"‘Go on, child, away with you. Don’t start trying to think this one out. Legolas is not here to help you and of the pair of you, he is slightly better than you at working things out and that’s not saying much." - Wow...Legolas and Anglach are really not thought of very highly. That's so mean! Do people just underestimate him? I myself can't reconcile pre-war and post-war Legolas. They are so immature!
Can you tell us a bit more about Greenwood? For some reason it's so weird to me that there are high lords and ladies and lowly elves who bow to Thranduil. I guess I always thought of Greenwood as some sort of Kibbutz - barely any hierarchy or formality, lots of sharing and working the land together. Also your observation about what Thranduil thought of Doriath is fascinating! Can we hear more about that too?
Don't let Galion fool you into thinking that Legolas and Anglach are complete idiots- they are also very well regarded warriors- but as Ceredir says to Anglach, the pair of them are hopeless when they get home- I think it's partly the prssur of being in the South so that when that pressure is gone, they revert to being adolescents. And htey are young as well. And it;s just good fun writing them like this!
Don't forget too that post-war Legolas has lost Anglach. That more than anyhting sobers him up. Black Arrow and the Hall of Elven King predate Gollum's release and Anglach lives- once he is dead though, we get a much more serious Legolas. That's why I wrote the last chapter of WTSL with a grieiving Legolas- I wanted to show how different he is now.
So sorry Nash- I'm not intending to go back to the Greenwood now- re Lords, I have deliberately kept to lords to denote genderless council and the 'lords' are really just the council which makes policy and decisions, and advises Thranduil. Thranduil is the Aran - which means Chief really rather than the real sense of King. They use lords and King as recognisable terms to others but you'll know from earlier chapters/ More Dangerous etc that Thranduil does indeed muck in like everyone else- from the first few chapters of MDLW at least. But in The Hobbit, Tolkien refers to The King and so I keep that. But as I say, I use Lords to denote those in his council only but this is not the feudal system. Hope that helps- this is how I see it anyway.
My view is that Thranduil woul dhave hated the hierarchy of Doriath and the secretive and hidden nature of it- Oropher crossed the mountains to get back to a simpler life led by the elves pre-the great march although he seems very suspicious of strangers so perhaps he inherited a more protectionst, secretive manner as well?
Ah, Ziggy, you always know what makes me happy. OK, so there was no naked Legolas in this chapter (I hope you'll put that right soon), but everything else was there in spades. I Love your Galion! He's a law unto himself and makes me laugh every time. And Anglach...he's so gorgeous, although it's always sad to read about him.
And now Thranduil knows of the existence of Bilbo Baggins! I wonder if he'll piece any more of the puzzle together before Legolas meets him at the Council of Elrond. Thranduil strikes me as being pretty wise, so I wouldn't be surprised if he got close to the truth. But we shall see !
You describe the horror that is Smaug very intense.
Laersul is just great in this. You really write him very likable.
Tho font size is a bit small, maybe you can change that?
GLad you found this chapter intense and liked Laersul- I needed to build him up as a character in this so readers would care about him in Where the Shadows Lie. But he is one of those characters that make you feel things will be all right.
I have no end of trouble trying to get the font size right and give up. It's because I use Pages and it doesn't easily cut and paste- sometimes it works, sometimes not. I have even had the font size 18 and it still pastes tiny! You have a button that will enlarge the font as a reader and to be honest, the time it takes me to try and get it sorted is time I could be writing and most readers would prefer I get on and write. It is very frustrating for me too!! Usually it's last thing at night and can take me half an hour before I give up.
Heavens above, Ziggy, this is now so much more vivid and meaningful in my imagination, thanks to your writing, than the scene in the film!!
What a heartbreaking moment between Smaug and Thalos: he is now and forever truly the "dragon's ransom" among the sons of Thranduil.
What a wonderful birthday present you have given here to all the lovely, lucky recipients you named (and to the rest of us, thank you so much!)
Why thank you, ebbingnight! And it's lovely to know you are still following things:) I really worked fast to get it out in time so I haven't re-read it -I bet I find loads I'm not happy with. But thank you anyway.
Whoa. What will happen?
The thought of Legolas babysitting is hilarious!
