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A King's Choice (NC-17) Print

Written by Eora

07 June 2011 | 1908 words

Title: A King’s Choice
Rating: NC-17 (just to be safe.)
Warnings: Slash, sexual scenes, angst (moi?!)
Disclaimer: None of these characters belong to me. All written in good fun with no offence intended!

Author’s Note: As you will see from my other stories I do like awkward situations, bedroom scenes, and happy endings. I’ll let the reader decide whether or not this story ticks all three boxes…

Aragorn lies there in the morning’s half-light and stares upwards, and does not move when the body beside him shifts and begins to rouse itself. Faramir murmurs softly, and turns, and Aragorn knows he is watching him, silently, with blue eyes that glint behind a copper shield. A thigh slides over his belly and his groin and holds him down, and the rest of Faramir’s body follows, his chest and stomach lie against Aragorn’s ribs and hip as a tongue presses itself against the underside of the King’s jaw. Aragorn closes his eyes and exhales. Faramir’s ardour is often insatiable, he treats Aragorn with honour and respect and is always gentle, tender even when they are rough with one another. Faramir worships him, and yet his heart will not open in return.

Soft kisses are left against his throat, and he swallows against them. Faramir’s eyelashes tickle his cheek, and then their mouths meet soundlessly, and Aragorn can summon enough of himself to at least kiss him back, slowly, so slowly, opening his mouth eventually to let Faramir’s hot tongue slide delicately inward. Gods, but kissing Faramir is wonderful. The young man’s eyes are closed and they are still so silent, moving in tandem, heads tilting and then a hand thrusts itself gently into Aragorn’s hair, fingers combing through the black sea and Faramir is beginning to shake as his arousal becomes evident. Aragorn pulls away, gently, and looks at Faramir’s flushed cheeks and furrowed brow. The blue-eyed gaze is intent, and the air that rushes over Aragorn’s cheek and throat wavers ever so slightly.

“I love you.” Faramir breathes, and leans in again, tilting his head further this time to kiss beneath the King’s ear. Aragorn knows he does this- the evasion, the gesture- so that he does not have to show the King his disappointment when the sentiment is not offered in return. Aragorn cannot say the words, and though Faramir tells him every day he still lies silent, guilt thrumming through his veins as the pressure of Faramir’s arousal against his leg only increases.

The midsummer feast, and he had drunk too much wine, and when Faramir had leant in again to speak to him Aragorn had lost his wits and pulled him close and kissed him in front of everybody, kissed him with all the fervour he could muster and was not even surprised when the kiss was returned without pause. Cocky in his drunken state he had just assumed that Faramir could not say no to him, and now, now that they had yet again woken up together in the royal bed, now that Faramir had fallen in love with him, now Aragorn felt only guilt where he knew love in return should flourish.

Days became weeks which became months, and still Faramir honoured him and served him and loved him and yet, still, somehow, he could not find it within to love him back. Not openly, anyway.

Sometimes, in the deep night hours, he would awaken with the fire in his heart and the urge and he would turn to shake Faramir from his dreams to tell him, that, yes! I love you! I have always loved you! And then he would pause, and breathe, and let the shadows creep over him and he would falter, hand in mid-air, as the fear and the guilt reclaimed his body and his mind and he would lie back down and wait for the dawn.

Loving Faramir means the downfall of his House, but he could neither deny him nor encourage him. The Telcontars will be a sorry line indeed if Aragorn is to indulge this weakness of the flesh.

He stirs, and Faramir looks up, and Aragorn ignores the voice in his head and tells himself that this will be the last time he slides his hands between Faramir’ legs, as he tells himself every time. Faramir shudders, gentle shivers that set Aragorn’s own body into that same old chain reaction. The King reaches down, and draws a fingertip feather light across the entrance to Faramir’s body, and receives a soft moan against his shoulder in return. Faramir rests his head against the pillow, then shifts, so that the hot breath he pants more rapidly now flares up against Aragorn’s throat.

