The five Elves and three mortal girls spent most of that afternoon scouring the kitchens of Imladris. They made a few weak
excuses to get the kitchen staff to leave them alone, which they were all too happy to do. Their eagerness to leave the kitchen
had nothing to do with the homicidal looks Glorfindel gave them when they seemed reluctant, nothing at all. Honest.
They boarded up everything from the most obvious mouse hole to the tiniest crack in the wall, taking every measure to ensure
that no rodents could get into the kitchen. They even checked for loose floorboards and flagstones, and fixed any that were
"How are we going to intercept the coronation if there's no way to get in OR out?" Aldawen asked Glorfindel, who was standing
surveying the others at work.
"You will see," he said, smiling. "You will see."
Bilge hurried along the passages of Ratturd Palace to Elrond's audience chamber.
"My lord!" he cried, bursting into the room, all out of breath. "Such news! The Elves are boarding up the floors and walls
above the coronation chamber! There's no way into the kitchens!"
Elrond's eyes narrowed and he got that dangerous look in his eyes.
"It appears," he said, "that we have been found out. Bilge?"
"Y..yes, my lord?" the young rat asked, terrified.
"When you approached young Aldawen earlier today. What, exactly, did you say to her, and what was her reply?"
Bilge tried to remember. In all honesty, he had been so terrified at the time that most of it was a blur. Gods, humans
made him uncomfortable. "Well, my lord," he began, and gulped. "I told her of Rodentell, and how you would be our king, and
that it is you wish that she become a spy for us." He paused to wipe the terrified sweat from his forehead, and ploughed on.
"She asked why you would want inside information, and when I told her that I... did not know, she replied, 'Okay.' Forgive
me, my lord; I took this as an indication that she accepted your offer. I may have been mistaken."
"Yes, I think you were," Elrond said. Bilge quailed.
"Glorfindel!" Elladan called. He was checking for cracks in the moulding by the floor. "Look at this!"
Glorfindel went over to look, and so did everyone else. They were curious to see what Elladan had found.
"Look, this whole board comes right off," he said, pulling it away from the wall. Glorfindel peered in, expecting to see
only dusty darkness, but instead he saw something very different. It was a great hall, lit with many tiny candles. Rats scurried
here and there, preparing for the event that would soon take place. They hung up banners and tapestries and garlands of flowers.
They polished and dusted and scrubbed. And for some reason, they seemed not to notice the sudden invasion of their hidden
Glorfindel looked away, and turned back to his companions. "I think we've found what we're looking for!" he said.
The following day dawned bright and clear. Elrond rose from his next of pillows and cushions, and allowed the attendant rats
to dress him in fine robes. Frankly, they were nothing compared to his clothes in Rivendell, but he accepted them with pride.
He ate little at breakfast, feeling nervous. He knew that his sons had most likely found out about Rodentell, and was worried
that they'd try to do something to stop the coronation. But no matter. The Twins were rather stupid. There was nothing they
could do that he couldn't thwart.
Elrond didn't count on Glorfindel.
A guard of soldiers from BEER escorted Elrond to the hall where his coronation would take place. It was a fine sight. Tapestries
and statues depicting great events in rodent history lined the walls. Though he was of Elf-kind, Elrond felt proud to be a
part of this great society. A BEER official bade Elrond wait in an antechamber while the crowd gathered. He could here the
footsteps and squeaks and rustle of clothes as more and more rats came in to fill the hall.
Then the music began. Few people, mortal or Elf-kind, ever heard the music of rats. Elrond privately thought that this
was a good thing, and decided to have it banned as soon as he was king. It was a rather ghastly sound.
The door to the antechamber swung open, and Elrond stepped out. He was surrounded again by a group of the highest BEER
officials. And there, he saw, was Bilge, carrying the standard of Rodentell, now his standard. He walked among them, as they
passed through the crowd of rats and led him up to a raised dais at the other end of the hall. They were almost there, and
Elrond could see the elderly rat clothed in white standing next to the ornate box that held the crown of the rodent king.
At the dais, the BEER officials halted, and Elrond mounted the steps alone with only Bilge at his side. The old rat bent
down to open the box.
And that is when everything went wrong.
Suddenly, with a burst of light, part of the ceiling was torn clean off. The crowd screamed, and Elrond looked up with
horror to see the faces of his sons staring down at him.
"Hey, Ada!" called Elladan cheerfully.
"Blast!" cried Elrond. "BEER! Form your ranks! To me, to me!" Soldiers came rushing out of the crowd, surrounding their
lord, pointing their tiny swords upwards. The screams of the rats grew louder as a great hand (attatched to an arm that belonged
to Elrohir) reached down towards Elrond. Soldiers fired their tiny arrows and threw their spears and hacked at the hand with
tiny swords, but Elrohir, fortunately, had had the foresight to wear thick leather gloves, and was impervious to the assault.
Elrond found himself grasped tightly in his son's hand, and was rising through the air, out of the hall.
