West of the Moon
A Tolkien Fanfiction Archive
Love and patience are the truest healers of all, particularly in the hands of Samwise Gamgee.
Samwise Gamgee had long ago grown accustomed to waking with Mr. Frodo's fingers tangled in his hair. Next to his sleeping master's breath warming the curve of his cheek or the hollow of his throat, the lazy press of those snugly tangled digits was his most favorite sensation in the world. Especially since it had come to serve the purpose of reassuring him that Frodo was alive.
Sam shifted and yawned, snug beneath the combined weight of lingering sleep and the hobbit drowsing tranquilly in his arms. Sam tilted his head to one side, just enough to inhale the soft, clean scent of the dark curls tucked beneath his chin. Frodo did not stir. Sam gave a pleased sigh, sliding his hands up to Frodo's shoulders from where they rested at the small of his back.
Alive. Much too frail, much too spent, but alive. With eyes still closed, Sam lingered over Frodo's right shoulderblade, rubbing a gentle circle with his fingertips. How deep, he wondered, had the Morgul blade truly gone? Deep enough. Enough that Frodo had been locked in cold, piercing agony for days. Enough that he had spent a full four of them unconscious, even under Lord Elrond's care. Enough that he had been insensate of Sam's constant vigil.
Sam opened his eyes, lest he succumb to the sting of tears. Even through a heated blur, the ceiling was magnificent. Whiter than a star, more delicate than a shell, those arches, that scrollwork. Lords and maidens with faces perhaps to rival the fine features nestled at the curve of his neck, if only they drew breath. Sam closed his eyes again and swallowed.
Less than a day ago he had entered that very room and seen Frodo propped up on one elbow, blinking at him, blue eyes clear and open wide though set in bruised darkness. What longing had shone there, he could not fulfill. Not when Frodo had scarcely risen. Not while Gandalf and Elrond had looked on, watching as Sam had faltered for joy and clasped his master's hand. It was several minutes before they had subsided--endless minutes, by Sam's reckoning. But, ah, the moment they had gone: Frodo's cry met his own in a desperate melding of lips and hands. Fingers tangled in his hair.
Sam had eased them apart, bid Frodo simply rest for long moments in his arms until his breathing fell even and sleep took him once more. One hour, a second, a third. Sam had not slept a wink. By the time Frodo had awakened a second time, the pillow was damp with tears. Begging kisses, begging presses. No, no, my dear master. Sam had patiently helped him to dress. Through strained, wishful glances; through winces drawn out by the gentlest touches. It had been the best thing, then, to find Merry and Pippin. To find Bilbo.
Sam breathed in, parting his lips in Frodo's silken hair. Oh, he had missed the feel, the taste. How difficult it had been to watch Frodo, despite his elated reunion. Sam had hovered a ways off, wishing, wanting. Longing to reach out and thread his fingers through those tousled curls again. As if in answer to his constant gaze, Frodo had now and then turned his head. Pursed his lips in a faint smile, biting his lower one impatiently. As if to say, as he sat with the elder hobbit's book in his lap--Oh, you know Bilbo!
And then had come the bells, startling them all. Clean, resonant pealing through the bone-pale halls, a call to joyous feasting in the Ringbearer's honor. Frodo himself had eaten little and tired quickly, even in the company of such as Aragorn and Arwen garbed in full splendor. Sam dearly wished he could have rescued his master from the dwarves' tireless (and almost indecipherable) chatter, but he had remained dutifully in his place with Merry and Pippin. Who had not made his impatience any simpler to bear, considering their free rein with each other. Sam had kept his eyes on his plate and his chair pulled in to the point of discomfort. If there was anything in which he trusted Tooks and Brandybucks least of all--specifically the ones on hand--it was in keeping their toes to themselves.
How welcome that moment had been, Frodo turning to catch his eye from the high table as if to say, I have had my fill of this chatter, and not enough of yours! Dining had winded down to content nibbling at various cakes and delights, to tipsy laughter and tales from the languid to the lewd. Sam had wended his way patiently through all of this, to press trembling hands to his master's shoulders.
"Do you need anything, Mr. Frodo?" Sam averted his eyes, bent possessively so that his lips nearly brushed Frodo's hair. The dwarf next to Frodo watched with entirely too much interest.
Frodo started a bit at his touch, then relaxed immediately at the sound of his voice. "Yes, Sam. To retire. I'm quite finished and not a little faint."
"Begging your pardon then, sir," Sam addressed the dwarf with a nod, neither impolite, nor lacking a proper dose of coldness. The dwarf nodded, grunted, and slurped his mead.
Frodo rose at Sam's bidding, turning with a grateful look. "Good evening."
