She walked down the pathway alone. A young girl lost in her dreams. No one paid her much mind as she walked there. As the sun set and light faded, shadows fell across her path. The last bit of light in the sky faded and she was left in the darkness. She did not mind the dark, since she felt as if most of her life was spent in it. She had no one to share her life with. Her city had been destroyed and she was chased away from the village with the other women. When they were far enough away from the destroyed town, they split up and went off to live lives in separate cities. As she walked, she thought of a day a long time ago when an Elf sent from the great city of Rivendell came to their city to announce that Lord Elrond was to hold a council in the great elven city. Two men stepped forward. Gloin and his son Gimli, two of the bravest in the city. That day they gathered their possessions and were ready to depart for the elven refuge by midday. They said their farewells and were gone.
She spotted the inn’s sign ahead and decided to stop for the night. She walked to the door and pushed it open. As she approached the front of the bar the owner of the inn turned and stared at her.
“I would like to rent one of your rooms for the night.” She said quickly. The words came out of her mouth so quickly that she did not have time to catch her breath between words.
“We don’t usually get many Dwarves in here, let alone dwarf women.” said the innkeeper, looking the young dwarf over.
“I will be gone before sunrise and you will not notice me at all.” She answered.
“Very well then, what is your name dwarf?” he asked
“My name is Carniana and I would prefer to be called by that and not dwarf.” She said hotly.
“Here is your key.” Answered the innkeeper and he returned to his work at the bar.
Carniana did not think of ordering something to eat or drink. Instead she went straight to her room and closed the door. She crossed straight to the bed and lay down. She stared at the ceiling for some time. After what seemed like years of just lying there, sleep overtook her. When she woke again, she felt as if she had only slept a moment. When she looked down stairs, she found that every light was out and the bar was empty. She stepped back into her room and picked up her single pack that was sitting next to the bed on the floor. She went back to her door and quietly crept down the hall to the stairs. She quickly descended them and slipped across the room to the front door. She opened the door quietly and stepped out onto the street. Closing the door behind her, Carniana set off down the street towards the gate of the small village in which she had stayed only a short time.
She slipped out of the partly open gate and headed towards the forest that lay ahead.
* * *
By the time the sun was high in the sky, Carniana had covered a good distance of about 2 leagues. As she walked still farther, she finally saw the light of the sun clearly and knew that she had come to the end of the forest. She walked into the sunlight with great happiness. She soon spotted the road that led west towards the great city of Rivendell. She walked along the road not seeing another village for the rest of the day and when the light of the sky disappeared, she decided to walk off the road a ways and stop for the night. She ate a small unfilling piece of partly stale bread and a small sliver of an apple. She soon fell asleep. She awoke the next morning to find that the sun had risen and she had wasted an hour of her traveling time.
She stood and gathered her things. Then, she walked the few feet back to the road and set off once again for the city of Rivendell. When the sun was again high in the sky, she had covered no more than half a league. She stopped and dug into her pack and took out another piece of bread. Her last piece. She ate as she walked and was soon upset to find that night was coming swiftly. She decided that the way to get to the elven refuge quickly would be to continue walking through the night. She walked even as the light faded from the sky and she was again left in darkness. To keep herself from thinking that she would not make it through this journey, she thought more about the day the Elf messenger had come to her city. She thought about how the men looked when the elf announced the council meeting. They all had looked a bit frightened. They also looked as if they were considering whether to go with the elf or not.
She remembered the looks on their faces when Gloin and Gimli had stepped forward. She missed the men who had defended the women at the battle of their city. The last battle of the city. She missed the tall walls of her city. The laughter was another thing to miss. The laughter of children chasing each other through the streets. As she remembered these things she did not notice the sun rising again and the tall mountains that were drawing ever nearer. As she saw the light gradually appearing she decided that she had gone far enough in the night.