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I'll Be Yours If You'll Be Mine by NelyafinweFeanorion

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Author's Chapter Notes:

my thanks to Cheekybeak for her continued feedback on this




 

Fingon saw the advertisement as he waited to catch the train to Formenos.

SPAMALOT

Vinyamar Theatre

One week only!

He searched the theatre website on his phone once he was on the train. It would be staged the first week of March and there were good seats available.

He had wondered about a Christmas gift for Maedhros. They were definitely past the friends stage and although they hadn't necessarily said the words it was clear that they were dating. Spamalot tickets would be a perfect present for him—not only was Monty Python a shared interest of theirs but it was also a reminder of one of their first unofficial dates-watching Holy Grail with Aredhel and Tyelko all those weeks ago. Fingon clicked over to the calendar icon on the website to select a date to book tickets and then paused.

March. Two months from now. A wave of warmth came over him as he realized he was about to buy tickets to an event two months away for someone he had known for just over seven weeks. His finger hovered over the screen and then he smiled as he clicked on the Saturday date. He would be well into his internship by then and if he wanted dinner out with Maedhros before the show and a lazy morning sleeping in the next day then it would have to be a Saturday. He felt his heart beat faster as he realized just how confident he felt that they would still be together then.

He completed his purchase and ticked the "Will Call" box. He should have time to pick up the tickets from the theatre this week—it would make a nicer gift to have actual tickets rather than a computer printout.

Christmas was just a week away. He had finished most of his shopping for his family but the fact that he hadn't found anything for Maedhros had been weighing on him. Seeing the advertisement today had been a relief. He still wanted to get him something tangible though—something small perhaps but an actual gift nonetheless.

Fingon checked his watch. Almost four o'clock. Maybe he would wander around the shops along the square today before heading to Beleriand Books.

He sent Maedhros a text when he arrived and set off to explore the shops near the station. It was certainly his lucky day as he found the ideal item in the third store. It made him laugh when he spotted it. He stowed it deep in his back pack and resumed his walk.

He arrived at Beleriand to meet Maedhros just before six.

"You look cold again," Maedhros said, as he pulled him into his arms and gave Fingon's chilled nose a quick kiss. He locked up the store and then they were on their way to the square—dinner was at the pub tonight. It made more sense to eat in town; it gave them some time alone before heading to the house and the company of Maedhros' brothers.

"You said your internship starts in mid-January?" Maedhros asked, as they seated themselves across from each other in a booth.

"January 13th," Fingon said. "Three weeks from now."

"And you're at Barad-Eithel, right? That's a well-known firm."

Fingon nodded. "It was my first choice. Dor-Lomin was a close second." He leaned back against the booth. "I've been reading up on Barad-Eithel's principal architects and their current projects a bit. I won't know who I'm working with or which projects until I get there but I wanted to familiarize myself with them before I start," Fingon explained.

"Good thought. Weren't they a big part of that theatre district restoration?"

Fingon shook his head. "That was Dor-Lomin. Barad-Eithel is doing the new children's wing at the hospital and that Modern Art museum on the North side."

"I must have mixed them up. There's quite a few good architecture firms in Tirion," Maedhros said, reaching for the chips the waitress had placed in the middle of the table.

"No question. I'll be lucky to get a job with any of the ones I've applied to, but Dor-Lomin and Barad-Eithel are my top choices. That's why I hope this internship works out and I can transition it to a full-time job," Fingon said.

"You're planning on staying local then?" Maedhros asked, his eyes drifting down to the menu in his hands as he asked, his voice a little huskier.

"Yes. I've only applied to Tirion firms." Fingon was gratified to see Maedhros look up at him when he answered. He thought he caught a relieved look on his face and that made his breath catch. Maedhros was looking forward to him staying here—that was good to know. "I hope one of them works out. There are good firms in Brethil as well but I really don't want to leave Tirion."

He was rewarded with a bright smile. "I'm glad to know you're planning on staying," Maedhros said. "Any firm in Tirion would be lucky to have you."

"Any except Gorthaur and Associates. I didn't apply for a job with them," Fingon said, contempt in his tone. "I hated what they did with the Angband Industrial Park and that Thangorodrim skyscraper is an eyesore—who puts a skyscraper out in the middle of nowhere? I can't believe the city even approved that design."

He had been so caught up in his disdain for Gorthaur's architectural designs that he hadn't noticed Maedhros' look right away. But there it was again, that distant, closed-off look.

"Not a fan myself," Maedhros said, his tone clipped and short. "They do a lot of work for Morgoth Industries and their subsidiaries." He pressed his lips together tightly and briefly looked away.

