"He is dead then. I feared it was so."
I could hardly believe it. Balin, strong as an ox, I remember him; deep voiced like the soul of the mountain, beard as white as the snows on Caradhras. Much of my knowledge I owed to him, and now here he lay. All the hope that had gone into his plans now rested beneath a carved stone. The strength of the Dwarves has failed after all.
I drew my hood over my face to let tears fall where none could see.
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