Read the whole story since your posting of Chapter 51 just now, and find it both horrific and terrific. There is no balm in Valinor....
Author's Response: Thank you, so much, for your feedback. I'm delighted that you've enjoyed reading what I've written and posted of the story so far; thank you for communicating this to me; I really appreciate it.
I have to admit that I'm one of the "faint-hearted" readers you've said that this story is *not* for, but is there any chance that this will become less dark? LIndir has now lost everything for his crimes of having been so deluded by his misplaced love and loyalty, and his future now looks even bleaker than his past, even if Glorfindel makes this half-hearted attempt to save him. (I can't help think that if the situations were reversed, LIndir would never have left him to suffer alone.) The devastating part of all this is not in the details, gruesome as they have sometimes been, but in the very fact that the Valar are largely responsible for so much suffering. If that *is* the point, I guess I've answered my own question. But you write this brilliantly, regardless of my personal preference for *some* redemption, somewhere!
Author's Response: Again, thank you; I very much appreciate it. To answer your question, I do not know the ending yet, but I am aiming for a much less dark resolution, at least for Glorfindel and Lindir.
These two brilliant new chapters remind me of the old adage: "Be careful what you wish for, as you may get it!" I very much wanted to see this story continued, but it is breaking my heart anew. Lindir's bond with Glorfindel has been annulled, his ultimately willing "use" by Sauron is public knowledge, he has no contact with Glorfindel or his children, he has nothing left to do but suffer one forced pregnancy after another and to endure memories of how he helped to hurt other elves until they died from much the same "treatment" as he is now receiving from the Valar .... and yet he has nowhere to go, and no way to end this. I now see the real advantages that humans have in *not* being immortal!
And yet I admire him far more than Glorfindel at this point, oddly enough.
Author's Response: Oh, thank you again, ebbingnight. I really enjoy and appreciate your reviews. I'm so glad that you're still enjoying reading this story (although "enjoying" doesn't really seem like the right word here). Thanks again!
The only word that comes to mind to describe the story now is "Kafkaesque," which is not a word that I ever thought I'd be applying to LOTR fanfiction, lol!
The ambiguous conclusion of the "show trial," the insidious way in which the "rationalising" of mpreg seduces the judges and their minions into actions comparable in their cruelty to those for which the absent defendant(s) are (supposedly) standing trial, the several surprising methods with which the defendant(s) are able to manipulate the judges into releasing their key witness, the growing realization that this society is almost entirely built on pretense and actual lies, the many questions left unanswered about what actually happened and why, the lingering shame and sadness that even rebirth cannot erase, the flickering hope that some measure of reconciliation may come with time and care, the recognition that everyone is sometimes weak and wanting in some way, and that the guilty can be better than the good in certain situations... well, I could go on, but that's probably enough for one reader. Not an easy read, in any sense of the word, but a tremendous accomplishment by the author!
I don't suppose there's any chance of a final "afterword" someday? In particular, a meeting between Lindir and Laiglass?
Author's Response: Ha! Well, there's a first time for everything. :) I did, originally, intend to include a reunion between Lindir and Laiglas. Perhaps I will include it if and when I revise the story. Thank you, again, so much for your support; your generosity in sharing your thoughts regarding the story; and for simply reading and reviewing it. I doubt I would have finished this story without your input.
Well, if you do someday rewrite this (wow, what a daunting task, but how thrilling!), you might consider adding what I think might well be your missing masterpiece: the "Lindir's Funeral" chapter. I am going crazy imagining this now: who is there, who is not, what is said, what is felt, etc., etc. The idea of hundreds of elves suddenly coming to extend their "condolences" to Glorfindel about Lindir's mysterious demise is thought-provoking, to say the least!
So, despite the fact that the story is now officially finished, it's still ongoing in the mind of *one* reader, at least!
Thanks again for showing us such an engrossing (and occasionally grossing out!) universe!
Author's Response: Thank you, ebbingnight. That's a great idea; I'll have to consider it in the event of rewriting. It was my pleasure. I'm overjoyed that the story is lingering with you and that you found it that engrossing.
Oooh, I'm hooked, I'm hooked! More, please!
So glad to see the new chapter appear, and so glad to see that this very young Legolas at least has Haldir to advise him, as he seems far too young to be alone like this, let alone already pregnant by a man whom he barely knows. Hope the next chapter is soon! **looks pleading**
Author's Response: Thank you for the feedback. Indeed, I think Legolas would be a lot worse off without Haldir there.
OMG, you updated! *does happy dance*
And it looks like Aragorn and Legolas are in for a long, hard road ahead, doesn't it?!
This is wonderful: I read it in its entirety on Slashy Santa, but just wanted to post a thank you here for this bittersweet story. And now I'm off to read your other work!
Author's Response: Thank you so much! I'm glad you liked it - the bunny really ran away with me!
Angsty, angsty, angsty! Won't there be more chapters to this? *stomps foot and pouts, then changes mind and looks pleading*
Author's Response: Oh, thank you so much for your sweet review, ebbingnight. I'm so glad you enjoyed this story. I haven't thought about writing another chapter to this story, but if I do, I'll be sure to let you know. Thanks again.
