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19 June 2010 | 35926 words
With: Boromir, Aragorn
Summary: It all starts when things begin to go wrong for Boromir on his journey with the Fellowship. Faramir comes to his weary mind, of course – but do memories of the past have power to change the present?
Warnings: AU, sibcest, mild angst, mild fluff and very explicit slash.
Note: Story is based on Book verse for character description and those parts of the text where it actually sticks to canon. So keep in mind that before the Ring is destroyed, Lórien is attacked by the forces of Mordor, and King Elessar’s coronation and his wedding are two different events.
Thanks: To iris – for beta on chapters 1, 2 and 3 and for artistic inspiration! To everyone who had helped bring my laptop back to life when it died a premature death 4(!) days before turn-in. I doubt any of you people shall ever come to read these lines, but you have my eternal gratitude, undying love, etc. and you rule!
To the one who requested the story – for getting me to write it. This is not the sort of plot I would have explored otherwise, but I had great fun working on this tale. However I got quite carried away with it, and have no idea whether the result is anything like what you had expected. But I do hope you enjoy it!
Disclaimer: Obviously and much to my regret, none of this belongs to me. I had merely invited the characters over and let them run wild for a while – and then wrote it down to the best of my ability.
Written for the Midsummer Swap 2010.
Request by Anastasija: Faramir/Boromir love story. Boromir is on his way to Rivendell (or from Rivendell) and the way is so heavy that the only memories which make him fight and go forward are the memories of those wonderful moments that he had with his brother. And I would be very glad to see the happy end when Boromir returns to his beloved one.
They still heard the faint rumbling of the drums as they ran outside through the high gate. But what joy the Company had found at seeing daylight again was soon annulled by the shower of arrows sent at them from the cliffs. They had gone almost a hundred yards into the field, and did not make particularly easy targets, but then –
“Tsehhhh…!” Boromir gasped sharply and fell to his knee, toppled over by the mighty blow of a black-feathered shaft biting into his upper back.
The others halted and rushed to him, but he roared in rage and was already up, turning around and drawing his sword.
“Boromir, stop!!” Aragorn flung himself at the man, grasping him on the arm. “We can’t go back!”
Boromir growled, trying to shake him off. “I shan’t be running from Orcs while they shoot me like game.”
“But we have to go, or we shall all be shot!” As though to prove the Ranger’s point, another arrow landed into the ground right at their feet, and Aragorn sucked his teeth in impatience. “Come, you are wounded already.” And pulling Boromir along, he yelled to the others: “Run on! Don’t linger, we’re fine!”
But they had not made a dozen paces before more arrows were unleashed at them, one getting stuck in the hem of Aragorn’s cloak, a second one catching the bedroll he carried on his back, another shaft planting itself into Boromir’s waist, and yet another into his upper thigh, making him jerk and gasp again. He had made to turn around once more, but Aragorn cursed under his breath and pushed him on roughly. At the same time Legolas was by their side, narrowing his clear eyes and shooting forth some arrows of his own. There were cries from the gate as at least one of his bolts had found its mark, and for the present the attack ceased.
Thus the Company was able to go on, as fast as their battered and exhausted bodies allowed.
When they were a safe distance from the Dwarven halls’ exit, they halted by a small creek to catch a breath and attend to the wounded. Pulling Boromir’s arrows out had not been that difficult, for, thanks to his mail-shirt and leather tunic, they had not gone very deep in. But Aragorn studied the arrowheads with a frown of deep dislike, and smelled them, wrinkling his nose, and then examined the torn bleeding cavities in Boromir’s flesh with exceptional scrutiny. He did not say anything though, and merely washed and bandaged the wounds. And when he gave Boromir a cupful of some bitter infusion that made him hot and sweating at once, and then insisted the man drink as much water as he could possibly force himself to, Boromir did not say anything either, but only smirked wryly and nodded in understanding.
