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26 September 2005 | 9864 words
Disclaimer: LOTR and all its characters belong to Tolkien
Thanks a big huge deal and many hugs to Iris for the beta
Aragorn took a deep breath and then sighed loudly and happily as he felt the wind blow through his hair and the salty tang in the air. This was an excellent idea, he decided, almost gleefully, eyeing the vast blue expanses of sea and sky spread out in front of him. He’d almost forgotten how much he’d loved sailing in the open seas on his visits to Dol Amroth in his earlier days in Gondor. If only Faramir would come up a while and enjoy it with him.
Imrahil’s invitation to visit couldn’t have come at a better time. Winter was nearing and Minas Tirith was beginning to get cold and more than that Aragorn’s councils were getting longer as the days grew shorter leaving him with less time to spend outdoors. When Imrahil mentioned that the coastal defences needed to be re-planned, Aragorn had agreed. And so Imrahil had invited him over, and so, leaving Arwen to take care of matters in Minas Tirith, the king, his steward and a few of his commanders rode down to Dol Amroth. Common sense dictated that the best way to examine the existing coastal defences would be to sail the coast and that was just what Aragorn did now, in Imrahil’s flagship. He planned to be at sea for a few days at least, with Imrahil’s younger son and Dol Amroth’s naval commander, Erchirion as captain.
It was not a plan that met with everyone’s approval, but it was long clear to all that Aragorn did not always do things that were necessarily approved by everyone. He had deliberately ensured they would be at sea for a few days. And true enough, the moment he’d spied the sliver of blue from atop a hill nearing Imrahil’s castle, Aragorn had remembered his old love affair with the sea, and the trips he’s taken along the coast with the old fisher folk who knew more about the dealings of the Corsairs than the spies did.
This was their first morning on the boat. They’d boarded late the day before to catch the tide and after a quick meal the others had retired to their cabins, pleading tiredness from the long ride. Aragorn had been a little disappointed to see Faramir also looking a little tired. He was becoming increasingly fond of the younger man, finding in him a good friend and an excellent Steward and he’d hoped they could have had some wine together on the deck.
He hadn’t mentioned this plan of his to tour the coast on boat to Faramir earlier and had been delighted to see the surprise on the younger man’s face when they’d reached Dol Amroth and Erchirion had shown them to the vessel almost immediately.
“We’ll be back to spend a few days with Imrahil,” Aragorn had told him smiling, even as Faramir had continued to stare in surprise at the boat.
Well, he still had the next few days to eat and drink with Faramir he decided. Tonight, they could dine on the upper deck… he would show Faramir the sights on the cliff that rose above the coast. Surprisingly, Faramir had mentioned that he’d spent little time in Dol Amroth earlier and even less on the sea, coming in only on short visits every two years or so to visit his uncle and cousins.
He’d forgotten how wondrous the sea could be, Aragorn realised smiling, as he watched the waves slap the sides of their vessel. It was a little rough, but he liked it that way. He liked the rolling motion the roughness caused, so rhythmic and calming. As though almost on cue, the launch lurched ever so slightly. His smile broadening, Aragorn walked down to the small dining area that had been prepared for the royal party and settled down to a fairly sumptuous breakfast. Sailing always made him extremely hungry. He was joined at the table by the two commanders who had accompanied him, the Lords Celos and Mardil and Erchirion and spent much of his time discussing his plans with them.
“Lord Faramir does not join us?” Mardil asked, after a while.
“I had hoped he would,” Aragorn admitted, “Perhaps he prefers to break his fast alone? He oft did that while in Minas Tirith, before he moved to Ithilien. He used to like working in the mornings and he’d often eat while working.”
“I’m not surprised,” Erchirion muttered, “He’s probably nose deep in his parchments by now.”
“He should join us for the meeting later, though,” Aragorn smiled again, although he did feel a little wistful inwardly. He’d forgotten Faramir’s old habit of having breakfast alone.
Faramir did indeed come for the meeting, looking a little sleepy and tired. Probably the long ride the day before, Aragorn thought. Celos and Mardil however looked quite refreshed. He smiled at Faramir and got a weak smile in return that he thought looked more like a grimace.
