VairŽ Was a Weaver, or, Real Men Wear Corsets (a farce) by Celeritas

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Story Notes:

This fic is technically an AU, since Rohan left Minas Tirith before Arwen arrived to marry Aragorn in the days immediately after the Ring War.  However, anyone who would turn from a fic by this fact would probably have an aneurysm when she saw the other abuses that have been inflicted upon the (mostly male) characters of the story.  Technically has no chapters; however, since the author has no shame, each scene has been separated into its own chapter.

The sun was setting over the Brandywine.  Slowly she edged westward, where hours later she would set over Eressëa, and then Valinor where the Lords of the West dwell.  And as she sailed her course through the sky, she cast her rays on two figures sitting at the edge of the river, letting their feet dangle in the cool waters.

            “Merry?”  Estella shifted closer to her husband.

            Merry did not move.

            “Merry?”  Estella frowned, then laid her head on his chest and listened to his breathing.  A snore escaped his lips.  “Astonishing…” she muttered.

“Merry!”  This was spoken quite close to Merry’s ear and accompanied with a backward shove.  Merry tumbled back, feet spilling drips of water as they were jolted out of the river.

Merry’s eyes flicked open.  “Wha-?”

“Love, if you take me out to a romantic setting for the evening, you are not supposed to fall asleep, much less snore.”

Merry blinked a few times.  “Snore?  I don’t— Sam snores.  Gimli snores.  Me?  I…”

“Merry, you snored.  Very quietly, but you still snored.  And I feel ashamed that my own husband would fall asleep to such a beautiful sight as this.”

“Ah, but I awoke to a face so much more beautiful…”

Estella blushed at the flattery, but laughed his comment away.  “If you think that kind words are going to get you out of trouble, love, you are sorely mistaken.”

“What about this?”  Before Estella could blink, Merry sat up, locked his arm around her waist, and pecked her on the cheek.

“That might delay the punishment,” said Estella.

“Good,” said Merry.  He kissed her again, this time on the lips.

For a few moments they gazed at the sunset.

“But tell me, love,” added Merry after a while, “why did you have to wake me up?”

Estella stared at him.  “Because,” she said, “you were not supposed to fall asleep!”

“No, no—you misunderstand me.  Clearly you woke me up because you realized I was asleep, but you must have wanted something to realize I was asleep.”

“I don’t quite understand you,” said Estella.

“What I mean is that you would be much too busy staring off into the magnificent sunset to notice that I had dozed off.  It only takes a little logic on my part to figure out that you needed my attention for something; otherwise you would have continued staring off into the magnificent sunset and let me slumber in peace.  You do look pretty when you’re thinking.”

“Oh.”  There was a slight pause.  “Well, I had wanted you to tell me a romantic story, but I’m afraid the mood for that has been dispelled utterly.”

“A story?”

“Yes, a story.  Something from your travels Outside.”

“Oh.  But I’ve told you about everything that’s happened to me Outside!”

“Not everything.”  Merry gave his wife an offended look at this remark.  “Oh, certainly you told me everything that had happened during… during the War, but there were months after that that you spent with your friends in that city far away.  Surely something worth telling must have happened.  You know… something about the King and Queen, or those two friends of yours that fell in love while you were in the Houses of Healing.”

Merry shook his head.  “I already told you how they fell in love… and I received word of their marriage… I don’t know of anything noteworthy that happened in the  meanti—”  Suddenly he broke off and turned as scarlet as the sunset.

“Merry?” said Estella, the beginnings of a smile tugging at the corners of her mouth.


“I think there is a story to be had here…”

“What do you mean?  I don’t know what you’re talking about.”

“Don’t lie to me, Merry.  There is a story to be had here, and if you are not willing to disclose it to me, your own wife, perhaps I am not as important in your life as you would have me think.”

“Estella, you know—”

“Tell me, Merry—does your cousin know about this story?”

“Of course, but—”

“I rest my case.”

Merry spluttered for a few moments, trying to overcome Estella’s logic.  “I do not have to tell you every single thing that happened the year I was away…”

“No, of course you don’t.  All I was asking for was that one, simple tale, but that’s asking too much from you, isn’t it?”  Estella sniffed.  “No, I see how it is.”

“Estella, your… theatrics are not going to change my mind.  You know perfectly well that I love you with all my heart.  But… I don’t think this is a good story under the context of marriage and love.”

“Then tell me, and I’ll tell you if you think correctly.”

“You… you might have very disturbing dreams.”

“Merry, I am certain that any dreams I would have from this story would not be the kind of dreams you are trying to make them.”

Merry sighed, exasperated.  “If I don’t tell you, Estella, what can you do about it?”

Estella stared right into his eyes.  “Would you really like to find out?”

After a moment of tension she shrugged and looked away.  “I foresee a shortened honeymoon, much more flattery before kisses, separate beds…”  She glanced over at Merry, who was looking quite mortified.

“Mercy?” he said in a small voice.

“I’m sorry—I really shouldn’t force you.  Keep your secret little tale.”



“You don’t mind?”

“Of course not.”



“Well… actually… the story is rather funny…”

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