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Author: Dreamflower
Title: Go Not to Aunt Dora for Advice, for She Will Give It at Great Length...
Rating: G
Theme: Send It in a Letter
Elements: a letter of advice
Author's Notes: This story makes reference to the last two chapters of my story A Place for Gandalf
Summary: Frodo's Aunt Dora reacts to a very welcome Bit of News!
Word Count: 1,624

Go Not to Aunt Dora for Advice, for She Will Give It at Great Length...



Trewsday, 27 Rethe, S.R. 1389
Greenbriars, The Hill
Hobbiton

My Dear Cousin Bilbo,

I cannot begin to Express my Joy at the News contained in your kind Invitation! That at last you have seen the Wisdom of my Advice, and decided to bring Drogo's dear Son back to dwell near his close Kindred once more is Most Welcome tidings! I will most certainly arrive at Bag End after Luncheon on Highday next in order to be Present at the Signing of the Certificate of Adoption. I think it is a Fine Idea to make a Party of the Occasion-- it will be all the more Memorable to those who are Privileged to Witness it, and will give Certain Others pause should they try to Create Trouble.

As Daisy and her Family are here now, I am quite certain they will also be Pleased to Accompany me, but I am sure you know that Dudo's health will not Permit him to Attend. He is, however, also Pleased at the news, and has expressed the Wish that young Frodo will come down the Hill to visit him soon.

I must say that I am very Glad you have Finally come to this Decision! It is only Right and Proper that a son of the Baggins name be reared among Bagginses. I daresay that the Brandybucks Mean Well. I have no Doubts of their Affection for Frodo; but the Wilds of Buckland can not be a Safe place for a Young Hobbit to grow up. I know that Menegilda and Esmeralda do their Best, but Buckland is scarcely Civilised! Not to mention the Dangers of that River which already claimed the lives of his dear Parents! Scarcely a day goes by that I have not Feared for his Safety, lest he suffer the same Dreadful Fate!

You know that I have great Regard for Menegilda, but Frodo belongs Here! The Reports (dare I say it, the Gossip!) that have Come to My Ears of Frodo's Wild Behaviour have been Alarming! While I do consider The Source (Lobelia can scarcely be called a Disinterested Party, and the Dreadful Behaviour of her own son, Lotho, does not give her Alarums much Credibility) I have heard some Things from others as well. Not all of it can be a Tempest in a Teapot and there is No Smoke Without Fire; It was our own Cousin Peony who told me of his Encounter with Farmer Maggot in the Marish after all, and she should know if any would. I cannot Imagine what Esmeralda and Saradoc were thinking to have Allowed him to be Gallivanting around like that with No Supervision!

He is, however, a Lad and a Tween, both of which Unfortunate Facts often lead to less than Stellar Behaviour!

You will, of course, now be Responsible for his Proper Upbringing! I hope that you know what that Entails! You must now set an Example of Respectable and Predictable Behaviour yourself. It is most Unfortunate that you Allowed yourself to be dragged off into the Wilds and embroiled in the Affairs of Dwarves and Wizards so long ago, and you know as well as I that the Repercussions of such a lapse remain with you even to this day! The name of Baggins is now as often as not a matter for Jests, and while I certainly do not agree with those who call you "Mad", it must be said that you Brought it On Yourself! You must take care that your own Reputation does not sully that of young Frodo.

I trust that you know his presence must Curtail those wanderings of yours! Rambling about the Shire and Sleeping Rough, like a common Vagabond, should not be thought of at your Age and Station! And I am quite sure that you should not be Dragging Frodo about on any such Expeditions!

It is a shame that there are not more young Gentlehobbits of Frodo's age living in this area. Sadly, most Bagginses have scattered in recent generations, and while young Lotho is near to Frodo's age, I most certainly would not Recommend him as a Companion! His actions are Far Worse than any I have heard of Frodo getting up to, and the lad has been Dreadfully Spoilt by Lobelia's indulgence and Otho's carelessness! And I certainly hope you do not intend to Expose him to the Took side of the Family at this time! No disrepect intended towards your Dear Mother's kin, but Tooks are unpredictable At Best, and under Lalia's thumb, have become Haughty and Unpleasant! Your late Grandmother Adamanta would be Most Distressed at the State of Things at the Great Smials these Days!

