“Bilbo, are you all right?” Looking up from tuning his harp, Lindir had noticed the worried look on the Hobbit's face.
Bilbo cleared his throat. Why had he agreed to this? The elves liked his verses, his recitals had always been well received, and Lindir had repeatedly affirmed his singing voice was enjoyable. But singing aloud in the Hall of Fire, for such a large audience? What had he been thinking?
He opened his mouth to speak, but only a croak came out. He tried again, to no avail. Panicked, he looked at Lindir.
“Oh dear, you've got the jitters.”
The minstrel handed the Hobbit a mug, patting his shoulder. “Drink this, it usually helps.”
Bilbo obeyed, sipping the hot tea with honey, and trying again after a few sips. Still nothing but a painful croak. Lindir's worried look didn't help, nor did the second mug, nor the third. At this point, Bilbo needed to pee and a mouse-hole to vanish into.
“You wrote this song for Lord Elrond's Begetting Day, didn't you?”
The Hobbit nodded.
“Would you like someone else to perform it for you?”
Later, Bilbo marvelled how different his rhymes sounded this way.