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The Darkness in Your Heart by cheekybeak

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Story notes:
When you find your love changed is it possible to continue? When a man in clumsiness tears a friendship apart, can it be mended? When you grieve for a brother, consumed with guilt can it ever be healed?
Chapter notes:
So....an experiment. Which involves me writing an OC for the very first time, and not just that, a 1st person OC.....and Het Legolas. So apologies to anyone who finds something they didn't expect! However I am quite enjoying writing this and I need to warn you it seems like it might end up being quite long.
Legolas is my love and I am his. 

 
He is the spark beneath my fire, the sun upon my shoulders, the cornerstone of my hope, the reason I am here. 

For long centuries it has been thus - he and I together - and I hope I am at least a fraction to him, of what he is to me. I think I am. He tells me I am and mostly I believe him.

But he has changed, my Legolas; he went to Imladris on his father's say so, and who can ever argue with the King? He went, he stayed and allowed Lord Elrond to send him across all Arda in the company of mortals. I knew he would go; I knew that one sniff of adventure and he would be off. He cannot resist it and to ask him to do so would be asking him to not be Legolas. I cannot do that. 

And so I waited, although it is not in my nature to wait patiently, and he came back to me, as I always knew he would. But he returned encumbered with the sea and entwined in the lives of mortals. The sea, I have never seen and cannot even imagine; the mortals I do not understand. And so where we used to be one heart - one mind about all things - now there is a gulf, a crevasse filled with darkness and misunderstanding between us. 

He says his love for me has not changed. I say, it cannot possibly still be the same. 

Now instead of lightness, joy and exuberance he is distraction, contemplation and melancholy  and I do not know him, this new Legolas, but still I love him.

He turns his eyes to the sky and the gulls, his face to the wind and the seasalt tinged air. He yearns for a place we have never seen, not his woods, not the trees that he loved so well. 

The mortals too have changed him. They have wound a chain about his heart with which they twist him this way and that. I do not like them. 

I have met the dwarf; he has come to Ithilien many a time. He is solid and strong and he loves Legolas, I know this. I know too that when they travel I need not worry, for he protects my love with a fierceness that is admirable. He keeps him in the here and now and stops those wild silvan thoughts flying towards the ocean, far away from us. I might even like him if I knew him better but he is a dwarf, a dwarf! When he visits I retreat, out to the edges of our settlement and I watch him from there, ever curious. ,He is a dwarf and yet Legolas loves him as a brother and I do not understand it. 

When the King of Gondor comes, I leave, for him I do resent.

It was he who led Legolas to the sea, he, who more than any has harmed him. He is the reason we are here in Ithilien and not the Greenwood we fought so long to save. He leads Legolas like a puppy behind him and I am angry because of it. And that is not the end of it, for in the future he will die and Legolas will be bereft. It is I who will be left to deal with that pain. 

I have never been to Minas Tirith. I will not go, no matter how Legolas pleads. It is he who has chosen to bind himself with mortals, not I, and I want no part of it. I do not trust them, I do not wish to be in Elessar's city of stone. It has caused many harsh words between us - he accuses me of jealousy; he says I must learn to share him, that he wishes me to be a part of all his life and if I loved him, I would. I say I share him always, with all our people for he is never just mine to have, he is theirs as well. I say I do not wish to stand and watch as he follows a King who would hurt him, who is not our King, and if he loved me he would not ask it. 

And so Legolas' mortal friends do not know of me although he wishes them to. They do not see me and Legolas says nothing. I am a shadow on the fringes of his life until they have departed for their cities and left us alone. Only then we are free. 

Legolas is my love and I am his, but lately it is a love full of discord, and we struggle to find our way back to the us we used to know. 

 Today, however was a good day. We roamed the forest on patrol, a group of us, and he was himself as he ran beneath the trees, as light as I had almost forgotten he could be. I watched him as he danced his dance and marveled at the beauty within him. I wondered then, how it was that he was mine, why was I deserving of this gift above all gifts. I love to sit and watch him move; it mesmerises me. How did a being of such light ever notice me?

