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Shh!

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“Shh! Kili be quiet!”


“You be quiet! You’re the one yelling at me!”


“Am not! I’m WHISPERING!”

 

Frodo suddenly straightened up from where he was crouching over his worn-out books. He began to think wide-eyed to himself.


‘There are those voices again!’


A couple of days ago, he heard young voices coming from the garden. Naturally, his curiosity overcame him and he wandered outside but couldn’t find the source of the sound. From what he could tell, they were just as younger, perhaps younger, and male too. He thinned out his lips as he listened to the voices arguing. He wanted to tell his uncle, but of course, he didn’t have any real evidence for the intruders.


If there was one thing his uncle taught him (and many other things), you always have to have facts to back up your statement. Or else, you’d look like a fool. And Frodo was not a fool, thank you very much.


He did tell his best friend Sam, but Sam gave him a slightly cynical look to the older male. It was weird sometimes to be frowned upon by younger person, but he used to it by now that he-


“THUMP!"

Frodo was abruptly reminded of was going on outside as he jumped at the huge noise. He frowned and slowly got up and hurried off to the west parlor door. That way he wasn’t too far from the garden, but was able to sneak around, and hopefully discover the trespassers. He had to suppress a smile of the thought of adventure.


Slowly, he creaked open the door, and creeped outside, he closed it gently behind him. He started tip-toing towards the voices, trying to be quiet as one could. When he got close to the plant-covered fence, he ducked and noticing the rusty shovel leaned against it, he grabbed it, thinking maybe he could use it as weapon. He sat there, heart thumping, for a few beats, listening to the voices bicker. He felt impatient, but he didn’t want to scare them off. Unless they were bad, of course. He felt his stomach twist at the thought; he really hoped they weren’t bad.


He finally decided he couldn’t take it any longer, he crept up and peered over the fence, quickly, before ducking. What he saw didn’t overly surprise him, he was right.
They were in fact, young boys, brothers perhaps. One was blond, and was definitely older, judging by his height, and his overall ‘I’m older ‘air. The other one was a brunette, was certainly younger, and has a rather excited air about him. (As judging by his broad gestures compared to the solemnness of his companion) Both were wearing very dirty, ripped up clothes.


‘Uncle would have a heart attack!’


They also looked like they haven’t had a proper wash in days, no, weeks! Soon enough, another question popped into young Frodo’s mind.


‘What they doing here?’


He got and looked over the old fence, this time not just a fleeting glance and he watched them. He was ready to duck and bolt like a startled deer at any given moment though. The blond one scolded the younger one.


‘You’re gonna get us caught! We’ll be in trouble if we do, and they can’t afford to save us all the time!”


The brunette gave him a dejected look, looked away from his brother, and kicked a rock. He murmured so quietly, Frodo almost didn’t hear him. But he did.


“They’re never around long enough to save us anyway,”
The blond one’s face softened from his harsh look. Frodo thought his face looked too far old to be his age. Blond walked over to his brother and said.


“I’ll always be.”


He hugged his sibling who hugged him back tightly and fiercely. Frodo felt like he was intruding on something private, but his heart felt warm at the sight. They pulled back from each other and blond laughingly said in a quieter tone.


“C’mon let’s eat. We’re lucky we’ve haven’t been caught yet!”


Frodo suppressed the urge to laugh but continued watching.


Brunette nodded, and walked over to his Uncle’s vegetable patch and began….pulling plants out of the ground, rubbed it on his clothes to get some of the dirt off and ate it! Just like that!


‘That’s why they’re here!’


He suddenly didn’t want to turn them in, from what he could tell so far was that they were obviously poor, their parents don’t seem to be around, and they’re hungry, so they steal food from Uncle’s garden.


He watched them quietly, subdued now. They ate until Blond told his brother they couldn’t eat anymore, lest the owner notice. They went over to the huge gap in the fence that his uncle had been meaning to fix for quite a while now, and left. Frodo bent down, and touched his feet on the soft grass.

He sat there, thinking quietly to himself. Suddenly he heard his Uncle Bilbo call out Frodo’s name.


“Frodo, lad! C’mon, I bought some fish for us to eat, help me cook dinner!”


Frodo blinked at his thoughts and yelled back to his uncle.


“Coming Uncle!”
…….
It has been a week or so, so far. They seem to come back almost every day. And Frodo still hasn’t said anything, neither to the intruders, nor to his Uncle, though he was sorely tempted to when he saw his Uncle distraught over the plants. He’d bet his uncle wouldn’t really mind if he discovered who was really eating them but he couldn’t chance it, not yet.


One day, after the previous day where Frodo lost his footing on the fence and nearly fell off, startling the thieves. (He had to take off then, he couldn’t scare them away)
He decided he would confront them, especially after hearing the brunette complain of his tangled hair. When his uncle left the house to meet the Bellbottoms for elevenies, he snuck to his usual spot and began to wait for the unknown visitors.


He lost himself in his thoughts, staring at the odd patterns the grass seemed to make.


His uncle was grumbling about the elevenies, so Frodo recommended not going if it made his uncle so disgruntled. But Uncle murmured something about it being it terribly rude to cancel it now, and it would be best if they kept up their appearances and relations.


Frodo knew that at the end of day though, Uncle Bilbo doesn’t really care what anyone thinks, especially if they insulted Frodo. He smiled as he remembered how once his uncle defended him from Mrs. Sackville-Baggins when Frodo first came here to Bag-End; she was upset at how Frodo wasn’t a ‘real’ Baggins, therefore he shouldn’t be here. Uncle did not take nicely to her, he was even rude to her! Uncle was never rude to anyone. He knew then and there his Uncle Bilbo would protect him no matter what.
His smile faded some as he remembered the boys, and how they didn’t seem to have someone to protect them all the time. Yes, he was definitely going to meet them. He formed a plan last night after Uncle kissed him goodnight and if all goes to plan, hopefully, he’ll help out the duo.


“Crunch!”


Speaking of the devils….


“Yeesh Fil! You complain about ME being loud….”


“Shut up Kili!”


Frodo chuckled quietly to himself. They are simply terrible at being sneaky, especially with how they bicker at times. He waited for a few beats before peering over the fence. They were both pulling out radishes and carrots, collecting them in their grime-covered arms. Frodo hesitated before calling out.


“You know, I love vegetables, but they’re only so many I can eat before I get kind of, sick of them. Wouldn’t rather eat something else?”


Two things happened,; one, they both jumped about what seemed to be 20 feet in the air, and two, they screamed (High-pitched screams, mind you) and dropped the roots. They both began to run, Frodo panicked and yelled out.


