If You Fall
by Agrotora

Email: agrotora AT bellsouth.net
Classification: A/L of course, but with references to A/A
Rating: NC17
Disclaimer: Sadly, not mine.
Beta: Akasha Elfwitch, many thanks, hon!
Summary: Elrond said Arwyn's fate was tied to the fate of the One Ring. What if she wasn't able to hold out until Frodo destroyed the ring? This AU explores that idea.

If I fall, you'll be there to catch me
Time has taught me this…

Gonna stand by your side now.
Let me kiss all your tears away.
You can stay in my arms now,
And I know I can make you believe again.

When you feel like you can't go on-
Don't you know you never walk alone.
You live in me.

- Excerpts from: If I Fall / Stand by your Side – Celine Dion

Minas Tirith was much quieter of late. For many weeks after the installation of the new King people from all over middle earth still came by to pay their respects and offer support. Aragorn was certain he'd made enough enemies over the years to have to face at least a few of them now that he was the realms sovereign, but it simply did not happen. It seemed everyone accepted the Ranger-become- King without question.

As time passed, most everyone who wanted to recognize or *be* recognized by the new King had had their audience with him, and Aragorn's daily life settled into the routine of actually running a kingdom. Sauron's forces were decimated of course, but not completely destroyed. Even now, a year later, patrols often found small groups of Orc or Uruk Hai and had to deal with them. It was difficult for Aragorn to stay behind, but it was his station now, so stay he did, commanding his forces from the high walls of the white citadel.

The Ringbearer's Fellowship was little more than memory now. The Hobbits were happily getting on with their lives in the Shire, spending most of their time gardening and after work was done, telling long stories of their adventures over a pipe and an ale in the Shire's only tavern. The Maia, Gandalf hadn't been seen for quite some time but it was rumored he still visited the Shire on occasion,his affection for the Halflings having grown through all his dealings with them- even the mischievous Pippin.

Gimli and Legolas had chosen to stay in Minas Tirith, much to the King's happiness, for despite being much in demand most days, he was still a solitary and lonely man. Having his dear friends nearby made life that much more tolerable, however, even they did not always help his melancholy moods. It was to this he blamed the fact that recently both the Elf and Dwarf had expressed an interest in finding themselves more permanent dwellings- outside the walls of Minas Tirith. Gimli, of course had been awed by the Glittering Caves of Helm's Deep and his heart yearned to make that place as magnificent as Moria ever was when the Dwarves were at their height. Legolas had other ideas. He could often be seen at night on one of the many high parapets gazing out across the plain toward the river. But it was not the river his Elven eyes beheld, it was the Ithilien forest beyond. He was yet holding on, but the lure of the trees was too great and the harsh white marble of Minas Tirith too stark and uninviting. For some time now he'd been making frequent visits to the wood, somehow managing, just, to return in the evening before Aragorn's court dismissed for the day.

It worried the King that he was asking too much of his friends to stay nearby, after all, hadn't they both earned the right to get on with their lives? Though it hurt him inside to do so, he eventually bade them good fortune and encouraged them to go, with an open invitation to visit at any time.

So tonight Legolas was making a final trip to the uppermost tower to gaze at the moonlit forest. He hadn't yet really decided where he would choose to live, but everyone assumed it would be back in Mirkwood and the Elf hadn't said differently. Though he was of Thranduil, he was youngest and therefore not the heir, so he had no political reason to go back. No other reason either, he shrugged to himself, his father loved those politics as much as Legolas loved being away from it all and with his beloved trees. A Wood-Elf by familiarity if not by ancestry.

The hallway was quiet as usual this time of night and Legolas' light footfalls did not disturb that silence. As he walked his thoughts were interrupted by a soft noise, so soft even his keen Elven ears had to strain to hear it. Curious, he altered his path and followedthe sound. Curiosity soon turned to concern when he was able to recognize it as the sound of someone weeping and he hastened his steps.

He soon found himself in a wing of the great stone-hewn castle that had fallen into disuse. Upon turning a corner he stopped. Here the sound was fully audible, coming from a doorway that opened to a wide balcony bathed in blue moonlight. The Elf moved forward soundlessly, staying in the shadows. On the balcony was, of all people he did not expect to see this night, Aragorn. He was sitting on a stone bench facing out away from the doorway. Only the edges of his hunched shoulders were lit by the silvery hues of light, but Legolas could easily see the slight twitching movements accompanying each sob.

Not wanting to intrude, yet not willing to leave without understanding the King's grief, he stilled himself and waited. Soon Aragorn's voice could be heard, muffled to any man, but clear to the Elf. "Arwyn!" He took a slow breath in and let it out in a moan. "Forgive me, my Evenstar!" With that the King threw his head back and stared open-eyed at the stars overhead, his cheeks glistening with the wetness of tears.

Legolas held fast, yet felt himself drawn into the despair of his friend. The love shared by the Man and She-Elf was no secret, especially to those who came and went around Rivendell, but Legolas had no idea Aragorn was still in mourning. He recalled the King's coronation celebration a year ago…

==+==

Banners were flying and there were so many people, Legolas had been surprised they all fit in the lofty Minas Tirith courtyard. Of the Elves, they were so well represented it seemed perhaps *all* of them had shown up to endorse the new King. After accepting the crown from Gandlaf's hand Aragorn moved into the crowd to greet those who had come to wish him well. Despite being a man, and now holding the highest station among them, he still considered himself closer to the Elves- if only by familiarity. Stepping from the podium he made straight for the congregation of the fair folk. He greeted Legolas first, clutching a hand to his shoulder and squeezing hard. The Elf prince had returned the gesture and the two had allowed themselves amoment in full public view to reaffirm their brotherhood. Aragorn wasn't in a hurry to move on until he spied Elrond over Legolas' shoulder, and after another squeeze and blinking back a joyful tear, he went to greet his stepfather.

The last time he'd spoken to the Elder it was to accept the reforged sword, Anduril, and his fate. This time he had something else on his mind. Elrond had warned him that his Love had become bound to the fate of the One Ring. Arwyn was dying and the only thing that could save her was the destruction of that all-powerful talisman. As he hugged his Adar, he whispered into his ear. "Where is Arwyn? Surely she is here?"

Elrond stiffened and hugged his human son nearly tight enough to do harm. "She is not, ion nin." His eyes closed tightly squeezing out a single tear. "The Evenstar could not tarry. The call from the Halls of Mandos was too strong."

Understanding struck the King like a newly sharpened sword and his knees buckled slightly, enough so that Elrond's strong arms were the only thing keeping him upright. "No. It cannot be! The Ring was destroyed. The Black Tower fell, we all saw it! Mithrandir himself confirmed it was done."

"Yes." Elrond released Aragorn as the man found his strength and pulled free. "The power of the One is gone but it has taken much with it." He glanced at the ring on his own finger and sighed. "Vilya fades even now. Our time, the time of the Elves draws to a close. It is as it is meant to be by the Valar."

