Author’s Note – Frodo was an emotional child, so this is kind of an emotional tale. If you get emotional easily, grab a box of Kleenex and don’t say I didn’t warn you…
Frodo Baggins was always a plain, obedient hobbit child, even from the day he was born. The old doctor had to swat the child a good four times to finally make him cry, and even then, the little Baggins only cried for a few moments. He slept a lot as an infant, though his mother Primula often had quite a challenge trying to rid him of hiccups after his meals.
As he grew older, Frodo was well thought of among the elders of Hobbiton. He was quiet and respectful and rarely made trouble. And so Drogo and Primula Baggins had no trouble whatsoever to leave Frodo at home alone for small amounts of time when he reached the age of twelve.
“Frodo, dear,” Primula had said, before she and Drogo left for a meal out, “do be a good child and see that you get to bed a decent hour. Your father and I shall only be gone an hour.” Frodo looked up from the small meal that Primula had prepared for him and nodded.
“I promise, Mum,” he said, and turned back to eating. Primula smiled and kissed the top of Frodo’s curly head.
“Good night, dear,” she said. Drogo ruffled his son’s hair and put an arm around his wife. Frodo looked up again to watch them leave their hobbit-hole.
Frodo cleared off the table after he finished eating, and began to head to his bedroom to merely read before going to sleep, but a portrait of his uncle Bilbo caught his eye. He had never met the old man, because his mother thought that Bilbo was too eccentric for her son to meet, though Frodo always had longing to see him. Bilbo had travelled the world years ago and certainly had tales to tell. Taking a sudden inspiration from his uncle’s picture, Frodo decided to began his own story instead.
He had taken out and parchment and written for hours when he finally thought of his mum and dad. Hadn’t they said that they would be back in an hour’s time? Frodo went to look out the front window. It was pitch black. All of the sensible hobbits had gone to sleep, even the inns had closed. Where were his parents?
Tears clung to Frodo’s eyelashes as he looked out on the river. Several Brandybucks were on boats and peering into the water. Some called out the names of the missing Bagginses. Frodo only stood on the shore, watching and waiting. And hoping. Hoping beyond reason, for reason said they were dead. Reason told him of his parent’s punctuality and it was almost certain that if they were not punctual, something had happened. That something had to be Death.
Shut up! Frodo thought, Perhaps the weather got bad. Perhaps they did tell me they would be gone all night, and I only forgot. With this in mind, Frodo turned and ran all the way home with a new found hope in his heart. That was it, of course! He had just forgotten!
“Frodo! Frodo, hold up!” Frodo turned to see Saradoc Brandybuck, a hobbit of Buckland who had just come of age.
“Frodo, we found them,” Saradoc said.
“Where? Where are they?” Frodo demanded, his eyes brightening, though inside he felt foolish. He had fogotten that they’d be gone and now he’d be critisized for “crying ‘wolf'” and saying his parents were missing. But Saradoc sighed and placed his hands on Frodo’s shoulders.
“They’re dead, son,” Saradoc said, “Found ’em in the river. They must have fallen in last night. I’m sorry.”
Frodo’s knees felt weak and he felt it hard to breathe. Dead? No, that wasn’t possible! He had just seen them last night! He had just eaten food they had made–last night!
Frodo sat on a stump nearby, hugging his stomach, for he felt he might be sick. His heart raced and his breath came short and fast.
“Are you going to be all right?” Saradoc asked. Frodo closed his eyes as tears began to fall.
“No,” he said, “No, I’m not all right!” That was all he could say. Saradoc slipped an arm around the young Baggins as Frodo dissolved into tears and hiccups.
Frodo was taken into Brandybuck Hall to live with his mother’s relatives. They were understanding people who knew a lot about rivers. They explain exactly how Drogo and Primula might have died, though Frodo knew that it had to do mostly with the fact that no hobbit of Hobbiton knows how to swim. The Brandybucks offered to teach Frodo how, so that he wouldn’t have to fear the same fate as his parents had, but Frodo didn’t think that anyone in his right mind should learn. It was too dangerous, and though he never said it, Frodo thought that every last one of the Brandybucks must be crackpots if they thought they were safe in the water.
Often times Frodo would sit by the river’s edge quietly and think about what had happened. It seemed surreal and impossible to think that they were really gone. Often times he would talk to himself, which, though is said to be the mark of a madman, Frodo found rather comforting. What he really needed was a friend.
“Does your other half answer if you talk to it?” Frodo looked up to see a red-headed hobbit with a button-like nose and a blue apron.
“I don’t understand,” Frodo answered.
“You seem to be carrying on enough of a conversation with yourself, I was interested to see if your other half really did answer or not,” the hobbit-lass said, with a twinkle in her green eyes.
“Don’t be silly,” Frodo said, giving the water a kick, “There’s only one of me.”
“Two halves make one,” the hobbit-lass plopped herself down beside Frodo, “Are your halves different?”
“Now I’m confused!” Frodo exclaimed,”I’m not in halves at all.”
“That’s too bad,” the hobbit-lass said, “it’s always more interesting to have three people in a conversation.”
“Even if I was in halves, there still would only be two people,” Frodo challenged, “because two halves makes one, and if you’re whole and I’m in two halves, there still would be two whole people.”
“Now you’ve got me confused!” exclaimed the hobbit-lass.
“Never mind,” Frodo shrugged, “Have you got a name?”
“Most people do,” the hobbit-lass said, “Mine’s Melilot. Melilot Moss of Lake-By-Downs.”
“Why are you here?” Frodo asked.
“Visiting relatives of Buckland,” Melilot said, “though all my cousins are too wild for me. You looked like you were calm enough. Have you got a name, the whole of you, at least?” Frodo quirked a wobbly smile.
“Both halves are called Frodo,” he said, “Frodo Baggins. My mother was a Brandybuck, but she’s…well, dead. So I live here now.”
“How do you put up with it?” Melilot asked, “I’d think you’d have permenant headache.”
“It’s hard to sleep at night, but if you knock them down enough, they leave you alone,” Frodo said, “Actually, they usually leave me alone anyway…”
“Oh?” Melilot said, “And why is that?”
“Well…” Frodo drew a long breath, “my parents died about two months ago, and I think everyone’s afraid of making me cry, so they usually stay away from me.”
“Do you cry?” Melilot asked.
“Sometimes,” Frodo said, “usually at night, though. I don’t care who knows it, for they seem to think I’m going to anyway.”
“I think–“but Melilot was cut off by a distinct Brandybuck voice crying out, “Frodo! Frodo, come inside! And bring Melilot with you if you see her!”
“Coming!” Frodo answered, and turned to Melilot, “You’re supposed to go inside.”
“So I hear,” Melilot said, but placed a hand on Frodo’s arm, “I should like to talk with you again, Frodo, if you like.”
“I should like that,” Frodo said, “I need someone to talk to.”
And the two young hobbits made their way back up the hill to Brandybuck Hall. Frodo felt certain that he would begin to heal soon.
This is going to be a short post, with only about three more little stories left. I know many people write about Frodo, but I thought it’d be nice to hear about his youth, because he obviously went through some emotional times.There will probably also be short posts on Sam, Merry, and Pippin, if Frodo’s goes over well.