For Eyes To See

Frodo took Samís hand in his as they walked through the tall hallways of the Last Homely House. He had just had an excellent luncheon, almost excellent enough to make him forget what came before it. Heíd have to review it all soon enough: Merry and Pippin had already demanded a private conference, later in the afternoon. In the meantime...

He squeezed Samís hand, glancing over at his beloved. Sam ducked his head, then raised Frodoís hand to feather a light kiss over the back. He looked up at Frodo as he did so, and Frodo had to look away for a moment. Samís entire heart was in his eyes, and more than his heart, until it made Frodoís knees tremble and belly warm to see it.

"Almost there, Sam-love," he said softly.

Sam hmphed, and opened the door for him.

*

Frodo expected Rivendell to look grand and glorious. Elves, you know. The high ceiling of polished dark wood over his bed, the drapes of green linen embroidered with elegant flowers Frodo had never seen in any meadow, the blankets and pillows and carpet, all just as splendid as expected. The windows were perhaps a little large Ė elves, it seemed, believed in letting in the light, rather than allowing a sleeper to huddle in peaceful shadows a few minutes longer. Indeed, when Frodo first woke up, the high ceiling and green drapes seemed to faintly glow, like the sky just at sunset. But then, this was Rivendell, the home of Elrond Half-Elven.

*

Sam closed the door firmly behind them, then kissed Frodo. Frodo shut his eyes, the better to concentrate on the softness of Samís lips against his, the gentle nip of Samís teeth, comfort and heady warmth. He murmured and broke the kiss for a moment, pulling Sam closer.

He loved this. Slow sweet kisses, Samís body pressed so close to his that he could feel each breath Sam took, each pulse of Samís heart. Almost too close, just at first, the heat of Samís body too much, so Frodoís skin prickled with it and his breath came too fast. Then Ė then Ė body catching up to heart, flush of arousal swelling through him under the brush of Samís fingers and the biting press of Samís kiss. Sam tasted like sunlight and the smell of new-cut hay. Not enough time to taste Sam properly, to lay him out on the bed and explore every inch of Sam with lips and tongue and teeth until Sam sobbed and shouted his name, but this was nearly enough. Nearly.

Sam seemed to be trying to say something, between kisses. Something about bed and getting away from the door. Marvelous idea. Frodo opened his eyes again.

*

That first morning, awakening from gray-edged dreams... oh, Frodo could invent half-a-dozen explanations. Gandalf was a wizard, for all Frodo didnít usually think of that. But for as long as Frodo could remember, from the time Bilbo had first introduced them, heíd looked at Gandalf and seen an old Man in much-mended clothing and tangled hair. That first morning in Rivendell, Frodo turned his head on his pillow to see starlight glinting in Gandalfís hair and from his eyes, distant and awe-inspiring. The illusion shattered with a few blinks and a minute of talk Ė it was morning, after all, not night, and Gandalf still sounded as smoky and irritable as always. But the image lingered in the depths of Frodoís mind.

*

Samís breath caught, not quite laughter, when Frodo pushed him down on the bed. He raised his hands to his buttons, undoing them with rapid ease. "Thought youíd want a rest," he said.

"Iíll rest later," Frodo said, leaning his hands on the bed so he could watch Samís undressing more closely. Beautiful strong chest, sun-darkened from the summerís work. Wide callused hands, gentle as a spring breeze on Frodoís skin. Arms... sometimes Frodo thought he could write poetry to Samís arms, the flex of muscles as Sam weeded the garden or swung a bucket of water up from the well.

Sam sat up to toss aside his shirt. He studied Frodo, head to one side. "Mr. Frodo?" Softer, "Frodo-love?"

Frodo blinked, startled out of his own thoughts. "Iím here, Sam." He leaned forward and stole another kiss, Sam-taste sweet on his tongue.

They took their time about undressing, Samís touch careful against the hardly-healed wound in Frodoís shoulder. Sam turned down the covers, and they sprawled out there together, and it could have been a fine fall day back at Bag End. Except it wasnít. Frodoís shoulder did still ache, and the one thing he hadnít taken off was the Ring, on its chain around his neck.

And if Frodo half-closed his eyes as he caressed Sam... heíd thought the faint glow in his surroundings to be Elf-work, somehow, and the glimmer of starlight around Gandalf surely been his imagination, or reflections off the river outside. Then he woke a second time, late yesterday, and Sam came into his room, and took Frodoís hand in both his, just for a moment, and Ė-

Golden. Warm as hearth-fire, as summer earth beneath his hands, rich with the growing Sam drew from it. Sun and shadow. For that moment, Sam shone to Frodoís startled gaze, like morning sunlight cutting through the fog that had clouded Frodoís vision for the past weeks.

Frodo rolled them over, pinning Sam beneath him. Samís breath caught, and his hands fisted on the sheets. "Sir Ė you shouldnít-Ė"

"I wonít do anything to hurt my shoulder," Frodo assured him, with a kiss to the hollow of Samís neck. He wriggled his way further down Samís body. "Only Ė ah, Sam. Please." He didnít know exactly what he meant to be asking. He tried to find the words, but all that would come to his tongue was inarticulate poetry. Beautiful, my Sam, Sam of the Shire, no distant starlight but here and true Ė Oh, Sam would laugh. Frodo mouthed another wet, lingering kiss against Samís belly.

Sam did laugh, though the sound came out half-stifled, and his hands relaxed from their grip on the sheets. Frodo stifled a smile of his own by taking Sam into his mouth, careful cherishing taste. Hmm. Awkward position: his neck would be aching inside a minute, and heíd promised Sam. He squirmed farther down so he lay between Samís legs, propped up on his elbows. It was still messy, and jaw-aching, and... and Sam on his tongue, Sam gasping his name, Sam stroking his hair with shaking hands. Sam trusting him, absolutely. Sam with the dark gold curls that kept falling in his eyes, Sam with the dark eyes that saw Frodo more clearly that Frodo saw himself, let go, Sam-love.

Sam involuntarily thrust up, then came, a surge of bitter-salt. Frodo swallowed quickly, then sat up, looking at Sam. Sam lay sprawled out, panting a bit with the strength of the release that just washed through him, sweaty and sticky and the most beautiful thing Frodo had ever seen.

"My light," he murmured, though not quietly enough.

Sam opened his eyes and smiled up at him. "Thatís as may be," he said. "Now come up here."

Frodo smiled, and went.

Ė end Ė

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