Aragorn's countenance fell, "I cannot accept that!"

"You must for it is true." Elrond forced a smile to his lips. "Now is the time of men. You know this." His hands rose and he straightened the crown upon Aragorn's head slightly, a swell of pride evident in his kind eyes. He glanced at the crowd and lowered his voice, "Your subjects are waiting for their King. Do not keep them here in the sun too long. Already many are wondering what it is that keeps you here whispering with an old Elf."

Aragorn smiled weakly. "Adar, would that I look as you do a hundred years from now." He shook his head and lightly caressed the silvery material of Elrond's sleeve, not yet willing to break contact. "Do not leave too quickly. Later there will be time to talk more." With that the King squared his shoulders and moved onward. Was that Hobbits he saw by the fountain?

==+==

Another sob brought Legolas back to the moment. It was obvious that while things had been busy Aragorn hadn't had time to dwell on the loss of Arwyn, but now that his life was more routine memories of her and what could have been was weighing him down. `Ah, Brannon-nin.' Legolas thought to himself. `So it is not only Elves who can die of a broken heart.' Right then he decided he must do something to help his friend.

He quickly retreated the way he had come, careful to be just as silent. Tomorrow he would go as planned, but his focus had changed. No longer did he desire only to find himself a home. The King needed a retreat, somewhere to be away from duty and, if possible, memories. Aragorn was as much a denizen of the wood as any Elf, and Legolas was certain a return to those roots would bring much healing. Mirkwood was definitely too far, as were the other Elven realms, and Fangorn, well Fangorn was a place unto itself- and best left that way. There was however, Ithilien. That same forest Legolas had sought refuge in already many a day and watched over many a night. It would do.

==+==

Legolas was elated. He was now deeper into the forest than he'd ever traveled before and the trees were as large and old as much of Mirkwood. Something that should not have been true given that this forest had to be much younger. It was a mystery the Dwarf did not relish. Gimli still wasn't sure how it was he came to accompany the Elf instead of heading north to the Deep. Must have been the ale.

He uttered a mild curse as he maneuvered his pony around a thicket of vines. "Ach! Mark my words Elf, this place is enchanted. We should beoff before these fast-growing limbs close us in."

"I grant you, it is odd, but I doubt any dark magic is at work here with the shadow's leaving."

"Hmmph." The Dwarf grunted as he looked upward into a particularly tall Beech. "Probably wouldn't see it coming anyway."

The Elf shook his head at his companion's discomfort. "Be at ease. We are not in danger here." He sighed and looked up into that same tree. "Ah, Mellon-nin, I have missed this."

"Are you talking to me or them?"

Elvish laughter broke forth and it seemed the leaves all around rustled in response. "Both, perhaps."

"I suppose they are talking back to you?"

"Very little just yet. They are a quiet bunch and mistrustful. A result of the war, I think. They are aware we are armed and are keeping a close watch on your axe."

"My-" Gimli's hand went to the handle and gripped it tightly. "I have not provoked them and if they think a Dwarf is going anywhere unarmed while one Orc yet breathes, they've got another thing coming!"

"Of course. But they have seen much destruction of their kind and as I said, are—mistrustful." The golden head suddenly swiveled to the left as Legolas became aware of movement only Elf eyes could sense. Not seeing anything more, he held his breath a moment and listened intently.

"Elf?"

"Wait here." Quick as a blur, the Elf was off his horse and up a large tree in front of them. He scaled it easily using the rough bark for handgrips, not stopping until he was more than a hundred feet up. He wasn't yet near the top of this grand tree but it was far enough to view much of the upper canopy. At this place a large branch came off the main trunk providing an easy perch where Legolas could stand. He faced the tree and leaned his body fully against it, stretching out his arms and pressing his palms flat on the weathered wood.

Gimli had to move his steed several feet off to one side to be able to look up and see where the Prince had gone. He snorted when he saw the Elf with his body stretched out full against the tree. After a few minutes soft harmonic notes drifted down to him and he shook his head. `He hugs `em, and now `e's *singing* to them.' He dismounted and patted the pony's neck. "Might as well rest, I imagine he'll be up there awhile."

Slowly Legolas became aware of a sound that wasn't just rustling leaves or branches. It was lyrical, haunting even, and almost Elf- like in tone. As a matter of fact if he hadn't known better he would have mistaken it for an Elf singing. He moved back from the tree trunk slightly but kept his hands in contact with the wood. There was something familiar about the song. A moment later he smiled and began to sing in concert with the other singer in the sweet aria of an Elven ballad. As the song ended the first singer diverged from the ages-old melody and sang a harmonic contra-melody instead. Legolas grinned. Something old interspersed with something fresh and new. How very typical of a forest to sing such.

The Elf patted the bark under his hand affectionately and turned to go but was restrained by a branch that seemed to have come out of nowhere. Perhaps the Dwarf was right- what enchantment was this? Confused, he glanced back at the tree and saw a pair of sparkling gold eyes, each one larger than a man's fist. An Ent!

There was a raspy and long inhale of breath and Legolas had to crouch slightly and extend his hands to keep his balance as the entire tree swayed. "Green…leaf. We…remember…you."

"Me?" Legolas' eyes were wide. The appearance of this forestsuddenly made sense. It was the influence of the Ent making the trees thrive.

`Hmmm." The tree swayed again in what must have been a nod. "Long before…the war…and Isengard…" That name was spoken with a flare of anger. "We…knew…a young sapling…in the northern Great Wood. He liked to…talk and sing…with us. Taught us…Elfsong."

Legolas grinned as a sweet memory surfaced. Growing up he had often disappeared into the wood for many days at a time speaking to and listening to the trees. "Forgive me, but I know of no Ents in northern Mirkwood."

"Where there be trees to herd…there be…Entkind. We…sleep…a lot." The being drew in another long breath. "These friends...have shared…more… with me…as well. They say…*they*…know you, too. Elf who serves…the Ringbearer… and…the White King"

Legolas nodded, his mood slightly lowered by the mention of Aragorn. "As for the Ringbearer, I have no more duty there, only friendship, and of the King-" He hesitated.

Kind gold eyes blinked, awaiting an answer.

The Elf sighed and lowered himself to sit on the branch. "He is much more than friend to me. Even now my heart grieves for him. The war cost him much."

"Cost us all… much." The great Beech seemed thoughtful for awhile. "Hmm. We…also *know*…much. You…have come here…many times… before…but today…something has changed. What, Elf…would that be?"

Legolas was emboldened by the fatherly persona of the Ent. "I would to make this forest my home, if you will have me."

There was from all around a rustling of leaves and whispers the Elf recognized as Tree-speak, though he could not make out the words. TheEnt rumbled in response and all became quiet. "It would seem…my herd… have been but waiting…for you to ask." The golden eyes twinkled. "Hmm. Many plans. Much to do." The lofty branches overhead shook as a craggy hand-branch encircled the Elf and picked him up. "Go now. Return…after the change of…one moon. You may bring…the White King with you…should you desire." The Beech bent low and gently set the surprised Elf on the ground then rose up to his full height. He turned and within seconds not a leaf of him could be seen.

