Inside a mountain somewhere in Middle Earth there is a cave with a long winding tunnel that led to the fresh air and greenery of the mountaintop.
There surrounded by the inky gloom of night stands a large creature. From a distance, one might think it were a rock; indeed if it stayed in the same spot for a few more hours it would be. For the figure is a Cave Troll
She, for it is female, turned slowly scanning the horizon. After a final glance around she shrugged and ambled back down the tunnel towards an increasingly glowing light.
Rounding the final corner, she crossed into the cave and was nearly knocked over by two young Cave Trolls.
“Mum! Tell him!! He stole my geode”
The mother rolled her eyes,
“How many times do I have to tell you? No running in the cave”
“But mum, I’ve been training that one for years” The girl whined.
Now a Cave Troll whining sounds something akin to two pieces of spinning metal grinding against each other at high speed; not the most pleasant of sounds.
“Grutch, give Geretch back her geode”
Reluctantly, Grutch handed over his sister’s pet and skulked off to his room.
His mother sighed, shook her head then furrowed her brows.
“Has anyone seen Riguch?”
Geretch shook her head. “No. He went out with some Goblins earlier mum. Said they were going to hang out in Moria.”
Her mother sighed and shrugged. The effect of which was like an earthquake sending ripples across the heaving earth.
“I don’t know how many times I’ve told that boy? Spending all that time with Goblins and Orcs will only lead to trouble. All I can say is that he better be back before sunup or he’ll be grounded for a month.”
She slammed her foot down in emphasis. Shaking the walls and a few chippings of rock dropped form the cave roof.
“He should know better, especially after what happened to his father and Uncle Bert. Messing around over how to cook that morsel of a Hobbit and getting caught out in the sun.”
Geretch stared and looked around her then scampered to her room.
Five hours after sun up, the Cave Troll sighed and went to bed.
“That boy will be the death of me”
She left a cup of milk warming on the stove. She was sure he wouldn’t be to much longer.
The next night she awoke to the sound of breaking rock. She trudged into the kitchen; putting on her favorite apron as she went, pink with blue daisies and found that the milk had evaporated and the heat had shattedrd the cup.
She looked over to Riguchs room only to see that his slab hadn’t been slept upon.
Turning back she noticed a small group of Goblins standing at the entrance to the cave; shuffling their feet.
“Where is he?” She demanded
There was a quick discussion among the Goblins, followed by some nudging. Eventually, one small one was shoved stumbling to the front and was hissed and poked at until he spoke.
“Ummmm… there was an accident in Moria last night”
He hurried on, seeing the look on the trolls face,
“Well, there was this group that showed up. Men, Hobbits, a Dwarf and an Elf. And, well there was only nine of them and that was *** good odds so we decided to have a bit of fun with them….. We were doing really good too until they barred the door and well… Riguch got stuck on the other side yeah… But he was doing really well from what we could hear and was having a right laugh…Then there was this Elf and , well, he sort of shot an arrow at Riguch and it went into his mouth. Then he kind of fell over. We chased the group for a bit but then there was this Balrog…. And we had to, yanno, run away from it”
He received a poke from behind
“We made a tactical withdrawal”
He paused, not wanting to continue, but after several violent pokes from behind, one of which may or may not have been with a dagger, he continued.
“Yeah, so Riguch.. He’s umm… Kind of dead”
The goblins turned and ran as hard as they could up the tunnel.
The Cave Troll stood for a moment as the information sunk into her thick skin.
She sank into the chair that was next to her and let her head fall into her hands with a resounding thud.
She wept; the tears running down her face and hitting the floor in small sparkling pools which dried and formed diamonds, turning the floor into a sea of glittering gems.