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The Warrior  by daw the minstrel 21 Review(s)
pipinheartReviewed Chapter: 4 on 10/12/2005
Thranduil letter to Eilian could have been better, he was just handing out advise to the settlers nothing more. Tinar getting bonded to someone, unbelievable....
Ithilden sending Eilian a rune of protection, how sweet, how many can he get...

Author Reply: Thranduil probably overreacted to Eilian's words to the settlers. I think it must be hard to be part of a ruling family and have to watch every word you speak. Eilian must know he has to be careful. He's probably been told that since childhood. But he was provoked.

Brenda G.Reviewed Chapter: 4 on 12/13/2003
Wow! What a chapter!!! The excitement of battle, Spiders, Wargs, and mystery... Okay, okay, I'll bite. What is Beliond's story? You have been baiting your trap for several chapters now. First the hint about a wife in an earlier chapter, then this softening toward Legolas as he tried to clean his arrows and the conversation about that, then Beliond telling the young rookie that courage and skill were not always enough. Is he talking about himself when he was younger, or does (or did) Beliond once have a family and he is speaking from past experience, past regrets? I'm beginning to get the hots for Legolas' keeper! So, Daw, what does Legolas' guardian look like (you once sent me a picture of what you thought Eilian might look like, remember?). Mysterious men, er, Elves, definitely whet my appetite. Legolas is almost as curious about his keeper as I am at this point, so what gives with Beliond? Or are you going to continue your torture??? (Is that evil laughter I hear over the Internet?) It was particularly touching when Legolas realizes that his rune was Eilian's before him. Give me more, more, more of Legolas and his keeper!

Was so good to catch up with Eilian. I see hero worship in Galelas' eyes. He is trying very hard to be all that Eilian thinks he should be. I find it amusing that Eilian's eyes are finally being opened to how he was as a young, adventuresome warrior in the eyes of his own captain and keeper. Now he has his hands full with the same thing. Turnabout is fair play and a great source of learning.

This is a terrific story! Can't wait for the next chapter. Be kind, Daw, and post soon. Please?


ArbelethielReviewed Chapter: 4 on 12/11/2003

So Legolas is making his hole into the small society of the patrol :) Good for him.

I find Sólith increasingly exasperating. I think I just want to beat some sense into him. Though I can see his point of view, I don’t think he will be able to accomplish anything if he is killed by spiders or orcs, because he was living too far to be protected by the patrols. :(

His notion of the world took a sudden lurch.

ROTFLOL Centuries old and still so naďve where women are concerned :D

I notice that Legolas hasn’t given any rune of protection to Eilian ;) An oversight on his part, I suppose :P


Author Reply: Legolas has not yet figured out that the rune Eilian gave him came from his own neck. I'm working on that little oversight right now.

Ithilden cracked me up too. He's so honorable himself, and has such an idealized view of women, that it never occurred to him they might be peeking at the swimming hole. I love the guy!

Tapetum LucidumReviewed Chapter: 4 on 12/10/2003
I am glad my slow review was well timed. Never do today what you can put off until tomorrow...

Thranduil sure has a soft spot. If my parents had ever written anything so sweet to me I am sure I would be in tears as well. Legolas' attempt at laundry was very amusing. I was wondering if he would have that problem since Eilian also seems to think muddy clothes are disposable. Beliond's attempt to help him was cute and the reaction of the warriors was accurate - pounce on any weakness and tease one another mercilessly. Um, could Tinar be any more clueless. Can you imagine being married to him for eternity. Poor elleth! He better watch out or she might have to turn his urine blue.

Solith is a thorn in everyone's side. Yes, he is trying to save the forest, that is wonderful, but Thranduil's resources are not unlimited. I hope they can figure out a good place to move. Is that near Legolas' or Eilian's patrol? I have lost my may and since I am a woman, I will ask for directions.

Ithilden's time with Sinnarn was very sweet. It is very exciting to spend fun time with Ada. Alfirin and the commander's discussion about spying on members of the opposite sex was great! I find it hilarious that the straight laced Ithilden never realized that the elves were spied on as well. I don' think he wants to know if Eilian was ever at the elleth side of the pool. Ignorance is bliss.

It must be hard for the two eldest elves in the family to knowingly send the younger pair into danger. I don't think I could do it. I think I know what Ithilden wants to send. Apparently these elves are a superstitious lot.