“No, no, no, WAIT! I’m not here to harm you, I just wanna talk!”


He clambered over the fence, promptly fell on his face, and ran as he could up to them, until they were merely a few feet from each other.


Blond obviously wanted to run but the brunette grabbed his dirty sleeve, and tugged at it, glancing back and forth from his brother to the new stranger. His dark-brown eyes were burning with curiosity but he still seemed hesitant even if it was less hesitant than his brother but he conveyed this by semi-hiding behind his brother. The older one glared at Frodo, trying to be fierce-looking and snarled.


“What do you want? How long have you known we were here?!”


‘That’s the question I should be asking.’
Frodo thought to himself.


However, Frodo smiled gently as he had seen his uncle to others who were being difficult and replied.


“More than a week or so. I’ve been um…kind of watching you? I, uh, I want to help you. Well, I did mean what I said earlier. I think there’s some cake inside but I’m not sure,”


The brunette perked up but the blond narrowed his eyes, but relaxed his posture slightly. Blond opened his mouth to say something (probably something rude) but brunette beat him to it.


“Hi, I’m Kili! And this is my brother, Fili! Though now that I think about it you probably already know that! What’s yours?”


Frodo smiled, now feeling slightly shy but replied.


“I’m Frodo Baggins of the shire, nice to meet you,”


He extended his hand for one of them to shake it. Kili grinned happily and went to do so before he was stopped by his brother, who shoved his brother’s hand away. He stared at Frodo with skeptical eyes and said.


“I apologize but we’re not exactly used to trusting strangers we’d just met.”


Frodo frowned but shook his dark-haired curls anyway and responded.


“I-understand. It’s hard to trust people sometimes. But I can, technically, gain your trust right? So I invite you to, um, have a proper lunch in my house while we get to know each other,”


‘Please?’


Fili’s expression softened a bit and he now looked somewhat embarrassed while Kili poked his head from behind his brother to stare at Frodo; he looked rather happy at the idea of warm food. Frodo only smiled gently, secretly hoping they would take up his offer.


They stood there for a few beats and Frodo’s hope began to fade fast. Fili frowned seriously and turned from Frodo and began fiercely whispering something he couldn’t quite hear to Kili.


Of course, now they could whisper properly!


Kili whispered back and they both kept glancing at Frodo who began wishing he could hear what they what they were saying. It was slightly irritating but he was willing to be patient. Well, patient as much as a 12-year-old could be. At one point, Kili grew angry, and he stomped his foot, growling at his brother, sounding like an upset puppy.
Frodo’s eyes widened in shock as Kili then tossed his hair back rather dramatically and stomped over to Frodo. He yelled over to his brother, making Frodo visibly wince at how loud he was.


“WELL I’M GOING WITH HIM, HE IS A NICE PERSON NOT A WEIRD MOSTER!”


Kili grabbed Frodo’s clean hand, glaring at his older sibling who glared right back. Frodo felt flustered. Frodo dropped his gaze from an angry-looking Fili to look at the brunette gripping his hand. Kili blinked up at Frodo, and within that blink his expression changed from angry to sweet which startled Frodo of how quickly his mood changed. Kili cocked his head and smiled.


“Lunch?”


Frodo blinked in return and whipped up his head to look at Fili who was groaning in frustration. Frodo then smiled nervously, and said.


“Of course,”


Kili grinned and tugged on Frodo’s arm, dragging him to his own house. They started walking when they heard a louder groan and they turned back to see Fili quickly catching up to them, grumbling.


“Wait, I’m coming.”


He said the last part glaring at Frodo who tried to smile harder. He glanced down to see Kili smirking smugly at getting his way. Frodo suddenly had to resist to sigh loudly. He had a feeling they would be…difficult.


‘But,’


He thought as he looked down at Kili’s beaming face, looking happier than the amount of times he seen him in his yard.


‘It might be worth it.’

 

He just didn’t think of his uncle’s reaction, or a great many things that were soon to complicate things beyond anyone would expect.


They weren’t good at keeping quiet anyway.

Chapter Text

Frodo winced as he watched Kili consume his Uncle’s maple pudding rather loudly, and with his mouth wide open too.

‘At, at least he appreciates it…’

He couldn’t help but think of how Uncle would never, ever, let him be so rude. Then again, they haven’t eaten much besides the dirt-ridden vegetables that they been pulling out his Uncle’s garden for the past month. However, this wasn’t the first time that they showed a strong lack of manners ever since Frodo invited the two of them in for lunch.

 

For one thing, the older one, Fili, had refused to sit down when Frodo asked him to, and he stayed as close to the closest door as humanly possible. He did compliment (rather adamantly though) Bag-end when they first walked in, both of them in awe of the intricate designs in the walls, and the well-crafted furniture. Frodo understood the awe, he felt the same way when he first visited his Uncle when he was younger.

He gulped, feeling a pang of sadness hit him as he remembered his parents. He tried to be strong as it has been almost four years but he couldn’t help but feel sad at times. His thoughts because to grow but it was quickly put to a stop when Kili burped. He blinked and remembered his present company. And what he knew of them so far.

They were brothers, obviously poor enough to not even afford their own food, and the parents don’t seem to around. Frodo wanted to ask questions, but felt very uncomfortable doing so, as Fili refused to stop scowling at him, somehow looking fierce while bending down to eat his own food messily, the food getting positively everywhere.

Frodo sat there for a few beats as they began to finish their bowls of food, trying to think of ways to get information from them. Finally, he stood up suddenly, startling both the brothers, getting even more food all over the table. At least Kili looked somewhat remorseful, his chocolate-colored eyes avoiding Frodo’s light-blue ones.

“Sorry…”

Fili seemed even more annoyed. Frodo smiled gently at Kili who seemed to perk up a bit, seeing as his host wasn’t mad at him.

“Oh, no it’s alright. I’m sorry for scaring you like that. I didn’t mean to,”

Frodo shook his head, and walked over to the white-wood cabinet to grab a clean cloth.

Frodo’s eyebrows furrowed together as he tried to reach the cloth, which was on the highest shelf, and out of his reach. He huffed and glancing down at the other shelves, wondering whether or not to risk putting his feet on there to reach it. Uncle told him not to. But he would also be very mad at the mess ‘Frodo’ made. He sighed dramatically. Then he felt a small finger tap his shoulder. Frodo glanced down to see young Kili point up to the towel and say.

