Author: Isabeau of Greenlea PM
The sequel to Discretion. The end of the relationship. Or, what politics do to strange bedfellows. Chapter Two now rewritten and updated.Rated: Fiction M - English - Drama/Romance - Boromir & Faramir - Chapters: 2 - Words: 16,148 - Reviews: 16 - Favs: 11 - Published: 12-10-03 - Status: Complete - id: 1635719
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Author's Note--This story is the sequel to Discretion, and while you absolutely don't have to read that one, this one will make more sense if you do. It is dedicated to Dwimordene, who took the time out of her busy academic schedule to comment upon the first story, and to chuck the custom-bred Nuzgul into my lap that resulted in this one. The Haradrim worship of the Eternal Fire is an invention of Soledad's, and further explained in her Andrahar story The Face of the Enemy. She was kind enough to give me permission to use it.
"'But this very year, in the days of June, sudden war came upon us out of Mordor, and we were swept away. We were outnumbered, for Mordor has allied itself with the Easterlings and the cruel Haradrim; but it was not by numbers that we were defeated. A power was there that we have not felt before.
'Some said that it could be seen, like a great black horseman, a dark shadow under the moon. Wherever he came a madness filled our foes, but fear fell on our boldest, so that horse and man gave way and fled. Only a remnant of our eastern force came back, destroying the last bridge that still stood amid the ruins of Osgiliath.
'I was in the company that held the bridge, until it was cast down behind us. Four only were saved by swimming: my brother and myself and two others.'"
---Boromir, The Council of Elrond, The Fellowship of the Ring
"Will you try to see him?" Faramir asked his brother curiously, as they strolled downhill towards their Uncle Imrahil's townhouse in the gathering summer dusk. Imrahil had arrived in town for Council the previous day, and had promptly extended a dinner invitation to his brother-in-law, the Steward of Gondor, and his family. Denethor had sent his regrets, pleading too much business of state, but had urged Faramir and Boromir to attend in his stead. They were not loathe to do so, for both loved their uncle well, and dinner with him would be ever so much more pleasant without the presence of their father, who did not care for Imrahil. The Steward and the Prince disliked each other, and had done so for decades, though they managed a plausible public civility for Gondor's sake. Consequently, neither sought the other's company beyond what their marital connection and position required of them. Denethor's excuse was hardly a surprise.
"If I can. It has been more than a year, after all," Boromir murmured, with a quick look about, though the upper reaches of Minas Tirith were not thronging with people by any means.
"But Boromir--in the City? Is it not a risk?"
"I have been thinking about that. I'm not sure that it is any riskier than trying to leave the City unnoticed. I think there are ways that it could be done. Actually, I've already come up with a plan, and I will ask him tonight what he thinks of it."
"Well, Uncle Andra should know if it is feasible--he is good at that sort of thing."
"If he feels it unworkable then I'll wait till we're both at Dol Amroth or someplace else. But I would rather not. I really need to talk to him, Faramir."
His brother very rarely smirked, but he did so now. "Ah yes, you need to 'talk' to him, and that is all. Have a couple of beers, reminisce about old times......." Boromir cuffed the Captain of the Ithilien Rangers on the shoulder, only to curse softly when Faramir winced.
"Sorry! Forgot that was the bad one. That's what you get for taking the sling off." Faramir rolled the injured shoulder and winced again.
"At least I can move it now. I was afraid for a while there that something was broken, but according to the healers it's just badly bruised ."
"Bruises are not to be taken lightly. They take a while to heal. And they do hurt."
"Trust me, I'm not taking this one lightly." He looked at his older brother sidelong after a moment. "Do you know, I still have trouble imagining you and Uncle Andra together? I understand that such things happen, but it still seems very....odd. Are you sure that you are not interested in women any more?"
