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"And all we had to
eat was soup and bread.” Erestor came into the bedroom towelling his
long black hair and perched on the end of the bed. He had gone
straight to wash and change when he finally got in from a late
meeting with Elrond, and Glorfindel, who was already in bed reading,
had greeted him with a kiss and then gone back to his book.
"Hmph." Glorfindel turned so that he was facing Erestor but could
still see the book, which he held tilted to catch the light from the
bank of candles on the bedside table.
“Apparently we’re snowed in. The pass is closed. Tomorrow you’ll
need to decide with Elrond and Caedion what to do about the men
stationed at the fort - the steps down to the bridge are covered in
ice. It’s getting dangerous to come and go there."
“See to it tomorrow, yes.” He turned a page, trying to be discreet
about it. They were getting to the interesting bit.
Moving up to sit cross-legged in the middle of the bed while he
brushed the tangles from his hair, Erestor was close enough to nudge
him with a foot. "Are you listening?"
"Mm, snowed in, you said. Can't go anywhere. Decide about the men on
duty." Glorfindel pretended to consider this while he quickly
finished his paragraph. And the next one. "Like living in Gondolin
in other words - not going anywhere." He thought about what Erestor
had just said and something struck him. "Was there somewhere you
wanted to go?"
"That's not the point," Erestor told him, irritated. "And I swear
you're not really listening to me. The point is, we can't go
anywhere if we should want to."
Having brushed his hair till it shone, Erestor tied it back with an
old ribbon and got under the covers. "It's the principle of the
thing. I hate this feeling of something else controlling our lives.
Elrond shouldn’t allow this kind of weather, it wreaks havoc with
"You’d like it even less if he used Vilya to control the seasons,
Ery, and you know it. Unnatural, you’d call it. Anyhow, I’m the one
who should be upset about this, not you – I had centuries of not
being able to come and go freely. And as for snow, there’s no use
getting upset. It’ll thaw in its time."
"What are you reading?" Plainly not in the mood for logic unless he
was offering it, Erestor changed the subject.
"It's First Age – the true, untold story of Túrin."
"Why not? I saw it and was curious..."
"Why do you want to read about a walking disaster like Túrin? Why
not an artist or a musician or a..."
"No one has ever written a book about a great mortal artist or
musician, kitten. Not sure there are any."
"Of course there must be, don't be silly. And don’t call me kitten.
There are always people singing anyway, that’s an art."
Glorfindel put the book down and frowned at his partner. "I'm not
sure I understand the problem... I shouldn't read about Túrin
because I should be reading about a non-existent mortal musician or
"Well it would be much more interesting."
Glorfindel considered this in silence before picking up the book
again. "You need a hobby. What happened to your painting lessons
anyway? You haven't mentioned a word about them lately. Did you
finally give up?"
"I never give up, remember."
"Know that to my cost, yes. So - what happened?"
Erestor sighed. Turning on his side he twisted a lock of
Glorfindel's hair round a finger and began to play with it idly. "I
miss it," he said finally. "Everyone’s too busy. We'll resume
classes after Yule. Right now it's impossible for us all to be
together at the same time. Maeneth likes a full class, she says
there's no point otherwise."
"Makes sense. Still, you could practice in your spare time."
"Oh come on, Ery, you're not working day and night. You have time to
hang around the Hall of Fire and drink with Lindir, and you spend an
age fussing over your plants..."
"Lindir and I talk," Erestor said with dignity. "I might have the
occasional drink with him… You're never balanced about Lindir, I
have no idea what your problem is with him."
"No? Typical musician, morals of an alleycat, loved and left more
partners than your friend Gildor."
Erestor sat up. "If you’re going to start about Gildor, we’ll just
end up fighting. I can feel it. This room has a fighting energy
about it tonight.”
“All I wanted to do was read my book... Ery, don’t be ridiculous.
Where are you going? I’m not saying a bloody thing about Gildor.”
Erestor was out of bed and padding across the room. He wore black
socks so thick and warm they looked like small boots. “My crocuses,”
he said over his shoulder. “I’m sure I never watered them.”
