Title: "There Is Naught to Fear"
Author: LegolasLover2003 aka Ashley
Category: Book - "Lord of the Rings"
Disclaimer: I do not own any rights to "The Lord of the Rings". I just adore it to pieces!
Author's Note: This story was written for the November 2007 challenge in the Teitho Fanfiction Contest. 2ND PLACE WINNER!
There Is Naught To Fear
He clutched the smooth wooden bow tightly to his chest, closing his eyes for but a brief moment.
If the others noticed, they said nothing.
There was but a small trickle of light, shining onto the path before them. As Gandalf moved off, walking as silently as was possible for the old wizard, the others in the Fellowship followed.
Even Legolas followed, though every sense in the Elf's mind was yelling at him to turn and run.
The soft shuffle of feet did nothing to calm the prince's fear, but he took some measure of comfort in the knowledge that Aragorn was there.
As if reading the prince's mind, a calloused hand rested lightly on the Elf's shoulder. Turning his blue eyes to meet the grey ones of Aragorn, the prince sighed ever so slightly in relief.
"It will not be as it once was." the man whispered, his voice barely heard above the rest.
The man had passed by the Hobbits, hoping to speak some words of comfort to the Elf.
Legolas shook his head, the movement barely perceptible. "No, it will not be... nor will it be akin to the countless times before... but you know very well, Estel. This is perhaps one of the few things in all of this Middle-earth which fills me with dread."
"Iston." Aragorn whispered. "Awarthant u-natha. U-si. Le u-erui." (I know. You will not be abandon(ed). Not here. You are not alone.)
The Elf smiled sadly, "Im an-uir u-erui." (I am forever not alone.)
"What're you talking about?"
Looking down, both man and Elf found the young and always inquisitive Peregrin Took walking just in front of them. The youngest Hobbit was giving the two a look which betrayed his eagerness to get into the conversation.
Before Aragorn could decline to comment, the Elven prince smiled down at Pippin. "We are speaking of a time long ago, Master Peregrin." Legolas said softly, though there was no hint of fear in his voice anymore. "In fact, once Mithrandir sees it fit for us to stop, we would be glad to enlighten you to our tale."
"Really?!" Pippin asked, his eyes lighting up.
Quickly the young Hobbit found his way back to his cousin's side. "Merry! Merry, did ya hear!" he said quickly, though as quietly as was possible for a Hobbit.
Aragorn looked to the Elf at his side in concern, but Legolas simply shook his head. "It would do me better to voice these fears, Estel, then to keep them bottled up within."
Nodding, the man drew back to his post behind the Hobbits.
And the Fellowship continued on.
Legolas smiled as he leaned against the wall, hearing the inquisitive Hobbit's question.
Gandalf was lost... which the prince found hardly surprising. Thus, the wizard had called for a halt. Merry, Sam, and especially Pippin, found their way to where Legolas was standing. Aragorn sat in front of the Elf and beside him was Boromir. The two men were starting a small fire.
The prince's gaze caught Estel's own, seeing the man as he lit his pipe.
"Seems someone is quite ready for this tale." Legolas commented, to which the three Hobbits looked over at the man in confusion.
Though, upon seeing Aragorn's pipe, the three completely understood and quite sympathized.
"Is it a good story, Legolas?" Pippin asked curiously.
Nodding, the Elf's blue gaze found the dark wood of his bow. Carefully, the ran one hand down its smooth side. "It is a good story... and yet I find its re-telling a little painful, Master Peregrin."
Merry elbowed his cousin in the ribs. "Why'd you have to ask him about it, Pip?"
"He an Strider were talkin' 'bout it, Merry. I couldn't 'elp it!"
Legolas shook his head, "Calm yourself, Master Meriadoc. Peregrin is right. We were discussing the tale, and I promised to relate it to you." the prince smiled as he began his story.
"It was in 2951 of the Third Age, my good Hobbits. Aragorn and I had met not long before, and the Lord of Rivendell charged us both with a great task that spring..."
"It is doing you a world of good."
Estel rolled his eyes, "Oh yes... a world of good, Legolas. Sixteen leagues from home does me wonders, does it not?"
"Lord Elrond is doing this for your own good, mellon nin." the prince reminded as he looked ahead.
Before the two riders, for indeed both were on horseback, was their destination.
A destination that Legolas was rather dreading.
