Chapter 12: Song

(Epithalamion)

A playful nibble to his brow, warm breath washing over his cheek to the corner of his mouth… soft lips brushing his, whispering… "Sam?"

Frodo, love, this is far too nice to let pass quickly! He kept his eyes closed, feigning sleep.

"Sam…?" A more insistent breath against his lips, and a nimble hand slid across his bare chest, fingertips circling his nipple…

"Mmm…" Oh! Yes, love, wake me, just like you’re doing…oh, my, yes… there! He dared a small snore, but could not keep from sighing as every part of him roused.

"Sam, love?" Amusement lilting in his tone, and those fingertips tickling, lightly, ever lower…

"Mmmph?" Oh, my! I knew those hands were talented! No hiding that I’m well and truly awake, now! "Frodo?" Sam could not quite keep his delight from his voice, nor the smile from his lips.

"Who else?" A sharp little nip, an apologetic nibble; then warm lips kissed through a husky laugh, and left him.

Sam opened his eyes.

And Frodo was right there, mere inches from his face, eyes locked with Sam’s. His lips crinkled with barely contained laughter, his cheeks were rosy with rest and good humour, and his eyes were bright with love, warm with desire. Sam’s breath caught in his throat and his heart sang as he wrapped his arms around smooth silk and sinuous muscle. Alive, alive! You’re here in my arms, my love, alive!

"Oh, Frodo, you’re the loveliest thing…"

"As are you!" A slow burning smile, another quick kiss, and a nuzzle, the tip of his straight nose cool against Sam’s upturned one. "Sam, let me just look at you!" His brows furrowed and lips parted with the intensity of his scrutiny, as he laid gentle fingertips to Sam’s face.

Sam lay still beneath his touch, smiling at his quizzical expression. "It’s different, isn’t it, love, seeing each other like this? I couldn’t look on you enough, before, even while you slept! Or now, either!"

"Yes, it is... Oh, Sam, I have dreamed this…" His eyes left Sam’s and followed as his hand trailed slowly past Sam’s jaw, softly over the pulse beating hard in his throat, gently curving across his breast. And Sam could see that his gaze dropped even lower, past belly, and waist, to what swelled, pushing hard, beneath his loosened trousers. Frodo’s breathing became faster, and his bright eyes less focused, as he voiced raw desire, low and deep.

"My Sam… I want…"

Again, he sought Sam’s lips, and his kisses were no longer light and teasing, but hard now, and probing. With strength that surprised Sam, Frodo kissed him back into the pillows as he tried to lift and meet frantic hunger with fervent kisses returned, eyes closed, surrendering to the pleasure of Frodo’s urgent touch. Deft fingers brushed through light fur, kneading skin rounded over hard muscle on Sam’s belly, and further down to slip smoothly between folds of fabric lying open over his groin… With no hesitation at all, Frodo claimed Sam, slid his hand down to cup tender flesh nestled below… stroked back up…

Sam gasped. Ah… Oh, all for you, my love!

Panting now, Frodo inhaled Sam’s gasp with small throaty sounds of his own. He pushed hard, and again, into Sam’s hip, his face buried at Sam’s neck, clinging as tightly as though for his life.

Mine! My own! Frodo’s entire body tensed, and beat erratic rhythm against Sam. He raised himself, and reached across Sam, starting to move over and on, heedless as his shoulder took weight it should not bear, his breath harsh… wanting, taking… And icy metal slid around from his back and over his breast, to fall against Sam’s warm chest, a thin film of silk his only shield…

Frodo groaned, a sound almost of pain, wrenched through with desire. And in a rustle of fabric, he was gone.

What? I knew you’d have ideas of your own… but what’s this? "Frodo, love! You just… might be a bit of a tease!" And Sam’s eyes flew open as he reached eagerly for Frodo.

He had shoved back, and was huddled against the pillows, panting, hands twisting to pull the chain at his throat around to his back. He drew a deep breath, as of reprieve, and his eyes were wide as they met Sam’s.

Breathless himself, Sam saw distress lining his face, clawing his shaking hands; play was no part of that abrupt departure. Something is very wrong… Sam pushed down his own panic, reached for his hand, and turned it over to kiss his palm. "Frodo? What is it, love?"

