The Moth Takes the Ring
The moth fluttered, strangely drawn to the golden circle upon its chain, brighter and hotter than any flame it had ever wooed. Brighter than the sun, yet even the simplest creature knows you cannot reach the sun…
It landed close to where the hobbit lay sleeping restlessly, the golden circle held in his hand. Creeping slowly and carefully the moth crept up into the hand, its feathery antennae swinging faster and faster with excitement. The hobbit would not even feel its weight. Closer….
Antennae caressed the gold, its proboscis uncurling to taste the sweetness of it. The flame burned and yet its wings were not consumed. It crept within the very circle of the gold, feeling it condense about it until all awareness was gone, only the Ring remained, yet now it had wings.
Strength it gave, and direction. The simple creature that held it was completely in its thrall, beating its wings in whispering blur it rose up, up from the limp hand beneath it, fingers closing reflexively but too late. Much too late.
Golden and burning in spite of the cold muted moonlight, it shimmered only once as that white face slid across its curving beauty. The moth rose up above the sleepers, above the one that even now was beginning to moan and to wake in a panic. It's burden kept it from the heights it once reached, but still it lifted…lifted, and in submission to the strange force that now held it - this flame, this bright darkness - it turned to the East, fluttered and was gone.