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Because it's my Birthday  by Pervinca

Because it’s my Birthday


A/N: Well, it was my birthday on the 13th – I became a tweenager! – so I decided I should give you all a present in the traditional hobbit manner. Despite using a Sméagol quote for the title, this, of course, will be a Pippin and Merry ficlet. I always try to stay close to the events in the books, so let’s hope there won’t be any striking deviations.

* * * * * *

March 16, SR 1419 (3019), Minas Tirith

Pippin was glad to see Beregond waiting at the Houses of Healing. He was still assigned, for now, to watching over the Steward, and making sure that he did not yet hear news of the manner of his father’s death. The man smiled as he saw Pippin approaching.

“Good morning, Master Peregrin,” he said. “I had wondered if I would see you today. Did you not spend the night with your friend?”

“I did,” replied Pippin, “but I had something to do this morning, and I left before he awoke. No doubt he’s woken now and will be complaining that I am not there!”


“I…uh…have something for you, Beregond.” Pippin suddenly felt very foolish. But he had come this far, and there was no turning back on it now. He held up a loosely wrapped parcel.

Beregond took it and quickly unwrapped it to reveal a beautifully made pipe and a small pouch.

“When I saw that you did not smoke, I thought I should introduce you to it,” Pippin explained. “In the Shire, most hobbits enjoy a good pipe once in a while. Even Gandalf likes to! I found this lovely little carpenter in a quiet corner of the city. He makes the most wonderful things! I shall have to talk to Strider about having him made the Royal Carpenter or something.”

“It is a wonderful make,” said Beregond, inspecting the pipe closely. “And what of the pouch?”

“Oh, that has a little pipeweed in it. Not much, I’m afraid. But if I ever return to the Shire, I will have some sent to you!” Pippin smiled mischievously. “My cousin, Merry, had more left than me, so I ‘borrowed’ a little of it. He shouldn’t notice. The pouch was mine.”

Beregond smiled. “I do not know how I can thank you for such a gift. But, may I ask, why you have given it to me? Surely not only to introduce me to the fine pastime of smoking?”

“Well, no…” Pippin looked at his feet. “You may find this a little silly. You see, it’s my birthday today. In the Shire, it is traditional to give out presents on your birthday, to your family and friends. This is my present to you.”

“I am truly honoured to be your friend, Peregrin.” Beregond bowed.

“Oh, I almost forgot.” Pippin fished out another object. This one was not wrapped, and Beregond could see that it was a small painted wooden horse. “I had the carpenter make this as well, for Bergil. I thought I should give it to you, since I do not know when I will see Bergil next. A little wooden Shadowfax; he often asked me if he could see the real one.”

“Bergil has loved horses since he was a very small boy. I am sure he will treasure this for the rest of his life, especially since it was a gift from the Ernil i Pheriannath.”

Pippin cringed a little, but smiled. “You know I hate that name.”

Beregond smiled back. “Which is precisely why I choose to use it.”

“Well, if you will excuse me, I must see to my cousin. I have a gift for him also.”

“I will hinder you no longer. Happy birthday, Master Peregrin.” Beregond bowed again and stood aside so that Pippin may enter the Houses.

“There you are!” Merry greeted him, rather grumpily. “Where have you been? I woke up and you were nowhere to be found! Do you have any idea how worried I’ve been?”

Pippin rolled his eyes. “It can’t be half as worried as I’ve been about you. Sit back down, Meriadoc. You aren’t well yet.”

“Am too. The Warden says I may go out today. I was hoping to get an early start on that, but then you decided to go exploring without me.”

“I did not go exploring.”

“Then where have you been?”

Pippin sighed angrily. Trust Merry to forget it was his birthday. He shoved a box onto Merry’s lap. “I went to get you this!”

Merry looked at his cousin in confusion, then opened the box. Inside, he found two hand-carved and painted hobbit figurines. Merry gasped. “Pippin, these are beautiful.”

“They’re supposed to be us. The ugly one is you.” Pippin grinned. “I had them made especially for you.”

“But why, it’s not your…” Merry trailed off. He worked out the date in his head. The sixteenth of March – it was Pippin’s birthday. It was his best friend’s birthday and he had forgotten. “Oh, Pip, I’m so sorry. I completely forgot.”

Pippin laughed. “Of course you did. You always forget! But this year, I do think you had quite a good excuse. I suppose stabbing that black rider probably muddled up your brain. As if you weren’t stupid enough as it was!” He grinned. “Well, now I’m going to have to remember to forget your birthday, then we’ll be even.”

“Yes, you shall. But you always seem to remember.”

Bergil came a moment later carrying the hobbits’ breakfast. “Thank you, Peregrin, for the gift! If the real Shadowfax is as beautiful as the wooden one, he must be the most beautiful horse in the world!”

“That he is,” Pippin replied. “And thank you, Bergil, for our breakfast.”

“The Warden told me that you had organised it especially.”

“Well, since it is my birthday, I thought I should have a bit of a party. Would you like to join us, Bergil?”

“I would love to, but I have many errands to run today. I wish you happiness on your special day.” Bergil bowed and left as quickly as he arrived.

“He is very fair-spoken for a lad,” Merry commented. “I cannot imagine any lad in the Shire speaking like that. But now, let us eat!”

Pippin was pleased to see that everything he had asked for had been supplied. When he had gone to find food for Merry the previous day, he had spoken to the Warden. When Pippin had explained the reason for the special breakfast, the Warden was more than happy to help.

“Those wooden figures are amazing,” Merry said, with his mouth half-full.

“I know,” Pippin replied. “I’m going to have Strider appoint the carpenter to Royal duties or something.”

“So, you gave Bergil a little wooden Shadowfax? Did you give presents to anyone else?”

“To Beregond. I gave him a pipe, since he seemed very interested when I lit mine in front of him.”

“Good work, cousin. You have introduced someone to smoking, just as Frodo and I introduced you.”

“I suppose I should have found something for Gimli, Legolas, Gandalf and Strider too. Do you think they will be upset?”

“I am sure just seeing you will be present enough for them. It would have been for me.”

“Don’t think a complement like that is going to get you out of getting me a present, Meriadoc. I still expect something.”

“Well, I still have a month to worry about that.” Merry lay back against his bed and smiled. “I always hoped that you would be born on my birthday.”

Pippin snorted. “Even if I had been, you still would have forgotten.”

“Probably.” Merry looked at the little figurines that Pippin had given him. He knew the perfect place in Brandy Hall for them to go. But if Brandy Hall had a set, it only seemed right for the Great Smials to have a set too. Merry smiled broadly. Now he knew exactly what to get Pippin.

* * * * * *

A/N: Here’s a little explanation of why I chose March 16 to be Pippin’s birthday. Tolkien only really gave us the actual dates of birthdays for three characters – Bilbo and Frodo Baggins on September 22 and Elanor Gamgee on March 25 (there is also a mention in Appendix D that Sam’s is possibly April 6). Merry and Pippin’s birth-dates are not given, but, when Pippin speaks to Bergil for the first time, he says “I am nearly twenty-nine”, so I took that quite literally, since this story is set only a few days after that conversation. Well, there, that’s my reasoning. Hope you all liked the present and enjoyed the story!



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