His head was swimming, and he was far from certain even of the direction they had been going in when he had his fall. He guessed as well as he could, and crawled along for a good way, till suddenly his hand met what felt like a tiny ring of cold metal lying on the floor of the tunnel. It was a turning point in his career, but he did not know it. He put the ring in his pocket almost without thinking: certainly it did not seem of any particular use at the moment. He did not go much further, but sat down on the cold floor and gave himself up to complete miserableness.
Roads go ever ever on, Over rock and under tree, By caves where never sun has shone, By streams that never find the sea: Over snow by winter sown, And through the merry flowers of June, Over grass and over stone, And under mountains in the moon. Roads go ever ever on Under cloud and under star, Yet feet that wandering have gone Turn at last to home afar, Eyes that fire and sword have seen And horror in the halls of stone Look at last on meadows green And trees and hills they long have known.
There was a roar and a great confusion of noise. Fires lept up and licked the roof. The throbbing grew to a great tumult, and the Mountain shook. Sam ran to Frodo and picked him up and carried him out to the door. And there upon the dark threshold of the Sammath Naur, high above the plains of Mordor, such wonder and terror came on him that he stood still forgetting all else, and gazed as one turned to stone. Fire belched from its riven summit. The skies burst into thunder seared with lightning. Down like lashing whips fell a torrent of black rain. And into the heart of the storm, with a cry that pierced all other sounds, tearing the clouds asunder, the Nazgûl came, shooting like flaming bolts, as caught in the fiery ruin of hill and sky they crackled, withered, and went out.
The world was young, the mountains green, No stain yet on the Moon was seen, No words were laid on stream or stone When Durin woke and walked alone. He named the nameless hills and dells; He drank from yet untasted wells; He stooped and looked in Mirrormere And saw a crown of stars appear; As gems upon a silver thread; Above the shadow of his head. The world is grey, the mountains old, The forge's fire is ashen-cold; No harp is wrung, no hammer falls: The darkness dwells in Durin's halls; The shadow lies upon his tomb In Moria, in Khazad-dûm. But still the sunken stars appear In dark and windless Mirrormere; There lies his crown in water deep, Till Durin wakes again from his sleep.
"I think really Bilbo preferred slipping off quietly in the end," said Gandalf, "Don't be too troubled. He'll be all right now. He left a packet for you. There it is!" Frodo took the envelope from the mantelpiece, and glanced at it, but did not open it. "You'll find his will and all the other documents in there, I think," said the wizard. "You are the master of Bag End now. And also, I fancy, you'll find a golden ring."
Gandalf did not move. And in that very moment, away behind in some courtyard in the City, a cock crowed. Shrill and clear he crowed, recking nothing of wizardry or war, welcoming only the morning that in the sky far above the shadows of death was coming with the dawn. And as if in answer there came from far away another note. Horns, horns, horns. In dark Mindolluin's sides they dimly echoed. Great horns of the North wildly blowing. Rohan had come at last!