The Lord of Imladris had charged the pair with a map, and with the task of heading into the mountains near Rivendell, in hopes of finding a lost tome. What the book contained, neither knew, and the prince was willing to bet that Elrond had only given them this quest in hopes of cooling down the young human's rising adoration.
A few days before, Aragorn had met the Lady Arwen... and everything had gone wrong for the man since then.
Legolas, of course, had been there to try and coax him through everything, but Aragorn had found it quite difficult to come to terms with the fact that the love of his life was his adoptive father's only daughter.
Not to mention that she was of immortal Elven blood...
"I mean, why could we have not joined El and Ro? They were going south to hunt Orc! Surely that would have been better for our skills."
At this, the prince laughed. "Skills? Estel you are but a score old. True you are good with a blade, but you are no warrior nor Ranger for that matter."
"And apparently that will change soon too, hmm?" Aragorn asked before heaving a tremendous sigh. "Legolas... I love you as a brother, but sometimes..."
"Sometimes you think I do not understand?" the prince questioned.
To Estel's nod, the Elf shook his head.
"I understand completely, Estel. Smitten with the Lady Arwen, you wish to show her your bravery. However, the knowledge of your heritage, newly found, dictates that you will, no doubt, soon show her those skills. You are eager for battle, mellon nin... not for a distraction."
The young man nodded, but suddenly looked at the Elf as if he were crazy. "Distraction?"
Legolas laughed, the sound soft. "Of course, Estel. Lord Elrond is trying to get your mind off of your rising... well..."
Aragorn blushed slightly, looking back to the path and averting his eyes. "Then why not let us join my brothers?"
"Because you are not a warrior, as I have already said." Legolas spoke as he dismounted the white horse upon which he rode.
Gently, Legolas stroked the mare's long nose as he looked at the large cavern entrance before them.
"Something wrong?" Aragorn voiced as he too now stood on the ground.
The blond Elf was silent for a long moment. "I do not like caves." he replied.
To this, Aragorn began to laugh. "Legolas... you..."
"Aye, I live in a large cave, I know." the prince sighed. "But ada's halls are... well... they are home. This is not. Who can tell what vile creature, be it orc or warg, has made this their den."
Aragorn checked his gear before heading forward. "Yes well, something no doubt made a home here... or else we would not be looking for a lost book."
However, even as the man stood in the cavern's entrance, he looked back.
Legolas had not moved an inch.
"Come on." the man said, giving his friend a confused look. "It is but a cave, Legolas. There is naught to fear."
The prince smiled sadly, "That was what he once told me."
At this, Aragorn stopped and stared blankly at the Elf.
As the silence stretched on between the two, Legolas began to laugh. "Estel, what?!"
"You have a brother?"
Blue eyes narrowed ever so slightly. "I did... once..."
Without another word, the prince strode forward and passed Aragorn, entering the cave before the man. Stunned speechless, Estel hurried after him.
"Torch." the Elf spoke.
As Aragorn struck flint to a wrapped piece of wood, Legolas held the map which Elrond had given them in his hands. Light flooded the cavern, showing both companions that nothing had made this cave its home save perhaps a wandering bear, in quite some time.
"You had a brother?"
But Legolas did not answer right away. Instead, he took Aragorn's torch and lit another, handing the first back to the man. Having memorized where they would turn first in the cavern complex, he pocketed the map.
The prince turned, looking to his friend before nodding. "I did. His name was Morolas."
"Why have you never told me of him before?" Aragorn asked, both companions traveling further into the cave as they spoke.
Legolas sighed, "Because I do not remember much about him... I only recall the stories I have heard."
"You ask a lot of questions, human."
Aragorn smirked at this, "And you speak too vaguely, Elf."
After a moment, the prince nodded. "Fair enough... As I grew older, I was warned of what came to those who fell to greed... of those who wanted power above all else. My brother was just such an Elf."
As they walked deeper and deeper into the structure, the archer continued his story.
"When I was but an Elfling, there was a revolt in Mirkwood. Ada's elder brother, Galenion, wished for the throne that had been passed from Oropher to Thranduil, skipping over the eldest son. But the people, most of the people, thought ada a kind and just ruler. In his deceit, Galenion corrupted Morolas' heart, turning my brother against our father... but not against me. When Galenion lead his meger army against the Great Gate, Morolas came to me. He took me in his arms, wrapping me in a dark cloak, and spirited me away to the dungeons of the palace. 'You will be safe here, little brother. There is naught to fear.' he told me. Quickly, Morolas bade me to hide away in the darkest corner of one of the dungeon cells. He left me there, a child afraid of the world which was crashing down around him."
