From the Gap of Rohan, the southernmost peaks of the Misty Mountains and the northernmost of the White Mountains, the Grey Pilgrim crosses under the shadow and thunder of Mordor. Great evil shouts and growls across Middle Earth as Gandalf the Grey, the wise Wizard hurries through the tall grass.
Leaving the Wood Elves of Milkwood and a young Legolas with the care of the creature known by many names, but his partner in its capture, Aragon, named the creature Gollum after the sound it makes when speaking,
Gondor's leader and supreme ruler Sauron, whose forces caught Gollum and tortured him for information about Sauron's all-powerful One Ring, had just captured Gollum once before. After Gollum's squeals and wails were interpreted, he divulged that The One Ring was in the custody of one Bilbo Baggins. Released from Sauron's forces, Gollum was captured by the Ranger Aragon and Gandalf who both interrogated him about the Ring and then placed him in the care of the Wood Elves of Mirkwood.
After his voyages with Bilbo Baggins, Gandalf spent these past years in search of information on Sauron's resurgence and Bilbo's mysterious ring, spurred particularly by Bilbo's initial misleading story of how he had obtained it as a "present" from Gollum. During this period he befriended Aragorn and first became suspicious of Saruman. He spent as much time as he could in the Shire, strengthening his friendship with Bilbo and Frodo, Bilbo's heir.
Now, Gandalf is on his way to Bilbo's "eleventy-first" (111th) birthday party in T.A. 3001, to be held in the Shire and Bilbo's home. His horse and buggy is now loaded down as he is bringing many fireworks for the occasion, Gandalf as always, will be content as he once again will be Gandalf in Bagg End.