11-17-2002

Title: Rivendell 2/?

Author: Sony_Mouse

Pairings: 1+2+1

Warnings: Fusion (or sorts), Tolkien LOTR Characters (more of the REALLY side characters), violence

Archives: GWA (if you want my fic, you can have it, just tell me where your site is)

Disclaimers: ALL characters belong to either Sunrise, or Tolkien (or in a way, Peter Jackson :)

Author's Note: This is a SIDE story to LOTR, so the only characters who get involved are familiar characters from Rivendell BEFORE all the action starts. (eg: Elrond, Elladan, Elrohir, Glorfindel, some Orcs, ect). This story has little or nothing to do with the ring. It only takes place during the same time.

If you are NOT a fan of LOTR, DO NOT WORRY. This fic is first and foremost a story about Duo and Heero. So I'll try hard not to lose you in Tolkien's world.

 

Chapter 2: The Road

 

"I haven't forgiven you, I haven't said I'll come back, and for the record, I still don't like it.".

"Having to guide the Ranger?"

"Yes . . . But I do promise, if only for my pride, I'll do my best as a guide. The Ranger Heero WILL get there alive, even if I have to kill him to accomplish it."

"There and back again?" Lord Elrond asked uncertainly.

"Yes . . . there and back again."

************************************************

"The Road goes ever on and on
Down from the door where it began.
Now far ahead the Road has gone,
And I must follow, if I can,
Pursuing it with Eager feet.
Until it joins some larger way
Where many paths and errands meet.
And whither then? I cannot say."
- The Lord of the Rings- The Fellowship of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien

 

All of Rivendell had awoken bright and early the next morning to see Duo off on his way, and maybe just a bit curious to see how he would act around the Ranger. His hatred of Men was legend around the House of Lord Elrond, especially after last night.

Since his last talk with Lord Elrond, Duo had not spoken a single word to anyone while he prepared for his journey. Lindir, one of the many Elves staying in Rivendell, had made an effort to help Duo to pack a great many things. He was quite discouraged to later learn that Duo had decided not to pack anything at all, and just go with the bare minimum.

It was after Lindir had left Duo's room that he had realized that the Ranger was accustomed to living off the land. If Duo brought whatever met his fancy, then the Human would be upstaging him, and he wasn't about to let that happen.

He did however end up packing provisions for himself and the Ranger. Making sure to bring enough Lembas to last for as long as need be. Lembas was a sort of Elven bread, if it could be called that, and had all the nutrients and supplements one would need on a long voyage. A single bite would be enough to fill a grown man's stomach.

The horse that he had chosen to take with him was a parting gift from Elladan. The young Lord had hoped to aid Duo as much as he possibly could; giving him his own horse seemed the best possible way since he couldn't physically come with him on the journey. Duo had wordlessly thanked him, feeling a bit uncomfortable accepting any type of gift after the way he had behaved toward Elladan the night before.

As soon as Duo was ready to go, he grabbed the horse's reins, and met his fate head on at the entrance to Rivendell. There was already a large crowd of onlookers waiting for him, including the Ranger, who was clearly upset that he had to wait at all.

Heero was wearing the same clothes he had come to Rivendell in, with, his sword closely at his side.

Finally catching sight of the young Elf, Heero had to hide his surprised when he saw Duo approaching the gate with his horse behind him. The heir of Voronwë was dressed so differently then the two previous times he'd seen the Elf. His hair was now done up similar to last night, except that the front part that was lifted from his eyes, was now held back in tiny braids on both sides meeting at the back of his head. The rest of his hair hung just as loosely down his back as the night before.

His long robe had been replaced with a new pair of pants and a green and brown tunic; Heero thought the colours might be to help him blend in more with the forest. Duo also carried with him a dagger and a set of bow and arrows across his back. The end effect was that the Elf looked much more masculine than he had the night before, yet he still held just as much grace as ever.

Heero preferred this 'wandering' attire to anything else he'd seen in his stay at Rivendell. It was what he usually saw the Wood Elves wearing when he came across them in West. It was no obvious this was only something they wore to travel in. Heero wasn't sure he liked the idea of a male Elf in a robe anyway. It seemed nothing more than a dress to him, and he felt much more comfortable around Duo, or any other Elf for that matter, when they wore slacks instead.

Duo had now approached close enough to give Heero a once over, not acknowledging him in the least, it was more like sizing him up. He then jumped onto his grey horse as swiftly and gently as a wild cat might, and gave the mare a gentle pat on the head. He nodded curtly in the direction of where Lord Elrond stood alongside his two sons and only daughter. Then, without even the smallest bit of warning, he reared the horse's head around, and galloped of through the entrance as quickly as he was able. A soft mummer of surprise could be heard making it's way through the crowd.

