Aragorn, Legolas decided, could sear a person into ash with just his gaze. The Elf came to that conclusion as the Fellowship skirted the eastern base of the Misty Mountains. Rivendell was a diminishing warmth at their backs. The haze of snow blurred the peaks of Caradhras ahead. Though the sun burned strongly overhead, its brilliance was no match for the steely blue regard that traced the Elf's profile. It felt as though the heat of a thousand suns burned across his cheekbones.
Cloth brushed his arm and he gladly seized upon the distraction. He turned to find Boromir in step with him. "I did not know that the skin of an Elf could be reddened by the sun," the Man commented, studying him with particular interest. "Or is that becoming flush but a temporary condition?" Boromir's measuring gaze slid past the Elf to Aragorn.
Disconcerted, Legolas shrugged. ""Tis true an Elf may not be sun-burnt, but we are afflicted by the heat just as you are. Do not concern yourself."
Boromir nodded thoughtfully. The Man's gray eyes pierced like steel. Legolas wondered what he saw.
"I witnessed you in the forest yesterday," Boromir said abruptly, a strange tightness to his voice. "You move with the liquid grace of a deer. I found myself helpless but to follow you."
Legolas' breath hitched. He tried to keep his features passive. "You must have grown bored --"
Boromir's hand cupped his elbow, pulling him aside to let the others pass. Legolas allowed it, unsure of the Man's motives. "Quite the contrary. I was enlightened." The hand on his elbow tightened. "You surprise me, my Elven prince."
Legolas' eyes leapt away, aware that Boromir watched him. Surprise, thought the Elf, indeed. Nothing could have prepared Legolas for what he had encountered within the forest the day before..............
It was his habit to take his exercise by running, letting the exertion of his body distract from the cares of the mind. He had been troubled of late, filled with uneasiness when in the company of the Fellowship. It was most unlike him. Friendship and comraderie came easily to Legolas. He did not understand what was happening.
He thought himself alone, having left the others asleep in the chill of pre-dawn. But as he slowed his pace to cool his muscles, he heard the dull thud of metal striking wood. Curious, he sought out the noise. He found Aragorn.
The moment Legolas saw him, the Elf realized that here was the source of his unexplained anxiety. Legolas' throat tightened. His hands became moist. Though he stood unmoving, his heart mimicked the earlier pace of his run.
Aragorn wore only an undershirt and breeches, his feet bare upon the dew-dampened grass. Sweat made his shirt cling to the ropy muscles that flexed in chest and shoulders. Bark flew in chunks from a tree as Aragorn slashed at it, ducking and swinging on legs that moved with intricate footwork.
"You fight like an Elf!" Legolas blurted.
A misstep as Aragorn spun. The Ranger lowered his sword. "Legolas."
The Elf fought the shiver that passed over his skin. The Man's warm voice held too much nuance for comfort. "I did not mean to interrupt," he mumbled as Aragorn ran a hand through sweat-darkened hair. "Please continue. I shall leave you." He anxiously turned to leave.
"Don't run away, Legolas. Stay."
Legolas halted, shutting his eyes in dismay. Pride would not let him escape now and confirm the Man's comment.
The grass muffled Aragorn's tread as he came up behind. "You ask about my fighting style. You forget that I was trained at Rivendell amongst the Elves," the Man reminded him. An odd huskiness crept into Aragorn's voice. "I know of many secrets of your kind." Legolas flinched as the flat of the blade tapped lightly upon his shoulder. "I think you would be surprised at how much I know."
Legolas could not help himself. "What, exactly, do you know?" he asked softly.
He felt the Ranger's smile. "I know you cannot face me for fear of revealing the desire you hold back." Legolas trembled. The blade moved to the side of his neck, gradually exerting pressure until he had no choice but to turn or risk decapitation. He faced the Man, found Aragorn's searching gaze boldly stripping his defenses. "Why do you resist when your body so clearly desires me?"
"Your arrogance surprises," Legolas retorted, lifting his chin.
Aragorn tossed the sword aside and took the final step between them. "I merely speak the truth." Legolas stiffened, drew completely still as the Ranger leaned close, bringing his lips into intimate contact with a pointed ear. "Tell me," he murmured, sending shivers across Legolas' skin, "is this truth?" His tongue flicked the sensitive Elven point. The archer gasped. More moist heat as lips and tongue followed the delicate curve. "What about now?"
Legolas bit his lip, stifling a groan as Aragorn's mouth drifted lightly down the length of his neck. Soft lips brushed his skin in the barest of butterfly strokes. Each whispery contact sent ribbons of desire unwinding throughout his body.
Legolas lifted a hand to push the Man away. Instead, the Elf found himself clutching helplessly at damp cloth as Aragorn's firm lips latched onto the sensitive junction at neck and shoulder. When the Man's tongue laved hotly across his collarbone, Legolas thought his knees would give way.
