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A Creature of Fire  by daw the minstrel 42 Review(s)
Asms2Reviewed Chapter: 11 on 5/12/2016
Holy cow, this story is an emotional ride! I tend to prefer to read about family and friendship bonds over romance, but I was quite pulled in by the angst in this! Legolas was really hurting, and I felt for him. When he watched his brothers take happiness in their wives and felt the loneliness and despair…my heart just melted.

Was Thranduil out looking for Legolas when he found him and Beliond in the woods? Or was that just a chance happening?

I think that Legolas was probably a little hyper-emotional before he even saw Tuillinn in this story. He seemed to be having some effects from the Shadow and also feeling a bit lonely. Then Tuillinn walks into the camp and he instantly latches onto the hope that they could bond. That relationship progressed fast. They had only ever seen each other once before, and not spoken in 10 years. (I liked how Eilian was like "But I've never even heard him mention her before"). They must have had a good connection though, because Tuilinn seemed to be into Legolas too.

Anyways, it was quite hart-breaking to see Legolas so down. But I actually really enjoyed reading it. His family, fellow warriors, and Beliond all rallied around him to help. And they were so sweet in their comfort and efforts.

Great writing! :)

Author Reply: Thank you!

I hesitated to do this story because I'm not a natural romance writer either, and Legomances have a bad rep. Also I decided to try to do the story all from Legolas's POV, which was hard. I had to resort to him overhearing stuff and getting letters. And Legolas is so stunned during the later part of this story, that it was difficult to show what everyone else was doing too. But in the long run, I think that single POV gave the story an emotional punch it wouldn't have had otherwise.

Thranduil was indeed out looking for his baby. Eilian went home and sang like a bird about what Legolas was going through, and that was after he and Beliond conspired to let Legolas take Tuilinn's body to her parents but then make sure he went back to the stronghold rather than his patrol. So Thranduil had a pretty good idea where to watch for his son.

You're absolutely right that the scenes with his brothers and their wives were meant to set Legolas up for falling in love. I wasn't sure about the love at first (or nearly first) sight, but Tolkien says some things that seem to suggest that elves recognize one another as the person they're meant to love. I don't know. My beta wrote a story as a present to me in which Thranduil meets Legolas's mother and falls in love at first sight, so I ran with the idea. :-)

LiljeConvallariaReviewed Chapter: 11 on 11/9/2015
Congratulations on getting your own story published! That is so amazing! :-) You have a way with words I always liked, and of all LOTR stories I used to read, yours are the ones that made the biggest impression.

Whenever I see people complaining about OC in fanfiction, saying they don't read stories with OC's in it, I think of your stories. Years after I first read them, I still think of the family you created for Legolas as "real"

It's impossible to say which of the stories that's my favorite, it depends on my mood. But this one. This one is the one I would read if I needed a good cry.

I want to thank you for all the wonderful stories you've written. I hope your Muse is always inspired, both for your original work and your fanwork.
Hugs for you. :-)

Author Reply: Lilje--

I've been dragging around today, sick with a migraine, and I think your review may have cured me. :-) At least it made me feel better.

Thank you for the congrats and your kind words. This story was a departure for me because it's all from Legolas's POV, and I missed being able to move from one character to another. And Legolas was out of it for a large part of the story, so I had to try to convey what was going on around him even when he was fully conscious of it. Also, Legomances have a bad rep in the fandom, so I was treading on tricky ground. But it turned out that single POV gave the story emotional power I wasn't expecting. So I learned a lot.

Anyway, I appreciate this review.

daw

NotACatReviewed Chapter: 11 on 4/10/2015
I'm going to have to read this again once I find out who's been chopping onions…

Author Reply: Is it wrong that I'm glad I made you cry?

I really hesitated to write this story because Legomances have such a bad reputation in the fandom. And then I decided to do it all from Legolas's point of view rather than multiple pov's like I usually use, which made for challenges in some places because he's so out of it, but I still wanted to show what other people were doing. But in the long run, I learned a lot writing it.

And I made readers cry. So there you go.

daw

WinterwitchReviewed Chapter: 11 on 2/10/2014
Here by the recent rec of this story in the Faerie archive shoutbox discussion.

I really enjoyed this compelling and intense read, and the world of the woodland elves you created. The story was very sad, of course, and I cried quite a lot for poor Legolas - how bitter for him to find out after so many years that Tuilinn loves him after all, just to loose her in this way. It was really heartbreaking.
Apart from your amazing characterisations and your well-developed original characters (I'm really interested in the relationship between Legolas and Galeas now and hope I'll find more about them in your other stories) I most loved all the "practical" detail you brought into your story. The way the patrols are organised and how they all work together, the camp life, the differences between the patrol stations and the dynamics between the characters down the smallest details.

Author Reply: Those folks over at Faerie were very kind about this story. I was thrilled people still enjoyed it.

This story was a departure for me because it's entirely from Legolas's POV when I usually jump around from character to character. It was pretty challenging sometimes to convey what other people were doing or thinking because Legolas was so out of it. But then, it was fun to try that too. Also, this was my one stab at a Legomance, a genre which has a pretty bad reputation in fandom.

My OCs got out of control after a while. I found them easier to write than Legolas, actually. I think I feel some need to be careful with canon characters, but Legolas's brothers? I could have a lot of fun making up stuff for them.

