Bucklebury's LotR Parody

An ongoing role-play parody by various fans on Bucklebury.net

Leaving the Shire
Sam was a heavy sleeper, so he didn't hear the old Gaffer come in his room. He did however feel the ice cold water on his face and he jerked up with a yelp. "I'm up! I'm up!"  His Gaffer snickered as he walked out of the room, leaving Sam dripping wet.
"Guess I should go over to Frodo's now." Sam began to get ready...

Frodo thought Gandalf was unusually jumpy - he kept getting up and peering out of the windows, checking around the corners and looking under the beds.  He paused by the fireplace and listened up the chimney, nearly singeing his beard off in the process.  
 Frodo took a large sip of his tea and set to work on his second apple pie of the morning.  
 "Iffffumptin wonn?" he queried, mumbling around his large mouthful and spewing crumbs.
 "Eh?" said Gandalf, jumping nervously. He twitched. "What was that?"
Frodo swallowed and took another swig of tea.  He picked up another generous forkful, balancing it carefully on the fork as it threatened to topple.  "I said, is something wrong?"  He stuffed in the bite, following it with a succession of similar ones while he waited for a reply.

"I will never eat snacks in the middle of the night in a hobbit hole without more than a tiny staff light ever again!"
 Frodo was confused at the wizard's cryptic statement. 
Gandalf explained that he had inadvertantly ingested some of the jumping beans whilst having said snack sometime after Bilbo had left and Frodo had gone to sleep.  It seems that Bilbo missed a few beans when putting them in the envelope earlier that afternoon and they had ended up in the bowl of nuts. Gandalf's vision not being what it used to be and with the dim light, he did not see them in the bowl.
 [Pipe smoking, ale drinking, even the fumes of wizard work really don't do much of anything to an Istari - ok so if you drink too much Hobbit ale you can set your hat ablaze if you're not careful, but give me a break. You'd drink a little too much if you had taters flying randomly about, loud music, people stealing your fireworks,  and having to sit in chairs that were the proper size for your foot to rest
on. But NEVER!!! let a Wizard eat Jumping Beans...]
Frodo watched as the Wizard continued to peek out the windows and behind the doors muttering random things, but more than once Frodo thought he'd heard him say "they know" or "they'll find out and then I'll really get it" or "too small no hiding there either" and other things along those lines.
Unable to understand what had happened to the sage old man who had arrived the day before, Frodo continued to sit and watch the poor guy as he, himself, worked his way through breakfasts and began to think about what to have for elevenses. He had really tried to save some of second breakfast for Gandalf but he wouldn't sit long enough to eat. The little hobbit could only hope Gandalf got over his strange bout of paranoia soon. 

A knock at the door sent Gandalf running for the pantry in fright. Frodo didn't know whether to laugh or cry, but was grateful for the interruption. He just hoped it wasn't Lobelia - for Gandalf's sake.

Meanwhile, far across the land, a chirpy little ditty can be heard coming from the dreaded barrow downs.And there we see, Tom Bombadill waving off the last unfortunate travelers who happened to get caught by the barrow weights before continuing to rob the

 *toss large dagger, disembodied hand and white robes onto the grass*
 "Merry merry dol derry, oooooh whatsat? "
 *he rumages through a barrow examining it contents to see if he can find anything useful*
 "ooooh this looks like some good olde pipeweed, "
 *sniffs it, rubs it round his teeth* 
 "oooh yes that will come in handy, merry dol derry tra la la!*
 *then he struts off into the distance.*
 "Im off to see the wizard, the wonderful wizard of oz, oops darn, wrong film,"
 *clears throat*
 "I'm off to see the river daughter, goldberry, derry derry dol"

Long ago in a galaxy far away.... (oops, wrong movie!)... in a marsh far away...
"mutter, mutter... fissssh, fissssh, aren't there any nisssce fisssh? Only dead fasssces... maybe not so dead, eh precious? They ate all the nisssce fisssh! We are so hungry, precious, we wonders what rotting orcsses taste like, we do..."
Gollum continued picking his way through the Dead Marshes. To keep his mind off the gnawing hunger in his belly, he sang a little song:
Gollum had a little ring
 little ring
 little ring
 Gollum had a little ring made of precious gold
 And everywhere that Gollum went
 Gollum went
 Gollum went
 Everywhere that Gollum went the ring was sure to go

 "Until the precious jumped like silly beanses into that nasty hobbit's pocketses!"
 "::gollum:: We must hide from the White Face for a little while, precious, tell us a riddle, eh?"
 "Yes, yes!! Good Smeagol always knows a riddle... let's see...
 Why did the orcses cross the road?"
 "Orcses? ::gollum:: ummm to get to the other side?"
 "Wrong! To go to the Goblin' Head Roadkill Cafe for the blue-plate special: Manflesh-a-la-carte ::cackle::wheeze::snicker::"
(**to the tune of Mary had a Little Lamb)

Back at Bag End...

Frodo listened as the knock was repeated and wondered who it could be...?  He glanced over at Gandalf, notsure if he should open it or not.

A very frustrated Quickbeam banged on door. "Oi open up! I'm here for a delivery, I've got a dangerous journey's supply of entwash  here, in ah the name of, ah..."  He rapidly chewed his all-natural pine-resin gum, blew a bubble and generally acted irritated.  "Meriadoc Brandybuck ere, now, I've come a long way to get these ere, so open up will ya!"

Gandalf peeked out of the pantry. Frodo could see a loaf of bread in his hand poised like a sword. "Are they gone? Who was it?"