They went on, and soon Aragorn, and then Legolas too, came to offer him their shoulders. At first he only swatted them away and cursed at them, saying he was perfectly fine, and that it would take more than a couple of Orc bolts to fell him. Then eventually, when everything began to double before his eyes, and his weight seemed to increase by the minute, he was forced to accept their help, leaning on them more and more heavily, until they were almost hauling him.
“Aragorn,” he muttered hoarsely at last, trying to make them halt, for even the smallest movement rendered him nauseous and disoriented. “There was poison, I know – no, don’t deny it, I can feel it coursing through my veins, my own heart spreading it forth…”
Aragorn sighed sternly and pulled him on. “Don’t waste energy on talking, Boromir.”
But Boromir dismissed his advice with an ironic grin. “I’ve met Orcs before, don’t forget. I may be a big man, but three shafts will have even one like me finished long before dawn. It’s very honourable of you to keep dragging me along, but what is the point? You need to make haste and find shelter before dark, and I am only a hindrance.”
Aragorn glared at him in shock. “I don’t care how long you have to live, Boromir, I won’t have you dumped here on the road as a little present for the Orcs’ enjoyment. Now I suggest you shut up and use what strength you’ve got to walk – and should you try to resist, I shall knock you out and lug you on unconscious.”
Boromir’s knowledge of Orkish ways proved quite accurate, for by the time he was brought under the eaves of the Golden Wood late that night, he was more dead than alive.
The Lady of the Wood had tended to his wounds, and he lived; yet for three days he had lain without waking up, mumbling feverishly and growing thinner by the day, and when the heat had passed, for yet another day and a night he lay in a deepest slumber before finally coming to.
The Elves had lifted him carefully to a secluded flet high in the branches of a tall mallorn, so that he could be closer to the light and warmth of the sun, and laid him on a soft mattress. And there he spent his days, lying on his stomach quietly, while the rest of the fellowship were housed in a large tent at the foot of the tree.
Boromir did not mind the separation much, especially now that it was clear he would be unable to continue with the quest: he barely had enough strength to sit up, not to mention that despite all the Elven healers’ skill and effort, the wound in his leg had settled into a mode of continuous inflammation, mild yet annoying.
Nevertheless, Aragorn had taken to spending time with him, not so much to keep the man company, for Boromir did not seem particularly in need of such, but rather to enjoy his own solitude and bask in the warm spring-like sun.
Yet despite the lack of conversation, or maybe because of it, these hours of rest together had brought them far closer than all the previous weeks of travel had, and an unspoken accord and understanding had developed between them, resulting in an atmosphere of comfortable friendly intimacy.
The day was moving towards twilight, and a soft fresh breeze was swaying the gold-adorned branches above them, gently divesting the tree of some of its splendour, sending the narrow ash-gold leaves to glide and float in the air, to shimmer in the lowering sun like pieces of coloured foil at a festival, eventually letting them settle on the pale grey boards of the flet.
Careful not to disturb his wounds, Boromir reached out slowly to pick up one of the pointed leaves. He twirled it thoughtfully before his eyes and let out a quiet sigh. A faint fragrance, sweet and fresh, was spread in the air, and although the two men saw no one about, all around them many clear voices could be heard softly singing a fair gentle song, and the sound of it filled the heart with hope, peace and longing all at once.
“What are they singing of?” Boromir asked half-absently.
Aragorn inhaled deeply and stretched out on his back.
“The Sea,” he replied simply.
To Aragorn’s surprise, Boromir’s expression became warm and serene, an open unassuming smile appearing on his lips. “The Sea… Yes, that is the best thing.”
The older man smiled in return. “You have been there?”
Boromir nodded. “Once. The dearest memory I have ever had is of that one time.”
“Care to share?” the Ranger asked casually. He had always liked stories, especially those pertaining to things ‘best’ and ‘dearest’.
For a while Boromir was silent, then said noncommittally: “Mayhap… But first I would ask you something.”