Boromir sighed. "I am sure, little brother. You will have to fulfill the dynastic responsibilities for the House of Mardil. Which you had better get busy about soon, by the by." Faramir grimaced. "As for your difficulty imagining it, what exactly are you referring to? The mechanics involved?" He hooked his hands into his belt, and bent his head to hide his smile as Faramir's tanned cheeks reddened. Faramir was hardly a child, he was long past full grown, but there were certain things which would still reliably trigger a blush in him, much to his despair and embarrassment. One of them was praise, the other any discussion that was too prurient. It was not that he was an innocent, or repressed--he had as healthy an appetite in carnal manners as the next man, as Boromir had cause to know. It was simply that his deep-held sense of reserve and discretion were offended by discussion of such matters.
"No, Boromir, I understand the mechanics involved perfectly. There are only so many ways such things can be done, after all." Faramir's tone was indignant.
"Thus speaks a man who has obviously never read The Garden of Love," Boromir intoned pontifically, referring to the legendary Haradrim manual of illustrated instruction in love-play. His younger brother snorted.
"How could I? Every time I tried to steal a look at Uncle's copy in Dol Amroth, you had it." He flexed his shoulder again, then crooked his arm and held it close to his side.
"You should not have taken off your sling," Boromir chided once more.
"Uncle would have worried more had he seen it." After a moment's pause, he said, "It's not the mechanics at all, it's just that it's rather hard to believe. You always seemed to enjoy women so." The Captain-General of Gondor shrugged.
"Some of that was for show. One day I woke up, and realized that women did not move me any more. So I started thinking about what did, and after a time became aware that I might prefer men. I went to Andrahar initially to put it to the test, because he was the only man I knew of such a bent whose discretion I could rely upon. It was only supposed to be that one time, but about a year later we had the opportunity to be together again, and sometime later yet another, and over time it turned into something else." The Ranger captain gave him a concerned look.
"Valar, Boromir, you do not need me to tell you that you play with fire! Father has always despised Andrahar. He suspects him of espionage, of being a Haradrim agent. And how can the two of you ever hope to be together in any meaningful way? You must put this behind you, and try to marry as Father wishes."
Boromir shook his head sadly. "You tell me nothing I do not already know, brother. Unfortunately, our heads cannot rule whom our hearts love."
"LOVE?" Faramir stopped dead in the street and stared at him. Boromir nodded, taking his elbow carefully to steer him onwards.
"Yes, love. The stolen moments I have with Andra will suffice me, because they have to. I accept that, and so does he. There is no point in bemoaning what can never be."
"I would that there was something I could do to convince you to drop this. Or barring that, something I could do to help you."
"You listen, and you do not judge. That is more than I could have hoped for, and exactly what I need. Now let us hasten, Faramir. You know how punctual Uncle is about his dinner."
Imrahil was indeed punctual as ever, and as ever, very pleased to see them both. None of their cousins had accompanied him to Minas Tirith on this trip, which was somewhat disappointing, but the Prince of Dol Amroth was always entertaining company in his own right. The first part of the dinner passed with the Prince telling humorous stories about doings on the coast; then, when hunger had been mostly sated, and the wine was flowing, he asked in turn about the events at Osgiliath, and listened to the two brothers' accounts with the utmost attention..
The Prince's senior officers sat to meat with him, and that of course included Andrahar, who had little to say other than the occasional incisive question, and drank rather more wine than was his wont, his already dark eyes looking absolutely black in the candlelight. Faramir, watching him, thought to himself that if one did not know that he and Boromir were lovers, they certainly would not have discerned it from the Armsmaster of Dol Amroth's behavior, for he neither ignored nor gazed upon Boromir excessively. His manner was flawlessly matter-of-fact. As the meal ended, he rose and asked his lord for permission to depart, claiming that there were matters concerning the esquires that required his attention. Imrahil granted his leave graciously and asked, "Shall we retire to the library, gentlemen?"
"Would you forgive me if I were to plead fatigue, Uncle?" the Captain-General asked. "My leg is paining me a bit, and I think perhaps I should retire early this evening." His boot nudged his younger brother's foot.
