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Section LXXX-Final Night In Lothlórien

This night is our last in fair Lothlórien. Lord Celeborn and Lady Galadriel requested a final council with our Company. The decision is made: We must resume our journey; there is no point in remaining, but still, so many decisions must be made...

In truth, only one choice besets my heart. The Lady reveals the desire of every member to move forward, but chooses to tell no one of my need to go on alone; it seems the task is left to me... How do I tell them? What do I say?

Legolas spends this final night with us, as a council of our own is held. The debate continues for some time; do we journey to the West and Minas Tirith or to the East and Mordor...

Most of the company prefers to head West, to Minas Tirith, not the least of which is Boromir. He watches me closely; mayhap in an effort to discern my own thoughts on the matter. He speaks boldly his own feelings but suddenly stumbles over his words... I do not know how I know; I only know his words hide the truth. He voices concern over the folly of throwing away lives, but in my heart I know he thinks of the Ring. Has he forgotten Lord Elrond’s warning?

Aragorn says little, but my heart whispers he is undecided. He desires to follow Boromir and fill the destiny to which he was born, and yet he is bound to me by his word...

For myself, there is no choice but East... but as the discussion continues, I find myself remaining silent. What is the point? My path is clear, so to speak. I struggle not to mock myself. Yes, my way leads to Mordor, but how do I get there from here? How will I find Mt. Doom on my own? I know nothing of what is ahead of me. It seems impossible, yet the Lady of Light assured me I could find a way.

I relive our conversation -- was it only earlier today? -- suddenly I doubt. What if this endeavor is truly hopeless? But if I fail, then the Shire, Rivendell, Lothlórien... all will be lost. I must make the attempt.

Mayhap it is not intended I go on alone just yet, is it? Why aid us all in moving forward, if I was meant to go alone now... but no, they did not want us here to begin with... I think too much. We have been treated as honoured guests.

I choose to believe for the moment it is best we travel together, for a time. With the gift of the boats, at least the question of how to press forward is settled.

But when do I continue on my own? Where will our paths divide? How will I know it is time to part from the Company?

I gaze at each member of the Fellowship in turn. Memories flood my mind of moments shared in camaraderie, battle, and grief. I would not have survived this far without them. I shall never be able to repay the debt I owe them.

Alone... The Lady of Light told me I must go on alone... or all the Fellowship will be lost...

But how? How do I leave my kin, my protectors, my friends, behind?