Kili's Journal, 1st Entry (Translated from Dwarven Runes)
I am writing this as the effects of the Yule celebration are wearing off. Ori decided that he would give me a journal as a Yule gift. I would have preferred something more practical but Balin and my mother advised me that if I am to be of help to Fili when he inherits the city from Uncle Thorin that I must learn to keep good records. I thought that was Ori's job? I am no scribe! Still, I suppose this journal is not as bad as the gifts that Ori's mother gave to all the dwarves of Uncle Thorin's inner circle. She gave everyone a knitted scarf. The colour of mine, blue, is not too bad, but the ones she gave to some of the other dwarves are hideous.
We had an extra guest, this year, a Hobbit woman we had rescued some weeks before. At the beginning of the month which hobbits call Foreyule, we had received reports of an orc pack that was causing trouble in the area, so Uncle Thorin organised a group of us to investigate. The group consisted of Uncle Thorin, Bifur, Bofur, Bombur, Fili and myself. Mother was not pleased about Fili and I accompanying the group, but the other dwarves who could have gone had business elsewhere and were late coming home. Uncle Thorin said that Fili and I needed to gain some experience dealing with orcs and overruled Mother's objections to us going. Gimli had been keen to go, but his mother refused him permission to go. Balin stayed behind to deal with the business that Uncle Thorin had broken off to deal with the orcs.
We had been tracking the orc pack for five days when we came upon the hobbit farm that they had raided. The farm was known to the dwarves, as we had traded with them in the past, so it was with great sadness and anger to discover what had happened. We found the bodies of two of the hobbits, both men, one middle aged, the other young, by a dry-stone wall with a dead pig nearby. They had attempted to defend themselves, but failed. How can you hope to fight off orcs and wargs with nothing but a walling hammer, a crowbar and a spade to fight them off with? Still, I have to admire their bravery.
We found another hobbit man, around the same age as the young hobbit lying near a burnt out stable. The horse must have bolted, for we found no sign of a dead horse and there were hoof prints leading away from the stable.
By the farmhouse, a structure built in the traditional hobbit style with round doors and windows, but was not built into the hillside, we found the body of a middle aged hobbit woman.
"We're too late," Uncle Thorin said, his voice heavy with regret.
"They had a wee lassie with them," said Bofur.
"Spread out and look. She could live still," said Uncle Thorin.
Fili and I found the horse in the field near the patch of woodland. We were reluctant to go among the trees, especially as we had no idea if the orc pack was still in the area. I had my bow ready, just in case. Fili was able to coax the horse into moving. The horse was skittish and difficult to handle, but calmed down somewhat when we brought it to where we had left the ponies.
"Find anything?" Uncle Thorin asked.
"Only the horse," Fili replied.
Bofur joined us and said, "It looks like the orcs either killed or took all the animals. I found no sign of the hobbit lass."
Bifur and Bombur had not had any luck either.
"We must press on if we hope to rescue her," Uncle Thorin said.
It didn't look like anything was alive on the farm until we heard the barking of a dog. It came running up to us. I still had my bow ready and almost shot it on instinct but Fili managed to stop me. The dog led us to the hobbit lass we had been searching for. I was the first to arrive and knelt down in the snow beside her. I removed my glove and brushed the long red hair from her face. The dog immediately curled itself around her. To begin with, I thought she was dead, but I left her breath on my hand.
"Is she alive?" my uncle asked.
"She lives," I said. I did not appear that she had suffered any injury and I guessed that she had lost consciousness due to the freezing weather.
"Fili, Kili, you take her back to your mother," Uncle Thorin said. "The rest of us will deal with the orcs."
"And take the 'osse with thee," said Bofur.
With Fili's help, we lifted her on to my pony and pulled myself up behind her. She was deathly cold and I am sure that had it not been for the dog and our timely arrival that the hobbit lass would soon have died. I wrapped my coat around her as best I could and waited for Fili to finish tethering the horse to his pony, the hobbit's dog at my side.