Bucklebury's LotR Parody

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

Bilbo's Party

"Keep out of my vegetable patch!" hollered the Old Gaffer, lobbing a well-aimed potato at yet another trespasser. "Too many hobbits goin' back and forth around here with all this party business. Need to learn to stay on the proper side of a fence, they do. Mutter mutter..."

He noted Lobelia had abandoned the prickly rose hedge and was now skulking under the rhododendrons where she could have a good view of the front door of Bag End.  He's lost count of how many times he'd seen that old baggage ricochet off the door, as Mr. Bilbo had a quick hand with the hinges.  He remembered that Mr. Bilbo and Mr. Frodo had even tried leaving assorted tin cutlery as decoys in the yard, but to no avail. She was after those silver pieces of theirs and nothing would dissuade her.   Odd bird, she was.  Well, there's no accounting for the behavior of some folk.
 He chose a nice round, hefty potato to bop her with if she came his direction. He wasn't havin' no umbrella-poke holes in his garden today, no sir.

Merry and Pippin meet at the Maggot Farm Rendezvous Point promptly at 8 AM.
"Okay, Pip..." said Merry. "You go find one good cabbage head for us, and I will work on an armful of carrots.  Then, we will go for the mushrooms, but if Maggot catches on we'll have to leave those here.   Now... ready?"

At Bag End...

Bilbo finished tying the last strings and tags on the last packages and stretched and yawned.  He got up and peered out his window to see how the party tents were coming along when Lobelia popped up like a jack in the box on the other side of the glass.
"Ahmwhamapoons! Lemmen!" she hollered as she waved her umbrella about, though he couldn't quite make out what it was through the thick glass.  He stuck his tongue out at her scowling face and snapped the shutters closed. There were times when he couldn't get away from this place fast enough.

He looked at his watch. Where was that dratted wizard? And now Frodo had gone missing all morning too.

Lobelia stomped away from Bilbo's window.
"The NERVE...I know he could hear me in there, he's just choosing  not to listen. I know he's up to something. "
 *achoo* *achoo* *achoo*  

"Oh, drat that gardener Gamgee, he knows I'm allergic to roses, yet he plants them anyway all over the garden. Hmmmph...just like a Gamgee. "
 Suddenly Lobelia was hit in the back by something small and brown.
 "Ooofff!! What was that?"  
She looked around and spied old Gaffer Gamgee
 (waving her umbrella in the general direction of the Gamgee's home)"Now see here Old Gaffer, I've just as much a right to be here in this garden as anybody, it should be my garden anyway, so you see that you just keep your ol' potatoes to yourself and mind your manners. REALLY!!!" 
 Lobelia stomped off in a huff rubbing her back,as snickering could be heard from behind a bush.

On a relatively less dark and gloomy night as they go in Mordor the nine set off from Minas Morgrul to find some
hobbit character and this ring that their boss is sooooo concerned about.

 Úlairë Cantëa:   Sssshire.  Baggins?
 Witch King:  Yeah, I hear that hobbitt is throwing one heck of a party
 Ulaire Enquea:  I'm glad Sauron finally let us out. I havent been to a good party in ages. 
 Ulaire Ostea:  Hey, Witchie, can we do the party first and then get that ring. 
 Witch King:  *glares at Ostea* NEVER call me "Witchie" again you dolt!
 Otsea: What! Sauron calls ya that?
 Neyla: Sauron is the lord of ultimate evil, your just a minion, he can call his minions anything he wants. 
 Otsea: But....

Witch King: Enough you two.  Oh yeah, gotta drop by Saruman's place on the way.  Sauron wants to give him a spiffy new cloak and we get to officially make him a minion of evil. 
 Cantea: Sweeet! 
In Hobbiton...

The Old Gaffer chuckled to himself, pleased at getting her away however briefly.  He knew she wouldn't be gone long, not with all this attention being paid to her esteemed relative.  He pulled another potato out of his pocket and chewed on it absently as he watched the banners going up across the way.  He wondered how long it would be until they noticed they had put up the birthday banner upside-down.
Meanwhile Frodo had begun to be a little overwhelmed with the amount of information that the unusually talkative wizard was giving him about the Outside World and was beginning to think taking a short cut across the fields might not be a bad idea.  Besides, Sam would no doubt be looking for him - as always.
As they approached the bridge he noticed Ted Sandyman idly fishing along the side of it, so he casually reached out and shoved him into the water as they rumbled past.  "Oops! Sorry Ted!" he called back to the spluttering hobbit.
 He looked up at Gandalf who was eyeing him quizzically.
"Some folks just need washing more often than others."  he said, and batted his eyes innocently.

 Merry and Pippin returned from Maggot's a bit frustrated that they had to once again leave the mushrooms and planned to
go for the potatoes and mushrooms next week.

Merry chomped on a carrot. "You know, Pip... Bilbo has the big party tonight."
Pippin nodded and grabbed a carrot to snack on, too.  The two continued to walk and discuss their conspiracy to confiscate fireworks and set them off when Gandalf wasn't looking.

In the cart....

Gandalf continued to look at him in surprise after they got across the bridge, he had never known Frodo to do something like that. He was usually very patient with his fellow hobbits.

Though he could have ignored the look, after all that the wizard had told him, he was feeling generous. "You know with Bilbo's party just around the corner everyone will need baths. I just wanted to help him out, in case the bathwater ran short of course." Gandalf gave a snort. "Besides couldn't you smell him at least a half mile down the road? PHEW!"

Gandalf waved his scarf in front of his nose, he had to agree. It was usually better to stand upwind of Ted Sandyman. Especially on a warm day such as this.  He took put his pipe and lit it, waving to a few of the townsfolk as they went along.

Frodo was quiet as well thinking of the book he left behind and would have to go back and retrieve, but said quietly, "Besides, I've always wanted to do that."
Gandalf gave a loud chuckle and said,
"Don't feel too bad lad, I was thinking of doing the same thing. Do you think we might convince Bilbo to give him a bar of soap on Thursday?"

::Meanwhile, in the land of smoke and ash, riddled with fire, where the very air you breathe is a poisonous fume::
 "Gollum" ::cough, wheeze, choke:: "Don't orcses have to breathe air, too?" ::cough, choke, gag::
 "It ssstinksss, it does. What isss that sssmell, Precioussss?"
The wretched creature rounded a hill just past a strangely silent tower to find the entrance to a tunnel. There seemed no other way out of the vale, so he crept in while holding his nose...
 ::scrape, creak, snick, crack, scrape, creak::
Multiple luminous points began to appear, forming two masses reminiscent of bulbous eyes, glowing in the dark tunnel ahead. Something akin to laughter came from the general direction of those eyes, and a sense of deep dread filled Gollum with loathing. 
Suddenly, the thing leapt toward him with a snapping sound of unseen jaws... it was but a feint, yet enough to set him flying down the tunnel and out onto the stair. Shaking, sweating, and breathing hard, Gollum looked around.
 "We got out, we did!" ::cackle, pant, snigger:: "We are clever and tricksy, eh preciousss? Now we must find that thief! Baggins! We hatesss it forever!"
A small grey figure blended into the lifeless Morgal Vale, no one noted his passing save the eyes of an ever watchful tower winking in the night...

In the cart...

"You know, Gandalf, " said Frodo, "there are folks here who find you a bit of a bother.  You do so many unexpected
things that they have to go back and change the captions and headlines for every article in the local paper. I mean, they usually write it out a month ahead of time as so little changes around here, but when you arrive - whew!  I've even heard they'd given you a title down at the printshop."
 Gandalf cocked a bushy brow. "And what might that be?"
 "The Re-Blurber of the Piece."
Well...we're coming up on Bag End and I don't want Bilbo to see me until I get that book of his back where it belongs - I better make like a tree and leaf! "
 Frodo jumped from the cart, almost beaning himself on a low-hanging branch  as he waved back at Gandalf.