Heero, who had expected at least some sort of farewell speech from the Lord Elrond, was taken completely by surprise. With much speed, he said his thank you's and good-byes to his kind hosts, before rearing his own horse's head and beginning to chase after the newly departed guide, cursing the stubborn Elf the entire time.

**************

It took him quite a bit longer than he would have thought possible, but Heero finally had caught up with the speeding Elf. He cut him off the first chance he was able, hoping to stop the mad race into the forest immediately.

Duo had taken the hint much earlier on, but to Heero's great annoyance, he had chosen to ignore his wishes and ride even faster. The Ranger now took the chance to confront him.

"Elf, a good guide you may be, but I am a tracker by nature, and for us to know where we are going, I need to track where Aragorn has been. If you wish to be of any help to me at all, then do as I say."

Duo let out a slow suffering sigh, as if he was being forced to deal with a particularly slow individual.

"If you wish to get there as soon as possible, then do as I say Ranger. The last known whereabouts of Aragorn was with the Wood Elves in Mirkwood; that is where I am heading now, but if you wish to try and learn for yourself what we already know, by all means do so. I'm not the one in a hurry."

It was a full two minutes before Heero could manage to speak again, he was gripping the reins on his horse so hard his knuckles were now a pale ghost white.

"Maybe, if you had decided to TELL me that little piece of information Elf, I might have known! From now on, if you have any useful piece of information, no matter how trivial you might think it is, share it with me. I have no times for your petty, childish revenge against Mankind, or for your stupid games. Do I make myself perfectly clear?"

"Crystal!" Duo spat out, too enraged to give a longer comment with more with. He was infuriated that anyone could dare call his feelings petty.

He kicked his grey mare, perhaps harder than he had meant to, and sped right past Heero, almost knocking him off his own horse in the process.

Heero practically growled out loud, vowing here and now to kill the Elf if it was the last thing he ever did. He then began the ridiculous chase all anew, furious for accepting Lord Elrond's stupid offer in the first place.

 

By the time Heero finally caught up with Duo, he was once again furious. Not just at the Elf, but at his horse for being slower than Duo's grey mare. This was more due to the fact that Elves weighed so little compared to what a Human would, of the same body type. So Duo's mare had much less weight to carry, and therefore rode much faster.

Heero jumped off his horse with the least amount of grace he put together, noticing that as Duo did the same thing, the Elf never bounced when he touched the ground. He just jumped and . . . landed, as if gravity defied itself when it came to Elves.

Duo ignored Heero completely and right away he began to look for things to build a small temporary camp with, firewood, rocks, and other such items.

Heero knew that this would be the perfect opportunity to not only get away from the immature Elf, but to go fetch some supper at the same time. So without saying a word, he tied up his horse, and ran off into the forest, already sensing his prey.

The hunt didn't last long, but it was long enough for Heero to have let himself relax slightly. Heero's finely tuned skills had managed to catch him two fine looking hares. One for himself, and one for the ever ungrateful Elf.

Camp came into view too soon for Heero's liking, and he could soon tell that Duo had somehow managed to make a small fire with which he could cook his food. Upon even closer examination, Duo was already eating something by the fire, but Heero didn't have the faintest idea of what it was.

Seeing Heero enter camp, it was Duo who spoke first, and not in the least bit friendly. "Why are you carrying two dead hares? I realize that humans are butchers, but I didn't know that it extended to small hares as well. There was no reason to kill a defenceless animal."

Heero threw the hares down by the fire, getting his knife ready to start skinning them. "I brought us supper, but I see you already have found some for yourself. Were you planning on eating it all before I got back, or just hide it for the entire journey?"

"No, it's for both of us" Duo said as he picked up one of the Lembas and threw it up at Heero, the Ranger caught it deftly. "I brought us Lembas."

"And what is Lembas?"

"It would be similar to your bread, but it's not bread, and has many nutrients that are very valuable on a long journey such as ours." Duo said with some pride. He was quite fond of Lembas, and it was the one thing he had looked forward to on their trip, the chance to eat Lembas.

Heero didn't seem nearly as pleased. "You expected me to survive on 'bread' alone?"

"Well at least no one died in the making of it. And it's not bread, it's Lembas!"

"I don't care what it is, I'm not eating it. Save if for yourself."

Duo had to take in a deep breath to contain his anger, NOW who was acting childish. "Fine, don't eat it. But I won't eat that meat. Elves only kill in defence. Maybe those hares were sleeping, and you, being human, mistook it for a savage attack, but I won't eat off the 'victory' of your killing."

