Gandalf arrives at Bag End with fireworks for Bilbo's party
Event Type: General
Age: 3rd Age - The Stewards
Date: September 14, 3001
An event in the prelude to Bilbo's Farewell Party; see that entry for an overview:
At the end of the second week in September a cart came in through Bywater from the direction of the Brandywine Bridge in broad daylight. An old man was driving it all alone.... He had a long white beard and bushy eyebrows that stuck out beyond the brim of his hat. Small hobbit-children ran after the cart all through Hobbiton and right up the hill. It had a cargo of fireworks, as they rightly guessed. At Bilbo's front door the old man began to unload: there were great bundles of fireworks of all sorts and shapes, each labelled with a large red G and the elf-rune, .
[The] old man was Gandalf the Wizard, whose fame in the Shire was due mainly to his skill with fires, smokes, and lights. His real business was far more difficult and dangerous, but the Shire-folk knew nothing about it. To them he was just one of the 'attractions' at the Party....
When the old man, helped by Bilbo and some dwarves, had finished unloading, Bilbo gave a few pennies away; but not a single squib or cracker was forthcoming, to the disappointment of the onlookers.
'Run away now!' said Gandalf. 'You will get plenty when the time comes.' Then he disappeared inside with Bilbo....
Inside Bag End, Bilbo and Gandalf were sitting at the open window of a small room looking out west on to the garden....
'How bright your garden looks!' said Gandalf.
'Yes,' said Bilbo. I am very fond indeed of it, and of all the dear old Shire; but I think I need a holiday.'
'You mean to go on with your plan then?'
'I do. I made up my mind months ago, and I haven't changed it.'
'Very well.... Stick to your plan — your whole plan, mind — and I hope it will turn out for the best, for you, and for all of us.'
'I hope so. Anyway I mean to enjoy myself on Thursday, and have my little joke.'
The Fellowship of the Ring, LoTR Book 1, Ch 1, A Long-expected Party
Elena Tiriel 20Jul07