Anyway, I appreciate both that you took the time to read this story and then to tell me you enjoyed it. You made my day.

curiouswombatReviewed Chapter: 11 on 8/1/2008
I have been working my way through your whole series of Legolas stories for the past week. I would have reviewed before, but had forgotten my password!

But when I reached the end of this one I had to take time to get soted out so that I could log in and comment.

The whole series are so well written that I have been totally drawn into them - and this story has, literally, reduced me to tears - I still have a big lump in my throat. Poor, poor Legolas.



Author Reply: Thank you, curiouswombat. You're making me feel very, very good.

This story was tricky to write for various reasons. For one, I used only Legolas's point of view, rather than the multiple POVs I usually use. Also, Legomances are notoriously badly received, so I was treading tricky ground. But mostly, I depressed the heck out of myself writing it! LOL

sofiaReviewed Chapter: 11 on 11/18/2006
Just finished rereading this story. I have to say it was even more sorrowful reading how Legolas was so happy to see Tuilinn and how he was looking forward to bond with her. Knowing it would not end well was sad. Still one of my favorite pieces. I have one question though, Legolas tells Tuilinn's parents that he would visit them sometime and I am wondering if you will ever write a story in which Legolas does visit them?

Author Reply: This story tore me up to write. Being stuck inside Legolas's grieving head depressed me no end.

But what a good idea for a story!

LOTRFaithReviewed Chapter: 11 on 8/9/2006
Hello Daw... Long time no see ay? :-) Anyway... I just wanted to let you know again... :-) How much I love this story... I'm sitting here my nose running and my eyes blurring because of the tears still clogging my vision. Anyway... Just wanted to let you know that your story still makes me cry a river

Author Reply: Is it wrong that I'm glad I made you cry? LOL. One of the things that took me by surprise in writing this story was the power that comes from using the POV of a single character who's in a highly charged situation. I made me stay in Legolas's emotions which probably makes the reader do that too.

Thanks for telling me, Faith.

erunyauveReviewed Chapter: 11 on 7/1/2006
This is a wonderful example of showing rather than telling - I very much felt what Legolas felt, from the moment Tuilinn arrives at camp through her death and the end of the story. The result is rather painful, but it's very well done.

Author Reply: Thanks, Erunyauve. I struggle with showing vs telling so I'm glad you think this stayed on the showing side. This was also one of the few stories I've written from just one POV, so that was also hard. But I learned a lot, so I enjoyed it.

obsidianjReviewed Chapter: 11 on 6/24/2005
Hi,

I love this story. During Tuilinn's funeral, you had me in tears. Legolas's grief is very touching. His healing at the end is uplifting. I wish he could have had some years with Tuilinn, or would that have been even worse? Alas Legolas is not married in LOTR, at least that was my impression. But do we know that for sure?

I love this whole series of stories. I came back after having read everything of your stories there was and wanted to reread some of them, only to discover that you wrote some more stories.

I love your characterization of Legolas and the whole family dynamic with your OCs.

Keep writing.

Author Reply: We don't really know if Legolas was married or not, but to me, he looks single. Maybe things are different with elves, but all that running around ME with Gimli suggests to me that he didn't have a wife waiting at home.

I'm so glad you like the stories. Family dynamics is what I enjoy writing about the most.

AliceReviewed Chapter: 11 on 5/16/2005
Wow. I know I'm late in reviewing this, school work sort of hijacked my life for the past few weeks. So anyway I went back to reread this to refresh my memory, and it's still so incredibly moving. (sigh) It's all just so sad! It's a shame you don't like writing angst, because this is some of the finest angst in fanfiction I've ever read. It feels real and its obvious while subtle enough not to make you sick. It's just, oh it's just all so good.

I really love how Legolas essentially does the same thing in the last chapter as he did in the first chapter. It shows how strongly Tuilinn's death has affected him. It's just such a clever way of doing it. I thought the pacing in this last chapter was a lot better than in the first one. The scenes tie together better in this last chapter.

There were also some really nice little scenes with the characters. Like Galelas so needs a hug. And Beliond was awesome. He knows what his boy needs. I loved the last line about going in and letting Alfirin feed him. At certain points, it becomes more like him eating to comfort her rather than her comforting him with food. She's such a fun, motherly character. Oh! And I love Thranduil Ada. He's a good daddy.
"Loss can break us, Legolas, or it can make us stronger, more compassionate, more aware of what is important and what is simply trivia." (happy sigh) That's the wise old king I know and love. Yeah, as you can probably tell, there were a lot of little things I just adored in this chapter. It was a very nice ending. It was a nice change of pace, though I can understand you not wanting to do anymore angst for a while (to be honest, I think your readers need recovery time also, this stuff was so powerful). Once again you've provided me with a reason not to stop reading fanfiction.


Author Reply: Wow, that's a great compliment. And you're right -- writing strong emotion turns out to be hard. You have to show it but not go over the top. And in my experience, most people are just sort of numbed and dazed by tragedy. And then I did this all from Legolas's POV, so I was caught in his head. So now I had to show him numb but also convey what everyone else was doing around him even though he was out of it. So it was fun. :-)

I thought the first chapter or two of this story was a little slow. If I ever write fiction for real, I think I'm going to need to make sure my openings are a little more compelling.

Thranduil was wonderful. He really came through, although so did Beliond. Legolas is lucky to have all these people who love him.

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