Summary: Orlando really wants to see Viggo out of those clothes.
Pre-reveal Notes: Humor, I hope.
Disclaimer: This is a non-profit, non-commercial work of fiction using the names and likenesses of real individuals. This fictional story is not intended to imply that the events herein actually occurred, or that the attitudes or behaviors described are engaged in or condoned by the real persons whose names are used without permission.
Orlando really wants to see Viggo out of those clothes. He has done almost since the moment he met the man.
Though he's hard pressed to choose precisely which clothes he'd most like to see him out of.
The dark violet pin-striped slacks, for instance, grate on Orlando horribly. They come so close to looking smart, if a bit outre in colour. But Viggo hasn't had them tailored, so the cuffs slap loose and sloppy about his ankles. Not to mention that he never wears them with anything that matches them.
Viggo's button-up shirts are invariably splotched with unfortunate hues, or patterned in paisley or fleur-de-lys or (for Christ's sake) reindeer. All his jeans are frayed, worn threadbare at the knees if they have knees at all - none of them fashionably ripped, but stretched and torn at the stress points as if Viggo's been wearing them for years and years. Which is perfectly likely, knowing him.
As for the turquoise stirrup pants... well, they're turquoise bloody stirrup pants, aren't they? No secret why those have to go. And all his self-decorated t-shirts, ufgh. Those don't even bear thinking about.
"You all right?" asks Viggo. Though he asks it in Sindarin, so it's instead something more literally like "Are things good?" It's really the tone that carries the day.
"Things are good," Orlando answers, trying to get his tongue round the Elvish whilst his eyes attempt to escape from his head in protest.
Viggo's wearing those sight-scalding turquoise stirrup pants, along with a sort of... blousy, thin sweatshirt that looks to be circa 1981, patterned with staggered, uneven triangles in white and quite another shade of blue, a sort of cornflower shade that clashes frantically with the turquoise.
His socks, meanwhile, are bright red.
Orlando tears his gaze away and rests it on Liv, a positive balm to the weary eyes in a simple pink t-shirt. He focuses on playing cards and practising Elvish, but at the end of the evening as he volunteers to help Hugo with the washing-up, he finds himself cornered in the kitchen when Viggo slips in.
"Are you sure you're all right?" Viggo asks, though he says it in that dry way of his that implies he already knows your answer, and the truth behind what the words are going to be, as well.
Orlando retreats behind buffing a plate with a tea towel, regardless. "Quite, yeah. Fantastic."
"Just can't help noticing you seem a little preoccupied." Viggo crosses his arms and leans in the doorway. The shirt has, hand to God, elastisized white cuffs straining around the swordplay-corded muscles of Viggo's forearms. There's a similar white band round the waist that rides up a bit. Orlando feels hysteria threaten.
"Well. Sindarin's not quite coming naturally to me just yet."
"Mm. Maybe it'd help if you weren't distracted staring at my clothes."
He's so matter-of-fact that it takes Orlando long ticking seconds to realise he's been sussed. "Oh. Er. Hm."
"Hm," Viggo echoes, wry, noncommital, just watching.
"You must choose them to be looked at, though," Orlando reasons aloud, slowly. "They do tend to be a bit eccentric."
"I wear what makes me feel good," Viggo says. "Some days that means wearing something that looks a certain way. Other days it means wearing comfortable things, no matter how they look."
"Like stirrup pants?" Orlando makes a face involuntarily.
"What should I be wearing? Jeans and a t-shirt?" Viggo sounds consummately amused. "And then the next day, jeans and a t-shirt, and jeans and a t-shirt the day after that."
Orlando fidgets a bit, feeling childish, suddenly, as if he's been caught making fun of the kid next to him in fourth form. He crosses his arms across his chest, suddenly self-conscious of his brown t-shirt and stylish, but ultimately rather pedestrian, blue jeans.
"I'm not knocking you," Viggo says, probably more kindly than Orlando deserves. "If you go into a store and what draws your eye is a plain brown t-shirt and a pair of jeans, and when you wake up in the morning, what you want to wear most of anything in your closet is that shirt and those jeans, then... great. But if you're happy with your clothes, then I don't know why you're so concerned with mine."
"Only you look a bit mad sometimes," Orlando says, trying to keep the sulk out of his voice. "Especially when you're stalking about town half in costume, sword and all. You only get away with that sort of thing cos you're an actor on a job - the biggest job in town - and even then, only just."
Viggo shrugs. "Could be. I think if you're lucky enough to have that kind of freedom, you almost owe it to the world to exercise it. Make things a little crazier out there, push the envelope for all the other eccentric people who don't have the excuse of being a working actor to get them by."
"Ah," Orlando says. "Then the stirrup pants-loving peoples of the world owe you a debt of thanks."
"What I really want is for you to stop making faces when you see me around off the set. Tell the stirrup pants-loving masses to see what they can do about that," Viggo tells him, still calmly smiling away, and then he calls his goodbyes to Hugo and Liv in Quenya, picks up his sword, and heads out into the night.
At his next day off, Orlando goes round to Dominic's house. Dom's jeans are covered in ink scribbles and drawings.
Once they're sat down, Orlando compliments the jeans and then, somehow, finds himself rabbiting on about Viggo's conformity rubbish. "Jeans and a t-shirt, all the time," he says. "It's like a uniform, and we only doodle a bit in the margins."
"I can always tell when you've been talking to Viggo," says Dominic, tucking the tip of his tongue into the corner of his mouth and intently packing in just the right amount of ganja before he rolls up.
"Here, let me have a go, I can help," Orli offers, but Dom swats him away.
"You don't pick out the seeds well enough, you and your great hulking elf hands."
"Maybe you should be buying better stuff, hobbit git."
"I'd like to see you do better."
