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The Ranger and the Eagles  by Cairistiona 14 Review(s)
layneReviewed Chapter: 10 on 2/28/2011
OOOOOOOOOHHHH! Beorn shifting right in front of Aragorn, and just for him, that was beyond awesome!! I *was* hoping that Beorn would do that, and he did!

Aragorn taking care of that little puppy was so, so adorable. And yes, Aragorn going back to Rivendell on the back of an eagle would be EPIC!

Author Reply: Thank you! I *had* to write the shapeshifting scene... Tolkien never gave us anything about what that looked like and my imagination has played with it forever, wondering how it might look. So yes, Aragorn's inner little boy was satisfied, even if he did get a little too close a look at those teeth. *g*

Linda HoylandReviewed Chapter: 10 on 2/9/2011
I'm often made to sit still by a cat on my lap.
Aragorn's musings were so very human and relevant.
I'm pleased Aragorn had his wishes granted to see Beorn change.

Author Reply: My hubby has had that same thing happen to him of an evening... he sits down to watch a bit of television after a long day and the cat immediately jumps up to take a long nap on his lap. Instant enforced rest!

So glad you enjoyed this chapter... thanks for the review!

TiggerReviewed Chapter: 10 on 2/2/2011
Sigh...I knew the Eagles had to leave, but like Aragorn, am very sad to see them go. I hope we see them all meet each other again at some point.

Love that image of Aragorm w/a puppy tucked into his tunic. Happy sigh... :o)

This though...

Aragorn started to chuckle and soon he was laughing as hard as Beorn. It was several minutes before either of them regained control. "I thank you, Beorn. I was hoping to see you transform into a bear, although I must say I did not anticipate such a close view."

"You didnít soil yourself, I hope."

Had me ROTFLOL!! Still..Considering how close a look Aragorn got at those teeth, it's not that unreasonable a question. :oD

Really enjoying this, but I have a feeling we're getting close to the end.

BTW..I re read A Star In Midwinter on the weekend and I'm wondering if we're going to see more of Denlad in the future. Would love to know more about him and if he has indeed turned into a Mighty Warrior.

I'm just saying... :oD

Author Reply: Thank you, Tigger! So glad you liked all the crazy things in this chapter, and that you laughed a time or two. :) The end is getting close, you're right. The epilogue is now up, and there'll be a short gap-filler "appendix" story after that, and then it's on to some new adventure of Aragorn's or Halbarad's, or yes, Denlad! I still fully intend to tell Denlad's full story. :)

Thanks for the review!

MattReviewed Chapter: 10 on 2/2/2011
What a great story. Nice character development and an excellent aattle in the air. You've got just enough action to make things work and, I suspect, potential for quite the long tale if you choose to go in that direction.
Thanks for an excellent effort.

Author Reply: Thank you, Matt! I'm so glad you enjoyed this story... I do like writing action scenes, and I try to balance them against more introspective scenes and, of course, humor. Glad you liked the balance. I've written several multi-chapter, near novel-length tales, but the years-long hunt for Gollum I intend to tackle in "episodic", shorter novellas like this one, although I can't rule out a full novel-length story similar to my "At Hope's Edge" story. We'll see where the muse takes me with this particular part of Aragorn's life.

Thanks again for the review, and hope you enjoy the rest of the story!

Raksha The DemonReviewed Chapter: 10 on 2/1/2011
Awwwwwwww! Aragorn's caring for a tiny puppy - how cute is that! I hope someone else is feeding the pup when Aragorn is sleeping at night, because at that age the pup is going to need feeding about every two hours. At least Aragorn didn't drop the puppy when Beorn went all Bear on him (heee!).

Wonder what kind of dogs Beorn raises. Aragorn will recover all the faster when the puppy is old enough to steal his boots...

Great chapter!

Author Reply: Thank you, Raksha... glad you enjoyed this chapter! I would imagine Beorn would be sure to have someone taking the 'night shift' with the puppy; I guess you might say that that detail was beyond the scope of this story. :) And no, I don't think there was any risk of Aragorn dropping the puppy, even if he was about to flip over backward in his chair!

