“I can’t believe that happened. I can only imagine what stories will come from that one…Stop laughing.” Irissë glowered at her companion, who was slumped against the wall, shaking with helpless laughter.
“The worst of it is that it was your fool idea. The wine cellar, of all things. In the middle of a feast! Of course there were going to be servers coming in and out every other minute. I’m serious, if you don’t stop laughing, I’m leaving.” Irissë waited, but the laughter continued.
“And you hid, you coward! You took up all the space under that cask, you selfish trollop, and all I could do was hold up two bottles of wine and pretend to be drunk and stumbling around…”
Elenwë clutched her stomach, gasping for breath. “Elbereth, Irissë, the look he gave you! Finwë’s granddaughter, drunk and staggering around in the cellars!”
“Better than Finwë’s granddaughter caught with her hand up another maid’s skirts,” Irissë muttered. “But not by much. I can’t believe you hid. Why didn’t you pretend to be drunk with me?”
“You must be joking. My mother would kill me.”
“And what about my mother?” Irissë planted her hands on her hips. “When the story gets around to her I’m sure to be treated to another lecture on ‘responsible consumption’ and Arko and Finno will tease me unto the end of Arda.”
“You’re just upholding your reputation of being the wild white lady of the House of Nolofinwë…”
“See if I let you choose where we go ever again.”
Elenwë smiled and caught Irissë’s wrist, pulling her lightly against her. “Fine. You choose. But decide quickly, or I’ll just have to have you here.”
Irissë shot a look over her shoulder, but the hall they were in was well removed from the hubbub of the feast. “Don’t tempt me. I think I have an idea…”
“Your aunt won’t mind?”
“I have no doubt that she’d mind, but she doesn’t ever need to know.”
Elenwë looked around, a little uneasy. “It’s sort of creepy…”
Irissë looked around too. “What? It’s just a studio.”
“I feel like I’m being watched,” whispered Elenwë. “All those statues…”
“Let me distract you then.” Irissë laid her hands on Elenwë’s hips and drew her close. Elenwë tilted her head back and Irissë kissed her softly.
“Hm. I don’t know, I think I need something more…”
“Demanding.” Irissë kissed her again, more deeply this time, and slid a hand from Elenwë’s waist up her torso until her hand brushed lightly against the curve of Elenwë’s breast. Elenwë shivered and wound her arms around Irissë’s neck as Irissë’s pressed her back against the wall. Her thigh found its way between Elenwë’s legs, and Irissë whispered a curse as their long skirts tangled.
“Damn these clothes. What I wouldn’t give for – ”
“Just push them up,” whispered Elenwë. “Hurry up, Irissë, I’ve been waiting for ages to feel you.”
Irissë slid a hand under Elenwë’s skirts and caught her breath sharply. “Eru. You’re so wet, Elenwë…”
“I know.” Elenwë ground impatiently against Irissë’s hand. “Please – ” She broke off with an exclamation and Irissë pulled back.
Elenwë shuddered, looking at something over Irissë’s shoulder. “Ugh. Ireth, your grandfather’s watching us.”
“What?” Irissë whirled, and then rolled her eyes. “It’s just a bust, Elenwë.”
“It’s unnerving,” said Elenwë, eyeing the bust of Finwë with distrust. “Urgh, it’s like his eyes are following me.”
“So look away.” Irissë gave an exasperated sigh. “I thought you couldn’t wait.”
“That was before – ”
“Oh, for – Look, let’s go over into this corner instead, all right?”
That corner proved amendable for a while, or at least until Irissë broke off with a sharp curse.
Irissë looked pained. “I’ve bruised myself. On – oh Eru, a bust of Uncle Fëanaro. Talk about a mood killer…”
“This isn’t working,” said Elenwë. “We need to go somewhere else or I’ll have nightmares for the rest of my life about your entire extended family watching us while we – ”
“Agreed,” said Irissë, looking rather ill.
“Now this,” Elenwë let her head fall back with a sigh. “This is much better.”
“A bit cramped.” Irissë let out a muffled expletive as a broom fell away from the wall of the closet and narrowly missed hitting her on the head.
“Hush. You’ve got me so close.”
“Do I?” Irissë smiled in the darkness.
Elenwë was braced against the wall, her skirts hiked up around her waist, one leg hooked over Irissë’s hip. Irissë was pressed between her legs, the fingers of one hand sliding into her, the other hand under Elenwë’s blouse, fondling her breast.
“Yes. Oh – right there – ”
“What was that noise?” Irissë pulled back and looked over her shoulder just as the door was yanked open and light flooded the closet.
Elenwë let out an exclamation and threw her hands over her face while Irissë quickly tugged both their skirts down again and whirled to block Elenwë from the intruder.
Who was glaring impatiently at her.
Irissë blinked in the bright light, and as her eyes refocused and recognition dawned, black rage suffused her features. “Findekáno, I will kill you.”
“Not if I kill you first.” Her brother folded his arms and glowered. “Do you know how long I’ve been waiting to make my escape? This is my spot, Irissë.”
“Your spot?” Irissë sputtered indignantly. “I don’t see a sign.”
“Please. I’ve been having assignations in this closet since you were just a tomboy in short skirts.”
“The nerve – ”
“What are you waiting for, Finno? We don’t have long, I only just got away from Uncle Arafinwë – oh.” Maitimo appeared over Findekáno’s shoulder, and his eyes widened as he saw Irissë. Behind her, Elenwë buried her face in her hands.
“Tell you what,” said Irissë brightly. “You two can have it in just – oh, what was it Elenwë? Five minutes? Yes, I think I can get you there in five minutes. Just hang tight, boys.” And without waiting for an answer she slammed the door in her brother’s face and wedged it shut with the broom handle. “Now, where were we…?”