"Our lord! They are stealing our lord!" the rats cried, sobbing, grief-stricken, for they knew that there was nothing they
could do any longer. The board in the ceiling was replaced with a great, ominous boom. Lord Elrond was gone from Rodentell.
Elrohir held the tiny, struggling Elf-lord up in front of his face. "Yep, it's Ada alright!" he said cheerfully.
"You put me back there right this minute, young elf!" Elrond shouted, flailing his tiny fists.
"Sorry, no can do," Elladan apologized. "Sprite and Sake already glued the board in place. Can't take it off anymore!"
Elrond fumed. He was still hanging in mid-air, Elrohir holding the back of his robes. "Well then," Elrond said primly,
folding him arms. "What are you going to do with me?"
"Nothing you won't object to," Elrohir assured him. With that, he dropped his father into his pocket, and stood up. "Shall
we go?" he said to his brother and Sprite and Sake. The four of them were the only ones who were in the kitchen; everyone
else was preparing for what came next.
"Sure!" said Sprite, scrambling to her feel. Sake followed with considerable more reluctance. She was still dubious about
changing Elrond back to his normal size, but had gone along with it because she was outnumbered seven to one, anyways. She
and Sprite followed the Twins out of the kitchens, and they made their way up to Elrond's study.
There they found the rest of the gang, Legolas, Aldawen, Figwit, and Glorfindel. The infamous copy of 'Learning Magic with
Harry Potter' lay open on the table. "Did you get him?" asked Legolas as they entered the room.
"Sure did," Elrohir said, patting his pocket. Aldawen giggled.
"Let's see him," Glorfindel said, and Elrohir pulled the Elf-lord out of his pocket, and dangled him in the air for all
to see. Elrond caught sight of Aldawen.
"Two-faced traitor!" he screamed at her. "How dare you betray me?"
"I never said I'd work for you!" spat Aldawen. "Get over yourself!"
"Are we ready?" asked Figwit.
"Yep," replied Glorfindel, rolling up his sleeves.
"Will you do the honours?" inquired Figwit.
"With pleasure," answered Glorfindel, smiling grimly. He nodded at Elrohir, who dropped Elrond on Elrond's favourite arm
"What are you going to do to me?" cried the lord of Imladris.
Glorfindel pointed a finger at Elrond. "Elfius Restorus!" he cried, in a loud, commanding voice."
There was a flash of light-
and there was Elrond, full-sized, sitting in his armchair, looking bewildered.
He looked wildly at the faces surrounding him. Everything seemed so much smaller! Elrond then did the only thing that it
seemed reasonable to do that that moment. He screamed.
"Ack, Ada, will you shut up?" shouted Elladan.
"What have you done to me?" shrieked Elrond. He leapt to his feet, and then fell over. He wasn't used to being this heavy.
"Rivendell can't function without you, my Lord," Glorfindel said. He walked over and held out a hand to Elrond. "We needed
to bring you back."
Elrond stared at the hand as though he'd never seen anything quite like it. Slowly, he grasped it, and Glorfindel pulled
him to his feet. "Welcome back, my lord," he said, smiling.
Elrond frowned. "I don't suppose you're going to apologize for what you did..." he mused.
"Nope, sorry," Elrohir said. "But you can thank us for un-shrinking you!" Elrond glared at him.
Suddenly the door burst open and Arwen ran in. "ADA!" she cried, and flung herself into his arms.
"What a welcome!" he said, smiling warmly at his youngest child. Then he looked back up at the others in the room. "But
now I must deal with all of you!"
Sprite blinked back tears. Elrond was sending her home.
Not just her, but Sake and Aldawen as well. He had decided that they'd been in Middle-earth long enough, and it was time
for them to return to their own world.
"Spend this night," he had told them, "with those you love. In the morning when you awake, you will no longer be in Rivendell."
Sprite curled up next to Figwit as they sat next to the fire in his room. "I don't want to leave you," she murmured into
"I know," he said softly, his voice heavy with sorrow. "I don't want you to, either. But it is Lord Elrond's decree." He
sighed, and stroked her hair. "It is a just punishment."
Elrond had insisted that while what they had done to him was unpardonable, he was not going to punish them. Of course,
right after that, he'd announced his decision to send the girls home, and they all knew the reason for it.
"I love Middle-earth," Sprite said. "I love Rivendell, I love you. Back home, I'll be on my own, and have to go university,
and deal with a faulty laptop. Life here is so much simpler."
"All good things must pass," Figwit said, tears glittering in his eyes as well. "You are young, Sprite. You have your whole
life ahead of you. Live it to the fullest."
"Alone!" Sprite said bitterly, and let the tears come. Figwit lifted her chin and kissed her.
"You need to sleep," he told her, wishing it were not so. Sprite snuggled up to Figwit, his arms around her, and slowly
drifted off to sleep.
The sun rose over Imladris. And with it came a new day.