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The Steward and the Wizard | Faramir Fiction Archive

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The Steward and the Wizard (G) Print

Written by Minx

21 October 2012 | 1753 words

Title: The Steward and the Wizard
Author: Minx
Rating: G
Pairing(s): Faramir

A quiet farewell that needed to be said… – a Gandalf / Faramir pairing. Fluff

The Steward and the Wizard

“Faramir!” Pippin shouted out happily, knocking Gandalf’s pipe off as he waved cheerily at the tall, young man who stepped into the room.

Gandalf fished his pipe out of the jug of milk and glared at the young hobbit who was now prattling away unconcerned.

“It’s awfully nice of you to join us! We were just having our second breakfast. Would you like some mushrooms? They’ve been fried in salted butter and we have herring as well, and Ioreth has given us raspberry preserves. Do join us. You don’t look too well. I’ll wager it’s because you don’t eat enough.”

“I have broken my fast with the king, Pippin,” Faramir smiled as he spoke.

Gandalf looked up sharply at the tinge of tiredness in the steward’s voice. His keen glance took in the lines around the young man’s mouth, the thin set of the lips, and the slight redness around the hard, grey eyes.

He shook the wet pipe once and relit it, “I think I’ll complete my smoke in the gardens. Faramir, will you join me? We can rejoin our friends here once they’ve eaten.”

“Yes,” Faramir said quietly.

Gandalf waved an arm to forestall Pippin’s protests and led Faramir out of the room, through the large doors that led into the gardens.

“Well?” he asked once they were some distance from the open windows.

Faramir said nothing. He walked alongside, staring straight ahead, his hands clasped behind his rigid back. They stopped in front of a row of large tubs filled with daisies. Faramir stared at the flowers.

“I know you came to see me,” Gandalf said, pausing in the act of refilling the pipe, “I could not imagine the anger I see in you is meant for the hobbits.”

He thought could guess what Faramir had come to see him about. There was much he had avoided speaking to the younger man of, and he supposed he had put it off for long enough. He and Aragorn had almost cravenly put Pippin forth to speak to Faramir of Denethor’s passing, but it was perhaps about time that he at least played his part in helping Faramir settle with the knowledge of the events that they had almost lost him to.

“Why did you not tell me you are leaving?” Faramir said.

Gandalf stopped, surprised. He had not expected that.

“I was going to speak to you of it,” he said quietly, after a brief while during which Faramir pulled more than a few weeds off the daisy patch. He knew without asking that the query was directed not at his journey to the shire but his departure with the elves.

“Elessar told me,” Faramir said, pulling out another weed. His voice sounded flat and tired.

Gandalf waited. Faramir turned to face him, his face as devoid of expression as his voice.

“I did not expect that,” he said after a while, once he’d realised Gandalf was not going to say anything.

“I thought -,” he continued faltering, “I’d hoped… you are leaving soon with the Halflings, and…”

Gandalf waited still. It was perhaps a little unkind of him, but Faramir was young and despite his outward calm and sobriety, still had some of the impetuousness of youth. It would be better to let him finish having his say.

“I hoped you would return and stay longer. I thought you would, to – to advice Elessar. But he said you were to travel to Imladris and Lothlorien and that you would leave in two years.”

“Elessar has many capable advisors,” Gandalf told him, “You foremost of all,” he held up a hand to stall Faramir’s protest, “Yes,” he sighed, “We all know you feel that is a farfetched statement to make, but there is much Elessar can learn from you and you from him. He shall not need me any more. My duties towards him are done.”

Faramir flushed as he heard the words. He seemed almost angered, and unhappy, Gandalf thought sharply.

“What worries you?” he asked finally.

“I thought you would be here, so… so I too could…,” he started, and then flushed deeper. Halting, he gathered up the weeds he had pulled out, and then sighed.

“Never mind,” he murmured, “You are right. Your duties here are done, and we mustn’t hold you back from your other duties. I shall see you again before you leave.” He said, and turning walked away rapidly towards the citadel.

Gandalf stared after him in surprise, worried about the glint of wetness he’d seen in the young steward’s eyes.

He stared at the daisies, and sighed as he took another puff at his pipe.

He found Faramir in the Steward’s gardens later that day, sitting at the bottom of the steps, staring at a wall covered with climbing roses. He sat down next to him. Faramir looked up at him.

“Mithrandir,” he said, surprise evident in his voice.

“It occurred to me, rather belatedly, and I hope you will forgive me that lapse, that I have other duties as well, here.”

Faramir stared at him in bemusement.

“I have friends to whom I have not devoted enough time.”

Faramir chewed at his lower lip but said nothing. Gandalf thought he looked rather apprehensive and unsure, and wondered at it.

