West of the Moon
A Tolkien Fanfiction Archive
Pat, Pat, Pat...
Young Merry is too ill to be shy and is desperate for his first kiss.
Author: Singe Addams
"Pooooor Merrrryyyyy..." Young Merry
Brandybuck was too sick and weak to protest the little hands that were petting
him on the face. He couldn't even get off the ornate and faded settee, a welcome
change from his sickbed, to swipe at his tormentor standing just out of reach
behind him. And when was Pearl coming back? It had been hours, damn it, since
he'd seen Pippin's oldest sister. Pat, pat, pat. "Niiiice Merrryyyy..." Merry
sighed. It was actually kind of soothing. Little Pippin Took was going to pat
him to sleep before long. Funny how a three-year-old hellion was more comforting
than an army of Aunties, healers and well-wishers. Pat, pat, pat. "Prettyyy
"Pretty?" Merry was barely able to protest. "Not hardly."
"Yes! You pretty!" Pippin asserted. Pat, pat, pitty, pitty, pat...
Merry sighed and his eyes drooped closed again. "Even after I passed out face first onto the floor? You're an insane little boy." Pippin giggled and Merry caught a sour whiff on the Took's breath.
"Have you been eating paste again?"
"NO!" Pippin was scandalized. "I only did that ONCE!" Pat, pat, pat...
"Your rotten breath..." The door opened and Pearl walked in at last. Merry startled and tried to look handsome, healthy and virile. He failed miserably. Oh, well. Maybe he could get loving sympathy from her. "Hullo, Pearllll." he drawled weakly. Her eyes widened as she looked at the pair of them and Pippin giggled as if he'd been caught sneaking into the pastry pantry.
Pearl's mouth twitched and she pointed at her little brother. "No more visitors for a couple of hours. Merry needs a nap. You. Out!" Pippin didn't turn his back on her as he scuttled out the door, still giggling, his hands protecting his bottom. Then he was gone and Merry's heart skipped as Pearl shut the door, walked up to his settee and began to arrange his pillows more comfortably. She was gentle. She smelled wonderful. She was wonderful. Merry breathed deep. She untwisted and smoothed his blankets, then patted his chest with a graceful hand. "There you go. Anything you want before I go, Merry?" she asked, her eyes warm with good humor.
Merry was too ill to be shy. He covered her hand with his own. "I want a kiss." She blinked, clearly amused, and leaned down to peck him on the cheek. He caught at her hand again as she tried to straighten. "Aw, Pearl...a REAL kiss." he pleaded while trying not to sound too desperate.
"In your condition? The shock would kill you." She teased. Pearl was still near so Merry rose up on one elbow and clumsily planted his lips on the older girl's. "Memph?!" she squeaked just as his arm and shoulder trembled and gave out. He flopped back onto his pillows and a shockwave of sheer embarrassment flooded his soul. Damn, damn, damn! His misery was obvious and Pearl looked at him in surprise. She controlled her grin. "You're serious?"
"I haven't ever, um, before and I'd like to before I die...yes, I'm serious!"
"I've never seen you serious." Merry said nothing. "Well, this IS an occasion. Your first real Um." She teased as she flicked at his blanket for a moment, considering. Oh, please, the invalid prayed to...what, he didn't know. Oh, please. Pearl came to a decision and knelt on the floor beside him. "Now, Merry, there are rules about this sort of thing." Merry grinned. Yes! "They're very important. Are you listening to me?" Merry nodded, ridiculously happy. "Number One. Don't tell. A lad that tells shows the very worst manners and no lass in her right mind will ever trust him again. And she'll make sure her friends and family don't trust him. And they'll make sure their friends and family don't trust him and he'll wind up dying old and alone and insane. But the lad that DOESN'T tell gets all the kisses he can stand. He's safe, y'see?" Merry nodded again. Her mouth twitched again and, oh, he loved how her lips turned up at the corners. "Number Two, I'm not kissing you again, so don't ask." Merry realized that Pearl didn't know him very well if she thought he wasn't the persistent type. She'll learn. Merry obediently nodded again, his face innocent and blank. "Number Three, you have to kiss me back."
