AN: I recently started reading all of these really awesome Thilbo Bagginshield fics, and I have to say, the couple kind of freaked me out at first. I just couldn't imagine them being together, but after reading twenty-something stories about them and seeing the movie seven times (yes, I have actually seen it seven times) I ship them hard. So I decided to write a fic about them, since I love yaoi and have written several yaoi stories before.
And I know Bilbo is supposed to be 50 in the book/movie universe, but that's a bit weird for me, since Hobbit's live as long as humans do. So just pretend he's twenty or something.
DISCLAIMER: I don't own the Hobbit or any of J.R.R Tolkien's stuff.
At first, all he thought of was the Shire. Of his soft, feather-down bed; his warm hearth, stocked pantry and never-ending supply of South Farthing pipe weed. All the pleasures of home were sorely missed, constantly calling for him to turn back and abandon his quest and his new-found friends.
But as the journey wore on, these thoughts grew less and less frequent. He had seen the world, gotten a taste of adventure, and even though Hobbits are in no way built for adventures, he couldn't leave. He wanted to see Erebor, he wanted to fight the dragon, and he wanted to be helpful to his friends. Suddenly the idea of going back home and living his domestic, peaceful Hobbit's life wasn't warm and welcoming, but boring and dull.
So many things had happened; he had met a dwarf king, a wizard, Elves. He had nearly been eaten by trolls, killed by orcs, goblins and Stone Giants. He had watched in amazement as three monstrously huge mountain trolls were turned to stone and as giant eagles saved their lives.
And he had also watched as the person who hated him most looked on him with new light and respect.
All of the good memories of the Shire were replaced with both good and bad ones of his journey; he remembered all of it. But the words of a king were all that had been running through his mind these last few tiring days.
The hurtful words of Thorin Oakenshield as he nearly lost his life on the treacherously slick mountainside. How the company cursed him for getting himself lost after they escaped the goblin fortress. Only Fili, Kili, Bofur and Gandalf had looks of remorse; the others were either angry or annoyed with his weakness. When Bilbo revealed himself to the group, they had hardly any time to talk before they were attacked by the Pale Orc and his minions.
That was when he made a decision to save his friend. The pain of watching Thorin fall to Azog was too great, and at that moment, as he stood up on the tree trunk and gripped his sword tight. An unexplained agony was growing in his heart at the sight and controlled his actions, all of his self-preservation going out the window.
Then they were flying, and everyone watched in horror as Thorin lay on the stone pillar, unmoving.
Bilbo still remembered the look on his face when he woke up.
"It's all right. Bilbo is here." Relief flooded through the Hobbit's veins as the dwarf king opened his eyes and searched around their group for him. Dwalin and Kili helped Thorin stand, but the moment his eyes met the Hobbit's, a sense of dread overcame the small man's heart.
"You! What were you doing?" Thorin asked through ragged breaths. "You almost got yourself killed! Did I not say you would be a burden? That you had no place amongst us!"
Bilbo looked around to see the fallen faces of his comrades; some agreed, some didn't. Those who didn't were fearful enough of their leader to stay silent.
So when Bilbo was suddenly yanked into strong arms and held tight, everyone gasped as their stubborn, prideful king hugged the Hobbit who had been such a burden, but had saved his life.
"I have never been so wrong, in all my life." Those words still rang in Bilbo's head as they trotted along the pathway after descending the tall stony pillar. The smile on Thorin's face, the laughs of the others, the strong arms wrapped around Bilbo's tiny frame. Yes, that had been one of the most perfect moments of his life.
And now, as they moved over hills and streams, through fields and marshes, Bilbo couldn't keep his eyes from straying to the king every few seconds. Ever since the night Balin told the story of Thorin defeating the Pale Orc in battle, Bilbo had looked at the king in a new way. A strange new way that made him queasy if he thought about it too long, because he didn't understand or know what it meant. What he did know was that he had developed feelings for the king, and it was best to hide them.
And he had thought he was doing a pretty good job until they stopped to rest after two days of travelling nonstop.
It was late, the sky had darkened and the stars were shining brightly above them as they set up a campfire and their bedrolls. All were looking forward to Bilbo making dinner; if Hobbit's could brag about one thing, it was their cooking. The stew he made tasted of richly herbed rabbit meat, onions, carrots and savory broth. It filled the stomach and left a good aftertaste on the tongue, which was exactly the kind of food dwarves liked. Even Thorin was coming back for seconds.