Gimli peeked out from under a bush where he was hiding. "So, tossed out on your ear, were you?" Gimli extended a hand to the Elf.

Legolas flashed a somewhat irritated glare at the Dwarf and got up without assistance. "No. Invited to return, actually."

The Dwarf's eyes widened. "Well!"

==+==

One month later Legolas had managed to pry the King free for an afternoon to visit the forest across the river. Unknown to Aragorn, Faramir, who he'd left in charge, had been quietly told to not worry if the King tarried for a day or two. All would be well.

Immediately upon entering the wood Legolas was struck by the differences. Where there was no path earlier, now there was an easy to follow route carpeted with such a thick layer of moss even the horse's footfalls were silent. It was wide enough to ride side by side and as they entered the King began to relax. Aragorn was just humoring his friend's enthusiasm for `trees', but now that he was here he was enjoying the outing. They rode for quite a while, as the path meandered a bit before turning deeper into the forest. At its end the path opened to a glade encircled with things that Legolas definitely hadn't seen before.

Elf and Man both pulled their horses to a halt and stared open- mouthed at the sight. It looked like a part of Caras Galadon itself had been transplanted to this wood. Doorways and finely carved arches were built right into the bases of massive trees. High above theirheads was a narrow walkway connecting a few of the largest ones where the branches looked as though they had simply `grown' into alcoves and intricately carved balconies.

Aragorn caught his breath. `By Elbereth! I see why you wanted me to come!" He was off his horse in a heartbeat and starting up the steps before Legolas realized he was being left behind. He swung off his horse nimbly and lowered his head, speaking in a whisper meant only for the trees and grass to hear. "Lebethron, what have you done?" As he raced to the steps he heard what could only be described as an Entish chuckle.

Aragorn was already at the balcony, peering over the edge to the forest beyond. That was no longer just a forest. In the midst of many trees of varying size and age was a beautiful garden surrounding a pond with a small waterfall. He grinned at the beauty of it and turned to his Elven friend. "So beautiful. Thank you, Mellon-nin." Legolas had recovered sufficiently and beckoned to another stair leading down to the garden.

After taking a short walk around the perimeter of the enclosure, they stopped and sat side by side against the trunk of an immense tree. For a long while the only sound was the trickling and splashing of water, both Elf and Man lost in their own thoughts.

Legolas felt a somber change in the air and glanced at Aragorn. The man was sitting; eyes open looking up, with his head tilted back against the tree. His cheek glistened as if a tear had just run its course and disappeared somewhere in Aragorn's beard.

"Aragorn?"

The sound of his name brought the King out of his reverie. "Tis nothing, Mellon." He forced a smile and rubbed his hand over his face to conceal removing the wetness there. "I was thinking that…Arwyn would have loved this place, especially here in the garden. It is much like the one in Rivendell where we spent many an hour."

Both were quiet again for several minutes.

"Share with me a story- about you and Arwyn."

Aragorn glanced at his friend, still a bit embarrassed that he'd been caught letting his emotions show so much. In a way he was afraid to speak lest his resolve break completely but something about the sincerity of Legolas' voice drew him out. He let his head fall back again and adjusted his shoulders against the tree.

"It was late winter, and there had been a long spell of bitter cold. As you know, snowfall is rare in Rivendell, but there had been some, enough to make all the grounds white. The trees glistened with ice and the fountain was frozen over. We would walk in the garden anytime of year, no matter the weather, but this day Arwyn was particularly impatient for spring to come. She complained quite loudly that if it did not come soon she would altogether forget the sound of splashing water. I, of course, being the gentleman, decided to break free the fountain of ice so that she might not be put in that predicament."

"And?"

"Oh, the ice broke alright- when I fell through it."

Legolas bowed his head, trying to suppress a giggle. Aragorn went on. "Now you know Elves are not so affected by cold as men. While the Lady was just fine, though soaked to the bone after dragging me out, I was frozen, blue and sneezed for three days."

Now Legolas did laugh, but it was cut short when he realized Aragorn was not laughing, nor even smiling. His face was stern except for a faint quiver to his chin, and eyes far too shiny to not be holding back tears. Suddenly the Man turned away and moved to get up.

He was stopped by a strong grip on his right upper arm. "Please, do not leave." The grip tightened and pulled downward, joined soon by another hand firmly on his left shoulder. Aragorn had no choice but to sit or fall down. He landed harder on his behind than he wouldhave liked and blew out a harsh breath. Finally he was seated, but not against the tree where he was before. He was now sitting in front of Legolas with his back to the Elf's chest. Legolas had spread his legs and had made Aragorn sit on the ground between them. The firm hands did not desist until Aragorn leaned back with his weight against the slender body behind him. Even then they only moved enough to allow Legolas' arms to encircle him.

"Forgive me, Mellon-nin. I should not have asked. The memory is too near just yet."

Aragorn made to reply but was shushed when a cheek and nose nuzzled against his neck. "Hush, now." Those were the last common words spoken by the Elf for some time, though he did continue to whisper Sindarin words of comfort into the rounded ear. The response was not long in coming. First a great breath then a shaky sigh and the Man could hold back no longer, his burden begging for release. Tears streamed freely down his face and his chest heaved with great deep sobs, only to be held even more tightly. The Elf brought up his knees and used them as support, too, cradling the Man with his body as much as possible.

Eventually the sobs subsided, and Aragorn realized someone was singing. The song was soft and the voice a familiar tone he knew well. As Legolas completed the ballad, Aragorn rubbed a hand over his face and let himself sink into the warmth behind him, exhausted. After a time he breathed a cleansing sigh.

Legolas had relaxed his grip and was moving the fingertips of his left hand in a lazy caress on Aragorn's chest. When the King sighed, he reached up and touched the stubbled chin, turning the man's head toward him. A final tear fell, and the Elf leaned forward and touched his lips to the trail it made. He sucked gently and unhurriedly at the salt and moisture until it was effectively kissed away.

The small gesture made Aragorn want to weep all over again, to be the object of such kind affection. He turned his head into the Elf's shoulder nestling against him in the hope the action would convey his gratitude. It surprised Aragorn, to be able to accept something so intimate like this from a friend, even one as close as Legolas. True, he'd grown up with Elves and was accustomed to the way they freelygave and took from each other with no regard to age or gender, but still, it was a strange feeling. There was a time he'd been jealous of their ways, until he realized it was just the manner of immortal beings to experience life in all it's vastness without barriers.

Immortal. At that thought the sobs threatened to return. "Forgive me." Aragorn managed to whisper. "I am not myself."

"It is these past many months you have not been yourself. Today, I see the man I know you to be. A Man of great depth and large of heart." The hand was on his chest again tracing some random pattern. Soft words whispered into his ear. "Take my strength Mellon- nin. I will ever stand by you."

Aragorn's voice cracked as he spoke. "Make no promises for you know not what the morrow brings."

