He Went Out Boating!
Drogo Baggins leaned back and sighed happily, patting his stomach appreciatively. As far as in-laws went, he had chosen his wife well. Without a doubt, Old Master Gorbadoc kept a better table than any West of the Brandywine. Once the hundred or so youngsters about the place had gone to bed and the noise subsided, there were still plenty of scraps lying around for filling up the corners. And the moon was so big and beautiful tonight, it made him feel like…like…writing poetry? Something was not right. The only Baggins that ever wrote poetry was that dratted Bilbo from Hobbiton, and he was quite cracked. It must be the ale…
And it certainly must have been the ale that had made him agree to Primula's ridiculous suggestion that they go out boating! He'd thought that marrying into a good, sensible family like the Baggins would give her some good hobbit sense. Apparently he had been wrong. But it was too late to back out now – he wasn't quite sure whether he meant the marriage or the excursion – when she looked at him with those big, brown, pleading eyes of hers…oh, no. There went the flashes of poetry again.
He certainly hoped Frodo didn't inherit any of that darned adventurous blood.
"Come now, darling, we aren't really going anywhere. What could possibly happen to us? We'll just row out a little away from the shore, and sit and look up at the beautiful sky…it's so clear tonight…come, I know you can do it!"
It was impossible to resist Primula when she started wheedling.
"I'm coming, dearest, but I don't see why we can't admire the sky from the shore!"
"It's so much nicer in a boat, with the water rocking you gently…it's so soothing!"
"It sounds terrifying."
"Come, Drogo, and stop being such a silly goose! I'm beginning to wonder what I ever could have seen in such a cowardly hobbit! If you don't come now, my evening will be quite spoiled, and I shall tell my father that you don't care for me anymore, and I can assure you, you will never eat at his table again!"
Drogo heaved a sigh and gingerly set one foot into the boat. It rocked. "Soothing, yes, quite soothing," he muttered, drawing his foot back. "Perhaps it would be easier all at once." He practically threw himself in. By the time he sat up again, they were already drifting away from the bank.
It really wasn't so bad, once you got used to it. It certainly wasn't soothing, but they hadn't drowned yet, and that was surely something. Drogo sat stiffly, trying valiantly to focus on the sky, instead of the water. As long as he didn't move, everything would be all right.
"Now, aren't you enjoying yourself?" His wife's voice cut into the stillness.
"Yes, yes, quite…" he said, somewhat shakily, slowly lowering his eyes to look at her. My, but she was beautiful tonight, he thought. The moonlight gave her an aura of angelic softness and innocence, not at all like the cruel hobbit who would deprive him of her father's famous food. The urge was too great to be denied…
"The Sun is fair,
The Moon still more,
But fairer than them all
Is my little Pri,
Unearthly and free,
Enthroned in her starry hall!"
The poetry that had been building all evening could no longer be contained. It so overpowered him that as he continued, he rose to his feet, not even noticing the intensified rocking of the boat.
"The light of Moon
Deigns to stoop down
And rest upon her hair…"
But Drogo's first poem would never be finished, for the boat had tipped, and both singer and his subject matter were gone.
Frodo would be cursed with Bagginsish poetry for the rest of his life.