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Tangled Web  by daw the minstrel 27 Review(s)
Estel_Mi_OlorReviewed Chapter: 3 on 6/7/2004
Great chapter Daw! Ithilden so funny, I love how he deems having Mordor as a neighbor to be "unpleasant." I guess he has a dislike for Orcs? :) I can't believe they (at the Council) have been at it for a week. I would have pulled a Thranduil and stormed out after the second day. I just want to kill Saruman, and I will use his Westron name, because I don't want to mess up the spelling of his Elven one. What was he waiting for? This is much before Mithrandir discovered the Ring, and Frodo can't know anything about this. Or can he? Hmm.I think I need a year...yes, Daw, I will go get ROTK and look it up. Oh dear, I am terribly confused. The last Council meeting was in TA III 2953, but Gollum wasn't found, and the whole Ring buisiness begun until 64-odd years later. What is the Council doing? They're not supposed to act, but Gandalf does, by himself, doesn't he? Well, I am belatedly realizing the AU of this fic.:) And now that I have accepted that, I can cheer the course of action chosen! Yay! I love it when people agree to do something. Those are the most fantastic last words, "I know of someone," and then there's poor Eilian minding his own buissiness, unknowing of what he's going to have to do. Well, at least he's excited about it! I can't wait to see what happens next, and whether they succeed! And something tells me that Todith's weddding isn't going to work out too brilliantly either, but I am content to wait and see. Keep writing!

Author Reply: No, no Estel! It's not AU. This White Council meeting was held in 2941. Look at your LOTR appendix again. That's the year Bilbo got the ring from Gollum.

I was excited to have Eilian appear in this story too. I missed writing about him. The wedding could indeed be more exciting than any of them bargained for.

Saruman wanted the One Ring for himself. Peter Jackson showed him in league with Sauron but that's not what Tolkien wrote. Saruman didn't want Sauron out of Dol Guldur at first, says Tolkien, because he thought the ring might return to its master. But when he heard that Sauron was searching the Gladden Fields (where Isildur lost the ring), he decided that Sauron had to go. That was in 2941, and it's what I'm showing.

It's confusing, isn't it? :-)

tigerlily713Reviewed Chapter: 3 on 6/7/2004
This should be interesting! I can't wait to see how the Council interacts with the Wood Elves. To finally be in their land and see firsthand the darkness. I look forward to the next chapter! Lily

Author Reply: I'm glad you're enjoying this, Lily. I'm having fun writing about these major Tolkien characters and events from the point of view of my own OCs. The Wood-elves were mostly spectators for a lot of this, and it's interesting to try to guess what they saw.

caz - bazReviewed Chapter: 3 on 6/7/2004
i really shouldn't have read that. in the middle of my exams and i just now my biology this afternoon is going to go to pot. anyway, i love this story it's great. i would of like'd to have heard of what happened when Tinar first started at Ithilden's office and with Eilian there as well, i'm sure it would have been most amusing.
this is getting exciting.
well i'll go and put my nervous wreck of a selve in front of my biology and learn something hopefully that will be of use.

Author Reply: Maybe I'll write about that year Eilian stayed home in Ithilden's office some time. It sounds as if it could be fun.

I hope your exams are all going well.

JebbReviewed Chapter: 3 on 6/7/2004
A lovely chapter from Legolas encoutnering his Adar in full monarch mode to Ithilden reading so much into Saruman's behaviour he is of course right to be cautious
and Eilian still reckless but at least recognising it without being told!
And the brothers reunion and Eilian's reaction to GLorfindel hero worship indeed
the calm before the storm no doubt

Author Reply: All three brothers have things to do in this story, I'm happy to say. It was one of the things that attracted me to writing it.

I think that Legolas had mixed feeling when he encoutered his father as king. He certainly doesn't want Thranduil treating him like a child, but I'm not sure he wanted to be treated like a subject either.

French PonyReviewed Chapter: 3 on 6/6/2004
Wrg. Brain is fried from having taken a weekend trip to Grad School Town.

Hey! The White Council actually decided to do something! Concept City, here. I love how stunned everyone is when a firm decision somehow happens amidst all the chitter chatter and diplomacy going on around the table. And I feel peeved along with Ithilden. How dare they take attacks on Mirkwood as a given! Of course, they're right; Mirkwood is basically almost overrun anyway.

I think I know something about this special clearing. I think that spiders won't be the problem at this wedding. I think that maybe fourteen extra guests might turn up looking for a handout. Clearly, Alfirin's father has not seen enough romantic comedies in his time. Every time a special thing is scheduled for a wedding, something will go wrong. It's the law. Fainting brides, speaking in tongues, giggling fits, interesting-guests-of-another-species, you name it.

