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Story [The Hobbit, LOTR]: A Hobbit in Ered Luin Dear Diary 2014

Discussion in 'Non Star Wars Fan Fiction' started by Space_Wolf, Jan 2, 2014.

  1. Space_Wolf

    Space_Wolf Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Mar 13, 2007
    I've divided the next entry into two parts. I feel a bit guilty not giving Ori's journal the attention that it deserves and this piece is one where I've actually made a first draft (which is what I usually do...) I was hoping to get all of it typed up today, but as I was writing the draft this morning, I need a break...

    ------------------------------------------

    Kili's Journal

    8th Thrimidge

    It would take a few days to make arrangements for going back to the Shire and I found myself impatient to be off. The main barrier of course, was getting a certain number of the older dwarves to agree to allow us to go, most notably, my Uncle, Mr Dwalin, Skafid and Gloin.

    Early one morning, I was tending to Bungo and the other ponies in the field outside our home when I saw Ristal going for an early morning walk. There was a light mist that morning, and it was cool, as it always is in early spring in the mountains. She appeared more relaxed now that she'd had a chance to rest and was safe amongst friends. Smiling, I waved at her and seeing me, she walked over to me, the hem of her gown dark with the damp dew.

    "How are you settling in my lady?" I inquired when she had come within ear shot. A short distance away, my uncle's pony, Minty grazed, along side Mam's pony, and Rowan, the pony belonging to Fili, rolled around in a patch of dust. Hilda's Crowberry drank from the trough. It would have been idyllic, had a certain young hobbit lass been with me in that field.

    Soon, I reminded myself. Soon.

    Ristal gave me a shy smile in return. "Fine, my lord. Everyone here is so kind, especially your ma, but I do miss home."

    I nodded. If I'd been forced away from my home just as she had, I think that I would miss home just as badly. I took a brush from the bucket and began to brush the dried mud from Bungo's coat. It had rained the night before and now that the warmer weather is coming, the ponies are allowed out to graze in the field more, but we do have to ensure that they do not over eat, as that can be bad for their feet. Every time we allowed them out over night, though, they got muddy, no matter how dry it was and both my uncle and my mother insisted that we kept their coats as clean as we could manage, a task which usually fell to me.

    Curiosity had been nagging at the back of my mind ever since I had met her and I was intrigued as to what she and Gandalf had spoken about, even if I had been a little distracted at the time they had talked in Balin's office. I thought that now might be a good time to satisfy that curiosity.

    "What happened to you, exactly? Why did you have to leave your home? I know that you gave Hilda and I a brief explanation, but I would like to know more, if you are willing."

    Hilda, it always comes back to her, doesn't it? Everything….

    It was probably something I shouldn't have said because her eyes became all fearful and, as I ran the brush along Rowan's coat, dislodging the dried mud, I added, hurridly, hoping to put her back at ease. "It's alright - you don't have to tell me if you do not want to." I had never seen someone so frightened as she looked, not even Hilda, after the orcs had killed her family.

    "No, that's alright," she said, in a small, quiet voice. "I have told you some of it already and you didn't have to have helped me that night in Bree…."

    At that point, I had to stifle a laugh. "My dear lady, I am a prince of Durin and we value honour above gold, even though many would claim not. To have done any less would have been dishonourable."

    I just hoped she didn't think that through my laughing I was making mirth at her, which couldn't be further from the truth of things. I would never take amusement at the distress of a lady, but to think that I shouldn't have helped one in distress when I could, was laughable.

    "There are woods people who live in Mirkwood and we are under the protection of Radagast the brown, but he has not been around for some time. My people became worried that something had befallen the wizard and that is how it began, when we first noticed that something was not quite right…."

    I nodded. I remembered her heritage from the brief story she had related to Hilda and myself that night in the Prancing Pony, but she had not given as much detail on it.

    "If you lived in the woods, then you are used to the dangers of it. Wolves, bears, wolverines and lynx…" I rattled off the names of the creatures I knew best to be weary of, if not completely afraid. "Would not bother you, would they?"

    "They can be a problem, sire," she replied. "But I am not afraid of them for I know how to deal with them."

    I inwardly cringed at the word sire. Yes, I am a prince, of course, but I am not used to people pointing it out to me, lowering themselves and elevating me above them. It is not something I am used to. I think that part of it is because we don't really live as royalty. We suffer and toil with those we rule and I don't any of us, not Bofur, Bombur, and Bifur, not even Ori, Dori and their wayward brother as being anything less than myself, and I know this feeling of equality with my people is not universal amongst the high born of all the other races. I think it is something put upon us by circumstance. Would I be brushing Bungo's mane and tail right now if that wasn't the case?

    I tried to put her at ease in my presence.

    "Please, my lady, you do not have to call me that," I waved the title away. "So tell me a little about your people…"


    (part 2 coming soon.)
     
