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Antane's Anthology  by Antane

Written for the July 2010 LOTR Gen Fic Community challenge of writing a story with a particular number of words. I chose 226.

Frodo and Sam looked up at the White Tree that was again vibrantly alive. The Ring-bearer squeezed his beloved guardian’s hand. “That’s because of you, my Sam, these wonderful signs of life.”

Sam squeezed back. “’Tis because of you, Mr. Frodo. See the blossoms all a-shiver? They’d clap their hands if they had any.”

Frodo smiled. “And how do you know they wouldn’t be clapping for you?”

Sam denied it but Frodo smiled further. Slowly they walked around the tree and as they did, blossoms dropped to cushion their feet. Frodo touched the bark and felt life within leap up with soothing tendrils of peace. Sam saw his master’s light flare as he caressed the bark and thought the tree itself a-lit as it welcomed the touch.

In the middle night, Sam woke, alarmed to find his master gone. He fought down panic and thought hard where Mr. Frodo could be. He raced to the tree and saw a wonderful sight. His beloved was sound asleep under the overarching branches and blossoms had fallen over him in a soft blanket. Frodo’s face was beautiful and peaceful. All the lines of care had left it and it shone with a soft radiance that matched the tree and the moon above. Sam returned to bed upon seeing those signs of life. His master was in very good hands.

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