Lord of the Coffee: Special Brew for Faramir
With a brief exerpt from "The Council of Elground in Rivendell Perk":
Boromacha stood and spoke out: "Give me leave
to speak of Gondaroma, Master Elground! Say not that our beans are
stale, or that our ground is poor. Those in the West are full of praise
for our deeds, but offer only little plates of cookies when we come to
tea! We are the filter of the East! What freedom and peace your people
enjoy is purchased with our coffee!!
"But I did not come to Rivendell Perk to ask
for tea and cake. The wisdom of Lord Elground is in beans, not
confections. I have come to seek the unraveling of hard words. On the
eve of our last fight, a dream came to my brother Faramocha; oft it
came to him, until we cut back on his coffee-intake. And once, in a
caffeine-haze, it came to me, also. The Eastern sky grew dark, but in
the West a pale light lingered. I heard a voice, remote but clear, and
it seemed to say:
"Seek for the beans that were broken:
In Imladrip it brews.
There shall be councils taken
In caffeine-induced muse.
There shall be shown a token
That doom is on the land,
For Isillydur's Bane shall waken
And the half-caff forth shall stand."
Boromocha continued his speech, "I also
dreamed that I was going to school, but that I had forgotten all my
clothes, and noone seemed to notice..."
...and now, we find ourselves in Isillyin, Under the Dark Counter of Mordonut....
Faramocha, Second Fiddle of Middle-girth
The half-caffs settled down in the dry fern
after their meal, trying to catch a few winks before Smeagolatte
returned and began to snore. The coffee they had consumed made them
restless, though, so they lay awake, staring at the leaves of the bay
tree swaying over their heads.
Sanka heard a twig snap, and he thought, Here
comes Gulp’um now, the sneak! But instead of the withered coffeehound,
four Men in brown and green suits with narrow lapels and pinstripes
came tramping through the fern, with large rubberband launchers loaded
and aimed at the helpless half-caffs.
" ’ere they are, cap’n," said the first one. "Right where you thought we’d find ‘em!"
"Now we shall see what manner of creatures they are, and learn what they know," added the second Man, coughing unpleasantly.
"Well, they aren’t elves, that’s for sure,"
announced the third Man, who carried a huge slingshot and had two
bandoleers crossing his chest, loaded with potatoes. "Captain
Faramocha, I think we have some circus escapees on our hands!"
The fourth Man stepped toward the half-caffs,
who had leapt to their feet and drawn their small swords when the Men
had appeared. He was not unhandsome, and NescaFrodo was astonished to
see in him a close resemblance to Boromocha. He was clad in brown and
green, like his men but his trousers were tightly fitted, and carried a
violin case instead of a rubberband launcher. He was chewing on a
matchstick. He looked down at the half-caffs and cracked his knuckles
"Spill it, shorty. Who are you and what are
you doing in Isillyin? Let me see your passports!" said Faramocha
around his matchstick.
"We don’t have any," responded Sanka shakily. One of the men had a slingshot aimed right at his head.
"This is our turf, savvy? We don’t cotton to
folks traipsin’ around these parts without asking permission first,
see? If you ain’t one of us, you are one of them, savvy? What do you
take in your coffee?"
NescaFrodo and Sanka looked at each other in
alarm. What kind of madmen had they found in the wild this time? "What
does ‘savvy’ mean?" asked NescaFrodo, trying to buy time.
"Um," Faramocha looked uncertain for a
moment, then he frowned and bit his matchstick in two, spitting out the
pieces. "Never you mind! I’ll ask the questions here!" he grabbed
NescaFrodo by his lapels and picked him up.
"What… what do you want?" asked the terrified half-caff.
"Cream or Sugar?" the man demanded. When NescaFrodo did not respond, he shook him.
"Both!" cried NescaFrodo. The Man set him down gently.
"Well, why didn’t you say so?" He turned to
his men and said, "Three javas please, one grande, all with with cream
and sugar. And bring us some of those cranberry and walnut scones!"
