Legolas Cares Not for the Ways of Men

            "We can go no further now," decided Aragorn.  "It is too dark to ford the river.  Should the Hobbits lose their footing, they would surely be carried away by the current."

            "Thank goodness," breathed Merry to himself.

            "Let us make camp, then," said Boromir, "and engage ourselves in such activities as befit a troop of hearty men."

            "Shall we compose a lengthy, overly involved lyric poem addressing the tragic love of Lúthien and Beren?  Or perhaps an ode to the Moon?" asked Legolas, perking up considerably.

            "Um…" said Boromir, "I'd prefer not."

            "Boromir," said Aragorn warningly.  "This is not a conversation you want to have."

            "It's just," continued Boromir, unheedingly, "I'd rather do something more manly."

            "Manly?" replied Legolas coldly.  "Perhaps you would rather discuss the ludicrous history of Men then, comparing their various shortcomings to your own!  Feel free to discuss your topics of Men in front of me.  I certainly won't complain.  Elves care not for the ways of Men."

            "No, no.  Not 'Manly' as in 'related to the world of Men," but 'manly' as in 'masculine'.  Not that I'd expect someone like you to understand such a concept," said Boromir.

            "Oh no," said Aragorn, "now you've done it."

            "Masculine!" shouted Legolas, "You think composing poetry is not masculine?  Poetry is the ultimate art form!  It takes centuries to perfect the art of arranging appropriate words in pre-defined meter and verse!  You will never know the sublime joy of completing your first perfect poetic masterpiece!"

            "You've got to be kidding me," said Boromir.

            Legolas's jaw dropped, and he started to reach for an arrow.  Sam quickly interceded, "Well, as we must camp for tonight, I would think that we should get dinner started.  Strider, would you please take Boromir into the nearby woods and collect some firewood?"

            "Yes," replied Aragorn, "I think that is an excellent idea.  Come, Idiot, I mean, Boromir."

            "Excellent job, Sam," said Frodo.  "I thought they were about to kill each other."

            "Poetry not masculine," steamed Legolas, "How can he possibly believe that?  And what does he mean that I wouldn't understand the concept of masculinity?  I am among the most masculine of Elves!"

            Frodo sighed.  He knew this conversation was a long time in coming.  "Legolas," he began, "I think it's time I told you.  Boromir thinks…how do I put this…Boromir thinks you're…a fairy."

            Legolas stared at Frodo.  "Is he blind?  I am of the noble race of Elves!  I'm hardly a fairy!  And he should be glad.  Fairies are batshit insane.  They steal children and leave completely random things in return."

            "No, no.  Not a fairy like that," cut in Pippin.  "Frodo, you can't be so gentle.  Legolas, Boromir thinks you're gay."

            "Elves are not gay!  We are serious and melancholy.  We pine for a time long gone by.  Happiness is expressed through gentle, condescending smiles, not gayness."

            "Ha!" laughed Gimli, "Silly Hobbits.  You don't understand the 'complex' workings of the Elvish mind."  And with that, Gimli tugged Legolas down to his height and whispered in his ear. 

Legolas turned bright red and looked frantically at the other members of the Fellowship.  "You mean…Boromir thinks that I…I…"

"Care for the ways of men," finished Frodo, matter-of-factly.

* * * *

            Aragorn glared at Boromir as the two men gathered fallen branches.  Boromir had the good sense to look slightly ashamed, but Aragorn was not mollified.  "Boromir, I told you Elves were sensitive."

            "I know, but for a species that claims not to care what Men do, the Elves seem to interfere a great deal.  And never when they should.  I mean, they were alive at the end of the last War of the Ring.  Maybe if they actually talked to Men every once and awhile, those things that shouldn't have been lost, wouldn't have been!"  Boromir's rant was interrupted by a high-pitched, enraged scream.

            "Was that a woman?" asked a bewildered Boromir.

            The anger tinted scream turned into a voice: "I'll give you a list!  A list of all the girls I've loved before!  What about me could POSSIBLY make him think that?!"

            "I'm going to sleep out here tonight," said Boromir, turning to Aragorn.  "If that's okay with you."