Midsummer Night's Dreams by Lbilover


On Midsummer night, unwed hobbits all over the Shire slept with bouquets of seven different wildflowers under their pillows so that they might dream of their future sweethearts, as tradition held. Except, that is, at Number Three, Bagshot Row. Gaffer Gamgee didn't hold with any tradition that smacked of elvish magic, and he made a point of checking under his daughters' pillows every year to be certain they weren’t indulging in any such foolishness.


But never did he think to check under his son's.


Foxglove, cowslips, bindweed, harebells, primroses, scarlet pimpernel, and poppies. Sam carefully tied the bundle with a length of twine and placed it under his pillow, as he had each Midsummer night since he turned a tween and stopped viewing the world, and the hobbits in it, with the eyes of a child. He blew out the tallow candle and climbed into his bed, breathing deeply of the scent the bruised flowers gave off when he rested his head on the pillow. Sam screwed his eyes tight-shut and willed himself to sleep. He couldn’t wait for the vision to arrive.


For he had no fear over which fair face would visit him in his dreams this night. Hadn’t it appeared last year and the year before and the year before that? He knew he was full young yet to do aught about it, but he’d be ready when the time came. Left to himself, he’d never have dared to lift his eyes so high, but unlike his gaffer, Sam believed in Midsummer night’s dreams.


~*~


It seemed rather silly, truth be told, and even more, Frodo found himself unexpectedly fearful. Of course it was simply superstitious nonsense as Bilbo said, and surely nothing to be afraid of.


Foxglove, cowslips, bindweed, harebells, primroses, scarlet pimpernel, and poppies. As Frodo placed the bundle of wildflowers under his pillow, a great reluctance overcame him. If only he hadn’t promised Merry and Pippin that he would do it, thought Frodo. But he was honour bound.


Frodo blew out the wax candle and climbed into bed, breathing deeply of the scent the bruised wildflowers gave off as he rested his head on the pillow. He closed his eyes but willed himself to stay awake. Superstitious nonsense it might be, but there was only one visage he wished to visit his Midsummer night’s dream, and if it did not, he would be sorely disappointed. Sleep would not be put off, however, and soon arrived to claim him.


Next morning, Frodo resolutely ignored his cousins’ badgering, refusing to divulge the name of the hobbit who had appeared to him. ‘That’s none of your business,’ he said calmly, buttering his toast, while inside a tiny flame of happiness glowed. It was too soon to act upon the knowledge, but Frodo now believed in Midsummer night’s dreams.


~*~


Later that morning, outside in the garden, Frodo and Sam came face to face. They looked long into each other’s eyes without speaking, the young Squire and the gardener’s son; awareness arced between them, settled down deep in their hearts, to abide in patience until the time was right. Then they went about their business as if nothing had occurred.