Title: Release

Author: tarotgal

Fandom: Lord of the Rings

Rating: PG-13

Pairing: Legolas/Gimli

Disclaimer: Gods no, I don't own these boys. Wish I did! But I only play.

Summary: This is too short for a summary

Notes: This bunny came to me yesterday and needed... to come out ;-)




     "ihhehhhh!" As his breathing hitched, Legolas closed his eyes. It built from a tiny tickle to an overwhelming urge, and he rocked his body forward in his armchair, trying to draw it out to completion. He was distracted, at once, by Gimli. The sneeze backed away almost altogether and Legolas opened his eyes again.


     Gimli, teakettle in hand, poured more hot water into the basin Legolas' feet were in. Legolas shivered at the temperature change, then sighed. Gimli pressed a fresh handkerchief into his hand and took the crumpled one off Legolas' lap. "There, now," Gimli said, fussing with the blanket wrapped around Legolas' shoulders. He tugged and tucked to be sure it sat tightly and warmly. "Better?"


     Whether he felt any better or not, Legolas nodded in answer. But his breath hitched again. He pressed the handkerchief to the bottom of his nose, covering his mouth. "ihhhh... Hihhh-Hih!" But even when he concentrated on it, willing it to strike, it stayed back. "ihhhhh!" He gave it a moment or two, then let his breath out and gave his head a shake.


     "Having trouble?" Gimli asked lightly, his hand on Legolas' forearm out of concern.


     Reluctantly, the elf nodded. "Frustrated," he explained. Though Legolas' expression was more or less one of calmness, Gimli had easily discerned as much. "I feel the need to sneeze, but it does not want to come out." He wiggled his now running nose and dabbed the handkerchief at it.


     "Have you tried tickling it with something?" Gimli suggested.


     "Gimli!" Legolas laughed, "It is bad enough to suffer through without having to discuss it. yihhhh!" It came upon him again. He tried to be patient, when what he really felt was expectant. "ihhh... hihhhhh..." Eyes opened or closed, handkerchief at the ready or not, it seemed to make no difference to the sneeze which was most definitely stuck.


     Gimli took advantage of Legolas' inability to speak right away. "I only ask because it might help. I could pull a feather from the mattress if you like."


     Another shake of his head, after which he cocked his head and searched Gimli's eyes. "I have tried that, thank you. Though if you can think of any other solutions..." His nostrils flared, and he quickly brought the handkerchief up to rub at them. "hih-heh-HIH!" But this time neither of them took the build-up seriously.


     Gimli wore a gruff but thoughtful expression as he left Legolas' side and walked forward a few paces to the fireplace of their sitting room. He knelt at the hearth, stoking the fire. He threw another log on from the pile of logs he had chopped just hours before so that they would not be found wanting in the middle of the cold night. He and his axe had chopped for hours that afternoon while Legolas napped, staying far enough away from the house so that the sound would not reach even Legolas' fine ears. Ill, Legolas needed his sleep, especially as he had not slept well the night before.


     "Legolas," Gimli said, turning on the balls of his feet, though still squatting down. "Do you recall what happened last night?"


     Legolas could not very well forget it. "Naturally," he replied. He had felt poorly earlier in the evening, but had not let that interfere in his normal nightly routine. Not, that is, until he came to be intimate with Gimli in their bed. And then the blossoming head cold had come on so strongly and speedily, preventing him from that intimacy for every single time he went to kiss Gimli, or the other way around, he would sneeze. Gimli had settled for putting Legolas to bed. But the unshared kisses remained between them, waiting to be released.


     Gimli's hand touched the elf's cheek now, hot and rough. It slid across Legolas' face, tracing Legolas' lips and then cupping and fitting perfectly against Legolas' other cheek. Their eyes were locked, silently communicating hesitation from one side and reassurance from the other. Those few seconds were all the waiting that was required, as Legolas' nostrils twitched and he sucked in a sharp, short breath. "Yihhhh!" Gimli leaned forward, pressing his lips to Legolas'. Legolas did not resist, but did not kiss back at first. It was impossible to resist Gimli's kiss for long, however.


     Unspoken rules of kissing dictated that they close their eyes, which Gimli did willingly, as though ignoring everything else and concentrating only on the kiss. Legolas' eyes closed on their own, pulled shut by the urge to sneeze. "ihhh...ihh-hihhhh..." Gimli said no words of comfort, and did not stop kissing for anything. As though nothing were different, he was drawn into the kiss, bumping noses, opening mouths slightly. "heh?!" Gimli did not falter or flinch. He stubbornly held his ground and hoped for the best... and hoped the best was not too uncomfortable.


     "iihhhh..." Legolas leaned forward, deepening the kiss by chance. "Eh'Chshhhhh!" Surprised, Legolas pulled back and buried his nose in his handkerchief with a second, muffled, "ihh'Chmphhhh!" He lifted his head and looked apologetically at Gimli.


     The dwarf was using his sleeve to wipe the side of his face where the sneeze had grazed him. He smiled in amusement and shook his head to indicate it had not been too unpleasant. "Better?" he asked again.


     "Immensely," said Legolas honestly, but with a wet sniffle. He quickly rubbed his nose again. It tickled. He looked upon Gimli fondly, and reached out with one hand, pulling Gimli right up against the side of the chair. This time, Legolas eagerly initiated the kiss, and this time Gimli kept his eyes closed for both the kiss and to brace himself for the sneeze.