Codebearers

Nothing was known about her. Not a clue. 

How she ended up in Brandy Hall among the river-folk was a complete mystery to all save two.

She wouldn't speak about her past. She refused to let it haunt her, no matter how hard it tried.

She had a new life there in Buckland, and she would not let any dark memories take hold of her there.

Lili Grace, in her small form and fragile frame, had a courage in life that few others had.

Perhaps it was Merry's fault. After all, he was the one who she trusted better than anyone. He became an older brother to her, teaching her everything there was to know about living there in the East-Farthing. He taught her what courage meant the moment he held out is hand towards her when they first met that fateful night so long ago.

Lili Grace would not let the world destroy her. It didn't matter how big or strong she was. If that were it, she'd have been long since gone.

But here she was.

Now, life was beautiful and truly worth living with a smile. The grass was greener than any other. Breakfast was never a worried thought. A mishap firework was the only known threat to the Shire.

If only it could stay that way.

Yet all good things may cease

when life grabs you by the wrist

and whispers

"follow me..."

~

-

~

Lili Grace; my LotR Fanfiction Thingy-Magigger-Whateveritscalled.

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Cool! I can't wait for more of this. Nice job. :)

Oh thank you! I hope I'm able to write it somewhat well... XD

Lol. I'm sure you will. :)

Very nice! It felt LOTRish before I even knew it was LOTR.

Thank you very much!! :)

The halfling girl sat under the tree, listening to the wind blow gently through the leaves. Her eyes were closed as she listened intently. The sounds of the woods of the Green Hills filled her with peace, and, for a moment, a thought fluttered to her mind. No danger could reach her here, unless the world were to end.
She opened her eyes when the sound of soft footfalls reached her ears. Peeking out from behind the tree, she saw her friend only a few yards away, slowing down to a walk.
"Find anything?" she asked him as he reached the blossoming tree.
"Not today," came the reply, and, with a sigh, Merry sat down next to her. "But I heard that tomorrow she's going to Bywater to get spices. I heard her say something about tarts."
Of course, by 'her,' the two hobbits meant Lobelia Sackville-Baggins. And though she was a rotten old goose, as Merry's younger cousin had once thoughtfully put it, Lobelia had a talent in the kitchen. And Lili could already see the workings of a plan forming behind Merry's eyes.
Her suspicions were confirmed when an impish smirk worked its way across his face.
"Do you still have my tinderbox?" Merry asked her.
She reached into her pocket and pulled out the little brown box in reply. He took it from her hands and opened it, glancing quickly at the contents. He smiled. "This'll do nicely."
"What are you thinking of doing?" Lili asked him as he stuffed the box into his own pocket.
"We'll need some sort of distraction, won't we?"

The following morning, Lobelia, as Merry had reported, made her way towards Bywater. She hadn't noticed the silent shadow following her, dodging out of the way of anyone that passed along the road. He followed her only as far as the Three-Farthing stone. There, the shadow stopped.
He waited until Lobelia was well out of earshot, then pulled himself up onto the stone.
He whistled.
Nothing happened.
He waited a minute and tried again.
Again, nothing.
Merry sighed in frustration and tried a third time, and again, there was no response.
He sat upon the stone, whistling every few minutes but each time getting no more from it than the attempt before.
After about fifteen minutes, Merry stopped.
It was no use. Whoever he was waiting for wasn't there.
He felt his pockets. There was nothing to be found besides the tinderbox, a small pouch, and half a biscuit saved from breakfast, having been crumbled to pieces in his pocket.
He cursed himself for not bringing something to do.
He leaned back on the stone and stared up at the bright blue sky. A handful of clouds blew gently over the lands.

