2. Chapter 2
A cold kiss of moisture hit Erestor’s cheek. He glanced up as another struck him. The sky was fulfilling its promise of snow. Big flakes drifted downward as if coming from a single point high above. The light was almost gone, the shapes of the land unfamiliar, making him feel disoriented. He leaned forward as their horse began climbing again. The animal stumbled for a moment and Glorfindel’s weight shifted hard onto Erestor’s back; his arm tightened protectively about his waist. A cascade of small stones rattled down the slope.
When they reached the top of the promontory, Erestor was able to get a wider view. To the left, the land dropped off a cliff. Beyond was the wide, grey expanse of nothingness that he knew was the ocean. He could hear the distant roar of the surf. On the right was a stretch of low scrubby brush disappearing into blackness. They were following a narrow path along the foot of a cliff. Soon there would be no light to guide them. Erestor’s nervousness increased when he heard Glorfindel mutter, “We should have reached it by now.”
He turned his head to look at the golden-haired elf seated behind him. “Are you telling me you don’t know where we are?”
“I know where we are. Approximately. I’ve just not approached from this direction before.”
“And so it could be leagues from here?”
“No, not leagues. Well, I suppose that’s possible.”
“That’s not what I want to hear, Findel. It’s snowing and very shortly it will be dark.”
“Don’t worry. I’ll just give Oiolairë his head. I’m sure he’ll find his way.”
“How can he? He’s never been here before either.”
“Horses have better senses than we do, Erestor.”
“Yes, I can imagine he could find a stream or a patch of grass, but how can he find a wayhouse?”
“It doesn’t matter.”
“It DOES matter,” Erestor said.
“If we have to camp, then we do. No use fretting over it. Oiolairë is a big animal. He’ll keep us warm.”
“He’s from Umbar,” Erestor said. “I’m sure he doesn’t like the cold any more than I do.”
“When we were in Umbar, I well remember you cursing the heat and wishing to be back up north. Which do you want, the heat or the cold? Make up your mind, ‘Restor.” Glorfindel sounded unbearably smug and not the least bit concerned.
Erestor bit back the retort he’d been about to make. Flurries of snow swirled about him now. He could feel his temper flaring. They continued on for a while, Oiolairë’s hooves making a curiously hollow thud in the gloom, then Glorfindel brought him to a halt. Behind him, Erestor felt Fin’s body shifting as he turned this way and that. There was a long silence in which the only sound was the horse’s blowing breath.
“Mandos!” Glorfindel said softly.
“I have no idea where we are,” Glorfindel replied. He actually sounded worried. “I think we had better stop and make camp before we lose all the light.”
“Well, I’ll be a dead stinking orc,” Erestor stated flatly. “I thought you knew where you were going. You assured me you did.”
“No help for it now, ‘Restor,” Findel declared as he slid off Oiolairë. “You can help by going to look for some wood.”
“We’re going to spend the night HERE, without any shelter?” Erestor spluttered. In complete disgust, he swung a leg off the horse and landed on the ground. Pins and needles shot up from his numb feet. He nearly fell over and made a grab for Oiolairë’s withers. Glorfindel put a hand out to steady him. Erestor pushed him off, then began stomping. “I can’t feel my toes, at all. I’m not letting you forget this,” he said. The snow was coming down faster now. There was a thin white cap of it on Glorfindel’s hair and some flakes dusted his eyelashes. Erestor shivered. Findel was wearing their only cloak.
“Hurry up, Counselor,” Glorfindel said. He pulled the rope rein over Oiolairë’s head and began leading him. “Try looking for some wood up there.”
“Where? I don’t see any fallen trees. Can’t see much of anything, actually,” Erestor snapped.
“Up behind you. They usually have a store of dry wood in the lean-to at the side of the wayhouse.”
“At the side of the . . .!” Erestor turned his head and looked up at the cliff behind them. There, perched about one hundred feet up, with what must be a stunning view of the ocean, was one of Gil-galad’s outposts. The peaked slate roof was just visible in the grey twilight. He turned back to glare at Glorfindel, who was sporting a wide grin. “You KNEW all the time where we were?” Erestor cried, relief and chagrin flooding him all at once.
Glorfindel laughed, a lovely bell-like sound. “Foxed you!” he said.
“By Mandos, you’re going to pay for that one,” Erestor growled, but he was too relieved to really feel angry. “Later. Let’s get out of the snow. How do we get up there?”
