Author's Notes: Well this is it. The end.
I knew that this moment would come, yet I feel sad that it's time.
I will answer two questions that might burn on your mind right now;
1. Yes, I will probably write a LOTR fic in the future. No, Ayne won't be in it, but mentioned perhaps. Next fic will be about North&South, so if you are interested keep an eye out ;)
2. What happened with Ori, Balin, Oin and Dwalin is true. The rest is made up because I thought everyone needed a proper ending that they deserved.
Thank you for commenting, reviewing, faving, following or just be a silent ghost reader. Thank you, and good bye.
Chapter 34: Epilogue (END)
It was over.
The quest for the Lonely Mountain has ended.
With Thorin's, Fili's and Kili's death the line of their own family died, but not that of Durin. Daín, son of Naín, had taken up the title of the King of The Lonely Mountain after the funeral of the rightful heirs. Erebor would thrive underneath his reign, as he would restore the order, glory and its prowess in all kind of fashions that it deserved. Erebor was to be well known throughout the eastern wilderness and amongst the dwarves of Blue and Iron Hills.
But what happened to the company?
Bilbo had returned to the Shire, guided by Beorn and Gandalf. He had taken Bofur's 'long term deposit' from the trolls – and a small portion of the gold and silver of the Mountain- to Bag End and lived there in wealth and writing down his adventures. Embedding Thorin in his many stories for he promised that. Little did he know that the little golden ring he had stolen from Gollum would land in the hands of his nephew Frodo; but that is a story for another time.
Gloin settled in Erebor, functioning as one of the finest warriors that it had ever seen. His wife and Gimli also established there; unknowing that their son Gimli would grow out to be a fine warrior, like his father, and play a significant role in the War of the Ring; that would take place about sixty years later.
Oin, Ori and Balin had flocked together as a group. They did many expeditions later together. Forty-eight years later, they would travel to Moria -in order to try and reclaim it- with a large band of other dwarves. They were overrun and slaughtered by the goblins dwelling there. Balin was honoured in the tomb that Gimli would mourn about many years later. Ori was the one that wrote a journal of what was happening and Gandalf would read aloud to the Fellowship of the Ring. The near-deaf Oin had met a horrid fate in the belly of the Watcher of the Water, when he and several other dwarves tried to take their chances and escape.
Dwalin, Nori and Dori, returned to the Iron Hills and settled down. It was said that Dwalin got married and fathered seven sons and three daughters. Nori and Dori couldn't stay in the Iron Hills for long, for the lust to wander and adventure was thick in their veins. They were never to be seen again.
Bifur, Bofur and Bombur had settled in Erebor for a short while, only to return to the Blue Hills where Bofur started mining again, his cousin Bifur set up a toyshop, and his brother Bombur founded a pub called The Company where Bofur would tell mad tales in the evening hours. Mostly about a strong woman that he had met and was beautiful unlike any other being that he had seen.
Remember the small statue that he was carving throughout the journey? That small statue was you. The travellers that visited the Company asked about the small likeness of you adorning the mantelpiece above the central fireplace. Bofur would only sit down with a pipe between his lips and tell them this with a merry voice;
"Some claimed that she died and was buried next to Thorin under the mountain; her love. Some said, that she had deserted the company just before the battle and was now living a solitary life. Some claimed that she had survived the battle by the aid of the elves and now served Daín as head advisor and general. Then again, others boasted about seeing dear Ayne drinking and singing here in The Company, whilst others said that they have met her on the road as she was probably visiting old friends."
No other explanation from your disappearance was drawn from his lips, much to the chagrin of the travellers and lads that listened to every story of you that Bofur told them.
But, what did happen to you, indeed?
That is up to you, really.
But the ending is not important. For it matters not what road we take, but rather what we become on the journey.
You are Ayne, daughter of Aynúr. You were called a betrayer, a friend, a lover, and so much more.
And this is your story.