Again Boromir did not reply at once.
“I heard you grew up with the Elves,” he began from a distance.
“You have heard correct.”
Boromir nodded thoughtfully. “On my stay in Imladris,” he continued slowly, obviously careful with his choice of words, “I had once been walking through the groves, and I saw… The sons of Master Elrond, they were embracing… and kissing, like lovers would.”
Aragorn nodded. “They are lovers indeed, have been for as long as I’ve known them – and probably long before that as well.”
“What think you of it?” Boromir asked very casually.
“Nothing,” the Ranger replied just as casually.
“Nothing at all?”
A shadow of a smile appeared at the corners of Aragorn’s grey eyes. “Well, not entirely,” he admitted lightly, and when Boromir encouraged him with a curious hmmm, he went on: “As a matter of fact, although it may shock you, Man of Gondor, I shall tell you that in the days of my youth I myself had lain with them,” and, after hesitating a moment, he added with a grin: “that is, with both of them – simultaneously.”
Boromir raised his eyebrows, but rather in amused surprise than shock. “Oh, is that so?”
Aragorn chuckled. “You see, the ways of Elves are rather… different from what Men are used to. My mother was widowed before I had turned two, and Master Elrond had fostered me. So I was a little like a baby-brother to his sons, and they deemed it their responsibility to… now, how did they put it? Teach me some sense, I believe, or something along those lines.”
Boromir snorted softly. “I gather you had had an interesting upbringing.”
“So I had,” Aragorn admitted with a smile.
They were silent for a while, and then Aragorn spoke: “Well…? You wanted to tell me about something, or have you decided against it?”
Boromir shook his head, and the soft quiet smile appeared on his face again. “No, I have not, although I am afraid it won’t match up to the tale of being bedded by two Elven-princes.”
He sighed and went quiet again, but when Aragorn was already beginning to think the tale would not come after all, he began unhurriedly.
“It was also in the days of my youth…
“My little brother Faramir and I, we had been visiting our uncle down in Dol Amroth, and we were to depart for Minas Tirith the following morning. The day was as fine as you could wish for in the middle of summer, and we had decided to spend it at the sea-side, taking his two young sons along. Or rather, it was they who had taken us along, for they knew every inch of the coast, and had promised to teach us to catch crabs, and show us some amazing cave, and all that sort of thing.
“We had whiled away the whole day in this manner, getting our skin battered by the sun and the breeze, enjoying ourselves to no end. We had done some swimming as well, although the beach in that place was not of the best kind: no white sand, no gentle slopes – instead, to get to the water you had to climb at least ten feet down a wall of large dark boulders, some with sharp edges, others smooth but unsteady.
“Disaster had struck when least expected – but then again, doesn’t it always?
“Though at first we did not give it much thought.
“It was late afternoon and the tide was rising, the sea unquiet, lapping with frothy waves at the green-covered slimy rocks. Faramir had been wading in the water – looking for sea-shells, most likely, when suddenly he slipped, fell with a yelp and went all the way under. Almost at once he emerged, but I saw he was frightened, and when I rushed to him, I understood why. His leg had slid into a crack between the rocks – don’t ask me how, he always managed to get the least likely thing to happen to him; point is, his foot got caught and he could not pull it out.
“The water was only up to his chest, splashing in his face as waves rolled on, and at first we all made fun of him for being clumsy and all that while he squirmed this way and that. But then it was not funny anymore, because he was seriously stuck, and we could not help him out. He tried to explain which rock was holding him in place, but when I attempted to shift it, he screamed, for it had only tightened its grip, and now he could not move his foot at all. Pathetically powerless, I just stood there and stared at him.
“He was breathing heavily from his efforts, but not only that: I saw fear glitter in his eyes, because the tide was visibly rising, covering him up to the armpits already. And from the way the weeds grew on the rocks, I saw that when it reached its summit, the water would be above even my head, although I was hardly covered to the middle of my thighs at that time – and I knew Faramir understood that as well. The other two, they were very young, and they got positively panicky, and started crying.