“There’s a path around back here. Follow me.” Glorfindel led Oiolairë along the bottom of the cliff a ways, around a stone wall. Behind it they found a narrow road winding back and forth up the slope. Erestor trudged behind, still unable to feel his toes, but so grateful not to be spending a miserable night out in the open that it did not bother him. The pathway ended with a gate. Glorfindel reached around, slid back the bolt, and the gate creaked open. They found themselves inside a large courtyard. “The stable is at the back of the house,” Fin said. “I’ll take care of Oiolairë. You can go inside and get us set up.” He slid the saddlebags off of the horse’s back and tossed them to Erestor.
“Fine,” Erestor said as he caught them. He tried a door recessed under some arched stonework. It was locked. Erestor sighed and dumped the saddlebags. They wouldn’t have hidden a key here anywhere, would they? He felt around the lintel and eventually found an iron object, which he withdrew and held up to try to see which end was which. But by now, all light had faded from the sky. He was able to fumble the key to the hole and unlock it by feel. The door swung open, releasing a dusty scent of stale air. It appeared to have been some time since anyone had been here. This was ridiculous; he couldn’t see a thing. He opened the strap on the saddlebag and felt inside for the tinderbox.
“I’ve got it,” Glorfindel called from the opposite side of the courtyard. Looking up, he saw Glorfindel coming towards him, carrying a small oil lamp that cast a yellow glow. His cloak drifted softly about him as he walked. With his hand, he shielded the flame from the steadily falling snow.
“Will this help?” Findel said once he reached him.
“Quite so,” Erestor said. “Is there another one?”
“Inside,” Glorfindel said. “I’ll show you.” Shortly, they found another lamp and got it started. Erestor raised it up to look around and found himself in a large hall with tapestries on the walls. “This place is designed to hold a garrison if needed, but is mostly used by Ereinion’s messengers,” Glorfindel said. “It’ll be more than adequate for our needs. There is a kitchen at the end of the house with a large fireplace. You can get a fire going. I’ll finish tending to our horse.” Then he was gone.
Erestor hoisted the saddlebags over his shoulder and headed down the hall, leaving sodden footprints behind. He discovered the kitchen with an assortment of hanging pots and pans, and herbs, and a sink with a pump that actually worked, once he’d pumped it several times and got the rusty water cleared out. There was also a larder with some large, promising-looking ceramic jars and other supplies. He descended a back stairwell and found a cellar. Amazingly enough, there was a variety of wine kegs and bottles in racks. He also found some clean rags with which he managed to dry off his hair and face. By the time Glorfindel returned, he had a fire going in the grate in the kitchen and a large kettle of water steaming.
Glorfindel stamped his feet and held his hands to the fire. “It looks positively cheery in here,” he said. “Well, Oiolairë is well-stabled. Found a blanket for him and hay and water.”
“Good. And I’ve got the ingredients for a decent stew together,” Erestor said. “Found stored potatoes, and onions, dried tomatoes, some herbs. We can add some of the dried cod Widgewyn gave us. And look,” he exclaimed, brandishing a bottle of wine, “a very tasty white Enedwaithian wine to cook it in. After reading all those endless acquisition reports, I should have remembered that Ereinion likes to keep his soldiers happy when on patrol.” He grinned at Glorfindel.
Glorfindel smiled widely back. “I didn’t know you could cook, Erestor.”
“I’ve learned some things over the years. I can do fairly well in a pinch,” Erestor replied. “Here, you’re soaked. Why don’t you dry yourself off.” He tossed Glorfindel a rag.
“I’m not a bad cook, over a campfire,” Findel said, as he toweled his head, “Learned while on campaigns and I’ve certainly seen enough of those in my time. I can help get our dinner going. Then I want to show you something.”
Despite feeling cold and damp, Erestor found that preparing the meal with Glorfindel was very enjoyable. They opened the bottle of wine to drink while they worked, and soon the day’s annoyances had faded and they were jesting with each other while they chopped vegetables.
“I’m not forgetting that little joke you pulled down below,” Erestor said, gesturing with the knife. “You’d better watch your backside.”
Glorfindel laughed. “My backside, eh? It was worth whatever punishment you inflict. You should have seen the look on your face when you thought we were spending the night out in the snow.”
“It was not the best moment of my life, no,” Erestor chuckled. “But I’ve lived through much worse things. Like being trapped in the hold of the Hirilondë a few days ago.” He paused, sobered for a moment. “And worse, much worse even than that.” He shook his head. “I suppose it is good to keep things in perspective.”
“I don’t think I’ve ever heard so much sanguinity from your lips, meleth.”