I also hope that you will Take Care as to whom you bring into your Home once Frodo is sharing it. I am not Unaware that even now you are harboring that very Wizard Gandalf who was Responsible for your Disgrace (not to mention one of the Dwarves you went off with), at Bag End! I do realise that you Owe Hospitality to these Unfortunate Acquaintances, but I hope you will discourage them from Frequenting the Shire hereafter! I know that the Wizard once made a habit of visiting your Grandfather Gerontius, but Hobbiton is not Tuckborough! And you know how those visits Turned Out! Why, your own Uncle Hildifons was never seen again after one of Gandalf's visits! And even Lalia has the sense to keep him away from the Great Smials now! As for Dwarves, they are all well and good when it comes to Trade, but the presence of this one only serves to stir up the old and unpleasant Gossip from your Regrettable Lapse.

I hope you realize that I am telling you These Things out of my own Regard for you, as well as my Affection for you and for Frodo. It is important that the lad have a Stable Home, with no Unsettling Influences! The Poor Child has been through more than Enough Difficulties at his Tender Age!

I have given some Consideration as to the best thing to do for Frodo once the Adoption has been Signed and Sealed. As Family Head for the Bagginses, it is your duty to Strengthen the Ties of Family. Therefore, I think as Soon as Possible you should arrange to have a Family Reunion. Frodo knows the Brandybuck side of his family very well, but It Is Time for him to begin to know the various Bagginses, Boffins, Bolgers, Goodbodies, Chubbs, Grubbs, Proudfoots, and dare I say it, even the Bracegirdles as well! Such a gathering would allow you to Officially Introduce him as your Heir. I daresay it will Annoy Lobelia and Otho. I am certain that so far as you are concerned that would Entertain you!

You must also Consider other aspects of Frodo's Education. I know that you will be his Tutor yourself ( you were always an Excellent Teacher), and I know that among the Brandybucks he has learned to ride, and has taken lessons in Art. But I am not so sure that a Bachelor such as yourself is best Fitted to teach him Proper Comportment. I will be Most Pleased to Undertake such a task. He must learn that there are Differences here in Hobbiton from the free and easy ways of the Brandybucks! And I do not recall any reports that Frodo was given any instruction in Music and Dance while he lived at Brandy Hall. Such omissions must be Clarified.

Frodo will also need regular and Proper Meals while under your Roof! I know that you often Take Liberties with the proper times of Meals! But he is a Growing Lad and will need his Nourishment on a regular basis.

Finally, I should mention that while I know your own Health is Remarkably, and some say Unnaturally, Robust, you may not realize the various Ailments and Accidents the Young may be prone to. You will need to consider what Healer to call when Frodo takes Ill, or should come to some Regrettable Harm through the sorts of activities Tweens undertake. I recommend Mistress Salvia Gawkroger. She is a Family Connexion, through her aunt on her mother's side, Columbine Goodbody, Cousin Tollo's late wife. She is an Excellent and Sensible Practitioner, who has dealt Sensitively with Dudo's various Ailments, and has on Occasion treated me as well. She has the further Advantage of living at the foot of the Hill-- quite nearby in the case of any Emergency-- and she has a very good Apprentice in the event that she is Otherwise Occupied when called.

I look forward to seeing you and young Frodo on Highday! Please give to him the Loving Regards of his old Aunt!

Your Affectionate Cousin,

Dora Baggins

P.S. Please tell Frodo that I should very much like to see him wearing the Embroidered Waistcoat with which I gifted him on my Last Birthday!

