It was dark and outside, at several hours before the dawn. And
yet Drogo was awake, restless with worry and anxious for the sun to rise. He didn't like the dark hours of night, where things
unseen lurked in the shadows, and the shadows themselves seemed to laugh whenever the wind blew. And it blew something fierce
tonight. Drogo shivered a little, and threw another log into the fire. He got up and looked over at Primula, and smiled softly.
Even after all this time, the sight of her made him catch his breath. They both have been playing with Frodo outside in the
newly fallen snow last week. Now, a week later, she had been quite ill. Enough to be kept away from the lad, for fear that
he would catch the illness. He was quite upset about it, and let it be known. They had been so happy that day, and such love
they had shared together. But since then, Frodo, even at his 10 years, knew that his mother was in danger, even without them
telling him. He seemed to be listless once she had fallen ill. He would sit on his father's lap, listening to the comforting
sounds of his breathing, and fall into sleep eventually, with tears in his eyes, when Drogo would sing songs for him. Very
carefully, Drogo would pick Frodo up, and take him to bed, staying for a while to hold onto his hand for comfort.
Frodo woke to the sounds of rain outside on his window.
But he was dizzy. Gingerly he got up, and went down the short hallway to go to his parent's room. He passed his father, who
had fallen alseep in the chair by the fire, as quietly as he could go. If he woke now, Frodo would fail in his task, and that
just couldn't be...not now! Frodo moved quietly, passing his father with only a slight breath while he moves in his sleep.
He heads down the hall, the sounds quiet and still within their apartment. He opens the door silently, and moves into the
room. There is no light save for the moonlight that shines through the clouds from the break in rain. "Mama?," he whispers,
going over to the bed and taking her hand in his own. But there is no answer, and his eyes open wide when he feels a sudden
breeze at the back of his neck. The rain falls again, and suddenly pushes the window open with a violent crash. Frodo goes
to close it, and stops in fear as he turns around. A figure of a woman, wearing a shimmering dress of white and blue, comes
through the window and floats across the room. Frodo cannot take his eyes away, nor can he move. "Who...who are you?," he
asks, his voice quiet with fear. The wind is letting rain through, and even at this distance, he is gettting wet from the
wind and rain. But he doesn't falter. "You don't need to know that Frodo," says the woman. "How..how do you know my name?,"
he asks, curiosity overcoming his fear. "I know many things Frodo Baggins. I know that your father told you not to come into
this room for instance, and that you think that your mother's illness is your own fault," she says with a wry smile. "No...that's
not true. Papa said it wasn't my fault...," he says, his voice shaking. He turns back to the bedside and kisses his mother's
hand softly. "But you don't believe that do you Frodo?," says the voice, her voice coming now from right next to his ear.
He jumps slightly, and turns to look into her eyes. So bright...violet eyes that made you want to lose yourself in them. "You
mean...it....it...IS my fault?," he asks quietly. "Yes Frodo. Your mother was to have another child, but this illness has
made her lose it. And she hates you for that....so does your father," she says coldly. "No...that can't be! I don't believe
that...they can't hate me," he says, tears starting to fall in his slight disbelief. The figure laughs slightly, a musical
laugh that makes Frodo sigh for the pain and beauty in it. This woman is intreging, but Frodo can't help but be afraid of
her. "Why have you come?," he asks suddenly, losing all fear as she moves slightly over to the bedside. "For her Frodo," she
answeres him. "NO! I won't let you take her! We need her...Papa needs her."
Suddenly she stops moving and turns to face him. She regards
him for a moment, and then starts to glide over to him. He can't help but step back, retreat when someone not only is larger
than you, but has such eyes...he's afraid. He backs into the wall beside the window, and she still moves forward. "You'd rather
I took another?," she asks, her voice almost tremulous with hidden exitement. He falters a little bit, but answers slowly.
"I...I'd rather you not take anyone," he says, his eyes bright. "But that cannot be Frodo Son of Drogo. I must take another...or
at least attempt it. Who's life would you have me take young Frodo?" He says nothing. But as she turns from him and moves
back to his mother's bedside, he suddenly gasps in great fear and moves around in front of her. "No...please...don't take
her," he sobs. "Then suggest another Frodo!," she cries, moving to stand directly in front of his eyes. "I....I'm....take
me. Not her. Papa needs her. He would be dreadfully sad without her. Take me," he says, his voice even and slow.