Ha- someone said they found the idea of Laersul and Legolas hoiking Thalos around funny so I wanted to acknowledge that. We are back in the stronghold for the next chapter!
Ah! This explains why a man rather than an elf did the deed:
‘You cannot take up arms,’ Laersul said slowly and Legolas stared.
‘What do you mean?
‘You and I are sworn, Legolas whatever happens, we may not break our oath.’
That makes complete sense! And so it was Thalos calling to Smaug that gave Bard the chance to make the shot. I love it! Thanks for the perfect birthday gift!
It all worked out perfectly in terms of the plot- I stayed up REALLY late to get it finished for your birthday- I hope I haven't missed anything!! Have a loverleee daay!
Oh wow - such powerful images all through this chapter. I loved the tension at the start as Legolas pounds through the tunnels, searching for his brothers...that beautiful moment where Laersul listens to Legolas's Song...and most of all the yearning of Smaug's Song, and how it reaches out from Thalos in an attempt to lure Legolas as well. Fantastic chapter, Ziggy!
Thank you Naledi- you always put all my fears that it's not good enough at ease. I am really pleased that you liked the moment Laersul listens to Legolas' song. And how Smaug has beguiled Thalos- I have quite a task in the next chapter!!
This is so beautiful, Ziggy, such atmosphere and such heart-rending emotions. I can feel the spell that Thalos and even Legolas still feels, the great moon, the lonely lake, the desolation, the east wind, the fear Laersul and Legolas feel for their brother, and his own soul lost in the spell of the dragon.
And it also makes me feel so sorry for the dragons, who would have touched the fire of the Universe, but were dragged away from it and down and chained by Morgoth's will. Like fallen angels.
So I wonder if Thalos is all right for now - not all-right, but not going to try and break away and go back to Smaug? And now it is all kicking off because Smaug is about to head for Esgaroth any moment!
A lovely treat, and unexpected, Ziggy! Thank you!
Yes - like fallen angels! Exactly that. As you write yourself, the idea of Morgoth corrupting (although yours is more chaos-creative theory I feel). I just think to see a dragon would be amazing- and if it wasn't trying to eat you you could just stnad and wonder at it. Imagine meeting the last one.
Yes- all kicking off indeed!! No spoilers though;D
Mmm....Laersul, so very gorgeous and very brave and honorable I had to read him again here.
He is delicious.
I will say no more. Have already said it all elsewhere. You know what I think re Laersul!
I know....What can I say? He is all those things and I am writing him properly here so he is getting proper airtime.... I should never have dropped any hints. now when you read him, you just hate me!
Wow - Laersul is amazing here. I love that image of him striding into the treasure chamber and demanding his brother back *swoons*. But the image Smaug sent him of yellow smoke and the spear...it makes me afraid to read much further in Where Shadows Lie. Please don't be so cruel!
For now, though, I hope Thalos recovers his senses or Laersul's going to have a job getting him out of there.
Sooo pleased you love Laersul- he is so honourable and brave. Almost finished the next chapter of that one so I'll try and polish it up and get it posted ASAP.
I know- you're anxious. Sorry my darling- I am trying to find a way out but everything is senw together in these fics and the story writes itself to be honest.
Thalos is a complete dead weight here but Smaug is going to be going to Esgaroth soon so he had better get his acto togehter!
Thranduil's love for his three children is so sweet, conveyed so well. I'm absolutely amazed. It's like they're his own self, parts of him, and he cares about each one equally and in different ways.‹p›Wow though... I can hardly imagine Laersul! If Thranduil is based off the Hobbit's Lee Pace, he's 6' 6''! That's a lot of inches to outgrow, so much that he can only kiss his ear? Wow, what an elf...
It's just written so well, the whole thing. By the second paragraph I've forgotten it's a fanfic completely. Plus, I think I sneeze less when I'm reading!
With Laersul, I wanted to make him exceptional- if all elves are tall anyway then Laersul really should be about 6' 6''- like Maedhros the Tall, he does have to be impressive. I hadn't thought quite so analytically but my first husband was 6 ft 5 so I'm just used to tall men. Im so gald that you like the relationships - that's such a nice thing to say:)
Ah... finally had time for some reading. :) Yay.
