West of the Moon
A Tolkien Fanfiction Archive
A Pretty Thing
Even as tensions run high, miruvor is running low. However, mayhem and mithril abound...
"They're tiring fast, Gandalf. By all that is sacred, can we not afford to rest?"
Boromir's curt whisper drifted above the weary shuffle of the company's feet. Frodo jerked his head up, startled, momentarily losing his footing on the slight, roughly graveled incline that they had been climbing for the better part of two hours. Sam's grip on his upper arm tightened, preventing a fall. As the gardener steadied his master, his eyes drifted to the head of the procession. Frodo followed his gaze, finding it fixed on Boromir, who carried a listless Pippin. Merry trailed close behind, and though Frodo couldn't see his face, he imagined it riveted on Pippin's own baleful one staring back at them over Boromir's shoulder.
"I ought to speak on your behalf as well, Mr. Frodo, seeing's you're no better off'n Mr. Pippin, to be sure," Sam murmured with a hint of challenge. His eyes still bored into the base of Boromir's skull.
Frodo squeezed his hand. "I'm all right, Sam. Pip's the least prepared of us all. I'm surprised that he's carried on as little as he has."
"No doubt that's because he's got Mr. Merry," Sam replied, lacing his fingers with Frodo's, "but I think you'd do well to remember he weren't the one nearly snapped in two."
"That doesn't matter. And I have you. Sam, what's gotten into you?" Frodo pressed gently, falling out of step. He tugged Sam to one side, fixing him with a steady look.
Sam blushed a bit and faltered. "Aye, that you do. It's just...just that...I feel sorry for Mr. Merry. Havin' his place taken by that--that--"
"Boromir hasn't taken his place. He's just as concerned for Merry, I'm sure of it. In fact, Merry would rather see his arms occupied by Pip than by himself. Terribly noble, Brandybucks can be."
"Should've known, what with the bit that's in you," Sam murmured fondly, running his fingers over Frodo's as Legolas and Gimli passed by, caught in soft discussion. Frodo tightened his grip, leaning forward a fraction, but Aragorn's voice cut his intention short.
"Gentlemen, you'd best keep up. We haven't much farther to go, but I would rather it if we did not pause," the Ranger cautioned, lowering his voice. "Frodo, you know what pursues us, and I do not think you wish any more than I to meet with it. Nor you, Master Gamgee."
"Indeed not!" Sam replied staunchly, sliding a protective arm about Frodo, urging him ahead of Aragorn. "Not necessary, remindin' you of what..." Sam muttered, casting a disapproving glance over his shoulder at the Man, who waited for them to catch up with Legolas and Gimli.
"Sam, hush," Frodo whispered. "Once we've stopped, you can chatter all you like. I doubt severely that any ear but mine is starved for the sound," Frodo continued, leaning close to Sam with a faint smile upon his lips, which he licked before adding--"and your mouth, while you're at it."
Whether Aragorn's throat-clearing implied that he had heard or not, Sam blushed deeper still. That considered, his retaliation was indeed impressive.
"Since when have I neglected your ears, Mr. Frodo? You've done well enough on your own, if you ask me." With that, Sam reached up and gave the point of Frodo's right one a thorough tweak. "If they've been washed since Rivendell, then I'm a Barrow-wight!"
Aragorn made another sound low in his throat, one distinctly bordering on mirth. Frodo's own cheeks felt uncharacteristically warm. He leaned closer to Sam and bit, no longer caring that they had an audience.
"That won't go unpunished," he mumbled around Sam's earlobe.
"Certainly not," Sam murmured with a tremor that was the nearest he had come to tripping in their two days' journey through the dark.
"Mm," Frodo grunted, and released him, nuzzling for good measure.
"You're right wound up," Sam whispered, sending little chills down Frodo's spine with a kiss discreetly planted in his hair.
"After last night, who wouldn't be," Frodo hissed under his breath, kneading Sam's hand.
"S'why I argue Mr. Pippin's not as bad off as he seems, if you follow."
"I can't imagine we're the only ones who heard."