He didn’t know exactly how long he sat there, staring and marveling at the vast, unending expanse above him, when he heard a whistle, similar to that which Merry had used a while before.
He rolled his eyes and sat up. Merry looked towards the line of trees and caught sight of a figure approaching him. He recognized the coming halfling immediately.
Glancing quickly to make sure no one else was nearby, he raised his voice. “You’re at least half an hour late!!”
"Sorry," the hobbit said, re-adjusting the scarf around his neck as he reached the stone. “I lost track of time. I won’t do it again.”
“If I had a stone for every time you told me that, I could build a wall around the perimeter of the Shire… Twice.”
Peregrin smiled as Merry climbed down from the stone.
When he reached the bottom, he handed Pippin the pouch. “You need to go to Bywater. Two loaves of bread and a single bunch of flowers.”
“Wait…. Why?”
“I’ll tell you on the way back.”
He turned towards the town and began walking.
“What kind of flowers?” his cousin asked, running up to walk alongside Merry.
“Any type is fine.”
“How much time do we have?”
“Only about half an hour, thanks to your delay…”
“What kind of bread do you want?”
Merry stopped and gave a frustrated sigh. “Pippin. I am sure you are quite capable of choosing the bread you think is best. Now please be quiet.”
There was almost a whole moment’s silence.
Then…
“Merry?”
Merry said nothing.
Again. “Merry?”
Another sigh. “Yes, Pippin. You can spend whatever’s left on muffins.”
“That’s not…”
“Then what?”
Pippin was quiet for a moment. Finally, he spoke. “Do you think Gandalf knows about this?”
Merry, still walking, smirked. “You’d better hope not.”
“Do you think he’ll notice that the…”
“Peregrin. Please. PLEASE. Be quiet.”

That afternoon was busy for Merry, Lili, and Pippin. The two younger hobbits were ordered to tasks that could keep them busy until the moment came for them to split up. Merry wanted to make sure neither of them got into more trouble than they needed to be in for the time being.
“She can’t see Lili or I,” he ordered Pip. “Or the whole plan is ruined and we’re all toast.”
Of course, Master Peregrin asked his fair share of questions and some. It took up half of Merry’s sanity to keep from tying the kid up and leaving him behind. ‘There are other ways of getting one’s hands on pastries…’ he’d thought. More than once.
Yet no one was tied up, luckily. Merry’s plans did not include any rope for such a purpose this time.
Finally, the hour came for the great plan to be unravelled… and Merry had high hopes for this one.
He looked down at the small sparkler-box he’d found in the back of Gandalf’s wagon. The Wandering Wizard was there for one of Merry’s distant relatives’ birthday celebration the following evening, and he’s brought fireworks. Plenty of them.
Merry didn’t know exactly what the little one in his hand would do when he set it to the flame, but he had a basic idea. The thought made him giddy with excitement, but he kept a straight face as he worked.
He sent Lili off a ways towards the town while he had Pippin sneak around to the front of the Sackville-Baggins’ home.
Merry waited behind a tree nearby until his moment came. “Please don’t mess this up,” he muttered, watching Pippin reach down for the prized flowers that grew in the well-tended garden just beyond the porch. “Please don’t mess this up.”
Pip knelt below the front window as he chose the brightest rose he could find on the bush. He plucked it off, without cutting himself (for once), and, with a grin, stood up…
Right in front of the window.
Pippin heard a scream and the sound of breaking china inside and jumped in surprise, then turned to face Mrs. Sackville-Baggins through the window. He barely had time to turn and run before the front door was thrown open and Lobelia screamed after him. “PEREGRIN TOOK!!”
He stopped, bit his lip, and shyly turned around to face the disgusted-looking hobbit woman. She had recognized him the moment she'd laid eyes on him.
He was in for it, and Pippin, and Merry (who had to convince himself not to throw something at Lobelia) knew it.

This is great. :)

Thank you so much!! :)

No prob.  Keep working on this...I can't wait for more...

"HOW DARE YOU PICK MY LOVELY ROSES FROM MY BEAUTIFUL GARDEN WITH YOUR NASTY LITTLE FINGERS AS IF THEY’RE THERE FOR THE TAKING??”

Pip kept his eyes focused on the ground instead of looking up at her. He wished he could run. But it would be no use. 

“WELL?!”

He really did wish she would stop shouting. Half the Shire would hear her awful voice if she continued on for much longer. She stepped towards him and snatched the flower from his hand, cutting both of their hands in the process. Pippin winced but didn’t make a sound, whereas Lobelia cried out in pain and frustration. “Why YOU FILTHY LITTLE PEST!!”

“If you didn’t want to cut yourself you shouldn’t have pulled it from my hand,” he said curtly, but regretted the words the moment they left his mouth.

