TIME-SCALE: The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings
AGE: 100 (Approx.)
YEAR OF BIRTH: Third Age: 2841
PLACE OF BIRTH: Hultvis, a village near Rhosgobel
OCCUPATION: Scholar, Scientist, Explorer
MARITAL STATUS: Engaged
PARENTS: Father - Hredimar (deceased) Mother - Svarri (deceased)
SIBLINGS: Brothers - Fafnir (deceased) Regin (deceased) Ottr (deceased) Sister: Lofnheid
SIGNIFICANT OTHER: Kili
WEAPON(S) OF CHOICE: Sword (Belonged to her mother), is interested in learning the bow.
|HAIR COLOUR:||Long, black hair|
She does not really care about the appearance of her hair and only styles it for practical purposes, or if her mother makes her. Her apathy is largely due to being unaware of the social conventions of her people regarding the importance and social niceties of hair-braiding, having grown up in a settlement far from her own kind other than her immediate family. Her mother has tried to instill it in her, but she sees little reason to adhere to it not being around other dwarves. In some ways, this is liberating, but in other ways it will put her at a disadvantage if/when she ever meets other dwarves. How will they see her when she actually meets them?
She prefers to wear practical clothing and hates anything that's frilly and extravagant. She has a tendency to avoid wearing bright colours such as yellows and pinks, which she despises. She usually wears traveling clothes and tries to keep the braids in her hair simple, if she wears them in her hair at all. Ever since she was old enough to begin growing a beard (Tolkien's female dwarves have beards), she has shaven it off because she got tired of humans mistaking her for a male dwarf.
She has a curious nature and likes to explore. (Perhaps even more so because other dwarves tell her she shouldn't.) Her curious nature gives her a desire to want to understand how the world works. She wants to learn about the world and to do this she would like to travel to Rivendell and Gondor, as she has heard that these places are good places of learning. She would like to learn about the history of Middle-earth, and attempt to learn different languages if she can, espeaically those of the elves. She would like to learn more about her mother's craft of healing. She is loyal to her friends and family.
Unlike a lot of dwarves, she has an interest in nature, though still somewhat retains a distrust of trees and can be friendly to elves if they are not discourteous to her. However, her experiences with elves has left her weary of them.
Like many dwarves she is very stubborn and strong-willed, something that can at times be a benefit to her - this trait is very useful in the pursuit of her goals as it means that she will not give up easily. However, as much as it can be a good trait, it can also get her into trouble and lead her to be argumentative and grumpy. Being a dwarrowdam sometimes means people try to be overprotective of her which she hates. She also dislikes it if someone implies that she is incapable of doing a task. Her curious nature can occasionally land her in trouble if she tries to explore dangerous areas. Life experiences have made her somewhat independent and self-reliant, and although useful in some situations, these traits make her loath to ask for help, or cause her to take on more than she can.
After losing most of her family, her biggest fear is living alone, or having to deal with loneliness. It scares her that she may never live with other dwarves, or find others of her kind. Unlike most dwarves who have a love - obsession with gold and gems, Lyndheid hates them because they were the cause of the loss of her family. Instead, the 'gold-sickness' in her has been replaced by and obsession for knowledge and wander-lust. To relieve her loneliness, she has fostered a love of nature, and of animals espeaically.
Other Important Information:
Life in Hultvis
Lyndheid is the oldest daughter and fourth child of Hredimar the blacksmith and Svarri the healer. She was born in the year 2841 of the Third Age - a birth that was unusual in some respects since dwarves rarely have more than three children. She is proceeded by three brothers - Regin, the eldest, who was born in TA: 2821, Fafnir, who was born in TA: 2831 and Ottr, the youngest brother, who was born in TA: 2836. In TA: 2851, ten years after her birth, her sister, Lofnheid was born.
Hreidmar gained his skills as a blacksmith from his often uncaring uncle who took him and his sister under his wing after their parents were killed in the Sack of Erebor in TA: 2770, and fought in the War with Orcs between TA: 2793-2799 where he first met the dwarrowdam who would be his wife. Svarri, before meeting Hreidmar had been a healer and minor scholar, and a trainer of sheepdogs. Hreidmar eventually settled in the Woodsman Village near Rhosogobel because he was ashamed of the loss of Lord Fundin and Prince Frerin at the Battle of Azanulbizar. How they had settled there had been unplanned, because Hreidmar's goal had been to take his wife to live in the Iron Hills, but an incident requiring Svarri's skills near the place of Radagast the Brown's home caused them to stay.
