Chapter 8: Thorin and Kili Travel Home Apace of the Others
So Kili wolfs down some food. [(1) Image of Kili] Then he and Talin saddle two horses and begin their journey back to the Dwarf base camp at the foot of the Lonely Mountain. After traveling for two hours, they reach the Dwarf base camp by nightfall.
As Kili and Talin enter the camp, they find the men sitting around the fire eating their food and singing. The band of Dwarf men and one Hobbit are glad to be almost home. Then the Dwarfs see not just Kili, but Talin also. And Dwalin leaps up to greet his son.
Dwalin: “Talin, my son! You look well. How is your mother?” He asks embracing his son.
Dwalin: “And?” He aks expectantly.
Dwalin: “I have a daughter!” He cries as the men shout their rejoicing. [(3) image of Dwalin]
Kili: “She is a pretty little thing–as babes go.” He says like the teen he is–despite his 50 years.
Thorin: “And Kili, what of Umay? Has she had our babe?” He daren’t ask if Umay is alright as he looks at Kili worriedly.
Thorin: “What are you not telling me?” He asks quizzically. [(4) Image of Thorin]
Talin: “She is well, My Lord. Come and see on the morrow when you return home.” He says cryptically with a small smile.
Thorin: But the morrow is too long a time away for Thorin. “I will ride home this night and greet my family in the early morning. Kili, will you come with me?” He asks, since Thorin as Lord always has an escort with him.
Kili: “It will be an honor My Lord Uncle. We can take the horses that Talin and I rode here back to the village–we did not ride them hard and they should be ready after a brief few hours of rest and food.” Kili says, hinting that he would like some food, too.
So, the horses and men are fed. Then Thorin and his nephew Kili set off under cover of moonlight [(5) Forrest in Moonlight] to Thorin’s home–to Umay and his babe. Since it is so dark, they have to be careful since the ground is uneven. So, it will take them a little longer to reach the village than it took Kili to return to the camp from the village earlier that evening.
Thorin: As they and their horses make their way toward the village in late evening, Thorin waxes contemplative. “It is a beautiful night to return home, my nephew.”
Kili: “Aye, it is that My Lord Uncle. Are you glad to be home so soon?” He asks, missing the adventures of their quest already.
Thorin: “Home. There is never so beautiful sounding a word as home. And Kili, when you are happily wedded you, too, will know the contentment and joy that family life brings.” Thorin smiles knowingly, his face illuminated by the moonlight on this clear and starry night.
Kili: “Aye. I wish that I might soon enter into a first marriage.” Of course, Kili is referring to the ‘trial’ marriages that young adult Dwarf’s enter into to practice being married–with some marriages continuing. “You all seem to recommend marriage. So, it must be worth having.” Kili smiles sheepishly.
Thorin: “Kili, my boy!” Thorin smiles broadly. “Is there a lady fair whom you would seek to be your bride?” Thorin raises his eye brows mischievously.
Kili: “Well …” Kili stammers, then stops and sheepishly shrugs in shoulders.
Thorin: “Has no maid caught your fancy? Or, have you not yet made your interest known to the young lady in question?”
Thorin: “God’s teeth! Not Bofurs two daughters fair?” [(6) Image of Bofur] Thorin looks at Kili incredulously. “Both of them?”
Kili: Kili nods. “Yes, My Lord Uncle. Though not at the same time.” He hastens to add. Dwarf couples mate one at a time–one husband to one wife–unlike some other clans.
Thorin: “That could get tricky.” He blanches. “Tis better to woo and wed one, than to woo two and disappoint the one not chosen.”
Kili: “But Uncle Thorin” He whines like the adolescent Dwarf teen that he is–and forgetting his manners with regard to his Uncle Thorin’s status as their leader. “How can I know which maid I prefer if I do not woo both of them?”
Thorin: “You are forgetting something, Kili.” Thorin looks at his naïve nephew pointedly.
Kili: “What is it?” He looks at his uncle quizzically in the moonlight.
Thorin: “Well, one or both of the Bofur’s daughters might not prefer you.” Then Thorin rocks his head back in laughter at his jest.
Kili: “But why, My Lord Uncle?” He asks naively and reverting to his usual courteous behavior toward his uncle. “Why would they or any maid not prefer me? I have been on a manly quest now.” Kili says sitting straighter in the saddle as he puffs up his chest.
Kili: “But My Lord Uncle, you and My Lady Aunt met and married these 25 years ago. How did you manage it?” [(7) Image of Umay now, at age 85 years (or 22 in human years)]
Thorin: “That is a very personal question, my nephew.” Thorin’s eyes narrow. If there is one thing that can be said of Dwarf men, it is that they are discreet–especially with regard to their own wooing behaviors, which are not always successful.
Kili: “Please, My Lord Uncle.” He begs. “How am I to learn how to woo a maid if no one will tell me how they did it.”
Thorin: “Kkkkhh.” Thorin coughs. Thorin’s moment of truth has arrived, and he waxes nostalgic. “Well, my nephew, I had grown up with My Lady Umay’s father–Mayger. So, I had naturally met Umay over the years as she grew up.” [(8) Image for Umay as a child] Thorin is feeling quite discomfitted at the prospect of revealing the precise details of his and Umay’s courtship and he hesitates.
Kili: “Oh please, My Lord Uncle. Do not stop now. Tell me all.” Kili asks eagerly.
