West of the Moon
A Tolkien Fanfiction Archive
Inset fic for the Tol Eressean Tales. Frodo laments the elves' lack of enthusiasm for his favourite party game. Sam makes it all better. Legolas and Gimli are perplexed... as usual.
This story was written for the hobbit_smut
Livejournal Community "Games Hobbits Play" Challenge.
Part the First
"The elves aren't terribly good at parties, are they?" remarked Sam, as he and Frodo headed home late one night after Bilbo's 'Welcome Home, Erestor' party; the star guest having elected to remain behind in Middle-earth for a few years after Elrond's departure in order to effect a smooth handover of administrative responsibility in Rivendell and thus being a recent arrival in the Blessed Realm.
"I'm afraid not," lamented Frodo, "though Bilbo certainly did his best to keep things moving."
"Mr Bilbo was the best organiser of party games in the Shire," observed Sam, shaking his head, "but here..."
"... they just don't seem to have a clue, do they?" sighed Frodo. "I wonder why?"
"No imagination, that's the problem," said Sam. "Look at 'Sardines' - every single time we started a new round they all got into the same bloomin' cupboard."
"The same thing happened with 'Musical Chairs'," agreed Frodo. "When the music stopped the whole lot of them tried to sit on the same chair."
"Aye," said Sam, "then we were left with a broken chair and this big heap of elves all bickering about who was sitting on whose hair."
"The only one who seemed to understand that you were supposed to sit on an untaken chair was Gimli," said Frodo. "Unless he was just trying to protect his beard!"
"Problem is," said Sam, "they do tend to take things rather literally. I thought we were going to have a right bloodbath on our hands when Bilbo told them to get into pairs for the three-legged race and when he suggested a game of 'In and Out the Dusty Bluebells' they all glared at me as if I'd been criticising Yavanna's horticultural skills."
"To be fair, it wasn't just the elves who took things seriously," Frodo pointed out. "Despite Gimli's earlier display of common sense, I doubt that Bilbo was expecting a quick turn of 'The Brandywine Bridge is Falling Down' to result in a half-hour lecture on structural engineering."
"True," said Sam, "though the scale model of the pontoon bridge that he made out of chives and breadsticks was fair impressive. I think I'll have to offer to build him a water feature so that he can overwhelm Legolas with his talent."
"At least Gimli's lecture had some educational value - unlike Gandalf's novel reinterpretation of 'Blind Istar's Buff'," said Frodo, with a slight shudder.
"Educational value or not, I don't think anyone's going to forget that in a hurry, and no mistake," said Sam.
"Oh, the party was certainly memorable, that's not in question, but I just hate to think of Bilbo feeling a failure," said Frodo, sadly. "He got very fond of Erestor while he was living in Imladris and I can't bear to think of him thinking that he'd ruined his homecoming party."
"It wasn't all bad - Elrond and Celebrķan did seem to enjoy 'Hide and Seek'," offered Sam, encouragingly, "even though it would have been better if they'd hidden under Mr Bilbo's bed, rather than in it."
"Or, have been a little quieter and stiller," added Frodo. "Mind you, 'Pin the Tail on the Oliphant' went quite well, though I have to wonder exactly where they were concealing all those longbows. I certainly didn't see them when they arrived."
"No more did I," said Sam, "mighty tricksy folks these elves, but you have to admit that they do have great aim. That tailless Oliphant was certainly good and dead by the time they'd finished with him."
By that time they had reached the door to the smial and headed inside. Frodo was still looking glum and Sam, worried that he was fretting about more than just Bilbo's reputation as a host, asked him if anything else was troubling him.
"They didn't play my favourite game at all," replied Frodo, mournfully.
"And which game would that be, Sir?" asked Sam.
"'Pass the Parcel'," replied Frodo. "Would you care to have a quick game right here?"
"What?" said Sam, "with no parcel and just the two of us? Don't seem like much of a game to me."
"We only need the two of us, and the parcel I want to unwrap is right here," replied Frodo, placing a palm upon Sam's sturdy chest.
"Well," said Sam, "if you put it like that..."
"I certainly do," said Frodo, slipping open the buttons on Sam's waistcoat one by one and sliding it off of his shoulders. "Layer one!" he exclaimed triumphantly as it hit the floor. "Why don't we retire to somewhere more comfortable before I tackle the rest?"
