An Unhappy Birthday

by Dandy

SR Sept 22

My hand ached. Clutching the quill tightly in the other hand I fumbled through the next page. Trying to make meticulous legible strokes. The ache in the chill autumn air cut through me like a knife and lay resting in my hand. But I could not stop. The words rushed out of me through the median of pen and ink. I stopped only long enough to rub life back into the ache. One more word and then another. The pen moved across the page and the words appeared. Half the time I didn't know what I was writing just the simple movement as time sped by.

I stopped again, just long enough to read again the words on the paper and to close my eyes against the color of the ink. Dipping the pen into the ink I sent it again scratching across the paper. Black. Orc's blood was black. I remember the strokes that were taken against them in Moria, in Mordor. My hands began to shake as if I were sick and I thrust them between my legs to still their movement. The door opened as I sat in the chair.

"Happy fifty-second birthday Mr Frodo" Came the words from behind my back. "You should get some sleep before the doings tomorrow."

"Thank you Sam." I stilled the shaking of my voice, "Is it after midnight already?"

"Yes sir, if'en your hand is bothering it perhaps I could rub some of the Old Gaffer's lin-a-mint into it or perhaps.." His words were cut off by the shaking of my head. It would not help. Neither would the aloe he had tried, nor the lavender. "No Sam." I shook my head again. "It will pass.." I hoped.

"Just let me finish this page and I will be finished for the night.." He nodded and shut the door. Sam and I both knew I was lieing.. I would grasp the pen and wield it against the pain, and against the dark.

And my hand ached. No actually, not my hand.
Just the one finger.
The missing one.
The one that felt more alive then the rest of me.