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Reflections from the Paradise of Elves  by Bodkin 9 Review(s)
ArmarielReviewed Chapter: 47 on 10/15/2006
Oh it's nice to see this series again...this chapter is particularly lovely both with the description of the cavern and the discussions of dwarves and elves. ROFL @ Narvi and Celebrimbor each not knowing the gender of the other! hehehe
Legolas trailed his hand along the cool wall of the cavern as he followed the twins. ‘Gimli said that stone was the skeleton upon which the living forest depended – and that it had its own song,’ he reflected. ‘That the world we love out under the sky depended on the dark and secret depths and elves were foolish to turn their backs on them.’

Lovely. I'm fascinated with beautiful rock formations, myself.

Author Reply: I quietly confess you have picked the line I loved the best in this! Sometimes, I find, these really short pieces just sing to me - and this was one of those parts. I'm so glad you liked it.

And dwarves appear so very male - while elves are slender and pale and elegant ... I can see them getting confused about each other. At least on first acquaintance.

ImhirielReviewed Chapter: 47 on 8/31/2006
The description of the cave in this and the previous chapter is marvellous. I find the allusions to Gimli and to Menegroth very moving and I really love that the three friends appreciate the beauty of it.

Gimli said that stone was the skeleton upon which the living forest depended - and that it had its own song,’ he reflected. ‘That the world we love out under the sky depended on the dark and secret depths and elves were foolish to turn their backs on them.’

Author Reply: I admit I really rather liked this episode - largely because of the bit you quoted! I think his relationship with Gimli and his exposure to a dwarf's eye view on the world probably did a lot to open Legolas's eyes to looking at some things in a very different way.

lwarrenReviewed Chapter: 47 on 1/1/2005
*sniff* You have such a nice way with description, Bodkin. And with friendships...I dearly love the interaction between E2 and Legolas...alternately teasing and loving. The twins know when to comfort Legolas and when to tease him. Good friends, indeed!

Had to laugh at Narvi and the revelations about gender here...especially the dwarf thinking that Celebrimbor was female :-)! But the best lines were what Gimli told Legolas about the caves being gifts, and the backbone of the forest (oooooh, they were so good I was going to wait and write down my favorite lines later and then review, but I know me and something would prevent it from happening for another month!!!! So, I'll just paraphrase poorly...sorry :-( .) Anyway, you were right when you warned if I got teary reading the chapter before this one, just wait. Wonderful, poetic stuff!


Author Reply: I'm glad you liked this one - it is one of my favourites, if I do say so myself. Tough little dwarves must have found ethereal elves quite disconcerting - especially when they saw them fighting.

E2L have a really comfortable relationship - of the sort where insults show love even more than courtesy and the best support is often totally wordless.

NilmandraReviewed Chapter: 47 on 12/25/2004
I really like the idea that Aule built the caves for his dwarves, special treasure houses for them. Very unique and shows again his love for the creatures he made.

Author Reply: Thank you. I think Aule would have a special interest in creating things for the dwarves - he is linked to them in a special way. As they are to him.

Dwarves do seem to have been a very private people - which is, I suppose, easier when you live underground in places which can be closed away from the rest of the world. It does make them interestingly mysterious.

elliskaReviewed Chapter: 47 on 12/16/2004
Sorry it took so long to review this. I am without Internet access right now. I have a one hour window right now and I'm taking advantage to catch up a bit. This one was absolutely great. I love the idea of Celebrimbor and Narvi getting their genders mixed up. That was clever and quite hilarious. And the idea of Aule's hidden gardens is excellent. But this line is outstanding:

‘Gimli said that stone was the skeleton upon which the living forest depended – and that it had its own song,’ he reflected. ‘That the world we love out under the sky depended on the dark and secret depths and elves were foolish to turn their backs on them.’

Wonderful. I can so see Gimli and Legolas arguing that. It deserves its own drabble, at least.

Author Reply: Without Internet access! That sounds like cruel and unusual punishment. I hope the withdrawal symptoms aren't too bad.

