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Dark Water

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A touch at the top of his boot, just time enough to turn and see the slime-green tentacle as it coiled twice around his leg, slid down his calf. Time to draw a single breath as it jerked him off his feet, face-down in the stinking muck, and dragged him down into the dark water.

Aragorn thrashed and the tentacle pulled tighter, yanked him deeper. He pulled his dagger from his belt. He opened his eyes and the water burned them. He could see only roiling shadows and he felt along his knee for the tentacle. Found it, cold and spongy under his fingers.

He slashed at it, forcing his arm through the slowness of the water. A coil of black blood rose and he slashed again, felt the knife bite into his own leg. The tentacle loosened, as his own blood streamed and twisted together with the monster's, the cut throbbing.

Aragorn kicked and was free. He lunged for the surface, struggling against his sodden clothes and the weight of Andúril at his hip. His stinging eyes made out a lighter haze and he swam for it, his heart thudding in his chest and fear ringing in his ears.

A tentacle wrapped around his waist. He stabbed it, and another grabbed his leg, a third, his wrist, and the dagger tumbled away. He snatched at Andúril, but more cold arms slid around him, pulled his arms tight, his legs apart, so he was spread full out, helpless and open for any blow.

Crushed, he thought, or eaten. Squeezed until he burst or thrust into some dark maw. His lungs ached and he fought to keep himself from breathing in the water.

A tentacle snaked up the back of his jacket, under his shirt, colder than the icy water against his skin. It slid across his chest, coiled around his neck, caressed his cheek like the fingers of a lover. Then it clamped down, suckers pulling at Aragorn's skin, stinging, bruising, cradling.

Calm yourself, save your breath until help comes. But Aragorn's limbs shook against his will and water leaked into his mouth and nose, oily and bitter, running down his throat.

Another cold finger felt its way into his clothing, over his belly, down to his groin. He set his tongue between his teeth as the tentacle brushed his cock, his cringing balls. It tightened around his hips and Aragorn braced himself for the clamp of the suckers.

The tentacle thrust inside him.

Aragorn gasped, sucking water into his lungs. He choked and thrashed, his head reeled, and the tentacle pushed deeper inside of him, impaling him with a pain that eclipsed all the others.

And yet, he was responding. His back arched, his cock filled with blood, his thoughts fell away. Just a heat that filled his belly, a dizzy light that filled his eyes, and the cold arm that opened him again and again.

The tentacle against his cheek pushed against his lips and forced itself inside his mouth, pushing deep until he gagged around it. He floated, he flew, choking, screaming.

Everything contracted to a single point, a single sharp sensation, the monster invading him, pushing deeper, and Aragorn knew that he was dying and could not bring himself to care.

Something clamped his wrist. A hand, hot with blood. It pulled him, a tug of war between the cold hands and the hot, and the hot was winning as the other coils fell away, as the gag slipped from his throat.

But the last tentacle still drove inside of him, and as his head broke the surface of the water, as Boromir's wild eyes found his, it thrust one more time and Aragorn came, his tendons pulling tight and his face crumpling into a grimace.

The tentacle slid out, away, gone into the black water. Boromir hauled him onto the shore.

Aragorn vomited water, sucked in air, vomited again. And he leaned into Boromir's side, under the curve of Boromir's arm.