Glorfindel looked regretfully at his book. “I don’t know a lot about
plants, but you shouldn’t over-water them in winter, should you?”
“I’m not over watering. I first check if the soil is still damp and
not too hard. If it’s hard, I’ll loosen it up with a fork tomorrow.
What?” He shot a defensive look over his shoulder. “Otherwise it
doesn’t drain properly.”
The plants were all on the table that served as a desk in summer.
Each evening he moved them there from the cold windowsill, and every
morning he returned them. When he was running late, which was most
mornings, Glorfindel saw to this for him if he remembered. It wasn’t
unusual for the little collection of pots to spend several days on
Erestor prodded soil, checked leaves, and talked softly. He would
not speak to a plant in front of another living soul besides
Glorfindel, a fact which still made the warrior smile a little and
feel absurdly pleased. One plant got fed from the jug of drinking
water. The rest were moved closer together as protection against the
night air. Finished, he went over to the window and knelt on the
window seat. Opening one shutter a little, he looked out.
“Oh, the clouds have cleared a bit and the moon’s finally up. It
looks beautiful out there now. The bridge is all white...”
Glorfindel fought the urge to make some funny comment about how snow
will do that. Erestor had a wonderful, dark sense of humour, but
often somehow missed the point of his own more traditional wit. “Has
the river frozen yet?” he asked instead.
This had only happened a handful of times since elves had settled in
Imladris, and was the ultimate test of a winter’s severity.
Glorfindel had never seen it, but life in Gondolin had left him with
the suspicion that winter with flowing water was – well, autumn.
Checking the state of the river had been simple before, needing no
more than a glance out the window, but they had reached the point in
their relationship where they wanted more of a home than shared
rooms in the Last Homely House, and had recently moved to a small
cottage in the adjacent village. He could only see the river
obliquely from the bedroom, though the spray from the waterfall
drenched their windows when the wind came out of the north-east.
“Seems to still be moving,” he said, craning to look. “The waterfall
is anyhow, I can hear it. But the air’s freezing my breath.”
“Of course it is. You’re letting the night in. Leave it be now and
come to bed.”
“Someone’s crossing the bridge,” Erestor said, ignoring him. “Can’t
see who... oh, it’s Rhovanor. He must just have come off duty. Is it
that late already? I should be asleep. I have so much to do
Glorfindel rolled his eyes, put his book away and shook out first
his and then Erestor’s pillows. “I have no idea why you aren’t
asleep,” he teased. “Something about watering the plants and being
snowed in. Come then. If you hurry I’ll help you to warm up.”
“And if I don’t?” Erestor paused halfway to the bed, head tilted,
“If you don’t,” Glorfindel told him with a straight face, “I’ll turn
over and go to sleep, and all you’ll have to cuddle will be your
pillow. Oh, and that moth-eaten mouser skulking at the end of the
bed, of course.”
Erestor raised an eyebrow in Nubbin’s direction. The cat paid no
attention. He was old and jaded and tended to ignore everyone
outside of mealtimes. “I’ll settle for you,” he said finally.
“You’re bigger and more interactive.”
He made a leap for the bed, sliding in under the covers in a series
of fluid, graceful movements. “And I also won’t have to feed you
Imladris was busy
for midwinter. There was a party from Mirkwood in search of a market
for a new style of weaving, and some warriors from Lórien, a bunch
of hooligans who were meant to be sharing their archery skills, but
seemed to spend most of their time drinking and chasing girls. They
were currently engaged in a ball game that was fast degenerating
into a raucous but cheerful snowball fight down beside the river
Glorfindel had a theory they would be calmer guests if life wasn’t
as restrictive back in the Wood, where a lot of the ‘old fashioned
Nandor values’ still held sway. Despite Galadriel’s best efforts to
modernize things, Amroth liked the old ways. Lórien wasn’t as
rule-bound as Gondolin had been, but Imladris still offered heady
freedoms unknown or at least frowned upon at home. Right now he had
some sympathy for their exuberance; snow was rare in the Wood, which
lay well to the south, and they were spending every spare moment out
They formed a strong contrast to the Mirkwood elves, who were
generally bundled up to the eyebrows and visibly depressed by the
weather. From Greenwood, he corrected himself with a grin. Erestor
had told him Mirkwood always had to be referred to as The Greenwood
in their presence. He had not looked amused. There was a little
party crossing the courtyard behind him now, possibly on their way
to meet with Celebrían or Erestor, both of whom spoke of the
visiting weavers through gritted teeth. He watched their hurried
progress along the recently swept route to the main door then turned
back towards the path.