"Aragorn...Aragorn don't." Even to his own ears, the protest sounded weak.
The Man chuckled huskily against his skin. "If you meant it, I would obey. But this --" he licked the racing pulse he found in the hollow of the Elf's throat "--this tells me you might actually be enjoying yourself."
The Man's cockiness finally broke through the wonderful haze that had enveloped Legolas. He pushed, hard, until Aragorn lifted his head, fire flashing in his eyes.
"Why do you play at denial?" the Ranger demanded, frustration sharpening the edges of his voice. "Tell me you don't want this!"
"Tell me!" Aragorn's hand slid to the bulge between the Elf's legs. Legolas' breath left him. Coherent thought fled. Aragorn stroked him firmly through the cloth, measuring the Elf's growing length with his fingers. Legolas pressed himself into the touch, unable to help himself as desire surged through his body. He moaned deeply, his entire body trembling with unspent passion. "That's it," Aragorn urged softly, "show me."
Legolas' head fell back, his eyes rolling blindly. His hips rocked forward of their own accord as Aragorn's lips fell upon his neck and the clean edge of his teeth nipped skin. Legolas heard someone growling, wondered briefly if it was him. Then he had no room for thought as the Ranger's hand pushed beneath his leggings.
He swelled to impossible tightness. Aragorn's hand was rough; its calloused surface tugged and scraped Legolas' sensitive flesh with bittersweet pain. Aragorn presented no finesse. Then again, Legolas was too far gone to appreciate subtleties. Tight, demanding strokes that pulled his feet from the ground were enough to send Legolas over the edge. He moaned, Aragorn quickly sealing his mouth over the Elf's to catch the sound. Hot liquid spilled over the Man's hand and trickled down Legolas' thighs.
His heavy-lidded eyes watched absently as Aragorn drew his palm to his mouth and licked. Legolas' shuddered at the intimacy of the act. "I knew it," Aragorn said, almost to himself. He smiled around an unmistakable tension. "You taste of honey."
The faint tremor in his voice drew Legolas' eyes downward. The Ranger's bold arousal was clearly evident. Suddenly, the full impact of what Legolas had allowed and what was now expected of him struck home. He took a shaky step backwards. Aragorn's lips twisted
wryly."You're not ready," he stated, studying the Elf's alarm. "There'll be time enough to return the favor, Legolas. When you're ready."
Ready. He would never be ready. Feeling like a panicked animal, Legolas bolted. As he ran through the trees, he thought he heard laughter trailing him. Or was that mocking voice his own?...............
The hand that had been gripping his elbow had now found its way to the back of his neck. Drawn from the recollection of his memories, Legolas was startled to feel Boromir's fingers massaging the tense muscles there with unwarranted possessiveness.
"You ran away from him," Boromir was saying. "The future king was not to your liking? Perhaps your interests lie elsewhere?"
The timbre of the Man's voice was low and deep. Whether it was from the too-sharp memories of yesterday or Boromir himself, Legolas found his body responding. "I-I wish you had not witnessed that," he heard himself stammer. "Such a thing will never happen again. It distracts from our purpose."
Boromir's fingers drew lazy circles on the Elf's skin. "So does physical tension," he conceded.
Flustered, Legolas pulled his gaze away, only to have his eyes fall upon the figure of a man standing in the road. Aragorn. The Ranger was waiting for them, watching with a predatory stillness that bode ill. Even across the distance, Legolas felt the Man's anger and jealousy like a stiff, bitter wind in his face.
Boromir tensed beside him, following the Elf's line of sight. Legolas expected the son of Gondor to step back. But Men, as he was loathe to forget, were unpredictable. To his utter consternation, Boromir used his grip on the back of Legolas' neck to pull the Elf into a sudden, bruising kiss.
It wasn't a kiss of passion. It was meant to make a point. Legolas rebelled. He drove his fist into the Man's stomach without apology. Boromir's breath hissed against the Elf's lips as he fell away. Angered at what had come to pass, Legolas looked to the road. Aragorn had gone.
For many days afterwards, Legolas worked on developing his relationships with the other members of the Fellowship. He discovered a great affection for the Hobbits, found them charming, actually. And, of course he spoke often with Gandalf, whom he knew well and respected greatly. His interactions with Gimli left much to be desired, but that was to be expected. As for his tumultuous relationship with the Men of the Company -- well, that was something Legolas was still attempting to reconcile.
Boromir had long since forgiven the Elf for the blow to his stomach, or at least pretended such. Nonetheless, Legolas remained hesitant to fully trust him. The Man was obviously infatuated. Legolas had no interest in fleeting human attachments.
