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What His Heart Spoke  by LKK 15 Review(s)
LeawardReviewed Chapter: 1 on 2/2/2005
Sigh! What a lovely -- and sad -- story. Very evocative. I loved this part:

"Tears streamed down Thranduil's face. Yet this time, the king felt no shame in his display of tears. For this time, the king wished his people to hear what his heart spoke."

I love seeing a 'nice' Thranduil after all the rotten stories that have been written about him. And you wrote it so you could feel his pain along with him. Again, well done!

Red Squirrel Reviewed Chapter: 1 on 11/28/2004
oh...this was just wonderful! I am only sorry that I have found it so late. I have loved everyone's response to the challenge.

This was very well written with wonderful intimate detail. I have to say that I was teary eyed as I read this. I have always wondered about Oropher's family's reaction to his death. You have shown what happens when someone so important (both in his family and Realm) dies.

I just wanted to say how much I enjoyed this story that you shared!

~Red Squirrel

Author Reply: Hi Red Squirrel,

Better late than never, as the saying goes. I'm happy to hear you were so touched by this story. This one pratically wrote itself. I must have tapped into something special for this because the writing was so easy (comparatively) and the readers' reactions have been so strong.

Thank you for taking the time to leave me a note. :)


RuseReviewed Chapter: 1 on 9/26/2004
Very good! Very sad. I think you handled it perfectly, with all the dignity befitting the Elves. Most excellent!

Author Reply: Thank you for the review, Ruse. I appreciate you taking the time to let me know what you thought of the story. :)

Brenda G.Reviewed Chapter: 1 on 9/25/2004
Well, now that my nose is swollen and my eyes reddened from crying so much, I can post my review. This really touched me. I love the window you have opened to the younger Thranduil at the beginning of his reign after Oropher's death. Most stories in which Thranduil figures show him as the long-time ruler of the Woodland Realm - warrior, father, and all that those roles imply. It was nice to see him as a young elf, now shouldering the huge responsibilities untimely thrust upon him when his father perished. Nethwen strikes me as being the epitome of wisdom and dignity, qualities she seemingly has bequeathed to her son. Their love for each other is deep and abiding, another compelling facet which made this story pull so hard at the heartstrings of the reader.

I, who am childless, have often reasoned as Thranduil and his queen about bringing children into a world so shriveled by Shadow (for the Shadow of Evil is very real, very much with us in all aspects of life today as it was in Thranduil's time). But I see the joy of others with children, I share in that joy and in the wonder of a new life with friends and family, marveling, as I always do at what a miracle a baby truly is. My nieces and nephews are wells of wonder to me and rooted themselves so deeply in my soul as to become a part of me. Nethwen is right--children are our hope -- candles of light that all the darkness in the world cannot put out.

The part in this story about our tears are how our heart speaks was particularly moving and beautiful.

This is a memorable piece, teaching the reader many things not soon forgotten, if ever. Well done, and thank you for this treasure.

Author Reply: What a touching review, Brenda. I'm honored that you shared it with me. It's left me almost speechless. Thank you so much. I don't know how else to express my gratitude except to say thank you again.

NilmandraReviewed Chapter: 1 on 9/24/2004
Oh, LKK, you made me cry.

Thank you for writing this - its a lovely use of the challenge, and I like the glimpse of relationship there was between Thranduil and his parents. I hope both of Legolas's grandparents were waiting for him when he arrived in Valinor.

Author Reply: I'm sorry that I made you cry, Nilmandra.

Well, to be honest, I'm not *entirely* sorry. I am entirely honored that this story effected you so much though.

I'm pretty sure both Oropher and Nethwen were waiting for Legolas in Valinor. I doubt Namo could have kept Oropher too long once Nethwen was in Valinor. I get the feeling that Oropher was a *very* determined and hard to dissuade elf. LOL

Thanks for the review! :)

DotReviewed Chapter: 1 on 9/24/2004
Oh wow. This is so incredibly moving. Thranduil is wonderfully written. He is so touchingly concerned for his mother, yet still there is an underlying sense of his own grief for his father. Then, of course, there's the glimpse of the fine king he will be when he tries to be strong for his people and recognises that he is not the only one who has suffered.

I thought you depicted the symbols of mourning very well. It's completely realistic and I love that you kept it closely related to nature so that it's recognisable but still uniquely elfy.

Nethwen seems very wise. She is complety right in what she says about children being a hope for the future. The close and loving relationship between her and her son is lovely to see and made her departure all the more poignant. But I'm glad you had her choose to sail West.

Oh, and I just love the idea of the secret seals! Great take on the challenge and sensitively's just perfect. :-)

Author Reply: Such a wonderfully detailed review, Dot! I'm honored.

I'm glad you liked the elven symbols of mourning. That was the one part of the story that required the most reworking in later drafts. I struggled with balancing traditional mourning symbols with things elves might do. I'm glad that you felt the results worked.

I liked creating Nethwen. I felt that any elf married to Oropher and who raised Thranduil had to be a patient, far-sighted, and wise person. She was the calm in what could be a rather tempestuous household. I couldn't imagine someone like that allowing herself to fade completely. Such a strong person would have chosen to sail, I thought.

The secret seals turned out to be a rousing success. Several reviewers commented on them. Sometimes I get lucky. LOL

Thank you for taking time to leave me such a wonderful review. :)

Elena TirielReviewed Chapter: 1 on 9/23/2004
A very touching story, LKK. Beautiful and sad and hopeful all at once...

- Barbara

Author Reply: Thank you for the review, Barbara. I really appreciate that you took the time to let me know how you felt about the story. :)

BrazgirlReviewed Chapter: 1 on 9/23/2004
Beautiful. Absolutely beautiful. One of the best answers to this challenge. Wonderfully done. Thranduil's emotions were well described and his mother was so sublime. Lovely...

Author Reply: There have been so many good responses to this challenge. I'm honored that you think so highly of mine, Brazgirl. Thank you for your kind words. They really mean a lot to me. :)

CarolReviewed Chapter: 1 on 9/23/2004
That was a beautiful story. Sad but beautiful. Great job.

Author Reply: Thank you, Carol. I'm glad you found the story both sad *and* beautiful. I appreciate you taking the time to drop me a note.

elliskaReviewed Chapter: 1 on 9/23/2004
How very sad. You did a very good job conveying the emotions of everyone involved. A letter from Oropher in case he did not return. Too sad. And the special seals are a wonderful thought. Great story.

Author Reply: Thank you, elliska. I'm glad you found the story so touching. I appreciate you taking the time to let me know how you felt about it. :)

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