Title: By the Light of the Fire
Author: tarotgal
Fandom: Lord of the Rings
Rating: PG
Pairing: Legolas/Gimli
Summary: A warm night in Legolas & Gimli's home
Notes: Happy birthday, Lady Korana

By the Light of the Fire



“Legolas?” Gimli called out, immediately wincing a moment later as he remembered the pointlessness of trying to start a conversation with someone in another room who was unable to shout back. Gimli could hear his elf preparing tea now, the shrill whistle of the kettle giving way to the tink-tink-tink of spoon against mug as lemon and honey were stirred in for taste. This most recent cold of Legolas’ had already lasted longer than normal and, in lingering so long, had also robbed Legolas of his beautiful, smooth voice.


Legolas appeared in the doorway to the sitting room after a minute, hands cradling his mug as steam billowed up toward his chin and his reddened nose. With his eyebrows slightly raised and his head slightly cocked, Legolas asked what Gimli had called him about. Though elves were not always the most expressive, having little-to-no voice meant Legolas had to communicate somehow. Over the years, Gimli had learned every expression on his elf’s face.


“You know I love you,” Gimli said, patting the spot next to him on the couch.


Accepting the invitation, Legolas folded himself into the spot and tugged the blanket over his lap. He secured his mug and tugged a handkerchief out Gimli’s pocket. “ihh ihh…. Ihhhhhhhh-Ihhhishhhhh!” Legolas wiped his nose and picked his mug back up for a sip. Swallowing obviously hurt his throat, but the warm tea soothed it at the same time.


“I love you even when you’re all sneezy like this.” Gimli leaned over and kissed Legolas’ ear as its sneeze-twitching slowed and stopped. “And you know I love Fara.” Both dwarf and elf looked over in the direction of the hearth where a fire danced brightly. In front of it, in her favorite spot, their furry gray cat slept stretched out on the cushion that rested atop a footstool. Upon hearing her name Faralavan, lifted her head, stared at them, blinked slow, then settled back down. She loved them back.


“But this… this is testing my limits, elf.” Gimli gestured to his lap. Instead of a warm blanket, there were four tiny kittens rolling about. One was gnawing at the end of one of his beard braids while another had buried itself entirely in his beard, one paw sticking out from it occasionally to bat at a sibling. There was a kitten dozing on his shoulder, its tiny whiskers tickling Gimli’s cheek. And there was one that kept playing with the ties that held Gimli’s trousers on.  Each of them had sharp little kitten teeth and claws and big, black eyes that meant they were constantly ready for play and mischief. But none of them wanted to play anywhere but on Gimli.


A tiny gray head poked out from under Gimli’s beard and looked closely at Legolas, its little ears twitching with curiosity, the firelight reflecting in its eyes.


ihhh-HIHShhhhh!” Legolas sneezed, startling the kitten so badly it mewed and promptly hid itself in Gimli’s armpit.


Legolas looked mildly hurt, but that quickly turned to amusement.


“Ow! Watch your claws! Oh, you little…!” Gimli grabbed for the kitten as it burrowed back under his beard, curling up in the spot between his neck and chin where it was warm and cozy.


With a smile, Legolas leaned over, curling up against Gimli as well. The warm tea had made him sleepy, and he agreed whole-heartedly with the kittens that there was no better place to be.