ooohhhh, you are mean.
I will definitely join in the strangling of the captain. It may well be that Hesgar is better suited for her, but love goes its own ways.
I am a bit afraid now, for everyone, because is the captain is in a bad mood, I wouldn't want to cross him (or even his way). But unfotunately that is mostly impossible for everyone he works with. I can see trouble a mile away
Author's Response: I am happy that my writing is evoking such emotion! Even if it is the desire to strangle a main character. Hesgar is a wonderful young man and yes, he is a great catch and a good match. You are also correct that Erkenbrand in a foul mood could be dangerous. You will have to see how things play out in the long run! ~G
You are right, I like Hesgar. And DAMN IT! I would help him strangle the captain with my own bare hands! *grumbling*, *cursing*, *swearing*
And I was so happy thinking they were solving everything out...
By the way: I think we have still somewhat of a mail-problem ... you said that you had sent me e-mails (when I wrote my first review after my exam), but I didn't get any and I think the one that I wrote you didn't find its way into your box ;-)
Any idea what's happening?
Author's Response: Thought you'd like him...he just kinda appeared in my mind, a sweet, lovable, honorable young man. A wonderful match for Ealwyn or any young woman! They each still have some small issues to get over--Ealwyn needs a confidence boost whixh erkenbrand tried to give her by encouraging her social behavior. erkenbrand does not want her to feel trapped--he is, after all, a very large, intimidating man, her is technically her boss, and he did basically help rescue her. So, things are not so solved...much more to come! As for the e-mail....who knows! I really do not think the mods are around much. It's not the first time.
I like the flow of the story now, the gentleness of their relationship's progress. It really fits nicer to the story line than the fiery yet remarkably unoriginal development that most stories display.
And yesss, I still like Frearid best. Now I can add 'refreshing honesty' to his character traits ;-)
And there is something else I noticed: you always seem to try and give even the minor characters fitting (or befitting ;-) ) names instead of calling them 'soldier' or 'a lady'. I like that. Just where do you get those names from?
Author's Response: Thank you! I am a romantic and I like the building of the relationship--the foreplay more than the "they are together now jump into bed". Even the scene in Dúnadan’s Daughter was about more than just sex. Since these two are young, I think they would need the get to know each other time...especially given her recent past. I am glad you like Fréarid! He is a fine young man and someday will make a great captain, I am sure. I am hoping that you might also come to like Hesgar (even if he is competition). he also has honest feeling towards Éalwyn. I like to name characters unless they show up only once or they are...hmmm...to be shown in a specific light. For example in a fic a I wrote called Sight Unseen, I left a she-elf nameless as she was not "important" though she tried to be. It also helps give them dimension and actually make it clearer in writing. Lots of he's and she's and the woman or the rider start to make the text muddled--not sure who's who. I spend a lot of time looking through books and websites and picking friends brains. For the Rohirrim, i used an online gaming site and my old English text books since Tolkien kinda fashioned them from old Anglo-Saxon cultures (that is where Colmáse came from--old English) The Council of Elrond and my Sindarin Language book is where I go for elf names. Tolkien gave us wonderful, beautiful characters and if I am going to even hope to write something worthy of the master, in his world, I believe I need to put forth the effort. I am glad that it works! And yes, most names have a meaning and it usually fits their persona (heck, even my pen name has a meaning and it fits me ;) Hope you continue to like where this goes and how the characters grow! ~G
He is perfect for her, got to love him! And Frearid, too. I think I didn't quite change my opinion, he is my favorite in this story. BUT noone surpasses ELDER GUTKNECHT ;-)
I would be curious as to the fate of the advisor though... I am not sure if you are going to include that in the following chapter, but I wondered how hard the Rohirrim in your story would punish such a crime.
Author's Response: I was going to 'deal' with the advisor in this fic, but that would have made things drag and I am kinda trying to keep this within Tolkien's timeline (and I was trying to avoiding epic length stories) I may still do a little one shot just to give him his just deserts...I do not believe it to be a capital offense, but it will not be just a slap on the hand. I'll have to think about that. As it is I am struggling with getting Éomer’s story written and that needs to be done so this series can be complete.
aaawwwww, so sweet. him, her alone in a glade on a blanket.
I especially liked the rivalry between Erkenbrand and the other men, even if it is only for fun, but it will remind him not to take her for granted, that he isn't the only one who is interested in her.
I'd like to see how they will continue from here on, so don't you dare stop writing =P
Author's Response: won't stop...promise! (baring of course an act of god) A little competition and some choices are healthy! ;-)
So much for liking quiet evenings. I don't think this will be quiet but they will be there together and I bet she only goes because he does.
It is so nice that she is back to herself, her real selt, that is. And the care Lady Cynwen gives, no more of this pants stuff. Women, be womanly !!!
