Down and Dirty

By Daegwenn

       

Their journey had been a long one, and it was beginning to wear on all of their nerves. The fellowship of the ring had an aura about them like that of a tribe of orcs-and the ring wasnít helping. Through the marsh lands they trudged begrudgingly, the hobbits complaining of the bloodsuckers nipping at their feet and the flies buzzing around their heads and it was beginning to wear on, Boromirís, Aragornís and even Legolasís nerves. When they reached a slightly hard ground, the set up camp and each went to bed quietly after eating.

In the night, the frogs croaking and the owls softly hooting was deafeningly loud to the elf. He sat, propped against a tree fiddling with his dagger when he the voice startled him so that he pricked his finger on the wicked edge "Legolas, can you not sleep?" Aragorn asked.

Sticking the wounded appendage in his mouth, he glanced at the form of Aragorn, sitting up and hugging his knees "Yes, did I disturb you?" He asked, glancing at his finger.

"No. I could not sleep, something does not feel right in these woods." The ranger muttered, sounding paranoid as always.

His lips curled into a soft smile "Yes, it seems that the forest has eyes of their own, does it not?" He asked, he heard the sound of a doe walking through a brush and a fox with her kits hunting mice in a near by boggy patch of land. "But none that will not harm I do not think." The elf was slightly relieved when the cut stopped bleeding. He picked up his knife and began twirling it around in his long fingers.

Aragorn watched intently as the elf did this, the moon flickered from the blade and it bounced across the forest. He was aware of this; like everything else. A cloud covered the moon, casting them into a blackness that quickened his heart beat. He didnít like not seeing anything, but he relied on his hearing and Legolasís as well. "I will be glad to get out of here."

The blonde elf made a non-committal sound of agreement and resumed playing with the blade. "It is not so bad." He shrugged. "We have been in worse situations." It reminded him of the grim passage through the mines and his memories of the orcs made him shudder.

"It is true." That was followed by a bitter, quiet laugh from Aragorn. It pleased him that his eyelids were beginning to get heavy, and he fought to stay awake "Goodnight Legolas." He muttered before laying on his cloak and closing his eyes.

Legolas watched as his friend slept, he volunteered to stay awake and didnít mind it. It gave him time to reflect on the many things he and his friends had done. Sheathing the blade, he stood and grabbed his bow, he wanted to walk, his legs were cramped from sitting, although he was used to it, if he could avoid it, he would do so. The ground was slightly hard as he chose his steps, like the water had disappeared or evaporated over the night. The elf didnít want to stray far from camp, his keen ears picking up the mumbles of the hobbits as the slept, probably dreaming of their own homes and food-it wouldnít surprise him. The hobbits had a huge appetite, almost so that it intrigued him. Where could all that food go when such a little person devoured it. Shaking his head at those ridiculous thoughts, he took another step and suddenly felt weightless, he plunged through the floor of the forest and before he realized that he had stepped through a trap of some sort, he landed with an ungraceful thump at the bottom of the muddy pit. ďThis could not get any stupider.Ē He grumbled to himself, why hadnít he just stayed at the campsite and ignored his restlessness? This was going to be quite funny when Aragorn pulled him out- heíd feel ten times stupider with the dwarf chuckling over his shoulder and the hobbits fawning over him, asking if he was alright.

He was knee deep in sticky, gooey muck and it stank oddly of decaying leaves. "Lady Luck has forsaken me." The elf muttered as he writhed in the mud, trying to pry his boots from the glutinous sludge.

"Now what have we here? Is it the fair elf Legolas Greenleaf? Prince of Mirkwood?" A voice said from above him, it was Aragorn.

His green eyes flickered at the man, leaning over the hole "Get me out of here!" His calm cool reserves rapidly dwindling, he was feeling slightly frantic and the odd feeling that the ranger was laughing at him became blatant and it seemed to mock him.

The human nodded and threw down rope for him to grab. He wrapped his hands around the rope and tugged, the muck acted like a lubricant and it slipped from his grasp "what is wrong, Legolas?" He asked.

"The muck." He looked up, baring his palms to him "I cannot grasp the rope."

