West of the Moon
A Tolkien Fanfiction Archive
The Black Widow
Frodo bravely saves Fatty from a fate worse than Shelob. Nearly. This fic was written for the Hobbit Smut Livejournal community "What Dreams May Come" challenge.
Summary: Frodo bravely saves Fatty from a fate worse from Shelob. Nearly.
"Fatty's as good as dead," said Merry. "We have to do something."
Frodo stopped mid-reach and put the sugared scone down. "Dead? What has he done?"
"The Black Widow," said Merry. "Several times, at least."
"She's got him in her toils, Frodo. Wrapped him in her web. Spun him into - "
"You can stop the analogies, Merry, I do understand what you're saying."
Merry flicked crumbs off his striped satin waistcoat. "Good. Because with three husbands buried and her no more than forty-two, you should be concerned about Fatty. Now she's got hold of him. He succumbed to her once, Frodo, and thinks he's honour-bound to wed her now."
"That's not a nice thing to hint about a female, and a widow," Frodo said severely.
"My dear Frodo, you know I like lasses. I respect them to the utmost. But we are talking about Pansy Pinktoes. Don't you think it a little strange that all her husbands popped off in succession?"
"Meriadoc Brandybuck, if you're suggesting poison - "
"No! Put the poker down, please. She's not that sort at all. No, Pansy thinks she's cursed, the poor sweet lass. She doesn't realise what she's done to them."
Frodo sighed, and flicked through his book. "What did she do? Feed them too much?"
"No," said Merry. "She was just too enthusiastic in the bedroom."
"Frodo, you dear innocent. She's mad for it. Lusty as a rabbit in springtime. Not that it's a bad way to go, but she has this habit of picking older hobbits, and those with a fair bit of wealth about them. Coincidence maybe, but they've all snuffed it in her bed."
"Good - gracious," said Frodo. "It has to be coincidence."
"Why, Frodo? One and one makes two. And Pansy plus a husband equals a headstone. Fatty's doomed."
"Are you sure?"
Frodo chewed his lip. "This is not good."
"No, Frodo. It isn't."
"What about Pansy, then? If she thinks she's cursed, she might not want to marry again."
"She's hoping Fatty will break it, apparently. And how is he going to resist? One look at that heaving bosom of hers and those gold-dusted curls, and he'll be randy as a dog."
Frodo's eyebrow quirked at him across the parlour table. "It's lucky you're immune to her, then."
Merry squirmed. "Ah, well. Estella did promise to murder me herself if she caught me looking her way. I do enjoy being alive."
"Well." Frodo considered. "Fatty's young and hale - maybe he will survive a marriage with her. It shouldn't be for us to destroy their happiness."
"I've thought about that. But Fatty's not in love with her. He was all but betrothed to Nasturtia Brownlock, before he got involved with Pansy. Poor Nasturtia's devastated. And Pansy's head will be turned by another lad in a moment, given half the chance."
"It seems a hopeless situation."
His cousin bounced forward on the sofa. "But it isn't. All we have to do is find another lad to distract Pansy, and convince her to break off the engagement."
"If it's that simple, why haven't you done it?"
"Ahem. Well. Pansy doesn't trust me. Never did, since we were tweens and I poured that pot of glue over her head. No, she needs a talk from a respectable gentlehobbit. Such as yourself."
"I'm not sure I can convince her."
"Think of Fatty, Frodo. It's the least you can do."
Frodo dropped his book onto the table. "All right. I'll do it. But I can't promise it will work."
"Well done, Frodo!" said Merry. "Just try, that's all I ask. And if you succeed, I for one will be very grateful." He leaned forward and kissed Frodo soundly on the lips.
"Careful," Frodo murmured. "You don't want Estella murdering you twice."
"Oh, she wouldn't do that. She says if I wasn't around, she'd have you with bells on."
Why that wasn't "too enthusiastic" Frodo didn't know. But if Merry Brandybuck feared Pansy Pinktoes, she must be formidable indeed.
Pansy lived in a pretty smial on the outskirts of Hobbiton, neatly furnished by her succession of husbands. Frodo knocked on the rose-bowered door and stood in the sunshine listening to geese and chickens quarrel in the yard. Quite an idyllic spot, really.
The door opened and the golden curls, abundant bosom and pretty blue eyes of Pansy welcomed her visitor. "Frodo Baggins!" she exclaimed. "I've just baked a batch of scones, what perfect timing."
Frodo bowed. "That sounds lovely," he said. "I am feeling a bit peckish."
"Oh good," she breathed, and dragged him in.
Frodo sat in one of the chairs provided. "Ahm. How's Fatty?"