They sat down with jugs of wine and pored over the maps of the coast long and discussed Tolfalas and fortifications and Erchirion often pointed out specific land features to the king. The younger man was quite delightful, Aragorn realised as he laughed over his comments on the corsair attacks that they still faced. He was quite young and certainly so when considering the responsibility he held but that was to be expected, and his enthusiasm was almost infectious
The sea was calm now and the launch seemed to be barely moving in the stillness. Standing at the deck rail with Erchirion, sipping his wine, Aragorn’s eyes fell on his Steward’s profile. He knew very little about the sea and ships, Aragorn had realised quite early on. Faramir had in fact said as much when Aragorn had asked him to come along. But he had agreed that he needed to know all about the coastal defences in his capacity as Steward. Now he sat hunched over the large and detailed map of the coast, trying to work with it. He was completely different from Erchirion, his countenance sober as ever, his voice soft as he spoke to Celos, and even his long, dark hair was tied down by a ribbon quite unlike the others.
When they were done an hour later, Erchirion invited Aragorn to sup at his cabin later in the evening. The king mentally postponed his planned dinner with Faramir to the next night and accepted and turned to the Steward who had come to join him at the rail, holding his cup of wine in his hand.
“I must return to my papers now, my lord –”
“Oh no, Faramir, you’d better not run off downstairs again,” Aragorn said, “Stay here awhile and speak to me.”
“Yes, my lord,” Faramir said, smiling gently.
“Is not the sea beautiful?” Aragorn demanded enthusiastically.
“Indeed,” Faramir replied softly, “And you love it so do you not? I remember you once told me how much you loved sailing.”
“You do?” Erchirion said his face lighting up, “Then when we return you must come on my sailboat with me.”
“I would love to,” Aragorn replied.
“But I must warn you we will face rough seas.”
“All the better,” Aragorn replied laughing happily.
From there the conversation progressed on to boats, sails, seas and rivers. Erchirion was animated and enthusiastic and knew well what he spoke of. Aragorn noticed Faramir was not saying much and tried hard to include him in the talk but the Steward would contribute little more than a monosyllable before returning to his wineglass. It was a while before they were finished.
“You will you join us for supper, will you not, cousin Faramir?” Erchirion asked.
Faramir gave them a hesitant look.
“I hope you will,” Aragorn said.
“I – I had thought of writing some letters,” Faramir said quietly.
Erchirion shrugged, but Aragorn frowned, “Surely letters can wait. I would be happy to see you at supper.”
The sea had roughened steadily by the time Aragorn came to Erchirion’s cabin for supper. They lurched their way through the courses, and Aragorn was frustrated to note Faramir had not come. Celos and Mardil both had though.
“Faramir works through supper too?” Celos murmured, “About time he got married!”
They all laughed at that, though Aragorn did so quite mechanically.
This was silly, he decided, surely, letters could wait.
“I did think he’d have joined us,” Erchirion said a little testily, “After all he was asked by you to come. Elphir used to say he was quite reserved, I didn’t realise he was so reserved as to be almost stuck up. He hardly spoke earlier too.”
Aragorn didn’t reply but Erchirion’s words did distress him a little.
He’d realised however that the cousins did not know each very well so
he let it pass. Faramir had mentioned that his trips to Dol Amroth had been
fewer over the years and his interactions with his younger cousins much less.
When supper was over, Aragorn excused himself and left for his cabin, stopping for a few minutes at the deck to enjoy the wind. He wondered about Erchirion’s remark that Faramir had been quiet earlier too. Aragorn frowned. It was true. He’d been quieter than usual on the ride here and ever since they’d boarded the vessel he’d hardly spoken, and he hadn’t even smiled, merely grimaced a lot.
“That’s it! I’m going to ask him why he’s being so aloof!” he decided.
Faramir’s cabin was on next to his. Aragorn walked over in smooth strides that kept up with the rocking of the boat. Stopping at Faramir’s door, he knocked. There was no reply but he could hear sounds of movement from inside. So he knocked harder. Again there was no response.
*Is he avoiding me for some reason?*
Seething a little at the thought, he contemplated turning away and stalking off. And then he heard the noise, as though someone was choking…
And then again that same sound.