"What makes you so sure I was going to offer you any?" Heero then picked up the biggest hare of the two, and began to skin it with his hunting knife.

Duo was at once both sickened and angered by the act. He stood up and threw the piece of Lembas he had been eating into the fire. "Suddenly I've lost my appetite. I hope you choke on that hare. You would well deserve it."

Heero just glared up at the Elf and skinned it with faster strokes, taking uneven shots at the hare with his knife, knowing he was acting on pure malice now.

He watched suspiciously as Duo stood before the fire for a few extra seconds, looking down at the yet untouched Hare with what could almost be described as sadness in his eyes.

Then quicker than Heero could have imagined, he bent down to grab the second hare, and ran off into the forest. All Heero could do was throw his knife into the ground and swear out loud. He was really beginning to despise that Elf.

 

It wasn't until many hours later that Duo decided to return. He looked tired, and slightly worn out. Wherever he had been, he'd ran all the way there and back, but Heero had no way of knowing for sure.

Without a glance in Heero's direction, Duo silently laid down on the dirty ground, heedless of what it did to his clothes and hair, and closed his eyes as if to go to sleep. He never got the chance.

"What did you do with my supper?"

Without opening his eyes, Duo answered in a soft voice. "I gave him to a hungry wolf. Someone who needed to eat it."

Heero resisted the temptation to growl just like a wolf. "I needed to eat it!"

"No, you already had a hare. Besides, there was no reason for you to skin that other hare in front of me. I am doing my best to keep a promise and not to harm you in any way on this trip, You are not helping your cause."

Heero scoffed at the idea. "I very much doubt anything I could do would help my cause. You find fault in everything I say or do, you seem to hate me for some worthless reason, and I . . . " Heero never got the chance to finish the sentence. Duo had jumped up from where he lay and cut him off.

"I think I'll go find a nice swamp to sleep in. I'll find better company there." He then walked off into the dark forest for the second time that night, as if it was the most normal thing in the world.

Heero was left shaking his head in disbelief. They'd only camped out once, and already the Elf had left in a tantrum twice, like some child who couldn't' be sated. It was ridiculous, and defiantly not worth worrying about. So in defiance, Heero lay down his head to sleep. Nothing would stop him from getting the rest he needed, not even if the great evil of the past where to reawaken and come to him at night. At the moment, he just didn't care.

Luckily for Heero, it wasn't some great evil that woke him up from his troubled sleep, nor was it Duo. The unlikely perpetrator was in fact, no other than an Orc.

Called Yrch by the Elves, Goblins by some, and Glamhoth by others, Orcs were, in most people's opinions, very ugly creatures. They mostly stooped when they walked, smelled badly, and were generally dangerous to be near.

 

Heero had dealt with his amount of Orcs in the past, but never while he slept, and never while he was so distracted. The result was that before he knew it, he had been knocked unconscious by one particularly nasty Orc, and was being carried off into the night.

This is quite the embarrassing situation for a Ranger, who supposedly dealt with much worse on a regular basis. But Heero had really let his guard down, and was now paying the price, something he really couldn't afford.

It wasn't long before Heero woke up, or maybe it was, he couldn't know for sure. He found himself being thrust unceremoniously to the ground. His head had already hurt from the blow, but now due to the fall, so did his body. Pushing the pain to the far reaches of his mind, he looked around the badly lit cave where he now lay.

For the present moment the Orc was ignoring him entirely, obviously thinking that he was still unconscious, and, after all, only a Human. Besides that, the Orc had found his fellow Orc friend already waiting for him in the cave. The second Orc had seemed to have found something even betting to play with, in his own hunt that evening. It turned out that what the second Orc had found WAS much better than a Human, at least in their eyes, he'd found an Elf.

While Heero had just been dumped on the ground in some corner, Duo had been gently laid down onto a bed. As far as Heero could tell he looked completely uninjured, and for a brief second, Heero had to wonder if Duo had not come willing, planning his capture all the time. But he knew it wasn't true. No Elf would make an alliance with an Orc, and especially not at the cost of his own personal well being.

Heero could see that they had taken Duo's tunic off already, and where now just standing by the bed staring at the Elven figure.

He found this whole scene disgusting.