The next thing he knew, there was a stinging pain as Lobelia grabbed him by the ear. “Wait until your father hears of this. You Tooks think you’re too good for the rest of us, do ya’? That everything your spoiled hands touch belongs to you? Well I’ll have you know, young man: you are going to regret EVER HAVING…”

There was a bang as Merry’s firework went off a few yards away. Again, Pippin jumped, even though he had a vague idea what had happened. The old hobbit woman, however, cried out and released her hold on Peregrin, who quickly disappeared as Lobelia tried to figure out the cause of the sound, and the sparks that were beginning to explode around the bushes where Merry had thrown it. It was terrific. Kept safely behind the tree, he grinned with satisfaction at the colorful array of embers and lights. For a few dreadful moments, he panicked at the thought of the bush catching fire but, to his great relief, no such thing happened.

The sparkler-box was made by a great wizard. It was magic. Of course no such thing would happen. “I hope,” he muttered under his breath. He watched as Pippin slipped under the kitchen window while Lobelia tried to manage the sparks. The toasted pastries sat cooling in the breeze on the windowsill. He pulled his hand back with a gasp after having touched one of the newly-baked pastries, which were still extremely hot. He put his hand to his mouth for a moment, then carefully pulled the cloth underneath them around the little desserts so that they were safely inclosed in the cloth. Ducking out of view, he held the treasures to his chest and ran.

Merry and Pippin walked down the path to Bywater, laughing and joking as they went. The bundle under Merry’s arm held the stolen prizes, though there were indeed fewer than with which they had first left. Pippin still occasionally rubbed his ear, but his frustration with Merry had long since disappeared. Merry smiled as he recalled the perfect theft. Though, it wasn’t a completely dishonest theft. The bouquet of flowers had been left on the Sackville-Bagginses’ porch, along with a handwritten letter, penned by Lili but not signed, gratefully thanking Lobelia for the pastries. Merry had put a few coins into the envelope as well. Not quite enough to compensate for the missing pastries, but still a kind gesture in return for their thievery.

By the time they reached the marketplace, the rotten smirk across Merry’s face still hadn’t disappeared. Neither had the little white burn mark on Pippin’s palm. Lili had been sitting by one of the stalls, talking gaily with the bread vendor. When she heard the familiar laughs of her friends, she thanked him and went to meet her companions.

“Well?” She asked Merry. “I’m assuming by that ridiculous look on your face that everything went well?”

“Perfectly,” he replied, handing her the bundle of pastries. 

Pippin scoffed and rubbed his ear. “Easy for you to say.”

Lili grinned and lifted the top of the cloth - the delicious smell of the little toasted treats making her smile. “And they’re still warm.”

“Peregrin learned that the difficult way…” Merry said, turning to face his cousin, who simply shook his head with a smile. “I’d have thought you’d learned not to grab at food fresh out of the oven, Pip. Don’t let your stomach get in the way of whatever brain you might have in that head of yours.”

Lili laughed, and the three of them walked through the marketplace, occasionally stopping and looking through the vast varieties of fruits, breads, and fabrics. There were baskets and blankets and bouquets of flowers, which gave off a marvelous aroma. 

“There’s not quite as much food as usual,” Lili remarked, looking around at the marketplace. “I suppose Mister Bilbo’s party may have something to do with it”

“Undoubtedly,” Merry replied. “He’s practically emptied every barrel of drink in the East Farthing, and who knows how much food he must have had to purchase.”

“My father says it’s going to be a 'celebration of special magnificence',” Pippin said proudly. “He also told me that cousin Bilbo will have magical toys bought specially for the occasion!”

“Which undoubtedly include fireworks,” Merry said softly. “I do believe that Gandalf’s display will be unforgettable.”

“The first since even the Old Took’s!” Pippin exclaimed. “All the Shire will see it!”

Lili glanced up at the bright blue sky above them. She could only imagine what lay in store for the following night. Everyone was talking about it, especially the small hobbit children, who were thrilled at the prospect of having a magical toy in their possession. 

“I suppose we’ll have to wait until tomorrow evening,” Merry said as they left the marketplace and began towards Tuckborough. Then he fell silent, and Lili watched him intently. Just as she had the day before, she could see in his eyes that he was thinking of a new sort of trouble. She had a feeling it had something to do with Bilbo’s party.

He felt her eyes on him and smiled. No one else could read his mind like Lili could. Granted, they’d known each other for years, but even those who he’d known all his life couldn’t tell when he had a plan up his sleeve.

Yet Lili Grace could. 

And he knew that she knew that the next ‘problem’ he created would be marvelous.

I like it. :)

*thumbs up*

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