They sat down together and drank coffee as
the sun rose to zenith. NescaFrodo and Sanka relaxed as they realized
that the man must be the brother that Boromocha had referred to back at
the Council, the one who had the funny dreams. They watched him as he
sat happily drinking his coffee, then glanced at each other askance as
he opened the coffee pot and began to rub the damp coffeegrounds into
his hair. Acting casual, they inched away from him.
Ainseborn came up to the man and said, "Captain Faramocha, the enemy approaches. Our ambush is ready to spring, on your word."
"Right-o! Let’s get crackin’!" the man jumped
up and began taking off his suit. "Wardrobe!" he called, and a
half-dozen people dashed out of the bushes and helped him change from
‘woodland-gangster’ to ‘commando-joe’, still with the tight-fitted
camouflage pants. Carefully setting down the violin case, Faramocha
removed a SuperSoaker 3000, filled with cold-pressed espresso, with
double over- and under-hand spudgrenade launcher and coffeebean
slingshot. The half-caffs watched in confused wonder as the men hurried
away, leaving Damsinrod and Marblelung to guard them.
They peeked through the baytrees and watched
as the forces of Good laid a clever ambush for the forces of
Naughtiness and cleaned their clocks with ruthless application of
guerrilla tactics and sophomoric locker room hijinks. The Rangers of
Gondaroma soon sent the legions of Sour’on packing, dropping their
coffeemugs and running for their lives, those who weren’t fatally
rubberbanded or pummeled to death with potato-pellets.
Faramocha soon returned, flushed with triumph
and caffine. He ordered the troops to form a semi-circle while he
questioned the half-caffs.
"Who are you, strangers here?"
"We are half-caffs from the Shire. NescaFrodo Teabaggins in my name, and this is Sanka, my…"
"Body guard? Punching bag? Stunt double?"
"I am his waiter!" replied Sanka with some heat.
"So. What are you doing in Isillyin… and
don’t tell me a pack of lies about you being on a quest to destroy some
ancient evil artifact, with a twisted and schizoid vagabond as your
guide. I have heard that one a hundred times!"
"Um, well…" said NescaFrodo, at a loss, "It’s funny you should say that…"
"Have you seen my brother?" interrupted
Faramocha suddenly. "He is tall, broad-shouldered, kinda arrogant,
wears a dress-thingy and swings around a sword. He went missing a few
months ago. I have been looking for him."
"I know Lord Boromocha, if that is who you mean. We parted company at Perk Galen, above the Rauros Waterslide."
"Would it grieve you to know that he is dead?"
NescaFrodo was shocked. "I would grieve
indeed! He owes me 10 gold pieces! But dead, how? He was alive and
kicking when I departed, and he lives still for all I know, tho surely
there are many perils in this world."
"There are, and treachery is not the least!"
Faramocha showed them something he had kept hidden. "This is the Kazoo
of Gondaroma. It has been in my family for many generations. It is
always borne by the eldest son of the Breward of Gondaroma. A few
nights ago, I found this in Boromocha’s room. Apparently he forgot to
take it with him. He always was a forgetful git." He tossed the kazoo
aside, his eyes becoming dreamy as he said in a loud voice,
O Boromocha, whither did thou goest? Whence shalt thou returnest?
How dost thou conjugate in this courtly speecheth?
Faramocha turned his sad eyes to the
half-caffs. "I would guess you could put some answer to my riddles,
NescaFrodo. But not here and not now. We must go to a secret place
nearby, and play canasta and mahjongg until it is safe to travel in the
land again. And I must decide what is best to do with you."
"You could just let us go," suggested NescaFrodo lightly, not really wanting to take the time to dally with these strange men.
Faramocha thought about it for a few moments.
"You’re right! I could let you go… but I am not going to. Guards!
Blindfold these guests and put up the piñatas. It is time to go."
And they walked through the evergreen woods
of Isillyin, were the birds warbled and the hyenas giggled and all was
still and had an air of brooding patience, not unlike a waiting room in
a dentist’s office.
NescaFrodo walked forward blindly. He held
Sanka’s hand as they journeyed, guided by the Men. "This Faramocha is
totally insane, Sanka," murmured NescaFrodo in his friend’s ear.
Sanka squeezed NescaFrodo’s hand. "I would be crazy, too, if my pants were that tight!"