  2. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Chosen One star 7

    Registered:
    Aug 31, 2004
    Loved Kili's musings and the serene setting in the horse paddock. :) Enjoyed the talk with Ristil, his assurances and kindly meant curiosity. =D=
     
  3. Space_Wolf

    Space_Wolf Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Mar 13, 2007
    I am glad that I was able to write this and get it in. Sometimes when I'm writing a story, it is very easy to focus only on the main aspect of it and forget about the other ideas I get, so I am glad that I've not rushed it in the end, even though I do wish that I'd finished it by now.
     
  4. Mira_Jade

    Mira_Jade The Fanfic Manager With The Cape star 5 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Jun 29, 2004
    I too really liked the feel of this one. Kili's musings were wonderful, as was his conversation with Ristal. :)
     
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  5. Space_Wolf

    Space_Wolf Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Mar 13, 2007
    She stroked Bungo's head, as she replies. "There are many small groupings of woods-people in Mirkwood, mainly at the west end. We don't tend to venture to the eastern parts because that is where the elves live, and the wood itself seems to resent our presence. I would hesitate to call them villages, because many of these groupings consist only of family members. We would meet up in the summer, around the time of the solstice, and stay together until the autumn, to gather food, and then separate again for the winter. There really is only the settlement near Rhosgobel which could be called a village," she paused for a moment in her tale. "Did you know that there is a family of dwarves there? A blacksmith, and his wife, their three sons and two daughters?"

    I shake my head, wondering what a family of dwarves would be doing in such a place.

    "No, I did not," I replied, "But many of our people have become scattered in the years since Smaug took the mountain, so although it is a strange thought that dwarves would be living in Mirkwood, I wouldn't discount the possibility of it."

    Ristal looked thoughtful for a moment. "I do hope that nothing has happened to them."

    Dwarves living in Mirkwood! How unusual, and with a high proportion of dwarrowdams amongst them. I shall have to check this out, when I have the time, and I too, hoped that the evil that had touched the wood had not touched them.

    "Thank you for telling me. They may want to come and live among us one day, if we meet them,' I inclined my head towards a fallen tree trunk which my uncle and Dwalin had dragged into the field which could be used to sit upon on warm days. "Would you like to sit down, my lady?"

    She nods and I took her arm in mine and we walked over there. She took a seat on the trunk and I sat down in the grass, resting my back against the trunk. I glanced up at her. "But your er settlement….what happened?"

    Bungo, not wanting to be away from me, walked over to us and grazed the grass nearby, reminding me of Hilda's Trotter.

    "We weren't the deepest settlement in the wood, there were others further in and it were those who had problems first. We heard rumours, whispers that settlements had been destroyed in the winter. We thought them exaggerations and we've always had the occasional problems with orcs from time to time taking slaves - for what purpose, I don't want to know."

    I nodded in understanding. There are many reasons why orcs would want slaves, and all of them vile if you ask me. I kept silent on that, keeping my speculations to myself. She appeared frightened and I laid my hand on her shoulder to bring her some comfort. "We had problems with orcs in late winter, and the hobbit lass who was with us in Bree lost her home to them." I hated describing her as the hobbit lass, but what else could I do? We weren't together now…

    "It's alright," I said, after a moment. "Whatever horror you faced, you are safe here." I reassured her.

    She took a deep breath and I could see that relating what happened to me was a difficult task for her. "They were rumours, until my brothers came across one of the settlements which had been attacked. There were bodies," her hands trembled as she spoke. "which had been drained of all their fluids. They were just sacks of bone surrounded by skin and spider silk, with no flesh left at all. It is how they feed, you see…."

    "You don't have to tell me more, if you don't want to, my lady."

    "Ah, but I do - it helps, somehow, to share it."

    I nodded in understanding. "Then continue, if you wish."

    "That was terrifying enough, when they came back with the tale. Then, a week or so later, my uncle and my cousin encountered undead one evening. My uncle died, defending my cousin from these creatures. He only just got away from them and if he hadn't, we would have had no idea at all what was happening, not that it really mattered much, for even though we prepared ourselves, it was useless, all useless in the end."

    I stood and sat beside her on the log. "It is dreadful, losing your uncle, my lady."

    "That's not the only thing," she said, looking down at the grass between her feet. "People began to disappear. My sister and her baby first, and then her husband. They were there one evening at sunset, quite close by with the rest of us, and mist rolled in as it got dark. In the morning, she and her baby were gone. Her husband disappeared searching for her," she shivered, and rubbed her arms, and it wasn't the cold of the day that caused her to do that. "Then my brother disappeared, and after him, I lost my mother. It was like something was hunting us and picking us off one at a time. My father went to look for Radagast, but he never returned, and it was just my cousin and I left. He told me I that I should go, before whatever was out there got me, too. I left him, I wish I hadn't. I suppose that he is gone too, now."