He gave the river a long look before he moved on. The Bruinen had
not yet frozen over and seemed unlikely to do so, but there was ice
in the churning water, sheets of it, and frosted chunks, all rushing
along from the high falls – Big Bruinen - at the head of the gorge
to the lower waterfall near the village and onward down a series of
rapids. He and Erestor had gone to take a look before leaving that
morning, a quick detour as there was a viewing platform with a bench
only a short distance from their cottage.
Erestor had been fascinated by the sight. “Isn’t it gorgeous? Snow
on the rocks and shards of ice like diamonds in the water. If the
sun came out it would be stunning.”
Glorfindel considered the ice-laden river crashing past rocks and
down the drop and an old memory surfaced, of snow and cloying mists,
of ice that shifted and growled underfoot and sometimes split
asunder, dropping the unwary into the icy water below, people like
his cousin Elenwë...
“Pretty,” he had conceded, not wanting to dredge up past horrors –
no one asked questions like Erestor when he wanted to understand
something, especially if he thought the ‘something’ was upsetting
Glorfindel. “Pretty, but damn cold. And we need to keep people away
from the river bank, it’d be too easy to slip and fall in if the
snow starts icing.”
Erestor had given him a curious look but said nothing, which was the
other thing he did really well sometimes when Glorfindel least
Reminded of his words earlier, he changed direction and strode
towards the young Galadhrim, meaning to warn them to keep their
distance from the river. During more clement weather the space where
they were fooling around was a flower-studded, open grass sward
stretching to the water’s edge, a popular spot for picnics and the
setting for the weekly craft market. Right now it was a field of
trampled white that sloped ever so slightly down to the Bruinen.
There was a chase going on with a lot of yelling, dodging and
diving, and somehow one of the young boys who helped with the horses
and around the garden had managed to get in the middle of it. There
was a scrabble going on for the ball and Glorfindel was almost
within polite hailing distance when someone lobbed a fair sized
snowball into the midst of this, missing the intended targets and
hitting the child instead. He balanced a moment, arms windmilling,
then with a yelp he lost his balance, hit the ground and slid down
the slope into the river.
No one moved for a matter of heartbeats, including Glorfindel. Then
the shouting started, from which he gathered as he raced up that
none of the young men from the Wood had ever done more than paddle
in a stream: the Anduin was forbidden territory.
The current ran hard and treacherous past the house even in summer,
and the boy was whipped screaming away from the bank before he could
find something to grab onto. For the second time that day,
Glorfindel relived ice, cries of terror, swirling water closing over
heads. Then he was dropping his cloak and outer coat onto the snow
as he ran, hands busy knotting back hair.
“Get up to the house and get help,” he barked as he passed the men –
boys themselves really, and meaning no harm – and leapt into the
Darkness closed over his head and he fought his way up towards the
light. There were no reeds here, he remembered, thinking with
surprising clarity. They grew further downstream, beyond the
cottage. Just sheer banks with rocks closer to the falls. Breaking
the surface, he was shocked at how powerful the water was, how much
strength it took just to swim at an angle instead of being tumbled
along like a log of wood. He was a middling swimmer, tireless and
strong but lacking experience and finesse. Erestor had taught him to
swim the same summer he had taught Ery to play chess, back when they
were getting to know each other. Not so long ago really.
He could see nothing to begin with, just the water rushing past and
around him, the cliff rising straight up on one side, the house
going past on the other. Still, the child could only have gone one
way. He stopped swimming and concentrated and eventually he saw a
flash of colour, there then gone, and struck out towards it.
