There Moves A Thread That Has No End
Haldir opened his eyes slowly, adjusting to the darkness of the room. He swung his legs over the edge of the bed, the remains of sleep falling away with each shake of his head and the shock of a cold floor underneath his feet. Looking over his shoulder at the noticeably empty space beside his own, he grunted, before getting up and walking out of the sparsely furnished bedroom, picking a carelessly tossed robe up off of the floor on his way. He sighed wearily; this was the fourth night this week that his lover had been absent from their bed.
He slipped the robe on, cloth settling over his shoulders as he walked the silent hallways. Imladris was far quieter now with most of the inhabitants having left to cross over the Sea. It seemed a skeleton of the place Haldir had held in awe when he first viewed it so long ago. He remembered it as a warm place, busy and vibrant, everyone having their job, their place and being quite content with it. It was an idealized view, he knew; every place had its troubles. He did briefly consider the fact that perhaps hindsight was swayed by the pervasiveness of Elrond’s eldest son, of amused grey eyes and dark gossamer hair in his recollections.
He smiled, shaking his head at the remembrance of a time when he lost himself in this maze, only to be found by Elladan. It was sheer embarrassment for Haldir, as was the wont of someone young and prideful, but it had opened up the door to an unlikely friendship. It was hardly easy; they lived far apart and most of their lives went on in different realms. Haldir was a border guard and Elladan was being groomed as the next lord, tradition demanding it if necessity did not. But the friendship bloomed through correspondences and sparse meetings when their lives did indeed cross paths.
Due to hard work and accomplishments out in the field, the Woodelf had risen in the ranks over time, but nothing could have prepared him fully for the ravages on Lorien in the last days of the War of the Ring. The evil spoken of in the whispers of the trees and in the growing darkness of Middle-earth had now come to a head, war spilling out all over the land; the Dark Lord striking while the iron was molten hot. Haldir had lost many friends in the struggle to keep his homeland safe and secure, elves with whom he had grown, fought beside and shared a bond as deep as the one he shared with his brothers. It had been a great victory, but there were times when the losses were difficult to bear.
He thought that he had reached past the age of youthful inexperience, but the war proved he still had very much to learn and many ways in which he needed to grow. He found himself changed in the aftermath. He was quieter and, while a lingering problem with his temper still remained, his arrogance and youthful pride had all but gone. He had scars that spoke of war, reminders of pain, but he wore those with the knowledge that he survived; many others hadn’t. It humbled him, though at times the scar of sadness and loss on his spirit served as an even deeper reminder of these events than his physical ones.
A chill touched him at the memories, the sense aided by the hallways deserted, the remaining inhabitants being already in bed at this hour. As he should be with Elladan, he muttered to himself irritably, distracted largely by the thoughts swirling around in his head. Now, with the all but emptied surroundings, he was more aware of the one last, big change in his life.
He was leaving with his family. He would cross the sea and live until the world’s end in a land he had never known, and leave Middle-earth behind. Peace and healing lay over the sea, it was told, though deep within Haldir’s heart of hearts, he wondered if after all that had happened he would be truly able to enjoy and be satisfied with peace and a never changing land, so different from Arda, so different from his home.
Haldir’s musings were interrupted when he looked around, truly paying attention to his surroundings for the first time in his walk. Despite his head being in a completely different place, his feet had led him automatically to a familiar doorway at the end of the hall. Upon examination, he found it wasn’t fully shut and he was unsurprised to see a sliver of yellow light pouring through the crack.
He opened the door, wincing at the sound it made. It clearly needed oil and whatever idea he had of entering quietly was ruined. His eyes swept over the room, quickly adjusting to the different lighting. It was one of the few that still looked the same, untouched by this exodus, just another sharp reminder to him of Elladan’s decision to stay for an indefinite amount of time after he left.
Elladan was sitting at the grand oak desk on the far side of the room, head down, focused on the piece of paper, the letter he was writing. He didn’t raise his head, though Haldir was sure he knew of his presence. There was silence for a moment as Elladan signed his name, lightly dusted the parchment with a fine sand, then set it aside, looking up to meet Haldir’s eyes across the room.
“I couldn’t sleep. I finished a letter to Cirdan - Sílad and his group will take it with them to the Havens.” His tone was explanatory with a hint of weariness, but there was no denying the warmth that crept into the look he gave Haldir.
