Pairing/Characters: Bilbo, Kíli, Fíli, Thorin, Dís, Dáin II; Bilbo/Thorin
Fandom: The Hobbit
Word Count: 1,605
Spoilers: For the end of the book/movies.
Summary: Bilbo and Dís finally meet. Only Bilbo is surprised that she likes him.
Notes/Warnings: My sister asked if anyone had written gender-changing Dwarves. That planted a seed in my head and resulted in several pages of headcanon. Naturally, I had to eventually write Bilbo meeting Dís. I also wanted to work in the fact that Dáin has been super-helpful and has no intention of trying to take Erebor from Thorin. He's happy with the Iron Hills, thank you very much. No beta.
"Bilbo! Hurry up!" Kíli dashed into the Hobbit's rooms, boots sliding on the stone floor.
Fíli came in behind his sister and steadied her. "They're almost here!"
"Who's almost here?" Bilbo asked, adjusting his coat over his waistcoat.
Kíli bounced on her toes, as exuberant as ever, just days after her Change had left her much the same as she'd looked before except with extra curves at her breasts and hips. "The caravan from the Blue Mountains!"
"Amad's leading them!" Fíli's mustache braids trembled ever so slightly, betraying his own eagerness.
Bilbo's knees weakened at the thought of meeting Thorin's sister and Fíli and Kíli's mother. He was terrified. Part of him would rather face down Smaug again. He cleared his throat, hoping his voice would come out steadier. "You two go on ahead. I'll meet you down there."
"Oh, no, you're coming with us," Kíli informed him, her face serious for once.
As his sister looped her arm through Bilbo's, Fíli added, "Thorin would you like to stand with the rest of the Company."
"Very well. I can't exactly refuse my Intended, can I?" He let them steer him from his room and through the halls of Erebor to the front gates.
They stood wide open with Thorin and the rest of the Company waiting on the roadway. Dáin Ironfoot and the other Iron Hills dwarves waited inside the gates. Fíli and Kíli led Bilbo over to stand beside Thorin. She smiled and wrapped her arm around his shoulders. He leaned into her gladly, trying to hide his nerves. For all intents and purposes, these Dwarves were Thorin's people and Bilbo worried about the sort of impression he'd make, especially Dís. He had Fíli and Kíli's approval, but not hers and he was terrified of making an arse of himself in front of her. He blinked when Thorin pressed a kiss to his temple. "Relax, ghivashel. Everyone will love you."
"Especially Amad," Kíli added with a grin. "She always said Aunt needed someone who can out-stubborn her."
Fíli nudged his sister. "We weren't supposed to overhear that."
"Oops." Kíli smiled sheepishly. "Pretend you didn't hear that."
Bilbo looked up at Thorin and noticed that her eyes were sparkling with mirth despite the serious expression on her face. He squeezed her hand firmly. "Let it go, dearest. You know she's right."
"Which one?" Thorin snorted, looking from her niece to the approaching caravan.
Kíli, irrepressible as always, chimed in, "Both of us!"
"You're not helping." Fíli gave an exasperated sigh.
Behind them, Bilbo could hear the rest of the Company failing to stifle their amusement. Kíli bounced on her toes again. "I see her! I see Amad!"
"Amad!" Fíli echoed his sister, following when she dashed towards the Dwarf on the lead pony. The golden-haired Dwarf barely slid off the pony before the two heirs crashed into her, hugging her tight. There was much laughing and crying from all three Dwarves before they finally disentangled themselves enough for the three of them to head up towards Thorin, Fíli and Kíli on either side of their mother.
As the three drew closer, Dís caught sight of her sister and her relieved smile faded, to be replaced by a thunderous expression that Bilbo had seen many times on Thorin's face. He looked up at Thorin when she withdrew her arm from around his shoulders. Her expression was carefully blank as she gazed back at her sister. "Thorin?"
"It's all right, Bilbo," she assured him, gently pushing him a few steps away from her.
Just in time, for Dís reached her sister just then, glaring at her. Without a word, she punched her older sister, hard enough that Thorin staggered back a few paces. "That's for taking both of my children on this damn fool quest!"
"We all survived, didn't we?" Thorin replied, rubbing her cheek.
Dís planted her fists on her hips. "That's not the point! I almost lost all of you to this quest!"
"We're here, Amad," Fíli reminded her as Kíli simply hugged her. "You haven't lost us."
She kissed her son's forehead while wrapping an arm around her daughter. "Where's the hobbit I have to thank for keeping all three of you idiots alive?"
"That would be me, ma'am." Bilbo secretly prayed his voice would remain steady, giving her a small bow. "Bilbo Baggins of the Shire, at your service."