The boy was helpless against the current, but trying nonetheless to
fight it. Glorfindel called out to him but the wind and water caught
his words back at him: all he could do was find more speed and catch
up. He was cutting through the water, drawing slowly closer, when
his quarry was suddenly swept in against a jutting spur of rock near
the right bank. Glorfindel watched, horrified, as the slight form
was flung up against it and then dragged out again, into the
midpoint of the stream. He bobbed there for a few breaths, then the
current took him, tossing him over and back, and even from two body
lengths’ distance, Glorfindel could see he was no longer making an
effort to stay afloat.
Ery would have reached him by now. Erestor swam like a bloody
dolphin when he could be persuaded to get that gorgeous hair wet.
Glorfindel kicked hard, pushing himself through the water, and
finally caught up with the rolling body before the Bruinen could
turn him onto his face and hold him there. With water slapping his
face and the current urging him on, he caught a handful of hair, let
go, got hold of an arm instead. He realised he had no idea how
someone could tow an unconscious swimmer while still controlling
their direction, but at least the boy was breathing because when his
head slipped briefly under water as Glorfindel got a grip on him, he
He had almost forgotten about the waterfall up ahead, but was
reminded as he caught a glimpse of the end of the Hall of Fire and
realised where he was. A short stretch of river lay ahead, then
turmoil followed where the torrent ploughed between rocks and
dropped down to the next level – not far, but far enough to do all
kinds of damage to soft flesh, brittle bone. He started looking
around in earnest for a way up the bank. There was none, it was
almost sheer on both sides here. He could see no one on the path
either. Further on though, just before the falls, the trees closed
in and hung over the water... Tightening his hold on his unresisting
companion, he let the river carry them along, harnessing his
strength for what came next.
The noise increased as they drew near, and cross-currents almost too
strong to fight buffeted them. The boy squirmed in his grasp once or
twice but was barely conscious. Glorfindel ignored him and kept
alert for their one chance before the falls. He wished he had taken
off his boots, although he knew they gave his feet a little
protection against the cold that was sinking into his bones. His
clothing was heavy too, now it was wet, but he could manage that. A
small sheet of ice barely missed him at one point and several ice
blocks struck him and careered on; he ignored them too. The place he
was looking for was just around the curve – had he been in a boat,
he would have been able to see their cottage.
Trees came towards them, too fast, leaning from a low bank towards
the water. He struggled to grab hold of branches, ignoring the
scrapes and blows, but there was nothing to get a grip on strong
enough to take his weight. At one moment he thought he saw help as a
shape loomed into sight, but it was just a deer who was as startled
by the sight of him as he was disappointed by the sight of her.
And then the trees were behind them and the waterfall roared ahead,
close enough for him to see icy water stream white around jagged
rocks and then fall away out of sight. Taking a deep breath he
tightened his grip on the boy, pulling him closer, trying to keep
his head out the water while shielding him. Now there was no other
choice, he was calm. He breathed in time with the beat of his heart
and turned on his side, the child against his chest, an arm extended
to try and protect his head. And waited.
The cataract was deafening, making it hard to think. The sky tilted,
tipped, something struck his back, then his leg, a sharp pain went
through the arm protecting his face. Water covered his head, held
him down, and he fought his way up gasping and swallowed in
mouthfuls of the Bruinen. Something scraped the length of his leg
and he knew without looking that it was one of the ice sheets,
jaggedly sharp. The child half roused, struggled, and Glorfindel
swore violently in Quenya, shouting at him to be still.
They were being battered repeatedly against snow-covered rocks, too
slick to hold onto, and then without warning there was air and water
and rushing and flying as they went over the edge. He tried to
picture if there were rocks at the bottom and wondered briefly how
angry Ery would be if he got himself killed.