"Perhaps." The Elf brushed his lips across the smooth skin just in front of Aragorn's left ear. "Then take this moment. Keep it forever and let it be an anchor to your soul."

Aragorn moved to better see the Elf. Steel gray eyes met blue, only inches apart. "Poetry?"

"Truth."

After a long pause Aragorn slowly lowered his face. "I don't know what that is anymore."

"Then learn." A delicate yet strong finger touched under the man's chin and lifted his head. Eye to eye again, Legolas tipped his head to one side and leaned forward slightly. His sweet breath was warm and heavy and Aragorn inhaled deeply the intoxicating scent of honey and wildflowers. There was the barest touching of skin and Legolas smiled when Aragorn did not stiffen or pull back, need outweighing uncertainty. He pressed his lips gently to those of the Man then released him.

Aragorn looked back at the Elf somewhat confounded yet now suffused with a warmth he hadn't felt for a long time. In his mind a thousand questions raced. He settled for one- `Why?'-but before he could give it voice the answer came. It was given him more than a year past on the eve of the battle of the Helm. He could still plainly hear Eowyn's fair voice:

`Do you not know why they follow you? … They love you.'

He had glanced back at the Elf and Dwarf at that moment and just for a second his eyes met those of Legolas. How unworthy he'd felt to know this beautiful creature would follow him to hell's gate, and if necessary give up his immortal life if Aragorn so but asked. He shook his head at the memory. He knew also that even now, the same was true.

Slim fingers touched his cheek and stilled the movement. The Elf leaned in and graced his companion with another kiss, this one slower and more sensuous. By the time he was released Aragorn was lightheaded. He barely heard what Legolas said.

"Muse on this, Mellon-nin, for it is truth incarnate." He smiled and pushed Aragorn's shoulders forward, then slid easily out from behind him. Standing, he offered down a hand. "Come, perhaps more exploration will cheer you. It is my first time as well."

Aragorn paused midway up and jerked his face toward the Elf. He straightened up slowly without looking away, intent on seeing if there had been a double meaning behind those words.

Legolas smirked when he noted Aragorn's gaze was on his mouth. He leaned forward and whispered, "Of that I am no novice. I am, after all, somewhat older than you. I was speaking of being here in this place."

Aragorn felt a blush rise to his cheeks. "Ah."

"Come then." The Elf straightened. "You *can* still climb a tree can't you?" He didn't wait for an answer and was off, leaving Aragorn to catch up this time.

==+==

Several hours later the two were standing again on the balcony overlooking the garden. Where the sky could be seen through the treetops there were streaks of pink and orange on the clouds. "Red sky tonight; it will be a fair day tomorrow."

"Hmm." Aragorn nodded. He was standing with one hip against the rail, arms across his chest, rocking himself just slightly. His eyes stared out into the trees at nothing in particular.

"You are not becoming melancholy are you?"

"Hmm, mmm." This time the head shook minutely side-to-side. His eyes blinked slowly.

Legolas frowned and moved to directly in front of the Man. His hands reached for the tunic. "Aragorn, son of Arathorn, Isildur's Heir, King of Gondor; have you heard anything I've said for the past several minutes?"

Aragorn blinked quickly and refocused his gaze to the Elf. "Yes, I…"

"Have no idea of what I was speaking." He huffed out an irritated breath. "I forbid you to be sad while in my home."

"Oh, well…" Aragorn had come back to his senses in time for a retort. "In that case, save all those titles, who am I to challenge a sovereign in his own domain?"

Legolas glared back at him. "You mock me when all I wish to do is help you."

"Forgive me. It was a jest, albeit a poor one." He shrugged and suddenly seemed to be very far away. "Melancholy is as good a word as any."

When the Elf made no reply Aragorn glanced up at him. It was obvious Legolas was waiting for more in the way of explanation. Aragorn sighed and continued with a twinge of sadness in his voice. "I fear I will never love so again."

"No, you won't."

Aragorn was taken aback. "I thought you would speak words of comfort, not agree with me…even if it is true."

"Then learn another truth. You will love again, of that I am certain, but it will never be the same. Tis the nature of the thing."

"Hmm." Aragorn arched an eyebrow. "What you say may be true but to me, for now, it is only so many words, meaning nothing."

"It is because you are awash in a sea of memories that you despair so. You must release them. You have mourned long enough."

Aragorn shook his head. "Pray tell, Guren nin, how does one do that?"

The Elf only smiled at Aragorn's attempt to bait him. He was about to do some baiting of his own. "By creating new ones." With that, Legolas grasped Aragorn's jacket and slid it off his shoulders.

The Man was surprised to find that while they had been talking, the Elf had somehow undone his belt and all of the buttons of his jacket without him being aware of it. Perhaps he really *had* been too lost in his own thoughts. "What are you-"

Legolas had already discarded the jacket to the floor and now reached to cup Aragorn's face in his hands. Quickly he pressed his lips to those of the Man. Aragorn's knees almost went out from under him when he opened his mouth in surprise and instead of voicing an objection, took in the honey-almond taste of Elven tongue.

Suddenly it seemed a great many things were overrated. Speaking, for one, breathing a close second. Aragorn sucked in the sweet morsel and let himself delight in it, pulling back only when he couldn't keep his nose free enough to take in air. The Elf was far from finished with him, but relented rather than have the Man pass out.

As he recovered his breath, Aragorn's mind began to process just what path this was they were taking. Part of him wanted nothing more than to keep going but his logic dictated he stop. There was something just `wrong' about the feelings that were welling up inside him. And yet…he couldn't deny it; there they were. And the Elf seemed to be intent on bringing them out even more. He pressed his palm against the Elf's chest, staying him. "Just how far do you mean to take this?"

"As far as need be."

Aragorn raised both eyebrows, "Oh." They held each other's gaze for a moment then Aragorn looked away. "You don't have to-"

"I know. Whatever you may think, son of Arathorn, do not presume me to act out of pity, for it is not."

For another long moment neither spoke. Legolas took a step back and Aragorn wondered if the Elf would change his mind. He needn't have worried. Legolas extended his arm toward Aragorn, turning it so as to expose the laces securing the leather brace to his forearm. "Please." His voice was not much above a whisper. "Remove this."

Aragorn had applied or removed braces like this a hundred times before though he rarely wore them himself, being more of a swordsman than archer, he had less need to constrain his sleeves. Still he fumbled as if he'd never seen one before. When it was off, Legolas presented the other arm. Aragorn complied, and when that was doneLegolas allowed his arms to hang loosely by his sides. "My belt and coat."

Arms were one thing but touching the Elf's body was something far beyond. In a way, more intimate than even the kisses Legolas had so freely given today. "I don't think-"

"Good. You shouldn't be." He moved forward slightly, taking hold of Aragorn's hand and moving it to his belt. "I promise not to bite."

"Yet."