"I can never get anyone to sell to me," says Orli. "'Spose I don't look dodgy enough."
"Perhaps you need to do a bit more doodling on your wardrobe." It sounds like a double entendre when Dominic says it, but then most things do.
"You have to admit he has a point," Orlando says. "We're actors, we're meant to be creative people - inventive, original -"
"Yeah, I know what creative means, thanks."
"So why aren't we taking more chances? Why're we dressing in this ordinary lot, just the same as everybody else?"
"Speak for yourself," says Dom, "if you could see what I'm kitted out with under this, the word ordinary would not leap to mind."
"Give over, you don't wear underwear. You've mentioned it often enough."
"My point, she is made," Dom says in a dreadful French accent.
"Oh, God. Shut it. You wouldn't be laughing if you really did have to learn lines in another language for this job, you grubby halfling."
"Torog," Dominic replies pertly.
It's not one of the words in Orlando's ready vocabulary; it takes him ages to twig to the meaning and by then Dominic's so smug there's nothing for it but to nick a joint off him and light up.
A haze or so later, Dominic says, "I hope you haven't bought into some kind of ideology around Viggo's ugly clothes. He obviously just rolls out of bed and puts on whatever's to hand, and he gets away with it cos he's so bloody cool and good-looking. If he's giving out like it's anything else, it's just a line, you ought to know that."
"Maybe," says Orlando.
"Mind you, if he's giving you a line... well, if it's me, I'd be taking it."
"You don't fancy him."
"You what. Give me half a chance. I'd get a leg over him and ride him into the sunset," Dominic cackles.
"Chance'd be a fine thing," says Orlando, feeling entirely too stroppy for as much as he's been smoking, and draws another lungful down deep.
It's supposedly an off day for the tall half of the Fellowship - today's all effects shots for the hobbits. Tall Paul stands ready to don elongated versions of their costumes. Orlando, Sean, Viggo, and John are free and clear, and of course Ian's long since swanned off. (Laughing all the way, no doubt, Gandalf's death scenes having gone over very well in the dailies, even with the effects shots still just cut in as drawings from Peter's storyboards.)
So they're not on the schedule per se, but they're still on set anyway, not least because it's a glorious day and the Lothlorien location is gorgeous. Holing up in a trailer or hieing back to Wellington on a day like this would be practically sacreligious.
There's a tiny, tiny chance the hobbit shots will come together quickly and the five of them will need to scramble into character and do one or two short scenes later, but odds are against it.
More likely they might be called upon to do the other side of some of the hobbits' scenes, give them the proper voice and reactions to play against. Most likely, they're cooling their heels and wasting their time. But at least they're wasting it in the air and sunshine.
"It's a job. Another day, another per diem," says Sean philosophically.
"Maybe for you," says Orlando. "Northern bastard. Look at that sky. Every day we're here, there's something I've never seen before."
"Well, you've got another year of it ahead of you," Sean says. He sounds a trifle wistful now, a bit of a reminder: he won't be here the full stretch with the rest of them. "You can hope it stays like that, seeing new things."
"It will," says Viggo, dead cert.
Viggo's out of his sexy Aragorn swag and in a ragged pair of khaki cargo pants with all the many pockets torn off, and a buttoned shirt covered with ugly silkscreened horses backdropped by splotches of sickly green. His trainers glare new and white, with purple stripes.
He has his sword, but without his makeup, he doesn't have the Aragorn eyebrows that lend focus to his face and ground him in the character, in Middle-Earth. Even if the ugly clothes didn't make him Viggo, the blond, near-invisible brows would.
It's not until Orlando notices Viggo looking frankly back at him that he realises he was staring.
Viggo turns and scuffles away through the leaves, thumbs tucked into the belt loops of his cargo pants, hands over the loose threads where the pockets ought to be.
Orlando follows him, pulls even with him, matches his stride. "Dominic thinks you're talking bollocks with your -" and God, but he knows there's a right word to use here, a clever word, but he's not quite quick enough to think of it now when he needs it - "your wardrobe philosophy."
"I'd be interested to know how Dominic ended up forming an opinion on that," says Viggo. "I don't remember talking to him about it. Also, I don't have a wardrobe philosophy."
And going by his baffled smile, he really doesn't; it was Orlando who assumed that if Viggo said it, it had to involve deep thoughts and still waters and so forth.
"Sartorial," Orlando remembers aloud.
"Hm?" Patient. That's one of the things he likes about Viggo, he's in no rush to get to explanations. He's content to let answers come out on their own.
"That's the word I was trying to think of a minute ago." Orlando shakes his head. "That shirt's an eyesore, mate." He adopts his Legolas poise to add, "Hurts my eagle eyes. Even a grotty Man ought to know better."
"One of these days," says Viggo, "you're going to tell me why you're so hung up on what I wear."
Viggo'll wait forever for the answers to come out on their own, Orlando knows, but Orlando's all at once ready to shove them out ready or not and send them on their way to find their fortune.
"Cos I like looking at you," he says.
He's not surprised of course, the bastard; Viggo nods. "Okay."
"And cos I've only ever seen straight men dress themselves that badly."
Viggo smiles at that, slowly, bigger and wider by the second, showing teeth. He looks askance at Orlando, wise and sly, and says, "Well, this is your year for seeing new things."
Ages later, months, years, no time at all - before the premiere, Viggo's palms smooth over Orlando's red and white checked, ruffled shirt.
When he walked into the shop, this shirt was the thing that caught his eye, and when he woke up this morning, it was what he most wanted to wear. It's soft cotton, comfortable, and it makes him feel he's not taking himself too seriously.
Still, "How's it look?" he can't help asking, a bit anxiously.
Viggo kisses him lingeringly and smiles. "Good," he says. "I can't wait to get you out of it."