Imrahil looked disappointed for a moment, until Faramir picked up his cue.
"A game of chess, if it please you, Uncle? It has been too long since I defeated you." The Prince of Dol Amroth grinned rakishly.
"You might not find that as easy as you anticipate, nephew--I've been playing with Tirathiel!"
"Whereas my usual opponent when I am in town is Father," murmured Faramir with an absolutely evil smile. "This should be interesting-- providing you've actually managed to beat Lady Tirathiel!" The decades long, ongoing chess competition between the Iron Lady of Dol Amroth and the Steward of Gondor was a thing of legend.
"Once or twice," Imrahil claimed, then rose and went to his older nephew, who was rising as well, and embraced him. "Get some rest, Boromir. I will see you at Council on the morrow."
"Good night, Uncle," Boromir replied warmly, and embraced him in return, then moved out the door. Imrahil looked away for a moment, and Boromir took the opportunity to wink thankfully at his younger brother as he left.
Andrahar was not hard to find, he was loitering a short way up the hall. But he started moving along the corridor again as soon Boromir joined him. The Captain-General, who knew well that there could never be a display of affection in any place where they might be seen, simply fell in beside him, his head bowed close to the shorter man's.
"'Tis good to see you, Andra," he declared, his voice low.
"And you as well, lad," came the equally quiet reply. "When we heard what had happened, I feared for you."
"I will not deny it was a near thing, but I am well enough. I need to see you." Andrahar gave him a sharp sideways glance.
"In the City itself? Too risky, Boromir."
"There is an inn in the fifth circle. A simple enough place, but clean. The Golden Finch. Have you heard of it?" The Armsmaster nodded.
"I know of it. I have been in that neighborhood a time or two. There's a boot-maker there the Prince uses."
"Can you meet me there tomorrow night? I have some plain clothes, I thought to pass as a merchant." Andrahar rubbed the back of his neck as if he were tense or weary, and sighed.
"I am not on duty tomorrow evening, and I can make sure that I will not be followed. Can you say the same?" Boromir nodded.
"There are men within my command whom I trust. Not to tell them the truth about us, but if I say I need to meet in secret with someone who has important information, they will clear my path." The Armsmaster stopped, turned and gave him a piercing look.
"Are you absolutely certain, Boromir?"
"Yes, Andra. Please..." Despite himself, a pleading note entered his voice. "I truly need to see you. That thing in Osgiliath--I have not felt myself since."
"You got overrun and soundly beaten! Of course you don't feel yourself!" Andrahar growled, uncomfortable as always in the presence of strong emotion. But after a moment, as he looked his younger lover up and down appraisingly, his eyes softened in a way that few had ever seen
"Very well then, Boromir," he said gently. "It is against my better judgment, but if you truly need a meeting so much, then I will be there. You can expect me after sundown."
Nodding, the Captain General of Gondor reached out and clasped his arm, the only public caress they ever permitted themselves. A firm squeeze answered him, and he smiled gratefully.
"Thank you, Andra. Until tomorrow evening, then?"
"Until tomorrow evening." And they parted.
"Do you know, this is the first time I've ever seen you dressed as anything but a Swan Knight?" Boromir exclaimed, after Andrahar had slipped into the room the next evening. The Armsmaster's distinctive badger-striped hair was covered with a rough leather coif, and all of his clothes were decidedly shabby. He looked a common laborer or craftsman, or perhaps a thief with a sack of loot, for he carried a bag of coarse cloth with him that clinked gently as he moved.
"Discretion made it necessary," Andrahar said, looking about the room critically, and found it much as Boromir had promised--plainly furnished, but of acceptable cleanliness. "Were you followed?" he asked the younger man, as the Captain General took the sack from him and emptied the contents carefully onto the table. There were a couple of very good bottles of Dorwinion Red, a loaf, a good cheese and some grapes.
"No," Boromir replied. "Were you?"
