Rambling Band part II –MSTed


By: Acacia Onna Stik


* * *


DISCLAIMER: I own nothing and no one belonging to J.R.R. Tolkien or in Lord of the Rings nor any of the songs by Led Zeppelin and Heart. This story is meant to be in the text of pure fandom of both rock and roll and Mr. Tolkien's momentous and beautiful works. I'm not profiting from this in any monetary fashion. It's merely an expression of love.


Rambling Band


By Queen of Rock


Chapter Two: Lost and Found in Middle Earth


Acacia: Why couldn't they just stay lost?

Renn: They could go on the quest to find the Other Sock.  That would be nice.


Voices hover around Laurel. Her head is spinning and her eyes won't open. She hears Geoff and Cole nearby.


"Laurel? Can you hear me?


Serilda: If you can't, don't answer. You'll just cause this fic to make even less sense.


It's Geoff."


Laurel's lashes flutter as her brother's voice fades out. Strong hands pick her up and sling her over a broad shoulder. A deep voice vibrates in her eardrums, one she did not recognize.


Acacia: (catches Serilda as she faints from tense disturbance) The tenses are not strong with this one.

Serilda: (wakes up) …How many more chapters?

Renn: This is only chapter two. There are thirteen.

(All flinch as the bleak horror sets in)


"She'll be fine.


Acacia: Damn.


We have business to attend to nearby in Rivendell; our friend was stricken ill and has been sent ahead of us.


Renn: "Stricken ill"?  That's an odd way to put it…


We will reach it in a day and the lady will rest comfortably there. She should come through soon. However it is important that we keep going until then, I fear danger is ahead and being held at bay."


The sounds around Laurel lull her into a strange state; birds and new voices, water and trees.


Serilda: So which state has those, then?

Renn: All of them, I think. Unless you've met everyone in the whole state. Then there wouldn't be new voices. But who's ever done that?


"Oh, I think she's coming to.


Acacia: Damn!


Sam, go get some water."


Laurel opens her eyes to see two faces peering eagerly at her.


Serilda: But no bodies.


She blinks a few more times. She was in a forest?


Renn: Serilda, just ignore the tenses…


As her pupils began to settle in focus,


Serilda: Now class, settle down! (claps hands)

Renn: Eerily appropriate.


Laurel's brain once again connects with her vision. Two small men sit before her waiting for her to speak.


Serilda: (singing) 'Cause I am hanging, on every word you say, and, even if you don't want to speak tonight that's all right, all right with me... (stops singing) Actually I'd prefer you didn't speak…


Laurel breathes and raises a hand to her head, "Geoff? Cole?"


Acacia: Yes.  They magically became shorter and more interesting.


One smiles at her "There, there Lady Laurel. They went with Strider to make sure the Wraiths aren't near. But we're here. I'm Meriadoc Brandybuck and this is Peregrin Took. But we answer to Merry and Pippin."


Serilda: I don't even have anything to say about that. This is just bad…


Laurel looks to the man left of her and giggles weakly, "Little men."


Acacia (Laurel): Pink elephants.


The one who answers to Pippin shakes his head, "We're Hobbits."


Laurel smiles wryly, "Alright, where's Geoff so I can tell him what I think about all of his Hobos."


(All groan)


The one who answers to Merry shakes his head, "Not Hobos, lady. Hobbits. We come from the Shire."


Acacia: How out of character is that? (slams palm into forehead)


Laurel jumps upward like a spooked horse and spins around, "Oh, no. I'm hallucinating, I might even be dead."


Acacia: Of COURSE you're flipping dead, I KILLED you ALREADY! Be DEAD, dammit! DEAD!

Renn (John Cleese): Pass on! Be no more! Cease to be! Expire and go to meet your maker! Be a stiff! Bereft of life, rest in peace! Go off the twig! Kick the bucket, shuffle off your mortal coil, run down the curtain and join the bleedin' Choir Invisible! BE AN EX-MARY-SUE!

Serilda: There, there, dear.

Acacia: What does it TAKE for these IDIOTS to STAY DEAD?!

Serilda: Large rock?

Acacia: But she was eaten!

Renn: This is before that happened, dear.


At that moment, Laurel hears her brother's voice from the edge of the forest. She stops and screams, "Geoffrey!"


Serilda: So is it Geoff or Geoffrey? Make up your mind!

Lux: Herro! ... (looks around)… wrong MST… (poofs)

Acacia: No.  NO!  It's bad enough having to deal with her at work.


Soon after her cry, a hand takes her by the waist and another hand covers her mouth.


Renn: So she can't talk?

Acacia: Thank gods…

Serilda: "Soon after?"  Shouldn't it have been immediately after?  Or she would have kept screaming?

Renn: You're trying to make it make sense, Serilda

Serilda: Ah.  Yes.  My mistake.


"Sshh. I mean no harm Lady, but we cannot afford to draw attention to ourselves. Your brother is safe. Your friend is safe. You are safe."


Acacia: Unfortunately.


Laurel stiffens under the stranger's grasp. He then lets her go and sits her back on the ground. Laurel looks up to see a man with longish brown hair and blue eyes. He seems threatening, yet his grip is gentle. However, it is enough to scare Laurel into silence.


