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A Hobbit's Dream: Bilbo in Beleriand

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What follows is a lesser known translation of Ælfwine, a children's book.




Bilbo in Beleriand
Recorded by Elemil of Eressea
Based on the dreams of Bilbo Baggins



I have sat by fires and listened to tales more numerous than pearls off the coast of Eldamar, and more various than the jewels of the Noldor. I witnessed these like songs that come to life before my eyes, and I revisit them still. But none of them are as dear to my amusement as the adventures I first experienced at Pengolodh's fire on the day that there were two tellers, one of them unheard except by me. The secret teller was Bilbo Baggins, of whom you have heard. For he was one of the very few mortals to dwell in these lands. And one who slipped into sleep during the telling of tales, and quietly spoke in dreams.

______________________________

Chapter I: Down the River



I
t was many ages ago now that Bilbo woke to the smell of bacon in a hole far bigger than his home at Bag End. This was not a hobbit hole, but the caves of a noble Elven-king, Finrod Felagund. If it was an unusual place to wake, it was an even more unusual day that lie ahead.

The hobbit jumped out of bed, and his hairy feet thudded against the cool tile floor. "Dear me! More vigour than I have known in years. Now... where is breakfast?" But Bilbo hesitated at the door. He could hear steps out in the passage, and wasn't sure of the morning customs for guests. Should he sit on the edge of his bed and wait for an invitation? Or walk through the tunnel pretending to belong, nodding greetings to any who pass him by? And if so, should he ask for breakfast, or patiently (and hungrily) wait for it to be offered?

"Oh but I am terribly hungry!" snapped the hobbit, but with that he took out his pipe, sat on the bed, and waited.


 
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Turgon

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It was not long ere the dull rumblings in the hobbit's belly were echoed by a gentle rapping at his door.

Then, before the old fellow could so much as pull the pipe from his mouth, the door sprung opened, and a tall, sharp-featured, (and it must be said, somewhat ponderous) elf sauntered into his room, bearing in his arms, much to Bilbo's suprise and lasting delight, an exquisite silver breakfast tray.

'Yes, yes...' murmured the elf, eyeing the hobbit with something akin to wonderment. 'My Lord sends his regards, and hopes you find this meal to your...' At this he peered, with a disapproving frown, at the contents of the tray. '...Satisfaction.' Bacon, eggs, fried tomatoes, hot-buttered toast, and more than a few (at least to Bilbo's eyes) delicious seed-cakes were heaped upon it. Obviously not to the bearer's taste. 'Any questions you may have in regards to your dwelling here in Nargothrond, you may of course, address to me, and I will answer then as best I can.'

With this the elf placed the tray upon a small table beside Bilbo's bed, and taking a few paces backwards, arched his body in a courtly bow. 'Rasgalen at your service.' he murmured, and then let out a delicate cough.

'Ah! Mister Baggins?' the elf muttered, arching an elegant eyebrow at the sight before him. 'There appears to be smoke coming from your mouth...'

 
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In a chamber deep in Nargothrond sat Finrod Felagund and he was troubeled .For news had came to him from his brother Orodreth ,who gaurded Tol Siron, that Morgoth was sending orcs to Hithlum, to catch the Noldor unawares.
A sigh came from the King as he wrote a letter adressed to Ciran and this is how it went...

Hail Cirdan lord of the falas and greatest of those who never saw the light of old.
I am troubled, for Ulmo set it in my heart that I should prepare a place of hidden strength for when the leguer of the Noldor is destroyed. The peace of old when you built your fare havens in the starlight, has gone and I fear for your people. Therefore I offer you the service of the sons of Finarfin to rebuild your cities.
Finrod of Narogthrond.

"Gelmir, Gwindor find some of my household to deliver this mesage, i recomend Gildor or some other Elf of mighty being. I will go to our guest and see that he is comfortable though by the amount of food I have had sent to him should be!"
Laughter sprang up from the two brothers, for they were untroubled, having not there Kings fear.
 

