The Beating of our Two Hearts

by River-Woman

Summary: Two long time lovers re-discover their passion for each other.

Warnings: Angst

Archiving: Elrondslash; Wizards & Elves; Meddling in the Affairs of Wizards; others please ask permission.

Feedback: Would love it.

Disclaimer: The characters belong solely to the Tolkien Estate, I merely play with them, and I always put them back afterwards. I write for fun, there is no profit in this, believe me.

Author's note: With grateful thanks to Trinity for the beta - and to Nefertiti for the encouragement - all other mistakes are mine. Translations are at the end of the chapter. Italics denote speaking mind to mind.

Chapter 7

The thundering waves are calling me home to you,
The pounding sea is calling me home to you,
As we cast our gaze on the tumbling sea
A vision came o'er me.
Of thundering hooves and beating wings
In clouds above.
From "The Old Ways" by Loreena McKennitt.

The white ship ploughed through the foaming water, the wind sending spray over the decks as the prow rose and fell. Elrond stood facing the wind, his hair flying out behind him. His heavy cloak was damp with the spray, but he was revelling in the feel of wind and salt water upon his face. He looked back at his husband. Mithrandír was walking along the deck with Frodo. The young Perian still suffered greatly from his wound and an air of sadness was with him always. He enjoyed the company of the wizard and Elrond encouraged the Hobbit to talk to him as often as he needed.

Valinor was close, maybe another two days, the mariners said. He thought of how he would be greeted by his wife. Indeed, it was weighing heavily upon his mind today. He sighed. He would have to tell her that their children had all decided to remain in Arda, the twins choosing their Elven heritage, so in time, perhaps taking the White ship themselves. The hardest news to break would be of Arwen. She had chosen a mortal life and although it would be a longer life than of most Men, she would eventually, die.

Mithrandír had made him remove the condition of fidelity upon Estel. He had explained how Arwen would be separated from her husband during any pregnancy and confinement. Sexual activity between them would cease and if Estel upheld his pledge of fidelity, it would eventually drive a wedge between husband and wife. Better to let the King choose another bedmate than for him to lose his temper with the queen. They had argued back and forth for a whole day, until finally, it was Mithrandír who had folded his arms this time and stared him down. He had conceded.

It made sense of course, Elves were more open about such things and Arwen would no doubt encourage her husband to seek solace in the arms of another while she was pregnant. As a father, he didn't want his daughter and youngest child hurt by anyone, including her husband.

Their final leaving-taking was anguished. He had openly wept as he told his daughter of the love he held for her. He had always hoped that it would be her that joined him and her mother in Valinor. To lose her to eventual death was a bitter choice to make. But he respected her decision and knew that she loved Estel with all her heart. She would be a great queen and her children, his grandchildren, would rule the kingdom wisely for many generations. He had asked her if she had any message for her mother. She had shaken her head and said she only wished her mother peace. The peace she could not find in Arda. He told her that her brothers would care for her in his stead and that they would make good uncles.

They had then talked of the small things, of her childhood and Imladris. Of how she loved the waterfalls and gardens and would miss them. Of the times her brothers would come back from their expeditions of killing orcs and they would be wounded and that he, their father, would tell them not to be so reckless all while hugging them and telling them how brave they were.

She had wept and he had held her and stroked her hair as he had done when she was an elfling. He sang to her, a song of remembering and love. He had told her to keep the song in her heart; it was his song for her and when she sang it, it would remind her of her father's love. He had then led her back to Estel and lain her hand in his and as he did so, removed the condition of fidelity from the King.

He did not look back as he, Mithrandír and their company continued on their way to Imladris.

His husband's gentle hand slipped into his own bringing him back to the present.

'Come inside, love. The wind blows ever stronger and you are getting wet.'

He kissed the wizard's hand before allowing himself to be led down into their cabin.

He removed his cloak and set it to dry. Taking the hot tea offered by Mithrandír, he sat in a chair and stared out through the small windows at the rolling sea.

'Elrond, you are making yourself ill. I will not stand by while you sink further into despair. There is nothing to worry about. Celebrían will welcome us, I have told this. She always liked me anyway. So please, melme, I need you.'

He looked at the face before him, wise and gentle, the blue eyes filled with longing and desire. He loved the Istar more than life and he knew that he was making him miserable. They had not made love since boarding the ship, but his husband had been patient and understanding. He had held him during the nights, whispering endearments and placing chaste kisses on his hair and brow. Their love was strong, but the wizard's needs were also strong, as were his own. He wanted to take him now, roll him on the bed and love him.

