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When Worlds Collide
by Hapira Brandybuck

Chapter Three

When the delivery boy arrived, it was her best friend Jake. "You gotta help me, Jake! I’ve got some sever issues here!"

"What’s wrong?" he asked with concern as he put the stack of pizza boxes on a table.

"First, lookit this," she handed him her copy of Fellowship of the Ring". He flipped through it and saw that after a certain point, the book was blank. A confused look flashed across his face. "That’s not half of it, look in the living room."

He did so. "It looks like a Tolkien bomb exploded in there!" he said.

"I know, I don’t know what to do!"

"Just follow my lead," Jake took a few of the pizza boxes and Joanie took the rest into the room. "Hey everyone! I’m Jake Brownfeather-" Legolas’s head snapped in his direction from where he had been listening to Sam when he heard the last name. "I’m a friend of Joanie’s and I’m here to help."

They placed the boxes on a table and opened the top ones. "It’s pizza, think of it as an open-faced sandwich."

Pippin was the first to take a slice and when he took abite and thought amoment, he devoured the rest of the piece hungrily. The others took it as a sign that it was okay so they all dove in.

Joanie sat back and listened for a little while, surrounded in her thoughts. She was concerned for Gimli and the others that were missing. She was lost in her thoughts when Jake tapped her on the arm. "Hey Spacey! You awake over there?" he said.

"Yeah, I was just thinking to myself." She paused before she spoke up again. "Frodo, you wouldn’t uh… happen to have the ah… ring with you… do you?" She could feel Aragorn’s suspicious eyes on her as soon as she said it.

"No, I lost it when we arrived here…" he said sadly. The look in his eyes made her feel bad for him.

"What could’ve happened to it?" Jake asked.

"Maybe when we got here, it stayed behind," Sam offered.

"That would be disastrous! That would mean that it has been found and Sauron has it!" Legolas said.

"I don’t think that happened, Legolas." Joanie said. "You all have all of your other gear, why wouldn’t it come? Maybe someone ripped it off while you were unconcious."

"Ripped it off?" Aragorn asked.

"Stole it," she clarified.

"In this city, that’s a very good possibility," Jake said.

"What do we do?" Frodo asked eagerly.

"Before we go anywhere or do anything, we gotta get y’all clean and dressed more normally. We’ll be back." Joanie got up and dragged Jake with her by the arm.

"Whaaat?" he whined when they were out of the room.

"You need to help me find some clothes for Legolas. There's no way he could fit into my dad's stuff."

"My brother looks about his height."

"Great! Go get some clothes for him while I get them in the shower."

Jake left and Joanie got Aragorn and Merry into each of the two showers in her house. While they washed, she dug in her parent's room for clothes of her dad's. She found some and when they were done they were waiting for them on a chair in the bathroom.

There was only Legolas and Sam left when Jake returned. Once he was done, Joanie went to Sam. "You know how I told you I would have my dad take care of your leg? Well, that's kinda not possible. I don't want my parents knowing about you guys just yet. So that means I gotta set your leg. Now here's what we're going to do..."

She pushed up his pant leg after taking off the splint. "This is going to hurt and there's not a lot I can do about it. You ready?"

At that moment, Frodo came down the stairs dressed in her little brother's clothes.

Sam nodded. She put it back in place. Sam screamed in pain. Frodo heard and ran in the room. "What are you doing?" he yelled as he yanked Joanie away from Sam. He pulled Sting out of the pile of his clothes that was now on the floor and stood ready to strike.

Joanie stood with her hands up. "Whoa, calm down, Frodo, it's okay. I was just setting his leg. If I didn't it wouldn't heal right and that leg may be paralyzed."

Frodo lunged toward her and she acted quickly to defend herself. She grabbed his wrist and twisted his hand so that the hobbit-sword faced away from her. She kept a firm grip on his wrist, keeping him from making any further attempts to hurt her. "You calm now?" she asked him.

Aragorn heard the scream and came ahead of the rest of the fellowship minus Legolas. When he saw Joanie's seemingly automatic response to Frodo's attack he was impressed. "It's okay, Frodo, she was helping us," he said. Joanie didn't release the hobbit until the anger in his eyes had passed. She went and got some aspirin for Sam and then found some supplies for making a cast.

She enlisted Aragorn's help in making it and they talked while working on it. "It must know," he said. "How did you react that quickly to Frodo's attack?"

"It's a form of fighting known as Tae Kwan Do. My dad was worried that I couldn't defend myself when I was by myslef in the city so he signed me up for classes. These hands can be lethal weapons if I wanted them to," she said with a smirk. "I can teach you guys a little if you'd like."

He thought for a moment. "I'm willing," he said.

"Great!" she said with a smile. "Hey Jake! Turn on the TV! the Bears game is on!"

Jake did so and once she was finished with Sam, Joanie joined him in watching it. They were showing a little thing about the people that had been tailgating and Joanie's moth fell open in shock. In the background of one of the tailgaters' interview, there was Gimli and Boromir wth glasses of beer, thoroughly enjoying themselves. "It's-it's-it's Gimli a-a-and Boromir!" she shouted.

Everyone crowded around and they saw them for themselves. The Bears were playing against the Vikings so they looked like crazy fans. Joanie thought for a moment while trying to figure out how to get them while everyone else talked amongst themselves. She had a hard time thinking with everyone being so loud. "Quiet! I'm trying to think here!" she yelled.

Everyone fell quiet and a few moments later Joanie spoke up. "I got it! Aragorn, come with me!" she jumped up and went to her car. Aragorn was righ behind her and when he got in, he seemed confused. When she started the engine and pushed the gas pedal, he was even more confused. She saw the perplexed look on his face and giggled. "It's a gas motor. It doesn't need horses or anything."

"I was thinking it was something of magic."

"You've been with Gandalf for way too long."

They arrived at Soldier Field and spotted Gimli and Boromir right away. They got out and walked up to them. "Aragorn!" Boromir said happily. The two shared a hug while Joanie walked up to Gimli.

"You must be Gimli then," she said. "I'm Joanie Woodriver. I'm helping y'all."

"That name is downright elvish! Do you expect me to trust you?" he protested.

She sighed. "I guess not. Will you give me a chance based on the fact that all of the others do?"

He only grumbled something she couldn't understand but he went with her when she walked over to Aragorn and Boromir. "We'd better get back to my house. You two have already drawn too much attention to yourselves."

With that, they got in her car and drove to her house.

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