“Haven’t you? We’ve got shelter and food. What more is needed? I think, Fin, that perhaps we only know one side of each other. It appears there’s more to be discovered.”
“Yes, indeed. I look forward to discovering every part of you,” Glorfindel said. He raised his cup of wine towards Erestor and took a sip, meeting Erestor’s gaze over the rim. His blue eyes were laughing, full of sensual mischief. Promising. Strands of hair had come loose from his braids and were hanging in damp ringlets about his face. His cheeks were ruddy from the cold, the angles of his face prominent in the golden firelight. He tilted his head to look at Erestor and grinned. His lips curved with the smile, tantalizing. He was the most beautiful thing Erestor had ever seen. It was no wonder he was so successful in the game of love. Ah, but Erestor was no neophyte himself. He smiled to himself, thinking that the golden-haired warrior was in for a few surprises this evening.
Erestor hung the pot of chowder from a hook to simmer over the fire. Glorfindel reached into the heart of the blaze, grasped a large brand on its unlit end, and held it aloft as a torch. “That will take a while to cook,” he said. “In the meantime, I want to show you something.”
“What?” Erestor asked suspiciously.
“Oh, just come,” Glorfindel said. “Bring the lamp.” He strode out of the kitchen, through the parlor, and into the great hall, then turned to see that Erestor followed. The shadows ran away from the torchlight, flinging themselves up the walls, hiding in the dim corners. At the end of the hall, Erestor could see a small but ornate staircase. It disappeared around a bend. Glorfindel was going up, taking two steps at a time. Cautiously, Erestor followed, shielding his small lamp with one hand as he climbed upwards in a dizzying spiral. Their footsteps sounded loud in the echoing stairwell. He reached the top landing and could see Fin’s torch going along ahead of him. They were in a hallway, passing several doors. Hanging in one arched doorway, Erestor noticed a ragged spider web. Someone needed to dust around here. Glorfindel reached the last door and pushed it open with a loud squeak. “This is the Captain’s room,” he explained. “This is where we’ll spend the night.”
Erestor entered a well-furnished room with a large fireplace on one end. There were beautifully woven tapestries on the wall, soft rugs on the stone floor, several large leather chairs and a couch by the fireplace with a low table in front of it. At the far end, beyond the fireplace was a large window, shuttered against the cold. At the other end of the room there was a bed with hanging curtains drawn off to the side. The mattress was bare; they’d need to find blankets. But there were promising cedar chests and wardrobes along the wall. Even more promising was the large stack of wood by the fireplace. It didn’t look as if it had been used in a while. There was a cobweb at one corner of it.
“Very nice,” Erestor said. “We could hole up in here for a week.”
“Don’t tempt me,” Glorfindel said. “But it’ll do for tonight, don’t you think? Here, hold this.” He handed Erestor the torch; then began building a fire using pine needles and twigs for kindling. Erestor shivered in his damp tunic. “I don’t suppose they store any dry clothes here?” he asked. He set his lamp down on a table.
“Take a look,” Fin said. “Here, give me that.”
Erestor handed him back the torch, which he thrust into the midst of the pyramid log structure he’d built. The pine needles began to crackle; Glorfindel gently blew on them. His fair face was suddenly lit by the red glow.
Erestor went to a wardrobe and opened it. Nothing. He had better luck with the next one where he found some tunics, breeches, and long robes hanging. He fingered one of the robes, a beautiful garnet color, good velvet, a little moth-eaten on one sleeve, but no matter. There was another one, dark blue with gold cord outlining the shoulders and keyhole neckline. They were perfect. He pulled the dark blue one out, shook it to release the dust, and held it out towards Glorfindel. “Here, this should fit.”
Glorfindel turned his head away from the fire which was sputtering into life. He looked amused. “I think you just want an excuse to get my clothes off.”
“Do you think it will work?” Erestor asked with a smile.
“Quite possibly.” Erestor tossed Glorfindel the robe, which he caught and laid over the back of the couch. He unfastened the broach on his cloak, set it aside, then pulled off his shirt and tunic. The bare skin of his chest gleamed ruddy in the firelight. Leaning on the couch with one hand, he began pulling on the heel of one of his boots. “The cursed salt water shrank these things,” he laughed as he tugged. “They hurt like hell to walk in.”
Erestor had already removed his rough linen tunic and cotton shirt given to him by the villagers who had sheltered them after the shipwreck. He put them in the wardrobe. Glorfindel stopped tugging for a moment and looked up at him standing there, bare-chested. “Thoroughly lickable,” he said.
