I can't believe that this is the last chapter. I'm kinda sad to see it end, but  I'll content myself with writing sequels. So here it is, the end of 'Faramir's story'.

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            Faramir stood on the balcony, staring out over the city, yet looking at nothing. He quit singing when he heard someone behind him, but he didn't turn. "Faramir?" It was Éowyn. "Faramir, what is wrong? Please, tell me." Her concern for him brought tears to the Steward's eyes.

            "I nearly killed that man. I wanted to kill him."

            Éowyn knew he meant the blacksmith. "I understand, he was hurting his son..."

            "No, you don't understand!" Faramir gripped the balcony's stone railing. "I didn't want to kill him to protect the boy. I wanted revenge!" His knuckles turned white from his grasp on the rail. "I wanted revenge for every bruise, every cut, every broken bone, every death that was caused by fathers like that." Faramir let go of the railing and turned to face Éowyn, unwanted tears tracing pathways down his cheeks. "I wanted revenge for the three years of pain, the two years of silence, the eight years of exile! I wanted revenge, because you should not be wishing for death when you are only ten-years old!" Faramir could no longer hold himself up, collapsing to his knees with his arms tightly crossing his chest as if in hopes of stopping the anguish of his heart from overcoming him. //Please make it stop. Please!//

            Éowyn stood there, stunned and horrified. The horrible truth of Faramir's past made her want to run away. She couldn't deal with this, she didn't know how. The moment that thought crossed her mind, Éowyn pushed it away. Her love was hurting, she had to help him, had to at least try. Éowyn knelt beside Faramir, wrapping her arms around him. She pressed her cheek against his, a cheek scarred by the hand of his father. "I'm so sorry, my love, I'm so sorry."

            Faramir's breath was ragged from holding back tears. "My father hated me. He always hated me. I tried so hard to gain his love, or even just his acceptance, but still he hated me. And I never knew why. I never knew why he loved and cherished Boromir, and then tried to kill me. Why? Why didn't he love me?"

            His grief and agony pierced Éowyn's heart. "Oh Faramir." She stroked his hair. "He loved you, he must have! Maybe he never quite knew it himself. Perhaps he refused to let himself love you out of fear or arrogance. Sometimes it is hard to listen to your heart when you have trained your mind to think otherwise. And from what I have heard, your father's mind was twisted beyond his control."

            Faramir looked up at Éowyn, tears in his eyes, tears he still would not let fall. "Deep in my heart I know that you speak the truth. I saw a glimmer of it at the end, in a vision before he died. But I don't know if I truly believe he loved me, or if it is just a desperate hope that leads me astray." Éowyn did not answer, could not answer. "I thought all this was behind me. I never wanted to think about it again."

            "You cannot run away from the past. It will slowly destroy you unless you face it."

            Faramir's voice was now a whisper. "I don't know if I can. I have not the strength or will to face it alone."

            Éowyn smiled softly and stroked his cheek, brushing her thumb lightly across his scar. "You are not alone, min léof. You will never be alone." Her love broke down his last barriers, and for the first time in twenty-six years, Faramir let himself truly cry.

~*~

            Faramir stood among the ashes of the House of Stewards, the final resting place of his father. Burned along with Denethor, the charred timbers had been cleared away, leaving only the blackened stone beds, including the one upon which Denethor had died. That table had been inscribed with the likeness of a palantir, the instrument of Denethor's madness. Faramir took a deep breath, and knelt on one knee before the table. "Where death takes men, I do not know, but I need to speak. Father, your heart and thoughts are mysteries to me, mysteries that I will never solve. But wherever you are, know this." He paused. "I forgive you. I will never forget what you did to me, but if I am to be different than you were, then I must forgive you and move on. You hurt me, not just in body, but in soul. But I forgive you. Because you are my father, and nothing you did can change that. I love you, I always have, and when you love someone you forgive them for their mistakes. Now, I only hope that your soul finds the peace it was denied in life. Farewell, father."

            He stood and closed his eyes, a great burden lifted from his shoulders. A light breeze blew through his hair, a gentle kiss brushing his forehead. Faramir smiled and turned to Éowyn who waited for him on the Silent Street. The Steward of Gondor and his love walked away from the Hallows of the Dead towards the glistening White City. The past was at rest. Now it was time for the future.

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IMPORTANT! I will update once more in order to answer reviews and such, so look for that. I hope you enjoyed this story, and thank you to everyone who reviewed!

By the way, 'min léof' means 'my beloved' in Rohirric/Old English, in case you wanted to know.

Addition

I am adding the reviewer responses to this chapter in order to get rid of that last bit. I'm also not going to add anymore, sorry.

Reviewer Responses

Hi everyone! I am soooo sorry it has taken this long to finish this up, but with everything going on in life, I haven't had the time. So here are the answers to some of the reviews. If I don't get everyone who reviewed, sorry! I'm not the most eloquent of people and sometimes don't know what to say.
Acacea= I wish I could have written more too, but unfortunately my brain gets in the way. =D Sequel may have a little bit of Elrond and Faramir father/son stuff but mostly it's angst on Éowyn's part.
Susan= like I told acacia, if you like Éowyn worried, you'll like the sequel.
Caroly= I really tried to show the horrors of abuse. Not having experienced it personally, I'm glad you thought I did a good job with it.
Anodien= Maybe we should call Aragorn the speechless spaz! He does seem like it doesn't it. Thanks for reviewing so much, you've really encouraged me. Good luck with your own stories, they are sooo good!
Elf Ears= I like the blacksmith's son too. I even wrote a poem about him which I also put up on ff.net. Glad you liked it!
The proud Canadian= I'm so glad you like my story. I hope you'll like the sequels.
Fan81981= I agree, Faramir is seen in the wrong light because of the movie. Sorry about, Boromir, I don't really know how to write him. At least he's not a sadistic madman like I've seen in some stories. *shudders at the memory*
A.E.Hall= It just seemed right to put the song back in. And I felt that facing his past would be a good ending. I didn't know any other way to end it!
The evil witch queen= I hate when stories end too. I guess that's why I keep writing long ones and I like *reading* long ones. And don't worry, I will write more. (eventually)
Nihtfyr= Thanks for reviewing so much. And unfortunately some people will take anything as slash. That's why I put the warning, just for them. Yes, angst is *very* good.
Narn= I didn't worry, you are a very faithful reviewer. *Elladen gives Narn some fish tied with string* See, my mini-Balrog even likes you and he's picky. I hope the sequels live up to your expectations.
Iavala= My computer is evil too. So is ff.net cuz I keep trying to read stories and they keep saying that the site is overloaded.
Thanks to everyone who read and/or reviewed "Faramir's story". There is a sequel in the making and I think it is almost done, but it may take some time. Until then, Namarie!
Lirenel