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Spring Thaw (NC-17) Print

Written by RubyElf

03 May 2011 | 9184 words

[ all pages ]

TITLE: Spring Thaw (Part 2)
AUTHOR: rubyelf
CHARACTERS: Aragorn, Boromir, Faramir, Legolas, some hobbits, a dog…
WARNINGS: AU (ruby-verse)
SUMMARY: Hobbits get drunk, Aragorn gets a visitor, and Legolas gets the tables turned on him.
DISCLAIMER: Characters do not belong to me. They are just here to play.

Part 2

After spending the rest of the afternoon unsuccessfully hunting for Finn, Faramir made his way dejectedly back to his rooms, expecting that Legolas would have gotten annoyed and left hours ago. To his surprise, he found the elf sitting cross-legged in one of the chairs by the fire, flipping through one of his books.

“You have appalling taste in literature,” he said, without looking up.

“Glad to see you too.”

“No luck finding the dog?”

“What do you know about it?”

“Heard the guards talking. They’re all quite terrified what Boromir will do if she doesn’t turn up before he gets back.”

“Well, at least he’s not supposed to be back for several days, with all the flooding. Would you like to come have dinner?”

Legolas raised one eyebrow. “Don’t we have better things to do?”

“Some of us do need to eat occasionally,” Faramir said.

“Of course. Silly me. But you know, you could have your dinner brought here, couldn’t you?”

“I could. Boromir does that all the time, if he doesn’t feel like seeing anybody.”

“Why don’t you do that? And while you’re at it, ask them to send some honey with it.”

“I’m not terribly fond of honey.”

Legolas grinned and stretched out his long legs suggestively. “No, but I am. And trust me… by tomorrow morning you will be too.”

“I can’t believe Aragorn told us to leave,” Merry complained, as he and Pippin meandered down one of the upper city’s many streets.

“He wouldn’t have, if you’d been able to behave yourself,” Pippin declared.

“I was behaving just fine,” Merry argued. “You’re the one who got us in trouble. I told Aragorn not to give you any wine.”

“He gave you more than me, and that’s why you said all those appalling things.”

“You’re the one who said… hmm. What did you say, anyway?”

Pippin burst out laughing. “I don’t remember.”

Both hobbits fell suddenly and uncharacteristically silent as a large figure in a dark, hooded cloak came stalking down the hall with a determined stride. They stepped uneasily aside, hoping the man would pass them by, but instead he stopped, and they could feel the eyes studying them from the darkness under the hood.

“You’ve been drinking again, haven’t you, lads.”

“Boromir!” Pippin exclaimed happily, and both hobbits launched themselves at the man, embracing him.

“You’re soaking wet!” Merry said, tugging at the cloak. “What have you been up to? We heard you’d be gone for days.”

Boromir pushed back his hood; the temperature had dropped as the sun sank, and his muddy hair was beginning to harden into dark blond icicles.

“Don’t worry about me, little ones. I’ll come fetch you in the morning for breakfast, I promise.”

Merry glanced at him suspiciously. “What sort of trouble have you gotten yourself into?”

“Not nearly the kind of trouble you two are going to be in if you don’t get on your way,” he said, his smile making a lie of his stern tone. “I’ve got somewhere to go at the moment.”

“He’s going to see Aragorn,” Pippin whispered loudly.

Boromir raised an eyebrow. “What would make you think that, little Pippin?”

Pippin opened his mouth to answer, but Merry, who was accustomed after much practice to keeping the two of them out of trouble even when he’d had a bit too much to drink, caught him by the arm and gave him a warning shake. Boromir always had a smile for his hobbits, but he was clearly not in a mood to be taunted or pestered.

“Breakfast, then,” Merry said, leading Pippin away.

“Or second breakfast,” Pippin added cheerfully. “Or both.”

Aragorn had nearly dozed off in his chair, a book open on his lap, when someone knocked briskly at the main doorway. Arwen looked up from the patch of burgundy cloth she was embroidering with an image of the White Tree of Gondor.

“What would the guards want at this time of evening?” she asked.

Aragorn frowned and stood up, but before he reached the door it swung open and Boromir strode in, his wet, muddy cloak clinging to his broad shoulders, frost sparkling in his beard.

“Boromir? What… where did you come from?”

