Chapter 13: Things to remember

When Aragorn awoke, he was confused, for he did not know where he was. The last thing he remembered was falling asleep in Legolas' arms, lying on the stony beach. But now he could feel a straw filled mattress under his body, and a pillow under his head. Also, his bed seemed to sway from side to side…Confused, he opened his eyes and blinked around. He was indeed lying in a real bed, in a small wooden room. He could hear the soft palling of water on wood, and realized that he must be on the ruffians' ship. Although, he did not remember coming on the ship at all. He sat up and rubbed his face, happily surprised to note that his head did not hurt as much as it had the day before. He gingerly touched the side of his head, and although the touch hurt, the pain had lessened. Similarly, the swelling seemed to have receded.

While he exited the chamber and climbed up the steep stairs towards the deck, Aragorn smiled at the thought that Legolas must have carried him to bed, so gentle that he had not even awoken. He was truly blessed to have a mate as thoughtful and compassionate and gentle as Legolas. As soon as he opened the door that led to the deck, the sunshine bathed his face in warmth, and the soft breeze ruffled his hair. Had it not been for the knowledge of what had happened to them and why they were at this tiny beach to begin with, Aragorn could have almost enjoyed the tranquility.

Looking around for Legolas, he spotted the elf exit the tunnel system. He carried what looked like long planks on wood on his shoulder, and rope in his free hand. When he saw Aragorn on the deck, he smiled brightly and waved. "Time you woke up, Estel! The day is almost gone."

Surprised that he had slept so long, Aragorn made his way down the gangplank and onto the beach. Legolas had built a small fire, on which two fat fish sizzled in a pan that must have come from the ship. A piece of bread lay next to the fire to roast. It smelled delicious, and Aragorn's stomach rumbled loudly. When had he last eaten anything?

Laughing at the hungry look on Aragorn's face, Legolas threw the planks onto the beach and gestured at the fish, "Alas, they are not ready yet, they need at least another half hour." Sighing in regret, Aragorn made his way over to Legolas. As soon as he reached his side, Legolas reached out and drew him close for a kiss. "How do you feel? You've slept long and I began to worry." His blue eyes searched Aragorn's grey orbs for signs of pain or a concussion, and a tiny frown marred his beautiful features.

"I feel rested, that is for sure." Aragorn laughed, tucking a strand of blond hair behind Legolas' ear. "And I feel good. The pain has receded somewhat, and I neither feel dizzy nor nauseous." He decided that being completely honest with Legolas about his injuries was the quickest way; otherwise Legolas would only pester him with questions until he was satisfied that he had heard the truth from him. "In fact, I feel rather hungry." He shot a longing look at the fish, causing Legolas to give him a joking shove, "They will be done soon enough. Now forget about food for a moment, human-Hobbit, and take a look at my raft."

"Your what?" Aragorn looked down at the wooden planks that Legolas had carried out of the caves and only now realized that there were already many more planks of various sizes lying on the ground. Some of them had been bound together with cord, and Aragorn could see that the raft was almost finished. It was small, barely wide and large enough to carry the two of them, but it looked sturdy. Aragorn was surprised but delighted, "When did you think of this? And when did you make it?"

Grinning like a child that had succeeded in something very difficult, Legolas sat down and began to place the new planks beside the ones already attached to the raft. "After you fell asleep I had time to think. Nibs has taken the only vessel there was, and with but the two of us we cannot sail the ship. Not to mention that neither you nor I know how to sail a ship." He looked up at Aragorn and squinted in the bright sunlight, "And with your injuries, you cannot swim to the shore. And then I saw all the wooden crates stashed on the deck and in the caves. A raft was the only thing I could think of." He got down on his knees, causing the white stones to tinkle softly, and resumed his work and shrugged his shoulders dismissively, "Once you begin, it is easy work. The raft will be finished tonight, tomorrow morning at the latest. And then we can leave this place for good and return to Lake-town. To be honest I will not regret having to leave this beach, although it is rather beautiful here."

Not knowing what to say, Aragorn crouched down beside the elf. Not only had Legolas taken care of him while he had slept the day away, but also had he thought of a way to get away from this place and already begun with building a raft. Legolas' thoughtfulness touched him deeply, and before he knew what he was doing, he took hold of Legolas' hands and kissed them, one after the other. "Legolas, you are more than I could ever have wished for in a friend…and lover." Their eyes met, and instantly their passion of the day before rose in them. Their lips met in a searing kiss, and within a minute they were lying on the half finished raft, kissing and touching.

