Title: A Lasting Gratitude

Author: RavenWolf

Feedback: ravenwolf1414@yahoo.com

Rating: G

Pairing: F/A, Aragorn/Arwen

Disclaimer: There would be more sex if they were mine. Trust me.

Summary: Frodo thanks Aragorn for his services rendered.

~~~

There are too many kindnesses you've done me, Strider. Too many to ever, ever repay. Hush. I can see that you want to speak. Don't. Let me talk, Aragorn, and just listen.

So much that you've done for me, and yet, in my heart of hearts, I would ask for still more. More that you can not give me. I love you, Aragorn. What did I say? Shhh. I'm not done yet.

I love you, and though you did not know it, it was you who guided me through Mordor. You who brought me to the top of Mount Doom, to the fiery lava. Your strong arms cradled me the entire way, offering solace in dreams and fantasies. You were with me every step of the way, haunting my path, ghosting through the edges of my thoughts. There was a fourth companion with us as we trudged through the wasted landscapes of the enemy.

No, I do not expect anything from you. Nor did I ever. I am not blind, but by the beauty of Arwen Undomiel, I wish I were. Then I could not see the bonds unbreakable between you. The love that shrouds you both in immortal happiness. I cannot bear it some days.

Don't worry, I don't blame you. I could never blame you. Even if you were a black hole into which all the goodness in the world fled, I would never blame you for your magnetism. As I have said, I love you, unconditionally. Totally, wholly, unabashedly. You are the one thing my torn, shredded, blind soul can find left to cling to. And it has you in a death grip. It's holding you so tight that I can feel myself suffocating. This is no way to live.

I suppose you have heard that I am returning to the Shire. I also assume that you know it will not be long before I depart with the Elves across the sea. It is the last voyage I can take, and the only thing that could sever me completely and totally from this Middle Earth, and the few things left that I still cling to.

My heart bleeds profusely, and it is not something the healing hands of the King could ever fix. Not truly. Because you do not love me, and all that you could give me would never be enough for my ravaged, hungry spirit.

Remember me when I am gone, Aragorn, son of Arathorn. Remember that I love you, and look back at your journey to destiny with love, if you can. I am leaving now, and I do not think we will ever meet again.

Love Arwen. Love her wholly, and convert the pity you feel for me into yet more adoration of her. Something good should come of it, at least.

And finally, I wish to formally thank you. For all of the things you gave to help me on my quest, and all of the things I took from you unknowingly.

Goodbye, Strider.

I shall miss you.