Gandalf continued on his way, letting Bill take his time pulling the cart up the hill and smoking his pipe. He was practicing making new smoke rings to impress Bilbo.  The last time he visited they had a contest, without the magical colors and and fanfare; he'd almost lost! Gandalf, a being older than the shire itself almost lost a plain old smoke ring contest! He just couldn't have it... what would Saruman or Radagast say if they found out. He'd lose his standing in the council. He shook his head in mock sadness.

He knew that Bilbo would have been practicing these last few years, but he'd been so busy with wizard affairs that he hadn't had the time.  And as everyone knows you can't have a proper pipe to make proper smoke rings while working on fireworks, so no time there. So Gandalf took the time now to practice a bit, hoping Bilbo had forgotten their promise to a new contest. But, before he knew it Bill pulled up in front of a hole with the little green door and refused to go any further without a rest. 

Bilbo heard what sounded like a cart outside, but feared it was just Lobelia with her wheelbarrow, wanting to load up his valuables again.  He thought about booby-trapping the door, but didn't really have time for a proper trap.  That time he'd tipped a bucket of dishwater on her head had made her a little more wary.  Then again, it could just be a saleshobbit.
 When they were bold enough to actually come through his gate and knock! Well! He got rather huffy.
"No thank you!! We don't want anymore girl scout cookies, religious magazines or coupons for pizza! And I'm not donating anything, I don't have any recycling and my windows and siding are just fine as they are!"
 Hmph. That ought to cover all the bases. 
 Meanwhile, after the wierd incident of telepathy, Sam took a walk around Hobbiton. 
 He gave a snort as he walked past the Sackville-Baggins's Hole.  "What a disgrace. Not even a proper garden." 
He stepped on a nearby weed then looked around. He saw a curtain close from one of the Sackville-Baggins's windows. Sam quickly walked away. He didn't like being spied on. 
 He strolled back to his own hole. As he looked off in the direction of BagEnd, he saw a pony and a cart.  Oh! Gandalf must be here. I hope those are fireworks in his cart.  And without even taking a notice to the pony  which was staring at him, he went inside.

Gandalf gave a loud  HUMMPF. Magazines and hobbit scout cookies indeed! he thought as he walked up the steps. 
When he reached the top he chuckled. before knocking on the door. He heard nothing more from inside, but since he knew Bilbo was in there he yelled in a singsong voice, "Fireworks!, Fireworks for sale." then stepped back and waited, trying not to laugh at his old friend.

Lobelia watched from her window as that horrible gardner tramped all over her beautiful flowers. 
 I wish he'd just stay out of my way, that one. I've seen the way he spies on Old Bilbo. Probably wants to get his hand on the treasure Bilbo's got holed up there. Well, he won't get a silver penny of it. Not if I have my way.
As Lobelia was watching Sam and grumbling to herself, she noticed a cart laden with many strange looking packages go by her window on the way to Bag End. Here eyes narrowed to slits as she watched the cart roll by. 
Aha!! I knew Bilbo was up to something. That old troublemaker never comes around, but to bring some kind of mischeif! I'll warrant those are some of those fireworks of his in the back. Dangerous things they are. Someone could get hurt. Certainly no respectable Hobbit would play around with such things. Hmmmph!!
As an excuse to get a closer look, Lobelia decided to check her mail. She dialed up, waited for the login to finish and heard the familiar words...."You've got mail"....After deleting requests from Southron business men wanting her to open a bank account for them here in Hobbiton, chain letters promising good fortune and money if she would just forward this to everyone in her mail box and invitations to try........oh, wait...no, no, no...this isn't right.....
She decided to check her mail box, she opened her front door and pulled from the mail box a beautiful card with
Gold letters on it. She wondered what it could be.......

At Bag End...

Fireworks?! Gandalf!
He hurried over to the door and opened it for his old friend. "Why, Gandalf! I'm so glad to see you! Come on in, can I get you anything?"

(erm, drat, that was me...logged in as the wrong person... oh well...)

Lobelia and Boromir stand off camera snickering at Bilbo as he quickly changes out of Frodo's wig and costume.
"You know Boromir, in my experience, the costume people on this picture are much better than that. I can't believe they would acidentally dress Bilbo in Frodo's costume, can you?"
Boromir quirked an eyebrow. "Well, actually, I suspect a certain Hobbit pair that might have sweet talked the costume girls into
helping them with a prank."  He eyed Merry and Pippin suspiciously.

Pippin, also off camera heard that last comment and rapidly hid the carrot behind his back.  "Who us?"

Merry shook his head and gave an innocent "Who me?" look. "Nope... I have no idea what they're on about."  He took a last bite of his carrot and tossed the greens over his shoulder, accidentally landing them in Lobelia's hair.

Gandalf thought a moment. A cup of tea would be proper, but a tankard of Old Winyard sounded better. He knew Bilbo had some left that was his father's and should be more than ready to be opened. As he debated with himself, he looked about the hole and spied Thorin's map. It was quite old when Bilbo had had his adventure and now it was quite worn, but Bilbo manged to keep it safe enough. It was lovelingly set safely in a frame.  

He could hear Bilbo running about trying to find munchies to share, as most food in the area was going towards the party. He wasn't hungry, but his mouth was dry from the long drive. When the request was offered again Gandalf said decisively, "Do you have any of Bungo's Winyard left? It's been a long drive and a good drink would do well to wash the dust away."  
Gandalf then attempted to squeeze his lanky frame onto the small bench that really wasn't much bigger than a footstool in a human house. 

Bilbo hustled and bustled around the hole.  
"You kind of caught me unprepared! Here's tea, a bit of cheese, some crackers, bread...yogurt, asparagus from last night, half a pear, a bowl of nuts, a partial sack of Hershey kisses, four boxes of macaroni and cheese, a tub of butter, applesauce, two jars of jam, porridge, a slice of zucchini bread, a jar of spaghetti sauce, five cherry tomatoes, a head of cabbage, olives, a tureen of potato soup, raisin-boxes...a bowl of cornflakes, three slices of nut-cake, carrot-sticks, a small jug of buttermilk, a plate of bratwurst and...oh yes! Meatloaf with a side of mashed potatoes, gravy and all the trimmings!  Sorry, I know it's not much. Just barely a snack, really.  I hope it will tide us over until the party - now that should have a decent amount of food at least.
Did you see how quickly I swung the door shut after you? I've gotten quite good at it.  That thump you heard was just Lobelia bouncing off of it again.  Stubborn creature, she is.  Still after my cutlery, you know.  
Well, tuck in!  Hard to believe this will be my last evening here, but I guess that being as it is, we might as well use up the leftovers.  I'm really ready to retire, Gandalf - and yes, I mean to have my little joke tonight.  
 He sat down and proceeded to inhale the vast majority of what he had heaped on the table, pausing only to insert olives onto his fingers before eating them off, one at a time.

Frodo fetched the book he had left under the tree and headed back, wondering what Bilbo was up to.  He looked left and right, but didn't see Sam anywhere, which was very odd, as Sam always was around somewhere. 
As he headed for the Party Field he admired the tents, lights and cheerful activity, but grew quizzacal when he noticed that every now and then some of the hobbits would suddenly jerk in an odd manner and keel over.  He was finally looking in the right place at the right time and actually saw a huge baking potato bounce off the pate of one party-goer. 