"Very good this," Dwalin stated around a mouthful of soup. Bilbo chuckled to himself as he remembered those same words being said at the beginning of their journey. Dwalin did too, as he grinned wolfishly at the Hobbit.
Everyone sat around scratching their stomachs and snuggling into their bedrolls contentedly.
"Bilbo?" Bofur asked.
"Hmm?" he replied, scrubbing a particular bowl with force.
"You said you're good at conkers before we left. Could you show us?" Bilbo's head snapped up at the random question; conkers? Why would they want to know about that? Bilbo's eyes wandered around the faces of everybody in the camp, most of which were paying attention to him. Thorin was glaring at Bofur for some reason; maybe he just didn't like conkers.
"Well…usually the game is played with hardened horse-chestnuts or snail shells. Strings are tied to the conker, then one person holds theirs up while the other uses their own to hit it. The first person to get the other's cracked wins."
"Sounds kind of boring," Kili mumbled, while Fili nodded in agreement.
"It can be a very intense sport if you get good at it, but we don't have any conkers to use."
"What about Hobbit conkers?" Suddenly half the camp broke out into huge, devious grins and the deep rumbling of Gandalf's laughter came from behind him.
"Good idea Glóin!" A swarm of dwarves descended on the Hobbit and hoisted him up into the air. He let out a yell of surprise, and a bolt of fear went up his spine. But when he looked down at the smiling and laughing faces of those holding him up, he knew they wouldn't hurt him.
Thorin, however, did not.
"PUT HIM DOWN!" Everybody immediately ceased their banter and slowly lowered him down, staring at their enraged leader. Wide eyes meet those of the king's, who was glaring at them all. He quietly sat down and crossed his arms, watching them, making sure they stopped their foolish games.
Needless to say, it was a silent night. But still, Bilbo couldn't sleep. Why had Thorin done that? Why had he gotten so angry? There was no logical reason; Thorin had been awake so they hadn't disturbed his sleep. They hadn't been making fun of anything or anybody, they were just messing around like all dwarves, and men, usually do. No matter how hard he thought about it, Bilbo couldn't come up with an answer to his nagging question.
And it didn't help when Bofur looked between the king and him, then winked. Bilbo knew that Bofur knew something; maybe he wasn't as good at keeping secrets as he thought.
His musings had kept him awake, and the sky was just the slightest bit lighter than it had been an hour ago. He would only have a few hours left before they would undoubtedly continue their journey at the crack of dawn. Sitting up as silently as possible, he stretched his aching limbs before getting up and venturing into the forest. The moon shone brightly enough for him to see as he wandered through the trees, brushing his fingers along their rough trunks. The forest really was beautiful; hauntingly so at night.
And of course, this beauty reminded him of Thorin.
The dwarf king was a mystery to him; he didn't understand his stubbornness, his over-developed sense of pride or his generally grouchy attitude toward everything and everyone. But despite all of this, when he saw him, he had a hard time looking away from his strong features and hair black as a raven's wings. His eyes were like two dark sapphires glowing in the night, whether it was day or not. He was magnificent, and that scared the young Hobbit. He was a man, he wasn't supposed to have these feelings toward another male, much less one of a different species. But…he couldn't help it. Thorin had saved his life, which showed that he cared at least a little bit. It gave the Hobbit false hope, and that was heightened even more when the dwarf king started treating him like an equal after he had saved his life.
After walking and thinking for a while, Bilbo started to realize his surroundings were becoming increasingly unfamiliar. The sky hadn't gotten any lighter, so it was still rather dark, and he didn't know where he was.
But just as he started to panic and worry, a strong hand clamped down hard on his shoulder and spun him around so he was staring into sapphire eyes.
Thorin Oakenshield wasn't a stupid man. In fact, he was considered above average intelligence when it came to dwarves, who weren't the sharpest tools in the shed. It was necessary to be smart, or at the very least aware, so he could lead well. Almost all of his studies as a young boy had been training him to think like a leader, a king, so he could lead his people well.
So it wasn't a surprise when he realized he had feelings for a certain Hobbit.
