Halcyon Days by Lbilover

Written for the word of the day 'halcyon'.

I worried about Elijah as we drew near the end, the real end, to our time in New Zealand. He had thrown himself wholeheartedly into the adventure, the friendship, the fellowship, without reservations, without regard to the future and the different paths our lives would take when it was over. Even granted he was right that we would remain friends forever, that didn't address the disconnect between past and present that would occur when he returned home to the States.

For myself, I had already grappled with that reality. I had to. I was in love with Elijah, but married and a father. I couldn't afford to bask in his glow, to accept the carelessly exuberant hugs, the impulsive kisses that he scattered like glittering fairy dust. While he, Dom and Billy were goofing around and being pals, I had my head in a book or a phone under my double chin, or even my arms waving madly in the air as I pretended to direct helicopters in to land. Anything to maintain a safe distance.

I don't know if he noticed. If he did, he never showed it - or perhaps I was willfully blind. But the closer we came to goodbye, the harder it was to maintain that safe distance in the face of his distress. Our beautiful golden lad, our Frodo, our heart and soul, the lynchpin who held our Fellowship together, stood now on the shore of Middle-earth and a metaphorical white ship was about to set sail. The glow in his eyes dimmed and his carelessly exuberant hugs and impulsive kisses held an edge almost of desperation and lingered a few heartbeats too long.

I wanted badly to hold him, only hold him, and tell him it would be all right. I wanted to be his Sam in this, too. Yet, in the end, wasn't it kinder to be cruel? So when he stared at me with sorrowful bewilderment and a voiceless plea, I hardened my heart and looked away. He had to understand that nothing was permanent, nothing lasted forever, not in our business, and no amount of wishing would make it so.

On our last day, speeches were made, gifts were given, hugs exchanged, tears shed. In the trailer we shed our costumes and our Middle-earth personae one final time. I did a little celebratory soft shoe shuffle and joked about never having to put on those damned hobbit feet again. Elijah on the contrary had the dazed look of someone in those few frozen seconds before he understands that he's been mortally wounded and the pain explodes inside him.

That was the moment I crumbled, because his pain was my pain, too, and to turn my back on it was to refute everything that Frodo and Sam symbolized in our lives. That night I offered him the solace not only of my words but of my heart and body. He took them both and kept them.

Against all odds he keeps them still.