He peered through the gathering twilight toward Bagshot Row. Sure enough, there was the Gaffer. He had disguised himself with greenery and was lurking in the bushes near the entrance, cheerfully amusing himself by shooting potatoes with a homemade slingshot.  
 "Greetings, Master Frodo! And a very happy birthday to you!" he called when he saw he was being watched. "Did ya see that last one? The way his arms flew up and down like a half-plucked chicken? Hee hee hee....I give myself extra points if I can land them in the fires, so we can have baked taters later in the evening. What do you say to that?"
 "Good shot!" said Frodo with admiration. "Your aim has improved. Lobelia been around a lot, has she?"
"Eh, yes, but that's no damper on my spirits tonight, young Master. It's a fine night for a party." He carefully pulled back on his slingshot and lobbed another tuber into the crowd.

Bilbo patted his full stomach and politely burped behind his hand.

"Well, that was a nice snack. It'll do for a while. Come on, Gandalf, let's go out on the porch and blow a few smoke-rings before we go down the hill, shall we?  I've been practicing, I warn you!  Oh, and watch out for potatoes."

Sam walked up behind Frodo. He was rubbing his head and had a potato in his hand. The old Gaffer ducked quickly behind the bushes before Sam could see him. 
"Hello Mr. Frodo. I was wondering where you were. The party is going to start soon and I didn't want you to be late, seeing as it is your party after all." 
 They started walking to one of the tents. "You'd never guess what happened to me today. I think I talked to someone through my mind. I never found out who they actually where. All's they said was thier name was Bill. Now what do you think of that, Mr. Frodo?" 
 Frodo grinned. "I think you may have been hit harder in the head than you might think." 
 Sam just shrugged and took a bite of his potato. 
The stone pebbles in the pathway crumbled and crunched beneath bare hairy feet of a Hobbit.  Now mind you, this was not typical for just any Hobbit.  No, the Hobbit who stomped along resolutely, leaning forward as if into a stiff wind, fists clenched was not a Hobbit who had ever practiced much stealth.   This Hobbit huffed and puffed as the road rose to meet her, cursing it under her breath.  She vowed that if ever things went her way, she would hire someone from Bree to come in and flatten the pathway to HER front door, and maybe even to dig up some of these cursed "weeds" that grew so profusely here at Bag End.  Yes, and besides that, she would make certain that the good-for-nothing lout Samwise would go looking for employment elsewhere.

Taking her eyes off her feet and daring a glance ahead, Lobelia grinned to herself upon seeing just ahead--and still unaware of her approach, Bilbo Baggins himself.  But the wizard Gandalf was there also, legs folded unceremoniously upon the low Hobbit bench at the front door.  A haze of smoke surrounded the two, which drew another pursed frown upon Lobelia's face.
 "Well, let's just see him ignore me THIS time..."  She muttered under her breath, deciding to brave the Wizard to confront her relative...
 "...and I'm coming away with more than silverware!"

Bilbo blew an unusually good smoke-ring and watched as it began to float off into the sunset.  It had little hope of staying whole for long though.  Gandalf's smoke hot-air balloon sailed through it, making it rather too oval.  At least it had stayed together, unlike the previous one that had been blown apart by Gandalf's realistic smoke version of a jumbo jet. 
He carefully puckered and blew one more perfect O.
Somewhere nearby the bushes rustled, but he figured it was just Lobelia again - he figured the Gaffer would soon take her out with one of his top-quality vegetables to her noggin

meanwhile in Lobelia's dressing trailer......

Lobelia double: (to Lobelia, while holding an ice pack to her head) I'm so glad you finally made it. I've been holding your place for you, but man, I'm getting tired of that Gaffer. 
"I'm ever so sorry," groused Lobelia, "but shooting on the witches of Eastwick 2 went longer than I thought, but I'm here now and I'll take over."
Lobelia's double gave her a sour look. "Just watch your back, that Gaffer has a good arm." She got up and headed out the door to the hobbit extras trailer.  "Oh and watch out for those two rascally ones, I don't trust 'em."

Rosie got on her dancing shoes and hoped she could get that ninnyhammer Sam to do more than blush at her when she got to the party.

Pippin hands in pockets whistled a low tune to himself while walking along the hedgerow by the party field and returned casually to the market area and pub. Spotting Merry he pulled him into the shadows by the smithy.
 "Psst! Looksee what I've got...."  he whispered, unfolding a piece of parchment.  "Uh huh, the party tents map. Now this small one between the kitchen marquee and the wash-up tents is the storage."
 Merry nodded, slightly perplexed.
 "And this..." Pippin pullsed a wad of paper from his weskit, "...is the site safety co-ordinator's schedule, and look, Gandalf's fireworks wagon is to be parked betwixt the storage and the wash-up!"

Seeing as Gandalf wasn't being too talkative, Bilbo headed down to the party to welcome the stream of hobbits arriving and to hand out gifts to all and sundry.  He wondered why there were so many potatoes sprinkled around the grounds.
Gandalf brought his cart around to the side and parked it, then fished out a few small fireworks to amuse the children with.

The Old Gaffer loaded up his pockets with spuds and tucked his slingshot into the pocket of his work jacket. He dusted himself off and headed into the festivities, nodding and smiling at his many friends and relatives, and giving an approving look at his Sam when he saw him where he belonged, right by Mister Frodo.  He headed over to the kegs to be sure his best brew was being served properly.

Frodo happily greeted people alongside Bilbo for a while, then decided to head for the tables with a good plate of baked potatoes and mushrooms and a mug of ale.  The music was starting up, and except for the weird notes coming from a horn that appeared to have a potato stuck in the end of it it was quite lively.

:::cut to Rivendell:::
Meanwhile down in the valley, Elrond stood on his balcony surveying his realm, glowing with pride as he watched his beloved elves going about their business. Their business was mainly laying around in the trees or on the ground, watching the leaves grow, drinking wine, and singing, and occasionally attempting to teach inanimate objects to talk. It worked so well with the trees long ages ago, and some elves were determined to keep up the practice, even though so far the rocks weren't talking back -- or at least not in a voice audible to others.
Occasionally an elf would pause and glance up at Elrond, raising their hand in the traditional elvish greeting with fingers splayed in a V. 
 "Live long and prosper," they said to their leader. 
 "Peace and long life," he responded.

Back in the Shire....
Sam, while sitting at a table with his ale in hand, was looking around anxiously. It seemed to be he was looking for someone, but they had not arrived yet. As he looked around, he saw Gandalf's cart, and the pony he had seen earlier. Again, it was staring at him, and Sam didn't quite know why.  
Off in the corner of his eye he saw a figure moving slowly. In fact, it was two figures, Merry and Pippin, and they seemed to be moving towards the cart. Sam decided it would be some sort of mischief so he got up and went to them.

"Why hello! I saw you two over here and had somethin to say. I'm quite alright with that joke you played on me earlier. All in good fun, it was, I presume, and it actually got me and Rosie to talkin. So I'm not too mad at you for it." Sam smiled at them and took a drink of his ale. They both looked like they did not want to hold this conversation any longer. They were going to run out of time. 
 Merry and Pippin were in luck though when Sam felt a shock....and heard Bill talking to him again. Sam stepped aside. 
 "Well hello there Sam! I just wanted to say it is lovely to see you." 
 "Excuse me? I don't believe I have seen you yet." 
 "Why, yes you have! You looked straight at me." 
 "I did? Well, who are you? Where are you?" Sam was genuinely confused. 
 "I'm actually right next to you. I am standing by Gandalf's cart." 
 Sam turned around and saw the pony staring at him. He looked quite horrified. "You're...you're a pony!" he said aloud.  
 Bill nodded his head. "Does that surprise you?" 
 "Well yes, actually. I had always thought ponies had Austrailian accents...not proper British ones." There was a pause. "Wait a second...There's supposed to be a Bill later on....did the other pony not show up?" Sam looked around again and he saw Rosie sitting down at a table. She was talking to Ted Sandyman, but did not look happy.  
 ".....so that's how I got the role of both ponies."  
 Sam clearly had not been listening. "Yeah, sure...thats' great. Hey, um, do you think you could turn off your, um, listening for now....I...have something I need to do." He continued to look off in Rosie's direction. She had her head in her hand, trying not to pay attention to Ted. 
 "Sure! Whatever you say!" He sounded quite cheerful. 
 Sam felt a shock and he gave a sigh of relief. He nodded to the pony and walked in the direction of Rosie.

