Author: Rachel Stonebreaker

Title: Jack of the Lantern

Rating: G

Summary: This story is based on the European myth of Jack and the Lantern, a story about a man who rescues his true love from Hades by using his wits, his friends and a turnip. It's been modified to fit Hobbit fanfiction. Five chapters.

Characters: Our favorite hobbits, Frodo, Sam, Merry, Pippin and Bilbo

Genre: Drama, Friendship

Disclaimer: All hail JRRT, the master. I hope he doesn't mind us playing with his creation. I certainly don't make any money, fame or fortune off of my writings. I WISH I did, but I don't so don't sue me. Authors Notes: Co-authored story with Amy Sweetwater. Amy's version is slightly different and posted at (http://www.fanfiction.net/read.php?storyid=1019871) on FanFiction.net and Yahoo's List Merry_Piplovers.

~ Pansy, thanks for the boost in confidence. I didn't know anyone actually WATCHED for my stories (oh my!)

~ Tiggivon, the Neeps were pretty fun. In case you haven't figured it out by my other stories, I'm a sucker for the fanon inspired "Tookborough Accent"... *snicker*. A friend asked once, do the Scots think we Americans have a cool accent, too? To which an Australian friend answered, "Nah, you all just sound grunty and harsh. Like we do!" Needless to say, we were all dispirited.

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~ Chapter 5 ~ I Will Keep A Light For You

"Is that it, Sam? Is the story over? Do you think you might be able to build me a nice cozy fire like we had at Uncle Bilbo's that night?" Frodo whispered to Sam as he shifted to find ease for his aching bones. It was of no use. There'd be no ease for him anytime soon.

"I'd be doing just that, sir, if'n I had the means, but there ain't no wood to be had in this barren wasteland. I wish I were a wizard, I'd light up my staff and at least cast you some light for a bit of comfort. It's so dark tonight." Sam tucked Frodo's cloak in around the tired hobbit and fussed with the bit covering Frodo's hands.

"Yes. It is dark. But it's hard for me to tell if it's any darker now than during the day. It is night, isn't it Sam? Or is it day?"

Frodo's musing hurt Sam to the quick. He knew his master was fading, that the Ring was a burden burning away Frodo's essence and dragging him into perpetual darkness. Sam would have to find a beacon for Mister Frodo. A light that he'd be able to see even in his dreams, for he walked mostly in dreams now. It frightened Sam something fierce. But he'd protect his Frodo if it meant he'd have to face the Demon of Darkness, or the Dark Lord Himself, he surely would.

"Sam! What's that I hear?" Frodo struggled to sit upright to investigate a non-existent sound.

"It were nothing. Just a prick of your imagination." Perhaps it was nothing, Sam didn't know for sure. Frodo could hear things now that Sam couldn't. But, still, Sam's internal sense wasn't warning him right now. Frodo was starting at things in his mind. Sam shushed Frodo and smoothed his hair in a gesture that always worked on his younger sister to quiet her in the middle of the night. Frodo lay back down and breathed a heavy sigh, trusting his faithful Sam to watch over them both in this desolate waste.

"It's so dark, Sam... I can't go to sleep. What if something comes out to snatch me away? What if I loose my way in all of these shadows?"

"Sleep, now, Frodo. I'll keep the bogies away. I still don't think I believe you when you say I'm as smart as Jack, but do know I'm as loyal and I'll not be letting anything happen to you. I'll keep a light for you so you can always find your way back home..."

~ The End