Wargs and spiders? shudder... I think I will stay home, especially without my map. I am glad to see Galelas seems to have shaped up nicely, in spite of his older brother's influence. Being the second born is rarely easy and I think Eilian may have a few things in common with him. Thranduil's scolding of Eilian seemed appropriate for the circumstances. It will be uncomfortable until they clear the air. I hope nothing bad happens until then. Of course, where would the fun be in that?

Looking forward to meeting some spiders.

Author Reply: Tinar's betrothed must be nuts. I haven't done anything to picture her in my mind except conclude that she admires him without question. It's the only thing he would accept. Maybe he'll learn to give a little if she really needs something.

The settlement elves are not going to be near either Eilian or Legolas in this story, which is probably a good thing. I don't think Solith and Eilian are soul mates.

I am getting fonder and fonder of Ithilden and I always liked him because he was so competent. I want him guarding my part of the world. But he is hilarious and touching with his wife and child.

Brenda G.Reviewed Chapter: 4 on 12/10/2003
My favorite chapter so far... Longing and laughter and a peek into the heart of each character completely emersed me into the richness of the lives you have created on each page. We see Legolas, a fierce Woodland-warrior-wanna-be blinking back tears he had not expected to shed upon reading his first letter from his adar. The love and longing in Thranduil's letter to his youngest was as tender and poignant as anything we have ever seen from the Mirkwood King in those rare moments when we are allowed glimpses past his stern exterior. I found Legolas' first brush with laundry quite humorous. Nana Beliond? I crowed with laughter over that one and then smiled broadly when Legolas realized that his "keeper" indeed possessed the capacity to make a joke. As I said last review, I am definitely warning to Beliond, and I believe that Legolas is finally also beginning to see light at the end of this dismal tunnel. I do hope that in time Beliond will come to consider his charge more than just duty to his King. I foresee many merry adventures ahead for this odd couple.

It was refreshing to visit with little Sinnarn again, more and more like his Uncle Eilian as the days unfold. Ithilden and Alfirin make me smile. Their relationship, even after 10 years of marriage, seems fresh and evergreen - and still able to surprise the King's eldest son. I found it hilarious that the thought of maidens spying on the males, rather than the other way around, was such an unexpected discovery by Ithilden, so much older and more mature and knowledgeable than his centuries younger wife. Alfirin is just a precious, precious jewel to all who know her and absolutely perfect in her role of wife, mother, lover and friend.

I'm glad Thranduil was firm, even impatient, with the settlement Elves. I felt he made it quite clear that he expected them to settle in the areas he considered appropriate, but rather than making it an order on the spot, he has given them time and space to come to that decision on their own. They do have a duty to defy Shadow, as all Elves do, but also to work in unison with their King in achieving that end. Better a rap on the knuckles by their King, than an all out slaughter of the settlement occupants by the enemy to prove who's right or wrong.

Eilian... So good to visit with him again, and I have hope that his Shadow sickness is lifting somewhat. The Warg insertion was intriguing. I believe Eilian is right about where the Warg howls, the Orcs prowls. And with new spider colonies newly discovered, I see bows being tweaked and arrows fletched for upcoming chapters. When Eilian opened Ithilden's package and pulled out yet another rune necklace, I laughed along with him. How loved this Elf is! Surely, despite his many exasperations with family, Eilian knows this. I look forward to his continuing healing and eventual complete restoration. My heart goes out to Galelas, trying to grow up in the shadow of his older and more established brother, but he is on the right path and in good company to steer him clear of the obvious pitfalls that Tinar blindly ignores. Tinar's day is coming, but also (I hope) is Galelas'. I also had to chuckle at Eilian's attitude that he would write to his father when he was a little more repentant than currently. Same ole Eilian!

What a rich feast you have laid before us, and my appetite is already sharply whetted for Chapter 5 (which, dare I hope, will soon make its appearance).

You're my hero.

Author Reply: Wow, what a great review. I considered calling this chapter "Domestic Interlude" because it was all about people's home lives and relations with their families, even when they were far from home. Oh, and domestic chores like laundry too.

I like the thought that Thranduil's sons are all loved because they are dear to me, I have to admit. And Eilian is getting better. He's in a happier part of the forest and his family (and Maltanaur) are showing their love for him, even though his father is also driving him crazy. I'm thinking he can help
Galelas and that might help him too.

I have a back story written for Beliond and just have to figure out how to work it in a little. I dropped a couple of hints in this chapter, but it's harder to figure out how to make things explicit.

Thank you for taking the time to do this.

