Remember that whether you have the adult content filter switched on or off, this is always an adults only site.
05 March 2011 | 19031 words
Title: Faramir’s Dilemma
Characters: Faramir, Éomer, Legolas, Boromir, Aragorn… and probably just about everyone else at some point.
Rating: PG13 (no guarantees it’ll stay that way…)
Warnings: AU (ruby-verse)
Summary: Faramir could really use some company, don’t you think? And there are so many intriguing possibilities…
Disclaimer: Characters do not belong to me. They are just here to play.
So I decided it was about time Faramir got some attention. Easier said than done… not that I don’t want to write about him; just that he’s a bit more introspective and likely to think about what he’s doing, unlike just about everybody else in this AU, so he’s not quite as willing to allow himself to be tossed into the ridiculous situations that others (for instance, his brother) manage to get into. There even seems to be an actual plot in progress! So even if this is a little less ridiculous than my usual stuff, I promise that there will absolutely be a generous amount of silliness, a good dose of at least mild smut, and inconvenient hobbits.
(not necessary to read, but this is kind of a prologue)
Faramir cursed under his breath and resisted the urge to pull away as the healer perched on the stool in front of him finished putting the last few stitches in the gash that had opened him up from just above his left eyebrow to the crown of his head.
“Sorry, Captain,” the man said quickly, noticing the involuntary wince. “I’m finished now.”
Faramir sighed, relieved, and leaned back against the stone wall, musing that the cots in the Houses of Healing were not terribly comfortable, and he would have been more than happy for a few minutes of sleep at the moment. Something murmured vaguely in the back of his head that he ought to be awake and attending to what was going on, but this voice was drowned out by the crashing roar of the headache that had been nearly blinding him since… well, since he could remember. In the woods, at some point. Quite a bit of shouting. He shifted uneasily and opened his eyes, but the light streaming through the windows made him wince and close them again.
“Faramir,” a familiar voice said sternly.
He groaned. “Don’t yell, brother. My head hurts.”
A soft chuckle. “Sorry. Was a bit worried when they said you’d been hurt. Looks like you’ll live, though.”
“Ugh. The way I feel I’m not sure I want to.”
“Get up, and I’ll take you back to your room.”
The healer said something, but Faramir didn’t hear it, because as soon as he tried to get to his feet he was knocked back by a wave of dizziness that made his stomach twist. Boromir, frowning, steadied him with a hand on his shoulder as he leaned forward and fought the abrupt assault of nausea.
“You! Healer! What did you give him?”
“We didn’t give him anything, Lord Boromir. He’s had a nasty blow to the head and he has a concussion. He’ll be all right, but take it a bit easy on him, please.”
Boromir stepped back, arms crossed and scowling. “What are you going to do with him?”
“We’ll keep him here for the rest of the afternoon and keep an eye on him. If he’s feeling better then, you can take him somewhere more comfortable, but someone ought to keep an eye on him. He’s likely to have some dizziness for a few days and might not be thinking very clearly. He’s off duty for at least a fortnight.”
Faramir mused that whatever the healer was talking about might have something to do with the fact that he couldn’t seem to recall much about what had happened since he got up this morning. Something about an early morning patrol…
“… ambushed,” the healer was saying.
“Damned orcs are apparently getting smarter. Or just more desperate,” Boromir muttered.
“I’d say it’s a bit of both,” another voice said, and Faramir forced his eyes open to look across the room at the figure stretched out on the other cot, looking absently up at the ceiling.
“Your hair’s not purple anymore,” he observed, wondering where that thought came from.
Legolas smiled slightly. “No. Washed out after a week or two. I told you that once already today, when I met up with your patrol, but that orc cracking you across the head with his bow seems to have contributed to your forgetfulness.”
“Why would you let an orc attack my brother?” Boromir demanded angrily.
Legolas turned his head and met the Steward’s glare evenly.
“Well, I’d killed five or six of them before the one came up behind me with a club and took my leg out from under me.”
He nodded toward the other end of the cot; in his concern for his brother and his deliberate attempt to ignore Legolas, Boromir hadn’t noticed that the elf’s right leg below the knee was securely splinted and tightly wrapped.
“Well, I suppose that explains it,” the man admitted grudgingly.
Legolas shrugged. “Elves heal quickly. I’ll be up and about by tomorrow.”
“You will not,” the healer interrupted. “Even an elf can’t heal a break like that overnight.”
