Still a crossover between LOTR and X-men. You still need to read the earlier
parts. You can do so here:
This is it, Scott said unnecessarily as they reached the still smoking pile of burned bodies. The fire was out on the open plains but a little further ahead a dark forest began. The stanch of burned flesh was sickingly sweet and made him want to vomit. He could see that his fellow X-men had the same issues while the three others seemed to be used to this kind of primitive and barbaric battles.
They all got off their horses and walked to stand before the burned corpses. Logan had his arm around Rogue who buried her head by his shoulder, crying softly and refusing to look at the mutilated corpses. If nothing else the riders had been thorough, Scott thought as he looked around. All the bodies had been burned and some of the Orcs heads had been put up on sticks as warnings. Crude but efficient. On a strategic level Scott admired Eomers tactic.
What now? Logan asked softly, stroking Rogues hair in calming strokes. His voice was purposely low and soft as to not add to Rogues stress.
We have to know if they
if theyre among the dead, Ororo answered for Scott, coming to stand between Scott and Legolas.
How do you propose we do that? Shall we go through the ashes? Logan wanted to know, his own sorrow at losing the children, Hobbits he mentally corrected himself, made him easily agitated.
Just that, Aragorn agreed and without further ado began to search the ashes for clues.
Oh, what the Hell
Scott mumbled. It wasnt like he hadnt seen dead people before. And this was Orcs
just Orcs. He began to search the ashes as well. Legolas, look out for enemies, Scott asked of him without turning. Legolas nodded, gave Ororos hand a reassuring squeeze and walked to stand close by, looking out over the open plains to look for approaching Orcs. Ororo watched him for a few seconds, a smile spreading over her lips. He was the most amazing, beautiful and elegant creature she had ever meant and just knowing he cared for her made her want to smile all the time. With effort she tore herself free from her sweet daydreaming of Legolas by turning around and looking at the smoking pile of corpses. She called a wind to her and moved the ashes around, praying that she wouldnt find anything. She had almost begun to believe she wouldnt find anything when something frightingly familiar caught her eye.
I see something, Ororo called, pain evident in her voice. Aragorn and Scott looked to see what she had found. Aragorn reached over and picked up the object she had uncovered. It was one of the Hobbits small daggers.
May the Goddess protect them and grant them peace, Ororo said softly, tears running down her cheeks. They had all known this would happen yet still it felt like a slap to the face. Legolas gazed back at them and made a motion with his hand and bowed his head for their lost friends before his attention had to return to his outpost. Gimli stood still, silent in his grief.
I cant believe it! Weve raced through half of this bloody country only for the kids to be killed by our own allies! Logan bummed, anger and pain in his voice as he held Rogue tighter against him.
Talk about irony, Scott admitted softly, wishing his mutation allowed him to cry for the Hobbits. He felt guilty for their deaths; guilty that he hadnt been able to do as Boromir had asked
he had failed them all.
They werent killed. I see them here, Aragorns voice brought hope back to the others eyes as he looked at the leads on the ground. He moved away from the burned corpses and went down on hands and knees, searching the ground. They were here, they fought to come free. In the fight one of them lost his dagger, Aragorn revealed as he read the signs the marks left on the ground told him. As he continued to try and recreate the battle he moved further and further away from the dying fire and the others went after him, all holding their breaths in hope. Legolas and Gimli came last, taking the horses with them.
So? Did they make it? Logan asked impatiently and Rogue looked hopeful at the King.
They made it through the battle. They escaped into the woods, Aragorn pointed to the beginning wood which they now stood just outside.
They live, Rogue smiled and grinned relived. Logan hugged her and smiled as well. Ororo smiled at Scott who smiled back until he saw that their new allies didnt seem to share the X-mens happiness.
Whats wrong? Scott asked, getting a bad feeling about it.
This is a dark forest. No one dares to enter it, Aragorn explained.
Wonderful, Logan bummed. Just what we need
Strange forest or not they are our friends and were going after them. This time Ill believe theyre alive until I see their corpses with my own eyes, Scott declared and began to walk into the forest. The X-men followed him and with a look at each other the others went after them.
I sense something, Legolas said as they had moved deeper into the forest.
When dont you sense something? Give it a rest already, Logan complained. Rogue who walked beside him smiled slightly.
No, hes right. I sense something as well, Ororo warned them.
What is it? Scott demanded to know.
Ororo searched for words.
Its alive, Legolas finished for her.
Alive? What do you mean alive? Logan looked around and popped his claws as Gimli raised his axe. The forest gave warning and angry sounds.
Logan, stand down, Scott quickly ordered, moving to grab his hand to get him to lower it.
Gimli, lower your axe, Aragorn asked of him and the Dwarf did so. With a look at him Logan withdrew his claws.
Are you looking for the Hobbits? A voice suddenly sounded through the forest. That voice
it sounded familiar, Scott frowned, trying to recall whom it reminded him of. Everyone took up battle positions.
Yes. Have you seen them? Scott answered, his right hand on his glasses.
They passed through here. Theyre safe, the voice assured them but no one let down their guard.
Show yourself, Aragorn demanded, his hand on his sword handle.
If you insist.
Suddenly a bright and blinding light appeared before them and began to mould into a man. A seemly old human man, dressed in white robes, with white hair and beard. A beautiful long white staff in his right hand. It was
Gandalf! Everyone said the name at once, some with awe, some with respect
the X-men mostly with disbelief. Legolas went to his knees before the wizard, Gimli bowed his head and Aragorn smiled widely before he went to embrace his old friend.
You live, the King said happily as the two men embraced. Gandalf smiled at him as he drew back.