Orcs tended to be fascinated with Elves because they were something Orcs could never be again. And 'again' was indeed the right word because Orcs had at one time been Elves themselves. Thousands of years ago, in Ages past, the first Age to be precise, before even the Dark Lord by the name of Sauron had risen. There had been the first great Evil in the world, the first Dark Lord named Morgoth, and he had created terror all throughout the land of Middle-Earth on his whim alone. One method he had used was to mutilate and torture a great number of pure Elves. The end result was a whole army of beings that were not even a shadow of what they had once been. Even after Morgoth had been defeated, the evil still remained in them, and as they bred, Orcs continued to be born. Never to be Elves again.

It was for this reason, and others, that the two mutilated Orcs now sat staring at every inch of Duo's body. Hoping soon to posses the one thing that eluded them to this day, their lost beauty, of both body and soul.

Heero knew exactly how they meant to posses the Elf, and preferred greatly not think about it. He wanted to stop the Orcs, wanted to prevent what was not preventable, but he had no weapon on him, and knew it would be better to wait until they'd completely forgotten about his being there.

As much as he hated Duo, even he had to admit that the thought of an Orc being anywhere near an Elf seemed somehow very wrong.

The second Orc, the one who had found the Elf, didn't seem to share Heero's opinion, and was now tracing his dirty, unkept hand all along Duo's exposed torso. His meek eyes closed as he revelled in the touch, steadily going south along the Elven body. His hand was slowly reaching under Duo's trousers, while his other attempted to undo the clasp, but he never got the chance to finish it.

Duo's arm suddenly shot forward, knife in hand, and stabbed the unsuspecting Orc in the eye. As he fell hard onto the ground screaming in agony, Duo thrust the bloodied blade into the heart of the other Orc, who was in some sort of shock at seeing his friend stabbed by an unconscious Elf.

Duo then grabbed the first Orc he had stabbed, and pulled his head back by his hair. A determined look appeared on his face as he slashed his knife against the Orc's Throat.

In less then a blink of an eye, Duo had killed both Orcs, not sustained a single injury, and had thrown his knife in the air, causing it to graze Heero's right ear, and hit the wall behind him.

Heero pulled the knife out of the wall and pointed it in back in Duo's direction. "There's no need to attack. I'm not another Orc."

Duo just shrugged. "Had I attacked, you would be dead now. That was just my way of saying 'thanks for trying to save me'."

Heero threw the knife back at Duo, amazed when the Elf caught it deftly and wiped the blade clean of blood on one of the dirty sheets. "I was going to help you. I was just waiting for them to forget my presence."

"Well Ranger, you waited too long. Or were you just enjoying the prospect me of my being raped, tortured or killed." Duo roughly grabbed his tunic and placed it upon his bare shoulders. Happy to have something warm to wear in the cold cave.

"No Elf, I'd rather have the honour of killing you myself." Heero surveyed the damage around him. Amazed at the brutality he'd just witnessed. "For someone who values life so much, you kill in a cruel manner."

"I kill in a necessary manner. I kill to survive. Had I been starving with no alternative, I would even have killed a hare. That is the way Elves live! No matter how foreign it is to Humans."

"Not all Men kill as I do!"

"In my experience, yes they do!." Duo didn't let another word go by in edgewise as he sheathed his knife and stormed out of the cave.

Heero trailed angrily behind him, something he'd been doing too much of recently. Once outside, Heero decided he'd had enough, and corned the Elf against a tree.

"Listen Elf, I wasn't the only one who was captured! And I don't have the benefit of your Elven hearing or your sight. Had you not run off like a child in a tantrum, had you stayed at the camp and actually done your job like you were supposed to and acted like my guide, then maybe you wouldn't have been in the situation you were just put into. You have only yourself to blame Elf. I regret none of my actions!"

Duo was left speechless. Heero just turned around more upset now that he'd actually spoken what he'd been thinking the whole time, and angrily walked off. Even after the Ranger had left to go back to the camp, he remained at the tree for several minutes more, shocked that Heero was actually right about one thing. He should have stayed at the camp.

He had no excuse for leaving. He knew there were Orcs in these areas, Heero had not. He should have warned the Ranger at least, but he hadn't. He really was to blame. The momentary guilt didn't last long. He was still too angry with Heero for having done nothing to help him back in the cave. The Orcs had been well distracted before Duo had ever reached for his knife. If not, they would have easily spotted the small movement.

Duo suddenly realized that they'd been separated again, and hurried to find Heero and walk beside him, even though he'd rather walk alone.

The truth was he'd been upset and distracted when the Orc had found him walking in the forest earlier that night. He had been so centered on his hatred of that awful Human that even a noisy Orc had managed to walk up behind him. Deep inside, Duo just wanted this whole trip to end. It had only been one day, one simple day, and he had already messed up, been captured, by a single Orc no less, and had allowed his personal feelings almost get Heero killed. Something he had promised both Lord Elrond, and himself, that he wouldn't do.

