This was written in response to an HA onlist challenge. Expanded a bit from its original form to a true quadrabble.
“Imri, you’ve got to dig the hole deeper than that.” Nimrien said, supervising the event from her spot beneath a young oak, Erchirion sleeping upon her lap.
The Heir to Dol Amroth wiped his brow with a linen handkerchief and sighed. “Are you sure? The tree’s not very big. I feel if I dig any further, I’ll find myself on the other side of the world.” He looked to his father for support, but Adrahil was supervising the unloading of a large picnic lunch. Feasting would follow the completion of this little tradition.
“You want the roots to grow deep, don’t you? Then dig! And don’t forget to put in plenty of manure!” Imrahil surveyed the pile of stable leavings at the side of the hole with a jaundiced eye.
“You’re the gardener in the family,” he reminded his wife.
Nimrien was unmoved. “And tradition holds that the father has to do this. Get to work!”
Imrahil turned back to his task-only to find his five-year-old son, the reason for the celebration, gleefully shoveling dirt back into the hole with his little toy shovel. “You are not helping things,” he informed Elphir. Elphir’s face clouded.
“You said I could help, Daddy!”
“Yes, but you don’t fill in the hole until after Daddy has finished digging the hole and put the tree in it. Here, help me get that dirt you just put in out.” Chagrined, Elphir manfully did his best.
Nimrien the expert finally declared the hole deep enough. Imrahil got the slender sapling that stood ready in a pail nearby and lowered it into the hole. Servants and family alike watched while it was planted by father and son. A cheer arose when the task was completed, then everyone headed for the cloths upon which the lunch was spread.
“Did Grandy plant a tree for you, Daddy?” Elphir asked as his father helped him wash his hands with the soap and clean water that had been brought for the task.
“Where is it?”
Imrahil indicated the strong young oak Nimrien had sheltered under earlier. Smiling, she came to him, and wrapped an arm about his waist, ruffling her son’s hair.
“Valiantly done, my lord husband. But you do realize that you’re going to have to do it all over again in four years, don’t you?” And she indicated where Adrahil was playing with his second grandson.