December 31, 2011

Dwaling and a Lost Lead Dog

In my prior post on the Bird and Baby Inn, I talked about the group of Hobbits who congregate in the back room, deep in literary discussion.  One very important Hobbit is missing, where in Middle Earth can he be?

If one takes a stable point from Michel Delving, over to Hobbiton, up through Overhill to Brockenborings, and then north to Oatbarton, you'll eventually discover a small village north of Oatbarton that has been overrun by brigands of the worst kind.  Dwaling was once a snug, peaceful little town inhabited by artisan glass blowers.  Recently much of the property in Dwaling was purchased by some mysterious Hobbit from the Westfarthing, who then sold it to some Big Folk, who subsequently turned out to be ruffians working for the equally mysterious "Sharkey" (or Sharku, as the half-orc properly calls him) and quite rude, to boot.  And the Hobbit who sold all the property in Dwaling to this band of no-gooders?  That naughty Lotho Sackville-Baggins.  No surprises there, eh?

The remaining residents of Dwaling have turned to a local Hobbit of respect who apparently has some good writing skills, Mr. Ronald Dwale, to help them draft a letter to the chief ruffian in Dwaling.  Mr. Dwale is none other than LOTRO's doppelganger of Professor Tolkien himself. A number of biographical sources state that his family called him "Ronald."

Your first meeting with Mr. Dwale may actually be to assist him in a quest to find a toy that his young son recently lost (Lost Dog).  Turbine has again wonderfully integrated an event from Professor Tolkien's life into the story line here.  In 1925, the Tolkien family went on a holiday to the Yorkshire coast, where one of his young sons lost a favorite toy lead dog.  Professor Tolkien created a short story about the lost toy dog, which was submitted for publication a decade later after The Hobbit had been accepted, yet was never published until many years later and after his death.  You may read more about Roverandom and the story of the little toy lead dog at Tolkien-Online.  In the world of LOTRO's Middle Earth, however, the destiny of the toy dog is a bit nastier - it appears to have been eaten by one of the Sand Nerbyg from the dunes of the Barandalf!  Washing it off in the Brandywine before returning it to Mr. Dwale might be a considerate thing to do.

Turbine gives us two additional chances to help the good Mr. Dwale.  He seems to have lost a page from his notes that contained the first lines of a story he has been working on.  Possibly one of the most important pieces of Hobbit literature - don't just stand there, go help him!  Although just imagine where we would all be if he hadn't chosen to edit that first line....

After you have assisted him, Mr. Dwale decides he had better take advantage of the flowing creative juices (and I'm sure we would all thank him for that) and skip meeting with his friends - none other than the group at the Bird and Baby Inn in Michel Delving. They are naturally a bit disappointed, and a couple of them had hoped to read from some of their own works.  But they are ultimately understanding friends in the end.

Jack Lewisdown expressing his disappointment.
A wonderful reward for assisting Mr. Dwale is a pipe that matches his own, and which emits a very pretty smoke shape!

Unfortunately you can only smoke his pipe once every hour; probably a good thing, as these Hobbits seem to be cloaked in smoke half the time - can't be healthy at all.
You may encounter Mr. Dwale twice more in your journeys through Middle Earth - he shows his linguistic skills during one of the chapters for the In Their Absence quest group.

Those lucky enough to be invited backstage at the G.L.O.B.E. theatre in Frostbluff may also catch a glimpse of him hurriedly finishing a play.

Leeowyn enjoying a smoke with Mr. Dwale.


  1. I found him backstage during a Frostbluff show and was nearly overcome with joy! "So, there you are!"
    I had heard that he was near Brockenborings too, but try as I may I could never find him. Thank you for this article. Now I'm itching to get in game and go find him. I love how they tired Roverandum into the storyline.

  2. Good luck in your search, you'll find him! And there will be more coming up about the Frostbluff theatre, too. ;)