MN. Chapter 1: The Elusive Truck Creature.

I awoke with quite a headache and the unmistakable feeling that I was underneath something. I groaned and opened my eyes. The last thing I remembered was being in Middle-earth, at Aragornís coronation. It was then that I realized the something on top of me was actually someone, and that I recognized that someone.

"Katy, get off!" I all but shouted with annoyance, poking her in the ribs to make sure she was awake.

A groan was emitted but nothing more, she apparently was in the same state as me. "Katy! Off!" I repeated, louder this time. Finally the figure stirred.

Katy groggily stood up, swaying slightly on her feet as she got her bearings. She looked down at me as I picked myself off, brushing dirt off of my pants from laying on the ground. She turned her attention to our surroundings.

"Where are we?" She asked, as if I might know the answer. Then, as an afterthought added, "I mean, besides in a forest."

"I donít know," I said in a low tone that sounded dangerously close to a growl, "How would I know where we are when I only just woke up moments before. Iím not a mind reader, I canít predict where we are just by looking at a bunch of trees. I--"

Katy rolled her eyes and started to walk away, effectively cutting off my rant. I cast my irritation aside and followed her.

"So, Einstein, where are we going?" I questioned, falling in step beside her.

Katy shrugged, "I donít know. But I figure anywhere is better than just staying there, right?"

I shrugged as well, "I guess so. Hey, Iím hungry, you donít have any food, do you?"

"No, Rachel, I donít have any food." Katy said tolerably, "Why donít you check your pockets?"

I did so and pulled out some lembas which, compared to the food that usually graced my pockets, was quite fresh. I handed her a piece and took one for myself before returning it to my pocket.

It was a good several hours later when we came upon a road. Thatís right, a good, new-fashioned road. Well, new fashioned compared to the rough dirt paths we had been dealing with for the past eternity. It was paved and although it didnít have any lines painted on it, it was still a very encouraging sight.

"Katy, a road!" I exclaimed, pointing excitedly to the road.

"Yes," Katy agreed, equally excited if not more, "And where thereís a road, there are cars!"

"And where there are cars there are people!" I added, "And said people could tell us where we are!"

"And maybe even give us a ride to the nearest city or something!"

And so it was with very high spirits that we started walking down the road, all senses focused on listening or watching for the car that we expected to find. The car that didnít come. We walked along the road for hours without any sign of human life, without any change in scenery. Needless to say, we began to get discouraged.

"Rachel, what if weíre never found? What if weíre stuck out here forever until we starve?" Katy was asking for the hundredth time.

"Then I guess weíll die." I stated disinterestedly and suddenly paused in my steps, cocking my head to one side to listen better. My eyes lit up and I turned to Katy with a grin, "A car!"

Katy listened as well and as the car came closer a smile appeared on her own face, "Weíre not going to die after all!"

I frowned and added, "Unless itís a serial murderer or something."

Katy shot me a glare, "Donít ruin my moment of happiness. Itís a car!"

I rolled my eyes but remained silent as we waited for the car to appear. Some minutes later an old looking pale blue truck with rust along the bottom came around the bend, finally visible from where it had been hidden by the trees. It was the best looking car either of us had ever seen. Katy and I waved our arms widely, calling out for it to please stop.

It did so and the driver cautiously rolled down his window - I doubt he had ever expected to run across to teenage girls walking along a seldom used road in the middle of nowhere. The man looked older, probably in his early sixties, he was tan and half bald with large glasses over his brown eyes and a mostly white mustache.

He looked back and forth down the road before addressing us, "You young ladies need a little help?"

"Yeah," Katy confirmed, "umÖ Our car broke down and, um, could we get a liftÖ Somewhere?"

Seeing the hesitation on his face I added, "We donít bite, really."

"Well, alright," the man conceded, "would you mind sitting in the back?"

Both Katy and I shook our heads profusely, "Not at all! Thank you." We climbed in the back and he started moving again, clearly he didnít trust us.

The car was slow, it bumped along the road at barely thirty miles per hour, but it was faster than we had been going so we werenít about to complain. We leaned back to enjoy the ride, exchanging brief conversation mostly about our previous adventure in Middle-earth, how we had turned up here, where exactly here was, and what we were going to do next.

It was a good half an hour or so later that something completely unexpected by us and entirely surprising to the man driving happened. Something fell from the trees and landed in the back of the truck with a loud thump. Katy and I started with surprise but didnít get a good look on it as the driver slammed on the brakes, sending us sprawling on the floor of his truck bed.

When we finally did get a good look, we noticed with surprise that it wasnít exactly a thing, but rather a very well known elf. "Legolas?" I asked, my voice echoing the surprise in my eyes.

"Rachel? Katy? It is you!" Legolas said, then called out into the woods, "I told you it was them!"

Katy and I looked to the woods as if expecting a three headed dragon to show itself as the you Legolas was talking about. Instead we were greeted by the one time ranger and current king of Gondor.

"Aragorn?" Katy asked.

Legolas jumped out of the truck to stand by his friend and Katy and I quickly clambered out as well, being both very curious and very confused by this new occurrence. We hardly noticed as the truck raced away once we had all gotten off.

"What are you guys doing here?" I demanded once I had found my voice.

"Probably whatever you are doing here." Aragorn commented dryly, "Which would be where, exactly?"

Katy and I looked at each other and shrugged. "We donít know where we are either." I stated for the both of us, "Although if you had come out of the woods like normal people instead of jumping out at us like rabid animals, maybe we couldíve stayed on that truck until it reached a town. Then at least weíd know where we are."

"A truck?" Legolas repeated, "You have seen that kind of creature before?"

I rolled my eyes and sighed, "Yes, weíve seen that kind of thing before, but it isnít a creature." The eyes of the ranger and elf were on me and showed no understanding. "You remember way back on the mountain I mentioned something about cars? Well, that was a kind of car, a truck. Itís like your carts but it doesnít need horses to drive it, it goes by itself. On gas. It isnít alive at all."

"If it isnít alive, how does it move?" Aragorn questioned.

I chewed my lip thoughtfully for a moment while the others looked at me expectantly - including Katy who wasnít about to try to explain the howís and whyís of propulsion. I sighed, "Alright, look, it just does okay? It, like, uses the engine for powerÖ And the cylinders in the engine go round and round because of the fireÖ And heatÖ And, umÖ It just does, okay?"

They looked at me blankly. I groaned, "It isnít important anyway! Letís just keep on going this way and try to figure out where we are, okay?" Suiting actions to word I quickly started stomping off in that direction, not really caring if they decided to follow or not.