“Do you want some help with that boot, or not?” Erestor asked.
Glorfindel nodded. Erestor came over and grabbed hold of his heel. Glorfindel leaned back against the couch while Erestor pulled. The boot finally came loose and slid off, then Fin put up his foot with the other one. This one proved more recalcitrant. Erestor tugged and grunted and Fin ended up hooking one arm over the back of the couch to brace himself. Suddenly, with a slight sucking pop, the boot came loose and Erestor shot backwards, landing with a bounce on the end of the bed. “Warg’s teeth,” he declared.
“Are you all right?” Glorfindel asked, trying to cover a smile. He came over to stand next to the bed, looking down at Erestor.
“Yes, yes,” Erestor said laughing. “Mandos, how did you walk in these things?” He sniffed the boot, made a face, then tossed it across the room.
“Painfully. Are you implying my feet smell?”
“Implying nothing, statement of fact,” Erestor replied.
“And yours don’t?”
“Not a bit,” Erestor sniffed.
“Let’s find out, shall we?” Fin declared as he leapt on the bed, grabbed one of Erestor’s soft skin shoes and attempted to pry it off.
“You’ll rip it, curse you,” Erestor laughed.
Fin got one shoe off, then the other. He brought Erestor’s foot up to his nose. “Yep, needs a wash,” he declared. He licked one long swipe along the arch. Erestor burst into laughter and jerked his foot away.
“Oh, ticklish!” Glorfindel cried with the joy of new discovery. He seized Erestor’s foot and began tickling harder.
“No, no!” Erestor cried, trying to get away. Still laughing, he squirmed, and managed to kick Fin in the chest so that he let go.
“Ow! It appears that Gil-galad’s fearsome Chief Counselor has a tender spot,” Fin crowed. “Let’s see where else he has thin skin!” He threw himself on top of Erestor and began tickling him madly about his waist, under his arms.
“Ai, stop, you hound,” Erestor laughed, wriggled, flailed. His hand closed on a pillow and he pulled it forward abruptly, whacking Fin in the head with it.
“So it’s war, is it then?” Glorfindel cried with youthful abandon. He grabbed another pillow and slugged Erestor hard with it across the chest. In retaliation, Erestor grabbed one corner of his pillow and rapped him across the buttocks.
“That’s for telling me we were spending the night in the snow,” Erestor cried. He slugged Fin harder. “And that’s for the tickling.”
Glorfindel was laughing. Erestor began laughing too, with a joyful feeling of lightness. He realized that he was having fun in a way he hadn’t in years. He managed to wiggle out from under Fin and then the battle began in earnest.
“Attack!” Glorfindel yelled as he leapt off the bed and brought a pillow down hard on Erestor’s back. Erestor slid off the bed and ran after him. They fought back and forth around the room, leaping onto the couch, smacking the pillows hard against each other, wielding them like clubs overhead and becoming increasingly wild with their blows. They were both laughing so hard now that their hits were less than effective. Erestor managed to maneuver Glorfindel backwards and then to knock him over onto the bed. He leapt on top of him, straddled his waist, and whacked him hard in the face.
“Ooh, sonovawarg,” Fin cried. Turning his head to the side, he held up his pillow like a shield while Erestor redoubled his blows in short bursts. Suddenly Erestor’s pillow burst a seam just as it hit Fin in the head. It was like an explosion. Feathers flew everywhere, greatly resembling the flurries outside. When the avalanche cleared, there was Fin under him, with his eyes tightly shut - an amused grimace on his face. He spat a feather. More drifted down. “Yuck,” he said, spitting another one. He opened his eyes with a sudden glint of mischievous blue. “You’ve been disarmed. You lose!”
“No, clearly you are the one who has been vanquished,” Erestor laughed. “You look like a goose after it’s been plucked.” He swept feathers off Fin’s bare chest, then leaned forward and blew more of them away. That beautiful strong chest was too much to resist. He kissed Fin’s nipples, one after the other.
Glorfindel’s lips quirked. “Once I’m plucked, do you plan to eat me?” he asked. “Because I’d like that. Truly.”
Erestor rocked in Glorfindel’s lap, feeling Fin’s pliable organ beneath him beginning to twitch in interest. Erestor said, “Unusual, a goose who wants to be eaten. Yes, I plan to eat you, dressed with a sharp sauce. Which end of you is tastiest, do you think?”
Glorfindel closed his eyes blissfully for a moment as if in deep thought. “Both ends have points in their favor,” he said. “So, I think . . . oof!”
