This is a re-post of my original chapter. I have modified it slightly, hopefully for the best. Enjoy.
Disclaimer: The Lord of the Rings belongs to J.R.R Tolkien, Peter Jackson, New Line Cinema and their associates. I am making no money from this; it is just a wonderful way for me to write for an audience with room for me to improve upon my skills/technique through their comments and criticisms.
Cymbeline was written by William Shakespeare (c. 1609) and belongs to him, not me.
Rating: Most likely R, although some may argue it PG-13.
Suilaid all! I'm sorry to have been so long in-between posts lately. Here is the last chapter. While it's not as concise and poetic as I'd like it to be, I'm having surgery tomorrow (no worries- just the wisdom teeth ;o)) so I didn't know when I'd get the chance to post a figured it was better to post now.
That having been said, I wish to thank you all for this wonderful experience. Hannon le- and may we all stay in touch! ;o)
Fear No More the Heat O' Th' Sun
VI. All Consign to Thee and Come to Dust
"It doesn't seem right."
Arwen merely stood patiently waiting for her husband to continue, her gaze lingering upon the freshly churned earth piled before them.
"To bury one who was so full of life, so close to the trees," Aragorn sighed, clearly unnerved by his own wandering thoughts. "I just hate to think of him entombed in the earth."
"It is only his body that resides there now, Aragorn. His soul passed long ago."
The king looked over at the soft voice of Faramir, his gray eyes kind and understanding. He lowered his voice to be equally as soft. "I know." He didn't care that he sounded like a cheated child for he felt the part. "Yet it is no easier for my heart to bear."
He felt Arwen's comforting hand on his shoulder then, and he reached up his to cover hers. Glancing to his wife he was surprised to see tears running down her cheeks, contrasting her silent strength. "Nor should it be," her voice was slightly hoarse form disuse.
He sighed deeply as he returned his gaze to the soft mound of earth and the fresh young flowers placed upon it.
"I never thought that I'd be standing at the grave of an Elf with naught but agony in my heart." Gimli the dwarf nearly bit his lip in an attempt to remain composed. "The fool creature could make any love him. How cruel is fate to take him from us?" The anger left his voice and was replaced with woe. "There was but a day's journey left between us. I came as fast as I could yet I was too late. I have failed him," the dwarf gave into his sobs then. Hearing a dwarf so stoic and gruff in such utter lament broke the hearts and reserves of nearly all present.
Aragorn felt the lump in his throat become unbearably painful as he watched Faramir break into tears across from him, the wet-cheeked Éowyn clinging to his arm. Arwen squeezed his shoulder more tightly before resting her face against it, a quiet sob escaping the regal lady.
The former Ranger attempted to speak around the pain in his throat. His voice was choked with anguish and sorrow yet he did not mind. When hearts were so utterly torn what use was regality? "You never failed him, Gimli. His heart reached out to you before he died. You were always with him, as he is always with you."
The dwarf let out a shuddering sob as he took in the king's words.
At that moment the wind picked up, tousling the hair of those present. Éowyn glanced about wildly before fresh tears streamed down her high cheeks. "The trees mourn for him..."
"No." The voice was firm and all turned slightly surprised eyes to the Evenstar. "For they are wiser than we- he is with them now. He is with us still. He is in their whispers..." There was no doubt in her voice and she had pulled away from her husband as if to assert her belief. Being now the only remaining Elf among them none thought to question her assertion.
"He told me as much," came Aragorn's deep rumble beside her.
Arwen turned to him and offered him a gentle smile. It was as if she were bearing up against the pain she felt for the benefit of those much younger and as much was true. "You knew his heart as well as I, Estel. You were his brother. Bonds of love are not so easily broken. You know in your heart that he will always be with you, as long as you hold him in your memory."
After gazing into her clear dark blue orbs for a moment longer the man leaned his head against hers in a silent show of gratitude. When next he spoke, the song-like quality his words held stilled all.
"Now my love
It's come to pass
The dying of the sun
Tomorrow's weight already felt.
When the earth is bare
Will we at last
See clearly our deeds
Come to pass?
And gentle smile
Blown lightly past
Only stayed but a little while.
Leaves do weep
And Ferns do grieve
The passing of one
To them so close.
Trees do moan
And birds do cry
Will my brother and I
Seek their solitude."
For a long moment all was silent save the sniffling of those who yet breathed.
"A hero of the War of the Ring and a great warrior; a brother to all who knew you and a giver of hope. That is how you shall be remembered, Legolas, son of Thranduil," Faramir's voice rang clear in the glen where they had gathered.
Gimli stepped forward slightly and spoke next, his voice less pain-filled. "My brother-in-arms and spirit, my gentle trickster, I shall miss you dearly."
Éowyn shifted slightly beside her husband, taking a step forward towards the grave. "I did not know you long in this world, Fair One, but your presence ever did give me strength and courage. To know that one with so much to lose believed enough to fight alongside us.... You gave us all hope."
"You were our silent sentinel," the king could was not even conscious of his woe-full countenance as he spoke from the love he continued to feel. "Long did you protect the Fellowship. Without your guiding eyes we would be lost. I miss them now, gwador-nïn. I miss you. But I know you would want me to use the strength you have taught me. You have given us all so much," he paused as he bit back a sob. He then touched his hand to his forehead as he inclined his head, closing his eyes briefly. "Go in peace."
