Inside the Fortress
Moonday 6 Hithui(Foggy) – (First Winter) T.A. 2758
Cúthalion and Aramis return to the cart. When they arrive, Cúthalion drops off his weapons and then heads up to the main courtyard and enters the great hall. The guards nod to the elf as he enters the hall. He passes through the great hall and turns past the chapel to the Valar and comes to the houses of healing. Inside he sees some of the freed prisoners that had journeyed with them. when they notice him they thank him again for all that he did to save them. Beyond the weary travelers, he also sees many people in makeshift cots, covered in bandages and blankets. Women rush in between the crowded beds, doing what they can to help the wounded. A woman comes out of the door in the back of the room and sees the elf. She wipes her hands on the long cloth belted to her waist before coming to greet him and give him a hug.
You must be Cúthalion. My name is Déorwyn. I am forever in your debt for freeing my son who was captured by the rebels after the battle at the fords. I thought I was seeing a ghost this morning when he stumbled in with the others you have saved. If there is anything I can do to repay you, pray, tell me what it is so that I may do it at once.
I am merely here to help those who are sick and injured. My services are at your disposal
With so many new patients this morning has been busy. We would surely appreciate any help. Especially from one as skilled as you. Some of the new guests are still being settled in the front room here but the worst off are in the back. If you would follow me I can show you where we could use your help
She turns and leads the elf through the main hall among beds filled with tired and weary. She pushes through a set of curtains hanging in a stone archway at the back. The entry opens on a corridor with many other small doorways leading to small cells with the sick and wounded. She turns to the left and into the door at the end. Inside, a man lies asleep on a small cot. A large bloody bandage covers his chest from right shoulder to waist.
This man was brought in on a cart with many others after the battle. We have done all that we know how, but he still hasn’t woken since arrival. Do you think there is anything you can do for him?
I will do my best
As Cúthalion says an ancient healing prayer to the lady Estë in old Quenya, he lowers his hands over the still body of the wounded man. As he moves his hands along the blood crusted bandage Déorwyn looks on with awe. After he removes his hands the man lets out a faint groan but makes no movement.
Déorwyn asks the elf
Is there anything we should do with him now? Or do we just wait?
Just give him water, nourishment and time to recover. He may just pull through
She nods in acknowledgement of what the Elf says and turns to leave the room. Cúthalion follows Déorwyn out of the room, and she points towards another room on the other end of the hall. As Cúthalion passes the archway from the main room, he sees two guards standing at the foot of a cot waiting for the man to rise. When he does, Cúthalion sees one of the men that they had freed from the stockades the night before.
As the guards gently but firmly help the man to his feet, Cúthalion approaches from the back of the hall. He asks the guards who the man is and why he is being guarded. As the man shifts his weight away from his broken right ankle and onto the shoulder of one of the guards, the guard on the other side responds.
My lord elf, this man is accused of treachery, treason, and espionage. He is being taken at the order of Prince Háma. I fear that is all that we can tell you. By your blessing we take our leave.
The two guards point the delirious man towards the door. They help the man limp towards the door and outside into the corridor.
Cúthalion turns and leaves the house of healing and leaves through the great hall and out into the courtyard. He passes into the Coombe and walks among the tents and shelters with refugees starting to emerge and prepare for the day. He finds the cart and tent set up next to it and goes to enter. When he enters he finds Dagorhir inside laying on a bedroll with his armor neatly arranged nearby and his longsword laying at his side. Dagorhir looks up at him as if he had just laid down moments before.
Cúthalion simply nods, opting to wait for a more opportune time for conversation. He then prepares for his own rest.
Cúthalion drops into a deep meditation and loses himself in reflections on the events of the past night and what it may mean for the coming winter. He finishes pondering his own actions as well as those of his companions. He slowly comes out of his meditation feeling rejuvenated and relaxed.
Dagorhir shifts slightly in his sleep on the wool bedroll next to him but doesn’t seem to wake.
Cúthalion peers outside the tent and finds that the sun is much lower than he had expected. He steps outside and takes advantage of the free time to repair any damage to his robes and carefully prepare the contents of his healer’s kit in his bag. He also takes the time to sharpen his sword and refill his quiver while waiting for Dagorhir to wake.