December 6, 2006

“Oh... my... word...” Glorfindel stood at the entrance to the Hall of Fire, staring at the occupant of a bench that was situated under pine boughs that decorated the room. The ellon he was staring at was asleep, sound asleep, and softly snoring. This did not at all concern Glorfindel. What made him do a double take was the inordinate amount of tinsel, bows, and ribbons decorating the slumbering elf.

“Uncle Fin!” hissed a little voice nearby. Glorfindel turned to regard young Arwen, who came running over to him and gave him a hug around his legs. “Guess what?” she whispered.

“What?” he dumbly asked, taking a few steps forward. Now that he was in the room, he noted one other person there, grinning madly and tucking away the extra bows and baubles into a box.

“Uncle Erestor has been teaching me to be stealthy. Watch this!” Arwen scampered over to the box, the bow in her hair bouncing as she ran. From the offerings she selected a sparkly icicle ornament, and then went back to the sleeping ellon.

Carefully, Arwen lifted the string around one end of the ornament up over Gildor’s ear and dropped it gracefully down. Although Gildor sniffed and shifted slightly, he did not wake up, and his movement did not disturb the rest of the items draped over him and hanging from his fingers and feet or woven into his hair.

“Was that good?” she asked Erestor as she ran over to him.

“You told her to do this?” asked Glorfindel incredulously.

Erestor shrugged. “I needed a volunteer and he just happened to be here when we arrived. Anyhow, Arwen really wanted to decorate today instead of coming to her lesson, so we managed to come to a compromise.”

“May I be dismissed for the day?” Arwen asked impatiently. Erestor nodded, and Arwen bounded out of the room.

Glorfindel walked up to Gildor, shaking his head. “We are going to need to take all of this off of him before he wakes up.”

“What fun is that?” demanded Erestor in a hushed voice.

Shaking his head, Glorfindel reached forward to remove a sprig of mistletoe that was attached to Gildor’s elbow. Erestor grabbed hold of Glorfindel’s wrist. “Let me have a little fun.”

“You can be so mean at times.” Glorfindel twisted out of Erestor’s hold, now reversing their roles with his fingers around Erestor’s wrist instead. “I might consider leaving the rest... if...” Glorfindel back Erestor back against a wall. “If...”

“If what?” insisted Erestor as Glorfindel raised his hand above their heads, Erestor’s wrist still in his grasp. His other hand grabbed Erestor’s other wrist and pinned it against the wall. “Ow, stop that.”

“Shhh... you want to wake him up?” whispered the blond.

Erestor sighed. “Fine. What do you want?”

With a predatory smile, Glorfindel looked up above them.

Following his gaze, Erestor shook his head. “No, Fin.”

“Come on...” purred Glorfindel. “Just one...”

“Fin, you know I am not interested, and—“

“Sorry, Erestor, it is tradition.” And Glorfindel stole a kiss, lingering when he was not shoved away or fought against. “Mmmm... you really kiss well. What a shame.”

“What are you talking about? You kissed me,” answered Erestor, slightly breathless.

A smile curled on Glorfindel’s lips. “You kissed me back.”

For a moment, Erestor said nothing, his mouth open. “Well... are you going to let me go now or not?”

Glorfindel lowered the hand that was raised over their heads, but did not quite let go of Erestor’s wrists. “I have a choice?”

Something of a groan was heard by both of them, and they pulled away quickly. Glorfindel looked at the mistletoe he was holding and clutched his hands behind his back while Erestor fanned his face and studied the floor.

With a yawn, Gildor stretched and sat up, rubbing his eyes only to find the various festive items hanging from his hands. “What the...?!”

“Exactly what we were trying to figure out,” Glorfindel said, faking a great deal of concern. “We happened in to see if Lindir was around, and here you were, decked like the halls.”

For a second, only a second, Gildor looked convinced. Then he snorted and chuckled, standing up and pulling the items off that did not fall off on their own. “Sure you were.”

“Honestly,” began Glorfindel, but Gildor picked up a handful of tinsel and dropped it over Glorfindel’s head.

“Here. You should have a little more to go with the stuff attached to your legs,” said Gildor. “And you... well, you have it all over you, but, here is a little more,” he offered, dumping some onto Erestor as well. “Ta,” he said as he left the room.

Erestor turned to Glorfindel, looking him up and down. “You have tinsel on your head,” he said plainly.

“So do you,” Glorfindel informed Erestor. The blond sighed. “Well, I do believe I shall be sleeping alone tonight.”

“Oh, stop making such a sad face. Do you know how many centuries I have slept alone? One night will not kill you.” Erestor frowned when Glorfindel pouted, then snagged the mistletoe from his friend. “Here, maybe this will make you feel a little better,” he said, holding the bundle of leaves and berries over Glorfindel’s head before giving him a more than friendly smooch.

“That was nice,” said Glorfindel with a goofy smile on his face. “You know, we need mistletoe around here more often.”

Smirking, cheeks slightly red, Erestor began to make his exit from the room.

“Hey! You kissed me that time!” called out Glorfindel. “And you still have tinsel on your head!”

Erestor looked over his shoulder. “So what if I did?” He tossed the mistletoe over his shoulder, and Glorfindel caught it, tucking it into his pocket. “And I think I can deal with the mistletoe; I want to see the reaction Gildor gets from everyone. I do not think he realized he left here with a bright red bow still stuck to his rear.”