Haldir slipped behind the desk, resting against the edge lightly, looking down at him. “It could not have waited until tomorrow?”
“There is so much to do and not enough time.” Elladan pushed back from the desk, his chair now tilted more to face his lover. He shifted, stretching his arms, trying to relieve the strain across his shoulders. The candlelight flickered over him, bringing out the red in his hair.
“You should come to bed. It’s late and the maid keeps finding you here on the couch.” Haldir frowned. “You know how the gossip vine works over here. Even I learned of this, and publicly I’m just a messenger, not the person sharing your bed.”
“They are talking about me?” Elladan’s eyes brightened with concern. “I’m fine, they need not be worried. It’s just a heavy work load, is all. My father dealt with much worse…”
“It’s just concern for their lord. I fear if they knew, they would give me a scolding for not taking care of you properly.” Haldir said in an amused but petulant fashion.
“It was your choice to keep us secret.” Elladan pressed a little bit, wondering at the way his lover had said that.
“Is that all you are going to say?” Elladan questioned. His voice was still quite calm, but inwardly he was a little suspicious. It hadn’t been his choice, he was all for letting everyone know, but he had abided by Hal’s wishes. They’d known each other for a long time, and Elladan did trust him. It was just a bad night for this.
“Why make it public?” Haldir countered. “This is new - it’s not even public knowledge that we are close friends? I have no wish for my private life to be so examined…I know when we make it official in Valinor that it will be unavoidable, but I’m leaving soon. I don’t want our last days together marked by that and all of this.” Hal gestured with his hand, encompassing the messy office. “You’re stressed and you won’t come to bed at night, you’re even busier in the day. I just – don’t see you. We don’t have much time left. And I’m uncomfortable asking for more from you when you are worried about so many things, but damn it…”
He trailed off, wordless, shrugging.
“I know, I know.” Elladan’s brow furrowed, his smooth and very fair face twisted in irritation. “I can’t help it if your family has to leave now, but why can’t you stay behind longer? I don’t understand why you must go.”
“It’s been already agreed by my family that our surviving members would leave Middle-earth together. Of all the things to rebel against, this is not it. Not now. “
“And I have to stay. For the same reason you have to leave. Family. Arwen has chosen her path. Neither Elrohir nor I will leave until she has passed. Father’s spirit was dimmed, he needed to go, but we can stay. I will not let her pass into an afterworld that we know nothing about alone in her last moments.” Elladan didn’t intend to let this get so heated, but he felt his control slip out of the very firm grip he had on himself, his work and his life. The idea of losing Arwen was very difficult to even contemplate. Or to sit there and just wait for it to come to pass…he couldn’t do that.
“I understand that. I do.” Haldir sighed, running his fingers through his thick, light blonde hair. “I’m not saying it is unimportant, I’m not saying it’s not a completely horrific thing to do. No one should ever have to go through something like this, least of all with a sibling. But I am very worried about you, ‘Dan. Is there not any of this work you can delegate to someone? My own desires aside, if you keep pushing yourself at this rate, you are going to wear yourself out and you’ll be help to no one. Not to the remaining people in Imladris, not your sister.”
He mentally winced, not meaning to come down quite so hard on Elladan, but the point did need to be made. He took Elladan’s hand, pulling him up from the chair. Intense grey eyes looked at him, and Elladan’s mouth opened to fire another retort, some defense about this work needing to be done and him being the one responsible, but Hal rested a finger against the full sensuous lips.
“I’m sorry, that wasn’t quite called for. I just – love you and I worry about you. Quite a bit. You’ve – not been mine long and I’m leaving you behind. It’s my nature to want to protect the people I love, and I’ll be lucky if I get a letter from you after I sail…or news from later arrivals.”
Elladan frowned against the warm press of Hal’s hand and moved it away, intertwining the long fingers, worn from a life of hard work, with his own. He felt a pang, seeing Hal close his eyes and smile at that small, intimate touch. Looking back, he realized this was probably the most personal time they had shared in quite a while. In his bid for control he had shut Haldir out rather firmly and yet this was one person he needed the most right now.