Ithilden sure knows when to punt. And he knows just who the puntee should be. Oh Eilian! Gotta little job for you . . . . you get to meet Glorfindel. Won't that be fun! Oh, and there's this leeeetle extra matter of clearing out Dol Guldur.

Eilian! Eilian! He's our man! If he can't do it, no one can!

Author Reply: It's actually kind of funny when you think of it. When these folks came to the White Council meeting, none of them expected to be making a little field trip to Dol Guldur. Well, maybe Curunir did. He seems to have known what he wanted.

It does seem as if Tonduil's wedding is not destined to run smoothly. Poor guy. He's probably nervous enough to start with. Ah well, it'll be a story to tell the grandelflings.

I have to admit that I enjoyed having Eilian appear in this story. I missed him!

Re grad school: If you think your brain is fried from visiting the town, wait until you've spent about two weeks in classes. ;-)

LKKReviewed Chapter: 3 on 6/6/2004
I have been puzzling over why Gandalf would declare that Imladris was subject to an upcoming attack from Sauron. I've come up with a theory. I think Gandalf decided that merely seeing the darkness in Mirkwood wasn't sufficient to convince the Council to attack Dol Goldur. So he chose a target that would shock the members and force them into action. Will we find out the real reason Gandalf came out with such an unusual theory?

I have a small quibble with this chapter. I feel as if Ithilden is too suspicious of Saruman and his actions. It's easy for us, with out post-LOTR knowledge, to question his actions and decisions. But unless Tolkien wrote more that I'm not aware of regarding how the others thought about him (a distinct probability!), I believe Saruman was totally trusted prior to Gandalf's imprisonment. I know Galadriel wanted Gandalf to head the White Council instead of Saruman. But I don't think even she suspected him or questioned his actions. What I'm getting at is Ithilden's suspicions seem based more on your knowledge of Saruman than on his. Does that make sense?

Regardless of that quibble, I am enjoying this story as I do all you stories. I felt sorry for poor Todith with Thranduil watching over his shoulder. I laughed at Eilian's eagerness to escort the Council to Dol Goldur. Ever the wild child, that one. :)

Looking forward to the next chapter!

Author Reply: Believe it or not, the theory that Sauron was getting ready to attack Rivendell is straight from "The Quest of Erebor" in the UT. I know. It startled me when I read it too!

And I think your quibble is a good one. That's something I've been worried about too. After all, can Ithilden be wiser than The Wise? I finally decided that he had enough of his father's orneriness to make it possible. Plus he saw Saruman only once, centuries ago, before he had become corrupt. So maybe he would see the change in him more than the others would. And then, any suspicion he has is very faint and goes away the minute he hears Saruman's voice. And finally, I doubt it Saruman was too interested in Ithilden. He's not a major player, so Saruman might not have been so careful to charm him. I still think it's probably questionable, but what the heck. I went with it anyway. :-)

I loved bringing Eilian into the story. He's fun to write about.

Tapetum LucidumReviewed Chapter: 3 on 6/6/2004
Curunir seems to hold Ithilden under his sway in his presence but I am glad to see it fade with time and distance. A week's worth of unproductive meetings would try even an immortal's patience. Mithrandir is clever to offer something to the council that is fairly easy to dismiss,and hold the rest of his cards closer to his chest. When he presents his real itinerary, few could deny him. A direct threat to Imladris should be enough to move them off of their rear ends. Curunir's response makes me wonder what he is really up to. Obviously it is not what Mithrandir has reported. You are ver clever.

Legolas' litte chat with his father was very entertaining. Obviously neither are accustomed to these new roles. At least Thranduil has had some experience dealing with his other two sons but it is brand new for Legolas. Being spoken to as a somewhat inept lieutenant does not sit well with him. It was a very effective way to motivate him.

The council's move to attack Dol Guldor is a brave one. If anyone can do it this group can. I sure hope Ithilden has enough sense to warn his father of what is going on. A large surge of dark creatures from the south when the tower falls is not something the realm is expecting. Especially during a wedding... I think I know who he intends for the job.

Eilian still gets in trouble with Maltanaur? Some things never change. He is a great captain and it is obvious his men (elves) have a lot of respect for him. He is a strong, likable character. The brothers' reunion was heartfelt. I hope Eilian doesn't have to sit in a long, boring council meeting. It is not his forte. Eilian gushing over Glorfindel was cute. I hope the esteemed Lord gives the young captain a compliment and has him blushing like a maiden.

