Fool of a Took!

Through the mischief of two Hobbits Rick discovers his family line travels further back than he could have imagined.


The personal study of Elrond was massive for what Merry thought would be just a small den inside a bedroom. Not that any of the rooms here in Rivendell were what he would have termed 'small', but he had never seen so many books in his life—except in the more public library of this city of Elves, that is. He must really enjoy reading, he thought, taking a bite into his apple as he flipped through a book written in Elvish.

Okay, so they weren't supposed to be here in the Lord of Rivendell's personal quarters, but the way Pippin figured it, if they got caught, they would just say they couldn't find any books written in Common in the other library—which would be a total lie, but Elves were immensely understanding after all—and well, they didn't think there would be any harm in just browsing the study. After all, they really wanted to expand their horizons and learn about things outside the Shire. That was partly truthful…it was curiosity that drove them in here.

Many of the rooms had already been plundered by the two restless Hobbits, who had gotten a pretty stern warning from Sam that prying into things which they oughtn't would get them into big trouble, but trouble never stopped them from exploring anything. They had explored already some of the more forbidden rooms, such as Aragorn's and his stuff wasn't all that much to look at, really. A few hidden weapons, some books and clothes. Nothing really and truly interesting or out of the ordinary. Certainly nothing magical. Pippin had, after that, suggested they move onto Lady Arwen's, but for the sake of propriety Sam had convinced them otherwise. That kind of disappointed Pippin, too, who had taken a bit of a shine to the pretty Elvish lady.

So in compromise they had come here. Slinking through the halls on a quest more important and far more dangerous than getting the Ring to Rivendell had been, Merry and Pippin had stole away into Lord Elrond's private chambers on the chance they might find something extraordinary. After all, this Elf was nearly seven thousand years old. Surely in all that time he would have acquired something of magnificence. All they were going to do was look, anyway, so why should anyone get upset?

The sound of a drawer opening and closing issued from Elrond's bedroom and Merry looked up in time to see Pippin bound out with a silver circlet tangled in his golden hair, an expensive ring on his hand and a grin plastered over his features. "Pip, what's got into you?" he hissed with a glance at the door. "I thought we agreed not to let this get out of hand."

Pippin drew himself up regally and waved a finger. "That's Lord Pip to you and anyway, what do you think you're doing, thumbing through his books, getting apple juice all over them no less?"

"I'm not getting juice on them," Merry defended, biting his apple and quickly wiping a wet hand across his thigh. Reclaiming the fruit to his fingers, he chewed and waved it at his cousin. "Go put that back before someone catches you. I wouldn't blame him at all if he locked you in the dungeon."

Pippin crossed his arms and leaned against the doorframe leading to the bedroom in blatant defiance. "Rivendell doesn't have a dungeon," he replied, but his voice wasn't completely convinced.

Merry grinned inwardly and looked up with the utmost of gravity in his expression as he widened his eyes and peered around conspiringly. He motioned Pippin closer and scooted forward on the table he was perched upon. With the faintest hint of excitement in his voice, devious Meriadoc Brandybuck leaned into his cousin and whispered, "Actually, they do."

The other Hobbit's eyes widened in curiousity. "Really?

Playing it up for all it was worth, Merry nodded knowingly and took a nonchalant bite out of his apple. "Yes. See, I was sneaking around yesterday while you and Sam were visiting with Frodo…how is he feeling, by the way?"

"Fine, fine," Pippin answered impatiently, circling his hand and looking at his cousin expectantly. "So, what happened?"

Merry took another bite. "Hmm? What happened when?" He concealed a wicked grin behind forgetful eyes.

Pip rolled his eyes largely and grabbed Merry's arm, pinching it quite hard as he hissed, "The other day…you were sneaking around? And?"

Rubbing his now sore arm, Brandybuck shoved Pippin's offending hand off his arm and shook his head. His crafted expression grew hurt. "Never mind, then, if you're going to get violent."

The look on Pippin's face was worth at least a basket of mushrooms. Sulkily, he drooped his shoulders and pleaded, "Come on, Merry. Tell me what you saw."

Ever the long-suffering of the two, Merry drew up and decided to be merciful. After all, the young Took was family. "All right, I'll tell you," he gave in, taking another bite and winning himself a dirty, impatient glare. "So anyway, where was I?"

"Merry!" Pippin exclaimed, his fingers making ready to pinch again.

Merry slapped at the approaching fingers and groaned, "All right! All right! I was sneaking around and heard Gandalf and Elrond talking."

The flat-faced Took cocked his head. "So?"

Pursing his lips with a gleam in his blue eyes, Merry looked away and back again. "So? So, Elrond said there's a big, huge, nasty Orc in the dungeon!"

"You're such a liar!" Pippin accused, shoving his cousin dangerously close to the side of the table. Gripping the book and trying to maintain balance, Merry bit into his apple and grabbed Pip's ear to twist, making Took yelp in pain amidst insults. "Orc indeed!"

Slapping Pip over the head instead, Merry scooted closer in and huffed, "There is an Orc down there. I know because Elrond wanted to feed you to it for breaking his vase the other day."

"Oh, yeah," Pippin replied sarcastically, straightening his clothes out. "And where would the door to this so-called dungeon be, Mr. Know-it-all? Hmm?"

Merry took another bite and went back to reading. "How should I know? Get that silly thing off your head! And that ring you got on your finger looks rather important, too."