“Sent my men further north to find a safe place to cross with all the equipment, don’t worry.”

“And what about you?”

He shrugged. “My horse and I made it across at the bridge.”

“The bridge that’s underwater?”

Boromir shrugged. “Only part of it.”

“Have you lost your mind? Why would you do that?” Aragorn demanded, alarmed.

“Because if I didn’t get back, either you or my brother or both of you would have gotten nervous and come looking for me, and it would have been dangerous. If I could trust either one of you two not to do daft things any time you thought I might need help, I wouldn’t have been in such a hurry.”

Aragorn flushed. “For your information, I told your brother this morning it wasn’t safe to go out after you and that he was to stay here.”

“How long would you have waited? Till tomorrow, maybe, without hearing from me? And then you’d have come out after me?”

Aragorn stared at him for a long moment, until Arwen spoke gently but firmly behind him.

“Estel, it doesn’t matter how he got here; he’s here now, and safe, but he looks nearly frozen. The stove in the bath should still be burning. I’ll send for something to eat to be sent to his rooms.”

“I’m fine,” Boromir muttered, but his chattering teeth gave him away.

“You’ll be better when you’re warm and clean,” Arwen said sensibly. “And my husband will attend to you and make certain you’re fully recovered.”

Aragorn glanced at her; she returned his questioning expression with a patient smile.

“Are you going?” she asked.

Aragorn shook himself out of his daze. “Of course we are.”

He took Boromir’s arm, feeling the muscles tense as if the other man intended to resist this gesture of familiarity, but he was too exhausted to be difficult, and allowed Aragorn to steer him out into the hall and toward the bath room. Inside, a dim ruddy glow came from the iron grate of the small woodstove, its belly still full of coals and a large kettle of water on its flat top, filling the room with humid warmth that swirled and condensed in the cold air as they closed the door behind them. Aragorn took the kettle by its coiled handle and poured the hot water into the bath before filling it again and setting it back on the stove. He turned to find Boromir still standing by the door, looking nearly asleep on his feet.

“Are you all right?”

“I told you I was fine. Why don’t you just go away and let me have my bath in peace?”

“You’re mad, you know that?”

“Heard it before. I believe it was from you.”

Aragorn tugged at the wet laces until the cloak came undone and fell to the floor, and then proceeded to the soaked woolen tunic, working quickly and efficiently as Boromir watched him, weary and mildly amused.

“Do you plan to strip me naked?”

“I do, yes.”

“And then what do you plan to do?”

“Warm you up and scrub all that mud off of you, and then make you eat something, and then make sure you go directly to sleep without getting into any more trouble.”

Boromir chuckled to himself. “I do believe you may have skipped a step.”


His hands came up, fingers clumsy with cold but familiar with the territory, and tugged at Aragorn’s loose house shirt.

“I don’t think you’re in any condition to be doing anything of that sort,” Aragorn said.

Boromir grinned lazily. “I didn’t say I was going to do anything. I said YOU were going to do something.”

Aragorn laughed and slid his hands down to tug the clinging wet breeches over Boromir’s hips. “I did say I’d warm you up, didn’t I?”

Legolas smiled indulgently up at Faramir as the young man moved his wrists toward the wrought iron bars at the head of the bed.

“What do you think you’re up to?”

Faramir bit his lip lightly, his attention focused on the thin rope he was winding around the slender wrists and then around the metal bars. After a moment he sat back and raised his eyebrows.

“What do you think of that?”

Legolas shook his head. “I hate to ruin your clever plan, my friend, but I’ll have that rope broken before you can even move on to whatever you had in mind.”

“Oh, I doubt that.”

Legolas wasn’t entirely sure he liked the triumphant expression on the man’s face. “Why do you say that?”

“Because that’s not rope. It’s woven mithril.”

Legolas frowned and tugged at his bound wrists. “I see.”

“Two weeks after you left was far too much time for me to think,” Faramir explained easily, and he reached down and took a firm grip on the elf’s bare ankle. Legolas felt a hint of alarm and thought about kicking the man, but something in the back of his head kept him still as Faramir loosely secured each of his legs to the foot of the bed. “I had decided within a few days that I intended to find out how you liked not being in complete control of every situation.”

“I’m not certain I like it at all,” Legolas said.