I'm usually one or two ahead on these - sometimes more - and I liked this one. I am glad you picked out that line - it sounded right when it when I read it back, but one is often not the best judge of what goes on paper.

Gimli and Legolas arguing? I don't know if I have Gimli's voice really. Although I would like to see more dwarf stories.

SharonBReviewed Chapter: 47 on 12/15/2004
More of Legolas misiing his dwarf. Such nice memories, the twins are right he should share more of those memeories with others and his little ones. And they probably all should share their memories of the hobbits as well.

I could just see how Celeborn might react after all those years with Thingol and Melian in the caves. Such memories he could share with them all.

Author Reply: Legolas does miss Gimli. Well, they all miss people - Estel and Arwen not least. The hobbits. All those who were part of the Fellowship and Elessar's reigh. But loss, to a degree, must be part of what living as an elf teaches you to endure. Not, perhaps, Legolas so much - as he was young and isolated in Mirkwood until the Quest; but the twins, with the fostered heirs of Isildur and their riding with the Dunedain, must have been well-acquainted with the sorrow of growing fond of mortals only to have them age and die.

The trouble with sharing memories (and this is from a family historian point of view) is that children aren't interested in the stories. They put on that 'here they go again' face and respond in the way that I call 'smile and nod', where there is no listening going on. It's one of the reasons, I think, that these three old friends love getting away together - they can refer to moments and people that are meaningless to their families, and they can share a world of memories in very few words.

The time you really want to hear the stories is when there is no longer anyone there to tell them - which never really applies to elves. Though I agree - they really should take Celeborn off with them and get him to talk about all the things he has seen and done and all the legendary figures he has known. (And Galadriel, actually - she could tell them about the Grinding Ice - and Idril as a child - and Luthien. What a resource for knowledge.)

daw the minstrelReviewed Chapter: 47 on 12/15/2004
Very evocative musings on dwarves and beauty. The talk about Narvi and Celebrimbor was amusing! And Legolas's feelings about Gimli were nicely handled too.

Author Reply: Thank you. It is perhaps easier to see the beauty of the natural world above ground, but dwarves would respond very strongly to the beauty of these formations. Narvi / Celebrimbor - interesting to consider their mutual incomprehension being overborne by their fascination with each other's skill. I wonder how long it took them to realise the other's gender? And how they found out? Or, I suppose, if they did.

In my reality (sounds a stupid way to put it) Legolas has probably had about 250 years since Gimli died - his feelings are now more of regret and fond remembrance than fresh grief.

Jay of LasgalenReviewed Chapter: 47 on 12/15/2004
I like the way you blend fun and sadness in these tales. Aulë’s hidden gardens sound breath-taking, and I'm glad Legolas can see the beauty in the deep places of the earth this time.

The conversation about Narvi and Celebrimbor was great - the one about dwarf women will run and run - as was the image of the twins making sure to sit upwind of the Dúnadain!


Author Reply: There is enough light coming into this part of the cave to take away the oppressive feeling of too much stone - and I think he can cope with the more open spaces (after his training from Gimli!) - it's the places where he has to squeeze through dark passages that make him cringe a bit.

Yes - I think the absence of any real sense of family life with Dwarves makes the whole Dwarf woman thing fascinating - and I should think the tough-looking Dwarves did find Elves a bit girly. And unwashed Dunedain must have impinged unpleasantly on Elven nostrils. I can see Elves leaping happily in half-frozen streams to clean themselves, while the Men huddled in layers of dirty wool that didn't get changed until spring.

RoseSaredReviewed Chapter: 47 on 12/15/2004
Oh well, you knew that would tempt me from my cave, didn't you! VBG! Hope to have some time for both reading and writing after christmas, my domestic situation has finally settled down and I have a month's leave - mostly to be spent painting the house-a great activity to compose plots to. Thanks so much for this litte vig, lovely, in character elves and a nice hark back to thier past in middle earth. Lovely as ever.

Author Reply: So glad you liked it. It's great to hear from you. Painting the house can only be done for so many hours before you need the relief of a bit of fun reading and writing! It'll give you something to look forward to, so you will paint faster. Best wishes for a calmer time!

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