A look of slight suprise, and the figure of the woman suddenly
moves close to Frodo. It is now that Frodo realizes what she is and more important, what she can do, but he can't break his
promise. SHE'S worth everything after all, even his own life. And he knows he would do anything for her, as long as she could
live and be happy and free of illness. The figure wraps her arms around him, and picks him up off the ground. The wind blows
around them, the rain and now sleet flying through the window. Frodo's eyes go briefly to his mother, still silent but not
as pale any longer. He smiles slightly, before his eyes roll and then close as he gasps slightly. Then the door opens suddenly,
and the figure vanishes in the light. At that instant, Frodo falls to the floor as if one dead. It takes only a moment, but
suddenly Drogo's movements come back to him, and he rushes to the window to close it. He hasn't seen Frodo, until the moment
he shuts the window closed. Then, from the corner of his eyes, his vision clears. He makes a gasp, and goes and drops to his
knees on the floor beside his son. "Frodo???," he asks quietly. He lays a hand softly on Frodo's cheek trying to wake him.
But the boy is very pale, and his breath is so light that Drogo can't tell if he even breathes at all. He picks him up gently,
cradling him in his arms as he carries him to bed. "What could have happened to you my boy?? My dear child...," he asks to
himself as he lays Frodo down into bed and covers him softly. He doesn't know why Frodo had disobeyed him and had gone into
that room. But he did...risking everything just to see her, to spend time with her in what might be the last hours of her
life. And at that moment, it occurs to him to wonder why he hadn't thought this very thing might happen sooner. Frodo had
always been very close to them, more often than not prefering to be with them rather than playmates or cousins. Though Drogo
would hardly blame him for that. His cousins were rather rowdy for the most part. Not like Frodo...not at all.
Time passes slowly. There is no sound in the room, save Frodo
the sound of Frodo's quiet breath as it labors to find some hold where he can rest. And Drogo seems to hold his own breath
as he quietly sits stroking Frodo's hand. He listens silently, and doesn't know why Frodo has gotten so weak. Surely he didn't
spend enough time with her as to get that ill so quickly? And this was the first night that he himself had been out of the
room with her, so the thought that he would have gone earlier leaves his mind as soon as the thought enters it. He thinks
of his beautiful son, of the moment that the boy was first put into his arms. How small he had been...even then. But he was
the most precious thing in the world to both Drogo and Primula from the moment he was born. They loved his very presence,
cherishing him like a star that fell from the sky just for them. And he loved them just as deeply in return. Drogo was bonded
strongly with the child as soon as he had come into the world. Wrapping his tiny fingers around Drogo's own large ones. And
at that moment, the most unheard of thing happened, and Frodo opened his eyes to reveal those of the clearest blue anyone
had ever seen. Primula's eyes were blue, but they had lots of flecks of green and brown in them. The eyes of their child however,
were almost astounding. Drogo gave a gasp in amazement, and the child had squeezed his hand a little tighter and smiled up
at him. And from that moment onwards, Drogo knew that Frodo was different than any other child in the Shire.
Growing up, Frodo indeed was much quieter, though as happy as
could be. He adored Bilbo as well, the later becoming so attached to the lad that he came quite often for visits. He taught
Frodo to read and write, and was teaching him Elvish, because Frodo wanted to learn it. There was nothing he thought he couldn't
do, and there was nothing he wouldn't try at least once. 'Perhaps it was our doings Prima', Drogo thought to himself with
a slight smile as he continued stroking Frodo's hand. 'Because we always told the lad to believe in his heart above all things.
Believe he could do anything he wanted to do.' Drogo smiled again, and brought Frodo's hand to his lips. He was alarmed about
the heat coming from his son's body. And he cringed again when he heard Frodo's slight intake of breath. He is laboring, trying
to breathe in a way that is not painful. He is not succeeding. Briefly, blue eyes open and waver towards the figure sitting
so patiently next to his bedside. "It's okay Papa...she'll be allright now...they promised me..she...," he says before his
eyes fall shut once more. Drogo leans forward, more anxious than he has been all the nights he's sat by his wife's side. How
could he know that? "Frodo?," But there is no answer save for the sigh in the wind and the patter of rain on the window.
The hours pass, and Drogo falls into restless sleep. His dreams
take him on a journey where he is following someone, someone close to his heart. But this person whom he should know, doesn't
know he's there. He looks familiar, even though he is much older. The journey is a very difficult one, and there are times
when Drogo sits in tears beside this one. He can't lose him, not after all he's gone through. But by miracles and friendship,
the boy's life seems to be blessed. He survives, even after brushes with death that seem to take more of him after each time.
