When Frodo first arrived,
he was incredibly withdrawn. Always he clung to Bilbo’s tunic, and more oft
than not, he would hide his face in his cousin’s leg. Bilbo was the only one
able to communicate with the faunt, always in hushed, soft tones.
Thorin understood the
trauma Frodo had suffered was great. Dutifully, he kept a distance from Frodo, lest
he create feelings of unease. Dwarves were known as terribly loud, from their
heavy footfalls, to their oft-raised voices, uproarious laughs, and boisterous
snoring. It was his noisiness, perhaps, that Bilbo complained about the most.
Thorin never took his husband’s quips to heart, but after Frodo arrived, the
Dwarf made sure to imitate Hobbit quietness. It was no easy feat, but one look
at the small, skittish child, and the necessity of the task was impossible to
Despite not speaking to Frodo
directly, Bilbo encouraged Thorin to interact as much as possible. He would
converse with his husband as usual, provide aid in the kitchen, sit in the
garden, read a book aloud every night, often accompanied by a deep song. Bilbo
said it would help acclimatize the fauntling to his Dwarvish housemate.
For the longest time, Thorin
was convinced all was for naught. Even as the weeks eked on, and Frodo began
opening up more – whispering to his cousin, travelling through Bag End on his
own, accompanying them on trips to the markets – he would not talk to Thorin. The
Dwarf would have thought Frodo ignoring him altogether, if it was not for the wide-eyed
stares the fauntling sent him.
Always Bilbo was there to
assuage the Dwarf’s self-doubt. Frodo was still healing, and it is quite a shock, you must admit, to suddenly live with a Dwarf!
he would say. Even if he hardly believed it, Thorin still endeavoured to
make the orphaned boy happy at Bag End; never would anything come before
“Very good, Frodo,”
Thorin murmured to the small Hobbit sitting on his knee. The child leaned
forward over the desk, tongue caught between his teeth as he concentrated. The
quill clenched in his hand shivered slightly with the effort to make each
Frodo suddenly flipped
the paper over, seconds before a voice called, “What’s this, then?”
jumping up in his seat and jostling the little faunt with the movement. The boy
just laughed, always finding amusement in moments such as these. Of course he
would, Thorin thought mulishly; he was a co-conspirator when it came to Hobbity
“Nothing!” Dwarf and
faunt called at once, both turning to Bilbo with wide, blue eyes. Bilbo crossed
his arms, chin tilting down and brows lifting up in a look of total disbelief.
Something colliding with the back of Thorin’s head had the King whipping around, Orcrist drawn. Another attack came immediately, and before the battle-hardened warrior even had a chance to dodge the blow, he found himself with a face full of cold, hard wetness. Spluttering, the King wiped his eyes free, gloved hand coming away covered in snow.
“What in Mahal’s name?” he growled, glaring out into the vast snow-covered field.
A giggle came from his right. Spinning, the King turned just in time to see a small figure appear out of nowhere before running down field. The tiny frame gave away the creature instantly.
“Frodo!” Thorin yelled, running after his Hobbit ward. “We must get inside –”
The King stopped short as he was pelted with three balls of hard, clumped snow.
“Run, Frodo, run!” The Consort’s cry was unmistakable, golden curls popping up behind a snowy fortress before ducking down. Frodo ran as fast as his little legs could take him, and Thorin watched, flabbergasted, as he dove behind the stronghold with his elder cousin.