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The Ranger and the Eagles  by Cairistiona 15 Review(s)
layneReviewed Chapter: 6 on 2/7/2011
Awwww ... Strider. To be so traumatized by that childhood event of his *cuddles him*

I was rather afraid at first, that there *was* something sinister behind his fear of the gentle eagle. I'm glad that was not so because I really like Durvain, and I love his and his mate's backstory in the chapter before this, that tugged at my heartstrings.

Love the part where Gandalf probed into Aragorn's thoughts, and Aragorn being cross at that!!

Author Reply: Thank you, Layne! My apologies in taking so long to reply... somehow I didn't get an email notice about this review. Glitches happen, I suppose, but I hate it when they do!

I'm glad you're enjoying the story--especially Durvain and Menelris and their story. I wasn't sure how well OC eagles would be accepted by everyone but it seems that those two have found places in readers' hearts. :) And no, nothing sinister behind Aragorn's fear... just a silly phobia set in place by a scary childhood incident, similar to what anyone might suffer.

Hope you enjoy the rest of the story, and thanks again for the review!

LisaGReviewed Chapter: 6 on 1/24/2011
Ha! I just knew it had to be something from Aragorn's past that was causing the intense fear of eagles! Poor little's hard to overcome those childhood memories, even when they turn out ok. I was chased by a great dane dog when I was a kid...he thought I was playing, but I was terrified he was going to jump on me and bite me. To this day, I'm still a bit leery of large dogs, so I can relate to Aragorn's fears! Being so ill also isn't helping the poor man...who wants to try to deal with psychological issues when ones body is making you feel just awful. :( I think it's going to be a hard trick to get him calm enough to fly with the eagles!

Author Reply: Thanks, LisaG... yep, it was a childhood phobia that he never realized he had rearing its ugly head! And I think if I had been chased by a great Dane I would be leery of big dogs, too! I'm glad he didn't actually bite you.

I think you're right in that Gandalf will have his hands full trying to get Aragorn to agree to fly. *g* Thanks for the review!

Linda HoylandReviewed Chapter: 6 on 1/22/2011
Oh poor Aragorn that he has a childhood fear of eagles!You have made me feel very sorry for the poor Ranger and Gandalf trying his best.I'd like to read a story now about eagles bringing down as a coronation gift for Aragorn!

Author Reply: Thank you, Linda! I'm so glad I've captured your sympathies for poor Aragorn (and Gandalf!). And I wouldn't be at all surprised if Durvain decided Aragorn needed down as a coronation gift. He seems that sort of bird, doesn't he!

RadbooksReviewed Chapter: 6 on 1/18/2011
I'm really enjoying this story! I loved the glimpse of Aragorn as a child... very fun. I'm glad that he remembered where his fear of eagles came from, it would have made it tough for him to trust the bird otherwise. :)

Thanks so much for sharing!

Author Reply: Thanks, Radbooks... glad you're still enjoying it! I love thinking about how Aragorn's childhood might have went, in those small, everyday ways. We know the "big" stuff, but I like thinking about all the little things... not that getting scared out of one's four-year-old mind is little! But it's not something in canon, though I think it could fit canon. At any rate, hopefully the realization will help some, but I imagine it's still going to be hard to accept that he's going to have to fly, flying not being something most residents of Middle-earth ever think they'll do!

Thanks for the review!

Silivren TinuReviewed Chapter: 6 on 1/18/2011
I have to say the title of this chapter made me quite nervous! I'm quite relieved no one (especially not a certain ranger) was grabbed and eaten during the course of this chapter. *g*

I can't blame Aragorn for not being entirely comfortable with the thought of being carried in the talons of a giant eagle, especially since he seems to have (at least imaginary) reason to be nervous. I loved that little scene with Aragorn and Glorfindel, though Aragorn would probably have been quite happy without it... or at least without the events leading to it. ;-)

