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Call It True Love.

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Bluebell Baggins was almost convinced that Thorin Oakenshield hated her. 

Thankfully, he didn't, that was just the grudging sort of affection that he tried to keep tampered down. After the Carrock, after the bloody noble idiot was going to go to his death, and she had stepped in front of the Defiler, she, the Burglar, Belladonna Took's daughter, a hobbit from the Shire, had faced down Azog, Thorin had wrapped his arms around her, and . . . . 

And, they all had lived. 

Beorn's home was warm and welcoming, there were enough beds to suit them all, and as it happens they would be able to stay a few more days until bruised and banged up Thorin had had enough time to recuperate even a bit. He has enough of Oin's herbal tea to last him a lifetime, and embarrassingly enough for him, he is bundled up in an armchair, his beautiful Durin blue eyes drooping shut, slowly. Blue watches him from her seat beside Dwalin, trying to push down that instinct to push back his hair and soothe his hurts. The feeling is so visceral that she has to clamp her hand around Sting's hilt to keep from crossing the room. 

Dwalin is a mountain beside her, sweet smelling smoke wafting up and out from his pipe, she still has a cloak, she is not sure whose, draped around her shoulders. The warrior takes another puff, exhales, and starts to speak, slowly. "Lass, I have something to tell you, and please listen because-" it is in that instant that the lost King Under the Mountain begins to scream. 

"Wake up, wake up, wake up, wake up, WAKE UP!" The mountains scream this into Durin's ears, and he cannot sleep, he will not sleep again. Every time he falls asleep, he loses her, and when he wakes once more the stars wind their way into his hair, resting there. 

He does not want to lose her again. 

Mahal stretches out his hand, touches his hair, softly, and, he falls to slumber once more. 

 Dwalin is the first to react, clearing the room with his glare, Blue, though still shocked down to her bones, follows behind him in one quick beat. "I, let me help, Dwalin! Please. I can't stand to see him like this!" There is something so desperate in her voice that her words catch in her throat, and her cheeks burn pink in shame. Dwalin just looks at her with so much sympathy that she wants to stand in the middle of Beorn's home and cry with that blue cloak around her shoulders like a fauntling. 

Thorin Oakenshield has stopped screaming. 

 

It takes her the next day to realize he was crying, too. 

 

Kili has her arm gripped tight, and while she can already feel the bruises forming, she can't fault the lad in saving her from a tumble in the river. "Thank you, Kili. I could've sworn that I had proper footing, forgive me if-"

Thorin has shoved past everyone, including his nephew, and to take account of her now mottled looking arm, "Are you trying to end your life before you meet the dragon or are you just careless to what happens to you?"

Bluebell Baggins is cold and tired and hungry and she can't help but snap right back, "I should say the same to you, oh great one! You are the most reckless dwarf, and person for that matter, that I have ever met in my entire life!"

"HOW MANY HOBBITS ACTUALLY LIVE IN THE SHIRE, MASTER BURGLAR?"

"ENOUGH TO KNOW WHAT A GREAT BLUDGERING IDIOT YOU ARE!"

"I'M THE IDIOT? WHO ALMOST FELL INTO THE RIVER?!"

"DEAR YAVANNA THORIN, IT WAS AN ACCIDENT!"

"WELL-", with that Thorin Oakenshield's jaw snaps shut, he takes in the mirthful looks on his Company's faces, drops their precious Burglar's arm, and stalks off into the forest, with a, "We'll stop here for the night," as their only order. 

Bluebell Baggins takes off in the opposite direction, cursing under her breath about dwarf kings and blue eyes and mad coincidences. 

It is only after they are both out of earshot that Balin laughs, "We should tell her, lads. It would be best for all of us."

 

The union between a child of Mahal and a child of Yavanna was smiled upon by the One, who better to exemplify true love than the mates so different, the love that stretched far beyond time as they knew it. For they were creations themselves. It was not fair for one to walk so alone, so, so alone. 

As they watched, Durin woke alone . . . and not for the first time.