“Faramir!” he cried out aloud and did the first thing that came to his mind. He kicked the heavy door open and launched himself inside. He fell onto the carpeted floor in a heap and straightened himself rapidly, sitting on his haunches his eyes wide and focussed on the table and chair where Faramir should have been.
He wasn’t. He was on the bed.
Faramir was lying limply on his back, his shirt open, the sheets thrown haphazardly over him, one leg dangling off the bunk and an arm thrown over his eyes. Aragorn stood up, surprised. Faramir moved his hand and peered blearily up at his king.
“Sire,” he murmured making no move to rise.
It was enough to show Aragorn something was wrong, “Faramir? What has happened?”
The young Steward simply groaned, and mumbled something as he tried to sit up.
“I had too much wine… and I get seasick when I travel by boat,” came the embarrassed answer accompanied by a deep flush.
“You get seasick?” Aragorn asked incredulously. He’d never even considered that. For one, he never got seasick himself, and for another Faramir’s maternal family was after all from Dol Amroth and they were renowned sailors as Erchirion was clearly demonstrating.
“Yes,” Faramir replied tersely. It was clearly a sore point.
He’d managed to sit up now.
“I’m sorry I’m late. If you would give me a few minutes, I will change and join you for supper.”
“Supper is over. You look a little pale,” Aragorn asked, “Are you all right?”
Faramir nodded and then winced at the movement. It was at that moment that the boat gave a huge lurch. Aragorn reached out to steady himself. Faramir on the other hand nearly toppled off the bunk, as his hand flew to his stomach.
He groaned loudly even as the craft steadied, and the next moment had indeed flown off the bunk, and headed straight for the bowl kept at the corner of the cabin. Aragorn stood by him as he bent over it, retching unhappily.
When he’d finished he gently helped him up and guided him back onto his bed, and then sat down by his side.
“You should have told me,” Aragorn said as he gently made Faramir lie back against the pillows.
“I didn’t know we were to sail,” Faramir groaned in reply, as the boat rocked ever so slightly, “If I had I wouldn’t have come to Dol Amroth at all.”
“You could have told me when you learned that we were to sail that you get seasick!” Aragorn repeated, “We would have had our meeting on land.”
“I couldn’t,” Faramir murmured and curled into himself.
“You couldn’t tell me? Why?” Aragorn asked surprised, “And why ever didn’t Imrahil tell me?”
“He doesn’t know!” The boat rocked once again and Faramir curled up even more turning his face towards the pillows, loose strands of hair fringing his damp face.
“How could he not know?” Aragorn demanded, “You said you have visited here.”
“He didn’t know because I stayed away from the sea after I realised I get seasick… I – I couldn’t tell him,” Faramir’s voice was muffled by the pillows.
“Why not?” Aragorn demanded.
Faramir sighed a little, “He- how – I just didn’t. I was afraid what everyone else would think, and – the others don’t… and father would – would say I – I just couldn’t tell anyone so I found ways to never have to sail.“
“Oh? And why couldn’t you tell me?”
“I – I thought I could handle it,” the younger man looked up at Aragorn, his grey eyes reflecting all the misery that he clearly felt, “You wanted so much to come on this journey… I remembered how oft you spoke of sailing on these seas here and you sounded so fond and I couldn’t-”
“Oh Faramir! I did want to come out to sea but not at the cost of forcing you to make yourself ill!”
“But you are enjoying yourself so and I have spoilt it for you.”
“One of the reasons I wanted you to come was so I could show you all I had learnt on my last visits here. I thought you would like it… to see the stars and to see the cliff formations around the bay and to hear the tales the fisher folk tell of the sea… I wanted so much to spend time with you, Faramir, without all these disturbances that we keep having and I thought who could disturb us at sea,” Aragorn said with a hint of a wistful smile in his face.
He reached out a hand and gently brushed the damp strands of hair away from Faramir’s face, “I hardly get to see you these days, Faramir, you seem away in Ithilien all the while and I find, my friend that I miss you greatly. I thought this would be a good way to spend time with you. I know you are lonesome, and I too long for company at times.”
Faramir stared up at him, the grey eyes as astute as ever, although tinged with weariness right now, “I – I have missed your company too, my lord, and oft wish to return to Minas Tirith but –”
“I know,” Aragorn said gently, his fingers still brushing Faramir’s hair lightly, “There is much to do in Ithilien and I can think of none better to handle things there. It is why I so looked forward to this journey.”