Rustling came from behind her as well as a familiar voice, "Laurel."


(Serilda opens her mouth to comment, but decides against it.)


Laurel turns to see her brother and Cole and rises swiftly to her feet. She throws an arm around each of them and hugs them close, "I'm so glad to see you both."


Renn: Quit hurling extremities! It impresses no one!

Serilda: (reluctantly) That is standard usage.

(Renn and Acacia glare)


Another rustling breaks their embrace


Renn: (makes breaking-glass noises)

Acacia: (hopefully) Don't broken things have sharp edges?

Serilda: Only glass, and sometimes pottery. And some other stuff.


and the strange man's hand goes instinctively to his hip and rests on the hilt of his broad sword. Laurel clutches Geoff and Cole by their shoulders as her breath pounds at the walls of her throat.


Renn (breath): Lemme out! I don't want to have to stay in here forever!


Another little man, a Hobbit, comes bounding through the brush carrying a bowl full of water.


Renn: And how did it not spill?

Acacia: Magical Mary Sue powers.


"Is she awake?


Acacia: Sadly, yes. I wish she was still asleep. Forever.


I've got the water!"


Renn (Sam): to drown her with.


Merry and Pippin breathe a deep sigh of relief. The tall man relaxes his hand and nods, "Thank you, Sam. I'm sure the Lady will appreciate it."


Serilda: So now they're capitalizing her?

Renn: That would make her a goddess. Typical Mary Sue behavior.


The Hobbit steps gently to Laurel, reaching the bowl to her,


Serilda: I will not begin to describe what is wrong with that sentence.


"Here. Have a drink, it will help."


Renn: With what?

Serilda: With her grammar?

Acacia: We can only hope.


Laurel extends her hand and takes the bowl from Sam with a weak smile, "Thanks."


Serilda: Obviously not.

Renn: She hasn't drunk it yet.


Geoff sits down and Laurel follows. Soon everyone is sitting, all eager to recount the recent events that have brought them all together. Laurel sips from the bowl with a look of sheer disbelief awash on her face.


Acacia: A look… awash? (blinks)

Serilda: (slumps) Obviously it didn't help her grammar.


She then looks to Geoff and Cole, and then to the Hobbits, her eyes finally resting on the man.


"I don't understand.


Acacia: That would be because you're a useless, pointless, brainless, cardboard, uninteresting, two-dimensional Mary Sue in a plotless fic and you have an IQ of THREE!


What happened? Where is the van?"


Renn: The van got sick of you and ran away.


Geoff points behind them; "The van is now a burned up wreck, back there. Cole and I were found by Merry, Sam, Pippin and Strider, they are on their way to Rivendell, to see the Elves."


Serilda: Quit with the run-ons! Please!

Renn: A colon. A semicolon. A period. Something besides a comma! It's not the catchall punctuation mark!


Laurel swallows a sip of water hard and coughs, "Elves. Are you sure that we aren't dead?"


Acacia: No. See, you are dead. I shot you. Your body got eaten. SO BE DEAD!

Renn: (alarmed) Acacia! Calm down!

Serilda: I think I'm more disturbed that she thinks there are Elves in the afterlife. If Mary Sues go to Middle-earth when they die…

Acacia: It would certainly explain why they never go away.

Renn: It's a scary thought…


The strange man, now known to Laurel as Strider, speaks in a calming tone, "I assure you, maiden.


Serilda: Only, she's not a maiden. She's a slut!


You are alive and in Middle Earth. The most important question is; is Middle Earth where you're meant to be?"


All: NO!


Geoff sighs heavily, "No. We came here by accident."


Sam looks as confused as the rest of the group,


Serilda: And the reader…


"So, Mister Geoff. How is it you came here? And how did you survive?"


Acacia (Geoff): Sue power.


Geoff shrugs, "I don't know."


Strider shifts his weight; "We should concentrate on Rivendell, for the moment. Once we reach it, we can consult Lord Elrond; he may have an idea of what to do. Our friend, Frodo, is seeking help from Elvish medicine; the Lady can have her wounds treated as well."




Laurel looks to Cole, "Wounds? I have wounds?"


Acacia: Yes. Want more?


Cole points to her leg; "You have quite a gash on your calf, Rel. Strider bandaged it up."


Laurel looks to her leg, her leather pants are ripped


Serilda: I don't want to know where, or how, or for that matter who.


and a makeshift bandage protrudes from the seam. Laurel's head swims in thoughts


Renn: Bet it's never encountered those before…


and muddled memories. What has happened? This place. these people. can't be real.


Serilda: This grammar. This spelling. This story. Can't be real.


Strider's voice brings her back from the recesses of her mind,


Acacia: It wasn't that far to go.


"Are you fit to walk, lady?"


Acacia: A better question might be, "Are you fit to exist?"


Laurel nods, "I think so. Please, don't call me 'lady.' I am more likely to answer to Laurel."


Renn: Or, for some reason, Rel.


Strider nods solemnly as he and the Hobbits turn to lead the way to Rivendell. Laurel takes an unsure step and grimaces; "Why in the hell did I wear these damned boots?"


