Rating: T, for a few bad words.
Disclaimer: The characters of “Lord of the Rings” were created by J.R.R. Tolkien, not by me, and I am not claiming otherwise. No violation of copyright is intended or should be inferred. I am writing this story for love, not for money, so please do not sue me. The original characters in this story are mine.
Word Count: 588
“I tell you, Lughazh, the shit details always fall to us.”
Radbug, the more vocal of the two orcs, grunted at his comrade without looking round or even taking his eyes from the mouth of the cave. “Orcs from our outfit have been looking for the Sneak—and the Man who is said to have captured him—for weeks now. Not a sign of them, though. And we’re not likely to find any more signs when it’s pouring down rain like this. Even this stinking cave we’re in is better than being outside in that murk.”
“Glad you agree. I won’t tell we came in here if you won’t. The way I see it, we’re no more or less likely to spot the Sneak and his bloody tark companion by staying here in this cave than we are by being out in the rain. Supposedly a report came through saying a big Man, one of those Rangers, had been spotted somewhere not far from here, with the Sneak in tow. Don’t know if the Sneak is his slave, his prisoner, or his companion, but we’re supposed to keep an eye on this pass, because they might be coming this way. And if we see them going by, we’re supposed to stop them. How? The Sneak don’t look like much, but he fights like a rat when he’s cornered, or so I’ve heard. And I wouldn’t like taking on a Ranger under any circumstances, much less one as big as this one’s reported to be, and as good a warrior and a tracker. Not that anyone high-up ever asks us what we think, right?”
“Right! Glad you agree, Lughazh. What was the name of that Sneak again?”
“No, nothing like that. More like a sound you make in the back of your throat, when you’re like to hawk something up.” Radbug spat on the cave floor. “Gollum, that was it!”
“I tell you, it was. And only the two of us, sitting here, watching the rain come down on this bloody pass. How likely is it that this Gollum and the big Man he’s with are actually going to pass by here? And if they do, it won’t be easy to stop him, not with just me and you here. Not that I’m sure we would see them pass by, even if they walked right in front of the mouth of this cave, with the rain coming down nonstop. I tell you, Lughazh, that’s the only thing that could drive me in here, because this cave stinks worse than anything I’ve ever smelled. And I’ve been in many an orc barracks, let me tell you.”
“Bloody hell, Lughazh, can’t you say anything but ‘Mmmmm—” In irritation, Radbug turned round, and broke off in mid-sentence, his breath stopping in his throat.
Just behind him was Lughazh, covered completely in spider webs as thick as ropes, webs which encompassed him completely from his toes to the lower part of his face, so that his mouth was covered, and “Mmmmm” had been the only sound he could make. He could breathe because his nose was uncovered, and his eyes screamed his terror at Radbug. And just behind Lughazh were a multiplicity of glowing eyes and enormous fangs, the latter dripping poison—and scuttling directly at Radbug. A giant spider. Shelob was her name, Radbug recalled, realizing too late that this cave they were in was part of Cirith Ungol.
He had time to scream.