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The Spy  by daw the minstrel 57 Review(s)
AngelelfReviewed Chapter: 2 on 8/25/2007
Great story. I love these characters!

Author Reply: Hi, Angelelf. I was just over on SoA checking something out on one of my stories and I realized I'd never thanked you for letting me know you loved my characters. I'm shamelessly fond of them myself so it always makes me feel good to know someone else loves them too. Thank you.

MairiReviewed Chapter: 2 on 8/22/2007
This was very well written, the descriptions in particular. I do think, though, that it would be nice if you could put fewer sentances in between one line of dialogue and the next.

Author Reply: Thanks, Mairi.

I had an easier time with the dialogue in the second chapter than in the first because Beliond is alone or sneaking around more in the first.

NoorReviewed Chapter: 2 on 8/15/2007
Thank you Daw...I had wondered how Beliond had been persuaded to guard legolas. This is a great prequel to the first few encounters between Legolas and Beliond. it explains Beliond's attitude.


Author Reply: Thanks, Noor. Beliond takes Legolas on, assuming he's been oversheltered and might be spoiled. A bad start! Glad you liked the story.

elliskaReviewed Chapter: 2 on 8/12/2007
Oh this is a conversation I have always wanted to see and it did not disappoint. Beliond is just a riot. His interaction with the poor guard was a hoot.


I am still laughing about that. Poor thing.

And I love Thranduil interacting with someone who knows him so well and shares so much with him. Of course, Beliond's reaction to Thranduil's 'request' was perfect as was Thranduil's response. I actually felt a little sorry for Beliond when Thranduil threw that out about the baby Lorellin wanted. That was the killing blow in many ways.

Great choice for a gap filler. Loved it!

Author Reply: Beliond always makes me laugh. He just doesn't care about the conventions. He says what he thinks and everyone else has to deal with it. The poor guard is probably used to good manners. LOL.

I wonder how well Beliond knew Lorellin? I'd have to think about that. But of course, really, the vulnerable young warrior is the thing Beliond can't pass by. Poor guy.

RedheredhReviewed Chapter: 2 on 8/11/2007
Excellent little fic! Perfect of Perelleth! The dialogue and Beliond's internal dialogue were perfect as well!

Your phrasing is so good, but I like your description very much too. Especially apprehension scuttling about and cheerily fluffing itself.

The end was very emotional and touching. These sort of things always are with tough guys. Loved the end.

Happy Birthday to Perelleth, and may her part-time Nana always have his job too.

Author Reply: Thank you, Redheredh. I've been working on description, which doesn't come naturally to me, so I'm glad you liked it.

Thranduil is happy Beliond will look after Legolas, and I feel the same way about Perelleth's Beliond looking after her.

DotReviewed Chapter: 2 on 8/11/2007
I was delighted to see a Beliond story (though I admit I was kind of hoping – it being for Perelleth and all) and even more delighted to see that it had Thranduil as well. I was grinning from the beginning. Beliond has such a distinctive voice. Though I did feel a little sorry for him and his horse, who are going to end up hanging around a lot longer than they think. Among the, er, crowd. And is that Alfirin and Sinnarn or random mother and child?

The entire part with Beliond and the guard is priceless. Run along and play with the elfling indeed. "Uh," the guard said. LOL! Hey, I think I work with him.

"Stop frightening the guards, Beliond," said a deep voice. Oh, how I love Thranduil. The reunion between them is gorgeous. I especially liked this line: Beliond's heart lifted at the touch of this friend of his youth, one he had known when their eyes gleamed with hope and the Shadow had not yet spread over them all. That’s so touching. We get to see the depth of their friendship and also how much they’ve changed as well as the forest.

Beliond pictured himself alone among the trees, their song in his ears, the smell of green life filling his nostrils. Uh-oh.

I love how you play with Beliond’s apprehension. Very effective. I really enjoy watching you try out these things.

Beliond’s immediate reaction of ‘no’ actually made me a little teary. Even if we didn’t know his story it’s obvious that something more than dislike for that type of task is troubling him.

Thranduil's gray eyes met his, and between them lay the shared sights of Dagorlad, of blood and terror and Elves dying in the mud. Pain swelled in Beliond's throat, and he pushed away a vision of the fragile, broken body of his son, no older than that fool of a guard at the Doors. *sigh* Really, my heart went out to Beliond. I can’t even think about that time when Beliond lost his son. How awful. I like, though, that they both know what’s stopping him from agreeing. It’s clear that Thranduil is well aware of the weight of what he’s asking but he too is troubled and wants to protect this son who’s loved no more or less than the other two but who’s special because he’s the last and was so longed for by his lost mother. But boy is Thranduil lucky he knows what he’s doing! I don’t blame Beliond one bit for feeling pressured.

I really like how Beliond works through what he’s been told and starts to come around to the idea.

"This is not the one I caught raising a spider as a pet, is it?" LOL!!! Perish the thought! And since when is Maltanaur a pushover?? It struck me as hilarious that Beliond smugly thinks this to make himself feel better about what he’s just accepted – it would only have been really giving in if he’d got stuck with the troublesome one!

