Sekrit Slasha

Slasha, Baby is the LOTR RPS Fanfiction holiday fic exchange. This story depicts real-life public figures engaged in completely fictional, false and untrue activities. It never happened. This story is a work of fantasy and satire which in no way professes to express the truth about the life, thoughts, feelings, desires, opinions, beliefs, activities or sexual orientation of any person mentioned herein.

Fear of Falling

Title: the fear of falling
Pairing: sean b/viggo
Rating: PG
Summary: It is a strange fate, that we should suffer so much fear and doubt over so small a thing. (Boromir, Fellowship of the Ring)

Viggo doesn't call him now that he's home. He's under no spell; knows that this isn't some fairytale ever after, but he'd hoped that it was something more solid than the kind of casual fling that stays on the road. It had been hard enough to leave, the way things were, but the idea of it being the definitive end makes the prospect of flying back feel heavy, like a weight that settles in his gut when the thought comes to him, unbidden. He's not sure he'll be able to handle going back to have Viggo look at him without a stray, telltale glimmer of heat, be it a twinkling eye or a wry grin that disappears in seconds.

He tries to push it from his mind and avoid thinking about it, but there are times, when he reaches for the telephone and remembers that Viggo isn't responding to his messages, that it fills him with an emptiness far greater than the one that fills him by day, and that weight falls away and he's not sure whether it will drag him with it, in freefall, or if it will tear him in two.

"How's Viggo?" he asks Billy one morning. He's been up all night, and the question slips out without him thinking to ask; he's cross with himself for asking, especially since Billy's been on about bike seats and sounds ready to drop off, but he thinks he does need to know. In the silence that seems to echo like dead air, he realises he's warm for the first time since he got the envelope, before he left.

"Can't really say, actually; I don't see him much now we're all split up. He's spending a fair bit of time with Karl lately." Billy seems to sound honestly regretful, and that somehow makes him want to pull the phone away from his ear. "I'm sorry, mate, I am. I'll tell him you asked, when I can."

Billy hangs up without waiting to say goodbye; he knows that it will be like the old telephone game, and Billy's rudeness means only that, most likely, he's already on the phone to Dom, who'll hook in Orlando, who'll needle at Viggo, and it will seem like he's pining. He goes to bed without even bothering to strip; he should have thought first, shouldn't have risked everyone knowing he doesn't think he can do this on his own.

He knew as soon as it arrived that it would change the way things were; it was easy to see how it happened, looking back. They'd been at the point in between two drinks turning to five and spending the night, when it's not enough to just be around the other but that final step towards admitting it seems too large to ever take. Viggo was understanding and let him have the time to spend on the phone as soon as business hours started back home, and he'd appreciated it then, but now it feels like Viggo had started to back away even before there was something else to choose. He remembers the sad, vacant look that Viggo had when they'd had the talk about needing to deal with the arrangements in person. It's in his dreams, except Viggo is saying that he shouldn't expect to come back, and not quietly accepting.

The last time this happened, he had his friends around him; they held him steady, never left him on his own in this aimless sea of papers and lawyers and signatures and accounts. But, he's a drifter; he doesn't have anyone he can ring up and ask to ground him, at least not here. His instinct is to call Viggo, suggest a pint and hope Viggo wants to cook, but New Zealand is a world away and there's an aeroplane in between. There's also Karl; he remembers the tension there, and the way Billy had sounded.

He wonders whether he did the right thing by leaving; it's like he's standing in the dark and he has no idea of how he got there, and there's nothing he can touch to help him find a way out. He remembers filming Amon Hen, the warmth of Viggo's touch even through gloves and oily mud, and how easy it had been; he'd slept after, exhausted and barely able to think, and Viggo had been there when he woke, with weak coffee and two slices of toast.

"Can we hurry this up?" he asks his lawyer, when he's leaning over her desk to read the latest offer. This hasn't been easy; it's harder with children involved, and he has money now. She's sympathetic, but she can only smile and wait for him to say yes or only if.

His breath catches when the lift starts to fall; he doesn't feel it, and only knows by the way the lights count down to the ground floor.

Fran answers on the fourth ring. He knows it's early, for her; he tried to wait longer, but there's something like a raw heat piercing the back of his head, and it nags despite the pills and the absence of light.

"I'm ready to come back now," he says, and the flight is booked before she hangs up. He doesn't know where the pain in his side has come from, but he knows he has to sleep before he even thinks of packing. This time Viggo says it's not too late, but only if he runs, and there's a shadow darkening from the west.

He says yes when the hostess asks if he'd like to order a taxi; he considers asking to go to Viggo's, but he thinks his key is in the bag he thought it would be a good idea to leave there, before the envelope. He could still go there; sit on the porch, maybe, or around the back. He knows he doesn't want to be alone, but he's not sure who to call, or who would come.

He fills out his customs card without really paying attention; he makes sure his seatbelt is still on and he closes his eyes when the plane starts to descend. It hasn't been a bumpy flight, but he still doesn't want to know anything from here until they land. It's bad enough that his hearing goes and the weight in his gut feels like it's gone to his throat.

Viggo has him in a one-armed hug before he really understands that he's on the ground. He can smell dirt and rain and either turpentine or paint, and feel the last of the headache fading away under Viggo's fingers at the top of his neck.

"Missed you, Sean," he says, in a low voice that he's sure was said right next to his ear. He doesn't know what to say back, but he drops his carry-on and holds Viggo as close as he dares; he hopes that will be enough.

slashababy was created by megolas, revised by yueni
fabulous artwork 2002 by Hope
now moderated by MSilverstar & feelforfaith