"'Course we're not. Strider's done up in knots six ways to Sunday!"
Frodo stifled a belly laugh. "Sam!"
"Your ears really do need washin'."
"That can be next on your agenda."
Sam cuffed Frodo fondly. "I'll show you what's next on--"
"Rest for the wicked! We'll camp here," Gandalf called.
"Wicked indeed," Sam muttered. "My supper says we're no sooner settled than those two are at it again, an' maybe at Boromir as--"
Frodo clapped a hand over Sam's mouth and hurried him along after Legolas' quickened pace. "We'll find a moment, Sam. We will."
"More'n a moment, and don't you forget it," he grumbled, tongue grazing Frodo's index finger.
Frodo felt weak already, his body flooded with yearning for a soft bed and Sam warm against him. Kissing, holding, touching, pushing until heat flooded between them and invited sleep to wash over in pleasure's wake. Rivendell, oh, Rivendell had been...
Dazed and no longer leading, Frodo followed Sam up the last of the incline onto a broad, flat outcropping punctuated with jagged, mined mounds and broken stalagmites. Gandalf had already established himself upon one of the more hospitable ones, and was busily filling his pipe. Boromir eased Pippin down beside Merry and began to methodically unpack their supplies. Legolas drifted to the edge of the chasm, gazing pensively down. Gimli was not far behind him, sniffing at the air, studying the high, ragged ceiling, as if to detect some sign of life. As far as Frodo could see, the Fellowship was the only such phenomenon in the endless stretches of shadow. And Gollum, Frodo supposed, but Aragorn had been more than correct; he didn't wish to consider--
"Over here, Mr. Frodo," Sam murmured. He steered Frodo a short distance from where Aragorn had begun to build a fire, behind a mound that looked conducive enough to leaning. Sam hoisted his pack to the ground and spread his cloak against the rock. He urged Frodo out of his own pack and pressed him to sit. Frodo needed no coaxing.
"Just rest quiet a bit," Sam said, taking advantage of the partial concealment. Frodo leaned up and kissed his forehead, hooking one arm around his neck. Sam leaned into it with a pleased hmmm, hands venturing from Frodo's shoulders down to his belly. Frodo bit back a gasp, pressing into them in spite of himself, eyes fixed tensely on Sam's.
"You go on givin' me that look, and I'll ravish you right here," Sam warned in a husky murmur, tucking his head in the curve of Frodo's neck. "Or maybe plead th'other way around, since I'm in for some consequences and the like."
Frodo pulled him close and squirmed. "If you go on talking like that, I'll have no choice but to deal them."
"The pots, Samwise?" Aragorn called, a bit too tersely.
Frodo loosened his grip, sighing in frustration. Sam licked at his neck briefly and murmured, "You need your vittles, an' that's that."
Frodo slumped back, groaning softly. "If I last through the cooking."
"You will. Sleep a bit, Mr. Frodo." Sam laid him out with gentle authority, tucking his cloak and a spare blanket about him, leaving him with an all-too-delectable kiss.
Frodo stared at the razor-sharp shadows overhead, listening to the sound of Sam's voice mingling with Aragorn's, trying desperately not to think of it low and breathless in his ear. After considerable tossing and turning and no lack of resisting the urge to let his hands wander, Frodo curled up in a tight ball and let his eyes drift to an uneasy close. He had no idea how much time had passed by the time he roused to a light brush against his cheek.
"Supper," Sam announced quietly. Soft scrape of a plate being set to one side on the ground. Frodo struggled to sit up, making a blind pass at Sam's lips with his own. He met with a shoulder instead, which shook with hearty chuckling.
"I didn't mean me."
"Might as well have."
"There, there. Quit your grumping. Bread, sausage, a bit o' miruvor."
Frodo blinked, stilled. "I thought we were out of--"
"Shh," Sam whispered, grinning. He waved a flask, that, for all its sounding mostly empty, was music to Frodo's ears.
"Samwise Gamgee, well I never," Frodo gasped, making a grab for it.