They struck the water hard at the bottom. He gasped for air, dazed
and hurting in the conflicting currents at the foot of the
waterfall, able to hear nothing above its roar. There were more
rocks, but nothing like those above, and somewhere dimly he
remembered that if he kept moving to his left somehow, the river
filled a hollow almost level with the bank, used by the brave for
swimming in summer. The boy hung quiet and motionless, but there was
no time to worry about that and nothing he could do about it right
He swam one-armed with pain lancing through his chest and with a leg
that ached when he moved it. The river fought him but he had faced
all manner of beings – men, orcs, wargs, wolves, a Balrog – and was
having none of it. And finally the water was less rough though
somehow colder, and then he was crashing through thin ice and
dragging himself and the child up onto the snow-covered bank, which
was where he collapsed. As the world grew dim around him, he barely
remembered to pull the boy on top of him and wrap his arms round him
to try and protect him from the cold.
An endless amount of time passed, or possibly not even a candle
quarter, and then he started to hear something other than the river.
Hear and sense. Help. He opened his eyes slowly and looked up and
for a few moments the shape hovering above him made no sense at all.
Then it resolved into a stocky brown pony with a shaggy winter coat.
It stood on the bank staring down at him. One of the farm horses, he
thought hazily, though he had no idea what it was doing there. They
looked at each other a while longer and then his eyes closed and
even though he could hear voices somewhere, he no longer cared. He
just hoped the snow would hold off until they were found.
He sat on the side
of a bed in the infirmary, sipping hot tea. They had dressed him in
one of those gowns they gave patients to wear with a towel around
his hair and a blanket wrapped about him for added warmth. He felt
the blank exhaustion he associated with the aftermath of battle, a
combination of bodily ache and mental flatness. They had told him
the boy - Thandir, whose mother worked in the kitchens – had mild
concussion; but would be none the worse for the experience. Once his
mind was at rest about that, there was nothing else to engage him.
Beyond the room someone was laughing, metal clanked against
porcelain, someone else was whistling, but the sounds of the
infirmary seemed disconnected, as though coming to him from far
away. Even so, something in him stirred to alertness at an
indistinct murmur of voices and a set of quick footfalls approaching
the room where he waited. They stopped at the door.
“What on earth happened to you?”
Erestor stood in the doorway, dressed for work as he had been that
morning, even though that morning seemed an aeon away. The only
things that suggested concern were a slight narrowing of his eyes
and the too-straight set of his shoulders.
“I took a dip in the Bruinen,” Glorfindel responded. His voice was a
bit hoarse and raspy from all the water he had swallowed and all the
yelling he had an idea he might have done going down the waterfall.
“Not to be recommended.”
“I can see that.” Erestor came closer but stopped at arm’s length to
take a good look at him. “All I was told was that you got a bit
“Ribs, fractured arm. Cuts. Bruises. Oh – the leg, I had endless
stitches in the leg. I don’t know what cut me – it looks clean as a
dagger.” He was matter of fact about it, watching Erestor because he
still wasn’t over the pleasure of being able to do so openly. For a
large part of his life, this kind of love, this kind of attraction,
would have been frowned upon or outright forbidden.
Erestor shook his head as though to clear it. “You said you wanted
to get volunteers to shovel and salt. You never said anything about
being a hero.” He stepped closer as he said this, reached a hand to
briefly touch Glorfindel’s cheek as he did when he came home from
riding with one of the patrols or something even more dangerous.
“Well, I suppose I need to organise us rooms over here for a few
days till you can make it down to the village again...”
Glorfindel closed his good hand around Erestor’s fine-boned wrist
and tugged very gently. “I want to go home,” he said. “My own bed.
Our things around me.”
Erestor studied him through a small frown then nodded. “All right,”
he said simply. “I’ll organise a cart.”
The Galadhrim took
him home. Somehow they heard he was to be carried home on a cart –
possibly the kind farmers used for market – and presented themselves
at the infirmary neatly turned out and demanding the honour of
transporting him. They were torn between admiration, embarrassment
at their own lack, and a need to make good the harm they had
inadvertently caused. Glorfindel gave them a short lecture on
discipline around civilians, and then let them get on with it.
