," Legolas whispered back. "Too hard to pronounce?"

Thranduil glared. "Mayhap if we ignore them, they will go away."

No such luck. "Smaug the Dragon visited great destruction upon our town. Our women and children now shiver upon the lakeshore, with winter coming on," the men cried insistently.

"Dammit, I'm always a sucker for a sob story," Thranduil sighed. "Sometimes an Elf's just gotta do what an Elf's gotta do!"

"Tis only just," Legolas observed. "I suspect that one of their own got a lucky shot in at the dragon, else we'd have been burnt out too. And we really need to find out what became of Glavras."

"Ai! You are right. We'll give them some tents and some timber, and we'll share the lembas. But none of the wine, nor the courtesan." Arwen's eyes widened at this, but Thranduil was continuing, in a voice intended to be heard by the masses, "This army is turning aside. Make rafts ready, and carry food and tents down the river to the lake. I will lend my most skilled elves to help build huts for the winter and to later rebuild your town. Because everyone knows I'm just made of money. I have it growing on the trees, you know! You may send your thank-you notes to Thranduil Oropherion, that's T, H, R, A, N, D, U, I, L; O, R, O, P, H, E, R, I, O, N;, Great Hall of the King, Taur Nu Fuin, otherwise known as Mirkwood. So let it be written; so let it be done!"

"We thank thee, O Elvenking!" cried the men of the Laketown delegation.

"Ai Valar!" Thranduil muttered, in frustration.

"Cheer up, Adar," Legolas said. "They may not get your name right, but they won't even notice I'm here at all."

* * *

And so it was that on the sixth day, the host of the Elvenking rode onto the shores of the lake.
As Thranduil had more or less predicted, the town had been burned to the pilings, and what had escaped the blaze had been flattened when the huge worm fell spang down on top of it in his dying throes.

The first sight that met them, besides the blackened stubs out on the lake and the grubby peasants with their snot-nosed kids on the shore, was an angry looking adan who approached with another, about a head taller, whom he was holding by the ear. A pointed ear, Arwen noticed, as the pair came close enough to make out details.

"I believe this is one of yours," the shorter, older one said to Thranduil. "I caught it with its hand down my daughter's bodice last night."

Thranduil gasped in horror. "And you removed his hair in that fashion? Ai, what cruelty!"

"Nay, he was like that when I got him. I know not who bestowed the haircut upon him, but more power to the fellow, I say!" The injured father stalked off without a backward glance.

"Ai, Glavras, what horrors have they done to you?" Thranduil exclaimed, sounding most shaken.

"Oh, My Lord," Glavras replied. "I would rather not speak of it. The hurt is still too near! I may need the services of a Healer, or perhaps even the Havens! For now, I wish only to rejoin my People and rest, safe at last!"

"Very well, my good Elf," said Thranduil understandingly. "Courtesan, let him ride behind you."

As on the first day she had entered Mirkwood, Arwen offered Glavras her stirrup and he swung up behind her. "All right, what's the real story?" she said, sotto voce.

"Two men of Laketown got me piss drunk," Glavras replied.

"Tell it to the pikemen," Arwen whispered back. "You can't get a Wood-elf that drunk."

"Oh yes you can," Glavras told her. "Especially if it's a new liquor imported from Far Harad by way of Rhun. Rhum, I think they called it, and I pray our Elven-lord never hears of it, else he will switch from Dorwinion and we shall never get anything done. Those edain bet me I could not drink ten glasses of it and keep my head and . . . I lost. The last I recall, we were all off to get tattoos and see a woman of pleasure, but instead, I found myself at the barbershop, getting the newest fashion. A 'crew-cut' they call it. The edain found this most amusing, and then they stole my clothes. At least I hope that's how I came to be lying naked on the lakeshore when the dragon came. What a light show! And a stroke of luck for me, as I could claim I had lost my garments in the fire. A sweet young adaneth found me, took pity on me and gave me some of her brother's clothing. I have been 'repaying her kindness' for the last five days. At least until her father caught us at it."

"Sounds like it could have been worse." Arwen ventured.

"Oh yes," Glavras breathed. "Much worse!"

Arwen laughed. This was just like old times! Old times indeed, she decided as a growing bulge made its presence felt in the small of her back. "Honestly, Glavras! Did you not get enough during the past five days?"

"Oh, aye, but that is the thing about mortal women -- they are passing sweet, but half a day later, you find yourself lusty again."

"Courtesan, Sarnwen?' The Elvenking boomed. "Did you bring your sewing kit and knitting needles with you as I ordered?"