“You could put me on your shoulders and I can grab it,”

Frodo blinked, considering it for a moment, before bending down, earning a happy noise from Kili. He heard Fili give a grumbling protest but he ignored it. He felt him clamber on to his back, and saw dirty cloth-covered legs enter his vison, so he wrapped his arms around the short legs. He shakenly stood up, trying to stay still as possible, not wanting to drop him. He tightened his grip on the young dwarf’s legs when he felt him start to squirm and move. He felt movement behind him that wasn’t Kili, so he assumed it was Fili.

Frodo thought his legs were going to give out from underneath him when he heard Kili exclaim.

“Got it!”

Frodo went to bend down, and would’ve let Kili off if hadn’t been for Fili hovering nervously like a great, big, mother hen behind them.

“OOF!!”

And so they went over, crashing and tumbling onto the floor, with Kili miraculously on the top, giggling away, and Fili at the bottom, groaning, but smiling slightly, and Frodo promptly squished between the two like the ham in the sandwich he’d had just eaten. Frodo grunted.

“K-kili? W-would you mind getting up?”

Instead of Kili getting up like Frodo expected him to, he merely grinned down at Frodo mischievously, making Frodo’s stomach twist in fear as he was reminded of his own mischievous cousins, Merry and Pippin. Kili chirped out.

“Nope!”

Then proceeded to flop over on top of Frodo, making him squawk with the even heavier weight. Frodo opened his mouth to protest, but he heard a sound that he didn’t think he’d hear so soon. Especially since the source of the sound had been glaring at him and refusing to answer the simplest of questions since Frodo’s introduced himself. But he hear it, he did…Laughter.

And, as soon as Fili started his gleeful laughing fit, Kili began to laugh and squeal with happiness, so Frodo was stuck between two hysterical dwarves, which felt very, very odd to be truthful. But he also couldn’t help but start laughing himself, and so there they were, a giggling pile of children, who seem unable to stop laughing, no matter what they did.

However, eventually they did stop laughing, only Kili was still admitting giggles, but overall, the air was far more relaxed and Fili seemed to have cease some of his glaring. Frodo let out a deep breath but smiled, and snatched up the towel that was left on the floor. He then chuckled a bit at the fresh memory, and crossed over to the water bucket which held cool water that was normally heated. But, cold water could suffice for now. After he soaked it, he turned to go clean the table and floor which was probably a bit sticky but he had no choice but to do it, when suddenly the wet rag was taken from his hand by Fili. Frodo blinked in confusion but Fili merely said.

“You made us lunch, we made the lunch, and we are not without manners.”

With that, he turned, proceeding to clean up the mess roughly, obviously wanting get this over as soon as possible. Frodo blushed, and caught Kili’s eyes, who looked almost as confused, but he also joined his brother, both of them trying to share the same rag. Luckily, Fili had the most control over the rag, as Kili was very enthusiastic with his part. (Frodo was still concerned over the rag, but he also didn’t want to clean, so he left them to it) Frodo stood there awkwardly for a few moments, wondering what the correct protocol to follow when your guests wanted to clean instead of you. He finally shook his curls, and began to wash some of the dishes.

So began their friendship. Every day, for about two weeks now, Frodo would invite the duo for lunch and in turn, they would entertain, and somehow cause chaos at the Baggin’s household. Frodo constantly was torn between being annoyed and amused almost every time the duo caused some sort of craziness. (Luckily for them, amusement won out most of time) Overall, they were fun to be with, despite Fili’s insistence on being secretive about who they are, and, well, everything about them. It caused a rift between them, and the issue was sure to grow worse before it got any worse. And so it did.

 


 

 

The incident that would overall decide the overall relationship between the three happened on a particularly gloomy Thursday, several weeks after he met the duo. The normally azure-blue sky was filled with brooding, blue-gray clouds that looked thick and heavy with rain. The clouds seemed almost alive, as they crept closer to cover the lush green lands with a low growl, appearing menacing, and dark. Frodo normally reveled in the rain; he loved the feeling you would get as you were stuck inside, in the warmth of a welcoming fire, while hearing the rain’s downpour outside. It was serene.

However, this time he wasn’t so happy to see the clouds coming closer. He was worried about the brothers, and sincerely hoped they managed to find a suitable shelter to wait out the storm.

‘They will to have find another place for food.’

Frodo frowned at that thought, and melodiously sighed. He felt somewhat disappointed at not seeing his young friends.

“Is everything alright, my lad?”

He blinked up at his uncle who gave him a worried stare, probably wanting to know why Frodo was so depressed. He still hadn’t told his uncle about Fili and Kili yet, he was waiting for the perfect time.

At one point, he was about to confess but then Uncle found an infestation of sugar ants in the library where Kili had dropped cookie crumbs. His uncle grew agitated and warned Frodo severely about not taking food into the library where a great many, old books lay. Frodo didn’t need the warning, he knew very well that food did not belong in the library. But Kili didn’t.

Another reason he didn’t want to tell his uncle just yet….Well, it was kind of fun to have a secret like that! Sneaking around with his new, mischievous friends. He was somewhat bored, as he did have other friends but they lived rather far.

They were also…different. He didn’t know why, maybe because they were dwarves, but he really didn’t know. And, with Uncle leaving during the day to do his job as a lawyer. Frodo was left alone with his schoolwork, which could sometimes be interesting, especially the history part (he loved reading about the ancient elves), but having old, musty books, well, it wasn’t quite as the same as having living, breathing company. With the dwarves, he didn’t quite feel so alone.

“Frodo?”

Frodo snapped back to reality the same time his Uncle snapped closed his book on the legends of dragons, placing it on the honey-wood desk. Frodo panicked slightly, and blurted out.

“I-I’m fine, Uncle! Just a bit lost in thought today,”

Uncle raised his eyebrow and teasingly said. “Hmm, I could tell,”

Frodo grinned back at him happily. Uncle softly smiled back at him.

A half-hour later, Frodo was excitedly describing exactly how cool cats were, and Bilbo was patiently nodding in agreement, a hand resting his head as he listened to Frodo chatter.

“And did you know that-“

“GRAAGH!”

They both froze at the loud grumbling sound. Then, ever so slowly, a blush crept over Frodo’s face, with his deer-like eyes staring down at the source of embarrassment. Bilbo began to smirk, chuckling a bit before laughing loudly at Frodo’s mortified face. Frodo began to laugh loudly too, his hand clutching the cream-coloured fabric covered his murmuring belly.

When the laugher eventually died out, Bilbo shook his head and pushed his chair out. He waved his hand to the doorway, stating.

