Disclaimer: The Lord of the Rings belongs to The J.R.R. Tolkien Estate Limited. This is nonprofit fan fiction. No copyright infringement intended. No disrespect intended.

Notes: This is a humorous version of the journey of the Fellowship. The spoof includes shameless toying with the characters, suspicious ambiguity and intentional mistakes regarding the world of Tolkien and the Mines of Moria. Includes also random abuse of English. Based mostly on the movieverse.

In the Mines of Moria

by Salysha

"Very well," sighed Boromir heavily. "It is against my consent, but if everyone in the Company wishes so, I will agree to it."

"What does the Ring-bearer, the Lord of the Ring, say?"

"Fool of a Took! Do not speak such things."

"I say we do it."

And so the decision to enter the Mines of Moria was made.

The way to Moria was full of perils. Their attempt to enter was greeted with open tentacles, as the Watcher in the Lake tried to eat the Ring-bearer, and Gandalf found himself missing the entrance. Muttering to himself, he went on knocking at the stone wall inch by inch and thus tormenting Legolas, who was forced to listen for any changes in the sound by pressing his ear against the wall. By night-time, Gandalf had sweet-talked the door to appear, eventually, he pried it open by following the instructions engraved on the dwarf-door in Elvish.

Finding the right way inside Moria was not as easy as expected. Gandalf and Gimli led the way, guided by Gandalf's glimmering staff. Gandalf's memory and Gimli's sense of direction ensured that the journey continued slowly, and they were forced to spend the following night in a shabby room, where most of the floor was missing. Gimli told them the premises were an old guest room and made satisfied remarks on the luxury of the accommodation. The others did not reply as they busied themselves with kicking rats into the hole in the ground.

After a not-so-peaceful night, the journey continued. Eventually, they made it to a ruined stone room. Gimli seemed to recognize the room: he went ballistic and rushed inside with a cry. The others followed him and reached a tomb structure before which Gimli had kneeled as a gesture of respect. Gandalf quickly spotted a great thick tome of a book and went to leaf it through.

"This appears to be the book of Balin, Lord of Moria," Gandalf noted with a nod of his head.

Gimli was immediately at his side, trying to see the contents of the book. "Let me see."

"This appears to have been written in an ancient tongue."

"Let me see!" Gimli demanded, but failed in his attempt to confiscate the book.

"It may take a while to interpret this mystic dwarven language, Gimli son of Glóin. I suggest you be patient."

At this point, Gimli the Dwarf was fuming in frustration, and his axe had started to rise. Help came from the most unlikely creature imaginable: Legolas the Elf rushed over to settle the argument. "Gandalf, maybe you should give the book to the dwarf. If anyone, he should be able to make some sense of it."

"Why, that is most kind of you, Master Elf," Gimli thanked Legolas for his "support."

"Wait, I understand now. I fear this book bears dreadful news, Gimli. Balin's people were attacked, and Balin himself was killed three days before the last entry." Gandalf took his eyes off the book and inspected the tomb structure carefully. "This is the resting place of Balin, Lord of Moria," he read from the carvings.

"Nooo!" cried Gimli and broke down weeping after letting out a few manly roars. Legolas covered his ears and writhed in pain. Aragorn hissed to Gimli to mourn more quietly, which Gimli did not. Boromir told Gimli to put a sock in it. Gimli replied with a sentimental shout.

While the others were doing their best to silence Gimli and calm down the frantic Legolas, young Pippin made an interesting discovery: he found an old and gnawed dwarven skeleton lying atop an old well. Showing wisdom beyond his years, Pippin deducted that the horrid corpse must be the reason for the Dwarf's agony. Willing to make things better again, he gave the figure a push, and the skeleton fell into the well, dragging a set of steel chains with it. In a way, Pippin's goal was now accomplished: even Gimli was silenced by the noise that echoed through the hall.

Gandalf turned to Pippin menacingly. "You fool! Now, everyone in Moria will have heard our presence."

"They heard it long ago," Legolas pointed out. Amazed that the Elf would speak, Gandalf forgot his anger and turned back to inspect the tomb. Suddenly, the rooms started shaking.

"Ai! Ai!" wailed Legolas.

"What is it, Legolas?" whispered Aragorn.

"I hear them. The drums. The drums of the enemy."

"We are fighting against bards?" Pippin was perplexed.

"Sure, Pip," Merry said with a touch of exasperation in his tone.

"We fight the plague of the earth," said Aragorn grimly.

"We are fighting against bards," Pippin confirmed complacently and took a battle stand.

Before long, the enemy broke into the room, and the Fellowship found themselves fighting against superior numbers in a battle that could only end in one way.