As a young dwarfling, Lyndheid became fascinated with the woods that surrounded their home and because of Ottr, who also encouraged her, she spent a lot of time exploring it - (at least the places where her parents would allow her to go in the company of one or more of her brothers, or her father.) She gained a fondness of animals in part due to those explorations and because of the sheepdogs her mother kept and trained. Though it may appear superficially that Lyndheid's fascination with the forest and animals is undwarf-like, she still possesses the desire to obtain, collect and hoard that all dwarves have, only in her case the object of that isn't gold, mithril and gems - it is knowledge.
Unfortunately, books were hard to come by in the village, so book learning was frustratingly restrictive to the young dwarrowdam, so she compromised by owning her skills to learn by other means, including close observation of her surroundings and obtaining the skills to observe the habits of wild animals without revealing her presence and frightening them. Her mother's craft of healing meant that she learnt a lot about the plants of the forest. The young dwarrowdam knew in her heart that she would never learn everything she wanted to learn if she stayed in that village and a yearning to travel to other lands in pursuit of knowledge began to grow in her heart. As books were scarce, Lyndheid began to consider them to be the most precious thing a dwarf could possess.
Due to the lack of books to learn from, Lyndheid only ever learned to read and write in one language, Khuzdul, the secret language of her own people that was very rarely taught to non-dwarves. This was in part due to the fact that her parents were keen to preserve their dwarvern heritage as they were the only dwarves living in the village, and were concerned that at least two of them, (Lyndheid herself, and Ottr), were showing signs of abandoning it with their fascination of the woods.
One problem with being a dwarrowdam is that they are so few in number that their families tend to be a little over protective of them. Svarri, though not wanting to stifle her eldest daughter's ambitions, fretted over her adventurous nature and tendency to wander, and attempted to forbid her sons from encouraging it. Regin, the dutiful and obedient one, tended to keep to his mother's wishes and did his best to protect her. Fafnir was the same, but not as diligent in his approach, looking upon it as a chore. Ottr was more sympathetic to his sister's desires and being the youngest of the brothers, was the one more inclined to be reckless. Of her three brothers, Ottr was the one she was closet to and both hoped that when Lyndheid came of age, they would have permission to travel to Ered Luin, Rivendell, the Iron Hills and anywhere else that took their fancy.
Her father was just as concerned about her landing in trouble as Svarri was, but he had a different perspective on matters, seeing as how his sister became a warrior. He knew the stubbornness, determination and strong will that all dwarves possessed were no less in a dwarf just because of their gender and though he would have preferred her safe, he knew that any attempt at controlling her wouldn't work. In addition, their immediate environment exerted its own influence. The forest was not a safe place to live - there were orcs and goblins that prowled the woods, as well as the wild wargs. Even some of the Woodsmen, who were mainly nomadic in their life style, could not be trusted entirely, and the elves weren't always known for having a welcoming disposition when they were encountered. There were, disturbingly, rumours of a necromancer and great spiders deep in the woods. The wizard Radagast kept the worst of these threats at bay, but the dangers were increasing year on year and the blacksmith knew that there would come a time when he would have to move his family west. These concerns meant that he was not adverse to Lyndheid learning how to defend herself He did not want her to go looking for trouble, but he felt that she should be able to competently deal with it if such trouble should come looking for her, and so he allowed his sons to teach her fighting skills and what they couldn't teach her, he would. However, there were still gaps in the lass's education as Hredimar himself was only an expert in certain techniques and there were no other dwarves to teach her.
Though life was not always easy in the village, Lyndheid was happy in her days living with her family and she looked forward to the celebrations that her family kept to - with Durin's Day being the most important of these. Because of their circumstances being away from other dwarves, these were nothing like the vast ones that her father had known as a dwarfling in Erebor and which were now just a vague memory, made in part grander by their fading. Lyndheid also loved to watch her father work the forge, and he even allowed her to make simple things when he thought that she was strong enough to wield the hammer, though she had a long way to go to attain her father's skill, or even that of Regin, the brother who seemed to take to it more readily than the others.