Faramir is a good man, a kind, clever, gentle man, equally stern and sombre and laughing and in good humour. He is skilled with the sword and the bow, a competent horseman, the Captain of his Rangers for good reason, for he is the best of them. As Steward there is no parallel; his records and bookkeeping are impeccable, and his thoughts and plans well-laid out and put forth. He is not afraid to question his King, and Aragorn likes him for that more than he would ever say. And the man himself, dear Faramir, is not un-handsome, with those high-cheekbones and clear blue eyes, and the tumble of burnt umber that cascades from atop his head to frame his fair countenance. His body is yet young and lithe, with muscles firm and skin soft and silvered with scars. Faramir is, Aragorn cannot deny, an excellent match, save one aspect, and that is the one detail that no-one can change. Were it not for that Aragorn would throw himself into the feeling he runs from and never look back.

But he cannot, for Faramir is a man, and Aragorn needs heirs, and love has nothing to do with it.

Faramir groans, teeth bared against Aragorn’s neck and the King sets his jaw and pulls his hand back, wrapping long fingers around the flesh that digs so impatiently into his side. Faramir lets forth a soft cry, wordless pleasure, and Aragorn shuts tight his own eyes as he begins to stroke. He knows Faramir loves him, oh how he knows, and it is breaking his heart. He is too weak to deny Faramir, or to deny himself, and he is too afraid of the hurt that will come when he must end this. When he thinks of the pain he must cause this good man he feels a twisting in his belly, and it is then that he knows he loves Faramir too, beyond doubt, beyond life and light and the earth, and still he sits in the darkness and lets his hand hover between them, unable to waken Faramir and say the three simplest words in the world.

Aragorn hates himself, a little more each day. A King’s guilt, heavier than the crown, more painful than the sword and more oppressive than the laws they are breaking.

A stiff shudder, and then it is over as Faramir’s release dampens Aragorn’s hand and belly. The Steward slumps to the side, breathing heavily, face obscured by pillow and hair. Aragorn wipes himself quietly with a corner of the blanket and steals a sidelong glance at his downfall.

It is a little while before Faramir surfaces, and Aragorn too has begun to doze quietly when the younger man shifts once again and props himself up on an elbow, stray sorrel hairs skating lightly over the skin of Aragorn’s shoulder, pulling him from sleep. The King opens his eyes and finds Faramir’s blue gaze set upon him, heavy-lidded but somehow alert.

Ending this will break him, he knows, but Aragorn swallows hard and takes a breath and almost says the words but Faramir pre-empts him, raising his eyebrows in question and gesturing toward the King’s lower body. Addled with lethargy and guilt as he is it takes Aragorn a slow second to realise that he himself is aroused, and has been for some time. Faramir’s hand slides into his field of vision, across his belly and over the ridge of his hipbone and Aragorn would have him continue, spread his legs further and thrust those skilled fingers ever southward with his own hands, but all the same he breathes in sharply and pulls away. There are two things he can say to Faramir. Two sets of words that will each set their paths in entirely new directions. I love you. This must end. He can love him, or he can leave him and Aragorn must only choose which.

Faramir is still looking at him, hand now resting on the bed in the gap between them. Aragorn sits up, and, feeling now oddly vulnerable, pulls the blankets up over himself, hiding the evidence of his body’s errant decisions. He must do it, he must end it now. Faramir waits now for him to speak, and Aragorn closes his eyes briefly, gathering himself, summoning something that is not quite strength from the storm in his innards. End it, end it now.

He opens his eyes, and watches as Faramir draws a loose strand of hair behind his ear, before undoing his work entirely and combing his fingers backwards through that auburn sea slowly over and over. It is a nervous habit, Aragorn has noticed, and suddenly his own heart clenches in his chest when he realises that he may never see Faramir quite so tousled ever again. Half-memories flood his mind; the way Faramir’s thumbs dig into the spaces between his shoulder blades as he eases the King’s aches after a long day, the crack of his knuckles, the way his nostrils flare when Aragorn lets the young man take him, for they have always done it this way. There are parts of Faramir that Aragorn is sure only he knows, and only he has been allowed to see, despite his lack of payment in return. He has kept himself closed, let only what was necessary escape. And Faramir has stuck by him, beside and behind and above and beneath him unfailingly all this time.

