“Glorfindel release my hand! I will not be led through the hallways like an errant child!” Erestor demanded as he stood his ground just outside the door to his chamber, forcing the seneschal to stop as well. Glorfindel cast a speculative glance at his friend, and then laughed merrily.
“I find it hard to imagine that you were ever a child, Erestor, let alone an errant one,” he teased.
“Whereas I imagine you were definitely trouble for your parents, just as you are for Elrond and me at times,” retorted Erestor with affection rather than insult in his voice. “But, as you pointed out, we are guests in the King’s house, so please try and comport yourself as befits an Elf of your station,” implored Erestor, using his now free hand to straighten first his robes and then his hair.
“As you wish, but we must make haste to the stables, or you may find your dignity shattered,” warned the Elf lord, his eyes filled with thinly disguised mischief. It was a look the Advisor knew the meaning of, and it did not bode well for whoever Glorfindel had decided to tease.
“What have you done, and to who?” hissed Erestor, now certain the Balrog slayer had been up to no good.
“I admit not to a deed but a poor choice of words spoken in jest, and I will explain as we make our way to the stables,” he replied, ushering Erestor through the archway that opened into the garden where Legolas alone was still working. Sam had decided they needed some assistance and had gone in search of Merry and Pippin.
“I do not believe this is the way to the stables,” stated Erestor, his raised eyebrow demanding an explanation.
“It is best we take a less travelled route, lest our escape be noticed,” whispered Glorfindel with a conspiratorial wink that made Erestor realise he was now embroiled in whatever havoc the seneschal had chosen to cause this day. This was neither the first time, nor likely the last that he would find himself involved in Glorfindel's plans, and the normally aloof Advisor had to admit that he actually enjoyed these brief forays away from proper behaviour. Oft times it was an amusing experience for Glorfindel was, after all, a master at making mischief.
“Escape! We are not captive here, and I refuse to take another step until you explain what you mean!” His raised voice carried across the garden, causing the other occupant to look over in their direction. Erestor’s polite nod of greeting was returned, and since it was not uncommon to see the two Imladris Elves at odds with each other, Legolas turned his attention back to his work. He had promised Galadriel that all the gardens would be restored before the day of the wedding, and he had no desire to disappoint either the Lady or Arwen.
“Very well, if you insist,” conceded Glorfindel with an exaggerated sigh of resignation.
He quickly explained that when he had spoken to Arwen earlier that morning, she had seemed rather upset. Apparently all the servants were so occupied with other tasks, that the seamstress could find no one to model the bridal veil whist she sewed the final pearl drops around the border. It was a task that was likely to take several hours and Glorfindel had politely suggested Arwen should perform the duty herself, but she had replied that Galadriel required her services elsewhere. He had then jokingly suggested that her brothers would make an excellent substitute, for being the same height, they could take turns acting as models for the seamstress. What he did not realise was that Galadriel had approached from behind and heard his words. She agreed it was an excellent suggestion and promptly sent Arwen to find her brothers.
“Fortunately I found them before Galadriel had a chance to send them to the seamstress, and they insisted I make amends by seeing to their escape,” said Glorfindel as he finished his tale.
“I see, so this is why the sudden interest in exploring the countryside, although the predicament your words placed Elladan and Elrohir in would have been an amusing sight to behold,” Erestor mused with a smile that could only be described as wicked. Both he and Glorfindel laughed at the image of one of the brethren wearing a veil while the seamstress performed her task.
“Aye, but knowing how determined Galadriel can be, and I think it wise that we all make ourselves scarce before she decides one of us would make an acceptable substitute.” No one would refuse a request from Galadriel, and Erestor shuddered at the less than appealing thought of being asked to spend the day in such an undignified manner.
“Then lead the way, mellon nin.” He exclaimed eagerly, but was surprised when Glorfindel made no move other than to allow his brow to furrow with uncertainty as he beckoned for Legolas to join them.
“How can I be of assistance, my lords?” enquired the younger Elf as he wiped the dirt from his hands on a soft cloth he wore on his belt.
“Do you know the path to the stables from here?” asked Glorfindel, who had not bothered to inform Erestor that he did not. The Advisor merely rolled his eyes in mock disgust at Glorfindel’s uncharacteristic lack of forethought.
“Aye, we can make our way there in secret, without passing back through the palace,” Legolas told them. He had not meant to eavesdrop, but had easily heard the conversation between his elders, and did not wish to leave his friends to the mercy of their sister and Grandnana.
“Aye, secrecy is desirable in this instance,” agreed the seneschal with a knowing smile for Thranduil’s son. Apparently the young one had learned much from his astute Adar whom Glorfindel held in high regard.
“As is haste it seems, so perhaps you would be so kind as to show us the way?” requested Erestor.
“Or better yet, I suggest you join us in our escape.” Glorfindel spoke in an urgent whisper as he sensed Arwen approaching the archway, calling to their would-be guide.
“Legolas dear, are you out there?”
Only the echo of her sweet voice answered from the now deserted garden.