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A smile shone in Bilbo's wide eyes. Here was breakfast, here was beakfast! bacon and eggs by the smell of it, and yes, more than that by the looks! And delivered by an elf? Bilbo found himself flustered, but when he remembered his manners and stood to thank the elf, nothing escaped his mouth but smoke. He dearly wanted to show off one of his smoke rings, but thought better of it. Dislike of breakfast and pipeweed? Elves were a strange but wonderful people.

"Yes! This is excellent Rasgalen!" He managed. Bilbo thanked him with a bow and snuffed out his pipe, "I wonder where might I find a window to sit by? Is something expected of me? Is there ale? Or a porch? And if it isn't too much trouble, when can I meet King Felagund?" and there Bilbo stopped himself before he could ask about elvish song.

He wondered many other things too. Who was this elf? A High Elf by the looks of him, and there would be countless such elves in Nargothrond. There would be tales too, and elvish food. No wonder this fellow doesn't like my breakfast, thought Bilbo.

Wouldn't want the eggs to get cold, he remembered. He glanced at them to make sure they weren't broken, and looked back to Rasgalen as he sat down to eat.

It was shaping into a fine morning, and Bilbo looked forward to a walk in the warm Spring afternoon. If I get the chance today, he thought, and decided to save a couple seedcakes for the occasion.

 
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Ithrynluin

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Edrahir sat in his chamber, scribbling down the beginnings of a poem. It would be a song of the swan havens of Alqualondë, where he loved to walk among the Teleri and feast his eyes on the elaborate design of their white ships. He was fond of the sea, but fonder still of lakes, and rivers, and brooks.

He had not yet put down many lines, when there came a slight tapping on the door. He stood up reluctantly, as if awoken from a pleasant doze, slightly annoyed for being disturbed so, when he had intended this day to be one of solitude and reflection.

He did enjoy company and fellowship, as well as indulging in music and merry-making, but he longed for some self-imposed seclusion at times, to rest his mind from the chatter around him, and sift through the affairs of the past days. He would grow increasingly fretful if these moments of peace and quiet could not be obtained.

The door creaked open. There stood a pair of Elves from the King's household. He was more than acquainted with the two, for he would sometimes speak to them during meals, or assist them in scouting or hunting. They greeted one another, and then Edrahir spoke - courteously, yet sternly:

"What news, friends?"
 
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Gelmir and Gwindor exited the king's chamber bowing ecentrically. They traipsed along in high spirits feeling extremely jubilant as the war was going well.
"Who do you reckon the king had in mind when he said a high elf me perhaps" joked Gelmir with a high pitched voice.
"You wish my brother, I was thinking of Edrahil he's always in the lore hall poring over maps and poems as if they are his children he is also a good warrior so if trouble arises on the way to the havens he would slaughter a good 20 orcs on his own" retorted Gwindor in a low soft voice.

They turned left at the end of a stony corridor full with tapestries and paintings of superb standard some made and painted by King Felegund himself. Pushing hard against a stubborn wooden door they entered the lore hall, they gasped, each and every time they entered the massive hall Gelmir and Gwindor could still not get over the beauty of it.

Wooden pillars held the rocky roof up, they had on them extreme lifelike scenes of bloody battles and the hewing of orc after orc. Huge cabinets held in their arms scrolls and manuscripts ten fold the size of scrolls later found in Minas Tirith in the third age to which the hobbit Bilbo Baggins belonged to.
"Oh that's a surprise he's not in here" said Gelmir haughtily obviously annoyed at Edrahil's absence, "Let's go check his quarters then".
They exited the hall of lore, walked a few more steps and entered his chamber which in the matter of convenience for Edrahil had been made near to the hall of lore. Edrahil stood up and spoke in a lordly voice, "What news, friends".
The brothers bowed low and Gwindor answered,
"A letter of great importance from King Felegund concerning Lord Cirdan of the havens". Edrahil took the letter without thanks,
"Leave the matter to me friends, I will speek to the king soon, now if you will excuse me I am writing a poem". With that subtle goodbye the brothers exited the chamber.
 
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Rasgalen smiled at the hobbit in a kindly, if somewhat stiff manner, for if the truth be told, he was quite taken by the strange little creature. Very polite, he thought to himself, setting, as he did, great store in manners. Obviously a personage of some refinement.