Fingon stayed quiet. It was a good decision. Maedhros' eyes flashed back at him, a spark of anger visible for an instant before he blinked it away. He looked at Fingon as he chewed on his lower lip, as if he was trying to decide if he wanted to say more. He straightened his shoulders and then spoke again. "Morgoth Industries was responsible for my grandfather's death," he said. His gaze stayed on Fingon, who was barely breathing at this point. This was not a topic Maedhros usually chose to talk about. He kept his eyes on Maedhros in return. "It was a hit and run. By one of their subsidiaries' trucking companies," Maedhros continued.

"I'm sorry I brought Gorthaur up—I didn't realize the connection. I know you don't like talking about that," Fingon said, reaching across the table to rest his hand on Maedhros' clenched fist.

"It's not your fault. You weren't to know they were linked. It just brings back some . . . unpleasant memories." Maedhros opened his fist and laced his fingers with Fingon's. "It was years ago but I can't quite let it go." He looked down and then at Fingon again. "Morgoth Industries eventually settled his wrongful death suit but they didn't make it easy for my father, or any of us." That look was back, a hardness in his words. "That's where the settlement money came from." He frowned at the table, his fingers tightening around Fingon's, his tone far more bitter now. "It's why the bookstore profits aren't that big a deal to me—between grandfather's estate and the settlement we're all financially secure on our own."

Fingon nodded. There didn't seem to be a good way to respond to that statement that wasn't awkward so he opted to just squeeze Maedhros' hand.

It was the right choice. Maedhros squeezed back, blinked, exhaled and then looked at him again. "And yes, you're right. Those architectural designs of Gorthaur's are abysmal. I'm glad you won't be working for them."

Their meal arrived and further conversation on that topic was diverted.

Maglor was the only one home when they arrived at the house. He was curled up in one of the armchairs in the library, headphones on and a notebook in his hand. He waved at them as they walked by but didn't remove his headphones or make any effort to speak to them.

"He's working on a composition," Maedhros explained. "Best if we steer clear of him for now." He walked in front of Fingon, towards the game room. "Tyelko's with the team tonight—I think he's back tomorrow." He turned to look at Fingon over his shoulder. "Pool or table tennis?" It appeared there wouldn't be any snuggling on the sofa tonight, Fingon thought. But he was content to follow Maedhros' lead-it hadn't steered him wrong yet.

They were surprisingly well-matched at table tennis although Maedhros' longer reach resulted in him winning more often than not. Fingon had the definite edge at pool. "It's all those nights at Taeglin's with Finrod," Fingon confessed, as he beat Maedhros for the second time that night.

"Or the spatial capabilities you have with your architecture background," Maedhros pointed out. "Don't sell yourself short. Pool isn't all technical skill and accuracy—it's predicting the vectors and three dimensional spatial relationships and you've got me beat on those."

Maglor drifted in later that evening, declining to play but sitting on a barstool to watch them. He didn't say much but Fingon could feel his eyes following him, a thoughtful expression on his face.

They all went upstairs at the same time, Maglor darting glances at his brother, a questioning look in his eyes now.

"You go ahead," Maedhros said to Fingon, briefly resting a hand on his shoulder. "I'll be there in a few minutes."

Fingon made his way to Maedhros' room and was already beneath the comforter by the time he returned.

"Everything all right?" Fingon asked, as Maedhros shut the door behind him.

"It's fine," Maedhros answered, sitting on Fingon's side of the bed. "He's just worried. Like you, he's concerned about me not sleeping. Like me, he's worried about you being in the line of fire if I do let myself fall asleep and something happens." Maedhros shrugged. "I told him you have a plan and so far, so good."

"Well, you know my plan is based on you actually sleeping sometime," Fingon said, sitting up and leaning back against the headboard.

"I know," Maedhros replied. "You've made that clear." He stood up abruptly. "Let me get changed," he said, making his way to the bathroom.

Fingon stayed sitting up as he waited. Maedhros returned a few moments later and slid under the covers on the far side of the bed before switching off the light.

Fingon shifted down to rest his head on the pillow. He took that as a fairly clear signal Maedhros wasn't interested in discussing the issue further.

He was mistaken in that assumption.

"Listen," Maedhros' voice came out of the darkness. "I've told you how difficult it is for me to fall asleep with you here, under the best of circumstances. I can guarantee there's no way I'm falling asleep tonight." He hesitated and then Fingon felt Maedhros reach his hand out towards him. He slid his own across the open space to take it. "So, I was wondering, since I'm going to be awake anyway, if you really need to be all the way over there tonight." He turned his face towards Fingon, his dim outline barely visible in the dark of the room.

Fingon let go of Maedhros' hand and scooted across the bed until he was pressed up against him, his head tucked under Maedhros' chin. "I'd rather be here," he admitted, his voice husky with emotion.