“Then I bid them run to the fishers’ village like there were Dragons chasing them, and get help, as many men as they could, and bring some sort of tools.
“They were gone, and I remained with him to wait…
“We did not speak; he had twisted around to be facing away from the surf so that it would not splash in his face so, and I sat on another rock by his side. And I cursed myself for being so careless, for we had been oblivious to time and had wandered miles from the nearest hamlet…
“We waited and waited – what else was there to be done…? And it seemed like the boys had been gone forever, and I thought they should have already made it there and back at least twice… I climbed the rocks to look down the shore for any sign of them, but even far at the horizon, there was no one. I left my shirt on the sand and put a stone on it, so they would not miss the place, trying not to think that by the time they came, it might not matter at all.
“When I got down again, it was hard for me to find Faramir, for only his black-haired head remained above the water, and when the wave rolled forth, it covered him whole. Each time he surfaced, he would wheeze and sputter, and he looked a little like an otter, and it would have been very funny and cute in different circumstances.
“When I was back by his side, he looked at me very seriously and only said: “Don’t leave me again.” And I just nodded, for I could not speak. I wanted to say something, to reassure him, but what kind of reassurance could I give? And anyway, I knew he needed me to be strong and confident, but if I were to speak, my voice would tremble and crack.
“I came to stand between him and the surf, hugging him to me, pressing his head to my bare stomach. But that was not much help, and soon he had to tilt his face up to breathe. One last time, he made an effort to get out, twisting and pulling so hard he went red in the face, and I knew he was hurting himself terribly. Then he became still again, and… he stopped even trembling against me, and his eyes… they grew hazy and calm, like…
“Once, the two of us had gone hunting, and he had shot a doe; and when we came to look at her, she was still alive, though she could not get up, and the way she looked at us… You know, I saw the same acceptance in Faramir’s eyes – not a peaceful kind of acceptance, but acceptance nonetheless, like he was already letting go…
“By the Valar, Aragorn, that look in his eyes – to this day, I have not seen a thing more terrifying…
“And for a second my blood froze, and I thought my heart would split and I would die together with him. But then, suddenly, all the fear was gone, and I knew I would not let him go without a fight.
“I knelt before him, and took his hands into mine, intertwining our fingers, and I said to him: “Trust me and have no fear.”
“He held my gaze and nodded; and then the tide came, and he shut his eyes and went under – and I took as deep a breath as my lungs would hold, then gathered a mouthful of air and dove after him. And I found his mouth in the water, and sealed it with mine, and gave him the air I was holding. He understood me, and took it at once. Then quickly I came up for another gulp, gave it to him, and came for another. And so it was how we went: four or five small fractions of a breath for him, only as much as I could hold in my mouth without inhaling into my lungs – then a fast deep one for myself.
“Thus minutes passed, and despite the strain and the dread, I had grown almost euphoric, for he was alive. All the breath he could have taken with him would have long since expired – yet he lived! He lived on the air I was giving him, and so I saw it was yet possible for him to make it…
“But slowly I was growing despondent again, for he was clutching at me so desperately, and I could tell I was giving him barely enough. Of course I was, for I was hardly getting enough myself. My head was beginning to spin, and so must be his, I understood. I was getting cold, too, and the sea was leaving a bitter acrid taste on my lips and tongue, and there was water in my nose. And the tide kept rising, so the breaks between our kisses had to become longer. I knew that eventually my air would become insufficient for him, and he would faint – and that’s it, he would not be able to accept what I gave him…
“Then suddenly I wanted so badly to talk to him, to say all the simple, important things I had never said. I wanted to see his eyes, to hear him laugh, and sing, too, although before I had teased him over his singing. But you know, he has the clearest voice, he could easily sing along with these Elves… And at that moment I wanted all of it so badly… For alive as he still was, he was already out of reach, I could only hold him and kiss a breath into his mouth, naught more.