"Aye, My Lord," Arwen replied hastily.

"Good. I want you to knit a Tam O' Shanter for poor Glavras here. And then when you're done with that, I need you to embroider a pretty green banner for when we reach the mountain. All in your copious free time, of course. Ah, look," he continued, pleasure filling his voice, "here comes a grim adan looks just like Girion! Mayhap he will be of some use to us . . ."

* * *


So sorry, gentle readers, for what I did to poor Glavras in this chapter! *Sniffle* Putting elves in collars, submitting them to rough sex, whippings and nipple clamps is all in a day's work. But a haircut is simply vicious!

Faithful Servant: Still with me? Just a little bit more now.
Double Trouble: Again, no sex, but we'll be making up for that in a bit. Perhaps Arwen will be given to Glavras for some 'sexual healing?' That sounds like a capital idea, doesn't it?
Lady Abendstern: Yes, our little courtesan did get in a few licks against that snotty prince. She does get to have some fun once in a while -- as if being Thranduil's constant bedmate weren't joy enough! Thank you for the plot idea, and also for keeping a certain Pretender to the Throne of Gondor in line. The prospect of having the Ring of Barahir shoved where Anor does not shine was most unwelcome to me.
Gorthaur: I know, poor Glavras! The mental picture of a shaved elf gets you all hot, doesn't it? Just wait until he disrobes in the baths and his fellow soldiers discover the tattoo on his buttocks which reads: Property of the Esgaroth Chamber of Commerce. :D
Artanis: Thank you for what "most royal gift?" Er, you are welcome, in any case. Are you perhaps referring to the Harry and David fruit basket I sent you for your last Begetting Day? Just how many is it, now, if it is not too impolite to ask? I lost count after your nine thousandth. I hasten to add that you do not look a day over 5,500!

* * *

L.T.: Uh-oh . . .

T.O.: Indeed. Our little talk is long overdue. Wouldst mind explaining what the Lady of the Golden Wood meant by that cryptic statement?

L.T.: Hoo-boy! Busted . . .

T.O.: I am waiting . . .

L.T.: *Sigh* Do you recall a fortnight past, when I went to have a 'night out' with Marchwarden Haldir of Lorien? It seems, he had just gotten DSL installed in his talan and had happened upon a certain story -- coincidentally the one to which you are paying your sincere homage -- and as a result, we felt inspired to consume his entire stock of Dwarven ale from the Moria days. The early hours of the morning found us quite 'merry' and singing the Lay of Luthien, the unexpurgated version, beneath the Royal Mallorn. Who should stick her head out to discover the cause of all the caterwauling but the Lady Herself!

T.O.: I see no reason for her to thank me for this. I thought I had brought you up better than that.

L.T.: Alas --that was what she said. And she demanded an explanation for my uncharacteristic behavior. By this time, Haldir was incoherent, muttering dark curses about not being the owner of cheap, flimsy furniture, in between bouts of being violently ill into the Lady's bushes. There was nothing for it, save for me to show her the cause of our distress. We repaired to her Mirror, and after cleaning it out, for Haldir had been sick into that as well, she had a look for herself.

T.O.: Ai! Tell me, did she do that thing where she gets all green and scary?

L.T.: That she did, and it frightened ten yen's worth of immortal life out of me and sobered the Marchwarden right up before she calmed down again. But then she thanked me, for now she understood the reason behind Cousin Celeborn's atypical behavior of late. His resolve to never again eat peaches was no problem, for peaches in that realm are becoming increasingly rare thanks to the Lorien Orchard Warden spending so much of his time in the woods with his assistants. But the lady was most heartsore over her lord's insistence that he had been put off of sex forever, for their once a yen 'date night' was a great joy to her.

T.O.: Aye, he was always a sensitive sort. So, her gratitude was for the insight into her spouse's mind? I still fail to see how this could be construed as a 'royal gift.'

L.T.: Ah . . . there was more. She invited us up to her talan to commiserate and to share her own private stash of Dwarven ale. What with all the ale and the commiseration, one thing led to another and . . . let me just say that on the morn Master Haldir and I were two very happy ellyn.

T.O.: . . .?!

L.T.: Indeed, Adar, have you not always encouraged me to improve relations between our two realms? You are not angry, I hope?

T.O.: Nay . . . relieved, actually.

L.T.: . . .?!

T.O.: Never mind. On to the story . . .

TBC in Chapter Twenty-five: The Centre Cannot Hold