This is my first fanfiction ever, so reviews would be very helpful. I don't mind people pointing out flaws (and there will be some, I'm posting without a beta), but I don't want to hear about how horrible it is. No flames, please.

Disclaimer: anything that you recognise from LOTR belongs to Tolkien. I do, however, claim the rights to my characters and the race of NightSong elves.

I played around with the history of the werewolves, just a little bit, so that it fit my story, 'cause Tolkien did not leave any room for good werewolves, or breeds. Also, I am quite unfamiliar with most of Tolkien's characters, especially Glorfindel. If I messed up, help me un-mess up, please.

"This is someone talking out loud."-"This is someone speaking telepathically."-This is someone thinking.

Chapter 1

Western edge of Mirkwood, nearing the edge of the Misty Mountain range

Rain fell in heavy sheets from the dark sky; the occasional flash of lightning illuminated the tops of the trees, but provided no light under the thick canopy of the ancient oaks, pines and maples. The icy wind howled, carrying the screams of orcs as they swarmed beneath the sighing boughs. A black and silver she-wolf, abnormally tall and lithely shaped, paced just ahead of the enraged pack. She dashed and wove, turning right and left, trying to find a way to bypass the mob, but every time she got near the flanks, the orcs would shoot a few arrows at her, and turn her back to their path. Some of the arrows struck home, and each one brought a cry of pain from the beautiful creature, as she threw her head back and up, her legs skittering, but never breaking pace. She knew with her whole body that if she were to turn back and face the hordes, she would not survive. So she raced on, as fast as her weary legs could run, sometimes leaping over obstacles, or turning to look over her shoulder at the approaching enemy.

The orcs turned, angling the hunt towards a gorge. The sound of running water reached long, pointed ears as they neared the river, the name of which she knew only later, though the scent was familiar to her. The wolf skidded to a stop a few feet from the edge, and glanced around. The canyon was too wide even for her to jump across, and the orcs pressed in on the sides to prevent her from running alongside the river. The water itself was deep but full of large boulders. The cliffs were shear and devoid of any ledges or out-crops.

The orcs poured through the trees, stomping saplings and breaking low branches. The she-wolf whined through her nose, high and whistley, to hear the trees crying their pain to any who would listen. As the orcs moved in closer, they drew their weapons and started shouting obscenities. The she-wolf snarled, swinging her head back and forth, thick hackles raised and tail puffed, glaring her hatred at the monstrosities. Surrounded on three sides by orcs and to the back by a large, water-filled canyon, she had nowhere to go. She stood tall, not cowering, and pricked her ears forward. She bared her teeth further, the full five and a half inches showing through midnight blue gums. Her eyes glinted with angry metallic fire. Only the quiver in her unusually long and dexterous tail gave away her fear and exhaustion. Her rumbling snarl made the thunder sound weak, to the orcs at least. They were not expecting their quarry to have such a change of heart.

Somewhat wary, the orcs made a hasty change of plans. They ushered the archers to the front lines, and on the leaders command they, all twenty three that were left, drew and knocked an arrow. The orc leader, a large Uruk-Hai with an old scar slashing through the place where his left eye had been, stared lopsidedly into the wolf's pupil less, swirling copper eyes as he gave the command to aim. At the harsh word, the she-wolf laid her ears back and lowered her lips a little bit. The orcs weren't the only ones who could have a change of plan.

She glanced quickly around. It was the only warning the orcs got before she leaped.

Off the edge of the ravine.

The Uruk shouted "Fire!" as soon as her feet left the ground, but the only reward the orcs got was a muffled thump and a pained yelp as the huge black creature disappeared over the side of the cliff. They all rushed to the edge to see if it was still alive, but in those few seconds, the wolf was swept downstream, out of bow range, and the disappointed orcs could see the she-wolf swimming in a cloud of bloody, vibrant blue-purple water, heading towards a no-go place that any orc in its right mind knew to avoid: Rivendell, one of the last havens of the elves.

The wolf swam for hours, the rain and river making it hard for her to hear when the rocks would rear out of the water. As a result, she got jostled quite badly. Evert time she crashed into one of the large stones, arrows would drive in deeper and snap, leaving the poor animal crying and gasping, and choking on water.