A very good thing that the baby spider cheerleader squad wasn't practicing their other moves, as the "flyers" might have spotted Glorfindel and Legolas while they were up in the air, and then it might have been all "Bring it on!" But this was delightful!
Author's Response: 'Bring it on!' cheerleading Legolas and Glorfindel versus baby spider squad? That mental image is awesome!! You make me laugh. Thanks, ebbingnight! I'm delighted you enjoyed the story so much and I very much appreciate the review!
I thought this was fascinating and thought-provoking, however, I would propose a sixth theme: the nature of time? A recurring theme in many of the stories you list is the difference between the ways elves and men experience and perceive time, given their very different lifespans. Our human memories and metaphysics are those of a mayfly, in comparison with those of someone more or less "immortal," so that allows writers to explore and exploit time in a way that is unlikely (though not, of course, impossible) in contemporary "realistic" fiction, while still grounding their world in what eventually becomes our reality (according to Tolkien!)
As for slash, I read it avidly, but have no simple, single explanation as to why I enjoy it. Probably to experience emotions that aren't available to me in real life? Hmmmm....
Author's Response: Our human memories and metaphysics are those of a mayfly, in comparison with those of someone more or less "immortal," so that allows writers to explore and exploit time in a way that is unlikely (though not, of course, impossible) in contemporary "realistic" fiction, while still grounding their world in what eventually becomes our reality (according to Tolkien!) That's so right! Have you read Forbearance by Jdav? It exploits this difference very nicely. Another story that just got this right is Murder the Dawn by Crowdaughter. I am not good with essays or writing in general. I lurk for the most of the time. I read slash too much. It's something I got into during my university days and never recovered. I still don't have an explanation ;)
Aaargh, that's no way to end this! How about a sequel, please? Lindir's fingers are broken!!!!!
Author's Response: Thank you, ebbingnight. I'm glad you enjoyed reading it, and appreciate the request for a sequel. I'll take it under advisement. Thanks again.
Oh, now we're getting into the "heart" of possible worlds. Van may have very mixed emotions about being in a world in which Sauron is perhaps not such a monster, and in which he himself is able to experience sexual ecstasy without the fear of fatally harming his partner, but in which Elgalad doesn't exist (or, at least, doesn't have his same existence as Van's beloved protegé), but things may be very different for Coldagnir, if this is indeed a "possible" world in which he hasn't had to wield a whip of fire or eat the marrow from elven bones.
Which side of "the door" would Coldagnir choose, given the opportunity? The world in which he hasn't had the chance to do such evil, or the one in which he has the chance to make amends?
I really liked this: I think Faramir might well have said something like this about his beloved brother. Tolkien tells us that Boromir was always Faramir's best defender in life, so it makes perfect sense that Faramir would be Boromir's best defender in death.
Author's Response: thanks for the review! i like the way you put that; very poetic and fitting. :)
I am charmed by this, though frankly the "dress" could be a little less English-garden-partyish, couldn't it? Though exactly whose illusions I'm trying to preserve here, I'm not quite sure, lol!
Author's Response: LOL!! Well, being English...and a fan of garden parties...I guess it rubbed off on me! Perhaps that's just Duilin's personal style! ;) I'll try sending him the Marks and Spencer's catalogue and see if that piques his interest!
Thanks for the review - I'm glad to hear you're enjoying the fic, and I hope the remaining chapters are to your liking!
Not sure what I love most about this chapter: Erestor and his impulsive gift of the ribbon; Duilin and his urge *not* to be seen by all as some legendary hero; or you for writing this endearing piece (with orcs!)
Author's Response: LOL!! Poor Duilin - he's a bit conflicted. He *needs* to be legendary and a hero for the task ahead, and yet it goes against his nature these days. It just doesn't come as naturally to him to posture around the place and be brave and dashing (though I think he can fake dashing fairly passably when he tries) any more! Erestor...is getting a soft spot for the silly old grump-bag. ;)
I'm delighted you're still reading and enjoying! Thanks!
Ooh, started reading this elsewhere and am happy to see it here (less crowded for commenting)! Would love to see the sequel here too, please?
Author's Response: Thank you ebbingnight! I think you might like this version even more and oh yes- hotted up version of Sons coming soon.
Legolas was flushed slightly, and Eomer had his hand on one of the white knives Legolas carried and was tracing the engraving on the blade, his eyes fast on Legolas. Aragorn supposed that Eomer, having never met elves before, was interested in the weapons of Mirkwood elves.
Of course! *smirks*
And all the "director's cut" additions you're making as you post here are much appreciated: wonderful story!
Author's Response: I am so glad you like the 'director's cut' -good term! I will add in a bit more in the next chapter just for you!
Ah, I've been anxiously awaiting the arrival of the sons of Elrond: and here they are! Now the plot will really thicken.(Poor Eómer!)
Author's Response: Yes, me too. I wanted to slash it up a bit more but actually, it doesn't quite work - or I am not quite confident enough, I dont know. But I have added a bit more to indicate what's coming- its a delicate balance to not give too much away and make it heavy handed. Thank you as always for reviewing.