Title: A Simple Tune
Summary: A short story in which Sam, with the help of Legolas, learns the words to a simple elvish tune.
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Time: During Fellowship of the Ring, after Rivendell
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Samwise Gamgee never knew that a hobbit could ever have cause to walk so much. He never knew that anyone could walk so much. Sam had never figured that there was much need to walk past Frodo's garden or his Gaffer's house, let alone to walk out of the Shire. He had never even imagined that he would ever travel so far as he had lately.
But, oh, the sites he had seen on the journey! Thinking of Tom Bombadil and the lovely Goldberry brought a smile to his face. The entertaining folk at the Prancing Pony in Bree made him laugh as he marched along. Ah, if only old Master Bilbo could have seen Frodo's song and dance. Jumping cows indeed! He glanced ahead at Frodo and smiled. Frodo's hand was fingering Sting in its sheath, and Sam shuddered. He did not care to remember the horrible Barrow-wights that they had encountered, or even worse, the dark Ringwraiths that were constantly pursuing them. His curly-topped head glanced around to find something to remove his mind from such unpleasant thoughts.
Sam's gaze finally came to rest on the figure who was walking lightly in front of him. The hobbit smiled at the swaying green-gray cloak and the quiver of arrows; Legolas, prince of the Mirkwood elves. Elves. Meeting elves had made this whole journey worthwhile for him. Sam began humming a tune that he had heard while in Rivendell. The sharp ears in front of him perked up, and the blond head turned back.
"A good tune, that is, Sam," Legolas said with a smile.
"Oh, I like it very much," the hobbit eagerly agreed. "I heard it sung while we were staying in Rivendell." A slight frown creased the hobbit's forehead. "I can't remember the words though, only the melody of it."
"It's a song about a maid who lived among the trees of the great wood," the elf said with a smile. "I can sing the words for you if you'd like."
"I'd enjoy that very much!" the hobbit exclaimed eagerly.
A grumble came from behind Sam.
"Not another ballad of the blasted trees," a stout dwarf muttered.
Legolas turned around. "If you don't want to hear it Gimli, then move further on up ahead. Sam here would like to know this tune, though, and I am happy to oblige him."
Gimli grumbled some more to himself, but he did not change his place in the fellowship's small parade as the elf began to sing.
Legolas had a good voice for singing, a clear voice that could reach a variety of notes without quavering. Sam listened happily as he moved up to walk next to the elf.
There once was a maid of the wood I did know
As fair as the leaves and strong as the boughs
She danced among the streams so clear
And ever did she call me near
The springtime wood carried light in the air
And my lady wove colors in her hair
The leaves they flew around with bliss
As I gave my lady our first kiss
The springtime beauty paled in compare
To the joyous face of my lady fair
No golden leaf nor the elegant tree
Could steal her heart away from me
Beneath the eaves we made our home
And even when should far I roam
I may always to that wood return
For my lady fair my heart does yearn
Legolas paused at the end and turned to look down at the beaming hobbit.
"Splendid!" Sam enthusiastically cried.
"It's not one of the more elegant songs of my kind," Legolas said. "But it is one that is always popular at large gatherings. It's a simple tune, but when enough people join in, it's quite fun to dance to."
"It's all a bit of nonsense if you ask me," Gimli added from behind. "Living in trees and all."
Legolas's brow furrowed. He was tiring of the incessant bickering that occurred between himself and the dwarf.
"Well, nonsense or not, I enjoyed the song," Sam quickly added, not wanting to see the elf in a bad mood. "Thank you very much, Legolas. Could you perhaps sing it again when we camp tonight? I would like to have another go at the words."
Legolas smiled. He was happy to entertain the hobbit.
Sam thanked the elf prince again and found his place back in line. The walking continued, but it did not seem quite so tiring to the hobbit now that he had the elvish tune running through his head. He began humming it to himself again, but soon had to struggle to hide his laughter when he heard the gruff voice behind him quietly singing along.