Sam trudged along to Frodo's, clicking a stick on fences along the way. He was in no hurry to get to Frodo's, as he feared Lobelia might be there already, trying to claim an already taken Bag End. He also happened to pass by the Cotton's home and wanted to maybe be noticed by a certain Hobbit-lass. (which is not entirely true as the Cotton home is no where near Frodo's and is certainly not on the way to BagEnd at all....the part about being noticed by Rosie though was true.

Strange he thought....

He whistled cheerfully as he slowed down once he got nearer to thier home.

Rosie was sweeping the front step and batted her eyelashes when she saw Sam. She invited him in for tea.

Sam blushed a deep Rose-color. He stumbled through his words when finally Rosie came over a dragged him inside. 
 "Well, hello Mrs. Cotton. You look lovely this morning."
"Why thank you Sam. Has Rosie finaly got the courage to invite to tea?" Mrs. Cotton gave a warm smile.
 Sam blushed again and Rosie gave him a smile

A beautiful snowy owl glided to the doorstep of Bag End and rapped on the door with her beak. She had a message tied to her leg addressed to the wisest and yet goofiest of all wizards. Having been blown off course in her search for Dumbledore, she naturally sought to deliver her message to Gandalf instead.

Gandalf was glad the jumping bean paranoia was slowly dissapating, though not soon enough for his liking. 

He opened the letter. It seems that You-Know-Who was back and word was going to Dumbledore who had left for a few days vacation. But obviously while trying to find the Honorable wizard, she got lost or something.... It seemed that Gandalf's knowledge and wisdom is still needed.  You-Know-Who was terrorizing the Muggles...er, hobbits, er... Something needed to be done! But then again the Ring is here and Gandalf needed to deal with that too.
Gandalf decided it was just too much right now and put the letter away and sat down for a cup of tea and lunch waiting for the paranoia to completely wear away before deciding what to do.

Quickbeam was a bit befuddled.......by the time Frodo had opened the door it took Quickbeam so long to say anything........that Frodo didn't realise he was there ......

He remarked "Oh.....isn't that nice Sam has planted another tree!.........and right at the front door, what a thoughtful gardeniner, that Sam!"
 In the background Quickbeam caught a glimpse of someone playing a game of swords with bread, and with that the door was shut in his face!
 "What about my Entwash?" he said   (by the time he had gotten that sentence out it was already dark) Better go before someone wants some firewood ........

Frodo carefully bolted the door and returned to the table where the unusually nervous wizard was now chewing on the end of the loaf of bread, only pausing to blow perfectly circular rings of crumbs onto the table. 
"Why so jumpy?" he asked Gandalf, reaching over to break off the other end of the loaf for himself.  "There wasn't anyone there, though I'll have to talk to the Gaffer and Sam about asking me first when they take it into their head to plant a tree right by the front step that way.  I certainly hope you aren't worried about Lobelia! She's always under the windows here you know - fairly harmless most of the time...."
He paused, listening, then got up to check out the kitchen window.  Nothing.  He reached over to the sideboard and picked up a small silver fork, which he tapped lightly against the windowsill, making a small "tink" sound.
 There was a small explosion of leaves under the window as Lobelia's head popped up outside the glass. 
"Ahherddat! Ahearddat! Lemmein! Ahwanmasilvah! Gimmemypoons!" she hollered through the muffling window, gesticulating wildly. 
 Frodo calmly latched the shutters over the window.  "See?" he said, turning back towards his guest, "It's just Lobelia." He stifled a yawn, and absentmindedly brought out the envelope from Bilbo, toying with it on the table as it squeaked and wiggled.  "Think we should take it out?"

"Who's jumpy?" Gandalf absently blew another ring of crumbs onto the table. He felt much more himself as the Jumping Bean effect began to wear off, thankfully there were not many in the bowl. "And Lobelia isn't someone to worry about, but do try to keep the silerware hidden when she's about.  Why do you let her near the windows? But she's not at all like 'He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named', now he's a bad'un. I'll have to think on what to do about him..." 
Gandalf looked at the envelope bumping about on the table and took another bite of the bread loaf. "Perhaps we should, but not now. Let's wait til after lunch shall we?" 
 Frodo looked at the wizard and just shook his head as he watched the last of the bread loaf disappear.

Frodo got up and peeked back out the window - yup, as he had figured, she hadn't stayed long once he had closed the shutters on her.  He opened the window back up to let in the warm sunshine and air.  He could hear Sam snipping away at the plants in the distance.
He sat back down at the table, then suddenly reached out and tore open the envelope, dumping the shiny ring onto the table, where it glittered among the crumbs.  He picked it up and peered at it a moment.  "Huh.  I wanted that really cool set of cufflinks he had, but instead he leaves me this! Never been much of a ring-wearer...oh look, Gandalf! It's stretchy!" Frodo squashed it into a fat oval between his fingers, then stretched it out into a wide O.   "I bet you could make it fit about anyone's finger. Here - you want to try it on?"

"Try it on, whatever for? Besides I have this other very nice ring right here." He held his left hand out to Frodo to show him, "and they would clash something awful, don't you think?"

Gandalf didn't see Frodo's look of confusion or the wary glance he gave him as the wizard was gazing at his own plain, and very unadorned, hand.  Gandalf abruptly cleared his throat, pulled his hands back into his sleeves and said, "Well now, onto business." He looked at Frodo who was eye level with him, as Frodo was actually standing up. "What are you going to do with that thing, now that it's yours?" 

Frodo absently rotated the shining ring in his fingers, noticing how golden it was...which made him think of precious things....which reminded him of how much money Bilbo had left behind...which reminded him of the estate tax he was going to have to pay in about two weeks...which made him rather abruptly fling the ring into the fireplace in a fit of irritation!
It disappeared into the flame, embers and ash with a little *puff* noise and a distressed squeep! even as Frodo leapt up in distress at what he had just done and frantically fished around for the hot-dog tongs on the table to get it back out.  He reached toward the fire, but the sudden sizzling sound made his realize he had a hot-dog, not the tongs in his hands.  He fumbled around the table again, but found Gandalf was now holding the tongs instead, and peering intently past him into the fire.