“You’ll see,” Legolas said, looking back up toward the ceiling.
“Perhaps,” the healer said. “But if you get up and try walking on that leg any time soon, you’ll put the bones all out of place, and then I’ll have to set it again… and being an elf didn’t make that part any easier, did it?”
Boromir saw the elf’s face pale slightly.
“He can leave here this evening when your brother does,” the healer said, “but only if someone’s going to be available to make sure he’s not doing anything to hurt himself more than he already has. He’s not been a very cooperative patient.”
“I’ll manage that,” Aragorn said, stepping into the room and patting Boromir on the shoulder as he studied his two injured friends. “What a sight you two are!”
“Your humor is not appreciated,” Legolas noted coolly.
Aragorn ignored him and turned to the healer. “I’ll speak to my wife. We have several unused rooms. You can arrange to have these two moved there later today. I won’t be there, but the Queen will.”
Boromir nodded; if anyone would be looking after Faramir, he could think of no one more suitable than Arwen. He had briefly contemplated offering to keep an eye on his brother himself, but he had no patience for such things and he knew it.
Aragorn rubbed Faramir’s shoulder.
“The healers will keep an eye on you two for the afternoon. I’ve no choice but to attend to the delegation arriving from Rohan this afternoon… Éomer would understand my absence, but his advisors wouldn’t, and I don’t need them sour with me when we’ve got work to do.”
Éomer, Faramir thought absently, and then suddenly frowned. Arriving this afternoon… the thought brought back a disorganized rush of distracting thoughts that had been wandering through his mind the past few days, ever since Aragorn had mentioned something about Boromir as a teenager visiting Edoras with his father, and a young Éomer showing the Steward’s son around the city, and then showing him some other sorts of things, and that was when Boromir had threatened to break Aragorn’s jaw if he didn’t bring the story to an immediate conclusion. That hadn’t stopped Faramir from musing late at night about exactly what Éomer might have taught him during that visit to make Boromir turn so very red when Aragorn mentioned it, and hadn’t stopped him from wondering whether Éomer might have an interest in providing Faramir with a similar education while he was in Minas Tirith. He reminded himself that at the moment he was still having difficulty seeing straight, much less engaging the King of Rohan in intelligent conversation, and that perhaps it was for the best anyway, since he did happen to be engaged to said King’s sister, and at that point the rambling of his mind tumbled over itself and he dozed off.
He woke up much later, with dusk gathering outside an unfamiliar window and a vague recollection of arguing with the healers about something, which wasn’t really like him and probably had something to do with the pounding pain in his head that refused to go away.
“Good evening, Captain,” a voice said, and he looked over to see a slender female elf with red-blond hair setting down a tray with a pitcher of water and some bread and cheese. “Lady Arwen asked me to come in and see if you were hungry.”
“Maybe a little,” he said.
“I’ll leave this for you, then.”
He sat up, relieved that at least this didn’t send him reeling anymore, and studied the elf; the distinctive golden-red hair fell over her pointed ears and into her face, and the eyes that regarded him curiously were sea-green and very bright.
“What’s your name?” he asked.
She smiled slightly, looking away. “Not that it matters, Captain, but my name is Miriel.”
He frowned, searching through his lessons in Sindarin and Quenya. “Miriel… the jewel?”
She raised her eyebrows. “Very good. I don’t know many men who speak Elvish languages. Other than the King, of course, but he was raised among elves.”
“I had an unusual education. But not much opportunity to practice… all the elves I’ve ever met speak perfect Westron.”
She turned away, smiling. “And how many elves have you met, Captain?”
“I hope the only example of elvenkind you’re familiar with isn’t the one in the room next to yours.”
“The room next to… you mean Legolas?”
She nodded. “He’s certainly not typical of our kind, to say the least, although I suppose it could be that all Mirkwood elves behave that way… one would expect better, though, since he is a prince… not that I’d care if he was a king, with his poor behavior.”
“Why? What’s he done now?”
“Well, first of all, he’s been terribly rude to me all afternoon. I told Lady Arwen about it and she went in and had a chat with him… we’ll see if that changed his mood at all.”
“There’s no excuse for being rude to a lady,” Faramir said, watching the graceful figure drift toward the door.
“Certainly not,” she agreed, glancing over her shoulder through the curtain of her hair. “I’m sure you’re a gentleman, Captain. I hope you recover quickly, but I will look forward to serving you while you’re a guest in my Lady’s home.”