Now, he was confused. Of course he'd kiss her back. He wasn't stupid! "You're recovering so I shouldn't catch what you have." Pearl reasoned to herself as she dipped her head. Her mouth gently pushed against his. Her eyes were closed. He knew this because his eyes were wide open. He froze. Her lips were soft...her lips were warm...she broke away and he could feel the breath of her laughter on his face. "Merry? Kiss me back. Don't just lie there."
"Oh! I'm sorry, Pearl!" He had the strength to blush though his heart was beating dangerously fast. She bent her head again. Merry clamped his eyes shut and dutifully pressed hard as soon as he felt her lips on his own. He could taste her?! Her mouth tasted like maple syrup. He wanted to laugh. He could tell what she ate for breakfast! But it was Sweet.
Merry remembered he was supposed to kiss her back. How? Pearl patiently led the way, gently mouthing his lower lip...and then his upper lip...suddenly a strange, new and beautiful wave of heat swept through Merry and his mouth sealed over hers. His weakened body was unprepared and it trembled. All thought disappeared as his instincts took over and all they could agree on was More. He had to have more, more, more.
Merry opened his mouth and gently slung his
arm around her neck. Her hair was soft, soft and it tickled his skin and the
heat he could feel pulsing from the back of her neck traveled all down his arm
and formed a rushing whirlpool in the pit of his stomach. This was easy. This
was wonderful. Luckily it felt too good to be frightening or he would have been
His other arm creeped around her waist and Pearl gasped as she broke away and leaned back before he could pull her down, properly, on top of him. Her face was blazing. Merry fell back again and, yes, Pearl had been right. The shock had killed him. The room spun around happily and Merry gaped at her. She was standing and nervously brushing her dress as if she'd gotten flour on it. "I'm sorry. Don't be mad." he whispered.
"I'm not mad!" she shouted.
Merry flinched. "Was it alright, Pearl? Was
She took a couple of deep breaths. "I...oh...yes, it was nice." She glanced down at him out of the corner of her eyes as if he were a strange dog that might bite her. Then she grinned and the strange tension left her face. "Don't mind me, I was just surprised." she admitted and Merry was relieved and glad. But then she turned away. "It was extremely nice. Extremely. Now...us Tooks're all going home today so you'll have to seduce a new nurse, I'm afraid." Merry wondered what 'seduce' meant. "Feel better soon, sweetie, and don't forget what I told you."
"I won't. But...Pearl?" He tried to look strong.
"Do I...am I pretty? I mean handsome? Pip says so but he eats glue so..." He tried to show his profile to its best advantage. Pearl dissolved into helpless laughter. It surprised him but before he could be hurt she bent over him again. Lifting his head with her warm hands, she savored another quick kiss on his mouth and Merry moaned at the sudden pleasure of it. It was as if she were waving a wand over him. Simply magic.
She stood, grinned and left the room without
another word, an obvious bounce in her step. She closed the door behind her.
Merry's arm lolled off the settee and his knuckles rested on the rug for quite a while as he stared at the door. It didn't open again. Giving up hope and completely exhausted, Merry pulled his blankets tighter around his shoulders. He smiled and brushed his lips with his fingertips. He wanted to howl at the moon. Wonderful, wonderful and, yet again, most wonderful.
He covered his blushing face with his hand.
And yelped in terror as his fingers came in contact with something horribly dry
and scab-like on his skin. He frantically scraped it off with his fingernails
and stared at it. It was a two-pence stamp. "What?" His fingers roved his face
in horror. It was covered with what had to be an entire sheet of stamps lovingly
glued there by...
Pat, pat, pat...no wonder the brat's breath had smelled like paste, he had been licking stamps. "That little bastard!" Merry scrubbed his face and a flurry of blue paper and dried glue fell onto his pillows. "You little monster! I'm going to kill you!" No wonder Pearl was laughing. But, ah, she'd kissed him anyway and it was a thousand times better than any of his dreams ever dreamed of being. Merry stilled, reflecting. And it had been...his finger traced his bottom lip thoughtfully and his eyes closed...it had been so, so nice. He released a short scream of a guffaw and passed out, flopping gratefully onto his settee for the last time.
Too much excitement for one day.
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