I almost wonder now if Smaug's entrancing affects are lingering with Thranduil, after all. I've never heard of dragons being particularly honorable. He seems too trusting to me. Either that, or he can't stand the thought that he's putting his sons in such terrible danger, and he's deluding himself into thinking they'll be safe. He seems too smart for that.
And I like his kindness here, to Baard's ancestor. Too many people paint him so cold and aloof.
Now Galion... he's obviously an old and dear friend of the king. But what else is he? I thought I remembered from 'In the Halls' that he was a cook? Or maybe an advisor? They are so close, it's like they're linked, or picking up on each other's brain waves. Fascinating just to watch those two. x)
What a lovely, intrguing review, Arasa- you have made me think about this.
My belief about dragons( and I admit this is not from Tolkien alone but from folklore - especially Norse and ASaxon) is that dragons are really tricky but they do keep their word-but that getting it depends on what you ask from them- so they try to trick you into giving more than you want to. In this, Smuag wrings the promise to send someone every ten years- including Thranduil's own sons. As you say, they are not really safe- and you'll find there are dangers for Legolas, and for Thalos (which I am just writing now).
There was one point, I htink in More Dangerous, when I hinted at more but Galion is just too devoted to the whole family and I was influenced by Jael's story- can't remember what it is called now.. BUt that fell away the more I wrote Galion.
Thank you for such a lovely review!
Ah, Laersul is home and the complex seems to release it's breath and sigh with relief. Your description of Laersul as he arrives at the gates and feels the discord as he opens the gates and then knowing that Thranduil is in his chamber leads me to believe that Laersul is more than the heir apparent, he is also in some ways Ying to Thranduil's Yang. I get the feeling that Laersul may look like his father but he is a great deal like his mother. Now that he is home it seems like things are falling into place.
Poor Anglach and Legolas. To have to face a tribunal of their commanders has to be disheartening. No one believes their story and even Legolas feels that that things have devolved down to him becoming a messenger rather than a warrior. When Bilbo appears later on at Erebor to Legolas and Anglach, it will be a wonder that he even makes it to see Thranduil. Those two are going to want revenge for the punishment they received for letting the dwarves escape.
I was glad to see this chapter, sort a precursor to the travel to Smaug by Laersul, Theolos and Legolas. The trip there could be as interesting as meeting Smaug. The trio will need to get together and make sure that Theolos gets Smaug's agreement and doesn't become enthralled.
Hope you are still enthused to keep writing, I am loving this story.
MAde my day, rikwen- so many SPAM reviews I didn't believe this was genuine (humbly). Thank you.
I like the idea of LAersul and Thranduil somehow their complimentary opposites- I think that happens with a second/ deputy- they have to smoothe the rough edges of the leader, and to make sure they fill gaps. LAersul definitely does this. I'll be more aware of that now- thank you.
Yes- Anglach and Legolas are going to want some payback when they know what happened! I have already got that in my head and its one of the things I am writing towards.
Thank you again- I was becoming quite despondent about how few reviews there were and feeling it was not worth writing. You've given me a boost.
Poor Legolas - I just wanted to give him a big hug. Okay, I always want to give him a big hug, but this time it was because the poor boy is so confused and everyone's angry and disappointed with him. Bilbo really does have a lot to answer for. I hope when Thranduil meets Bilbo he'll put two and two together.
Hurrah for Laersul's return! I was so happy he made a move on Theliel. I thought he was going to leave without saying anything. So now the scene is set for a visit to Smaug. And it looks like Legolas is going after all...
Great update, Ziggy. You made my day :)
And you've just made mine with such a lovely review:)
Yes- you're nothing but trouble for Legolas, seducing him away from his duty!!
Don't worry, he and Anglach are the two guards that Bilbo turns himself in to when he arrives at the elves' camp- and they will have a lot to say to him when they realise what happened!!!
I don't think you should be worried. Just I am a lover of Darkfic, and SoT, is Dark Fic extraordinaire. Legolas in that is well, he is put through the mill completely, (actually, it begins before that, of course, and you can see him changing) and wounded and deeply hurt, and then there's Elrohir, who's so Fëanorion (I still think that piece where he took Legolas from Gimli when he (Legolas) was shot, was sublime. Elrohir really did look like he'd ridden out of the First Age! It still makes my heart jump to read it. Give him to me,' a voice spoke low and close. The great black horse stood near him, its hoof stamped and there was blood on its foreleg. The Elf warrior sat astride the war horse, his raven black hair tangled in the wind, his sable cloak swirled around him and blood, crimson and black, gleamed wetly on his sword. It seemed to sing with blood. His eyes were fierce and sunk in slaughter and Gimli stared at this vision from the First Age.