"Sam…" In that one word, a plea for understanding. But even though Frodo touched his fingertips gently to Sam’s lips, lingering for his kiss, he stayed amongst the pillows, breathing so hard he could not speak. After a moment, he let his head fall back against the headboard, frowning, his eyes closed, as he tried to slow his rasping breath. He held tightly to Sam’s hand, letting his warmth penetrate the icy fear that clutched within his breast.

Sam stilled, waiting – wanting most to take him into his arms, but knowing that patience was needed even more. Samwise, you give him time to get his bearings! He’ll talk, soon as he’s ready… soon as he can. You just listen, and give him what ever else he needs or wants after that! He held Frodo’s hand to his lips, rubbing his thumb and fingers, soothingly, over the fine veins at his wrist. Gradually, the racing pulse slowed, the furrow between dark brows smoothed, and the creases from his nose to the corners of his lips relaxed.

Frodo opened his eyes to meet Sam’s. He spoke with some difficulty. "Sam… I wouldn’t ‘tease’, ever, not like that…"

"Shhhh, love… of course not…"

"But… it – I – was going so fast, there was going to be no ‘taking time’. Instead, it was all me ‘taking’, not giving… And I couldn’t bear that! I want so much for us, for you…" He caught his breath, and added, his voice low and urgent, "And I was afraid, Sam. The Ring… How can I tell you?" He leaned forward, and laid his hand on Sam’s cheek in the gentlest of caresses. "Sam, love… I feel it always… But when we were together, earlier, I felt only you. And it does not want that! It tries to be there, with me and between us – and I could not stand for it to touch you!"

"No more would I want it to! But you… I hate it that you must be the one to bear it, Frodo – and to bear what I’ve seen it do to you. But it will be gone soon, and you will be free of it." Sam took his hand from his cheek, and kissed his palm, comforting him with words until he could again comfort him with his body. "And, setting that thing aside, it’s hard enough for you, waking from – from where you’ve been, to so much that’s new, and everything flitting by so fast, it’d make anyone dizzy!"

Frodo’s grip on Sam’s hand tightened. "It is hard, Sam…But you bring me back. Now, and then, when you held me close through my worst nightmare… through more than you should ever have had to bear…" He was silent for a moment and when he spoke again, Sam was unsure whether he was meant to hear, so soft were the words. "Even this needing, wanting you so much, almost overwhelms me… so much, so fast, so intense… even this, even our loving…" Then he looked up, his face anguished. "Oh, Sam! I want to take time, now we have it! Not just take from you! I need to give, to please you–"

Sam broke into his rushing words with truth, his voice rough with compassion, and so very tender. "Please me? Oh, Frodo! Nothing you could do, fast or slow, ‘taking time’ or no, that would not please me! Your need is my need, love! And you can have me, any way, any time you want me! And if you need me hard and fast, Frodo Baggins, you just come right here to your Sam!"

And then Frodo was back, a warm silken bundle covering Sam’s chest and face. He flung his arms around Sam; his kiss was tender and quick, his voice husky, and his words as sweet as his kisses.

"I – I know. And so am I yours, for any need or want of me, ever! And, as for ‘hard and fast’– oh, Sam!" He hugged Sam tightly, wrapped securely in his arms, and the tension melted away as Sam held him close, kissing his hair and brow.

Then, lithe and relaxed once more, breathing blended smoothly with Sam’s, he lifted his face, lit now by a blush and a grin. Strain had dissolved into tiny smile lines at the corners of his lips and eyes, and his eyes were sparkling.

"‘Hard and fast’, Sam? Oh, yes! We will do that! But for now, love, we’ll ‘take time’ for your pleasure, for both of us, and I’ll try to not be totally undone by your first touch, as I was before!"

"That – you ‘undone’… that was my pleasure!"

"And mine!" Smiling, Frodo hushed Sam’s protest with a slim finger to his lips. "And I know you didn’t mind it! But, you must let me take care of you, too!"

"Well, now, I can’t say as I would mind that, either…" Sam’s eyes twinkled and his laugh was throaty as heat rose pink in his cheeks. "Any time, love!"

