Linaewen Tries to Change the Subject

by Linaewen

Linaewen is pacing the room, notebook and pen in hand. Every now and then, she writes a phrase, then scribbles it out. She grows more and more agitated. Finally she throws the notebook across the room and throws up her hands in despair.

Lin: (muttering) That Boromir! He's spoiled me! I am no longer capable of writing anything unless it has to do with him! I'd be happy to write something -- anything -- that doesn't come back around to him... but I can't!

Linaewen sighs heavily, then sits at her desk, with her head in her hands.

Lin: I can't write a story that doesn't have Boromir in it, and all poetry ends up being about him! I tried so hard to write an object poem about something different, like Aragorn's boots, or Barliman's apron... But no! Aragorn's boots turned into Boromir's, and Barliman's apron never got out of the kitchen!

Suddenly, Boromir's voice is heard, coming from the depths of the Lazy Boy recliner on the other side of the room.

Boromir: Apron? What apron?

Linaewen leaps up and runs to the chair. Boromir is there, looking as though he just woke up from a sound sleep.

Lin: What are you doing here? You're supposed to be dead.

Boromir: I know that! You did not think I would stay dead, did you? Did I not tell you, I am indestructible?

Lin: (sighing) You did tell me... several times.

Boromir: (jumping out of the recliner and stretching) Did you miss me?

Lin: (irritably) Of course I missed you! Even though it's only been a day or two! Why do you think I am acting so cranky?

Boromir: (smiling happily) So what is this about an apron? Why did you want to write about Barliman's apron instead of about me?

Lin: It was the furthest thing from a Boromir topic I could think of! But I couldn't go anywhere with it. That's the problem, of course. When I try to think of anything myself, I get stuck. But when you think of things, then the ideas start flying.

Linaewen retrieves her notebook.

Lin: Since you're here, make yourself useful. Help me think of something to write for Gimli Day. Something that does not involve you, if possible.

Boromir: (looking thoughtful) That will not be easy, but I will do my best to aid you. Perhaps if I suggest a few topics, one of them might inspire you.

Lin: Good idea! (She opens her notebook to the page she had been trying to work on.) Okay, I'm ready. Shoot!

Boromir looks at her crossly.

Boromir: No reminders of recent events, please.

Lin: Sorry!

Linaewen looks at the partial list she has already prepared and crosses off "Uruk-hai battle." Boromir starts pacing the room, frowning in concentration.

Boromir: Orcs...

Lin: Orcs... good topic! (She writes down "Orcs," then adds "Uruk-hai" beside it in small printing so that Boromir won't notice.) Go on.

Boromir: Cave troll...

Linaewen scribbles it down, nodding, then starts to giggle. She covers her mouth with her hand but cannot stop herself from laughing.

Boromir: (crossly) Why are you laughing? There is nothing funny about a cave troll!

Lin: I know, I know, but I can't help it. I always laugh at that line of yours! "They have a cave troll!" You looked so disgusted!

Boromir: I was, indeed!

Linaewen notices the disgusted look on Boromir's face and goes off into gales of laughter.

Boromir: (frowning fiercely) It was a very serious moment. You should not laugh about it.

Lin: Right, sorry. (Composes herself with difficulty) Go on!

Boromir: (with one more cross look at Linaewen) Dragon...

Lin: Hmmm... It's been done, but there might be something there for Gimli.

Boromir: Wargs...

Lin: I begin to detect a pattern here! I imagine these ideas all involve fighting of some kind?

Boromir: (shrugging) It is what I do best.

Lin: True, but this isn't supposed to be about you. Try to think of something different.

Boromir: As you wish, I care not. (Furrows his brow in intense concentration) Galadriel?

Linaewen, nodding, writes it down, then reads through her list. She pauses, then starts to write down some notes. Boromir does not notice, attempting desperately to come up with more ideas.

Boromir: Bilbo? Buried treasure? Dwarf women?

Boromir falls silent as he realizes Linaewen is not listening to him. She is writing furiously, and smiling with satisfaction.

Boromir: (coming to look over her shoulder) So, you have thought of something? Tell me, what will you write about Gimli?

Linaewen begins to read what she is writing, then stops suddenly, and throws her notebook down in disgust.

Lin: It's not about Gimli, it's about you! Oh, it's hopeless!

Boromir picks up the notebook, and reads through what Linaewen has written. He smiles slowly, and looks pleased. He glances at Linaewen out of the corner of his eye. She is scowling at him, but he is unconcerned.

Boromir: (taking Linaewen's arm and directing her to the recliner) Shall we look at this idea more closely? It has some merit for a story...

Lin: But Gimli Day! What about Gimli Day?

Boromir: (soothingly) There will be plenty of time for that. 

He settles Linaewen in the recliner, and perches on the arm of the chair, notebook in hand.

Boromir: Now, about this story idea...