'Indeed Mister Baggins.' Rasgalen murmured, his voice soft and lilting, though a little too high to be considered musical, at least by the standards of his own people. 'There are many terraces without the gates of Nargothrond where you may take your ease as you wish. Though perhaps you should know it is not the custom of our folk to take ale with breakfast.' A slight frown played across his forehead with this. 'And I believe the Lord Finrod intends to call on you personally ere long. It must be said though, that I am merely his butler, and I do not presume to guess my Lord's mind.'

There was something in the way that Rasgalen spoke that made Bilbo wonder whether the elf considered himself to be merely anything.

'Now then Mister Baggins.' Rasgalen began again. 'Do tuck in, there is no need to stand on ceremony with me.'

Here Bilbo stiffled a chuckle - that was almost like a dragon telling him not to be afraid.

'I believe the bacon to be especially delicious.'

 
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Bilbo wondered what the fellow did take with breakfast, but did not tell him that ale with it was not his custom either. Simply taking thought for my future he thought. (And by future he ment next meal.)

At the mention of terrace Bilbo began to wonder about Nargothrond's gardens. And what strange and wonderful flowers must grow in the area! He thought, and lovely song birds! And it must be said, he wondered about the marvelous caves themselves, though with less longing.

He also felt a touch regretful that he was without his best waistcoat for meeting the king. At least it has golden buttons, and anyway it will have to do thought the hobbit. Of all the elf-kings of old, he had been most fond of Finrod.

Bilbo thanked the butler, for he had been of great service even had the breakfast been less impressive, "and for that" he ended with another bow, "I put myself at your service."

This was of course, only politeness, for what need could an elven butler possibly have of a hobbit?

Now for breakfast!, and with a mouth full of bacon the hobbit nodded approval. Elvish bacon was no disapointment.


 

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As Finrod strode though the hall he wondererd what would happen in day's to come. Ever since he spoke with Nerwen ,who was called Galadriel by Celeborn her husband, he had been troubled nought of my relm shall enduer that a sonn should inherrit. Thosse words trobled him.
"My lord, Gelmir sends word that the lord Edrahir has agreed to take the message."
"Thank you Gildor but though Morgoth be fenced in the north it is many long miles to Eglarest where the falathrim dwell, and it is a long road for one. None can tell what the petty dwarves will do if they see one alone who dwells now in the caves of the Nargothrand. I will send a compainion for Edrahir for safety"
"Thankyou my lord"
Thus Felagund entered the chambers of Bilbo Baggins, the hobbit.
The room was bathed in sunshine and the light bounced off the cutlery in the hands of a hobbit, sitting in a bed that was miles to big for him eating a slice of bacon.
"Hail Bilbo the first of the hobbits to bless these halls with there presence." he spoke using the sindarian tounge as was his wont with strangers."
"Hail Finrod lord of the Noldi" Bilbo answerd in Quenya.
"Well" said the king," it is a great joy to find one who speaks the high tounge of the west, i trust you enjoyed your meal" he said whilst eying his (empty) plate.
"Yes it was perfect, but do you have any tea?"
"Ofcourse" he said " excuse me whilst I talk to Rasgalen"
 
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Ithrynluin

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After Gelmir and Gwindor had departed -- and they had not tarried long, as they perceived Edrahir had slid into one of his moods again and was best left alone -- he settled back into his chair, and opened the letter.

The writing was spidery and stately. Such exquisite letters could only be produced by one of the folk of the Noldor, the Deep Elves, or one who possessed great skill on their own, and has spent many a year in their tutelage.

The King spoke of a journey to Círdan the Shipwright, offering the aid of the smiths and the wood-crafty folk of Nargothrond to the Falathrim.

Felagund had always tended to his friendships with the Teleri, and indeed cherished and valued the amity between Círdan and his own folk above many others; for the Shipwright was wiser than many kings of old, and his foresight surpassed that of any other in Middle-earth, and the King had learned numerous things in his company.

Further on, the King proposed that not many need go, one or two at the most; for even though the lands of Beleriand enjoyed peace and the Dark Enemy was beleaguered behind the mountains of the North, his spies would still fare abroad at times in strange and secret guises, espying the ways of his enemies and laying bare their innermost thoughts.

