Trotter's Triumph

Author: Dreamflower

Nominator: Larner

2011 Award Category: Cross-Cultural: General - Honorable Mention

Story Type: Story  ✧  Length: Short Story

Rating: General  ✧  Reason for Rating: N/A

Summary: This story features my OC, “Trotter”, the hobbit Ranger who happens also to be Bilbo's missing uncle, Hildifons Took. It gives the details of an incident briefly mentioned in that story. Trotter's out on patrol with his fellow Rangers when an unexpected opportunity to prove his mettle comes along...

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Reviewed by: Larner  ✧  Score: 10

Tolkien’s original intended guide for Bilbo’s heir from Bree to Rivendell wasn’t a tall Man, but instead a Hobbit Ranger from the Took family who would be introduced as Trotter. Trotter, however, had a habit of morphing from small Hobbit in wooden shoes into a tall Man, and did so so frequently that Tolkien abandoned the Hobbit, although he kept the Hobbit’s given name and eventually gave it to another of the Ringbearer’s companions from the Shire, and Trotter became our beloved Strider instead. Dreamflower has given us tales of the adventurous Hildifons Took, who according to the Took family tree disappeared from the Shire and never came home again, as a Hobbit gone feral who DID join the Rangers of Eriador under Arador, father to Arathorn and grandfather to Aragorn/Estel/Strider. And this one in which the small Hobbit Ranger manages to subdue a group of brigands who’d been stealing sheep is doubly delightful, as not only does he manage to find the thieves and capture them, but he does so without losing the provender he’d been foraging for tomorrow’s breakfast! Dreamflower’s characters are charming and believable, and the manner in which Trotter manages to capture his prey is perfectly Hobbity in nature. Definitely a recommended tale!

Author response: Thanks, Larner! I'm glad you like Trotter, and that you like his way of capturing the thieves! I had loads of fun filling in this gap in my own personal fanon!

Reviewed by: pandemonium_213  ✧  Score: 10

Ah, Trotter! This story represents the concept of transformative works at its best. Dreamflower, who is in possession of a formidable knowledge of Tolkien's legendarium as a whole, takes Tolkien's Trotter, who was ushered off the stage by Tolkien and recast as Aragorn, into a full-fledged character who fits into the legendarium perfectly. As a follow-on to her fabulous novel, [Trotter], Dreamflower offers the reader a short story of the intrepid hobbit, Trotter, a.k.a. Hildifons Took (Bilbo's missing uncle). Trotter demonstrates his resourcefulness in things hobbity, which directly apply to the often perilous world of Men: his knack for gathering berries and mushrooms (and putting them to good culinary use for his fellow Rangers) and his skill with throwing stones. With the latter, he has his revenge on the ruffians who captured and abused him in [Trotter]. In characteristic hobbit fashion, he has a moment of pity for one of the thieves he encounters on his mushroom-hunting excursion, but Trotter is practical. Deadly practical: [“Don't get too smug, Hildifons Took,” he told himself. “They could come to any moment if you haven't killed them.” ] I think this aptly illustrates what hobbits are capable of "in a pinch." I love the interactions of the Mannish Rangers (and their nicknames!) with the Hobbit Ranger. There's an ease, loyalty and mutual respect amongst them that ring true. Selfishly, I hope that we see more stories of Trotter, one of my very favorite fellows of hobbitkind.

Author response: Thank you so much for this lovely review! I do know you have a fondness for "Trotter", LOL! I'm glad that this little account of one of his adventures pleased you!

Reviewed by: DrummerWench  ✧  Score: 5

Love, love, love! this lovely short adventure starring (and how!) Dreamflower's OMC Hobbit, Trotter. It's done believably and with great humor, allowing Trotter to use native hobbit skills and sensibilities to confound his enemies and astonish his friends. Even better, he finishes it all up with thoughts mainly centered on breakfast! The characters are all well-drawn and appealing (or repellant as the case may be), and the world-building seamless. The interactions among the characters, and the concerns of the Rangers for the Hobbit, and his for them, show them as dear friends and true comrades. This one definitely goes on my re-read list.

Author response: I'm so pleased that you loved this little tale of "Trotter"! It's always risky building stories around OCs, but I am pleased that you like Trotter and his hobbity adventures among the Rangers! Thank you so much!!

Reviewed by: Raksha the Demon  ✧  Score: 4

A well-written story of one of Trotter's adventures with his Dunedain Ranger friends in the northern wilds. Dreamflower uses hobbit stealth and stone-slinging skills to good effect here as the hobbit sets his sights, and his stones, on a group of sheep thieves. I love it that he finds their trail while hunting not for men, but for mushrooms. An excellent adventure story; that works well as a single tale, while also serving as a good spinoff of Dreamflower's original Trotter story.

Author response: Thanks! It's always dicey when writing fic that features OCs and lesser known characters. I'm so glad to know you enjoyed this!

Reviewed by: SurgicalSteel  ✧  Score: 4

I absolutely love the fact that Dreamflower managed to find a way to take the obscure canon origins of Aragorn - originally a wooden-shoe wearing hobbit named 'Trotter' - and come up with a plausible backstory for a hobbit Ranger. In this particular story, Hildifons Took aka Trotter is meant to be simply foraging for food. When he comes across a party of sheep-thieves, he successfully takes matters into his own hands, much to his companions' surprise. This was a really fun read from one of the fandom's most prolific hobbit-writers.

Author response: *grin* Thank you! It has amazed me how much people have taken to this OC, given that he's an amalgamation of two canon non-starters! But I'm so glad you enjoyed this one!

Reviewed by: Nath  ✧  Score: 2

Hobbit heroics from Hildifons Took, aka Trotter, clever exchanges between friends, and food:) A pleasant little slice (*heh*) of life among the Rangers.

Author response: Thanks! It's always fun to show a hobbit getting the drop on Big Folks! *grin*