Startled by a potato that whizzed close overhead, Frodo looked around to comment to Sam and his eyes widened in astonishment.  He realized that the impossible had happened -  Sam was nowhere in sight! He was so tickled at being left "alone" for a moment he felt full of mischief and, like an unwatched toddler, set out to find some trouble to get into. Unfortunately for him, the only thing that happened was Bilbo grabbing him in a mild panic.
 "Psst! The Sackville-Baggins!" Bilbo hissed, his ears flapping like Dumbo's.  "Hide!"  
Frodo was in no mood to face the sour Lobelia and Lotho together at the same time.  He followed Bilbo behind a nearby tent without argument.
Bilbo had spotted them coming from the other side of the field and had tried sprinkling a trail of cheap silverware like a trail of breadcrumbs, to see if they would follow it off into the nearby woods.  He had been most disappointed when this little trick hadn't worked.   

A potato bounced off the tent where he and Frodo were hiding.  He heard a small squichy thump as it ricocheted into Lotho's midriff and he and Frodo smiled at each other. Good aim, that Gaffer.

Lobelia and Lotho meet the Gaffer

After awhile, the nine arrive at the river Isen.  They start looking about confused. 
Witch King:  Hey guys, I think we're a tad early
Attea:  WHAT!  Weren't we going to that hobbit's party
Enquea: Yeah! I wanted some ale, maybe a couple of tasty little hobits.
Cantea: Speak for yourself, I wanted to dance with that Rosie girl. 
Witch King:  Sorry guys, we can't cross yet. 
Otsea: Why not? 
Witch King:  Look at the sign.
The Witch King points to a sign by the river that reads:
"Do not cross until midsummers eve.  - Middle Earth Coast Guard"  
A ship with a bright orange keel and several rapid fire ballistae can be seen sailing up and down the river.
Enquea: Oh well, guess we'll have to go to the disco Saruman built to party.  
Witch King: "Club Evil Wizard" ,  yeah, its a rocking place.
Attea: But all the chicks are orcs! 
Witch King:  Yeah, but it'll have to do.

At Bag End...

Lobelia forgot her exhaustion as she continued climbing the rise toward Bag End when something gleaming and golden on the ground caught her eye.  Gathering her skirts about her heels, she bent down, and peered intently, screwing up her eyes to decipher what lay in the pebbles at her feet.  Leaning closer, she came nose to nose with a mere cheap party trinket, laying forlorn and forgotten trampled in the dust.

"Hmmph!" She sighed, not deeming the bauble worth soiling her fingernails for.  

As she stood straight again, a rush of air zipped by her head, startling her and a large potato fell a few feet before her on the pathway.
  "Well, I'll be...!"  Her eyes widened in surprise but then narrowed with the realization that neither Bilbo nor Gandalf were lazing upon the front doorstep anymore.  She wheeled around, hands on hips expecting to see them behind her, laughing.  Instead she was only in time to see the weeds behind her close back together, as the sound of retreating footfalls came to her ears. All was quiet but for the sound of party preparation in the dale below.

"Well, I've come this far..."  She thought, and continued the short distance to Bilbo's front door.  "Surely they just ducked inside..."
The round regal door of Bag End stood before her, and she didn't hesitate to lean into it with a heavy knock.  To her amazement, the door swung open with the force of her jarring.
And then more shrilly, "Bilbo?"

There was no reply.  Lobelia stood, wringing her hands in her apron, weighing the possibilities before her.  What lay behind the doors of Bag End?  Well, it surely wouldn't be wrong to have a look, now would it?  After all, it was all supposed to belong to her anyway...She took one hesitant step across the doorstop.  What if that dratted wizard was in there?  The thought nearly froze her blood.  There was something quite unnatural about the visitor who dropped in on Bilbo every so often.  But a Hobbit's curiosity will often overcome a Hobbits fear, real and imagined, and soon, her other foot followed and she found herself standing in the entryway of Bag End...

Lobelia smiled to herself.  The wizard and Bilbo had obviously gone to the party...Frodo...well, who knows where that strange boy was.  And Lotho, well, he had things of his own to worry about--what, with his distant cousin, Datura visiting from Archet and wanting to go to the party early and all.

Lobelia clapped her hands in glee..."I'll just take a quick look-see!"  She thought.

Sam, once he got close to where Rosie was seated, became nervous. He decided to change his course over to
the ale tent.
 As he filled his mug, Sandyman was standing nearby, talking to Fatty Bolger. 
"Yeah, she digs me. I'll have that hobbit-lass Rosie in no time. There won't be anyone else she'll want to dance with."
Sam walked away grumbling to himself. Who does he think he is? Actin' like he's all that and a bunch of mushrooms. I'll show him...Rosie will only want to dance with me! But as he neared her seat again, he watched her get up and start dancing....he made his way to his own seat, slightly embarrased, and sipped his brew.
Rosie noticed Sam sitting alone and Sandyman kept stepping on her feet so she went over to Sam and pulled him onto the dance floor.

Bibo had gone to greet his guests at the party. Gandalf was being too quiet, but as a wizard he had many things on his mind and taking the time off for this party was straining the limits of his time. Making the fireworks was no big deal he had many made years prior, but right now he was busy and taking time off wasn't helping. **sigh** A wizard's work was never done.
Gandalf got up and went off to get a few last minute things done that would allow him to truely relax this night and enjoy himself as he had not done since he couldn't remember when. So, he missed seeing Lobelia sneak up the walk and into Bag End.
Gandalf finished his wizard stuff and went to start his job at the party in the visual entertainment dept. aka he needed to get the fireworks going. He was already late, though he'd never tell anyone, hobbit or otherwise that he was late - for anything!
As he shot off one firework after another, he realized he had not been sorry to use magic on his smoke rings earlier. Plain old smoke rings were a bore and Bilbo had been looking forward to some new designs as he could now make quite large and sturdy round ones.  Gandalf quite enjoyed himself with them. It took precision timing to get his smoke desgins to pop thru Bilbo's before they disappeared, but still large enough to get his picture thru. It had been a marvelously fine evening for smokerings and also for fireworks. He chuckled as he thought of the one he had saved for later. He thought about their reaction to it - he couldn't help but smile and then gave into the pleas of some of the younger hobbits. After the last firework from this pile was set off he joined the dancing in front of the music platform. 
After Lotho had staggered past their hiding place, clutching his stomach and rubbing his head even as yet another tuber  bounced off his derriere,  Frodo and Bilbo had slipped back into the crowd to continue with the party. They wondered where Lobelia had gone - it wasn't like her to leave Lotho wandering around without her somewhere nearby.  
Frodo headed back towards his seat but found in his absence someone else had eaten everything and cleared his dishes away. Sam was there, eyeing Rosie Cotton shyly, so he had decided to help out a bit by suddenly propelling Sam into her arms when she came by.  The look on his face was priceless.
 He wondered where Merry and Pippin had got to...the birthday cake was about to be brought in, and he hoped they wouldn't miss out on it. Ted Sandyman, standing nearby, suddenly let out a "yawp!" and sat down heavily. Two large potatoes came to rest nearby.
He looked around and spotted the Gaffer lurking just behind the edge of the nearby tent. He gave him a thumbs-up sign which was acknowledged with a grin.

