Gandalf gently placed his left hand on Aragorn's forehead and tried, but once again failed, to call him back. Gandalf sighed as he turned to face Elrond and Thranduil. "I have tried every healing spell that I know and he still will not respond."
Elrond sank down into the chair behind him and buried his face in his hands. "There has to be something we missed."
Gandalf turned to Thranduil. "Thranduil, what were Aragorn's worst injuries when he arrived again?"
The elven king thought for a moment before answering, "The worst probably had to be the trauma to his head and ribs. He was also injured by an arrow, but luckily it wasn't poisoned."
Gandalf looked back down at Aragorn, who again began tossing and turning. "You were right, my friend, there is something we missed."
Elrond's head shot up. "What, what is it?"
Gandalf began to explain. "I have seen this a few times before with trauma victims. When it becomes too much for them to withstand, they lock themselves away in. I guess the best way to explain it is their own world. They create a reality in their head with people and places that aren't really there, with events having different outcomes, or they do things they either want to do or think they've done."
Elrond leaned forward, waiting for Gandalf to continue. The wizard however, was silent. Finally, Elrond couldn't take the silence anymore. "Gandalf, how do we reverse this?"
Gandalf sighed. "There is a spell. It allows someone to enter the reality with the person and then they must try to convince him or her to return. But the risk is great, for you can either deepen their connection with the reality, or whoever goes into the reality may become ensnared by it as well."
"It's a risk I will have to take." Elrond said softly.
Gandalf's head shot up. "No, Elrond, you can not risk yourself "
Elrond frowned at his longtime friend. "He is my son. I will brave the risks for I would have the best chance of getting him to listen and I would not even think of sending another."
Will carefully surfaced and made his way over to where Elizabeth lay unconscious after Barbossa backhanded her when her blood hadn't lifted the curse. He gently woke her and placed his hand over her mouth when she looked like she was going to yell. "Shhh." He beckoned for her to follow him. Elizabeth reached over and grabbed the medallion, and followed Will out of the pirate filled area and back to the boats where Aragorn awaited them.
Aragorn was throwing the last of the oars into their boat when he noticed Will and Elizabeth running towards him. That was quick. Elizabeth practically dove into the boat, almost sending Aragorn, who was standing, flying into the water. Only his excellent sense of balance kept him from falling. "Hey, if you don't mind, I would like to stay dry for at least a few hours." Elizabeth looked somewhat annoyed, but apologized anyway while Will pushed them off and hopped into the boat, and they began to row towards the Interceptor. After they exited the cave, Aragorn began dropping the oars from the pirates' boats into the water.
Jack rubbed his hand over his face as he began to wake, the drug finally wearing off. He made a face and spit, trying to get rid of the nasty aftertaste that lingered in his mouth. What did Strider give me? And why? Jack stood, only to come face to face with Barbossa's crew.
Pintel pointed at him. "You You're supposed to be dead "
Jack made a face and looked down at himself. "Am I not? Hmm. Puhuley, puhluehvoos, parleli, parsmi, pasley, parle, parle."
The pirate next to Pintel, named Ragetti, spoke the word Jack was looking for. "Parley?"
Jack smiled and pointed at him. "Parley That's the one. Parley Parley "
Pintel rolled his eyes. "Parley? Damned to the depths whatever man who thought of parley."
Jack just shrugged. "That would be the French."
Aragorn swung his legs over the railing and then leaned back over to help Elizabeth up. Once she was on board he turned to help Will. Elizabeth looked at the crew. "Not more pirates."
Gibbs stepped from the line smiling. "Welcome aboard Miss Elizabeth."
Elizabeth looked at him, confusion etched onto her face. "Mr. Gibbs?"
Will came up behind her and began leading her away from the others when he heard Gibbs call to him. "Hey, boy Where be Jack?"
Elizabeth looked up at Will. "Jack? Jack Sparrow?"
Will didn't answer, but turned around to look at Aragorn, the guilt he was feeling showed clearly in his grey eyes. Aragorn sighed and turned to Gibbs. "He fell behind." The crew looked between each other, whispering, until Gibbs told them they were keeping to the Code, and Ana Maria took charge, and began giving the order to raise the anchor and make way. Will cast one last look back at Aragorn, who had gone with Gibbs to hoist the sails.
Barbossa pushed his way to the front of the crowd and looked at Jack. "How the blazes did you get off that island?"
Jack's face turned to one of hate as he set his eyes upon Barbossa. "When you marooned me on that godforsaken spit of land, you forgot one very important thing, mate. I'm Captain Jack Sparrow."
Barbossa stepped closer to him, with this same hate in his own eyes. "Ah, well, I won't be making that mistake again. Gents, you all remember Captain Jack Sparrow." He turned to his men and began walking away from Jack. "Kill him."
Barbossa's crew readied their pistols to fire when Jack spoke up. "The girl's blood didn't work, did it?"
Barbossa stopped in his tracks. "Hold your fire " He turned and made his way back to Jack. "You know whose blood we need?"
Jack smiled somewhat wickedly. "I know whose blood ye need."
Gibbs watched Aragorn carefully. The young ranger had always been so full of life, but now he seemed to be deeply troubled and the pirate had a feeling it was something more than having to leave Jack behind. Gibbs made his way over to Aragorn, who had started mumbling something too low for him to hear. "Strider." Aragorn looked at him, and Gibbs was surprised by the look in his eyes. They were glazed over, and almost had the appearance of glass, and a light seemed to burn brightly in their depths. ".what is wrong with you?"
Aragorn inhaled deeply. "They are coming, we can't beat them. they are going to get the medallion and the one whose blood they need." Aragorn had learned that what his gift of foresight revealed to him was always true in one way or another, and he wasn't about to let these men get what they wanted. He didn't wait for Gibbs to reply, but took off below deck to find Will.
Elizabeth held the medallion out to Will. "It's yours."
He reached out and took the medallion from her and ran his thumb over it. "I thought I lost it the day they rescued me. It was a gift from my father, he sent it to me." He suddenly looked up at her accusingly. "Why did you take it?"
Elizabeth lowered her eyes under his intense gaze. "Because I was afraid that you were a pirate. That would have been awful."
Will clutched the medallion tightly as realization hit him. "It wasn't your blood they needed. it was my father's blood. my blood.the blood of a pirate." Will slammed his hand down on the table causing Elizabeth to jump.
"I'm so sorry, please forgive me." She quickly got up and pushed her way past Aragorn, who had watched the scene between them unfold.
Will narrowed his eyes. "How long have you been there?"
Aragorn shook his head. They really weren't all that different from each other. Both were in love with a woman who was unobtainable to them, and both were afraid of who and what they truly were.
"Strider." Will pressed, his eyes flashing.
This is a work of fan fiction, written because the author has an abiding love for the works of J R R Tolkien. The characters, settings, places, and languages used in this work are the property of the Tolkien Estate, Tolkien Enterprises, and possibly New Line Cinema, except for certain original characters who belong to the author of the said work. The author will not receive any money or other remuneration for presenting the work on this archive site. The work is the intellectual property of the author, is available solely for the enjoyment of Henneth Annûn Story Archive readers, and may not be copied or redistributed by any means without the explicit written consent of the author.