The river now lies behind us and the mountains are rising to meet us. The farmlands are giving way to woodlands and there are fewer elves about. No doubt most of them are archers and were called up long ago.
For the first time we had to show Nililitil’s passport. A barrier had been placed athwart the road and guarded by the largest elves I have ever seen. The passport proved its worth. They ushered us through and bid us all speed.
Rumble commented afterwards that they seemed on edge, constantly scanning the skies towards the north.
Just after that experience, we had a message from the High Fairy. He has arrived in Dromadil. The Laguayilian armies are arriving and Merlin is already there. The Faerie Queen’s forces will be there soon. He was optimistic and reported that all was quiet across the lake.
Even so I cannot shake a growing sense of forboding.
That and Rumble thought he saw black birds flitting around in the woods.