This boy, and Drogo can not seem to think of him otherwise, seems to be fading more as time passes in this journey, and even
after it is over, the color fades from his eyes. And Drogo's heart breaks, because his eyes were such a splendid part of him.
They remind him of someone...but he can't tell who. All he longs to do is hold this boy close to his heart, and tell him he
is still there, whether he can see him or not. But he knows that he won't hear his calls. As gifted and special as he is,
a dread seems to follow him...one of terrible loss at something or perhaps somone he loved very deeply. It is a place of sadness
that cannot be reached even by the friend that follows him and loves him more than most. But as close as they are, this friend
is the closest that the boy will allow. He is afraid of hurt...afraid of loss. And because he doesn't want his friend, whom
he loves above any other in Middle Earth, to be hurt from his own loss, and suffer as he did from the loss of those he loved,
he travels to a distant shore, where he can wait until the time is right to be reunited.
It is a place that will give him more time to heal, more time
to heal his hurts and weariness. And suddenly when this boy, with eyes that are so like...like someone else's, looks into
the mirror of the room he is in, he looks straight into the glass and at last seems to see him. Drogo smiles, and the boy
sighs a little in happiness. "I knew you would come...I know now that you were there with me...but oh how I wish you could
have stayed with me. I missed you more than I could ever tell you...or show you. You would have liked Sam I know if you knew
him as I did. And all of my other friends as well. Bilbo took good care of me...but I missed you both...every day of my life.
I still do." Drogo mouths words, and sees himself in the mirror as the boy does. It's now like he's watching the scene from
afar. He can't hear what he himself says, but he hears the boy's answer. "I do know. And I love you both as well. I wish you
could stay all the time with me. But I know we will meet again one of these days, when the time is right. And parts of me
feels that it will be sooner than later...because I miss you both...and I miss Sam so much my heart sometimes aches in sadness.
The memories have faded and yet have grown stronger. I know now what happened. I know that I owe Sam for trying to save me
when I didn't care to be saved or not. And for you both, for being there with me in a place you knew I would find eventually.
It's been so long..." Drogo sees the boy lean forward to reach his hand to touch the mirror, but before his hand reaches the
mirror, the boy suddenly grows very pale and collapses to the floor and is silent. In that instant, Drogo calls. "Frodo!..."
and is startled awake at last. He jumps in the chair, and again looks at the figure on the bed. Frodo. He knows now that it
was Frodo he was following. Frodo who had gone on a terrible journey. Frodo who survived despite the overwhelming odds against
He looks again at Frodo, and realizes that if he should die,
all would be for naught. All flowers and trees and grass would be gone...and only barren landscape and darkness would remain.
Tears fall from Drogo's eyes, and he gently lifts Frodo from the bed to carry him as gently as he can. He knows that he must
get Frodo to her, before he can no longer come back. Drogo holds Frodo close to him, cradling him as he walks, singing to
him softly - songs that he may never hear. And the tears still fall. He walks to the room, still silent with death and sleep,
and walks in silently. And then he lays down, taking Frodo with him, and lays the boy between both himself and his beloved
Immediately, Primula sighs and opens her eyes. But in seeing
her pale son, her eyes come into alertness, and she is now wide awake at the thought of seeing her son in this state. A fear
comes over her as she watches him in this first moment, a mother's instinct that her son's life is in danger. "Frodo...my
darling...," she says quietly. Her eyes see her husband, and the tears in his eyes. "Drogo...?" But he says nothing...just
watching their son pass through the shadows of life and death. "You mean...it was no dream? I saw...he...," and suddenly her
eyes fall back on her child. She knows she did see him, even in her own restless sleep between life and death. And her heart
tells her what he would do for her. Tears fall from her eyes, and suddenly she is overwhelmed by what he felt he had to do.
She takes the boy in her arms, and Drogo comes close to her as well. Briefly, his eyes open, trying to focus in a world that
seems to be getting so far away, and he smiles a little. "You...does this mean...you don't...hate me Mamma?" Her eyes see
only her beloved child, "Of course not my Angel, why would you think so?" "It was my fault..," he whispers, the effort becomming
too great for him. But she kisses him, and strokes his heated cheek with her hand. "Oh no darling, it wasn't your fault...it
wasn't...and don't you ever believe that. Your Papa and I have you here with us my dear child, and no one in Middle Earth
could be as blessed as we are." He smiles again, and falls back into dreams that cannot be reached. The hours pass, and now
both parents are holding their only child, and each other. They can't let him go, nor each other. They are afraid to, even
as the rain becomes a downpour of howling rain and wind and their window is thrown open once again this night. But they heed
it not...only caring about the love they share as a family. They do not let go.