Frodo laughed, kissed him, and pushed back from his embrace to curl before him, looking appreciatively at Sam, and past him, at his reflection in the mirror. The bright waves of his flaxen hair rippled in the afternoon light, his well-muscled back was flexed and bare, and his hips were still wrapped loosely in rough wool; hair and skin and trousers all blended in rich, warm shades of gold, dark against the sheets. So alive and healthy, and all that rounded strength serving the gentlest heart in the world. Oh, Sam! He grasped Sam’s shoulder, his eyes dancing, "I will take care of you, my love, but first… Look!"

Sam twisted, following his gaze to their reflection. "What?"

"Look at yourself, Sam, and see as I see. You are beautiful!"

"Well, I don’t know as I’d say ‘beautiful’, but as long as you think so…"

"I do. And isn’t it about time we were both bared to that mirror? You’re still wearing too much!" Suddenly Frodo laughed; Sam raised an eyebrow in question. "Far too much, though less than when I last saw us reflected! You had all your clothes then, and I was… well, there was that silly strip of silk…"

"Frodo! I liked that silk! Showed a good sight more’n what it hid!" Laughing, and deliciously aware of exactly what had been shown, Sam shifted and rolled to the edge of the bed, adding, "That old mirror has seen a good bit of you – and the very best bits, at that!"

He stood, pushed wool and linen down and away, and straightened before the mirror. He saw sturdy limbs and sun browned skin, pale below his waistband – and below that, ready and eager… All so familiar, except he had not ever seen himself mirrored in this state, any more than had his Frodo. His breath quickened at the reflection of Frodo, partially hidden behind him, sitting back against the pillows, regarding him with intent awareness. And he smiled with such warmth as he looked up to meet Sam’s eyes in the mirror…

Oh, Frodo! Life just bursts from you, now you’re awake and happy. I do love your sweet body, and that look tells me you just might like mine, too! But it’s always been that bright spirit shining in you, that makes for all my wanting… He pivoted back toward the bed the better to see Frodo himself.

Where Sam was all shades and tones, Frodo was all contrasts: dark brows and indigo eyes against fair, fair skin; russet-black tendrils brushing creamy silk, as it slipped off one lean shoulder. He had pushed Sam’s shirt aside, and his nightshirt had ridden up, so that nothing lay now across his knee canted in the air, that firm muscular thigh, nor over slim flanks and curved hipbones framing dark curls swirled round… His desire was clear, and his invitation unmistakable.

Sam gasped and grabbed the side of the bed. "Oh! Everything went so fast for us before, I didn’t ever see you… not like this! He looked up slowly from Frodo’s body to his smiling face, to meet eyes shining with love. He was clearly aware of his effect, and definitely enjoying Sam’s noticeable pleasure. And then, his expression somehow both heated and mischievous, he lifted one brow, a crooked little smile playing on soft lips.

"Frodo, I know that look, though maybe not quite like that! You’re up to something – well up, I might say!" he added with a grin.

Frodo sat forward amongst the pillows and gathered the shirt from where it pooled at his waist. Catching Sam’s eyes, he started a slow, sultry shimmer of silk upwards over his belly and waist and chest, watching Sam’s obvious interest and reaction. But after only a few enticing moments, he burst forth laughing in frank happiness.

"Oh, Sam, I simply don’t have patience for this! Later, if you would like, but for now, please come here!" He tugged the shirt up and overhead to toss it away, but in that sudden movement, the gathered fabric became entangled with his wounded shoulder. He hissed with shooting pain, froze, and growled his frustration. "Bother! Sam?"

"Here, let me help…" Sam clambered quickly across the bed and pushed himself to his knees before Frodo to see where and how he was caught. "Are you hurt, love?"

"No, it’s all right now. I’m just tangled… Can you…?" His muffled voice was reassuring as he wriggled his arm where it was trapped in the bunched folds of silk.

"Right here, love. Maybe I could help with that…?" Sam laid his hands over the firm swell of muscle across Frodo’s chest, lightly circled the flat brown nipples, stroking upwards to the draping hem, enjoying a small slow tease of his own, well rewarded by Frodo’s quick inhalation and sigh.

"Oh, a much better way to remove a shirt, Sam!"

