O misty eye of the mountain below
Keep careful watch of my brothers’ souls
And should the sky be filled with fire and smoke
Keep watching over Durin’s sons
The song is a prayer and no one knows who first wrote it or who first began to sing it. But every Dwarf in Erebor knows why this song is sung, beneath the mines, in the smithies, in the workshops and in the halls.
The Dwarves have had many tales of woe in their long history and perhaps this, which should have ended far more happily, is saddest of them all.
Most tales grow twisted and strange in the retelling but each Dwarf of Erebor knows the story, word for word, exactly as it happened, carved upon their hearts like stone. And the tale is thus, of how Thorin Oakenshield and a Company of thirteen Dwarves and a Hobbit of the Shire, set out to reclaim Erebor from the dragon Smaug. The tale begins well, of facing against Trolls, Orcs and Wargs, of a clever Hobbit outwitting Wood-Elves in their forest halls and Men who shift their shape into bears and Great Eagles bearing the Company away from fire and death.
It should have ended well, far more happily than this.
It ended with betrayal and pride and the gold-madness upon the King Under the Mountain, ever the curse of Durin’s sons. It ended with banishment and tears and broken hearts and the worst dishonor of all, the laying of violent hands upon a Dwarf’s One.
It ended when the Heart of the Mountain broke into two and the King Under the Mountain was delivered out of his madness at long last.
Now the throne lies empty, save for two pieces of cold, worthless rock and the true Heart of the Mountain wanders far from his home, searching for the treasure above all treasures that he had so foolishly cast away.
And in his wanderings, his people sing their prayer, that Mahal may watch over Durin’s son and one day, bring him home at last.