Faramir glanced at him and smiled gently at the wide and slightly alarmed blue eyes. “Tell me to let you loose, and I’ll do it.”

He felt muscles twitch uncertainly in the wiry body under his hands as the elf’s instinctive panic fought against his intimate understanding of the man looking down at him. After a long moment, the muscles relaxed slightly.

“This isn’t the first time you’ve proved to be more resourceful than I expected,” Legolas said.

“I hope it won’t be the last,” Faramir said, leaning down to kiss him.

Loud pounding on the door echoed through the quiet rooms. Faramir scowled and attempted to ignore it, but the disturbance persisted.

“What do you want?” he shouted.

“Ho! Faramir! It’s us! Let us in!”

“Hobbits,” Faramir muttered. “Go away! I’m busy!”

“Faramir! Let us in! We’ve got wine…”

“I told you to go away!”

“We’re celebrating! Boromir’s back!”

“Drunk hobbits,” Legolas said.

“It’s true! We saw him with our own eyes!”

Faramir gritted his teeth. “I don’t care if the Valar themselves are in town! I told you to GO AWAY!”

Unhappy mutterings moved off down the hall. Legolas looked up at Faramir curiously.

“So I suppose that means you’re going to run off and get back to looking for the dog, right?”

Faramir sat back and sighed, trying to imagine what Boromir would say if he found out that Finn had been off running loose somewhere while Faramir was shut up in his room with his brother’s least favorite elf. On the other hand, he was quite certain he wouldn’t take Legolas by surprise like this again, and if he didn’t make proper use of this opportunity, he wasn’t likely to get another one.

“Every guard on this level and the next one has an eye out for her,” he said. “She won’t get too far, and no harm will come to her. Besides… I’m busy.”

“Are you,” Legolas said, grinning and arching up as much as the mithril bindings would let him.

Aragorn had just finished steering Boromir into the warm water and was busily removing his own clothing when he heard voices outside the door.

“Boromir! Are you in there?”

Boromir chuckled as he sank gingerly into the bath. “Bloody hobbits. Tell them to bugger off.”

“Boromir! We’ve been looking for you! We brought you some wine…”

“I don’t want any wine!” he called. “Go away and let me have some peace. I already promised I’d come fetch you for breakfast.”

“We’re having a very early breakfast,” Merry said.

“With wine,” Pippin added.

“More wine?” Aragorn muttered. “They both had some at dinner with Arwen and I, and they started chattering on about something vulgar having to do with Pippin discussing what sorts of thing he thought would fit in Merry’s arse…”

“Ugh,” Boromir said. “Go away, little hobbits!”

“If we don’t, will you come out and punish us?” Pippin asked hopefully.

“No,” Aragorn said sternly. “But if you don’t, I shall tell the kitchen that they are not to give either of you anything but bread and water for the rest of the time you’re here!”

Silence for a moment.

“He wouldn’t,” Pippin said.

“Oh, he would,” Boromir called. “And I’ll tell them to make sure the bread is moldy.”

“Will there be butter?” Pippin asked hopefully.

There was a grunt that probably indicated that Merry had punched him in the arm, and then the sound of rapidly departing hobbits arguing over which one of them should be carrying the wine bottle.

Aragorn dropped his pants next to the bath and stepped in. Boromir watched him intently in the red glow from the stove.

“Are you warming up?” Aragorn asked.

“Starting to,” Boromir said. “You could speed up the process if you wished.”

Aragorn laughed and slid over to straddle him, one knee on either side of his thighs. Boromir leaned forward, intending to kiss him, but Aragorn neatly dodged the kiss and leaned over Boromir’s shoulder for a cloth and a bar of soap. Boromir growled, but Aragorn ignored him and worked up a lather between his hands.

“Close your eyes.”

“If I wasn’t so tired I’d throw you to the other end of the bath.”

“I know. Close your eyes. I’m not kissing you until I wash this mud off your face.”

“Hmph. There was a time when you were always the filthy one, and I never complained about it.”

“You complained about it constantly,” Aragorn reminded him.

Boromir’s response was lost in a low moan of contentment, his muscles going limp as Aragorn’s fingers began to rub at his temples and forehead.

“Relax, love.”

“It’s never safe to relax when there are drunken hobbits about,” Boromir mumbled.

“I’ll protect you.”

“From hobbits? How very noble of you.”

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