Topic: "Playin' Possum" (3)
Once upon a time, on a dark and stormy night, an opossum fully intimidated Mick, the Wonder Dog. The memory of all those pointy teeth has had an impact on his continuing subsequent behavior. It was not surprising therefore, when naught but an upraised nose and a wayward glance from afar took place while Frodo was retrieving the morning paper. The object in the middle of the lane was obviously the detritus from a newpaper delivery person whose task at hand took precedence over his steering, and resulted in the corpus delicti of an unfortunate opossum. Frodo had promises to keep, but fully intended to properly dispose of the remains upon his return from Mount Doom.
Tom Bombadil is a good neighbor. Departing his residence just before Frodo, he noted the remains and planned also to take obvious action when the eve brought his return to the lane afront the Shire. Therein lies this brief tale.
Tom arrived home and noted the corpse was still present in the middle of the lane. He fetched his shovel and retreated to the plains just beyond the Gardens of the Shire to prepare a proper final resting spot for the unfortunate victim of Henry Ford's folly.
During this period, Frodo returned to the Shire and likewise noted that the task remained undone. Frodo fetched his shovel and a plastic garbage bag. Frodo scooped the remains into the bag, sealed it, and deposited it into the refuse can which was scheduled for pickup on the morrow.
A bit later, while Frodo enjoyed the product of Master Brewers in Wisconsin, the telephone rang and it was a very confused Tom Bombadil. He inquired of Frodo if he had noted the presence of an opossum in the lane afronting the Shire earlier in the day. When Frodo stated that he had, it was clear that Tom was both relieved and in awe. He told Frodo of what he had observed and done, and noted that the game playing opossum had gone to great lengths to disappear into the Gardens of the Shire.
If Frodo had been a truly evil Hobbit, he would have parlayed Tom's confusion into a prolonged act of comedy. Instead he had Tom meet him back at the burial spot, and he carried the sealed bag with him. Together they returned nature's creation to its beginning. Mick, the Wonder Dog, accompanied them and observed the entire affair. When all was done, he sauntered over to the spot and promptly lifted his leg. The lesson, perhaps, being that justice delayed tastes just as sweet.