Sam, while clipping the hedges, was still in a daze from this morning.  He was a bit embarrassed at what had happened and hoped that Rosie still liked him 
As they drank their tea, Bill decided to call Sam up. Of course Sam felt the shock, and twitched a bit by it (He still was not quite used to the feeling). Rosie gave him a queer look but continued to talk to him as he thought Bill away. Bill, being a stubborn pony, turned it back on, so Sam twitched again. He shut it off. It went on like this for about 5 minutes until Rosie stopped talking and asked what was wrong. 
Sam blushed and said he thought he heard the sound of Lobelia on the walk way. Rosie gave an understanding smile then finished what she was telling him. Sam annouced that he needed to be going and he stumbled through an apology and left.

 Now he was at Bag End gardening, and wishing he knew how to better handle himself in front of Rose. He was also wondering what happened to the time between when he left and when he started working "Oh well!" he thought, and continued to garden.

Gandalf was sitting beside the fireplace having a leisurely smoke when he reached over for a handful of nuts (without the jumping beans) and missed getting hit by the thrown ring. He had ideas about the Ring, but wasn't positive about his suspicions and therefore said nothing to Frodo about them. Seeing the ring disappear into the fire Gandalf quickly grabbed the hotdog tongs before Frodo could (he was bigger and could cross the room faster, of course) and returned to the fireplace to wait. 

After a time, Gandalf fished out the Ring from the ashes and looked at it. Gandalf looked at Frodo who was nearly beside himself with anxiety that his inheritance might be ruined due to his foolish action. Gandalf contiued to hold the ring in the tongs and took a moment to think. He could feel the Ring's power calling to him, but he never was one to covet power. He just wanted a nice place to live with time to spend on his spells and fireworks with good friends. He didn't need to rule others, in fact he detested the thought. 
The longer he sat looking at the little circle of gold the more he felt like He was a mouse caught in the open being eyed by a hungry wolf. He did not like the feeling. Closing his eyes he let the feeling pass. Opening his eyes he held the Ring out to Frodo. 
 "Take it. Its quite cool."

*far away in Mordor, Shelob sits in her lair, as an unspeakable namesless evil falls upon her . . . . . .
. . .  she storms over to her oh so helpful director*


 *storms about in a rage, grrrrrrrrr takes anger out on anything close by!*

Back in Bag End...

Frodo trustingly held out his hand.  The Ring dropped into it.
YOWCH! he cried, dropping it to the floor with a loud thunk that belied it's small size. Whipping the flowers out of the nearby vase, he dunked his hand into the cooling water.  "That wasn't cool!  It was hot!"  He pulled out his hand to examine it for any lasting damage while glowering at the wizard.

Seeing no "O" branded onto his hand as he has expected, he turned his attention back to the Ring.  Nabbing a potholder, he carefully picked it back up. It was glowing in an odd way.
 "There's writing on it, Gandalf! I can't read it, though...kind of reminds me of scribbles from a preschooler. Isn't that weird?"

Gandalf looked at the ring Frodo held out towards him. He could see something  glowing upon the ring.  He couldn't understand about it being hot, his own magic ring never got hot. 

Scribblings of a child indeed, he thought. "That scribbling, my dear Frodo, is elvish writing. Didn't Bilbo teach you anything? Now you just hold it still for a moment and I'll see what I can make out."
Gandalf peered at the glowing letters. "Oh dear this may take some time, I've not translated this dialect in quite some time." He got up and when into Bilbo's study. Grabbing a piece of paper, a quill and an inkwell he returned and began to copy down the letters before they decided to stop glowing. Periodically he'd ask Frodo to turn the ring this way or that so he could see the lettering better. But for good or ill they disappeared before Gandalf could finish writing the last few words.
"Well that's all we've got, I do hope it's enough. It is really too warm a day to rebuild the fire to reheat the thing. But let's see what I can make of this, in the meantime." 

Gandalf didn't start translating right away, instead he began to look about the room while patting down his robes. "Now wherever did that pipe go, always disappearing it is. AH! there it is." He'd spied the thing in question calmly sitting on the lunch table where the old wizard had left it. He retrieved his pipe and after filling it, with some Old Toby brand weed that he'd lifted off Bilbo the day before, took a few longs drags off it before returning to the writing he'd just copied.

Frodo was still a little freaked out about the writing on his ring, but was drawn to its novelty too.  While Gandalf translated, he amused himself by putting it on the hotdog tongs and inserting it into the fire repeatedly to watch the letters come and go. 
"I'll have to show this to Sam! He'd love to see a trick like this. Glowing letters - wouldn't they be neat to have on your  cooking pots and teakettles, Gandalf?  I mean, everytime you went to cook something you could have a secret message show up,  something like "Remember to clear the table when you're done" or "Add more spam." Wouldn't that be fun?  I wonder if you could charge it up somehow, so it could be used for a night-light.

He pulled it back out of the fire and waved it around in the air.  "Hey, look! If I wave it around fast enough it looks like I'm leaving a red line in the air!"  He swooshed a few circles before sticking it back in the fire again to brighten it up.   "How's that translating going over there?"


The nine, after taking a LOOONG Break finally got over the river Isen and started on their trek towards the Shire.  After riding up to Isengard and telling Saruman to scare the crud out of any other wizards that showed up, they rode on, looking for the ring.