He leaned forward and took the wizard's hand.

'I apologise for my behaviour, melme. I have been lost in my own thoughts and cares, excluding you. That was not my intention.'

'Elrond, I know what troubles you and I say again, she will welcome us.'

'Is this another of your bargains with Manwe, love?'

The wizard laughed. 'No, just my intuition. You know her and love her. Do you think she would reject you, me and happiness out of hand? Do you not think that she has also been lonely, more so than you?'

Elrond sat back and was silent. He had not considered the last possibility. It had not occurred to him that Celebrían would be lonely in Valinor. The hurt she suffered at the hands of the orcs would not allow her to take a lover. She could not bear to be touched by another, even her own children. All his patience and care could not bring her to accept his loving touch again.

'As ever, you are right, beloved. She would have been lonely and now she has the chance to be with those who love her the best, including her mother. But she will not have her children. That will be difficult for her to accept.'

'We will help her, we will love her and we will care for her,'

Elrond rose from his chair and embraced his husband. 'I love you, Olorin. I am blessed to have you by my side and Celebían will love you in her turn.' He kissed the waiting lips and felt the wizard lean into it, but not forcing it deeper, allowing him to dictate the pressure and passion.

'I will not break, love. You can kiss me as passionately as you like.'

He felt his love's tongue probe his mouth and he joined with it, deepening the kiss and letting his hands wander over the wizard's body.

'I have a great need for you, meldanya' the wizard said as they broke from the kiss.

'And I for you, husband.'

Taking the Istar's hand, Elrond led him across the cabin and pushed him down on the bed. He then lay on top of him and ravished his mouth again. They had not been this close for many, many days and the urgency of their need for each other overtook them. There was no foreplay, no slow undressing and no lengthy kissing of each other's body, just the lust of two beings, deeply in love and needy.

Elrond took the lead and roughly opened the wizard's tunic, then dropped his hands to release the ties of his trousers. He lavished hot kisses on smooth flesh working his way quickly to the already engorged cock. The Istar moaned as the Elf's lips encircled the swollen plum before taking the full length of his member into his mouth. Elrond sucked gently at first, then harder, allowing his teeth to pluck at the sensitive flesh. The wizard caught his hair and pressed his head down onto him as he bucked his hips quickly towards his release. He groaned deep in his throat as Elrond worked a finger into his tight opening. Another followed, and as they found the small, hidden nub of delight, Mithrandír was tipped over the edge and spent himself into the Elf's throat. He gave a strangled sob and allowed his body to go limp on the soft mattress. He flung an arm over his face, gasping for breath. But his lover had not finished.

Elrond was fast approaching his own peak and he wanted to climax inside his husband. Turning the wizard on to his stomach, he pulled him onto his knees. He ripped the ties to his own trousers and releasing his throbbing erection, he placed himself against the wizard's forbidden opening. He rubbed the drops of moisture that were leaking from the tip over the puckered skin and without further preparation, thrust himself to the hilt. The burning fire was spreading quickly through his body and it only took one more thrust before he spilled himself within his beloved. He slumped across the wizard's back, gasping in his turn. Gently, he slipped himself out of his husband and lay down next to him.

Mithrandír turned to face the Elf. The eyes that met his were dark and sorrowful. A perfectly formed tear ran down his cheek, followed by another.

'Ah, my love. What is this? Why the tears?' He kissed the salty wetness away. Elrond clung to him, shaking.

'I apologise for my actions, melme. Did I hurt you?'

The wizard laughed. 'Not at all. In fact, you were very gentle and besides my beautiful one, you could never hurt me.'

Elrond took a deep breath. 'I'm frightened,' he said.

'That is only to be expected. I am here with you and I will always be here for you.'

He held his distraught husband, cradled him and stroked his hair. Rhythmic breathing told him that the Elf had fallen asleep at last. He moved to pull the cover over both of them. He then drew the Elf close so that his head lay in the crook of his neck.

He kissed his forehead. 'I love you Elrond.'

In the two years they had lived together as husbands, he had grown to fully understand the complexity of the Elf Lord's character. A deeply compassionate being, the Lord of Imladris was humorous, regal, knowledgeable, wise, but above all, loving and passionate. They had worked hard in the last two years readying Imladris for his departure. Galadriel visited often, as she would travel with them.