Legolas went silent after that, as did Aragorn. Neither spoke for many moments. Together they continued, Legolas pausing to glance at Elrond's map every now and again, but he spoke not of his fear of the cavern, nor of his story.
Finally, when Estel could take it no more... he asked his all-pressing question.
Still the prince remained silent as the two companions came into a narrow tunnel.
"He told me he loved me and left, closing and bolting the door behind him. Days passed, I think... I know not truly. My voice had grown ragged from screaming for someone, anyone, to save me from the darkness. Exhausted beyond measure, I fell unconscious. When I came to, I was in my own bed, and both of my parents were kneeling at my bedside in tears. They saw me awake and, overjoyed, ada actually called a realm-wide celebration. I could not speak for days, and refused to be left alone in the dark. Thus, one of my parents, or sometimes Legede, would be at my side always."
Legolas smiled, looking to Aragorn. "Just as you are by my side now."
"That tale is horrible, mellon nin..." the human whispered. "Why would your brother do such a... such a cruel thing to..."
"It was not cruel." Legolas spoke, interupting the human. "Morolas did it to protect me from my uncle. When he realized the revolt was taking place, Morolas feared that Galenion would have me murdered, just as he planned to murder my parents. My brother saved my life."
"But he almost destroyed it as well!" Aragorn protested, stopping in their walk.
The prince took a few more steps before turning, watching the man curiously.
"He locked you down there and no one could find you for days! Does that not brother you, Legolas?"
"It does... sometimes..." the Elf whispered. "But you must understand, Estel, Morolas was arrested for treason. When ada finally learned of my location, they found me when it was nearly too late. Yes, the experience almost killed me, but my brother was trying to save me from a fate which he feared would come to pass all too soon."
Aragorn sighed, shrugging his shoulders slightly. "Thus, you do not like caves because of that time."
"You are correct." Legolas spoke with a nod. "But with you here, I..."
Before the Elf could finish his sentence however, there was an ungodly cracking of stone above their heads. Both man and Elf looked up to the cave's ceiling, fearing that it would collapse on them straight away.
But silence reached their ears and, after a few moments, Aragorn let out the breath he had been holding.
"Hannon i Valar..." he whispered before smiling to Legolas. "Well, that was quite..." (Thank the Valar...)
"MOVE!" Legolas shouted suddenly, rushing forward.
In doing so, the Elf's torch fell to the ground, flickering out. He rammed into Aragorn, sending the man flying backwards.
Just as a tremendous collapse of stone fell upon them.
Coughing and waving one hand in front of his face, Aragorn pushed himself up. He was coated in dust and debris, the small particles in the air nearly choking him.
"Legolas that was extremely foolish." Estel spoke, his own torch having gone out when the Elf pushed him down.
But there was no answer to his words.
Confused, Aragorn groped along the cavern floor, his fingers finally finding the torch. After a few strikes with the flint, it was lit once more.
Light filled the small narrow passageway, illuminating a rather large and precarious pile of boulders, rocks, and other debris, blocking the way forward.
"So much for the tome." he whispered before waving the light around the passageway.
It hit him then, for he could find no sign of the blond archer.
"Legolas?!" Aragorn called out, moving forward to the rock wall. "Legolas?! Legolas, answer me!"
The sound of coughing met the human's ears. "I.... I am here, Estel."
Sighing in relief at the sound of Legolas' voice, however harsh it was from the dusty air, Aragorn knelt down to try and find some hole in the rock.
"Are you alright?" the man asked, finding that every rock he tried to move, only made the pile shift down tighter.
It took a moment before the Elf answered. "Yes and no."
Those words, and their pained tone, sent warning signals off in the human's mind.
"I am alright, but my arm is broken... and I think a few ribs may be broken as well."
Aragorn closed his eyes, leaning against the rock. "Legolas... I can not move the rock. Everytime I try, it shifts down even tighter. I..."
"Go for help." Legolas replied.
The sound of slightly shifting stone met the man's ears, and suddenly, Legolas' uninjured arm broke through the debris. Quickly, Aragorn grabbed the Elf's hand.