It's good to see Gandalf in a grouchy mood again - it's almost worrying when he becomes too mother-henny. :D It's a pity he doesn't feel like dancing, though - I'd LOVE to see him dance that jig! *ignores glaring wizard* Poor Aragorn, though. It doesn't seem as if he's likely to feel any better anytime soon. Flying will be quite hard for him for more than one reason - if it even comes to the flying part and you don't have any more nasty surprises up your sleeve. I almost suspect you have. *g*

Author Reply: What, me? Nasty surprises?? *blinks innocently* Everyone seems to think I'll have nasty surprises for Aragorn and I can NOT imagine where they're getting such ridiculous ideas.


Okay, fine... I do see. *g* But if I say anything they won't be surprises, if such are in the offering, so I'll simply say thank you for your review! I think like you, Aragorn is also glad no one was eaten in the course of the chapter, least of all him. Bad enough he has those phobias of being eaten; he'll give no thanks to me for having anything gnaw on a leg or arm. And yes, now that Aragorn's showing tiny signs of improvement, Gandalf's relaxed enough to get grumpy instead of merely panicked and hysterical, which is always an improvement, but I don't think you'll get him to dance that jig, sorry. *g*

Thanks again for the review!

Lily BagginsReviewed Chapter: 6 on 1/18/2011
Oh wow, I keep thinking I can't enjoy the story any more than I am, and then you post a new chapter that I love even more than the ones before!

I have to say that you absolutely are a master at the Aragorn POV, and it's so nice to see his feelings here---and know exactly HOW he's feeling and the details of his injury.

Gandalf's "hysterical staccato" made me laugh! To someone as cool and collected as Aragorn, I can imagine it does seem like hysteria! But it's lovely to see how much Gandalf cares for Aragorn, hovering over him like a mother hen.

Mother hens and eagles! I must say, I can only imagine the night terrors a child in Middle-earth could suffer. It's a dangerous place with a lot of dark and scary things---that unfortunately DO exist as more than a figment of the imagination.

So... the wound is infected now. I must say that news should make me feel terrible, but it gives me a feeling of giddiness, because I know Aragorn isn't in for too easy a time of it. Poor thing! I would wipe his brow and soothe him if I could---but thank goodness he has Gandalf and Durvain. I can't even imagine how flying is going to feel in Aragorn's condition, can't even imagine how the poor dear is going to handle it!

Oh, I can't wait. This honestly all excites me to no end, reading this---it's quite unlike any Aragorn fic I've read before, and after nine years of reading LOTR fanfic, that's quite an awesome thing!

Author Reply: Thanks, Lily! This really isn't like any Aragorn fic that I've seen either--whether that's good or bad I'll leave in the eyes of the readers. LOL I always try to write my take on scenarios as uniquely as possible, even if it's something that's been done a million times before (which this storyline definitely hasn't). I think I've managed to do that here; I've never heard of any stories out there that take Aragorn to the places he has gone and will go in this tale. *fingers crossed*

You make an excellent point about M-e being a scary place for children... I wonder that any of them grew up without screaming cases of the heeby-jeebies but I suppose they were a resilient and courageous lot, for the most part. Good thing!

Glad you enjoyed this latest chapter!

EstelcontarReviewed Chapter: 6 on 1/17/2011
I'm so glad to see that though injured Aragorn has not lost his sense of humour, and happy to hear his right earlobe at least was not giving him misery. LOL

This is a great chapter. Your description of the avalanche was so intense I almost felt as if I were poor Aragorn lying in the snow slowly freezing to death.

Aragorn's childhood terrors read very real, just like something that would have happened to a child. They do have great a great imagination, don't they, and can conjure these real life nightmares and believe in them most completely. I also reaally, reaally liked the way you used "...who would grab him and eat him and spit out his bones..." as a link between Estel's experience and Aragorn's irrational fear of eagles.

It also goes without saying that I enjoyed to bits Aragorn's reaction to Durvain, and his interaction with Gandalf. The humour which you instill in these scenes makes them very lively and entertaining. And the tail feather's bit had me chuckling out loud.

