Title: His Last Adventure
Author: Sivan Shemesh
Disclaimer: Not mine.
Warning: AU, Angst, and Character Death
Summary: It was just another hunting trip for Legolas and Aragorn – but one of them will not survive it.
A/N: Written for Back to Middle Earth 2012 Bingo Cards:
Emotions - I18: Grief
Cause of Death - I18: Poison
Injuries and other Ailments - I18: Arrow Wound
Aspects of Aragorn - I18: Healer
Mirkwood the Great - I18: Leisure Time
Games People Play – N43: Horse racers
Thranduil watched grimly as his son rode deep into the forest with his young friend. He knew what dangers haunted the place; he knew what evil lurked within. These two were seeking adventures, just another hunting trip, just as they had had outside of Mirkwood, but this time they were simply tempting fate.
"I can feel your adar's eyes on my back," Aragorn pointed out.
"I do not," Legolas teased and hurried his horse onward, into the forest.
"Wait for me!" Aragorn called toward the elf, pressing his horse to get even with Legolas.
Legolas did wait after all and when Aragorn finally caught up, Legolas turned to look at him. "Aragorn, do you remember the game that you taught me some time ago?" Legolas asked.
"Which game? I taught you far too many games," Aragorn replied.
"Horse racing," Legolas replied, his eyes dancing with excitement.
"I remember that one, why?" Aragorn nodded curiously at the elf.
Without another word, Legolas prodded his horse, galloping into the distant trees, laughing merrily.
"You cheat!" the man managed to shout.
"You lost!" Legolas called back.
"You cheated so I did not lose…" Aragorn retorted and tried to hurry his horse, a grin fixed on his face – it seemed that the elf had learnt and remembered some of his tricks as well.
"Aye, you have indeed lost," Legolas proclaimed, smiling widely at his friend, pushing his steed into another gallop.
Then all hell broke loose.
Aragorn could hear the whistling of arrows and he looked up at once into the trees. The guards were releasing their arrows toward where Legolas had gone.
The man hurried inside the forest, fearful of what he might find inside. And stopped abruptly. Aragorn was not ready for the sight in front of him. He dismounted from his horse, collapsed on the ground, his hand shaking at the sight that caught his eyes.
The prince lay motionless on the hard, cruel ground, pierced by four arrows – three of which Aragorn identified as bearing the mark of the guards of Mirkwood, and the last – only one arrow – came from the orcs.
How could this happen? How could the guards do this for one of their own – for their beloved prince?