Ottr's Death and the Weregild
One day, in the year 2900 of the Third Age, the first disaster that was to befall her family struck, and began the sundering of her world. Ottr, in addition to his love for exploring the woods, was also a keen fishermen and often fished, a task that was important in feeding the family of dwarves when they failed to hunt successfully. One day, Ottr had gone out on his usual fishing trip, (it was a day when Lyndheid had not accompanied him because she had things to do at home,) he failed to return home at his usual time in the evening. This was not worrying at first - it was most likely that he had been delayed and would arrive in due time. The evening meal was eaten, the night turned to darkness and still he had not returned. By this time, her parents had begun to worry, especially since there had been reports of troubles recently - people failing to return home, the odd robbery by unsavory men as the victim traveled between settlements - stories that Hredimar had been told when customers had sought his services, or tales Svarri had been told by the families of the patient when she visited the ill and treated the injured. The family spent an anxious night worrying about Ottr's fate, which increasingly looked grimmer as the night drew on and the light returned to the world. At dawn, Hredimar, Fafnir and Regin set out with the most reliable of Svarri's sheepdogs trained to find the lost to endeavour what had befallen him. Svarri and her daughters stayed home at home in case Ottr turned up on his own and needed assistance.
That day was one of the most challenging of the young dwarrowdam's life as she waited with her mother and sister for her father's and brothers' return, one that dragged on so that it seemed like a year passed in one day. It was a sad home coming for her father and brothers, as they had found Ottr's body by the river, a strange looking arrow piercing his chest. Her father and Fafnir were both consumed by a cold rage at the perpetrator of the deed, whomever they were, and vowed vengeance. Regin's reaction was more practical - he just wanted to care for his sisters and mother over the following days as they came to terms with the loss. This was the first time in her life that Lyndheid had encountered death in her family, and for it to be her favourite brother was just inconsolable for her. Fafnir was all for going out and hunting down Ottr's murderer immediately, but after his initial rage, at the death of his youngest son, Hredimar saw that, for the moment, there were more important things to do - a son needed to be buried, iron needed to be shaped at the forge, food needed to be gathered and medicines needed to be made. Vengeance, if indeed it could be obtained, would have to come later. And so, that was what they did. One morning, just as dawn was breaking and the moon setting below the horizon, they buried Ottr on a misty morn, in one of his favourite groves, to be with his beloved trees for all time. Over the coming days, the realization sank in slowly that her dreams of traveling beyond her home would come to nought, now that Ottr was gone, for she had no one to accompany her. Fafnir, determined to find Ottr's killer, hunted the woods for them, leaving Regin to do the tasks that he normally did around their home.
Late one misty evening, about a week after Ottr's burial in the grove, Hredimar was finishing up in the forge when a stranger approached. The stranger, all dressed in black, had an ill look about him, and an air of menace that raised the dwarf's hackles. Lyndheid and Lofnheid, who were in the garden gathering herbs for their mother, were sent inside and the smith indicated to Regin that he wanted him to accompany him in confronting the stranger. Carrying his blacksmith's hammer, Hredimar approached the stranger. Fafnir, on his (fruitless) hunt for Ottr's killer was absent.
"I bring tidings, good dwarf," the sinister stranger in black said to the blacksmith. Though fair his words, his voice was foul and malevolent. "Aye, and what tidings are they?" Hredimar asked. By this time, Svarri had heard of the stranger's presence and she stood just outside the doorway of their cottage, flanked by a pair of sheepdogs who growled softly at the stranger. Behind her, Lyndheid stood, and she attempted to get past her mother, who stopped her firmly. The young dwarrowdam had armed herself with a sweeping broom, not that it was much use as a weapon - Lyndheid just brandished it to give herself courage.
"You have experienced a recent loss, have you not? My master sends his condolences, and a weregild."
Hredimar's eyes darkened in anger, and he stepped closer to the stranger, intending to strike him with his smithing hammer. As he moved closer, he noticed that in the cowl of the stranger's hood where the face should have been there was nothing and that sent a chill down the dwarf's spine and involuntary, he dropped his hammer as his anger turned to the most intense fear he'd ever felt in his life. From inside his cloak, the stranger produced a large black sack bulging with red gold, which he placed on the ground. Too intimidated to move, Hredimar just stood and watched as the stranger beckoned him to hold out his hand. Trembling, the dwarf smith did so, compelled by fear to obey. The stranger dropped a ring into his outstretched hand and said, in his harsh voice. "Justice is done, dwarf. The debt is paid." The stranger disappeared into the mist.