    I took the lady in my arms and hugged her to give her comfort. It did not matter at all that she is taller than I. At that moment, it felt like she was tiny and vulnerable and I, I was strong and large, like a bear.
     
  6. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Chosen One star 7

    Registered:
    Aug 31, 2004
    Ristal's grief and sense of "what could I have done" is very strong. Like Kili's comforting her.
     
  7. Mira_Jade

    Mira_Jade The Fanfic Manager With The Cape star 5 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Jun 29, 2004
    I liked a glimpse at the ways of the North-men here, even if Ristal's tale was a sad one to tell - and terrible at that! Those were not good tidings at all. [face_worried] But I am glad that Kili was able to provide a listening ear, and some comfort for her woes. :(
     
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  8. Space_Wolf

    Space_Wolf Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Mar 13, 2007
    Kili's Journal

    10th Thrimidge

    Tomorrow we will be setting out for the Shire. I don't know how long we will be gone, so Fili and I are spending the evening drinking mead in the field where we graze the ponies. Why does it feel like Fili is being condemned to a frightful fate? I do wish that he was coming with us. It seems wrong to be parted from my brother as we have always been as far back as I can remember in each other's company or not far away from each other. I will miss him, but duty is duty in the end, and it must be carried out if we wish it or not. I can only hope that he finds with one of these dwarrowdams what I have found with Hilda and I hope that she is beautiful, brave and kind like her.

    We built a small fire and played our fiddles. Fili, being older, has always been a more accomplished player than I, because he's had more practice, but his duties as heir mean that he doesn't have the time to compose music like I do, so eventually I will surpass him in it. A shout announced the arrival of Ori and Gimli as twilight settled upon us and they joined us. Gimli and Ori had had a difficult time getting their respective parents to allow them to go tomorrow, and I wondered of Lyngheid and Lofnheid were having the same trouble. I hoped that they would come, but dwarrowdams rarely travelled anywhere, at least, as dwarrowdams.

    I thought, as we waited for the lasses to join us, that it would be a good time to bring up the subject of that article with Ori. I don't know what thoughts Hilda still had regarding it, but it had upset her greatly and I think it one of the primary reasons for my uncle turning on her as he had. It was awkward, bringing it up and Gimli got up from the fire and left us to discuss it among ourselves. He saw it was something that we needed to work out between us and he wandered over to pet Bungo and Rowan. Crowberry sauntered over and nuzzled his shoulder, which caused me to smile. Minty, ever aloof for a pony if ever there was one, stood back and grazed with my mother's mount.

    The smile died on my lips as I turned the talk towards that article. I felt horrible doing it. Ori is quite a timid dwarf and he has been a friend for a long while, but if there were ever going to be trust between us again, I had to do this. Fili, a supportive presence for Hilda and I stayed silent, not wanting to intimidate the young scribe, but there to help see that the wrong was put right.

    It turned out that the article had never been meant for publication. He'd written it purely for the purpose as an exercise in writing, but he'd left it in a pile of parchments he wanted to put into the Chronicle. Lofnheid, if she had been setting up the press for that edition's printing, would have recognised it for what it was and would have asked him for confirmation if he wanted it in there, but she hadn't. She'd been ill and he'd not had the time to check through the parchments himself, nor set up the press because he'd been doing a task for Balin. So he'd asked Nori to do it, because Dori was busy working in the mines. Big mistake. He'd went ahead and put the thing in the paper without a thought thinking it was a proper article.

    I was still angry about it, of course, even if it's inclusion had been a genuine mistake. I could tell that Ori was telling me the truth because of how he told me. It had been humiliating to say the least, especially for poor Hilda to have our private life exposed like that. Would I be able to salvage my reputation, and more importantly, hers? I don't know, but I will try. I told him that he never should have written the thing.

    Tension was lifted by the arrival of the two sisters. It had been a battle for them to convince Dwalin to allow them to come. Their father had always been over protective of them and looking at Ori, I wondered if he would survive once Dwalin found out about him and Lofnheid. We drank and sang, filling the spring evening with jollity. It was shortly before midnight, when the embers of the fire were low that we brought our celebration to an end. This was due to mam coming out from the house to tell us that we should be getting rest in the morning if we were going to set out at the time we had planned.
     
  9. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Chosen One star 7

    Registered:
    Aug 31, 2004
    Oh what a relaxing time and great that things were cleared up. Nice tie-in with Ori and Lofnheid as well. :)
     
  10. Mira_Jade

    Mira_Jade The Fanfic Manager With The Cape star 5 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Jun 29, 2004
    I too am glad that things were cleared up with Ori, and more anxious than ever for Kili to reach the Shire. ;)
     
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  11. Space_Wolf

    Space_Wolf Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Mar 13, 2007
    I've neglected this for too long. I had to get a new computer. The old one still kind of works, but all the stuff for this story from NaNo is still on it, and I don't have Office on the new laptop yet. The old lap top sometimes makes this annoying sound when I use it, which is why we had to get the new computer. It will take some doing for now to keep this thread updated.
     