"I can not move any of the other stones. Not with my injuries. This will at least provide me with air." the Elf was saying, trying to ignoring the searing pain in his body. "Return to Rivendell, Estel."
The young man shook his head, "It will take a day to get home, Legolas. Two to return. I can not leave you here!"
"And you can not save me alone." the prince replied before laughing softly. "I did tell you I hated caves..."
Nodding, Aragorn squeezed the Elf's hand tightly. "I will return. I swear it. Do you have water? Food?"
"Aye, my pack is well." Legolas spoke softly, returning the pressure on Aragorn's own hand. "Hurry, mellon nin."
With another nod, the man released Legolas' hand. "I will return, Legolas. There is naught to fear."
Quickly he stood and grabbed his torch before beginning to run, as quickly as possible, back down the passage.
Sighing, Legolas closed his blue eyes and leaned back. "Never again." he whispered, gingerly holding his broken arm. "Never again will I explore a cave."
"And obviously, I healed and..."
Pippin shook his head, "But how did ya git outta tha hole?" the Hobbit asked curiously.
Sighing, the Elf smiled. "So many questions. If you must know, Master Peregrin, Aragorn returned in two days time with Glorfindel and a host of Elven warriors. They carefully dug me out and five days later, I was healing in Lord Elrond's home."
"It took them two days?" Merry replied in wide eyed shock.
"It did." the Elf nodded. "I was stuck in a very small space, with naught but some water and food, for four days. On the fifth day, I fell unconscious from the pain of my arm, though that was only when Aragorn and Glorfindel were setting the bone."
At this, all three Hobbits winced. Boromir shook his head slightly, "Elves must have ungodly stamina."
"We do." Legolas said, as if it were common knowledge. "And even though I vowed to never find myself in a cave again..." he let the comment hang in the air, because he was obviously in a cave... again...
Gimli shook his head, "Bah, the Mines o' Moria aren't likely ta be fallin' down on yer head, lad." the Dwarf said gruffly. "They've stood tha test o' time, they have."
"Time or not," the Elf shook his head. "I do not like caves, Master Dwarf, nor will I ever like them."
Pippin nodded, "Seems like they hold too many memories, an' bad ones a' that."
"That they do, Pippin." Aragorn spoke up as he looked over his shoulder to the Elf.
Legolas' blue eyes sparkled and he nodded slightly, catching the man's gaze.
"But he is here, just the same." the man finished. "No truer bravery is there than that."
The youngest Hobbit seemed to consider this for a long time.
Finally, Pippin nodded. "I see your point." he said with a smile. "If it'd been me, I would've left at tha mere mention of tha idea, myself."
Legolas laughed, "And that, my dear Hobbit, is something that you will one day find most untrue of yourself."
Pippin shook his head, before suddenly his stomach growled. "Merry."
"What?" his cousin asked, looking from Legolas to the Hobbit.
Merry rolled his eyes. "Shhh... Gandalf's thinking."
Aragorn smiled, looking to Legolas once more. "Le na-eithel?" (Are you well?)
The prince returned his friend's smile before nodding. "Im eithel." Legolas said softly. "Gosto ennas u-nad." (I am well. There is naught to fear.)
Morolas is an original OC, as are Legede and Galenion. Please don't steal them. But if you want, you can borrow them (just ask permission).
For those of you wanting more of the Morolas story... yeah... it'll come sometime. Soon as I can finish it. It'll be insanely angsty!
The part about "Shh... Gandalf's Thinking" and Pip being hungry... that was put in there in honor of my own Merry. It was one of our favorite things to say. I'd go, "Merry?" and she'd look at me and say, "What?" and then I'd randomly go, "I'm hungry." and she'd stick a finger in front of her mouth and go, "Shhh... Gandalf's Thinking.". It was one of those random things we did back in High School. So yeah, that's there for her!
Also, I tried to make everything Book-Canon EXCEPT for when they were in the Mines of Moria. All of that should be Movie-Canon. Yes, I had to go re-watch a couple scenes to see the person order or walking or who was sitting where. The flashback from 2951 would be the year that Aragorn met Arwen. So all of that happens within that time frame (actually a few days after that meeting). I do hope my timeline wasn't confusing.
Also, all of the Elvish was done by me with aid from my David Salo book on Sindarin. If I butchered the language, please forgive me, as syntax sometimes makes my head spin.
Lastly, here are a couple of words you may need to know if you don't already know them...
Mellon nin = My friend
Ada = Father