Taking Sam by the hand, he led the way into their bedroom and pushed him down upon the waiting bed before joining him there.
"Mmmm... that's better," he said as he began to attack the buttons on Sam's shirt and explore the skin below. "One of the lovely things about Pass the Parcel is that some of the layers have little presents hidden in them," he murmured as he nuzzled at Sam's nipple and teased it erect.
"Of course some of the layers also have forfeits," added Sam, slightly breathlessly.
"Forfeits?" queried Frodo, pausing reluctantly from his task, "such as what?"
"Such as having to unwrap the next layer with your teeth," suggested Sam with a wicked twinkle in his eye.
"Mmmm..." said Frodo, his mouth travelling down Sam's belly toward the buttons on his breeches, "could be tricky."
"I have every confidence in your skill," said Sam, encouragingly.
"I always was good at tongue-twisters," agreed Frodo, though his dexterity was slightly lessened by the fact that Sam was by now pushing up into the slightest pressure.
Finally freeing the last button, Frodo peeled back the flap with his teeth and nudged Sam's smallclothes out of the way with his nose. "I think I've found my present," he murmured, circling the tip of it with his tongue. "Of course, sometimes when you finally get to the present you discover that it's just begging to be hidden away again."
All Sam could manage in reply was, "ahhhh," as the warm wetness of Frodo's mouth enveloped him for a moment before retreating.
"Would you like me to wrap that up again for you?" murmured Frodo, his cool breath whispering gently over Sam's heat.
"Oh, please," moaned Sam, and was rewarded by another slow descent and the soft brush of curls against his thigh before Frodo's tongue trailed back up towards the head where it flickered teasingly across the tiny slit, lapping at the bead of moisture that had gathered there.
"Hoy!" said Sam, his hips questing upwards a trifle desperately, "I thought we were done with the party games!"
"But it's my prize, and I worked so very hard to win it!" protested Frodo, drawing back even further and batting his eyelashes innocently at Sam - a look that was rather spoiled by the fact that he was also licking his lips like a dwarf who'd found the mithril mother lode. "Surely I'm allowed to revel in my good fortune?"
But Sam's patience was nearly done and he muttered: "I hate to tell you this, but the game was rigged," before twining his fingers into Frodo's dark curls and urging him downwards. Frodo finally took the hint and drew Sam deep, swallowing around him and moving with Sam's increasingly desperate thrusts until he cried out in release.
Leaving a final kiss upon Sam's belly, Frodo drew back from the bed and let his eyes roam over its sated occupant with proprietary pleasure. "Why, Sam," he said, bending forward and taking hold of the bottom of Sam's trousers, "lovely though you are all half-unwrapped, I think I'd like to see the rest of your charms." Sam obligingly raised his hips and was soon divested of the offending garment.
"What about this?" he queried, fingering the collar of his open shirt.
"I think I'll leave that," said Frodo, his head tilted to one side, "it frames the view so nicely."
"And what about yours?" queried Sam. "It don't seem fair that I'm all unwrapped while you're still packaged tight."
"Would you like to do the job?" asked Frodo.
"Oh, it'd be no job, but I think I'll just watch and admire," said Sam. "You are so very good at it, after all."
Frodo smiled mischievously and his fingers moved to his shirt, releasing each button with maddening slowness, before trailing down to the next. After what seemed like an eternity, he slipped both shirt and waistcoat off of his shoulders and turned to perch upon the edge of the bed. Extending his arms back towards Sam, he asked: "A little help here, if you please."
Sam dutifully crawled forward, undid Frodo's cuffs and pulled on his sleeves, taking off shirt and waistcoat together as Frodo stood. Turning back to face Sam, Frodo's hands rested upon his waistband: "More?" he asked.
"I can never have too much of the sight of you, Frodo-love," said Sam, truthfully, "though I'd like it better if you were to make a little haste."
Shaking his head and tutting, Frodo responded: "Patience, Sam, patience. A gift is enjoyed all the more when you've waited for it." But, nevertheless, he made more speed on these buttons than he had on the previous ones, despite the slight but noticeable tremble in his fingers. Then, edging his breeches and smallclothes past his hips, he shimmied them down and stepped out, moving within Sam's reach as he did so. Seeing this, Sam made a grab for Frodo's hand, tugged sharply, with a cry of: "Come here, you!" and tumbled the pair of them back onto the bed. A few seconds later, Frodo was plastered against Sam, his arousal pressed tightly against Sam's thigh. "If you happened to have a present that needs packing away, I could suggest somewhere safe and snug for it," said Sam, hopefully.