  12. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Chosen One star 7

    Registered:
    Aug 31, 2004
    :eek: I hope that gets straightened out soon. I love this fic! [face_batting] There's an NSWFF 1980s songs roulette going on; no deadlines, so you're welcome to pop in and pick a number. :D
     
  13. Space_Wolf

    Space_Wolf Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Mar 13, 2007
    Kili's Journal, 11th Thrimidge

    Mam woke me up early the next morning so that we could be out on the road at an early hour and make good use of the daylight as we traveled. She was fussy, more so than when we had gone to Bree with Uncle Thorin because it was my first journey out of Ered Luin 'alone.' She had packed provisions for me, because she had this notion that I would have forgotten to do the job myself, or not make a good job of it. She warned me profusely about bears and other scavenging predators and gave me advice on how to keep from attracting them. She knew that I knew it, from my previous hunting trips with my Uncle, Dwalin and Gloin, but she wanted to ensure that she knew that I knew. If I'm honest with myself, I think she was more concerned than I was about the trip. She needn't have worried. Uncle Throin, Dwalin, and Gloin had taught both Fili and I well in that regard. I don't know what skills Ori had, and I wasn't sure about the dwarrowdams. I know that Gimli is capable, because we have taken hunting trips together and if I thought of it as a longer version of that, with a destination in mind, then I think we will have little trouble. I shall be the leader of this expedition in more ways than one. I am not only their prince, but I am also the oldest and, presumably more experienced than any of them. I will do my best to keep them out of trouble and get them to the Shire safely, but I do worry that I will fail them. I think I would have preferred Fili to come along with me and I had some idea now of what he had felt when he'd had to take over my Uncle's duties during his absence in the winter after we had found Hilda, even if it was on a smaller scale to his responsibility.

    I was checking the riding tack for wear before I saddled Bungo and preparing Crowberry for the journey when Ori and the two lasses arrived with their mounts. It wouldn't do for leather to tear while we were on the road, especially if we were in the middle of no where. I also checked the horse shoes and their feet, to make sure that there were no potential problems there before we set out. Doing this for Crowberry was quite difficult, because of her size. As a dwarf, I am extremely strong, but Crowberry leaned on me quite heavily when I checked her hind feet, and that was exhausting. She's a heavy horse, and I don't know how the hobbits managed to care for her so well. I noticed that Lyngheid was doing the same with her pony and she encouraged her sister to do the same, and I smiled at her. She is capable - I know that. Ori was just milling around.

    "Have you checked your tack and the pony's feet, Ori?" I asked him.

    "Oh...right...Sorry, Kili. I'll get right on it..."

    That question spured him into action. The lad's just not used to dealing with ponies, that I could see. I caught a glimpse of my Uncle, who had just come out of the house and was standing by the fence to the paddock. He nodded his approval at me, which embarrassed me, but also made me feel that I had done good at the same time. We've both let each other down do much lately, and I was glad that he was proud of me still.

    Of the two lasses, Lyngheid looked the most confident, but Lofnheid, always the more bookish of the two, didn't seem quite so sure of herself. I noticed that she wasn't even carrying a weapon. After I finished with Bungo, I went over to my mother's forge and fetched her a small mace that my mother had crafted for use by dwarrowdams. Our women are strong in body, and formidable fighters, but like women of other races, they aren't as physically strong as our men, so their weapons tend to be lighter. She accepted the mace, though in an awkward manner.

    "Don't worry," I said to her, so that the others couldn't hear. "You will find your feet."

    When traveling, many dwarrowdams choose to appear as our men do, and that is what Lyngheid and Lofnheid had done so now. In some ways, it is safer for them to do so, and after what had almost happened to Ristil, I am inclined to agree, and don't blame them for their choice. The bulkiness of their traveling clothes kept their feminine features well hidden and only the sparseness of their beards indicated that they are women, but only an experienced eye, or another dwarf would be able to tell.
    Mam had sent orders to the kitchens to fetch us a good breakfast of sausages, bacon and boiled eggs, which was brought to us by one of Bombur's ladies. We ate while we waited for Gimli, who hadn't shown up yet and I was starting to become concerned that there was no sign of him, even as we finished our breakfast. Where was he?

    I was starting to worry that something may have gone wrong, so I asked Ori to fetch him. Had he changed his mind about coming with us? It was sometime later when the young scribe returned with Gimli in tow, leading his pony. The young dwarrow had overslept, which we suspected that Gloa had deliberately allowed to happen in the hope that we would get tired of waiting for him and leave for the Shire without him. We set off without further delay, anxious to get going on the road.

    Of course, as we set off, my heart was much lighter than it had been upon our arrival back in Thorin's Gate, for now I was traveling towards Hilda, instead of away from her, getting closer to her with every step Bungo took.
     
