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A Creature of Fire  by daw the minstrel 22 Review(s)
lwarrenReviewed Chapter: 6 on 4/3/2005
You really do an excellent job of showing everyday life in a patrol...the beginning scenes of Legolas' group searching that cave was very well done. And of course, all the other little details of who does what in camp and how each member of the group does their job, very realistic! I really liked Beliond bouncing the acorns off of Sinnarn's head - beware of keepers lurking in trees, especially if you are going to call them Nana! LOL

Eilian's letter, though, was priceless! Anyr's little settlement sounds like some of the hippie communes of the '60's - complete with skinny-dipping elves! Of course, the whole thing is so much more funny because Eilian tried to reassure Celuwen he'd be blind to all that display of bare flesh! HA! I see Celuwen reacted much the same way! :-) Eilian is hilarious as he mentions several times what an outstanding husband he is...and thoughtful, too! *snort* He has his serious side,however, being all concerned for the defense of the settlement...tho' I'm not too sure Celuwen will like his little classes he has going on the side...I sense trouble on that front!

I'm glad Legolas made the effort to compliment Galelas and pass on Eilian's greetings - maybe that will lessen the tension between them. So, it begins - Tuilinn has not started back from Dale...and the mountain is on fire! Will Legolas lead the elven version of the fire department...or will he freak and take out on his own to find his sweetie? Great chapter, daw!


Author Reply: I'm having a good time writing Eilian's letters, I have to say. I think Celuwen is right to be skeptical of his claims about how oblivious he'd be while swimming with naked maidens. And I do think it's right that he'd be serious about defending the settlement.

As I'm looking at this story now, though, I think I see a better way to do it! I should have started with the patrol and the meeting with Tuilinn and also had the patrol meet more action than usual to give a sense of things beginning to stir. Then I'd send Legolas home on leave to talk to Thranduil about Tuilinn. That would be interesting. I think Adar would want him to slow down. Then I'd send him back to find the dragon. That would give the first part of this story more tension and drive it forward better.

Sorry, Linda! I was just thinking about this so you get to hear it!

I'm working on the next chapter but was slowed down by being away this weekend.

BodkinReviewed Chapter: 6 on 4/2/2005
'You can bet that if Celuwen hadn't been there, he'd have been diving head first into the Forest River!'

Maybe - but I bet that if Celuwen had said 'yes, let's strip off and join them', he would have been absolutely horrified. He's a wood-elf with a thorough indoctrination in suitable behaviour. However much he is willing to disregard convention, I'm not sure he would feel comfortable about his wife abandoning it!

And I doubt one thing will make a difference to Galelas and his resentment of Legolas's luck in being who he is - but it's water on a stone. There has to have been a fair amount of erosion. And maybe there's the knowledge that Eilian loves Legolas - and if Eilian feels like that, maybe the brat has something going for him. I'd like to see them putting adolescence behind them - they'll never be best buddies, but Galelas is grown up enough to see Legolas's good qualities. And vice versa.

Author Reply: LOL. I suspect you're right. I think that Eilian might be rather possessive about Celuwen, and would be most unhappy to see her swimming with males other than himself.

And see, that's what I thought about Galelas too. I didn't want to show a radical change, but I did want to show what you call a drop!

BodkinReviewed Chapter: 6 on 4/2/2005
I hope, in Valinor, Galelas becomes a husband and adar. He is good with young'uns and he would never, NEVER let an elfling a) suffer neglect as he did or b) grow up like Tinar.

Maybe he needs to know something about the pain of escorting the bodies of young warriors home and feeling that he is responsible for their deaths - for not foreseeing the unforeseeable or preventing the unpreventable. Although I hope he doesn't have to carry out that duty himself.

I loved Eilian's letter - it made me laugh out loud (rare). So Solith would not approve of mixed bathing? Quelle surprise! And Eilian felt that, had Celuwen been his naneth, he would be confined to his room to 'think about his actions'. (How familiar that sounds!) And the 'sufficient perseverance' reference! Anyr's wood elves are so wood-elvish that they are almost incapacitated! They flit! And gambol! Grasshoppers to Eilian's ant. And that is so remarkable I feel need to stress it as I laugh - Eilian is the ant!! Eilian is preparing for winter and hard times, while shaking his head over the irresponsibility of others!

And Legolas is beginning to think beyond the moment with Tuilinn. But, unlike his brother, he is considering how to make the transition easier for her - and how he can accommodate her desires and needs. I suppose Eilian did know Celuwen - and very well - from their earliest childhood, and she was ill - but he still dived in headlong and sorted the situation out later.

Poor Sinnarn. He does find taking responsibility for the whole world a difficult concept - although I don't think ignoring it will work for too long. I seem to remember that he is fairly convinced of his need to protect by Tangled Web, so he must find his own way of dealing with the pressures. And it's a good converation for Galelas to hear - I doubt he's tried looking at it from the point of view of the Thranduilionnath. But, on the other hand, I loved Beliond pelting him with acorns - and I'll bet Nana can throw HARD.

