My first ever longish story, written back in February 2005. Many thanks to my beta Trianne.
Sam stumbled, stopped and scowled. He glared at the broom he held at arm’s length, took a deep breath and began again.
Sam froze in mid-count.
“Whatever are you doing?”
Feeling his face go redder than the sky at sunset, Sam turned to meet the astonished gaze of Frodo Baggins, who, instead of being hard at work in his study as Sam had believed, was instead standing framed in the doorway of the parlour. Sam wished the floor would just open up and swallow him whole.
Frodo advanced into the room, one eyebrow raised, a smile quirking his lips as he took in the sight of the parlour furniture pushed back against the wall and Sam standing in the middle of the floor holding an upside-down broom.
“I…” Sam began, “I…” He finished with a desperate rush, “I was practicing the waltz, Mr. Frodo.”
“With a broom? Not a very- um- satisfactory partner, I should think.” Frodo’s eyes were dancing with mirth.
Sam grinned sheepishly. “Aye, well, a sight more satisfactory than my sisters, to tell the truth. Ever since Mr. Merry showed them how to waltz at Mr. Bilbo’s party, they’ve been at me to learn. ‘Newfangled nonsense from Buckland’ my Gaffer calls it. I expect he’s right. I can’t get the hang of it nohow, Mr. Frodo, and my sisters tease me something fierce.” Sam sighed. “I’m just a clumsy oaf, that’s clear. I can’t even dance with a broom.” He gave the broom a disgusted look.
Frodo looked at Sam with unexpected sympathy. “Learning the waltz takes practice, Sam. I felt a hopeless fool the first few times I attempted it.”
“Did you really, sir?” Sam felt comforted by the words, though he didn’t believe for a moment that the slim, elegant form of Frodo Baggins could ever look less than graceful.
“Oh yes. Merry is quite as bad a tease as your sisters, you know, and I think I persevered simply because he teased me so. But eventually he had to admit that I can waltz as well as he can.”
Sam pictured Mr. Frodo and Mr. Merry waltzing together at some grand party at Brandy Hall, chatting and laughing as they twirled in graceful circles across a crowded dance floor. His spirits sank.
Abruptly, Frodo reached out and took the broom from Sam’s unresisting hands. He set it aside and returned to Sam, standing squarely in front of him and raising his arms. “Come on, Sam, you can practice with me. I hate to think of your sisters teasing you. You aren’t a clumsy oaf and I mean to prove them wrong.” There was a flash of blue fire in Frodo’s eyes as he spoke and Sam’s plummeting spirits suddenly soared.
“What-“ Sam had to pause to swallow against a sudden constriction in his throat. “What do you want me to do with my hands, Mr. Frodo?” He firmly suppressed the idea that leaped into his mind as to what he’d like to do with his hands.
In answer, Frodo took hold of Sam’s right hand and placed it slightly below his own left shoulder blade, adjusting Sam’s arm until it was at a 90 degree angle; he then raised Sam’s left arm until it was at eye level and lightly clasped that hand; finally, he rested his own left hand on Sam’s right shoulder. “There,” he pronounced in satisfaction. “You lead, Sam, and I’ll follow.”
The queerest sensation came over Sam at these words but he had no time to consider what it meant, for Frodo was giving him an encouraging look and saying, “Ready? Remember, lead with your left foot.”
Sam nodded, took an awkward step forward on his left foot, and then he was waltzing. Waltzing with Frodo Baggins.
Sam halted, flushing with mortification. He’d stepped on Mr. Frodo’s foot. Again. This was, as best he could count, the fourth time since they’d started the lesson. “Oh sir, I’m that sorry. Let’s just forget the idea. ‘Tis clear I’m hopeless.” Mental visions of waltzing gracefully around the parlour were fading fast.
“Here now, Sam, if you are going to apologize every time you take a misstep, we’ll never get anywhere. And no, we are not going to forget the idea,” Frodo informed him, as he gently massaged his toes. “Try to relax. The problem is that you’re thinking too hard. Just close your eyes and imagine you’re, I don’t know, chopping wood, or kneading dough. Something with a regular rhythm that your body can do without conscious thought.”
