STARLIGHT ON LAKE EVENDIM
"Ever been to Lake Evendim?"
Frodo pressed his cheek against Sam's cloak as they descended on ponyback from the Tower Hills to the Shire road. "Lake Evendim?"
"North of the Shire, in the highlands."
"Mm. No. No, I haven't. Have you?"
Frodo felt Sam move, which he took as a nod. "Beautiful country, up that way. Like the Northfarthing, only more so. Ought to be a lovely sight, this time of year."
"And we could ride home through the Northfarthing, see the foliage at its peak," added Frodo. "It sounds splendid, Sam. Lead on."
And so Sam turned the pony off the road, riding north and east toward the distant Twilight Hills, while Frodo sang softly into his back.
Sam smiled to himself. "Happy, Frodo?"
"Yes." Frodo hugged Sam tightly. Sam let one hand fall from the reins long enough to briefly press Frodo's hands. His fingers traced the contours of Frodo's entwined fingers, then, reluctantly, he again took hold of the reins with both hands.
"The lake's beautiful in the starlight," remarked Sam. He and Frodo were sitting by the fire, camped on the southwest shore of Lake Evendim.
"Mm." Frodo leaned against him, his head on Sam's shoulder. "It is." His hand found Sam's, and he began to caress it absently.
"Beautiful night." Sam squeezed Frodo's hand gently. "Weather's been mild for October."
"Yes. It has." His fingertips skimmed Sam's palm. "We've been most fortunate."
"That we've been," Sam gruffly agreed, resting his head on Frodo's. Smiling, he lifted Frodo's hand to his lips. "I'll warrant you'll not find a happier Hobbit in the Shire than yours truly." Frodo looked up at him and smiled; their lips met, lingering decidedly longer than customary for a kiss between friends.
"So." Sam's eyes sparkled with mild amusement as they parted. "Shall we make a habit of this kissing, then?"
Frodo averted his eyes, suddenly shy. "If -- if you don't mind," he softly answered, "I shouldn't object."
Sam's eyebrows rose. "Well, now." He gazed out over the glittering lake. "I don't rightly know if it's what you'd call proper--"
"It's all right, Sam," dismissed Frodo, starting to pull away.
"--but," he touched Frodo's chin, tilting it so Frodo's eyes were upon his once more, "I shan't object if you shan't." Smiling, he bent his head into another lingering embrace which Frodo gladly returned.
Frodo smiled tenderly up at Sam. "Make love to me, Sam," he impulsively implored.
Sam started, wide-eyed. "Make -- make love to you?" he repeated, stunned. "You mean -- like -- like--"
"Never mind, Sam." Wrenching away, Frodo leaped to his feet. "I'm sorry."
"Frodo -- what--" Sam reached for him, but Frodo broke into a run toward the lake. Scrambling in the sand, Sam struggled to his feet and huffed after him. "Frodo! Frodo, wait!"
Frodo plunged into the water and swam vigorously away from the shore.
"Frodo! Come here!"
Frodo swam on.
"Frodo!" Sam hoarsely wailed. "Frodo! Would you please stop running where I can't follow?"
Frodo froze, letting his arm fall in mid-stroke. Treading water, he turned, gazing back at Sam.
Damn, you've put your foot in it this time, Sam Gamgee. "Frodo," he pleaded, tears welling. "Frodo, please come back."
Silently Frodo began to propel himself back to shore. Sam said nothing, simply watched and waited as Frodo slipped silently through the water until he clambered up onto the beach, drenched and shivering, slogging step by sodden step until he halted in front of Sam. Sam regarded him tenderly but still said nothing, merely reached for Frodo's hands and led him back to the fire. Frodo waited, watched while Sam spread his own cloak on the sand, then watched, his eyes glimmering gold in the firelight, while Sam began to unlace his waterlogged shirt. The shirt Sam wriggled up Frodo's torso, over his head and off his arms. Silently Sam slipped the first breech button loose.