It was she who had asked the twins to persuade Celeborn to come and live with them in Imladris once she had departed. Elrohir, Elladan, Glorfindel and Erestor were staying longer in Arda and this pleased Elrond. They still loved Arda and wanted to remain as long as possible in the new age. Glorfindel and Erestor would take the last ship with Celeborn, but the twins had yet to make up their minds if they would follow their father. As the day of departure grew closer, Elrond had grown more agitated. He paced, he slept little and he ate less. He had been distant on the journey to the Havens, so much so, that not even Frodo could reach him at times.

Now he knew the reason.

Elrond was frightened that Celebrían would hate him for bonding again; that he hadn't brought any of their children with him and that he would lose his husband in the process. Mithrandír smiled to himself and kissed the Elf again. How little Elrond knew of his wife; how little trust he placed in the Valar. Elrond had been the foremost Elf on Arda since the Battle of the Last Alliance. He had held the different Elven groups together with his diplomacy and care. He had gained the trust of Men and Dwarves. Elrond was always an important part of the Master Plan to rid Middle Earth of Sauron and he had fulfilled his role without regard or thought of reward. Now the Valar were rewarding him, only he couldn't see it, nor would he take any re-assurance that Celebrían was happy for him and would accept the situation.

'Have I been asleep long, love?' The Elf shifted in his arms.

'Not long, Elfling.'

'I had a dream. In that dream, I was in Valinor and I was sitting in a garden. In the distance, I saw two people approaching. As they got closer I realised it was Celebrían and you. She looked at you with such happiness. You both waved at me and when you reached me, you sat either side of me and we embraced each other. It felt warm and good.'

'That was a beautiful dream, Elrond.'

'Do you think that it could be like that?'

'I know that it will be like that, beloved. You deserve all the happiness the Valar gift to you, remember that.' He touched his husband's nose with his fingertip.

'Do you wish to rise and bathe or would you rather stay like this?' he asked.

Elrond snuggled deeper into him. 'Stay here, close to you.'

'In that case, I suggest we undress and get into bed.'

Elrond giggled. 'Is that an invitation?'

'You can be a very bad Elf sometimes.'

'Ah, but you love me all the same.'

'Yes, I do. Now, let me undress you.'

They stood together in the prow of the ship as she passed under the great sea arch that guarded the port. Alqualonde, the Swan Havens, was before them rising white in the early evening sun. Frodo stood at Elrond's side. Bilbo was still below deck, making sure his luggage was properly packed.

'Elrond? I see a woman who looks like the Lady Galadriel on the quayside. Who is she?'

'That is Celebrían, Frodo. My wife.'

'How did she know you would be arriving now?'

'Because I told her.'

'Oh? How?'

'I spoke to her mind. When two Elves are bonded, they can speak to each other's minds. Sometimes parents and children have the same connection. My sons have it. As twins, they have always shared a deep connection, much deeper than mere brothers. They believe they are two halves of a whole person. Without the other, each is only half of who they are, and when they are separated, they know if anything is wrong with the other.'

'Will they come to Valinor?'

'I know not, Frodo. But what ever choice they make, they will remain together.'

'Elrond? How could the Lady Galadriel speak to my mind? Can she speak to your mind?'

The Elf Lord laughed and placed his hand on Frodo's shoulder.

'Galadriel and Celeborn can speak to anyone's mind. They are the only two Elves I know who can do such a thing. And yes, Galadriel can and does speak to my mind.'

The ship slowed as it approached the quay. Ropes where thrown to Elves on the quayside, and the ship was made fast.

'Do you and Gandalf have that link?'

'Yes Frodo, we do.'


'Yes, Frodo?'

'What happens now?'

He squeezed Frodo's shoulder in reassurance.

'Now Master Baggins, you begin to heal.'

'Yes, I know that. But what about the basic things, somewhere to live, food, that kind of thing.'

Elrond laughed. 'Ah, I forget you are a seasoned campaigner. My dear friend, you can live anywhere and all the food you need will be provided.'

'Could Bilbo and I have a Hobbit hole?'

'Yes, I'm sure you can.'


'Yes, Frodo?'

'Can I come and visit you?'

The tall Elf knelt down before the Hobbit.

'My dearest Ringbearer, you will be welcome at any time, you and Bilbo both. I am your friend now and forever.'

'Aye, so am I, Frodo,' the wizard added.

'Do not forget that the Lady of the Golden Wood is also the Ringbearer's friend. I would wish for you to visit me often, Frodo.'

