Title: Catching Elijah
Writer: Lexi (email@example.com)
Rating: PG13 hitting NC17 later on
Summary: When Elijah loses his grip he needs someone to help him hang on.
Feedback: Yes please I need the precciousss feedback
Disclaimer: It. is. Fiction.
Betas: legomyarrow and dalehead who I was glad to find liked playing in the Karl and Elijah part of the playground with me.
Waking to these sounds again
I wonder how I'll sleep
Passing out is taking off into the stubborn deep
I'd like to meet a human who makes it all seem clear
To work out all these cycles and why I'm standing here
Over and Over-Moorcheeba
Over and Over
“Karl you shouldn't be here, someone might see us together.”
They were on a sound stage in Wellington and Karl had been sitting silently beside Elijah as he smoked a cigarette between shots.
Karl looked sideways at the younger man and noticed the dark rings under his eyes highlighted by the dirty make-up that was plastered on his face.
“You look tired Elijah, maybe you should get an early night.”
Elijah blinked and rubbed at his eyes.
“I'm fine, I got a day off tomorrow, I'll sleep then,” he said slowly.
Karl reached up to brush Elijah's hair out of his eyes.
“Not here Karl,” said Elijah, absently pushing the hand away.
Elijah hadn't been looking at Karl when he did this, otherwise he would have the seen the brief shadow of hurt that passed across his eyes.
“Elijah Wood, whenever you can manage to drag yourself away from your cigarette please feel free to come and join us,” Peter's voice drifted over to the two men.
“I gotta go,” said Elijah scrambling off the seat.
Karl looked up, his eyes following Elijah as he walked back to the set.
“He's a bit young for you don't you think Karl?” Viggo said, having appeared silently in front of Karl.
Karl fought the need to stand up, feeling a bit threatened with Aragorn looming over him when he was just wearing jeans and a t-shirt.
“Well, that's really none of your business.”
“That doesn't change the fact he’s the youngest member of the cast and probably the most vulnerable.”
Karl laughed mirthlessly.
“You can't judge how old someone is just by their age Viggo”
“He's just a kid who’s carrying the whole weight of the movie. I don't think you should let this thing between you go any further.”
Karl stood and rubbed a hand over his face, his eyes looking haunted.
“As for this thing as you call it, I don't even know how it got started, and I'm not entirely sure that I'm the one who can end it.”
With that Karl stood and walked away, feeling Viggo's eyes burning into his back as he left.
Karl knew it had started not long after he had arrived on set. Making friends had been difficult since the cast who had been with the project from the beginning were a tightly bound group and suspicious of newcomers. Karl spent most of his free time with Bernard and Miranda and the rest of the inhabitants of Edoras. Although he had scenes with some of the members of the Fellowship he wasn't particularly close to any of them. Despite this, whenever the whole cast went out drinking he couldn't shake the feeling that he was being watched by someone. It took him a few nights but he finally figured out that it was Elijah who was doing the watching. Now and again Karl would glance over and catch Elijah staring at him with those blue eyes and he would lock gazes with him till he broke off and turned back to Billy or Dom or Orlando. That was all that happened though, they didn't have any scenes together and they never spoke off the set.
Nothing had happened until one night when he had arrived at the pub late and found Elijah standing outside leaning against a lamp post, a cigarette hanging loosely between his fingers. Karl could only see him from behind, but the slump of his shoulders seemed to tell Karl that the ringbearer wasn't happy.
“You know that cigarette isn't lit don't you Elijah?” said Karl teasingly as he walked up behind him.
Elijah jumped, spinning around to face him.
“Hi Karl,” he said.
Karl caught a glimpse of sadness in Elijah's eyes before he changed his expression to a slightly false looking smile. Karl smiled back at Elijah and continued past him toward the door of the pub.
Elijah had spoken quickly like he was trying to get all the words out before he had second thoughts about what he was saying. Karl was surprised and he turned back to look at Elijah.
“A walk together you mean?”
“No man I was thinking I'd walk one way and you could walk the other. Come on I feel like a walk and the company would be good” said Elijah beseechingly.
“Sure thing if you want.”
As they walked down the street, Elijah finally got around to lighting his cigarette. From what Karl had seen Elijah was usually impossible to shut up, but here he was walking in total silence. He wondered if he should say something but he just watched the younger man smoke his cigarette. Elijah kept throwing glances at Karl and opening his mouth as if to say something but stopping himself each time.
After about fifteen minutes of silent walking they turned another corner and they were back at the entrance to the pub.
“Thanks man I just needed to clear my mind”
“Well I'm glad I could help,” Karl paused “Are you alright Elijah, is something bothering you?”
“Can I ask you a question Karl?”
Before he could reply, Elijah shook his head “Don't worry, it doesn't matter.”
Karl was staring in confusion at the young man when suddenly Elijah stood on tip toe, ghosted a kiss over his lips and then he was gone.
Karl didn't stay for a drink that night, he walked home and wondered what the hell had just happened.
It was a week later and facing a five o'clock call in the morning Karl had gone to bed early. He was deeply asleep when he was dragged to wakefulness by a frantic knocking on his front door. Rubbing his eyes he blinked at the digital clock that glowed 2.15 in the darkness. The knocking continued and Karl dragged a t-shirt over his head and slid his glasses on.