  14. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Chosen One star 7

    Registered:
    Aug 31, 2004
    [face_dancing] I can well understand Kili's strong sense of responsibility for the entire group. I like the upbeat outlook as they set out. :D I too love the idea of getting closer to Hilda. ;)
     
  15. Mira_Jade

    Mira_Jade The Fanfic Manager With The Cape star 5 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Jun 29, 2004
    I too liked Kili's taking care of the group as they set out; and I am really, really eager for his reunion with Hilda. They are so close. :D
     
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  16. Space_Wolf

    Space_Wolf Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Mar 13, 2007
    [Blows the dust off this thing.]

    I am determined to start work on this again. I've had enough of role-palying on twitter. All I really want to do is write and create, and although there are some wonderful people there, it is marred by those who ruin it. Fan fiction is much more enjoyable and although I don't always get as many readers as I would like, I don't have to put up with the stress caused by people acting like teenagers in high-school cliques.
     
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  17. Space_Wolf

    Space_Wolf Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Mar 13, 2007
    10th Trimidge - Late Afternoon - Early Evening

    I do wish Gimli had got up earlier than he had. If he had, it would have saved us a hell of a lot of trouble on the road. Why? About half-way through the morning, the leather on his saddle gave way and upon checking it, I could see that it was well-worn. If he'd got up earlier than he had, I would have had the chance to check his riding tack and would have spotted this sooner, and replaced it with one in better condition before we set out. It would have saved us time in the long run, but because of his tardiness, we had to rush our departure from Thorin's Gate, and we've had to walk along side our ponies ever since. I was hoping that we'd reach the dwarven settlement of Noglond by evening, as I had promised my Uncle and Mam that we would stop there, and at every other dwarf settlement between here and the Hobbit town of Needlehole, at the northern entrance to Rushock Bog. It was to put her mind at ease because I knew that she would worry about us until we returned to Thorin's Gate. By promising her this, it would mean that she would at least worry less about us. Of course, I don't think Dwalin and Gloin would have wanted us to take the lasses and Gimli along if we didn't do that. There are some elven settlements on the road, which I don't think we can avoid staying at, but they are somewhat friendly. When we came this way with Uncle and the small company earlier in the year, we by-passed a lot of these settlements and only stopped at the dwarf ones. The elven settlements lie just beyond the farm Hilda's family lived at, and the last of the dwarf settlements, Gondamon, was before the inn where Fili and I met Nori after we rescued Hilda. I think it irked my Uncle that we had elves living so close to Thorin's Gate, and that was why he didn't want to stop there. There are other dwarven settlements in Ered Luin, but they are far off our road, so we will not be visiting them. Now, reaching Noglond this evening is impossible because of this set back.

    Ori and Lofnheid are inseparable now that there isn't the looming presence of Lofnheid's father hanging over them, and it made me long for Hilda, just seeing them together. There is one strange thing which Ori and Lofnheid noted as we traveled along the road, and that is a thrush that has been following us. I thought nothing of it to begin with. There were always birds around in the mountains. This was evidenced by the majestic Hendroval I had seen as we descended into the Vale of Thrain. He was magnificent! I have heard stories of giant eagles - are they just legends? - and wonder, as I watched him dive and soar if what I saw is comparable. Some dwarves do not like the creatures for they are said to prey on young goats and foals. Perhaps they do, but I saw no need to let fly an arrow at it, and just enjoyed the sight of it flying free.

    While we were seeing to Gimli's pony, I noticed the curious behaviour of the thrush. It seemed to me that it was taking more of an interest in us than I would have normally expected from a bird. It sat in a Bird Cherry tree, and studied every move we made while I inspected the ruined saddle. We took the opportunity to have a small meal at our forced halt, with that bird watching us all the time. Ori, always a kind hearted soul, broke up some of his bread and gave it to the bird, which took them quite readily, disregarding our presence. That is not the behaviour of a completely wild bird, I noted. It has some tameness about it, which I found very curious indeed. Then, all of a sudden, it departed. All this happened before noon, and we stopped for a rest half-way through the afternoon, and I took the opportunity to write in my journal.

    We are some distance away from where we were forced to stop now, but we have no hope at all of making the settlement today. After our mid-afternoon rest, I spied a ptarmigan on the wing, and took aim with my arrow and shot it out of the air. It will do for dinner. As the late afternoon turned to early evening, we looked around for a suitable camp site and found one. Lyngheid is now kindly plucking the bird for our evening meal, to spit over a fire and cook with a few vegetables such as carrots, turnips, potatoes and parsnips which we have on us. Ori and Lofnheid are off gathering fire wood and Gimli is seeing to the ponies - a job I normally do, but on this occasion I decided that the task was better left to someone else while I patrolled the area for danger. The summer in the mountains is not as dangerous as the winter, but I still felt responsible for the safety of our companions.