Aragorn soon found himself covered by Legolas' pliant body, the elf's lips tracing a scorching path down his neck and upper body. Nimble fingers undid his tunic and shirt, and hot kisses burned his chest. When Legolas took one of his roseate nipples inside his mouth, Aragorn arched his back in pleasure. His nipple hardened instantly and Legolas lightly scratched his teeth against it, causing Aragorn to moan deep in his throat. After bestowing the same lovely treatment to Aragorn's other nipple, Legolas moved downwards. He gently kissed the bandage that wound around the broken rib, ever so careful not to aggravate it. His hands followed his pillaging lips, and when his fingers teasingly tucked at the strings that held Aragorn's breeches closed, Aragorn felt heat boil in his nether regions. Pounding, his shaft awoke to lustful life, and he groaned once more, lifting his hips in invitation.

Without hesitation, Legolas undid Aragorn's breeches and pulled the fabric down. While his lips returned the way they had come, burning Aragorn's chest with kisses, his long fingers found their way into the dark curls between Aragorn's legs, until they finally, gloriously, tightened around his pounding flesh. Throwing his hands around Legolas' slender shoulders and pulling him closer, Aragorn moaned in pure pleasure and lifted his hips into Legolas' hands, wanting, needing more. But Legolas took his time.

Ridding himself of his clothing and pulling off Aragorn's remaining garments, Legolas blanketed him with his slender body, relishing the feel of skin on skin. His own length was pounding with desire, but he would not satisfy this desire just yet. With the sun warming his back, Legolas mapped Aragorn's chest and neck with fiery kisses, enjoying the sighs his wicked tongue elicited from his willing victim. But when Aragorn wrapped his arms around his body and started his own perusal of it, Legolas was hard pressed not to give in to his needs. He wanted this to last, to make this memorable.

Capturing Aragorn's warm lips in a devouring kiss, Legolas reached down and began to stroke the man's length. He felt the thick veins pulsate with want, and before Aragorn could protest, he broke the kiss, moved down and enveloped the turgid flesh with his wet lips. Aragorn quivered under him, his back ached away from the ground, and his flailing hands sought for something to anchor him. When Legolas slid his lips down until nose touched the man's stomach, Aragorn groaned deep and his hands tangled in Legolas' blond tresses.

"Legolas…" he whispered brokenly, his eyes closed tightly in pleasure. Squeezing him, sliding his tongue up and down the pulsing length, Legolas felt his own need grow to immeasurable heights; And he felt that Aragorn was close to breaking, too. The man moaned and writhed on the ground, trembling with the urge to find his release, but unwilling to let go just yet. With a wicked lick of his tongue, Legolas released Aragorn, and crawled up to look at his face. Panting, cheeks flushed in a lovely shade of pink, Aragorn gazed at his blue orbs, "Legolas, don't leave me like this, please." He shifted his hips and pressed up against him, his arms on Legolas' hips.

A groan fell from elvish lips at the softly spoken plea, and Legolas felt his body sink down on its own accord. Their hips met in a searing dance, and had it not been for his desire to be taken, and not to take today, Legolas would have taken Aragorn there and then in one ravaging thrust. Instead, he placed a hot kiss on Aragorn's swollen lips, and moved to astraddle Aragorn, much to the young man's surprise.

Blue eyes met confused grey, "Take me, Estel, my love." Legolas groaned, locking his gaze with Aragorn's. "I want to feel you inside me."

It was not often that Legolas asked Aragorn to take him, for it was usually the elf who took on that role. It was not that Legolas did resent to be bedded, but it was just their usual way of doing things that Aragorn yielded to the Prince's desire. But not this time, and the rotating movements of Legolas' hips were all the incentive Aragorn needed. His hands began to stroke Legolas' strong thighs, up his stomach and down his back, sun-kissed skin on marble white, and Legolas sighed in pleasure.

Soon, Aragorn could no longer resist the pounding flesh that stood out so proudly, and his fingers closed around the elvish length and squeezed it tightly. A moan left Legolas' lips and he pressed down, his knees on either side of Aragorn's hips, "Estel, please, don't tease me. Please, take me now."

With a barely suppressed growl, Aragorn moved his hands behind Legolas, who lifted himself up. Aragorn thoroughly prepared his lover, before he positioned the elf right above his impressive member. Their eyes met in a hot gaze, before Legolas slowly lowered himself, spearing his warm passage on Aragorn's thick heat. A feral moan rendered the air and Legolas threw his head back, so that his long tresses fell across his back like liquid gold. He lifted and lowered his hips in a slow dance, relishing the feeling of being filled so completely.

