This is sort of an AU if Pippin was taken away by the Orcs before seeing Boromir died, and didn't know. This is sort of both movie and bookverse, set during the book when Merry and Pippin find their way to Fangorn Forest before they meet Treebeard.


Peregrin Took stumbled over a root in the Fangorn forest, his older cousin Meriadoc Brandybuck quickly grabbing his arm and steadying him, a worried look on his weary face.

"Careful, Pip- We've made it this far-" Merry said quietly as Pippin looked up at him with an expression that he couldn't read.

"I know, Merry." The small hobbit whispered, painful memories of the Orc's abuse still in his mind as Merry kept his hand on his cousin's arm, leading him through a safe path in the forest that they had heard frightful stories about. Pippin was just relieved that both of them were safe, all though Merry looked more beaten and weary than Pippin had ever seen him in his whole life.

"Don't loose hope, Pip- We shall make our way through this forest and live to see the other side-" Merry said quietly, and Pippin nodded tiredly, feeling as if the other hobbit could read his mind.

"I know that, Merry. I just wish that Strider or Boromir were here- Or anyone else at that." Pippin said quietly, his voice slightly shaking. Merry stiffened at the mention of Boromir and he looked at the ground of the dark forest, not knowing if Pippin knew or not of the Gondorian's fate. He assumed his younger cousin didn't by the way he spoke.

"Yes, Pippin. I wish that too." Merry said, his voice hollow and suddenly full of sadness without meaning too as they struggled to walk through the forest on wobbly feet, still shaken from the treatment from the Orcs.

"Merry? What is the matter?" Pippin asked quietly, a concerned frown on his face as he stopped walking, putting a hand on Merry's arm lightly.

"Nothing, Pip- Don't worry." Merry said, clearing his throat and pushing back the tears that were burning at his eyes. Pippin's eyes suddenly widened as his exhausted mind processed his statement and Merry's reaction.

"Merry- Strider and Boromir, and the others- They're all fine? I don't remember-" Pippin said, breaking off in frustration as he searched his mind for answers as Merry slowly turned towards him.

"Strider, and the others- They're all fine as far as I can tell." Merry said, his voice a low, pained whisper, and suddenly Pippin's heart was full with fear and sorrow.

"Boromir?" he questioned, his voice breaking off as his hands started to shake. Loosing Gandalf was bad enough in Moira, especially since Pippin felt that he was at fault, his nightmares filled with the echoing sound of the object that had fallen into the hole, alerting the Orcs and other creatures to their presence.

Now as Merry slowly nodded, regrets ran through Pippin's mind as he felt his legs give out from underneath him, Merry holding him up as he brought him into a tight embrace.

"Pip, it's not your fault- It's not-" Merry whispered as he stroked Pippin's auburn curls gently, as his cousin let out a pained sob.

"Everything- Always- Gandalf- Boromir-" Pippin cried out shakily, the thoughts in his mind racing as he let out another anguished sob as he held tighter onto his worn friend as he thought of the Gondorian who was always so kind and protective of them.

"No, Pip- You saved us both back there- If you hadn't cut your ropes, we wouldn't have gotten away-" Merry reasoned gently, his voice hoarse as he held Pippin tightly.

"If I had never come like Elrond had said, then Gandalf and Boromir would be alive and well-" Pippin said sorrowfully, tears rolling down his dirty cheeks, not seeming to hear what Merry had just told him as he let out another sob.

Merry bit his lip nervously and held his trembling cousin close, realizing as he looked around that Pippin was all he had, and he was all that Pippin had. He held the small hobbit closer at this thought, forcing himself to strong for Pippin.

"We've got to stay together, Pip- No matter what happens, no matter what we have seen- I'm going to take care of you-" Merry whispered quietly, closing his eyes against Pippin's curls as he rocked him back and forth gently. Pippin pulled away slightly, his now dull green eyes filled with pain.

"When will this be over, Merry? When will we see Frodo and Sam again? When will we see Strider, Legolas, and Gimli again? I fear I will see Gandalf and Boromir before I see anyone else again-" Pippin said tearfully, as Merry shook his head firmly, fear running through his veins at seeing his normally bright and happy cousin like this.

"We shall live to see the light of day again- We will see the Fellowship again- We will see brighter times, Pippin. Trust me-" Merry whispered in an almost frantic voice, his tone firm. Pippin looked at him for a moment, tears slowly spilling over his eyes as he threw his arms around Merry, a sob building up in his throat.

"I'm- sorry- Merry- You're always- there for me- I can never be there for you-" Pippin struggled to say shakily through his sobs, holding onto the other hobbit tightly for a few moments until Merry pulled away gently, looking Pippin in the eyes.

"You have always been there for me, Pip- Whether you know it or not." Merry said in a quiet voice, "And I will always be there for you, whether I know it or not-"

Pippin nodded slowly, wiping his tears away with his free hand, looking up at Merry.

"I know, Merry. I know." Pippin said quietly, holding his cousin's hand tightly as they began to walk again through the dark Fangorn Forest, not knowing that they would both soon be small stones, starting an avalanche of the fall of Isenguard.


Thank you for reading! I hope you enjoyed!

Reviews are appreciated!