06 May 2011 | 1001 words
Series: Desperate Hours
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Disclaimer: All characters and everything else belong to Tolkien, this is just written for fun.
Rating: PG-13, for a bit of romance
A/N: Set on March 1 of T.A. 3021.
Ithilien bloomed in riotous spring, come unexpectedly early in this second year since the end of the Ring War. New leaves unfurled with delight in the early morning hush, and in a lovely hidden glade near Emyn Arnen, the White Rose of Rohan protested, not without a hidden delight, “Faramir! You wouldn’t!”
Éowyn’s husband of just a year grinned at her, looking young and care-free as he held his wife gently cradled in his arms over a pool formed by a creek on its way to the Anduin, “Éowyn, meleth-nin, just yesterday you told our honored guests that I am ‘predictable’ and ‘excessively dedicated to routine.’ Just now, you said that a picnic at dawn was lovely, but that it was a ‘surprising’ idea to have come from me. You have impugned my honor as a husband and a romantic; I must prove that I am not so predictable.”
Though Éowyn’s blue eyes widened in appeal, her husband was pleased to note that she did not take any more effective counteraction to his threat. Instead, she batted her eyelashes, and half-heartedly protested, “Faramir, that water will be freezing!”
He laughed in reply, “Its not that bad. The snow finished melting two weeks ago.” Then he let her go. Falling, she reflected that he would know well; he bathed in this river for nearly two decades, even further north at Henneth Annûn. But Éowyn could be predictable, too. She grabbed at his ankle, but he had anticipated such, and moved back with a chuckle.
The water was cold, but not as bad as she had expected. And moments later, he was beside her in the pool, naked now, and kissing her. She forgot about the cold entirely, aware only of his pale, well-shaped limbs entwined with her own, as the pale light of early morning shone down through the new leaves onto the shade-dappled surface of the flowing creek.
Some time later, they had returned to their picnic, as Éowyn’s clothing dried in the morning sun. They spoke of what they would be building and planting in Ithilien, now that the spring had come, and of berries to be harvested in the warmth of the beckoning afternoon. “No duties, today.” Faramir assured his wife, adding with a smug grin, “I am not so predictable, after all.”
“No.” Éowyn agreed, leaning forward to kiss him again, tasting pastry and coffee from Harad as her lips met his. The coffee made her think of where he might have been, the week before their guests came. She did not ask, but suspected it was well for him that he had arrived home before the King’s visit. “You are not so predictable.” She assured her husband, moving to sit in his lap, glad for his arms safe and warm around her.
Faramir held his wife with sublime contentment, glad in turn for her. They would have remained just like that for quite some time, had not he heard the distant rustle of leaves heralding visitors. Kissing her pale blond head, he gently lifted Éowyn to her feet, reaching for his tunic to cover her.
“Must we get up?” Éowyn said mournfully, as she pulled the tunic on. “The berries will wait ‘til my gown is dry, and it is quite early yet.” She thought that Faramir might not realize that the rest of their household should only just now be arising. Given his druthers, her husband would still be sleeping for another hour or two yet, especially if she did not wake him, and had warned his squire not to wake him, either.
“Someone comes.” He warned her, and she reached for her sword as he nocked an arrow in readiness, until a cheerful whistle from not far off, joined by a higher pitched one, caused Éowyn to roll her eyes with amused disgust, as Faramir laughed.
“Happy Birthday, Aragorn.” Faramir cheerfully greeted the King of Arnor and Gondor, who was flanked by his companions Legolas and Gimli. Éowyn thought it typical of her husband’s ability to show grace under any circumstances, that he could greet their monarch, who was wont to tease Faramir like an elder brother, in nothing but his leggings, his wife dressed in nothing but his own discarded tunic, and only blush a little.
“Happy Anniversary, Faramir, Éowyn.” Aragorn greeted in turn, his eyes twinkling in pleased amusement. “Arwen said that we are to collect berries now, at the clear direction of our babe whom she carries.” He shrugged, the confused but pleased willingness of an expectant father in his expression, in addition to an amused grin that said he would, indeed, be teasing Faramir later.
Legolas offered Éowyn a bag with an embarrassed, apologetic smile, “Arwen sent you dry clothing. She’s being particularly Galadriel-like this morning, with a touch of Cousin Elrond in a “do as I say” mood. I think we should do as she says.”
Gimli nodded, accepting Faramir’s offer of a cup of coffee, which he’d come to enjoy. “Aye, breeding women are not to be trifled with. The granddaughter of the Lady of the Wood, especially,” the dwarf added. He was not a father himself, but he had a slieu of younger cousins.
“Well, if Arwen’s asking…” Éowyn agreed with a flustered smile, going a bit further into the undergrowth to change. As she donned leggings, soft under shirt, and a light-weight tunic from her own clothes press, and listened to their friends tease her husband gently, the White Lady grinned. She was glad, indeed, that she had taken Arwen’s advice as to how to prompt her husband to do something out of the ordinary for their anniversary.
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