London - Simon Hardwick, 17, awoke today after seven days in a coma
induced by the ballads in J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the
family found him slumped on his bed last week with a copy of Lord
Of The Rings lying by his side.
At his press conference Simon said, "I had read LOTR at least
five times but always skipped the ballads. On checking with my friends
I found they did the same, even those who had read it more times
"I decided to see what I was missing. At first it wasn't too
bad, Frodo's song at Bree only caused mild drowsiness. Things started
to get a bit more serious with Sam's ballad at Weathertop. I got
as far as `Gil-galad was an Elven king', the next thing I knew I
had missed the ending of a Star Trek episode that was on TV, I reckon
I was out for 15 minutes and should have realized something was wrong."
"My big mistake was attempting to read the ballad of Lúthien
Tinúviel. One verse in and everything went black, the next
thing I remember is waking up here, in hospital."
Simon's parents said, "At first we thought the book fell off
the shelf and hit Simon on the head. If we had known he was experimenting
with Tolkien ballads we would have had that 'Just Say No' talk along
time a go."
Simon was looking forward to going home. "A couple of weeks
back, I spotted my Granddad’s copy of 'The Silmarillion' in
the attic and can't wait to read it."
Then asked why his Granddad was not there at his bedside, Simon
replied, "Mum and Dad say he his having one of his *off days*.
Something happened to him in the early Seventies, which no one has
been able to explain. Since that time there are days when Granddad
doesn't seem to be coherent, he just sits staring at the wall saying
'I will get past page six even if it costs me my sanity.' "
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