"Oh, he's sweet. Rather nervous about the wedding and everything, but he's not been married before, so it's understandable. I'm going to get a new dress, I do like new things, couldn't bear to bring any bad luck to another marriage, you know." Pansy slathered generous helpings of honey and cream onto the scones, and sucked a honey-drenched finger. "Has he asked you to be his best hobbit?"
"No, I haven't seen him for a week or two," Frodo admitted. "Er... are you sure about this marriage, Pansy?"
Pansy's pink lip quivered a little. "Fatty's a very dear hobbit, and I think he'll be good to me."
Frodo put out his hand and covered Pansy's. "Yes, I'm sure he would be too," he said kindly. "But he's... he's... well, there doesn't seem to be a kinder way to put this. He was promised to another before he became involved with you, Pansy. He'd never admit it to you, but he may be making a mistake."
Pansy wilted. "Oh. Oh my." Her blue eyes filled up, and Frodo felt like a beast. He hated to see any lass cry. "There, there," he said gently. "Pansy, you deserve a fine, loving husband, but Fatty may not be right for you. I'm sorry to interfere."
"No - no. You're doing the right thing. You always do, Frodo, you always were a darling." Pansy swiped at her lashes.
Frodo produced a handkerchief. "Here. I can't leave you in this state, are any of your friends around?"
She blew her nose. "I shall be all right, just by myself. I'm not a weakling, I'll have you know. It's just that I did like him so." She dabbed at her eyes. "I'll wash your handkerchief. Now," she bravely. "Please eat up. I'd hate these scones to go to waste."
Frodo bit half-heartedly into a scone. "Perhaps I should go."
Pansy choked, half-laughing. "I suppose you should. I must look a fright now, bawling at elevenses."
"You look fine."
Pansy stood up and dusted off her apron. "It's a shame this was a short visit, you must come again."
"Certainly." Frodo got up too, and in his haste knocked the tray of scones. "Oh, blast!" he said, as they tumbled to the floor.
"Oh, there, it's not your fault," Pansy protested. She dived to the floor with him, picking them up. "They're not all ruined, look, this one isn't so bad."
Frodo, on his hands and knees, collected the last scone and looked up into a deep cleavage, a pair of rosy lips, and lovely, melting eyes.
Pansy may have moved forward first, but he didn't resist when she kissed him. Hard. She tasted and smelled of sweet musk and cinnamon. Frodo found himself kissing her neck, then pulling down her bodice to explore further delights, while Pansy squealed and grabbed his hair with strong fingers. They rolled on the floor, popping buttons off braces and tearing the lace off pantalets, then there was joyous shriek and a gasp, and Frodo could feel the stickiness of honey in his hair.
Pansy's bed was a splendid one. It had a tester, and Frodo tested it exceedingly well, along with several scarves and an extra pot of honey. Pansy sprawled out naked on the quilt while Frodo smoked a pipe, letting her sneak a puff before Pansy shimmied back on top of him. "Oh Frodo," she purred. "You're magnificent."
"Oh, not really," said Frodo, going pink.
"You are. You make Little Pansy very happy indeed."
"I'm er, glad to hear it."
He glided a hand over her nipple. She closed her eyes and rocked her hips. "Frodo Baggins," she breathed. "You're going to be the death of me."
The next day Frodo ducked into The Green Dragon to say hello and "oh, by the way, Fatty, your engagement with Pansy's broken," before rushing to the Pinktoes smial.
Pansy opened the door, blinking at him with flour on her nose. "I'm sorry," Frodo said instantly. "I should have never done that, you were vulnerable, you were broken-hearted, I'm a complete scoundrel, I'm mmmmf..."
Pansy was a most enthusiastic kisser. Two minutes later he was pulling his shirt off, and Pansy was yanking at her laces before sliding to her knees.
"Oh, Pansy, we shouldn't, oh, oh, *bugger*."
"Ooo!" said Pansy.
A week later Pippin sat Frodo firmly down at the Bag End parlour sofa.
"Does he look all right?" he asked Merry, pulling Frodo's lower eyelids down.
"Stop that," said Frodo, yawning.
"Look at you," said Merry. "You've had no sleep. You've eaten next to nothing. You're a wreck, Frodo. I thought you'd have had more sense."
"It's just been a few days," said Frodo. "It's a fling. A very discreet fling."
"Discreet?" said Pippin. "Running down the main street of Hobbiton with your bum painted purple, that would be more discreet."
"Really, Frodo love," said Merry. "I thought you'd have had it with her by now."
"I have," said Frodo. "On the table, in the pantry, in her bedroom, in the privy..."
"In the privy? Remarkable," said Pippin.
"It's not bloody remarkable," Merry snapped. "Come on, Frodo. You did it so easily for Fatty, why can't you do it for yourself? Tell her you're impotent, or infertile, or snore or something."