The ending is perfect. I just love these two together. If Thranduil knows what’s good for him he’ll give Beliond that skin of wine. Or maybe a key to the cellar.

This was great, daw. Plenty of laughs and very moving too.

Author Reply: Thanks, Dot. I love writing Beliond.

Until a couple of reviewers mentioned it, it never occurred to me the mother and child could be Alfirin and Sinnarn, but now I think I have to say that's what I meant all along. It would certainly explain Alfirin's indignation every time Beliond appeared. :-)

One of the best things about writing Thranduil and Beliond is observing the balance between valor and despair. Older elves have seen the shadow go, at great cost to people they loved such as Beliond's son. And then it returned. How awful that must be.

since when is Maltanaur a pushover?? It struck me as hilarious that Beliond smugly thinks this to make himself feel better about what he’s just accepted

Hey, everyone knows Maltanaur is putty in Thranduil's hands while Beliond is not! What's wrong with you?

ziggyReviewed Chapter: 2 on 8/11/2007
Beliond- Middle Earth's very own Grumpy Old Man! I love Beliond- he is just so gruff- all that defensive mechanism hiding a truly loving and affectionate heart- look at his total loyalty and dedication to Thranduil, and then Legolas. I dont think Legolas ever really appreciates him as much as he should you know- I know he respects and cares for him, but perhaps takes him a bit for granted- and there are wonderful bits showing this. Beliond seems indestructible- which is a Good Thing! I love the way you do Thranduil- you know EXACTLY where you are with him-the guard skipped out of the way- love it; it builds nicely on your earlier story, Woodelves- which is beautifully wicked. Wonderful stuff as always.

PS: In one of your author repsonses, quite some time ago (you can see I am on holiday and have been re=reading your stuff - you said you would like to write the Quest froma dual pov- with flashes between Legolas and hte Fellowship and what is happening in Mirkwood and the Battle beneath the trees etc...that would be great!! I know - Greedy Greedy Readers!

Author Reply: I've been working with these characters long enough that their lives have taken on a fair amount of depth. So readers have seen Thranduil, Maltanaur, and Beliond and young elves forming a friendship. I've always had them address one another as "old friend," and that's what they are. So as you say, Beliond is loyal to Thranduil and Legolas (who probably does take him for granted--because really Beliond would be annoying to have around all the time, fun as he is to write about) and Thranduil is thinking of Beliond too, when he makes him Legolas's keeper.

That Quest story would be fun to write but it would take me two or three months and I don't know that I'm ready to commit to that. I'm still working on original fic--just got back from a two week novel writing workshop, as a matter of fact. But the story isn't going anywhere. I can still do it sometime. Maybe. :-)

meckinockReviewed Chapter: 2 on 8/10/2007
I love Beliond's idea of a crowd. It happens to coincide with my own, at the moment.

I adore this story, and this extra chapter is just perfect. Beliond is just so perfect I could reach out and...try to avoid his disapproving glare...

The guard's eyes widened. He had a round, boyish face and the bony-wristed look of one who still needed frequent feedings. Beliond resisted the temptation to tell him to run along and play with the elfling on the Green.

"Uh," the guard said.

Beliond sighed. "The king did send for me, lad, to my dismay as much as to yours."

"Stop frightening the guards, Beliond," said a deep voice.

LOLOLOL. I love Beliond with Thranduil. There are so many wonderful lines here, daw. Beliond's instinctive rejection of Thranduil's task was just perfect, as was Thranduil's gentle but firm insistence. And Maltanaur, a bit of a pushover! And I laughed out loud when it was revealed which son of Thranduil's had stuck in Beliond's memory. Eilian, of course! This was such an enjoyable interlude, daw. Happy Birthday to Perelleth.

Author Reply: Writing from Beliond's POV is fun. Four people passing one another on a Green is a 'crowd.' A kid runs "as if his arse were on fire.' The guard should be sent to play with the other boys. LOL. That's stuff I'd never say in RL. And it feels great to write it.

Eilian, Beliond, and the spider appeared together in a story Nilmandra wrote for my birthday last year: "Be Careful What You Wish For."

Thank you for telling me you enjoyed it.

sofiaReviewed Chapter: 2 on 8/10/2007
I always wanted to read about how Thranduil broke that particular piece of news to Beliond. He doesn't know what he's getting into, though Thranduil, it seems, does.
Its funny how the tough (sometimes mean) ones grow on you, and Beliond is no exception. I would hate it if he died.
Can't wait to read more.

Author Reply: When I introduced Beliond, I never expected him to become a loved character. But he grew on me and on readers too. I think he'd be annoying to live with, but he's wonderfully entertaining to write about.

erunyauveReviewed Chapter: 2 on 8/10/2007
>>"The king did send for me, lad, to my dismay as much as to yours."

Wonderful Beliond! Though Thranduil is the star here - he knows that Legolas will do Beliond a world of good, and that there is no one better than Beliond to watch his 'baby's' back.

And that would be little Sinnarn buzzing about on the lawn, I think?

Author Reply: You know, it never occurred to me that was Sinnarn until a reviewer at made the same guess. Now I think I'll have to say that was what I meant all along. :-)

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