The rain lasts through the rest of the night. At daybreak finally,
it stops with a suddeness that leaves the father and mother breathless with a quiet fear in the still silence. As light breaks,
they realize what a physical torment the night has been for their son. He is almost gray with paleness, and there are circles
under his eyes are like great dark bruises, like a shadow has fallen over him and refuses yet to let go.
Pale blue eyes flutter open, and see the two people he loves
most in the world. He smiles with the strength he has left, and the two smile back and hold him close to them. They tell him
words of endearment meant for him alone, and he gains strength in their love, and gives him his own in return with all the
love he holds for them. He can find strength in their love alone, and because his love is so strong, he is able to take food
and try all the harder to fight the illness that refuses to leave him yet. He fights with will and love, and finally passes
into sleep with them still holding him and loving him as much as they can. He knows they will be there when he finds the strength
to wake again.
Day passes into night, and all is silent still. Primula and
Drogo speak little, afraid of the shadow that has taken residence over their child. They stay holding him, as the night passes
again, and yet another and another. He is becomming weaker it seems, finding strength to wake for only moments at a time.
But still he tries, because he loves them that much. He doesn't want to dissapoint them, and he knows deep in his heart that
they long for the time that he is awake. But he is fighting the illness with all his spare energy, and finally, at the end
of the week since the illness began comes, he is exhausted, unable to wake at all now. He is fading, like in Drogo's restless
dream...but now Drogo and Primula both refuse to let go. With the both of them, they fight the battle that he seems to be
losing. They will not give up their child, their joy. The love between them is too great for such tragedy. They lift his head
and pour liquids down his throat, lovingly and gently, willing it to give him strength, to give him hope in their love. It
is a quiet time for them all...being closer together than they've ever been. Their bond grows to the height that they feel
each other's thoughts. They feel Frodo's thoughts in his weary sleep, and bring comfort to him, so that finally, when yet
another week passes, he wakes to see them asleep beside him.
Frodo smiles and squeezes both their hands. They wake and see
that the circles beneath his eyes fading and the shadow gone. It becomes a joyous day in that instant, and Frodo feels surrounded
by so much love that he feels like he is the luckiest hobbit in the Shire and all of Middle Earth. They are together...and
nothing else matters. He brought her back, he made a difference in what fate had decided. They needed to be together yet.
And so he fought back, trying with all he had to get back to them both. As he was their joy, they were his. And years later,
when Frodo sat in his chair, looking out of the window of the house he resides in, in a place that is lush and green and as
peaceful as it was in all of his dreams, Frodo looks back on this moment, and tears fall from his eyes. "I know you both were
there with me then...oh how I wish you were here with me now. I wish you could be here, and tell me it would be allright again...just
like you used to...and you will find me once again, to show me that you still love me...and that I'm not alone."
But then in the silence, comes a voice beside his ear. "You're
not alone Frodo. I'm always here for you, whether you think so or not. And it will be allright dearest of Frodos. We came
back from darkness, the two of us together. And that alone shows me that the light has come back. I love you Frodo...more
than you'll ever know, and more than I could ever show you. Any words are not enough to even begin. Let me be here for you,
as they were Frodo. Come close and lay with me...and I'll put my arms about you and make you feel that love again. So much
time apart Frodo...let it not be ever again. The fact that you're here, and I am as well, makes me believe that we can never
be alone as long as we have each other. And that is a rare and special gift Frodo my love....a bond beyond all life and death."
And so Frodo turned to Sam, and with tears in his eyes, said quietly, "You always know everything there is to know...everything
my heart my wants. They would have loved you as I do, were they here, and I know you would them as well." "Of course I would,
because they gave me you if nothing else. But in my heart, I feel like I've known them always, because you are part of them.
I see your mother's kind heart and sense of good and right, and your father's strong will and bit of stubborness about the
ones you love as well as yourself. But you are the one I need with me now Frodo. You alone I followed, although we were not
alone. Yes, they came with us Frodo, guiding you when you needed it." "Oh no Sam. They were there with us yes, but let it
be known to you now and always, that it was you alone who guided me. You, dearest of Sams, that I cared about saving. You
- I would give my life for...both then and even now...Samwise the Brave." And Sam, with tears in his eyes, gathered Frodo
in his arms, and refused to let go...even as the day passed into night.