When Thrain went away Thorin was 95, a great dwarf of proud bearing and full manhood. Maybe because rid of the Ring, Thorin long remained in Ered Luin, labouring and journeying and gathering such wealth as he could, until his people had fair houses in the hills, and were not [? ill content], though in their songs they spoke ever of the Lonely Mountain and the wealth and bliss of the Great Hall and the light of the Arkenstone.
But the years lengthened, and the embers of his heart began to grow hot as Thorin brooded on the wrongs of his house and people. Remembering too that Thror had lain upon him the vengeance due to Smaug.
But Erebor was far away and his people only few; and he had little hope that Dain Ironfoot would help in any attempt upon the dragon. For Thorin thought ever after the manner of his kingly forefathers, counting forces and weapons and the chances of war, as his hammer fell on the red iron in his forge.
It was at this point that Mithrandir entered the story of the House of Durin. He had before troubled himself little with Dwarves. He was a friend to those of good will, and liked well the exiles of Durin’s Folk that dwelt in the west. But on a time it happened that Mithrandir was passing west through Eriador (journeying to see Cirdan, maybe, or to visit the Shire which he had not entered for some years) when he fell in with Thorin Oakenshield going the same way, and they spoke much together on the road, and at Bree where they rested. In the morning Mithrandir said to Thorin: ‘I have thought much in the night. Now if that seems good to you I will come home with you for a while and we will talk further in greater privacy.’