Fear and Desire
Despite his years, Legolas feared many things. Most of these fears were beyond his control -- the seemingly inexhaustible forces of orc and uruk hai, the spreading evil of Sauron's influence. They were threats to be reacted to, prepared for as best he could. Some fears, however, were within his power to alleviate.
The moon was full. It was nearing the end of his watch. Standing with his back to the heart of a tree, Legolas cast a protective eye over the sleeping members of the Fellowship. Exhaustion had worn them thin, reduced them to the death-like slumber in which they sprawled. Although he, too, felt the wear of their journey, he longed not for sleep but for peace. Peace from the shadow that swirled insistently within his mind. Peace from the voices. He heard warning upon the darkness. The warning of weakness, of conceit. It was a warning of the folly of Man and he was all too familiar with it.
Elrond's council to him upon leaving Rivendell had been succinct: "You will travel in the company of Men, my young prince. Men are weak. When they fail, it will be up to you to see that the failure is not too great."
It was, he decided with a sigh, a task he did not relish. He turned his head, seeking comfort in the murmurs of the forest. When the moon had reached its zenith, he moved to the bedroll nearest him and knelt beside the sleeping figure. A true soldier, Boromir slept with his hand on the hilt of his sword. Legolas covered that hand with his own before gently shaking the Man.
As expected, Boromir reacted reflexively, seeking to draw steel. But under the Elf's restraint, he relaxed into the blanket.
"Nothing is amiss," Legolas murmured reassuringly. He moved back slightly. "It is your turn for watch."
Boromir, blinked, nodded. He ran a hand tiredly down his stubbled face in a poor attempt to wash the sleep from him. Sympathy for the Man's obvious weariness made Legolas speak. "Boromir--" he began, then faltered as he knew not what to say.
Blue-grey eyes fastened on him with unshuttered intensity. They lingered on his face, searching the Elven features for... what? The unexpected weight of the gaze caught Legolas unprepared. His lips parted slightly in surprise and the Man's eyes followed the movement. The blue eyes darkened.
Legolas abruptly stood, turning his escape into a graceful assist. "Let me help you up."
Boromir hesitated before allowing himself the aid, his grip tightening briefly before pulling away. "Get some rest, Elf," he muttered beneath his breath. He strode purposefully into the forest.
Legolas watched his retreating back, noting its defensive hunch. He released a breath. Was this, then, the weakness that nagged at him? The weakness of the flesh? He frowned as he dropped lightly into his own blanket. Boromir was troubling. He would bear watching. Legolas would not let the Fellowship fail.
Uruk hai came upon them at midday, swelling from the forest like pus from a seeping wound. Legolas alone heard the ominous approach and gave a cry of warning. Dwarf, Elf and Men formed a protective circle around the Hobbits as the wave of evil crashed upon them.
Metal clashed with metal. Screams and grunts drowned out the pant of exertion. The song of the forest became hushed as horror and hate assailed the small Fellowship, seeking to end their quest for peace.
Legolas loosed arrow after arrow, his aim unerring. Around him, he felt and heard the mounting success of his companions. Uruk hai fell to sword and bow until the earth turned wet and black, littered with the bodies of the defeated. Legolas' bow sang as the last of his arrows found its mark in unnatural flesh.
Triumphant, he turned to the others and found Boromir staring at him, bloodied sword pointed to the earth. "Legolas, your skill is unmatched in this land," the Man breathed, shaking sweat from his eyes. "'Tis a pity we've not more of your kind with us. Success would be assured."
Legolas slung the bow over his shoulder, stepping over the fallen as he approached. "The Fellowship was chosen for the strengths each of us carries. None other are meant to be here."
Scorn twisted Boromir's lips within his beard. He wiped his blade clean on the grass and roughly sheathed it. "Dare you try to convince me the skill of an Elf inferior to that of a mortal Man?" He laughed harshly, bitterness tingeing his voice. "The blood of Isildur runs in Aragorn and I both. Who is to say we don't carry his weakness as well?"
Legolas heard the fear in the Man's voice and it gave him pause. When Boromir would have turned away, the Elf laid a hand upon his shoulder, stopping him. Self-doubt rimmed the blue eyes that looked back. "Isildur was a Man alone. He did not have the benefit of the Fellowship." Legolas swallowed, unnerved by the heat and energy radiating from Boromir. "We shall not fail if we rely upon each other, son of Gondor." He squeezed his hand around the muscled shoulder. "You may depend upon me, as I you."
Boromir's lips formed a sharp response, but something made him refrain. A rough, dirty hand settled atop the Elf's slender one. "You would fare better if you trusted your fate to another," Boromir whispered hoarsely. Pain carved sharp relief on his face. "Do not trust me, fair Elf. For I do not trust myself!"