Seeing Galelas concerned about Eilian's health will touch Legolas's heart, too. And a few stilted conversations might ease the tensions a bit.

But fire on the mountain. Oh dear.

Author Reply: I hope that for Galelas too. I even hope that in the Halls of Waiting he's treated like a hero for his actions at the Battle of 5 Armies. He'd like that. And while I didn't think that overhearing the conversation between Legolas and Sinnarn would change him in any significant way, I thought it wouldn't hurt him to hear it.

Eilian does indeed find himself in an odd situation -- compared to these elves, he's like his adar or Ithilden or something! And yet, Thranduil would be horrified to see how easily he fits in in some ways too. You can bet that if Celuwen hadn't been there, he'd have been diving head first into the Forest River!

Assuming that Legolas ever gets the chance to talk to Thranduil about Tuilinn, I think that Adar might try to slow this romance down a little so that the couple has a chance to get to know one another a little better. But according to the story Nilmandra wrote about my Thranduil meeting Lorellin, he loved her at first sight, so I don't think he has much room to stand on. And, like Tuilinn, she was playing with children when he caught his first glimpse of her. :-)

KarriReviewed Chapter: 6 on 4/1/2005
I am glad to see Legolas making an effort to let bygones be bygones. He will be glad to have done when he thinks back after the Battle of Five Armies.

Author Reply: Yes, Legolas will be glad he did that. I thought it was his own joy that made him able to be generous.

ziggyReviewed Chapter: 6 on 4/1/2005
I have so enjoyed reading your stories - 'discovered' them earler this year and have spent many happy hours getting to know all the characters over a number of wet weekends- I have to say, Eilian is perhaps my favourite, but I love the way you have depicted them all. And there are really good lessons in them for parents- and grandparents! Such good advice wrapped up in the tales. So thank you- I think is the first review I have left becasue I have been'catching up' and have a few of the ones of younger Legolas to read- usually I cant bear the very sentimental treatment writers give younger Legolast but you have drawn the family so beautifuuly and it is so accurate in terms of what life is like for famileis, espeically bereaved families, that I am looking forward to them. Thank you so much for just keeping on writing!

Author Reply: Thank you so much for letting me know you're reading and enjoying these stories. I love my OCs quite shamelessly, so I always like to hear that other people appreciate them. I've had a good time trying to work out the family dynamics here and make the characters distinct and rounded.

I hope you like the kiddie stories too. I try not to sentimentalize little Legolas, but it's tricky to avoid.

thechevinReviewed Chapter: 6 on 4/1/2005
There I was enjoying Eilian's letter as much as Legolas obviously was, smiling about the swimming and Eilian's attemptes to keep his training activities quiet, poor deluded male elf Celuwyn is bound to find out sooner or later!
I was even happy to see the effect Eilian's remarks had on Galeas and Beliond's acorn tricks and then whoosh we have a mountain of fire and something wicked this way comes
What is worse you then leave us hanging by our fingernails to find out what is going to happen next
Another excellent chapter, cliffie notwithstanding

Author Reply: I'd say Celuwen is certainly going to find out, and when she does, she won't be happy. But I doubt if she'll shake his resolve. This is an area in which he's dead serious.

I needed to get to some action! This story has been pretty quiet, you have to admit. Now we're going to go take a closer look at Dale and the mountain, and things will get a little more lively. Sigh.

perellethReviewed Chapter: 6 on 4/1/2005
He, he, such an ending! as on tiptoes! ;-) great. Wonderful daw, seriously, all that day-to-day routine and now he can hardly believe what his eyes are telling him. I could almost figure what he was feeling. It was wonderfully done, the contrast between their peaceful day and the tragedy striking down there in the east.

Eilian's letters are getting even funnier... he's master of sarcastic euphemism! Mingling in the bare! that sent me howling! And Celuwen seems to have developed an "Ithilden syndrome" A list of lengths, indeed! I was reminded of some experiences I've had in situations quite... similar (not with elves, unfortunately) and I couldn't help shaking my head in sympathy, I think Eilian has chosen a safer course.

Am I allowed to pity Galelas? I know he behaves horribly with Legolas, but his captain seemed happy enough with him before Legolas arrived, and as Eilian remarks, he's a good warrior, and good at teaching others, which is something not easily found! Poor one!

Beliond was great with Sinnarn. I wonder. Are they all aware that should anything happen to Ithilden, Sinnarn would be the next "heir" in the list? I guess they all rather ignore that chance!!! Poor Sinnarn. He seems to feel overwhelmed by his father's example and his own sense of inadequacy! Maybe they need a little time together?

Where is Tuilinn? (look at me, reading and reviewing at work! shame!;-)

Author Reply: One of the things I've been a little worried about in this story is that all the relationship stuff and everyday activities would be boring. But I wanted to lay the groundwork so that readers could see the significance of later events. A lesson I think I'm taking away from this is that I might need to use more "action" openings.