Incredibly, the nine emerged from the cave-troll and orcs' attack unharmed. Even Frodo, who had seemingly been pierced by the 12-foot cave-troll's spear, claimed to be unharmed, though Aragorn was reluctant to believe it.

"That blow would have been enough to kill a wild boar. You cannot possibly be well."

"Thank you so much for the comparison, Strider. That really made me feel better."

"So you were not well?"

"I did not mean it that way."

To end the argument doomed to make no sense, Frodo opened his jacket and showed a delicate mithril-coat. After the others had done enough wondering and touching of the silken-soft material, they fled from the stone room. A little break and a battle seemed to have sharpened Gandalf's memory, and he now led the Company with confident steps. He led them apace with Legolas and the Men, while Gimli and the hobbits jogged behind.

"That mithril-coat saved your life, Frodo. It was a gift well given from your uncle. Wear it night and day, for it is unlikely that we are going to find a place safe enough for you to remove it," Gandalf shouted without turning around. He merely turned his head to his right and gave the information in a loud voice. Aragorn, who had been striding on the side, rubbed his temples and relocated himself.

"I shall never take it off!"

"I have often wondered what you and Bilbo were doing, so close in his little room," Merry said. Frodo shot him a dirty look.

"Now you know."

"I wonder."

They were nearing the Bridge of Kazad-dûm when their way was cut off. Goblins, swarming by the hundreds, approached them quickly. They came from everywhere: from all around them, from the roof, and from the walls. The Fellowship took off running, but the creatures gained on them with each step.

All of a sudden, a terrible roar echoed in the hallways and the little creeps disappeared. A quick glance at Gimli assured Gandalf that his dwarven friend had not gone insane, and soon enough he could see what had scared the gobblers—ahem, goblins—away. A giant Balrog had emerged from the depths of Moria and begun a pursuit.

"To the bridge!" cried Gandalf. "Lead on, Aragorn. We shall cross the bridge when we come to it!"

Aragorn obeyed and led the Company toward and over the bridge that led them to the one exit of Moria. They carefully crossed the narrow bridge and stood on the other side, waiting for Gandalf.

Gandalf was not about to follow them; he stood on the bridge, facing the fiery Balrog, who stood breathing menace and fire. "You cannot pass!" he cried, as the heat brought tears to his eyes. "You shall not pass, flame of Ûdun, for I am the servant of the Secret Fire."

For the time being, there was little need for fire, secret or otherwise, for the Balrog was advancing on Gandalf. The fire it breathed lit the entire hall. Seeing the wizard facing such a beast by himself, latent heroism surfaced in his companions.

"For the Shire!"




Gandalf cast a spell so powerful that it shattered the bridge under the fiery beast. The Balrog fell into the abyss, but with its last strength, it wrapped a whip around the wizard's knees and started pulling him down with it. Aragorn and Boromir leapt forward to rescue him.

"Fly, you fools," Gandalf cried, dragged painfully by the whip. "Fly!"

Aragorn and Boromir turned on their heels and escaped from the mines with the little strength they had left. Orcs, lurking by the entrance, cast a rain of arrows after them, but luck was with the Company, and the arrows did not hit their intended mark.

When they managed to escape Moria, the Company fled to a nearby clearing to gather their breath. The loss of Gandalf came upon them and they took a moment to mourn, each in his special way. Gimli, who was in favor of dwarven traditions, cast a hood over his head and began weeping. Legolas, who was not in favor of dwarven traditions, covered his ears and started moaning. Boromir, who was not in favor of any traditions, did his best to silence Gimli. Aragorn grabbed him right in time before the Gondorian could hit the dwarf with his shield. The hobbits gathered together and comforted each other in the way only hobbits can: talking about the foods that the wizard had liked when visiting the Shire.

The eight were too preoccupied with their mourning that to notice a ninth figure joining them. Suddenly, Gandalf stood among them, living and breathing—and fuming.

"Why did you leave me there?" he roared at Aragorn and Boromir, who ceased their struggle of a thick branch with which Boromir had tried to hit Gimli. Aragorn had already disarmed him of the shield, the sword, several smaller rocks, and Pippin.

"You said...," the Men stammered in surprise. "You ordered us to leave."

"Fools! Cursed fools! I said nothing about leaving. I said 'fly' to you gentlemen, as a simple observation."

Aragorn and Boromir looked at each other, looked down, and quickly turned away. Though the others did not see the proceedings, they could see that both Men were frantically struggling with their undergarments. Then they turned back, trying to act as impassive as humanly possible. Their brave attempts failed, mainly because Aragorn had turned into an interesting shade of red and Boromir's unconvincing nonchalance. Not quite wanting to know what that had been about, the others turned to look at Gandalf.