As for the breeds of dogs... I don't know if Tolkien ever said what he had in mind, but I always picture something that looks a little like Irish wolfhounds when I read "The Hobbit". :)

Silivren TinuReviewed Chapter: 10 on 2/1/2011
Oh, Beorn has a wicked sense of humour! :D I had hoped Aragorn would get so see him change into a bear, but just like Aragorn I didn't expect him to be quite so... frightening. *g* It must be a great feeling to have that guy as your ally, though! I hope he won't manage to scare poor recuperating Aragorn to death during the winter months, lol.

I was really sorry to see Menelris and Durvain leave, too. I hope their reunion with Aragorn and Aragorn's flight on Durvain will be part of this story! *puppy eyes* As always, I loved the Aragorn-Gandalf friendship scenes in this chapter. I can already tell I won't like having to say farewell to this story. ;-)

Author Reply: Thanks, Almut! Yes, I do imagine Beorn as having a very wide mischievous streak in him, for some reason. But yes, wouldn't he have been a great ally?? Hopefully he'll behave himself for the rest of Aragorn's stay.

As for a flight on Durvain... somehow I imagine Aragorn will get his ride eventually. *g*

Thanks again!

MirachReviewed Chapter: 10 on 2/1/2011
Aww, Aragorn caring for a puppy!

********SYSTEM ERROR********

Now, I hope I will be more coherent. I loved this chapter, and the light and warm feeling of it despite the ever-present doubts and worries. Beorn apparently enjoyed himself, too, in granting Aragorn his secret wish. I must wonder what did Durvain think about human customs when Aragorn came to greet him in a soiled shirt. What was that about vultures? ;) The leaving of the eagles was bittersweet. It will be a long winter, I think, waiting for spring when they will come again, and for the promised flight. I'm looking forward to it as much as Aragorn! But it will be a winter spent comfortably for once. And with puppies!

********SYSTEM ERROR********


Author Reply: LOL! Thank you, Mirach--what a creative review! There was a bunch of cuteness in that chapter, wasn't there. And hopefully Durvain didn't even notice the little splotch on Aragorn's shirt! It might be a very long winter, and then poor Aragorn will have to say goodbye to that puppy... those farewells just never seem to end for the poor Ranger.

Glad you enjoyed this!

Lily BagginsReviewed Chapter: 10 on 2/1/2011
Oh, this was a wonderfully heartwarming almost-end to this tale!

Oh, I do love the thought of virile, sturdy Aragorn hobbling about like an old man---that image gave me a big smile. And I can only imagine the unpleasant sensations such a back injury would leave you prone to for a time. It would be easy to lapse into depression.

Thankfully, Aragorn has puppy therapy! That was darling. And seeing Beorn change into a bear at last was delightful, and a true show of his affection for Aragorn (especially what with losing a perfectly good woollen tunic, lol). I can imagine it would frighten anybody to some degree!

I loved Aragorn and the Eagles' final farewells, though it was sad to say goodbye to Durvain and Menelris. I have a feeling Aragorn will definitely be seeing them again, though, come spring! And will likely get another flying lesson, to boot.

I think it's wonderful to see how happy and somewhat relieved Aragorn was to stay at Beorn's through the winter. I have a feeling you could post "Aragorn's Adventures During the Winter At Beorn's Hall" and we'd all eat it up! There's just no telling what he could get himself into...

I'm going to be very sad and depressed to see this story end! You can't imagine how I've enjoyed looking forward to chapters and how awesome it has been to read such detailed and serious h/c. But I'm sad in a bittersweet way, as the story has been so wonderful, and now that it's nearly complete, I'll always have it to enjoy again and again.

so we will weather it by the fire and tell tales and eat until we burst or fall asleep, whichever comes first!"

Well, we have a storm coming here, too--I just heard some rain, actually---and I'd like NOTHING better than to hurry off into Beorn's Hall with Aragorn and Gandalf and partake of all of those things!

Author Reply: Thank you, Lily! I'm so glad you liked this "almost-ending" (perfect term for it)! I like to think that Beorn's "showing off" his skinchanger abilities was a bit of a special treat that he doesn't do for just anyone. Definitely a sign of his growing friendship and respect for Aragorn.