Author's Response: Her is a big part of why she is going...she feels protected, safe...that however is a sign of dependency and Erkenbrand does not want her to feel trapped in anyway by anyone, himself included. It will be a good experience for them, though. Hope you like how this plays out. And yes...women should be womanly--it is hardly a sign of weakness! ~G
Yay, they have a date (or at least plan to have one). Quiet evening, date ... all the same to me.
I like the part in the stables. I always say animals are more intelligent and knowing about our emotions than we give them credit for but nobody listens to me. At least I know you understand me in that way.
As you said, I am waiting for the twists and turns
Author's Response: Well, Erkenbrand hinted at liking quiet evenings...but he still wants to give her the chance to expore her new found freedom so...well, you'll see. More soon :) ~G
Depression miraculously faded...
Author's Response: Glad! I know I kind made quick work of her recovery, but I am trying to fit this into the canon time line so she's a quick healer and ready to get back to 'normal, everyday' routine. Hope the rest does the story justice! ~G
Maybe I should just stay silent on that point, not raising a debate on principles and such ... but most often I find it really hard to keep my mouth shut - or my fingers still, for that matter ;-)
So: personally I think that abuse is not so hard to recognize, if one is curagous enough to adress it. It is a very curious behaviour that abused persons exhibit, that always reminds me of a beaten dog - not that this metaphor would be far from the thruth, really. I have never seen that kind of behaviour in someone who was not at least verbally abused.
And especially when the abuse is of a physical nature and the culprit is so careless as to let the signs show on the face ... I mean if the person does not suffer certain illnesses and has healthy reflexes than the probability of, let's say a black eye, is really ... low. Or at least it should not happen often.
But I am in no way complaining about the story line! It is the realism of it that probably has me upset ... or drawn in, if you want ;-)
Even nowadays it happens so often and nobody steps in, even when someone is abused in the middle of a marketplace! But at least there are adresses for women's refuges in every public toilet and other measures are taken.
And there practically in something akin to the Middle Age in a smaller village Ealwyn had not even the chance to flee the situation for the knowledge that she would be found in every single town in Rohan. And. No. One. Saw.
That lady Cynwen has an explanation for everything so soon must mean that she all but knew what was happening.
God, now I'm depressed ... must have been my longest comment though, so far ;-)
And I liked the chapter, the story is realistic and the characters in it, too.
You are a really good author and I greatly enjoy your stories.
~ Massanie ~
Author's Response: It is not as easy as one might think as most abusers are very smart. As a former teacher, I was required by law to report suspected abuse--it was a scary thought. My husband worked for more than a decade in Children Services and saw many forms of abuse and it is actually disturbing how easy it is to not see it (whether because someone does not want to or because a victim will often protect the abuser--had a Teacher like that) Now about the advisor...he was a very intelligent man and he did not let marks show clearly. When Grimbold saw the bruise, I intentionally did not say where it was other than to imply it was on the head/face. A slap or shove into a wall will look much different than a fist to the eye---he was never that obvious. In the end he just lost all control, feeling angry and betrayed and played. Lady Cynwen felt he was a lecherous old man but could not prove anything inappropriate because he was just that damn careful. Plus there was the whole War of the Ring--the destruction of Helms Deep and all; no one really had time to place close attention. They were at war and there were far bigger issues. the Lady is not a young woman and has seen much in her life. Think of the power Gríma had...Théodred was young and more concerned with defending his people; Grimbold was only a captain, also buried under the strains of battle. Éalwyn unfortunately just got a little lost in the shuffle. So sorry to have depressed you! But the worst is over...now come healing and dancing around each other....
Huh, that was ... disturbing? (I know, that sounds just sooo hypocritical coming from me ;-) )
Well written though. And finally everything is out in the open now, with enough reliable witnesses. At the beginning of the chapter I thought he would get away with it once again or that finally someone would not be able to ignore the bruises that were bound to appear on her face now. I am glad that at least she is safe. In Germany we have this saying: better an ending with terror than a terror without ending.
It is sad though that every person is in the end just the sum of everything that happened to them. In a way Ealwyn will never be completely free, for the memories - while with time fading and becoming less painful - will always be there and she'll probably never be as cheerful, as self-confident as she could have been if not for that advisor.
Sorry by the way, had an exam to do and not much time, am now catching up on your story though!
Author's Response: So glad to hear from you again (sorry to bug you w/ e-mails) I hoped it was something like school and not something else...like not liking the way this story was heading. Some people have trouble with abuse/violence stories and stop reading. Now that that is settled :) about Ealwyn--keep in mind that she was only with the advisor for 7 years and she was 16 at the start. She had a pretty good life till that point so we can guess she was well adjusted and already developing her own personality. Therefore, she will have an easier time getting over this. I also (intentionally) did not dwell on when the abuse started or how bad it got. You could view it a more mental or verbal with physical threats and only occasionally physical "punishment"....off to continue commenting on you other awesome reviews...by the way, I love that saying you mentioned--how very true.
