1. Dreams of Boats
The section of Dol Amroth's outer wall that stood upon the edge of a high cliff above the Bay of Belfalas was Boromir's favorite place above all others in the city. He loved looking down from the sheer height, past wall and cliff to the water breaking on the rocks far below. The view of the Bay to the west was breathtaking, and he never tired of gazing at the ever-changing expanse of water that extended to the horizon. Boromir marveled at the thought that beyond Belfalas was an an even greater stretch of water: Beleagar, the Great Sea, more vast than he could possibly imagine.
Shading his eyes with his hand, Boromir stood watching the play of sun on the water, waves sparkling in the sunlight like innumerable jewels of adamant. A strong wind from the sea whipped Boromir's hair about his face and tugged at his tunic. He inhaled deeply; the sharp smell of salt in the air was refreshing, and the taste of it on his lips made him grin. He felt free and relaxed, and relished the feeling while he was able. Dol Amroth was one of the few havens left in Gondor that remained unburdened by the darkness of Mordor, and while no place existed that was totally safe while the Nameless One ruled in Middle-earth, this was one place where Boromir could let down his guard for a time.
He heard the scrape of a boot on the stone walk behind him and turned.
"Ah, Faramir!" he exclaimed as his brother approached. "There you are, at last. I have been waiting for you. I am considering going down to the quay, to see if perhaps we might take a boat out on the water. What say you to that?"
At the mention of the word boat, a look of dismayed pain crossed Faramir's face, and then was gone as quickly as it came.
"What is it?" Boromir asked sharply. "Is something wrong?"
Faramir shook his head. "No, no. It's nothing."
Boromir frowned, unconvinced. "The look on your face just now... are you ill?"
"No, I am well. I tell you, there is nothing wrong!"
Boromir grasped Faramir by the shoulders and turned him to face him directly. He looked intently into his brother's eyes for a moment, and then nodded. "Do not attempt to hide this from me, Faramir. There is definitely something wrong. Tell me!"
Faramir sighed. "Very well, then!" he said ruefully. "You are right, of course. There is something wrong. I had a dream last night which disturbed me greatly; though I had all but forgotten it by morning, something you said just now reminded me of it afresh."
"The boat?" Boromir queried. "Was your dream about a boat?"
"Yes," replied Faramir, looking away.
Boromir released his grip on Faramir's shoulders and turned back to look out at the water in the distance. He waited for Faramir to speak further, but when his brother remained silent, Boromir turned back to him with a stern look. "Will you not tell me what you dreamed, Faramir? It is better to speak of your fear than to hold it in and allow your unease to grow, is it not? You know I am right!"
Faramir smiled and came to stand beside Boromir. "You are right, of course," he said quietly, then looked accusingly at his brother. "Though truth be told, you are a fine one to be telling me to speak of my fear. I cannot remember the last time you spoke openly of your own misgivings about anything!"
"That is because I am never afraid!" Boromir answered with a wink.
"I almost believe you!" Faramir laughed. "Well, let me tell you of my dream, then; perhaps your fearlessness in the face of danger and the unknown can help me see more clearly and put away my fear of what it might mean for us."
"Have you had this dream before?" Boromir asked, suddenly worried.
"No, this was a new dream...."
"Ah, that is well then!" Boromir laughed in relief. "I have learned to be wary of your recurring dreams, since there always seems to be some kind of truth in them that warns of woe to come. Let us hope for both our sakes that this one does not return!"
Faramir made to speak, but Boromir held up his hand to silence him. "Do not misunderstand me, I do not make light of your dreams, my brother," he continued more seriously. "I know there is truth in them, and that is why you are afraid. But forgive me; I interrupted you when you were about to speak. Please continue with the tale of your dream."
Faramir did not speak for a moment as he gathered his thoughts, then with a sigh, he began.
"I dreamed of you, Brother," he said quietly. "You lay in a boat, as if sleeping, and the boat was floating away from me on the water. At first it seemed as though the boat moved upon a river or stream, but then the water changed to that of the Sea, dark under the stars. In my dream, I called out to you, but you did not awaken. I tried to reach you, to stay the boat and keep it from going out to sea, but the boat was forever just out of my reach...."
Faramir's voice trailed off, and he shrugged helplessly. "Such an empty feeling I had as I gazed upon you in the boat, floating away, I knew not where! If only I could have reached you to stop you...."
Boromir pulled his brother close in a warm embrace. "Do not be afraid!" he exclaimed. "You are more precious to me than any jewel or all the riches of the world, and I will never leave you behind if it is in my power to remain at your side! If my vow will be of any comfort to you, I swear I will not forsake you! Yet no one knows what might happen in the future, and if this dream of yours is a true one, then so be it! Do not let the fear of a possible separation foretold in a dream hold you in its thrall. Our bond as brothers is stronger than fate, and it will hold, even if the Great Sea lies between us!"
Faramir leaned into Boromir's embrace. "Thank you, Brother," he whispered. "Your vow comforts me, though perhaps you should not make such a promise, not knowing what the future holds for you or me. But you are right, I do dread separation from you. Perhaps the dream is only a result of that fear, or perhaps it tells of a future that has yet to unfold. I will try to heed your words, and not let my concern for that possibility rule me." He pulled away, smiling suddenly. "Even so, I do not think I care to see you go out on the water in a boat today!"
Boromir threw back his head and laughed. "I agree! Somehow, I find that the thought of boats no longer has an appeal for me! Let us forget about boats for this day, then, and do something else together. What say you to a walk on the strand? I want to get close to the water and feel the spray of the waves on my face. I do not need a boat for that!"
Faramir laughed and nodded. "A walk on the strand, it is! Or perhaps a run would be more to your liking? Let us see who reaches the sands first!"
He darted away, and Boromir followed with a grin. Boromir knew better than to believe that the anxiety born of dreams of boats would be so easily laid aside, but it was a beginning.
Perhaps it would not be such a bad thing to be wary of boats in the future, he thought as he raced after his brother. For Faramir's sake....
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.