The Corrupting Influance of the Lesser Ring
Nothing significant happened for a few weeks, but gradually a shadow fell over the family. Hredimar had a distant memory of wealth from his childhood and the ring and the red gold were the first real precious things that he'd beheld since the sack of Erebor. All dwarves have an instinct to collect, covet and hoard precious things, even those who had never beheld riches in their life as a result it had a lure for them to differing degrees. As the head of the household, Hredimar was the one to wear and keep the ring near and soon he became obsessed with it. A fear grew in his heart that it would be stolen or lost and it became a distraction to his work. Before this, the dwarf had always been a diligent worker, working the forge, providing for his wife and family but now idleness set in as all of his thoughts turned to the ring. As for the effect on the rest of her family, the worst were in her brothers. The ring seemed to bring out the worst of their personality traits. Fafnir was always angry and cruel. Regin twisted the sense of honour that he had so the protective nature he possessed became a bullying and controlling one.
To begin with, Svarri thought that the change in their behaviour was down to grief over the loss of Ottr. People often loose themselves for a while when they have experienced a loss or trauma in their life and eventually they come back to themselves, but not so this time.
Soon, business began to dwindle because Hredimar's work declined. Even though Regin did his best to take up the slack, his work was not as good as his father's because he didn't have as much experience. In addition, the attitude of the brothers would scare customers away and they'd take their business elsewhere or struggle on as best they could with what they had. Svarri had to spend the gold to get what they needed for their survival and that only made Hredimar's disposition worse.
Compensation indeed! The weregild was tearing Lyndheid's family apart.
Rumours spread about the gold, and folk with a greedy nature and lack of honour convinced themselves that they had more of it - they were dwarves, after all! And dwarves usually have other riches like silver and precious gems, perhaps even Mithril, but the truth was the gold was dwindling and part of Hredimar's anger towards Svarri was that most of it was gone. Soon the family had to deal with bandits trying to steal what was left. It was ill advised an action because Fafnir had someone he could really take his anger out upon (although unpleasant to his family, there had always been some restraint, something that stopped him from going too far) and killing became his way.
Svarri worried with what was happening to her family, sent Lyndheid and Lofnheid to seek help from the wizard Radagast who lived in a house near Rhosgabel, whom, in many ways, was the unofficial guardian and peacemaker for the woodsmen. As they went without the protection of their father and brothers, they took the sheepdogs with them (really, Svarri had been concerned for their safety too and wanted them out of the way.) Unfortunately, when they arrived at Radagast's home, they discovered that he wasn't there and they were forced to wait for him for several days. Lyndheid eventually got tired of waiting and went back home only to discover that a tragedy had occurred in her absence. Her parents and brothers were dead.
It was while she was in the ruins of her home, pondering on what to do that the wizard and her sister arrived. Radagast, being a wizard, was familiar with ringlore and advised her to take the ring to Rivendel where it could be studied. This was what set Lyndheid off on her adventuring life and she made the journey to Rivendell after all.
Lyndheid's Time in Rivendell
Lyndheid set out for Rivendell, alone aside from her favourite of the sheepdogs. She had wanted him to stay behind with Lofnheid and the rest of the dogs (as she was going to stay with Radagast for a while until she felt that she could cope on her own), but he wouldn't have it. He trottered along beside her and wouldn't leave her side no matter how many times she told him to stay behind. The journey was arduous and she tried to stay away from people as much as she could - there was something off about the ring as her moods and temper were worse now that she carried it and it went beyond grief and loss. She didn't want it getting into the hands of someone else because she suspected that the misery that had befallen her family would just transfer to others, and continue to cause torment and suffering. She drew on her natural dwarvish stubbornness and endurance to get her through the journey. The most difficult part of the journey was scaling the Misty Mountains because of the cold and the goblins that resided there, but eventually she came to the Valley of Imladris. She did not get much of a warm welcome at first, in part because of the gulf that had grown between the dwarves and the elves, but it was not as bad a welcome as she would have got in Thranduil's domain, or Lothlorien, where it was unlikely that she would have been allowed to pass into the wood. It was there that ring's secrets were revealed - it was one of the lesser rings of power, one of many that had been forged by the elves of Eregion in the Second Age as they experimented with creating rings before the Rings of Power were forged. It was clear that the ring's power had been corrupted and it was determined that it would be best destroyed.