“C’mon, let’s get us some elevenses,”

Frodo shot a glance to the rain-streaked window, silently noting that the rain was now heavier, and sideways, spraying the windows.

He then jumped off of the blue-green window seat, and ran up to his uncle to head towards the kitchen. He let his eyes wander the halls to the kitchen, silently naming all the relatives he could spot in the mostly round frames. Not for the first time, he wondered who the duo’s family were. He knew only so much, as Kili was more talkative than his brother. They had an uncle, that’s for sure. But where is he?

He looked back up at his uncle who seemed to be as thoughtful as he was, though definitely not thinking what he was thinking. He was very grateful for his uncle. His mother’s relatives were kind but they didn’t understand him like Uncle does. Like for instance, just now, his uncle cocked his head back Frodo just as they reached the kitchen, asking him.

“Do you want some baked potatoes or some corned beef….?”

Frodo glanced towards the closed white pantry, appearing to ponder to himself before replying. “Both sounds good but I would like to have some sautéed mushrooms….I can make it myself!” Bilbo chuckled before questioning.

“You sure?”

“Yep!”

“Alright, well, get to it!”

Bilbo shooed Frodo away who giggled in turn. He bounced up to the ice box and grabbed the bowl of mushrooms and began cooking them. He was done before his uncle and so he headed into the next room to place down his mushrooms, and the napkins on the carved table and sat down to wait for Uncle, as he told Frodo there was nothing for him to help his Uncle with.

He sat there, humming a nameless tune to himself as he gazed out the window which seemed omit a gray-blue light from the rain outside. He was lost in thought when his eyes spotted a fast moving blur. He started, and immediately ran to the window to find out what it was. His fast breathing fogged up the window as he look around to find the source of fright.

But all he saw were rain-dripping plants, a rusty bucket overflowing with rain-water, and the peonies looking slightly droopy. He stayed there for a few beats before reluctantly pulling away from the window, letting his eyes linger on the window suspiciously. He clambered into his spot at the table, wondering if he’s gone mad. He let out a sigh as he tore his gaze away from the window to stare at the slightly wilting bouquet of robin-egg blue hydrangeas. He slowly began to relax again when suddenly, he hear a loud,

“THUNK!”

Sound from the window! And a muffled voice yelling.

“FRODO!”

Poor Frodo fell out of chair and on to the cool floor, he was so startled. He groaned but quickly stood up again, stumbling slightly, and let out an annoyed sounding noise as he realized who it was.

 

Chapter Text

Merry and Pippin’s faces were squished up against the glass, with pure gleefulness radiating from them. Many questions popped up in Frodo’s head, some he knew better than to ask. Like, for example, how in the name of the Valar did they manage to climb up to a second-story window in the pouring rain? But, they did.

Frodo put a hand to his forehead, done with it all, when Pippin cheerfully waved at him like this was nothing. Like this was completely normal. He heard his Uncle cry out worriedly.

“Frodo? Is everything alright?”

He shook his dark curls, before yelling back.

“Yes, I’m quite alright!”

There was a muffled reply but Frodo didn’t hear it as he then turned around, and left, much to the obvious dismay of his unexpected visitors. Young Merry and Pippin stood there miserably, banging on the old glass loudly in order to perhaps annoy Frodo enough to let them into the grand house.

They stopped when they saw him reappear in the dining room again, his arms full of large towels that nearly stood taller than his head. You could only see his exasperated eyes peering over them. Merry grinned like a cat who caught the canary and stood a little straighter as he walked over to him, knowing what he meant to do. Pippin was a bit confused, like he always seemed to be half of the time.

Frodo carefully placed the folded towels on the oak table, before selecting the top one and placing on the floor right by the window.

He then stood up straight, and eyed the two of them speculatively, like he was debating whether or not he should let his cousins in.

Merry frowned and shook his wet curls, before rapidly tapping the window, with Pippin joining in. Frodo grinned, feeling amused, and went over to the latch of the window, letting them in.

They quickly clambered in, both of them falling chin first on the floor. Frodo rolled his eyes, went to fetch the fluffy towels, and gave the soaking wet duo a towel each. He warned them.

“Dry yourselves completely! Do not spread water anywhere else! Or else Uncle will be mad!”

Young Merry and Pip merely grinned at him, and Frodo took a step back cautiously, ready to run if necessary. But, Pippin just said.

“Nice to see ya, Cousin! Haven’t seen you in forever!”

As if he wasn’t standing in the dining room, soaking wet from wandering around in the rain, and he just didn’t climb in the window with his best friend. Actually, how long have they been wandering out there? They didn’t catch a cold, did they? He opened his mouth to comment on that when his Uncle suddenly rushed in, exclaiming.

“Frodo, why didn’t you respond to me when I’ve called for you? I’ve called your name ten times, are you alrigh-“

He then halted in his inquires as he spotted the two dripping figures in the room with Frodo. Frodo merely had a raised eyebrow as he glanced back at his Uncle. Uncle stood there froze for a few beats, a comical expression on his face before going. “What in the name of Middle Earth are you doing here? It’s pouring outside! Do your parents even know you’re here?!”

Both of them looked sheepish now, but Pippin murmured.

“Well, I did tell them, ‘We’re heading to Uncle Bilbo’s house!’ Buttttttttt I don’t think they heard me,”

Bilbo mimicked Frodo’s earlier actions and put a hand on his forehead, and Frodo had to suppress a giggle. Apparently, it was taken the wrong way as Merry sent a glare in his direction but Frodo couldn’t care. Pippin violently sneezed, sounding very much a like a tiny kitten and both the elder and younger Bagginses donned very similar expressions of concern. Bilbo sternly, and somehow kindly asked.

“How long of the two of you been out there?”

They both raised the eyebrows, and glanced at each other comically, and Bilbo’s nose twitched in slight amusement. Then his eyebrows furrowed in concern and he said.

“You haven’t caught a cold, have you?”

Both of them quickly replied no, remember the stories that Frodo told them of how, well, motherly Bilbo could be, and bossy.

But alas, it was too late, as Merry let a loud sneeze that racked his whole body. Bilbo grimaced, and Frodo smirked, knowing what they were trying to do. Bilbo glanced towards Frodo, smiled a bit himself.

After all, he may be rather concerned and a bit angry at the sheer idiocy the duo showed, but it was still funny. So Bilbo merely asked Frodo.

“Do you mind heating up the water so these two can get proper baths?”

Hearing their dismayed cries, Uncle shook his head.

