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(Written June 2013, for Father's Day)
Title: Fathers by Choice
February 26, T.A. 3018
Fathers by Choice
Elrond found his old friend there, where he had spent most of the day, each and every day, for the last ninety-one days: on the balcony that faced South and East. The tray of food placed beside him on the bench was only half-eaten, but Bilbo had a cup of tea in his hands, more for warmth, Elrond suspected, than any other reason.
"A hobbit who does not eat is a worrisome thing."
Bilbo gave a mirthless chuckle. "I am old; not some ravenous tween."
"I have never known your appetite to be affected by your years until quite recently."
The hobbit shrugged. "I think you know why."
The Master of Rivendell pushed the tray to one side, sitting down next to his friend.
"I have reason to believe our children have gone their separate ways."
There was a sharp intake of breath. "What's happened?"
"That which was necessary. Yet my heart tells me that both are still hale, if not safe."
"I wish I could know as you do, Elrond."
"Foresight is as much a grief as it is a blessing to a father's heart, Bilbo."
The two fathers leaned together for comfort as they watched the evening fall.
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