Merry on Amon Hen
Merry huddled under the
log next to Pippin. He’d never been so terrified - not even when the
Ringwraiths attacked them on Weathertop or when he saw his first orcs
in Moria. The army of uruk-hai seemed to have come out of nowhere and
there were more of them than he could count. Although they had the
knives Galadriel had given them, he and Pippin knew they were no match
for these enemies. So they had dashed into this hiding place and drawn
their elven cloaks about them for more camouflage.
Merry was torn, though. He knew he couldn’t
do much against an uruk-hai, but what about their companions? Surely
the Men, and the Elf and Dwarf would be fighting. Shouldn’t he try to
help? And Frodo - maybe he and Pippin should keep trying to find him.
They couldn’t let him fall victim to these monsters. That would make
everything they’d gone through, especially Gandalf’s loss, for nothing.
The sound of running feet drove the
half-formed thought from his mind. He ducked down, but when the
footsteps skidded to a sudden stop he cautiously raised his head just
enough to see. A little ways across from him he saw Frodo pressed
against a tree, one hand to his chest, trying to catch his breath.
Frodo shut his eyes for a moment and Merry’s heart ached for him. His
cousin shouldn’t have to bear such a burden and yet he did so with
little complaint, understanding what was at stake.
Pippin stirred next to him. “It’s Frodo,”
he whispered. “Frodo!” they called in cautiously soft voices, “Here!
Come hide here with us!”
Frodo seemed not to focus for a moment.
Then he looked straight at them and shook his head. “No,” he mouthed
and shook his head. Merry’s breath froze at the look in Frodo’s eyes, a
combination of fear, desperation and determination. In that instant
Merry knew what Frodo planned, and Frodo, seeing his face, knew that
Pippin tugged on Merry’s sleeve. “What’s he doing?” he asked, confused.
“Leaving,” Merry answered grimly. They would
never know what had happened in the woods that day, but Frodo had made
up his mind and Merry could see that there would be no changing it.
Pippin, however, as usual, acted with his heart instead of his head.
“No!” he cried, leaping from their hiding place. Merry jumped up to
pull him back, but too late. A group of uruk-hai spotted them and
headed toward them.
Merry shot once last quick glance at his
beloved cousin. “Run!!” he ordered, then began to wave his arms and
shout at the uruk-hai. Pippin immediately caught on and joined him in
leading them away from Frodo.
“It’s working!” Pippin exclaimed. “I know,” Merry answered, “Run!”
The two young Hobbits dodged trees, running
for their lives, hearing the pounding feet and yells of the pursuing
enemies. They went so fast that before they knew it they’d run into
another group. Merry skidded to a stop, Pippin clutching at his arm.
They were surrounded.
Back to back, Merry and Pippin drew their
knives. They had no chance, but they were going to fight to the end.
One of the monsters charged and then -- there came Boromir! He
intercepted the blow meant for them and slew the uruk-hai in one swipe.
That seemed to galvanize the others. They came in a flood and Boromir
met them with equal fury. Encouraged, the two Hobbits used their knives
as he had taught them. Merry was startled by a sudden sound amidst the
battle and looked around to see Boromir blowing on the horn that had
always hung at his belt. He ran a little ways, trying to find a better
place, Merry and Pippin staying close. Twice more he cleared an area
around them and twice more the Horn of Gondor sounded. If they could
just hold on a little longer, Merry thought desperately, surely the
others would come.
Then it happened. Boromir jerked abruptly
backwards, a large black arrow jutting from his chest. He stumbled, but
still blocked another blow. Stunned, Merry and Pippin dropped their
knives and started towards the wounded warrior. Before they could reach
him another arrow slammed into him. Still he refused to give up and
killed two more of those surrounding them. When the third arrow hit, he
finally fell to his knees.
“No!” cried Merry and Pippin with one
voice. Too late, they grabbed their knives again. Before they could
strike even one blow, they were each grabbed by an uruk-hai. Struggling
to free himself, the last thing Merry saw was Boromir trying to rise,
looking toward them in despair. Then the uruk-hai clouted him on the
head and Merry knew no more.