Bilbo Baggins never paid much mind to how his life would turn out. Of course he thought about it, every young Hobbit thought about it and all believed their lives would take the same picturesque path. First you would find a Hobbit lass or lad to settle down with, get married and have an abundance of Hobbitlings and all would disgustingly domestic and normal. But when has he ever been normal? His Took blood made sure of that long ago. But he was also and Baggins and with the course his life was about to take, he found that all the fight that he had inherited from his mother's side of the family was cowering in a dark corner of his mind.

No, Bilbo Baggins had long since accepted his fate.

"Confound it Bilbo! Would you ever stop fidgeting? How am I to make you any way presentable if you can't sit still more than five minutes?" Bilbo was brought out of his thoughts by the shrill voice of Lobelia Sackville-Baggins, again bitterly reminded that she was in fact the reason that he was in this situation in the first place.

Lobelia was known to be a covetous and grasping hobbit, and had designs on Bag End from the moment Bilbo's mother passed, and when Lobelia saw her chance may the Valar strike her down if she would not take it. The Dwarven kingdom of Erebor was known for its prosperity. Bilbo had read about it in one of his mothers old books. She had loved to read and it was a trait that was passed down to Bilbo who often opted for the adventures in his books then the company others. He had read of the precious jewels that were produced from the deepest caverns of their mines and the finery that the Dwarrow smiths created in their searing forges, their skill matched by no other race. The opulence of it all had little appeal to him, which is why he found himself so apathetic to the circlet that adorned his head. It was a light and tender weight that sat amongst the honey blond curls of his hair. Any other time it would have been barely noticable but now, it sat heavy on Bilbo's head. Just another reminder.

Mithril.

Yes, Erebor was known for its wealth in jewels but when it came to riches of the earth, it was significantly lacking. King Thráin had caught word of the Shires trade with the city of Dale and was obstinate that Erebor, to ensure the prosperity of its people, must establish a solid trade pact with the Shire. But of course you can't have something for nothing or so Gerontius Took had said.

The Thain of the Shire, had received word from the king himself and was outraged by his forwardness and the assumption that he would roll over and indulge his every whim simply because of his status as royalty. Of course this is where Lobelia saw her chance to finally sink her claws into Bilbo's family legacy.

"We are simple folk."

The Thain addressed the council.

"We grow and make things for our own people and those who we have allegiances with. We agreed to trade with the the city of Dale for its mutual benefits! We provide then with crops during the Winter and they provide us with fabrics. What would we have to gain from this Dwarrow kingdom? We have no need for their riches nor their jewels."

"A matter easily rectified with marriage!"

Silence fell through out the council room at Lobelias words. The frustrated council turned to her with questioning looks, silently urging her to continue.

"Think of it this way, we provide them with the sustenance they require in exchange for a marriage! Think of the benefits that come with such an allegiance, to have Erebor on our side would be nothing but beneficial!"

The council murmured amongst themselves seemingly weighing up the pros and cons of the proposition until Gerontius voice broke through the cacophony

"Silence! Now, say that both parties do agree to such an... arrangement who do you suggest we offer to his Royal Highness."

Lobelia could sense the snide edge to his tone but not without picking up on his genuine curiosity. She felt a smirk cross his features and thanked whatever maker that was watching over her the Thain could not see it. If the curiosity that was laced through out his voice was anything to go by the battle had already been won, all he needed was a little nudge in the right direction. Giving a polite cough Lobelia stood and moved towards the front of the room to stand in front of the old Hobbit.

"Why, your grandson Bilbo of course."

And so it was that this was how Bilbo had found himself sitting his bedroom with Lobelia prodding him from all angles, arranging his curls around the Mithril circlet. Apparently it had been crafted for him by the finest of Dwarven smiths. Nothing less would do for the fiancé of the future king of Erebor, Thorin, son of Thrain who Bilbo was to be wed within the circlet had been a gift sent when word reached the Shire that his intended had accepted the proposal. The news was cause for immense celebration through out the entire Shire, all the way from Hobbiton to Buckland.

Any other time Bilbo would have laughed and jested along with his fellow Hobbits but he could not help the sickening feeling and the bile that raised in his throat when ever the reason for their carousing crossed his mind. Now Bilbo wanted nothing more than to tear the circlet of his head and throw it against the wall. He wanted nothing more than to run, but what good what that do him now? Tears sprung to his eyes at the barbarity of it all and he did his best to blink them back, but if a few stray droplets ran down his cheeks, well then, no one had to know.

A few more minutes of Lobelia's incessant prodding and Bilbo heard her let of a sigh of satisfaction "There!" She leaned down to press a hand to his shoulder and looked at his reflection in the mirror he sat in front of. "Fit for a king."