Local Shirriff Case File Number 14 Part 1: Old Sally!

Post date: Nov 12, 2012 10:4:51 AM

By Mellam Hollytoes  Being the local shirriff of Oldfurlong is a job I'm proud to do but sometimes it also comes with a greater responsibility. So when two of the Shire's bounders came and asked for my help how could I refuse. It seems Belco Brockhouse and his prize pig Old Sally had disappeared and no one knew where they were. Now Old Sally the pig does like to wander off, so no one was too bothered when Belco went to look for her. It was when hours turned into a day when the bounders were informed, but they did not have any luck either locating the pair.

Now some unsavoury long shanks have been moving about the Shire of late,so the bounders are pretty stretched. Hence they asked for some of the local shirriff's help to aid in the search.

The idea was to make up teams of three consisting of two bounders and one local shirriff. I was paired with Dargo and Denkin Burrow from Tookland, a capable pair of lads. We was to patrol up near Woodhall and the surrounding area, looking for signs of the missing pair. So off we went with Denkin taking the lead as he was the best tracker in our group.

Several hours went by with only a couple of stops for meals, as we were on duty. It was now mid-afternoon when Denkin stopped and pointed at the ground. Me and Dargo then noticed the tracks Denkin had pointed out to us. One set was made by a hobbit, another what could have been a pig, but the final set had us worried. It was a long shanks boot marks and there appeared to be more than one.

Well we followed these tracks for another hour and, and we now had passed into the Marish. From up ahead we suddenly heard voices, and over a rise to our relief three more hobbits appeared.

It was two bounders with Local Shirriff Nimelia as well, which was a very welcome sight. The two bounders were Sandy Took and Pinny Hollowbanks, who was from Frogmorton. It appears the three had come across the same tracks but had lost them, when they heard us talking. So now we joined forces and set out to find the missing Belco and his pig Sally. We crossed the Shirebourne river and picked up the tracks on the other side which were heading towards some cliffs. Denkin said we should wait while he scouted ahead, so we decided to have lunch in a small copse of trees. Here me and Shirriff Nimelia managed to have a chat about what was going on. She thought it looked like the long shanks had kidnapped poor old Belco and his pig Sally. At this point I had to agree with her but both of us could not figure out why. Suddenly Denkin came into our camp looking very excited and told us he had located Belco and Sally the pig. The problem was they were being held prisoner by a group of long shanks. Dargo thought it best we all see this for ourselves, so we crept forward and peered down through some bushes. Below us was a crude camp with a stockade full of animals, including Sally. A cage of rough logs was holding Belco and what looked like a dwarf. Gathered around a fire pit was several long shanks all armed with various weapons. Near them was a pile of boxes and barrels, and some of the barrels looked like pipeweed.

Who were these longshanks and what were they up to, and how was we going to rescue Belco. That will have to wait for the second part of my report.

Report ends: Local Shirriff Mellam Hollytoes investigating officer.

Signed Mellam