    The snow which covered the ground from mid autumn through to late spring in this part of the mountains had retreated to higher altitudes and the warmth of the day had begun to turn to the chill of the night. Although it often became warm in the day-time at this time of year in the mountains, the nights were always cold. There is no getting away from that. As I walked in the woods of the immediate vicinity of the campsite, I took notice of the early summer flowers that were growing, and knowing how much Hilda loved them, I wished that she was here to appreciate them. I hoped that some would still be around when we made the return journey from the Shire. I searched for signs of lynx, bear and wolf. Each represented a danger, though that from lynx and wolf had lessened now that the summer was here. They were lean and hungry during the winter months and as well as the danger from exposure, most dwarrows didn't let their children go beyond the safety of the town for fear a predator would find them. Bears, they posed no danger in the winter, for they were usually asleep in their dens, but in the spring and early summer, they were hungry from their long sleep and it is then that they are most likely to want dwarf on the menu. It is always a disappointment when I have to kill one of these beasts to protect myself, or others. I never enjoy it, or take pride in it, other than the fact that I have kept someone safe. A few winters ago, my Uncle, Fili and I had gone out to kill a rogue lynx which had been trouble the goat herds. We succeeded in tracking it down, and Uncle made the kill. He gave the skin to Mam for a winter cloak. We sometimes have the odd goblin or troll. Those I really don't mind killing because they are minions of Melkor and kill for the sake of destruction, not for food, and have no innocence at all about them.

    I found no signs, of any, thankfully, but as I was making my way back to the camp site, I encountered a dwarf, with a thrush companion, as a matter of fact. He was almost bald, with a grey mohawk and a long grey beard. He had the look of a dwarf who was used to and competent at living out in the wilds. I had never met him before, but he was my Uncle's man, and he introduced himself as Nos Grimsong. As we walked back to the camp, he told me that he was a part of my Uncle's spy network, and it turned out that we weren't not far away from the Thrushstones, the place where he had his camp. He understood the language of thrushes and the birds were useful and discreet carriers of messages, but you had to understand them to be able to gain any advantage from the messages they carried and they were too small to carry parchment, unlike the ravens. Listening to his tale reminded me of the stories Balin told about the the ravens of Erebor, and I smiled, wondering just how long it will be before we're able to renew our alliances with the birds. Ori and Lofnheid were back at the camp when we got there and were in the process of making a fire.

    Lyngheid rose to her feet to greet him, having finished plucking the bird, which was ready to be spitted over the fire, once the two scribes had got one going. Nos Grimsong was taken aback a little at the presence of not one, but two young dwarrowdams in my company, but he soon recovered. Lyngheid, who had seemed to have taken on the role, (unofficially, I might add) of my second, offered him a share of our meal, which he accepted. The two scribes finally got the fire going and Gimli joined us from seeing to the ponies. He was wanting to make up for his earlier embarrassing blunder over the riding tack, and I decided not to check up on his work right now - I would do it later, while he slept. I didn't want to dash his confidence by making him think that I didn't trust him with simple tasks. I now understood some of the difficulties that my Uncle had to experience as leader. Ori and Lofnheid took over the cooking, while Nos Grimsong told related to us some news that he had.

    "You all must think that the king sent word to me to watch out for you, but he did not. I did not know that your company was due to be passing this way, my lord, but I am glad that the thrushes spotted you when they did, and I think that you will be, once you learn of the news I have to impart."

    Ori stopped what he was doing, glanced at me and I nodded for him to speak. "What news is that?" he asked quietly.

    "There is an abandoned dwarvern settlement near here, called Orodost. Or rather, it used to be abandoned." Nos Grimsong glanced at me with a grim expression on his face. "Goblins have over run the place and have made it the base of their operations in the area."

    I sighed. "I had thought we had seen the last of that trouble, Sir Grimsong. I am sure that you are aware of the trouble we had with orcs this winter past?"

    Nos regarded me with a grim smile. "Not much gets past my thrushes, my lord. I know of the trouble, and how you dealt with it, but you must understand something. Orcs, and goblins are like rats. Once you've got rid o' one bunch, another swiftly takes its place. It's inevitable."

    "Then what are we waiting for?" Gimli roared, brandishing his axe.

    I chuckled. I didn't doubt Gimli's bravery and willingness, but it was hardly appropriate for me to allow my little company to go rushing off to deal with a nest of goblins without the back up of older, more experienced dwarves. "You'll get your chance, Gimli, but for now, it isn't our fight," I turned to Nos. "I presume that you'll inform my Uncle of this latest threat, Sir Grimsong?"

    The dwarf nodded, and Gimli looked deflated. "But they will probably be gone by the time we get back."

