Title: Fear No Darkness

Author: Yuggster

Rating: T (for action/violence and some scary moments)

Disclaimer: Lord of the Rings does not belong to me. It belongs to that guy...you know, the one over there rolling in his grave as I write this.
Summary: When Legolas was an elfling he was nearly killed in what was thought to be a horrible accident. His father sent him to Rivendell to heal and grow away from the Shadow, but the threat within Mirkwood was not eliminated. Will the truth be discovered before the prince succumbs to the darkness? No slash.

Warning: This story contains one instance of physical abuse (a cuff to the head) of a child (elfling). That is the only one, but there are also instances of verbal abuse (mostly in the form of threats) and basic mistreatment. It's only in the first few chapters (though repercussions continue throughout the story), but I wanted to warn you in case it would bother you. And before you ask, it's not Thranduil.

Spoilers: Well, in the third part there will be spoilers for Beginnings. You don't have to read that one first, though, as the first two parts take place before that story. In Beginnings there was mention that Legolas had been injured in an accident as an elfling and was sent to Rivendell to heal, and that he had stayed there to grow up. Basically, the first two parts of this story are about the references made in Beginnings, while the three takes place a few months after.

Prologue: An Enemy Returns

Fall, 3945 TA

Estel bit back a cry of pain as he was roughly shoved down beside Legolas. The elf quickly put an arm around the young human as though to protect him, glaring up at their captors.

"What do you want with us?" Legolas demanded.

They had finally convinced Lord Elrond to let the two of them go out on a short hunting trip without Elladan and Elrohir. Not three hours out from Rivendell they had been attacked by hooded and masked men, or elves, and taken prisoner.

One of their captors gave a low laugh. "You will soon see, Prince."

Estel noticed that Legolas looked startled. "That voice..." the elf murmured, his brow furrowing.

The human cried out involuntarily as someone grabbed his injured leg, roughly exposing his wound and cleaning it with a rag.

"Leave him alone!" Legolas cried, lunging forward to push the offending being away, only to be shoved roughly back against the wall. "Who are you?"

Estel winced as their captor backhanded the prince. "No questions," he growled. "But so you understand..."

The hooded being shoved back his hood, and Estel was startled to see an elf.

But if he was startled, it was nothing compared to the shock on Legolas' face.

"It cannot be..." the prince whispered.

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