7. Wild For to Hold
Chapter Seven: Wild For To Hold
"Who list to hunt, I know where is a Hind . . .
Fainting, I follow. I leave off therefore,
Since in a net I seek to hold the wind."
Sir Thomas Wyatt
"You work fast," laughed Phazan, moving out one of his diagonal pieces to block Legolas's own, which was threatening his king.
"Impetuosity in battle is a family trait," Legolas responded, before realizing that this last detail was perhaps indiscreet. He hastened to save himself. "Of course, working fast is appropriate in one of my more recent calling."
"I would not know about haste in the arts of love; romance is no longer my purview," said Phazan. "But in battle, or games of battle, haste can be dangerous. Your piece is now in danger from mine."
This came as no surprise to Legolas. He had placed his piece in jeopardy deliberately and was willing to sacrifice it as part of his strategy. Verily, Mithrandir had placed him and his father in jeopardy often enough to further his grand schemes, so turnabout was fair play insofar as this game of chess was concerned. "In my home, these pieces are called Wizards. What is your name for them here?"
"We call them the Viziers. Like our Lord Huzun. Although our realm has but one of him, and that one is enough."
There was a note of distaste in the librarian's tone which was not lost on Legolas. "You do not care for him?"
Phazan shrugged. "It is not my place to criticize the decisions of my . . . king. But I think Huzun would not hold so high an office had not the deaths of so many good men in the recent war left Khorlai with no other choice. Why do you ask?"
"I must take my leave of you soon. And it is to Lord Huzun that I am summoned. In polite terms, of course," Legolas grinned. "It is useful to me to know his proper title. And perhaps a bit about the man himself."
"Then accept the advice of a friend, Maitimo," said Phazan, knitting his brows. "Watch yourself with him. The man is twisted. He has no lovers, and there are even some bêthnari who will no longer accept his invitations."
Legolas kept his face carefully impassive. So Huzun was the patron Barlomi had spoken of refusing! "I thank you, Master Phazan, for your concern. I am ever wary, as one in my position must needs be."
"Wary? Indeed?" Phazan grinned. The effect on his ruined face was rather ghastly, but Legolas had grown used to the librarian's appearance and did not react. "Think again. My Vizier just took yours."
Legolas inclined his head as Phazan reached out unsteadily with his left hand to sweep away the white Wizard with his black one. "I thank you, my friend. I will bear the lesson in mind."
* * *
Unlike the tasteful apartments of Lady Zamin, the quarters of Lord Huzun were opulent -- even garish in their appointments. Legolas's senses were assaulted by a riot of colors and textures -- scarlet silks and gold leaf abounding.
The Vizier wore only a thin robe, loosely belted at the waist. He was visibly naked beneath. "You're late," he snapped
Legolas cast a quick look outside at the angle of the sun. He was not late, and he knew it. So this Vizier had a need to keep his partners off balance, did he? The prince in him wanted to bridle at this treatment, but even a prince had to control his emotions and play a part -- as must a courtesan. "Forgive me, my lord," he said evenly.
Two glasses of wine stood on the table, already filled. "Here, drink this before we get started," Huzun said. It did not escape Legolas's attention that Huzun chose carefully which glass he offered.
Legolas narrowed his pale blue eyes imperceptibly, taking the proffered goblet and sniffing as if savoring the bouquet. The strong odor and color of the red wine could not disguise the bitter under-scent from his heightened sense of smell. Drugged, Legolas thought, as he pretended to sip. A slight tingling in his lips confirmed it. Oh, this was not good. "Delicious, my lord," he murmured.
So much for the polite fiction of a willing seduction! Legolas would at this point have dearly loved to switch glasses with the man, but he doubted that Huzun would be careless enough to allow this. Instead he went to the nearest window, which looked out on a garden courtyard. "What a pleasant view you have here, my lord," he said conversationally, blocking the man's view with his body and emptying a large portion of the goblet into a potted palm. He made a small mental apology to the plant.
Outside in the courtyard, one of the large iridescent birds strolled past, dragging its magnificent plumage. As Legolas watched, it let out a piercing cry. "Those are lovely birds, my lord. What do you call them?"
"Peafowl," said Huzun. "That one is a cock. Look at me, bêthnaru, when you speak to me."
Slowly, Legolas turned, striving to keep his true emotions off his face. 'Serene smile, serene smile,' he repeated to himself. Huzun had taken the opportunity to drop his robe, and he stood revealed naked in all his glory, or lack thereof. "A cock," Legolas said, slurring his words ever so slightly for effect. How, he wondered, was he going to get himself out of this?
Legolas knew himself to be out of his depth here, his brave words to Arwen on the docks at Harlond notwithstanding. She had been correct, the Lady Undomiel; without his rank to shield him, all the diplomacy and charm in the world could not help him evade the attentions of one who obviously refused to take no for an answer.
