The River was the best way for them to
travel and avoid any pursuit, but it was fraught with its own perils
also. Great slime-ridden rocks rose up all frothing from the deep,
white foam surging around them in endless striving. Other rocks
be seen below the clear waters, vague shapes, to Sam's mind, they
threatened to rip out the bottoms of their boats. Icy, stony
hidden away, malicious. The waters of the Anduin were swift and deep,
deeper than the cold, running fears of all the world it seemed to Sam.
No, he did not care for boats.
Another September Already
went the silver axe, neatly cleaving the roast once again. The meat
dripped with juices, wafted its aroma among the bushy beards that
eagerly gathered around. Another thick slice fell from the bone to the
waiting golden plate, another thick-handled foaming tankard of ale was
pulled to go with it.
"Ah! What a fine feast, and what a fine day for it!" said Gloin
happily. "My son has once more brought us great honor, and thankful we
are for the peace we enjoy as well. To Gimli!"
"To Gimli!" chorused the others. "May his beard ever grow longer!"
Heaped and Overflowing
Merry and Pippin shook their heads at the
many-sized flock of children
gathered around Rosie at this reunion. There were more every year, it
seemed, with no end in sight. The tables had been set and all was
ready, but they were still missing one person. It was to the children's
delight when Sam finally entered the room, kneeling and opening his
arms. They all ran to fill them.
"Hullo pumpkin! Hullo sweetie-pie! How's my dumpling? My honey? The
apple of my eye? I love you too, sugar-plum, and why there's my little half-pint!"
"I'm hungry." said Pippin.
Had it really been another year? Bilbo leaned upon the hobbit-height
balustrade, gazing over peaceful Rivendell.
How many years, since
he had gone down that familiar path, jumping the gap in the
hedge? How old would Frodo be this September? He shook his head
at his own thoughts; he couldn't even keep track of his own age
sometimes much less someone else's.
He had no birthday
presents for the Elves but had promised a new song to hear, a
translation he'd set to rhyme. A hobbit birthday song... Maybe
someday they could sing a birthday song together, one last time...