“But then… At first I was not even aware of voices. Yes, Aragorn, they had finally found us…
“It had not been easy, to move those rocks, even though there were quite a lot of people. Of course, a son of the Steward was drowning – the whole village must have come! But I did not look at what they were doing – I had my own thing to do.
“Oh, I could not believe it when I had finally pulled him out, when I saw his face again – above the water… He was half-faint, delirious and exhausted, but he was alive, Aragorn, we had made it…!”
“If ever I should live to see the fulfillment of this quest, I don’t believe I would feel such relief as I did then.”
Boromir sighed heavily and licked his lips, and it seemed that the mere recollection of their toil had worn him out.
The sky above the two men had grown a shade darker, and the gold of the mallorn a shade paler, yet the air about them bore no sign of chillness. The breeze had almost ceased, and the wood seemed to be quieting down for the approaching dusk, even the sweetly sad Elven music sounding fainter now, as though only an echo of a song long since sung.
Aragorn had taken his pipe out and was puffing on it now and again, watching the sky through the fine dark lace of leaves and branches above him. He knew the tale was not yet come to its climax, and he would have greatly liked to hear more, yet he did not prompt his companion to continue.
He understood that even if technically Boromir was relating this story to him, ultimately he was doing it for himself, for his own private purpose, and if the man did not wish to go on – oh well…
But in a while Boromir did go on.
“For a long time we just sat and breathed, and I wept, holding him to me – and he was too spent to even cry.
“And then,” he grinned, “it was a long, long way back… Faramir had to be half-carried, for his foot was, of course, in no condition for walking. By the time we reached the village, the sun was already low over the water, and we were so very tired… So it was decided we would spend the night there, and early next morning return to our uncle’s castle.
“They prepared us a small room on the second storey, overlooking the beach, while our cousins were given a place downstairs. It was the best and largest house in the hamlet, but still a cool and shabby one. Yet they did all they could for us. Gave us clean clothes, ours being all torn and stiff from the salt in the fabric; and brought us hot broth and fresh bread, and lit up the little hearth with as much wood as would fit in – and gave us all the quilts and woolen blankets to be found in the house. But still we were horribly fatigued and cold to the bone, especially Faramir; so eventually he asked me to lie by his side to warm him up: I say ‘eventually’ because, well, he was a little embarrassed of that request.
“I’ll admit I hadn’t always been the most understanding and sympathetic kind of older brother. It had irked me there was so much about him I did not understand and, frankly, I was both envious that he could enjoy things I found boring, and jealous, too, that sometimes he would choose these fancies of his over the rough loud merriment my lads and I liked to make. So I would often tease him when I thought he was not acting manly enough, nor had I ever been gentle with him, thinking it best to show my affection through playing pranks on him and tussling.
“But that evening, when he asked me for a bit of warmth and tenderness, not for a second had I been inclined to make fun of him. Instead I slid in next to him at once and pulled the covers close around us. And he snuggled up to me, wrapping his arms firmly around me, making me realise that he must have wanted to do this not only that evening, but on many other days and nights as well. I hugged him back, adjusting my body against him to make us fit together as close as possible, and he heaved such a happy, peaceful sigh – I used to think only dogs and little children could sigh like that. But he was no child, he was already a lad of fifteen, quite tall and strong for his age, if only a little too lean, and he felt pleasantly firm and substantial to
hold. And you know, somehow the strength and heat of his body made it only sweeter to feel him so relaxed and cosy against me, like with me he forgot he was already almost a man.
“We lay like that, absolutely without moving, for a very long time, and our breaths had come to the same rhythm. And then he shifted away just a little – to look at me…
“He had eyes to drown in, Aragorn – he still does. The clearest, untainted grey. Transparent, with a luminescent depth – they catch the light, and hold it, and it shimmers in them, and you just stare into them thinking, how on Arda does it work like that?
