What Really Happened At Amon Hen

by Primula

Frodo: Boromir, what are you doing out here in the woods? Are you following me?

Boromir: None of us should wander alone, you know. But it is so boring, waiting to cross the river....What do would you say to a little game?

Frodo: (warily) A game?

Boromir: Nothing serious. Just to pass the time - I brought some games along in my pack, and I even have a couple I borrowed from Merry and Pippin, but they're all for at least two people. What do you say? I'm from Gondor, so you don't have to worry about me cheating or anything.

Frodo: (relaxing) Well...sure, I guess there's no harm in it. Not tic-tac-toe, though. I had enough of that on the boat ride with Sam.

Boromir: What do you want to play? I have my pocket checkers set with me...we can use this stump for a table...(brushes off stump and sets up a small checkers set)

Frodo: Sure. (pause, considering the checkers) How about if we... well, bet a little something? Just to make it more interesting?

Boromir: Bet? For keeps? (guarded) What would I have that you would even want?

Frodo: Well, I always did think that shield of yours would make a great sled. And the horn is kind of fun, too. Though, all I have is pretty commonplace stuff. You wouldn't want anything of mine I'm sure. I don't have anything that's very interesting after all.

Boromir: (eyes widening) And we could keep whatever we win?

Frodo: It would only be fair. What do you think?

Boromir: (sweating, forcedly casual) Oh, of course. Ahem, um...Just in fun and all that...heh heh.

Frodo: (cheerfully) Okay. You can have black, I'll take red.

(time passes.)

Boromir: (pointing) Hey, look over there! What's that?

(as Frodo looks away, Boromir rapidly crowns several of his own pieces)

Frodo: What? I didn't see anything.

Boromir: Oh, it was just a bird, I guess. Sorry. Your move.

Frodo: (examining board) I didn't realize you had so many kings. Oh well...

( a short number of moves later)

Boromir: I win!

Frodo: Yes, you did...All right. Hmmm. Here, you can have my elven brooch. I can use this safety pin instead.

Boromir: Thank you. You're a good sport. (digging into his pack) How about a round of croquet? Very popular in Gondor, so I have a set with me at all times. If you unbend a wicket you can use it for roasting hot dogs too.

Frodo: You are full of surprises! All right.

(time passes...we see Boromir nudge the balls with his foot several times. When Frodo isn't looking, he relocates the wickets.)

Boromir: I win again! Not your day, I guess.

Frodo: (chuckling) You're right! I suppose I'm in need of practice. Here's my cloak. It goes with the brooch anyway. (pause) Play again?

Boromir: (trembling) Uh...Sure!

Frodo: I think croquet is beyond me - what else do you have?

Boromir: Ever played Battleship?

Frodo: I haven't played that since I was a lad - you have a set with you? Wonderful! I get the blue one. I used to play this with Bilbo, you know, but then we lost all the little pegs.

(time passes....Boromir can be seen to surreptitiously rearrange his little ships from time to time He casually gets up and stretches to get a peek at Frodo's board.)

Boromir: B-9.

Frodo: (throwing up his hands in mock dismay) Hit! And sunk. And that was my last ship too. You've won again! I don't know how you do it! Well, here - I suppose you can have the light that Galadriel gave me. It's bright enough around here - I doubt I'll need it anyway. And fair's fair.

Boromir: (carefully) You seem to be having bad luck. I don't want to take advantage of you, but... (pause - trying not to be too eager) do you want to play again?

Frodo: Certainly! Maybe my luck will change! You're a capital fellow to even suggest it. How about pin-the-tail-on-the-donkey? I still have that blindfold from Lothlorien in my pocket.

Boromir: (brightening) Oh, that would be just fine! Best two out of three?

(time passes - we see Boromir peeking out from under his blindfold. When Frodo's turn comes, he quietly moves the picture to one side.)

Boromir: I hate to say it, but I've won again.

Frodo: (taking off blindfold and laughing) Oh dear, his tail definitely does not go there! All right. Um...(considering) here, you can have Sting. It glows, you know. Very handy. You can even use it to trim your nails.

(This continues as the afternoon whiles away. They engage in rounds of thumb-wrestling, tiddly-winks, twister, marbles, and yahtzee. We see Boromir consistently cheating. Frodo loses his mithril coat, his share of the food, his gameboy, the rights to Sam as a servant and the real deed to Bag End, which he had kept hidden against a successful return to the Shire.)

Frodo: We probably should stop now.

Boromir: (trying not to beg) Oh, please, just one more game?

Frodo: Well...

Boromir : Just one more. I'm so close to getting...I mean you're so close to winning for a change.

Frodo: (scuffing his feet in the loam self-consciously) Well...all I have left is the Ring.

Boromir: I am a man of honor. I'll cut you a fair deal. If you win this one, I'll give you everything you've lost back again. Everything! And if you lose, all I'll get is one little, small, trifling Ring. And consider how many times you've lost already - all the statistics are in your favor. Here, I even have this scientific study proving it (pulls out newspaper from pocket) see? Right there in black and white. The odds are in your favor. It's a mathematical fact.

Frodo: (considering) I get everything back? Even Sam and Bag End? (tears welling up) What would I do without a friend like you? You are so generous!

Boromir: (trying to not be too eager) Then it's a deal?

Frodo: Done. (brightly, reaching into his own pack) Monopoly?

Boromir: Eh...isn't that kind of long?

Frodo: You said you were only doing this to pass the time, right? This passes more time than any game I know.

Boromir: (reluctantly, trying to be cheerful) I suppose you're right, as usual.

(Much time passes as they hunch over the board. Boromir gets progressively more fidgety, pulling at his collar, tapping his fingers on his sword, sweating. )

Frodo: (suddenly waving monopoly money in the air) I win! I get everything back!

Boromir: (watches, stunned, as Frodo quickly gathers up his pile of lost items.) Wait...

Frodo: Ha, ha. Sucker. (vanishes)

Boromir: (examining piles of monopoly money) Wait! Hey!... You cheated! You took extra money out of the bank! You're not the winner - I am!! I won fair and square... it could be mine! It should be mine! And ...hey! My wallet is gone too! Thief! Baggins! Thief!