He sat beside his uncle, Bilbo, feeling strangely sick. He wanted this all to be over. He wanted to go home to Hobbiton, to Bag End, to his bed. He still didn’t understand why he was the one. Gandalf shouldn’t have picked him. He was just a Hobbit. Bilbo should have just left the Ring to Gollum. Oh, but no, he had forgotten, then all would have been lost. All that is good in Middle Earth would have been gone forever. Although, listening to the dark stories of the others, Frodo felt that all would be lost anyway.

He felt the Ring burning into his breast, dragging the chain with it. He clutched the arms of his chair tightly to keep his hands from shooting to his chest. Bilbo glanced at him, signalling with his eyebrows, asking what was the matter. Frodo shook his head slowly and tried to calm down. He took a few deep breaths and sat higher in his chair. He closed his eyes and thought of his home with a sigh.

Suddenly he was brought out of his dream. Elrond was saying his name. He opened his eyes and saw that everyone was looking at him.

“Bring the Ring forth, Frodo,” said Elrond, and Frodo had an irrational thought. They were trying to take it away from him! But he fought it hard and got up to take the golden circle to the table in front of the elven king.

The Council stared at it. Then the talking started again as Frodo walked back to his seat. Boromir was speaking. He was saying that the Ring would be useful, that they could use the Enemy’s own weapon against them, that Gondor would be the place to keep it. In a second, Frodo realized what he was doing. He was trying to take the Ring. He was trying to convince the Council to give the Ring to him so he could take it back to his city and use it… badly.

Frodo closed his eyes again and sat back. The sober talking broke out into arguing and the sick feeling came back. He dropped his head into his hand and gripped the chain with the other.

Finally he could bear it no longer. He jumped up with no regard to Bilbo’s wondering expression and cried, “I will take it!”

And shrank from the surprised faces the entire Council turned on him.

“I will take it,” he repeated in a softer voice, and heard a sound from Elrond. He turned to face the elven king. He was chuckling! He wiped his brow and laughed out loud.

“Well, Frodo Baggins,” he said, “I thought that this would happen sooner or later. I knew it in my heart that you were the one to take this on. You shall be the Ring-Bearer.”

Frodo smiled shakily as Elrond began to pick out his companions. He made his way back to his chair again, this time with the enormity of the task ahead resting on his head.

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