Sacrificed Hope by Shadowfaxgal

Rated PG-13 - For torture and violence. No romance and little swearing.

Genre Mostly angst with some action. Lots of Hurt/Comfort. If you don't like character-torture, don't read it

Characters Mainly Estel(Aragorn) and Legolas, quite a bit of the twins, some original characters, and a little Elrond and Thranduil.

Updated Every 2-3 weeks.

Disclaimer I don't own LOTR. (But if I controlled the movie...I'd have had Elladan and Elrohir in it!)

I'm most likely 'changing' things around- My elvish leaves much to be desired and some of my sentences and actions I'm not sure elves would do/say...but please just go along with it. I might have a few errors but I try to re-post the chapters when my wonderful reviewers point them out. I know the twins and Legolas are 'adult' elves but in my stories they look and act like teenagers. I am erasing all evidence of Gilraen after she brought Aragorn to Imladris (sorry if that upsets you). And Estel is 7 years old in this story, and yes he fights orcs and yes I know that is probably not realistic, but just please go along with the idea that these are small, stupid orcs, and he is a good fighter. And since when Legolas met Aragorn is not recorded anywhere, I'll be making many fanfics of different times and reactions of them on their 'first meeting'. Please review and remember that I'm only 13 so I'm not a writing expert or anything and this is my first fic, but constructive criticism is very welcome.

Thanks to: Lord Elrond of Hogwarts, Just Me :o), Brittany, TeacherTam, Warrior Elf, Beling, Immortal-grace, sesshomaru103, Ainu Laire, TheRowan, tina, Legolas-Aragorn-r-hot, Kathira, drew'sgirl, Varin, Lady Jaina, Jadelyn Rashwe, and Bec for reviewing this chapter!


Chapter 1: Life-Threatening Trip




Legolas inhaled deeply, the air was so fresh. He absolutely loved being in Rivendell. While he also loved being in Mirkwood, there was just something so peaceful here, so serene...

He smiled to himself, thinking of the twins. With Elladan and Elrohir in Rivendell it was never that peaceful. But Legolas liked it that way. It was always fun to be with them, his best friends, though always in some kind of mischief.

Then, in the distance he saw two identical shapes. They were kicking a leather ball back and forth between them. He didn't know if it was just his imagination, but Legolas thought he saw a smaller, third person next to them. Then one of the twins turned for a second and caught sight of Legolas. A smile broadened on his face. He turned to the other and said something, and then they ran towards him.

They were in front of him within seconds.

"Ai, Legolas, where've you been, we've missed you!" Elrohir teased.

"You're just in time for a game." Elladan shoved the ball into Legolas, who staggered backward.

He smiled. "I have had to stay in Mirkwood with my father. There's been much business to attend to...But that doesn't mean I can't still beat both of you." He twirled the ball on his finger.

"Sure..." Elrohir snorted.

It was then Legolas noticed a small figure behind Elrohir, hiding. Elladan turned to see what Legolas was looking at.

"Oh yes," he said. "You haven't been here in the past years, Legolas. You haven't been introduced yet."

Legolas frowned in confusion. Been introduced to whom?

"What are you waiting for, brother?" Elladan asked.

Legolas looked up to Elrohir, but for some reason the question hadn't seemed to have been directed to him.

Slowly, a small child stepped out from behind Elrohir. He had a little longer than shoulder length, slightly wavy dark brown hair and grey- blue eyes.

"It's a pleasure to meet you Prince Legolas." He said shyly with a polite half-bow.

"Um...Hello." Legolas stuttered. He shot a look at Elladan. 'Who is this?'

Elladan stepped closer. "This is Estel, our little brother." he stated, smiling down at the boy.

Legolas looked down at the boy. "Hope?" he questioned incredulously.

The boy looked to the ground timidly, hurt at the tone of his name.

Elrohir shot him a dangerous look.

"I'm sorry," Legolas stammered. "I just..."

The boy looked up at him questioningly and Legolas couldn't help but gasp, which earned him another dirty look from the twins.

The child called Estel's hair had fallen back and Legolas realized he was no elfling. His ears were round.