“No, I’m the one who should be sorry, Hal. Ever since Elessar’s wedding, things have been quite different between us. We are lovers as well as friends now.” He paused but decided to push straight through. “I realize that this is the first chance we’ve had to connect after parting ways at Gondor. I haven’t given us much time to readjust. I’ve just been dealing with so much right now and I’ve lose sight of you and - I am sorry.”
Haldir looked at him for a moment, slipping closer to him before replying. “Apology’s more than accepted, love. “ He touched Elladan’s cheeks with his hands, framing his face before leaning in to press a warm kiss against the lips that had been calling to him ever since he walked into the room.
Elladan kissed him back passionately, before quietly uttering, “I love you” and leaning into Hal’s solidness.
“I love you too, you know I do,” Haldir murmured, running a hand down Elladan’s side, before settling it on his lover’s hip and adding mischievously, “Would you like to make things up to me?”
“Well it depends on what it entails…” Elladan replied with a feigned innocence, as if he hadn’t noticed the quiet but sure tension mounting between them, even with the disagreement.
Hal just grinned at him, snuffing out the candle on Elladan’s desk. Darkness hindered them but a little: a short pause before they melted against each other and mouths joined. Heated kisses were exchanged, hands traveling over one another’s bodies, touching any available skin. One of Hal’s hands found its way down Elladan’s leggings, touching and rubbing the hardness he found there. After a few moments, he abandoned his pursuits for the time being to take Elladan in his arms and lift him up on the desk.
Even with being swept off his feet – quite literally - Elladan thought of the papers that doubtless were acquiring a print of his bum on them. He wasn’t allowed to pay attention to that detail long. Kissed thoroughly, and his legs spread to allow Hal to press against him as much as possible, Elladan lost much rational thought and his vaulted control.
He still retained enough, however, to pull back from the kiss, opening his mouth to take a breath and to speak the last jewel of wisdom he had. What little breath he had remaining, however, was stolen when Hal, deprived of his lover’s lips, focused on the smooth tanned skin of his neck instead, pressing small sucking kisses down the long curve.
“Maybe - maybe we need to go back to the bedroom,” Elladan gasped, shifting into the touch, pressing up against it. It felt so good to just relax, let Haldir have his way with him, to be loved, stop worrying so much.
“No, we stay.” Hal’s eyes gleamed mischievously with a healthy dose of lust as he looked up from undoing Elladan’s legging ties. “I’ve never had you on your desk before. Good penance for all the hours you’ve spent here and not in our bed, no?”
A groan answered him and Hal laughed, working harder at getting the willing body beneath his quite naked. The light summer tunic was easily removed, and Elladan lifted his arse up off of the desk, as Hal guided the tight fabric of his leggings down his long legs and off, tossing them indiscriminately to the other side of the room. He paused to pull back and admire his handwork, running a hand down a muscular thigh.
Elladan shivered, his sex twitching at the touch, and he spread his legs wider, propping himself up with a hand. “You going to come and get this?” he smiled teasingly, enjoying how, in response, Hal hastily removed his robe, untied his sleep pants and shoved them down his hips.
With the candle snuffed, the only light coming into the room was the moonlight filtering in through the window which, Elladan decided, suited his lover just fine. It touched the fair skin, highlighting the sleek muscle, the width of Hal’s shoulders, the strength of his arms. Scars were visible across his upper body, the worst of them softened by the shadows. Elladan’s eyes trailed down Hal’s chest, down his flat stomach, lower, until he saw the thick girth of Hal’s erection nestled in light curls above firm thighs.
“Hey. Eye level, please.”
“Why? What if I just wanted you for your body?” Elladan looked up at Hal, grinning back at him.
“Well I would be terribly hurt. Here I thought you were with me for my intellect.” Haldir moved back in, Elladan straightening to meet him with a smiling kiss. Hal moved a hand between them, resting it on Elladan’s chest, gently pushing him backwards onto the desk, cool wood and parchment at the dark-haired elf’s back.
Elladan murmured instructions. Second drawer on the right and after a few moments of Hal’s rooting through it, a small bottle of oil was produced. He arched an eyebrow at the location and availability of said oil and Elladan grinned sheepishly at him. Nevertheless he wasted no time in uncorking it. Haldir took a moment, coating himself with the slick liquid, enjoying the feel of eyes on him.