For a long while only the quiet rustling of the leaves overhead could be heard. Then Arwen stepped forward and knelt, her head bowed and eyes closed. She spoke in quiet Sindarin. What she had to say was between her and her Elven brother, although she knew that the two men present could understand her tongue. "I know that with your passing you do not fade. I shall join you shortly when my time here has ended. I will be blessed with such company as you, Legolas, although while I still draw breath I will not see joy in your absence. So much pain we have endured for love, you and I. I know you have always loved me, and now I can say that I have always loved you, Greenleaf. Your presence ever brought me warmth. To know you was a true blessing. I shall treasure that gift always."
The Evenstar rose, and together with Aragorn the two spoke a soft Elvish prayer, then placed their hands on their hearts before extending them outward in a traditional goodbye of their people. The others present followed suit. The small crowd departed. Only a mound of quiet earth, decorated by young flowers remained.
The wind blew and the trees whispered.
I have an idea for a sequel, believe it or not. Would anyone be interested? Please also be sure to watch the trailer for this story- I'd love to hear what you think!
Partheon: My ever loyal reviewer! Where would I be without you, Love? I have long enjoyed knowing that one will pay attention to the details I attempted to impart into this tale and you have never once let me down. Your favorite lines are also mine! Indeed, we seem kindred spirits for I must now admit my obsession with furrowed brows now that you've called me on it! ;o) (CNYICAL 21? The name MOST DEFINITELY rings a bell- I shall have to look her up again. I love Obi-Wan Kenobi, as well! ;o)) Thank you for always being there and offering me direction- you have been a true guiding light this entire journey- and I do not say that lightly. With all my heart, hannon le. :o)
Elithraniel: LOL! Eight hours of LOTR fanfiction a day? ;o) How fun that must be! Thank you so much for your compliment, my dear. I hold it close to my heart! And I shall most definitely check out the story Coming Home which you suggested! I'm always game for a good Legolas/Aragorn fic! Thank you for your suggestion! :o) I wish you well, my friend!
BButtercup: Thank you so much for all of your reviews! And your appreciation of the way this tale has been told has always comforted me. I was worried that the perspective, subject matter and lack of details might find distaste with some, but you and I seem to agree here that it is the consequences of the action that are more important than the action itself (at least for the purposes of this story.) I'm sorry to have upset you, but I know it's what we were both looking for- you in reading and I in writing. Thank you for reading, mellon. :o)
Lady Laswen: I know! I hate ending stories as well. It's nice to get the feel of accomplishment but it's still hard when you know people will be wanting more. So perhaps a sequel isn't so bad an idea? LOL- yes, I thought that the chimney-sweepers would have added the corny factor to this story which I was adamantly trying to avoid. ;o) Thank you for your lovely presence, as always. :o)
Merry lad: Thank you for your constant support my Aussie pal! I will miss hearing from you so be sure to e-mail me from time to time! LOL! Until next we meet, mellonnamarië
Naitriab: I'm glad that you enjoyed the good-bye scene! I was hoping it wouldn't be hopelessly mushy/corny. ;o) Your reassurances there were most welcome. LOL- as to your name and the Chemistry remark- I think it reminds me of "Nitrate" and the like. Go figure! ;o) LOL. Thank you for your reviews, my friend!
Sirnonenath: My faithful Elf maiden! How can I ever thank you? You and I truly do have similar hearts! I never want a character to die, even when I know it's the "right" thing, if that makes much sense. Thank you for trusting me, all through this tale. It has been better since you came along! ;o) Your presence has ever lifted my heart. You are a joy to know! :o) With every fiber of my being, I thank you, My Lady. :o)
Silver Thorne: Noss faer! Oh my Silver Thorne, you truly have been a constant companion throughout the writing of this tale. Thank you for always being there and letting me share when I needed to. The bittersweetness that you describe as feeling is exactly what I was hoping to achieve, as cruel or twisted as that may be. ;o) My wistful smile arrives whenever I see your name, noss faer. I will not say good-bye here, for I know that with you and I there never will be such a thing. Yet still bows hannon le.
LP13: My buddy! I'm so glad that you liked this story! You are always a joy to speak with! I shall treasure your friendship always. Thank you for all of your constant support. :o)!
Dreamality: One with the lovely name, for making you cry, I am both sorry and happy. But it is a good sadness, no? Thank you so much for your kind words, mellon. You are a great source of inspiration! To hear such words attributed to this tale as those which you have chosen is no matter of compliments but of honor. As corny as it may sound, you honor me, Lovely One. Thank you so much. :o) I only hope that you have also enjoyed this chapter!
MIzxXxmALfoY: Awww- I do hope your track meet went well and that no one thought you insane for asking "why" out loud! LOL. Oh you dear thing, hands Kleenex I'm sorry to have made you cry, but it feels nice, doesn't it? I'm so glad that you've liked this tale. As to the backstory- would you like a sequel? ;o)
FlyingPurplePig: Leads out of corner and dries tears Hannon le. Hugs :o) (P.S.- Smart Party for President! ;o))
ColeForever16: Awww, thank you so much for your kind words. I have also found this story hard to leave and am seriously considering a sequel. Thanks for your vote- it shall not be taken lightly! :o)