With her task done, Lyndheid could have chosen to return home to Lofnheid, but her heart was still sick with grief and there was much in Rivendell that attracted her, least of all the feeling of peace that seemed to come over her being in the Valley. She became enamoured with the library in Elrond's house and spent a long time there browsing the shelves and learning. Much of it was frustrating to her because the books were in languages that she couldn't read - the elvish languages of Quenya and Sindarin and the mannish language of Westron. Westron she knew how to speak, because it had been taught to her so she could talk to the woodsmen, but reading it was another matter. The written form of the languages were particularly frustrating because of the unfamiliar scripts. Luckily, she found quite a large selection of books in Khuzdul (which surprised her, since dwarves rarely taught their language to other races) and was happy for a time reading those. Her negative feelings began to subside and she began to feel more like herself, but the passage of time, that seemed to pass unnoticed even though she felt at the back of her mind that she must go home to her sister.
It was in Rivendell that she first met members of the Dunedain race of Men, the descendants of the mythological (to her) land of Numenor and she learned some of their history. She learned that many of them longed to find Meneltarma, the sacred mountain of Numenor (and all that was believed to be left of the lost island), and talk of this stirred her wanderlust. Ten years after arriving in Rivendell, she set out on an expedition with a group of them to find the lost island, and spent the next twenty years sailing around the Bay of Belfalas, Havens of Umbar and exploring the New Lands over the western sea.
Erebor, Reunion with Lofnheid and Meeting Kili
There comes a time when even the most enthusiastic adventurer gets tired of the traveling life and decides it is time to go home. In early spring of 2941 of the Third Age (the same year in which the Battle of the Five Armies occur), Lyndheid says farewell to the nomadic life and leaves the coast for Rivendell with the journals of her experiences on the sea and in the New Lands. It takes her a number of months to arrive in Rivendell that summer and after her arrival, she learns of the quest to regain Erebor. Unfortunately, she arrives too late to actually meet Thorin and the company but it does inspire her curiosity. She remembers the stories of old told by her parents of Erebor and the dwarves of Durin's line and she realises that she is anxious to meet them, or at least, other dwarves. She met few dwarves in her own travels for there were none in the New Lands and of the few that she had met from the south and east she found that most of them were villainous - dwarves who had been corrupted by a hard life under the Black Numenoreans and the legacy of Sauron or if not villains, a shell of what they should be. She also misses Lofnheid and decides it is time to find her.
Leaving most of her journals in Rivendell to be picked up later, she follows behind the company (though she is a week or two late). On her travels, she meets the fearsome Beorn and goes home to find Lofnheid. Lofnheid is missing and she decides that she has no choice but to press on. Perhaps it is her own fault for leaving things for so long. Anything could have happened to Lofnheid in her absence. Instead of going through Mirkwood, she follows the Anduin and skirts the southern edge of the forest through the Brown Lands and heads north along the edge once she reaches the other side.
Lyndheid finally arrives at Erebor after the Battle of the Five Armies have taken place and then she has the joyful reunion with her sister (and her aunt, whom she'd forgotten about.) She meets and stays with Balin for a few months to learn about her people. It is a steep learning curve for her because she realises then that there is much about her people that she was ignorant of, and that her life in Hultvis and her subsequent traveling had made her (in the eyes of her people, anyway) very undwarf-like. It is around this time that she meets Ori and is convinced for a time that perhaps he is her One. Her conflicts with dwarf tradition and Ori cause her to leave Erebor for a while - she goes back to Rivendell to collect the journals that she left behind, rescues an orphaned family of foxes in Mirkwood (her regard for animals makes Beorn a friend, even though usually he doesn't like dwarves). At some point in her journey from Erebor, she is unsure if she wants to go back but she misses her sister and wants to get to know her aunt better. They are the only family she has now and she has spent too many years alone so she goes back. Upon her return, she meets Kili, whom she had not met before as he had been recovering from the battle (she had really only stayed in Erebor from December to March and had been preoccupied with meeting her family and Balin's lessons in dwarf etiquette. They get to know each other and begin to court.