Title:It Could Have Been

Author: Pippin-kun

Chapter Eight; A fine day for fishing.

Rating: R, for dark themes (just to be safe)


Author's Notes; I believe I'm ending the story here...if you want a sequel, tell me. I just need to finish all that I can up here. I've loved writing this story, but...I can only go so far in my quest to answer quieres that I'll never have the answers to.

This last chapter is dedicated to every author out there, published or not, and especially Professor Tolkien, whose immensly beautiful world was realized mentally before the rest of the world got the chance to experience it. He has gifted us with wise men, common heros, laughter, and a light lit in every soul, with the hopes that we too may one day set foot on the shores of Arda, and drink in the beauty and joy, even in the scarred grounds of the healing Shire, until Illuvatar's gift comes close, and we see the grey rain curtain of the world roll back, and all turn to silver glass; and mortal eyes will finally see the white shores, green, rolling hills, and the swift sunrise that rolls across Valinor.
And in that moment, I shall not be afraid.
-PippinKun

Standard Disclaimer Applies
"Sméagol? Sméagol? Come on, Sméag, it can't take you that long to find a fishing pol-"

"Got it! Come on, Déagol; do you want to fish or not?"

Laughter followed the two friends all the way down to the river.

"Thirty-three...of all those I know. Congradulations, Sméagol."

"It's not that different; I still feel like I did when I turned thirty-two. Why such a difference?"

Déagol shrugged.

"No clue..none at all. Tradition, I suppose. Got that whole mess when I came of age too."

"I know; it was last month"

The two were laughing again.

The day was serene, and sunlight streamed through the foliage, casting a muted light on whatever crossed the river, be it pilgriming leaf or being of flesh. For those hours, the two of-age Stoors reveled in being absolutely childlike. They talked of the promises they'd made; the secrets they kept from family. All very juvinile; things like snatching crumbs from the baker. No, it wasn't kind, but it wasn't harmful; the birds would eat it otherwise.

"Sméag, the fish aren't biting. What say you to going up to Gladden Fields? I hear there are big ones, the size of Old Tomagee" Déagol stretched his arms wide to simulate the size of the portly old hobbit he spoke of.

"Sure...it is kind of far; what if we don't make it back by sundown?"

"Why are you worrying about that? That's usually me. Sméagol, we'll be back before supper, I promise."
---
It happened so fast, Sméagol hadn't been able to discern it until later. One moment Déagol was in the boat, the next; as Sméagol saw it from the shore, he fell in, pulled by a giant fish. Sméagol stood on the shoreline, ready to jump in to save his cousin.

But it wasn't nessecary; Déagol surfaced close to the shore, and Sméagol pulled him onto the land. The other Stoor coughed and sputtered, one hand closed tightly in a fist. Sméagol brushed himself off and slowly walked up behind Déagol, who was staring intently at something in his hand.

A gold band. Nothing extrodinary about that.

Yet all of Sméagol wanted it; to the pit of his very bones he ached for that.

"Give that to us, Déagol, my love" Sméagol spoke. Déagol looked at him and turned around.

"Why?"

"Because, it's my birthday, love, and I wants it"

"I already gave you a present, and it was more than I could afford. This is mine; I'm keeping it"

"That you are..." Sméagol hissed under his breath, lunging for his friend's throat like a creature possessed. The gold band fell to the grass as the two wrestled. Finally, after much struggle, Sméagol's soft grip latched tightly onto Déagol's neck and squeezed tighter and tighter, until...he ceased moving.

Utter shock bloomed on Sméagol's face. Oh...Elbereth...he had killed..had killed Déagol. What would happen now? He was already a social outcast, if someon-

The thought never finished. That gold band, that ring, it caught his attention. He even, on brink of madness he supposed, heard the band whispering his name. He lifted it up and placed it on his palm, stroking it like a bird.

"My...preciousss...."
---
Déagol was buried quickly and discreetly, and so well that he was just thought to have gone missing. A new, wicked part of Sméagol enjoyed the fact that no one knew he had done it. It gave him a feeling of...power, almost. It was this new part that seemed to tell Sméagol to try on that shiny ring he'd found. To the joy of the ever-growing wickedness, this ring made Sméagol invisible, though the dark blue, odd looking world he traveled through was a bit disturbing, it never affected Sméagol.

