THANKS for all the wonderful reviews! You've all been very kind to me!
I would thank all of my individual reviewers but I have no time at the mo. But thanks for the huge support with this story. You've made writing it a huge pleasure! Thank You everyone!
Enjoy the last chapter of this fic!
The Healing Process
Arwen soon came to learn the truth from Eldarion of what had transpired. He told her of the choice Aragorn had to make at the end of his life and that it involved her. The Queen also found Aragorn not responding properly and when he came from court he was distant and quiet. Even the presence of Eowulia did not raise his spirit.
The wounds that he had sustained were gone but it was the memory of it all that affected the Numenorean King. He spent days sitting alone in his study brooding over events and wishing that he could leave all the pain and agony behind. In the months that followed Aragorn was found usually staring at maps of the world and on one such drawing was his handwriting saying: The West. A large arrow pointed out to sea. It was then that Arwen discovered Aragorn's wanting to leave the city.
It pained her to think of Aragorn like that.
The second month into Aragorn's recovery brought about the return of Gandalf to Minas Tirith who explained the Knights had been found and killed. They were no longer going to bother Gondor. With this Gandalf remained in the city for a year.
Life went on as normal for the children. Eowulia was deprived of her father and mother for the first year but she surprised the nanny's by learning to walk and talk quicker then her siblings. She was a bright young child and full of curiosity. She was truly the King's heir.
Eldarion was the only one who constantly worried over his father.
Faramir took over the King's duties and he and Éowyn moved to the city. No one apart from the household knew the truth behind Aragorn's sadness. In due time Eldarion began taking some of the duties of the King and soon he was known as the 'King Eldarion' which was something he did not wish to be known as. The only time he saw his father was when Aragorn emerged to dine with the rest of them, which was rare. Usually he ate in the safety of his quarters. He would only speak to Arwen about what had happened to him.
Many months flew by and gradually Aragorn began to open up and his wounded spirit began making its way toward the light. By the time he was speaking again Eowulia had grown and could speak simple words. She recognised everyone save for her father for he was a stranger to her. Through gentleness and guidance the small child gradually accepted Aragorn as her father. It overjoyed him to hear her say 'Ada'.
He soon summed up the courage to go outside in the summer gardens, which he had avoided since returning home. He was joined by Gandalf.
"How are you feeling, my friend?" the wizard asked.
"In pain. All I see is what happened. My mind will not ease away. It's getting too much to handle."
"It's wearing off though, isn't it?"
"Sometimes I feel whole, but I know I'm not which opens up the void left in my being. How can I live knowing that what has happened to me has made a part of me leave forever?"
"It has not left you forever Aragorn. You have been given the choice to sail away at the end of your life to start anew. If you choose this, you will become whole and given the chance of a better life then one you've had. Arwen can still come. You will always suffer but there are ways around it. Forget about the past. In Valinor Frodo healed and he enjoys life now. If you sail you will be allowed a future where no pain can reach you. You have to learn to live with the pain if you wish to heal here in Middle-Earth."
Aragorn sighed. "I cannot see beyond my sight. All I see is images of the past. Granted that Arwen is there, but she'll never understand the emotional torment I was forced to go through. It was horrible." His voice lowered, tears almost came unbidden to his eyes. "I wish to be free from it all. I'd choose death over this, but I know my passing would be hard on her."
Gandalf smiled. "Aragorn, you've lived your whole life through many difficult challenges and you've shown that you are stronger then all men in Middle-Earth. What you went through and that you survived shows that you are not willing to give up. You continue to live in this world even when you have an option of leaving it in two ways: death or sailing. I believe that you will heal in time but it will remain in your heart for the rest of your life but only as a memory of what happened to you. Just think about it."
Aragorn nodded. After they parted he did think about it and afterwards he begin to heal rapidly. Within two weeks he was taking his duty once again. It was now seven months since he returned to the city and Aragorn was much happy and more confident. Only three days later he laughed for the first time.