"Or that you like lads," said Pippin.
"Well, that doesn't stop him," Merry pointed out. "What is it, Frodo? You're not in love with her, are you?"
"Nooo," Frodo admitted. "But she smells like honey and marchpane and she wears pink gingham."
"*I* could wear pink gingham," said Merry, petulantly.
"Actually I think Sam does," said Pippin. "Only in patches on his underwear, with all those sisters having leftover rags. He'd kill me if I told."
"And how did you find out, Pip?"
Pippin lifted his nose. "One doesn't reveal one's secrets."
Merry crouched down in front of his cousin. Frodo, pale of face and dark-ringed of eye, was still grinning in a daft, well-shagged way.
"It has to end, Frodo. Now."
"Maybe a few more days..."
"I'm not picking out your headstone just because you're a hobbit of honour. If she gets you to propose you're a dead hobbit walking. Or shagging. Now break it off."
"I - I don't want to hurt her feelings."
"Oh lord," said Pippin. "She hasn't fallen for you, has she?"
"I don't know. We haven't really discussed it."
"All the better to get it over with quickly," said Merry, briskly. "Tell her you're delicate."
"I don't think she'll believe that. Not after the pantry."
"All right then. Invite her over and have Sam show up naked in the parlour. If she sees you and Sam boffing like bunnies, she'll drop you."
"I'm not going to boff Sam!"
Merry twiddled his thumbs. "Oh, I think he'd do it before you broke out the flowers and invited him for a picnic."
Frodo considered this for a minute and was surprised to feel results. Sam's sturdy arms and soft brown eyes, and tender lips were quite appealing. He tried to clear his mind as Sam walked in carrying a posy of roses for the study.
"Hello Sam," Merry said breezily. "You're looking well. Those breeches set off your eyes. Like velvet. Or brown gingham."
Sam's eyes widened, but he frowned at the sight of his master. "Mr. Frodo, you're not looking at all well."
"I'm just a little tired, Sam."
"He's exhausted," said Merry. "You have to help us, Sam. The widow Pinktoes has got him."
Sam looked troubled. He had been worried she might set her sights on the Gaffer, or maybe Will Whitfoot, who giggled like a tween whenever Pansy was near. The older hobbits muttered over it in their beers at the Dragon, but few alluded to it in public.
"Well, you'd best give her up, if you don't mind my saying so," he told Frodo. "She'll do you an injury, and that's a fact."
Frodo plucked at his shirt, which was missing a few buttons. "I should listen to you, Sam. I just wish you could help me tell her it's over."
"Go visit her tomorrow morning," said Merry. "We'll do the rest. Now Frodo, drink this wine and eat all of this stew. You'll need your strength."
"I cannot go another day without waking to see those eyes and those lips on my pillow. Your skin, bedewed with perspiration. When you have desire in your eyes, and they go dark with lust, you look like a hawk sighting his prey. A hawk ready to seize me like a fluffy chick, and devour me before I can let out so much as a coy cheep of acquiescence."
Frodo eyed Pansy nervously. He was leaning on his elbow on her bed trying to get his breath back. Pansy was marvellously talented, really, she should give lessons. But she was a widow, he kept reminding himself. And given to strange flights of fancy. His heart was hammering with exhaustion, and it occurred to him that the hawk in this situation was probably not himself.
Frodo gingerly felt his bits and was startled to hear a clonking sound. To his relief, it was not his bits, but a knock on the door.
"I'll go," said Pansy, wrapping herself up in a sheet.
Pippin Took stood there, beaming. "Hello Pansy," he said. "I was just passing, so I thought I'd remind Frodo about our appointment."
"Well, it's not really for me, it's for my mother," Pippin continued guilelessly. "She's very fond of Frodo, he's remarkably skilled."
"Mmm," said Pansy. "At book writing? Keeping accounts?"
"No, no, no. More like, well, oh you wouldn't be interested. He's remarkably virile, though, is Frodo. Mother calls him her velvet flagpole."
"Her - what?"
Pippin cleared his throat. "Well, I can see you're busy, but just remind Frodo it's three o'clock behind the oak tree, same place, bring the oil. Thank you ever so much."
He strolled away, whistling. Pansy watched him go, shook her head, and shut the door.
"Who was that?" Frodo asked.
"Er," said Pansy. "Pippin. Pippin Took. He, er, said something about an appointment."
"Oh," said Frodo. "Nothing important, I'm sure."
"If you say so," said Pansy, climbing over his torso. "Where were we? Ah yes, kissing that sweet little navel of yours."
"Ahum," said Frodo, looking at the ceiling. "Wait - was that a knock at the door?"
Pansy huffed. "Pippin again, I suppose. You might as well go."
