The Fellowship of the Hair

by Mrs. Frodo
From The Book of Justifiably Lost Tales_ by J.R.R. Tolkien; editorial assistance from Mrs Frodo.

THE FELLOWSHIP OF THE HAIR

Chapter 6 - 'Lothlorien'

"...At noon they halted, and Frodo was aware that they
had passed out under the shining Sun. Suddenly he heard
the sound of many voices all around him...."

"Ooo, my dear, just look at that."
"Naughty elves--they didn't say there'd be a party!"
"What pretty curls! I want mine to look just like 'em."
The bemused Travelers blinked in the sunshine. They were surrounded not only by tall slender elves and the rare, majestic splendor of mallorn trees, but by the most peculiar assortment of misshapen primping creatures imaginable. One of the creatures approached Frodo. Frodo wanted desperately to be polite, but it had become clear to him that the hobbling apparition was, in fact, an orc...though unlike any orc he had seen in Moria. This one seemed...in fact...to be female.
"Oh, aren't you precious, then!" cooed the orc, shoving back a lock of her freshly shampooed hair with a perfectly manicured claw. "My my, Gorpluk, have you ever seen the like?-- You must be one of those darling hobbits the Lady has been telling us about."
"Ummm...yes, ma'am," said Frodo, eyes wide.
Gorpluk, who also seemed to be female, came toddling forward, swishing a delicate paper fan. In her long, pale green gown she dropped a quite respectable curtsey to the stunned Fellowship. "It's so nice to meet you all," she rasped. "Real gentlemen are so difficult to find...oh, not to insult our hosts, not at
all!" She turned with another curtsey to the elves. Aragorn looked in all directions. He could see nearly as many orcs as elves sashaying through the grass. Every orc was simply but elegantly attired in the manner of the elves. Here and there an elf maiden was kneeling in the grass behind a seated orc. He looked harder and realized that the elves were brushing and fashioning the orcs' hair.
"Do sit down and have a cup of tea!" said another orc with a beautifully painted wire protruding from her temple and running down along her jaw to disappear into her collarbone. She gestured to the grass.
Sam sat down with a thud.
"Do you like chamomile?" she went on. "It has such a fragrance."
"May I comb your lovely hair?" asked another of Legolas. "I believe it may be tangled."
Legolas sat down beside Sam and looked up in disbelief at the hunched creature who stood beside him, an elegant comb in her claws.
Boromir could scarcely back away fast enough. "What new devilry is this?!" he sputtered for the eleventy-first time.
Haldir gave his shoulder a comforting pat and gestured for the attention of the other Travelers. "They grew weary of having to sew stinking hides into clothing and dry unclean meat and sit in the underhalls of Mordor while the men-folk went off to bring eternal darkness to the world. They came to us for make-overs. How could we turn them away?"
"And we're ever so grateful, we are!" said the first she-orc, whose name happened to be Urkblek. She stroked Frodo's curly hair with surprising gentleness. "You're a right pretty little creature, you are, dearie! Your country must be very nice. Would you like a seed cake?"
"It is, indeed," said Frodo. He was relaxing a bit. "That would be lovely, thank you."
A particularly gnarled and pierced orc had corraled Gimli. "--and I told Snorbukt, I told her, 'You need to get out and about, you do! Don't just sit here waiting to screw your old Gnasher's nosepiece back in again! Get out and see the world while there's still a world to see!"
"Oh, right," said Pippin nervously to the flower-bedecked orc next to him.
"Yellow is definitely your color."
"How do I look, dearie?" asked one of the orcs newly primped. She flounced her hair with one paw.
"Bee-ootiful, just bee-ootiful!" said Urkblek. "Come and meet these precious hobbits, lovey!"
The freshly coiffed orc came up close, looked around and sniffed. "My dear, ain't they a sweet lot! --So nice to meet you, one an' all!"
Aragorn had retired to the shade of a nearby mallorn, taking Haldir with him.
"So this is what the Lady has been up to?"
"Indeed," smiled Haldir. "You can guess she's had her hands full! They all want to brush her hair, and they all want their own to look just like it."
Aragorn tried not to laugh at the sight of Boromir surrounded by half a dozen admiring, crooning orc females. "Too bad Gandalf isn't here to see this!"
Haldir grinned. "Whose idea do you think it was? --Now, if you'll excuse me...I have to return to the border. Another band of refugees from Mordor is due any time."
One of the she-orcs gave a shriek of the ugliest but most harmless laughter the Heir of Gondor had ever heard. Apparently Merry had just told a joke.
"And, as far as Gandalf is concerned...." Haldir looked around, then dropped his voice. "He said something quite awhile ago about presenting the Moria balrog with a few new colors to liven up his flames...and after that...well, you can guess his next project."
Aragorn stared at him.
"Eye shadow!" whispered Haldir.