Markings in the Snow
After the third instance, Boromir asked testily, “What?”
“Nothing,” Pippin wiped the smile from his face.
“You are snickering behind my back and I would know why.”
“Nothing, honestly, Boromir.”
The big man glared then turned back to the trail. In just the space of
a breath, he heard it again and quickly turned, as much as the snows of
Caradhras allowed quick turns. “I heard you.” He noted Merry’s mouth
“Nothing, Boromir.” Pippin looked at his feet.
“Keep moving, Boromir,” Aragorn chided the Man. “This snow falls heavy;
we have not time for stops, whatever the reason.” At this, he too
glared at Pippin.
The Hobbit shuffled but said nothing. The Nine Walkers continued to trudge along.
Another giggle and now, the Elf looked quizzical. “What tickles you so, Pippin?”
The Hobbit gave a guilty look at the Elf and put his head down, as if totally concentrating on the path they walked.
“Lack of food,” Gimli snorted. “It’s been a bit of awhile since they ate.”
“Sleep, perhaps,” Frodo said unconvinced.
“Out with it, laddie,” the Dwarf growled, “before Boromir takes off
your head.” Looking sideways at the Man from Gondor, he whispered, “I
wouldn’t much blame him.”
“Peregrin Took, what are you about? We have more important things than snickering Hobbits to worry about!”
“Nothing,” Pippin’s voice shook. “I was just watching you all walking and it… it was funny.”
“What?” Aragorn said, more gently than Boromir.
“Well, for instance, Gimli. See his tracks in the snow? They remind
me of a double plow – they just go through the snow - nothing showing
he picked up his feet - just a like a plow. And then, their’s yours –
they sink a bit, but not all the way down. Ours are easy to see; being
that we’re not very heavy and such, we don’t sink far.”
Boromir began to smile. Legolas put his hand on the Man’s shoulder and smirked.
“Boromir now,” the Hobbit blushed, “His sink – really sink down
deep. And it seemed funny, as Legolas,” at this the Elf blanched,
“doesn’t even seem to touch the snow. Look! He’s on top of it, whereas
Boromir is sunk up to his knees.”
The Elf began to laugh. Gimli snorted and Boromir – well, Boromir
looked embarrassed. At last, the Man looked at himself and the Elf and
promptly fell into the snow. “I’ll wager the Elf can’t do this!” His
arms and legs swept over the snow. He picked himself up, careful not to
disturb his artwork. “There!” he pointed proudly, “A Balrog with
At this, the Elf and Gandalf blanched; the rest of the company roared.
“He has you there, Legolas,” Sam giggled. “If you leave no foot tracks, you can’t leave Snow Balrogs!”
The Elf shook his head and continued onward, as did the Man from
Gondor. After a moment, Boromir slung his arm over Legolas’ shoulder.
“Do not be concerned. I think walking on the snow is much better. Wish
A/N – This story came about for two reasons – besides the prompt!
Yesterday, playing with my grandbaby in the snow, I had to giggle
because I was sinking pretty heavily in the over two feet of the white
stuff. The baby, she’s two and a half now, sunk also, but not nearly as
deep as I. It reminded me of another instance in the snow.
I was with Haldirriel, who calls herself The Elf, on a glacier in
New Zealand. As we walked, the Elf began to laugh; in fact, she was in
hysterics. “Look!” she shouted to me. “The Elf does not sink; Men do!”
Boromir, in this tale, is more magnanimous. I haven’t forgiven my friend yet! (Well, yes, I have!)