A/N: This is a birthday mathom for everyone. It has absolutely nothing to do with birthdays but then again, strictly speaking, a mathom is something interesting that has just been lying around doing nothing (and this fic is certainly that).


Questions, Questions

"I'm going into the dining room to talk to Paladin, can you get Pippin to bed all right by yourself?" said Bilbo as he stood up, clutching a half- finished cup of tea. Pippin looked up quickly at Bilbo,

"I'm not tired." he answered automatically. Frodo smiled, nodded quickly at Bilbo so he could leave, and turned back to Pippin.

"It's not time for bed yet, you've got another few minutes yet."

"Minutes? Is that all? I could stay up for hours!" Pippin jumped up, he would've knocked over his mug of milk had Frodo not moved it in time. "I have lots of energy and could run around all night!" he declared proudly.

"Could you really?" said Frodo sceptically as he lay back on the hearth-warmed rug.

"Yes!" insisted Pippin. He then went and sat on Frodo's stomach, legs crossed, Frodo was the only one he could do that on any more, everyone else's stomach was that little bit too round.

"You can't come back here in a year and still expect to be doing that, you're getting awfully heavy!" Pippin poked the stomach on which he was sitting. "What do you want up there anyway? What's the matter with a chair?"

"Well, if I sat in a chair you might be able to get away from me and you're squashier,"

"Squashier? Thank you my dearest cousin, I hope that when you get 'squashier' I'll be able to sit on you!" Pippin just sighed elaborately and rolled his eyes,

"Well, you're not as squashy as daddy but you're not as round as daddy either. I need someone nice and flat but very squashy as well,"

"You mean like a chair?" Pippin gave Frodo a calculating look.

"O shush Frodo, you're being too clever." he decided. Pippin then, rather dramatically lay flat out on Frodo's stomach (well, perhaps not quite flat). He leaned his chin on his hands and looked up at Frodo.

"Frodo?" he asked with a very thoughtful expression on his face.

"Yes?" replied Frodo.

"Why do people die?" Frodo lifted his head and looked down at Pippin. He was used to Pippin asking questions upon questions, but they weren't usually so hard to answer.

"Well," started Frodo, he looked around the room for something that might give him inspiration. Then he looked back at Pippin, who was staring at him avidly, waiting for the answer. Frodo's mind then lighted on the most obvious point. "If no one died, then imagine how crowded the Shire would be! Every last one of your relatives would be alive, I don't think even the Great Smials could hold that many people, do you?" Pippin giggled.

"No, I don't," his face became serious once more and Frodo wondered when and if he would ever stop asking questions, he was far too curious sometimes. But Pippin didn't ask another question as Frodo had suspected, "I wish your mummy and daddy hadn't died because me and Merry never knew them, what were they like?" Frodo thought back and was surprised to find his memories annoyingly fuzzy, but what he could remember was of kind and loving parents.

"They would have liked you, I'm sure," He smiled down at Pippin "They would have spoilt you rotten, or even more rotten."

"I am not rotten!" said Pippin, pouting slightly.

"You can be when you want to be though."

"Auntie says I'm sweet as anything!" Frodo let loose a snort of laughter before he was able to stop himself,

"Yes, well, Auntie says Merry's the most charming lad she's ever met," Merry could be charming, but more often than not he wasn't.

"What's it like not having a mummy or a daddy?" Now that, in Frodo's opinion, was an impossible question to answer.

"I'm not sure I've got an answer to that," he said entirely truthfully.

"So it's like not having sisters?"


"I asked Merry what it's like not having sisters and he said he didn't know how to explain it." Frodo was glad to hear that Merry was receiving the same type of questioning.

"You're not going to die are you Frodo?"

"I will someday, but I'm not planning on dying anytime soon."

"Good, because everyone gets sad and goes all quiet when people die, except then at dinner time they all cheer up again," said Pippin very knowledgeably.

"They do?"

"Oh yes, when Old Ben died, everyone was very sad but at dinner time they all cheered up and talked and laughed about him and there were lots of people I'd not seen before, is that why people die?"

"Is what why people die?" Frodo hadn't quite been able to keep up with Pippin's logic.

"To get all their friends to meet because I met Hal there and I wouldn't know him if Old Ben hadn't died." Frodo took a moment to think about it.

"Yes, I suppose that could be another reason."

"So death isn't really all that bad when you think about it."

"No, not when you think about it in the right way," agreed Frodo.

"You're still not going to die though?"

"I'll stay alive as long as I can Pippin, I promise." Pippin nodded and then crawled up to Frodo's chest, which was slightly flatter but also slightly less squashy. He put his hands on the floor on either side of Frodo's head and looked down at Frodo.

"I love you Frodo." he then gave Frodo a rather sloppy but very heartfelt kiss and Frodo hugged him back tightly.

The ticking of the grandfather clock in the hallway caught Frodo's attention and he whispered into Pippin's ear, "Bed time," Pippin pulled away and looked thoughtfully at Frodo, who was rather dreading that Pippin was about to ask another question. He did.

"Can I sleep in your bed?"