 Cantea: Hey guys, why couldn't we just hang out with Saruman and wait for that hobbit to sneak through Moria or something.  
 Witch King: Moria!  I hate that place
 Enquea:  Yeah, goblins, cave trolls, and Balrogs...god that place stinks
 Otsea:  What? You don't like goblins. 
 Enquea: No...but Fluffy here doesn't
 Enquea: Well, whats wrong with it, he's so cute and huggable and....
 Witch King: Hey, we're supposed to strike terror into all that  see us.  You're supposed to be scary, not a girly-wraith.
 Attea:  Yeah!  Girly-wraith! What's your sword's name, Jill?  How about Shiny? 
 Enquea: Knock it off! My sword is called Mr. Giggles. 
 Strange sounds can be heard for miles as all 8 other wraiths begin to laugh hysterically

Near Rivendell...

 Aragorn looked back at Rivendell for a moment before turning his back and heading towards Bree. He sighed. Glorfindel was a mighty fine ping-pong ball player, and the Ranger would miss him.  But enough of that, he thought, I have to be in Bree in a couple of weeks.
 "Wait. Why is that?" he said aloud to himself. Suddenly a voice came from the sky.
 "Because the narrator says so. Pbbth!" He jumped and did not question such things for the rest of his trip.

Meanwhile back in Bag End, the Ring kept making little sqeeping noises as it was burnt over and over again. If they were to be recorded and slowed down it might sound something like:
 "Eep! No you stupid hobbit! Ack! I'm getting overheated! NIGHTLIGHT?! Good grief. Aaargh! Yowch! This is not what I would consider comfortab-*sizzles* Ow!" etc...

In Bree...

It was Barliman Butterbur (and a inn full of hairy unwashed black toothy goodness) patiently (not!) waiting for his big scene. 
Butterbur stood by the window that opened onto the stable yard.....he seemed to be listening for something with a very WHAT THE! look on his face.........

"Talking to himself again.......that pony Bill.....I swear!.........How am I ever going to convince the Ranger and the Hobbits to take that pony with them!.......And why does he keep calling himself Sam?"
 "Ere.......Butterbur!......When are those Obbits gettin 'ere?" Pipes up a particularly hairy individual......."I've got a shampoo commercial at nine!....I 'aven't got all day yknow!Cmon...fess up!"

Back in Bag End...

"AHA!" Gandalf cried. He had been making sure he had the correct translation before saying anything. Once before he'd mistranslated a word which changed the entire meaning of a passage and the result was not one he cared to remember. This a little more important and didn't want to make a mistake. 
"Frodo are you still playing with that?" He heard a muffled reply, he thought was an affirmative. "Well are the letters visible again? If so bring it here."
In a moment Frodo and the glowing ring appeared next to the table. Gandalf asked him to turn it about this way and that again as the wizard mumbled excitedly under his breath. "Yes, yes. Bind, all, darkness. Yes this it the one. It has to be."
 "Gandalf, what is the one?" Frodo asked.
 "The Ring. This is the One Ring."
 Frodo looked at the wizard with concern.  He said slowly and clearly, "I know it's a ring, but what about the letters?"

Gandalf shook his head. "I'm sorry, my lad. Let me explain. The letters read, 'One Ring to rule them all, One Ring to find them. One Ring to bring them all and in the darkness bind them.' It is but two lines of a verse from the Second Age. In full it reads:
Three rings for the Elven-kings under the sky,
 Seven for the Dwarf-lords in their halls of stone,
 Nine for Mortal Men doomed to die,
 One for the Dark Lord on his dark throne, 
 In the land of Mordor where the Shadows lie.
 One Ring to rule them all, One Ring to find them,
 One Ring to bring them all and in the darkness bind them,
 In the land of Mordor where the Shadows lie.

 That ring you are holding is The One Ring, The Master Ring that rules the others. It is evil, made by evil and can only do evil. It's Master, Sauron, who lost it long ago, put much of his own power into making it, so the lore says. He fondest desire is to have it again. He will always search for it." Putting a hand on the hobbit's shoulder he gave a sorrowful look. "He may know where it is already, but I don't think so. If he did, he would have sent his minions already to reclaim it. But now that this thing that has been lost for ages has been found we must decide what to do with it."

 The old wizard sighed deeply. "I had hoped it would stay lost forever. I will need to tell the White Council about this."

Frodo considered the old wizard gravely. Then he slooowly took a step back so he could see the level of the ale mug and whether or not that bottle of Old Winyards on the sideboard was still full or empty.  It appeared to be full, and the mug had hardly been touched.  He wondered if Gandalf was just having some sort of "senior moment."  Sam had mentioned this sort of thing happening to the Old Gaffer from time to time, though never as odd as this.
 "Oookay. Well. That sounds pretty...um...serious.  Would you like to lay down and take a nap, maybe?"
Gandalf glowered at him under bushy eyebrows. "I am quite serious, young Frodo.  I have never been so serious in my life, which is quite long by the way."
 "Of course! Of course! I mean, why wouldn't you be serious and all that?  It just seems a little...strange..."
He picked up the cooling Ring, and went over to the teapot.  Lifting the lid, he popped it into the hot water, to see if it did anything else interesting with heat.  As he watched the golden thing rapidly sink, he stirred it with the hotdog tongs and commented
"I mean, you sound like it's something dangerous.  If whats-his-name wants his Ring back, that's just tough cookies - it's been lost for a long time, and finders-keepers, I say.  Besides, he doesn't know I even have it, right?"
He lifted the Ring back out of the teapot and examined it closely.  No letters.  He tried rubbing it very hard to see if friction did anything. Nothing.  Disappointed, he looked around for any other heat sources and reached for Gandalf's still-smouldering pipe.

In the Wild...