Bilbo, seeing the huge cake being topped off with the last of  its candles, began to work his way through the large crowd. Almost time for his speech...and his little joke....
Gandalf's fireworks just kept getting bigger and better - he'd really enjoyed the ones that had looked like Thorin's Nose blowing sparks, and the Keg of Ale with leaks of sparkling golden "drops" going into flaming purple mugs! No one could make 'em like Gandalf, no sirree...

Merry hovered in the tent where all the food was being prepared, recounting the candles on the cake.
"Um... I think we don't need this one." 

He pulls off a candle and licks the frosting at the bottom of it, then checks around him to make sure no one is looking and places the candle back onto the cake.  Once all the candles were accounted for, he began the process of lighting them.

 Lobelia stepped fully inside the threshhold of Bag End, pushing the door closed with a soft 'click'.  It took a moment for her eyes to adjust as the only light inside was the dimming sunlight through dusty panes and the glow of untended fireplaces.  So this was Bag End.  She shuffled through the passageways, re-arranging furniture in her mind, discarding useless heirlooms and making a mental checklist of things that were of value.  Surprisingly to her, however was the fact that Bilbo seemed to have little obvious wealth.  Sure, his Hobbit-hole was one of the largest anywhere, but it was packed tight with things of little use to most Hobbits.  And these things were strewn about the rooms with no thought for decorum or neatness.

This was truly a bachelor's home, and had obviously been that for every bit of his one-hundred and eleven years.  Books by the thousands gathered dust and silverfish on the floor, on the shelves, on the mantles.  And what's more--many of those books were rendered even more useless by the fact that they were written in pure gibberish!  Incomprehensible letters filled the volumes, some blocky and angular, others reminiscent of the flowing forms of leaves and vines.  Surely they could be no alphabet at all!   Inkwells and writing instruments accompanied these books and Lobelia counted no less than ten desks devoted to the writing pursuit, each with stacks of papers, maps and volumes arranged tastelessly around.  The books she could read snippets of were of completely boring topics like children's stories of dragons and kings.  Nothing useful and practical like a planting guide or (she didn't find any) geneaologies.  One book was even ruined by the accidental tipping of an inkwell, though no effort had been made to salvage the writings.

A large array of walking sticks lined the wall of one room; Lobelia turned her nose up at them, "Certainly most un-Hobbitlike indeed!" She sniffed.

But the famous wealth of Bilbo eluded her, and she became a bit upset, finding nothing she could secret beneath her apron and show to Lotho later.  

The first seven of Bilbo's storage trunks revealed nothing but moth-ball scented clothing.  She had just about given up on looking through another when a small strangely decorated trunk caught her eye.  The remaining light of the set sun filtered into the room, a soft beacon illuminating the corner where the trunk lay as an invitation.  She was in the farthest pantry down the right wing, and this little iron-bound trunk seemed curiously out of place.  Looking about her, Lobelia stooped down and lifted the lid...

Down in the Party Field...

The Old Gaffer, missing his favorite target, looked in vain for Lobelia Sackville-Baggins.  He lobbed off a couple more almost randomly and winced slightly as one lodged itself deeply in Mr. Bilbo and Mr. Frodo's birthday cake.

Glancing back up the Hill, he noticed a shadow move past one of the windows of Bag End.  So that's what the old bag was up to, was she?  He headed for his garden to assemble an appropriate lot of vegetables for this situation, then crept up the Hill.

Carefully reaching over to light the last candle on the cake, Merry was suddenly hit from a blast of cake topping that covered his face when a potato unsuspectingly buried itself into the cake's side.  He snuffed the match, wiped his eyes, surveyed the potato's damage, then proceeded to walk off innocently licking his fingers.
Sam continued to blush shyly as he danced with Rosie. All the time he was thinking, "Am I really dancing with Rosie? Is this happening to me?" all thought with a silly grin on his face. 
As the current song ended, and all be came fairly quiet, Sam looked down at Rosie's feet. On the toes, was a nice shade of Rosie-pink. He stuttered to his words. "Tha-at color on, on your feet looks lovely on you misstress R-Rose." She gave him a warm smile with a twinkle in her eye as the music started up again and they continued to dance.

Sam was in heaven...especially when he caught a glimpse of Sandyman's sour face....though, that could just be from the recent potato that smashed his foot.

Pippin slipped into hiding in a certain tent... "I'm here, the wagons outside loaded with fireworks, and where in the Shire is Merry!"
He paced back and forth nervously.

Gandalf wasn't dancing any longer, nor was he setting off any fireworks; he was relaxing in a corner with a tiny (for a human) mug of ale and his pipe. There was just something about being in The Shire and at a party that was a balm to his soul.
He tried to remember that last time he felt this relaxed and he could only think of the tea party he set up at Bag End that fateful Spring day sixty years ago. He laughed to himself thinking of Bilbo's response to 13 dwarves (with appropriate breaks) showing up on his doorstep.  Ahh those were the days...

In Bag End...

Lobelia caught her breath as the trunk lid opened, revealing the glimmer of silver metal inside.  She hastily delved her hands into the container, but pulled them out twice as quick, for her fingers had been knicked by something sharp.  Cursing under her breath, she
grabbed her hand, and wrapped it in her apron.  

"...Be a bit more careful..."  She reminded herself, though it was hard for such a simple Hobbit to resist the lure of loot recovered from a Dragon in days long past.  The spell of greed still lingered and called strongly to Lobelia's nature.  She rifled through the trunk (a bit more cautiously this time) and to her great disappointment, found no gold, no coins--not even any silverware!  Instead, the only other thing in the small trunk was a coif (or so it seemed to her) wrought of tiny interlocking silver rings.  What use could that be?  No one in their right mind would go about wearing metal, now would they?  And wouldn't their hair get irretrievably stuck in the rings?  Lobelia sniffed haughtily, not deeming anything in the trunk of any value and slammed it shut.

It was very late...the party would have started long ago, and Lobelia was beginning to feel the pangs of a much more urgent nature to a Hobbit...HUNGER!  It was one of the few things that could take her mind off of her greed, although I suppose you could say that hunger is a certain greed all its own.

As she stood, she froze with fear, thinking she had heard a voice.  Would Bilbo leave his party so soon?  She cocked her head to the side...there it was again.  For some unexplainable reason, it gave her cold chills, and she immediately wished for a light, and maybe even the dagger from the trunk at her feet.  There it was again...a voice, disembodied Coming from nowhere and everywhere at once.

Lobelia screamed with fright and raced down the darkened hallway, tripping over books and laundry and boots and planting pots.  The fireplaces were black now, no more sun shone through the rounded windows; she could barely find her way through the house.  A loud explosion shook Bag End, and bright sparks silhouetted frightening shapes of twisted trees and plants through the windows.  She screamed again as she saw through the window, a giant fiery red dragon headed directly for her.  This was all quite too much for Lobelia, and she nearly dropped to the floor then and there.  But as you may know, Hobbits are hardy folk, and in a pinch, show some pretty sturdy stuff.  Lobelia screamed anyway, feeling no more need for stealth, but continued running. Straight out of Bag End she ran, howling all the way, and straight down Bag End Drive, hardly stopping to check on the health of the Gaffer after running him down in her haste.  

 But many rotten tomatoes and one large cantaloupe rolled after her down the hill.

The Old Gaffer sat on the ground, a bit stunned by having had Lobelia plow right over him that way.  He felt around in the dark for his hat, rammed it back onto his head and stumped back down towards the party, muttering about females....

The cake smouldered and smoked with candles dripping as it was hoisted up and carried along from the bakery tent towards the table that awaited it by the Party Tree.  A small trail of frosting blobs followed in its wake, being eaten by children and childlike adults as they fell. 
 Frodo looked around for Bilbo, figuring if any birthday speech had to be made, he would rather get out of doing it by letting Bilbo take that chore.