I love writing Eilian's letters. It's so much fun to take on his voice. I have to confess though that I got "mingling in the bare" from The Karenator, who says she got it from Daeron. It sounds like him, doesn't it?

Please do pity Galelas. I do. He's not evil. He's just unpleasant in Legolas's presence. I'm trying to drive tiny wedges in the wall between them, although I don't think they'll ever be buddies.

It's kind of scary to think of the fact that Sinnarn is his father's heir. And it's not like bad things couldn't happen to Ithilden or Thranduil. Oropher died, after all.

We're going to go looking for Tuilinn in the next chapter.

emjoReviewed Chapter: 6 on 3/31/2005
NOOOOO Daw you can't do this to me. Please update as soon as possible! Oh and another plea to you asking you please don't make this story sad I can't handle that! Love it so far!

Author Reply: I'm glad you like it, emjo. We're seeing a bit of Mirkwood's history here, and much of that was unhappy, I'm afraid. We'll have to see how it goes.

BrazgirlReviewed Chapter: 6 on 3/31/2005
Legolas is in love! That is so sweet! You are right Daw, Eilian's letters are always fun!!! This line really made me laugh: "Sólith is about as likely to allow mingling in the bare as he is to send me a scroll declaring what a fine son-in-law I am." He is so fun!!!
Those wild elves swimming all together! They know how to enjoy life. I wonder what would be of Eilian if he had been born in a settlement.
Sinnarn... the poor babe. I think he misses Ithilden in his life, as just an adar. Or ada! He worries over his too right father and thinks he is all unhappy with his duties. I see some of the queen in Sinnarn on this. Am I right? When he started to talk to Legolas I felt like hugging him.
I did not think Legolas would speak to Galelas, even more after he heard the talk.

Author Reply: I'm so glad you like that line in Eilian's letter! The Karenator suggested the phrase "mingling in the bare," which I thought was clever. Eilian's father-in-law would have a stroke if he knew what his little girl was being exposed to.

Like Eilian, Sinnarn is quite a bit like Lorellin. You're right about that. And he can see that he might have a lot of responsibility some day. After all, Ithilden is the king's heir and Sinnarn is Ithilden's. That has to be scary.

Legolas is happy enough that he can be generous with Galelas.

elliskaReviewed Chapter: 6 on 3/31/2005
Finally got home from work so I could read this. Work is getting in the way of my fan fiction reading so much these days! How dare it! :)

I like how you have handled Galelas and the young warriors. You are really good at making your 'not so nice' characters have balance. It's still hard to like the guy (even knowing his fate in Laketown later on) but it's impossible to just dislike him too. It's fun for me to think about that but poor Legolas is struggling with it right now.

I loved Eilian's discovery. That was hilarious. Poor Celuwen--I bet Eilian had fun teasingly trying to convince her to join in. And you had some great description and some great lines in that section too. I doubt any letters Celuwen's father sends Eilian ever sing his praises.

Eilian is going to be in sooo much trouble with Celuwen when she finds out about his extra curricular activities (unless, of course, they end up saving lives when all you know what breaks loose). How is it that I can so see him doing that?

And the conversation with Sinnarn about his letter and Ithilden was well done. Poor Sinnarn needs more self confidence. It sounds to me like he generally does a good job (when dwarves aren't around). I feel for the kid. He's in a tough place having his adar's example to live up to and not really wanting to.

Poor Legolas. I am dying to find out how he manages to control his reaction to the mountain being in flames. Knowing the lady that he cannot tear his thoughts from is right under that mountain is going to make it hard for Legolas to react like an officer (or at least it would be hard for me not to go running off straight there--I imagine Legolas will do better than I would. He always does. :) Thank heavens.)

And just because I can't leave a review without saying this: I love Beliond! He's great. Sinnarn deserved the acorns.

Don't wait too long to update. This was a really cruel place to leave it. :)

Author Reply: I'm glad you find Galelas complex enough to be hard to classify. I don't think of him as evil or as meaning to do harm. He's just a guy whose family is not very nice and he's struggling to become a decent person in spite of that. He'll never shake them entirely. Oddly enough, the only thing that's saved him is that he's not his parents' favorite (which is also the thing that's soured him).

To me, Eilian is likely to go along with what Celuwen wants most of the time because he's pretty easy going. But he's never going to let his guard down when it comes to protecting people from the forces of Shadow. Celuwen can rage all she wants. This is the one thing he's serious about. He's seen too many bad things to ever let it go.

Sinnarn is feeling overwhelmed. He's deeply afraid he's going to have to live the life his father lives and he doesn't think he's up to it. He just wants to be sure no one else expects him to do that either, and he's doing his best to convince them that he's not capable.

I think you may find that your reaction to the fire on the mountain and Legolas's are more similar than you might anticipate!

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