Yes, she's back. I can imagine what the office must have looked like with all those papers and 2 men not knowing what to do. I know how that looks because I kind of have the same job. Anyway, she is back, both are happy about it and there are no ill feelings towards each other. Life could be good =)
Author's Response: *Snigger* Yes, it could...but it is never quite that easy ;} I think you will enjoy the twist and turn still to come! ~G
I don't really know what ot say to this chapter. I am glad everything is out, I am glad Erkenbrand stopped blaming himself and I am glad that he'll be there for her when she will face the difficult time ahead.
But I don't know how this will develop, I think his feelings of guilt will resurface every now and then and I think she, too, may feel he is to blame or she will feel threatened by him, after experiencing something like this.
Author's Response: Abuse (at least in my Rohan) was not almost unheard of and as I said in the story, a criminal offence. I decided not to dwell on the advisor's punishment and leave it up to the reader to decide what happened to him--I assure, however, he was punished! This is why Erkenbrand feels as he does; he cannot fathom how a man could behave in such a manner. He is a very large man, powerful and extremely gentle (except when it comes to battle) everyone needs a protector. Lady Cynwen is a wise woman and her explanation helped. How it is time for Éalwyn to begin healing...
You might be surprised to hear that this chapter didn't shock me, I kind of saw it coming.
I knew I didn't like the advisor, and now I have a reason not to.
As for Erkenbrand, I know it is normal to feel guilty in such a situation, but I hope it doesn't stop him from spending some time with her, now that Ordwulf is in prison. He is gone and they are free to build something, if only a proper friendship.
I guess I'll have to wait for the next chapter...
Author's Response: Sorry I am behind on replying! I hoped most people would have caught on by now. An abusive situation is very difficult to understand for most of us--just leave, get out, we all think; but everyone wants to be loved and many victims think they will be alone if tey walk away. They are convinced that it is their fault and they are no loveable. It truely is a person's power over another and the younger the victime the easier it is to bully them. Fortunately, Ealwyn was only in this situation for almost 7 years (thought it began when her father died and she was alone). It will be a new beginning for her... ~G
So, all of a sudden it is HIS little mouse. Well, sure, I won't object.
I thought it cute for a man to be so afraid of losing his horse. I mean, I know the Rohirrim are very attached to their horses, but still, I think it would be much worse for him to lose his little mouse.
Let's see what she thinks about being his ...
Author's Response: I guess you might call that a Froydian slip in his mind... To the Eored of Rohan, their horse is a member of the family--there has to be so close a connection for them to be so remarkable in battle. Erkenbrand is alone in the West-mark; his mare is all he has at this time and it takes a very long time to train/bonf with a new steed. As for losing his little mouse, he does not realize just yet what that would mean--they are I suppose friends, but there is still a bit of a barrier between them on the social front. So, tomorrow there will be more :) ~G
So she IS clumsy... ;-)
And, yeah, again you're right: I tend to forget that the self-confidence and independence of women nowadays is rather ... new and should not be taken for granted.
I just have a problem with poeple who tend to accept their fate all too easily. Makes me want to grab them and shake them until they learn to tackle their problems ;-) ...
But don't worry, I like those characters, too (and include them in my stories), and I like Mouse and Erkenbrand and I can sympathize with them. But from time to time I feel the need to shake them a little bit nonetheless (or give them Sun Tzu's "The Art of War" to read).
The godfather-thing only came to my mind as here in Germany it is still customary to appoint a godfather and a godmother (normally friends or aunts/uncles of different families) directly when the child is christened. I don't know how that is in America (or anywhere else for that matter) but this has a long tradition here and maybe I kind of expected the Rohirrim to have something similar as it is the logical thing to do with a mortality rate that is high enough so that the probability of losing both parents during childhood is significant.
And: I in return appreciate the time and effort you put into answering my rambling, babbling and nagging ;-)
PS: very good chapter. I'd say: that advisor has a screw loose somewhere.
Author's Response: She was just 16 when she lost her Da and wound up in the advisor's care. Most abusers are very good at what they do and reel in their victim so to speak slowly. No one really noticed because she did not show up beaten to a pulp; no, I had a teacher once in college who was a victim of child abuse. she was not able to break free until adulthood and even then---years later; she still desperately needed to gain her father's approval. it is truly terrible what a person can make a child believe! (you'll see in later chapters) The Godparent idea is still around here at Baptism (although it is more to see to the Catholic upbringing if the parent pass--none of my kids' Godparents are in a position to raise my 3 kids now so we have other emergency arrangements) The Advisor has more than 1 screw loose, I assure you. now I am off you give you another update (just got chapters back from my Beta!) ~G
I get to review this story again today.
