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This is the Journal of the Dwarf, Murad. It recounts the events of the Battle of Dale and the Siege of Erebor in the Third age and some of the events that followed afterwards.

March 17th. TA 3019

I sit in a watchtower overlooking the town of Dale. I and the others here are armed to the teeth with axes, bows and swords. We know that they will come today. We have seen their campfires from afar. Our Lord Dain and his ally Brand of Dale stand their ground against The Dark Lord and his armies. I am proud to be on the same field as them, let alone fight alongside them. But I still have this doubt. We will die, even if it is with honour and a valiant sacrifice. Will we be remembered? Or will our race fall into darkness and be forgotten? But we cannot run. We must stand even in the face of death. We cannot expect help from anywhere else, Mirkwood has problems of its own, Gondor and Rohan are fighting Orcs in the south. We are alone. This battle will most likely be the death of me. I have never really felt like this before. The feeling that you are going to die. I’ve been in battles before, but they were small skirmishes, where I cut though Orcs like a knife through butter! But this battle, this is different. We are outnumbered, and even I don’t think that our dwarves sheild will hold the men of Ruhn for that long. Well only time will tell. I need to sharpen my axe and ready my wits. It will be a long battle.

March 20th. TA 3019

Three days we managed to hold them. Three Days! I was expecting to be slaughtered at the first second by an arrow from the sky. The old fire of battle had rekindled inside of me, and we held our shield wall for three days, time to barely eat, drink or sleep. But the sound of our enemies flowing blood kept us fighting, fighting until we had to retreat into the mountain.

Alas I have just heard as I write this. King Brand has been killed, he has been struck down just outside the gate. Even now, our Lord Dain defends his body from attackers. How such a bond could from betwixt two different Kings from different races, I have no idea.

The ink on the paragraph above has only been dry thirty minutes. I write this now in great sorrow, and a shaking hand. King Dain has fallen. We held them back as we bore his body, and that of Brands into the mountain. Then we closed the giant gate leaving the battle cries and bodies of men and orcs outside. We are now besieged inside our home. We watch and barricade every entrance, every secret passage, in case they find a way in. We have suffered heavy casualties over all, but then again so have the enemy. Its hard to be optimistic in these rough and sorrow filled times.
March 22nd. TA 3019

They tried to get in, again. They brought a fallen tree to the gates. We held them off with axes and arrows through slits in the rock near the gate, but even that tree, with a head of steel could not breach those gates. We’ve seen a troll fail to get in. But now there is little to do but sit and wait. Our food will run out in about a week. We are waiting to die.

March 24th . TA 3019

We are waiting to die. Everything is silent. The cries of Orcs and men outside just turn into an irritating buzz in our heads. We ignore them now. Our new leaders, the sons of Dain and Brand have taken command. Thorin Stonehelm III and Bard II have done little to boost morale. I can’t blame them. There is little hope left. We are waiting to die.

March 26th . TA 3019

All sorrow has left me and my comrades! We have had excellent news! Saurons forces have been defeated and routed in the south! The Dark Lord himself is dead! Our enemies morale has taken an almost fatal blow, we only need to make a final push to send them scattering for the hills! We going to attack at dawn, yet we are preparing already. We are sharpening our blades, polishing our shields. We are still outnumbered, but if this is going to be our end, then it will be such an end, people will talk of it for generations to come! I must sharpen my axe once more, for it has become blunt from the many days of fighting.

March 27th. TA 3019

Victory Is Ours! I will remember this day forevermore! The gates burst open, and we gave a battle cry that shook the mountain. We saw our enemies cower and scream in fear as we charged out, horns blazing, axes and swords shining. We cut a bloody swathe through their ranks, and after some close combat fighting, their already low morale was broken, and they started to flee. We cut down as many as we could, and shouted and cheered as we saw their backs turn into specks on the horizon. My blood still boils from the speech that Lord Thorin gave afterwards. I remember little of it, but I still feel like charging after those that have fled! My bones ache and my muscles hurt, but my spirit remains as strong as ever!

March 28th . TA 3019

Clearing up the dead. It brings thoughts that trouble the mind. We have suffered heavy casualties as a cost for our victory. The Dark Lord has been vanquished, but he has certainly left scars on our lands, our minds and our hearts. I am lucky to have survived, when others have not. But now. Peace. The word is so sweet when said now. In my thoughts, all those that have sacrificed themselves, Lord Dain, King Brand, and other dwarves and men. If they were here, and they foresaw what Middle Earth will be in the years to come. They would smile.
Chapter End Notes:
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