Aragorn was proud that his hand only stilled for a moment. He was also glad that his tunic hung low enough to conceal the twitch in his groin as the first rush of blood filled him there. The thought of an Elven love-bite anywhere on his body brought far too many images to mind right now, starting with that delicious…

`Ugh.' He grunted under his breath and put a stop to that thought. This would not do- no matter what happened- or didn't happen, he had to maintain some semblance of control. He forced himself to be more detached from what his hands were doing, as if he were undressing an injured comrade so as to see to his wounds. Finally he slid the jacket off revealing a silver tunic embroidered with an intricate leaf and vine pattern. The fabric was much more delicate than even the silk of Aragorn's own tunic, making him wonder what it could possibly be made of. As his hands slid across the material he could feel every nuance of the Elf's shoulders and upper arms- every curve of lean muscle over solid bone. There was something sensual about it that he'd never considered before.

He'd been with women, several, actually, and always thought the female body was the height of sensuality, all soft and curved and squeezable. What he felt now was totally different. Legolas was lean, but with the musculature of an athlete. As the Elf rotated his shoulder to assist, Aragorn could feel the restrained power of those muscles under his hands. He suddenly wanted very much to see with his eyes what his hands now enjoyed.

Legolas stepped back and smiled at him, already knowing the direction of Aragorn's thoughts. "Now, be a good tithen adan and go fetch our packs." He nodded to what apparently was meant to serve as a bed or lounge of some kind. It was a raised rectangular platform, in the form of a bed, but as the rest of this place was made solely of forest materials and was covered with a thick layer of dark green moss. "While I like the moss, I think I'd prefer to not lie directly on it tonight."

Thinking ahead, Aragorn agreed. They'd both packed bedrolls and Aragorn had an extra blanket; any of which would be more comfortable than waking up with his face in moist green stuff. He quickly left before his mind started thinking about what else he might be waking up to in the morning.

==+==

Back on solid ground, Aragorn checked on the horses. He'd removed Brego's saddle and harness earlier but had neglected to give the animal a proper brush down, an omission he now remedied. Brego rubbed his nose lovingly against Aragorn's shoulder in appreciation. When he was done he gave Legolas' horse the same attention though much less needed, as Legolas did not use the human accoutrements of riding. The Elven mare had never been saddled or reined in her life and bore no thickened skin or calluses from the use of such gear.

Giving each a final pat on their rumps, Aragorn sent them off to graze. That done, he took his time to gather up his and Legolas' packs and cloaks. The weapons were here as well, since Legolas had insisted they had no need of them while in this place. It was as if the Elf believed there to be some force at work that would keep them from harm should even something as unwelcome as a stray Orc find its way here. To Aragorn it seemed but a simple forest; well, not so simple given this amazing structure was a part of it. Legolas had yet to explain how he knew it was here or who built it.

Aragorn realized he'd gotten lost in his thoughts once again and hastened to lash together the gear so it would be easier to carry. He slung the bundle to his back and climbed back up to the talan. Uponentering he was surprised to find Legolas had started a small fire in a depression in the middle of the floor. It was lined with flat stones and encircled by larger squarish ones, both obviously designed to confine the flames. Still it was odd to see fire amid so much wood- and yet not threaten to set the whole place ablaze. The packs thumped to the floor when Aragorn saw what was just beyond the flames.

Legolas sat with his legs crossed, close enough to the firelight that his body seemed to glow in reflection of it. His boots were set against the wall, and the silver tunic lay folded neatly on a small bench where he'd also placed both of their jackets. Aragorn's mouth fell open slightly at the sight of the half-naked Elf slowly unbraiding his hair. His eyes were closed as if enjoying the sensual feel of his own fingers working through the strands of flaxen hair. His head moved to one side allowing for better access as he slid an open hand upward past his temple and used his fingertips as a comb, sliding his hand outward and downward until the hair fell away. He repeated the action several times to rid himself of even the tiniest knot or tangle. That done, he tilted his head back and shook the now loose mane. If possible the translucent strands picked up even more of the firelight. Ganldalf himself would have been hard-pressed to put on a more breathtaking display of sparkling fireworks.

Legolas moved his head back to a more upright position and opened his eyes to gaze directly into those of the Man. "Do you plan to come in or just stand there all night?"

"Um." Aragorn couldn't quite form a coherent thought just yet. He stooped to pick up the bundle and quickly moved across the room with it, setting it on the bed to unwrap. Struggling for something to say he asked, "Have we anything to eat?"

The Elf shook his head. Humans and their stomachs. He gestured to the table where there were two bowls, one with red and yellow fruit and the other brimming with an assortment of nuts. "In my pack you will find a square block- it is cheese, and though I'd thought of bringing some Lembas…"

He paused on purpose to see Aragorn's reaction. The Man's shoulders visibly slumped but he didn't say a word. After living on the stuff for literally months, all members of the Fellowship had become wellacquainted with the gastronomical effects of a high-fiber and not much else diet. It was decided the Hobbits outdid cows in their ability to produce methane, with the humans not far behind. The others had been immune to the scourge, surprisingly even the Dwarf.

Legolas chuckled to himself before continuing. "But there was none available. You should find a package of the sweet bread you so like in your bedroll. If you haven't been nibbling on it already."

Aragorn ignored the jibe. It was one of the things he enjoyed most about being King- that the cooks were ever trying to pamper him with treats. Usually it was just an extra-perfect piece of fruit set out as a snack, but now and then he was surprised with something baked and sweet.

He found the bread and cheese and grabbed the bowl of fruit. After placing the items on the floor close enough Legolas could reach them too, he retrieved the water skin and found two wooden mugs on the table. He sat himself down, mimicking the cross-legged pose of his companion. The fire was warm and welcome as evening came on with a touch of dampness in the air. After several minutes of munching, Aragorn noticed the Elf hadn't eaten anything yet. He broke off a piece of the bread and offered it.

Legolas only shook his head to decline. The slight movement was enough to cause his hair to once again become alive with firelight as it moved about his shoulders.

Aragorn gestured with the hand holding the piece of bread. "I don't think I've ever seen you with your hair unbraided before except to wash it."

"I am no warrior tonight."

Aragorn coughed slightly. "Mellon, it would take much more than a change of hairstyle for that to be true." He watched as Legolas produced a not-so-small dagger from some hidden place in his leggings and proceeded to cut up an apple. "Thank you for making my point."

The Elf eyed the blade thoughtfully and skewered a piece of the fruit. He extended it to Aragorn who took the wedge and popped it into his mouth. Legolas ate a piece as well and stretched out his legs so he could lie back on his elbow. "Perhaps you are right. We are what we are, you and I."

"Now *that* sounded melancholy."

"It is true." Legolas answered with a shrug. "But it does not change anything."

"Like what?" Aragorn had gotten lost somehow.

The Elf only grinned and got to his feet, snagging a dark reddish- orange colored fruit as he rose.

Aragorn raised a finger. "Uh, that ones a bit over ripe I think."