Groaning, Aragorn watched as his lover speared himself again and again on his length, mesmerized by the play of light and shadow and the ripple of muscles under the smooth skin. His member ached and pounded in Legolas' wet passage, and Aragorn could not help but meet every lustful press of Legolas' hips with his own upwards thrust. Soon, his hands took hold of Legolas sinful member and stroked it in rhythm of their coupling.

Legolas rode Aragorn until he could take it no more. The pleasure built inside of him like a tidal wave he could not control, and when he felt his release nearing, he lifted himself up so far that he almost freed himself of Aragorn's shaft, before he sank down hard. Aragorn slid even deeper inside his channel, filling him with pulsing heat. It was too much for Legolas to bear, and with a lustful shudder he found his release, crying out Aragorn's name.

Under him, Aragorn watched as his lover found his release, warm liquid spurting from between his fingers. Legolas' wet channel contracted around him, sucking him deeper and scorching him with heat. With a last powerful thrust Aragorn came to completion, his own hot seed shooting into Legolas' body, who still writhed above him in the throes of passion.

Afterwards, they lay side by side in the warm sunshine, bathing in the afterglow of their passion. It was a long time before they got up to wash quickly and dress. By then, the fish had burned to a black mass which they had to regrettably throw away.

They worked on the raft for the rest of the day, and when the sun sank behind the horizon, it was finished. They watched the sunset and the birth of the glimmering stars in the dark sky, and when the moon bathed the tiny beach in silvery light, they loved each other once more, caught in the magic of the night.

At sunrise, they launched the raft, and using thick planks as oars, they slowly made their way towards the shore. The tide sucked them southwards, though, and it took them much longer to reach the shore than they had thought. As soon as they had green grass under their feet, they began the long march back to Lake-town. It was almost dark when they crossed the long bridge into the town, and nearly midnight when the town-keepers threw Rory into a cell in the Castellium. The man had been weak from thirst and hunger when Legolas had shown the town-keepers to his room, but neither Legolas nor Aragorn could find the strength to feel any compassion for him. The man would probably spend a few years in prison. The next morning, the town-keepers would head out to the caves to collect Willie.

When the town-keepers had left with the prisoner, all statements had been given, the inn keeper been placated after finding a handful of town-keepers in his inn, the room been cleaned from the mess that Rory had made during his stay and the windows been thrown open to let in the fresh night air, Aragorn was exhausted. Flopping down on the bed, he threw his arm across his eyes, sighed deeply, and was asleep in mere seconds. Sighing good naturedly, Legolas removed the man's boots, before he lay down beside him on the too small bed. Automatically, Aragorn snuggled up beside him, resting his head on his shoulder and draping his arm across his chest as was his wont. Smiling, Legolas pressed a kiss to the dark curls, before he let his eyes close.

He lay awake for a few more minutes, thinking of the days to come. They had stayed far longer in Esgaroth than they had planned, and it was time to return to Mirkwood. He would have to resume his duties as the Crown Prince and Aragorn would have to return to the rangers. Soon, the rangers would send out the summer patrols, and the men would wander far and wide and not return to The Angle before the first snow fell. Aragorn could not miss his patrol.

A sad smile flickered across Legolas' face; they would not see each other for so long… Aragorn could not return to Mirkwood coming winter, and he – Legolas – could probably not travel to Imladris, given the fact that he would have to run patrols as all the soldiers of Mirkwood did. Furthermore, Aragorn had told him that he would probably spend the winter in the North and not in the elven haven. The fell beasts of the North had gotten bolt last winter, as his cousin Halbarad had reported, and Aragorn wanted to destroy the danger before the creatures could get their numbers up. That did mean that they would not see each other at least for more than a year. For any other elf a year was not such a long time, but for Legolas, it was too long, much too long. He opened his eyes and gazed at his sleeping lover.

Aragorn was so young still, and every time they met again, he was changed. And it were not only the physical changes that surprised Legolas every time anew, but also the changes in his bearing and demeanor. Already the once so open and hilarious young man had vanished, leaving in its place a more secretive, thoughtful man. Now and then, Aragorn's playful nature broke free, but Legolas felt that it was only a matter of time before his responsibilities and ancestry would turn Aragorn into one of the cold, reserved and withdrawn rangers that Legolas had met. Not that it would make any difference to him. He would love Aragorn no matter what, for as long as he lived.