Faramir lay back on the bed, the stabbing pain in his head eased somewhat by the pretty smile the elf maiden had given him as she departed.
After a few minutes, it occurred to him that someone ought to say something to Legolas about his manners. Ordinarily Faramir would have allowed Arwen to deal with the elf on her own, but since he still wasn’t thinking very clearly and had already forgotten that Miriel had mentioned Arwen at all, he took it upon himself to address the issue. After all, rudeness to ladies was not to be tolerated. He made his way gingerly to his feet, the abrupt dizziness making it even harder to think properly, and rested a hand on the wall to steady himself as he made his way to the door. Stepping out into the hall, which seemed unusually long as he attempted to look around, he remembered that he was supposed to be defending the honor of an attractive elf maiden. The blinding pain in his head made it difficult to recall what room Legolas might be in, so he looked around until he found a door that appeared as likely as any other and began knocking on it.
“What?” the voice from inside demanded.
Faramir pushed the door open, and even in its dazed state his brain realized that some sort of mistake had been made; the figure that stood scowling at him was tall and bearing a mane of blond hair, but the muscular shoulders and bearded face certainly didn’t belong to an elf, and neither did the curls of hair across the exposed chest revealed by not-Legolas’s current state of shirtlessness.
Abruptly, the scowl dissolved into a broad grin. “Faramir! I haven’t seen you in months! Come in, come in! How are you?”
Faramir found himself ushered into the guest room and firmly embraced by the King of Rohan.
“I’ve been better,” he admitted.
Éomer stepped back and studied the neatly stitched but still ugly wound across Faramir’s head. “Aragorn said you’d taken a good knock to the head. Glad to see you up and about. How are you feeling?”
Éomer laughed, the unrestrained merriment of a man who despite his royal title still spent most of his days outdoors.
“I know exactly what you mean. See this here?”
He leaned forward and parted the shaggy blond hair to reveal an old, long-healed scar.
“Got that when I was a teenager. My own fault, of course. Friend and I were having a contest, jumping our horses over fences, and mine refused one and tossed me on my head. It’s not a nice feeling to have your brain rattled around like that, is it? It was a week or so before I felt quite right again.”
Faramir nodded; the vice grip around his head was starting to tighten again.
“You alright, friend? You look a bit unsteady.”
“I suppose I ought to go lay back down.”
Éomer motioned to the bed. “Sit down for a moment. I’m just getting changed out of these awful formal clothes, and then I’ll give you a hand back to your room.”
Faramir sat down, not being able to think of a good argument to the contrary. To his mild alarm, Éomer briskly stripped his breeches off and, stark naked, began rummaging through his travel bags, muttering to himself. After a moment he paused, glanced over his shoulder at Faramir, and grinned.
“You’re rather red in the face, lad. You’re a soldier… I’d think you’d be used to seeing other men roaming around unclothed.”
Faramir attempted to think of a response to this, but realized that whatever he came up with was likely to make the situation worse, so he closed his mouth and attempted not to watch the wiry muscles shifting under the weathered skin of the Horse Lord’s lower back and twining down into the extraordinarily powerful legs of a man who spent half his life on horseback. Eventually Éomer found a pair of leather breeches and a shirt and set about covering up the distracting expanses of skin. Faramir absently took note of the fact that he did not appear to have put anything on underneath the breeches, and then tried to erase that thought as it was likely to prove even more distracting.
“There we are,” Éomer said, taking Faramir’s arm. “Let’s have you back to your room. You look like you’re off in the clouds somewhere.”
Faramir sprawled out on the bed with relief, as this immediately stopped the unpleasant vertigo, and also released him from the obligation of trying to ignore the heat of the other man’s strong arm behind his shoulder. Éomer chuckled down at him.
“I’ll bid you goodnight, friend. I hope to see you feeling more like yourself in the morning.”
NB: Please do not distribute (by any means, including email) or repost this story (including translations) without the author's prior permission. [ more ]
Enjoyed this story? Then be sure to let the author know by posting a comment at http://www.faramirfiction.com/Fiction/faramirs-dilemma. Positive feedback is what keeps authors writing more stories!
Thank the author
The following people read the story, enjoyed it, and would like to thank the author: Tabee , alecia , Denise , Minx , , Trollcookie,