Before he even straightened up, Dís pulled him into a hug, her arms tight around him. After a moment's surprise, he returned the hug. She whispered in his ear, "Thank you, Bilbo Baggins. Thank you."
"I didn't really do anything." He returned the hug all the same, feeling her shoulders shake under his hands, just as broad as Thorin's.
Dís gently pushed him back so she could look at him, her expression stern and reminding him so much of Thorin in that moment. "No. You saved them. Or have my sister and children lied to me about you?"
"I don't know what they told you, but I couldn't bear the thought of losing them myself, so I did what I could for them." He smiled sheepishly up at her. She looked so much like her sister, with golden hair instead of ebony and a longer beard. It was a tad disconcerting to tell the truth.
She smiled and leaned forward to kiss his forehead. "That's why our line remains in your debt, Bilbo Baggins of the Shire."
"You Dwarves and debt and honour," he huffed, secretly pleased. "In the Shire, we don't let bad feelings get to the point of war. Maybe a feud between families, but those rarely last long since everyone is related to pretty much everyone else in some way."
Thorin slid her arm around Bilbo's shoulders, interjecting before her sister could say anything. "Don't get him started on Hobbit genealogy. He could talk for hours about it."
"I would not!" Bilbo couldn't help pouting a little at his Intended.
Fíli and Kíli laughed at him and chorused, "You would!"
"Amad!" "Adad!" "Adad!" "Amad!" The chorus of young Dwarf voices drew their attention to a whole herd of Dwarf children rushing towards Bombur. Bilbo stared as she caught each of them in a hug, eyes bright with happiness and relief.
Normally, he'd ask Bofur for an explanation, since the toymaker had proven most adept at explaining Dwarf culture to him, but his friend looked happy for once, hugging his nieces and nephews once they'd greeted Bombur. Thorin must have noticed Bilbo's confusion, because she leaned down to whisper in his ear, "Bombur and her husband are one of the few Dwarf couples to share the burden of bearing children. That's why they have so many and why some call her 'Amad' and others call her 'Adad'."
"I did wonder," Bilbo murmured, catching Thorin's hand in his and giving it a squeeze.
A grown Dwarf, carrying a very young Dwarf, waded through the children milling around Bombur, Bofur, and Bifur and carefully placed the Dwarfling in Bombur's arms. She stared at the child with wide eyes. Bilbo remembered from conversations during the Quest that Bombur's mate had been pregnant with their latest child when she left for Erebor. Obviously, the child had made the journey safely and she was seeing it for the first time. Bombur kissed the child's forehead and turned so Bofur could see his new niece or nephew.
Tearing his eyes away, Bilbo watched as the rest of the Company greeted friends and loved ones on the caravans. Thorin tugged on his hand and he walked with her behind Dís, Fíli, and Kíli into Erebor. "Lady Dís!"
"Lord Dáin, it's good to see you," she greeted him with the armclasp Bilbo had noticed fellow warriors exchange. "I'm glad you've been here to keep my sister from being too much of an idiot."
Thorin frowned and Bilbo stifled a laugh. Diplomatic as always, Dáin replied, "That's been more of a joint effort between myself and Master Baggins."
"I'm not an idiot," Thorin huffed, folding her arms across her chest.
Dís mirrored her sister's action. "In some matters, you aren't, but in others, you are. I'm glad there were others here to keep you in line without me." Thorin growled wordlessly at that and Dís stepped forward to thump Thorin's chest. "I notice you haven't Changed yet and how long has it been since you got to Erebor?"
"There hasn't been time." Thorin shifted her weight and refused to look her sister in the eye.
Bilbo rolled his eyes. "Óin hasn't cleared her yet. Kíli was only cleared last week to Change."
"Exactly. Idiots." Dís thumped her sister again. "Once Óin clears you, we'll go to the Chamber of Change together."
Thorin sighed deeply. "You don't have to wait simply because I was an idiot. You can Change now if you like."
"Do you know how long it'd been since I'd Changed?" Dís asked. Thorin shook her head. "Not since I came of age. It took almost a week for me to Change for this trip to Erebor. I'd almost forgotten what it was like to be male."
Bilbo stared at her, as did the others around them. Quietly, Thorin asked, "Dís, what are you saying?"
"I'm saying that it's been almost as long for you since you were female." Her expression was soft and sympathetic. "You may find that the Change will take longer than usual. It'll be easier to have company there and I know you won't want to show weakness in front of your people."
Slowly, Thorin nodded. "We'll Change together when Óin clears me for it."