P.P.S. When planning the Menu for the Occasion, do not forget that Daisy's husband Griffo has an Unfortunate Reaction to Cucumbers, and that Cousin Ponto cannot abide Mutton. Also, I suggest Strongly that you have a Separate Table for the younger children!

P.P.P.S. I shall take it as a given that the Sackville-Bagginses will not be Invited. While I normally Do Not Approve of such slights to Family, I think that on this Particular Occasion it is the Wisest Course! I am afraid that their Presence would be Disruptive to the Purpose of the Party; I shall take particular care not to mention the Invitation to Lobelia should I have any reason to Encounter her between now and Highday next.

D.B.

Comments

( 32 comments — Leave a comment )
shirebound
Feb. 16th, 2010 01:21 am (UTC)
LOL, this is Perfection! Aunt Dora must be excited to have something new on which to Advise. It's very clever of her/you to remember that Bilbo might not have had to use the services of a healer very often. I also love the use of the phrase "Certain Others". :D
dreamflower02
Feb. 16th, 2010 01:44 am (UTC)
Aunt Dora *is* so excited. She really is Very Fond of her only nephew, after all, even though she shows it in her own inimitably bossy way, LOL!

I have it that since Bilbo's return from his Adventure, he's only been ill one time: at Yule once, when he decided to leave the Ring behind at Bag End when he and Frodo traveled to Buckland. My Frodo enjoys marvelous health after Bilbo leaves as well!

*cough* Yes. Certain Others. I think you can tell there's no love lost between Dora and Lobelia!
clodia_metelli
Feb. 16th, 2010 01:31 am (UTC)
Wonderful! I particularly liked the use of capitals for emphasis. And I'm sure Bilbo was appropriately grateful for so much advice, especially in regard to managing his own Disgrace consequent on all that nasty adventuring. :D Thank you!
dreamflower02
Feb. 16th, 2010 01:48 am (UTC)
Aunt Dora is quite the Mistress of the genteel art of Random Capitalization! I started that when I wrote "Miss Dora Baggins' Book of Manners" because it just seemed perfect for the sort of old-fashioned spinster she seems to be!

I'm glad you enjoyed it! Thank *you* for your kind words!

surgicalsteel
Feb. 16th, 2010 03:28 am (UTC)
HEEEeee! That was fun!
dreamflower02
Feb. 16th, 2010 03:44 am (UTC)
Aunt Dora *is* so much fun to write! Glad you enjoyed!
baranduin
Feb. 16th, 2010 03:33 am (UTC)
I daresay that the Brandybucks Mean Well.

LOL!
dreamflower02
Feb. 16th, 2010 03:45 am (UTC)
Well, naturally. *giggle*
leianora
Feb. 16th, 2010 04:45 am (UTC)
*giggles*

Those wonderfully wacky aunts that everyone loves dearly, and wants to know how to smack even as they're loving them... I've never had an aunt like that, but I don't think I could bring myself to mind it too much. In this modern-day age of email and the delete key, it'd make life that much easier to deal with one. :D

I love her little additional remarks about the Tooks. "Meaning no disrespect..." BTW, the second S is missing in that word. Sorry if that came across as rude. Hugs you!

I really did love the story. I could even picture the voice of a rather snooty Maggy Smith reading it aloud.
dreamflower02
Feb. 16th, 2010 01:55 pm (UTC)
Aunt Dora is definitely dearly loved, even though she often exasperates her relatives-- and very often because she is usually (though not always) Right! (And never lets them forget it, LOL!)

Oops! I'll try to remember to fix that!

Ooh! Maggie Smith has the perfect "Aunt Dora" voice!
someplacetobe
Feb. 16th, 2010 11:11 am (UTC)
I don't think I can keep from snickering long enough to make more of a comment than this was a great read! =D
dreamflower02
Feb. 16th, 2010 01:56 pm (UTC)
Thank you! I always have great fun writing Aunt Dora!
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(no subject) - dreamflower02 - Feb. 16th, 2010 05:07 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - someplacetobe - Feb. 16th, 2010 05:20 pm (UTC) - Expand
elandulin
Feb. 16th, 2010 02:33 pm (UTC)
Delightful! I really like Aunt Dora--she is a splendid character!
dreamflower02
Feb. 16th, 2010 05:08 pm (UTC)
She's one of my favorites! ((hugs))
(Deleted comment)
dreamflower02
Feb. 16th, 2010 05:10 pm (UTC)
"A lovable busybody". Exactly! LOL!