"I thought you might like it!" Only then, careful of the hurt shoulder, did Sam gather up the silk, lifting the tangle past the warm, dark tufts beneath supple upraised arms, sliding it off over outstretched hands with a sigh of appreciation.

"Ahh… Frodo… plenty nice in silk… but so much better out of it…"

He looked down, smiling, into Frodo’s upturned face, so close to his own belly as he leaned to free him from the shirt, and suddenly he realised, for the first time, how very close Frodo was. His eyes were warm with love, his fair skin flushed, his breathing fast through parted lips… and Sam’s own body was ruddy, heated, swollen … and so near to touching his Frodo, right there… And Sam faltered and blushed.

"Frodo…" He started to pull away, but Frodo caught him with one palm spread, curved round the back of his thigh, the other gently beseeching on his chest.

"Samwise. I’d like… won’t you let me?" His voice was suddenly hoarse, and his gaze was no longer on Sam’s face, but rapt upon his body. And though Sam could not see the blue of his eyes through downcast lashes, his expression was as intent as Sam had ever seen. "Oh, Sam! So beautiful!"

Sam could feel Frodo’s hands trembling, his voice whispering soft breath over sensitive flesh. "I want this, you, so much…" He looked up, brilliant eyes meeting Sam’s, seeking consent for what he wanted to give.

And Sam could only nod, mutely, and lay his hand on Frodo’s head in wonder, twining his fingers through the tumbled curls, unable to look away from his eyes, unable to move at all. Frodo… Oh, love, I may not survive this! The silken nightshirt dropped to the bed from his hand, as all sensation rushed to one part only. He braced himself against the headboard as heat rippled from his groin outward at the very thought of the sweet kiss… of those soft lips… that dark head bent to… Ohh…

Frodo released the breath he had held, and its moist heat raised quivering chills on Sam’s belly. His nimble fingers teased downward, to loins drawn tight with anticipation, threading through the dark gold tangle that nestled round the heat straining before him. And then he smiled, so sweetly, closed his eyes, and bent to lay his cheek against the rounded belly before him. Sam sighed at the sight and feathered tickle of shining curls, drifting over his skin.

Frodo slid his hand smoothly along Sam’s thigh, pulling him closer, then turned his face to kiss… He pressed warm lips, murmuring love, against yearning flesh, pulled sensitive skin taut, humming, tasting… slipped his hand around Sam’s flank, over cheeks tensed to keep from thrusting, and explored, reaching between… Sam gasped and Frodo turned to glance up, making sure it was pleasure he heard, seeing Sam’s head thrown back, eyes closed, lips parted.

"Sam… oh, my love…" Frodo took a deep breath, readying for what he wanted to do and had never done, for that joy with his Sam that he had glimpsed, that he wished to give… and he leaned to take Sam as deeply as ever he had dreamed.

"Frodo! Ohhh…" Sam’s groan was answered by a deeply vibrating "Mmm…" hummed on flesh tuned to highest pitch. His hand hovered over the dark curls bent to him, then tangled through, to cradle his head lightly, as it rose and fell… And Sam gave himself completely to Frodo’s loving and his own longing, so long delayed.

In all the world, there was only Frodo, his lips and tongue, so fluent round elvish words, flowing mellifluous upon him… And then Frodo shifted, commanded by his own flaring desire, and his teeth scraped accidentally, exquisitely, along Sam’s length. Between one heartbeat and the next, Sam saw blindingly his Frodo’s radiant smile, heard his joyful laughter… and all that he had known before of beloved master, scholar, friend, merged into this: his lips, his life, his love, here and now in an instant beyond dreams.

And though he tried to pull back, as he relinquished control so joyfully to Frodo’s measure, Frodo caught him even closer, humming his own insistent need, to receive Sam’s shuddering release, taking, swallowing… And then Frodo was coughing, just a little, and he looked up with an expression of such wonder that Sam’s heart swelled with tenderness as tears traced down both their faces.

"Frodo…"

"Oh, Sam! Hold me…"

Sam slipped from his knees to gather Frodo close, and, mindful still of the need to protect his shoulder, laid him gently onto the bed, following him with kisses. Their lips blended rose and honey, salt tears and Sam’s own sweet musk, murmuring Sam and Frodo, the names alone a quiet paean of happiness between them. Wondering fingertips smoothed tear tracks from each other’s cheeks, and they lay side by side, twined together.

