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Winnowing Time by Dreamflower

Author: Dreamflower
Title: Winnowing Time
Rating: G
Theme: Harvest
Elements: chaff, give, above
Summary: It harvest time in SR 1420, and Sam muses on his bride...just a little vignette.
Word Count: 653

Winnowing Time

The grain had been gathered in, a fine harvest all things considered, and it was time for the threshing and the winnowing of the chaff. Farmer Cotton had a large winnowing barn. Sam recalled that it had been built only a few years afore he'd left the Shire with Mr. Frodo and Mr. Merry and Mr. Pippin. He'd only been courting Rosie for a few months at the harvest that year. He'd helped with the barn raising, and then he'd come to help with the harvest.

Rosie'd been about the whole time, bringing water to the hired hands and the friends as had come to help. Her brothers weren't above trying to give her a hard time, teasing her about how she brought the water to Sam first and such. Jolly was the worst of 'em, being her twin and all, but Sam had learned not to try and defend Rose from her brothers. She took no sauce from them, and she'd give 'em back as good as they gave her--but she wouldn't thank Sam for interfering with 'em. So he watched and chuckled to see her turn the tables when Jolly got a bit above himself and she upended a ladle full over the top o' his head. Jolly made to go after her, but Rose timed her squeal just right, and darted behind her approaching father.

Old Tom had scowled. "Jolly, what've I told you about plaguing your sister! Leave her be--you've work to do. You shouldn't be a-tormenting her like that, and her bringing you cold water out of the goodness of her heart!" From her position behind her old dad, she grinned and stuck her tongue out at Jolly, and Sam (as well as Rose's other brothers) had laughed heartily .

The farmer had turned around and looked at her suspiciously, but she'd already wiped the smile from her face. "Thank you, dad," she said meekly.

" 'Tis naught, lass," he answered, and gave her a quick hug around the shoulders. "Come along back; your mam needs your help."

She'd turned to look back once more, to smirk triumphantly at Jolly, and to wink at Sam. The lads had all turned back to the threshing, flailing away at the grain. After the nooning enough of the grain would be threshed for the winnowing to begin, a task mostly done by the lasses and the wives.

And so it was he'd watched her that golden afternoon, she and her cousins and her mother and her aunts, the flat baskets filled with the grain that they would lift and toss the grain into the air, letting the breezes between the two doors of the barn carry the chaff away. She was flushed with exertion, stray curls escaping from her braid to plaster themselves against her face. She was laughing with her cousins and Sam thought his heart would burst from gazing at her beauty.

Last year and the year before, he'd been in Rivendell. The first, awaiting their leaving on a journey Sam hadn't've thought would be like anything he could've begun to think up--all things horrible and beautiful, mixed up together with terror and tiredness and sorrow and joy, too, at the end. And then on the way back, on the way home, all unsuspecting of the Troubles that had plagued the Shire while they was gone. He'd never forget how horrid it was to see all they'd left to protect being ruined by a bunch of lowlife Men. But they'd taken care o' that--the Ruffians had turned tail when Mr. Merry had blowed his horn, and Mr. Pippin had brought the Tooks. But it would all've been for aught if it hadn't've been for Mr. Frodo. And there was his Rose awaiting for him, as saucy and sweet as ever, and a sight for sore eyes!

This year was different. She was his wife now; she wore her hair bundled up beneath a scarf, yet a few curls had still managed to escape. Her figure was not so slim, for it was round with their first child. But Sam thought that she was even more beautiful than she'd been back then. She turned to look at him as she tossed the basket up with her cousin Rusty, and gave him that special smile, the one that made him think again that his heart would burst from joy.


( 14 comments — Leave a comment )
Oct. 23rd, 2012 02:18 pm (UTC)
How very sweet. I really enjoyed this small peek into their married lives.

- Erulisse (one L)
Oct. 23rd, 2012 10:11 pm (UTC)
Thank you! I had not intended to do Sam's POV for this challenge--and then it just came to me!
(Deleted comment)
Oct. 23rd, 2012 10:13 pm (UTC)
I had something different in mind for this challenge, but when I googled "chaff", the description of the winnowing just brought this little scene to me!

Sam does love her SO much!
Oct. 24th, 2012 12:36 am (UTC)
With Samwise's wonderful descriptions and reflections, this ficlet is right out of a John Constable landscape with a soundtrack by Vaughan Williams:

Edited at 2012-10-24 12:39 am (UTC)
Oct. 24th, 2012 07:18 am (UTC)
And what lovely associations these bring to this story! Thank you for the links!
Oct. 24th, 2012 02:02 pm (UTC)
What a lovely way to comment! Thank you--that was delightful!

I'd never noticed before just how Shirish Vaughn Williams music is!
Oct. 24th, 2012 04:41 am (UTC)
JUst lovely. I loved the vivid images of harvest.
Oct. 24th, 2012 02:06 pm (UTC)
Thanks! I found an article about the way winnowing was done in the past, and then suddenly it all just clicked!
Oct. 24th, 2012 07:13 am (UTC)
He has such sweet memories to compare with the joy and contentment and wonder of now! Their first child to look forward to, and a blessed harvest after a terrible reaping the former November that helped remove a few tares. Heh!

Well done, Dreamflower!
Oct. 24th, 2012 02:04 pm (UTC)
Thank you! I think Sam would always be one who could find joy in those he loved and in thinking about them and remembering.
Oct. 24th, 2012 08:17 am (UTC)
I loved this Barbara - so gentle and full of life. The details and the way they grew but their loved remained the same were very vivid. Nice work!
Oct. 24th, 2012 02:03 pm (UTC)
Thank you! This was a very spontaneous little vignette--I had something quite different in mind! But I do very much love Sam/Rosie and the love they had for one another.
Oct. 28th, 2012 07:41 pm (UTC)
Sweet story!

Namarie, God bless, Antane :)
Nov. 2nd, 2012 11:15 am (UTC)
Very sweet:)

Sam in love is adorable.
( 14 comments — Leave a comment )


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