The door swung open with a bang and Aragorn lifted his head from the avalanche of paperwork he was buried under. Who was entering his study in such a dramatic fashion?
It was no surprise to him really to see Legolas there, agitated and so full of tension he imagined he could see it oozing from every pore. What was wrong now? Somehow whenever Legolas was residing in Minus Tirith the wheels completely fell off his expertly managed city.
"Legolas, what a surprise, I was not expecting to see you this morning. I thought you and Gimli had other business to attend to."
"I have cancelled it. This is an emergency."
His heart sunk. An emergency with Legolas meant a headache, a massive, never-ending headache.
"What is it this time?" He sighed, dropping his pen and pushing away the mound of papers. He knew from experience he would get no more work done until he had at least listened to Legolas' problem.
Legolas pushed an small, unassuming, envelope across the table towards him and so he opened it. What choice did he have?
The words scrawled across the paper were nearly illegible, as if a child had written it and reading them was a struggle but when he saw what was written there it was all he could do not to laugh.
"Where did you get this?" he asked almost casually.
"Someone pushed it under my door. It was there this morning. What do you make of it?"
Legolas leaned across his desk staring at him intensely. It was at times like these he was glad of his upbringing in Imladris and his ensuing ability to resist an elven stare.
"It is what it is Legolas," the smile he was resisting tugged at the sides of his mouth insistently.
"A declaration of love. It is obvious you have an admirer."
Legolas looked horrified,
"A human admirer?!"
"Well I would guess at that, yes. There is not exactly a surfeit of elves around and it is hardly likely to be one of my brothers!"
For that he received another stare. This was proving hard, even for him to cope with, all these Elven looks that stripped him to the bone.
"Stop looking at me like that Legolas!"
"Why would it not be your brothers?" Legolas seemed suddenly to be terribly offended and he had no idea why. "Am I not good enough for them?"
"They are men Legolas." He said slowly.
Aragorn suddenly decided he didn't want to pursue this conversation at all.
"Never mind. You are perfectly good enough for them, of course but I do not think they are your culprit. It is just a hunch Legolas.
"Arwen...." Legolas cried in desperation,
"It could be her,"
He rolled his eyes at that.
"Think about you are suggesting Legolas. It is not Arwen."
"Why not?" Legolas was all indignation then, "I have heard it said I am pleasing to the eye, why not Arwen?"
"Because she is my wife and you are my friend. Really Legolas, you clutch at straws. It must be a woman from the city, perhaps a servant judging by the handwriting."
"Ah, I did not wish to point out the obvious illiteracy of one of your subjects, perhaps you should do something about that Aragorn. Education plans of some sort."
Legolas waved his hand airily and Aragorn could only sigh, a long heavy sigh.
"Well I would if my time was not spent giving romantic advice to wood elves."
Legolas swooped his hand across the table gathering the letter as he did so.
"I do not need your advice about romance Aragorn," he said imperiously as he stood, so obviously offended.
"I do well enough on my own.......but what should I do about this......person?" he added with just a hint of uncertainty.
"Ignore it. It is harmless and they will likely not bother you again."
Legolas turned on his heels then and strode haughtily towards the door.
"Wait," Aragorn called out just as his hand reached for the door handle, He found he could not resist a last gentle prod.
"If you find you need more advice on how to catch a lady, you know where I am."
And Legolas fixed him with one last baleful stare as he departed,
"Perhaps I already have one. Who says I look for a lady anyway."
And then he was gone.
He was joking of course Aragorn thought to himself. Legolas steadfastly kept all females at bay, even in Ithilien. There was no one. And breathing a sigh of relief the problem had been so easy to solve, he turned back to his paperwork. Perhaps he would actually get something done today.
It was just after lunch the next day when he first realised the problem was not going to be as easily solved as all that. When an earnest young page accosted him in the corridor insisting the Elven Prince required his presence immediately. He should have known when Legolas had not appeared for lunch that something was up.
He could not believe his eyes when he opened the door to his friend's room. There was Legolas, his face mud streaked, flowers strewn across the floor and a series of pots, dirt, and gardening tools around him.
"Aragorn, you are here!"
The relief on his face was telling.
"What are you doing?!" he exclaimed for he could make no sense of the scene before him.
