A Knife in the Dark

From Tolkien Gateway
Ted Nasmith - Fire on Weathertop.jpg
A Knife in the Dark
Chapter of The Fellowship of the Ring
EventFatty is attacked at Crickhollow; Frodo and Strider leave and are attacked at Weathertop.
Date30 September-6 October 3018
LocationCrickhollow, Bree, and Weathertop
<  Strider (chapter)
Flight to the Ford  >

A Knife in the Dark is the eleventh chapter of the first book in The Fellowship of the Ring.


Back at Frodo's new "home" in Crickhollow, Black Riders accosted Fatty Bolger. Fatty escaped and the horn call of Buckland was blown, announcing the invasion. The Black Riders flee, but now they knew that Frodo and the ring were not there any longer.

Meanwhile, at the Prancing Pony, Strider discovered that the Hobbit rooms of the Inn had been broken into and ransacked. All the horses and ponies had been stolen from the stables and the Hobbits had no means by which to travel, except for one pony, sold to them for thrice its price.

The Hobbits loaded the pony with supplies and set off, creating a stir in Bree-land. Their journey began on the road and continued along paths and woods through bogs and marshes. By the sixth day, they were almost near the place that they had been hoping to meet Gandalf, who had left a sign scratched on a stone signifying that he had been there at Weathertop three days back.

Samwise and Pippin found traces of a recent and hasty campsite on the mountaintop. It might have been left by rangers or perhaps by Gandalf. Strider was concerned that it was a mistake for the Hobbits to stay on the mountaintop, because Black Riders could smell the blood of living things. The crusaders made a fire, beside which they sat listening to stories of Gil-galad the Elven King, the Song of Beren and Lúthien and other tales of Middle-earth.

The Hobbits noticed strange shadows and they realized that the enemy was approaching. Frodo gave in to the desperation of wearing the Ring and as soon as he does he saw the riders clearly. There were five of them, one wearing a crown. Though Frodo was invisible, that Black Rider sprang forward with his knife. Frodo managed to strike at the enemy's feet but was himself injured in the shoulder. He managed to slip the Ring off his finger just before losing consciousness.