Life is What You Make It:
A poison is infecting the land around the Lonely Mountain.
Greenwood has been infected into Mirkwood and Dale’s farm lands can no longer fully support Dale, let alone the Dwarves of Erebor.
In hopes of easing the burden on the land, their eyes turn to the West, where their allies in the Blue Mountains have informed them of a peaceful and fertile land called the Shire.
Thrain sends his best representative, Balin, to the Shire to offer an alliance with the Hobbits that reside there, in hopes of opening a trade route between them.
However, the residents of the Shire are hesitant to offer such an alliance with the Dwarves, when Thráin offers a political marriage between his son, the Crown Prince Thorin Oakenshield, and one of the Shire’s choosing to be a proper representative of the Shire. They have only one question; would Thráin take offense if the Hobbit in question was not…perfect.
His response is ‘no’, and thus one Bilbo Baggins was sent to Erebor to be married to Heir Apparent Thorin Oakenshield.
But no one really expected Bilbo.