Letters from Faramir
XI. From Pippin, regarding Wargs
The Halfling has been speaking for well over an hour now, telling me of
your journey towards home. You did no less than I would expect when you
joined the Fellowship and my heart is proud and sore for it led you
down paths I would not have you trod. I am grateful to this little one
for befriending you. It seems mayhap, he was the only one who did,
though Frodo, bless his heart, said you were his friend.
Hullo, Boromir –
It’s Pippin again. Your brother is kind and has given me tea and cakes
to refresh myself and I am ready to begin again. Frodo and Sam must
have taught him a little something of a Hobbit’s needs.
As for friends, Boromir earned many before our time together ended –
not the least was my friendship, though I wish somehow that friendship
could have saved him.
We never rested after we passed the snowdrift on our way off Caradhras.
Gandalf led us now southwards. At last, he let us rest. After a very
small meal, he started to speak of where we would go next. Aragorn was
upset that he had led us up the mountain, but we are alive and that is
a good thing. Gandalf has called a council – which seems a little silly
– we are all here. But this is also nice. It almost seems as if Gandalf
wants to hear our thoughts, too. I haven’t much to say. I don’t even
know which way is which, except that West is home.
Rivendell – Gandalf says we might return there. Ah, that would be so
good. I can tell Sam and Merry like that idea too. All the food we
could want, and warmth, and songs, and pipeweed. What’s wrong with
Frodo? Wouldn’t he like to see Bilbo again? But Gandalf says evil will
come to Rivendell soon if we don’t press on and Rivendell itself might
fall. That would be terrible. Such a beautiful place and such wonderful
songs. No, we can’t let anything happen to Rivendell.
The mines of Moria – my skin crawls as Gandalf speaks of that place. I
don’t rightly know why, but I have vague memories of it being a bad
place. Why would Gandalf lead us there? If the looks of the others tell
their thoughts, they don’t want to go there either. We must think of
some other way. I turn towards Boromir – he looks at me and smiles -
but he is troubled too. I remember he said he would protect me. He
wants to go south to the Fords of Isen or even further south than that.
He said this way was clear on his journey from Gondor to Rivendell, but
Gandalf is uneasy. He almost chides Boromir for not listening at
Elrond’s council. Of course, I don’t know what went on there, only the
little that Frodo told us, but I guess another wizard has been turned
by the Enemy and he lives too close for us to go that way.
Boromir fears Moria is a trap. I think that what happened on Caradhras
has made him angry for his words to Gandalf are harsh to my ears. He
was very much afraid that we would all die. Is that why he’s angry or
is he angry that no one asked his opinion before we almost all got
killed there? And Gandalf snaps back at him. No one but Gimli wants to
follow Gandalf to Moria and poor Frodo just wants to rest. Tomorrow
will be the better time for a decision – in the light of day, he says,
and away from this howling wind.
Aragorn jumps to his feet. The hair on the back of my neck stands on
end and I am terrified. It’s not the wind – it’s wolves. No, more than
wolves – it is WARGS! I remember Bilbo’s story of the Wargs driving
them up the trees, howling and waiting for Bilbo and the Dwarves to
fall down to eat them. I thought they were just legend as Moria was or
Bilbo’s trolls turned to stone at Trollshaws. But I have now seen the
stone trolls and I now hear the Wargs. They are not legends. I move
closer to Boromir.
We climb a short hill, light a fire and I am told to sleep. How can I
sleep? I move near where Boromir sits. He smiles at me and lightly
tosses his sword around and around in his hand. His face is set and I
am a little less afraid. I wish I had taken Elrond’s advice. I feel so
useless. Where is the courageous Took blood? Sam seems to think we’ll
be all right. And he definitely thinks that no Warg can harm Gandalf. I
don’t know. I finally fall asleep through my fear, but awake to a shout.
What is that horrible noise? Boromir jumps to his feet. There is a huge
animal looking at us. I have never seen anything so big. Its eyes glow
and its teeth - it has horrible fangs hanging down - and the sound
coming from its throat is hideous. I run to Boromir's side. He tells me
quietly to draw my sword, but not to fear. My heart is racing and I can
do naught but fear. This is a servant of the Enemy - my first look at
such a one. As terrifying to me as one of the Black Riders. But there
is only one - and Gandalf is not afraid. He looks so tall and fierce.
He shouts a command at it, but it only howls in defiance and springs
forward. ‘Look out Gandalf!’ An arrow flies into its throat and it is
dead. Legolas cannot seem to miss what he marks. The eyes in the dark
all seem to vanish. I am shaking and move even closer to Boromir. He
puts his hand on my shoulder and says I did well. I didn't do well. I
was terrified, but he tells me I did not get in the way, I did not
panic, and I kept my head. I cannot go back to sleep now. The night
seems to last forever and I want to see the morning come and quickly!
More Wargs suddenly come forward - there seems to be no end to them.
All those dreadful eyes looking at us. The screams and howls are all
around us. More wood is thrown on the fire - but this will not stop
them. I move towards Boromir and so does Merry. Our swords are drawn -
how I wish we had spent more time practicing with Boromir instead of
playing. All is lost. We won't survive this night. They come. Aragorn
and Boromir hack with their swords and Legolas flies arrow after arrow.
Gimli swings his arms back and forth and there always seems to be a
warg split in two by his mighty axe. Gandalf wields his staff and it
shines brightly as it destroys warg after warg. One has gotten past
Boromir - I close my eyes and strike out. Boromir shouts, 'good work,'
and I open my eyes and find one of the dreadful beasts dead at my feet.
I know I did nothing to harm this beast – Boromir has saved me again.
Another comes towards us and Merry and I both try to defend ourselves,
but it is useless. Again, Gimli steps in and makes short work of that
one. Now Gandalf strikes forward and as he moves he appears to be
growing larger. I rub my eyes and yes, it is true, he is growing
larger. He grabs a large burning branch from the fire and wields it
about his head, yelling something in Elvish, I think, as he throws the
branch into the air. Sparks fly all over – I hide under my cloak. The
trees have caught on fire. Everything is white and brilliant – I can
hardly see. The Wargs turn and run. At last, they are all dead or have
I fall to the ground. My arms shake and I can't see for the tears in my
eyes. My throat is dry and sore. I must have been screaming, but I
don't remember it. Boromir comes to my side. He looks with fear and
sorrow at me. 'Ah, my little one, you have been hurt,' he says. I laugh
in spite of the tears. His concern for me brings more tears to my eyes.
I quickly tell him I'm not hurt, just stunned and frightened and very
glad it is all over with. 'It is all over with?' I ask. Thankfully, he
Gandalf says we must now go through Moria and no one questions this.
Boromir says we must start out as soon as dawn comes - it will be good
to see the dawn and to feel that perhaps there is something right in
the world. I am hungry and that is good. In the battle, I never thought
I would eat again.