‘Something with a regular rhythm that your body can do without conscious thought.’ Well, that sort of imagining wouldn’t be difficult, Sam decided, not with Frodo’s soft hand in his and the warmth of Frodo’s body beneath Sam’s hand at his back.
“All right, Mr. Frodo,” Sam said with renewed determination, taking up his position again. “I’ll give it another try. And… one-two-three, one-two-three…”
Frodo began humming a waltzing tune and Sam closed his eyes. As Frodo had suggested, he gave his imagination free rein and stopped thinking about his steps. And it worked, just as sure as one of old Mr. Gandalf’s spells. Suddenly his feet knew exactly what to do, his body followed, and then Sam was aware only of the blissful feel of Frodo in his arms; the dizzying sensation of flying across the floor; and the lilting notes of the song that Frodo hummed.
“You’ve got it, Sam!” cried Frodo, “Wonderful! Keep going.”
So he did, never wanting to stop, twirling his master around and around, hearing him laugh in delight. Sam pulled Frodo closer, then closer still, wanting to bring him so close that they would never be separated, but would waltz on together like this forever…
The speed of their movements began to slow; reality began to intrude. How it had happened, Sam had no idea, but Frodo’s cheek was now pressed against Sam’s shoulder and his arm had crept around Sam’s neck. Sam’s own arm had dropped to snug around Frodo’s waist and their clasped hands, fingers tightly entwined, were nestled between them, resting against Sam’s heart. They were barely moving, swaying in tiny circles, and Sam became suddenly, vividly aware of Frodo’s arousal burning against his hip, and his own pressing against the yielding softness of Frodo’s belly. He halted in confusion and dismay; his eyes flew open.
Frodo lifted his head from Sam’s shoulder and looked at him with burning eyes. “Sam,” he breathed.
“Mr. Frodo, I-“ Sam didn’t know what to say, what he should say. Was it possible, could it be possible, that Frodo, too, wanted what he himself had desired for so long?
“You lead, Sam, and I’ll follow.” Sam heard the words again, clearly, in his brain. They gave him the courage to act.
“Frodo.” He tightened his hold on that supple body and moved his head. An eager Frodo met him halfway, his fingers digging into Sam’s shoulders as their mouths came together in a long, desperate kiss, hips grinding together.
But it wasn’t enough, Sam thought, not nearly enough. He drew back, ignoring Frodo’s small sound of protest. He took Frodo by the hand and pulled him toward the nearest couch; they fell onto it in a tangle of limbs. Clothes and buttons flew everywhere as hands tugged and yanked and tossed, the overpowering need to feel naked skin against naked skin driving them. Finally they knew the heated wonder of their naked bodies touching from chest to toes, and the almost unbearable friction of their erect shafts trapped between them. The compelling urge to move overcame them, then, and their bodies instinctively found the rhythm of that most ancient of dances. The tension built and built until it could be borne no longer: Frodo found release first, followed closely by Sam, each calling the other’s name as they did.
Minutes or hours later it might have been, before Sam regained his breath and wits; he couldn’t tell. Frodo was sprawled atop him, seemingly in the same state of dazed wonderment. Sam felt the pool of their mingled seed cooling on his belly and wondered if he ought to fetch a cloth to clean them both. But the thought of moving, of losing Frodo’s dear weight, was insupportable. He held Frodo closer instead. They lay so for a long time.
Sam felt rather than heard the quiet rumble of laughter. “What?” he asked softly, one hand smoothing up and down Frodo’s back, marveling at the velvet feel of it.
“Oh, I was just thinking, Sam-love,” Frodo murmured in Sam’s ear, his warm breath raising goose bumps.
“What were you thinking?” Sam-love, he repeated to himself and wondered if it really was possible to die of happiness.
“That, far from a clumsy oaf, you really are quite a natural.”
“At waltzing, do you mean?”
Frodo smiled against Sam’s neck. “That, too,” he said.
“Will- will we waltz again, Frodo?” Sam asked hesitantly, his hand pausing in its rhythmic caress. He held his breath as he awaited the answer.
“Do you want to?” Frodo propped himself up and looked down searchingly into Sam’s eyes.
“Aye, that I do,” he replied with quiet conviction, “Every day, from now until I’m too old to dance no more.”
“Then I promise, Sam-love, to save all my waltzes for you.”