First of all, I knew it, and I hate to be right about such things. She is not accident prone, Ordwulf is the accident.
And Erkenbrand is right, there is something nagging at him in the back of his mind. It's me!
Let's see how long it will take me to make him see ...
Author's Response: Now you will have to wait till tomorrow and always remember: nothing in my universe is ever that simple (insert wicked laugh here)... ~G
Why is it that other people always see first when someone is in love? That is so cliché.
I liked this chapter because, even though he himself did not make an appearance, yet, I decided I do not like the advisor Ordwulf, though I guess in the end I am all wrong again (happens all the time).
Well, I will have to be patient to find out.
Author's Response: Well, I think it is cause women are more in-tune with such things (and like to meddle)...and it is not that they are in love...Fréarid's wife just thinks Erkenbrand is interested and both she and Fréarid think it would be a good match. At this point, there is not real attraction between Erken and Ealwyn except mutual respect and a growing friendship. As for the dear advisor...well, you will get to meet him in the next chapter. More very soon I promise~ G
666 words ... I half expected an evil chapter ;-)
Now the question would be: was she clumsy before her father died or did that wondrously happen when she moved in with the advisor? ;-)
Honestly, I had a neighbor once who continuously walked against doors or fell down steps. At least she was after the social prestige and money he was able to give her. But Ealwyn it seems could have that even without the advisor ... I mean, there really is no gain for her whatsoever and obviously there are more powerful persons like Gamling who would support her if only she spoke up.
And about taking her in ... I just thought: that is really the historical reason for godparenthood, isn't it? So that if something happened to her parent, she would be well provided for. It was remiss of her father - being a captain and all - not to appoint a godfather. Then all this would not have happened.
Well, perhaps it is good that an outsider now comes in and takes an interest. It often seems easier to step through imaginary walls of complicated social relationships when you are not bound by the fixed images you have of people that you know a felt eternity.
;-) Liked the chapter though. Frearid has such an easy-going character, I think up to now I like him best in this story ;-)
Someone with confidence who nonetheless knows his own limits is *invaluable* in my opinion...
Keep it up and I hope I wasn't too stern with the little mouse and her father ;-)
Author's Response: I really love your thoughts! So...I did not realize the word count or I would have done something about it...oh well. Keep in mind that these woman are much like they were in Medieval times so she certainly would not be able to just up and leave once she became and adult. Her father did not take the death of his wife well and kinda shut himself off, too. Since there was no one else, the assumption is they had no other family left. Yes, there should have been an emergency plan in place, but remember that the people of Rohan are very...simple about life. They are not like the social structure of Gondor. They look after their own and when the need arises, someone will come forward; in this case, Da might have been wrong in his choice (more about that will come out later). None the less, Ealwyn feels bound to honor her father's dying request. I don't want to say too much on our dear Colmase as I don't want to spoil anything, but just let me say that sometimes, fear and loneliness and love can cause people to do or stay in less than ideal situations. You are right that sometimes it is easier for a strange to see what others cannot for what ever reason. Of course, he she had a 'godfather' then there would be no angst. Freadir is a good guy...young and inexperienced but willing to work hard (he is about 21-22 to Ealwyn's 23 years) Erkenbrand is about 28-30...Freadir has not seem the battles many of the older men saw and therefore, still has some youthful joy that has not been tainted. Hesgar is another one you might like by the time this is over and I hope Erkenbrand grows on you, too.
Hello, here I am. Found my way into your new story.
Well, yes, I like mouse. She is sweet but at the same time knows so much about all this mens' stuff.
But this injuring thingy, they say she is clumsy but I believe there may be more to it. Hopefully I find out soon AND I am wrong.
Author's Response: I envisioned a sort of Radar O'Rally (from M.A.S.H) character. Knows her stuff but is content to remain in the back drop. More soon! Promise! ~G
Hmm, interesting start.
I just wonder: does Grimbold truly believe her tales of her clumsiness or can't he intervene (for whatever reason). He would not seem a man to stand by and watch an obvious abuse: even if he had no proof and the victim denied it, I would have expected him to speak up... but maybe he did so?
Or am I running in the totally wrong direction? ;-)
Ah, well ... sorry, I'm already forestalling again, me and my bad habits ;-)
Anyway, glad to be the first to comment on the third part, keep it up!
Author's Response: You always have interesting thoughts...keep them on hand as the answers may come in the future. Yes, Grimbold is a good and observant man however, things are not always as the seem; no one wants to think the worst and if Mouse says she is clumsy...perhaps she actually is; if it is abuse, often the victim will still defend the abuser...nothing is ever that simple... Glad to have caught your interest again! More soon ~G