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A Not-So-Simple Misunderstanding  by Dreamflower

 Part 5 by Dreamflower of the Esmeralda team:

Pearl had taken his essay away to give to Father, and now he was really bored. With the essay finished he didn't have anything to do! He wadded up one of the peices of paper that he had blotted, and began to toss it from hand to hand. Then he looked at his wastebasket and tossed it in with a flip.

That was too easy. He moved the wastebasket across the room, and then tried again. Still too easy... maybe if he put it on the other side of the bed...or...

Several throws later, he had put the wastebasket on top of the desk, while he stood on his bed, and was getting ready to try tossing it backwards over his shoulder. Surely he'd miss this time...


Down he flopped. It wasn't Pearl this time, it was Pimpernel. He sighed.

So did his sister. Then she shook her head. "Father and Mother want to see you now, Pip."

At last! At last he'd get out of this room, though he wasn't sure what his parents were going to say. Pearl had not explained her idea, but he had a hunch as to what it might have been. He hoped that was it. And he hoped that his parents would listen to her.

Paladine and Eglantine were on the settee in the parlour of their guest quarters, and Eglantine gestured for him to come sit between them.

Pimpernel backed out and closed the door, though her face clearly indicated she'd rather stay and hear what was said.

Pippin glanced over at his father who was holding the essay in one hand, and tapping it lightly against the other.


Uh-oh. Surely he was in trouble now.

"while this is not exactly what I expected in your essay, you were certainly...eloquent."

His father looked at his mother, and they exchanged one of those looks that Pippin never quite understood. Sometimes it seemed they had whole conversations with their eyes-- and this one was surely about him. Anyway, eloquent was good. He knew that word-- it was one of Frodo's favorite words. Perhaps he wasn't in as much trouble as he thought.

"Pearl has suggested that perhaps the Great Smials is not a good environment for you right now," said his mother.

"Pearl doesn't like it here either," answered Pippin. One good turn deserved another; maybe he could get her out of here too! She hadn't liked it here ever since...well...his mind shied away. He really didn't like to think about that terrible time a few years ago, when Pearl had been so sad about old Lalia's accident...

His mother smiled and hugged his shoulders. "Don't worry about Pearl, Pippin. It's you we have to discuss."

"At any rate," added his father, "your mother and I have discussed it, and have decided that if he will have you, we will see if Cousin Frodo is up to a visit from you." Paladin held a hand up, forestalling Pippin's whoop of joy before it started. "But only on two conditions! First of all, now that you've had time to think about why it was wrong, you will need to apologise to Diccon."

Pippin nodded vigorously. He had already planned to do so; he liked Diccon, and wanted to make things right between them.

"And secondly, Peregrin, until we hear back from Frodo, you are to be on your absolute best behaviour."

"Oh, oh Father! I will! I will!" He gave Paladin an enthusiastic embrace and then turned to do the same for his mother, who laughed and squeezed him back and then ruffled his hair.

Oh joy! He'd get to go to Bag End! For he'd no doubt at all that Frodo would say yes!

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