Sam held it just out of his reach, chuckling. "Eat."
Frodo tilted his chin up stubbornly. "You, too, then."
"Oh, aye," Sam agreed heartily, settling himself beside Frodo, reaching for the plate. "More'n enough for two, and a good thing, too!"
They ate in comfortable silence. Frodo found that Sam was, as usual, far more correct about his hunger than he had been. When it came down to a few last sausages, Frodo paused. Sam had been holding back for him.
"Depriving yourself, Sam! What would your Gaffer say if he knew I let you?"
"You need it worse'n I, make no mistake."
Frodo skewered one of the remaining sausages warily, gulping it down. Sam finally buckled under the pressure of his gaze and did the same. Frodo cut the last with a neat swipe of his fork. A split second later, the plate sausage, and silverware went flying with a shattered clang. Frodo blinked, finding himself sprawled across Sam with a skittish Pippin half sprawled atop them both. Merry appeared a moment later, looming over them.
"What in Middle-earth was that all about, Pip?"
"H-Heard somethin'!" the youngest hobbit stammered against Frodo's chest, burrowing.
Sam shifted indignantly, tugging himself and Frodo from beneath Pippin even as Merry made a grab for him. "In a place like this, you hear plenty."
"Indeed you do, Pip," Merry admonished gently, tugging him to his feet.
Frodo recovered his wits enough to ask, "What did you hear, exactly?"
Pippin spun around, still trembling and eager to share. "Somethin' down in the rocks. It sounded...it sounded slimy, Merry," he whimpered, turning back to his best friend with a shudder.
Frodo glanced at Sam, who mouthed, Gollum? Frodo nodded and sighed, resting his head on Sam's shoulder. Merry patted Pippin reassuringly, but he was not so preoccupied as to deprive Sam and Frodo of a rakish grin.
"We've interrupted somethin', I see."
"Which you're particular experts at, if it happens to be sleep!"
"Oho, Sam Gamgee! Cousin Frodo hasn't got your tongue for once, I see--"
"I heard it again!" Pippin screeched, clinging to Merry's cloak, burying his face in the once-bright golden weskit.
Frodo shivered, pressing closer to Sam. "Perhaps we ought to move," he murmured.
"Agreed, and now," Merry announced, pushing a hysterical Pippin ahead of himself.
Frodo made as if to gather their things, but Sam held him until the others had made it back to the vicinity of their own bedding. Frodo relaxed into the embrace, turning his head to nuzzle at Sam's cheek.
"You think his mind's playing tricks on him, don't you?"
"I think he's hearin' things, aye," Sam confirmed. We're nowhere near the ledges, an' I doubt that no good slinker's got gall enough to creep up here, so long's we've a Wizard's staff and an Elf's bow for cover."
Frodo's lips twisted in amusement. "You're just afraid of our plans being foiled, aren't you?"
"Look who's tellin' it to who."
"You had to remind me?"
"Seems as you'd forgo--mmf."
Frodo tore his lips away after long, bruising seconds. "Ah, never..."
Sam didn't let his hands get very far. "There's some still awake, Mr. Frodo. I've a few more manners than all that, if you take my meaning."
"Some still awake?"
"Aye. Gimli's snorin', but your cousins haven't yet settled in. I reckon their playmate has, as I don't hear him raisin' any to-do with Strider. Gandalf's first on watch, an' I doubt that Elf ever takes so much as a wink."
Frodo sighed, leaning heavily. "There's nothing for it. Someone's going to hear, whether we like it or not."
"Whether you like it or not," Sam teased, breath hitching as Frodo found his earlobe again. "There's not a one of 'em going to hear this hobb--oh...I...think we should lay low a bit, Mr. Frodo, first..."
"Whatever you say," Frodo murmured innocently, slipping out of Sam's lap. He settled himself back on the cloak with his back turned, promptly closing his eyes. Frodo could practically hear Sam's jaw set itself, and it was all he could do to keep from a giggling fit. The urge subsided soon enough as Sam spooned resolutely behind him, tugging the blanket up.