"Someone has sent me these......to save them, but I cannot, Aragorn, for they have been cut. I have been trying all morning and there is nothing I can do."
Aragorn stood for an instant and stared, he did not know whether to laugh or cry at the elf's obvious distress.
"Someone sent you these, was there a note?"
"No note," Legolas shook his head adamantly, "But they had taken care.....they were tied with a ribbon. It was obvious they were trying to help them and I have failed."
"Legolas," he moved across to him and placed a hand gently on his shoulder,
"I do not think they wished you to save them"
"But what then?"
"It will be your secret admirer. They will have cut these for you because they are beautiful, to demonstrate their love for you."
The look on Legolas' face was nothing short of horror.
"Who would think I would wish them to kill flowers? They have murdered them for my sake?"
"It is not really murder Legolas. You are over exaggerating." He knew Legolas was deeply connected to anything green but murder was taking things a bit far.
"It is obviously just someone who doesn't know much about Woodelves." he reassured him while gently gathering the flowers up in his arms.
"It is a common custom, I have been known to give them myself."
"I do not want to hear of what atrocities you have been involved in Aragorn!" Legolas cried, "Just get these away from me. I cannot bear to see them. You promised me this person would leave me alone!"
"They must just be persistent, they will stop eventually if you ignore them. I will make it known loudly you only like flowers which happen to be attached to the ground, hopefully then there will be no repeat of this."
The last thing he wanted was Legolas rampaging around the castle grounds looking for flower murderers.
Arwen greeted him with a smile when he arrived in their room, arms filled with flowers.
"Estel! Flowers, how pretty!"
He toyed briefly with taking the credit but in the end his conscience wouldn't let him.
"They are actually from Legolas."
"Legolas?" her smile faltered, "How strange."
He smiled then,
"Don't worry they are not from him as such, he has a secret admirer who left them. He was so upset by it I removed them before he lost all reason. "
"Ah! " she laughed as she took the flowers from his arms, "You should never give flowers to a Woodelf! Poor Legolas, a secret admirer? He will not cope well with that."
"And I am not coping well with helping him cope," he sighed.
He remembered then Legolas' parting shot from the day before.
"Do you think Legolas could have someone......in Ithilien, that I do not know about?"
She turned in surprise,
"Has he said something?"
"Only in jest," he shrugged.
"Well anything is possible Estel, but you know how he is."
Oh he did, he did know how he was, flighty, changeable, mischievous. And so they dismissed the idea and thought nothing more about it.
The next day passed trouble free and Aragorn allowed himself to think the worst was over. The mystery admirer had given up their pursuit and equilibrium had been restored. That was until the evening when he, his brothers and Gimli gathered in his study for a quiet drink. Legolas strode in late and all casual airiness, the kind which set alarm bells ringing for Aragorn, it usually did not bode well.
"I have a treat for everyone," he announced, "Here, try one."
He took out of his pocket then a small box, which, when he opened it was filled with sweets, delicate, beautiful, delicious sweets.
"Oh, give me one lad," Gimli reached eagerly for the box but Legolas held it high, out of his reach which caused much annoyance.
"Oh no, no, Gimli. The Elrondionath must go first." And he held the box out between Elladan and Elrohir for them to make their choice.
"It is good to see you finally acknowledging our superiority Legolas." Elrohir smiled as he reached happily to pluck one of the treats from the box and pop it in his mouth.
"No!" At the last minute Legolas snatched the box from his reach. "Elladan must go first. He is the eldest. You shouldn't forget protocol Elrohir." and Elrohir's face fell. He had obviously had his heart set on one of those sweets Aragorn thought to himself, which surprised him somewhat. Elrohir had never had a predilection for sweets before.
Elladan however dug in with gusto, smirking at his brother as he did so.
"How does it taste?" Legolas asked with great intensity as he clutched the box to his chest.
"Delicious, cousin," Elladan exclaimed
"No bitter after taste?"
"A finer delicacy you will not taste!"
"Then everyone can have one!" Legolas cried and the box was shared around with great enthusiasm.
"Where do you get these Legolas?" Aragorn asked, "I would like to get some for Arwen I think."
"Oh I do not know.... They were left at my door this morning, from my admirer."
"You have had these all day and eaten none? What happened to your sweet tooth?" He could not believe it. Legolas usually devoured cakes on sight. His love for sweet things was legendary.
