Tea and Misery

Lobelia Sackville-Baggins frowned at the proffered plate. "I'm not fond of seedcake."

"Pity," Bilbo responded sympathetically. "I've nothing else in the hole just now."

Frodo carefully poured tea.

"Three lumps," commanded Lobelia.

"Oh, dear!" The lad looked crestfallen. "We've no sugar here either, Aunt Lobelia."

She stood with a disapproving sniff. "I think I shan't take tea after all. Good day."

Bilbo watched from the window until she disappeared round the curve of the lane; then he dropped the curtain and winked.

"Fetch the sugar and biscuits from the garden, my boy. No sense letting the tea go to waste."