BtVS by Whedon and Mutant Enemy. The Lord of the Rings Trilogy by J.R.R. Tolkien

Written for JadeHunter's Challenge "If Wishes Were Horses" at Twisting the Hellmouth

Frodo's wish is mine, Sam's wish is quoted directly from the book. I use 'winter' below rather than 'white' as they are in the book, as an alternate name not as a replacement.


Ruins of Eregion, January, 3019 in the Third Age of the Sun

A Burden Made Lighter

"I can't believe that when I asked you for a vacation, you sent me to this beautiful but hotel-free dimension on assignment," Anya snarled into the crystal she was using to communicate with D'Hoffryn.

It's not like you're there for vengeance, Anyanka, came the reply. It's simply chaos.

"I mean, look at the size of those Hobbits' feet. What are they called here, anyway?"

Hobbits, my dear.

"Oh. Really? I thought there were copyright restrictions."

D'Hoffryn groaned and cut the connection, so she pocketed the crystal.

Because the rules were different in this reality, she was able to fade completely from view.

##

Under the cover of invisibility, she snuck closer to the gossiping hobbits.

The heavy talkers were too flighty for her to get a handle on, but there was one over there who practically smelled of angst.

He was sitting on a log at the edge of the bank, skimming his toes across the water's surface.

He was idly fingering a ring on a chain about his neck.

His mouth was open and his mind was wandering...

It sounded something like this: "This ring I wear could doom the world... Only I can carry it... I only wish my burden wasn't so heavy..."

The ring slipped through his weary fingers and began to fall up, across his face.

The chain was halfway over his head by the time he grabbed hold of it and held it tightly.

##

"Oh my," he said. "Sam... Sam!"

"I'm here, Frodo. What is it?"

Frodo silently showed him how the ring was trying to escape the chain and ascend into the sky.

"How did it happen?"

Frodo answered after, with difficulty, he managed to secure the chain to his belt and hide the ring under several thick layers of fabric. "I don't know..."

"Well, that's good, right? If you let it go and it never comes down, Sauron will never be able to get his claws on it."

"No, Sam. The ring must melt in the fires of its creation, or else Sauron will never be completely destroyed... Do you realize what this means?"

"It's going to be a lot harder to keep it safe?"

"Not only that, but the plan was for us to simply throw it into the fires of Mount Doom... If something goes wrong, time's of the essence and there's no other way to ensure the success of the fall... One of us is going to have to down with the ring."


Redhorn Pass, January, 3019

An Invited Storm

Anya pulled her cloak about herself and shivered. The magic that gave her strength in her home reality was channeled into concealment here, but even featherlight she'd be leaving footprints in the snow. She huddled closer against Bill's back, invisible and weighing little, as the already overladen pony trudged through the snows of Caradhras.

"I don't like this at all," panted Sam as he struggled to keep pace. "Snow's all right on a fine morning, but I like to be in bed while it's falling. I wish this lot would go off to Hobbiton! Folk might welcome it there."

The Fellowship was seeking an overland route rather than braving the mines of Moria, but the falling, swirling snow was so thick it was hard to see, let alone move. If the biting wind grew worse, if they had no shelter for the nights, or ran out of fuel for the fire or the drifts overtowered the hobbits in height... they would have to turn back.

"Your words seem to have pleased the mountain." Gandalf laughed, shaking the snow from his wide-brimmed hat. "Look, already it begins to clear."

The clouds slowly parted and sunlight poured down bringing with it the illusion of warmth. The wind quieted to gentle puffs until a new force blew past them. Legolas blinked, seeing mottled shadows flit across the ground with nothing to cast them.

Merry and Pippin stood back to back, weapons drawn, filled with memories of the tree that had trapped them on the road to Bree. They'd had quite enough of self-willed nature.

Snowdrifts were torn apart by the harsh gale revealing stark projections of bare rock, many of which seemed to reshape their surfaces to better catch the wind.

The wind howled through these shapes, full of shrill keening cries and evil laughter. There was the constant distant rumble of falling rock as the very mountain shifted.

##

Into the sudden calm and silence, Gimli spoke. "It would be perhaps wise not to tempt the mountain further, it is not called Caradhras the Cruel for nothing."

"This is an ancient mountain," Aragorn agreed. "Sauron himself would not have a better reception than us, nor any other living creature except perhaps for those with hearts as cold as ice."

Shivering despite the increasing warmth brought by clear skies, the Fellowship trudged forward in silence. Following the path, which soon broadened for swifter passage, they made it to the eastern side of the Misty Mountains without further incident.


It was night when a harsh gale blew through Bree. Strange tales had been coming for the southeast for days and the densely packed stormclouds could be seen for miles.

Inside the Inn of the Prancing Pony, the cheery fire was snuffed out as a sudden chill wind blew down through the chimney. Those inside had a few seconds to watch tendrils of frost curl across one of the windows before it shattered, a winter wolf launching himself through it, to land, snarling, in the center of the room.

And the wind pressed on, roaring in the direction of the Shire.