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Ch. 71 - A Master’s Friends
Some horses, very sleek and well-groomed, trotted up across the grass and looked at them intently with very intelligent faces; then off they galloped to the buildings.
"They have gone to tell him of the arrival of strangers," said Gandalf.
Soon they reached a courtyard… Standing near was a huge man with a thick black beard and' hair, and great bare arms and legs with knotted muscles.
He was clothed in a tunic of wool down to his knees, and was leaning on a large axe.
The horses were standing by him with their noses at his shoulder.
"Ugh! here they are!" he said to the horses. "They don't look dangerous. You can be off!" He laughed a great rolling laugh, put down his axe and came forward. From THE HOBBIT
"He said they don’t look very dangerous. Perhaps they’re not."
"I don’t care what the master says; I won’t leave him alone with them. No telling what a Dwarf might do in the middle of the night, let alone thirteen of them! And I don’t very much trust that smaller one. Look at the way he’s dressed, definitely not ready for any kind of real traveling!"
"The tall one," his friend asked, "what kind of a man is he?"
"I think not a man, too tall. Perhaps… a wizard?"
"That sounds about right. Radagast is well-loved by our master. If it is a wizard, perhaps all will be well."
"Because one wizard is good doesn’t mean they all are. I wonder… Perhaps he’ll send us off on their adventure with them! For it seems our Master’s house is not their final destination."
"He won’t send horses. Those Dwarves could never ride horses; they’re too short. But ponies, he’d send them on ponies."
"That wizard won’t be able to ride a pony. You mark my words, one of us will have to go!"
"The master’s too kind. And too fearless. Just because he can turn into a bear, doesn’t mean we can."
"He is too kind. But he forgets how men treat animals. I, for one, would prefer to stay here."
"But if the Master asks us to bear them?"
"You know the answer. I will have no fear, if he bids us bear them, for there will be just retribution if they harm a hair upon us."
"Well, then. Let us keep our ears pointed up and watch them. If they try to harm him, we are here. If they try to harm us, he is here."
They all whinnied in agreement as they watched the gathering on the porch.
A/N - Part of a challenge at HASA.
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