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A Creature of Fire  by daw the minstrel 26 Review(s)
perellethReviewed Chapter: 7 on 4/8/2005
I'm breathless! And sore, for sitting at the edge of my chair for the whole chapter!

I re-read "the hobbit" just some weeks ago, when I got to "Tangled Web", and this time, the ruins of Dale caught my attention particularly. Maybe because since last time I had read "the hobbit" I have seen things that could resemble that (settlements after a virulent volcanic eruption...) and I tried to picture that whole scene... You did a wonderful and detailed job! I loved it when the dwarf turned out to be Thror!. Legolas was smart, recognizing the power around this dwarf and bowing to him, and then I liked how he was able to see him as a creature who had lost that much! Thoughtful Legolas!
Then the bells ringing, and Girion's eldest son so dutifully and bravely taking charge, the chaos and confusion, it was wonderfully done, at least for me!

I think that apart from Eilian, I may be the only other person who likes Galelas a bit... I'm glad he's behaving. As you say, he and Legolas will never be buddies (YOU did not give him time to get to that, hehe..) but... he's not altogether evil, only in Legolas' presence.

And then, the building collapses! How long do you think they can hold on without fresh air? I mean, I've been away for the most part of this week but...I don't think they can resist for far longer...;-)

Eagerly waiting for more, as usual! ;-)

Author Reply: Oh that's excellent to know -- the stuff about the volcanic eruption and all. I was also trying to picture a city being fire bombed, something I have thankfully only read about and see in old newsreels. It would truly be an appalling sight, I think. And it would be chaotic. Who could have possibly planned for such a thing or reacted to it in an orderly manner? Although, you're right that Girion's son does. He's the one whose armor was bought with the emerald necklace that Thranduil is given at the end of The Hobbit. So far as I can see, he doesn't survive this, nor does his father, of course.

I like Galelas. :-) I feel for him. I think he's like a lot of other people who have these good and strong points that are sometimes buried in pettiness and resentment. Indeed, I think maybe that's all of us on occasion.

I justed started working on the next chapter today and have about 1000 words done. I keep wandering away to do other things because it's not good news, I'm afraid.

BrazgirlReviewed Chapter: 7 on 4/7/2005
Right. Wow, this chapter was full of action, and angst. I know you kill your characters when you plan and I am so nervous about Tuilinn... I wonder what will happen now! I so want to know!
Anyway, very well written chapter. I could imagine people's despair and the burnt city. Legolas was a crazy elf there, when the dragon approached! No wonder Beliond cried after him. Oh Daw! I am a curious woman!!!

Author Reply: I'm glad you thought it was a tense chapter! This story had a quiet beginning so it was time to bring in some action. And yes, Legolas lost his head when he saw Tuilinn. Beliond must be going out of his mind, poor guy.

White WolfReviewed Chapter: 7 on 4/7/2005
You did a good job of describing the devastation wrought by the dragon. You could just feel the peoples' terror and Legolas's anxiety over wanting to find Tuilinn. Beliond must have had a near heart attack when Legolas darted out after her. Great action chapter.

That was a nice little cliffy you left.

Author Reply: I'm relieved you thought the descriptions were convincing, White Wolf. When I thought about what a dragon attack would be like, it seemed pretty appalling, I have to say. Poor Beliond. He has a hard life. He's supposed to protect this Elf who seems to find trouble no matter where he goes!

AlkjaReviewed Chapter: 7 on 4/7/2005
Great chapter, Daw!
Reading the parts about the fleeing populace of Dale was almost like seeing a documentary. Your descriptions are so powerful!
I am pretty worried about Tuilinn's fate, the odds are not much in her favor. Though I admit I am worried more for Legolas's possible heartbreak then for her life itself: it's not I don't like her, because I do (even though Legomances usually make me run for the hills), it's just that Legolas is Legolas while I don't really know Tuilinn all that well yet. Does this make me a horrible person?

Poor Beliond! And he thought that love makes a warrior more careful! I'll bet he doesn't think so now... Still, it was great seeing him in Ada-mode.

And what is the rest of the family going to say? They thought the new post would be all about relax... and "the baby" of the family has managed to fall in love and in mortal danger in the blink of an eye!

Write fast, you can't leave us with a cliffhanger like this!


Author Reply: If worrying more about Legolas than about Tuilinn makes you a bad person, then I'm in there too!

As for Legolas getting himself into trouble while in the "safe" patrol, he seems to make a habit of that kind of thing. Who could have predicted that a little trip to Rivendell would send him on the path to Mordor? His father and brothers are not going to be thrilled about any of this, I suspect.

I've been busy at work the last couple of days, but I should have some free time tomorrow to start the next chapter. :-)

LOTR loverReviewed Chapter: 7 on 4/7/2005
Good action! You really scored on this one, daw. The action is smooth and Legolas's emotions are well written. His interactions with the Dwarves, with his own Elves and with Gwigon ring very true, as does his fear for Tuilinn. Beliond's reaction to Legolas's leap out of cover is priceless. And of course the cliffhanger is just the perfect place to stop.

You know I'm waiting with bated breath for the next chapter, don't you?

Author Reply: I'm glad you liked it. I wanted the action to be vivid, but the whole reason for the previous chapters is so that we can see what the action means to Legolas (and in a minor way to Galelas, Sinnarn, and Vanduil).

