1. Just Another Day
"Now to start on my book." Mr. B. Baggins of Bad End settled down on his bamboo crafted desk that he had specially ordered from the East. "But where to begin?" He rubbed his monocle on his silk jacket and replaced it in his eye. He poised his pen over his paper, starting to form the word In…
An ear-shattering banging caused him to squeal his pen over his paper, mortally wounding the sheet in a rip that bled gold ink. At another bang, Bilbo fell out of his chair. At yet a louder pound his false mustaches curled.
"BILBO! OPEN THAT DOOR!"
Bilbo straightened his curly, powdered hair (said to be a wig, and in fact, it was). He grabbed a silver staff capped with a giant emerald, big as a cantaloupe. Across his cashmere rug he crawled, and keeping low, he closed the blinds of his round window with the end of his staff.
The same instant his window thudded. "Bilbo! OPEN UP! We know you're in there!" Bilbo snuck out of the room, crawling as a snake, pulling down the shades of windows as he went. Even as he pulled down one, the window shuddered with a "Bilbo!"
"Frodo!" Bilbo called. "Frodo! Drat, where is that boy?" The bangings were, if possible, growing more insistent. "Frodo! Come here and tell the S-B's that I've taken a walk to Arcturus!" Bilbo cowered in the kitchen.
"What? What?" Frodo stomped in, yawning.
Bilbo waved his staff in his nephew's face. "Where've you been, boy?"
"Well, the S-B's are here – no, stop. It is too late! Release the bees!" Frodo boredly pulled a red leaver over the coffeemaker. A buzz and two sets of screams followed. Bilbo cackled, snapping his fingers. "That'll show 'em. Always pestering me about my health – I'll show 'em. I'll out live 'em." He snapped some more. "Now, Frodo, get some dinner cooking. And don't bother me. I have to start my book."
Meanwhile, the giant bees lazily buzzed back. Bought from the Beornings at no low cost, they had been easily trained to seek and destroy all but their masters.
B. Baggins reseated himself, after a long conversation with Precious (a ring). Many curs'd and exotic items filled his rooms and passages. His home was a place of myth and wonder, said to harbor secret chambers in every room that burst with gold and silver. Maybe, maybe not. Bilbo was not telling, but boy, he did have a lot of stuff. He collected rare items, which blocked over any existing secret passages and belying his denial of vast riches. Being himself a retired "expert treasure hunter" he often entertained other fellows of his occupation from lands as distant as Fornost, Harad, and Dorwinion. At each visit they added to the accumulation of worthless treasure maps and broken magic furniture.
Bilbo scratched these random thoughts from his head. "Hobbits?" he asked himself. "What are hobbits?"
The doorbell rang like a siren. "Frodo! Get the door!" The bell continued its wail; Bilbo tore down a golden fleece from his wall and stuffed it in his ears. After ten minutes of cringing over his desk, he trudged to the front hallway, lined with maps of "outlandish" places and an "unnatural" quantity of walking sticks.
"What?" He opened the door. Outside waited half a dozen of hobbit-lads, as fat and grubby as befitted any healthy Shire youth. "Uncle Bilbo, we're here for our nephew allowance." All held out sugar-crusted hands.
"All right." Bilbo felt into his pocket and deposited a gold piece each. One pink-faced lad took another place in line and opened his palms for seconds. "Hey! Brownfoot!" Bilbo shook his fist. "You ain't even a relation! Now scram!" He closed the door, mopping the sweat from under his wig. "And back to my book."
He had not even lifted his pen again when came a subtle knock on the door. "Now what? Frodo!" He did not even bother to wait for the lad, and grumbled to the door. A bespeckled fellow with a magnifying glass and a pickaxe pushed his way in. "Excuse me," said the intruder in a wheedling voice. "I'm an expert."
"Expert of what?" shrieked Bilbo. The fellow shoved past – the pickaxe was very pointy – and began tapping the walls. Then did Bilbo notice a whole crowd of gawking hobbits lined up on his lawn; they marched in, trampling him into his oliphaunt-skin doormat. "What is this, what is this?" Bilbo grabbed the next over-stomper.
"Hey man, watch the leather." It was one of his Brandybuck nephews, Meriadoc, known around there as Merry. His leather jacket and boots squeaked as he settled against the wall. "You're having an open house, didn't you hear, man?"
"Otho," Bilbo hissed. In his thoughts he labeled Otho and Lobelia Sackville-Baggins with many rude words. "Oooh, I am angry. ANGRY! Get the other nephews, those loyal to me, and round up this lot!"
With the walking sticks, Merry, with the most steadfast nephews and Bilbo, managed to drive the invaders out with no causalities, though several chairs and carpets were missing after and the bathroom was never the same again.
Only as the last hobbit was swatted out did Frodo finally appear. "Where've you been, boy?" grumbled Bilbo, giving the nephews a reluctant tip and slamming the door.
"I was buying dinner," Frodo rolled his eyes. "We had no food."
"Impossible! After I just ordered a cart-load!" Bilbo marched to the pantry. A mumbling, smacking sound came from within. He lit a lantern. In the light formed the glob of Fredegar Bolger.
"Flabby! Out! Out!" Flabby Bolger glanced up, stuffed his pockets with the last apples and turkeys, and waddled away.
Bilbo, sighing and straitening his mustaches, turned to Frodo. "You know our birthday?"
Frodo looked at his uncle, brow raised, for Bilbo had begun to sound cruel and conspiratory, like he did before a practical joke. "Yes."
"And how it was yesterday?"
"And how I didn't invite anyone?"
"Well, next year, I'm going to invite the whole Shire. Then I'll show 'em." Bilbo cackled most ominously.
To be continued
Notes: This was created with the combined effort of two of my siblings, many otherwise dull evenings, and a few hundred Lego bricks. I am sorry to say the first chapters will be many... then things will speed up and get out of hand. Blame it on Bilbo.
This is a work of fan fiction, written because the author has an abiding love for the works of J R R Tolkien. The characters, settings, places, and languages used in this work are the property of the Tolkien Estate, Tolkien Enterprises, and possibly New Line Cinema, except for certain original characters who belong to the author of the said work. The author will not receive any money or other remuneration for presenting the work on this archive site. The work is the intellectual property of the author, is available solely for the enjoyment of Henneth Annûn Story Archive readers, and may not be copied or redistributed by any means without the explicit written consent of the author.