Erestor had settled against his chest. He seized Fin’s wrists, holding them above his head. Then he lowered himself until his lips were just brushing Glorfindel’s. “You remember I promised to eat you alive,” he said. “I think I’ll start with Balrog Slayer lips for appetizer.” His mouth brushed Fin’s again. Such a compliant mouth. Glorfindel raised his head slightly, tried to deepen the kiss. “Uh, uh,” Erestor clicked his tongue, pulling away a fraction. “So eager, my goose. Such a wanton.” Gently, he bit Glorfindel’s chin and felt him relax a little; his body settled into the bed.
“Eat me, down to the bone,” Fin said.
“What a charming request.” Erestor sank his mouth down onto Fin’s; their tongues tumbled together; he tasted wine and Glorfindel’s own unique flavor. Oh yes, thoroughly appetizing, everything about him: his cinnamon smell made bold from their exertion, the feel of his hard body that just now was molding so comfortably against his. Erestor felt his lover’s compliance and it excited him. He shifted his hips again, rubbing against Fin. They were separated by the fabric of their breeches as both of them rose beautifully, one against the other. Fin shifted his legs farther apart and Erestor settled down more firmly. The kiss deepened, became searching, yearning. Fin moaned and Erestor began to see in red tones. He devoured Fin’s mouth at the same time that he rubbed his cock more firmly against him. Heard a tight inhalation.
“Erestor,” Fin sighed.
Erestor felt the hot tingle spreading outward as they ground together. He wanted to hear Fin moan again so he dropped his mouth to Fin’s neck and bit, then moved down to his chest - that beautiful, beautiful chest, with muscles that undulated like a washboard under his fingers, defined in ruddy light and shadow. He ran his tongue down the indentation between his pectorals, then up over one flat-topped mound to nuzzle a tender brown nub of flesh. He licked it back and forth until it grew deliciously taut under his tongue. Then he gathered it into his mouth and sucked.
“Nngah,” Fin gasped.
That was better than a moan. Erestor smiled around his prize. He slid his hand down over the muscles of Fin’s stomach, palmed his cock through the suede breeches, eliciting another satisfying gasp, then ran his finger around the outline all the way down to the sacs underneath, cupping and squeezing them. Glorfindel’s breath was coming faster now. He thrust his hips gently towards Erestor. “More. Do more of that,” he panted.
Moving downward, Erestor kissed that long, hard outline, then nibbled on it a little. And managed to get a feather in his mouth. He sat up suddenly, spitting. “Blech.” And looked around. “What a mess,” he said. “This is most unfitting behavior.”
“By the gods, you’re not going to stop now?” Findel groaned.
“Mandos!” Erestor exclaimed, leaping up. “We’re forgetting about our dinner and I am much too hungry to allow it to burn.” He slid a hand up the inside of Fin’s thigh and gently squeezed. “Even though this is very enticing.” He leaned over and kissed Fin slowly, deliberately. “We have all night for this,” he said.
“Is this your revenge for my little joke earlier?” Glorfindel asked.
Erestor was pulling off his breeches. He slowly stood, completely naked, and gave Fin a smouldering look. “Oh no, you’re in for much worse,” he said.
“You are so beautiful,” Glorfindel said, leaning back on his elbows and looking him over.
“Get over it. Dinner is burning,” Erestor replied. He shook feathers off the crimson robe, then pulled it over his head, slipped on his shoes, and picked up the lamp where he’d left it on the table. “I’ll go tend to supper,” he said, “YOU can clean up this mess. Then come down to help me carry the food up. And remind me when we get back to Lindon to add a pillow to the requisition list for this outpost - unless of course, you are handy with a needle.”
Glorfindel flopped his head back onto the bed and groaned, “I just HAD to fall for an elf who maintained a vow of celibacy for five hundred years.”
When Erestor reached the kitchen, he found the cod chowder simmering nicely, if a little too thick. He added more water and wine, stirred and tasted it, added some salt and pronounced it done. In a cupboard, he found wooden bowls, knives, spoons, and in the pantry, some honey-biscuits which were hard but sweet, nuts, and whole dried apples. He appropriated another bottle of wine and added a bottle of blackberry brandy to the lot. He also found a small bottle of oil which he thought might come in handy. He was looking around when his eye fell on the cotton rags he’d used as a towel. Yes, definitely those.
He had all of it loaded on some wooden trays when Glorfindel appeared, resplendent in his blue velvet robe. He had undone his braids and his hair was flowing loose about his shoulders like ripples in a fast-moving current. Erestor couldn’t resist tangling his fingers in it and drawing him in for a kiss. Erestor took Fin into his arms, felt his body against his, warm and hard through the thin layers of cloth. The time spent on the kiss stretched, deepened.
