This is my overdue Lord of the Rings fanfiction. I've had this story circulating in my head for far too long and thought it is finally time to share it with you all. Please review and leave any constructive criticism. I am trying to become a better writer so all help is greatly appreciated. I have seven chapters already written but I'm still in the process of editing them. I plan to update new chapters every week so be sure to check your alerts. Thanks for checking out my story and be sure to leave a review if you can!


Prologue

Gandalf remained caged, high above the ground in Dol Goldur awaiting rescue or death, he did not know. He mustered the strength to mumble one last spell in hopes Radagast would hear his call of distress and relay the message to Lady Galadriel. Any hope for the future was now out of his hands. With all energy now expended, Gandalf closed his eyes and tried to save the last remnants of strength he had left.

The first vague outlines of consciousness returned to him when a melodic voice seemed to float into his ears and spark a light in the endless darkness within his mind. It took him a moment to recognize the voice as the one belonging to the Lady of Light. Her soft and musical voice caressed his ears as she urged him to endure.

Gandalf struggled to open his eyes and respond to her, but the blanket of darkness weighed him down, refusing to grant him sight. Suddenly, Gandalf could feel the smooth and delicate arms of Lady Galadriel gather him up before lifting him off the cold and rocky ground. He realized with great astonishment that the Lady of Light was carrying him as he could feel the harsh wind whip across his face, stinging his wrinkled skin like the blades of a thousand swords.

As Gandalf became cognizant of his surroundings, an urgency began to fill him. There was something of great importance that he needed to tell the Lady of Light; something that could change the course of the future. What it was, he could not recall, as his mind was still muddled like waking up after a night of too much ale. As Galadriel continued to carry his weak body through Dol Goldur, Gandalf struggled greatly to remember the message. It was on the tip of his tongue, yet the more he thought about it, the harder it was to evoke.

Just then, a deep and sinister voice ripped through the quiet.

"Three Rings for the Elven-kings under the sky…," the voice began, speaking in the cursed tongue of black speech. "Seven for the Dwarf-lords in their halls of stone."

Gandalf immediately recognized the voice. It belonged to none other than the dark lord Sauron. But there was something about Sauron's words that began to stir Gandalf's recollections. The memory was being brought to the forefront of his mind; only a moment more and he would have it. As if answering his silent plea of remembrance, Galadriel picked up where the dark lord left off.

"Nine for mortal men doomed to die," she supplied in a grave tone, finishing the verse.

Gandalf mulled over the words. Three rings for the Eleven-kings, seven rings for the Dwarf-lords, and nine rings for mortal men. That was it! The rings. Not just the rings but the ring—the Ring of Power, which Sauron made to control all the others. But that wasn't it. There was something more. If only he could grab the memory that seemed just outside of his reach. It was almost maddening to be so close to the thought and yet unable to recall that which mattered most.

Suddenly, Gandalf began to feel the overwhelming sensation of evil, as if it was manifesting into something more tangible—something more real. Although he still couldn't see, he could feel the vile darkness surrounding them, caging them in like a pack of Gundabad wargs going in for the kill. He felt Lady Galadriel's steps falter before they both fell down to the ground in an unceremonious heap.

Gandalf could now feel himself splayed over Galadriel's lap as she whispered words of encouragement to him. If he could just remember the message of importance. It was critical now more than ever that he remember it. The fate of them all depended on it. Gandalf went back to the words spoken earlier about the ring as the dark lord spoke once more. He focused on the rings. Something about the rings continued to nag his memories as if it was related to the message he needed to tell Lady Galadriel. Like a spark to start a fire, Gandalf's memories lit up, illuminating the message of great importance.

Now that he remembered, Gandalf fought against himself to regain full consciousness but it was harder than he imagined. It seemed no matter how hard he tried, he could not get himself to open his eyes nor to speak. Gandalf took a moment to gather all of his strength for another attempt to gain consciousness when suddenly, he heard the voices of Lord Elrond and Sauroman. They only had time to offer their assistance before Gandalf could hear the cling of metal as a full on assault took place.

Despite the dire situation and the intense fighting that could be heard, Gandalf felt a surge of calm flood his body as Lady Galadriel's delicate hand brushed his cheek in a maternal fashion.

"Mithrander. Come back," she whispered into his ear in soothing encouragement.

That was the last bit of help Gandalf needed. Now was the time. He had to wake up now. He forced his eyes opened and blinked until the blurriness of his vision faded and his eyes gazed upon the Lady of Light. Immediately he began to speak, afraid he would not have enough time to tell her.

"My lady. The dark lord has conjured up something evil-something that could change the fates of all," Gandalf revealed through ragged breaths.

"In his cruelty to punish me, he boasted that he forged another ring—one full of dark magic with the ability to travel through time. He must not be allowed to leave here today! If he can change the past or future to his will, he will control us all! He must be stopped. He wears the Ring of Time now, although he does not have his full power to wield it," Gandalf finished, drawing in a series of deep ragged breaths, his strength nearly depleted once more.

Galadriel's face froze at his words. It was worse than she feared. If Sauron gained enough strength, and was able to use the Ring of Time, his evil would be unstoppable. She knew what she hand to do. Looking down at Gandalf, Galadriel brushed her hand across his beaten face once more as Radagast arrived in his sled pulled by rabbits. As she urged Gandalf to get onto the sleigh, she spoke to Radagast.

"He is weak. He cannot remain here. It is draining his life. Go quickly."

As she expected, Gandalf tried to convince her to leave with him but she couldn't. She had something to do; something only she was able to do. Reaching within to her deepest power, she ordered Radasgast to leave. It was harsh, but she didn't have the time to argue. Her focus needed to be on Sauron. Frightened by her sudden surge of power, Radagast fled with Gandalf, leaving Galadriel behind.

She remained on the ground, drawing in all her strength for what she must do next. If it didn't kill her, it would severely deplete her magic and life force. There was no other option, countless lives depended on her. She briefly felt the hand of Lord Elrond try to comfort her before she felt an explosion of power erupt in front of her, leaving a fierce and fiery flame in its wake. So it begins, she thought grimly.

Sauron appeared in the flames, only a dark shadow within, creating the image of a silhouette. He began to speak at once.

"It has begun. The East will fall.

So shall the Kingdom of Angmar rise."

Suddenly, nine Nazguls appeared on each side of Sauron in the flame.

"The time of the Elves is over. The Age of the Orc has come."

Galadriel would listen no more. Drawing from within, she conjured up all of her power, allowing it to surge to the surface and show outwardly. She held up the Light of Eärendil as she began to speak.

"You have no power here. Servant of Morgoth.

You are nameless. Faceless. Formless.

Go back to the void from whence you came!"

As she finished speaking, a great explosion of golden light and shadow shot into the sky as Sauron was sent far into the east. Galadriel could not ponder the significance of the explosion into the sky for too long as she began to fall, exhausted and weak from the use of such great power.

As Elrond caught her, she whispered, "I do not believe we have seen the end of the Ring of Time. We must be ever watchful in the future as it will undoubtedly return."