by Agape4Rivendell

Standing upon one of the many bridges overlooking the great waterfalls of Imladris, the Man of Gondor saw naught but the anger and frustration in his heart. He had left the Council meeting with a myriad of concerns buzzing through his head like the gnats that came in the spring to the Citadel. Slowly, using all the tools of a warrior, he analyzed each argument and action of those assembled this morning. He could not agree with the outcome.

"You are weary, Boromir," a familiar voice spoke behind him. "Perhaps you should rest instead of chewing your lip till it bleeds."

The man did not move nor reply.

"You are angry with me?"

The shoulders straightened, but there was no response.

"What exactly are you angry about?"

"There are so many things that I can hardly think. You deceived me." Boromir turned and faced the wizard. "I had hoped…" His brow furrowed and Gandalf read the pain in them.

"You expected me to go back to Minas Tirith?"

"I had hoped that you would be there for Faramir." His cheeks blazed. "I would not have left him alone if I had thought you would… I told him to turn to you for help."

"For that, I am grateful, Boromir, but do you not think my presence here is more important? Does not the Ringbearer need me at his side?"

"Nothing is more important than Faramir," he whispered, the words spoken slowly and painfully. “I thought he was your friend.”

Gandalf walked to his side. "He is. As are you. Boromir, he is a fine man. You have raised him well."

At this, Boromir turned. "I… He does not have the support he needs. Not with me gone." He took a deep breath. "But it is as you say, he is a fine man and a good warrior."

"What else?"

"Why did you not defend Gondor when they maligned my father and my people?" He struck his chest as he said 'my people' and Gandalf grimaced. "You listened as the Ranger spouted his words of contempt. You know what my father fights and said naught. Your lack of words condemned him."

"The Council’s were not words of contempt, Boromir, they were words of explanation. Too long have you thought you battled alone. Others have waged war against evil in other places. Aragorn and the Rangers are one of them. Legolas and the Elves of Mirkwood are others."

"None," Boromir's tone was hard and anger-filled, "none fight against the very forces of Mordor, against the Enemy. They fight skirmishes in the backwaters. We fight the real foe who lives at our doorstep. You could have said that. You could have acknowledged my father's valor."

"All know of Denethor's valor. And of yours, Boromir. However, just because the foe you fight seems more powerful because he is closer, know that the foe Aragorn and Legolas fight is just as deadly. Boromir, the size of the foe does not matter."

"We fight Ungoliant!"

"Yes, you fight an evil beyond imagining. The foe that Aragorn and Legolas fight would seem smaller, but does that mean its venom is not as deadly? Look at the wandering spiders of Ithilien. Their poison is the most toxic in all Middle-earth, yet they are not the size Ungoliant was."

Boromir turned away, facing the falls once again. "A spider is a spider?"

"It is," the wizard said quietly. "I would not have you give into despair because you think Gondor fights alone. The spider's web is far-flung. Anything that fights it, whether in Gondor or in Arnor, weakens it."

Tears fell from the Gondorian's eyes. "It is lonely, fighting in Gondor."


A/N – Tolkien doesn’t say there are spiders in Ithilien, but I thought, since he loved the little things so much (LOL), that I’d give them this nasty little thing!
Phoneutria not only has a potent neurotoxin, but is reported to have one of the most excruciatingly painful envenomations of all spiders due to its high concentration of serotonin.   http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brazilian_wandering_spider