As for Aragorn... Legolas preferred not to think of the Ranger at all. As often as was practical, the Elf did his best to remain far from the dark, silent Man. Once, while trimming the feathers of an arrow, he had looked up to catch Aragorn staring at him. Yearning in the blue eyes was swiftly replaced with anger. Legolas had ducked his head, intending to ignore what he had seen. But he never forgot. And he wondered which bothered him more -- the fact Aragorn wanted him, or the feeling the Man's patience was quickly wearing thin.
It was with a sense of relief, then, that Legolas accepted the duty to gather firewood for the evening's camp. The crisp smell of trees and fresh earth helped to clear some of the tensions that had steadily built in him over the days. A footfall behind him, however, and the tension seized his shoulders anew.
"Finally, I have a moment's peace with you."
Legolas said nothing as Boromir reclined against a tree. He felt the Man's eyes lazily admiring him. "You are angered at the way I kissed you," the Man ventured.
Legolas added another stick to the bundle in his arms. "I do not think of it," he replied evenly. "'Twas a moment of foolishness that meant nothing to me. I suggest you forget it, as well."
"Had I your stoic Elven composure it would be so." The Man sighed melodramatically. "However, I am but a Man. With a Man's weaknesses."
Legolas refused to be drawn into the other's banter. Ignoring Boromir, he continued to collect twigs and sticks. He heard the Man shift, felt, rather than saw, the growing impatience. "Legolas--"
"Go back to the camp, Boromir," he interrupted calmly. "You are wasting your breath. Let it pass."
"But I cannot. It's memory haunts my sleep!" Leaves scattered as the Man surged forward. A thick hand grabbed the Elf's arm. "Legolas --"
The dagger was in the Elf's palm before the wood he had been carrying struck the ground. Boromir froze, the Elven blade firm to his throat. "You forget yourself," Legolas murmured with a silky deadliness that made the Man's eyes widen. "I am not interested in whatever you have to offer me, son of Gondor. Do not bother me again else the Fellowship will see its first fallen. Do you understand?"
Boromir nodded as much as he could against the dagger held against him. With a muttered curse, Legolas drew the blade away and watched in resignation as the Man stumbled into the trees. Weary in soul as well as body, the Elf bent to recover the dropped firewood. He had been pursued before, and often. But now was not the time for dalliances, he told himself. Affairs of the heart and flesh created unnecessary complications. He did not wish to make an enemy of Boromir, but feared he may have done so.
He lingered in the woods longer than he needed to, reluctant to face the others. Inevitably, obligation forced his feet back to the camp. He dumped his load of firewood, noticing that Boromir was nowhere to be found. Aragorn sat by himself upon a fallen log, idly carving a piece of wood. The Ranger glanced at him briefly, face unreadable, before returning to his whittling. Legolas sighed. He felt unclean after what had happened. No one would miss him, he decided, if he slipped away to bathe.
After checking the fullness of the waterskins to be sure no one would need to go to the river, Legolas ran with lighted heart to the slow-moving water. Moonlight streaked the river with rivulets of silver as he swiftly undressed and waded into its chill. It was a bit cold for his taste, but he made himself welcome the mind-clearing sensation. He ducked his head, gasping as the wet ropes of his hair slapped smartly against his shoulder blades.
He swam for awhile, savoring the relaxing ripple of the current as it passed over his skin. He drew nearer the shore and let the smooth pebbles squeeze between his toes as he admired the glittering water where it lapped against the top of his thighs.
What calm he felt was immediately dashed as a body pushed through the water behind him. Annoyance reared up in him. He turned, raising his hand to either strike or shove Boromir, only to have his wrist deftly caught, twisted, and yanked behind him. Biting back a cry of alarm, Legolas found himself jerked backwards against a hot, hair-covered chest.
"I did not know you like to play rough, little Elf."
Aragorn. Legolas stopped struggling, acutely conscious of his nudity. His buttock brushed against something hot and firm. He jerked forward, blushing fiercely. The Man laughed.
"Release me," Legolas ground out. He surreptitiously slid his feet apart, looking for the leverage to throw the larger Man.
A foot kicked his legs beyond balance. "Don't even attempt it," Aragorn warned against his ear. The foot that had spread the Elf lifted, until the Man's knee brushed the underside of twin globes. Legolas tried to twist out of reach, but his wide-spread feet could not find purchase on the shifting riverbed. He bit his tongue as the knee between his legs brushed slowly back and forth, teasing tiny shivers from him.
Aragorn's tongue slid along the Elf's smooth jawline. "What are you doing out here, Legolas? Hmmm? Waiting for someone?" He nipped, sharp enough to sting. "For Boromir, maybe?"
"I will not play this game," Legolas bit out.
"This is no game," the Ranger assured him. "It's either he or I." The Man's free hand slid around the Elf's chest, splaying against the muscles covering his ribcage. "Do you want Boromir?"
Legolas held his breath as fingers trailed up to one peaked nipple. "Nay, I do not."