"Well," Legolas leaned back in his chair, arms behind his head.
"After yesterday and the attack upon the flowers I was not sure of the intentions of this secret person, perhaps they were an assassin? I thought these may be poisoned."
"But you offered them to my brothers!" He said as he leant forward in his chair in horror.
"Well I could never lose Gimli, and Gondor could not afford to lose you, it made perfect sense ...... as you have two brothers and they are exactly the same, really one of them is surplus to requirements."
"You thought me surplus to requirements?" Elladan leapt to his feet in outrage and Legolas held his hands up in defence.
"Not you particularly, but you are the eldest. I had to follow protocol Elladan, that is hardly my fault. After all you are always complaining I am not civilised, yet when I try to follow your rules you are not happy." He threw out his arms in frustration.
And the room erupted into chaos.
Aragorn whispered in Legolas' ear in the middle of the arguing and drama just to make sure he was clearly understood.
"Let me make it clear Legolas," he said sternly...very sternly.
"I love both my brothers. Neither of them is superfluous."
"If you say so Aragorn. I was just pointing out, two brothers, both the same, it is a little bit ......excessive do you not think?"
"I do not think!" He snapped back, and he knew then, he could not let this go on. The secret admirer must be stopped.
That was how he found himself, late at night, skulking in the corridor outside Legolas' room. It was not very becoming behaviour for a king but he anticipated his sudden appearance being enough to scare any admirer into never coming back. It was however also very cold and very uncomfortable.
He was most annoyed therefore when just before dawn, after a night of hiding and seeing not a soul, Elrohir appeared and began fiddling with something outside Legolas' door. What was he doing? Did he have to choose this morning to become an earlier riser?
Elrohir seemed to have a note, and he saw then a flash of gold in his hand. Suddenly the penny dropped and he was out of his hiding place, grasping his brothers hand before he even knew what had hit him.
"Hey! Let go of me!" Elrohir protested but Aragorn was having none of it. Instead he wrestled the note and object away from him. Looking down at it lying in his hand he saw it was a ring.
"Brother! What is this?" In all his wildest imaginings he had never imagined this! "Is this some kind of a joke? This has been you all along and you have put me through this for fun? He tried to poison Elladan!"
"Come on, Estel. The sweets were not poison, Elladan was never in danger. As if I would ever give Legolas poisoned sweets!"
He did not know how Elrohir managed to sound so indignant when he had been discovered red-handed.
He glanced at the note then, the same illegible writing meandered across it.
"Who has written these for you? This is not your writing."
"Left hand, Estel." His brother grunted and he stared at him dumbfounded. He had gone to so much trouble...for what? Simply to annoy Legolas?
"What possessed you to do this?" He asked. "It makes no sense."
"Why do you think?" Elrohir cried, "He is beautiful. I cannot stop thinking of him."
Aragorn felt his mouth drop open. This could not be happening. Elrohir was teasing, he had to be.
"You are not serious. Elrohir, in case you have not noticed...he is a man."
"And...?" Elrohir said indignantly, reminding Aragorn rather disconcertingly of Legolas in his study the day before.
"And...you are also..." Aragorn trailed off miserably.
"What difference does that make?"
Aragorn wondered how this had happened. How had he managed to completely miss this facet of Elven sexuality for all this time. He was about to attempt to explain himself though he did not know how—he really did not wish to have this discussion with his older brother—when they were interrupted by the opening of the door and a wild looking, dishevelled Legolas stood looking at them blankly.
"What is going on?"
Aragorn realised a moment too late that he was standing there, his hands full of incriminating evidence, looking very, very, guilty. Unfortunately for him Legolas realised it at exactly the same time.
What is this?" He cried, snatching the letter and ring from Aragorn's hands, who not for the first time cursed those elven reflexes.
"A ring? A letter?"
The look of hurt betrayal on his friend's face rendered him briefly speechless.
Legolas opened the letter reading it with horror.
"Aragorn! What are you thinking? We can not do this! What of Arwen? Have you lost your mind?" He swung then to Elrohir. "Elrohir, I promise I knew nothing of this....I have not laid a finger on him. I would not....I would not insult your sister so."
