Bilbo wanders around alone, and then decides to lie down under the bower for some time, while a dark bird flies towards him, with him a decrepit old raven aside.
"I am the chief of the great ravens of the Mountain." He croaks, "Hobbit, you have to set off at this moment, and head to the giant rock in the south of the Lake. There awaits your last quest."
"I believed that my tasks were completed.", says Bilbo, "Smaug is no longer alive, and those dwarves have taken back Erebor, not to mention the Lake-town being saved. I am ready to go home."
"There is still the last task." Finishes the old raven, and then off he flies away.
Riding on a pony, Bilbo rushes towards the south along the riverbank, landscapes around him flashing away. He set out in the morning, and didn’t arrive the giant rock until noon. It is an ancient huge rock, with half of which sitting beside the river and other half gazing the clear sky. Bilbo soon finds someone lying under the shadow of the rock covered by the mosses after he settles his pony nearby. He rubs his eyes as he thinks himself having some kind of illusion, but then he notices that there actually is someone there.
Is that an elf? Wonders Bilbo, as the figure seems graceful, with a clean fair skin. Is this what the raven referred as the last task of Bilbo?
He kneels next to this elf, and puts a hand onto his forehead.
"I am a hobbit of the Shire, elf." He addresses to him, "Please wake up."
His forehead feels like burning. Bilbo starts to worry, but considering the fact, it apparently doesn’t allow a solution like a hobbit carrying an unconscious elf. Things might get even worse if he didn’t come to his sense.
Bilbo walk down to the river and fetches some water back, pouring gently onto the elf’s face. Water drops along his face, yet the forehead still feels scalding (and so do his arms and chest). Bilbo notices that his lip skin has started cracking, a sign of lacking moisture. Bilbo didn’t carry any water bag with him, nor any cup. He tries to force water into his trismic mouth using a reed leaf. Didn’t success. He heaves a sign, sits down next to him with a extreme upset face.
Then, an idea comes to his mind.
He fetches the water from the river one more time, and this time, instead of pouring on the face, he drinks a mouthful, and then, bends over closely to elf’s lips (with a short moment of hesitation), carefully feed the water into his mouth.
After that, Bilbo straightens, and stares at him. If this didn’t work, he would have to ride his pony to get Gandalf for some help (which is the worst, as they would not be able to return by horse until the moon rose). However, the elf starts wavering his eyelash, and he opens his eyes.
It is a pair of grayish-golden eyes, floating with light lake-blue. Pupils with rather dark color, therefore make it seems quite sharp. Those eyes blinks, and then meet Bilbo’s surprised gazing. The elf struggles a bit to sit up, behaving gracefully despite the weakness and the fact that he wears nothing on him.
"My raven hasn’t yet returned," he says, "May I borrow yours?"
Bilbo checks around, and, with surprise, finds that dark raven standing on his shoulder, slowly pluming his feather.
"Of course." he responds, "Use mine."
The elf stands up, reaching his hand out, and let the raven stands on his finger. He quickly talks to the raven, using the language that Bilbo cannot understand, and waves his hand to free the bird. Then, his sight returns to Bilbo.
"Lake-town, or Lonely Mountain?" He questions.
"How did you…"
"Make sure you have two horses, hobbit." He continues, "It takes a long time to return to the Shire, and I am not able to fly for now."
"How did you know…"
"I was wounded, thanks to you." answers the elf, "Certainly, those wounds can, and will cure themselves."
"You told those dwarves my weakness, and those ravens of the mountain also heard about it. They passed the message to that bowman of the Lake-town. I was then shot by his arrow."
Bilbo has completely lost his words. A name comes to his mind, but it seems nothing but nonsense.
"My name is Smaug. My address is the Lonely Mountain, Erebor, Dragon Hole - at least, WAS - you have to take me back."