"You look different somehow," observed Pippin, screwing up his eyes.

"Fool of a Took!" remarked Gandalf.

"His highly limited vocabulary set aside, I should say that the only change in him is his turning from gray to black," observed Legolas. Again, Gandalf forgot to be angered by the comment, since the fact that the Elf was speaking perplexed him. He, indeed, seemed to be covered in a coal-black substance, save the odd clear spots on his face. He looked like one who had been in the fires of doom and come back.

"Oh, I don't care. You are the luckiest, the cunningest, and the most reckless man I ever knew. Bless you, laddie," cried Gimli and jumped to embrace Gandalf. Gandalf returned the embrace rather awkwardly, either because he had just been called "laddie" or because Gimli's head had hit his body at a rather questionable height. A stuffed laughter from the now beetroot-red Aragorn told Gandalf that he was not the only one making the observation, and when he turned to look at Boromir, the Gondorian winked and laughed. Gandalf loosened Gimli's hug hastily and patted him awkwardly on the shoulder.

At this, Legolas gave up trying to keep from sniggering by biting his bow, and burst out in joyful laughter. The Elven laughter being notably infectious, the Company soon rolled in fits of laughter. Gimli did not quite catch what all the commotion was about, but he soon enough joined the rest. In this area of noise-making, the dwarven heritage proved to be an incomparable asset and soon enough they resumed their previous activities: Legolas covered his ears in pain, Boromir tried to silence Gimli, and Aragorn to protect Gimli from Boromir. The hobbits attempted to calm down Legolas.

Gandalf put a stop to the madness. He rose to his full height, shouting, "Calm down, all of you, or you will see Gandalf the Grey uncloaked!" All calmed down in an instant.

Now that there was finally peace and no imminent danger present, Gandalf excused himself and headed toward the bushes while others sat down and started chatting to lighten up everybody's moods. Legolas did not sit down; he kept pacing restlessly, agitating others.

"Master Elf, you pace around like a restless soul! Come here and shoot the breeze," Gimli suggested.

"I might as well," Legolas replied. He strolled to Gimli's side and shot a few arrows at random before anyone had the chance to protest. Even as they were still looking for words, a terrible shriek came from the nearby bushes. They looked at each other, horrified, and even Legolas seemed slightly disturbed by the outcry.

"What were you thinking? You fool, you shot Gandalf!" Aragorn hissed before taking off.

"I was shooting the breeze."

As Aragorn investigated the bushes, he made a horrible discovery that the great Istari wizard, Gandalf the Grey, had fallen in the middle of performing the most unwizardly actions. Boromir came to investigate, too, and was even faster to leave the scene than Aragorn. Gimli kept banging his head on the ground, repeating, "With Elves, no idioms," over and over again. Those around him were satisfied with the dwarf having found something quiet to do, and dared not interrupt.

Frodo overheard him and added sympathetically, "With idiots, no idioms." Pippin made his own contribution to the noble art of mental exercise by adding, "Idiots with idioms results in idiotism," of which he himself stood as a perfect example in the minds of the literate hobbits. Finally, the Company gathered together for an emergency meeting. Even Boromir, now of an unhealthy shade of white, joined in.

"We should now decide what to do. It seems that Legolas has killed Gandalf," Aragorn began.

"He can always plead insanity. The Elves are known to be rather light-headed," Gimli grumbled.

"I think you mean light-footed, Master Dwarf. At least we Elves had wits to begin with, which cannot be said of all races."

"True," Pippin confirmed. Quizzical looks were shot his way, but to avoid further conflicts, Aragorn chose that they skip formalities and let the voice of democracy decide.

After Aragorn had decided that the whole incident was to be put aside, he named himself the new leader of the Fellowship. It was agreed in silence that the blame of Gandalf's death was on Moria. Legolas was never blamed for his demise, partly because the wizard had turned out to be a sexually-focused, chronologically-gifted individual—commonly known as dirty old man—and partly because the few battles had practically made everyone in the Fellowship a person with difficult-to-meet needs—that is, serial killer—so that one life here or there made no difference on the grand scale of things.


Author's Notes:

Useless fact: in medical language, "moria" means 'silliness, folly.' In a way, Boromir was right in FotR when he pointed out that "It is folly." (That was right before he made the gesture of an "eye." Hey, all right by me if he wants to refer to an "eye" with that particular finger twist. I would think twice before repeating the gesture in public.)

Given the quality of this fic, you can make up your own mind regarding the nature of unwizardly actions.

Huge thanks to Sarah (La Princesse D'or) for the proofreading! Her help was invaluable.

Published April 2, 2003. Revised 2010.