I know what you mean about that sadness that hits after a story ends... but there'll hopefully be more stories down the road, and yes, you can always revisit this one. I have a feeling I'll be doing that myself now and then, if I can dare say that out loud! LOL I did enjoy this story, and I thank you for giving me the plot bunny lo those many moons ago!

DarkoverReviewed Chapter: 10 on 1/31/2011
Dear Cairistiona: This was wonderful, as usual! Everything was wrapped up beautifully. All the characters made an appearance, everyone was in-character, and Aragorn got to see Beorn change into a bear. If Aragorn was childish, then I am childish, too, as I think seeing someone change into a bear would be pretty neat! The dialogue that you wrote, between Aragorn and Gandalf, was very moving, and completely in-tune with the h/c aspect of this excellent tale. I especially enjoyed that part of this chapter; you wrote that so well. Everyone deserves to know how highly his friends value him, and Aragorn, having had a difficult time of it, deserves that consideration more than most. I was glad to learn that he will be allowed to remain as Beorn's honored guest, and will enjoy the company of his old friend Gandalf, for awhile longer. Aragorn's goodbye to the Eagles was equally well-written. Well done, adapting some of Tolkien's lines from "The Hobbit." It was reassuring to learn that Aragorn would see his new avian friends and allies again in the future. The puppy was an inspired idea. Not only is its presence, and needed care, in keeping with Beorn's tradition of treating his animals as family members, but Aragorn is still weary and recovering from his wounds, at a stage when it is easy to slide back into depression. It is difficult to be depressed when one is cuddling a puppy, so Beorn's "assignment" of the puppy's care to Aragorn might have been as much for the sake of the Ranger as for the sake of the pup. Again, this was just a great story all the way through, and I am only sorry that it has ended. Thank you very much for writing and posting it. Take care! Sincerely, Darkover

Author Reply: Thank you, Darkover! I'm so glad you enjoyed the tale start to finish (well, almost finish--there is an epilogue to come, on Thursday, blizzards permitting).

I love your theory that Beorn may have had an ulterior motive in giving Aragorn the task of puppy-sitting. That's a very good point and one I hadn't considered.

I'm glad you liked how I blended "The Hobbit" with this. I think that there's a tendency to forget about the events that took place in "The Hobbit" but they would have played a role in Aragorn's life, even the sort of "fairy tale" feel of the stories he heard as a child about Beorn. It was great fun to drop Aragorn into one of those childhood stories and see his reaction--and a childlike glee at seeing Beorn turn into a bear didn't seem too unreasonable a thing for him to feel. Aragorn may have been grim, but who wouldn't, as you say, want to see someone turn into a bear! :)

Thanks so much for this and for all the reviews you've left for this story. You've encouraged me greatly!

EstelcontarReviewed Chapter: 10 on 1/31/2011
I absolutely loved this chapter to bits when I first read it, and it is even better now. It's a great ending for a very lovely tale. It's got so many wonderful touches it's hard to decide what one's favourite is: having Beorn make healing Aragorn taking care of the puppy was a great find. Gandalf's conversation with Aragorn is very enlightening, and very much to the purpose. And so is the fact that by the end of the chapter one feels Aragorn's confidence is restored. Aragorn's farewell to Durvain and Menelris is very moving, and I hope we get to see Aragorn and Durvain flying together again. Still, I think the pride of place goes to Beorn's transformation into a bear. It was a very vivid piece of writing. It's great to have Aragorn confess he wanted to see the transformation, and have his wish come true in such a dramatic fashion. LOL The snapping jaws just clinched it. Perfect! I wish I could have seen Aragorn's face.

The ending was also delightful and most seasonable. It's good to know that Aragorn and Gandalf are going to be snug, warm, comfortable and happy in the company of friends for a while. They so deserve it.

Author Reply: Thank you, Estelcontar! I'm so glad you liked this last chapter. I like that you touched on Aragorn's regaining his confidence--I think he likely depended on those few close confidantes like Gandalf, Halbarad, Elrond, and Arwen when he got to see her, to keep his spirits up when they'd invariably flag because of the hard road he walked. Part of Gandalf's "comfort" I think was encouragement in the aftermath.

And Beorn's transformation was so fun to imagine! Of course, I had to have a little fun at Aragorn's expense--like you, I would love to have seen his expression. :)

Thanks for all the help with this and for your review!

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