Author Reply: Thanks, Estelcontar! You know, I would have loved to have actually seen Durvain mumble that little complaint about the wind blowing across his bum! *g* Poor bird, but he's doing a good work, blocking the winds and keeping them warm. I'm glad you liked the link between the childhood event and his current fears--that was admittedly a challenge to come up with, because it's hard to make the mighty Aragorn afraid of anything, at least on that illogical, visceral level. Yes, he's frightened of the Nazgul but then anyone in their right mind would be; giving him a true, believable phobia was more of a challenge!

Glad you enjoyed it the second time around, and again, thanks for the review!

perennial lurkerReviewed Chapter: 6 on 1/17/2011
Just came across this for the first time. This amazes me because I've wanted someone for *years* to do a thoughtful Aragorn and Gandalf friendship fic framed by their Gollum hunt. I've read a few one-shots but nothing like this. It's really good so far; your characterizations of both of them are just as good as your other stories. Here's an obligatory "keep up the good work." You really have a knack for writing Aragorn.

Author Reply: Thank you, perennial lurker! So glad you found the story and are enjoying it. There really aren't enough Aragorn & Gandalf friendship fics out there, and still fewer, as you say, framed by the hunt for Gollum, which to my mind had to have been their greatest endeavor together short of the events in LOTR. It's definitely worthy of exploration... challenging, though, because it's hard to figure out how to approach an event that took place over so many years. My solution is to take it in bite-sized adventures like this one.

Hope you enjoy the rest of the tale, and thank you for the review!

DarkoverReviewed Chapter: 6 on 1/17/2011
This is the best chapter so far! You have a gift for writing dialogue. You have done a particularly good job of writing Gandalf in-character, and I loved his conversation with Strider. As usual, when the wizard is frustrated or worried--and in this situation, he is both--he gets tetchy and sarcastic. The thought of him dancing a jig is quite an image! You are doing a fine job with the h/c. In this chapter you express it mostly in words, and yet you still keep our favorite wizard and our favorite Ranger both in-character. It seems typical of Strider that, even though he appreciates Gandalf's concern, he would ascribe the shoulder-patting to a sort of "hysterical staccato"--good choice of words--and that Strider would do his best to tough things out, not letting on how much his injuries hurt. The title of this chapter certainly got my attention, and I quite sympathize with poor Strider's childhood fears. Childhood fears are intense and don't have to be rational, and they often stick with us even years later. Besides, Eagles, even noble and helpful ones, are still predators, and Strider's primitive hindbrain is probably responding to that with Durvain so close. Again, I am really enjoying this story. Thanks for posting so promptly, and I eagerly await the next chapter. Sincerely, Darkover

Author Reply: Thank you, Darkover! Glad you found this chapter even more to your liking than the others... it's one of my own favorites, to be honest. It was fun to explore the idea of Aragorn having a childhood fear that still rose up to bother him as an adult. He's always so brave and noble and capable that the idea of him being reduced to shivering fear is hard to write plausibly in character--the Wraiths apparently give him the "creeps" but I wanted to see if there could be some other, unexpected, thing that might (and yes, Eagles being predators helped in that regard... hard not to feel a bit dicey about those giant talons, simply on an instinctive level). "Cranky Gandalf", on the other hand, is not quite such a stretch, as Tolkien gave us so many wonderfully funny glimpses into the cantankerous nature of the Wizard.

Next chapter should be up on Thursday--thanks for reading!

curiouswombatReviewed Chapter: 6 on 1/17/2011
Oh dear - poor little Estel to have been so frightened - and oh, how those childhood fears and frights colour our adult selves, no matter how we try to reassure ourselves with logic.

Author Reply: Thank you, curiouswombat... yes, those fears we carry with us from childhood have much to answer for, and are very hard to put down. Aragorn will have his job cut out for him, methinks.

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