"Wait, Sam." Frodo's hand stilled Sam's, his quiet voice trembling on the edge of the silence. "Is this really what you want?"
Sam blinked, looking up into those gentle, vulnerable eyes. With his free hand he brushed a damp curl off Frodo's brow. "I've wanted it for as long as I can remember," he said, letting his fingertip follow the line of Frodo's face. "I just didn't know it."
A smile wavered on Frodo's lips. "I -- I don't know what to do," he confessed.
"Neither do I," Sam wryly countered, slipping the buttons free one by one. "I reckon we'll figure it out." He slid both hands beneath the waistband and slid the clammy breeches down, letting his hands glide along the skin beneath. Frodo breathed in sharply, closing his eyes.
"Mm." Sam pulled Frodo to himself, warming Frodo's body with his own. Frodo's arms slipped around Sam's waist, and he began to sway gently, drawing Sam with him, his open palms circling Sam's back with long, broad strokes.
"I love you," whispered Sam, his lips against Frodo's ear. "I've loved you for as long as I can remember."
"I've loved you too," Frodo whispered back. "I just didn't know it. Till--" His voice caught.
"Hush." One hand slid up Frodo's back and neck and began stroking his wet hair. "No regrets. Not now." Sam rubbed his cheek along Frodo's. His lips brushed Frodo's neck, just below the ear; Frodo gasped, tensing.
"Hm." Smiling, Sam pressed his lips just a little more firmly, allowing the tip of his tongue to slip up and down the side of Frodo's neck, stroke behind Frodo's ear, pressing lightly into the hollow beneath it. Frodo let out a soft moan.
"Mm-hm," murmured Sam, letting his tongue caress the soft lobe of Frodo's ear. He pressed Frodo's hips against his own. Gasping, Frodo moved his hands more insistently, tugging free the hem of Sam's shirt, slipping his hands beneath the shirt and clinging to Sam's back.
"Mm. Half a minute." Bestowing a few more light pecks on Frodo's neck, Sam drew away. He wrenched his shirt over his shoulders and flung it away from the fire, the breeches soon following suit. "There." Grinning at Frodo, Sam embraced him snugly. "Better?"
"Oh, yes," sighed Frodo, leaning forward to cover Sam's mouth with his own. By unspoken agreement they collapsed upon the cloak side by side, twining legs and arms and tongues and tears, hands searching, stroking, exploring. Frodo pressed
himself against the hollow of Sam's hip and thigh, then with a soft groan quickly pulled back, not wanting it to be over that soon. Suppressing a smile, Sam distracted Frodo with another deep kiss while he let his hand slipstealthily between them. With the tip of his finger he pressed gently, and Frodo cried out in ecstatic seizure, heaving for air as he slumped back on the
"You did that on purpose," he mildly accused when he could speak.
Sam chuckled. "Complaining, sir?"
"Hm!" Raising himself on one elbow, Frodo began to laugh in turn. "Sir. I'll show you sir, if you insist that I be master." His hand dropped between Sam's thighs, and he began to administer strong, steady strokes. Sam's mouth fell
open, and a sly grin crept over Frodo's face. "This much have I mastered, dear Samwise."
"Oh--" Sam shook his head, fell onto his back, surrendering.
"Turnabout is fair play, dearest Sam," said Frodo, grinning while Sam lay motionless in the wake of release.
Lethargically Sam's eyelids lifted, and he eyed Frodo soberly. "I trust, sir, I've given satisfaction, sir?"
Frodo snorted. "Per--perfect satisfaction," he choked out, collapsing back onto Sam. They fell against each other, giggling helplessly.
When they could laugh no more, Frodo curled up on his side, resting his head on Sam's chest.
"Here." Sam reached for Frodo's cloak and spread it over them both.
"We can always have another go round later," murmured Frodo, running his fingers through the hair on Sam's chest.
"Mm. Much later," grunted Sam. "I'm spent."