“Oh come on, it is not the end of the world to get into a bath. Perhaps it’ll make the two of you think twice before deciding to wander around outside when it is pouring cats and dogs outside!”

Frodo couldn’t help it but guffaw loudly at them, which in turn made his uncle laugh along with him, and his cousins glare viciously at him. He decided now was a good time to go heat up the water, and turned to do so.

He let a sigh in relief, being very glad it was only Merry and Pippin rather than Fili and Kili.

‘That would have NOT been good.’


 

A little while later, after Merry and Pippin have been washed and dried, they all sat in forest green, worn-armchairs around the fire (excluding Bilbo who was too busy making tea for everyone). Frodo giggled at Merry and Pippin’s odd story of their ‘treacherous’ journey here. He was sure that some of it was made up, (really, an elf? In these parts?) But it was funny nonetheless. He breathed in the smoky smell of the fire, loving the scent of it as he curled into himself, feeling quite content.

“Alright, here’s the tea. Make sure you drink every last drop of it.”

At this, he aimed a look at the duo who in turn, smiled nervously and quickly went to blow the steaming cup of green tea. Frodo smiled, accepting his cup of tea, and scooted to make room for his uncle. Frodo decided to mention that Merry and Pippin supposedly met an elf on their travels here.

His uncle quirked an eyebrow and eyed the duo, and questioned.

“Really? You met an elf on the way here, in this weather?” Merry looked sheepish but Pippin simply chirped.

“Yep!”

Merry shot him a look out of the corner of his eye. When Pippin caught that, he began to frown.

“Well, we saw something. It might not have been an elf, though. It moved too fast for us to really see,”

This caused Frodo to tense a little. No, it couldn’t be them. They’re way too short to be possibly mistaken for an elf. Still, what was it? He snapped out his grim thoughts as he heard Uncle chuckle a little.

“Then it was probably one of the fauna that live there,”

He gave Frodo a glance, wordless assuring him that it was fine. He probably thought Frodo was freaked out about something other than some sneaky dwarves. At least, Frodo hoped he did. Merry and Pippin furrowed their eyebrows simultaneously, and Merry hesitantly asked.

“What does ‘fauna’ mean?”

Bilbo blinked and answered as simply as he can put it.

“A group of animals. Or an animal is part of a group animals,”

“Oh….”

Pippin raised his hand silently. Bilbo’s nose twitched but he replied.

“Yes, Pippin?”

“Um…What does ‘morbid’ mean? I heard the other day, and I wanted to ask, but she was already mad at me so….”

And so Bilbo explained what the word morbid meant, and then they proceeded to ask the definitions of a bunch of random words. Poor Uncle tried to explain all of them the best he could, as patiently, but even Frodo could tell he was getting slightly annoyed. Frodo staring into the lively fireplace that had just received a new log, his tea all gone when he came up with an idea to help his Uncle out.

“-And that is the definition of ‘irrevocable,”

They both nodded and Merry went to ask another question when Frodo jumped suddenly.

“I have an idea! Wait here, I’ll go get it,”

He turned from the surprised faces of Merry and Pippin and winked at his Uncle. Uncle Bilbo had to suppress a smile, considering his wink was very obvious and not secretive at all.

Frodo snatched a melting candelabrum         to lead him through the darkened home, and ran down the creaking stairs which moaned with every step, making it sound like a haunted house.

Frodo ran through various rooms until he reached the study, where he kept all his school books. He set the candles down, and began digging through his multitude of books to find his dictionary.

“Aha! Found it!” He held the worn, auburn coloured book in his hands that had faded golden letters that read ‘Dictionary.’ He smiled to himself before sneezing again. The dust was quite severe in the nook, and Frodo kept sneezing and coughing as he dug through the pile of books. He let himself smile in satisfaction as he stood up straight.

He was going to grab the candelabrum and leave to return to his present company when he saw something move out of the corner of his eye. He froze in fear, and pleaded to the Valar for it not to be what he thinks it is.

The gods were apparently not on his side that day as a familiar mop of chocolate-brown hair appeared in the window, along with the young, innocent brown eyes that went with it. Kili peered in the foggy window, wiping the fog away with his dirty sleeve when he spotted Frodo. He was obliviously to Frodo’s turmoil, and waved excitedly at him. Frodo couldn’t help but smile and wave back at him. Dirty-blond hair entered his sight, and Fili smiled at him tentatively. Frodo stood there for just a second when he realized they were actually outside his house in the pouring rain and were probably freezing cold. He jumped, and ran to the outside door to let them in.

They entered the warm house gladly, both of them shivering badly, and completely soaking wet, their matted hair flat against their skulls and backs. Frodo hurried to fetch them both towels before whispering.

“What in Middle Earth are doing here?”

Fili’s smile faded into a frown and he paused for a bit, making Frodo feel slightly guilty, but Kili merely grinned, and said a little loudly.

“We’re to see you, Rae!”

(Yes, they have taken to calling him Rae, which was short for Raven. He wasn’t sure whether or not to be pleased he was named after such a bird, but Fili told him that in Dwarven culture, Ravens were trust-worthy friends and often seen as wise. Frodo also wasn’t sure he believed that, knowing their mischievous nature)

Frodo smiled softly at that. Maybe… This wasn’t too bad after all. He could introduce them to his Uncle. He might be annoyed at first but soon as he would see how soaking wet they were and hungry, he would loosen up.

“Well…Now that you’re here, you might as well meet Uncle Bilbo,” Now Frodo didn’t know what kind of reaction he was expecting but he certainly didn’t expect for Fili to tense up and become rather furious at him. Nor for Kili to suddenly shy away to hide behind his brother, looking quite small. Fili growled lowly at Frodo.

“Absolutely not,”

Frodo felt anger rise in him and he hissed back, forcing himself not to yell.

“Why not? Do you not trust me?” Thunder rumbled ominously, as if it was feeling their anger. A flash of shock crossed Fili’s face before it was replaced by fury once more.

“You’re different, we know you!”

“But you can’t trust me when I say someone is good? That sure seems like trust, alright!” Fili’s voice rose higher.

“You don’t understand! We can’t trust him!” If Frodo was calmer, he would’ve noticed that Fili’s blue eyes were starting to water and what was shown on Fili’s face was not really anger, but fear. And, hurt.

But Frodo wasn’t calm.

“Why?! Tell me why you can’t trust me or him?!” “WE JUST CAN’T!” Frodo’s arms fell to his sides and his hands curled into fists. His eyes started burning but he didn’t care as he nearly yelled.

