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Old 04-27-2004, 12:18 PM   #1
piosenniel
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Thumbs up Barrow-Downs’ Birthday Celebration! 2004

~*~ The Long Awaited Party ~*~

Rumors of the party were rife in Hobbiton and Bywater. Indeed, all the Shire was buzzing with news of the travelers on the Great East Road and the doings in the Party Field. The word, in fact, had spread in the four directions until all manner of creatures beneath the starry skies of Arda had heard whisperings of it carried on the breezes. Hearing the news, many had traveled from afar and were now staying in The Green Dragon Inn, near to bursting at its seams, or pitching tents in the fields of some accommodating Hobbit. And much of their time was spent in speculation and rubber-necking as the curious train of wagons and carts bore their goods and workers down the Great East Road, up the Bywater Road, turning north finally on Hill Lane.

A Southron troupe, all in a motley of parti-colored silks, stood up on the flat bed of their great wagon. Some played an enchanting melody on their curious instruments as others juggled hoops and bright striped balls. They answered no questions as they rolled along, only winked and nodded to the crowds that stood along the road. And one of them, a kohl-eyed woman from Khand, all in scarves and shining bracelets, threw paper-wrapped sweets from the basket in the curve of her arm. She laughed as the children, and to be sure a great many of the older folk, scrambled for the treats.

One old traveler, flicking the reins lightly against his cart horse as he passed, caused a stir of delighted whoops. He had taken the Bent Road to be here, bringing his special sort of entertainment to the party, the likes of which had not been seen in many, many ages.

But even he was silent as he nodded his head to the welcoming cries. His eyes twinkled with amusement and anticipation from beneath his hoary eyebrows as he passed by, and he kept an eye out, or both when he could spare them, for any who might ‘borrow’ a thing or two from his cart.

Last edited by piosenniel; 05-04-2004 at 12:32 PM.
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Old 04-27-2004, 12:21 PM   #2
Child of the 7th Age
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Clinging precariously to her brother's shoulders, the young lass flailed her arms in the air, trying to latch onto the lowest branch of an overhanging apple tree. She missed the limb by almost a foot, muttering words of frustration under her breath.

"Stop wiggling!" Holly Zaragamba commanded her brother in a stern voice. "If you'd stay still, I could pull myself up."

In recent days, workers had rumbled into Hobbiton, their carts overflowing with supplies, and had quickly constructed a thick wooden fence encircling the party field. All the Hobbits in the neighborhood could hear the intriguing sounds of saws and hammers, and even smell the enticing odor of food being prepared. Yet no one could get inside, or see anything at all except the topmost branch of the mallorn tree sticking out above the fenceline.

For most of the afternoon, Rory and his sister had searched for a peekhole and even tried to bore through the wooden planks, but had accomplished nothing at all. The front gate was still firmly locked despite all their efforts to push it open. As the sun went down, the overhanging apple tree remained their only hope.

"Look here!" Rory grinned and pointed at an upturned crate that one of the workers had left in the grass. Dragging the box near the fence, he climbed onto it, balancing his sister on his shoulders. With one valiant heave, Holly reached up and grasped the limb, slowing pulling herself up into the leafy branches until she could look out over the field.

"What do you see?" Rory demanded, his face wreathed with expectation.

"Ooohh! Lots of nice things to eat and drink, party decorations, and tables with mathoms. But wait...." Disbelieving, Holly rubbed her eyes. "There's something not so nice, too. It's a dark, scary hole, a grim place with the word "Barrow" over the door."

"'Burrow?'" Rory questioned, tripping over the unfamiliar word.

“Not a 'burrow,' silly! A 'barrow'. Whatever that is . . ."

Out of the dark recesses of the barrow came a commanding green hand, larger than anything Holly had ever seen. It was reaching out in her direction. With a shriek of terror, the lass came tumbling out of the tree, flattening her brother on the ground. The hand bypassed the two Hobbits and instead whacked up a note on the locked door:

~*~

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO THE BARROW-DOWNS!

On May 1, 2004, the forums at the Barrow-Downs reach the ripe (and I do mean ripe!) old age of FOUR! While the site itself is a bit older, the fourth anniversary of the opening of the forums is a cause to CELEBRATE!!!!! Therefore, we will have a PARTY in the Shire to celebrate the fourth birthday (uh, deathday?) of the Barrow-Downs forums and all members are invited!!!!!

PLACE: The Party Field in Hobbiton (located in the Shire Forum).

TIME: Saturday, May 1, 2004 beginning at 9:00 a.m. Pacific time through late Monday night, May 3, 2004.

DRESS: Middle Earth Wear – formal, if you wish, or just plain comfortable.

There will be an open bar, entertainment, and meals will be served buffet style.

COME CELEBRATE THE BARROW-DOWNS, AND PAY YOUR RESPECTS TO THE WIGHT!

(ANYONE TRYING TO SNEAK INTO THE PARTY BEFORE THAT DATE WILL BE DEALT WITH PERSONALLY BY ME)

Signed – The Barrow-Wight

~*~

Quickly scanning the placard, and noting the sharp words near the end, Rory and Holly took off for the Green Dragon where their family was staying at a dead run . . .

Last edited by Child of the 7th Age; 04-27-2004 at 03:42 PM.
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Old 05-01-2004, 02:26 AM   #3
piosenniel
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Pio took one last look at herself in the polished buckler that hung in her tent, near the Green Dragon Pavilion. It was almost time for the party to begin. And this year she was going as the Elf she’d always wanted to be. She grinned, as she adjusted the flame red wig and popped in the emerald green contacts. Crossing the field, she took note of the small barrow to her left.

Ah . . . good . . . the Guest of Honor had arrived. . . .

In the shade afforded by the tall mallorn in the middle of the field, The Party Tree, a curiously out of place mound had sprung up over the past few days . . . pushed itself up, rather, from the ground beneath the bright green field. It, too, was green, but of a mouldering hue . . . the doorway into it opening onto a deep, darkness from which a deep, sing-songy voice issued in sepulchral tones.

‘Throw me another word, Sharkey! I’m on a roll here!’

Handsel, then,’ came the acerbic reply of the Old Man’s voice.

‘Too easy by half!’ chuckled the Wight.

After the Bywater Battle was won
And Sharkû was gone, for his time was done,
The hobbits then wondered just where to begin,
So they turned naturally to the Green Dragon Inn,
Unboarded the windows, unlocked all the doors,
Invited all Fallohides, Harfoots and Stoors,
They filled all the chairs, and tables and stools,
And broke every one of The Chief’s stupid rules,
The first rule of which was the one about drinking,
And Sam was the one who was quickest in thinking
To climb on the bar to a boisterous cheer
And handsel the place with a splash of cold beer.


Pio could hear the Wight clapping his cold green hands together in delight as Sharkey muttered something incomprehensible. ‘If only he’ll stay in such a good mood when the well-wishers pin their birthday greetings to the tree or put their mathoms and gewgaws on his treasure table. I can’t afford to explain to Hizzoner, the Mayor, why Hobbits and other party goers have gone missing . . .’

She ran to the gates, one hand clapped on her head to keep the wig in place . . . time to announce the party is starting . . .

Last edited by piosenniel; 05-01-2004 at 02:36 AM.
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