“I'm coming, don't knock the door down,” Karl yelled at his persistent visitor.
He unlocked and opened the door.
“Elijah, what’s wrong?” he said in surprise.
“Why should anything be wrong?” replied Elijah.
“Well for a start it's two in the morning which is not the usual time for visitors to appear on my doorstep,” Karl said yawning widely.
Elijah dartted past Karl into the hallway, and make his way through the house into the living room. Karl followed him slowly down the hall, running his hands through his hair, completely confused by Elijah suddenly appearing in his house.
He sat down on the couch next to the younger man who was bouncing around babbling about something that had happened on set that day. Elijah was unable to sit still at the best of times but this amount of energy in the early hours was ridiculous and Karl had his suspicions that this time the energy source wasn't entirely natural.
“Elijah, look at me” he said trying to sound stern.
Elijah shook his head and refused to meet his eyes. Karl grabbed Elijah's chin and pulled his head round so he could look at him. His suspicions were instantly confirmed, Elijah's pupils were huge, his normally bright blue eyes almost completely black. Elijah stared back at him and then started giggling.
“Elijah what the fuck have you taken tonight?”
“I'm not entirely sure because it was Dom's, but I have to say it’s great.”
“Fucking stupid hobbits,” swore Karl eloquently.
He couldn't believe that the Dom had given Elijah drugs and then just let him wander the streets.
“Elijah what is Dom's mobile number? I need to know what you have taken,” he said grabbing Elijah's arm.
“Mobile schmobile” giggled Elijah promptly falling on the floor.
As he fell, his mobile tumbled out of his back pocket and Karl reached over and grabbed it scrolling through to find Dom's number.
“Karl you know I like you, man?”
“I like you too Elijah,” said Karl absently as he decided the number listed as English Hobbit was most likely to be Dom's.
Karl listened as it was answered immediately.
“Fuck it Elijah, where are you?” came Dom's anxious voice down the line.
“Elijah's at my place Dom, and he is completely drug fucked. You want to tell me what the hell is going on?”
“Karl? What is he doing there?”
Karl was temporarily unable to answer as he found himself with a lap full of Elijah who was kissing him somewhat messily on the lips.
“Karl, are you there?”
He disentangled himself from Elijah, pushing him off his lap and back onto the couch.
“Karl man I'm sorry, he grabbed a tab and took it before I could stop him, then he kind of escaped,” said Dom sounding very worried.
“Escaped? Fuck Dom, you guys are gonna have to come and get him. He is bouncing off the walls and I got a five o'clock call tomorrow.”
Karl completely neglected to mention the kiss and the fact that he needed to get Elijah out of the house before things went any further.
Karl gave him directions and Dom promised to be there in five minutes.
Karl looked over at Elijah who was bouncing in his seat.
“Dom's coming to get you Elijah. What were you thinking taking drugs?”
“Well they wouldn't give me any, they keep saying I'm too young.”
As he spoke, Elijah moved closer to Karl's side of the couch and Karl found himself backing away from the approaching mass of energetic hobbit.
“Well I just think they’re trying to look out for you, what with you being the youngest.”
“I'm old enough to do this aren't I?”
Elijah moved quickly and straddled Karl's lap, leaning forward to kiss him again. He was obviously more serious about this kiss and he pushed his lips hard against Karl's, his tongue insistently pressing against his teeth till he yielded allowing Elijah to slide in deep. Karl closed his eyes and tasted cigarettes and peppermint as Elijah explored his mouth. He knew it was wrong but he couldn’t make himself stop; he was growing hard. Finally despite his growing desire he came to his senses and pushed Elijah back to break the kiss.
“No Elijah this isn't right,” Karl said breathing hard.
“Not right 'cos it’s me?” asked Elijah looking upset.
“Not right cause it’s not you, it's the drugs,” said Karl quietly lifting Elijah off his lap.
Elijah's reply was cut off by a knock on the door.
“Come on Elijah it must be the hobbit retrieval squad.”
“I don't want to go with them, I need to stay here with you,” Elijah's tone was suddenly very serious.
Karl shook his head trying to clear the desire from his brain and he stared at Elijah who had a slightly desperate look in his eyes. Then he grabbed Elijah's wrist and started to pull him out of the living room as the younger man struggled in Karl's firm grip.
“I want to stay here,” he wailed as Karl towed him along the hallway toward the front door.
“Well people in hell want iced water and they ain't getting it either,” Karl said trying to regain some measure of control over the situation.
Pulling open the door with one hand, he held Elijah at arms length, since he had started to kick at Karl's ankles. He looked out and found Dom, Billy and Orlando standing on his doorstep. They at least had the good grace to look shamefaced about what had happened. Silently Karl pushed Elijah out the door into Dom and Billy's hands and they started the task of pulling a loudly protesting Elijah down the path toward the car.
Orlando remained on the doorstep looking at Karl who stared back at him.
“Why did he come here Karl? I didn't think you guys were particularly close friends,” asked Orlando curiously.
“God only knows. His eyes are spinning round in his head, who knows why he was doing anything,” said Karl evenly, his eyes indicating to Orlando that he wasn't in the mood to discuss this any further.
Orlando raised one eyebrow at him, slid his hands into his pockets and walked slowly down toward the car containing the hobbits.
Karl closed the door and took himself back to bed, where he lay awake in the dark till his alarm went off.