Calm The Fire: 27

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The gardens which were within Erebor were a little few and far between. It wasn't that the Dwarves disliked gardens, more that gardens didn't really hold much use. Even as a recreational space, they still wouldn't have been used.

The only time – that Thorin could really remember – that he'd been in one of the gardens was with Dis, who had gone running off to hide somewhere. She had such a skill of hiding, he couldn't find her. So he ended up returning to his room. Dis appeared hours later, rather unhappy that he had failed to find her, yet happy that she had succeeded in avoiding his gaze.

The floral space could not compare to what laid within Mirkwood at the time. Though the beauty of the things which grew within the woodland space was slowly diminishing. There was something there...something growing which blotted out the plants like a cloud going past the sun.

Thranduil didn't even need to lift his head up to register Thorin and Náriel appearing, mainly because he could hear the heavy booted footsteps of the Dwarf Prince even before he rounded the corner. No other Dwarf would come here, not at this time, if they did and they saw him sitting on one of the stone benches, head lowered gazing at the simple flowers before him, they'd surely turn tail and walk away. No Dwarf – as such – had openly addressed him. And Thranduil was rather thankful of this. The only two who did were naturally Thrain and Thror. Other than that, Thranduil was left in the company of his guards. But really, there was only so much he could take of their stoic nature before growing bored.

Boredom wasn't really a natural thing for him to feel. What was boredom? Time spent not doing something? Time not spent on a task at hand? There was always something happening, something going on that Thranduil never found himself bored. That and time really didn't hold much for him. In a blink of an eye time would fly by, that was life.

Giving the pair a sidewards look he stood slowly from his bench and turned to them. Náriel stopped and Thorin stopped immediately by her side. Exchanging a look between them, they looked to him. Both seemed to be in a rather confused state, even he could sense that.

“Good morning,” Náriel said politely while inclining her head. “This is a surprise.” She walked forwards a few paces and stopped in front of him. Thranduil barely looked over her form to see Thorin quietly following after her.

“Is it a surprise to wish to speak with my niece?” Thranduil said in simple tone. He crossed his hands loosely in front of him and looked to Náriel awaiting an answer. She shifted from foot to foot awkwardly. “Or,” at this Thranduil's icy eyes flicked up to look to Thorin. “To speak with the man who has so captivated my niece's attention?”

“There is no surprise in that,” Thorin replied while crossing his arms against his chest. He gave a nod and walked forwards and stood by Náriel's side. Looking around at the surrounding space, Thorin looked back up at Thranduil. “It is – if anything – your place to do such a task.”

This caused Thranduil to let out a thoughtful hum, his eyes narrowed a fraction as his head tilted to the side curiously. Lifting up a hand he gestured to the stone path which was beside them. “Shall we?” He commented not replying to Thorin's words.

Náriel rather unwillingly shuffled forwards, she wanted nothing more than to shrink back and hide somewhere. She looked at the flowers, it must be nice to not have a care in the world. Sure, being a flower didn't wholly interest her, just they had no troubles. She envied them there.

Looking up she couldn't help but frown. The path they were walking on was big enough for all three to walk side by side, but both Thorin and Thranduil had stepped forwards and commenced walking before her. Which meant they were walking side by side, with a gap in between them, in stony silence.

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