It started out as simple gratitude. Bilbo had been rather genius in saving them from the trolls, and he was impressed with the Hobbit's quick mind and fearless demeanor, though he knew the boy must have been scared beyond belief. Even though they had to constantly endure pitiful looks of homesickness and stories of what lay in the Shire, Thorin knew Bilbo would not abandon them. And that was what changed his gratitude to attraction.
It made absolutely no sense for the Hobbit to stay, yet he did. He was even more stubborn than the dwarves around him, who he constantly complained were too hard-headed and tenacious. He cared for them when they ignored him, he saved them when they would have left him behind. He did everything opposite of what Thorin expected.
During the last few days of the trip, before they went up into the mountains and faced Azog, Thorin had begun to look more closely at Bilbo. At his curly brown hair and how it fluttered in the wind when they moved over flat fields. His hazel-green eyes that shone in the sunlight and moonlight, always bright and cheery except when he spoke of his home. He was small, delicate and fragile looking, but that had been proven wrong when he killed the Orc about to behead Thorin. The king didn't want to think about it, but that action was strangely attractive, and that was when he began to notice how the Hobbit's clothes clung to his lean form, how his face relaxed when he slept.
He didn't want to admit it, but he was falling for a Hobbit.
The days wore on and he tried not to think about it. It was unbefitting of a king to love someone so much lower than him on the social hierarchy, much less someone of a different species. Once they reclaimed Erebor, he would undoubtedly marry some dwarf woman, and they would continue the line. That was his job as king; make sure his home is safe, his people cared for and the line continued.
But whenever he looked at Bilbo Baggins, all of that went out the window. Whenever he looked at those…cute features, his heart stuttered and he had to look away as his cheeks flamed. He was certain Balin noticed something strange or different about him, and was proven right when the old dwarf came and sat next to him when they were awaiting Bilbo's famous stew.
They were all weary from travel, Thorin especially. His wounds were healing slowly, but every once and a while they stung. Bilbo had offered numerous times to help him bandage and care for the wounds, but Thorin refused; he didn't know if he could control himself around the Hobbit.
This is what got him noticed by the old dwarf, Balin.
The fire blazed in the night, reflecting solemn light on every face. All were eagerly awaiting dinner, while Thorin was busy trying not to look like he was gazing at Bilbo the whole time. He was startled when someone sat down next to him, then saw it to be his white-haired friend.
"You know, Master Baggins isn't all we've made him out to be."
"He saved your life." Thorin looked at Balin with tired eyes.
"I know," he repeated with a growl.
"Then why do you treat him opposite of your feelings?"
"What do you mean?"
"Thorin..." the old dwarf sighed. "I've known you since you were the smallest child. I've seen you grow, watched you study, and saw as you made relationships that will last a life time. But I've never seen you look on someone with interest. Not until this trip." The king's head snapped around to glare, daring the other to continue.
"What are you trying to say Balin?"
"I just...I want you to be happy. We all do; you deserve it. And the Hobbit is what gives you this happiness, that I can see. But still, you treat him as if he were below you, like saving your life was just a mere favor. There is no need to be ashamed of these feelings."
There was nothing Thorin could say to that. Balin clapped his shoulder before going to sit with his brother who was laughing at something foolish Kili had said, like usual. Bilbo announced that dinner was served and was soon covered in hungry dwarves holding out their bowls. To his surprise, Bilbo came over and gave Thorin his bowl. Their hands touched and Thorin immediately pulled back, some of his stew sloshing over the side of the bowl. Bilbo gave him an awkward smile before shuffling back to his seat by the fire.
The soup was undoubtedly delicious, but for some reason Thorin didn't want Bilbo to know that. He had to keep up this facade of disliking the Hobbit if his pride were to stay intact. It was almost painful to watch as everybody conversed and had a merry time with the Halfling. Everybody but him. Balin's words echoed through his head as Bilbo described how to play conkers. He was unaware that his face had slipped into a fierce glare as he thought.
Suddenly Bilbo wasn't on the ground, but in the air on the shoulders of Glóin and Bofur. All of them had smiles in their faces, even the Hobbit, but the sight enraged the king so much he was on his feet yelling at them in an instant.