Before he knew what was happening Legolas had knelt behind him and reached around to stuff his hand down the front of Aragorn's tunic. As he did, he pressed on the very soft fruit and squashed it into the Man's chest. He moved his hand to smear the pulp even more.

"What did you do that for!" Aragorn bolted forward, plucking at the front of his tunic to keep it off the gooey mess. Pulling the material away didn't help much, the fruit was more juice than solids and it had already soaked into the cloth and more was running down into his leggings. He pulled off the tunic and made to use it to clean himself. Immediately the nimble Elf shoved him to the ground and straddled his hips. That plus the strong hands holding Aragorn's wrists effectively pinned him in place.

"Allow me." With that Legolas leaned forward and began to slowly lap up the juice and bits of fruit still clinging to Aragorn.

The Ranger bucked at first, still reacting to the initial shock ofbeing soiled and then thrown to the floor and held down. Quickly though, his mind woke to what was happening to his body. The Elf was moving over him licking and nibbling all over his chest and their hips were close enough to feel each other beginning to arouse. Legolas spotted a bit of fruit on Aragorn's neck and slid up to capture it. As he did so his hips pressed more firmly and Aragorn let out a strangled moan.

After swallowing the fruit, Legolas licked his lips and looked into Aragorn's eyes. "To answer your question. What we are does not change my intentions for this evening." He punctuated his statement by rotating his hips forward an inch.

Aragorn groaned again. "You are evil, Elf."

"Hmm." Legolas considered the statement for a moment then shook it off. "Perhaps. Sometimes." He continued his assault on the Rangers chest. As he slid downward he realized that it was now not only Aragorn who was covered in goo. He released Aragorn's hands and sat back, frowning as he looked down at himself. "I think we both need a bath."

"Oh, we do, do we?" Aragorn swept his arm out and grabbed a still full cup of water, flinging the contents at Legolas. The Elf jerked in surprise and the cold water hit him square in the chest. "You!"

"Aye. Me!" Aragorn was up and over and suddenly it was Legolas who was flat on his back being held down.

He struggled only a moment, well aware of the uselessness of it given Aragorn's superior weight. When he stopped Aragorn relaxed slightly and took in the vision beneath him. Legolas was breathing hard, his chest rising and falling in a pant, the wetness there shining from the firelight. His loose hair was splayed every which way on the ground giving him the appearance of a wild animal. The look was echoed in the Elf's face. His lips were slightly parted, but his jaw was set as if he was about to growl and his eyes were nearly solid Indigo the pupils were so dilated.

In a word, he was magnificent.

And Aragorn wanted him more than he'd wanted anything in a very long time.

Mouths clashed and Aragorn was astonished at how much the Elf could give back even from his imposed submission. Legolas got a hand free and grabbed a handful of cloth at Aragorn's crotch. "Off! Now!" As he roughly tugged the material down Aragorn's member sprang free. Legolas' hand was on it immediately stroking him to full hardness. Aragorn quickly became lost in the sensation and Legolas pulled his other hand free.

With that hand and much squirming he wriggled out of his own leggings and wrapped his legs around Aragorn, pulling their bodies close.

Aragorn was nearly out of breath and becoming lightheaded. This was far more stimulation than he could take after being celibate for so long. He grunted and pressed himself to Legolas, forcing the Elf's movements to still by sheer weight alone.

"Legolas." He panted out the name. "Wait."

In response the Elf bit his ear.

"OW!" He jerked back. "Legolas! You must listen! Please." He levered an arm across the Elf's chest just below the neck and pressed hard. Chancing another bite, he reached up with his free hand and took hold of Legolas' chin, forcing the Elf to look at him. When their eyes met, Legolas stopped, seeing in the pale blue orbs something that gave him pause. He didn't think Aragorn would reject him at this point, the Man was obviously responding in kind, but clearly something was wrong.

"Aragorn?" There was no hint of ferocity in the voice, only gentleness as Legolas cupped Aragorn's face in his hands and caressed the rough cheeks with his thumbs. "Meleth?"

Aragorn smiled at the endearment. "Yes, you are to me as well, sweet Elf. But…" He sighed wearily. "I-"

"You still feel-"

"No." Aragorn clasped one of the Elf's hands and pressed his lips to the palm. "My memories are clear, but shall remain in the past. " He smiled hesitantly. "You have seen to that, Mellon nin. It's just that… I have not done this before. I am not afraid, merely…uncertain."

The Prince smiled at Aragorn's admission. He touched his fingers lightly to Aragorn's lips. "Then I will show you. We will go slow."

Aragorn nodded and lifted his weight off the Elf. "Can we—get this off first?" He plucked a bit of fruit from his skin and tossed it into the fire.

"Yes." Legolas laughed. "A bath."

==+==

Aragorn was not keen on the idea but the Elf dragged him along by the hand to the pool they'd visited earlier. "It will be *cold*!"

"It will not. You will see."

The Ranger had replaced his leggings, though they were sticky, but the Elf had not- he carried both his leggings and Aragorn's soiled tunic over one shoulder but was otherwise nude, and quite unbothered to be so.

"Come." He gestured as he stepped into the pool. "You need to take those off to wash them."

Aragorn agreed, though still unsure about getting into the water himself. Eventually when he did, he found it wasn't cold at all. There had been enough sunshine to warm the water throughout the day and most of it had been retained. After the clothing was washed and laid out to dry Aragorn let himself enjoy the warm caress of the water. It only took a few seconds to remove the sticky fruit but he delayed getting out.

Legolas had finished his own bathing and took note of Aragorn leaning back, his body mostly submerged and a look of pure contentment on his face. He quickly retrieved a small jar from his leggings and set it within easy reach on the stones bordering the pool. Slipping into the water carefully, not even making the tiniest wave, he swam right up to the near-slumbering Ranger. His hands moved over Aragorn's chest and sides in feather light touches, with only slightly more pressure than the water itself.

Aragorn responded as if to a dream, sighing deeply and smiling. In a moment he lazily raised his head and opened his eyes. Instead of waking, he found the dream was real. Legolas' face was only a few inches from his own and as their eyes met the Elf moved forward and kissed him with the same softness of touch. Aragorn's need returned with a vengeance. He leaned forward into the kiss to glean more of it, but was gently restrained by a hand on his chest. Legolas smiled and shook his head `no'. He pushed himself back in the water, separating them.

He avoided the Rangers questing hands and swam around, just out of reach until he was behind him. Once in place he grasped the Man's shoulders and pulled back until Aragorn was resting his weight against him, a light burden given the buoyancy of the water. The Elf leaned forward and nibbled the round ear before whispering into it. "Rest easy Meleth nin, let me please you."

The Ranger felt as if he'd been preparing for this all day. "Aye, if it were within my power I would order you to do so."

The Elf smiled and continued his caresses. "You do not consider me to be one of your subjects?"

"Never, Mellon. Even were you not of your own royal heritage, you have never been subordinate to me."