“As did I,” Faramir admitted, “Until I learnt of how we were to journey,” he let out a short wry laugh at that which turned into a slight groan as the boat lurched unsteadily.
“I should have told you earlier,” Aragorn said ruefully, and then sitting back a little, took a closer look at Faramir. He seemed rather sweaty, he decided and reached for the jug of water placed nearby, “Although I fear you would not have confessed even then.”
“No,” Faramir admitted in a small voice.
“Because you ever fear to reveal what you think others construe a weakness,” Aragorn stated, and rising walked over to a shelf on the wall, “I feared briefly that you were avoiding me.”
“I would never avoid you,” Faramir breathed out sharply, his eyes following Aragorn around the room, “But I did think you could do with better company than I would have provided, with my mind ever on when the sea would get rough and I would embarrass myself in front of everyone, and –” he broke off abruptly as Aragorn sat on the floor by him and ran a wet cloth over his cheek and neck.
“I would never avoid you,” he said again, trying not to squeal at the feel of the cold cloth against his neck.
“I am glad to hear that,” Aragorn smiled and wetting the towel some more, parted the open shirt a little more and rubbed down Faramir’s chest and stomach, “There that should help you feel more comfortable.”
Then he undid the clasp that held Faramir’s hair and wiped the towel around the back of his neck too.
“Now that I know you do not wish to avoid me,” he said grinning a little, “I shall feel easier about imposing my company upon you tonight. I was told that it is suggested for such a sickness that one seek open air.”
Faramir’s expression turned to one of dismay, “In open air?” he almost squeaked, “Like this? I – I -,” he couldn’t he thought, distressed. To appear outside looking, as he felt, weak as a half-drowned kitten - he baulked at the thought.
Aragorn was well aware of Faramir’s insecurities in that regard, but this he decided was no time to attempt to resolve those, so he simply smiled reassuringly instead, “I can imagine you would prefer not to come out on to the deck, so I have another suggestion. My cabin is larger. I suggest we retire there for the night.”
Faramir stared up at him at first in relief at hearing he didn’t have to seek the deck after all and then his expression changed to surprise, “But –”
“I am sorry to say,” Aragorn continued, “That the sea will remain choppy. I shall ask Erchrion to turn and make for shore but I fear it will not be till later tomorrow that we shall be able to return to Dol Amroth, and your cabin is too small for both of us to spend a comfortable night here.”
“Both of us?” Faramir asked surprised, “But really, Sire, there is no need for you-“
“-to spend the night with you?” Aragorn completed smiling, “No, Faramir, there is every need. You are in discomfort and likely to feel worse, and I will not leave you alone at such a time.”
There was little Faramir could say that Aragorn would heed after that, particularly as the boat began to lurch even more unsteadily and a swift wind made its presence felt outside. He made the younger man get up and change into lighter clothes, while he sent a message to Erchirion to ask him to turn back towards Dol Amroth and another to the galley to ask for some bland soup, bread and fruits.
Aragorn’s cabin was indeed large, as was the huge bed in it, with soft pillows and sheets that looked so inviting that Faramir had merely a moment’s hesitation as he stood by the door leaning on Aragorn’s arm.
He laid down on it while Aragorn sat by him. A small lantern infused the cabin with a warm glow.
The food had already been placed and Erchirion had apparently accepted his king’s orders without question. The sea had after all gone progressively rougher and the rocking movements of the boat were now unceasing. Faramir looked even worse and at the sight of the food, his face developed a sickly hue. He had retched once earlier, nothing but a dry heaving though and Aragorn had hastily moved the food out of sight and slipped into the bed next to his Steward.
“Rest,” he suggested, “And all will be better in the morning.”
Faramir groaned in reply and curled up next to Aragorn as though seeking his nearness, “Can’t sleep,” he mumbled.
“If you wish,” Aragorn said gently, and sitting up a little, pulled Faramir into his arms, “We can talk.”
The sudden gesture seemed to surprise Faramir and he glanced up at Aragorn with his eyes wide but made no move to distance himself from the embrace, instead he leaned his head a little warily against Aragorn’s chest.
“But for this infernal rocking…” he muttered.