'Give him to me.' It was a command this time, low and deep and spoke to his bones and blood.
Just magnificent. And of course Through A Glass Darkly is also incredible in its depth and darkness. Too many incredible passages to count in that, too.
So very glad we will see more of SoT!
Oh- that is lovely to have that passage quoted- you've made my day! I admit I rather like that scene myself- in fact, that whole episode when Elrohir trembles on the cusp of love and there's all the confusion and Legolas being Legolas and getting it wrong and hurting Elrohir- plenty more of that to come! I have Half term so am hoping to get those threee chapters to Anar so she can look at them.
Oh, lovely. Laersul is so gorgeous I could almost like him even better than Legolas.....almost..... I refuse to think of what you have in store for him. He needs to marry Theliel and live happily ever after.
Loved the way he strides in and suddenly all feels controlled again. Thranduil is obviously dependant on him to keep him steady. Such a relief he is going with Thalos.
As for Legolas—poor baby, he is so miserable. I hope he finds a way to prove himself.
I have serious worries about Thalos who is enchanted with the dragon before he has even been there. They will have to go in and drag him out forceably I think, in fact perhaps he will be saved only by the intervention of Bilbo. Stranger things have happened!
I am sorry.
I love Laersul too. Not sure I will ever get to his fate if I can keep writing in between bits.
I am trying to work out the sequence of the dragon and Thorin and Bilbo- I can see the end but not the bit in between.
So pleased you enjoyed htis- I should have posted it as a birthday present:( sorry.
I missed this chapter!! Dont know how that happened.
Ah, I should have know. Legolas and A gla he would have been the ones involved with the dwarves escape. Of course....who else?!
Loved the suggestion of Bilbo's meddling in their wine drinking....and the ring influence there as an explanation as to why two elven guards would suddenly decided to drink themselves to oblivion on duty. Doesn't add up otherwise...so that was a great idea!
This has been in my junk box for AGES!!! So sorry, Cheekybeak. I always thought Bilbo interfered- it was in my head when I was a kid and I was really surprised to go back to the Hobbit and find ot he didn't! BUt I'm sure the Ring will have had something to do with it.
It's amazing how Legolas changes from the person in this story to the Legolas of Sons of Thunder; it is as if his wound, his experience in Phellanthir, and with Elrohir particularly, forces him into the person we see in SoT. Of course, SoT was the first story of yours I read, so it is strange seeing a 'younger' Legolas, but I must say I love what he becomes :)
Of course I face palm whenever he's with a woman, or stares at their cleavage, as I think, 'No, mate, your destiny is awaiting you and he far outstrips any of these lighthearted romps, but neither he nor you know it yet. It will be like lightning striking you when you find him.'
I do worry about that- because he really is a complete nit at times in this! But it;s Anglach's death I think that really changes him. And then as you say, the process from MDLW when he is happily sleeping around, and then through Sons when the power of that attraction with Elrohir really shkes him to his core. I know he is more interesting then as well.
I love that phrase! Facepalm! Yes- he is just a terror- but typical young man I htink- not enlightened just randy as hell!
To give you some comfort, I have written two chpaters of the sequel to Sons so you do get him back:)
Oh...I liked that. Thranduil doesn't cower unless it serves his people. He's so powerful and steadfast. Amazing.
This whole story feels well thought-out and complete. It doesn't clash with any canon and actually makes more sense to me: such as sneaky old Gandalf getting hold of the Arkenstone instead of it just sitting in a mountain of treasure all that time.
I can't wait until it's Legolas' turn to pay homage...(and get his tattoo). You know, normally I don't actually like them. Really. But something about Legolas with a Dragon tattoo twisting down his back...Hm. Giggity. xD
I have a feeling things are about to get interesting. Thnx for posting.
Thank you. Arasa- I am so glad you are enjoying this littel fic- it seems to be growing! I had intended it to just be a one off but it's going to end up with BOT5A!! It's really nice to hear that it feels well thought out and complete- I suppose that;s the good bit about following canon-ish, and just writing in between the gaps. Gandalf just keeps popping up, doesn't he!