“You teased me so badly that I had to take the edge off myself,” Glorfindel laughed against Erestor’s lips.
“Wicked elf,” Erestor said as he gave Fin’s backside a light spank. “Now, you won’t want any more.”
Glorfindel laughed. “On the contrary, it was merely an appetizer. Now, I desire the main course.” His mouth sank onto Erestor’s. He pressed him back against the counter, their hips flexed together. Then Erestor’s stomach growled. Glorfindel broke away with a laugh. “Clearly someone is hungry. Come upstairs,” he said.
They gathered all the dinner together, plus a small caldron of warm water, and carried the lot up to the room. The fire was burning merrily now. Fin had cleared up the feathers and made the bed with linen sheets and a heavy quilt. They set the food on the low table next to the couch. Erestor ladled the chowder into the bowls and they fell to eating as rapidly as they could while still maintaining some decorum. Erestor hadn’t realized just how hungry he was. He sat on the leather chair, slipped off his shoes, curled his feet up under him, and ate ravenously. Strangely, he felt like a youngster in anticipation of a sleigh ride. He wondered who that elf was who had broken a pillow over Fin’s head; certainly it was someone who had not been allowed to kick his heels for some time now. He liked that buried part of himself.
“Not bad,” Glorfindel said of the chowder, after he had cleaned out his bowl and filled it up again.
“It could use some milk and butter,” Erestor said. “But I’m not complaining. It tastes wonderful.”
“Amazing how a little hunger sharpens the appreciation, isn’t it?” Fin said.
“Yes. It’s strange. If events had happened as planned, by now we’d be back at the palace, delivering the horse and our grim report to Ereinion and we’d be feasting on Mettarë leftovers. The last several days have been like a strange dream. I feel adrift, as if I’m still floating in on the waves - like so much flotsam.”
“Are you sorry that it happened this way?” Fin asked. He was leaning back against one arm of the couch with his long legs sprawled out in front of him. The robe had ridden up to his knees. His calves were lean hard muscle, with a slight groove etched in the backs where, often as not, greaves were strapped. His feet were bare. Erestor’s eyes lingered a moment before turning away.
“I deeply regret the loss of the ship and possibly Captain Armalak,” Erestor said. “But if things had gone as planned, I’d still be bound to Lord Ossë and we’d still be carping at each other as we passed on the stairs. So there have been positive aspects. So much of life is like that, isn’t it? A trade-off.” He took up a knife and began peeling one of the apples, the skin coming off in a long spiral. Absently, Glorfindel reached for his wine cup on the table.
Suddenly Erestor startled. There on the floor, inches away from Fin’s foot, was a spider as big as his splayed hand - a kind he knew to be very venomous. “Fin,” he said tightly. “Don’t move.”
Glorfindel went rigid, “What?” he mouthed.
“Iell Ungoliant,” Erestor hissed. With a lightning fast flick of the wrist, he threw his knife hard. It hit the floor with a loud thwack, impaling the spider through its hairy abdomen. It shrieked, its legs churned, and then it went still. A pale green ichor oozed from it.
Erestor exhaled in a loud sigh. Carefully, Fin sat up and moved his feet up onto the couch. He leaned over and eyed the spider. “Damn good throw,” he said.
“Good thing for you,” Erestor replied. He rose from his chair, jerked his knife out of the creature, then used it to scoop the spider’s remains into one of the soup bowls. With a flip of his hand, he tossed it out of the bowl into the fire. A flame leapt up as it was consumed into charcoal. “It must have come out of the wood pile,” Erestor said as he sat back down. “If that had bitten you . . .” he let the words trail off. “I loathe them. Spawn of Ungoliant. Creatures of the dark places.”
“You have my thanks,” Glorfindel said, “and remind me never to cross you when you’ve a knife in your hand. Too often have I seen the accuracy of your aim.”
Erestor chuckled. “I guess all those years of playing sigil paid off, eh?”
“Remind me never to play sigil with you, either. You are formidable, Counselor. Tell me, what are you doing behind piles of ledgers and reports when you should be training warriors with me?”
“I have been a warrior in my time and have seen enough death,” Erestor said quietly. “No, I’ll leave all that in your capable hands.”
“Perhaps you would be surprised to learn that I do not like it either, Erestor. I do what is necessary.”