    I know how he felt, for I too wanted to roust them, but it would have to wait until we got back from the Shire. I doubted that Gloin, Dwalin and Skafid would appreciate it if I led our company on a charge into Orodost to deal with these goblins and get my charges severely injured, or worse, killed. And I would like to have Fili fighting at my side. It wasn't something I was going to risk with the lasses and Gimli, and Ori wasn't really a fighter, even if is heart is brave.

    I could tell that Lyngheid, as always, was keen, but her enthusiasm was tempered in comparison to Gimli's. "Don't lose heart, Gimli. I'm sure that there plenty of adventures ahead of us, even on this little trip. You'll get your chance to use your axe."

    "And I'll get my chance to use my sling-shot!" Ori declared, which elicited a smile from me.

    Nos shared tales with us of happenings before Fili and I were born while we waited for the bird to cook, and it was a pleasant evening, even if I'd not anticipated spending it out here, rather than at Noglond. The bird and the vegetable stew made a pleasant meal and our unexpected guest seemed appreciate the meal greatly. Although he said that he hadn't come to check up on us, I couldn't shake the feeling that he had. I know that Mam worried about us, and that she would want to reassure herself that we were alright. Ori entertained us with his flute playing and the evening would have been perfect if Hilda had been present.
     
  18. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Chosen One star 7

    Registered:
    Aug 31, 2004
    I enjoyed meeting Nos Grimsong but his news is worrisome, although I'm glad he was able to convey the warning. Gimli's youthful enthusiasm ;) & Lofnheid and Ori :) :) I know that made Kili miss Hilda all the more!
     
  19. Space_Wolf

    Space_Wolf Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Mar 13, 2007
    Kili's Journal 3
    12th Thrimidge
    The next morning we were woken by rain. The rain had dampened the fire out while we slept and as a consequence, we ate a breakfast of dry cram and drank cold tea. Tea, drunk cold, is disgusting, by the way, but it is all we had. It is impossible to get a fire going in damp conditions, so we didn't even waste the time trying to have something warm, though we really did need it as we were soaked through to our skins in our sleep. The rain was just a drizzle when we woke up, but it became heavier as the day wore on. After our sorry breakfast, we rolled up our sodden bedrolls, tied them to the backs of the ponies and set off for Noglond. My journal, of course, was kept dry and I am writing this in the comfort of a warm study. I really hoped that we would get there today, and not have to spend another night out here in the damp and cold.

    Now, in the mountains, mist is always a common sight, but it is usually a light dampness in the air. On the highest peaks, however, it is low lying cloud, and not mist. I think Lord Ulmo and Manwe must be having some fun at our expense this day. Today, because of the rain, it hung over the mountains heavily and we couldn't see even a short distance in front of us, let alone the nearest peak, though there were the occasional breaks in it. It can also be quite erry at times, when you can see the mist surrounding a nearby mountain come rolling down the slope towards you like an avalanche of vapor. I once over heard Oin say that such a phenomenon heralded ill tidings, but I didn't take him seriously. I find he has some strange ideas, and I was perplexed by what he meant by it, to be quite honest. Some of his medicine does work wonders, and you cannot say that he is a bad healer, but he comes out with some rather odd things that could be termed mystical in nature. I don't really understand it, and I do profess that I have a practical nature and the only artistry I perform is the music I play on my fiddle, and the designs I put into my metal-working.

    The road was so obscured that Nos Grimsong decided to escort us the rest of the way to Noglond. I deferred to his judgement because I've not traveled around this part of Ered Luin often enough to trust that I know my way in conditions when visibility is reduced, and after the setback of yesterday, I did not want to get lost and wander aimlessly through the mountains. What would my Uncle think of me if I let that happen? And, of course, I do have a duty of care to my companions. A part of me suspected that Nos Grimsong had planned on seeing us safely to Noglond, regardless of the weather and the visibility on the road. I kind of know that he is acting on my Uncle's orders, even if he does not admit it. It seemed too much of a co-incidence that he appeared otherwise.

    We did not stop to rest that morning, mainly because none of us wanted to hang around in the rain and even after only an hour of hiking, I wanted to be warm and dry in Noglond. We did eat more cram as we traveled, because the mist and the rain caused the day to be cold, despite the time of the year. Ori, usually shy, felt at ease enough to recite some poetry regarding rain as we trudged through the mud. It was a funny passage, designed to keep up the spirits of those who listened to it and it was some what successful at it. It kept us going. It certainly helped make the journey time seem to be not as long, but by the time the fortress of Noglond came into veiw, I was beginning to lose heart that I was ever going to get out of this accursed rain. The sight of our destination did renew it, to a certain extent.

    It was shortly after noon when we arrived in Nogland, and the helpful stable master, a dwarf who introduced himself as Leiknir, took our ponies and Crowberry off our hands and promised to feed them and once they were dry, groom them so that the mud they had acquired on their coats would come off. He frowned at the state of Gimli's saddle and recommended a leather worker who kept a stall in the courtyard by the grocer. We would have to see to that later, after we'd had the chance to freshen up after our travels.