As Frodo rubbed soothing circles on his back and shoulders, Sam’s tremors subsided and the haze from loving began to clear. He reached down to tangled curls, still moist from Frodo’s earlier pleasure and his own tender care, nestling heat… and found that desire burned there yet, a flame banked patiently between them.

"Oh, love! You were so close just then, and you didn’t… I thought… Here, love…" And Sam slipped his arm from beneath Frodo and started to slide lower, tracing kisses down his throat, wanting to bring lips and hands to Frodo’s need. But Frodo stayed him with a gentle touch to his face.

"Sam, wait." As Sam looked up enquiringly, his hand still moving, Frodo continued, rather breathlessly, "It was wonderful, and just as I wanted. I needed to give you pleasure!" And I had to know that the Ring was not there with me, with us – that it was no part of my loving you… I had to know that I could keep it from you!

"But, pleasing you is part of my pleasure, love." Sam saw something – Worry? Fear? – flicker on Frodo’s face, and then it was gone, replaced with open longing.

"Sam… You did! I loved feeling you… as… as you loved what I was doing. You’re so alivethere, your hands, lips, everything about you. You quicken all you touch – garden, song – you’ve even brought me back to life!" Frodo hugged him close, then pulled back to meet Sam’s eyes. This time, he did not blush as he chose careful words from love’s new lyric, his voice hesitant but very warm. "But… there is something else I want for us now. Sam, I want to lie with you, to… to feel you lying on me…" Suddenly shy, he added, very softly, "And I want us to… come… again. Together."

"Oh, love! I want that, too! And often!" Desire for his Frodo, never far from the surface, flared afresh in Sam, and with a new daring, he took Frodo’s hand, guiding and placing it over his own groin. "Here, love. Feel. Soon… Oh! Sooner, if you keep doing that!"

"Yes! I feel… and that’s just what I shall do!" Frodo laughed softly and wriggled even closer. He sank back into Sam’s arms, nuzzling dark curls into his shoulder, and set himself to fan desire into ardent flame, inspired by a fine imagination, and memory of his own hands upon himself, of the greater pleasure of Sam’s upon him, known now as never before.

"Just lie back, love, and don’t stop…" Sam smiled, and closed his eyes a moment, with a hum of contentment. "Mmm… You do that… and I’ll do this… and we’ll be together real soon." And he moved to caress Frodo where fire burned less intensely, soothing inflamed flesh, nurturing slow, enduring desire; seeing, with wonder, as from a dream, his own sun-brown hands laid with love on fair skin that rippled with pleasure beneath his touch. His hand traced upwards from Frodo’s groin as his lips trailed kisses downwards from throat and collarbone to meet at Frodo’s breast, lips and fingertips meeting at one rosy nipple, puckering over a soft note of delight vibrating from deep within.

But worry struck Sam afresh; the stark white scar so close to pleasured flesh recalled the terrible, chill mist and Frodo’s suffering. He kissed Frodo’s breast and raised up to touch the wound very lightly, in blessing; it was still not as warm as the rest of Frodo’s heated skin. Quietly, he asked, "Frodo, love, would – would it hurt… for me to lie on you? I couldn’t bear that…"

"Oh, no, Sam! Not when you are so gentle with me." Frodo smiled reassuringly. Then, seeing the continued concern in Sam’s face, he added, "I want that, want you! Yes, my shoulder does hurt a little, and won’t support me, so perhaps our ‘hard and fast’ must wait… But, Sam, I can still do this!" He shifted quickly and rolled onto his back, pulling a surprised, but pliant, Sam across his right side. He laced his fingers through Sam’s curls, gently bringing their lips together, kissing him deeply, completely open to everything Sam might ever want or need of him.

With kisses and smiles, they explored anew lips and teeth and tangling tongues, well known before from laughter, word, and song… And Sam now knew what else those sweet lips could do and had done… and a groan rose from deep in his throat. Desire mingled with tender care for Frodo’s wounded shoulder; he held his own weight on one elbow as he pulled back from their long kiss. With a look into eyes dark with arousal, he confirmed that Frodo’s need was for his Sam, now. And Sam was more than ready.