As they spoke softly to each other, Legolas began to move toward the shallower water of the pool, placing his hands up under Aragorn's arms and gently tugging to bring him along. The Ranger relaxed into the embrace, fully trusting the Elf to handle his body in any way he desired.

"I seem to recall following an order…once… or twice."

"And I recall a great many times you were already moving before the words came out of my mouth."

"Hmm." Legolas mused. "Then again, is it not the mark of a good servant to anticipate his master's needs?"

"Master?" Aragorn chuckled. "I doubt to ever see any man or beast who could tame you."

"Nor I any Elf who would not bow to the strength of the Pillar that is Gondor. And…" He paused, arching an elegant eyebrow. "I said nothing about being `tamed.'"

They had reached the edge of the pool where the stones were arranged as steps leading down into the water. Here Legolas positioned himself sitting on a submerged step and pulled Aragorn into his lap, still buoyed enough by the water to make moving him easy. With some well- placed caresses he encouraged Aragorn to relax even more against him.

As Aragorn's head rolled back Legolas licked and sucked on the Ranger's neck, all the while moving his hands lower, massaging chest and ribs then hips. His fingertips slid down the muscled belly and finally to Aragorn's groin. He took the shaft in one hand and the sacs in the other, kneading and caressing him into arousal.

Aragorn bit his lower lip and began to move his hips in concert withthe stroking as his erection firmed.

"Now, Melethron, may I touch you here?" Legolas reached further and pressed the tip of one finger against the tight opening beyond.

"Yes." Aragorn forced out the word in a raspy whisper. The fingers caressed for a few minutes then seemed to leave him altogether. He was dismayed and turned his head to question the loss of contact.

"I am still here." The Elf was scooping some kind of thick salve out of a jar and applying it to his fingers. "Even in water the friction would be too much; this will help."

One hand snaked around Aragorn's middle to hold him, while the other came from behind and gently spread his cheeks, seeking. The puckered entrance was quickly found but not delved into. At first Legolas only rubbed and caressed it, slowly increasing the pressure. When he felt the muscles loosen he inserted a finger slowly, mimicking the same motion with his tongue in Aragorn's ear.

The King gasped and tightened for a moment but quickly let himself relax as the hand on lower abdomen moved in a large circle, caressing and calming him. Slowly the finger moved too, in and out, stroking, circling. Another finger was added and after a little resistance, a third. Legolas moved his free hand down and lightly grasped Aragorn's swollen cock at the base. He wanted an additional measure of control at what he planned to do next. He turned his hand and pressed in further with his fingers, seeking the small gland there.

When he stroked it, Aragorn bucked and threw his head back. "Ai! What was that?"

"Shhh." Legolas breathed into his ear. "Only the beginning. Shall I continue?"

"Please." Aragorn nodded breathlessly.

The Elf withdrew his fingers and quickly rubbed some of the salve onto his own now full erection. He positioned the tip just at Aragorn's entrance and steadied himself with one hand; with the other he reached around, pressing their bodies together. "There will be some pain, it is unavoidable." He pressed forward slowly just until the opening was breached, then paused, waiting for Aragorn to adjust to his presence. Aragorn let out a small grunt but quickly relaxed again. As he did, Legolas pushed slowly until buried to the hilt. Both Man and Elf groaned with pleasure at the joining.

"Aragorn." Legolas breathed. "You would make me lose myself already." He drew in several steadying breaths before continuing. Slowly he pulled back and then moved forward again beginning to set a rhythm. The water only enhanced the motion, rocking the two gently and effortlessly as they pressed one to the other.

Aragorn's hand was on himself, but the Elf shoved it away. "Mine." With one hand he pumped the engorged shaft while with the other on Aragorn's hip he guided and kept their bodies together as he thrust harder and faster. Soon Aragorn was panting and gasping for air. He began to jerk uncontrollably as his orgasm claimed him.

"Lego- LAS!" He yelled the Elf's name in a strangled cry. The jerking soon pushed Legolas over the edge as well. He clutched Aragorn's hips in a death grip and pressed their bodies together as tightly as he could, his breath changing from rapid panting to a long drawn out groan.

Legolas slowly came down from the pinnacle and regained his senses, his muscles feeling as weak as a newborn Elfling. He stretched languidly and leaned in to nuzzle the Man's neck. "Ah, Meleth, you undo me."

"And you me, Elf." Aragorn blew out a deep breath and shivered.

Until then Legolas hadn't noticed the slight cooling of the water. "Come, let us retire to the chamber above; the water no longer keeps Anor's heat."

==+==

After hastily spreading out their bedrolls, Aragorn was first to collapse onto the bed. Their clothing wasn't dry as yet so he'd wrapped himself in his cloak to keep warm while Legolas set to rekindling the fire. When he turned to address Aragorn he found the Man was softly snoring.

"Rest well, Meleth." The Elf caressed Aragorn's weathered cheek. He moved around the bed and crawled in on the side away from the fire so Aragorn would get most of the heat. Gently lifting up the cloak so as not to disturb, he slid in behind the Man, spooning himself to him.

A few hours later Aragorn woke to the feeling of cool air on his body; he found he was uncovered and the fire had died to nothing but glowing embers. He absently looked around for his cloak and saw it twisted around the Elf. The sight made him grin. Legolas had obviously turned in his sleep and dragged the covers with him. For now the Elf lay on his back, staring at the ceiling in the odd waking slumber of Elves. He hadn't actually remembered Legolas coming to bed, so it was all the more endearing to find him there.

He got up and stoked the fire, adding two heavier logs that would last well into the night. When he returned to bed his shadow fell across the Prince who blinked his eyes several times bringing himself back to full awareness.

The Elf turned his head and smiled. "You are recovered?"

"Yes." Aragorn laughed and reached to trace his finger down the fire- kissed porcelain skin. "In many ways Meleth." He settled himself on his side facing the Elf.

They watched each other for a few moments before Legolas spoke. "Would you care for more?"

Aragorn opened his mouth to respond but paused. The pleasure he'd received was unmatched, but he could yet feel a little soreness inhis nether region. "I…"

"Take me."

Aragorn's eyebrows rose in unison. His lips formed an `O'. With his eyes he scanned the Elf's face for any sign of misgiving but found none.

Suddenly one corner of the Elf's mouth turned up in a smirk. Aragorn felt a gentle touch on his raised cock. "I will take that as a `yes'."

Aragorn only growled. He leaned in for a hard kiss.

Legolas opened his mouth, willingly accepting the intrusion and thrusting back with delight. It was natural for Aragorn to move his body over his lover and grind his hips forward. This time though, he encountered not a flat feminine belly, but something as hard as himself. He was momentarily surprised at how erotic it was, and pressed harder to increase the sensation. Legolas grunted and threw his head back at the contact. "Estel!"

The Man made use of his mouth being freed to use it elsewhere. He latched onto a nipple and sucked hard, pinching the other with a finger and thumb. His other hand went below and grasped the Elf. Aragorn had not ever done this either—pleasure another male with his hand—but he figured what worked for himself was a good starting point. He pumped, making sure to keep pressure on the underside and give special attention to the tip. He knew of a spot on himself just beneath the base that was particularly sensitive, so he stroked that same area on Legolas- then bit the nipple—hard.