In all of ten minutes, they had found their way back to Frodo's sheets and wasted no time becoming carefully tangled in them. After long, breathless minutes, Frodo lay nodding, clasped tenderly to Sam's breast. The gardener sighed, ran gentle fingertips back and forth over Frodo's flushed, parted lips.
"Sam, I...oh, wanted!...I just--"
Sam pressed down gently. "Hush, now. We tried, and you're not up to it. Simple as that, Mr. Frodo. I'd be happy as anything to just lie and kiss you till the Entwives come home."
Frodo turned his face against Sam's bare chest and gasped a short laugh. "Then whyever did you stop?"
"You'd never have gotten that yawn in edgewise." Sam grunted at Frodo's sharp poke.
"You shouldn't have let me!"
"You need your rest, and no mistake."
"I'd rather I didn't," Frodo sighed heavily, nuzzling at Sam's breastbone.
"Close your eyes, master, dear," Sam murmured, tugging the sheets over them after making sure the loose robe he'd draped around Frodo covered him securely. "Your Sam'll be here in the morning."
Frodo yawned, burrowed close. "I know, Sam. I know."
"Ah, me love," Sam whispered.
Frodo was already asleep.
Sam opened his eyes with a start, felt Frodo's weight lighten and shift. "Oh..." He ran his fingers over Frodo's cheek, felt a yawn and sleepy nuzzling against his ear.
"I'm here," Sam murmured, running his fingers up the back of Frodo's neck, burying them in his hair.
Frodo trembled. Sam exhaled and slid his arms low about his master's waist. Frodo lifted his head, turned it till their lips brushed. Sam forgot to breathe as one delicate hand crept to stroke his cheek.
"You slept like a stone," Frodo whispered, delving in for a kiss without warning. Sam whimpered into his mouth, tonguing eagerly. Frodo pulled away and gasped against his cheek, "But I couldn't, not for some time." Frodo mouthed a damp trail to Sam's other ear, nipping lazily. "Your dreams," he whispered, stretching so that their bodies slid for a moment in one long, languorous caress, "distracted me, Sam."
Sam clutched at Frodo, breathing again, but with difficulty. "D--Did they, sir?"
Frodo shifted and pressed himself into Sam's belly. "Yes."
Sam stifled a whimper. "Sir... begging your pardon, but... you're... are you sure--"
Frodo pressed again, tucking his chin over Sam's shoulder, moaning into the pillow.
Sam's hands clenched involuntarily at the backs of Frodo's thighs. "Me too," he said in a thin whisper.
"Mmh," Frodo responded, turning his head to nip at Sam's ear drowsily, fingers working their way down his sides.
"Frodo," Sam whispered, shivering as he tugged Frodo's robe up clumsily to bunch about his waist.
Frodo's teeth closed briefly on Sam's earlobe, tongue swiping clumsily as he mumbled, "I missed you. I missed..."
"This," Sam murmured, rolling them to one side, stroking up Frodo's back beneath the fine fabric, reaching with his free hand to loosen the garment.
Frodo gasped, claimed him for another lazy, burning kiss. His hand crept to Sam's belly, groping till it found heat to hold. "This."
Sam quivered and broke away, cupping Frodo against his own pale stomach. "But I don't miss the dark, or the cold, or havin' to keep quiet," he confessed in a husky whisper, nipping Frodo's ear in turn.
"Sam," Frodo whimpered, pushing against Sam's splayed fingers. "Sam--"
"Here, now," Sam whispered, gripping him securely. Shaking, Frodo pressed his face back into the curve of Sam's neck, moving in slightest counterpoint, his breath snagging on jagged cries.
Sam eased Frodo's trembling fingers away from himself and rolled him onto his back, completely absorbed in his loving task.
"And...this," Frodo gasped when he was able, teeth grazing Sam's shoulder at intervals. His breathing steadily grew less even, and before long, Sam felt one slender leg hook his waist, anchoring thrusts rising to meet Frodo's breath.
"Missed you!" Sam laced a trail of frantic kisses from shoulder to shoulder along Frodo's collarbone, earning a few unintelligible stammers that he would nonetheless never forget for the sheer urgency behind them. And his thoughts fled when Frodo pulled taut, tugged his hand away as Sam had done with his own, and writhed his way beneath Sam's hovering body.
"Want you," Frodo panted, wrapping both legs tight, "like this."
Never before had Sam descended the spiral so fast. Hips clashed first, then mouths. Frodo held him tightly, shaking with a great effort.
"Don't do that," Sam chided, breathless, thrusting as firmly as he dared. "Doesn--mmm--matt--"
"It does!" Frodo grunted, meeting Sam with a last push.
With that, Sam was gone. Simply glowing--simply being--at that same precipice--at that same knowing--
The thought burst in Sam, through the sweat, through the fractured, plaintive sound of Frodo's release. Through the feel of his own, and his own. He stifled a cry in Frodo's hair.
And so am I!
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