Thorin: “It’s just that ‘little’ Umay as a young girl of forty two years (about thirteen years old in human years) and I had a game we played when I would visit their home. She would pretend to be my princess fair and I her knight. Kkkkhh.” Thorin coughs some more. [(9) Image of Umay as Thorin’s teen “princess”] “And when Umay had reached her young adult hood in her sixtieth year–a few years past your fifty years now–it seems that the game we played was no longer pretend when she told me that she loved me.”
Kili: “Uncle!” Kili exclaims enthralled with his uncle’s wooing tale. “And did you love her?”
Thorin: Blushing profusely, he says shyly. “It seems that I did love her. But there were obstacles in our path.”
Kili: “Ah.” Is all he says–knowing of the over 100 year age difference between his Uncle and his young child bride. “Did Mayger not want you for a son-in-law?” Kili asks impishly.
Thorin: “Oh no, he was quite pleased–to have his family become connected with my royal house. But it was Umay’s mother, Naytha, who did not look kindly on an old bachelor warrior for her daughter’s first mate.” Thorin rolls his eyes.
Kili: “Ohh!” Kili says in understanding as his eyes go wide–that his Lady Aunt Umay was truly a ‘maid’ when she married his Uncle Thorin. And Kili wondered about his Uncle Thorin. “But surely you had your own first wife to recommend you to them?” He asks inquisitively.
Kili: “But what of Hegara? I thought I heard talk that she was your first wife?” [(10) Image of the midwife Hegara]
Thorin: Whipping his head around to look at Kili, Thorin emphatically says “That is a story spread by those who do not know the truth. Hegara and I were never a couple.” Thorin pauses, then explains. “I was too busy with the early wars and then reestablishing our village community in exile to consider taking a wife–that is, until My Lady Wife Umay.”
Kili: “But were you not lonely, My Lord Uncle?” He asks caringly.
Thorin: “I was too busy to be lonely.” Thorin states plainly, but it belies the truth of his many lonely years when others started families and he did not.
Kili: “And then My Lady Aunt became your wife?” Kili nudges his uncle to continue his tale of romance.
Thorin: “She did.” Thorin’s face begins to color thinking of their early years of marriage as they came to ‘know’ each other as husband and wife. [(11) Image of Umay as Thorin’s enchanting new bride 25 years ago, when she was 60 years old (or, almost 16 in human years)] For, it was only after they had been married a few months and had gotten to know each other better with living together day to day that Thorin and Umay became lovers. It is the Dwarf social custom to sometimes wait a full year into the marriage for it to be consummated by the husband and wife mating with each other–in case they do not get along and want to part amicably. So, Thorin and Umay were ahead of that timetable in their lovemaking. “And my Lady Wife has brought a joy to my life that I had not thought I would have.” Thorin says thinking of their life together as help mates and lovers.
Kili: “If I could find a lady as kind and sweet as My Lady Aunt, I would be well pleased.” Kili says thinking of a wife as helpmate–not necessarily as his lover, since young Dwarf men are just as ignorant about lovemaking as young Dwarf maids.
Thorin: “You would be blessed.” Thorin says contentedly. Then looking into the distance, Thorin sees the twinkling lights of the village an hour away. “It will not be long until I am home to My Lady Umay and our babe. We should reach them well before dawn even thinks to peek over the mountain.
Kili: “Yes, My Lord Uncle.” Kili smiles, knowing the secret of the twin babes that await his Lord Uncle Thorin.
The remaining hour of Thorin’s and Kili’s overnight journey to the Dwarf village is spent in silence–enjoying the beauty of the still moonlight, noticing the crisp cool air in their lungs since they are nearing the winter solstice, and reflecting on their new lives yet to come–Thorin as father and Kili as future Dwarf maid courting Dwarf man.
And in that distant Dwarf village, Umay finishes suckling her babes at her breasts--with Elienne helping her. [(12) Umay suckling image] Elienne did not want to sleep at her own home alone this night. So they gave Hegara the night off and the two new mothers take turns suckling their babes, chatting, and napping. Umay could not know as she lays her head down to sleep again that her Thorin will be with her not next evening, but in one short hour.
To be continued with Chapter 9 (The Final Chapter)
(1) Close up picture of image representing Kili as portrayed by Aidan Turner in The Hobbit (2011).
(2) Image used to represent Elienne’s and Dwalin’s 10 year old son Talin is by Adriano Bonifazi (1858-1914) is found at
(3) Image representing Dwalin, as portrayed by Graham McTavish in The Hobbit (2011).
(4) Image representing Thorin, as portrayed by Richard Armitage in The Hobbit (2011).
(5) Image representing the forrest in moonlight; a darkened Funks Grove, Illinois picture (2011).
(6) Image representing Bofur, as portrayed by James Nesbit in The Hobbit (2011).
(7) Image used to represent the current 85 year old Umay (22 in human years) by Titian is found at
(8) Image representing Umay as a child from http://iamachild.wordpress.com/
(9) Image representing Umay as a teen princess from http://iamachild.wordpress.com/
(10) Image representing Hegara the midwife by the Flemish painter Pieter Bruegel
(11) Image representing Umay as Thorin’s enchanting new bride.
(12) Image representing Umay suckling a babe found at
To read my earlier “Thorin’s Hope” chapter posts so that you may catch up on the reading, please visit:
Ch. 3 & 4: https://gratianads90.wordpress.com/2011/09/21/thorin%e2%80%99s-hope-ch-3-4-umay-and-thorin%e2%80%99s-feelings-about-their-separation-and-their-coming-babe%e2%80%99s-birth-92211-gratianads90-post-17/