SUMMARY: A small vignette from Arwen's point of view

DISCLAIMER: I don't own Lord of the Rings in any way, that honor goes to JRR Tolkien and New Line Cinema. The only thing I own in is Kemmendel.

Taste of a Kiss

By Tiger

She sat in her talan, staring out at the open space of Mallorn trees before her. It was a beautiful sight that stood before her, silver and blue in the immediate vicinity, and then splashes of browns and reds and oranges in the forests beyond. But Arwen was not paying attention to any of that. She knew the beauty before her, but in her mind, she saw another beauty. She saw her love her Aragorn, pure and true. She was interrupted out of her thoughts by a knock on her door. Quickly, she stood up and banished the far away look from her eyes and opened the wooden doors. Outside was a handmaiden, holding a letter for her.

"Milady Arwen," Kemmendel, her handmaiden, said, giving Arwen a slight bow before holding the letter out to her. "A letter that was sent from Imaldris a month ago." Arwen took the letter and quietly thanked Kemmendel before dismissing her. She looked on the back of the envelope. Indeed, it was dressed to her. Her breath caught at the familiar handwriting, and she began to smile, knowing who sent it to her. She quickly tore apart the envelope, wanting to greedily devour all that he had written to her, for it was not often that she heard from him. But after a glance at what was written, her smile faded.

Meleth nin, Arwen,

I hope this letter finds you in Lothlorien happy and well rested, that is how I imagine you are anyways as I write this. How I long to hold you in my arms again, to stroke your hair and feel its raven softness flow through my fingers. But I cannot. I regrettably will not be able to visit you in Lothlorien as we had previously planned, for there are things with the Dunedein that require my attention for the next few months. My Arwen, I know your heart pains after reading that, but mine does as well. My Arwen, do not let your heart falter, it will not be long before we see each other again. Have faith, as long as we focus on our tasks; a few months will pass quickly.

If I were there with you now, I would kiss you, but I am not. Pray, remember the last kiss we shared.

Aragorn

She looked at the ground dejectedly. Why? Why did such a thing have to come up now? Estel should have been with her in two weeks, safe with her in Lothlorien, together, as they should be, not apart. It was hard enough that her father disapproved of Estel's love for her, and hers for him. It was hard enough that they saw so little of each other. Arwen could not bear to go back to Imaldris, memories of her mother were everywhere there. Estel was the leader of the Dunedein, it was almost impossible for him to stay in one place for two long, unless it was Imaldris or Lothlorien.

Why? She asked herself again. Why was it so difficult for them to be together? But then she thought of all the times they were together, and she brightened a little. Though those moments were few and far in between, they were precious little moments. It was during then that she knew nothing but safety, after going so long without feeling any. Even though her mother passed centuries ago, to Arwen, the pain was still fresh. She had just barely reached her majority when her mother had been violated by orcs on her way home from Lothlorien. She had rode out with her brothers that day, and saw her mother's battered body lying on the ground. In one selfish moment, she realized that she could have gone through what her mother endured, and was glad that she had left early. But seeing the way her mother was, had frightened her to the very core of her being. She could not bear to be in Imaldris, her mother was everywhere there. Lothlorien seemed like the only safe place at the time, her grandparents were there, as was the rest of her mother's kin. It had been hard saying goodbye to her childhood home, but she had to leave.

No! Arwen scolded her mind, forbidding the painful memories to return. She closed her eyes and cleared her mind, and tried to do what Estel told her to do, to remember their last kiss, which had been the first kiss they shared.

She had been in Imaldris then, visiting her father and brothers. Her heart had fallen a little when she did not see Estel welcoming her with her families, but she didn't let her pain show, not in front of her father anyways. Late that night, after everyone else had fallen asleep, she had crept down to the bridge in front of the waterfall, wishing that her Estel would appear. It was their bridge, they met in the middle, late at night.

She sat there waiting for him, knowing in her heart that he would find her. She had been looking into the waterfall so deeply that she did not hear his soft footsteps or the soft intake of his breath. All she knew was that one minute, she had been staring into the cascading water, and the next moment, a weight plopped down next to her, and a strong arm encircled her waist. She had jumped a bit, startled at the intrusion into her reverie. She heard a familiar chuckle in her ear and smiled broadly.

"Surprised?" Estel teasingly asked her. She gave him a playful hit on his arm.

"I knew you were there all a long, I have elven hearing remember?" They both shared a chuckle at that. All was quiet save for the sounds of water. She rested her head against his shoulder and let her eyes glaze over a bit. It had been a tiring trip from Lothlorien, and she needed sleep. She felt his arms tighten comfortably around her and his fingers stroking her hair, gently untangling the knots that she missed. They stayed like that, leaning against each other, resting.

"Arwen," Estel said, causing her to refocus her eyes and turn her face towards him.

"What is it?" she whispered, staring into his soothing grey eyes. She shook his head and smiled a little.

"Nothing," he whispered back, "It's nothing." She had been about to say something when he bent his head and kissed her. It was awkward, neither of them had done it before. The kiss was over quickly, but the moment was not. "I'm sorry," he had apologized, embarrassed, thinking that it was not what she wanted. "I—"but he never finished apologizing, as she pulled him towards her and kissed him...

Arwen shook herself out of the memory, smiling slightly. She touched her mouth with her fingertips, remembering the taste of her first kiss. All of a sudden, a few months did not seem like such a long time, though she knew that she would be moping again tomorrow. For now though, it satisfied her to think that there would be more of those kisses the next time they met. She would wait. Impatiently, but she would wait. After all, she had waited her entire life for someone to make her feel the way Estel made her feel, what was a few more months of waiting to see him again?