Author's Comments:I am very canonical to the book, but in this case I'm mingling movie-and-book canon; it fits in very well with what I envisioned after initial research threw my last idea out of the door. It also solves a niggling plot gap in the movie that jarred me because it directly contradicts the situation in the book; at the same time, I also break a few rules in Tolkien fandom to get this idea down on paper. For one, I'm excising useless parts of the movie battle (Legolas shield-surfing – I just don't see this in Tolkien's Middle-earth). I'll consider this an experiment – nothing more. All fanfics are like that with me, and all ideas and characters belong to Tolkien and his estate. And to PJ – the one who made movie-canon possible.
Sorrow in the Rain
Written By: RinoaDestiny
Stone cracked and broke, riven into many pieces by the blast, and shrapnel scattered over the battlements like harbingers of death. Legolas, horror in his eyes, did not move to dodge some of the splinters of stone that ripped through his tunic, opening bleeding wounds. The sound of the explosion rang loudly in his ears, nearly but not quite drowning out the remembered screams of Aragorn. Legolas – stop him! Kill him! The Orc was too persistent, too swift, and too stubborn to fall. The Elf glanced down at his hands; at the hands that failed to save the people that now fought with him to ensure victory. So many had fallen with the rubble, and many would not be coming back.
Struck with guilt, Legolas nearly did not hear the hideous roar behind him. Knives flashing out of their sheaths like white lines of lightning, the young prince slashed once at the Orc's throat, while his other hand sliced a lethal arc through the creature's belly. Without a sound, the fell beast collapsed at his feet, black blood gushing onto the slippery stones of the Deeping Wall. Stepping back with disgust, Legolas moved towards the left side of the wall, his attention focused on the brutal horde overwhelming the Men of the Mark and the remaining Elves. There was so much screaming, dying, pain, agony, and grief. This was part of their sacrifice in order to save Middle-earth for their descendants.
Blood was always spilt so that life could resume.
Gritting his teeth at this horrible truth, the Elf blinked rainwater out of his eyes and launched himself directly into the fray. He had failed his friends! His failure had caused many to die – his people and Rohan's people. Even Aragorn his friend was thrown down, fighting for his life in the worst of conditions. How could there be hope if hope itself died? Gore spattered on to his face, on to his clothes, and the rain washed it off, drenching him. Orcs fell around him as he frantically fought, desperate to save those that he could. Haleth, he saved from an Orc spear that nearly impaled the boy, and elderly men he sought to save because their beloved awaited their return. War was cruel when it demanded men who had seen too few or too many winters, thus depriving their families of the foundation of their love. Children need not die, nor did grandfathers.
He began to understand why Elves thought the affairs of Men were below them.
And yet, these were his people. He would bleed with them, he would fight for them, and he would die for them. Aragorn's words came back to him with poignant power, and Legolas hid his tears in the storm. Already, the Elves of Lothlorien – the wardens of the Golden Wood – gave their all to save people that they could have ignored. Could he do any less?
"Pull back to the keep, Haldir!"
Legolas quickly glanced down the battlements, his blood running cold. Unknown to Haldir, the sword of the Enemy was about to descend upon him, cutting his life away from Arda. It was too cruel to allow yet another friend to join his companions in the Hall of Mandos. The Lady Galadriel needed his aid in defending Lothlorien, and to send him back as a corpse to his two brothers was sure to drive them to grief. Legolas had enough of grief. He suffered enough guilt for his former lapse; his aim that erred. That would not happen again.
Faster than the eye could follow, one of his knives cut through the air like a line of white. Bone cracked, flesh tore, and the Orc slipped and fell. The black blade gleamed as it clattered to the stone battlements, only to be seized by yet another Orc. He, too, died as Legolas swiped his remaining knife against his gullet, severing the veins beneath. Grabbing Haldir, the younger Elf pushed him aside. He could only guard Haldir's back for so long. "Run! Pull back, Haldir!" Haldir stared at him, surprised, even as Aragorn bolted up the steps behind him. Then, the Elf's expression changed. "Legolas! Behind you!"
It was too late. By the mercy of the Valar, it was too late. Legolas barely bit back a scream of anguish as the steel spear slammed through his stomach and out through his back, staining the stones crimson with blood. The Orcs roared in victory, only to find their brutal joy fiercely interrupted by the vengeful sword of Aragorn. The grief and rage on the man's face ripped a new wound into the dying Elf's heart, and Legolas stumbled back, crumbling in surrender to his fate. He would have fallen, if not for Haldir – the one he saved at the cost of his own life.
"Legolas, son of Thranduil...I never asked this of you."
The words were swallowed anew in the throes of his pain. "I…I could not fail…" The metallic taste of blood sickened the Elf, and Legolas knew his time was short. Mandos would soon be expecting him in his grand halls. The thought of the stricken look on Gimli's face tortured him; although death frightened him, he grabbed Haldir's arm with his remaining strength. "Tell Gimli…tell him…that I regret that I could not…finish the journey with him."
Haldir's eyes were grave. "I will tell him, Legolas. Go in peace."
Aragorn was now yelling, upset and torn by the Fellowship's loss of yet another companion. Haldir moved, and the world shifted, blooming into a vision of red. Agony shredded his body; Legolas gasped, drawing what meager breath he could. The spear was gone – Aragorn knew that Gimli would not suffer to see him thus impaled. Warmth soaked into his quickly chilling skin, and the Elf shuddered.
"Go into the keep! Can we not save him?"
"Alas! It is too late. Already he fades."
He would bleed with them, he would fight for them, and he would die for them. He did die for them – for all of them. Haleth he saved, the grandfathers of families divided he saved, and Haldir of Lothlorien he saved. He might have failed them once, leading some to death because of his carelessness. But redemption was always possible for those who sought it. He found it, and traded in his immortal life so that others could live. So that evil could be defeated…so that Frodo's own sacrifice was not in vain. He would not fail them – he didn't betray that trust.
Alas! It was his time to leave. The brilliant Halls of Mandos drew ever closer to him, until he was upon its threshold. Death beckoned to him, and the afterlife loomed before his eyes.
He stepped in.