Fun and Games
It's Only Me
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Pippin sat on the castle steps despite the fact that the rain was coming down in torrents. He just sat there, his sandy curls plastered to his head by the water. His clothes were just as waterlogged as his hair, but Pippin did not pay attention to his current state.
Pippin stared vacantly across the courtyard, his hazel eyes fixed on the distant mountains that could be seen from Edoras. He was lost in thought…
And some people I know would say that I was lost in thought because it’s unfamiliar territory to me, Pippin thought miserably. The poor young Hobbit was very dismal indeed and it seemed that the world at the moment felt the same. But nothing, no matter how sad or dreary, could compare to what Pippin felt at the moment.
It was as if nobody cared about him. Pippin sniffed, and it wasn’t because he was feeling cold. More than just rain went down his face; mixed with the raindrops were his tears. He felt forlorn and cold and abandoned, yet he wouldn’t go inside, for he was absolutely sure somebody would reprimand him for dripping all over the polished stone and marble floors.
The Hobbit turned around and saw Éowyn standing on the steps above him, wrapped in
a dark blue mantel, the fur-lined hood drawn up over her head. She looked down at him with puzzlement written on her face.
Pippin cleared his throat. “Yes?”
“What are you doing out here in the rain?” Éowyn asked. “You’ll catch cold.”
“I’d like to.” Pippin’s voice was hard and colder than ice.
“Because then maybe somebody would care about me for a change.”
“Oh, Pippin. Don’t talk like that.” Éowyn came down to stand on the same step as Pippin. “We do care about you. All of us do!”
“Don’t try to make me feel better. All the sugar’s making me sick,” Pippin retorted.
Éowyn looked down at the Hobbit, who looked like a lost puppy. Something tugged at her heart, and the White Lady of Rohan sat down beside Pippin.
“Pippin,” she said gently, “don’t think that we’re all heartless monsters who hate you. We all care about you and love you. Me, Aragorn, Legolas, Gimli- all of us want you to be happy!”
“Then how come you keep yelling at me and telling me to keep quiet?” Pippin demanded.
“All of us are stressed out, Pippin,” Éowyn explained, her voice calm and gentle. “You know very well what the aftermath of war does to people, especially those who were injured or those who lost loved ones. It’s not easy for anyone right now. We’re all tired, cranky, stressed, and sick of all this, but we are trying to cope.”
“How?” Pippin said angrily. “By yelling at me all the time? By making me the scapegoat?”
Éowyn sighed. “You’re not the only one who gets yelled at,” the woman said. “Haven’t you noticed that other people are scolded, and not just you?”
“But nobody gets scolded as much as me!” Pippin cried. “I’ve had enough! I want to go back to the Shire! I want to go home!”
Éowyn wrapped one half of her cloak around the wet Halfling and drew Pippin close. Pippin cried his heart out for several minutes, and gradually all that remained of his sobs were small hiccups.
“Pippin, please don’t think that we hate you,” Éowyn pleaded. “We snap because we’re stressed out. Don’t hate us.”
Pippin leaned on Éowyn’s shoulder and hiccuped a few more times.
“We love you, Pippin. You make us laugh and feel better when times get rough. You’re a great help with the injured warriors we have in our care because you take their minds off the pain with your jokes and riddles. Don’t think we hate you. Don’t think we pin all the blame on you alone.”
“But you do!”
“No, we don’t. Pippin, we know it’s hard for everyone, you especially. You’re a young Hobbit and never asked for any of this to happen. But don’t say that we use you as a scapegoat. We don’t. We know it’s hard for you. We know.”
“Everyone wants me to change!”
“Pippin, we love you the way you are. Without you, everything would be less bearable. I know it’s only me saying this, but everyone else feels the same.”
The rain began to go away, and soon the sky was clear. Pippin straightened up and looked out over the horizon. Then he broke into a grin, for above the mountains arched a beautiful, vibrant rainbow.
Éowyn saw it too, and she smiled as well. “After the storm, hope always remains,” Éowyn said softly.
Pippin looked up at her. “You’re right,” he said. “You’re absolutely right.”
They rose and Éowyn took off her warm cloak. She hung it over one arm and put her other arm around Pippin’s shoulders. Together they walked back up the stairs.
Pippin felt better than he had in a long, long time. Before they went back inside, he
looked back to the rainbow. It cheered him up quite a bit, and he reentered the front hall with Éowyn feeling like a new Hobbit.
Éowyn’s right, he thought. They can’t make me change. It wouldn’t be the same if I was different. Who cares if I get myself into scrapes all the time? It’s only me, my nature. Sure I can grow up. But I’ll always be me. Pippin Took.
It’s only me.
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