There was an audible crack from above and Legolas watched the Ranger drop from above like a raindrop from the sky. He landed with a loud splat, the mud sprayed over the elf and it got into his mouth, he spat into the mud but the disgusting taste of rotting matter was strong in his mouth. He began to wipe away at the mud splotches on his face, only leaving smudges across his fine skin. "A sticky situation we have gotten ourselves into." Aragorn muttered as he stood, his face blackened with the mud, making him look like an Orc.

"How are we going to get out of here?" Legolas muttered, looking up at the edge of the pit.

"I cannot believe that I have gotten myself into an old Rangerís trap. How stupid I have been." He grumbled to himself and waded over to the edge, trying to get a decent foot hold on the walls of the trap. The soil was too soft and it crumbled under his foot. "It is too soft."

"I cannot free my feet," the elf said.

Aragorn crawled his way over to the elf and grabbed him by under the arms, hoisting him out of the muck like a little child. He lost balance and toppled backwards like a tree cut from its base, Legolas falling on top of him. "well, my friend Legolas, would you mind getting off of me?" he asked, giving the elf a broad orcish like smile.

Legolas frowned and tried to push himself off by putting his hands on either side of him but it only got him into more trouble. The way Aragorn was laying, he wasnít sinking any further into mud. "I cannot. I am stuck now." He pulled one hand free and pushed his mud straggled hair out of his way. "Tis a good thing you came to rescue me, Friend Aragorn, I do not know what I would do without your help." He smiled, looking at the man beneath him

"I am here to serve you solely, my prince." The man said, sounding slightly sarcastic.

The corner of his mouth twitched "And I you, my king." He said, sounding thoroughly amused with their current situation. He raised a finger and poked him in the head "Now, we must find out how to get out of here."

"Well, hobbits sleep like the dead, and Dwarfs can sleep through a natural disaster, and Boromir is capable of sleeping with a snoring dwarf beside him, so until daybreak, we are stranded my friend." He said.

Legolas attempted to run a hand through his hair but was met by wicked knots from the mud that dried, gluing his hair together and making it look like dirty blond tendrils. "Well, what shall we do, Aragorn?" He asked.

"Can you get the mud from my face?"

The elf lifted his muddy hands and wiped away the dirt. "There." His hands wavered longer than they should have, his green eyes looked into Aragornís. "Better?"

"Hmmm." Aragorn sensed it, he sensed what Legolas was feeling and he found himself pulled into it-almost against his will.

The Elf-Prince lifted his face to the skies, the moon was shining down upon them, the soft silvery rays of light, lighting up his fine-boned features, the mud smeared skin and once well kept hair that was now hanging in straggly tendrils around his face. "Do you know that a full moon was once said to have an odd affect on us?" Legolas didnít want to say what, just thinking about it made him bow his head, out of sight of the light so that the man beneath him wouldnít see him blush furiously.

"You will not turn into a werewolf, will you, fair friend?" Aragorn jested.

His eyes flashed. "Your jest is more correct than you would know. We of course turn into a different type of wolf." Legolas smiled.

"I was not taught of such a thing?" The man had caught on, even before he mentioned it, but wouldnít let up that he knew precisely what he was talking about.

"Ahh." The smile grew wider "Alas dear friend, I may teach you if you wish to be taught." He said, sounding slightly apprehensive.

The corner of his mouth twitched. Arwen. He was suddenly reminded of Arwen, his beautiful elf lady that he left in Rivendell. He hadnít seen her in months, and he wondered if she would do the same thing he desired to do with the elf that lay on top of him-against his own will. Pushing all of that to the back of his mind, he pulled his hands out of the muck and pulled Legolasí tiny body closer to him "What is it that you wish to teach me that I have not learned?" He whispered before kissing his lips softly.

Tongues melded together like quicksilver, laving away at all reasoning within their heads. The faint taste of mud laced with the taste of Legolas filled the Rangers mouth and he drank greedily. When they broke off their kiss, a slender hand reached up to brush the bristling jaw line. "I have desired this many times before, but never had I imagined being stuck in here."

"The way the moon strikes the mud is slightly romantic" Aragorn tilted his head, contemplating the elfís words.

Legolas laughed, it was melodic and sounded just right to the manís ears. "That I cannot agree with. The stench of this place is unholy."

"Not good enough for the young prince of Mirkwood?" He raised an eyebrow at the elf.