For seven years, Sméagol grew into more of a villain. He stole from his grandmother, he lifted books from carts and never returned them. An odd noise began to come out, like a mangled sob, from his throat. Frequently, he would beat people like Isil, and try to look in on young lady Stoors while they were changing clothing.

But it took nigh on a decade for Sméagol to realize that he could do something he'd never been able to do before. That idea that he'd thought insanity years before.

And now he could.
---
The home was quiet, in those wee hours of the night. Sméagol quietly picked the simple lock and crept inside, quickly slipping on that ring. Temptation rose within him to do away with Pim and the whore of a mother Pim had but, 'no', his mind said, 'more pressing matters to deal with'.

Keron was awake, if just barely, in his study, poring over various books and scrolls. He moved to write something new now and again, and generally wasn't paying much attention.

Perfect.

Sméagol crept quietly in, his hand ready on the ring. This would be most satisfying.

"Father" he called softly, waiting for Keron to look up. He did so. Sméagol slipped off the ring for a second before putting it back on. Keron rubbed his eyes.

"Bloody hell...must be the lights. Keep seeing that bastard son of mine."

"Father" Sméagol called softly again, stepping closer to grab the letter opener peeking out from a pile of papers.

"Who's doing that? Where are you?

"Your bastard son. And right here."

Sméagol jammed the letter opener directly into Keron's jugular vein. The Stoor grabbed it in panic. Unbeknownst to the bleeding hobbit, his son smirked.

"It's been years since I first thought of doing that to you. Now I had the means. Good-bye, father."

Sméagol turned and left, waiting until he was outside the door to slip off the ring.

"That was more fun that w...I thought."
---
The next day, Sméagol's grandmother woke him by roughly shaking him.

"Sméagol, Sméagol, get up, you louse!"

That startled him.

"Grandma?"

"Out, you thieving snake. I know what you've done; you've often talked in your sleep recently."

"But, I...what?"

"Out, you cursed, lying snake, you...you gollum!"

Sméagol panicked and did what came instinctively; he ran, fled for the roots of the mountains. His grandmother chased him out of the smial, and his hand smeared the almost complete genealogical tree of most of the families living nearby.

"You gollum! Treacherous, murdering cur! Flee and die in the cold of the mountain!"
---
He did so; though not immediatley. It was rough foraging for his own food, and his own water. The sun and moon ravaged him, and he sought deeper places that the surfaces of the Misty Mountains.

But that was not before another came to stay. Gollum, he called himself, and helped Sméagol. Slowly, whether through time or trickery of that cursed hunk of gold, Sméagol forgot of the pleasure of bread, of the sun, of the outside world, even his true name. Five hundred years of life that ring granted him, for it was the One Ring, forged long ago by a dark lord who stands nameless to our generation. It warped him terribly; he became more orc than hobbit creature, and all his words were cruel and gutteral. Always, his love was for the Ring, the foul thing that had destroyed so much of his life. He spoke to it, and himself, as 'precious', and whether another was around or not, he refered to himself as we.

Nothing more ever became of him, until a day in the Third Age of Arda, which your men call Middle-Earth, when a creature much like what Gollum had been fled from the goblins and found himself faced with a game of riddles in the dark.


.

I think I ended that quite nicely. I apolgize to everyone who didn't want this to end, but...as I said, I can only go so far with this before I intrude on what's already written.
Someone may be wondering why I didn't write the Ring finding scene verbatim from the books; well...I'm trying to see all this through Sméagol's eyes; that's how I imagine he saw the scene.

What I said in the begining; the 'I shall not be afraid' part i've heard before; not sure where. If it seems odd...my bad, to use urban slang.

So there we are; the ending to the history of Gollum/Sméagol. My part in this tale is complete; you will see me, or what my spirit takes form as, beside Frodo in the vast libraries in Eldamar, or dashing through those blessed forests in Valinor as a young fox, searching for Nienna


I leave you now with greater understanding.