After the events of Sunstead, our fellowship disbanded for the winter and I returned to Erebor and my Mair. I arrived and reported to King Dain of the Barrow Wight ’s evil attempt to turn the Helm of Peace into the Helm of Death. Our fellowship thwarted his attempt and I had destroyed the Helm of Death with a single blow. Unfortunate but necessary to save Ceowyn.
I also reported what we had learned from Ashe and that Sauron had revealed himself once again to the world. The King could not believe that Sauron had returned and yet he knew my words to be true. I was an elf-friend and the ambassador. The elves would not lie about such an evil and Mair pointed out that there was nothing to gain from this. Our darkest fears are before us. I returned to Mair that evening and she revealed to me that we were with child. I was shocked at first and then I was more determined than ever to wipe this evil from the world so that my Mair and my child would be protected from the shadow of Mordor. I and our fellowship will slay this evil from this world.
I embarked on a mission to improve my armor so that I could protect myself in battle. My winter was spent with Duaak the master armorer and I learned to craft dwarven hauberk mail using the old ways. I spent hours and hours learning everything that I could and a fierceness welled up inside me to work the metals with my fire making skills. I am now ready to do battle. I spent much time with the masters and they were gracious in their passing of knowledge to me over drinks late into the evenings. Good thing I am a prince as the bar tab was always excessive.
Close to the end of winter, I was summoned to meet Devlin and Fekka, two dwarves from Eriador. They traveled from the West and they reported that all are afraid to travel through the Trollshaws as Mormog is terrorizing the surrounding lands. They traveled across the Anduin Vale and came upon the Astor Vale. It seems that our old friend Petra Dribblecup learned of their passing and sought them out.
Petra asked these dwarves to seek me out in Erebor as her son was under arrest for the murder of his step-father. We were to arrive by mid-summer or else her son would be put to death. I assured the dwarves that I would attend to the matter and I sent ravens to the Whiskey Drinking Bear fellowship. I also encouraged the dwarves to develop new trading partners. I gave them my contacts in Laketown with Bombur and I also asked that they engage in trade at my new trading post in Sunstead.
When my friends arrived in Erebor, Loreth informed me of her adventures back at her homeland and that the evil growing there would need magical weapons to overcome their threat. I went to King Dain and asked about gaining access to magical weapons to fight this evil. He stated that Frar the Beardless was also interested in such things and he would not recommend my journeying in Frar’s path. We may need to seek out Gandalf or Saruman.
If there are no other options, then we may need head to the Mountains of the Grey Delve against the warnings of King Dain. I reached back out to Devlin and Fekka and asked that they make trade with Frar. This will be an option left open to us. I sent word to Thranduil to allow them to enter the realm of Mirkwood to establish trade and later they may use this as a potential link to Frar. We must be careful as Frar may still be mad about anyone working with elves. My hope is that he would welcome mining tools as I have offered my aide to him in the past. We do know through old lore that the Grey Delve is warded with traps both cunning and lethal. This will not be an easy path to follow.
I also learned more about our new party member, Grimbow. His bravado in Sunstead has already reached those within his homeland. He has been summoned by the Horse Lord back to Rohan when opportunity arises. This is good news and we must do what we can to get Grimsboy back as soon as possible. It will be good to visit this new land of horses, even though horses do not take a liking to this goat loving dwarf.
I was uncertain of Mair’s response to my needing to leave again with the fellowship. I asked Loreth to reach out to her and break the news. Honestly, I was too much the coward to disappoint my Mair. I can’t bare to see her saddened by my words. Instead I sought out Loreth and hoped that Mair would be entertained by the chance to speak with Loreth about her brother Thorin. We may yet see our dwarven ways change ever more. Maybe a match with a human woman and a prince of dwarfs would bring a new bond beyond our peoples. I went back to Mair that night and we spent one more passionate night together. Fortunately, she was thankful for me to not be around her while she carries the baby to term. I must not fail in my effort to throw down this evil.
Our journey to Astor Vale was long and mostly uneventful. We traveled through Mirkwood and Elabrimborn sang elven riding songs to keep our spirits raised. We also went past the foothills of the Grey Delve and decided that it was best to continue to the vale . We reached the outskirts of the vale and noted that there were several areas cleared of forest. We entered a lumber camp nearby and made our way into one of the small inns. Our greeting by these people were not hospitable. They wanted us to leave immediately and really didn’t like the elf in our party, as per usual. Elabrimborn never ceases to amaze me on how the people of Middle Earth do not take kindly to him. If they only knew what I know to be true of his goodness.
These lumbermen were mostly thieves and cutthroats but we needed shelter and we wanted to see if we could learn of the happenings in this area near Petra’s home. We tried to charm them and could only find common ground in our loathing of goblins who had made raids on the area. These were not good people and there was a bitterness growing in the pit of my stomach. They sided with that slaver Viglund who keeps encroaching on the homestead of the Beornings. We learned that they had heard of Petra and her son. They said that the son believed an owl women had killed his step-father, Bairn. A pretty incredulous story. Old lore does tell us of owl beings that were often used as body guards to sacred places.
We were also told that Viglar, the son of Viglund, is in charge of this region and they confirmed that he is waiting on our arrival to pass judgement and execute the boy. They said he has a goblin sidekick called Savigga. Viglar has a longhouse in northern Mirkwood. We purchased whiskey for this riffraff and I kept a wary eye out on them. Only Elabrimborn drank heavily and he seemed enchanted by a girl named Umbretta. They danced and sang all night before retiring for the evening together. As fate would happen, Elabrimborn ended up tied up to a bed post and left abandoned. As luck would have it, he was found by Grimwaldo in the morning. Elves really can’t hold their liquor.
Our new friends sent along a scout to ride with us to Petra’s home. We arrived without incident and met Petra with a warm embrace. She is a sweetheart and she was glad to see all of us. We shared wine and it was a good reunion under the circumstances. After a short time, Viglar and his sidekick burst into the home and stated that the trial would start in the morning and departed as quickly as he had come. We hastened to the jail to speak with Petra’s son. On the way, Petra told us of what she knew. Her husband, son and her son’s friend, Walden, traveled to the old Serpent’s Path. They were seeking gem stones that are known to have fallen from the old statues that lined the path.
It took a bit of doing but the boy finally told us the truth of the story. There had been an owl woman who had shot his step-father. This was after Walden had disappeared for a time. Walden had seen the truth as well but he did not want others to think that he was lying as well. We left the boy and sought out Walden. With much effort we were able to get Walden to speak the truth. He was reluctant as his family as well as himself was being treated well by Viglar. We must now wait for the trial in the morning and hope that Walden speaks the truth. unfortunately, Savigga overheard our plans and we had to stop him. Elabrimborn used his magic and we subdued him. We shall see what awaits us in the morning.