He could always call an end to the charade and walk out, he supposed, presuming Barlomi had been honest when he told Legolas he would always have a choice, albeit neither choice might be to his liking. Barlomi had not quite prepared him for this scenario. Even so, Legolas felt reluctant to abandon his mission just yet. Where charm failed, the situation might call for less savory measures.
"Come here," said Huzun. He had a predatory smile on his face as Legolas approached, swaying gently on the balls of his feet. "Now, on your knees, bêthnaru."
'Arrogant son of an orc,' thought Legolas. Aloud, he said, "Does it please you to order me, my lord?"
"In that case, I will obey . . . Because it pleases me to do so." His tone and expression were outwardly mild, and only another elf would have detected the dangerous note in his voice. Huzun frowned briefly at this modest sign of defiance, but he recovered himself as Legolas drew nigh.
First setting his goblet on the table, Legolas faced Huzun and dropped gracefully to his knees. The gesture of submission seemed to be just what the man wanted, for the object in question rose into action. Legolas looked upward with his most seductive expression and smiled. "And now, my lord?"
"You know what to do," the Vizier said tersely.
"Indeed," replied Legolas. He licked his lips, stalling for time. He found it difficult not to cross his eyes with an erection shoved into his face.
"What are you waiting for?"
What was he waiting for, Legolas asked himself? Some blinding flash of inspiration, perhaps? What had he expected, coming here, to this land, in the guise of a pleasure-giver, if not to give at least a little pleasure? Legolas felt at a loss to explain why he found the prospect so distasteful. It was mere flesh he saw before him, no different from that of the Lady Zamin, and he would have kissed her lips had he been called upon to do so, with no hesitation or second thoughts.
And yet, as he flicked his gaze upward, he caught a cold gleam in Huzun's eye. The Vizier desired pleasure of him, but not that of mere bodily sensation. His joy would come from the abasement and degradation of another. Legolas had up to this point believed himself to be meek, but this, he would not do.
"Well?" said the Vizier, his tone growing impatient.
"As you wish," my lord," said Legolas, taking a deep breath and parting his lips. 'Remember, Adan, you asked for this,' he continued silently. 'You deserve neither my kindness nor my respect.'
"Aaaa-chooo!" He sneezed wetly onto the man's turgid member, clearing out his sinuses and managing to spray him with saliva as well.
Huzun jumped back with a cry of disgust, his erection wilting.
"Oh, forgive me, my lord!" Legolas said, dripping false concern "It must be the flowers blooming in the garden. I have been affected thus all day." He leaped to his feet and ran into the bedroom, retrieving a towel from a pile he found conveniently stacked beside the bed. "Please allow me to set you to rights!"
Huzun glared as Legolas wiped off his flaccid organ. "You do not acquit yourself well, bêthnaru. I expect you to make me amends." The Vizier advanced, his expression cold.
Tossing the towel aside, Legolas retreated. "My lord, where is the sport in this?" he said with a smile that belied his inner turmoil. "Surely it is far more pleasant when your lover is willing."
"No. It is of little import to me whether you are willing or not. You are here for my pleasure and nothing else. Now stand still, courtesan."
Legolas, who had fetched up against the jamb of the doorway to the bedchamber, had little choice. Inside, he could see an entire wall of strange toys hung at the ready. Legolas shuddered, for he could only guess at the uses of some of them, while for others, it was all too obvious.
Legolas fought his rising dismay as Huzun came close and pinned him to the wall. His clever tongue would not aid him now, and he realized that his reluctance merely spurred the Vizier on. The man's erection had returned, and Legolas could feel it pressing into his thigh. Only one way out remained for him. He caught Huzun's gaze, shivering as he did so, for looking into those eyes was as disconcerting as staring into the depths of a dark well.
Quickly, Legolas sent his will into the mind of the Vizier and whispered the words of the spell of sleep that the Wood-elves at home used to protect their feasting circles. Huzun's eyes lost focus and he went down like a sack of grain.
Legolas caught the collapsing man neatly and carried him into the bedchamber, laying the unconscious Vizier on the bed. He sat gingerly down next to him, putting his head into his hands while his racing pulse returned to normal.
That had been too close. 'You have bitten off more than you can chew, Legolas Thranduilion,' he told himself ruefully. 'Not for the first time, but definitely the worst!'
Genius indeed! His usual strategy of shy aloofness -- fending off the silly love-struck maidens and the besotted lords with a regretful sigh and a fleeting hint that their affection might be returned save for some mysterious elven 'if only,' and for the more importunate, a posture of serene obliviousness to their attentions -- depended for success on a modicum of courtesy and respect, if not for his position, at least for another sentient being. Useless, obviously, with the likes of Huzun.