Fingers pinched, drawing a soft cry. "He wants you."
Legolas felt his cock grow ever stiffer as Aragorn moved to the other nipple and twisted. He shook his head wildly. "I cannot control what he feels."
"Can you not?" Aragorn's voice adopted a feral, husky tone. "Do you not realize that everything about you drives a Man to humiliation?" He tightened his grip on the Elf's wrist, pulling the slender body taut as his free hand roamed the slick expanse of chest and stomach. "Such beauty leaves a Man aching. I think you know what you do."
A helpless groan broke from the Elf's throat as caressing fingers danced lightly down his body. Never had he felt so vulnerable as the fingers paused to trace a ring of torment around the base of his erection. Losing control, he swiveled his hips, seeking greater contact. But Aragorn would not be swayed so easily. His hand came to rest upon Legolas' thigh, the tip of his thumb dragging slowly across the side of the pulsing cock.
"Tell me what you want, Legolas."
The Elf released a frustrated whimper. "Please --"
"Tell me what you want or you won't get it."
The thought was too painful to bear. "I want you!" Legolas choked out at last. "Aragorn, I want you..."
The Ranger sighed and kissed the Elf's exposed throat. "That's it, my Elf. That's what I wanted to hear." He took hold of Legolas' chin and turned him to his kiss. The Elf welcomed the invasion of Aragorn's tongue. The wet heat filled him, warmed him. Aragorn's consuming kiss was like a prize won after much hardship. The Ranger let his lips drift softly over cheek and chin. Legolas' eyes drifted out of focus as the Man moved down, sweeping the length of his throat with wetness. Lost in the haze of passion, the Elf barely caught the small movement across the bank.
His eyes flew open. Boromir. Despite the canopy of trees, the moon managed to illuminate the rapt face of Aragorn's would-be competitor. Legolas struggled to pull his wrist free.
"So you see him, too?" Aragorn said, amused.
"You've known all along?" Legolas sputtered.
Lips curved into a smile against his shoulder. "I am merely returning the favor he bestowed upon me in the road." The Man's hand curled around a firm buttock. "Let's give him something worth watching."
Legolas resisted. "Nay! I will be no Man's sport --oh!" His breath fanned into an exclamation of rapture, protests forgotten, as Aragorn's finger slid smoothly into him. "Relax," Aragorn soothed. His blunt fingertip stroked Legolas from the inside, rubbing in slow circles over the heart of the Elf's desire. Legolas's head fell back against the Man's supporting shoulder, his gasps short and harsh as another finger joined its mate inside his body. Aragorn's tongue stabbed into his open mouth. Legolas sucked at it greedily.
The fingers eased out of him. The emptiness did not last long as the slick head of Aragorn's cock pushed firmly, inevitably inside of him. The Ranger was hot steel and velvet. He filled Legolas until it became the Elf's only awareness. Aragorn pulled back, then pressed forward with a gutteral groan. And again.
Legolas moaned as Aragorn reached around him and took the Elf's bobbing cock in his hand. The Man stroked in time with his thrusts, drawing desperate cries from the Elf with each flex of his hips.
"Look at him," Aragorn whispered thickly. Dazed, Legolas opened his eyes. "Look at him," the Man repeated. Though he did not want to, the Elf looked for Boromir within the trees. There. The soldier of Gondor stood as if rooted, a look of intense desire evident upon his face even across the distance.
Aragorn slowed his thrusts, sliding his cock slowly, languidly into Legolas. "Think of what he sees," the Ranger murmured in his ear. "Me, holding you captive while I spear you with my cock. Taking your pleasure in my hand to do with as I please." Legolas groaned, tremors wracking his body. "He sees how vulnerable you are, sees your body lift with each thrust, watches the passion overcome your face as I take possession of you. He wants you," Aragorn whispered, "but he knows he can never have you. Not when you're mine. Not while I do this to you."
Aragorn deepened his thrusts, slamming them so tightly together that the Elf imagined they had become one. Overcome by the sensations flooding him, Legolas sought to pull away. But Aragorn would not let him escape again. "Don't fight it," the Man rasped. His hand around the Elf's cock stroked fiercely until it at last wrung a broken cry from Legolas' throat. The Elf exploded, jetting into the air in a pearlescent arc.
"Gods!" Aragorn groaned before he, too, succumbed to his passion. The Ranger clutched Legolas in a strangling grip as he spent himself into the heaving Elf. He released Legolas' arm and caught the slender Elf as he collapsed backwards.
"You do not own me," Legolas managed to pant once he had regained his breath.
Strong arms tightened around him. "Yes, I do, Legolas." Aragorn kissed his shoulder. "You're mine now."
The Elf said nothing. His eyes strayed to the trees and the emptiness there. He wondered if what he felt was disappointment.
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