"PUT HIM DOWN!" The clearing was silent as they slowly obeyed with fear in their eyes. It was meant as a simple joke, Thorin knew that, but it just made him so angry. Because...because...
Everybody quieted down and returned to their previous positions. It was dark out, and sleep soon over took them. All except the king. Thoughts of a certain Hobbit plagued his mind; how their hands had touched, the anger he felt when they picked him up. When they were touching him and he couldn't.
Thorin squirmed around on his bedroll, unable to get comfortable or fall asleep. He settled for looking up at the stars, and thinking about the Baggins down the row of sleeping creatures.
Just as he was starting to doze, a twig snapped and caught his attention. He sat up and was going to yell at whomever had woken him when he saw the small form of Bilbo disappear into the trees. Thorin's head whipped around to look at the empty bedroll before he took off after the Hobbit; it was far too late for him to be out by himself.
Both men ghosted through the trees, one watching the other carefully. Bilbo hadn't noticed his presence, so he would keep it that way unless he needed help. He watched as the Halfling brushed his hands against the rough tree trunks, the bristly bushes and gazed up through the treetops at the sky. The moonlight shone down on his face, making his pale skin glow. Thorin stopped for a moment and looked on quietly. He was...beautiful.
Maybe this was supposed to happen. Maybe now was the time Thorin was supposed to confess his feelings; where it would be just them, away from the prying eyes and ears of their company.
Unfortunately, Thorin chose that moment to not pay attention and stepped on a branch. Bilbo stopped for a moment, looked around, then continued. Adrenaline rushed through the king's veins at nearly being caught, and that was when he decided to just do it. He was tired of hiding his feelings, even if they weren't fit for a king. He was tired of looking on the beautiful form of his Hobbit and not being able to go further. He wanted Bilbo to know, to see how he felt.
So he strode forward and whirled the Hobbit around, who stared at him with scared eyes before he relaxed into Thorin's hand.
"Thorin...oh, it was only you..." he muttered to himself, placing a hand over his thundering heart.
"Did I scare you? You shouldn't be out here by yourself." You could get hurt, he added in his head.
"I was just about to come back," he defended. Thorin realized his hand had been massaging the shoulder it rested on and jerked it back. Bilbo didn't seem to notice; was that a good thing?
"I'll walk you. Don't want you wandering off again." It was funny to see just how childish the Hobbit's face could get when he pouted, like now.
"I think I've proven that I can handle myself."
"Actually no, you haven't. You just usually have surprise on your side." Bilbo scoffed before Thorin turned on him, a devious glint hidden in his eyes. "Come to think of it, I should change that."
"You need to learn how to fight, and since neither of us can sleep-"
"You're going to teach me?" It stung Thorin's heart to hear how much skepticism and shock was in that question. In answer, Thorin reached forward and pulled out the Halfling's measly sword from its sheath, holding it high enough so it gleamed menacingly in the moonlight. Bilbo gulped nervously.
Thorin showed him how to balance the blade while fighting, and how to block basic attacks, since the Hobbit was clumsy with that. It was doubtful that his skills really improved, but at least he had some knowledge to think about while they travelled.
"Now swing the blade like this," the king said as Bilbo blocked a parry swing. "No, like this." Suddenly there were strong hands on top of Bilbo's, and soft breath on his neck as the dwarf behind him showed him the correct maneuver. A blush overcame both their faces, and they stopped moving all together. The atmosphere shifted from being awkward to being filled with longing and lust.
Slowly, Bilbo turned his head to look at Thorin while whispering his name, in question. The king's left hand drifted up across the Hobbit's torso to his face, where he cupped his right cheek. Their eyes met, hazel-green to glowing cobalt blue as their faces inched closer and the sword clattered to the ground, forgotten.
But their moment was interrupted when a shrill scream pierced the air from not far away.
Both men stumbled apart and Bilbo picked up his sword, holding it out in the direction the noise came from.
"Orcs...dammit!" Thorin mumbled before grabbing the Hobbit's wrist and dragging him back to the camp. They proceeded to wake everyone up, pack up their things and run across the clearing they were in. They couldn't take another attack by goblins or Orcs; they had to get as far away from that noise as possible.
