Barliman's ChatThis weekend, Hall of Fire returns to The Lord of the Rings as we continue our chapter discussions of The Two Towers.

Throughout the first half of The Two Towers, Tolkien weaves together two threads of narrative. On one hand we have Aragorn, Gimli and Legolas and their efforts to find the hobbits, and then to assist the Rohirrim. On the other, Merry and Pippin’s captivity among the Uruk-hai, their escape and their burgeoning friendship with the Ents of Fangorn.

Flotsam and Jetsam finally reunites the two groups and reveals what happened after the Ents marched on Isengard.

Though Isengard be strong and hard
As cold as stone and bare as bone
We go, we go, we go to war
To hew the stone and break the door!

The Two Towers: Book III, Chapter IX: Flotsam and Jetsam

Flotsam and Jetsam is a chapter of big events, and small, yet important, gestures of friendship.

Pippin and Merry describe the destruction of the ring of Isengard, Saruman’s narrow escape to the safety of the black pillar of Orthanc, and the departure of many Huorns to wreak revenge against Saruman’s army of orcs and Dunlendings in the south.

Aragorn returns the barrow blades of the two Hobbits, and Pippin’s Lorien brooch — sacrificed during their captivity as a sign for any rescuers. Pippin offers Gimli a spare pipe that he has carried with him since leaving The Shire, and the five companions relate their adventures since that fateful day on Amon Hen.

Tiny gestures of companionship and camaraderie — flotsam and jetsam against the greater events of the War of the Ring — but is that not the essence of hobbitry?

Join us in the Hall of Fire this Saturday June 29 at 6pm EDT (New York time) for what promises to be a great discussion as we return to our Lord of the Rings read-through.

Time zone conversions

Not sure what time the chat will be where you are? Check this little conversion table out for some help. Alternatively, check our handy Event Announcer for the correct time.

6.00pm EDT (New York)
5.00pm CDT (Chicago)
4.00pm MDT (Denver)
3.00pm PDT (Los Angeles)

11.00pm BST (London)
11.00pm CST (Paris)
1.00am EEST (Helsinki)

8.00am AEST (Sunday) Brisbane
8.00am AEST (Sunday) Sydney, Melbourne
10.00am NZST (Sunday) Wellington

How long do your topic chats go for?

Our chats usually last an hour, and are very newbie friendly. Simply drop in and join the conversation! However, our main room, is open 24 hours a day. We don’t always talk Tolkien there, but if you have a burning question, you’ll usually find one or two of “the regulars” up for a chat!

Where — connection details

Chat happens on #thehalloffire on — the TORn IRC server. You can connect instantly via our embedded Mibbit client that works inside your web browser.

Alternatively, you can install a dedicated chat program such as mIRC on your computer and just plug in the following connection details.

Port: 6667
Channel: #thehalloffire