LeraReviewed Chapter: 4 on 12/9/2003
That was a fun chapter, I got to talk, er, eavsdrop on everybody! I love the fact that although Legolas might not know how to do every household chore, it never occurrs to him that it's beneath him. Tinar seems like the kind of guy who might think it's beneath him. I doubt he'd lift a finger to do his laundry if he were at home! How did he get a girl? Maybe he's handsome or something. Personally I'd rather not get married at all!

Beliond obviously has a story. Are you gonna show it to us? Please?
I'm excited to see Legolas in battle. Beliond better watch his own back(arm) with Tinar in the patrol. Thranduil's scenes really touched me. I was very proud of him, he didn't totally freak out about Legolas being in danger of spiders.

I loved seeing Ithildien with his family. It was so sweet seeing him teach his son to do basic kid things, like swimming. Maybe he should teach him to do laundry! I saw a little cousin over thanksgiving who I haven't seen in forever, and I was like, "That is totally how I picture Sinnarn." It was weird. Ithildien seems like a wonderful Ada. And Alfirin seems like a wonderful mother. I like seeing parent child relationships where the parent adores the child and spends lots of fun time with him or her, but still is respected by the child. Those seem to be the happiest relationships. I also love how Ithildien and Alfirin are still so hot on fire in love with each other.

I look forward to seeing if a bit of a relationship developes between Eilien and Galelas. Poor kid doesn't seem to have the greatest dad and brother.

Author Reply: Somebody needs to warn Tinar's girlfriend right now! I think I will write her a letter. :-)

And Legolas was indeed fine with doing his laundry. He just didn't know how. I'm going to eventually tell you a little more about Beliond. At least I plan to, if I can figure out how to let his story come out naturally.

I laughed at the idea that someone is going around seeing Sinnarn in real life. You must have an active little cousin.

kalileReviewed Chapter: 4 on 12/9/2003
There was a time when I first started reading your work when I would skip over the parts that dealt with Eilian or Ithilden or [insert name of OCC here] in favor of reading about Legolas and Thranduil. Now, however, I find these character incredibly fun to read and so real that if I had no background on Tolkien's books coming into your series I could have sworn they were in there.

Anyhoo, I find myself constantly cheering for a happy Eilian (all he needs now is for Legolas to give back his old rune of protection and he's good to go.)And Ithilden (who I think reminds me too much of my own older brother) is starting to grow on me too. It's good to see his tender side in his interactions with his family and that he isn't always "Thranduil #2" in his interactions with Eilian. I'm curious, does Ithilden mean anything in Elvish or did you just pick it because it sounded nice? I remember reading something that explained Eilian meant "sky bridge" and was just curious.

Author Reply: I smiled from ear to ear when I read your comments on my OCs. They seem real (and canonical) to me now too. I need to get over myself, but I do love these pretend people I made up.

I made up the name "Ithilden" but I used the Sindarin word "ithil," which means "moon," to do it. Then I added a common ending. "Eilian" means "sky bridge" or "rainbow," as you say, and, of course, "Legolas" means "green leaf." In my happy imagination, their names come from the circumstances in which each of them was conceived. In other words, Elves do it out of doors.

meckinockReviewed Chapter: 4 on 12/9/2003
Grand slam! Where to start? Eilian, of course. Thranduil is just such a wonderfully overbearing father - first indignant that Eilian overreached his authority, then deciding on second thought maybe he didn't comport himself so badly after all, and then in the end not being able to resist chiding him about it in his letter. Eilian is obviously accustomed to this behavior, makes mental note to appease his father when the mood strikes him...Eilian's reaction to the healthy trees was touching. Sometimes we don't realize how much we need a vacation until we're on the beach, smelling the salt air.
Ithilden and his wife were just delightful. Lovely to see this stern, overburdened warrior being gently teased, and cuch a delightful scene with his son at the swimming hole.
I am still intrigued by Beliond and can't wait to find out what his story is. I am not surprised that he has a hidden sense of humor, you can't be around as long as he has without developing one or going mad, I'm sure!

Author Reply: Do I detect some Eilian love growing here? He is a charming character and I can't believe I once considered killing him off. Thank god, I came to my senses and changed *that* plot element.

One of the things that's interesting to me about both Eilian and Ithilden is that they are willing to be at odds with Thranduil, although they plainly love him and feel loved in return. They are adult enough to know that they are separate people. Legolas is just figuring that out.

Ithilden's family is such a sweet element in his life. The stars shone on him with them.