Eventually, the river grew calmer, and the rocks fewer. When her feebly churning paws reached the bottom of the riverbed at the Bruinen ford, she could barely drag herself out of the water. Her sodden fur hung heavy on her, the water running off cobalt blue from the arrow wounds to her neck, abdomen, haunches and shoulders. Her slender frame was wracked with shivers and she stumbled away from the river. She had escaped the orcs, but she wasn't out of danger yet. Her only hope lay with the elves.

She limped slowly, painfully up the path to Rivendell. Dawn was not far off, and a warm wind made her feel un-naturally sleepy. When she reached the slender elf-bridge that spanned a deep, rocky stream bed, she paused for a moment to gather her strength before dashing across. The effort left her panting, which turned to hacking as she walked on towards the city that stood glistening, to her eyes, in the pale, pre-dawn light.

The sun was just cresting the peaks, touching the broken up clouds with pale purple and gold and rose pink when the wolf finally collapsed with a whimper to the smooth cobblestones outside the pearly gates. It was only moments later that the Twins, who had come to open the gates, first found her lying there, bleeding all over their doorstep.

"Lord Elrond, come quickly! Your medical assistance is urgently needed!" Identical twins Eladan and Elrohir charged through the door to their fathers' library. Elrond looked up from his book quickly.

"Where? What is wrong?" he said urgently, his ageless face showing alarm and concern. It was only just sunrise, and someone had hurt himself badly already? He hoped it wasn't an omen for what the rest of his day would look like.

"The outer gate," Elrohir said hurriedly. "Please hurry, Adar!" Eladan finished for his twin. "It's an emergency!" they both yelled over their shoulders as they dashed back down the hall to find Glorfindel and the other healers. Elrond rushed to get the medical kit from the desk across the room, quickly dog-earing his page. It was an unspoken agreement between the three, if the twins used the word 'emergency' in a sentence, then it really was an emergency. His robes and hair fluttered out behind him as he dashed down the hall towards the gate.

Elrond skidded to a stop in surprise just around the bend of the gate. Lying on its side in a slowly spreading pool of its own strange blood, barely breathing except to make a high pitched whine of canine agony, was the single largest wolf Elrond Half-Elven had ever seen. Larger even than the wargs that the goblins sometimes rode, the beast in front of him was easily as big as one of the largest horses in the stable. It was far more beautiful than any warg either, with silver tipped ebony fur covering it thickly, particularly around the neck, back and tail. It was proportioned oddly too, with big, slanted eyes, a long, tapered and sharply pointed snout, large ears, long, slender legs, a body shaped more like a racing hound than a wolf, and a tail like a very furry cats. It was clearly alive, but fading fast. The in-breaths it took grated and rattled, clearly full of fluid, and watery blue-purple blood trickled from its nose and mouth. Its fur was damp from being in the river, but oddly enough, there were fresh tear tracks flattening the fur of its cheeks, a totally unheard-of trait in any of the Less-Sentient races.

Elrond snapped himself out of his shock. In three quick strides, he was beside the animals head, which was nearly as wide as his shoulders. Its eyes followed his movements blearily, as though it could not see, but wanted to desperately. He knelt by the beasts neck, placing a comforting hand on the powerful shoulder and whispering soothing nothings to it. He ran his hands over the long front legs, feeling for breaks or sprains. He knew very well that there were many worse and more serious wounds that needed urgent attention, but they would have to go elsewhere to treat them. He needed to see if the wolf could walk at all. To his dismay, the right foreleg was shattered in at least three places. When Elrond gently touched the fractures, the wolf cried.

"No! Do not touch! Too much pain!" Elrond jumped. She (her voice was unmistakeably female) had spoken with telepathy, strait to his mind. It was an almost unheard of trait, even among the elves. She hadn't spoken like that in a long time, either, for her sentences were un-formed.

The twins arrived, trailing Glorfindel and three healers and apprentices. They all had expressions of shock on their face, Glorfindel's likely the greatest. "Werewolf," he whispered, shaking his blonde head. "I thought they were all gone."

"Werewolf?" Elrond turned to face them, standing up as he did so.

"Be wary, my lord," Glorfindel shifted forward and to the side, circling to the she-wolfs back. "They are extremely aggressive."

"And horribly wounded. Relax, friend, and help me move her." The healers, and the apprentice, rushed to unfold a large tarp. They talked softly to themselves as they worked, about Glorfindel's reaction to the 'werewolf', whatever that meant.