Aragorn lays his hand on Faramir’s shoulder and before he can lose his nerve pulls the younger man into an embrace, tight and close. He buries his face in Faramir’s softly scented hair, wrapping his arms around the lean back, and feels Faramir shift against him and return the gesture a little confusedly, fingertips dancing over the King’s ribs as his arms tangle around him. It has been a very long time since Aragorn has last shown Faramir such affection, and the King’s stomach roils with the prospect of what must come next.

The firmness with which Faramir holds him tears Aragorn’s heart asunder, and he must wait until the stray tear that slides along his nose is consumed by the coppery tumult before he straightens, loosening his grasp and pulling away gently. Faramir gazes at him, expectant, puzzled, a half-smile twisting the corners of his mouth. It is now or never. A King’s guilt, and a King’s choice.

Aragorn lifts his hands and frames Faramir’s face between them. Red-gold hair furls itself between his fingers, and Faramir is still silent, waiting, blue eyes shining and features set in gentle expectation. Aragorn presses a kiss to Faramir’s forehead, lingering and tender. Then, he shifts, and lowers his face, and whispers three words softly into Faramir’s ear.

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The following people read the story, enjoyed it, and would like to thank the author: waterwolf , Minx

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9 Comment(s)

NB: Comments may contain spoilers!

Hmmm… I’m usually a glass half full kind of person, but I’m not sure about that third box… especially in the long run. But then, (besides awkward situations in bedrooms) I also love ambiguous open endings that have me thinking about what might be happening next all day…
Brilliantly written as always! Thanks for sharing!

Iris    8 June 2011, 09:36    #

This is so lovely! Hurts in the best way, and I chose to believe Aragorn left it at those three words. Thanks for a great read!

— Alex    8 June 2011, 15:45    #

Maybe it’s because I’m in an unsettled mood myself, but I can’t see either path being easily followed. Oh the possibilities!

You always create a mood and draw me into your stories :)

— trixie    8 June 2011, 18:19    #

Lovely story (though I’m not sure which words he chose in the end). And I completely admire this phrase: “A King’s guilt, heavier than the crown, more painful than the sword and more oppressive than the laws they are breaking.” Wow. Powerful. Bravo!

Nerey Camille    8 June 2011, 22:24    #

Ack! Was it the Lady or the Tiger? … Thanks for the story!

— Mira Took    9 June 2011, 21:02    #

Iris: Oh, I’m very much a glass half full person too, but I really wanted to do something a bit different, and while I’m still unsure whether or not I can actually write a story with an unhappy ending I think this is as close as I’ll get, and while I won’t say what ‘what happens next’ scenario I had in mind after finishing I think it should be fairly obvious if anyone has read my other stories ;) Thank you for you kind words!

Alex: Thank you so much! I’m glad I managed to write the hurt and difficulty aspects in a way that was recognisable by others, and I’m finding it really interesting to see what conclusions others draw from the ending :D Thank you, I’m glad you liked it!

Trixie: Exactly! While I have my own choice of ending in my head for this story, you’re right…both choices are equally difficult, I think. One path has what’s ‘right’ for the realm and the future, while the other has what’s ‘right’ in matters of the heart; no matter the choice there will be pain in the future, I think :( But thank you, and thank you for reading and I’m glad you enjoyed it!

Nerey Camille: Like I said above it’s really interesting to see other people’s conclusions…and I’m very flattered to see that I’ve left some people still unsure or thinking about the story afterwards, so thank you! And thank you for the compliments on that line; I had to get in the taboo of their relationship somehow, not explicitly, but I needed to emphasise the magnitude of Aragorn’s choice, and I’m glad you thihk it worked so well :)

Mira Took: Well, like Stockton I’ve left that little point entirely up to the reader ;) Thank you!