“WHY WON’T YOU- JUST, LET ME HELP YOU?!” A sob escaped his throat as he grew quieter, and grim.

“I hate seeing you guys l-like this….”

Kili sobbed a bit and latched on to Frodo trying to hug him as tight he could. Frodo nearly burst into tears, and so did Fili when a voice called out.

“Frodo? Is everything alright?”

Frodo gasped and Fili panicked but Frodo was luckily quick to respond as he yelled back.

“Yes, everything is fine!” Not true. He paused before adding.

“I’ll be there in a minute!”

Frodo glanced around before finding a cluttered wardrobe nearby to hide them in. It was certainly messy, filled with worn clothes and shoes, but it could still fit Fili and Kili, even if it was tight. Fili picked up Kili who let out a surprised squeak, and quickly ran into the wardrobe, looking up Frodo expectantly, as if asking him if he was really doing this. Frodo gulped, nodded before whispering.

“I’ll be back in a moment, alright? Just stay here and be quiet,”

Fili gulped too, but nodded seriously too. Frodo quietly closed the oak wood door before nearly running to the table near the window, where the candelabrum was nearly diminished. He grabbed the forgotten dictionary, and ran as fast as he could to the upstairs parlor.

He heard gleeful laugher as he entered the carpeted room, and relaxed slightly. He walked up to the chairs and looked up at his Uncle who was giving him a questioning look. He blinked, before grinning and holding up the dictionary. Uncle understood immediately and Frodo felt some tension escape his body.

“Ah, you clever boy!”

Merry and Pippin’s both held confused expressions before Merry spotted the lettering on top of the book, and he perked up.

“I know what that is!” Bilbo chuckled and gently grabbed the book from Frodo’s slightly sweating fingers. Frodo knew his uncle wanted to him sit down, but he couldn’t risk having to stay and chat in order to not be suspicious. “There, now you can look up all the words you don’t know the meaning of!” He leaned in closer to the duo and winked.

“No more embarrassing questions, right?” They both giggled so Frodo took his chance to excuse himself from the room. Bilbo gave him a questioning look that Frodo didn’t see as he already turned to leave.

Once more he raced down the stairs, except this time he forgot his candelabrum, and he actually stopped to take deep breaths, and calm himself down.

He was staring deeply down at the floor when he glanced up to see a portrait staring at him. Well, it wasn’t actually staring at him, it just looked like it was. Frodo felt goosebumps, suddenly feeling creeped out the portraits in the shadowed house. He read way too many fey tales.

He entered the study again, the room’s only source of light was the gray light of the storm outside. He crossed the room and opened the wardrobe’s door as quietly as he could, willing it not to creak. He whispered.

“I’m back. Uncle Bilbo is still out but he doesn’t suspect anything, so you’ll still have to be quiet,”

So they clambered out of the old wardrobe as silently as they could and Kili latched on to Frodo again, and Frodo let his arms lightly hug him back. He glanced up at Fili, who looked tired and far older than he actually was.

He always seemed to act older than he actually was. He also looked sad, but it was ancient sadness which the source of it was far bigger than Frodo himself. Frodo saw it in him the first day he met him.

Fili’s reddened eyes met Frodo’s stare and with a jolt, Frodo realized he was crying. His own eyes burned again, and this time he let his tears flow freely. He shifted his position with Kili and held an arm out, beckoning Fili to come join their hug. Fili quickly agreed and went over to hug them.

And so they cried, Frodo crying for their sadness, and Fili and Kili crying for their own unknown tragedy.

When they finally pulled away, Frodo wiped his nose and muttered.

“I’m so sorry, I shouldn’t have pushed you like that-“ He was cut off when Fili interrupted him.

“No, I’m sorry. I shouldn’t have been so mean or yelled at you. I was just-, scared,” He paused, and looked down at Kili who nodded before continuing.

“It’s just that, we have had really, bad experiences with adults who- hurt us. Who wanted to hurt us. And…the last thing that Uncle Thorin told us before he was taken from us, was to trust no one,” Frodo’s eyes widened as he stared at Fili who gave a slight, sad smile at him.

“But then we met you, and you were so nice so….I guess we broke our promise,” Frodo stood there, going over the new information in his mind; many moments where Fili acted weird made sense now. But he didn’t know that their uncle actually taken from them. Why? How? Questions danced around his curious mind, but he decided he needed to focus on what he did know. His friends.

“Thank you for telling me that,” He smiled at them.

“And thank you for deciding to trust me. I want to help you and I’ll do so any way I can. I won’t tell my uncle until you’re ready, okay?” Fili smiled brightly at him and so Kili.

It wasn’t until till two weeks later that they chose to meet his uncle.

Chapter Text

Bilbo frowned in thought, staring at his dark-haired nephew, pondering just why Frodo has chosen to keep a secret from him.

And it wasn’t just a little one, no, it seemed too important for him to do that. He watched as Frodo scrubbed the warm-white dishes, humming a familiar tune to himself.

Bilbo wasn’t going to lie, he was slightly hurt that Frodo would purposefully hide something from him. He had hoped Frodo would be able to trust him with anything, but he supposed not.

But, Frodo also seemed like he wanted to tell Bilbo. He saw the guilt show in his eyes, and him opening his mouth as if he was going to tell him something but he never did.

Did Frodo break something? Or…did he find something? Maybe an animal… OH!

It was as if a lightbulb went off in his head. Of course! Why else would Frodo be sneaking extra food? Or digging up old toys that he never played with!

(Various relatives that had no idea that Frodo is not the average child, as he prefers books any day over toys)

Now, Bilbo only needed to find a way to get Frodo to confess. But how? Bilbo cleared his throat abruptly, gaining the attention of Frodo who stared up at him questioningly.

“The Proudfoot family has a rather cute dog, wouldn’t you think?” Bilbo glanced down at his hands that were deep in the soapy water, scrubbing hard at a random stain, waiting patiently for Frodo’s answer.

Frodo himself furrowed his eyebrows, confused on why his Uncle would ask this. He hesitated before asking.

“I thought you didn’t like him? Didn’t you say he jumped too much and he nips a lot?”

Bilbo tensed up before stuttering, feeling a little flustered.

“Well, yes. But he is cute, despite all that?”

He shrugged his shoulders, glancing at Frodo. Frodo blinked, feeling very bemused, and thinking at the moment of grown-ups were very weird.

“Yes?”

Bilbo nodded shortly, his nose twitching a bit. He cleared his throat.