“The expression on my face must have been a little silly, for he laughed delightedly, the shimmer in his gaze turning into a merry twinkle. He leant in to rub his nose against my cheek, and then he looked at me again, this time both coy and a little abashed.
“He bit his lip, eyeing me appraisingly, and then asked if I would share my breath with him again.
“Think of it…
“Hundreds of miles away from home, in a fisherman’s bare dingy house… The bed narrow and a little sagged, the linens nothing like what we slept on in the City. But the whole place, it smelled of the Sea, not the fishy or sea-weedy smell you get at the docks, but the fresh, humid scent of life… of freedom… of possibility.
“And the little window just above our bunk filling the room with the last glow of sunset… it all felt a little surreal, just like it does here in the Elven woods – as though you are being given a glimpse of some other existence you could have led, of some other life you could have lived…
“And I leant in to him and locked my mouth to his just like I had done underwater, and breathed into him. Only this time he did not let me draw back for another mouthful of air, but instead he returned the breath to me. You may think it silly, but at that moment I saw some special meaning in this little game, and I played along. And thus we kept on passing it back and forth, not inhaling anew, letting this air wash through our lungs over and over, and become humid, stuffy and heavy. But still we kept going, until our chests were bursting and we had become so dizzy and breathless we had to break apart. Then we stared at each other and burst out laughing.
“And I felt so happy, so blessed just to be there, holding him, sensing the life heat in the body in my arms – seeing him alive: knowing he would be there that day, and tomorrow, and the day after…
“For once, for the first and only time in my life, I felt so entirely, perfectly balanced – and so aware of myself. I was me, finally, the way I had always been meant to be. Everything just made sense.
“Then, suddenly even for myself, I leant in again and kissed his laughing mouth – this time with a proper kiss. But maybe it was sudden only for me, for he yielded at once.
“You probably expect me to say it was sweet, and so it was, but not straight away – at first it was very salty and even a little bitter, for we both still had a crust of salt on our skin. But it tasted like life itself – you know, just like when you inhale a full lungful of sea air and all of a sudden know you are alive.
“His hair had gone dry and wavy from the sea water, and it carried the sea air in it – aye, he smelled of it all over, just like I did.
“And this kiss… it just happened to us, like it had a heart and mind of its own, and we simply let it do what it would. So natural it felt that it seemed to me utterly absurd that I had not kissed him before. And I licked into his mouth, and let him lick into mine… It went on and on, without breaking, so strong and deep – and yet at once delicate and sweet, with a note of subtlety to it.
“I don’t know whether he pulled me over, or I pushed him over, but somehow we had shifted and I was lying on him, and he had parted and bent his legs to receive me even closer.
“And only when I felt the heat of his hardness pressing against my abdomen, did it register somewhere at the back of my head that I was also aroused. And I moved on top of him as though I was making love to him, and he moved together with me. But it was not just the hips humping, no, nothing like that. It was profound and unhurried, thorough and at the same time almost unconscious, our whole bodies rising and falling together, as though we were in the Sea again, and the waves were rocking us in their eternal rhythm.
“His breath was deep and heavy, but not frantic, no panting, no gasping. He was as though in a trance, and whenever I stopped kissing his mouth to go for his throat instead, there would be a smile on his reddened lips.
“And we rocked like that forever, lulling each other to completion, and the joy had spread through the body so smoothly and sweetly, like the foamy surf covering the shore… and then again. It abated and then came forth again, over and over, such pure bliss…”
Boromir trailed off and smiled absently, but soon a vaguely wistful expression appeared in his eyes, and he sighed.
