Bilbo Baggins and the Arkenstone of Thrain – Parting Gifts for Elven King Thranduil
When Bilbo Baggins went to the Elven King to offer him the Arch jewel – the Arkenstone of Thrain – he didn’t have a very good idea of how the situation would play out. The Elf King had told him that he wanted jewels.
The Bard had been displaced from his home and wanted help. He had mentioned to Bilbo that Thorin had value and that he would like to trade something for it. Moreover, he had said that he had a lot of gold. So, Bilbo didn’t think that Thranduil was going to hold a grudge against him. However, after he saw how angry Thranduil became, he feared that he could be hurt. Especially since he didn’t want to get involved in any further conflicts.
Bilbo, however, was still not entirely convinced that he should give up the stone. Besides, he believed that if he had his own one-fourteenth share of the treasure, it would be just the Arkenstone. But he had to get the stone out of Thorin’s hands.
Even if he had his own share of the treasure, he still couldn’t bring himself to hand it over to Thorin. For one thing, the bewitching stone was cursed. And secondly, it was immeasurably valuable. In fact, it was more valuable than the river of gold. Moreover, it was the heart of Thorin.
At the time, the Elf King hadn’t given a parting gift to Thorin. This wasn’t the first time the Elf King had done this. Previously, when Bilbo had offered the Bard his mithril shirt, he had been rewarded with the Elvenking’s parting gift.
When he was finally able to meet with Thranduil, Bilbo realized that he was taking business much more seriously than he had been led to believe. Unlike the Bard, he was not going to be given an easy opportunity to ask Thorin for his treasure. Furthermore, he was not going to be able to watch out for him. Rather, he was going to be thrown into battle without warning.
Bilbo’s first thought was to tie up Thorin. However, this seemed to be the wrong plan. If he did, he would be forced to come to his senses. Alternatively, he might lose his life. Another possible scenario is that he would be forced to kill himself, which would make him less than human.
After that, Bilbo decided to take advantage of Bombur. Although he was only half a star in the night, he could tell that Bombur had hunched over his shoulders, and he knew that Bombur was on guard during the night. Moreover, he also knew that Bombur had been looking for Thorin.
Before he can leave, however, Thranduil reveals his final piece of information: he is going to fight for the treasure in Smaug’s lair. Thranduil is also planning to fight for the emeralds of Girion, which is why he gave the Bard his parting gift of the emeralds.
Bilbo has changed. Now, he wants to end the siege. In addition, he’s determined to escape from the captors. Lastly, he wants to bring peace between the dwarves and the elves.