In Barad-Dur...

Sauron takes a few drops of a huge bottle of Murine to clear his sight of his lidless eye, scorched like fire with bloodshot lightning bolts across his cornea.   It burns for an eternal moment....
 With his one Cycloptic eye, he sees the explosion and chuckles to himself with malevolent glee...

In Hobbiton...

The music stops momentarilly as the cake nears the stage. Bilbo will be giving his speech soon so everyone goes to their seats, maybe grabbing food or a pint on the way. Rosie gives Sam a smile before she sits down. Sam blushes.
 He looks around, trying to find Frodo.
 "Ah! There he is." Sam rushes to the table, quie excitedy.

"Mr. Frodo! Frodo! You'll never believe it! I actually danced with Rosie! Mistress Rose herself! Me and her! Can you believe it?!" Sam plops down on a chair, with a silly grin on his face, staring off into nothing, as he lets out a huge sigh. 
Every once Sam would let out a little sigh or a murmer like "I can't believe it. I danced with Rosie!" and then would let out another sigh or even a squeal...Frodo just sat there laughing at his friend's obsession and excitement.

Bilbo was pleased with the way things were turning out overall. The cake was as huge as could be managed even by a hobbit
bakery, though the potatoes adorning it were a curious topping. He chuckled to himself. No, they wouldn't soon forget this.  The cake was beginning to burn lower and lower and starting to smoke, so he figured he better get to the speech.
Clearing his throat, he stepped up on a box to be seen a little better and all eyes turned to him, most of them reluctantly
as they expected he would be quite long-winded. He noticed Frodo, sitting with Sam and briefly wondered where Merry and Pippin had got to, as it seemed they were always there too. He was glad Frodo had his friends to support him; He would be fine, Bilbo thought, trying to reassure himself - yes, he would be just fine. He didn't need to travel or have adventures - he could
leave that up to Bilbo.
 He fingered the Ring in his pocket and began to speak. "My dear people..."

 "Hear! Hear!" they shouted and kept repeating this, as they did not want to take their own advice. 
 "Hear! Hear! Hear! Hear! Hear! Hear! Hear! Hear!"

 "My dear Bagginses and Boffins..."

 "Hear! Hear! Hear! Hear! Hear! Hear! Hear! Hear!"

 Bother, thought Bilbo - this is ridiculous!

"My dear Tooks and Brandybucks (ah- there they were! The wizard had them
scrubbing dishes!), Grubbs and Chubbs, Burrowses and Hornblowers, Bolgers,
Bracegirdles, Goodbodies..."

 "Hear! Hear! Hear! Hear! Hear! Hear! Hear!"

 "Brockhouses and Proudfoots."

"PROUDFEET!" thundered an eldery Proudfoot, finally putting a stop to the "hear hear-ing" His feet were HUGE and HAIRY and both in the middle of someone else's plate. 
 Bilbo suddenly decided to just get to the point and be done with it.

"I don't drink half of this ale half as well as I should like, and I eat less than half of this cake half as well as I deserve. It is my cake, after all."
 They all stared at him, completely boggled.
 "Well, I have things to do. I regret to announce that this is THE END. I am GOING NOW. GOODBYE!!!"

He went to slip on the Ring, but it jumped from his fingers and he dropped it. They all stared mutely at him as he suddenly stopped speaking and began to scrabble about madly in the grass. 
"Lost a contact?" one ventured.
"Dropped his slice of cake?" wondered another.
"What a strange time to start doing your aerobic exercises," thought a third. 
"He's cracked - I always said so," Ted Sandyman muttered.
Bilbo found the Ring, which was rolling away through the grass, squeaking like mad to think it had finally gotten away from him. He pinned it to the ground and wrestled it, protesting, back into his pocket, then stood up, brushing himself off, to face the crowd again.
 "Eh...as I was saying. I'm going now. GOODBYE!" He tried again and this time succeeded, disappearing completely. The hobbits shrieked, gaped, gasped, fainted, applauded, cried, hooted or snored, according to their present state of mind.

Gandalf had been eyeing  Bilbo as he went through his speech, and was beside himself when he realized what Bilbo's "joke" was.  "Stupid Hobbit," he thought. He was already striding forward to put a stop  to what was going to happen when it happened!
With a growl that startled the hobbits near enough to hear it and sober enough to realize who made the noise, the old man pulled his beard and stomped off. He debated just leaving then and there wiping his hands of the whole mess when a big fat raindrop hit him in the face. "To The void with what you want, Ulmo!" he whispered fiercely. "These foolish Hobbits will be the death of me. Pulling foolish pranks, with evil lurking who-knows-where and his ring possibly being The Ring - the one that we've been searching for millenia..." Gandalf's protestations slowly trailed away into frustrated mutterings as his feet lead the rest of him up the hill and into Bilbo's wine cellar. He hands of thier own accord grabbed a bottle of Bilbo's best before his feet, led him to a low chair in the living room where they stopped. 
 Nothing left to do, but have a drink, calm down and wait.

Sam sat there looking slightly startled and confused.  He felt a shock.

"Now what in Middle Earth was that??" he heard Bill, um, think. Sam was just wondering the same thing.
 "I don't know Bill, that was mighty strange. I think, Mr.Bilbo, he, he.....he disappeared!" Sam shook his head.
 "Maybe I've just had a bit too much ale."

 He looked down at his mug and set it down on the table. "I think I'm done with that for now." As he looked around, Sam saw people leaving and decided it was time for him to go too. After all, there was only one birthday hobbit left, and Sam didn't even know where he was.
Sam watched Rosie go off with her brothers. As he caught her glance, he smiled afterward as she waved at him.
"Mr. Bilbo may be invisible for a while, but right now, nothin could bother me!" Sam smiled.
"Ah! You fancy her, do ya?"
Sam jumped. He had forgotton that Bill was still listening. He gave an annoyed sigh. "Yes, that's right. Hey, um, Bill?
How do you do that? Turn on and off your listening, I mean."
"All's I do is think, Hello Sam! to talk to you, and think Goodbye, to turn it off."
"Would that work for me too?"
"Well yes, I guess it would, if you think Hello Bill, that is."
 Sam gave a sigh of relief. "Ok, well, then I think I will be turning it off now."
"Alright, Sam. It was good talking to you!"

 "Goodbye, Bill."
He felt a different type of shock. Now that he knew how to turn it on and off, he wouldn't mind talking to Bill a bit more. Just not now...he had too much to think about.

Frodo was caught up in the middle of placating unhappy guests, handing out portions of partially charred birthday cake and trying to answer questions about Bilbo's strange behavior. He found himself repeating and repeating "I'm so sorry you were upset by it, I'm sure everything will be settled by morning."  

Because of all this hubbub, it was a while until he realized he hadn't seen Gandalf ever since Bilbo's disappearance - nor Sam either.  As soon as he could, he thoroughly searched the tents but found no trace of any of them, though Gandalf's pony and cart were still standing where he had left them.

In Orthanc...

Saruman stumbled over some ancient tomes and mumbled some Black Speech curse words that were unprintable but apropos. Among them he noted his Julia Child's recipe book, stained with centuries of food splatters, orc droppings, and spittle.  
He lifted the cover off the Great Seeing Stone,  hoping to catch the next edition of Cooking with Orcs on Wiz-o-TV.  Awaiting the vision,  he watched as the murky and swirling with dark grey clouds and static grew gradually clearer.
"Friends!" it chimed. " Do you have rabbity like Hobbits swarming over your perfectly good farming land? Don't they multiply overnight when you're not looking? Well get rid them all with Hobbity-B-Gon! 
"Remember! Just spray it on - - and they're GONE!" 