"Unless you're still keen on that miruvor," Sam murmured, kissing the nape of his neck tenderly. "'Night, Mr. Frodo."
Frodo stiffened, feeling suddenly thirsty. "Sam..."
"I am, damn you."
Sam draped one leg lazily over Frodo's hip, aiming a careful kick somewhere in front of his foot. Sam's toenail scraped metal with a tinny, satisfying tap. Frodo shifted, caught between temptations of the worst sort.
"Yes, Mr. Frodo?"
Frodo twisted until they faced each other, shoving one thigh between Sam's with murderous intent.
"Wine," he breathed against Sam's chin, words giving way to a wanton suckle.
Sam didn't bother to respond. He wriggled free of his master's insistent limbs, crawling and fishing through the tangle of cloaks and blanket until he found the flask. He jerked it free of Frodo's grasp just in time.
"Not so fast."
"Promise me we'll sit tight just a bit longer."
"For pity's sake. All right."
Frodo grumbled good-naturedly at Sam's endearment, allowing himself to be tugged back into that comfortable lap. Sam uncapped the flask and placed it in his hands, smoothing a few curls back from his forehead.
Frodo hoped that his ecstatic mumble around a deep swig of the invigorating fluid passed as thanks. It seemed to suffice. He lowered the flask finally, gasping, wiping at his mouth with his sleeve. Sam tugged it immediately away, covering Frodo's mouth greedily with his own. Mmm. This was why Frodo had been so insistent. Yes, indeed. Wine and kisses, Elvish wine and kisses...
Sam's groan brought Frodo back to his senses. He breathed heavily against Sam's mouth, dimly realizing that he'd shifted to straddle Sam's waist, begun a comfortable, unhurried rhythm against Sam's belly. How good he felt, how--
"Now," Sam croaked, acknowledging defeat.
Frodo leaned in for another probing kiss. Yes. Wormed his hand between them, squeezed and prodded gently.
"Where, Sam?" Frodo breathed in his ear, still fondling. "Just tell me. We'll go."
"'Round the corner...just...grrh...somewhere..."
Frodo rose to his feet, chuckling, offering Sam a hand. "Meticulous planning, Master Gamgee."
"Which you make right difficult!"
Frodo pressed against him, wrapping a leg loosely around Sam's. "Mm, don't you mean hard?"
Frodo panted as Sam took a firm hold on his wrist, dragging him stealthily but urgently off around a turn in the tunnel they had emerged from earlier, not far from where the earth began its descent back into a downward slope. Sam pinned Frodo against the wall of rock, met with a whimper composed more of pleasure than protest.
"I may not be the one that needs punishing after all, Mr. Frodo, if you'll pardon my saying so, sir."
Frodo moaned, tugging Sam's hips hard into his own, parting his legs. "Don't care...!"
"I thought not."
Sam hitched Frodo up into his arms, sank slowly to the ground. They kissed for long, wild moments before Frodo caught Sam unaware, knocking him flat on his back, driving his entire body into their tongues' clashing frenzy.
"No, no, not yet," Frodo purred in his ear, fingers making short work of Sam's weskit and shirt. He slid his hands over bare flesh at last, moaning into Sam's mouth at the hot, sweet feel. Ah, it had been too long...
Sam whimpered and went limp at Frodo's touch, letting his master bend low to suckle his throat greedily, restless hands still stroking over his chest, his back, his sides, the gentle fingers burning streaks and spirals into his needy flesh. Frodo felt him writhe and did not hesitate to respond. He unbuttoned Sam's breeches, slipping one hand inside.
"Frodo...Frodo," Sam panted, head thrown back against the stone. He tossed beneath Frodo's firm stroking, almost as if he wished to break free. "Don't...not...yet!"
Frodo let up gradually, reluctant to let go of Sam. He bent to offer a puzzled, but languorous kiss. "Sam, mmm...but you love--"
"Want...t'see you 'fore I'm too blind to do otherwise!" Sam gasped.
"Easily done," Frodo murmured, sitting back astride Sam's hips.