He flung Legolas' hand away and shoved past him to join the others. The acrid stench of blood rose up around Legolas as he stared after the Man. Shadows chased each other through the Elf's mind. They whispered *Boromir*.
Onward they traveled. As the days stretched, tempers and patience shortened. The pressures of the Fellowship began to take their toll. Unknownst to the others, Legolas carried his burden in silence. The shadows of warning grew steadily in his mind. He knew that only ill lay ahead.
By the time they broke for camp at sundown, Legolas realized the strain had grown too great. Though he had tried to hide his troubles from the others, Aragorn now looked across the fire at him with concern. Dismayed, Legolas noticed that even Gimli, hardly the most observant of the group, stole worried glances at him, as well. Legolas sighed, unable to eat. Once the watches had been determined, he stole away for the privacy of the trees.
He found sanctuary upon the moss beneath a shimmering ray of moonlight. He allowed his senses to expand, seeking out the song of the forest. It was there, but faint. A beautiful melody muffled by wool. It could not deafen the insiduous whispers within.
"What is it that ails you, Legolas?"
The Elf was not startled. He had heard the Man's approach. He had not, however, known it to be Boromir. A frisson of unease and anticipation slid up Legolas' spine as the Man stepped in front of him. "You are troubled," Boromir continued. "It is plain for all to see."
Legolas rose slowly. He studied the other carefully before replying, "I am contemplating your weakness, son of Gondor."
A flush of startled anger mottled Boromir's cheeks. "Do not trouble yourself overly much. I will satisfy your curiosity in due time," he returned bitterly.
The answer suddenly came to Legolas. He knew now what he must do. "It has been my understanding," he began slowly, watching Boromir closely, "that Men are motivated by two emotions: fear and desire. You, my friend, are driven much by fear." As the Man's face turned ashen, he added, "I had not thought you to be a coward."
Legolas anticipated anger, even violence. But he did not expect the sudden press of cold steel against his neck. The tip of the dagger dug into his smooth flesh. A pearl of blood welled and slid down the pale column of his throat.
"You go too far, Elf. My fair Elf." Boromir watched the drop of blood disappear into the neck of Legolas' tunic. "Mayhaps you need a lesson in the strength of Man, yes? On the ground!"
Legolas lay back on the moss, the dagger never wavering from his throat. Heat seared his side as Boromir stretched beside him. Boromir's face was flushed as he ran his gaze down the length of the Elf's taut body.
His eyes met the wide brown gaze. "Nothing could stop me now from ending your immortality, Elf." The dagger pricked vulnerable flesh. "I hold the Fellowship in my hands, it seems."
The Elf's gaze never wavered. "I trust you, Boromir. I trust you with my life."
The whispered reply stilled Boromir. "Do you? You are a fool to trust me."
Legolas smiled faintly. "Then I am a fool."
The knife at his throat pressed against him. Shutting his eyes, Legolas worried that he had judged the Man wrong to his peril. But the edge of the dagger did not bite. It slid teasingly down his throat, easing slightly as it passed over his racing pulse. It paused at his breast as Boromir lowered his head. The stiffness of his beard abraded Legolas' smooth cheek as he murmured, "You said I am motivated by fear and desire. What, then, of desire?" Sharpened steel dragged across Legolas' stomach. He could not help but hold his breath as the sharp point lowered to his thighs. "Do you trust me now?"
Legolas shuddered as the tip of the dagger slowly encircled his cock through the fabric. He felt himself swell as the flat of the blade scraped across his length. "Yes--" he sighed raggedly.
Boromir raised his head, a look of surprise and lust on his face as he read the Elf's excitement. "You enjoy this." Legolas would have laughed at the wonder in the Man's voice if he'd had breath. Boromir drew the dagger in lazy circles around the tip of his erection, making it all Legolas could do not to writhe in frustrated pleasure.
"I want you," he gasped, holding the darkening blue gaze. "You alone can give me ease."
Boromir's breath left him in a rush. "'Tis a gift I do not deserve," he protested. "I do not deserve --" But he did not finish, instead crushing his lips against the Elf's. Their tongues warred, breaths caught and exchanged. Boromir kissed him as though salvation could be found within the Elf's mouth. Legolas moaned as the Man's fire consumed him. He had never felt such intensity. He burned ...
The heated mouth disappeared from his lips suddenly, leaving him bereft. He made to follow it, but found the edge of the dagger pressed firmly to his throat once more. "Trust me," Boromir commanded. Legolas could only swallow thickly, lying still as soft lips and rough beard moved down his chest to his aching erection. A soft cry tore from his lips when Boromir took him into the wet heat of his mouth. The dagger held him a frustrated captive as Boromir's skillful lips and tongue teased movement from his hips. Helpless, he clutched at the dark earth below, his eyes filled with the stars above.