Legolas immediately felt sorry. He didn't know why the twins had a new 'brother' who wasn't even an elf though named as such, but he was being quite rude. He knelt down.

"Forgive me for my ways, Estel. It is I who am pleased to meet you."

The boy smiled sheepishly and blushed.

"Come, Estel," Elrohir motioned and the boy immediately raced to his side as they walked a little ways away. Legolas stood up and faced Elladan with a quizzical look.

Elladan sighed. "I am sorry, Legolas, we never got to tell you about him."

"Where did you get him?" Legolas asked, then immediately realized he was once again impolite. Saying it like they had 'gotten him' at a shop or something.

Elladan smirked. "We got him five years ago when his father was killed. It was his mother's wish for him to live in Rivendell. Ada adopted him as a son so now he's our little brother." He paused and sighed. "We have tried so hard for him to fit in. Some elves here are quite unjust to him. He can't help it he is not an elf, Legolas."

Legolas nodded, feeling worse than he had by the minute.

"There is no reason he can't live with elves." Elladan continued. "He is a fine brother and it doesn't matter what race he is, though he does try so hard to be like the elves. Just because he's a human doesn't mean he's any less than you or me, Legolas, you should know that."

"I do know that!" Legolas snapped.

Elladan sighed softly. "I know, but you do not know how great of a friend he could be."

"I do too!"

"Prove it."

"How?"

"Well, for days Estel has been pleading to come along on a trip of 'Ro's and mine but we fear it would be too dangerous. Possibly you could go on a little ride with him while we're gone, a safer one, and get to know him better."

"Alright."

A FEW DAYS LATER


As the afternoon wind blew gently through his long blonde hair, Legolas urged his horse on. He glanced over at the human boy beside him, adopted brother of his best friends, Elladan and Elrohir. He had been taught that humans were weak, living such a short life and being so susceptible to illness, but Estel didn't seem that way. He was always very polite and kind, and didn't seem weak at all. In fact, he rode his horse almost as well as most of the elves he knew.

He knew it must be hard for the boy, though, to live with the elves but not be able to always do things with them. He would never be able to go out in the frigid temperatures of the winter and walk on the snow and participate in a snowball fight with his brothers. And someday he knew he'd have to leave his brothers and elf-friends. He would have to die.

But Estel never seemed to mind. In the recent past he had gotten to know the child very well and was beginning to like him. Elladan and Elrohir were coming back from a trip in a little more than a week and Estel had grown restless without them so Legolas and the human were going on a small ride. During it they'd also be able to get to know each other better.

He didn't know how deadly their little ride would prove.


As the sun began to set, Legolas told Estel they should stop for camp. They halted the horses and began to head for the riverbank to get water for dinner. The pair walked a little ways when an inhuman sound rang through the air. A shiver ran down Legolas' spine.

"Yrch!" he hissed.

The two whirled around to return to their horses just in time to see the animals bolt and orcs surround them. Before a word could be said, the orcs were on them and the boy and elf were forced to fight. They were too close for arrows, so Legolas resorted to his sword, horrid worry for the child's safety burning inside of him.

The elf and boy killed many orcs, though, despite the elf's fear of whether the boy could defend himself well enough. Soon there were just a little over a dozen left.

Legolas plunged his sword through an orc's neck just as he felt a sharp blow to his back and fell forward to his knees, almost on top of the dead orc. He felt rough arms grab him around his chest, immobilizing his arms, and felt the cold metal of a dagger on his throat.

"Move and die." A gruff voice whispered sternly.

"Vanne Estel! Bar lyaselda!" Legolas cried. Go Estel! Save yourself!

Out of the corner of his eye Legolas saw the horror-stricken face of the boy before he ran into the woods. Then Legolas felt a sharp pain in the back of his head and the world went black.


Estel felt a sickening feeling when Legolas mentioned orcs. They were vile creatures that were known to torture victims. They had killed his father.

He gripped the hilt of his sword. He knew he's need it. Orcs began to surround the two and the battle began.