Slowly, Legolas drifted off to sleep, but before his eyes glazed over in elvish sleep, a thought flittered through his mind, and it conjured a smile onto his lips.

-oOo-

It was still early in the morning when the two friends crossed the long bridge, leaving Esgaroth behind them. Their horses, which had been cooped up in a stable for too long, flicked their ears excitedly, swishing their tails and neighing softly. Throwing one last long look at the town, Aragorn climbed into his saddle and patted his horse onto the long neck. When he turned his horse to the South, he was surprised to see that Legolas was already heading towards the North.

"Legolas?"

Turning his head, Legolas threw him a mischievous smile. "There is something I want to do before we leave, Estel. It won't take long."

Curious but suspicious, Aragorn turned his horse and followed his friend. Legolas said no more, but there was a smile on his face, and Aragorn decided to simply wait. When there was something Legolas wanted to do before they left – although Aragorn had not the slightest idea what that might be – then so be it. They rode in companionable silence for a while, enjoying the lush green grass, the clear sky overhead and the warm sun on their faces. The temperatures were already high again after the storm, and if this weather was any indication, then the summer would be hot and dry.

After maybe an hour, they climbed a small hill. The town lay under them and to the East, with its wooden houses and small streets. The sails of the boats reflected in the sun, and the soft screeches of the gulls echoed from below. It was a beautiful sight, peaceful and memorable. Aragorn was mesmerized by the display, and he did not notice that Legolas stopped his horse. It was only when he heard a soft chuckle behind him that he broke out of his thoughts. He stopped his horse and turned, only to see that Legolas had already dismounted and was guiding his horse towards a young tree. Following the elf, Aragorn secured his horse to the tree, too.

Looking around and inhaling deeply, he smiled at the Prince, "So, this was what you wanted to do before we leave? It is really beautiful here, Legolas."

Smiling brightly, Legolas shook his head and came closer, "Nay, this is not what I wanted to do before we leave, Estel." He came to stand beside Aragorn, taking his hand and entwining their fingers. "Don't you remember this place, melethron?"

Confused, Aragorn looked around. It was only then that he spotted the small copse of trees a little ways up the hill. A smile tugged at the corners of his mouth as he remembered the hours he and Legolas had spent here. "Ah, I see." He said, before he let the elf guide him towards the shadow of the trees.

As soon as they entered the shadowy cave, Legolas turned and pressed his lips onto Aragorn's in a sweet kiss. His arms wound around the man's neck, holding him in place, and his body pressed softly against Aragorn's. Their lips moved in a slow dance, before Legolas's tongue sneaked between Aragorn's warm lips to taste the wetness beyond. Uttering a soft moan, Aragorn let Legolas enter him, feeling warmth spread through his body. His hands found the small of the elf's back, and he pulled him flush against his own body. The kiss turned from sweet and gentle to passionate and lustful, and it took them only moments to sink down into the lush grass.

Breaking the kiss, Legolas quickly shrugged out of his tunic and shirt and pulled Aragorn's shirt above his head as well. Then he sunk down, covering Aragorn's body with his own, and turned lovely attention to the young man's roseate nipples. He coaxed them to hardness swiftly, making Aragorn sigh in pleasure. Not to be the only one receiving pleasurable treatment, Aragorn deftly rolled on top of Legolas and traced his lips down the elf's neck, leaving a scorching path behind. Moaning, Legolas arched his neck a little, and Aragorn pressed his lips only every inch of skin available. He paid lovely treatment to Legolas' sensitive ears, making the elf writhe under him.

"Estel, please stop." Writhing in pleasure, Legolas buried his hands in Aragorn's dark locks, shoving his head away just a fraction. "I want this to last and if you continue this I will spend myself right now." Lifting his head, Aragorn gazed into the blue orbs, which had darkened with lust. Chuckling under his breath, Aragorn leaned down for a last, passionate kiss, but then he did as his lover asked him and back away. Panting, Legolas quickly removed his breeches, then helped Aragorn to pull down his own.

When the last garment fell to the ground, Legolas gazed for a moment lovingly at his lover's naked form. Heat pooled in his groin as his eyes fell on the proudly erect shaft, and he felt his own member harden to an unknown stiffness. Groaning, he reached out and let his long fingers stroke down Aragorn's broad shoulders, across his chest and his slender hips. Instinctively, the young man arched his hips, and that was all the invitation Legolas needed.

