|The Winter Wind
Author: Iorhael PM
By Primula's deathbed. Frodo and Rorimac. Drogo was drowned immediately while Primula was badly injured and lived a few hours longer.Rated: Fiction K - English - Angst/Drama - Frodo B. - Words: 1,245 - Reviews: 6 - Published: 05-10-04 - id: 1856841
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
The Winter Wind
A twenty-fifth fic by Iorhael
AN: Written for Marigold's Challenge 4
Summary: By Primula's deathbed. Frodo and Rorimac. Drogo was drowned immediately while Primula was badly injured and lived a few hours longer.
Rorimac peered up at the darkening sky anxiously.
"I don't like the look of those clouds. Come on Frodo. We'd better try to find some shelter."
The storm growled louder and lightning flashed a brief moment later, followed by a harsh cracking sound of thunder. The bleak sky was enraged and split itself in two. A soft breeze that had blown through the leaves on the trees had long been replaced by a crying wind that could easily cower the bravest heart of a man. The murky atmosphere swiftly affected all, and the silver surface of the Brandywine River had darkened even before anyone realized it.
Including Frodo -- even though he had been standing what seemed like forever by the river, ever since the water was still as clear as the day.
And now, swallowed by the sudden darkness, Frodo hardly heard his uncle's warning and stayed in place, arms loose on both sides, eyes staring blankly at a spot in the river. He did not wince despite the roaring storm and the chilling wind. The cold, whether it was from the climate or his heart, was not something from which Frodo attempted to flee. He had no right to do such a thing.
"Come, Frodo, and rest against my shoulder."
The hobbit, looking so small, doubtful and vulnerable, stepped forward from his place in the doorway and approached the quivering form lying on the bed by the window. Frodo glanced nervously at another figure sitting on a wooden chair beside the bed. The latter, Frodo's uncle Rorimac, scraped his chair backward, nodding silently.
Frodo climbed up on the bed wordlessly and lowered his body down, slowly resting his head on his mother's shoulder as he was asked. He drew in soap-fresh scent and dampness radiating out of Primula's body, and swallowed his sobs. Primula adjusted her position, recognizing her only son's presence despite her closed eyes. She smiled.
"It is past your bedtime, Frodo. You've played the day away."
Frodo blinked. The dawn had just broken. If there was anywhere he had been to, it was his own bed.
Primula sighed softly.
"Don't go, Frodo. Please stay. It's getting dark now. The light is fading. Look. The evening stars are appearing."
Frodo turned slightly, hopelessness filling his eyes. A new day was beginning. There would be no more darkness, as the sun had superceded it with promised brilliance.
Nor would there be stars. All would go into slumber until the night reigned again and summoned them back to existence.
Frodo returned his attention to his mother, and for the first time realized that not once did Primula lay a hand on him. Her arms stretched out rigidly on her sides under the blanket while Frodo was lying upon it. He reached out and stroked Primula's cheek gently.
"I'm staying, Mother. Don't you worry. It won't be dark anymore. The sun is shining. Can you see it, Mother? Can you?"
Primula smiled faintly.
Rorimac wiped his face.
"No, Frodo dear. Another day is dying for me."
Frodo wrapped his arms around his mother and felt her shiver all over.
"Oh, Frodo. It's turned so cold." Her voice quivered. "I – I feel so sleepy now. You go and sleep yourself, all right?"
Frodo's lower lip started to tremble as understanding dawned on him. He would lose her, wouldn't he? The stars and the sun. They meant nothing now.
Primula mumbled. "Go on. Sleep. I will be fine. I will sing you lullabies and wake you in the morning."
A low, soothing sound hummed softly and Frodo and Rorimac realized it was Primula singing. Rorimac rose abruptly and circled the bed, placing himself on the other side of his youngest sister.
"Prim…" He touched the young woman's cheek with the back of his hand. Primula leant over.
"Oh, the wind. It's very cold. Feels like it's winter time." It was as if Frodo's mother was in delirium already.
"Primula!" Rorimac insisted. "Our time is running out. I - "
Frodo's mother struggled to force her eyes open, turning in the direction of Rorimac's voice. Frodo paled at the fact that his mother did not realize his presence. She might think he had gone to bed to sleep…
"Frodo…" Primula whispered.
"I swear to keep him in my protection."
Primula wept. A single tear slipped down her fair cheek.
"He's lost his father. I know that. He has nobody else."
"Ssh…" Rorimac gently brushed wavy locks away from Primula's brow. "Be at peace. Be at peace now. None would ever harm Frodo as long as I'm living."
With a shiver Primula nodded, content, and her eyes fluttered shut.
"The night grows colder," she whispered haltingly. "But please, please stay till I'm sleeping." Rorimac could only nod, even though Primula would never see it.
"And tell Frodo I love him and I'll see him when I wake."
It was almost mid-day, but the sky had darkened as if it was the middle of the night. The sun was completely shrouded.
There were no stars.
Frodo was still standing by the river, his hair, face, and clothes soaked with rain.
He was not afraid of the cold. He did feel freezing to the core of his bones, but Frodo wanted to feel what his mother had felt -- what his mother had suffered before she finally breathed her last.
The biting cold of the winter wind.
And that was exactly what Rorimac was feeling, too, as he swept Frodo into his embrace -- coldness within and without his body. He bit his lips as he dashed through the rain, holding an angry, squirming mass of Frodo. Rorimac felt a chill in his heart as he recalled one of the vows he made to Primula.
"I'll be his shelter from the storm." Yet, even this promise he had failed to keep.
"Frodo, Frodo!" shouted Rorimac in the midst of the noise of the thunder. The young hobbit ceased his struggle, but he would not look at his uncle nor would he reply to the call. There was no sign of life save for the boy's soft breaths.
Rorimac did not let go of Frodo even after they reached a big tree where they could harbor from the rain. He tightened his hold.
"Don't punish yourself, my child. It is the call of fate that your father and mother had to leave you. You still have me. You heard my words and you know you may count on them."
Faintly. Very faintly, Rorimac could feel Frodo started to shake.
AN: Some lines are taken or adapted from Les Miserables – Finale. This fic will not even be here if not for shirebound and Celandine Goodbody.