Aragorn continued to travel in the general direction of Bree, but soon was hopelessly lost in a maze of hills, woods and little rivers.  The sun shone, the birds chirped and he cursed them both as he wandered up and down, grateful there were no other Rangers with him to know the truth about his much vaunted sense of direction.This way at least he didn't have to pretend he knew where he was going.

In Bag End....

Gandalf sat for a more than a few moments with a grave expression on his face.
 "Frodo, my lad? I've decided I must leave."
 Frodo removed the ring from a warm blackberry pie as he spun around and unbelievingly said, "LEAVE?!"
"Yes leave, the Council must know the Ring has been found after all these ages. I can stay another day or two, but no longer. Information must be shared, counsels taken, plans organized, travels begun. The Dark Lord will be looking for it, he must not get it. The Wise and those willing to help them must work to ensure it does not happen." 
Gandalf strode to his room and began making sure his things were ready to be packed for traveling.

Frodo pattered along after the Wizard, snatching his own valuables back out of Gandalf's pack when the he wasn't looking.  He knew sometimes Gandalf was a bit haphazard in packing and this time he was worse than usual - anything in reach was being absentmindedly added.  Frodo carefully licked the blackberry filling off the Ring as he went, and paused to examine it again - no letters.  And it had been a pretty warm pie too.   He looked up at his friend.
"Why should he come looking for it - and if he does, what should I do?  You say he can't have it, and you don't want it yourself, and I'm supposed to keep it safe..."
"He knows the name of Baggins, and that it is in someplace called the Shire, so it will not be safe here. You'll have to leave, and take it with you."
 "Leave? But where would I go? I don't even have any good maps - all of Bilbo's maps have these big white spaces outside the Shire except for that crumbly one with that ridiculous red dragon on it that he was always carting about, and the AAA doesn't open again around here until spring. "
"Follow the Road - it leads ever on and on. It runs down from the door where it began, you know.  Just step onto the Road and it will sweep you along until you reach Bree."

 "But...what if there's traffic coming the other way?"
"It's a one-way Road."
"Go to the Inn at Bree - the Inn of the Prancing Pony. I'll meet you there."

"Bree..."  Frodo put the Ring in his pocket and picked up his own pack.  
He wadded up a changes of clothes to stuff into it, wadded up a loaf of bread and some cheese and added those, then with Gandalf's help, wadded up the tablecloth and a blanket and managed to ram them in with the aid of a broomstick. He topped it off with a few apples and a pipe.

Sam gulped at the words "you must leave". "LEAVE?? No! that's not possible! Mr. Frodo can't leave!"  He went around to another window, closer to where Frodo and Gandalf were. It got really quiet, and Sam only heard snipets of the rest of the conversation..."Ring....Dark Lord.....End of the World..." Sam shivered, as did the bush. "That doesn't sound like fun...." but his thought was cut off by the end of a staff.....

"Now we're all packed and ready to go.  I do have to talk to Saruman and the council, so I can't go with you right off, but we'll meet again at Bree. But there are few more things I think you should know. We have time for a talk and decide which way to leave from here. Leave first thing in the morening I think. Yes That's best, a good night's rest before we start."
Frodo thought about it a moment before asking, "Shall we have some tea and cake while we talk?" Without waiting for an answer the Hobbit disappeared into the pantry.
A short time later while sitting in the kitchen, with the windows open for some early evening air, the two ate cakes and drank tea while they talked of the Ring. Well Gandalf talked, Frodo mostly listened.
 "The Ring, my lad, is evil. It was made, by evil for evil purposes. As I said earlier, the Dark Lord has never stopped looking for it, though all thought it was lost forever.  Since he first rose to power he has been his single goal to rule all of Middle-earth. All of it - Orc, Elf, Man, Dwarf and Hobbit. He will only be satisfied when every mountain, every forest, every field is under his dominion. Should he find his Ruling Ring again it would mean the end of the world. Putting it on, using it, can be dangerous for his servants are sure to be searching for it. The power inherent in the Ring can lure evil to it if it is used, that means it can draw them to you," he said gravely.  
 Gandalf paused. Had he heard something?  He thought a moment, but decided to continue anyway. He smiled internally at his thought.
Gandalf shook his head to silence the question he could see coming. "Whether he regains the ring or we manage to rid the world of it, Middle-earth will be changed forever, but even I would rather never share  another meal and pipe with an agreeable Hobbit than even think that he may regain that thing. " He pointed at the golden circle now sitting quietly on the table between them.

Frodo paused in his chewing to listen...wondering what it was that Gandalf had heard.  Hearing nothing, he continued stuffing food in his face.  Gandalf was being so serious!  And when people were serious. he needed something to chew on to help him concentrate. Ruling ring?  He reached for another slice of bread and topped it with a large scoop of jam before ramming it into his mouth all in one bite.

"Ffffo, iffwhayohayiffroo..." He paused to lick the extra jam off his fingers, swallowed and tried again.  "So, if what you say is true, why are we sitting here? Shouldn't you be running like crazy across the fields out there, with me following along or something?"  He took another big bite and almost choked on it when Gandalf suddenly popped up like a jack-in-the-box and lunged past him for the window.  He was even more surprised, if it were possible, when the wizard whacked something out in the bushes and brought in not Lobelia  (which wouldn't have surprised Frodo at all) but Sam!
Sam was terrified. He had just thought that him getting hit on the head was because  he had taken Lobelia's spot, so he didn't really care about that, but when he saw Gandalf, it was all he could do to stop his knees from shaking. He was thrown onto a seat near the table and Gandalf grabbed a nearby lamp and shown it just above Sam, giving him the 3rd degree.
 Gandalf: "Where were you just 5 minutes ago?"
 Sam gave him a look. "Just u-under the w-window there, Sir."
Gandalf, still in his 'detective' voice: "And what, exactly, were you doing?" Frodo was circling the table, trying to look the part of an angry bouncer...It didn't work too well.
 Sam: "I-I was, um, just timming the hedges there, If-f you f-follow m-me."
 Gandalf: "A little late, don't you think? Tell me Samwise Gamgee...WERE YOU EVESDROPPING??"
 Sam fell back out of his chair..."Mr. G-Gandalf, sir, There ain't no eves h-here at BagEnd, and that's a f-fact!"
 Gandalf: "Don't you get smart with me! What did you hear?? SPEAK!"
Sam: "N-n-nothing important! Just somethin about a ring and a dark lord and somthin about the end of the world! Please don't let him turn me into anythin, Mr. Frodo!"
Gandalf and Frodo gave each other a glance.