Panting, Sam struggled to sit up, supporting himself heavily on his elbows, watching Frodo with glazed eyes. Frodo held his gaze for a moment before lowering his lids coyly, allowing one hand to begin unhurried progress down his own weskit's dow of buttons. Though he couldn't see, Sam's whine set a rush of tingling loose in his skin as the garment fell loose. Frodo shrugged out of it efficiently, allowing his eyes to drift open. Sam appeared not to have blinked. The only change was his lower lip caught tightly between his teeth. Frodo resisted the urge to lean forward and relieve him of the duty.
"Can you see me now?" he asked in a hushed, sultry tone instead, leaning forward just barely.
Sam shook his head curtly. "Not nearly good enough."
"Hum," Frodo murmured, pausing as if in deep thought.
"Bloody tease!" Sam rasped, jostling Frodo a bit with a snap of his hips.
Caught off guard, Frodo's breath caught on a yelp, which he somehow managed to swallow. "W-Well...all right, then...here." Frodo locked gazes with Sam and untucked his own shirt, moving on to the buttons of his trousers, too, without hesitation. He parted them and tilted his hips just enough, breathing shallowly. Sam's eyes widened, then snapped shut as his head fell back, words breaking on a high gasp.
"Are you...tryin'...to kill me?" Sam shifted his weight to one arm, reaching--
Frodo caught his hand just short of its goal, gritting his teeth. Eru. That touch would have been ecstasy, even in comparison to grinding himself against Sam's welcoming--
"Maybe," Frodo whispered, stumbling over the buttons of his shirt and letting it fall away, "and myself, too, while I'm at it--Sam. Open your eyes..."
Sam tilted his head back up, blinking hazily. His jaw dropped, worked soundlessly.
Frodo felt his own resolve crumbling as he wormed his way out of his sleeves, casting the shirt aside. "Sam, oh,, I--Sam?"
Frodo watched him blink once, twice. Reach with fingers more tremulous than ever before. Reach for his collarbone--
"Oh, Frodo," Sam breathed, something else creeping into his desire-thickened voice. "Where'd you get that?"
Frodo licked his lips and nodded, shifting impatiently.
And before he knew it, Frodo was crushed to Sam's heaving chest, his breath lost to a ravishing kiss. Oh. Sam's hands worked at the whisper-thin hem where it fell at his waist, tugging and grasping madly. Frodo shuddered as his mouth trailed from mouth to ear.
"I lied...when I said you looked like an Elf-prince before, Frodo, Frodo..."
"Is...Is that...so?" Frodo whimpered, wiggling against the hands playing about his waist.
"Mmhmmm, because I, I...should've saved it for now..."
Frodo closed his eyes, found blissful surrender in Sam's hands working their way gently up his back, trapped by shimmer and bell-like whisper, sliding through sweat and tremor. They found purchase at his shoulderblades, only to slide low again, fingertips raking. Frodo shuddered and choked.
"You called me a tease? Samwise!"
Without further hesitation, Sam hitched the mithril up just far enough, folding it back almost reverently before wrapping his legs tightly around Frodo.
"Like that?" he whispered in Frodo's ear, tongue invading eagerly.
Frodo groaned, lost himself to Sam's heated lapping, to his own frantic writhing. They ended it in a shaking, tangled heap, gasping, slick bellies heaving. Frodo parted his lips, murmuring. Sam's kiss washed over him like a prayer.
"Wish we could stay...right here," Frodo whispered, pressing his cheek to Sam's. Sam mumbled a lazy, incoherent reply.
"It would be wisest not to, Frodo Baggins. I suggest you return at your earliest convenience, and see to it you don't leave Mr. Gamgee behind."
Sam rolled Frodo over with a yelp, shielding him, even though the deep, rich chuckle and its owner had already retreated. He glared over his master's shoulder, positively seething. Frodo closed his eyes tightly, caught between the wish to melt into Sam entirely and the urge to laugh harder than reason. He held tight instead, waiting for Sam's tirade to break.
If he even dared unleash it upon a wizard.
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