“Forgive me,” he repeated, “I had intended to spend time with you before I leave with the Halflings, and to tell you too of my plans. But we have both had other tasks to fulfil first.”

Faramir sighed loudly, “I should have liked to spend more time with you. You have always departed from here so hurriedly, this is the only time I have seen you stay back here for so many days, and I – I hoped… to spend time with you, and to talk to you more.”

Gandlaf smiled at the young man fondly.

“I would be glad to do so.”

“I thought we had days, perhaps months…. There was so much I wished to talk to you about, to – and now…“

“There is still time,” Gandalf said, encouragingly, “Would you join me for supper tonight?”

“Yes,” Faramir said unhesitatingly, “I should like that.”

Gandalf left the gardens thoughtfully. He had done unfairly by Faramir, he decided. The younger man had ever seen him as a friend and he had more than once perhaps taken advantage of that to avoid incurring Denethor’s displeasure.

Faramir arrived for supper punctually, with a jug of wine.

“I brought you some wine,” he said, as Gandalf led him to the table.

Gandalf had been a little perturbed to realise he was not aware of what foods Faramir preferred. He could well remember more than one occasion in the past when he had joined the Steward’s family for a meal, and Faramir would have ensured some of his favoured items had graced the tables.

They had a pleasant meal, and spoke of much. Gandalf was glad to note that Faramir seemed well recovered from his losses, even to the extent of being able to speak of them. His voice contained hope and eagerness as he spoke of Aragorn and the future of Gondor. He had nearly forgotten how much he enjoyed Faramir’s company. He had known him since his youth – an intelligent, charming young man, preparing to give up the training grounds for life as a ranger in Ithilien. Their interactions had always been pleasant, as Faramir had grown from a shy, curious youngster to a quiet, thoughtful man.

He felt as rueful that they could not have spent more time together, and he admitted as much while they sipped the wine Faramir had brought after they’d finished their meal. Outside, the sun had set and the fire in the hearth had been lit.

Faramir smiled, almost gratefully at his words, “I looked forward to your visits greatly,” he admitted, “When I was younger, I looked forward to the strange toys you always brought – the wooden dragon that breathed fire when you pulled its tail – it took me many days to unravel how the toy itself did not burn out.”

Gandalf smiled at the memory as he filled his pipe. Young Faramir’s usually solemn face had been full of open wonder and joy.

“And as I grew older,” Faramir continued wistfully, staring at the wine swirling in his cup, “I looked forward to seeing you, hearing you.”

He looked up at Gandalf now, his grey eyes quiet, contemplative, almost worried.

“I –“ he started and then paused and stared back at his wine.

Gandalf frowned a little. Faramir seemed a little strained. He leaned forward encouragingly; perhaps the lad needed his advice, although judging by the way he handled his day to day activities, he didn’t think he really needed any help.

“I was… I am… very fond of you,” Faramir murmured softly.

Gandalf raised his eyebrows.

“I felt I should say so,’ Faramir continued hurriedly, “Before you leave.”

“Oh,” he responded, trying to remember his previous meetings with Faramir. But he seemed to have spent more of his time focussing on his work in Minas Tirith and less on Faramir’s expressions. Perhaps, if the circumstances had been different, he would have noted them. And he thought he would have welcomed them.

“I should leave now,” Faramir said suddenly, a fleeting expression in his now shuttered eyes indicated he thought he’d stepped too far. He rose hurriedly.

“I would that you stay,” Gandalf said.

Faramir gave him an uncertain look.

“I have always been quite fond of you too,” Gandalf said gently, “I had perhaps not realised how much, for there ever seemed so many other tasks to do, in those times.” He rose and went to Faramir’s side.

“The times were such,” Faramir acknowledged, “I oft wished that I could meet with you when we were neither in a hurry to return to our tasks, I thought perhaps we’d have such times now. I had thought some day I would share my feelings with you. I had not thought I would do so in so hasty a manner.”

“I am gladdened you did now,” Gandalf told him. He placed his hand on the younger man’s cheek.

“’I desired often to share more than my feelings,” Faramir breathed softly, leaning into the touch.

Gandalf stared into the quietly apprehensive grey eyes.

“I leave soon,” he said gently.

“I know…”

“I would not like to leave you unhappy.”

Faramir smiled, leaned forward, and pressed his lips over Mithrandir’s.

NB: Please do not distribute (by any means, including email) or repost this story (including translations) without the author's prior permission. [ more ]

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2 Comment(s)

Aww, cute!
Well written :)

— Laivindur    Monday 22 October 2012, 20:04    #

Thank you Laivindur. I’m glad to hear you liked it:)

Minx    Tuesday 23 October 2012, 14:22    #

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