West of the Moon
A Tolkien Fanfiction Archive
Towards the Sun
An afternoon on the roof of Bag End.
I am flying.
The wind snatches in my hair. It twists the individual curls abut each other, like the twining ribbons of many dancers at a May Pole. Pushing against my hips on either side are the knots that fasten the thick coarse ropes in my hands to the weathered plank on which I sit.
I am much too big for this swing.
It has been years now since I threw myself into the wind like this, and at first I had laughed at your suggestion to do so. Your eyes were so wide with excitement as we spoke of the old forgotten childhood plaything that still, remarkably, hung from the thick, nurturing branches of the tree above my home.
We had been quietly smirking to ourselves at our foolishness, but we climbed the hill regardless, hand in hand.
Then I had seen it, and it was like stepping back into a world I had known before the troubles of maturity rested upon my heart. I was young once more, and not a day had passed since that final evening, when I had bid childhood goodbye and resolved not to come back here.
I remembered how the grass was always more lush beneath the tree -it was deep and springy -moist and cool as dew in the morning. I had loved the way it felt between my toes -the way it felt on the backs of my arms, calves and neck.
Stepping forward, I took one thick rope in my hand and heard it creak and groan at the movement. I had always wondered at the way the swing spoke to me like this -like it's very ropes were alive and responding to the touch of my small hands curling anxiously about them.
These ropes had come all the way from Tighfield -from your Uncle Andy, your Gaffer had said long ago. So it was no surprise to me that they were still strong to your careful testing.
The swing had creaked happily in welcome as you lifted me and set me upon it. I laughed, my fingers curling about the coarse ropes -more easily than they once did. My heart suddenly filled with joy at the meeting of an old friend.
Now I hear your laughing voice, singing me a nonsense childhood song -no doubt one taught to you by my old cousin years ago. It is hard not to think of him in this magical place. The pitch of your song rises and falls in my ears as I soar back and forth towards the clouds.
I am flying.
Your warm, broad hands push firmly into my back, giving me gentle thrusts forward that set the wind soaring in my ears and my hair flicking about my face.
With every fall, I leave my heart behind somewhere in the air, only to catch it again as I soar back up.
I point my toes to the sky, already seeing, through the orange flare of nearing sunset, faint stars glowing like faraway lanterns -tiny rays of hope to guide a weary traveler home. But still, I feel the kiss of the sun; first flickering in dappled patches across my face, then covering my whole body in light as I soar forward and out of the tree's shade.
I let my head fall back as I arch down towards the earth once more and glance up at the strong bough above my head. I notice that there seem to be two deep cuts in the branch where the ropes are knotted. My already short breath catches in my throat. These seams in the bough were caused by the tree's bark continuing to grow and thicken over many years -regardless of what was tied there. In places, the rope is completely invisible, hidden by the meeting sides of the trench in the bark. It looks as though the branch has turned molten and oozed over the ropes, only to harden once more.
I can't help but smile. Life will keep on living. Always, it is continuing around us. We are powerless to tame it, and should not try to.
But of course, you know that better than any. Your hands give more life and love than the vast branches of this tree give protection to the lush grass beneath.
I become aware of your voice once more, now singing a carefree sweethearts tune -one known the Shire wide. The deep, resonating tones of your voice mix with the rush of the wind in my ears. The warm, swift press of your hands into my back spread heat to every part of my body, save my face, washed chill with every fresh burst of air as I soar towards the sun.
I am flying.
Below me, far, far down on earth, through the blur of rolling green and grey, I can see two curling ribbons. One -the road- branches off at many tiny intersections, winding it's way from home and hearth to the market, the inn, to adventure in the wild. The other is singular -the Water -an untamed silver serpent powerful enough to cut through the very landscape itself.
Wind separates my curls at the back of my head, touching coolly at the nape of my neck as I descend, only to fall against the strong push of your palms once again. The heat that surges through me at that contact leaves me wanting more -wanting something that even this touch of sky cannot contend with.
I soar up again, but suddenly, I feel like I have flown past the sun, and have left it behind. My hands tighten, and I hear my voice choke your name. I am a little startled by the panic I hear in it.
I curl my legs down to probe blindly for the earth beneath me. I have not left it after all. In fact, I can reach it a lot easier than I once remember. My toes cut trenches in the moist grass as they tear through, searching for a foothold.
And there you are, my sun, gripping the ropes in your strong, capable hands -taming this wild creature, this ancient friend, this temptress of another world.
My breath is coming in sharp gasps as you finally wrestle the swing motionless and step close behind me until my back presses against your front. Your hand settles upon my shoulder and I ear your voice, close to my ear, "alright me love?"
I tilt my face back to look at you, and realise I am still smiling, my heart pounding hard in my chest.
I have touched the sky. I have risen above the clouds and mingled with the stars, but none of that compares with being here, seeing your eyes glinting golden brown at me in the fading afternoon light.
I whisper your name and you smile, spreading your life giving warmth through my entire body.
I am flying.
I lift my hand to tangle in your hair, tugging you gently down towards my mouth, tilted up and presented to you. Briefly, I catch a glimpse of your smile before your warm and willing lips are on mine.
Your tongue, hot and silky entwining with mine quickens my pulse and takes my breath faster than any touch of the sky.
Tumbling from my perch, somehow I find you pressed beneath me, your honest eyes telling me all of your desire.
Moisture from the earth rises up to kiss my palms where they are pressed deep into the grass at either side of your head. Likely you can feel the same dampness on your back and behind, seeping into your clothes. This seems of little importance to you, however, as your hand raises to the back of my neck, drawing me irresistibly down to feel your lips touch soft and hot against mine once more.
I fall willingly into your kiss, fingers threading to clench in your hair as your hands slide over my back, pressing me close.
I am flying.
You have my heart, love. Always, you have held it in your warming embrace, nurturing my soul and my desires with your sunlight.
I loose myself in your touch, not knowing where I cease to be and you begin. We are one. One body, one heart, existing in our own patch of sky. You are the sun, and I am the moon, and when we kiss we send the stars wheeling in a burst of light.
We are flying.
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