Once the tarp was spread and strung between two long poles, all seven elves dragged the she-wolf to the blankets laid out in the middle, to provide support. As Glorfindel warned Elrond, she weighed very little, no more than a solidly built human. She was long, though, so even when the elves hefted the poles onto their shoulders, her head, tail and hind feet were nearly dragging the ground.

(three days later, dusk, the healing houses)

"So, what makes a werewolf, a werewolf?" Elrond finally asked Glorfindel. For all his vast knowledge, it appeared that there were holes, and he felt compelled to fill them.

"Hmm," Glorfindel said distractedly, and he looked up from his seat by the fireplace, lifting his chin from his hand and meeting Elrond's eyes. "I don't understand the question. Do you want to know how they were born? Or what sets them apart the other races?"

Elrond nodded his head thoughtfully, and then said, "Both. I want to know all that you know."

So Glorfindel went on to tell the story of the werewolves, explaining that in the first Age of Sun, there came a race of tortured spirits who were the thralls of Melkor. He was not sure whether they were Maiar spirits who once served Melkor in Utumno and were shorn by the Valar from their earthly forms, or if they were evil beings of another kind. He suspected that they were actually captured peoples of the different races, elves, dwarves and Men. He knew for a fact, though, that these evil spirits entered the form of wolves through sorcery. A great holocaust, a mass conversion spell, turned any soul who harboured any malice towards the goodly races into a wolf /original form monster.

In wolf form, he said animatedly, gesturing with his hands, they were as large as bulls, and considerably stronger, serving as the cavalry of Saurons first army. In their humanoid form, which they could return to at will, they were taller than even the tallest of their races standards, and stronger. They maintained several wolfish traits while in the weaker form: their canine teeth were always sharp, and they had full mobility of their ears. Their eyes were also unchanged, still glowing with evil. They could growl and snarl, and still behaved much like wolves, even to the point of it not mattering what shape they were in, they would fight each other for leadership. While in wolf form, they also maintained traits from the other side: a dwarf spirit might be stouter and red furred, and maybe a bit uglier. An elf spirit might have gold fur, be more lithely shaped, with a horrible beauty about them. And a Man might be heavier built, stronger than an elf spirit, but taller than a dwarf.

Glorfindel reminded Elrond, "We fought them in the war of the ring, remember?" The younger lord did, now that he thought about it. The great beasts had been exceedingly difficult to kill, taking hard hits without flinching, and running through the ranks of elves and men. But the creature lying at their feet, flanked out on the stones of the healing houses floor, did not totally fit the description Glorfindel had given. Size, yes. Power, he had yet to see her in action, but he suspected yes. Evil? No, or the river would never have let her up to the gates. The general form would fit the description of a much exaggerated elf spirit, but the proportions were wrong in the tail, body and legs. And her half-open eyes were not glowing at all. They were bright emerald green, unusual anywhere, but not impossible. And anyway, he knew of no elves that had silver-black hair. He shook his head slightly and watched her breathing, heavy with a fever and pneumonic illness.

It had taken himself, Glorfindel, the Twins and no less than thirteen healers to remove thirty six deeply embedded and shattered arrows, set three broken bones, and repair the damage done to her lungs. Elrond was amazed that the she-wolf was even alive. She had been through an extreme bout of trauma, exhaustion and pain, then lost nearly a third of the blood in her body. Glorfindel didn't show it, but he was surprised, too. Many a wolf had died at their hands, from far lesser wounds. This one wanted to live.

They both started when, four hours after sunset, the she-wolf groaned. The two elves had been quietly considering whether their vigil would turn into a death watch, and contemplating retiring to their beds, when she became suddenly active. Her long legs scrabbled at the ground, and she twisted her head back, making a painful keening whine through her nose.

"Seizure?" Glorfindel asked Elrond urgently, moving to stand up.

"No," Elrond was confused. The symptoms were almost those of a seizure, but victims couldn't make any sounds further than muffled grunting, and it only happened to those with a bad head injury. "I don't know what's wrong."

He stepped forward, keeping low behind her back. The she-wolfs ears were almost flat to her ruff; her head was thrown so far back. Elrond placed a hand on her heaving flanks, trying to get a feel for what was going on.