Felagund bade Edrahir be the messenger, and Edrahir was pleased at once at the prospect of going South along mighty Sirion to the wild and furtive coasts at its mouth. He would enjoy this expedition, not only because he would get to gaze upon rivers and spend time beside the sea, but most of all because he would be left alone for many days, free to marvel to his heart's content at the various beasts and birds, and the numerous flowers and trees - the abundant wildlife of the generous southern climate.

He left his chambers to look for the King, leaving the ink bottle open on the table, his poem unfinished.

 
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"Rasgalen, there is need to go to the Falas to contact Cidran. Eldrahil has agreed to take the message, but I would feel better if someone went with ,him can you think of anyone who would like to go to the Falas"
The butler looked at the King "Sir if you wanted to contact Cirdan then there is no need to travel over the hills then across the unroaded plains. Sir, Cirdan has sent swift boats to the mouth of the Siron. One could follow the river till the bay of balar."
"Thank you Rasgalen, but who could go with them? There is some of the Teleri are here from Singollo and the Sindar love the sea prehaps one of them will acompany Eldrahil to Balar?"
From the floor of that room a squeeky voice came up,"There is need to go to Balar?"
 

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Bilbo marvelled at the high yet humble sight of Finrod, and for a long time after he wondered why he asked the king for some tea just then.

But now he spoke up.

The hobbit stood and in his most serious manner asked for the king's permission. "I couldn't help but hear that you are in need of someone to travel down the rivers and meet with elves at the Bay of Balar. I love elves and I have always wanted to visit the sea, and elven-ships. Perhaps if Rasgalen does not know of anyone, it could be me. Or maybe if he does know of someone, he would think that someon is me."

Bilbo did love all of those things, and even such a travelling hobbit as himself could hardly dream of a more beautiful walk in the Spring. But just the same, he had a mind to do this task for Finrod. If he loved the tales he heard regarding him, he loved Felagund ten times more upon knowing his presence.

The Elven-king carried about him an aura of warmth that invited openess and ease, and an air of kindess surpassing that of even Elrond if such is possible, and any whose heart is good couldn't help but love the elf. It was from the initial affect of this that Bilbo truly desired to fulfil this errand for the king. No doubt Felagund saw right into his heart on the matter, and there can be no doubt that he knew the hobbit's courage too, and all of that more to him of which Gandalf often spoke. For all the qualities Felagund had a share in, he was not lacking in wisdom. The Elves themselves held that he was the wisest of all the Noldor who returned in exile to Middle-earth. Bilbo was later fond of saying Greatest of all Kings that ever were in the world, when he spoke of Finarfin's eldest son.​
 
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Rasgalen looked at the hobbit "O the little one from across the mountains, I can not answer as you wish, for though i deem you have a stout heart I know nothing about yousave you favored breakfast. Though my heart says you should go. Excuse me my lord I have erands to atended to." Finrod looked at the elf wondering what to do.
"Erm... Sir" IT was bilbo braking the KIng out of his thoughts " Rasgalen seems to have answered both our questions, or neither."
"Both" said Finrod "Rasgalen has been with me since my farther left the march, his heart told him not to go thenn but he followed us anyway.".
"So I going to balar, thank you lord of caves."
 

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"Excellent!" Bilbo said. "When am I to depart?"

The hobbit was already wondering who Edrahir might be, and what he might take along with him on his journey.

And already images of elven-ships like great white majestic swans, and starlit havens with shimmering shores swam through his head, and his heart swelled with a love of adventure.
 
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A week later, and departere was near, all the preparations had been aranged, and tomorrow, the unlikely couple would set of down the river, Finrod, called a feast to send of the expedition, for most of the elves were deilighted in having a Hobbit to stay with them, and wished to send him off in such a way so that he would feel at home, they neecded not the slightly telepathic powers of the childern of Finarfin to know what this ment.
I was with great joy that the feast was made, With the adventures at the high table, the talk was merry.
 

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The man sat in the corner watching the party, he knew where That hobbit and the elf were going, he wondered if they would enjoy another companion but will wait till they begin to leave.
 

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