"Wait, Legolas! You have it all wrong!" He could not possibly be thinking this could he? Aragorn thought in desperation. But Legolas was rapidly backing away from him, stammering as he went.
"Alright, I admit it Aragorn, there was something...on the quest, initially....but as soon as I found out your feelings for the Evenstar I backed off. You know I did!"
What on earth did he mean....there was something on the quest?
"Legolas," Elrohir interceded before Aragorn could get clarification of that last statement. "I must confess, this was not Estel..... It was me."
Legolas was, for once in his life, speechless. If Aragorn had not been so confused...so ever so slightly concerned about what it was Legolas had just been saying, he would have laughed.
"Me." Elrohir pushed Aragorn aside as he stood dumbly gaping at the bizaare scene unfolding before him. "It was me, all me. The notes, the sweets, the flowers... All me."
"You killed the flowers..." Legolas spluttered.
"An error... I apologise, that was not my smartest idea. Will you let me in? Will you let me apologise properly....will you let me—" he bent down and whispered something then in Legolas' ear that Aragorn could not catch and, by the look of the blush that spread rather rapidly across Legolas' cheeks he decided he did not want to hear anyway.
Aragorn could only watch with horror as Legolas grasped his brother by the hand and hauled in to his room, slamming the door behind him. Neither of them gave Aragorn so much as a sideways glance, so eager were they. He decided, standing alone outside, abandoned, that he did not wish to think for one second more upon what they were doing behind that door.
Arwen was up by the time he returned to their room, sat in front of the dressing table, brushing her hair. She turned to him with a smile when he entered.
"Well did you find her? Legolas' secret admirer."
He sat on the bed with a thump,
"It was Elrohir."
"Elrohir?" She spun around to stare at him, eyes wide in surprise.
"It seems he is in love with him," he elaborated numbly and her hand flew up
to her mouth to stifle her gleeful smile,
"Oh, he has finally made his move! He has waited for so long I thought he would never have the courage!"
"You knew about this?" Aragorn thought this situation surely could not get any more confusing.
"Of course I knew!" she laughed. "Elrohir has been moping over Legolas forever, ever since the war. How could you not have noticed?"
"But they are men!" He cried,
"And...?" she said, genuinely confused by his objections.
Why had Elrond not explained this to him when he gave him that terribly embarrassing talk about the facts of life....why had he not pointed this out instead of going on endlessly about birds, and bees?
He threw himself backwards to lie on the bed then and a niggling, sinking feeling began to overtake him. What had Legolas meant by those words he spluttered outside his room...there was something on the quest. He thought back on it, his mind meandering back through those early days in the fellowship. Legolas had been very helpful, always near, very touchy feely now he thought about it...for an elf. Always volunteering to scout alone with him, he had thought Legolas was just diligent and supportive. Then there had been that night when he had been homesick and lonely for Arwen and had made a total fool of himself singing mornful songs and blabbing all over Legolas' supportive shoulder.
After that Legolas had been much more aloof. He had never touched him again, even accidently and suddenly it was Boromir he was volunteering to go and scout with Aragorn rather than himself.
He could not have been.... He could not have meant....
"Oh Elbereth!" Aragorn sat up suddenly hands to his mouth as the penny dropped. Had Legolas been flirting with him?
He stood up abruptly.
"I think I need a walk.....some fresh air." He announced, pushing past Arwen to get to the door.
"Are you well Estel?" She asked with quiet concern.
"Yes. Quite well." He had to get out of here. Suddenly his mind was filled with Legolas on the quest, the silken hair , those light touches, the warm breath in his ear as he bent near to whisper information as they scouted.
And now Elrohir had him!
"It's alright Estel." Arwen said kindly, her hand upon his arm jolting him back to reality. "He really is quite desirable. None of us can resist him. Don't feel badly."
And she smiled her sweet smile,
'None of us can resist him'—her words echoed around his brain ricocheting through his mind and he turned to her in horror.
As requested by Naledi, Curious Wombat and Ziggy. The slash version...complete with Elrohir. In celebration of Faerie's return. There are changes shattered all through this, but mostly in the "discovery" scene.
If you want to read the non slash version it is on livejournal account name: Cheekynz or FFnet account name: Finfinfin1
If you want to read the non slash version it is on livejournal account name: Cheekynz or FFnet account name: Finfinfin1
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