His Wealth Shall Flow in Fountains

Author: Celeritas

Nominator: Dreamflower

2009 Award Category: Races: Cross-Cultural - Third Place

Story Type: Story  ✧  Length: Short Story

Rating: General  ✧  Reason for Rating: Rated General; however, characters in the story do consume alcohol.

Summary: Bilbo Baggins on his second visit to the Lonely Mountain finds a chance comment about the DwarvesÂ’ ale landing him into the most peculiar of circumstances.(Written for the November LOTR GFIC Challenge. Authors received their titles from the moderators (the titles themselves were taken from poetry, often Tolkien's), and had to work poetry internally into the fic (i.e., not a songfic).)

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Reviewed by: Dreamflower  ✧  Score: 10

This story was written for a challenge in which the author had to as use a line from a poem as the title as well as incorporate a bit of song or poetry into the story, This wonderful tale, set in the Lonely Mountain during Bilbo's second visit there does it one better, as the entire story is cleverly built around a contest between Bilbo and the second Thorin, the son of King Dain-- a contest to make up poetry on the spot! It is all egged on by the wily Bombur, as Bilbo wagers his famous mithril coat against five barrels of Dwarven ale! The entire story draws wonderfully on Bilbo's own poetic talents, but the young prince, Thorin Stonehelm, is no slouch either. It really is a "tale-within-a-tale", as the story of Bilbo trying to teach the young Dwarf a lesson is worked in and around the tale of the hobbit in the poem, who begins (much as Bilbo did) by going off for adventures among the Dwarves, but who ends quite differently! The ["doggerel'] as the author calls it is well-constructed and the humor of the poem's content is enhanced by Bilbo's thoughts after each verse is recited. An excellent story, with its own little twists! And Bilbo showed his sharpness of wit, even at the venerable age of one-hundred-and-eleven.

Reviewed by: Thundera Tiger  ✧  Score: 10

Sheer and absolute brilliance! As a fan of all things dwarven, I was cheering long and hard for Thorin, especially when he started displaying a surprising amount of knowledge regarding elven lore. That was simply fantastic. And Bombur's slyness in suggesting the challenge in the first place also earned high marks in characterization. Three cheers there, too! The genius of the story isn't confined to beautiful characterizations of the dwarves, however. I was first drawn into this by Bilbo's perspective voice. It's almost...pert. That's the closest I can come to describing it. There's a detached feeling, which I attribute to copious quantities of alcohol, but more than that, it's just hobbity. And in the midst of the dwarves, it serves as a wonderful counterpoint from which to observe the situation. And as for Bilbo himself, you could see the drunken cogs of his mind spinning. He's a wily old fellow, and it's aptly displayed here. I love the fact that he turned the rhyming game on its head by suddenly including the elves. I wonder what would have happened if he had chosen Mirkwood as their origin. On a final note, I also have to applaud the little notes of continuity that link this story back to canon. The somber tone regarding Balin's absence and the fact that Bilbo's intimidating stare was a result of inquiring hobbit neighbors were perfectly placed to anchor this tale and firmly root it as a plausible gapfiller. Fantastic job!

Reviewed by: Dwimordene  ✧  Score: 10

Celeritas has managed to produce a piece that fits perfectly in its category: Bilbo and Thorin Stonehelm each have something to teach each other, and the hobbit battle of wits is a great way to make this show. I love the stakes for this game of doggerel, which ranges all over the known lands of Middle-earth, and forces each of the contestants to draw on his travels and ingenuity. At the same time, the final assessment of the game, and the conclusion of the argument between Thorin and Bilbo, is itself a recognition that the stakes were mismade in the first place. Bilbo's memories of Thorin Oakenshield, and his desire to do right by his namesake are a lovely touch that adds something poignant to this hilarious contest of verse, and I love the portrayal of Bombur here. Clever old Dwarf! And Thorin does in the end show his colors - he will, as Bilbo happily realizes, make a fine king one day, when he's had a chance to grow into himself and the knowledge he has already acquired but which stays a pace ahead still of his feelings and judgment, perhaps. Bilbo's mischievous streak, and his "old campaigner" attitude when it comes to refusing to back down to a challenge, reveal something new about him, I think: a versatility he's come to have, and an openness to try himself against others that are the benign effects, perhaps, of having had to riddle with a dragon once upon a time. I highly recommend this story - it makes you laugh, and remember why you loved [The Hobbit] all over again. Great job, Celeritas!

Reviewed by: Virtuella  ✧  Score: 7

Funnily enough, it was only this evening that I read something in a philosophy book about the threatening effect of staring and its evolutionary background. I was reminded of that straight away when I read this story. I can just about imagine Bilbo's famous stare, honed over the years on scores of curious hobbit children! Once again you show yourself here as a very fine writer with mastery of subtle and sophisticated language that is a real pleasure to read. It is also a great idea for a story and very well handled. The poetry contest suits the character of Bilbo in that it echoes the riddle contest with Gollum, but The poem is far enough removed from it to still appear original. delightfullly whimsical and I like the ping pong effect of the alternating stanzas. Who would have thought that making up ad hoc poetry could be such a fierce fight? Your take on Bilbo is very convincing and expands nicely on the character as described in canon. Overall a very enjoyable story that conveys a cheerful and companionable mood.

Reviewed by: Larner  ✧  Score: 3

Ah--what can a say? A most delightful response to the challenge to work poetry into a story, starting with a line of Tolkien's own poetry as the title! And Celeritas managed so very well as we find ourselves witnesses to one of the most original contests ever indulged in by Dwarves and Hobbits!

Reviewed by: Clodia  ✧  Score: 3

This really is a delightful story! You pin down Bilbo and the dwarves so well -- and what an exceedingly hobbity scrape for Bilbo to get himself into! The doggerel works perfectly, indeed I very much enjoyed it. A verse-story within a prose-story! Beautifully done.

Reviewed by: Raksha the Demon  ✧  Score: 2

A lively and very Tolkienish tale of Bilbo Baggins and Thorin Stonelm. I stand in awe of Bilbo, and Celeritas', considerable rhyming/poetry skills.

Reviewed by: Sevilodorf  ✧  Score: 2

Bravo. A unique but completely hobbity contest. It ties in well with Bilbo's contest with Gollum in his cavern. Delightful expansion of the dwarves.

Reviewed by: NeumeIndil  ✧  Score: 1

This reads like it could be part of The Hobbit. Well done!