"Oh, don't answer it. It's bound to be nothing important."
A familiar-sounding sneeze made him sit up. "Is that Sam?"
Pansy pushed him back down. "I'll go," she said firmly. "You just stay there and keep your dimples looking just so."
She opened the door to a scarlet-faced Sam, taking in her thinly clad form.
"Erm. Miss Pansy," he said.
"Me sister Daisy - wonders if Frodo's available for his four o'clock appointment."
"Four o'clock. What is this for, a reading lesson?"
Sam coughed. "Not at all miss, it's just ah, Daisy says Frodo is a talented er, dancer."
"Better than any of us," Sam improvised. "She wants to dance with him, just to learn a gentry fling or two."
"A gentry fling. Well, Sam, I must say that Frodo is well occupied at the moment, teaching me. So you will have to tell Daisy to scrap the appointment."
"Oh. As you wish, miss. G'bye." Sam fled.
Pansy flomped down on the bed where Frodo was lying. He moved his elbow to avoid being squashed.
"What did Sam say?"
"He was lost and looking for directions," said Pansy.
"Really? Sam was lost?"
"Anyway darling," said Pansy, "you're going to stay here for a good long hour or so, and then we're going to - "
"Did you hear a knock?"
"I may have to put up a sign," said Pansy, snappishly. "Excuse me."
She opened the door to Merry Brandybuck, who gave her an up-and-down look of subtle approval.
"Don't tell me," said Pansy. "Your mother misses Frodo in her bed."
Merry looked shocked. "I beg your pardon? My mother is Frodo's aunt. We're not that kind of family."
"Oh. I do apologise!" said Pansy.
"What is it, then?"
"Well... it's my granddad..."
Pansy slammed the door in his face.
"Frodo dear," said Pansy, "you have been a busy bee, haven't you?"
"Ah," said Frodo. "Quite. Yes."
Pansy burst into tears. Shocked, Frodo sat up and patted her shoulder. "Pansy, please! Take no notice of them, they're a terrible lot of teases."
"It's not them. I know they're fibbing their silly heads off. But it's true. The thing is, Frodo, with you it's all sex, sex, sex. You don't think of anything else. I want something more than that, thank you!"
Frodo pulled his wits together. "Well. I suppose that's a point. You - you do deserve more, Pansy."
"And I'm not that strong, you've quite worn me out. I'm risking my health, and .." tears started falling, "I wouldn't risk you becoming a widower, Frodo. It would break your heart."
"... oh Pansy... I suppose it's off, then. It was good while it lasted, I have to say."
She cuddled him. "You're such a dear, Frodo. One day you'll make a lass very happy. Or whoever takes your fancy."
Frodo smiled, hugging his knees.
"The thing is, I think I'm in love with Sam."
"Frodo, you're so naughty. I can see the attraction though."
"Thank you. I hope you marry someone just as nice."
"Oh, I'm not struck on marriage anymore. I am a hobbit of independence, Frodo, I assure you. Anyway, I'm going to a dance at the Brownlocks' this evening and I have to freshen up. How about one last roll about before you go home and give Sam your undivided attention?"
Merry was grinning when Frodo finally reached the front door of Bag End.
"Did it work?" he asked.
He took the full force of Frodo's glare. "Must you sully my reputation from here to the Eastfarthing?"
"It's for your own good, Frodo love," said Pippin. "We should have done it for Fatty."
"It's disgusting is what it is! Cousinly love is one thing, but that..."
"And Sam! Dragging your sisters into such an insinuation!"
"One of 'em's engaged, sir," Sam said.
"That's no excuse!"
"We're only stretching the truth a little," Pippin pointed out. "Maybe my mother doesn't want you, but I do. So do lots of lads and lasses, I might add. You're being terribly unfair to them, giving up your bachelorhood."
"And besides," said Merry, "it might be the end of the Baggins reputation altogether, a headstone marked "Frodo Baggins, shagged to death".
Frodo snorted. He watched Sam set the dinner things on the table. His sunburnt neck glowed temptingly. Sam might be steady and quiet compared with Pansy, but he was somewhat more - durable, Frodo thought.
Pippin went out with Merry to the Brownlock dance, and they came in a few hours later in their best waistcoats, carrying cups of wine, flushed and giggling.
Frodo looked up in a fresh surge of annoyance, and Sam, somewhat tousled, retreated to the other end of the couch.
"Do you know who we saw Pansy with at the dance?" Pippin cooed. "All over him like cream on a pudding?"
"Lotho Sackville-Baggins," said Pippin.
Merry lifted his cup. "Live long and prosper," he said.
Sam's eyebrows twitched. Frodo hid a smile, and kicked Sam's pink gingham-patched drawers under the sofa.
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