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Forsaking the Twilight - by Rebecca D. Bruner

An alternative dramatic adaptation of the Aragorn & Arwen storyline from Return of the King Based on the screenplay by Fran Walsh and Phillipa Boyens and the novel by J.R.R. Tolkien

The story opens with Arwen journeying toward the Grey Havens, with the intention of taking ship for Valinor. Aragorn has told her he won't be coming back. Elrond has persuaded her that she has nothing to look forward to but death if she remains in Middle Earth.

While riding with the other elvish pilgrims, she has a vision of a child, whom she recognizes as her own son, playing with Aragorn, his father. Confronted by this glimpse of the son she will never bear and the husband she will never marry, Arwen does an immediate about face, and races back to Rivendel.


Arwen (to Elrond):

You say you wish to spare me long years of grief by sending me hence, but do you not see? The grey ships may bear my body to the undying lands, but my heart will always be here in Middle Earth, with him. I shall pine forever for the life which might have been mine…for the joy of bearing his children…for the pleasure of being his bride. O, father, fleeing from sorrow is not the same as finding happiness.
For the love of Elessar, I will endure the doom of men. To share his life, I would endure a thousand deaths. My fate is bound to his, both in this world and beyond it. My choice is made, I will not turn back.

Elrond: (long silence)

Maybe, it has been appointed so, that by my loss the kingship of Men may be restored.


It will be even so. Through my children's children, your line will live on in Middle Earth, generations after you, yourself depart.


Yet I say to you, Arwen Undomiel, you shall not diminish your life's grace for any less cause. You shall not be the bride of a vagabond ranger. You shall not be the bride of any Man less than the King of Gondor and liege-lord of all the kindred of Numenor.


Then give him the sword of his fathers. It is time. Reforge the sword.


I will reforge the sword, but how if he will not wield it? If he should abdicate his inheritance? If he should refuse to fight for you? Will you not then take the ships?


Then I shall die of grief.

Arwen is overcome by doubt as she considers the possibility that the man for whom she has sacrificed everything may be unwilling to make the sacrifice Elrond demands. Grief overwhelms her spirit and her vital force ebbs away. Elrond watches his daughter's decline with alarm. The elven smiths reforge the sword of Elendil, and Elrond makes haste, realizing that only one hope for prolonging his daughter's life remains.

Meanwhile Aragorn is encamped with the men of Rohan at the foot of the Dwimorberg, preparing to ride to the aid of Gondor. In a dream, he sees Arwen dying, and awakens with a start as a messenger summons him to Theoden's tent. He enters the tent to find Theoden talking with a mysterious figure whose identity is masked by a voluminous cloak and hood. Theoden takes his leave and the figure throws back his hood to reveal his identity…

The camp of Rohan


My Lord Elrond!


I come on behalf of one I love. Arwen Undomiel is dying.




She has bound her life to yours. Her fate is now in your hands. She has chosen a mortal life, but the manner of her death is yours to decide.
Will you rise above the height of all your fathers since Elendil and become the king you were born to be? Will you stand as the Leader of Men and fight to win hope and a future for Arwen…or must she die without hope, forsaken and desolate, her life wasted away in grief, which is as deadly to the Eldar as the sword-- Must she die without even the memory of joy to comfort her in her final hour?


I will fight to win a future for her…for us. Give her this ring, the ring of Barahir which has been passed from father to son in my house since the days of Beren. Tell Arwen she must live to see it on the hand of her own son when a new day dawns beyond this darkness. Tell her "Hold on to hope. " As I live, I will not fail her.


From the ashes a fire shall be woken
A light from the shadows shall spring
Renewed shall be blade that was broken
The crownless again shall be king.
Here is Anduril, the Flame of the West. It was reforged from the shards of Narsil, the sword that cut the ring from Sauron's hand. Take it, heir of Elendil, and win hope and a future for all Middle Earth.

Elrond hurries back to Rivendel with the Ring of Barahir, hoping that he will not be too late…

v Rivendel Elrond takes the hand of Arwen, as she lies pale and insensible on her couch, on the verge of death. He presses her cold hand to his lips.

Elrond: (near tears):

Do not give in to despair, my child. Hold on to hope.

Elrond takes the ring of Barahir and slips it onto Arwen's finger. Her eyes open, and she looks up at him weakly.

Elrond (cont.):

Your king will return for you.

The Ring of Power has been destroyed; Aragorn has been welcomed as Elendil's rightful heir and is about to be officially crowned king of Gondor.

Minas Tirith, Coronation/Wedding scene


Now begin the days of the king. May they be blest.

Enter wedding procession. The amazed Aragorn kisses Arwen passionately, then takes her hand.

Aragorn (to Arwen, whispered):

With you beside me, not only shall the king's days be blest, but night too shall be beautiful and blessed and all its fear pass away!

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