January 28, 2012

Gollum's Nassssty Diet

Our first chance to cross paths with Gollum (and most definitely this, as much of my blog, will be a spoiler for those who have not done this yet, so read at your own risk!) comes in the Trollshaws, at a lonely cottage on the shore of the Bruinen.  A fisherman, Garbert, and his wife Afanen live here with a new baby.  The night before you meet them, they experience something that would horrify any parent.  It is part of the questline "The Skulking Creature," and even the title of this particular quest is creepy and full of foreboding:  "The Open Window."

Thank you to LOTRO-Wiki for the dialogue, as I don't currently have a toon at the right level who has not already done this questline.  Afanen tells us:

Inspecting the window Gollum snuck through.
"Last night, just after dark, we had snuffed out the candles, locked the door, and we were just getting into bed, when I thought I heard something moving around in little Whelan's room. Whelan is just a baby, so you can understand my worry: I thought a bird might have flown into his room through the window, which we always leave open a crack so the breeze can come in, and I did not want him to be frightened. But when I went into his room to check on him, I saw that it was not a bird at all, but a monster: a terrible creeping thing hunched over bony legs! It was moving towards Whelan's cradle, and making a terrible noise from his throat.  Its intent was clear -- it meant to harm my baby! I let forth a cry such as you have never heard, and sprang towards it; I do not know what I thought to do, but the thing sprang out the window through which it had crawled, vanishing into the night. Little Whelan is fine, but what if that thing comes back? That is why Garbert has not collected his catch, and that is why we will not leave the house! Speak to my husband if you like, but you will not change his mind!" 

This isn't just Turbine being sensationalistically and darkly suggestive.  It too is straight from the Lore.  Way back at the start of The Fellowship of the Ring, when Gandalf is telling Frodo the latest news of Gollum in the chapter, "The Shadow of the Past," he talks of the search of the Elves of Mirkwood to locate him:

"The wood was full of the rumour of him, dreadful tales even among beasts and birds.  The Woodmen said that there was some new terror abroad, a ghost that drank blood.  It climbed trees to find nests; it crept into holes to find the young; it slipped through windows to find cradles."

Not to put too fine a point on it, Gollum was planning to make a dinner snack of Garbert and Afanen's young baby, but thanks to the fast attentions of this NPC mom, he was foiled.  This time.

To be fair, we also need to note that in the timeline in Appendix B, in August of 3018 it is stated that, "All trace of Gollum is lost.  It is thought that at about this time, being hunted by both the Elves and Sauron's servants, he took refuge in Moria; but when he had at last discovered the way to the West-gate he could not get out."  Since this leaves room for some uncertainty about the whereabouts of Gollum that fall, this gives Turbine the wiggle-room needed to place him skulking around the Trollshaws.  And very, very hungry.

Sources:  The Fellowship of the Ring, Appendix B of The Lord of the Rings

1 comment:

  1. That is one creepy quest, and I love that you have no idea where it's heading until you get several quests down the chain. It was so exciting to see Gollum, but unpleasant at the same time.