In a bowl in the ground lived a betta. Not a nasty, dirty or smelly bowl filled with hard water or scum. It was a cared for betta bowl, and that means comfort. It was a good size, around 2.5 gallons and it had a perfectly round top. Because it was at the higher hill end of the rice patty, the bowl was well oxygenated and contained many plants and a small hollow log. The betta was a very well to do halfsun betta and his name was Moloka'i Baggins.
The Bagginses had lived in the neighborhood of The Hill for time out of mind, and other bettas considered them very respectable, not only because they were rich, but also because they never had any adventures or did anything unexpected: you could tell what a Baggins would say on any question without the bother of asking him. This is the story of how a Baggins had an adventure, and found himself doing and saying things altogether unexpected.
What is a betta? I guess bettas need some description nowadays, since wild ones are rare and shy of big people. They are little creatures, about 2-4 inches and smaller than the bearded cory catfish. Bettas have no beards. There is little or no magic about them, except the ordinary everyday sort which helps them disappear quickly into their bowls when large stupid folk like you and me come blundering along, making a noise like elephants which they can hear a mile off. They are inclined to be fat in the stomach; their scales and fins are usually colored in bright colors (chiefly green, blue, red and yellow) They wear no shoes, because their fins are wide and can support them easily. They have good natured faces, and cute little laughs (especially after dinner, which they have twice a day when they can get it).
Now that you know enough of bettas to go on with. I will tell you about the mother of this hobbit-of Moloka'i Baggins that is-was the famous Belladonna Took, one of the three remarkable daughters of the Old Took, head of the hobbits who lived across the water. It was often said (in other families) that long ago one of the Took ancestors must have taken a bettafairy wife. That was of couse completely absurd. Often though the some of the Took-clan would go and have adventures, secretly disappearing to the embarrassment of the rest of the family.
Rest of the story short, Thorin fishshield comes to Moloka'i's bowl. When Moloka'i realizes that the trek will cross the misty mountains he decided's not to go because battery powered bowl heaters have not been invented. The misty mountains are COLD! What should he do?