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Testaments of the Past  by Dreamflower 11 Review(s)
KittyReviewed Chapter: 5 on 9/3/2006
Merry looked puzzled. "Where is Pip? It’s not like him not to be in the kitchen at the first smell of breakfast." That's right. I'd expected Pippin to show up *long* before the cakes were ready. But I can see that his dream somehow disturbed and distracted him.

“Besides,” added Pippin, “how do you know he didn’t send *dozens* of letters? If they had to go through old Butterburr at the Prancing Pony, Frodo’d never have known, would he?” *giggle* Poor old Butterburr will *never* live it down, I fear.

It is good to know the cousins knew the contents of the box so well that they could say with certainty Frodo had taken some of them with him. I think it must be some comfort to them to know he has some mementos of the Shire and the people he loved so much taken to the Undying Lands.

I can see them feeling better after dancing around - it lifted the mood considerably. A pity Pippin made the wrong connection after Merry's remark about touching things he shouldn't touch. I am sure as soon as Pip could walk on his own *nothing* was sure from his hands and his curiosity!

The end was something of a cliffhanger. I truly wonder just *what* could raise such a reaction?

Author Reply: Merry and Sam both have wives at their sides, which makes a difference. For the usual nightmares, I think Merry would have sensed Pippin's trouble, and checked him in the night. But this was a different sort of troubled dream, and it was able to distract even Pippin from breakfast.

No, Butterburr rather stepped in it when he failed to pass that letter on.

It was Jackie's idea that Merry and Pippin would already know what was in that particular box, and would realize from what was missing that Frodo had taken the items with him.

Right now, with all the memories, happy and sad, being stirred up, it really does not take much to change the mood.

Well, you have seen it now!

ElemmírëReviewed Chapter: 5 on 9/2/2006
Eeek! I seemed to have missed this chapter!

Merry was fairly certain Frodo had not kept *all* his aunt’s letters, though, or they would have filled the box by themselves.

LOL! How very true! Dora's letters would have needed their own trunk.

Aww, Elanor and Sam making pancakes together. Very sweet. (I picture Sam being a very patient father as described in that scene. He'd have to be with 13 children, after all.)

Merry took out another small bundle of letters, and after a glance, exclaimed “Aha! I knew it! I *knew* Bilbo must have written to Frodo.”

“O’ course he did,” replied Sam. “He never said nothing to his kin about it though--said if Mr. Bilbo wanted them to know, he’d write them too.”

Yeah! I'm glad to see I'm not alone in my theory that Bilbo wrote to Frodo after he left. There's a line in FOTR where Frodo says to Gandalf, "In Bilbo's last letter ..." --Bilbo had written to Frodo about the Ring, to keep it secret if I remember correctly, but it's never mentioned as to when Bilbo wrote this letter. I've always liked to think that Bilbo wrote to Frodo at least once after leaving the Shire and his lad forever, perhaps when he got safely to Rivendell.

“I allus thought it meant that ‘if onlies’ was useless.”

I couldn't agree more. 'If onlies' only serve to cause bitterness and despair over what might have been. The trouble is, sometimes it's difficult to avoid that line of thinking.

The part with Drogo's skipping stone is so loving and so bittersweet, as it is now a remnant of a couples' never-ending love for each other. I very much like how it's included that Frodo demanded the stone be given to him as a child. Even as a young child he knew what this special stone represented. I wonder what Frodo did with the stone when he left the Shire with the Ring. Did he take it with him and leave it in Rivendell? Did he leave it behind?

Ahh, another similiarity in our stories! In my upcoming Dora tale, there is mention of Drogo's pocketwatch, although it's portrayed and received quite differently. :D

I really liked how Sam, Merry, and Pippin all continue to comfort each other in both the absence of their beloved Frodo and also when unpleasant memories of their journey come upon them.

I also really loved how the children received some of the their honorary uncle's treasures. I think Primula and Drogo would have been very pleased to see such.

Well done, Ladies!

Author Reply: Yes, I'm afraid that would have been quite true of her correspondence, LOL!

I'm glad you liked Sam and Elanor cooking together--I've wanted to show a scene like that for a very long time.

Well, I've always thought that if Frodo meant the letter Bilbo left after the Party, he would have said "farewell letter" or "final letter". "Last" letter implies a series of previous letters, and a linguist like JRRT would know that.
My idea is that he wrote Frodo when he could, being careful not to be too specific about what he was doing, and to never leave a clue to his current whereabouts. And Frodo, of course, could have sent letters back by Gandalf when he visited.

It's true. And yet they are hard to avoid, as Pippin found out in this very chapter.

Hmm...that's a good question. Perhaps he left it with Bilbo...

I'm glad you are enjoying the story!

PIppinfan1988Reviewed Chapter: 5 on 8/27/2006
Oy...I hope Sam isn't upchucking for seeing what I think he saw...yikes! We'll wait and see if my supposition is 'cold or hot'. ;-)

I thought Merry waking before Estella and him musing on his luck and her beauty was just lovely. :-) The lads dancing and singing round the room was a very hobbity moment!