Almost immediately the pair was separated from each other until Estel could barely see Legolas. He hoped he was okay. He whirled his sword around, killing orcs. He was thankful he had a weapon and knew how to wield it, but never expected to have to. Everything was a blur of action as he swung and stabbed skillfully, thankful for the fairly short stature of the orcs.

It made him sick to his stomach as the blood poured from the creatures but for some reason he felt some sort of pride in doing this. It felt good. It felt good to kill the monsters that had taken his father from him.

Suddenly, out of his peripheral vision he saw an orc bring a club hard down on Legolas' back and the elf fell to his knees. His heart froze, but even though there was not that many orcs left, he had to continue fighting.

Estel watched a large orc press a dagger to the prince's throat as he killed an orc and realized that there were no more to fight. The remaining ones were watching their leader and Legolas. They didn't even see the human boy.

"Vanne Estel! Bar lyaselda!" Legolas cried.

Fortunately, the orcs figured the elf was just cursing them in his language, but Estel knew what he'd said. And he was right. There was nothing he could do by himself. It would be one boy against a dozen orcs. Estel needed to run. But he couldn't. He was frozen there. He couldn't leave Legolas. It would mean certain death, but if he stayed it would be certain death for both of them.

Estel pulled himself to run. He dropped his sword, took one last look at the limp form of the prince being picked up by the creatures, and took off racing into the woods.


Legolas awoke with a pain his head and back and found himself bound to a tree tightly with ropes around his arms and chest. He immediately began to thrash but soon found it useless, at least for the moment. About fifty yards away he saw the flickering of a fire and the figures of orcs through the trees.

He was a captive to the creatures and could not escape.

Then he smirked slightly. This certainly wasn't the first time. He was always getting into trouble. But his smile faltered quickly when he thought about Estel.

He heard a grunt behind him. He could not see it but knew there was an orc guard there. For hours he stood there, saving his energy for a better opportunity to escape. His only thoughts were that he hoped Estel had gotten away safely.


Estel ran until his legs could bear it no more. He collapsed against a thick tree trunk, sides heaving.

'Legolas'

He had told him to leave. He wasn't betraying him, was he? He knew in his heart it was what the elf had wanted, for him to be safe, but it was at least three days walk to Rivendell, and another on horseback to find him. Plus, the orcs would be going the other way and it would be hard to find them, so Legolas would have to be at least five days in the orc's grasp. Estel doubted the orcs would keep him alive that long.

They would not take him. Against Legolas' biddings, he stood up, and began to silently trot through the woods, the way he had came from.

He was stealthy and quiet. He did not know which way the orcs had gone but could not risk them hearing him. He kept at a steady pace for hours, and it began to grow dark but there was still no sign of Legolas. He had reached the place they fought, and in the beginning there had been a sort of trail to follow, but it was quickly becoming less evident, and there was little light to go by. Also, they seemed to be dragging something. Or someone.

Estel continued to track but it soon became futile. It was late at night with only a sliver of a moon, which little of its light came through the thick trees.

Finally he stopped. If he continued, he might be passing the way they went and go for hours in the wrong direction and would never find Legolas.

"Ya ier ly, mellon nin?" He whispered to the darkness. Where are you, my friend?

Suddenly, as if answer to his plea, he heard noises. He stood perfectly still. He could hear the sound of crickets and other night- dwellers, but something else not so usual. Barely audible through the other sounds, he could hear the faint sounds of moving underbrush and gruff dark language.

As quiet as he could he crept closer to the sound until he could see the faint glow of a fire in the distance. He moved closer.

Estel bit back a gasp and dodged behind a tree.

He took a moment to catch his breath, his adrenaline pumping. He slowly peered out of his hiding spot. About a hundred feet away was an orc standing in front of a thick tree. Fortunately, it made no move to indicate it had seen the human. Behind it Estel could see ropes tied around the tree and figured he had a pretty good guess at what was being held captive. But how could he get there?

There was a chance, considering there was only one orc, but one sound from that orc and he'd have much more than he could handle. He racked his mind for a solution but could find none.