Eora    11 June 2011, 19:32    #

So tender and atmospheric! To me reading your fics is like taking a little time out in a comfortable corner of my favorite bar after a long day of work. ;)
And I agree with previous comments that there are so many issues that actually there is no happy end. The heirs, of course, and probably the fact that the royal court already suspects what´s going on… I greatly appreciate the way you regarded all those non-romantic though nevertheless very important things – and yet it pains me to feel Aragorn´s predicament struggling with all those absolutely comprehensible reasons.

On the other hand: A man who would be able to reject Faramir (particularly when he´s wearing that very special puppy gaze) would also be capable of drowning a bag of kittens – And no, it wasn´t me who said that! ;)

raven22372    15 June 2011, 13:08    #

Oh, but this one hurt, didn’t it?! I do believe, my dear, that you have some excellent genes in you paving the way for more angtsy stories to come! Though I would put in a plea for happy endings before too many of them are written ;)

This was truly a beautiful read! As for quotes I’m with Nerey Camille – I loved that particular line too. Ah, the pain! That heartbreakingly sweet pain that comes with that utterly inconvenient need of heirs. Yet, somehow I wouldn’t be without it… Now, I’m sure the boys could work something out but even if they didn’t and Aragorn did indeed end things with Faramir in this fic, it’d still be worth it, in a way. Of course, I’m not the one getting my heart crushed here, but there is still so much beauty and love that it must balance the scales in some respect. (Yes, I firmly believe that in some parallel universe this is all happening for real, and that is not to be debated! ;))
And surely Faramir must know on some level that Aragorn loves him back?
That embrace at the end said it all… In fact, I do think that Aragorn wouldn’t even have needed those words for Faramir to understand… perhaps.

Thank you for this lovely piece!

Geale    16 June 2011, 00:18    #

Raven: Thank you! I do rather have a slight obsession with what will happen or what people will say if ever Aragorn and Faramir’s relationship became public knowledge in many of my stories, but as of yet I’ve not actually managed the patience to write a proper ‘reactions’ story yet…but I think I would make it difficult (oh no, am I getting addicted to angst now? :P) So what I mean by all that is I wanted to go for a more perhaps realistic view of things within the world- Aragorn will need heirs, so it’s a big problem, and there are ways of solving that problem but none without difficulty where he and Faramir are concerned. I’m not sure which solution I’d choose (yet)…though I am dealing with it in another work-in-progress (don’t get excited, it’s been 6 months and I’m maybe halfway through? Ha!) But yes, bags of kittens taken into account, and despite the fact I doubt I’ll write a ‘what happens next’ to this story…I guess I’ll always go for the happier ending, at least in my head. But happier for the men, or happier for the realm? Thank you so much, I’m really glad you enjoyed it!

Geale: Oh, rest assured I’m not sure I really have it in me to turn exclusively to angsty stories (though I really do want to write that fabled ‘reactions’ fic now…and it will not be flowers and sunshine either!) So, yes, it did hurt! But I promise that happier endings are on the horizon, in one way or another ;) Thank you so much for your compliments on my angst-writing skills…I always have the dilemma of not knowing if I’ve gone too far with the pain or not far enough. I think I venture on the tamer side of things (because I just can’t bring myself to have a truly sad ending) But I’m sure, one day, I may dare to set foot past that line.
And surely Faramir must know on some level that Aragorn loves him back? …you didn’t hear it from me but…in my head, at least…I think so :) (as close to a happy ending as I think we’ll get with this one!) I think that (and reading all these lovely comments has really set the wheels of my imagination in motion…I’ve been thinking about this story and all the what-happened-next possibilities a lot recently) were they to end things, not everything would be lost. There would be pain, and heartache, but they would still have that time together, their memories, and that love though never properly spoken would still exist, even if just in the form of friendship and respect. But then I think what if it ended and Faramir disappeared off to Ithilien forever, unable to live with seeing Aragorn each day with a new wife? I’m really not cut out for this angst stuff!
Thank you again for such a wonderful comment! :D

Eora    19 June 2011, 22:21    #

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About the Author


Hello, I’m Eora :) As well as on this site I collect my writing (and general ramblings) on my journal. If you want to ask me anything you are more than welcome to comment/befriend me there :)