Erestor refused to be part of the parade, as he called it, choosing
to go on ahead and get things ready at home. What ‘things’, he never
They got hold of a cart, the type families used to travel across the
valley. Celebrían, who felt vaguely responsible for them after all
the years she had spent in the Wood, provided a well-behaved horse
to pull it, and the journey down the river path and across the
village was almost painless. Erestor met them at the door and had
them help Glorfindel through to the bedroom before dismissing them
with a suggestion they find someone to give them swimming lessons
come summer. No one argued. His reputation had gone before him and
he might be capable of ordering said lessons in the dead of winter
should he so choose.
After they left, he came through to the bedroom and perched on the
end of the bed. “Aren’t you getting in?” he asked, seeing Glorfindel
still seated on the edge. “Do you need help?”
Glorfindel, idly stroking Nubbin, managed a faint smile. “In a
while. They gave me something for the pain and it’s slowed me down a
lot. Plus Elrohir offered to sew up my leg... I rated a qualified
healer in the end, but I’m still getting over the shock.”
“I’m sure he’s very good at it by now,” Erestor said, “though I’m
not sure I’d want a trainee practising on me either, no. And Elrohir
has a history of being – inventive.” He shuffled up the bed so he
could lean against Glorfindel’s good arm and shoulder. “That was one
of the more unsettling mornings I’ve spent lately. I was trying to
make sense of the winter crop rotation – don’t ask – when someone
came charging in to tell me you were in the river and likely to be
swept over Lesser Bruinen. It was only later I found out why – at
the time I thought somehow you’d fallen in.”
“Yes, I’m likely to fall into an ice-filled river, Ery. I’m careless
that way.” Half laughing, he rested his cheek against the top of
Erestor’s head. “How did I get back to the house? I just remember a
lot of pain and bumping along.”
“The Lórien boys got help and everyone went rushing downriver to see
if they could reach you, which they couldn’t. Then you washed up at
the foot of the falls so they got one of those trailers, you know,
slats of wood on four wheels, and hauled you both up here.” Erestor
ducked under his arm to sit close, a hand carefully exploring. “You
need to tell me which ribs, I can’t tell with all this padding.”
“Other side. It’s fine where you are. They transport wood on those
trailers, you know. Building supplies.”
“I know. Still, it did the job. And you came home in luxury, after
“Yes, if you say so. Move, I want to lie down.”
Erestor obligingly moved back. “How can I help without getting
snarled at and being told I’m babying you?”
“I’m fine, I think. If you can just pull down the covers...”
“I’ll get you something to wear.”
“No, leave it. I’ll keep this – thing – on that they gave me in the
infirmary. Not feeling up for getting my arm into a tunic right
“Shouldn’t it be in a sling or something?”
Glorfindel divested himself of the blanket and the outer coat
Erestor had fetched for him and shrugged, wincing as he did so.
“Don’t think so. It’s strapped and I don’t have plans to use it much
for the next few days. I’ve had worse things happen.”
“I know,” Erestor said cheerfully. “They sing songs about it.”
Glorfindel glared. “Besides the Balrog, I meant. You’d swear I’d
done nothing else worthwhile in my life.”
The dog – called Dog for complicated reasons either to do with not
imposing names on animals, or disagreeing about the names chosen,
depending on who was asked - came in the bedroom, gave Glorfindel a
puzzled look for being in bed, then lay down on the mat near the
window with a deep, heartfelt sigh. Erestor gave him an absentminded
pat as he went to hang the coat up then folded the blanket neatly,
placing it on a chair. After this, he walked slowly back to the bed,
divesting himself of clothing along the way.
Glorfindel stared at him blankly for a moment, then shook his head.
“What in Arda are you doing?”
“Taking my clothes off, what does it look like?”
“Like you’re taking your clothes off, yes. What I meant was, why?”
“Obvious reasons.” Erestor dropped the last item at the foot of the
bed and then, completely naked now, sat with his legs curled under
him and began unfastening his hair.
