The Fellowship of Ten - Chapter One:The Mysterious Stranger
Frodo got Butterbur's attention.
"Who's that chap over there, the one on the left?" he asked.
"Ah, around here he's called Strider, one of them Northern Rangers, but I never had the chance to meet the other one." Butterbur answered.
There were two men sitting at the table, and the one next to Strider was dresed the same as he, but was slightly thinner and shorter than him.
After a while, Sam asked for more beer and Frodo got up to go get it, but as he did, he slipped, and the Ring encircled his finger! He promptly disappeared.
He appeared once more and was imediately picked up by Strider and carried off to the room.
"It is one thing to lay low for a time, but another thing to disappear entirely." stated Strider in a harsh tone.
"I have no idea of what you speak." retorted Frodo.
"Oh," he said while closing the window," I think you d..." but he never got to finish his sentence, for at that very moment, Sam, Merry, and Pippin came busting into the room.
"Don't you touch one hair on his head!" bellowed Sam.
"Yeah, or we'll skin you alive!" chorused Pippin.
"I doubt it not, Master Pippin." Strider had eased a great deal, and was actually smiling."But there are fell creatures about, not to mention the Ringwraiths, or Black Riders as you call them. As you know, they are after you, so you must stay in another room."
"But, we don't even..." interrupted Sam.
And all the hobbits save Frodo left the room.
"If you don't mind me asking, who was that other man with you, and where has he gone?" asked Frodo.
After a moments hesitation, Strider answered, "She is a friend and has gone ahead to Rivendell." He had hurried in his answer and you could not tell is he had indeed said 'he' or 'she'.
With that, Strider left the room, leaving Frodo to pondor his own thoughts, and in a moment, Frodo realized that he didn't fully understand what Strider had said, being the moderately slow hobbit that he was.
The hobbits and Strider set forth to Rivendell at the crack of dawn the very next morning. Merry complained about not getting second breadfast until Strider couldn't take it anymore. 'Alright' he had said, and vanished into some brush. He had come out in almost no time at all, and Merry was promptly hit on the head with a fresh apple.
After some more marching, the four came upon a hill, with ruins scattered over the summit. There was a great many of them, for it had once been a sanctuary in the second age.
Strider had told them "This hill is known as Weathertop. We will be camping here tonight, and be careful not to make too buch noise, so as not to draw attention. I am going to scout out the area, so you will have to find your own way up. There should be a stair on the western side." and with that, he headed off east, in the direction of a patch of woods.
The hobbits went off up the hill and went to sleep.
Frodo awoke to find the other hobbits around a small campfire. He instantainiously got up to stomp out the fire.
"What do you think you're doing?" he bellowed.
"Cooking breakfast, what do you think?" answered Sam.
Then, they heard a shriek out in the distance that scared them to pieces. They rushed up the steps and onto the floor of the old sanctuary, and were cornered by the 9 Ringwraiths. They crept forward slowly and menicingly, and were met by four very courageous hobbits. But the hobbit's courage was overcome, and after a brief and one-sided fight, Frodo was stabbed. He would have been killed, except for Strider entering and frightening off the 9 with his flaming torch.
He took Frodo into the covering of the forest and sent Sam off the look for some Kingsfoil, a healing herb. He went off to look for it himself, too, leaving Merry and Pippin behind to watch over Frodo. He had found the herb turned around to face a tall hooded figure with sword drawn looning over him. Just then, Sam, Merry and Pippin came up behind the two and stood there dumbstruck. After a momient Strider relaxed.
"We need to get him to Rivendell, and soon." Strider said to the hooded figure, who turned out to be dressed alike to him. They could have even been brothers.
"The rider is already on the way. I will go and alert Elrond." replied the shadow.
"Be careful, they are close."
"I know." and with that, he turned and left on a beautiful black horse.
Sam was severely shacken,"Who was that, who is Elrond, and who is close?"
"Elrond is chieftain of Rivendell, the Black Riders are close, and" again he hesitated, much as he did when answering Frodo," and that was the friend who was with me at the inn."