“You need to take your mind off it,” Aragorn said gently, tightening his hold a little, in an attempt to cushion the movements somewhat, “Think of other things… think of – of… what were you thinking of in the morning when you were sitting at the table with the maps?”
“You,” Faramir said promptly and then blushed, “I mean – I -”
“I was thinking of you too that while,” Aragorn confessed softly, “What were you thinking of me?”
“You looked so fine and handsome standing there… I thought Erchirion would fall madly in love with you and –”
Aragorn nearly laughed at that but stopped himself just in time when he realised Faramir was beginning to look a little miserable.
“And you thought I would reciprocate,” he said gently.
“I -,” Faramir blushed hotly at that, “Forgive me, I know you are married but I- it is not unknown and -”
“It is not unknown, yes, for married men to desire the company of other men, and I shall confess I do too.”
Faramir looked up in surprise, his eyes even more miserable now, “He – he will be glad of it, I think. He has ever said he can not be close to one who does not love the sea as he does-”
“Not he, Faramir,” Aragorn said gently, “Nay, my affections rest closer home, dear one.”
The endearment almost slipped Faramir by in his confusion but then his eyes widened and he paled and then reddened and stared wildly at Aragorn.
“If I ask for something you do not desire, Faramir, forgive me and forget that I ever ask for this,” Aragorn said quietly, “But if you too desire what I do, then… well, it would help you keep your mind off what ails you right now.”
Faramir continued to stare at him.
Aragorn bit his lip slightly, “Forgive me as I said. I should not have –”
“No!” Faramir spoke up hastily, “No, there is nothing to forgive. I mean – I should, I too… oh! But – I-”
And then Faramir stopped abruptly, and swiftly moving closer to Aragorn kissed him on his lips, a quick peck, no more. Then he moved back and stared apprehensively at Aragorn.
Aragorn let out a ragged sigh.
“I-” Faramir began, and then stopped lost for words. There was so much he wanted to say, or rather to ask Aragorn to do…
“Dearest,” Aragorn said softly.
Pulling Faramir closer and gathering his entire weight in his arms, Aragorn gently lowered his lips onto Faramir’s and kissed him. Faramir responded hungrily. Aragorn fell back onto the pillows taking Faramir with him and then rolled them both over so that Faramir lay under him.
When they finally came apart slowly, he looked down into the clear grey eyes of his Steward and spoke softly, “What do you wish to do tonight, Faramir?” he ran his hands through the soft, damp hair and traced a finger over Faramir’s cheekbones.
Faramir wound his arms around Aragorn before replying, “Take my mind off everything but you, my king,” he replied softly.
“Aye,” Aragorn breathed heavily and bent to kiss Faramir once more, his hands now moving lower till they came to the ties of Faramir’s robe and began undoing them. He lavished Faramir’s eager mouth with his tongue and let his fingers slip in to rove the sharp collarbones and dip lower to run across the chest. Faramir bucked up under him and pulled him closer encouraging him by rubbing his body against Aragorn’s chest, until it was clear the clothes were causing too much of an obstruction. Reluctantly slipping his mouth out of Faramir’s he sat up, straddling Faramir’s thighs. The boat continued to rock, more gently now, but Faramir had his eyes half-closed, and seemed not to notice the movement.
“Too many clothes,” he murmured softly, smiling at Aragorn. The king nodded and moving away divested himself of his tunic and pants, even as Faramir removed his robe. The soft golden light from the lantern played on their bodies as they looked at each other, before moving into each other’s arms.
Faramir ran gentle fingers over Aragorn’s chest, as the king nudged him back against the pillows. The steward moved his legs apart as Aragon kissed him on his lips again, and then moved his lips lower over the jaw, the long neck, the throat, onto the chest even as Faramir’s arousal became more and more apparent against Aragorn’s stomach. His own hardness beginning to make itself felt, Aragorn licked at one brown nipple, before taking it between his teeth gently and working it swiftly to hardness even as Faramir began releasing soft moans of obvious desire. Aragorn moved onto the next nipple, pressing his hardness against the Steward’s even as Faramir bent his head down and began kissing him everywhere within reach, his ears, the back of his neck.
