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He stood it upright and saw its contents were various knives and daggers. Most of them were basic iron blades fastened with wooden hilts. Some rusty and dull, fair in quality. As he was searching the trunk he made out the silver tip of a blade poking through the lattice of rusty knives. He removed the crude items one by one, revealing more of his discovery.

Within moments he held a beautifully crafted dagger. Its blade was a sharp silver, held into place by a porcelain hilt trimmed in gold. The dagger seemed almost too beautiful to be amongst the other shabby crafts. Balamor never laid his hands on anything like it, but he knew it was coming with him, he wanted to know more about the history of the dagger and how he could possibly contribute to it. His mind was set on the blade until the sounds of fighting rejoined his focus; he had forgotten about the bandit from moments ago, somehow the blade diverted his attention completely.

The racket of weapons crashing and feet shifting outside the caravan suddenly halted. The only the sound of the whimpering struggle of the bridge builder remained. He was almost done for when the wooden doors of the caravan crashed open, showcasing the small robed figure of Balamor. In his right hand he held his new dagger, its silver blade shined as he pointed it at bandit sharply.

“Put him down!” the armed map maker commanded; his morale amplified by his new found weapon. The bandit held the small bridge builders chest in his palm as he looked over at Balamor.

“Oh! So you didn’t scurry away huh? I'll take care of you first then.”

His words were raspy and somewhat hard to understand, but Balamor knew what was in store as the bandit threw the squirming hobbit to the ground. Lanky strides pushed the bandit closer as he cursed the robed hobbit. His courage was only a façade which shattered like a mirror as the bandit approached him, revealing a terrified boy underneath. The bandit was in mid-swing when the sound of a large thud came from behind him. A deathly gasp for air was followed by the sudden drop of the hooded attacker; in his back dug the head of a small hatchet.

Balamor opened his eyes to see the bandit dead on the ground, and the short kneeled body of the injured bridge builder; breathing heavily as he spoke.

“You...you saved my life you know? I figured...I would repay the favor.” he drew a winded laugh as his picked himself up. “We have to...stick together, us hobbits.”

Balamor tried finding words to reply as he looked at the dead hobbit only feet between them. “Is he...”

       “Dead? I’m afraid so...his bravery got the best of him.” He paused.

“We were fixing the bridge before we heard a raid down the road. I told him we shouldn’t bother but he insisted...” The man shook his head quickly. “I am sorry for you to have gotten caught up in all this. But I must inform his family of his death immediately. Again, thank you.”

The End

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