    We were met by Rothgar, an elderly dwarf who was the steward of Noglond. He reminded me somewhat of Balin, if he was more of a warrior than a scribe. He and Nos Grimsong appeared to know each other well. The other dwarf that met us was Grimkell Stonebearer, who was the commander of the guard of this small settlement. There were no dwarrowdams here, so Lyngheid and Lofnheid did cause quite a stir when they revealed themselves. We were offered temporary lodgings, which I accepted gratefully and a change of clothing, Rothgar being apologetic when he said that the lasses would have to wear trousers and tunics instead of dresses. Lyngheid scoffed at that, and Lofnheid found the situation somewhat amusing. Lyngheid has never been fond of dresses and avoids wearing them at all costs, and even for Lofnheid, they were an encumbrance, but they were forgiving since the dwarves here rarely saw dwarrowdams. I assured them that it was fine. I was glad to get out of the wet clothes and to don dry ones.

    Our traveling gear and clothes were spread out to dry in the communal mead hall, where we were served warm ox-tail soup and bread, and mead. This hospitality soon made me forget the discomfort of the day and when we had finished eating, Gimli and I went into the small market place to find the leather worker who could make Gimli a new saddle. My Uncle had given me a quite substantial bag of gold and silver coin, so I paid for it out of that. The leather worker said that the saddle would be ready in a few days.

    Because it was still raining, we went back to the mead hall and, with Ori and the lasses, we entertained ourselves until it was time for the evening meal. Nos Grimsong joined us then, and we dined on roast pork and potatoes. I over heard Nos Grimsong complain to Rothgar about the lynxes which were always trying to catch and eat his thrushes, and then about a dwarf called Thrasi who resided in a hunting lodge who had a pet lynx. There is a long running rivalry between the two, and I must admit, I am unsure of which side to take, so I wisely stayed out of the discussion. I'm not even sure what stance Hilda would take on it. She might have agreed with Nos, due to her background as a farmer's daughter, but because she had a kind heart where creatures are concerned, she might have sided with Thrasi. That evening, after our meal, we enjoyed an evening of music and storytelling, brought on by my presence there. There was a small community of dwarves that lived in Noglond, and they all joined us in the mead hall that evening. It is mainly made up of guards, and a handful of traders and cooks, all of whom my small company and I would get to know over the next few days. I do not know that I am going to do with myself while Gimli's saddle is being made.
     
  20. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Chosen One star 7

    Registered:
    Aug 31, 2004
    What welcome and splendid hospitality! :) Just what's needed before continuing. But I can totally feel Kili's restlessness. ;)
     
  21. Mira_Jade

    Mira_Jade The Fanfic Manager With The Cape star 5 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Jun 29, 2004
    I liked the details of traveling in this chapter, and the hospitality of Noglond. Kili's thoughts straying to Hilda was the best part of this, however - that was a sweet moment, and now I'm looking forward to their reunion more than ever. :) =D=
     
    Nyota's Heart likes this.
  22. Space_Wolf

    Space_Wolf Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Mar 13, 2007
    I'm hoping to get some work done on this and on Ori's diary this week, if I have time. I've got a bit of a cold recently and getting the some items I needed for the animals today was a struggle on the way back. (Although the garden centre is close and in walking distance, it's at the bottom of a hill so coming back up carrying a large bag of wood-shavings was a struggle.) So I guess it will depend on how I feel later on in the week. I've been looking through Ori's diary and I may even re-write it at some point, as I've mentioned something in one entry, and forgot to follow it through in the next one. (I don't like that kind of writing in books I read because it feels like the writer's not paid attention to what they are writing/or edited it properly when it was complete.)

    I also find that I go through spurts of where I'm inspired to write something and then there's nothing, so there's no point in trying to make myself write. Writing never works like that! (And it's why I would never be able to do an advanced creative writing or English lit course because I never put my best into something which I feel like its been forced.
     
  23. Space_Wolf

    Space_Wolf Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Mar 13, 2007
    I shall be attempting to do Nano, but it's been so long since I last worked on this that I think I'll need a beta reader to check consistency, but it is long, so I'm not expecting anyone to take it up, but I would be grateful for it.
     
  24. WarmNyota_SweetAyesha

    WarmNyota_SweetAyesha Chosen One star 7

    Registered:
    Aug 31, 2004
    Space_Wolf - I would be delighted to beta for you. [face_batting] Loong is right up with there with what I love. [face_laugh]
     
  25. Mira_Jade

    Mira_Jade The Fanfic Manager With The Cape star 5 Staff Member Manager

    Registered:
    Jun 29, 2004
    And Deb is the best beta to have in your corner, just saying. ;)

    As a reader, I am eagerly anticipating the words. Bring 'em on. [:D]