I can see this trip to the South having a lot of consequences throughout the kingdom. It should be very interesting. And what is Saruman up to?

Author Reply: Saruman's power to command seems to have lain in his voice and maybe in some gestures he made. It looks sort of like hypnotism to me. So Ithilden is lulled when he hears the voice but then kind of wakes up when he gets away. And Saruman certainly has his own agenda here. In all truth, I'm just following canon in almost all of this. Tolkien was incredibly baroque sometimes.

I loved bringing Eilian back into the story. Things should heat up a little now. No more boring sitting in meetings! No indeed. I thought Eilian and Glorfindel would get along nicely.

And as you will see in the next chapter, Legolas has problems other than what's happening here. :-)

BodkinReviewed Chapter: 3 on 6/6/2004
Oh, this is just splendid. And will all be so complicated.

Which came first - the chicken or the egg? Do Imladris/Lorien care less for Mirkwood because Thranduil despises them or does he dislike them because they look to themselves first? Or is it a bit of both - Noldor/Wood Elf aversion leading to political results. Hot tempers are bad things in politics. Ithilden is probably a much better representative.

Ithilden is really quite good as picking up Saruman's manipulations - I wonder if that is because he is new to it, and he is seen as relatively unimportant, so Saruman has put more of himself more into influencing those he meets more often. I am looking forward to Eilian meeting Mr Smooth, because, as I recall, even Thranduil admits that Eilian is excellent at reading people.

If I were Alfirin, I would be getting rather irritated by the over-protectiveness of Thranduil and Ithilden. However, I would doubt she is really as ignorant of what is happening as they would like - she does go out of the palace and her father is a forester, while her brother deals with the horses. She may let them think they are protecting her. Of course, not permitting people to talk about nasty things during meals and evening times might make them think she doesn't know, but could well be her way of giving them safe time to relax in.

Loved seeing how responsible Eilian has become - with everybody but himself. DON'T hurt him. Or indeed any of your other gorgeous OCs. Except perhaps Tinar - he could do with a bit of ill-treatment. (You will have to introduce some OOCs if you need to kill anybody off. Like Star Trek landing parties)

Interesting thoughts on elven bonding. Of course, they would have to learn how to be closed to each other when they wanted - you couldn't endure having someone in your head all the time, picking up everything. Sad that the glow of bonding cannot last, though.

It will be very interesting to see them getting to know Elrond and Galadriel better - Thranduil's sons should know the other important elves. And of course, there's Glorfindel, whose presence is so impressive it makes Eilian squeak. Seeing all of them together should be fascinating.

Oh, this is so good. More - please. Work nights.

Author Reply: Imladris and Lorien are bound together by so many ties, just starting from the fact the Elrond is married to Galadriel's daughter, so they undoubtedly know one another quite well. But the two of them are both ring bearers too. And Thranduil seems to be such an outsider. He's like a country cousin, without a ring and living in a cave. But he managed to keep his people reasonably safe even without a ring (well, he kept withdrawing to a smaller and smaller part of the forest, true, but they survived with Sauron in their very midst).

I'll bet Eilian will be spending as little time as possible with the great and powerful except for Glorfindel and maybe Mithrandir. None of the rest of them seems like his cup of tea, frankly. I think both the brothers see things in Saruman that the others don't, however, because they're new to him and because, as you say, he's not bothering with them.

Eilian's thoughts on his bond with Celuwen made me sad. I think their situation is a product of the lives they live, not a natural fading of the glow of their bonding. :-(

White WolfReviewed Chapter: 3 on 6/5/2004
Well, it's about time the White Council got their collective butts in gear. I'm happy that Eilian has gotten involved.

Author Reply: I was happy to see Eilian get into the story too. He's fun to write about. And it certainly is about time the White Council got moving. Curunir has talked them into sitting around for centuries.

erunyauveReviewed Chapter: 3 on 6/5/2004
Hmmm, maybe Mithrandir was being just a bit sneaky in suggesting that Imladris was the likely target of the attack? The orcs will soon be on the move from Mt Gundabad, and they certainly won't be moving west or south.

Yes, this sounds exactly like Eilian's cup of tea. It's good to see Galelas under his command again, since he seems to have won Galelas over. It's ironic that his much-touted older brother has really failed as a warrior, while Galelas has made himself useful.

Author Reply: I'm drawing on some material in the UT, Erunyauve. Gandalf was incredibly prescient. Well, he's a wizard.

That's so true about Tinar and Galelas. Tinar has more or less failed, and Galelas is doing well or Eilian would not have him under his command in this dangerous place.

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