'Thank you all,' Frodo stared straight ahead, but Elrond saw the tears.

'You are now the most honoured Frodo. Do not weep. Your pain and sorrow will be soothed and the Valar have nothing but love for you. No doubt you will be kept busy recounting your story for a long time.'

'Do the Valar like stories?'

'They love nothing better than to sit with a good ale or wine, plenty of victuals and listen to a good story.'

The Hobbit looked up at him and smiled brightly.

'Are they by any chance Hobbits?' he laughed.

'They love Hobbits, Frodo. You will be very comfortable with them.'

A companionway was placed against the ship.

'It is time, my friends,' Mithrandír said.

Galadriel led the way; then came Frodo and Bilbo, who had finally appeared on deck and lastly, Elrond and Mithrandír.

Celebrían came towards them.

Elrond felt his heart leap into his mouth and his heart beat faster. If Mithrandír had not been holding firmly onto his hand, he would have turned and fled.

'Nana,' Celebrían fell into her mother's arms.

'Sell-nin,' and Galadriel wept with joy.

When they separated, Galadriel tucked a stray strand of hair behind her daughter's ear.

Celebrían then knelt before the Hobbits.

'Greetings, Frodo and Bilbo Baggins of the Shire. You are most welcome. I am Celebrían and I hope that we can be friends.'

'I would like nothing better, Lady,' Frodo answered with a bow.

Then she was before him, he swallowed nervously.

Her eyes met his and she smiled. A warm, bright smile that held none of the fear and sorrow he had seen before she had departed. She raised her hand and touched his cheek. The evening sun shone on her hair, highlighting the gold held within. He had forgotten her loveliness and seeing her now reminded him why he had loved her. She looked radiant, dressed in a robe of white that accentuated her form with a girdle of spun gold around her waist. The robe left her arms exposed and her flesh was soft and shimmered in the light; her feet were bare, yet she was nearly as tall as her husband.

'Welcome, hervenn-nin. Long have I waited for this day.' She embraced him and did not pull away when his arms encircled her.

'Celebrían. My joy at seeing you is without bounds. You look very well.'

'Yes Elrond. Here I have found my healing ... and peace.' Her voice was melodious and soft.

She turned then to the wizard.

'Ah, my dear Mithrandír, how I have missed you.' She embraced him tightly. 'You are different, no longer Grey, but White. It is very becoming.'

She took his hand and that of Elrond.

'Come, we three have much to discuss and I know that Manwe and Elbereth wish to speak with you as well. I have found a house in the city for all of us. It is not far. May I invite Nana and the Perians to come with us, just until they find something for themselves?'

Tucking their hands into the crook of her arms, she led them along the quayside.

'I think that is a wonderful idea, my love,' Elrond said.

'Is it large enough for all of us?' Frodo asked.

'It will suffice for now Master Frodo. I do not live in the Swan Havens, but in Valimar, which is a long journey from here. But we can stay in the city for as long as it pleases you. Are you hungry? I have heard that Perians have even larger appetites than Istars.'

Mithrandír laughed out loud at this comment.

'Ah, my dear Celebrían, I had quite forgotten that particular meal. But indeed, Perian, or Hobbits as they preferred to be called, have prodigious appetites.'

'Not prodigious, Gandalf. Just large,' Bilbo replied.

They entered the city. Celebrían took them along wide avenues that opened into squares with fountains. Banners and flowers where everywhere and the buildings blended tall sharp angles with soft, sensuous curves to great effect. The trees and grass were vibrant green and lush.

As the final rays of Anor spread its red and golden fire over the white city, Elrond looked up into the sky. Overhead, a great white bird dipped and wheeled above him before flying high and disappearing into the east. A single white feather floated down and landed at his feet. He stooped to pick it up and as he did so, he glanced skywards again.

'Welcome, ion-nin,' the soft voice filled his mind.

'Naneth,' he whispered and held the feather to his heart.

Sindarin Translations (With grateful thanks to Dragon Flame.)

Ada = daddy
Adar = father
Anor = sun
Arda = earth
Hervenn = husband
Hervess = wife
Ithil = moon
Ion-nin = my son
Meldanya = my love
Melethron-nin = my lover
Melme = beloved
Mir-nin = my treasure/jewel
Naira = Heart of Flame (Elrond's horse)
Naneth = mother
Nana = mummy
Sell-nin= my daughter
Telemnar Lestánore = Silver Flame of Doriath