“Well, I was thinking, perhaps you are mature enough to have a pet now. If you wish,”

Frodo dropped the plate into the luke-warm water, mouth falling open and blue eyes wide. Well, that’s a confusing reaction. The young fauntling stuttered.

“R-really?”

Bilbo nodded, smiling a bit at the excitement Frodo was showing, and was feeling a bit satisfied. But, the battle isn’t over yet.

“Yes. Now, is there any animal you know of that you might want?”

‘Like, let’s say, an animal you’ve been secretly feeding?’

Instead, Frodo frowned, dark eyebrows drawn together in thought. Bilbo felt bemused; that wasn’t the reaction he was looking for.

“No, I don’t know of any animals I would want,”

Bilbo stuttered, feeling confused beyond his life, and flustered. And there was Bilbo’s instant regret at his impulsive plan.

“You absolutely sure? No stray cats or dogs?”

Frodo shook his head no, gazing up at his uncle with befuddlement.

Suddenly, Frodo’s eyes grew clear for a moment before becoming shrouded with guilt before finally settling on an overly cheerful expression. It all happened in the course of a few seconds, so fast Bilbo almost didn’t catch it.

But he decided he didn’t want to press the issue, not for now. He sighed internally as he realized that now he was going to have a get a messy pet.

Even if wasn’t the result he was looking for, he mused as Frodo began tattling off names.

It was still nice to see him so happy.

 


 

Warm colors softly fell from the trees in the yard, littering the normally green ground with an array of flame colored leaves, signaling the quiet sleep that was to overcome the land.

Not to mention the familiar smell of the earth, with a tinge of cinnamon.

Bilbo felt a sort of odd sense of peace, watching the season begin to change. However, a tinge of amusement and annoyance began to grow as Bilbo waited patiently out on the patio of the large house. Young mister Baggins suddenly had run back inside the house, saying he needed to do something real quick, after repeating jumping up and down as today was the day for the new pet.

Bilbo couldn’t for the life of him understand what could possibly so important.

Before he could ponder any further, Frodo came leaping out of the side of house through the garden gate. Bilbo’s eyebrows furrowed, a wrinkle formed in between them. He decided not to question it as Frodo grinned up at him, the small gap between his teeth visible, melting his own heart.

He felt his own hand being grabbed and so they set off down the worn path to Hobbiton.

(It wasn’t too terribly far, plus he didn’t want to own any horses. Too messy. And he is a little bit skeptical of the new ‘automobile’. It doesn’t sound safe whatsoever.)

“Do you think they’ll like me?”

Bilbo hummed, softly snapped out of his thoughts. He glanced at the young hobbit next to him, his face almost unbearably young and worried as the blue eyes peered up at his older cousin.

‘It is ever so odd, how mature he is at times and yet….He’s still so young.’

“Who do you think will not like you?”

He bit his lip, and glanced down at dirt.

“The cat,”

Bilbo had to fight back a smile, although, he didn’t think he did such a good job of it. He cleared his throat, and responded confidently.

“I’m sure they will. I’ve never met anyone who doesn’t,”

Frodo relaxed a bit, but he quipped quickly.

“I know someone who does!”

“Who?”

Frodo grinned slyly, mischief written across his face. Bilbo could suddenly think of one reason why Frodo liked Merry and Pippin so much.

“Lobelia,”

Bilbo huffed, sounding like an agitated horse, making Frodo giggle softly.

“She doesn’t like anyone. Especially me!”

Frodo laughed cheerfully and Bilbo smiled warmly.

 


 

Bilbo raised an eyebrow as he looked over the selection of cats. To be honest, he didn’t actually know at first where they would find a cat. But of course as fate would have it, there was a shop that did sell cats unofficially.

He glanced over at Frodo who looked both conflicted and enthused. He was not getting more than one cat, no matter how big Frodo’s puppy eyes got.

‘And they can get pretty big,’

He thought grimly. He decided observed his surroundings while Frodo cooed over at the cats.

As he said before, they were at an unofficial store for pets, although this was a legit store for ink and whatnot.

He smiled nervously as he met the store owner’s brown eyes. He was a giant of man, even more so than usual in Hobbiton. But he was quite peaceful, sometimes even more peaceful than some of the Shire’s inhabitents!

“Mrow!”

Bilbo felt his mouth twitched as Frodo fawned over brown tabby who meowed but for some reason evaded Frodo’s pets. Then the man (?), Beorn, Bilbo thought, squatted down to haunches to mutter quietly to Frodo who laughed cheerfully.

Bilbo uncrossed his arms and relaxed a bit as he looked out the dusty window. Then he spotted one of his older clients, (so old, she was at the other law firm before Bilbo moved) who spotted him as well.

She waved and crossed the stone-paved road to get to Beorn’s store. (Nearly getting hit by a carriage in the process, causing Bilbo’s heart to leap out of his chest)

He rushed over to the creaky oak door, and opened it for the mint-gowned lady.

She raised her voice as she hobbled into the shop, and Bilbo cringed a bit, but bore a grin anyway. Goodness, one could hear her a mile away, but it wasn’t her fault.

“HULLO MR. BAGGINS, HOW’VE YOU’VE BEEN?”

“I’ve been well, how have you been?”

“LOVELY, I AND MY HUSBAND ARE PACKING FOR MY FIFTH NIECE’S WEDDING! I WAS ON MY WAY TO GET FLOWERS, AND WHAT WOULD HAPPEN BUT-”

Bilbo patiently smiled and congratulated her. He then pretty much tuned out the entire conversation until he heard something interesting.

”….AND THEN MY NEPHEW TOLD ME THAT THE ENTIRE CITY BURNED DOWN, JUST LIKE THAT!”

Bilbo blinked in confusion, and interrupted quickly before she could change the subject again.

“What? Which city?”

He thought for sure he would have heard about a burning city by now, considering how gossipy this town was. (Seriously, one time he entered a shop that had a selected of remedies in it, and he was accused a being a witch for two weeks. Bilbo had thought they were in an age of science, but there’s no beating ignorance)

“EREBOR, IT HAPPENED 50-ODD YEARS AGO…”

Bilbo gave a quiet sigh, leaning back against the wall, feeling relived he didn’t quite know anyone from there, but also pity for them. He questioned.

“How did it happen?”

“BLOODY HELL IF I KNOW, ALL I KNOW THAT IT WAS BURNED TO A CHRISP. JUST LIKE THAT,”

She snapped her fingers. Bilbo cocked his eyebrow, but said nothing more on the subject. Erebor….Why does that name sound so familiar?