"I have lived many years, and seen many things but this it seems, has been something that I have not." He said ruefully, moving his numb legs. He squirmed, and sat up, straddling the manís waist, pushing him deeper into the mud.

"Legolas, if you do not sit still you will push me into the mud. I do not wish to die in such a place as this." He smiled, trying to sit up more.

Tossing his sticky hair over his shoulder he put his hands on Aragornís chest, and pushed him upwards until the mud gave way with a loud sound of protest. "I think we have four more hours until they wake up." Legolas looked up, calculating in his head from the position of the moon.

Pulling the elf down to look into his eyes, he brought up one mud caked finger to his brow and drew a stick line across the clean skin. "It is not as bad as it seems. We could be stuck in here with a troll, what say you to that?"

Legolasí eyes went wide "I do not wish to even speak of the idea." He muttered.

"I thought not." Aragorn smiled and lifted his head out of the mud to kiss the elf that loomed over him. It was a long, chaste kiss that left them breathless and dazed. "I wish that I could touch you but right now, I am a littleÖglued to pressing matters." A charming smile came over the manís face.

"I understand." Suddenly, he felt tired, very tired. He layed his head on the Aragornís chest and closed his eyes, sleep came to him suddenly, so much so that he didnít even remember falling asleep.

The two lay still and silent as Legolas slept. Aragorn watched the moon disappear behind the lip of the mud pit, and the sun turn from dark blue to a light shade of pink, he heard the distant yells of the hobbits. The were calling his name, the ranger didnít wish to disturb the beautiful creature asleep on top of him, but it was that or they would be left with no dignity at all when they stumbled across them. "Legolas." Aragorn nudged him awake, he raised his head and looked at him, his dark eyes clouded with sleep.

"Hmm?"

"I hear them, off quick." The ranger said, putting his hands on his arms, pushing Legolas off and pushing himself deeper into the muck. The elf landed with a splat beside him, on his back, staring up at the open sky "Right here! Come here!" Legolas yelled.

The voice grew close, it was Pippin that found them first, his shaggy head popped out to look down on them, a broad smile spreading across his face "Behold! ĎTis indeed Legolas and Strider!" He called over his shoulder "I found them"

Boromir stared down, and a smile came over his face "Ah! There you are." He laughed "How did you get down there, friends?"

"Get us out and we will tell you but for now, youíll have to wait." Strider snapped, glaring at the man and hobbits that loomed over them.

 

       

 

After they had managed to get out of the mud pit, they lay in a mess under the tree, panting. "I must admit, the situation was rather a foolish one." Legolas said, slowly standing, his sore legs wobbled underneath him.

They had explained the situation to their fellows, all of them had erupted into side-splitting laughter, it was Frodo who spoke first "We must definitely right a song about this!" he wiped the tears from his eyes when he calmed down to small fits of giggles.

"Please, do not. I would rather not be reminded of this again." Strider muttered, trying to rid himself of the caked on mud. "A bath would be very desirable." He muttered, looking at the equally disheveled elf that stood beside him.

He nodded.

"Well, we are almost out of the wood, there will be a lake between here and Mirkwood. If my memory serves me correctly." Boromir said, looking at the hobbits who had finally composed themselves long enough to stand.

When they began their journey again, Legolas and Aragorn lead the way, silently walking and eagerly looking for the so called lake. "There it is." Frodo pointed to the glittering lake.

The two were getting uncomfortable, the mud was beginning to dry and it cracked, making their skin itchy and their heads heavy. The elf picked up his step, making his way down the worn path to the lake. He made it to the shore with Aragorn behind him. He plunged in, taking off only his cloak. Company joined him, the ranger was swimming and diving under. The mud slid off his flesh and stayed in clouds of light brown in the crystal clear water. The elf gasped as he felt a hand wrap around his ankle, he watched in slow motion as the water engulfed him. His eyes were wide, as he looked blindly through the depths of the water and saw Aragorn swim up to him, wrapping his arms around him and kissing him.

Aragorn! What are you doing? He asked quietly in the manís mind.

You wanted a lake, I give you a lake. Came Aragornís answer.

With the others close by?

He watched a smile come over his face, I never knew that an elf was so self-conscious.

THE END


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