When Gandalf had paused Frodo attempted to speak He had to swallow the bread and jam in his mouth before he made any sense, but Gandalf wasn't listening to him anyway. He was listening for the sound he thought he'd heard from outside. There it was again - under the open window.
The wizard may look like and old man, but his reflexes were sharp and could be speedy when necessary.  The spy needed to be captured before it could report back to it's master. Not fitting at the table properly he didn't have to push the bench back and make any noise. He could still hear the spy rustling, oh so slightly, in the bushes. He wrapped his hands around his staff, then quick as a an arrow from a bow, Gandalf sprang for him chair to the window. He smacked the spy once on the head and dragged him squirming through the window and tossed him in a nearby chair.
"Well bless my beard! Samwise Gamgee." The old wizard was surprised.  But it didn't stop him but a moment. He grabbed a nearby lamp and brought it over to the chair and began interrogating the frightened Hobbit.  "Where were you just five minutes ago?"
A few questions later Gandalf paused and looked at Frodo and sighed. The gardener had listened and heard about the Ring. Something would have to be done.  Samwise was inspecting the edge of his vest which had ripped when he was pulled through the window. He was disgusted. If it hadn't got catch on that branch he'd have been safely gone.
Gandalf turned back to the sitting hobbit, leaned down closer to Samwise and looked at him menancingly. "What else did you hear?"
 Sam said, "M-Mr. Frodo is going away."   
 Frodo spoke up, "It can't be helped Sam. I must go."
Gandalf and Frodo exchanged another glance. Frodo grinned at the gleam in the wizard's eyes.  As the wizard reached down to help Sam stand up he said, "I have thought of the perfect punishment for listening. Mr. Frodo might have need of a companion until I can return and to keep you from talking to others that someone shall be you, Mr Gamgee."

Sam sat there speechless, looking back and forth between Gandalf and Frodo. So many thoughts were spinning in his mind. "Ring....Dark Lord...End of the World....Go with Frodo.....Ouch, that stupid staff....my poor vest....Ring....Dark Lord....End of the World....ect...." Poor Sam couldn't take it anymore....

 He fainted and fell out of his seat.

 Frodo was most concerned when Sam slipped to the floor. He quickly nabbed a loaf of bread to pillow Sam's head, and propped his feet up with a hunk of cheese to help the blood flow back towards his head.  He topped it with a jar of jam just for decoration.

"Sam! Sam!" he hollered, shaking Sam a bit.  He decided to revive him the only way he knew - with food.  He pried open Sam's jaw and inserted a cracker with butter, then carefully poured the now lukewarm tea over his head.
He licked the rest of the butter off his fingers and wiped his hands on Sam's vest while waiting for him to come around.  He wondered if he ought to start packing something for Sam while he waited - like the rest of the cake, that tub of pickles and a few more apples.  Maybe some sausage too. Come to think of it, why shouldn't he just have Sam carry all the food?  And with a gardener along, they wouldn't have to worry about accidently camping in the middle of a lot of poison ivy or something too.

The more he thought about it, the more he thought Gandalf's idea of bringing Sam along would be a good one.   
Now if he would only wake up!

"Oh, gracious." Gandalf was worried about the gardener, and  went to the kitchen for a glass of water. But when he returned he saw Frodo had things under control. The wizard sat down and began to laugh at Frodo's use of the foodstuffs while he waited for Sam to wake up.  

Sam slowly opened his eyes. It was blurry at first, but when he could make out the figures in front of him, he saw Gandalf and Frodo. He stared ugently at Frodo as he spoke (but first had to swallow the food that was in his mouth...that he did not know how it got there). "I had the most horrific dream Mr. Frodo! It was about a Ring, and a dark lord, and Somethin about the end of the world. And you were there, and, and you were there!" he pointed to Gandalf.
"Um, Sam? Don't freak out, but that wasn't a dream."  Before Sam had a chance to pass out again, Frodo was all ready with the rest of the tea.
 "O-o-ok," said Sam,"So what do I have to do? I know this means we have to travel and stuff but, what exactly do I have to do?"

 Gandalf began to speak....

"To start with, you  are going away with Mr. Frodo and you are leaving at first light. As I'm sure you already heard I have an errand to do, but will meet up with you as quick as way be, probably in Bree. There is an inn there - The Prancing Pony - stay there and I shall find you when I'm done. Frodo has been known to disappear for days at a time walking about the Shire, no one will suspect much if the new Master of Bag End continues this habit and brings his servant along as well.

