Khazad-dûm, the Dwarrowdelf, was truly a wonder in its day. Mine, workplace, and residence of the Longbeards, it was vast and intricate beyond the imagining of outsiders. While passing through Moria on their dark journey, surrounded by impenetrable darkness and the fathomless weight of the stone and earth of the mountains, Gandalf told the company that there were many wells and streams within Moria, and indeed they could hear water churning down a deep pit, “as if some great mill-wheel were turning in the depths” — the Water-works. In the upper levels, there were “great windows on the mountain-side, and shafts leading out to the light”, where the three peaks of Moria were enveloped in clouds and swirling winds. The lower levels were hot with flames and smoke, perhaps home to the forges of Khazad-dûm, and below them, at unimaginable depths, the Foundations of Stone. Dwarrowdelf, wondrous mansion of the dwarves, was alive with the elements of Arda.
Durin’s Tower, carved from the living rock of the peak of Zirakzigil the Silvertine, loomed high above steep mountain slopes, into which windows and shafts brought natural sunlight to the upper levels of Dwarves’ delvings. Turbine has extrapolated Khazad-dûm’s lighting system to include a network of cleverly angled serial mirrors that reflect light into the deeper reaches of the Dwarrowdelf; the main workings of the network are found in the Mirror-halls of Lumul-nar. In the days before the fall of Khazad-dûm, the workings of these halls would have required careful tending. This dwarf is a peak-steward, responsible for braving the snowy, wind-blasted, cloud-shrouded heights to ensure that the windows and shafts remain intact and unobstructed so that the Dwarrowdelf may be filled with light. He also checks the mechanisms of Lumul-nar for any damage and carries out preventive maintenance. A sure-footed mountaineer, he has a practiced eye for detecting tell-tale signs of potential avalanches so that necessary protective measures can be taken if possible. He wears warm, fur-trimmed garments in colours of icy blue and snowy white, reinforced with some armour plating, for at times dangerous creatures stalk the slopes. His cloak shows a glittering pattern reminiscent of the swirling winds and snows of the peaks, and his head is warmed by a padded and pom-pommed cap that also shields his ears and neck.
This outfit is the second in a four-part series called the Keepers of Moria, based on special positions I imagine could have existed among the dwarves responsible for the maintenance of Khazad-dûm. Each outfit also refers to one of the four classic elements; this one represents the element of air. It turned out that the peak of Zirakzigil is a difficult place to get a good screenshot! The weather was not cooperating while I was there and the beasts were hostile to my still-leveling dwarf model. I had to carefully position him beside cliffs or chunks of debris to reduce the blizzard conditions, but fortunately, it seemed like his warm clothes were just the thing to wear when venturing out onto the mountain top! Sadly, due to the particulars of Zirakzigil’s topography, it wasn’t as interesting a setting for screenshots as I’d imagined. Still, I hope the outfit itself pleases!
- Head: Radiant Hat (crafted or world drop), default
- Shoulders: Leather Shoulders of the Leaping Stag (Dunland quest reward), sea blue
- Back: Yule Hoodless Cloak (Yule festival token barter reward), sea blue
- Chest: Ceremonial Leijona Armour (crafted Lossoth reputation reward), orange
- Hands: Ceremonial Gloves of the Aurochs (medallion barter reward — Hunter), sea blue
- Legs: Ceremonial Leggings of the Aurochs (medallion barter reward — Hunter), sea blue
- Feet: Ceremonial Ajokoira Shoes (crafted Lossoth reputation reward or Store), orange
Tips: The shoulders used in this outfit can be obtained, by various names, from several quests in Dunland. The pieces from the Armour of the Aurochs (the Helegrod Hunter set) are available in both statted armour and cosmetic versions at skirmish camps. Recipes for the Lossoth reputation items (Ajokoira and Leijona sets) can be obtained from the Lossoth light and medium armour vendors, respectively, in the Great Lodge in Sûri-kylä. The ceremonial version of the Ajokoira armour is also available for purchase in the LOTRO Store.