"Stupid  infomercial," he muttered.  The Palantir made a dent in the north wall from Saurmans' roundhouse underhanded bowling throw. "That's going to need some spackling...," he grumbled.
Back in Bag End...

Bilbo was very pleased with all of the facial expressions he got to see as he worked his way through the crowd back to Bag End. He took the opportunity to give Lotho a good invisible kick in the pants on his way by.  Chuckling, he trotted up the path and slipped inside his front hallway.  He slipped off the Ring and started to put it into an envelope, but slipped it into his pocket instead. 
All he needed to do was gather up a few small things to add to the U-Haul cart he had waiting by the back gate and he would be off!   

 He headed into the parlour to nab his knapsack and book. 
 "BOO!" said Gandalf.
 aiiiiiiiigh!! cried Bilbo, almost wetting himself.

Sam stood next to Bill offstage chuckling to himself as Lotho walked off the set, grumbling to himself and
walking kinda funny.    He took a bite of his potato as Lotho walked passed him.

In Rivendell...

Aragorn had reached Rivendell several days ago, but, as Arwen was off at her grandmother's place, he had not had
anyone much to talk to. 

Wandering along 'yet another ridiculously beautiful hallway' (I guess immortals have time to stop and admire hallways) , he bumped right into Glorfindel.
 "Oh! Hello there Aragorn!" he said.
 "Glorfindel! Nice to see ya, man! How have you been?"
 "Aw, just fine," the elf said as the two walked outside, "And I've got something to show you."
 Glorfindel led Aragorn down to the stables. 

"You see," he explained, "Arwen kept stealing my horse and running off all over the place. I tried making her stop. I talked to Elrond and he tried making her stop, but then she took him to Lothlorien!" The elf shook his head in despair, but he was still smiling faintly.
 "What's so funny?" Aragorn asked.
 Glorfindel grinned. "Well, now that my old horse is gone..."
 "I got him from a 'used elven horse' dealer, you know."
 "What's that got to do with anything?"
 "Well, he wasn't the best horse in the west, sooo..."
 "I got a new one!" The elf nearly yelled, throwing open the doors and revealing a shining white horse with black stockings. 
 "Ooo!" Aragorn said.

"Yep. Top o' the line, he is. Named Shadowfax Jr. by the breeder, but he was some sort of nutty elf. I mena, since when do elves live in Rohan? Anyways, I renamed him Asfaloth."
 Aragorn stroked the horses mane.
 Asfaloth nickered softly out loud. Then thought,
 Bill the Pony! Come in, Bill.
 Bill, hello? I- what the...talking about someone named Rosie- Rosie? What in the name of wonder...Bill?

Haldir walked....no went gliding gracefully (as Elves do) along the path in Rivendell as the amber leaves danced about him they silently drifted to the (middle) earth below . Haldir caught a glimpse of Glorfindel and Aaragorn in the stable as he approached.......and was suddenly buried under a huge pile of lovely amber leaves (no longer dancing)...........and Haldir (NOT impressed...this was NOT in the script)......could faintley hear the snicker of a Dwarf somewhere above the stage and he distinguished the words "so loud you could've shot me in the dark......hahaha.....who's laughing now glow in the dark boy!"
Haldir regained his composure ( a good Elf is never rattled) and greeted Glorfindel and Aaragorn in the standard Elvish fashion   "Mae Govannen (really means Wassuuuup!)..Glorfindel Son Of  Gilligan and Aaragorn Son Of Asfaloth....I mean Artichoke.....I mean Action Man (Haldir wrestles his foot out of his mouth).........Imladris is truly beautiful this time of year is it not?"
  .........Glorfindel and Aragorn nodded their approval as Haldir walked nay glided gracefully away (as Elves do)........muttering to himself "But Caras Galathon is still the centre of Elvendom in Middle Earth"
In Hobbiton...

 In the background a Hobbit with a stain in his pants can be seen pulling a U-Haul cart with a sticker on the back that says "Honk If Your Hobbity!". The word "Precious" can be heard in the distance.

Bill perked up his ears. Asfaloth? Is that you old buddy? How nice to hear from you again! Was just talkin to my friend Sam, but he's off to bed now. So, you're finaly owned now, huh? Well that's good! So why the sudden message?....Nothing bad I hope....... Bill listens....Uh huh....uh huh...oh, really?...........yeah, sure...oh! tell me more about that, will ya?.........

At his farm on the edge of the Marish, Farmer Maggot sat on his doorstep sharpening his scythe, muttering sadistic plans for any trespassers he might catch on his property. A quiet, observant, unassuming hobbit who consorts with the likes of Tom Bombadil and whatever passing Elves or Dwarves come down the road by his land, Farmer Maggot has been pushed over to the dark side by the recent raids on his crops by some nefarious young Bucklanders. As everyone knows, hobbits are friendly, hospitable, generous folks, but when their food supplies are threatened they can turn real ugly. Farmer Maggot didn't mind sharing a meal with his friends on occasion, but he preferred to know in advance what was to be on the menu and have a hand in issuing the invitation for it.

"Young hoodlums," he muttered, "don't know what the Shire's coming to. Thought we'd finally see some peace after that dratted Frodo Baggins finally left for Hobbiton, stinking little mushroom pilferer, but darned if there isn't a new batch of rascals to do enough mischief to make up for him."
Nearby his dogs Grip, Fang, Killer, Cujo, Fluffy, and Mephistopholes drool and snarl. They look up from sharpening their fangs on the remains of previous trespassers only long enough to snap at passing butterflies, Fluffy's three heads occasionally snapping each other by mistake.
 Farmer Maggot kept making plans under his breath with an occasional exclamation between mutterings as new ideas occured to him. "Concrete shoes... mutter mutter ....Cyanide.. ..mutter mutter.. ....T.N.T... ..mutter, mutter.. ....HIGH VOLTAGE!!!"

Oh, there you are, Bill. The urgent message? Oh, it's just something Shadowfax asked me to relay to you.
He heard that you were somehow in the Shire. you were just with Sam, sooo, I take it that is correct?

Well, Shadowfax seems to have taken a fancy to this Gandalf person you're currently with. He wants to know if you oculd, say, get a 'lame' leg or something if he takes you anywhere near Rohan. Yeah, I know, he's a glory hound, but whatever. You got all that?

In Rivendell...
 Aragorn and Glorfindel waited until Haldir was out of hearing distance. Then they burt out laughing.
 "Did you see that look on his face? *snirkle*" Aragorn said. Glorfi right out laughed.
 "He had leaves all over his hair and there he was strutting along...hee hee hee." 
 Haldir suddenly popped around the corner,glaring.
 "You were saying?" 
"Uh, heh heh, nothing." they chorused.


*After eating her fill of the buffet cart Shelob decided that it was time she took up her residence in her lair once again. And so she scurried off, leaving the rest of the cast one of the carts legs just incase they got peckish.* 
"Not fair for me to eat the whole thing . . . . "

*She quickly changed her mind and ran back to fetch it! Then once again she was on her way to her lair. When she got there she disovered a small pink pig with a web above it, with the word wonderful woven into it.*
 "Huh? what in He that can not be named name?"

*An extremely agitated Peter Jackson run on set and tapped her, she swung round barely missing the poor ickle pig! She apologised and then turned all her attention on her Director.*
 "Uh yea, you got here a bit earlier than we expected, this is Wilbur" he gestured towards the pig, who waved politely.
 "Umm they borrowed our set so they could film Charlotte's Web"
 Shelob didnt know the story, but nodded anyway.
 "They should have been finished a while ago, uh"

Shelob nodded but decided that she would make sure they finished now.She waved PJ off, and then faced the pig. In one gulp she swallowed him, contemplating the web and its message.
 "wonderful she agreed"
 Then she glanced at the Charlotte's Web crew to let them know they were finished just before she settled back into her lair once more. But still the smell of pork haunted her!