Kneeling between Aragorn's legs, Legolas pushed the man's knees apart, opening him to his sight. And what a sight it was! Passion bubbled in Legolas's stomach at the sight of Aragorn's throbbing length, and he quickly leaned down to envelop the thick shaft with is sweet lips. His hands pushed down on the man's hips to keep him in place, before he began to move his head up and down. He felt Aragorn tense under him, his legs shaking with suppressed passion and the building sensations. Legolas swirled his tongue over the head of the erection whenever he could, and every time he did, Aragorn shuddered and tried to buck his hips. Groaning deep in his throat as his own shaft began to thrum mercilessly, Legolas quickened his pace. His teeth scraped the long flesh, making Aragorn call out in pure bliss. It was enough to drive Legolas mad.

Reaching out, Legolas lifted Aragorn's hips from the ground with his strong hands, and before the young man could comprehend the change in position, Legolas entered first one, and then a second finger. He never removed his mouth while he prepared his lover, and he felt that the young man was close to losing his restraint.

"Legolas, please…oh…Legolas…do it now…". Strong hands grabbed his shoulder, and with a strangled grunt Legolas removed his now swollen lips from the pulsing shaft, quickly moved upwards, and then sheathed himself in the oh so tight wet heat in one fluid and powerful thrust. Aragorn arched his back, shouting in surprise and pleasure, and then wrapped his hands around Legolas' shoulders to anchor himself. They loved each other with lustful, powerful thrusts that turned into a heated frenzy soon enough, leaving them both teetering on the edge of completion for many minutes. And then, with a strangled yelp, Aragorn found his release in Legolas' hands, spilling his warm seed between them. Legolas fell over the edge only a few seconds later, calling Aragorn's name and filling his young lover with his silky wetness.

Exhausted, they sank into the grass, panting and trembling in the afterglow of their passion. Legolas had not yet removed himself from his lover, but Aragorn did not seem to care. With his ear resting above the man's heart, Legolas listened to its swift pace becoming slower. A moment later, he felt Aragorn's long fingers stroke his golden tresses, a content sigh leaving his lips. "That was truly amazing, Legolas. I'm glad we came here." He sighed, "I love you, Legolas." The man's voice was still rough from their recent love play.

Sliming, Legolas pressed a soft kiss to the man's shoulder, "Aye, it was amazing. I could do this every day." Pressing another kiss to the man's shoulder, Legolas tightened his hold on him, "I love you too, Estel."

Laughing softly, Aragorn tightened his arms around the Prince, but did not reply. There was no need to. They stayed under the trees for another hour, relishing the peace and quiet, the sense of belonging together, before they returned to their horses and rode South. Neither of them looked back at the small copse of trees where they had spent such sweet hours. But both had made memories that day that they would carry with them for the time, when there would be nothing but memories for them to see them through the loneliness.

They had left Esgaroth far behind them and the sun was nearing the horizon, when Aragorn suddenly snorted and shook his head in amusement, "Well, considering all that has happened, we haven't done so bad."

Confused, Legolas smiled at his friend, "What do you mean?"

Aragorn grinned, "Well, you promised your father that there would be 'no orc hunting, no spider chasing, and no dwarf infuriating'. That makes two out of three."

"Two out of three?" A frown appeared on Legolas' face, but his eyes sparkled with mischief.

"Well, as I recall, you did infuriate a dwarf. Irritate him, anyway."

Snorting, Legolas shook his head, "That's not true. I was irritated by him."

"Whatever, Legolas." Aragorn smiled wickedly. "But I am sure your father will be very interested in this part of the story."

"Estel, you won't." Legolas threatened. "It was not my fault that the first person we meet in Esgaroth was a dwarf, or that we had to stay in a dwarven inn. That was your doing. And it was not my fault that I had to keep a ruffian hostage in our room and anger the dwarven inn keeper. That was just bad luck."

Aragorn merely lifted an eyebrow at his friend, "Well, but your father will not believe that." He smiled wickedly, "Maybe it is time he frightens you for a change." And with that said he pressed his knees to his horse's flanks, racing down the path.

"Hey! That is not fair!" Legolas more laughed than called, before he chased after his friend.

Aye, despite everything that had happened, they had both made good, lasting memories on this journey. Memories that they would not forget for as long as they lived.

The End.

Yes, it is over. I hope you enjoyed it! It was fun writing!!