"Ai! No!" Legolas pushed and shoved at Aragorn but it was too late. He climaxed and spurted the milky white seed over his own belly. Too overcome to object, he allowed Aragorn to hug him tightly and shower his face with gentle kisses as the wave receded.

"That was *not* what I had in mind."

Aragorn grinned against Legolas neck and kissed it, quite proud of himself for making the Elf lose control. "Nor I, really. I seem to have gotten carried away." He paused a moment and looked into the Elf's eyes. "When you are recovered I would still like to-" He pressed his erection into Legolas' thigh.

"Hmm." Legolas nodded slyly. "I will not need as much time as you did." He pushed against Aragorn's shoulder. "Lie on you back."

The Ranger complied, though with a questioning look on his face. Once situated the Elf crawled over him and got up to retrieve a wet cloth with which to clean himself. That done, he moved to the foot of the bed and climbed in, right between Aragorn's legs, pushing them apart to make room for himself. Aragorn wondered for a moment at the Elf's intentions. His thoughts were silenced as a hot mouth descended on him.

His member had already softened but he was quick to respond to Legolas' ministrations. The Elf licked at a drop of liquid that had welled up on the tip, rolling his tongue around and around first then closing his lips tightly. He sucked gently, using his tongue to stroke the underside of the shaft. Aragorn shivered with pleasure but forced himself to be still.

After only a few minutes Aragorn could not resist the urge to thrust back into the lovely mouth that had him entrapped. He reached down and lifted Legolas' head from him. "Enough!" Grabbing at shoulders, Aragorn hauled the Elf up and flipped him onto his back. He kissed him hard, tasting his own salt and musk on the Elf's lips. "I must have you—now!"

Legolas smiled and brought up his knees. "Then take me, but as I have shown you, you must prepare me as well." He nodded to the table and the small jar sitting on it.

Aragorn huffed at the delay, but was willing to give Legolas the same consideration he'd been shown. He dipped two fingers in the jar and got enough extra to spread over his throbbing member. He knelt on the bed, looming over the Elf. Legolas spread his legs wider.

"Would it not be better for you to turn over?"

"Nay." Legolas shook his head. "As much as I want to feel you inside me, I wish to see you as well."

Aragorn did not waste any more time. He quickly found the Elf's opening and began to caress it. Very quickly he felt the muscles relax and tentatively inserted a finger. Legolas breathed deeply. "Ah, Meleth nin, yes."

After only several strokes Aragorn was able to insert a second and third finger. While he was concentrating on his task Legolas had taken hold of both his own and Aragorn's erections, and was pumping them both slowly.

"Now, Aragorn. I am ready enough."

The Ranger moved over Legolas and assisted him to raise his knees higher, thus rotating his hips to better expose the puckered entrance. He positioned himself and pressed just enough to solidify the contact without entering. At a nod from the Elf, he pressed forward. He groaned loudly as he slid in as far as he could. Legolas was breathing deeply, mouth open, willing himself to relax. When Aragorn was fully sheathed, the Elf let himself tighten for a moment. Aragorn bit his lip to maintain his composure.

He pulled back then pushed in again, this time using a more upward motion. Legolas gasped as his gland was stroked from within. "Yes!"

The Ranger smiled and began to repeatedly thrust in the same manner. While the pleasure he'd received before was exquisite, this was even more so. He looked down to see Legolas was stroking himself. He placed his hand over the Elf's and stroked together with him.

"Estel!" Legolas spasmed as he cried out. This time his seed shot across his chest to his shoulder. Aragorn watched it entranced for amoment and had the sudden urge to taste that which he'd caused to come forth. He leaned forward and extended his tongue to a small globule, then licked. It was sweeter than he'd expected and he found himself wanting more. He took it, lapping up every bit from the Elf's body. The action of licking and sucking caused Legolas' orgasm to go on and on, eventually bringing the Elf to near unconsciousness, and the writhing of the Elf brought Aragorn to a climax of his own. Spent, he collapsed onto the Elf, leaning to one side so it would be easier for Legolas to breathe.

When he moved to separate their bodies Legolas objected. "Stay, Meleth, if you are not uncomfortable. You are not hurting me."

Aragorn nodded sleepily and lowered his head to the bedding. Legolas laid a hand on Aragorn's head and stroked lightly. "Dream well, Meleth." In a few minutes both were asleep, still intertwined.

==+==
Epilogue

Legolas woke to birdsong- one of his favorite joys in all of Middle- Earth. He smiled and blinked several times to clear his eyes then reached out an arm. To nothing. He turned his head and frowned at the empty bed beside him. The frown deepened when he saw Aragorn standing on the balcony, staring out into the forest. He had dressed, at least partially. He wore his leggings and had a grey-green Elven cape draped over his shoulders.

The Elf grumbled to himself. `If he is wallowing in old memories again, I swear I will bind him and flog them out of him!' Quickly he rose and pulled on his leggings. He approached the Man carefully.

"Aragorn?"

"Hmm?"

Legolas rolled his eyes. "And what is it you are contemplating so early on this fine morn?"

The Elf was surprised when the answer was prefaced with a chuckle. Aragorn turned his head toward his companion revealing not a somber face, but a glad one. "You were right."

"About?" All sarcasm was gone from the Elf's voice.

"You said it would be a fair day today, and so it is." His eyes twinkled as he spoke. "And something else. This place seems to refresh me. I think I would like to come here again, when you would have me."

"Then you would never leave." Legolas held Aragorn's gaze for a long moment.

Aragorn extended an arm and Legolas quickly moved into the Man's embrace, allowing himself to be kissed on the forehead like a small child. "Then perhaps I shall not. Do you think Gondor would mind if their King set up housekeeping in Ithilien?"

"Unfortunately, I do. But there is no law stating the King cannot have a second home. A place to renew himself when need be."

Aragorn smiled and lowered his head slightly. "Ah, I believe this King would need renewal on a regular basis, and often." He bestowed a soft kiss on the Elf's mouth. "And I think, since you have already spoken with Faramir about my stay here, Gondor will not miss me anytime soon."

Legolas opened his mouth to counter the accusation but was quieted when Aragorn's mouth descended on him again, this time not so chastely. He responded with the full strength of an Elf. When at last he released Aragorn, panting, he spoke. "And I think Faramir must have a big mouth. You should stay at least a week. He should be well and fully tired of holding court by then."

"A week?" Aragorn grinned as they walked back into the bedchamber. "I was thinking at least a month."

Far overhead golden eyes twinkled.

~fin

Adar-Father
Ion nin-My son
Brannon nin- My king
Mellon- Friend
Lebethron- Tree of Gondor
Mellon nin-My friend
Guren nin- My prince
Tithen adan- Little man (human)
Meleth- Love
Melethron- Lover
Anor-The sun

 

 

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