Hullo; this is just a piece of fluff that entered my mind and wouldn't leave; It features 'The Green Dragon', and occurs right after they find the hobbits in the wreckage of Isengard. One-shot

As always, I don't own this.

Pippin lifted his head from the table. He was tired, and still a bit sore from sitting among Treebeard's branches. He wasn't talking, nor eating, nor even indulging in a smoke, as he was wont to; very unnatural behaviour for the young Took.

Pippin set his head back down upon the table, allowing snippets of conversation to filter past; most about the victory at Helm's Deep. A maiden looked with curiosity upon him.

"Are you alright, holybltan?"

The Took looked up.

"What? No, no holybltan around here. I'm a hobbit; a half-ling"

The lass laughed softly.

"No, that is the name we give your folk here in Edoras"

"Oh..well, in that case, I'm alright. Just a bit tired is all"

"I understand."

The lass; Eowyn of Rohan; departed. Pippin laid his head back down on the table.

"Here, Pip," Merry's sudden arrival jolted the Took out of his thoughts. A pint was sat in front of the hobbit, and he took it and drank, weariness still evident on his face.

Isengard; though victory had come, something loomed in his heart, as if he were being reminded of why they ; he, Merry, Frodo and Sam; had left the Shire's borders behind them.

"Say...what's the matter with you? You look worried." Meriadoc sat next to his younger cousin.

The Took shrugged.

"I dunno, Merry; I'm tired, I guess."

"From what? We've done naught but ride here, and before that, search through wreckage at Isengard. Why would you be tired?"

Pippin shrugged again and lowered his head to the table. Merry felt worry for his cousin rise; Pippin had seemed to be tired for a while now; ever since the Ents and Hurons marched to Isengard, and even before that.

It took the Brandybuck a short second to understand his cousin's worry.


Frodo and Sam.

No one knew where they were, or if they were in Mor...that accursed land. Merry closed his eyes and hoped that they had made it.

"Pip? I...I know why your worried. But..they're alive"

Pippin looked up at his cousin, head still on the table, propped up slightly on folded arms.

"How do you know, Merry? How can you be sure?"

"Well, the world isn't gone...and besides," Merry added, seeing the concerned look on the Took's face, "Sam's got more good hobbit sense than anyone I've ever met. Elbereth forbid Frodo fails, but if he does...I think Sam will be able to help"

Pippin gave a yawn, and then smiled, straightening in his chair.

"You know, Merry, I can't help but be cheered a little"

Merry took a bite of food from his plate.

" 'Ow's that?"

Pippin smiled mischeviously, then pointed to where Legolas and Gimli stood.

"'s a drinking game, is that it?" the elf spoke.The Men cheered wildly. Merry smiled broadly, knowing what would come next out of sheer suspicion.

"What, may I ask, is the point of it?"

The hobbits spoke softly, but mimicked the Dwarf's words, "last one standing wins"

A great roar of laughter spread through the halls of Theoden, King of the Mark.

As the night pressed on, the Men lifted their voices in song, several in Rohirric, which the hobbits did not understand, but throughly enjoyed, after Gandalf had translated them.

Pippin, despite earlier fatigue, was feeling quite happy and down another pint of ale. The men laughed and talked. Another song, this time sung by Aragorn, in the language of Rohan, which was quick and lighthearted. But as the hobbits glanced about, they saw fear of death and destruction in the faces of Men.

"Merry. Merry!" Pippin whispered. Merry laughed at a joke someone was telling him, then turned to his cousin.

"What 'tis it, Pippin? Why were you poking me?"

"Can you see it Merry?"

"See what?"

"In their eyes; they still look afraid, as if the worst hasn't come yet..."

"Pippin!" Merry's voice lifted to bare above a whisper, "don't speak like that! They come from a great victory at Helm's Deep. They're elated!"

Yet even as these words took form, Merry could feel the slight air of dread that hung over them.

A drinking song ended, and there was loud cheering. Pippin shook his head, trying to rid himself of negative thoughts. He grabbed Merry's arm and began making for the other side of the room.

"Pippin! What are you...let go, you ninny!"

"Quit it, Merry...I've got an idea.."

The pair of hobbits made it to the other side of the room just as the Men were begining another song. Somehow, to Merry's amazement, Pippin managed to be not out of breath. The Took looked up at the Men.

"Oh, that song was fine, well, and good, but, in the Shire," Pippin spoke, a grin widing, " we've got much better than that!"

"Oh, is that so, little half-ling?" a Rohirrim soldier inquired, "Show us then."

Pippin put an arm around his cousin's shoulders, lifting him upright.

"Pip...I swear...I'm..I'm going to..."

"Oh, stop it Merry, and follow me"

Before the Brandybuck knew it, he had been hauled up upon a wooden table, eyes staring at him and Pippin, who, he noticed, didn't seem to mind being the center of attention.

"Pippin...what exactly are we going to sing?"

"Oh, you'll know..."

"Why are we doing this?"

Pippin leaned close.

"To make them laugh, Merry. To lighten their hearts"

Pippin took a deep breath and turned towards his 'audience'

"Oh you can search far and wide," his voice wavered slightly from misuse, "You can drink the whole town dry...."

Merry joined in at that point, and the men began thumping out a beat with whatever handy; their feet, or their mugs.

"You'll never find a beer so brown"

"But you'll never find a beer so brown" Merry echoed.

"As the one we're drinking in our town".

"You can kick your fancy ales." At this point, a mug had been kicked off the table, but by whom, none knew.

"You can drink em by the flagon.

But the only brew for the brave and true . . .

Comes from the Green Dragon

"Again, again!" came the cries.

"Alright," Pippin called, laughter in his voice, "but just once more!"

"Oh you can search far and wide,

You can drink the whole town dry.

You'll never find a beer so brown

But you'll never find a beer so brown
(Merry echoed once again)

As the one we're drinking in our town.

You can kick your fancy ales.

You can drink em by the flagon.

But the only brew for the brave and true . . .

Comes from the Green Dragon

The hobbits lifted their mugs and downed them quickly.

"Yes, thank you! I win!" Pippin cried. Merry smiled.

That night, as they lay down to sleep, Merry sat himself up.



"You're still a ninny"

Pippin laughed.

"Yes, and you're still a stubborn fool"

At this they laughed, then their conversation fell silent. The two lay down and sought sleep.

"Merry?" Pippin spoke softly, trying hard not to awaken any of their sleeping comrades.

"Yes, Pippin?"

"Promise..promise you won't leave me, please?"

Merry rolled completely to his other side, and Pippin turned his head on the pillow to face his cousin. Merry bit back tears at the scared look on the Took's face. He lightly rested a hand on Pippin's cheek.

"No, Pippin, I won't leave you."

So there you go...not as fluff filled as most expect, but, hey, it's tackling two things that were'nt ever mentioned; why Pippin and Merry were singing, and the scene in front of the Mumakil, you know;

"You're not going to leave me, are you Pip?"

"No, Merry, I'm going to take care of you"

I figured that Merry must've said a simliar thing to Pippin.

Review, please?