Chapter One


Bilbo's Point of View

Summary : Bilbo had never felt loneliness before travelling with Thorin and the other dwarves. Perhaps one dwarf can comfort him after it all gets a bit to much for him.

He has never felt such a strong feeling of loneliness before.

Hobbit's were not creatures, as far as he was aware, that suffered loneliness. They were incredibly sociable beings and spent a lot of their time in the company of friends and family. He had friends within the Shire but they were not people he would ever feel incredibly close to, he felt like they didn't understand him. He had liked his life in the Shire, he had liked nothing better than letting his 'Baggins side' take over and sitting with a book in front of his warm, cosy fire. However the 'Took side' of him longed for adventure, longed to see Elves and visit far off lands and this was something that his fellow hobbit's could never understand, because hobbit's liked the comforts of their home and some would spend their whole lives in the peace of the Shire.

He tried to avoid the Baggins side of his family, except that of his second cousin Drogo and his wife Primula, he saw them once every so often but they were the only members of his Baggins family side that did not dislike him, as they had no desire to live in Bag End and did not envy him for inheriting the property. He always had people he could rely on but since he had left his home, he had found it incredibly difficult to adjust to the harsh conditions that came with travelling great distances. There was mostly silence during their journey, everyone focused on their destination but as night came, the dwarves would talk among themselves. They would talk about their families, Erebor and old memories.. He hadn't realised until the first week had passed what he had gotten himself involved in, the harshness of the journey and the isolation he would feel.

His feet and back ached from the hours they spent walking and even sleep was no comfort as the floor was always freezing cold and incredibly uncomfortable. Some of the Dwarves found his lack of ability in swordsmanship and fighting irritating, Thorin had made no effort in hiding his dislike of his presence and he was mostly ignored by some of the company. Only Balin, Bofur, Fili and Kili had made him feel welcome and even they often overlooked him by accident. He would often sleep several feet away from the Dwarves and lay , sometimes Gandalf would lay with him but he was mostly away so he spent much of his nights alone. His favourite times were when Gandalf remained with them, he had seemed to make it his personal mission to keep him company and the hobbit had often seen him glare at Thorin's back in anger when he made comments about his lack of worth.

There was no words to explain how it made him feel when the company laughed at him, told him he did not belong, made him feel like an outsider. Most of the time he kept his feelings behind a cool mask but sometimes he felt his throat tighten and felt himself blinking back tears that threatened to spill down his cheeks and reveal his true feelings.

He had hoped after saving Thorin from the Pale Orc he had proved his worth but although Thorin had joined the group of people who valued him, he still felt like they thought he was a burden. He would do the slightest thing wrong and most of the dwarves would laugh and joke among themselves about his mistake, making him feel foolish. He knew that in most cases they did not wish to upset him and would probably be apologetic if they knew how much their remarks bothered him but he never said anything. Sometimes he would feel Thorin's gaze on him but he made sure to not make eye contact, he didn't want the Prince knowing how he felt.

He had always considered himself a strong person but even the strongest of beings can break eventually. In fairness it had been his fault, the glove had slipped as he had lifted the pot from their fire and the side had burned his hand pretty badly. He had been unable to stop the light yelp coming from his lips as he felt the sharp pain ignite in his hand and sting as though his skin had been set alight. The noise had made several of the Dwarves laugh, most not realising that he had hurt himself and thinking he had made the noise out of fear. He felt his heart sink slightly as he saw the Kili and Fili join in with the laughter and cursed himself mentally as he felt that horridly familiar tightness stir in his throat. He hid this injury from them, forcing a smile that came out rather forced and dished the company their food, not once letting his mask slip. Afterwards he poured himself his own bowl of food and walked away from them. Glancing back quickly and seeing that nobody was looking his way, he walked for a few minutes before stopping and leaning his back against one of the trees, the rough bark digging into his back. Sliding down it, he cradled his hand, glancing down and winced as he assessed the damage, it was an angry red and the skin was beginning to peel. Leaning his head back, he looked into the thick woodland and for the first time letting his emotions win the fight. He felt the first tear slide down his face and for a moment he felt relief, it felt good to let his emotions out as he had grown tired for holding them back for so long. His breathing was even but the tears would not stop and a part of him wondered whether they would, whether he could lift himself from this mood.

He didn't know how long he been away from the others, to be completely honest he didn't care because he knew that he needed this alone time. He knew he should head back soon before he was missed but he couldn't find the strength to compose himself. His placed his face in his hands and tried to take calming breaths but if anything it just made him feel worse.

His back stiffened as he heard twigs snapping behind him but he didn't look up, from the direction it was coming from it must have been one of the dwarves. He considered for a moment running but he knew that would cause more trouble than it would solve, he didn't want to run off without any form of protection or supplies. He did the only thing he could think of and fell onto his side and curling up in a ball, cradling his hand and praying whoever was looking for him to leave him alone.

Suddenly a pair of large hands were resting on him, one on top of his curly hair and the other resting on his shoulder. He felt the hands rubbing his shoulders slightly but he didn't look up, he didn't think he could.

Why did it have to be him?

Of all of them he was the last person who he wanted to see when he was feeling like this. He had only just earned his respect and now he looked even more foolish than before.

"Bilbo, what's wrong?" Thorin whispered, his tone laced with concern.

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