The other Hobbit raised his nose and wandered over to another set of books. "It just so happens I like them, so stick that in your pipe and smoke it." Merry shook his head as Pippin pulled out a black book from the case. Dusting if off and opening it, he started to browse through the pages absently with an expression Brandybuck recognized well. Pippin was trying deliberately to get on his nerves.

To that he took yet another bite, making sure to slurp extra loudly as he laboriously turned another page in his own book. Pippin paid no mind, hauling his read to the table and plopping it down roughly. He let out a delightful sigh and started humming as he looked through the large, leather bound book before him. Merry slit his eyes and coughed rather loudly. His cousin smiled sweetly and patted him on the arm, saying, "Maybe Lord Elrond should have a look at you. Wouldn't want that cough getting any worse, now would we, cousin?"

Merry said nothing and coughed again, deliberately forcing it to sound harsh and fake. If Pippin thought anything of it, he didn't show it. He smiled, finding a particularly colorful page and began reading words written in Common aloud. Brandybuck made a fist to clobber his unsuspecting cousin, but quite suddenly something happened they did not expect. The entrance to the grand bedrooms of Elrond, the Lord of Rivendell and one of the wisest Elves to walk Middle-earth, opened and in came the Wood-Elf Legolas they had been introduced to just earlier.

The Elf stopped with wide eyes, likely shocked at seeing Elrond's room invaded (but then again, what exactly was he doing here without Elrond?) and opened his mouth to speak as another form stepped in beside with an equally surprised expression. Strider. Pippin, not having realized anyone had entered the room, kept on reading as if for the world he had complete liberty to do so. When he finished and looked up, his hand went for the silver circlet adorning his head, but both cousins stopped the apologies on their tongues as the room lit up.

"Mer…" Aragorn began, but couldn't finish his sentence. In a flash of light brighter than Bilbo's birthday cake had been—which was considerable, given that it had eleventy-one candles on it—the Man and the Elf just disappeared. Gone. Poof. Nothing left.

Which quickly became untrue, much to the alarm of the two guilty sneaks and the now visible, irritated Elf Lord who stood in the hall and stared at the empty spot in alarm. The air resonated with a strange hum and another flash later Legolas and Aragorn returned—or didn't. Two men appeared rightly enough, but they weren't at all familiar. One was fair, with shining blue eyes, a clean-shaven face and sandy hair and the other man was darkly clad, with black hair and black eyes and a marked face. "Okay, what the hell was that?" breathed the fair colored one, looking around the room in alarm.

The darker one reached a tentative hand out and brushed his tanned fingers along the doorframe. "I do not know."

When the two strangers locked eyes on the Hobbits, Merry gulped and elbowed his cousin with eyes as large as saucers. This was bad. Very, very bad. Images of a large wooden staff swinging in their direction filtered through the Hobbit's mind as Pippin clutched his wrist fearfully. Only one thing could be said; one phrase to impart some sort of comfort to the frightened Hobbit at his side. "Gandalf's gonna kill you!"

But they had someone else to worry about right at the moment. From behind the two men came another. Bidding his two guests apart, Lord Elrond entered his not-so-private personal study with a very stern expression. Merry blanched and poor Pippin dropped the book he was holding, taking a step back from the glare boring down on him. "I didn't do it!" he exclaimed and Merry coughed nervously. The Hobbit amended his story and handed the Half-Elf's ring and circlet over—which were taken quickly. "Well, sorta. I did. A little, maybe."

Elrond's eyebrow rose as he nodded, keeping a patient but steely gaze on the Hobbit as he bent and retrieved his fallen book. "Indeed?"

Merry had to give his cousin credit for guts, if not for a quick wit. He had to laugh when Pippin spoke again. "You're not going to feed me to your Orc, are you?" At first Elrond appeared bewildered at that question, but after seven thousand years of knowledge and a wink from Merry, caught on rather quickly.

The Elven Lord dusted his black book off and spared Pippin one last look before turning to greet the newcomers. "I shall have to think long on that, Master Pippin. Ask me again at dinner tonight."

The two strangers, at a loss during this conversation, apparently had caught one word of interest. A word they both repeated simultaneously in the same tone of disbelief. "Orc?"

Merry smiled brightly and kicked his legs back and forth, enjoying a good joke while it lasted.


Author: Ruse –
Disclaimer: No infringement intended unless it involves me getting a romp with Ardeth and/or Aragorn and/or Elrond and/or Imhotep. ;-D
Feedback: Yes! By all means, my precioussss, lemme know how I'm doing!
Archive: Sure, just please let me know if you will, so I can stop by and see your site.

A/N: I know…I know. Nuts. ;-) I'm bound and determined to wed my two favorite fandoms…lol. ;-D Anyway, since Middle-earth is supposedly a fantastical pre-history to our own world, I thought this might work. This is about the only plausible way I could imagine readily at the moment of inspiration to drag Ricky and Ardeth to Middle-earth and stuff Aragorn and Legolas into Egypt (which I'll explain later in more detail). Lol. I'm not sure whether I want this to be during TM or TMR… I just don't know. What do you think?

And yes…I'll finish my Buffy/Mummy X-over someday…lol. I just got the LOTR bug.

Reviewers: Thanks to all who read/review my other stories…I hope this meets you well. And thanks to new readers! :-D