Chapter 21

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Miyuki walks through the trees. Being here reminded her of the forest that had been her home for thirteen years. Coming out into a clearing, she finds herself standing before a lake. Looking up she sees a clear sky full of stars. Closing her eyes she thinks of the Lady of the Light's words.

Miyuki: "Light & dark..."

Raiden: "Miyuki."

The dragon appears out of the trees. Walking up to his mistress, he stands at her side. Miyuki doesn't look at him, lost in thought & he waits patiently for her to notice him. After a while, she looks at him.

Miyuki: "You're hurt aren't you, Raiden? Let me look at it."

The dragon doesn't argue, allowing his wings to sprout from his back. Seeing the torn flesh, Miyuki places her hand, glowing, over the wounds. As her hand passes over them the wounds close. Raiden watches her work in silence.

Raiden: "You've not been sleeping well have you, Miyuki? The power you used in Moria. That amount should not have affected you the way it did."

Finishing, Miyuki withdraws her hand. She couldn't hide anything from Raiden. The bond between a dragon & their master allowed them to feel whatever their master felt & in turn for the master to feel whatever the dragon did.

Raiden: "Is it him? Has he been speaking to you again?"

Miyuki's hand goes to her chest, gripping something underneath her clothes. She nods. Raiden's features draw into a snarl. He had suspected it for he had felt it too. The darkness that was slowly trying to draw to the two of them in. Reaching up, Miyuki touches Raiden's cheek.

Miyuki: "Don't, Raiden. I do not feel him now. The power of this place keeps him out. At least, for tonight, we can rest in peace."

Raiden stops. He pulls Miyuki into a hug. Everywhere, they could feel the pull. It was even stronger now that they were close to the One Ring. They had held out so far but it was gradually becoming harder & harder to resist. Both them did not know how much longer they could fight the growing darkness within them.

Miyuki: "This form is troublesome isn't it? I'm sorry you've had to stay in it for so long. You can change now."

Miyuki steps back from Raiden as a white glow surrounds him. There is a flash of light & when it fades a large silver dragon stands before the girl. He dips his head to his mistress's level & Miyuki places a hand on his nose.

Miyuki: "You must be hungry. Go & hunt. I will be safe here."

Raiden: "I won't be far. Call me if something happens."

Miyuki nods. Raising his head, the dragon flaps his wings, rising into the night sky. Miyuki stands still, watching Raiden fly farther & farther away until he is no longer visible. Then turning back to the lake, she decides to bathe a while, thinking the water would help her relax a bit.

Removing her katana from her obi, she places it on the grass. She takes off her boots & socks. Then removing her clothes, she steps into the water. Submerging herself completely, she feels the dust clinging to her skin fall away. Coming to the surface, she stands still, gazing at the bright moon high above her head.

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Disregarding Aragorn's words, Legolas walks through the trees, searching for Miyuki. Ever since the had entered Lothlórien, it felt like the girl was carefully distancing herself from the Fellowship. For what reason, he did not know but it made him very concerned.

A bright flash of white light catches the elf's attention. Heading towards the source, Legolas stops & then darts back into the tree-line, hiding. Just a few feet from him stand Miyuki & a huge, majestic silver dragon. The girl touches the creature's nose.

Miyuki: "You must be hungry. Go & hunt. I will be safe here."

Legolas realises the dragon must be Raiden in his true form. He watches in silence as Miyuki nods & the dragon rises into the air, flying away into the night. Watching Raiden fly away for a while, Miyuki then looks back at the lake. Setting her katana down, she begins to remove her boots & socks. She reaches for her skirt, undoing the ties & allowing it to fall to the grass. It was then Legolas became conscious of what he was doing.

Eavesdropping, spying, his actions at this moment were extremely inappropriate. He told himself to leave, to go back & wait for her to return. However, he remained rooted in place, unable to look away. Miyuki's blouse falls to the ground & removing her hair ribbon, she steps into the water disappearing beneath. Scaling a tree, Legolas continues to watch with bated breath.

A moment later she breaks the surface, rising from the water. Rivulets cling, running over her skin, shimmering like diamonds in the moonlight. Her hair seems lit to silver. As she pulls it over one shoulder & the elf catches sight of a black mark in the shape of a rising dragon covering her back. Raising her face to the moon, it bathes her in it's soft light giving her an unearthly glow. It was as though she were Varda, Queen of Valar who had decided to descend to earth.

Legolas [soft]: "Elbereth Gilthoniel..."

Miyuki becomes alert, apparently hearing him. He begins to retreat into the leafy branches, attempting to hide but he is too late. The girl turns, her green eyes looking directly at the elf who had been watching her. Mild surprise crosses her features.

Miyuki: "Prince Legolas."

Miyuki's dragon mark: http://www.golfian.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/06/dragon-tattoo-back-tattoo600_8591.jpg

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