The sun filtered in through Bag End’s glass windows on a bright, sunny day on the 25th of Rethe*. A hobbit lass’s face peered through one of those windows, watching carefully for any foreboding rain clouds that would threaten this special day. A young boy joined her.

“Eli, I wanna see! Move!”

“Just get a stool, Frodo!”

“No! Move away! Go!”

“Frodo, please-”

“Maaaa! Eli’s not moving out of the way for me to see! Ma!”

Rose Gamgee hurried out of the messy kitchen to see what was the matter. She came quite suddenly upon little Frodo, who was closely followed by Elanor. Frodo tugged at the hem of her dress.

“Ma, Eli won’t let me see out of the window. She said I should get a stool.”

Rose looked with concern at her oldest child.

“Elanor, if you won’t let your little brother look out the window, could you at least get him a stool?”

Elanor looked down at the floor in shame.

“Yes, Ma. I’m sorry.”

“Now please grab a stool for Frodo. And I trust this won’t happen again, especially when it’s your 13th birthday?”

“I promise it won’t happen again, Ma.”

“Good girl.”

Later that evening…

All conflict was forgotten as little Frodo and Elanor waited for Sam to come home from his duties as mayor. At last he arrived and there was much joy and happiness as Sam recognized his daughter’s birthday.

“My, my. It seems only yesterday that you were sitting on my lap, listening to tales out of the Red Book. Are you too old for that now?” he teased.

“Da, you know I’ll never be too old for that!”

Rose looked out from the kitchen where she was putting the final preparations on Elanor’s birthday cake.

“Come in, come in! The cake is ready!”

They all hurried (because hobbits love their food fresh) to the kitchen for the warm, gooey strawberry-filled cake. What they saw was most astonishing.

Merry Brandybuck and Pippin Took were standing there, each holding a part of the big platter on which the cake resided.

“We came to celebrate, Eli!” said Merry.

“For whatever reason would we miss your 13th birthday?” questioned Pippin.

Elanor ran over to them and hugged them so tight that they almost dropped the cake.

“You’re my favorite non-uncles!” she cried.

“We’re your only non-uncles,” Pippin and Merry said.

All the hobbits sat down at the table to eat their fill of the cake.

And what a cake it was!

Topped with cream and four magnificent strawberries, filled with blueberries and apple chunks, the most wonderful batter ever tasted.

Everyone agreed it was delicious.

“Where did you get the cake?” Sam whispered out of the side of his mouth to Merry when Elanor was opening her presents.

“Oh, nowhere special.”

“Where, Merry? Certaintly not from Eowyn, I believe.”


“Merry! Tell me!”

“From Lady Arwen, if you insist. She still has those elven talents of cooking.”


Elanor unwrapped a package that had within a dark pink dress, embroidered with rainbow stitching at the waist and cuff lines. She had wanted a dress like this, and to finaly have it – oh! – just wonderful.

She turned to her mother and said, “Thank you, Ma. It is just lovely.”

“You’re welcome, Eli. But it was not I who made it. Ask your dad.”

Elanor looked to Sam.

“But you can’t sew, Da! No offense, of course.”

Sam looked amused.

“I know I can’t sew, Eli. But I had a very close friend who could.”

“You don’t mean… Frodo Baggins, Da?”

Sam handed her a letter.

“You better read this, sunshine.”

Elanor tore open the envelope and began to read.

My dear Elanor,
I have asked your father to give this to you on your 13th birthday. No doubt I will be long gone by then, but I hope this message conveys what I feel about you.
Eli, you are everything your mother and father could have wished for. Promise me you will take care of your father. Be a light for him in the darkness as Earendil was for me. Always be there for him, when he misses me. For you will make his life worthwhile. You will make him rejoice in life, make him feel happy. Promise me you will do anything, and everything, to help him.
The dress I lovingly made for you represents the little things in life, the stitching at the waist and at the cuff of your sleeves. Wear it proudly, as you were meant to. And I have no doubt you will.
Yours truly,
Frodo Baggins,
Wedmath**, 1421

P.S. If Pippin and Merry have brought you a cake, know that Queen Arwen makes the loveliest strawberry topped cakes in the all of Middle-earth.

*Rethe is the hobbit’s name for March.
**Wedmath is the hobbit’s name for August.

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