"Of course. I am always followed by agents of your father when I am in town. There was one upon me by the time I'd made the fifth circle."
Boromir paled. "Then Father will know about us?" Andrahar pulled the cap off, and ran fingers through his hair.
"Not from him."
"What did you do?" Curiosity and some trepidation colored the question. The Armsmaster shrugged.
"Spied him out, gave him the slip, then ambushed him and tapped him on the head. He was the only one, and he didn't follow me here."
"Valar, Andra! Is he dead?"
"I don't think so." Andrahar's voice was coolly uncaring. "I was not trying to kill him and did not hit him that hard. Of course, some robber could have come after me and finished the job. But it is of no consequence even if he is dead--he was either one of your father's lackeys or a common footpad. I shan't weep for him in either case." Boromir considered this for a few moments, then nodded, left the table and came over to his lover. Setting hands upon Andrahar's shoulders he looked down at him with a smile.
"Sorry I am to have put you to that trouble, Andra." Bending his head, he kissed the Armsmaster thoroughly. With a year's worth of thwarted passion to work through, it lasted for quite a while. The need to breathe parted the two men eventually, but though lips were separated, bodies remained pressed together and arms wrapped tight about shoulders.
"The prize was worth it," Andrahar murmured into his ear, and Boromir groaned at the ticklish feeling.
"Andra," he gasped. "Bed. Now. Please."
Andrahar leaned back, looked up at his taller partner and grinned wickedly. "Why Boromir! You said you wished to 'meet' with me! I thought you wanted my advice about your recent reversals in battle."
"If you do not get yourself into that bed immediately," Boromir growled, "I will pick you up, sling you over my shoulder and carry you like the veriest blushing maiden!"
"Ah! You mean you will try!" Andrahar's eyebrow flew up, and he gave Boromir a challenging look. "Though I suppose for the sake of both our dignities, I shall have to do as you ask. The tussle, enjoyable as it would probably be, would also be too ridiculous for words." Releasing his lover, the Armsmaster dragged a chair over near the bed, and to Boromir's amusement began to swiftly remove his clothing and fold it neatly as usual, ragged though it was. The breeches were the best part of his garb--they were leather, and worn, but fit Andrahar's lower body like a glove. The Captain-General came over as the older man was pulling his shirt over his head, and began smoothing his palms over the soft leather, front and rear. Andrahar jumped slightly, then leaned back against Boromir when he'd removed his shirt.
"I like the breeches," Boromir murmured, and Andrahar laid his head back against his lover's shoulder.
"I wore them just for you."
"And I shall like them even better when they are off."
"I do not see you hastening to divest yourself of your garments! Were you not afire with eagerness but a moment ago?"
"Perhaps I wish to watch this time. You've been known to enjoy such things."
"Indeed," Andrahar acknowledged, moving away from Boromir and hopping up onto the edge of the bed. He pulled his boots and stockings swiftly, then slid back down to the floor and began unbuttoning the breeches very deliberately, glancing up at his lover from time to time as he did so with a lascivious grin. He got all the buttons save one unbuttoned before Boromir broke, falling to his knees before the Armsmaster and yanking the breeches down his legs. Andrahar's knees nearly buckled in turn when Boromir took him into his mouth, and his hands knotted almost painfully into the Captain-General's dark locks.
"Oh lad!" he gasped. "Softly now! Is there such a need on you then?" Boromir released him and pressed his cheek against Andrahar's groin.
"Yes, Andra! I am sorry, but I must! I have felt so odd, so distanced from things since Osgiliath. I need to remember how to feel again!" The Armsmaster's hand slipped down to cup his heated cheek, and his eyes as he looked down upon Boromir were tender.
"Then take what you need, Boromir, and be welcome."
The first time that Boromir had ever lain with Andrahar, the Armsmaster had taken him, then refused to be taken by him in return. He had claimed that a youth in which he had been forced to whore himself in the streets of Umbar had left him unable to do so, though he did admit that Boromir's uncle Imrahil could have had the privilege had he wished it. Andrahar's unrequited romantic love for Imrahil had been more the cause of his refusal than the childhood trauma, Boromir had thought.