"Mmmm, how very thoughtful, " said Frodo, "but I believe that it could do with a little attention before it's... buried out of sight."
"Aye well, it's a pretty piece and no mistake, much like the rest of the package," agreed Sam, rolling over so that he could get a better view. He moved again so that he was straddling Frodo and reached out for the bottle on the nightstand. "Though," he added, pouring a little oil into his palm, "it's looking a mite tarnished. You shouldn't be thinking of giving it to anyone in that state." Reaching down he stroked along the length, coating it with the slick fluid. "There," he said, "the polish is on, so I reckon I should make haste and do a bit of buffing." Then, after preparing himself with the remnants, Sam settled himself down.
"Oh, Sam," groaned Frodo, driving himself deeper into Sam's warmth, "you are so very diligent when it comes to the household chores. What would I do without you?"
"Aye, well," said Sam, who was beginning to work up a pleasant friction, "I reckon the world needs two sorts of people, them whose talents lie in unwrapping the parcels and t'others who are good at making sure everything is put to rights afterwards. Seems to me that we fit together like hand in glove."
Frodo's fingers moved down his own stomach to coil around Sam's re-awakening desire. "My hand," he whispered, stroking upward before releasing it to travel down to where the pair of them were joined, "your glove."
Sam captured Frodo's hand and held it tight with both of his as he rode the pair of them towards oblivion. "Ohhh..." he cried, as he felt himself flooded with the heat of Frodo's release, "good things do come in small packages."
With the last of his breath, Frodo murmured, "not so much with the small!"
Part the Second
Elsewhere on Tol Eressėa another pair were heading home through the deepening shadows, Gimli weaving just a little, mainly due to the fact the he and Sam had consumed the entire barrel of beer that he had brought along as a donation to the festal board between them and Sam, as one of the hosts, hadn't had nearly as many opportunities to indulge himself as had Gimli.
"That was a wonderful party," remarked Legolas, "and it was so nice to see Erestor after all these years. I think he'll be a real asset on the social circuit if he inspires a celebration like tonight's."
"Aye," said Gimli, slightly breathlessly - due to the fact that he was having difficulties keeping up with the way that Legolas was bouncing along, particularly given the amount of ironmongery that he was wearing, "and Bilbo... what an imaginative host!"
"I'm not quite sure which game was my favourite," pondered Legolas, "the one where we saw how fast we could get into that cupboard or the one where we tried to find out how many elves could sit on a single chair."
"They wouldn't let me join in with the chair one," mourned Gimli, "said I weighed too much."
"No," said Legolas, patting him heartily on the back and then wishing he hadn't, "but you were a great asset on the cupboard one. There's nothing like a dwarf for getting into small, dark places..." he grinned at Gimli, "... unless, of course, it's a hobbit!"
Gimli shuddered to the accompaniment of a slight melodic tinkling sound and took a swig from the hip flask he had been concealing about his person. "Don't you go spoiling a good evening with talk like that, elf boy."
"Sorry," said Legolas, unrepentantly, "couldn't resist."
"Aye, well it's a good job you didn't say that before Bilbo paired us together in the 'Hack The Leg Off Your Partner' race - I've got a nice axe here that hasn't been used on anything fleshy for far too long!"
"Maybe you could use it to get rid of some of those Dusty Bluebells that Bilbo was going on about," quipped Legolas, "they sound awfully gloomy."
"They sound like Morgul flowers to me," growled Gimli. "I can't imagine why Bilbo would think they might grow here."
"Perhaps Sam's been experimenting again," suggested Legolas, "after all, he did frightfully well at introducing those hops."
"Hops are useful," said Gimli with a loud hiccup as if to drive the point home, "dusty bluebells are not, particularly if there's the inevitable hobbit make-out session going on in the middle of them."
Hoping to change the subject, Legolas offered: "It was nice of Bilbo to give us a chance to have a rest by introducing that lecture for you. I think you impressed everyone, especially with the bridge. You'll have to have a word with Sam about putting a moat around our home so you can build us a real one of our own."
