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118
Seasons of the Ring

Seasons of the Ring
Summary: Faramir lives though a fateful year

Rating: PG

Warnings: none

Beta: Raksha

Author's Notes: A set of four drabbles. This was my second choice of BTME prompt to sign up for, so I thought I'd write it anyway.

Disclaimer: The characters are the property of the Tolkien Estate. No profit has been, nor will be made from this story.

Autumn came early that fateful year, without its habitual blaze of colour. The leaves turned brown and withered ere October was out, blighted by Mordor's foul poisons. With every day that passed, Faramir's heart grew heavier, while his father's mood grew ever darker. The weeks passed, and with them, their hope, for no news of Boromir reached Minas Tirith.

"It was a fool's errand," Denethor said darkly.

"It should have been mine," Faramir replied.

"I would not have your head turned further with riddles," said the Steward.

A cold wind blew through the Citadel as the year approached its ending.

0000

It was a hard winter. The sun rarely broke through the leaden skies while the east wind chilled the bones of the Ithilien Rangers.

Mettarė passed without mirth. Boromir's absence was keenly felt by all.

One February night, Faramir beheld his brother once more. He scarce knew whether he were in the world of dreaming or waking when the funeral boat glided past his eyes 'neath the silver moon and twinkling stars.

Real though, without doubt, was the cloven horn yielded up by the river. Darkest dreams became reality. Faramir wept, as did his father. They did not weep together.

0000

Spring brought no relief. The very earth seemed blighted by the Shadow's tightening grip. Denethor sat silent, the shattered horn held in his hands. The Enemy struck hard and fast. An arrow felled Faramir. His father fell by fire. All hope seemed forsaken.

Then Hope returned, Elendil's heir borne of the wind from the sea. A star shone upon his brow and healing was in his hands.

Faramir awoke from deathly slumber and recognised his King. Reborn, with strength renewed, he dared again to dream.

Eagles sang the yearned for tidings. The Ring was destroyed and with it, Sauron's might.

0000

Summer rushed in, riotous in green and gold array. Sunlight bathed Gondor in a golden glow of endless days. Life sprung up abundantly, birds sang in every blossom- laden tree. Faramir too found abundance, the fairest maiden's hand, a princely diadem and Gondor's rod of rule.

The King had returned, the summer king, the Renewer. The White Tree bloomed again and Faramir walked beneath it, inhaling the scent of sweet blossoms carried on the western breeze.

Boromir would not return, but the land he loved would flourish. Faramir was well content to walk beneath the unshadowed sun with his lady.

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