Serilda: Don't look at us, we don't know…

Acacia: To twist your ankle and fall into the arms of whosoever you may choose?

Renn: i.e., Legolas?

Acacia: (darkly) And Boromir…

Serilda: Slut!


Cole and Geoff give each other a knowing smile as Cole bends down and motions for Laurel to climb on his back. She can't help but giggle as she holds on to his shoulders, "A piggy-back ride, huh? I haven't had one of these since I was six."


Cole grins, "Anything for a damsel in distress, lady."


Serilda: O.O Is she sleeping with him? Isn't he her brother, or is that Geoff?


Laurel pulls at one of his ears, "Ha-ha. Very funny."


Serilda: …oh. It was supposed to be funny.

Renn: I really couldn't tell.


They follow the four down a hill for an hour, at which point Laurel begins to search her jacket pockets for her cigarettes and lighter, "Shit. They're gone. What I wouldn't do for a smoke right now."


Serilda: Use good grammar? (hopefully)

Renn (Laurel): That's what I wouldn't do for a smoke right now.


As the words tumble from her lips, Merry and Pippin appear at her left side. Merry grins broadly, "You smoke?"


Laurel smiles, "Frequently. Just don't tell my mother."


Serilda: o.O

Renn: What a convincing "bad girl"…


Pippin points ahead in the darkness, "We are almost to Rivendell. Merry, Sam, and I brought our pipes and the finest weed in the Shire, if you want to join us."


Laurel's mouth drops and she turns to her right to see Geoff, "You didn't tell me that Hobbits smoke pot! Is that why you liked the stories so much?"


Acacia: Probably.


Geoff smiles and whispers, "Chill out, Rel. It's Pipe Weed. It's their version of tobacco."


Serilda: Riiiight.

Renn: In this story?


Laurel and Cole look at him sideways like a two-headed creature and say in unison, "Sure it is."


Strider stops ahead before a sizeable river. Cole carries Laurel to its edge where Strider points across to the other side where a pale woman with long, dark hair waves to them. Strider sighs, "The Lady Arwen waits to escort us to Rivendell.


Serilda: So, it's movieverse. But… that can't be right, because…

Acacia: This is why we killed her.


How are you holding up, Cole? Can you carry Laurel for just a bit longer?"


Cole shrugs non-chalantly, "Yeah, I'm fine."


Serilda: So stuck-up.


Strider pats him on the shoulder and starts across the river followed by the Hobbits. Laurel looks to Geoff with a quizzical expression, "Who is Arwen?"


Geoff walks beside Cole and into the chilly water, "Arwen is Elrond's daughter. She's an elf."


Laurel nods "Oh."


Serilda: Bad… grammar… I CAN'T TAKE IT ANY MORE!

Renn: (comfortingly) Don't worry… it'll be okay…


Geoff grins, "She's Strider's girlfriend."


Laurel nods knowingly, "Oh! So that is what that sigh was all bout."


Geoff whispers, "That's nothing. Elves are immortal. She'll bind herself to him and lose her immortality."


Acacia: And this is relevant information that Laurel wanted or needed to know why?


Cole shivers in the water, "Dude, that's heavy."


Serilda: (chokes)


Laurel nods in agreement, "Totally heavy."


They finally reach the shore where Arwen waits, draped in beautiful, white Elven finery. Her blue eyes fix on Strider, "We have been waiting for you."


Renn: Did she have blue eyes? I know in the book she didn't, but did she have blue eyes in the movie?


Strider discreetly takes her hand in his and speaks in Elvish, "How is Frodo?"


Arwen sighs deeply, yet calmly, "My father reached him in just enough time. He is resting inside with Gandalf."


Strider looks down at the beautiful elf, "Gandalf found himself in great danger?"


Acacia: Did anything anyone said give that impression? Is there any way he could know? NO!


Arwen nods, "Yes, he was kept prisoner and betrayed by Saruman.


Serilda: Would she know?

Renn: Well, I don't think so.


I am sure he will tell you more tomorrow at the council."


Strider looks to Rivendell, "And what of the others? Have they arrived yet?"


Acacia: What others?


Arwen glances toward the three strangers and answers in Elvish, "They arrive in the morning; but I must ask who are the strangers that you have brought?"


All: Good question!


Strider looks behind and motions for the three to step forward. When they reach Arwen and Strider, Cole places Laurel on the ground. Strider pats Geoff on the shoulder; "This is Geoff, Cole, and the Lady Laurel.


Serilda: (facefault)


They come from far away and find themselves lost in Middle Earth. They come to seek counsel from your father, and Laurel is quite injured."


Acacia: Good!


Arwen nods, "I am sure my father will be intrigued. For tonight, however, you all may rest easy in the House of Elrond."


Arwen takes Laurel by the hand, "Come, maiden,


Serilda: But she's not a maiden!


I will help you to get mended and settled. The Ranger will take the others to their rooms. I am sure that the Hobbits wish to see Frodo."


Renn: But… wait… isn't Frodo right there with them? As in, they can see him right now?


Laurel waves and allows herself to be lead away by the elf, who was much taller than she.