Glorfindel watched, and despite the pain medication and general
injuries, felt a very distinct stirring in his groin. “You’re quite
mad, aren’t you? And just how do you think I’m to do my part in
Erestor raised his eyebrows as he combed fingers through his hair
before shaking it out to fall like black silk over his shoulders,
caressing his torso. “Oh, you’ll just lie on your back and enjoy
yourself, I thought? While I do the real work.” He arched his back
and smiled seductively, but there was a question in his eyes.
Glorfindel held out a hand and he came to sit beside him, resting a
hand lightly on his chest. Glorfindel ran his fingers through
Erestor’s hair first then cupped his cheek. “Why?” he asked softly.
Light brown eyes met his gravely. “Because you’re my hero? And you
damn near killed yourself saving that child who should have been
nowhere near there in the first place. And I know you avoid ice and
cold because of all the bad memories attached, but you never
hesitated. Because I might have lost you and I’ve barely found
you... Unless you’d rather sleep? I can always curl up with a book.
Maybe spend some time getting to know Túrin. Everyone dies, right?”
Glorfindel hooked a lock of midnight hair and tugged him down to be
kissed. “I can tell you how the book ends,” he promised. “Later.
Right now you’re talking too much again.”
“You could have been killed,” Erestor muttered, subsiding against
“But I wasn’t. Hush.”
“And tell me if I’m hurting you or I forget which ribs...”
“Ery? Quiet now. All right?” He slid his hand down warm skin, over
ribs and waist to the curve of Erestor’s flank and left it there as
After a while Erestor carefully straddled his waist and rested his
hands on Glorfindel’s shoulders, his long hair falling down around
them both, his eyes shadowy and intense. “You are to stop doing
things to scare me. This should be the safest place in the world now
that the snow has us cut off from the world and you still find a way
to almost kill yourself.”
Glorfindel’s hand was busy rubbing his back, carding through his
hair, moving down to stroke the soft skin at his waist. His other
arm rested out from his side, protected by a pillow. He glanced at
it, grinned wryly. “I’ve done myself no favours. Want to hold you
“One hand is better than none,” Erestor promised, nuzzling the side
of his face near his ear. “I’ll find a good use for it presently.
Now get comfortable. This may take a while.”
It did take a while, something about which Glorfindel had no
complaints. Afterwards, sated and content, they lay together under
the covers and listened to the weather outside.
“That’s rain, isn’t it?” Erestor murmured sleepily behind him. They
had changed sides to accommodate the injuries, which meant he lay
with his chest to Glorfindel’s back.
“Mm. You going back to work?”
“No. Told Elrond I’d be spending the day with you. There’s nothing
urgent. I brought my reading down with me, so I can look at farming
“Are we going farming?”
“Not in a million years – unless you really want to.” Erestor moved
closer and tightened his arm, making Glorfindel draw in his breath
with a hiss. Erestor jerked his arm back hastily. “Gods, I’m sorry.
“My ribs, yes. Just – lower. Your hand.”
“You normally say that in a different tone.”
“Not usually in pain then.”
“Oh? Would swear you were, you always sound so urgent.” Erestor was
trying not to laugh but they were too close for him to disguise it
“Different kind of pain,” Glorfindel suggested, placing his hand
over Erestor’s and linking their fingers.
Erestor pushed blond hair out the way so he could kiss his shoulder,
then turned his face to lie with his cheek against Glorfindel’s
skin. “You want to rest a while?”
Glorfindel nodded and gave his hand a brief squeeze. “If you don’t
mind? I was feeling fuzzy from whatever they gave me for the pain,
and I’ve had a lot of exercise today. Think you finally wore me
“Apologies. I won’t do it again.”
Glorfindel glanced over his shoulder, amused. “Oh yes you will. As
soon as I’ve had some rest. I could get quite spoilt, I like this
lying back and letting you do the work routine.”
“I like spoiling you,” Erestor said softly, settling his head
comfortably on the edge of Glorfindel’s pillow and preparing to
sleep. “I like it that you’re here to spoil. Sleep. My turn to keep
you warm now.”
Lasbelin - this would not have been posted without you.
Banner by Red as well.