“Tell me what you want,” Aragorn demanded again, hoarsely as Faramir’s tongue slipped in to his ear and began lavishing him.
Faramir released his ear and moved enticingly so that their arousals brushed again, causing Aragorn to hiss audibly.
“You,” Faramir whispered softly, “Inside me.”
Outside the wind picked up speed and the boat lurched yet again and rocked more and more, but Faramir felt none of that as Aragorn gently pressed him down and slipping a pillow underneath his hips, slowly slipped an oil slicked finger deeper and deeper into him. Faramir moaned shuddering each time the fingers moved inside his tight passage, and moved in steady rhythm with them trying to aid them into moving further and further inside him, until they brushed the tiny knot that sent those sensations cascading over him.
“Soon, please,” he urged Aragorn, as the fingers were removed and replaced with Aragorn’s erect shaft. Spreading his legs wider, Faramir allowed his mouth to be captured in Aragorn’s again as he felt his muscles stretch to allow Aragorn to enter him and sheath himself completely insides him.
Sensations warred all over his body, the rhythmic thrusting of Aragorn’s thickening shaft against his passage as the king pulled out slowly and then thrust in harder, the tongue that ravished his mouth, and throat, the fingers that alternately gripped his hips and played with his nipples.
He felt himself being pulled into a maelstrom of feelings. Somewhere in the distance he felt other movements, rocking motions, blowing winds, all of which was being relegated to the waves that racked through his body as Aragorn hit that one spot again and again and again, as long fingers wound around his own aching shaft, and ran up and down it, teeth pressed into his aroused nipples as he threw his head back in pleasure. He thought he might have screamed loud, though he couldn’t say how many times. All he knew was that in all the times he had lain with another, he had never felt the depth he felt now, as he felt Aragorn come inside him, and as he felt his own release spill into the king’s hands.
He lay breathing heavily with Aragorn lying over him, his fingers entwining the king’s hair as dark head resting against his torso, the limp member still inside Faramir. The lantern had died out but neither felt like moving. The boat lurched once to the left and then to the right, but Faramir felt too overwhelmed to notice. He did notice Aragorn pulling out of him though and protested softly as the king’s warm body moved away from his. But the next movement he was back in Aragorn’s arms, and being held close.
They happily ignored the stickiness still spread over their lower bodies and fell asleep wrapped around each other.
Aragorn woke the next morning as sunlight streamed in through the window of his cabin. A glance out of the window showed him a calm spread of blue sea, and he felt his heart lighten at the sight. The day before when he’d woken to this sight, he had arisen promptly, readied himself quickly and bounded out to the open deck. Today, he turned to his side and glanced at Faramir who lay near him, still sleeping, the bedclothes tangled around his curled up body. Aragorn pulled the sheets straight and then gently slung an arm over the younger man’s chest and moved closer to him, resting his cheek against the soft, dark hair. He smiled slightly as Faramir let out a soft sigh and snuggled into his embrace.
They reached Dol Amroth later that day, and had meetings with Imrahil’s lords through the evening. Faramir’s seasickness had returned to a limited extent that morning but he managed to make it to the breakfast table and nibble at some food before smiling thinly and admitting to his cousin that he had been feeling poorly, and then apologised for not being sociable.
Imrahil had given them adjoining rooms in his castle, which they took full advantage of, spending their first night there in Faramir’s room which, out of filial love, had a better view of the sea.
They made love twice that night and fell asleep in each other’s arm. Waking at dawn, they sat together and watched the sun rise over the horizon. Aragorn was speaking softly as Faramir nestled in his arms.
“I did not realise it but I have come to depend on you so much, not just for your advise, but for your companionship, to hear you, to watch you, to spend time with you, and now when I see you suffer I know I would do all to ensure you do not suffer so, even turn around from that journey. And I know you suffered so because you wish not to deprive me of that journey, so I wonder, dearest Faramir if you too –”
“I do,” Faramir said simply and kissed him. Aragorn responded by slinging a leg over his thigh.
Faramir remembered later that night, “What of your sailing trip?” he asked softly, as they lay back against a next of pillows created on Aragorn’s balcony and the king pushed gently into him.
“I find that I get a finer pleasure on land,” Aragorn murmured, smiling lovingly at him, as they began rocking together slowly with his shallow thrusts.
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