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Date Posted: 05:37:25 04/20/02 Sat
Laeriel was barely conscious when she was found. She could faintly hear someone coming behind her. She wanted to turn and see, but she could barely move. Her stomach hurt her greatly and she was so tired, so very tired. Even after a full nights sleep, the stress on herself was too much. She had been traveling for weeks on end, barely sleeping at night and surviving only on herbs and berries. Now all she wanted was to be home.
The person behind her came ever nearer, all of Laeriel's instincts told her to run away. Her body would not respond to her brain, though, and she remaind still. She felt someone poking her side, it hurt. She shifted a little, exposing her face. She could just barely make out someone in front of her, a man. He picked her up, which she did not like, but she was too weak to protest. All she could think of was how much she missed her family. She also thought of why she was so very sick. She knew she had some sort of dehydration, but was that enough to make her so ill? Perhaps she had some type of exaustion, maybe the stress of being in such a strange place affected her body somehow. Whatever the cause, she would not worry now.
She felt herself being laid upon a bed. A clean, soft bed, that smelled quite nice- especially when you're so tired. She tried to sleep, but strange people were now surrounding her. Poking and prodding at her, saying things like "What have we here?" and "Looks to me like she's exausted. Has she travled recently?" Laeriel did not like these people, these humans. She tried to push them away. They would not leave her, though. "NO!" she screamed, "Away, away with you all. Leave me alone!" but they would not listen.
"There, there dearie, we'll make you better. Here, drink this," Someone said to her, offering water. In her anger she pushed it away.
"No, please, just leave me alone. I'm so very tired. Father! Sahrien! Help! Where are you?" Laeriel's feaver rose and she was becoming delerious. She just wanted to be home, she needed her sister. She longed for companionship. Deep in her heart, she was lonely. She protested a little longer, but her body was not up to it. Eventually, sleepiness took hold again, and she was very tired. She drank a little, but they wouldn't let her drink too much. Her dry mouth pleaded for more, but she was thinking clearly now and knew too much at once would make her sick.
Laeriel couldn't remember much after that. She knew she slept, because she could remember dreaming of home. Her dreams were so real. She could hear the trees, smell the clean air. She was walking among her own people, in her own city. Well, hardly a city. It was now a pile of ruins, but it was beautiful to her. At times she did wonder what it was like when it was new and grand. She was walking home in her dream, to see her father. They lived in what was left of the palace, just a few towers and some rooms. It was mostly in ruins. But the ruins were covered in beautiful green vines that criss-crossed around the toppled stone pillars. She walked up to what was left of the once grand stone steps. Instead of walking in the obvious entrance, though, she climbed up a tree that cut through large doorway. She glided through the branches of the tree, straight to the top. Her climb was not done yet, though. She then climbed up the bare stone wall, using vines to help her. Her father was in the window. Her heart lept when she saw her father. He was tall for a faery, nearly 5'7. He had dark olive skin and black, curly hair. His brilliant, emerald green eyes peeked through his bushy eyebrows. His thick, curly beard grew down to his chest. He had rosey cheeks, and a rather large nose. A beautiful, large nose, Laeriel always thought. A jolly, happy nose. And on his head, he wore a crown of leaves and flowers. Laeriel was happy to see him. She was about to embrace him when she awoke from her dream. Her heart sank. It had all seemed so real. She could still faintly hear the sounds of the forest echoing through her head. Her lower lip quivered. No, she would not cry now. She had to be strong. Inside, though, she was confused and sad. She had always been the most independent of the family. Now all she wanted was to be back with her people.
Laeriel couldn't have slept very long, there were still many strange people in the room, fusing over her. She could hear their conversation.
"Well, I've never seen anything like her," one said.
"She's not human, elf, or dwarf. She's not a halfling either," another replied.
"She is like an elf, though," someone else added, "Only she's so small. She can't possibly be more than five feet tall!" They continued to debate amongst themselves. Laeriel was worried. What would she tell them? She couldn't possibly explain about faeries to people like this. She would need the help of someone skilled in elvish lore. She didn't know where Legolas was, though, and she couldn't think of anyone else who would have a clue to what she was talking about.
Laeriel pretended to be asleep for a while, desprately thinking of a way out of her situation. She was not strong enough to leave her bed, but she did not want to stay. She alreadly could feel herself growing increasingly nervous at the constant staring of the cold stone walls. They loomed above her, like iron bars to a prison cell. They kept her in. She burried her head in the pillows, refusing to look at them. No, she thought, I will not let myself act this way. I'm the daughter of a king, not a scared wild animal. It's best for me to stay in here, safely inside. No matter what Laeriel told herself, though, she was just a scared, wild animal. She wanted someone to talk to so badly. Anyone at all who cared. Human, elf, dwarf, whatever happened to take notice of her. She couldn't stand being alone any longer.
Slowly, Laeriel let her conscious thoughts slip back into dreams. She dreamed of her home again. Of a place where people cared about her. In her dreams she talked with her sister, and told her everything that had happened to her. Her sister comforted her, told her it would all be okay. A small part of Laeriel's mind knew it was all a dream. But, oh, how she wished it was real.