LOL, just when we think things have calmed down...I'm eagerly awaiting the next chapter!


Author Reply: Well, I guess you know now what it is.

I thought it would be nice to show them waking up in the morning--and I think Merry would start off every morning thinking about his Estella.

The singing and dancing was Jackie's idea, and I think it came off very well!

It's up now!

GamgeeFestReviewed Chapter: 5 on 8/25/2006
I love all the dancing, and Merry and Pippin's insistance on Sam being family. Sometimes, you really do just have to force Sam to accept the facts. :)

And as for that item in the little box, everyone else seems to be thinking the same thing I am, but it can't really be that. How could it be? But what else is there? *thinks furiously* You just better not make us wait too long to find out!

Author Reply: It's hard for it to sink in for Sam: as far as Merry and Pippin are concerned, once Frodo made Sam his heir, then Sam became another cousin. Not that they didn't already feel he was family, but that really cemented it for them. Sam just has to begin to relax, and realize how much they care about him.

Well, I don't know if it's what everyone is thinking, but if it's what someone on LJ guessed--it's not. If it's something else, then it might be--unless it is something altogether different...

Baggins BabeReviewed Chapter: 5 on 8/25/2006
Oh my gosh! I hardly dare even guess what might be in that box but my imagination is working overtime! eeeek! Please don't leave us dangling off the cliff for too long, will you?

Love the banter between the three hobbits and the sensible behaviour of their wives!

Author Reply: Whatever it is, the three of them are not happy to see it.

Banter is fun, isn't it? And hobbit banter is especially fun!

LarnerReviewed Chapter: 5 on 8/24/2006
If the contents of this box is what I think it is, how in Middle Earth was it found? I'd have expected it to be lost in the destruction of the Mountain. But I can't think of another thing so small that would have made them so upset, to the point of vomiting.

Author Reply: Well, I'm not sure if you are guessing what I think you are guessing. We will have to see...

Pearl TookReviewed Chapter: 5 on 8/24/2006
I love wee Elanor getting the comb and Frodo-lad getting the button :)

I'm anxious to see if my guess about the contents of the little black box is correct . . .

Well done as always, Dreamflower :-)

Author Reply: Yes, well all these things will have to be divied up!

And we will see about all these guesses!

harrowcatReviewed Chapter: 5 on 8/24/2006
Oh come on Dreamflower! You soften us up with pretty hair combs and buttons and gifts for the children and then something goes and frightens Sam so much he is sick!!! Don't Hobbits know that red signals danger? Crumbs, and now we have to wait.....!

Author Reply: Well, you know, that *is* the nature of cliffies.

Hopefully you won't have to wait long. Jackie and I are hard at work, and we'll keep our fingers crossed that no computer woes or hospital visits will keep us from posting!

shireboundReviewed Chapter: 5 on 8/24/2006
How I love gentle, sensitive, well-mannered Elanor! Someone as cherished and beautiful as she could have grown up spoiled and difficult, but not this gem of a child.

Merry took out another small bundle of letters, and after a glance, exclaimed “Aha! I knew it! I *knew* Bilbo must have written to Frodo.”

“O’ course he did,” replied Sam. “He never said nothing to his kin about it though--said if Mr. Bilbo wanted them to know, he’d write them too.”

Love it! *grins* But oh Dreamflower, what's in that box? I have a rather gruesome guess, but can't imagine where or how Frodo might have gotten it. :O

Author Reply: Elanor is a sweetie! JRRT says somewhere that hobbit children do not spoil easily. And I don't think an excess of love is at all a spoiling thing--more like a preservative--like lots of sugar or honey to keep fruit from spoiling!

I thought you might like Bilbo's letters! Don't forget to check the Author's Notes and read them in their entirety!

As to the item in the box, well, it's gruesome enough, but not nearly as gruesome as what a few people have guessed!

AndreaReviewed Chapter: 5 on 8/24/2006
Cliffie!!! That one took me really by surprise!
Did I say something about someone not being wicked recently ;-)
What in Middle Earth is in that box? Please, don't let me wait too long!

I enjoyed the singing and dancing, the story about Drogo's special stone and this:

"I know, it’s silly. Of course we are all better now for the Ring and Sauron having been destroyed. It’s just… I still miss my Frodo …" Pippin’s voice faded away as he dissolved into tears.

Poor Pippin! He may be an adult now and a hero of the War of the Ring, but still, he's the youngest of our three hobbits and has no family of his own so far. He must feel very lonely sometimes. Merry and Sam did their best to comfort him, with a huge hug! Sometimes I wished there were some hobbits around. They are masters in cheering you up :)

Author Reply: Yes, a little cliffie! But really, we couldn't include what's coming up yet!

It's true, Pip's the youngest, and also being a Took, he's the most likely to display his emotions--he rather wears his heart on his sleeve. But you are right--hobbits always know how to cheer a body up!

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