“Mr. Baggins?”

Bilbo turned his head to face the much taller man, but his eyes fell on Frodo, who held a rather large (not fat, mind you, simply large) golden cat in his arms. He could barely see the top of Frodo’s head, but somehow he had a feeling Frodo was positively beaming.

Bilbo smiled gently, as the golden cat started purring very loudly and he heard a muffled giggle, and he asked.

“That’s the one?”

A stuffed sound came from Frodo. He took it as a yes.

 


 

The cat’s name is Glorfindel. According to young Frodo, he’s named after a great golden-haired hero who defended his people from a terrible monster.

The tomcat seemed to adore Frodo, and Frodo adored him. He was almost always under the young hobbit’s feet, quietly (and sometimes not so quietly) demanding attention. And, if not directly with him, always found napping lazily in a room nearby.

Frodo still continued to sneak extra food, but then Bilbo gained a rather hard case to work on at work, and so was decently distracted from the matter for a while.

Then the Holiday happened.

You see, every year Hobbit families held a holiday for the Fall harvest, and as much as Bilbo didn’t want to deal with busy-body relatives, he and Frodo always had to go.

Reputation and all. Plus, it was entertaining to say the least to see clever Frodo deal with his mischievous cousins, who for some reason decided Frodo was their favorite, and therefore must be harassed.

But Frodo appeared to enjoy this harassment from his cousins, and even had asked Bilbo if he could stay a few days longer at their house. Bilbo was reluctant but he eventually consented.

He took the time to ‘relax’ per se.

Meaning, he pretty much stayed out in the garden all day, enjoying the fresh, crisp air as the seasons changed from fall to winter.

He inhaled deeply, smelling the rich earth under his gloved hands. Shivering a little at the wind, he frowned at the poor carrot plants. They looked rather mangled.

“P-mrow?”

Bilbo glanced over to see the beautiful gold cat peering at him, his fluffy tail curling behind him.

‘Glorfindel, right? From Frodo’s fairytale books? Or as he would laugh and correct his uncle by insisting they were myths not, fairytale,’

Either way, Glorfindel seemed to be very unhappy that Frodo was gone, and took to informing Bilbo of this by meowing.

Very loudly.

In the middle of night.

Currently, said cat was rubbing against him, begging for pets.

‘Playing innocent, I see,”

Bilbo rolled his eyes in amusement, but took off his gloves to pet the pretty cat.

Glorfindel purred very loudly, before twitching his tail and walking off to goodness knows where.

He watched him go, before sighing to himself, and reaching for the gardening gloves when he heard a very loud and sudden crack.

Bilbo whirred his head to look at the increasing sparse bushes, when he spotted movement. He hesitantly called out, gripping his small shovel. (As if that would do anything against an armed intruder)

“Hello? Is anyone there?”

Then he heard the oddest noise, and the movement went still.

Bilbo wisely decided to pretend he didn’t see it as it was clear the other side did not want to be spotted. He could feel his heart beat as fast as hare’s as his anxious thoughts raced as who could they possibly be.

He grabbed his gloves, and tried to be normal about it. But you know when you’re trying to be normal, but it doesn’t quite look right? Yeah. Bilbo was far too fidgety, he knew this.

And he considering heading back inside the house, when the bloody cat let out a loud cry, and sprinted towards the bushes.

And then there loud rustling that, unless one was completely and utterly deaf, one cannot deny was there.

Bilbo impulsively ran after the cat, thinking of how upset Frodo would be if something were to happen to the goddamn cat.

That’s when he saw two, frightened faces ogling at him, one blond and blue-eyed and the other brown-eyed and brown-haired. And they were definitely not hobbits, but they were most certainly children.

And then Bilbo instinctive asked.

“What on Yavanna’s sweet earth, are you too doing in my bushes?”

And rather than an answer, which in Bilbo’s opinion, was the way to go when one is caught in another’s garden, they rushed to get away.

Bilbo’s hand shot out, and grabbed the brunette one by the arm. The one he caught cried out the other’s presumable name as the blond one immediately ran back to his brother and brought out a rather large knife, and why on earth does a child have such a really rather sharp knife as that- Bilbo’s panicked thoughts were interrupted by the blonde’s shout.

“Let him go, or I’ll cut you!”

Bilbo opened his mouth, and then closed it, his brows furrowed in thought as he took in the children’s appearance for the first time. They were positively filthy, and smelled rather like mildew. Their hair was tangled, and the blond one had a fresh cut on his angry, and fearful face. Bilbo felt a sense of pity come over him, and he let go of the brunette who ran towards his brother.

He asked gently as possible, not being terribly great with children, Frodo being the exception.

“Are you two lost? Where are your parents?”

They were huddled, and the blond one glared at him, while the brunette merely stared at Bilbo with great, big doe eyes. Bilbo thought grimly.

‘Well, at least they were not running.’

And then it all clicked for him.

They were the secret Frodo was keeping from him, which would explain the missing food. He questioned slowly, shivering a bit at the wind.

“Do you know my nephew, Frodo?”

They both replied quickly, with two very different answers. The blond said no, while the brunette piped up a yes.

“I’m not going to hurt you, I promise. You are friends of Frodo, and children at that. Besides, unlike you, I have no weapons on me,”

The blond one narrowed his eyes, but his shoulders relaxed a bit. Bilbo decided to crack a joke to cut the tension in the air.

“Seriously. The one thing I could possibly I could use is my straw hat, and it cannot even knock a fly out of the air,”

The brunette giggled, and Bilbo smiled a bit, still feeling a bit worried. He made a beckoning motion.

“Come, I can make you two some food, although I’m afraid you’re going have to wash up beforehand,”

‘My floors would not be able to handle it,’

Thought Bilbo, still surprised at how terribly filthy they were.

The blond one frowned, while the brunette   seemed to be a bit more impatient than his brother and broke free, walking towards Bilbo happily. His brother grew angry, shouting.

“Kili, come back!”

Kili stared back at his brother, frowning, looking like a particularly upset puppy.

“Fili, it’s Frodo’s uncle,”

He threw out his arm, and put one hand on his hip, and Bilbo felt the strangest sense of déjà vu. Bilbo had to hide a laugh as he realized that’s exactly how Frodo behaved.

“C’mon, Frodo’s right, he isn’t mean. And Glory likes him,”

Fili scowled, but consented, following his brother. Bilbo felt a sense of relief but also a sense of anxiety as well that he decided to ignore.

All the while, Glorfindel purred loudly.