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Longer than there’ve been fishes in the ocean Higher than any bird ever flew Longer than there’ve been stars up in the heavens I’ve been in love with you.
Stronger than any mountain cathedral Truer than any tree ever grew Deeper than any forest primeval I am in love with you.
I’ll bring fires in the winters You’ll send showers in the springs We’ll fly through the falls and summers With love on our wings.
Through the years as the fire starts to mellow Burning lines in the book of our lives Though the binding cracks and the pages start to yellow I’ll be in love with you.
Longer than there’ve been fishes in the ocean Higher than any bird ever flew Longer than there’ve been stars up in the heavens I’ve been in love with you I am in love with you.
Elessar Telcontar that had been simply Aragorn the Ranger once upon a time entered the royal bedchamber. His eyes went first to the slim silhouette of the one that stood outlined in light before the open window. The King knew that his love looked West to the Undying Lands, ears filled with the plaintive cries of phantom sea birds.
Walking up behind the Elf, the Man slipped his arms around the trim waist and rested his chin on his Consort’s shoulder. “Not yet, my love,” he said softly.
“Not yet,” the Elf agreed, turning in the King’s arms to face him. “Not until you no longer have need of me.”
“Then you will never take ship for I shall always need you at my side.”
“A day will come when you lay down arms for the last time. You will pass beyond these shores and go where I cannot follow, taking my heart with you. On that day, I will seek the Grey Havens.”
Man and Elf turned at the sound of a Dwarven throat being pointedly cleared.
“Begging your pardons,” Gimli rumbled, “but they’re awaiting your presence at the banquet, laddies.”
“Is it your sense of propriety, or your empty stomach that bids you seek us out?” Legolas asked mildly.
Aragorn, for so he still thought of himself, smiled fondly at the Elf’s baiting of the Dwarf.
“In truth, we cannot start the feast without the King,” Gimli said. “And though Elves might be able to live on love and starlight, Dwarves need stouter fare.”
“Truer words were never spoken by any seer that ever lived,” Legolas smiled. “Will you go ahead of us, and tell the revelers we will soon join them?”
Gimli cocked a shaggy eyebrow at the King. “Do not let this woodland sprite tempt ye into dallying, lad. I could eat the hind end of a dead Orc.”
Aragorn laughed aloud and bowed to Gimli. “We shall take your famished condition into account, Master Dwarf.”
When the door closed behind Gimli, Legolas raised a hand to touch the Man’s clean-shaven cheek. The years between the War and now had been kind to the weather-beaten Ranger. Aragorn looked scarcely a day older than he had at that fateful Council of Elrond. And yet today they attended the wedding of Aragorn’s eldest daughter to the Prince of Dol Amroth.
“It is still a marvel to me,” Aragorn said, putting his hand over the Elf’s.
“What astounds you now, Man?” Legolas teased.
“That you chose me, out of all the world’s children.”
“I did not choose you,” the Elf smiled. “I have always belonged to you, and you to me. For as long as the Stars hold light.”
Aragorn marveled again at the lack of doubt in the Elf’s beautiful voice. Legolas had always been unwavering and true from the moment he had first seen Isildur’s Heir. Aragorn, with his divided heart, could hardly say the same. And yet, Legolas was still here, accepting the role of Consort, as Arwen fulfilled the role of wife and Queen. It was a miracle as wondrous as the coming of Spring.
“I do not deserve you,” Aragorn sighed.
“You are wrong, as you often are,” Legolas answered. “If you were undeserving of me, I would not stay here, though it break my heart to go.”
“I only wish I might honor you, as I have honored Arwen.”
“And I wish that you would believe that it means nothing to me that we cannot wed. We are bonded. Our souls are as one and nothing can ever change that.”
“Then I make this pledge. As long as fishes swim and birds fly, I will love you, and my love will be deeper than the forest, stronger than the mountains and will burn as long as the stars. This do I, Elessar Telcontar of Gondor, promise you, Legolas Thranduillion.”
“I do not need you to swear to your love,” Legolas replied, placing his palm over Aragorn’s heart. “I can feel it all around me. It sings in my blood, telling me of your passion, and lies against my skin like the light of the Sun. I walk in your love, and I never walk alone.”
The King swept his Consort into his embrace and held him tightly. “There has never been one like you,” he whispered in the delicate ear. “And when you are gone from this Middle Earth, beauty and grace shall depart with you.”
“Nay, Aragorn,” the Elf laughed merrily. “This world will always hold wonders untold. My absence will not diminish it.”
The King did not agree, but neither did he argue. He kissed his beloved in promise of more to come when this feast was over. It was a joyous occasion and Aragorn could think of no better way to celebrate the union. The Elf pressed against the one that was all to him, bending as the Man leaned in to take his lips, a slender sapling bowing to the wind.
In just a moment, they would move apart and go down to celebrate the nuptials, but for now time had no meaning as kindred spirits mingled in pure bliss.
And it was a most disgruntled Dwarf that trudged once more up the stairs to call them to the feast.