“It was like nothing I have ever known, before or after. I was turning twenty that year, and I had had my share of romps at the back of the stables or in the armoury. But with Faramir, there had been no sweat, no swearing, no groaning or grunting, no spreading open and shoving in, no violent carnality – nothing of the sort. The passion I felt was like life itself, so deep and warm, and there was as though a light in it, like a steady clear flame. And I did not even touch him with my hands, did not feel him up, did not grope him or try to undress him. Yes, I kissed his chin and throat, but nothing more. Can you believe it? We had not even taken our clothes off… Not then, nor when we did it twice more in the course of that long evening. Yes, of course we had done it again, for we were so young and full of life… And the only difference was that those other times he had slung one leg over my hips.
“Of course, he would have let me do anything, do everything. Especially after what we had been through, his trust in me was absolute.
“But I had not exploited that trust. Not because he was young and unaware, or because I was particularly noble and conscientious. No, simply because it had been perfect as it was. Aye, I believe the ultimate aim of that passion had been not release as such, but that particular all-encompassing sensation of togetherness – nay, not ‘togetherness’, for does not the word imply the entities to be fundamentally separate? – nay, I’d say what we had found that evening was most like unity, a complete merging of selves.“I don’t think that he even understood, at least back then, that what we were doing was sexual. Of course not – even I for my part did not entirely understand it. It had simply made sense to be holding him thus, to be moving with him. I merely needed to be absolutely certain he was alive: to feel him with my skin, to sense his inner warmth, the rhythm of life in him… and somehow it had seemed so very logical to align our bodies, so that our legs came together, and our chests, and so our mouths and tongues, too, and the private places between our legs…
“The Sea… I shall be forever in love with it. Aye, it had nearly robbed me of him, yet I hold no grudge against it, for at the same time it had given us this bliss, this understanding… I do not know what to call it, but it was beautiful…”
At this he sighed once again and fell quiet, as though his narrative was complete. His face was turned away from Aragorn, and as minutes went by, the man wondered whether Boromir even remembered about his presence. But at last the Ranger shifted and said quietly: “Well, Boromir, you certainly are a fortunate man to have such a treasure among your memories,” he puffed on his pipe and, narrowing his eyes thoughtfully, blew out a neat little ring of smoke. “I hope you forgive the curiosity this tale has aroused in me. You have not said what happened afterwards… Are you still together?”
Despite his wounds, Boromir even raised himself up a bit to stare at Aragorn incredulously. He shook his head and let out a sigh of quiet exasperation, annoyed Aragorn had entirely missed the point of his story.
“Still together? We have never been together, Aragorn. Or do you forget where I come from? It is all very well for your Fair Folk to walk through their enchanted woods holding hands, and no one raises an eyebrow, apparently. But in Gondor…” he trailed off with a soft snort.
He thought it all to be rather self-explanatory, but the look on Aragorn’s face made him reconsider.
“Do I have to break it down for you?” he sighed and grinned resolutely. “People fuck, of course; and, well, as long as it’s discreet, one can get away with it. But a relationship, Aragorn, would never be tolerated. Not to mention when the people in question actually are related.”
Aragorn shook his head, looking a little uncomfortable. “No, no, I understand all that, Boromir. I merely thought that, given the strength… the beauty of the feeling you describe, the two of you would have found a way somehow…”
Boromir snorted again, and turned away, lowering himself back onto the mattress carefully. “But what would be the point? My father, Aragorn, is a farseeing man, and he would have come to know soon enough, if not at once: I, for one, am not good at concealing my passions. And worst of all, he would have held Faramir to blame, I am sure of that.
“But all that,” he said in sudden irritation, “is long since absolutely irrelevant. There is nothing left of ‘the feeling’. Such things are like cherry blossoms: amazing in their delicate purity and sweet freshness, but how long do they last? Faramir and I, we are both grown men, and close as our bond is, our private lives are our private lives – to each his own.” Boromir frowned sternly, the muscles in his cheeks flexing. “The memory is but a memory, and I draw on it only because it makes me believe in the goodness of life, and gives me strength when what lies ahead seems too bleak.”
“I see,” Aragorn murmured carefully, lowering his gaze thoughtfully.
For a while they were silent.
“All this is, of course, to stay between us two.”
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