- All that is gold does not glitter,
Not all those who wander are lost;
The old that is strong does not wither,
Deep roots are not reached by the frost.
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.
—The Lord of the Rings
Aragorn, also known as Elessar, Strider, Estel, Thorongil, Envinyatar, and a host of other names in the various tongues of the northwest of Middle-earth, is a character in J.R.R. Tolkien's Lord of the Rings trilogy.
Aragorn is of the line of Elendil, being descended both from the latter's elder son Isildur (via a many times great grandfather, Arvedui) and also from Elendil's younger son, Anarion (via his same amount of times great grandmother, Firiel). Aragorn is also a descendant of Elros, the mortal brother of Elrond. He is married to Arwen and is the father of a son, Eldarion, as well as an unspecified number of daughters.
Aragorn in Book Canon
Aragorn exudes a grim and weather-beaten air. He is introduced as the Ranger Strider, though his royal lineage and true name(s) are revealed later. A friend of Gandalf's, at the Wizard's instruction he awaits the hobbits in Bree, and escorts them to Rivendell via Weathertop, upon which the party is attacked by Nazgul and Frodo is stabbed. In Rivendell, he vows to aid Frodo in his Quest in any way possible, and joins the Fellowship. After Gandalf's defeat in Moria, Aragorn leads the party through Lorien to Rauros, at which point the Fellowship is separated. Aragorn then spends three days running across Rohan with Legolas and Gimli, in search of Merry and Pippin. He takes part in the battle at Helm's Deep and takes charge of the palantir thrown from Orthanc by Gríma Wormtongue. Around this point, the company are met by the last remnants of the North Kingdom—thirty Rangers, led by Halbarad and the sons of Elrond. Aragorn then leads the Rangers, the Peredhil, Gimli, and Legolas through the Paths of the Dead so they can defeat the corsairs of Umbar and thus make it to the Battle of the Pelennor Fields in the nick of time. Following this victory, he spends some time healing the wounded, and then leads a portion of the armies of the West to the gates of Mordor, to buy Frodo some time. On his return to Minas Tirith, he is crowned king and marries Arwen.
Aragorn in Film Canon
Aragorn is bearded and filthy, and thus strangely attractive to fangirls. His character remains more or less true to the books, though with perhaps a touch more than his portion of angst due to some notion that he is unworthy of being a king. Also, his relationship with Arwen is expanded upon greatly, drawing much information from the appendices of The Return of the King. Of course, given that Arwen is a big part of the reason he's set on claiming his birthright as King of Gondor and Arnor, this makes his reluctance in the movies all the more strange.
Aragorn in Badfic
Aragorn is often the target of Mary Sues, though not nearly so often as Legolas or Frodo. When this happens, Arwen is often shunted off to one side, cast as an evil, controlling bitch, or ignored entirely, thus freeing him to be with the Sue. His noble character will be ignored in favor of hormone-fueled romance, despite the fact that in canon he has the discipline to wait decades to be with Arwen. It is also common for Suethors to ignore or change his age to be closer to the Sue's — if they even know his real age to begin with.
Rarely, Aragorn may be cast as a Designated Misogynistic Bastard in order that the Sue might overcome terrible oppression and prove that women can be as good as men. More often, though, this role falls to Boromir.
As Aragorn is manly and unwashed, he must logically be the seme to Legolas's pretty blond uke. As such, his relationship with Arwen is either a) a sham to prevent anyone noticing Aragorn and Legolas's relationship, b) completely nonconsensual, with Arwen portrayed as the Bitch Queen of Angmar, or c) doomed to fail so that Aragorn and Legolas can get it on unimpeded. While all three can be written well, this is rare, and the majority of bad slash simply fails to recognise Arwen's existence at all. Aragorn has usually met and fallen for Legolas at some point during his youth in Rivendell; he is usually but not exclusively at least thirteen when this meeting takes place. Aragorn chooses to join the Fellowship so that he can escape Arwen and/or shag Legolas in many scenic spots. As Elves are not human, many authors feel "their biology is different!" is a suitable excuse for mpreg, leading to such horrors as Elleelen, the product of Aragorn and Legolas's complete inability to keep it in their trousers, although Elleelen himself was, fortunately, dealt with in a timely fashion and crushed to death by the crowd at a Led Zeppelin gig.
Aragorn is not exclusively paired with Legolas. Sometimes he has some kinky sub/dom fun with Boromir. Sometimes he has wild orgies with hobbits. Occasionally he gets a bit Freudian with Elrond. He is one of the most frequently exorcised characters in the multiverse.