Not that Im not happy youre alive, Scott said as he shook Gandalfs hand but how can this be?
I fought my battle and won but I was dieing. However, I knew that there was still need for me, Gandalf explained.
That makes no sense whatsoever but not much you guys say does, Logan said and grinned. Good to have you back, old man, he shook Gandalfs hand.
I see now why Legolas respects you so much, Ororo said warmly and embraced Gandalf.
Youre not dead, Rogue said happily and embraced Gandalf. Youre not dead, her voice was happy as she kept repeating that as to remind herself that it was really true.
No, Im not, Gandalfs voice had gone soft and he raised his hand to stroke her cheek.
No! Scott and Logan yelled at the same time but too late. Gandalfs hand touched Rogues bare skin. Gandalf stiffened and he began to glow. The glow began to spread from Rogues cheek through her body. A wordless scream was frozen on Rogues lips as she began to suck the life and powers out of Gandalf. Logan jumped forward and tore Rogue away from Gandalf, making her fall to the ground with him, she landing in his lap.
Got you! Logan embraced her, trying to get his heartbeat under control.
You alright? Scott asked Rogue and she nodded.
Im fine. I feel fine
.In fact I feel better than I have in a long time, Rogue stilled his fears and smiled at Ororos worried face to calm her.
Are you alright as well? Scott turned to Gandalf who appeared to be fine though he leaned on his staff a little.
Im fine, the wizard assured him.
Okay then, he wasnt sure what had happened
yet but he would figure it out, Scott thought as his red gaze went from Rogue to Gandalf. In their happiness at finally having some good news and the amazement at having a dead man return to life they had all forgotten the differences which had existed between them but now as the emotionness of the moment began to die out his feeling of distrust towards Gandalf, though lessened, returned to him.
You said the Hobbits are safe? Ororo asked, needing to confirm it.
Yes. Theyre with the trees and will be well taken care of. Theyre probably the most safe of us all, Gandalf calmed her.
Then we didnt fail Boromir. His Little Ones are safe, Scott drew a relived breath though his guilt didnt fully leave him. That they were alive was no ones earning but the Hobbits themselves. He should have taken better care of them. They were just children.
We should move on then, Aragorn reminded them as Scott helped Rogue to her feet so Logan could get up.
We must go to Rohan and seek help, Gandalf decided and lead them all out of the forest and back to their horses. Scott looked from their four horses and then towards Gandalf.
You can take my horse. Ill walk, Scott offered, no matter what else he felt he didnt want the older man to exhaust himself.
We need to make great speed, Gandalf warned.
Ill carry him with me, Ororo offered.
Surely thatll strain you, Legolas voiced his concerns.
No, Ive flown with Scott before. It will be a strain but I can handle it, Ororo reassured him and leaned in to steal a quick kiss from him. She didnt notice Gandalfs disapproving look but Scott did and it annoyed him. Ororo was his friend and he wanted her to be happy, he wouldnt let the wizard ruin that. Though how could he prevent it? Legolas obviously held the wizard in high regard and would most likely follow his advice. Besides, the wizard had proven that he wasnt just hard to kill, he was immortal and obviously not human. All in all odds werent in his favour. His best hope was that Gandalf kept his worries to himself.
You need not burden yourself, Gandalf said and smiled. Shadowfax, come to me, he called and before their eyes an endlessly beautiful white horse appeared and came to Gandalf.
The master of horses, Legolas breathed in awe as Gandalf went up on the horse and the others got up on their own horses. Rogue rode with Logan as before and Ororo flew closely beside the horse that carried Legolas and Gimli. As they began to ride out and towards Rohan Logan rode his horse up beside Scott.
What do you think of all this? he nodded towards Gandalf who rode in the lead.
I think Gandalf is a very powerful man, obviously not human
Obviously, Logan agreed.
Everyone seem to hold him in high regard, from Elves to magical animals, he nodded towards the horse. I also think he has the best of intentions.
Isnt that what the road to Hell is covered with? Logan asked softly, one hand holding Rogues right one closer against his abdomen as she pressed close to his back.
Yes. I have no doubt hes a good man but as you said earlier hes an idealist and though he would never sacrifice Frodo or Aragorn to see his goals fulfilled, Im not so sure about us. Besides, Im pretty sure Gandalf touched Rogue on purpose, not to harm her but
Im not sure why but I doubt he had forgotten he isnt supposed to touch her. He seems far too intelligent for that, Scott admitted and frowned. An intelligent man with hidden plans
always a dangerous combination when not on your side. If nothing else Magneto had taught them all that lesson well.
.we better keep an eye out for our Magneto look-alike here. Luckily there are no statues of liberty in this place, Logan nodded towards Gandalf and both Scott and Rogue laughed, both of them having noticed the vague similarity in looks between the two men. Thinking about it Scott wondered if not some of his distrust in the wizard was due to the mans uncanny similarity to one of his worst enemies.
After all this trip was hard enough in itself and wasnt made easier when they didnt even have a common trust between them. Scott caught himself feeling guilty that he was silently cursing Gandalf for his bad timing; they had just now found a common ground with Legolas and Aragorn and now this
I guess we just have to be careful. I dont think hes as bad as you make him, Rogue voiced her opinion.
You think were being paranoid? Logan asked in a teasing tone of voice.
No, I know youre paranoid. Both of you, she answered and smiled. The two men smiled as well but the fears they had uncovered in their conversation wouldnt leave their minds.
Authors notes: Thanks so much to Jonas for great beta. I know this chapter rises a lot of questions but dont worry
.I do have a plan here so theyll all be answered as the story goes on.
I hope youre enjoying your trip through Middle-Earth with our heroes :)