Maedhros slid one arm around his shoulders and the other around his waist. Fingon reached his arm around Maedhros' chest and a small sigh escaped him. There was a part of him that didn't regret the fact that Maedhros was staying awake tonight. He knew that wasn't fair but if Maedhros wasn't going to sleep . . . he'd rather be here than all the way across the bed.

"I don't like talking about events relating to my grandfather's death," Maedhros' voice whispered. "It was . . . a difficult time for me . . . for us. His death and the whole . . . aftermath."

Fingon drew even closer and buried his face in Maedhros' neck. "I'm sorry," he murmured. He seemed to be saying that a lot today but it was really the only thing that made sense.

"I know."

Fingon wanted to know more but this wasn't the time to ask. Maedhros had actually told him far more today than he ever had before. He could sense his reluctance to talk about it but Fingon was still convinced, that with time, he would open up even further. He just had to be patient.

It had to all be related, Fingon was sure of that now. Maedhros had basically confirmed that tonight, so sure he wouldn't be able to sleep after discussing his grandfather. It seemed that was a trigger.

He relaxed into the warmth of the arms around him and the gentle caress of Maedhros' hand on his back. He was so tempted to trail a line of kisses down along Maedhros' neck but he held back. There had been grief in Maedhros' voice, in addition to the underlying tension. He just needed to know Fingon was here for him—steadfast and solid. That he wasn't going anywhere.

Maedhros kept his hand on Fingon's back, gently tracing circles with his fingers. He could hear his breathing grow more even and then he heard that little snore that confirmed he was asleep.

Asleep in his arms. He had imagined this just a week ago, in his hotel room in Brethil. He had envisioned it but had doubted it would become a reality. But here he was, awake, but with Fingon in his embrace. He hadn't realized quite how much he had craved this until tonight. Until the possibility became a reality and he allowed himself to hope.

He had never had a serious, long-term relationship. Dating yes. Brief encounters, sure. But something profound and significant, something this all-encompassing and trusting? Certainly not.

It had been awhile since he had experienced any kind of contact, even brief and superficial. It was easier to be aloof, unencumbered, distant. He still wasn't sure what had compelled him to reach out to Fingon, to take him on a coffee date so soon after meeting him. There had been an undeniable physical attraction of course—that had been what had initiated it all. But it was so much more than that.

He hadn't wanted a transient physical relationship, a meaningless encounter. He had made a connection and that was far more precious.

It was hard to believe, even now, that Fingon was here, in his bed, in his arms.

He had avoided bringing anyone home these past few years, even before he had moved to the relative isolation of Formenos. If he was at someone else's place he had the freedom to leave, whenever he chose to—to just walk out whenever he felt like it. Not something he could do in his own home, nor could he easily ask the other person to leave.

He had been honest with Fingon—he had slept with others before, not frequently but often enough. Perhaps not in the last few years. Those interactions had been fewer since. . .

He had let a girl stay over, just before he had moved to Formenos, when he was still in the apartment in Tirion he had briefly shared with Maglor, after Azaghâl had moved in with Telchar. He had never let anyone stay again. Until now.

It was disruptive and unwelcome. And a risk for whoever was there with him. He didn't dare let himself fall sleep with another person at his side, just couldn't be himself with another person sharing that space. After that one time he had never allowed that to happen again. Formenos had made it easier to avoid—so far from the city there was no need to ever bring anyone home.

But now, not only was someone here, he wanted Fingon here. He longed for Fingon to be a part of his life—more than he had wanted anything in a long time. He had dreaded telling him about his nightmares, his sleeping issues; he had prepared himself for a disappointment that never came.

His lips skimmed Fingon's hair, leaving a breath of a kiss on the crown of his head. He craved more, ached for it. But he still feared that in the languid aftermath of a more intimate encounter he might accidentally allow himself to fall asleep. He couldn't let that happen. Not yet. Not yet.

Fingon's idea did make some sort of sense. If they took this step by step then perhaps it would become second nature and they would both adapt. And then Maedhros could tell him the rest. It wouldn't be hanging between them anymore, an invisible curtain of too many things left unsaid.

____________________________________________

Fingon woke up to warmth. He shifted slightly and felt Maedhros' arms around him still, just as they had been when he had fallen asleep the night before.

"Mmm," he mumbled into Maedhros shoulder. "I like waking up this way." He glanced up to find Maedhros looking at him, his silver eyes soft but so very tired. "You said you weren't going to sleep. You didn't, did you?"

Maedhros shook his head. "No. But I don't mind." He kissed Fingon's messy hair and smiled. "It was worth it to have you wake up here."

"Mmmph." Fingon snuggled in closer. "I could get used to this, you know."




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