Yes, I think she would never cease to give Bilbo little digs about how he Ruined the Family Reputation! She's very fond of him, but she also never *quite* completely forgave him! *grin*
telstar_gold
Feb. 16th, 2010 04:46 pm (UTC)
Wonderful! What a character Aunt Dora is!
dreamflower02
Feb. 16th, 2010 05:12 pm (UTC)
It's funny, but the one little bit in FotR about her when Bilbo gives her the wastebasket just completely characterized her for me. I knew instantly what sort of person she was, before I ever thought of writing fic about her.
ex_lbilover
Feb. 16th, 2010 05:35 pm (UTC)
So wonderful to hear more Sage Advice from Aunt Dora! I love her use of Capitals and exclamation points!! I was grinning the whole time I read this Most Excellent letter!
dreamflower02
Feb. 16th, 2010 06:55 pm (UTC)
Aunt Dora does have a way of making people smile-- although she might not be Gratified at *why* they smile, LOL!
curiouswombat
Feb. 16th, 2010 07:20 pm (UTC)
Oh that is Wonderful. You cannot begin to even Imagine how much I really Enjoyed it.
dreamflower02
Feb. 17th, 2010 01:56 pm (UTC)
I'm very glad to hear that you enjoyed it! Thank you! 8-)
blslarner
Feb. 16th, 2010 11:22 pm (UTC)
From the title down to that last PPPS--this is so PERFECTLY Dora Baggins! How hilarious and realistic! Delightful, dearest Dreamflower! Just perfect indeed! And she wants to see Frodo in her birthday gift? And she wishes to teach him comportment and dancing? Heh!

Wonderful!
dreamflower02
Feb. 17th, 2010 01:59 pm (UTC)
I'm very fond of that title! (Sadly, SoA's program would not allow the use of the entire title, so there it is truncated.)

Of course she wants to see Frodo in her birthday gift! And so far as Comportment goes, who better?

I'm so glad you like Aunt Dora!
lindahoyland
Feb. 17th, 2010 06:01 am (UTC)
LOL, poor Bilbo will be drowning in advice! Very amusing.
dreamflower02
Feb. 17th, 2010 02:00 pm (UTC)
I think that most of Aunt Dora's advice to Bilbo ends up in his wastebasket (after all, that's what he left her as a parting gift!) but I'm sure he at least reads it first! LOL!
wendwriter
Feb. 18th, 2010 12:04 am (UTC)
My goodness, I'd an aunt like that! Fantastic stuff, and great fun to read. :D
dreamflower02
Feb. 18th, 2010 12:40 am (UTC)
I think most of us have an aunt or other older female relative who fills that function of "lovable but exasperating", who thinks she knows *everything*!
frodosweetstuff
Mar. 14th, 2010 07:48 pm (UTC)
Oooh, this was so much fun!! I loved how she was thinking of everything and was chiding Bilbo while praising him at the same time. Somehow I'm touched that there was someone who was caring for Frodo, even if it was in a slightly over the top way.

Anyway, really enjoyed this! Thank you!
dreamflower02
Mar. 14th, 2010 09:23 pm (UTC)
Yes, she does have a way of expressing herself that gets her meaning across! She is very fond of Bilbo, but at the same time she's never quite forgiven him for the smudge on the family name resulting from his Adventure.

As for Frodo, I think she loved him very much. He was after all her only nephew, and the child of her beloved brother.

Aunt Dora is a bit Over the Top, but she'd be appalled to know that Anyone Notices!
( 32 comments — Leave a comment )

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