“Patience,” he said, raising an eyebrow. He let go of himself, focusing on Elladan, rubbing a wet finger on one of the brown circles on Elladan’s chest, tweaking the nub between his fingers and smirking at the sound this drew from Elladan’s lips. He knew some of his lover’s weakest spots and never hesitated to use the knowledge for the pleasure of them both.
His hands dipped down and ghosted over one of Elladan’s own silvery scars and he bent to press a kiss on it. Elladan had seen much war and sorrows himself. They understood each other’s inmost workings in that respect, and Haldir loved him all the more for it.
Elladan bucked slightly, impatient under his hands, and he laughed, taking the hint gracefully. Working his way down further, he spared a few moments for a caress to the focal point of Elladan’s desire, warm velvet skin, hot and hard. He gently massaged the round, plump balls resting underneath, grinning when Elladan spread his legs even wider and gave himself over to being loved.
He slid fingers across Elladan’s entrance, leaving a trail of oil shining dimly in the low light. Hal kissed him, deeply and intently, and an unspoken request and approval passed between them before he guided Elladan’s legs to wrap around his waist, and the dark-haired elf helped wriggle into place. Then he grasped himself firmly and pushed inside, looking into Elladan’s eyes and watching as they slowly widened in realization of being so filled.
They moved slowly at first together, accustoming themselves with each other’s rhythm. Low moans filled the air, Haldir for the warm, slick tightness he found himself in and Elladan for being so filled. They had found their heaven and it never had felt so good.
The slow heat built inside them until there was no other outlet. Elladan spilled first, wetness streaking his lower abdomen and on his fist. Haldir swore, forcing his last few thrusts, Elladan shuddering, arms clutching him tighter, panting. Hal followed him over, finding his release and grunting.
They relaxed against each other for a few moments, heart rates slowing and breath calming, before Haldir lifted himself off of Elladan; he would have happily stayed there, but knew Elladan’s personal comfort would be very slim. He instead moved to rest heavily on the chair by the desk, beckoning with a hand for Elladan to join him.
“Come here, ‘Dan, not done with you yet.” Hal smiled softly, unwilling to lose contact with him just yet.
Elladan slipped off the desk, rather aware that his clothes were now on the other side of the room, Hal’s robe not far behind. He settled onto Hal’s lap, leaning against him and resting his head on Hal’s shoulder, ignoring the sweat and stickiness from the sex, focusing on the afterglow instead. It was always good between them, and despite all the stress that had been hanging over him, he felt – relieved, lighter, his personal balance restored. He needed to share that with Haldir, but somehow the only words that felt right were “I missed you.”
Hal tugged him closer, pressing a kiss against Elladan’s forehead. “I missed you so much. Don’t do this to me again. I really did mean it when I said I didn’t want to come in and demand time when there are much more pressing things going on here. I felt – whiny.”
“I know, Hal.” Elladan turned his face to look at his lover. “Perhaps I can delegate a few more things in the future. I don’t intend for it to be like this the rest of your stay. I can’t promise I’ll be free the whole time, but I’ll endeavor to be around more. I promise.”
“I would love whatever you can give me. Just a little bit more than you have been, maybe.” Haldir grinned, all of the previous irritation gone. His light mood was dropped a minute later, however, when he held Elladan tighter and whispered against silk strands, “I worry about you, you know. I won’t be able to look after you once I’m gone. You’re going to have to take care of yourself for me. Don’t work so hard - and sleep more.”
“You honestly think that if I joined you more often at night in our bedroom during your stay, there’d be more sleeping happening?” Elladan raised an eyebrow, teasing Hal. He tried to lighten the mood, he wanted no more dark thoughts of the future tonight.
Hal looked at the wonderfully naked elf sitting in his lap, considering. Then he sighed and decided to be entirely honest. “Probably not.”
Elladan laughed, twisting in his lap and slipping his arms around Haldir’s neck. “Your logic astounds me sometimes.”
He tilted his head down, kissing Haldir warmly. They would go back to their bedroom, clean up a bit, and probably fall into bed and make love one more time. Then with soft touches and quiet words, Elladan would promise his warrior that he would take care of himself. He had the strength for everything he needed to do, and knew without a doubt it wouldn’t matter whatever happened in the time spent apart. Their love would survive.