“Necessary yes, perhaps even more so with what we learned from Prince Du-phersa in Umbar. I cannot bear it Findel. We fight and vanquish Darkness and then think we have achieved something, some measure of peace for the world. Then, just like that spider, when you least expect it, it rears its ugly head again, in some new form.”
“Then, may you always be there with your sharp reflexes and quick wits,” Glorfindel said. “Come, for at least this time, let us put aside the sorrows of Arda. They will be waiting for us tomorrow. For tonight, I want only the joy I feel in your arms.”
His words awakened the yearning that Erestor had felt all day. He nodded, then rose, and took the two steps across the floor to stand beside him. Glorfindel watched him coming with an almost greedy expression. “Did you have enough to eat?” Erestor asked as he piled their bowls onto the tray.
“Are you sated?”
“No,” Fin breathed. “Come and sate me.” He reached up, took Erestor’s hand and gently pulled him down. Erestor settled next to him, as best he could as the couch was not wide. For a long moment, they stared at each other. Glorfindel’s face was alight with a soft glow. “I want you to take down your hair,” he said.
Erestor reached up behind his head, undid the leather thong tying the two side braids together. Then, with Glorfindel watching raptly, he ran his fingers through the braids, loosening them, and pulled the thick dark hair, still kinked from the plaits, forward over his shoulders. Glorfindel picked up a handful, ran it between his fingers. “Beautiful, yes, just like a raven’s wing. You have no idea how beautiful you are, do you Erestor?”
“I have some idea,” Erestor said with a tilt to his chin.
“No, you don’t. None at all. If you did, there’d be no living with you.” Fin’s fingers were luxuriating in the black waterfall. “I’ve watched you going about your work at the palace - your hair tightly braided and pulled away from your face, stern, haughty, all business. You wear your tunics high on the neck and long-sleeved, no matter the weather, but always well-cut and perhaps a little too tight. Is that a contradiction, Counselor? A concession to some vanity? But I’ve watched you, and I know you do not see how others turn to look at you after you go by. You do not see the hunger on their faces. If only they could see you now: your hair loose, those twilight eyes . . . so fair.”
He traced the edges of Erestor’s mouth with his finger. “Your lips belie the facade you cultivate. They move with your moods: sometimes annoyed, sometimes even a bit cruel, occasionally laughing, always sensual. Once, I watched them embrace a strawberry at a banquet, and I nearly came undone on the spot. Your lips are pure sin, meleth. Anyone who looks at them imagines, imagines what it would be like . . .”
“You don’t have to imagine,” Erestor said as he leaned down and grazed Fin’s lips with his own, a gentle touch. Glorfindel sighed and opened his mouth. Another kiss, a little deeper. His lips were so agile, made to kiss. Erestor gathered Fin’s lips to his and released them, over and over. “You are a flatterer,” Erestor said in a deep purr into Glorfindel’s mouth. “Experience has taught me not to heed such words.”
“I only speak the truth. I have watched you for a long time now,” Fin said, pulling back to look at him and stroking his thumbs over Erestor’s cheekbones.
He was one to talk of beauty, Erestor thought. He who was beauty incarnate. His eyes were a rich velvety blue, the pupils large and dark. He looked hungry, like an elfling eyeing an apple tart. His hair was hanging in curling strands about his face. Unkempt. Erestor pushed it back away from his brow and Fin caught his hand and kissed the palm. Fin’s robe had partially slid off one strong shoulder. Erestor put his hand gently around Fin’s neck, rested it there a moment, and then stroked downwards onto that shoulder, cupped his hand around it, feeling its hardness under his palm. If only he could be rid of the doubts.
“Do you use that honeyed tongue to beguile all your lovers?” Erestor asked.
“I did not bring my other lovers into this room,” Glorfindel said gruffly. He turned his head to look away. “Nor do I wish to do so.”
“You are right. My apologies,” Erestor said. That had been a slip, a tactical error.
“You could make it up to me.” Glorfindel looked up at him hopefully. “I’ve been very patient, don’t you think? But I’ve been hard a good part of the day and I do not know how much more of it I can take.”
Erestor turned to look, ran his hand down the velvet robe until he reached the bulge of Glorfindel’s cock, which was now at half-mast. “Not quite so hard at the moment,” he said. “But I imagine that can be amended soon enough.” He began caressing it gently, varying his strokes. It rose rapidly under his touch. Glorfindel was purring now like a great cat.
“He likes you,” Glorfindel said. “See?”