LauraReviewed Chapter: 4 on 12/9/2003
Great chapter!
I really loved Legolas washing his clothes. And you're right, it's not just the guys who can't do it. I'm a fifteen year old girl and completely clueless as to the ways of laundry.
LOL! Eilian and all his protection. It's really nice that Ithilden sent him a rune. I thought it was so sweet. I love the family scenes, too. I was just wondering, when Eilian was captain of the Home Guard for awhile in One Year in Mirkwood, was Maltanaur around. I just can't seem to find him mentioned and wondered if he stayed in the south?
Awesome job, please update soon!

Author Reply: Oh my goodness, Laura. I think you're right. Maltanaur must have stayed in the south! Eilian was home with an injury, so at first he didn't need Maltanaur's protection and then he just stayed where he was. :-)

I think what really is helping Eilian right now isn't the runes themselves but the fact that he knows that all these people love him and want him to be protected. He needs that!

DotReviewed Chapter: 4 on 12/9/2003
Oh, such a great chapter – I really enjoyed that!

That laundry scene was priceless. Just the image of him enthusiastically swishing his clothes around in the water and then trying to copy everyone else while pretending to know what he was doing… LOL! If Beliond had realised, he could have had great fun concocting ways of doing laundry and poor Legolas would probably have imitated him… And Tinar is betrothed! “Gewiel is timid and needs guidance” *snigger* I’d love to know how she ended up with him. Nope, I just can’t picture it… Oh, and Beliond is being very mysterious. Has he a story, eh? It’s really great to see him a bit more lighthearted for a change – and it looks like he’s feeling all parental towards Legolas despite himself!

I was so delighted you let everyone have an appearance in this chapter. It seems to be the same old story for Thranduil back at the palace. Solith is as irritating as ever, I see. No, I do see his point about holding his ground against the shadow but did he learn anything from nearly losing his home and family? Apparently not. Y’know, I’m really going to have to get myself a map of Mirkwood ‘cos I’m a little lost. Solith and co. aren’t going to end up anywhere near Eilian’s patrol, are they???!

I just love Ithilden as ada! He’s so different when he’s with his family – Alfirin and Sinnarn really bring out the softer side of him. It was so funny that he genuinely never realised that the maidens just might tend to spy on the males too. Alfirin can be mischievous, can’t she? Like his father, Ithilden does deserve more of these family moments. Ooh, I wonder what Thranduil was like in happier times – did his wife have the same effect on him as Alfirin does on Ithilden… Just thought I’d wonder aloud, it’s not a story request or anything….;)

Yikes, spiders. That’s incredibly close, isn’t it, if the Home Guard found them. And now it looks as though Legolas will encounter some soon. So much for safe patrols. Things don’t bode well for Mirkwood. Still, Annael obviously came through his encounter safely and if Legolas can too, maybe his father and brothers will feel less protective of him. Nah, that’ll never happen…!

I’m really beginning to like Galelas in this story! It seems like he’s really learned a lot about himself. Actually, Eilian’s managing quite well, if he prevented himself from chasing the warg. Giving him others to protect was a good idea. I cringed, though, at Thranduil’s letter! It started off so beautifully but he just couldn’t help himself! It’s quite funny how they manage to annoy each other even across great distances.

Another rune of protection! If nothing else, it should show him that his family care… Is Legolas the only one who hasn’t realised where his rune came from?! It’s hilarious, though – if Eilian gets any more he’ll be so weighed down by them that he won’t be able to go into battle at all…so I suppose he’d be protected. Hmmn.

Author Reply: Of course Beliond has a story! It's all right here in my notes. I'll hold them up to the screen so you can see....So what do you think?

I love the idea of Beliond deliberately misleading Legolas about the laundry. Too bad I didn't think of that!

Eilian is north of the Forest River right now, so Solith and his merry band are not talking about being anywhere near him. For the time being, Solith is just hanging around Thranduil's stronghold waiting for the king to see reason. It's been tricky to bring everyone in in this story because they are so scattered. I still feel like I'm neglecting everyone but Legolas.

The only glimpse I have of my Thranduil with the wife I gave him was written not by me, but by Nilmandra. She wrote me a birthday fic called "Eilian's Begetting Day" in which Eilian is 20 (so about 8 in human terms). Thranduil and his wife go off and dance naked in the rain. Sigh. It's in a folder at Royal Mirkwood Home For Wayward Elves. If you can't get to it there, I can send you the file.

I was glad to be able to write the little glimpse of Annael.

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