Boromir sought to torture him. The pleasure at his cock came to a too-swift end as Boromir left off to bury a hand in Legolas' hair. Pulled to his knees, Legolas found himself faced with the evidence of Boromir's answering desire. The dagger nudged his jaw. Legolas opened his lips and let the Man's cock inside.
Boromir tasted of salt and earth and desperation as the velvet steel of his erection slid over Legolas' tongue. The Elf had been with many before this Man, but none had radiated such passion, such aggression. Before he had time to savor the nuances of the flesh presented to him, Boromir was pumping forcefully down his throat. His breath fled as the hand in his hair tightened painfully and Boromir thrust ever deeper.
"Yes!" the Man hissed as Legolas struggled around him. "Such desire I have never felt before, fair Legolas. You make me lose myself." He pumped his hips harder, gasping as the Elf choked around his thick length. "I cannot take much more."
Legolas pleasured him as best he could while his own erection rose stiffly from his thighs. Boromir's labored breathing grew desperate, until a note of pain intertwined with his cries. Sharp steel pierced the underside of Legolas' jaw. A throaty groan, then a wash of warmth across the Elf's tongue. Legolas swallowed the essence of Boromir. To his mind, it tasted of the salt of tears.
Boromir withdrew, his thick chest heaving like a wild animal's. The sweat of his efforts made his face shine in the moonlight. Legolas found himself unable to look away. "I, too, know something of desire," Legolas whispered, unable to disguise the strain in his
voice.Boromir at last looked down upon him. A hand still clenched in the Elf's golden hair, the dagger held tight to the long pale throat. Legolas did not look away, though he knew all too well that his body betrayed him unmercifully. Boromir dropped to his knees, his soldier's keen eyes taking in the flush of color that stained Legolas' cheeks, the trembling tension that hummed through his limbs. Boromir released the pale hair to grasp the Elf's cock. Legolas whimpered, his hips bucking.
"You trust me with your pleasure?" Boromir asked him in a low voice.
Legolas met the searching gaze. "I do, son of Gondor."
The Man's lips twisted. "Then let it come."
His hand moved knowingly over the sensitive flesh, sending wracking pleasure throughout the Elf's body. Quickly, then slowly, his grip tightened and eased, wringing sighs of pleasure and torment from Legolas' lips. When he would have looked away to conceal the magnitude of his pleasure, the dagger tipped his chin up. Boromir wanted to watch. "Let me see you come undone, my fair Elf." Boromir leaned forward to kiss Legolas' wet brow, his tongue sliding across his sweat-slicked cheeks. "Trust me, Legolas."
Though it bared him to the soul, Legolas did. He met Boromir's eyes and let the Man watch as pleasure unraveled him. Blue eyes seared his face as the hand upon his cock set a rhythm that would not be denied. Legolas' sobbed and shuddered as he came, every inch of his vulnerabilty laid out for Boromir to see and hear. Recognition painted itself across Boromir's face as the Man realized Legolas trusted him not only with his life, but with his soul, the Fellowship, with Fate itself. Legolas did not think him weak. He thought them
equal.Boromir held the Elf to his chest roughly, the Man's body quivering with unexpressed emotion. Legolas relaxed into the grip. "All is well, son of Gondor," he soothed softly. "We shall be triumphant."
After a time, the Man released him, sitting back on his heels with chagrin. "Had I but known Elves were so devious I'd have never agreed to this foolhardy task." Boromir's tone was light. Legolas was heartened to see the change. "Come." The Man drew him to his feet and they walked together to the encampment.
At its edge, Legolas paused. Boromir hesitated, question creasing his brow. The Elf shook his head with a fond smile. "I would like to listen to the forest for a moment. Go on. I will join you shortly."
Boromir nodded and continued to the others. Legolas listened to his footsteps fade before casting a wider net, senses searching. He waited for the music, the lilting verse that belonged to the forest alone. In time, it came to him, beautiful.
So, too, came the shadow.
Legolas paled, unable to deny the darkness that crept once more into his mind. Whispers of warning, treachery --
On swift feet he entered the camp. All was as it should be: Gimli by the fire, wrapped in a blanket as he kept watch; the others of the Fellowship asleep around him. Nay, not all asleep. The Elf's gaze fell to Boromir, who had crawled beneath his blanket. The Man was not asleep. The steel blue eyes were open, fixed upon the Hobbit Frodo. Despair washed over Legolas. Nay, the Man looked not on Frodo, but on the Ring.
Fear and desire. Legolas had not banished the darkness in Boromir. The Man had merely exchanged one desire for another. Legolas shut his eyes in defeat. "Ah, Elrond," he whispered brokenly, "you were mistaken. It is not Men who failed." He looked once more to the coveted ring. "It is I."
*Boromir* the shadow whispered, *Boromir*
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