When, after six years of enjoyable but rather one-sided love-making, Andrahar had finally submitted to Boromir, the Steward's son knew that their relationship was no longer simply a casual love affair. At first, he had dared not flatter himself by thinking he had replaced the Prince of Dol Amroth in the Armsmaster's affections, but lately he had cause to wonder. As he stood now above Andrahar, rocking hard into him, he watched him with awed affection. Flat upon his back on the bed, his legs over Boromir's shoulders, his head thrashing blindly from side to side and hands gripping the coverlet spasmodically, the Armsmaster was vulnerable and trusting in a way that Boromir knew that he had probably never been with anyone else, including Imrahil.
Having always been well-matched in matters of passion, both men reached completion simultaneously with groans of pleasure. Boromir leaned over his partner and kissed him gently, then, after a moment carefully withdrew and settled by him upon the bed. They rested there quietly for a few moments till breathing slowed, then Andrahar turned his head and cocked an eyebrow at Boromir.
"You never even got out of your clothes," he complained. Boromir got up, went to the washstand, took a towel and dampened it, then returned to hand it to his companion.
"I will now," he said, and proceeded to do so, folding them and setting them upon the chair with Andrahar's as the older man cleaned himself up a bit. By the time he was totally naked, Andrahar had completed his cleansing to his satisfaction, and was holding the covers open so that Boromir might join him. The Heir to the House of Mardil slid in, and was immediately embraced and pulled close. He sighed in contentment as Andrahar's sword-callused fingers stroked through his hair, and pressed himself even more tightly against his lover.
"Do you wish to speak of what happened now?" the Armsmaster asked. Boromir yawned.
"What I would truly like to do is take a nap, horrible as that sounds," he admitted. "I haven't slept well lately, and I always rest easiest in your arms. But it seems a shame to waste our time together thusly, rare as it is."
"'Tis not a waste if it gives you comfort, lad. Sleep if you like. I will wake you after a time. After all, I haven't had my turn yet!" Boromir chuckled sleepily, and in a few moments had drifted off.
He woke, crying out incoherently, to Andrahar's hand upon his shoulder, and his voice, soothing, in his ear.
"Boromir. Boromir, wake up. 'Tis but a dream." Gasping a bit, he pushed up on his elbows to find his lover regarding him with concerned dark eyes. "Are you well, lad?"
"Must you still call me lad?" the Captain-General growled. With inchoate dream images of the horror at Osgiliath still floating through his mind, he fastened upon irritation at a small thing as a way to bring himself back to reality. "I am forty years old!"
"But still a lad compared to me!" Andrahar declared, giving his eternal, stock answer to the eternal complaint. Boromir glared up at his expectantly smiling face for a moment, then his own expression softened, and he sat up the rest of the way, running his hands through his hair. The Armsmaster got up and moved over to the table, heedless of his unclothed condition. Tearing off a piece of bread and uncorking one of the bottles, he returned to Boromir's side with the food and drink, sat back down on the bed and proferred them to him.
"Go on. Eat a bite, and take a drink. I always find it helps Imrahil when he has one of these turns." Boromir took them, and bit off a chunk of the bread, chewing it briefly before gulping a swig of the wine to wash it down. "It wasn't the wave dream, was it?" Andrahar asked, all too familiar with the vision of drowning Numenor that haunted both Imrahil and Faramir. "I did not think you had the dreams."
Boromir drank again. "I did this time. But not about the wave. Part of it was the battle, and part of it was something that Faramir dreamed the night before the battle, and has dreamed a couple of times since. He told me about it, so I guess that's why I dreamed it."
"What vision was this?" the Armsmaster asked curiously.
"It was strange. There was rolling darkness and thunder in the East, a
very ominous feeling. In the West, a pale light glimmered under the edge of the storm-front with a voice crying from out of the middle of it. It was speaking in verse."
