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September 25, S.R. 1418 (T.A. 3018)

This date is not mentioned in the Tale of Years, but its events are easy to chronicle thanks to the fact that they follow immediately upon those of September 24th in the chapter ‘Three is Company’ and are concluded in the next chapter ‘A Short Cut to Mushrooms’.

The Shire-Reckoning · Sep 25 · 12:24 am

After the three hobbits have enjoyed the feast and songs of the Elves at their camp above Woodhall, Frodo asks Gildor for advice.

‘Go at once…and if Gandalf does not come before you set out, then I also advise this: do not go alone. Take such friends as are trusty and willing.’

The Shire-Reckoning · Sep 25 · 7:08 am

After the hobbits wake and enjoy the breakfast the Elves left for them, Frodo decides to leave the road, where they might be followed—and, ‘Short cuts make delays, but inns make longer ones.’

The hobbits head east. Looking back, Sam spots a Rider on the hill where they slept.

The Shire-Reckoning · Sep 25 · 10:46 am

It starts raining on the three hobbits as they hike eastward. A small wood offers concealment for this part of the journey.

The Shire-Reckoning · Sep 25 · 1:16 pm

The hobbits eat lunch in sunshine.

‘Ho! Ho! Ho! to the bottle I go
To heal my heart and drown my woe
Rain may fall and wind may blow
And many miles be still to go
But under a tall tree I will lie
And let the clouds go sailing by.’

They hear two distant wails and set out again.

The Shire-Reckoning · Sep 25 · 4:09 pm

A Rider reaches Farmer Maggot’s and asks about ‘Baggins’—‘If he passes will you tell me? I will come back with gold.’

‘No you won’t. You’ll go back where you belong, double quick. I give you one minute before I call all my dogs.’

The Rider gallops away east toward the River.

The Shire-Reckoning · Sep 25 · 5:22 pm

The three hobbits reach the Maggots’ farm. Mrs. Maggot pours them beer from a jug while Farmer Maggot starts his story. ‘I had just heard the name Baggins before you turned up.’

They accept his plan: to stay for supper, then to be driven to the Ferry in his waggon.

The Shire-Reckoning · Sep 25 · 7:55 pm

Farmer Maggot brings the three hobbits safe to Bucklebury Ferry, where Merry is waiting for them. After they thank Farmer Maggot, he lights his lanterns, hands them a basket, and drives away west into the fog and night.

The basket is a gift for Frodo from Mrs. Maggot: mushrooms.

The Shire-Reckoning · Sep 25 · 8:17 pm

After Merry has ferried them across the Brandywine River to Buckland, Sam looks back and points out a black figure searching the shore behind them.

Merry rides ahead to Crickhollow to tell Fredegar Bolger to start supper. Frodo, Sam, and Pippin walk.

The Shire-Reckoning · Sep 25 · 9:10 pm

Frodo reaches his new house in Crickhollow with Sam and Pippin. Merry and Fredegar are cooking while the other three clean up. ‘Sing hey! for the bath at close of day, that washes the weary mud away!’

The Shire-Reckoning · Sep 25 · 10:25 pm

After dinner, Frodo reveals that he’s leaving the Shire.

The others reveal a surprise of their own: they’ve known all along—and they’re going with him.

Frodo objects, but Sam knows a further secret. ‘Gildor said you should take them as was willing, and you can’t deny it.’

The Shire-Reckoning · Sep 25 · 11:31 pm

‘Farewell we call to hearth and hall!
Though wind may blow and rain may fall
We must away ere break of day
Far over wood and mountain tall.
To Rivendell, where Elves yet dwell
In glades beneath the misty fell…’

They finish packing and enjoy a final night of sleep in the Shire.

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