Erestor grasped the bottom of Glorfindel’s robe and slowly began gathering up the fabric into his hands until, with a flourish as if revealing the main dish at a banquet, he uncovered Fin’s prodigious assets. The sight made his mouth water. Erestor ran a finger up along the inside of a tender thigh, traced lightly over the tightening balls. Fin started, just a little. Erestor curled his hand around that impressive length that even now had not reached its full status. “Magnificent,” Erestor murmured and tightened his grip as he stroked upward milking a bead of moisture from the dusky head. Erestor took it on the ball of his finger and touched it to his tongue. Fin was watching every movement. Erestor began sucking on the fingertip, at first gently and then with increasing fervor. With a little moan, he plunged the entire finger into his mouth, let it linger there. Glorfindel closed his eyes briefly. “Dessert,” Erestor said. “Like honey from Belfalas. Here,” he tapped Fin’s knee, “move your leg a little.”
Glorfindel bent one leg at the knee and splayed the other to the side while Erestor lay on his stomach between them. He bit the inside of Fin’s knee, then moved upward until he was nuzzling his crotch. The soft, blond curls tickled Erestor’s nose; he breathed in a musky scent. So alluring. He ran his tongue up the entire length of that beautiful thick shaft, swirled it around the tip, tasting him. He could feel Fin holding his breath in anticipation. Oh, he was going to make him beg for release before the night was out. Then Erestor plunged his mouth down over Fin’s cock, took it as far back into his throat as he could and began working it up and down.
“Uhhhh, gods, yes,” Fin gasped.
Erestor knew he was skilled in this area; not so long ago he had used it to bring Lord Ossë to his knees. And he loved doing it. He employed all his cunning now, sucking hard, vibrating his tongue as wickedly as he knew how, coming all the way up and then sinking back down again, using his hand on the lower part of Fin’s shaft when he was working at the head. He could feel Fin coming undone beneath him, his legs quivering, his breath hissing inwards as Erestor used his teeth gently up and down.
“Yes, just like that. Mandos, that’s good,” Glorfindel murmured. With both hands he began caressing Erestor’s head, fondling the tips of his ears.
Erestor pulled off and looked up into Fin’s lust-hazed eyes. “You know, I’ve been thinking,” he said conversationally. He continued lightly stroking Fin’s shaft between thumb and forefinger.
“Oh gods, NOW what? You are killing me, you know that!”
“I am thinking of what you said earlier today when you decided I needed a five-fingered tosser.”
“Mmm, yes, ” Fin chuckled.
“And all those scandalous things you said you’d like to do to me? Well, in my experience, often what an elf says he’d like to do to someone else is actually what he’d like done to him.” Erestor held up his forefinger, then wet it in his mouth. “Wouldn’t you agree?”
Glorfindel sat up a little straighter. “I’m usually not on the receiving end,” he said warily.
“Yes, that’s what I’ve heard. What I want to know is, why not?” Erestor’s voice was soft and purring. He stood up, drew his robe over his head in a long glide, and tossed it over the back of the couch. Reaching down, he grasped himself, running his thumb over the head of his now substantial erection.
Glorfindel bit his lower lip. “Gods, Erestor.”
“Have you never been taken before, Fin?”
“Of course I have,” Glorfindel scoffed. “It’s just . . .”
“It’s just that usually you are dominant. It’s your nature to bend others to your will,” Erestor said. He moved closer to where Glorfindel reclined on the couch and took Fin’s head in his hands. His cock brushed against the warrior’s mouth sending a sizzle through his loins. “There are roles we play in bed that suit our personalities. You are ascendant, bright and powerful as Anor. I like to succumb to that power, allow it to fill and overwhelm me as it did last night, as you did to me today on Oiolairë’s back. I allow it because I like it, Fin.”
“So it seemed. It felt natural that way. I didn’t even think about it,” Glorfindel said.
“What you do not know about me is that mastery is a game I play equally well, in the same way that I like to master someone in a game of sigil.” Erestor slid his hand down his cock, held it at the base and smacked it lightly against Fin’s lips.
“Is that so?” Glorfindel said.
“Earlier you said you wanted to learn more about me, about my nature,” Erestor said. “I too can be dominant and I will know your heart once I'm done. Tell me, my friend, do you desire that?"
"At this point, I will do anything to get you in bed," Glorfindel’s breath sighed against Erestor's flesh. “But I’ll have you know, it is a rare elf that can put me on my back and I do not surrender easily.”
"There would be no challenge if you did,” Erestor said smoothly.
“If you talk any more, I shall die,” Glorfindel returned.
Iell Ungoliant - daughter of Ungoliant
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.