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7
Wights and Wraiths

Wights and Wraiths


Sam looked up from the lines he was copying as the Young Master asked, “And what do you know about wights and wraiths, Uncle Bilbo?”

Bilbo sniffed, rubbing his nose. “Wights are evil spirits, or so I’m told. Whether they’re ghosts of nasty folk or something worse is hard to tell, but they don’t like the living and will do them mischief if they can. But wraiths----” He shook his head. “They’re the undead—they aren’t properly living any more, but they aren’t properly dead, either. And even the great ones shiver with horror at any mention of them.”

***


“My dad saw both wights and wraiths while he was on his journey with Uncle Frodo,” Frodo-lad told the children of the lane. “Uncle Frodo fought a barrow-wight and cut off its hand when it was going to try to kill my dad and the Thain and the Master. And because Dad and Uncle Frodo reached the Mountain in time, there aren’t any wraiths left now. They couldn’t stay in Middle Earth without their Master, so now they’re properly dead and gone, since the Ring went back into the Fire!”

“Oh, my lad,” Sam muttered. “They won’t begin to understand!”



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