“I was right,” he said, his eyes flashing with mischief. “You are even more beautiful with the moonlight in your hair.”

“Kíli,” she said, reaching out for him. He went to her, wrapping his arms around her back. Framing his face with her hands, Tauriel kissed him. He pushed his fingers into her hair, gently tugging her down. They clung to each other, their shared breath forming a halo around them in the starlight.


Looking up, Tauriel saw Bilbo, Balin, and Fíli standing a few paces away. They, too, were more finely dressed, and each of them was doing his best not to look her in the eye.