I love Beliond!

AliceReviewed Chapter: 7 on 4/6/2005
Very, very exciting chapter. It was tense and suspenseful all the way through. The sense of destruction and just what a catastrophe Smaug's attack was are really strong. So, good chapter even if you did end it with a cliff hanger.

Legolas is about to take a hard blow isn't he? No don't tell me, I'll just find out when you update, which hopefully will be soon. Though I have to admit I'm somewhat relunctant for you to update, because as long as you haven't, I can still hope about Tuilinn's fate.

This has been a very dramatic story for us long time readers. We all have a very good idea of what is going to happen, and yet none of us can bear to look away. It's making the story tense.

I enjoyed the last chapter also, the calm before the storm. I love Eilian's letters. I'm also enjoying hearing about the settlers who we met in Spring Awakenings. Rodion joining the training sessions would not surprise me one bit. Hopefully the settlers will never have to use their new skills though. And hopefully Celuwen won't find out about the training sessions. I suspect these are foolish hopes however.

Oh, and it's really nice seeing Galelas and Legolas grow. They're actually sort of having peaceful moments. Not many, but they're there. There was a grateful glance! And a compliment! Also a no doubt revealing overheard conversation. Progress is being made. Which is no doubt a relief to Elorfin.

I look forward to the next chapter greatly. Not only is this one of your more exciting stories to date, it also has some of my favorite original characters in it. I'm loving Sinnarn here. Poor "Young one". Bet that gets old after the first century or so of life. Update soon!

Author Reply: I'm glad that Smaug's attack came through as the terrifying thing I think it must have been. I pictured it as like having a huge bomber plane dropping fire all over the place and bombs that knocked down buildings.

And I'm also glad this has seemed like a dramatic story. I know the start was quiet and I've grown increasingly concerned that it was too slow. Oh well. Live and learn.

Eilian's letters are a delight to write. They're so easy! I think he might be able to keep a sword out of Rodien's hands, but he doesn't have a prayer of keeping news of these sessions from Celuwen. But I think it's a sign of his seriousness about them that he'll go on with them even in the face of her anger. He'll be miserable that she's angry, but he won't stop.

Bet that gets old after the first century or so of life.
That made me laugh! And it's so true.

meckinockReviewed Chapter: 7 on 4/6/2005
This chapter came with a soundtrack. I can still hear the screams and the swoosh of the dragon's wings and the roar of the fire. Very vivid. The chaos and terror were palpable. Ow, and a screaming maiden snatched up by the dragon -- you didn't pull any punches, did you?

I felt sorry for Legolas. He really just has one thing on his mind, but he's working hard to do his duty anyway. I liked his belated realization that he should have offered the Dwarves a little more sympathy. Another thing I liked was his observation that normally he would have taken offense at the Man's disdain of the size of his patrol. Six Elven warriors can do a lot of damage, indeed. Galelas was nicely underplayed. He's all business when the chips are down. But geez, it had to be Tuilinn running right down the middle of the street in the flight path of the dragon, and carrying a baby, yet! Beliond must have had a heart attack when Legolas jumped out to grab her. You know you can't kill the baby, right, Daw?

Author Reply: I don't get many chances to write about a dragon attacking a town, so I figured I might as well go all out.

One of the things I wanted to do that was kind of hard amidst all the action was showing the reactions of Legolas, Galelas, Vanduil, and Sinnarn. I've spent some time now setting up emotional issues for all of them, and this crisis was supposed to allow them to struggle and learn some things about themselves and one another. But it's hard to do suggest that when all hell is breaking loose.

Lots of folks in Dale die in this attack, but I don't plan for the baby to be one of them. Karen scared me off that stuff after the Dwarf child!

EffigyReviewed Chapter: 7 on 4/6/2005
I thought your story started off "Oh snap" for some reason.

That's quite a cliffhanger you left us with. I hope everyone is ok. Especially Galelas. I have to say that he is one of my favorite OCs you have. I don't know why.

It's cute how Legolas rushes to save Tuilinn, but it's sad that this won't turn out well for him.

There, there Legolas. Don't be sad. It's ok. I'll take care of you. Sure you can stay the night. You'll find someone better soon. ;-)

Very well written.

Author Reply: I've gotten fond of Galelas myself, even though he's annoying sometimes. He may be a pain, but he's a complicated pain, which makes him fun as a characters.

You're very generous, Effigy! Legolas is packing his jammies to come over and stay.

sofiaReviewed Chapter: 7 on 4/6/2005
This chapter has had me so so worried about Tuilinn and Fyndil! I am glad that he found Tuilinn but what happened to Fyndil, and I hope they are all alright after the roof collapsed on them. Can't wait for more!!!

Author Reply: Fyndil is back with the healers at the bottom of the street. The collapsing roof is not a good thing. Not good at all. I'll have to write about that this weekend. :-)

Ms. WhatsitReviewed Chapter: 7 on 4/6/2005
Oh, no! I was afraid of something like this happening. I like the image of Galelas firing arrows at the dragons despite all odds, though. And Beliond thinking he was a fool.

Author Reply: Galelas is a good warrior, and that comes out here. I think that's satisfying for him and good for Legolas to see. But Galelas also saw Legolas being a good leader and trying to support Vanduil too, so maybe they're each learning something.

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