He was desperate but there seemed to be no way to help his friend. Plus, if he decided to go back to Rivendell he couldn't. He didn't know where it was anymore. He could try some extraordinary rescue feat, but chances were great he'd just get himself killed, and eventually Legolas too.

He thought of his brothers. What would they do if both their best friends and little brother left them?

'Yes!'

At the thought of his brothers his mind began to drift, thinking of the times he'd spent with them. He remembered them teaching his archery. He remembered a time at the archery field when Elladan had bet Elrohir he could hit the center of the target with a dagger at a distance. Having been their first time, they did not succeed flawlessly, but the trio of brothers had continued to try and perfected the 'sport'.

As softly as he could he crept from behind his tree, crouched down, and raced behind another, closer to the orc who didn't even notice. Estel continued this until he was only about ten feet from the unsuspecting beast. He silently unsheathed one of the twin daggers his brothers had gave him and raised it expertly as he had been taught. He stepped just far enough from behind the tree so he had room and raised his arm. The orc turned and opened his mouth to shout the alarm but not fast enough. A dagger was imbedded in his throat and he began to fall, dead, to the ground.

Estel immediately raced forward. However much he dreaded touching the creature it would make too much of a noise as it fell so he caught it as it slumped over and gently eased it to the ground. He wiped his hands on his tunic with disgust. Not wanting to make anymore noise he left his cherished blade in the orc and pulled out his other one. He wanted to check the other side of the tree, to make sure it was Legolas and see what condition he was in, but he didn't know if any orcs could see the front.

He pulled the ropes towards him and slid his dagger into the space between bindings and rope. He sawed quietly back and forth for what seemed like an unnecessarily long time but could go no faster and still be quiet. Finally the ropes gave way and fell to the ground, thankfully not on any leaves that would make a noise.


Suddenly Legolas felt a tightening on the rope and felt an unseen presence behind him but could not see what it was. After a minute of anxious waiting he heard a faint snap, felt a sharp tug on the rope, and then watched it fall soundlessly to the ground. Immediately he turned to the back of the tree in amazement.

"Let's go!" Estel whispered urgently as he sheathed his dagger.

They ran as quietly as possible, but also as fast. Legolas marveled at how swift the boy was. They were only about five minutes away when they heard the frenzied cries of the orcs who had just noticed their captive was missing.

"Faster!" Legolas murmured.

Abruptly, a thick orc club flew out of the bushes and collided with Estel's chest. Before Legolas could do anything the boy flew limply to the ground. Orcs came out from every side of him and the elf was soon held tightly back.


Estel ran with Legolas, who fortunately, other than a few bruises and scratches, didn't seem to be very badly hurt.

Without warning, he saw an object fly through the air in front of him. He felt an agonizing pain throughout his chest and the snapping of ribs before everything went dark.


"Estel!" Legolas cried in horror to the boy who hadn't yet moved.

Then he saw an immensely large orc step out of the trees.

"Well, well, well." He rumbled. "It seems our little elf is trying to escape."

He roughly jabbed the boy with his boot.

"And who's this? Seems a little small to be a fighter..." He peered closer. "Ai! A human! Now, what would an elf be doing with those other than his kin?"

Legolas said nothing. Estel stirred slightly. The orc grabbed him by his shoulders and pulled him to his feet, jerking the child into alertness.

"A friend of yours?" he sneered.

Legolas did not know what to say. Say nothing and who knew what the orc would do to the vulnerable boy. But orcs loved torturing just as much as killing, especially torturing people in front of their loved ones.

"No," Legolas lied, hoping that just maybe they'd let him go, even though it seemed futile.

"Oh, really?" the orc grunted. "Well if you don't know him I suppose you won't mind what we do to him?" he roughly punched the boy in his already damaged ribs.

Estel fell to his knees, slumped over and gasping for breath. The orc held a knife inches above the child's back. "Are you sure you don't know him?"

"No, please!" Legolas cried. "Don't hurt him!"

The orc smiled broadly.

"So you do know him?" He raised his dagger. "All the better."

He plunged the blade towards the boys back.


TBC!