"Sam…" Frodo opened his eyes to meet Sam’s, filled with love and wanting. He laid one hand along Sam’s face, slid the other down to encircle Sam, where renewed desire rose now as fervent as his own. His voice deepened, its timbre resonating from his very being, the lyric in his heart melded with desire’s thrumming song.

"My Sam. I love you. I will always love you, with everything I am. You are my home, and all that I have or might have is for you."

"Oh, love, I am yours! I always have been, and always will be. I love you so much, Frodo… You are everything I ever wanted or ever will."

Sam pressed soft lips to Frodo’s, sealing a promise that had sung in his heart for as long as he could remember. He took Frodo gently in hand, and pushed himself hard into Frodo’s embrace, completing the circle: hands to desire, lips to lips, pledge to vow.

So they lay, bound by enduring love and hope’s promise, far beyond nightmare and pain and loss, trusting that all that needed saying had been said, and all else could yet be in time forever fluent before them. Holding just so, they looked wonderingly into each other’s face, seeing more truly now than ever before in life. In Frodo’s, so familiar and yet so changed by all he had endured, by this wanting and needing and giving, Sam saw his love reflected back to him from eyes as clear as the heavens themselves, and a blazing joy arose within him. And to Frodo, it seemed that in Sam’s warm hazel eyes, the brown and green of tree and leaf, flecked gold by sun’s life-giving ray, he saw the generous bounty of the stable earth, the beauty of a garden’s every changing season. And he knew himself richly rooted there.

Watching Frodo’s eyes, Sam laid his hand again round the firm flesh pledged as his own. Memory merged into the clarion call of what lay before them, and he murmured, "My Frodo… holding you, here… feeling your desire… this is how we began, love, when you first came back to life – to me – and it is what I have always wanted…" Strong calloused fingers traced the line of Frodo’s firm heat, wrapped him in his palm, stroked down, and lightly up, pulling tender skin taut... releasing…

And Frodo smiled and sighed, and his hips lifted, as they must, attuned to that loving touch, thrusting instinctively, convulsively, every chord of his being tremulous with the desire swelling in his body and soul. Neither blade nor Ring, but this, our love, is what takes me. Willingly, and forever. This is that joy only glimpsed, even beyond the vastness of The Sea… here and now in my arms… our beginning…

"I love you…"

"Frodo… let me touch you…"

"I am yours, love…"

Sam raised to kneel close beside him, leaning for a kiss as one hand splayed over his tight belly, bringing rhythm to his shuddering movements. His hand slid down past arching flesh, past the soft curls brushing his wrist, over velvety skin… slipping slowly, sensually, downwards… around tender skin tingling with want…

Frodo’s lips parted for Sam’s searching tongue, his thighs for the seeking hand sliding along his trembling inner thigh… up… between… exploring hidden pleasures, finding tight heat… Frodo gasped, writhing with pleasure at that touch, lifting himself for more. His knee rose and fell aside, opening to whatever Sam might desire, whatever unknown joys they might discover, and he moaned, inarticulate, his mind now swept beyond the poetry of words or the lyric of song…

"Sam… oh…"

"What… do you want, love?" A hoarse whisper, yearning only to please.

"You!" Urgent need melded with sweet humour in Frodo’s breathless response, as his eyes flew open wide. His smile was twisted with passion as he met Sam’s, and he glanced down to see himself, quivering as Sam caressed every secret part of him, places he had scarcely dreamed could feel love like this.

