Merry was surprised to find that Frodo didn't recoil from the kiss like he had expected. In actual fact, it was Merry who eventually broke the kiss. 'Frodo, I'm sorry, I… I didn't mean to… I shouldn't have…' Merry muttered, before turning his back and running.
'Merry! Wait!' Frodo called back, but Merry didn't stop or even slow down. 'Merry!' Frodo called again, this time louder. Merry continued to run. With a sigh Frodo began to run off after the younger hobbit, continuously calling for him to stop. Merry didn't stop, however, and Frodo continued to chase him. Merry finally came to stop at the riverbank, bent over double and gasping for breath. Frodo came to a stop at Merry's side, breathing heavily. He took hold of one of Merry's wrists to stop him scampering off again.
'Stop running away.' Frodo said.
'Why? Why should you even want to know me anymore?' Merry asked. 'We were best friends, and I've ruined that now!'
'No Merry. You've ruined nothing, nothing at all!' Frodo said, taking hold of Merry's arms so that Merry was forced to look at Frodo's face. 'Why are you so sure I don't feel the same?' Frodo asked.
'I… I never… do you?' Merry stuttered.
Frodo didn't reply, but pulled Merry into a kiss. This time neither of the hobbits made any attempt to break away from each other. Before long they found themselves lying on the ground together, their kisses getting more and more passionate. 'Happy birthday, Merry…' Frodo whispered into his new lover's ear before proceeding to strip Merry down to the waist.
Bilbo was the only hobbit to notice Merry run from the party, and Frodo following him. After a moment, Bilbo set out after them at a slower pace. He didn't want to pry on his nephew's private business, but then again he didn't want his nephew to get hurt; Merry seemed to be in a strange mood tonight.
He had watched Frodo and Merry's first kiss from a distance, and had watched as Merry yet again tried to run from Frodo. He heard Frodo call after his friend, and then begin to pursue him across the fields.
Yet again Bilbo followed at a distance; his curiosity had now taken hold of him. He knew how much Frodo lusted after Merry, and this could change the rest of his nephew's life. Frodo had never told him about his feelings for Merry, but you don't raise someone from such a young age and not learn to tell everything they're thinking and feeling from just watching them. Bilbo had often watched Frodo around Merry, and the signs were just too obvious to be misread.
By the time Bilbo had reached the hill overlooking the riverbank, Frodo and Merry were halfway to the ground, their hands all over each other, their lips locked in a passionate kiss. Bilbo didn't want to stay and watch any longer, so he turned and headed back to the party. He was so happy for Frodo at that present moment, for Frodo, unlike him, was young with the rest of his life ahead of him, and now had someone to love and love him back, maybe for the rest of his life. Bilbo didn't think Frodo would be one of those hobbits that loved them and left them. No, Frodo and Merry would be together for a long time, if not until their dying days.