Mood: not sure
Topic: "Promises to Keep"(9)
He sat by his Mother's bed, as he told Frodo, and shortly before she passed asked him to promise her that he would enter the priesthood. Frodo did not comment, he knew this was not the goal his friend had set for himself. Perhaps that is why the two Hobbits moved on with their lives, never the twain to cross again. Frodo, now much older, is indeed wiser, and he has directly avoided similar circumstances in his dealings with people who ask for promises.
Bilbo was a master of the harangue. As the end time grew closer and closer, Bilbo repeatedly sought his committment to make sibling peace. Frodo had no intention of so doing, at least while Bilbo lived, for Bilbo was much the reason that the next generation collapsed. Despite best efforts subsequently, peace was "the next gale that sweeps from the North . . . bring the clash of resounding arms" and the conflict endures. It may have been the first, but it was certainly not the last.
Frodo was fooled by one he thought a friend, but that did not stop him from finally making a death-bed promise. His loyalty and affection for the now departed's spouse erased the treachery of one who was prepared to ask a favor. Frodo took the initiative however, without disclosing his knowledge of the actions so characteristic of the renegade. Before the words were stated, Frodo said, "I will take care of her, and see that she is safe." He responded back with relief and a smile, and the back slap which Frodo knew signaled only his relief, and not a scintilla of affection.
Today, the fortress is strong. Safety, security, and the turning of a page to new levels of excitement and mental ingenuity are in her possession. It was an overlong and overdrawn process, clear to Frodo at the very beginning, but obstructed by those with barely half enough information. Frodo is sure that the source of the initial promise is pleased, but Frodo knows that he is now cleared for his final trial, most probably in the Seventh Circle (or in the Republican Caucus of the House of Representatives). Now Frodo can go fishing with Sam, and never think of that prick again.