Even as he spoke bravely to Aragorn of being able to take care of himself, Legolas had known his usual tactics would not be enough. Base as the use of magic to control mortals was, he would not have come to Harad without this necessary escape mechanism in his quiver of tricks. He had not, however, expected to have to use it quite so soon.
'And now what?" he asked himself, faced with the unconscious man on the bed. He recalled one of his father's favorite sayings: When life gives you sour cherries, don't weep --- make wine. 'Very well,' he thought. 'Give the Adan what he wants, and make it good.'
Legolas found it convenient that Huzun was naked already, for it certainly saved him the time and effort of undressing him. He tugged at the sheets and bent to muss them for effect. In so doing, his eyes fell again upon the man's member.
"Ai nuath!" Legolas whispered. Now that he was no longer looking into the eye of the mighty trouser serpent, so to speak, and was not distracted by its threatening proximity, he noticed a significant difference from Men of the north. What would possess a man to cut himself thus? Legolas supposed it made a kind of sense in a climate like this one, for even as a naturally tidy elf, Legolas had found the need to take extra pains to remain clean in the heat. But just the same! "No wonder Lord Huzun likes pain," Legolas told himself. "It must be his first real memory in life!"
Mortals under the influence of a sleep spell were extraordinarily easy to influence. Legolas bent again and spoke into Huzun's ear, using all the inventiveness his knowledge of the Gondorian scrolls could supply. He watched in horror and dismay as Lord Huzun grimaced with pleasure and began to writhe, acting out the whispered fantasy. He would have enjoyed doing such things to a drugged and helpless bêthnaru, would he?
'What a man!' Legolas thought disgustedly, as the Vizier climaxed all over his sheets. 'He would have done that to me. He has, almost certainly, done that to others. This Adan needs a dose of his own medicine.'
A wicked smile came over Legolas's face. He bent again to whisper on Huzun's ear. "Whereupon I awakened and proceeded to . . . and you liked it . . ."
* * *
"Good morning, Master!"
Legolas groaned and buried his face in his pillow as Miki's cheerful tones called him to consciousness. He had been up late the night before, again seated between Khorlai and Zamin. It had taken all his self control not to react when the lady had slipped an emerald ring down the front of his trousers while he was in conversation with her brother. It was, he had to admit, a very nice ring, but he would sooner have had it placed in his hand. Or else received her gratitude privately.
The other bêthnari had glared their usual daggers, and Huzun's expression had been inscrutable as he watched him hungrily from his side of the table.
Legolas pulled on a robe and picked up his morning tea. As he sipped it, he went out into his sitting room and stopped still. "Rodyn! It looks like a flower shop in here!"
"A footman brought those this morning, with Lord Huzun's compliments, Master," Miki said brightly. "And this bottle of wine, and this . . ." He indicated a velvet sack on a side table.
Legolas opened the sack and whistled in appreciation. The diamond necklace inside was splendid, but far too ostentatious even for Thranduil's tastes. He broke the seal on the accompanying note and blushed slightly as he read.
"And this, Miki?" Legolas asked, picking up a basket of sweetmeats. "Are these from Lord Huzun?"
"No, Master. Those are from Yanâkhim the bêthnaru, he who was Lord Huzun's favorite before you came."
Legolas sniffed the candied fruits carefully. Again, he sensed an alien scent, different from the odor of Huzun's wine but equally bitter. "Take these and put them down the privy, Miki. They are not to my taste."
The boy eyed the candy regretfully but obeyed. Legolas sighed as he watched him leave the room. "I've made my first enemy here," he thought. His eyes fell again on Huzun's note. "And I think someone else is in love with me . . ."
* * * * * * *
To be continued . . .
Ai nuath!: Oh shadows!
Rodyn: Sindarin for Valar, gods.
Author's Note: The chapter title comes from the poetry of Thomas Wyatt in honor of his doomed cousin, Anne Boleyn The final stanza runs thus:
Who list her hunt, I put him out of doubt,
As well as I may spend his time in vain;
And, graven with Diamonds, in letters plain
There is written her fair neck round about:
Noli me tangere, for Caesar's I am;
And wild for to hold, though I seem tame.
This is a work of fan fiction, written because the author has an abiding love for the works of J R R Tolkien. The characters, settings, places, and languages used in this work are the property of the Tolkien Estate, Tolkien Enterprises, and possibly New Line Cinema, except for certain original characters who belong to the author of the said work. The author will not receive any money or other remuneration for presenting the work on this archive site. The work is the intellectual property of the author, is available solely for the enjoyment of Henneth Annûn Story Archive readers, and may not be copied or redistributed by any means without the explicit written consent of the author.