The company trekked across fields and through trees the rest of the night and into the next day. There were several more Orc calls they heard, but each one was farther away than the last. So when it started raining and Gandalf said he knew of a shelter nearby, they took the chance to rest. No fire was built, and all that was eaten was leftover bread and jerky from the nights before. Everyone shivered in their blankets, trying to garner some warmth from their sodden clothes. Fili and Kili scooted together; it wasn't weird for them to hold each other while sleeping. Thorin watched them in envy; if only he could do that with a certain someone...
Day turned into night and sleep finally claimed the king. But it was the opposite for the Hobbit in the corner, wondering what in Sauron's name just happened.
"Ow!" Shouted Fili, holding his bleeding hand up to his chest.
"Sorry! Sorry! I didn't mean to!"
"No, this is good! You're improving! Besides, it's just a tiny scratch. No harm done." Kili clapped Bilbo on the shoulder before attending to his brothers little wound. The Hobbit stared on as the brothers affectionately started wrestling, Fili's scratch forgotten. Wouldn't it be nice, to have someone so close…
Bilbo looked up to see the others either watching them or talking. Bofur was trying to tie a string around a horse-chestnut he had found, for a game of conkers. The Halfling watched on in amusement as the dwarf got frustrated and started shaking the string, the tips of his wide hat wiggling.
Just as he was about to turn and look back at the grunting noises coming from the two dwarf brothers, Bilbo's eyes met with those of the king, who stared at him with intensity. He gulped and looked away, hoping he was suppressing his blush.
Ever since that strange night in the woods, Thorin had made everyone but himself teach Bilbo how to fight properly. He was improving, but he had a feeling he would be doing better if Thorin were teaching him. When the king spoke, he listened, and though he might get distracted by the king's strong and beautiful self, overall he thought it would be best. He could only hope the king felt this way too, and was just embarrassed over that night a few weeks ago.
He's a king; I doubt he's embarrassed about anything. Especially growing up around this lot, Bilbo thought dryly. Dwarves were known for their immodesty, which was one of the reasons the Hobbit had such a hard time adjusting to them.
"All right, that's enough you two," Thorin was suddenly in front of Bilbo, pulling his two nephews apart. "Let's get some sleep. We start at first light." With a collective groan, everyone turned to set up their bedrolls. To everyone's amusement, Fili and Kili sulked over to their corner, muttering about 'killjoys'.
Bilbo picked up his things and looked around for a spot, but the space they were in was rather small if he didn't want to sleep too far away from the group. To his horror, the only spot open was one next to Thorin. He stared at it for a moment with a scrunched brow before gathering his courage and setting his stuff down next to the king, who was talking with Balin on his left. Not even a glance was spared in his direction.
So he settled down and went to go to sleep, trying to calm his nerves. So what if he was sleeping next to Thorin? He obviously didn't care that they were in such close proximity. Darkness took him, and suddenly he was no longer in a forest, but in a cavern of rock. The ceilings were so high he couldn't see them, and the walls bore threads of silver and gold. A throne of black granite sat in the middle of the room, and beyond that an endless sea of gold. Bilbo's eyes widened at the site; he wasn't a greedy person, or a selfish one, but he wouldn't mind being privy to all of these treasures.
But the room grew dark and there was a deep rumbling within the stone. The mountains of gold started to shift and move, scattering all over as something rose from the underneath. The Halfling watched in horror as a mound of bluish-purple scales emerged, following by two glowing yellow eyes looking right at him, down to his soul.
"Bilbo!" The Hobbit woke to see Thorin staring at him in worry, one of his heavy hands on his shoulder. Bilbo was breathing hard and his hands were shaking. It couldn't have been…
"Bilbo, what's wrong?"
"I…I don't think the worst is behind us. Not quite."
"I saw him…Smaug. He woke up. Do you think it means he's still alive?" Thorin just looked at him grimly, not saying a word. "You knew…" Bilbo whispered, partially to himself. "You knew this whole time that the dragon was awake and you didn't say anything!" The hand on his shoulder was smacked away. "You're bringing all of your friends, your family, to their deaths!" The Hobbit was on his feet in an instant, stomping away into the woods. He didn't know if Thorin was following him or not, but he didn't want to be around him right now. Who could do that to the people they cared for the most?
"Bilbo!" the king hissed, quietly following the angry Halfling into the woods, again. He caught up to him a good distance away from the camp and pulled on his shoulder, stopping his brisk walk.