In Barad-Dur...

Sauron put down his copy of Charlotte's Web on his dresser, next to the picture of his son Darth Vader, and choked back a tear coming out of his Cycloptic, firey, unrepentant,  bloodshot eye. He reached for the giant economy size Murine again, a foul drip came out and landed on his pupil, and the Lidless Eye in agony tried to blink. It burned.
"Darn it to Morgoth!" he exclaimed, and went back to pondering how to take over Middle Earth.

In Hobbiton...

Gandalf didn't have to be quite so pushy, muttered Bilbo to himself as he picked up the handle for his U-Haul Cart and began hauling it towards Rivendell.  He'd never seen the old wizard so grouchy about such a small thing...such a little thing....
He'd given Gandalf the last of his good pipeweed, as a goodwill gesture anyway, but was really regretting leaving the Ring behind.  He could hear it's pathetic little squeaks, all muffled in that envelope still.   He wiped away a sympathetic tear and sniffled a little.  How inhumane! How terrible! To seal up such a pretty, shiny little innocent ring in a thick, stuffy, scratchy paper envelope like that!  It just...wasn't....right.
He stumped on down the road, his wagon creaking behind him.  He'd half a mind to turn back, but
was afraid Gandalf would turn green and blow the door off his hobbit hole if he did.  Better to keep on going.   The sounds of the party faded behind him as he walked out of the story for a while.

The Old Gaffer took a thoughtful bite of potato, then set about clearing tables. Still a couple more hours until he would need to get his wheelbarrow to haul away any leftover party guests.  Most of them had recovered from Bilbo's strange disappearance fairly quickly and were wallowing in the goodies and ale again. 

Frodo tried going back and forth over the field, waving his arms but hadn't bumped into anything invisible, so he gave orders for two more large kegs to be broached and headed for Bag End while the mob descended with their mugs in hand.   

The door was slightly ajar. He opened it. "Bilbo? Bilbo?" 
There was a resounding snore.

He peered into the front parlor where he found not Bilbo but Gandalf, sound asleep and snoozing in front of the warm fire.   He had a note pinned to his hat.  
 "Gone to stay with the Elves. The clean socks are in the middle drawer. Remember to use up that old jug of milk before you open the new one.  Don't slam the doors.  Eat your vegetables.  Floss regularly.  Don't talk to strangers.  Remember, a penny saved is a penny earned.  And above all, don't meddle in the affairs of wizards, or go to the Elves for advice.  -  Bilbo"
He wondered if waking a wizard up was meddling with one.

In Rivendell...

Elrond was interrupted in his glorying over his elvish domain (and snickering behind his hand as Haldir stomped by picking leaves out of his hair) by a beeping from Vilya. "Hello, you've reached the Last, or First, Homely House, depending on which direction you're going," he said to the ring. "This is Elrond speaking."
"Hello, Mr. Elrond," a voice said from the ring, "I just wanted to let you know we will no longer need your services as Rex the sheepdog's voice in that upcoming Babe sequel sequel. The actor contracted to play Babe had an, um, unfortunate accident on the Charlotte's Web set. We've had to scrap the whole thing. Thank you for your interest in our project."
"But, but ..." Elrond spluttered, "I have a contract, you can't just back out now! Get another pig! Surely there's more than one pig in this business!" Elrond paused for a moment with a peculiar expression at the thought of what he'd just said, then continued in a more wheedling tone, "Look, surely we can make some other arrangement, I really need  this job. Do you have any idea how expensive it is to feed all these jobless, homeless elves? Singing and being good-looking doesn't put lembas on the table, you know," his voice rising to a shriek as he really got into his rant, but as he paused for breath he realized he was talking to an empty line.

In Bag End...

The wizard remained soundly asleep, even after Frodo had gotten bold enough to jiggle his shoulder and call to him softly.  If anything, his snores got louder. 
Unable to carry him to a bed, even if he had owned a bed large enough to fit him, Frodo tucked a blanket around him and resigned himself to wearing earplugs if he was going to get any sleep himself that night.

An envelope on the mantlepiece caught his eye - mostly because it was wiggling and bumping about.  It also emitted small, muffled squeaks.  Could it be.....? Nah.....Bilbo would never leave that behind!  Not his pet Mexican Jumping Bean collection! It must be that Ring then.

Lobelia returned to her very own Hobbit Hole, feeling positively flummoxed.  The terror of the unknown faceless voice in Bilbo's home wasn't easily erased from her memory, and it sent her to shivers whenever she recalled it.  Black it was, black and quivery and
crookedly cold like old Ted Sandyman's eyes.
 Oh, how she wished Lotho wouldn't invite him over to tea again! 

She sat down heavily in her favourite chair by the fireplace (after locking every bolt and bar on her door, or course--and even the shutters!) and she sighed.  No, her Hobbit Hole wasn't so bad...after all, there were no frightening voices floating around, and there was plenty of Lotho's pipeweed and even an uncorked keg of ale to be had here...
So she filled a tall mug and lit a long pipe and proceeded to try her luck with smoke rings, presently forgetting her upset.  Her demeanor was replaced with one more characteristic to her--jealousy.  Oh, how she wished she could blow smoke rings like that dratted wizard!

Gandalf knew perfectly well Frodo was back from the party, but after the terrible time he had he decided he was not going to answer and he pretended to be asleep. Frist, some of his best fireworks got stolen, then Bilbo put the ring on AND in front of all these people. He really should have known better, the silly hobbit. Then he tripped over his own robes trying to get back here unnoticed - twice! Good thing he'd left his staff in the hall or he would have made a real clatter on those stones the second time. 

When he finally got back to BagEnd, he found Bilbo laughing about the look on Lotho's pimply face after he'd kicked him a good one on the rump as the little sneak was trying to leave without so much as a farewell. Putting the Jumping Beans in an envelope thinking to distract him, was a good idea, but foolish. Any fool, even a Took would have noticed the difference. 
After pulling Bilbo back inside by the collar and fighting with him about the difference between Rings and Jumping Beans he was in just no mood to deal with the silly hobbit any more. He'd practically had to wrestle the golden thing out of Bilbo's pocket and into the envelope it was now sqeaking about in! Bilbo had been so unreasonable, that Gandalf even tried putting a spell on Bilbo to stop him from putting up a fight, ignoring his yells about thieves. But after all the ale at the party he only succeeded in setting fire to his hat and his staff to jumping about the floor like a pogo stick; he gave up.
 So now, after setting the ring on the mantle after his quick switch with the Jumping Beans,  putting out the fire in his hat and calming his staff, he was not in the mood for Frodo's questions. He kept up his snoring til Frodo ambled down the hall to his room. Eventually he did really fall asleep in front of the fading fire.

The Gaffer had had a late night of it, with all the clean up and clearing away of drunken guests.  The cartload of them had been trundled off in the direction of town and he was finally able to put out the last of the fires and get some well-deserved rest.  Sam had been a great help to him, and was also a bit late in rising because of it. 

He breathed in a deep breath of the cool morning air and set about cleaning up the field as various folks arrived to take down the tents and to pack up the (empty) kegs and boxes. 
Where was Samwise? He needed to rouse that boy and get him up to Bag End - that grass around the verge needed clipping and no doubt Lobelia's skulking had ruined a few of the branches on the smaller bushes. 
Frodo, faced with a pile of presents that Bilbo had left behind, wasn't in the mood to deal with it that morning. He had finally decided to just take the tags off of them, and to keep it all for himself.  Much easier that way, and he doubted anyone would knowthe difference.  He bolted the door and had a leisurely tea with Gandalf instead.