"Cover me," Elrond nearly leaped out of his skin, he was so startled. "It's just the change, I'm fine, but in less than an hour, I will be in quite a compromising state. Please, cover me." She was pleading, at the end. Elrond looked at Glorfindel in amazement, and terror. The golden haired warrior was already holding a heavy crochet blanket. He threw it over her body, and all they all breathed a sigh of relief that it was large enough to cover the ground around her. With one last shiver and a deep sigh, she lay still. Elrond gently placed a hand under her muzzle and the other under her ear and moved her head to a more natural angle from her shoulders. Her fur was so soft, like glistening black down. She was still warm, but no longer feverish. Her alert eyes were soft with gratitude.

"Thank you…" she said, softly, as her eyelids fluttered sleepily. Elrond and Glorfindel both smiled faintly, but both flinched as a loud crack sounded from under the blanket. The she-wolf cried quietly, but said "I'm fine. It hurts, but I'm fine." Both men figured that she would know best, so they trusted her words.

What she said was true; fifty three minutes later, her shape wan almost elf-like. Both males winced in shared pain when they heard her spine crackling, and then with a final shudder of relief, she lay still. She didn't appear to have completed the change, though. Her skin was as black as her under-fur had been, and her hands had only three fingers and a thumb. She had four toes, too, and her heels clearly functioned the same way a wolf's did. She panted for a moment, her exposed fangs half as long as they were, but still jagged like a bread knife, then rolled on to her side and curled into a ball, pulling the blanket tight around her. Tears the colour of liquid gold rolled over her sharp cheekbones and fell to the floor. She lay like that for a long time.

Dawn was seven hours from arriving when she sighed in mild annoyance and flicked the blanket off her shoulders. She sat up, sitting cross legged on the ground, and pulled the heavy material around her like a shawl, leaving her arms free. She reached behind her neck and pulled her hair free. It glistened metallic silver in the light of the fire, and was very long. She dropped her hands back to her lap, and Glorfindel and Elrond could see them shaking. She rested with her head bowed for a moment, then made the move she had intended from the beginning. She lifted her long, four jointed fingers towards her ears, which were hidden by her heavy tresses, and freed them of her glinting, metallic silver hair.

If it was possible, the two males looked even more surprised. Her ears were nearly two feet long, curving gently to rest near her lower back. Neither of them had ever seen the likes of this creature, and they could only be described as 'flabbergasted'.

"Elrond," Glorfindel's voice quivered. "I'm going to bed now. Good night." He stood and walked shakily off through the side door, leaving it open.

"Wimp." Elrond called softly after his retreating form. He looked back at the… thing, and decided on the most important questions to ask right now, before he, too, fled to his rooms.

"What manor of creature are you?" he asked, his voice faint with emotions he had not felt in many years.

"Werewolf," she whispered through her fangs. Her voice held a strangely beautiful accent. "You called me so yourself." Elrond frowned, furrowing his brow. "But right now, I am a NightSong Elf."

"What should I call you?" he didn't ask her name, because some races had names that spanned many generations.

"You needn't worry, Lord Elrond. Our names are short enough for your comfort. I am named ShadowSong in your language. Raksha in mine. Call me by either." Right. She was a mind reader. And, though she spoke clearly, she was overly exhausted. One last question.

"The change, did it pull any of the sutures? I'm aware that the bandages are off, but I need to know if there are any open wounds before I leave." He had seen the way her bones had bulged and shifted under the blanket, and couldn't imagine the tiny threads holding through.

"I'm fine. Could I maybe have another blanket, though? Before you leave?" her gold streaked face was hollow looking, and she swayed slightly where she sat. Elrond quickly found another heavy blanket and unfolded it partially, then laid it on the ground. He gestured with his hand for her to lie there, and then walked slowly to the closet room. He found a large woolen blanket and brought it with him back to the comparatively dark recovery room. Raksha was on the blanket, curled on her side with her head between her legs. She breathed softly and evenly, but when he entered, her ears twitched and she bent her neck to look at him. Elrond held the blanket out to her, and she quickly had it spread over herself.

He turned and left, then, making his way through the white stone halls and archways that made up most of Rivendell. The night was warm, and he was tired. He would have one of the women find something for Raksha to wear, then go to sleep.

I apologies for any broken paragraphs; I tried to fix them, but it may or may not have worked.

please, do review. I need feed-back!