"Now Frodo, why don't you just pop into the larder and see what more you can find for packing I want a word with Samwise here."  
 Frodo gave the wizard a long look, but soon decided he didn't seem like he was going to turn his gardener into something unnatural and left to see what was left in the pantry.
As soon as he'd gone Gandalf turned upon the remaining Hobbit. "Now then, little spy, Frodo has a job to do an you are going to make sure he is allowed to do it. There are people about who are looking for Mr. Frodo and would harm him if they found him."  
Gandalf paused thoughtfully as Sam bristled at the thought of someone hurting Mr. Frodo, who'd never done a mean thing in his life.  
 "He will need a friend and more importantly someone to look after him until I can return. I think things will be right enough in The Shire, but I may not reach you until Bree and that is outside the Shire. So I am depending on you Samwise Gamgee to not leave him at least not until we meet again. Do I have your word? "
 Sam was looking wide-eyed at the wizard who was depending on him, him! a lowly gardener. But then he remembered this was for Mr. Frodo, and he resolved not to let anything happen to his master. Gandalf saw the determined look upon his face and silently approved his choice. "Y-Yes, Mr. Gandalf, sir, you can count on me. I promise not to lose, er leave him."
 "Good. Now run back home, quick as you can and grab your pack and those thing you think you'll need for a week's trip. And don't you tell a soul about where you're headed or I may change my mind and I really will turn you into a toad."
 Sam nearly fell to the floor upon hearing the threat. "N-no! Mr. Gandalf, Sir I'll not tell a soul! On my honor, sir!"  
 "We shall see." Gandalf smiled at Sam, "Quick as coney then, be off, grab your things and get back here."
 The wizard chuckled softly as Sam went running out the door.

Frodo wadded up a few more shirts and another loaf of bread for his pack, then filled his pocket with apples,  licorice whips and the last of a sack of nuts.  Yup - that was about it. Last night in a regular bed for a while, so he figured he might as well get it.
He went back out to the parlour to find Gandalf already bedded down in front of the fire, snoring like anything, and Sam nodding sleepily in the chair, propped up by a hastily filled pack of his own.  Frodo quietly stuffed a packet of seedcake, two apples, a crock of honey, a baguette and a sack of beans into it, then draped it with a long string of sausages that wouldn't fit inside.
 He tipped Sam over and tucked a blanket around him, drew the parlour rug up over Gandalf to serve likewise and went to his bed.
Morning came all too soon, and they were awakened before dawn by Sam rattling around in the kitchen making a huge breakfast for them before they left.  They stuffed their faces and left the washing up to Lobelia, as Frodo was sure she'd find the unlatched window he was leaving for her.
Waving goodbye to the kegs of ale, who cheerfully waved back, they headed out into the pre-dawn glow of the Shire hoping to leave unnoticed.
A huge potato whizzed over their heads.
Sam waved back in the direction the spud had come from. "My Gaffer.' he explained, "I told him I was going to help out with the garden of a place you bought in Crickhollow. Hope that worked okay for a story. That's not a common tater, it's his Farewell Tater."

Aragorn finally fought his way out of the bushes in sight of a town, and triumphantly headed for the main road, figuring his tracking talents had been better than usual after all.  As he got closer though, he realized he had gone completely off course. This wasn't Bree! This was Buckland!

In complete disgust and glad no one was around to question him, he turned around and went back into the woods determined that he would find that blasted town yet.

Butterbur could still here Bill the Pony out in the stable yard.
"What's he saying?....End of the world.....aint no eaves! Mad as a cut snake is that pony!"
He heard a faint "clack" and Butterbur looked down........."dagnabbit!"......he mumbled....."not again!"  as he tried to stick the false yellowy mildewy tooth back in his gobb...............

Bill walked around the corner of the building, as old Butterbur was still staring at him.
 "Sam! Sam! I think there's something wrong. I think Butterbur has telepathy too cause he can hear what you and I are saying in our minds! We're not alone!"
 "Are you sure, Bill?"
"Yes, yes! Of course I'm sure!"
"Well where is this Butterbur guy? Why do I have to worry about him?"

"He's in Bree. At the Inn of the Prancing Pony."
"Aww...! Well, I guess I'll have to figure out what to do."
"Yeah. Anyway, when are ya comin, Sam? Have you left the Shire yet?"
"Yessum, we're on our way right now."

Sam was interrupted by Frodo. "You seem awfully quiet today, Sam. Is something wrong?"

"No sir....I've just been thinkin...

Butterbur was STILL standing by the window listening.............." 'ere ! " he said to the fella standing closest to him " Can you hear what that pony's sayin'?"
Iva Hairybutt (yes that's his real name) went all silent and listened intently.......... he was puzzled........" Your a nut!" he scoffed....and walked away.
 Funny, Maybe I'm telescopic or somefin......he thought

Shouldering his pack for about fifteen minutes was long enough for Frodo - he dumped it on top of Sam's pack and set off across the countryside, a bit afraid that the Road would grab him and wash him to parts unknown if he actually stepped on it.
"Well, Sam, I looked at a map and it looked to me like we can cut off a whole bunch of miles if we head towards Buckland, then skip thorough that little bit of forest there."
 "The Old Forest?" puffed Sam behind him. "But, won't we get lost?"
"Lost? How could we get lost? It wasn't more than three or four inches across on the map. I measured it myself!  And besides, that will take us towards Crickhollow too, so your Gaffer won't get worried."

"Yeah. I noticed him following us too.  He does that sometimes.  He'll turn back as soon as he's sure we're going the right way. Don't let on that you know he's there though. He likes to think he's camoflauged."
Frodo glanced back one more time at the very obvious Gaffer, who was darting back and forth behind them with branches of shrubbery sticking out of his belt and a chunk of turf on his hat.  "Ooo-kay..."  He paced on for a bit more then suddenly said " I wish we could have brought Pippin with us."
 "Pippin?" puffed and gasped Sam. "Why?"
"I don't know...just reminds me of something I read in a book once.  Maybe we can visit with him and Merry when we get to Buckland."