He just wanted it to be over and done with.

 

Both Man and Elf now walked back to the camp in complete silence, not knowing what else to say. Upon arrival, they were presented with pure chaos. Their camp had been ransacked by the Orc when he had captured Heero. They had even let the horses run loose.

This unfortunately meant that the trip would now be three times as long. There was little chance that the horses would ever find their way back to them, too spooked to even try. Duo figured that his own grey mare would lead Heero's horse back to Rivendell. It seemed their safest bet.

Heero and Duo sat down in relative silence, sharing the world load in cleaning up what was left of the camp, and starting up a new fire, both spending the entire night tending to it. They were just too caught up in their own thoughts to even think about going back to sleep.

The unfortunate event had been some sort of eye opener for both of them. They now realized that no matter how much they hated each other, there were going to have to tolerate each other's presence if the search was to be a success.

It came down to what they thought was more important, their hatred, or the reason why they were on the journey in the first place. Heero had risked much just to reach Rivendell, and that was just the beginning of his own journey.

A truce would have been too much, but a silent agreement was passed between them both that night. They would stick together until the end of this horrible journey, and they would stick together on the way back.

What other choice did they have?

**********

Before the sun had even come over the horizon, Duo and Heero had gotten rid of the fire and gotten ready to leave. There was now much less to carry, Duo still had a good supply of Lembas left, and of course his dagger, but that was it. Heero only had the clothes on his back and his sword at his side. All else had been ruined of lost.

As they started to walk away from the camp, Heero noticed that Duo no longer had his bow and arrows. He'd not seen the Elf wear them since the night before, and decided to inquire about them.

"What happened to your bow?"

Duo looked disappointed that Heero had noticed, trying to brush the small remark off. "The Orc broke it in to when I tried to shoot him."

This small revelation caught Heero off guard. "I thought you said he had come up from behind you?"

"He had, but I was quick and drew and arrow and tried to shoot him."

Heero contained the smile that threatened to take hold of his features. The Elf had tried to shoot the Orc and had missed. This was not a common thing at all for an Elf to do. But before Heero could comment on this, Duo spoke again.

"I warn you now Ranger, do not make light of my ability with the bow and arrow. It is no more my weapon of choice then it would be yours."

This puzzled Heero greatly. "Then why bring it along?"

"It was a gift from Lord Elrond, much like the grey mare was a gift the young Lord Elladan."

"And you've lost both." Heero almost smirked.

Duo tried not to be annoyed. "Yes, I've lost both. But I admit, the bow was no great loss to me. I work better with the knives, and I work the best with a spear. Much like the legendary Elf Gil-Galad once did. I've studied his teachings many times over."

Heero could see where this line of thinking was taking Duo. "A spear would be an impractical weapon on a long journey on horseback."

"Yes Ranger, but I may yet get one when we reach the Wood Elves since we are no longer hindered by any horses."

The mention of horses reminded Heero of Elladan's gift of the grey mare. He wondered if Elladan and Duo were somehow together as a couple. It was something he'd wondered since the banquet at Rivendell. To his great surprise, he asked this out loud.

"Did Elladan give you that mare because of the love you share with him?"

Duo stopped what he was doing immediately, and the first light conversation they'd ever had ended there. Duo's bright eyes seemed to grow dark as he spoke.

"No Ranger, I could never love Elladan. He has Human blood flowing within his veins. Although only a little, it's far too much for me."

With that Duo began to walk towards the direction he knew Mirkwood was in, knowing that Heero would fallow him now without question until they reached the fabled land of the Wood Elves.

Heero was sorry he'd asked anything at all. Duo's response being a sore reminder that even though the Elf could hide it better this morning, he really did hate him, and the hatred of an Elf was a hard thing for anyone to deal with, even a tough Ranger such as Heero.

 

TBC

Well this was shorter then I had planned, but it will defiantly do for a second chapter.

I hoped you liked it, I hope I kept the 'feel' of the first chapter. And I hope you didn't think it was corny or odd or something. BUT if you did (or didn't) please tell me just what you DID think and send me much e-mail (or replies) about it.

I LIVE for your comments, the only reason I keep writing is so I can read what you all have to say. (Now that I've suckered you for comments I'll go write chapter three MUHAHAHAHA

OH everyone go look at the lovely picture that Nezumi did for me. It's Duo as an Elf and Heero as a Ranger. It's a wonderful pic.

http://www.mediaminer.org/fanart/view.php?id=116556