"Well, it was Faramir's vision after all," Andrahar said with a grin, and Boromir smiled.
"Indeed! Here's what it said, to the best of my recollection. Faramir wrote it down after he first had it, since he felt that it was important." He tipped his head back and closed his eyes for a moment, then began to recite.
"Seek for the Sword that was broken:
In Imladris it dwells;
There shall be counsels taken
Stronger than Morgul-spells.
There shall be shown a token
That Doom is near at hand,
For Isildur's bane shall waken,
And the Halfling forth shall stand."
Andrahar considered the verse for several moments, then asked, "Did you and Faramir not say at dinner last night that you thought this new, fell commander of the Dark Lord's was the power from Minas Morgul?" Boromir nodded.
"That is what has me in such despair, Andra. Its own people would not abide its presence, falling upon us in a frenzy at least as much to escape it as out of bloodlust, and as for mine.......even the very strongest fled at first, despite my exhortations to them to stay! How can I stand against something that weakens my men so with fear of it? These were not green troops, they were my finest, hardiest men and captains!"
"They came back for you, did they not?"
"Eventually. Some of them. Enough of them that we could pull the bridge down. The fear had to have been some sort of vile sorcery upon the fell creature's part."
"That is my thinking as well. And if such is the case, then the second staves of the verse are the most important: 'There shall be counsels taken/Stronger than Morgul-spells.' Obviously, the answer to your problem with the Black Captain lies in this Imladris place--wherever that might be."
"Father was actually able to give us some information about that, when Faramir told him of the vision," the Captain-General said, taking another drink of wine, then handing the bottle back to Andrahar. "He said that it was an old Elvish name for a northern vale ruled by Elrond Peredhil, who is the greatest of lore-masters."
"Isn't he that half-elf fellow?" the Armsmaster asked with a frown. Despite the fact that the lord he loved was reputed to have elven blood himself, Andrahar did not care for the Elder kindred, and a long-running feud with the Lord of Edhellond, Gildor Inglorion, had not given him any incentive to change his mind.
Boromir chuckled. Some things never do change, he thought to himself, and that can be reassuring in and of itself. Ah, Andra--that I should find your prejudice a comfort! Aloud, he said, "Yes, he's the 'half-elf fellow'. Been around forever, 'tis said, and probably does know a deal about our problem. As you might imagine, Faramir is keen to set out and find the place."
"Perhaps he should. Certainly one of you should," Andrahar said, his frown transmuting into a more thoughtful expression.
Seeing this, Boromir asked, "What make you of the rest of the rhyme?"
The Armsmaster drank from the bottle absently, and without his usual appreciation for good vintages, his mind intent upon the puzzle.
"I have no skill with such things. But I cannot imagine what use a broken sword will be in our upcoming troubles. And it doesn't take some puffed-up half-elf showing me tokens to tell me what I already know--namely, that doom is upon us! I had always heard that Isildur met his end punctured by orc arrows. The news that Isildur's bane is awakening--which presumably means orc arrows and the orcs that fire them--may be of import in the North, where perhaps they've not had such troubles, but it seems not much of a prophecy to me! As for the Halfling standing forth--I have no idea what a Halfling is. But the name implies a diminutive and weak sort of creature or thing. What use is such to us, who require strength most of all? No, I still hold that the second set of staves are the ones with the most significance. Hopefully, it means they have some way of counteracting this fear the thing commands."
Boromir sank back against the pillows once more, hands knotted behind his head. "I wonder if I should not go. A good commander is sometimes served best if he sees things for himself. But Father says it is many, many leagues to the north, and I am needed here."
Setting the bottle carefully on the bedside table, Andrahar joined him, laying his head upon the younger man's shoulder. "Faramir is better by far in the wild. I fear you would starve in the wilderness without an aide to cook your supper!" Boromir turned his head and glowered at Andrahar.