As Frodo and Sam headed East Gandalf headed West. He'd sent his horse to the western borders to keep from frightening the Hobbits, some of whom who were small enough to walk upright under his belly. First he found his saddle and bridle which he'd stashed in a tree, then he located the Bay. Quickly he put the tack on the horse and shortly he was heading south away from Hobbiton and out of The Shire.
He had thought to talk with Elrond about his discovery, but then thought Saruman may be the better choice, as he was the most learned about The Ring and it's history. He continued to think about it. Once past the borders of The Shire he would have to make a final decision.

Frodo and Sam walked across the fields all day before they were forced to cross The Road.   
"It kind of curves around that hill over there Sam, so if we can just get across it, we can continue through the fields again for quite a ways.  But how can we get across the thing?"
Sam considered this problem. "What's wrong with just stepping on it?"

"Gandalf and Bilbo both said if you step onto the Road it will sweep you off to other places.  I don't think that's what we want to do right now."

"You think it really does that?"   
"Well, we could watch for a bit to find out. We can have our lunch and see if anybody else goes by on it."

They chose a hidden spot where they could still see the muddy track and inhaled a large portion of what was in their combined packs.  Just as they were finishing up they heard a noise.  A thin uulating wailing could be heard, getting louder by the minute, as if it were coming towards them!
They peered out at the Road.  In a moment they saw it - a dwarf, flailing his arms in windmills to keep his balance was being swept along the Road leaving a muddy wake behind him.  He screeched as he whipped past them, being rapidly propelled East, his beard streaming in the wind of his passing and his cloak flapping behind him.

"EEEEEEeeeeeeeeeeaaaaaaaauuuuuuuuuuu...."  He dwindled to a speck and was lost to their sight as the Road took a bend.
They looked at each other.  "No way are we stepping on that Road." said Frodo.  Help me cut a pole, Sam - we'll pole-vault it!"

In the Wild...

Aragorn fought his way out of the bushes and tried to get his bearings.  He could see smoke rising from a chimney off to the south, and deciding it was Bree, he headed for it with much self-congratulating.
 "See?" he said to himself, "I knew where I was going all along."
When he came out of the trees he was annoyed to find it was only one house, not a village.  And there was some big guy singing silly songs and dancing aroung in the courtyard with a bunch of lilypads.
 Disgusted, he turned and went back into the woods again. Bree had to be somewhere around here!

Beside the Road...
What a sight Sam was that day...once he saw that the road could actually sweep you off your feet, he suddenly didn't think this trip was such a good idea. And him pole vaulting was a completely different story. he grabbed hold of his staff, and ran at full speed (which wasn't all that fast). Once he got to where Frodo said to jump, He did.....but he accidentally took his staff with him. He almost got all the way across without using his staff, and one foot actually did.....it's just......one foot didn't. Before he knew it,  his right foot was going full speed down the road, and his left foot was dragging behind. Frodo lept across the road (Sam wouldn't allow Frodo to go before him) and ran as fast as he could to catch up with Sam. Frodo grabbed his dragging foot and pulled. Sam came tumbling off of the road and went rolling into a ditch.

Meanwhile, Bill was in Bree, running. Butterbur had finaly lost it and  chased after Bill, demanding to know how Bill was able to control his mind. Bill hid behind the corner of a building as Barliman ran past. Bill had said good bye, and turned off Butterbur's ability to hear him. Butterbur had not yet figured out how to turn it on, so Bill was safe. "Sam! Sam! We need to talk..."
"What is it, Bill? I'm not in the mood to think."
 "Barliman's lost it. He's now chasing afer me with a spatula. What do I do?"
Sam sighs. "Well, um, we'll figure that out once I get there. Just, um, hide."  Bill just rolled his eyes and turned off his telepathy.  Sam shook his head.  
 Frodo: "What is it, Sam?"
 Sam: "Um, nothing Mr. Frodo...I'm still just a bit shaken up."

On the borders of the Shire...

Gandalf judged he had reached the southern borders of The Shire - it's tricky to find as it's not marked well, and turned West. He had realized quickly enough that while trying to make sure Frodo and Sam were supplied with all they'd need he'd not packed near enough pipeweed, nor enough munchies for the trip to Isengard. Rather than go back to Bagend he decided to head to Bree. He could see the Innkeeper there, check in with a certain Ranger he had scouting out the region and grab a pint or two as well as restock the important things. 

He was about an hour out from Bree when his thoughts were broken into by a horse and rider coming over the hill.  Gandalf stopped and called to mind a few defensive spells while waiting for the rider to approach.  
 "Gandalf!" the rider hailed him. "Gandalf!"
 "Radagast? What are you doing here?"

"I have urgent news. Or rather, Saruman has news you may be anxious to hear. He is unable to leave Orthanc at this time or he would have searched you out himself. He says The Nine have been seen abroad. He also says that if you would seek his aide to come to Orthanc as soon as may be."   

Gandalf nodded and stroked his beard. "I had thought to see him or Elrond soon. I suppose this makes the decision easier, I will go to Orthanc."
"Then fare you well, Mithrandir. I shall return to my forests, now."
"Eh, wait a moment Radagast. You say the Nine are abroad. Ask those animals and birds that are your friends to bring any news they gather to Gandalf and Saruman at Orthanc."   
"I wil do this, but now I must return, I have been away too long in my search for you. Fare you well." Radagast the Brown turned his mount and sped away.
Gandalf watched him go, saying a quiet farewell to his fellow wizard, before spurring his own horse south regretting his lack of pipeweed and missing the ale at The Prancing Pony.
Butterbur turns to the mysterious man in black......hiding the spatula behind his back ..
 " Spatula?...What spatula? "