"How could you?" Bilbo cried. "They trust you, they're loyal to you, and all you're doing is filling their heads with tales of reclaiming their home when you know that they won't come out of this!" These words made the king angry, and he spit back his answer.
"They knew there was a possibility that Smaug wasn't dead. But they didn't want their kingdom to fall into the hands of others just because they didn't take the chance! This is old news to them; if it's too much for you, then leave!" It occurred to him that he was telling off the one he wanted most to stay, but dwarves had problems with their tempers.
"I already said I wouldn't! Not this time!"
"Then why are you so angry? This isn't your call to make, and you knew full well the risks when you stepped out your door. You fainted when you read your potential fate, yet you still came!" Bilbo bit his lip, holding back his retort. "Well?" Thorin asked impatiently.
"I'm angry…I'm angry because I don't want this to be true…" he whispered in defeat. "I don't want to lose the friends I've got. I don't want this journey to end like that. I want to keep my friends close, not lose them in battle. And…" With a furrowed brow and curious eyes, the king urged the Hobbit on. "I just…oh, how to say this…"
"…I don't want to lose you." Thorin's eyes widened at this confession as Bilbo looked away and bit his lip. Suddenly there were fingers lifting his chin up and he was forced to star into his king's blue eyes, like oceans in their depth.
"Is that what this is about?" All he got in answer was another defeated sigh. Well, if the Hobbit wouldn't speak, Thorin would make him.
Bilbo's eyes shot open and widened to their full capacity when he felt lips on his. They were soft and gentle, caring; contrary to the venom they were capable of spewing. A strong, muscular arm wrapped around his thin waist and pulled him close, making the Hobbit's eyes flutter closed in surrender. Not that it was hard.
The kiss was short and sweet, not nearly long enough, but Thorin had to make sure this was what Bilbo wanted. There was no reciprocation from the little man, which was generally not a good sign. He pulled back to see his love's face relaxed and peaceful, his lips slightly parted and his beautiful eyes closed.
"Bilbo?" he whispered. Those eyes opened and released their power on the dwarf king, rendering him temporarily speechless.
"Yes?" Thorin just smiled at the shaky reply.
"Does my affection…bother you?"
"Huh?" The king smiled and kissed his Hobbit again. This time, Bilbo fully complied and moved his lips against the king's, reveling in the sensation of finally being able to show his affection. Thorin's other arm wound itself around Bilbo's waist and held him tight, their lips molding together easily, like they were made for each other.
"Oh Gods…" Thorin mumbled when they parted, both breathing slightly heavy.
"What?" Bilbo asked, a laugh in his voice.
"I just…I've never been so at peace before. I thought you wouldn't return these…feelings of mine."
"You've never been so wrong," the Hobbit teased, referring to their moment atop the stone pillar after the eagles left. Thorin smiled at the memory and let his head drop down so it rested on top of his Halfling's, who leaned his head on his dwarf's shoulder. He wouldn't admit to it, but Bilbo was right; he had feared for nothing.
A bird chirped in the tree next to them, breaking the pair out of their blissful embrace. Light was breaking through the branches, and they could hear someone walking around in the campsite.
"We should be getting back," Bilbo murmured, unwilling to let go of his newfound lover.
"Yes; we don't want others to become suspicious."
"I think it's a bit too late for that," the Hobbit laughed as he pulled on Thorin's arm and lead them back to the camp. The king frowned; who else besides Balin knew of this?
The entered the clearing separately, to be discreet. Everybody was starting to wake up now and Gandalf got out the bread and meat for breakfast. Bedrolls were packed and food was eaten before the usual cheery morning trek began.
But there were, however, four dwarves who had noticed Thorin and Bilbo's earlier absence. Four pairs of eyes watched as looks of secret admiration and love were passed between the Hobbit and dwarf.
"Get any sleep this time around?" Kili asked as they walked down a steep hill.
"No, not really," Bilbo replied, grunting as he slipped a little on the rocks.
"Of course he didn't," Kili snickered, elbowing his brother, who grinned at the tiny man. The Halfling's eyes narrowed in question.
A blush covered his face when he caught the wink from Bofur and the brothers, plus another stare from Thorin.
From the way things were going, this was going to be a very long trip indeed.