‘There is no real going back. Though I may come to the Shire, it will not seem the same; for I shall not be the same. I am wounded with knife, sting, and tooth, and a long burden. Where shall I find rest?’
The Return of the King: Book VI, Chapter VII: Homeward Bound
Gandalf and the Hobbits finally reach Bree after a long but uneventful journey. There they find Butterbur largely unchanged… but the news is that things just aren’t quite right in this part of Middle-earth. The companions don’t stay long; they’re anxious to return to The Shire and get to the bottom of things. Frodo also realises that, regardless, The Shire will never again be the same for him.
Informing the hobbits that they have the capacity and wisdom to settle The Shire’s affairs themselves, Gandalf leaves to catch up with Bombadil,and the company is reduced to four Hobbits that set out from the Shire more than 12 months ago.
“It seems almost like a dream that has slowly faded.” Merry says. “Not to me,” Frodo answers “it feels more like falling asleep again.”
What do you think about how Butterbur reacts to the news that the companions bring? What do you think Gandalf wants to talk to Bombadil about? What does Frodo mean when he says it feels like falling asleep again?
Join us in #thehalloffire at 6pm ET as we take a look at the events of Homeward Bound.
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