"He is well today and it is good to see."

It was Taenor stood beside me. 

Wise, strong Taenor, friend of our King, sent by Thranduil, no doubt, to keep his errant son's feet on the ground, to watch over his most precious last child and keep him safe. How Legolas loved him. He was his rock when the burdens of leadership overwhelmed him. Legolas was not meant to lead, he was not born to it but instead to be a wild, silvan, younger son. Still he leads us all here and he does it well, but when he doubts, when he convinces himself he cannot do this, Taenor is there, always at his side - his protector.

I did not even have time to answer before Legolas was upon me, laughing, trying to encourage me to join him in the trees, and how could I resist, so rare were the days when he was like this.

Those were the last words Taenor spoke to me; ever.

It had to end, the gloriousness of that morning, for we came across the enemy. Still they walked in our woods and persecuted its people. Still we could not rid ourselves of them. It was a small group only and no match for us, really but they did damage, - so much damage - to the one I love.

Haradrim they were, those strange, dark, painted men the like of which I had not seen until I came here. We came across their trail and encircled them, There had been reports of their movements, harassing of Faramir's villagers and an attack on two of our people as they foraged by the river, no less . This was why we were out in the forest and it seemed we had found them.  Killing men was not something I thought I would ever do, but it is unavoidable here, and Legolas deems it necessary to protect Elessar's people. Always, it comes down to Elessar. 

Still we tried to avoid the conflict, tried to use diplomacy, for Legolas, despite his words is as hesitant of killing those who are not orcs as the rest of us. They are fools these Men. They do not understand the strength of elves, and when they attacked our prince we had no option but to defend him. 

And so that is why I found myself on the edge of a glade, dead men at my feet. For a moment in time, a brief pause in the chaos, a lack of the enemy where I stood gave me space to look for Legolas. If I thought he was a beauty amongst the trees, well, in the midst of battle he is more so. He is a dervish, a bright flash of gold, a deadly weapon and in that stolen moment that I watch he takes away my breath, so glorious is he.

But as I watch he errs, it is so unusual, so not Legolas, for as he puts an end to the man in front of him he does not sense the other approaching from the side. There is no time however for me to wonder at his mistake. I call his name in desperation but it is too late, far too late, and I can only watch in horror the slice of the blade across his side, the flash of blood, the stumble to his knees, for it takes him by surprise and he cannot retaliate in time.

"Legolas!"

My cry is high and urgent as the man raises his sword above my lovers head. It cannot be, it cannot end here, not after so long, so many battles before this. He is Legolas, he is my Legolas; he will always survive to come home to me. I am too far away, far too far. If only I had an arrow - I would only need but one to stop this - but I have long since discarded my bow.

I cannot breathe.

And then Taenor is there, his blow does not miss. It is only a second before the man lies dead at his feet.

And my life begins again.

Of course Taenor was watching Legolas, of course he would keep him safe.
He says something I cannot hear as he reaches out his hand to pull Legolas to his feet, a comment on his fighting ability no doubt as Legolas smiles in return, eyes alight with relief. They do not see the arrow and nor do I, so flushed with the ecstasy of a tragedy avoided are we all. We do not see it, do not sense it, until it is far too late. Too late for Taenor to avoid it even as he twists to the side, a last desperate attempt at survival. All that ensures is that it strikes in the worst possible place. It slices through his neck.

There is the briefest of cries as he spins - eyes wide with shock, a spurt of crimson blood and then he tumbles, face down beside Legolas.

I cannot believe it. This has not happened, it cannot be so. 

Then I am running, running, not fast enough, never fast enough. Why was I not closer? why did I not shout a warning? Why? Why? Why?

The words echo emptily in my head for there are no answers.

And as I run the look of horror upon Legolas' pale face tells me this will be bad. This will be so very, very bad.