"I am a perfectly competent hunter, thank you! And I am the stronger of the two of us. Besides, if Imladris truly is a center of lore, Faramir may get there, stick his nose in a book and forget all about us!"
"I think that unlikely," chuckled the Armsmaster, "though 'tis true that he might be less resistant to any plots the Elves might lay before him, regardless of his loyalty to us. He reveres them too much. But 'tis also true that you are needed here."
"Gondor would feel my brother's lack near as much as mine. He has truly done an excellent job in Ithilien, whether Father believes it or not."
"What does your father say upon the matter?"
"Neither yea nor nay as to whether anyone should go at all, and if so, then whom. He says he needs time to think upon it."
Andrahar turned his head a little and kissed Boromir upon the cheek. "Then let him think upon it. It will be an interesting conundrum for him--keep him busy." His hand slid along Boromir's flank, then drifted down over his lower belly. The Steward's son sucked his breath in with a hissing sound. "And now, if we have conferred quite enough--it is my turn."
During the time the two men had been lovers (and over the course of twelve years it probably only amounted to about three weeks) Boromir and Andrahar had come together in many ways; rough or soft, kind or almost cruel, one or the other of them playing the dominance game, or both of them entering into the act as equals. But never had Boromir been made love to as Andrahar did that night.
Expecting to have submission required of him, the Steward's son was surprised at the gentle tenderness with which the Armsmaster began to caress him. Each touch of Andrahar's sword-hardened hands seemed calculated to both soothe and coax a pleasurable response from him. The older man eventually set his mouth to the task as well, and before long, Boromir was writhing upon the bed in absolute abandon. The soft, mewling noises he was making would have embarrassed him had he been in a more sober frame of mind, but he paid them no heed now. Despite Andrahar's assertion that it was his turn, the Swan Knight seemed to have nothing better to do with his time than to languorously pleasure his partner. Nerves thrumming, Boromir was eventually reduced to begging him to finish things.
"Not yet," the Armsmaster answered, his eyes hooded as he watched his lover squirm. "I enjoy seeing you this way."
"You…are a cruel man!" the Captain-General gasped.
"Scion of a cruel people," Andrahar agreed pleasantly. "Who perfected the art of torture long ago. We have even written books about it. And we write the best ones about this too--as you well know." Whereupon he proceeded to drive Boromir half-mad by holding him upon the brink of fulfillment for what seemed forever. Finally he relented, urged his lover onto his knees, and covered Boromir's body with his own. The tenor of the encounter changed, became stronger, more urgent, and soon after that, both men achieved satisfaction, the Steward's heir scant moments before Andrahar.
Collapsing onto the bed, Andrahar's warm weight still upon him, Boromir sighed.
"Valar, Andra, that was wondrous! As always." The Armsmaster rolled off to the side, grinning, and slid his legs under the covers.
"As I always tell my esquires, many are the rewards of diligent practice." Chuckling, Boromir slowly bestirred himself, eventually joining Andrahar between the sheets. He then gathered the older man into his arms and kissed him softly. Dark eyes widened slightly in inquiry.
"Are you all right now? Remembered how to feel yet?"
"Oh yes, I am much, much better now." There was a lazy, sated quality to the Captain-General's voice which Andrahar was glad to hear. "And feeling is definitely not a problem any more."
"That is good to know." The Armsmaster wrapped an arm about Boromir, and rolled a bit, till their positions were reversed, and his lover was resting upon his shoulder. "Sleep now. I am sure that you can use the rest. And before you say anything else about wasting time, you should know that I like this part almost as much as the other. I tire of sleeping in a cold bed."
"So do I," Boromir murmured sleepily, tucking his head beneath Andrahar's chin. The Armsmaster's fingers twined gently through his black hair, and lulled by their massage and the events of the evening, he was asleep in a very short time. Andrahar remained awake for a while longer, staring up at the flickering patterns the lamplight made on the ceiling, his eyes unfathomable, his arms cradling Boromir as if he were the most precious thing in the world.