Arwen's patience with Aragorn's recovery was rewarded when her husband arranged a romantic evening for them, which ended in the elven Queen being carried to their bed. Several months later both of them noticed the Queen getting bigger by the day: it meant only one thing she was pregnant.
This small event brought joy back into their lives. Aragorn continued to enjoy life and even he celebrated Anawiel and Tiniwiel's birthday. It was the first time Aragorn properly attended a celebration involving everyone in the city.
The next big step was the birth of the couple's sixth daughter naming her Celedë. Aragorn spent most of the time – when he could – with his two youngest daughters. It pleased Arwen that he was feeling more his old self. He no longer cried at night but slept peacefully, undisturbed by the nightmares of old. He was truly healing at long last.
Year 120: Fourth Age
Sometime at the beginning of the year 120 Aragorn decided his final journey. He was nearing the end of his life and the choice appointed before him he still needed to decide. After much deliberation the dying King agreed to sail across the sea. On March 1st of that same year, he turned 210, and at dusk he rode out of the city with Arwen, but not before declaring Eldarion King of Gondor and handing to him the crown and the Sceptre of Annuminas. The couple rode for weeks through Middle-Earth until they came to the Gray Havens where a boat waited, one that Legolas and Gimli had built.
Once everyone had arrived they boarded the acquisitively, intricately designed boat and sailed off into the sunset of the West.
Many days they sailed across the sea until coming to Valinor where the elves awaited them. Reunions were held between them all. Aragorn was overjoyed at seeing Elrond again. Elladan and Elrohir had left ten years before. They hugged the human and their sister.
Gandalf explained then that since both Aragorn and Arwen were mortal they were being given an extended life, though not forever. Ilúvatar did not let neither of them to die for many years. For nearly a thousand years they lived on in Valinor; in bliss, until Aragorn succumbed to the Shadow of Death, followed shortly by Arwen.
They were laid together in the heart of Valinor. Their spirits passed into darkness, yet the shadow of death fell over the elves of Arwen's family. In due time Ilúvatar declared that Aragorn and Arwen's spirits would return from the darkness. And so it was, that both Aragorn and Arwen lived again, reunited with the elves: The first mortals to live forever in Valinor.
I apologise if the ending is rubbish and not detailed enough. That is what the sequel is all about. For more info read below!
Title:Into the West
Summary:Aragorn and Arwen sail INTO THE WEST, but will the blissful quietness heal Aragorn from the pains he still carries with him? Or will he fall into darkness and destroy the connection he has with his Queen?
I'm not sure about the rating though. (Any ideas?) The fic will contain romance (no sex, just little kiss scenes). There probably won't be much action, though I'm planning on something major happening around chapter 5 (if it all works out according to plan!). It's a fic about self-discovery – I think – and how people cope with pain that they bear. It will be slow, but the point of it is to show Aragorn's healing and expanding on their life in Valinor and showing how Ilúvatar came to the choice that he does on the fate of Aragorn and Arwen.
HOWEVER, I will not be able to work on this for a while because in 1 week time I am sitting my GCSE's, which ARE very important. I will work on this during my spare time. My last exam is June 28th but the following Saturday I'm going to France and Spain for 2-and-a-half weeks, with no access to the Internet or my computer. I WILL post the story as soon as I can (that is when I'm around Chapter 5). So, if you're interested, I will post sometime at the end of July, hopefully Saturday 24th. I cannot promise though.
If you'd like me to e-mail you when the story is ready for posting, please leave me an e-mail address so I'm able to contact you. I will try and post the sequel in the next few weeks but please don't get your hopes up.
Farewell until we meet again! Why did I say that? I must be LOONY! (well I did get to go home from school early yesterday at 12 as the school didn't want the students going on Study Leave at the end of the day to do anything silly like set off the Fire-Alarm or egg the teachers cars! LOL! A whole week to type until my first exam! Oh, and to revise! LOL! It'll be such fun!)
Hope TO see anyone interested in reading the sequel when I update it! Bye!