"That would be good," agreed Gimli. "Pontoon bridges have always fascinated me. The trick is in making sure that there's sufficient buoyancy to support both the bridge and dynamic loads."
"Dynamic loads?" queried Legolas.
"Things bouncing up and down," explained Gimli.
Gimli fell silent for a minute, gazing thoughtfully into the middle distance, before Legolas snapped, "No, absolutely not."
"What?" said Gimli, feigning innocence.
"I know what you were thinking, and I'm not having it," said Legolas.
"I can't imagine what you're talking about," muttered Gimli, somewhat shiftily.
Legolas turned and, placing his hands firmly on his hips, bent forward and eyeballed him. "You are not going to get Frodo and Sam to test the bridge!"
"Actually," said Gimli, shrugging, "after this evening's display I was thinking about asking Elrond. Bilbo's bed was practically bouncing across the room."
Legolas sought for an excuse. "Maybe he thought it was a bed-racing game?"
"If he did," said Gimli, "then it's a pity that he didn't manage to mow Gandalf down before he got rid of that fourth layer of robes. Gandalf the Pink and Wrinkly very nearly put me off of my ale." Legolas nodded in agreement. "Mind you," continued Gimli, "it didn't seem to throw your aim. That was some fine shooting you did in the oliphant killing contest."
By that time they had reached the rather impressive doors to their home and Legolas noticed that Gimli was becoming increasingly unsteady on his feet. While he managed to negotiate his way into his bedroom, it swiftly became apparent that he was totally incapable of getting his chain mail off by himself. Legolas knew to his cost that if he didn't do something about it then Gimli would simply go to sleep in the chain mail - and he also knew who would have to get the resulting marks out of the bedclothes.
"Come on, old friend," he said, heartily, "let's get you out of this lot."
"I'm not having you undressing me, elf," slurred Gimli. "You might try to take advantage."
"I think you're mistaking me for a hobbit," said Legolas as he wrestled with the buckles on Gimli's leather surcoat. "Now stop squirming. The sooner we get this done, the sooner my hands are out of your clothes." He finally got the buckles undone and peeled the topmost garment off, leaving Gimli in his chain mail vest. Standing back for a moment to consider how best to tackle the offending garment, he surprised a vaguely melancholy look on his dwarf friend's face.
"What's the matter?" he asked.
"Oh," said Gimli, "it's just that this reminds me of a game we used to play back in the Blue Mountains when I was young and my beard was but a pale and wispy shadow upon my jaw."
"What was the game?" asked Legolas, gesturing that Gimli should raise his hands above his head.
"It was called 'Pass the Parcel'," replied Gimli, smiling nostalgically as he complied. "Great fun."
"How did you play it?" asked Legolas, tugging the mail shirt off over Gimli's head.
Once Gimli had emerged from the metal prison, he explained: "On your coming of age you would visit all of the armourers and they would donate a chain mail vest. The only thing was that you had to wear it out of the shop and you couldn't take it off before you visited the next one. The amount of mail you collected depended upon how much you could wear and still walk. Then you'd go to your celebration and the guests would remove a layer each to take home and you kept the first and best layer for your coming of age present."
"So you were a bit like some sort of wonderful walking parcel?" asked Legolas.
"More like a staggering parcel by the end of it," said Gimli, "but aye, that's the gist of it."
Starting on the ties of Gimli's gambeson, Legolas suddenly started to smirk. Upon seeing the expression, Gimli snapped: "What's so funny?"
Straightening up, Legolas' smirk became a full-blown grin. "Can you imagine how the hobbits would play it?"
Gimli frowned. "I'm trying very hard not to. I would prefer to preserve my childhood memories intact."
The grin rapidly became giggles, prompting a "what?" from Gimli.
"Oh, nothing," replied Legolas, who was now only able stay upright by hanging on to Gimli's not too steady shoulder, "just that you could say that small things come in good packages!"
It was fortunate that Gimli's aim was affected by the amount of alcohol in his blood, and his range of movement by the clinging elf, or Legolas probably wouldn't have survived to tell the tale - which he did on as many occasions as possible.
Blissfully unaware of the scurrilous, if not entirely inaccurate, statements being made elsewhere, the two hobbits lay curled together. Their hands drifted languidly over each others' bodies in slow exploration until Frodo, his hands delving lower, made a pleasant discovery.
"Why Sam," he said with delight, "you're just the gift that keeps on giving!"
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