"Always… and this?" And in one smooth glide, Sam slid down Frodo’s body, and his lips were on him, surrounding the silken solidity risen from his very core, kissing, taking, loving… One hand wrapped around him, embracing every tremolo of flesh with lips and palm. Gently seeking fingers left a damp trail downwards… swirling cooling moisture to soothe the tight heat between his legs, only beginning to discover every part of his beloved Frodo…

Frodo’s eyes fell closed, his brow creased, and his head dropped back against the pillows. His breath was as ragged as Sam’s as soft wet heat slipped around him, deepening touches filled him… He thrust up, needing those lips and hands upon him, in him… Panting now, he reached to encircle Sam, claiming him once more, his own hands matching the tempo and pulse of Sam’s upon him, drawing even more breath from them both, as hips and hands and husky whisper urged…

"Sam… oh… please…"

His desire in close harmony, Sam gave straining flesh a tender kiss, an exquisite caress that made Frodo gasp. He nudged firm thighs further apart… lifted himself over, between. And for only a pulse, a resting moment, he held perfectly still, poised that he might look beyond any dream ever dared, to see what he held most dear in life, to see his Frodo…

…the darkest blue of his eyes, dilated almost black, now, intense and wide with love and knowledge of what they did in truth, and not in dream… fair skin flushed, head thrown back, black curls strewn across the sea of white, white sheets billowing beyond… the sheen of moisture that glowed upon his brow, on the bared line of his pale throat arching, and slicked his chest, taut belly, loins… and black curls lower still, and quivering firmness Sam could yet taste upon his lips… the shadow of Sam’s body darkening Frodo’s hands laced round them both, enfolding their desire together…in this one moment, before…

Come to me, my Sam…

Oh, love! Frodo… always…

Frodo groaned his need, as Sam’s warm weight lowered, settling heat to him… pressing… pausing… fitting them together as one sublime instrument, coupled at last to lyric grace. Sam thrust hard, once, twice, again, each measured pulse stroking deeper, faster… seeking ever more pressure and friction and pleasure with and for his Frodo, writhing lithe beneath him, around him… rising rhythmically to meet him. Hope and love in every ardent sigh, their voices blended in timeless song as desire swelled, soaring concord with the ancient music surging, pounding crescendo through their blood… until…

In ecstasy, Frodo arched in Sam’s arms, his slender body bowing vibrato to love strung sinuous between them, pulling forth and sounding the deepest response of Sam’s very being, resonant to everything he was, and all that he would be.

Frodo’s cry of sheer joy was the clearest call that Sam would ever hear, piercing to his soul. Sam closed his eyes and laid his face to Frodo’s, singing his name in perfect counterpoint, following, as always, his sure lead, enfolding his achingly sweet, beloved body as though never to let go. And Frodo was light in his Sam’s encircling arms.

The harmony of love’s searing consummation reverberated into peace and wordless love; wrapped in its echoes they lay, dark and gold entwined, cherishing each other. And so their song began, in truth, grace notes uplifted, beautiful and pure, interwoven with all that had been sung and ever would be. And with their hearts, it soared out of time, beyond the circles of the world, to where their love and joy promised them safe haven always, and this Now gave fulfilment to their dreams.


Finis


Author’s Note: “Mirror Images” tells of a unique time in Frodo and Sam’s lives, poised betwixt and between the nightmare of Morgul blade and their hopes for joy beyond the terror now revealed to exist in their world.

The first half of the tale explores the fears that lead to a new awareness of their need for each other, and the difficult decisions that each must make in facing those fears. The second half occurs on that one poignant day, between Frodo’s awakening in Rivendell and the evening before the Council of Elrond, when they believe that the burden of the Ring may be set aside and that they can return to a simple life in their beloved Shire, together, with new understanding…

Yet, we who love them from beyond the pages of their tale, know that the future they dream is not to be. Mere hours from the expression of their love, on the very morrow, Frodo will make a choice that will take his life, as he takes upon himself an impossible burden, and his Sam will choose to follow him, then as always.

Nowhere in The Lord of the Rings do free people compel another’s actions; compelling the actions of another is left to the likes of Sauron, Saruman, and orcs, or to those who have fallen to despair or temptation, as do Denethor and Boromir. No one tells Frodo that he must do this thing, even though there are various among the Wise who have some sense that it is his destiny. Yet, just as earlier in “Mirror Images,” Frodo must make an informed decision with limited understanding, so, too, does he make one in the Council. As does his Sam.

And it is in these ‘choices’ that their greatness lies: choosing to accept a mission beyond one’s ability, choosing pity over vengeance, devotion over fears, hope and endurance beyond despair… doing what one chooses in the time given…

Among other choices, in “Mirror Images,” Frodo and Sam choose to love. And that is an encouraging thought!


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