Journey to the Land of the Horselord, Part 1 Rochiriel angrily tossed her riding gloves on the table as she entered her home. She couldn't imagine how she had been so unlucky as to be selected for this particular assignment. Her father was the Horselord--didn't that count for anything? And she herself had been a member of the Elven Horse Guard for the city ever since she had reached the age of 200. Her record of service was good, she was certainly in good standing.....so why was she being sent away? And not just away, but south to some undistinguished hovel outside Skara Brae that supposedly housed an Embassy of the Exiles of Gondolin. Well, it had to be a pretty poor embassy, she thought, to be housed in a hut on the outskirts of civilization! So they needed a liason with this pitiful embassy, why did it have to be her? Exiles of Gondolin indeed--she felt as though she herself were being exiled. And the ambassador, himself? All she knew was his name--Santee. Probably some over-weight, effete, bookish diplomat, deluded as to his own importance and exceedingly dull. She was prepared to dislike him thoroughly. And he appeared not even to have much of a retinue--not important enough in his own world to be properly outfitted and escourted to a foreign realm. Rochiriel fumed. How could her father have allowed them to send her away?...away from her family, her friends, the great Elven city, with its elegant buildings, exquisite craftsmanship, well-stocked shops, cultural centers and......and entertainment! Such a humiliatingly unimportant assignment--liason to an embassy from nowhere! She packed her saddebags with practical items for the trip, armor, weapons, a few supplies for the road. She opened the carved chest and eyed the lovely gowns and jewels stored within, and promptly slammed the lid shut--she wouldn't be needing those where she was going! Well, they would all be sorry when she was gone. And this ambassador?--Well, he'd be sorry when she arrived! Rochiriel threw the saddlebags across the back of the horse, mounted, and rode toward the bank in the center of town. She dismouned, and strode toward the building lost in a black fume of anger. On her way inside the door, she rudely brushed past a young man dressed totally in glaring blaze cloth by the name of JimTheBrave. He stared after her. Turning, she glared back and said, "What are you looking at? Is my hair feather crooked or something??!!?" She stormed into the bank, withdrew enough gold to fund her trip, and rode toward the royal stables to confront the Horselord himself. Her father was consulting someone on the purchase of new horses for the Guard, but he looked up and smiled when she banged the door of his office shut. "What do you MEAN....sending me off to....to.....!" But he held up his hand, forstalling her tirade. "Rochiriel, my dear, I specifically asked that you be given this assignment." "You... you, WHAT......???" The Horselord smiled indulgently at his daughter, "My dear one, it will do you a world of good. And before you leave, you should adjust the feather in your hair....it's crooked." Rochiriel slammed the door again as she left, remounted her horse and rode south toward Skara Brae.