Summer Days and Warmer Nights
A/N: I just watched the Hobbit movie and loved it, especially Kili and Fili. I've yet to read the book, so there may be some inaccuracies especially with characterisation - but hey, I tried my best. I just find these two so adorable. This isn't durincest, just good ol' brotherly love. No obvious spoilers, although there is some foreshadowing.
It was far from the coldest night they'd had to endure so far and Fili tentatively called it 'warm', despite the subtle chill that hovered in the air and nipped shyly at his fingertips as he twirled his braids.
He couldn't sleep.
Or perhaps he didn't want to sleep.
Not in the darkness, the silence which lingered like a ghost on the dawn of something terrible.
Fili could feel it deep within his bones, floating softly, menacingly in his blood, creeping along the edges of his thoughts.
Kili slept peacefully at his feet while Fili perched uncomfortably on a log, shifting on the bark every now and again, carefully, so not to rouse his baby brother.
Young, near enough bare-faced Kili with too-delicate cheekbones and a too-bright smile.
All wild and gentle at once was Kili.
Fili let his hand drift down, tangle in Kili's dark, auburn hair. It was unruly hair because he wouldn't let it be braided and Fili smiled softly at the thought of his brother in braids.
It won't ever happen.
Not over Kili's dead body.
That's the thought which jolts Fili, letting his breath catch painfully in his throat, his heart stutter and miss far too many beats.
If Kili died, then so would Fili.
In every sense of the word.
Fili tugged his little brother's blankets up a little higher over his shoulders even though Kili never shivered and then tucked the furs tighter around the younger one's form.
Kili murmured and turned his head, his cheek coming to rest in Fili's warm palm.
"Shhh, brother," Fili whispered in the cold, dark night, "You need your sleep."
He didn't notice Thorin's gaze on him until his uncle spoke quietly, hoarsely.
"So do you, Fili."
The younger one jumped and blinked away the salty water gathering in his eyes, the grey mist that clouded their goal from sight.
He was a prince. Princes do not cry.
Except over little brothers they fail.
Fili reluctantly pulled away from Kili, who unconsciously frowned at the loss of warmth.
The loss of his brother.
"Uncle," Fili straightened his back, "I didn't know you were awake….that isn't my doing, is it?"
Thorin shook his head mutely and his face became clearer in the glow of the dying embers of the fire, it's flames flickering delicately in the silver starlight, simple glimmers of gold amongst the ashes.
"Why are you not sleeping? We have a hard journey ahead of us, Fili. You cannot afford to sit up all night watching over your brother."
"But that's my job." It has always been.
The words left his dry, chapped lips before they'd even ran through his addled mind. Fili blushed pinkly.
"I know," Thorin sighed with something vaguely resembling regret, but it was gone as soon as it had come, "Of course I know. He is young, Fili. But so are you."
"We are not children anymore, uncle."
But oh how Fili wished they were.
At least in childhood, he could protect Kili from everything.
The shadows in the night.
The monsters under the bed.
The local bully from across the river.
They lapsed into silence for a little while, until Fili couldn't stop himself from breaking the peace.
"He's so reckless, uncle. He doesn't think and I know – " Fili swallowed the lump that had rapidly risen in his throat, "I know that something will happen and I won't be able to protect him."
Thorin chose that moment to stand and move around the fire, stepping softly over various dwarfs and a single hobbit, until he sat beside his nephew.
It wasn't a question, or a statement, or a reprimand.
Just a name not said in annoyance or fear as it so often was.
"Fili, for tonight, just forget."
"Go to sleep and let me watch over your brother. Over you. That's my job as your king, your leader – "
"As our uncle."
Fili finished for him, his words lost upon the gentle breeze but Thorin heard him.
The older dwarf gave a weak smile that seemed to shine brighter that the summer sun in the bluest of skies.
"I'll be here, Fili. I'm not sleeping tonight."
After a moment, Fili nodded and settled himself back down beside Kili, forehead to forehead, heart to heart.
Fili said nothing when he felt Thorin re-adjust the blankets over them both.
Instead, he just clutched Kili's hands in his own and closed his eyes.
He dreamt of summer days and warmer nights.
Of monsters under the bed.
Of little brothers.
And never once did he dream of what was coming.
There were other, colder, nights for that.