Arrival by Ness

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Story Notes:

This was written for the July 2015 Fixed-Lenght-Ficlet-Challenge on lotr_community, which had the theme Arrivals and Departures.

Part II. I decided to write two stories for this challenge, one departure and one arrival, and they belong together.

'Lonely men are we, Rangers of the wild, hunters – but hunters ever of the servants of the Enemy;' Aragorn, FOTR, The Council of Elrond
'I am Strider and Dúnadan too, and I belong both to Gondor and the North.' Aragorn, TT, Flotsam and Jetsam
Summary: Aragorn ponders the arrival of the Grey Company.

He had not summoned them. The Dúnedain of the North, led by the one who was his closest friend. Riding with them through the Rohan night, his foster-brothers. Often in those last few days Aragorn's thoughts had strayed to them, during lonely watches and on the eve of battle. Selfish he had thought himself to be then, to wish for their company just for friendship's sake when their swords were needed elsewhere. But in the end the summons had not been his decision, and, free from that responsibility, he was glad for the arrival of his kin. The dark road ahead seems a little brighter for it. Moreover, who could deny the Rangers, hunters ever of the servants of the Enemy, the right – or the curse – to accompany the Heir of Isildur? For though I return to Minas Tirith with Elendil's sword forged anew, I belong both to Godor and the North. He looked at Halbarad riding at his side, bearing the furled standard. Long years they had fought together against the Darkness. There was trust and understanding between them that didn't need many words. Although the uncertainty about choosing the right path still weighed heavily upon him, Aragorn felt a little more at ease. For whatever will chance, and be it the ending of the world, we will face it together.

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