And I feel exactly the same about tattoos- I really domn't like them eithe rbut I once saw an Italian- about 20 years old and he was just so beautiful- his is what Legolas has- just across one should ernad twisting down over his body...hm.
After all the sacrifices and trials of keeping the dragon from attacking the Woods, everything is lost due to some Darwin wine. I am sure after surviving the previous war where his father Oropher was killed, Thranduil is not looking forward to fighting, especially in his woods.
Anglach and Legolas are certainly in deep kimchi as they try to explain what happened. I have not drunk that much wine to be that out of it in many years, but I have sympathy with both elves. Thalos will have to come up with something to curve the desire to drink Darwin while on duty. And unfortunately, knowing the story after having read it many times, poor Anglach will pay with his life.
Closing eyes and placing hands over face waiting for the explosion to occur. Looking forward to the rest of your story.
AH- poor Anglach. His fate makes me very gentle with him- and a bit harder on Legolas perhaps, (I think I am with Thrnaduil in tis- he probably has a sense of something). I like your point about Thranduil not wanting to fight after his father was killed in Dagorlad- good point!! I've just been saying to Arasa how I am strugglnig with the next chapter- but two very lovely reviews on one evening spurs me on- I am getting so few reviews it feels like no one is reading ot or that bothered. This weekend though I'll get on with it I promise.
Oh...this was just beautiful!
I finally grabbed onto enough time for reading, and I came here first. Thranduil climbing the mountain to the dragon's lair...the cold valley and warm sun above, the terrible ruins. It was so powerful and moving. Thranduil was real and complex in the feelings driving him to do what he did...awesome. I just loved it!
If I didn't absolutely have to go to bed tonight, I'd stay up reading this way too late; I know it now. Oh well. I'll pick it up again tomorrow. Thank you for posting, ziggy! x)
Do you now how sometimes someone leaves a review at Just the right moment?? Thsi si the right moment- I am so struggling at the moment, to get motivated and to find the way through this next chapter- I have loads of bits but no single thread that makes sense- but this lovely review has really made me feel liek going back and getting on with it. Thank you, Arasa17. You have inpsired me:)
‘It is true, my lord.’ Anglach took an ill-advised step forward and Galadhon’s hand shot out and hauled him back. ‘But it is!’ he exclaimed. ‘We had one. Legolas insisted we did not have more. He reminded me I was in duty and so we didn’t pour another but …something made us have another and every time we looked, it seemed the cups were still full.’ He finished weakly.
No, it doesn't sound very plausible, poor things!
But with the influence of the Ring, the dwarves would have escaped somehow with Bilbo helping them. Poor Thranduil - now it has to be war!
Yes- it;s very weak indeed and they will pay for it. I am looking forward to when they meet Bilbo just before the BoT5A!!
‘The dwarves have escaped.’
‘Fuck. Fuck. Fuck. Fuck!’
I love it when you weave Tolkien's words into your own. Lololol!
I'm glad Cheekybeak got a look-in as well. She's such a minx :D
So the race is on. How soon will Thalos et al make it to Smaug's lair? I can't wait to see what will happen next...
I love Legolas' foul mouth- he is after all, a warrior and I havenever met a solider who didn't swaer (not in front of people who might offeded ofcourse but amongst theselves). She's a minx and so are you!
I should get the next chapters out more quickly as work has eased off a little:)
Evil, evil, evil, that One Ring. You have given the ring it's own personality and I do not like what it is doing to the elves. This time I will be glad when Bilbo and his ring leaves the Woods.
Legolas and Anglach and Thalos, I love these three elves and their search for someone to be at their sides through time. Like another reviewer, I can see Thalos with Silaneth, though he has years to wait. It was cheerful to have Thranduil sending his sons off to enjoy the festival rather than attending as royality. Legolas will definitely score tonight, it will be interesting to see if Thalos spends the evening with Naledi.
One last word of Thalos and his enthrallment with the dragon. Looking into Thorin Oakenshield's eyes and seeing the dragon rising into space with the fire and the longing was a beautiful interlude. Thalos is truly damned if he goes to see the dragon, he will want to ride to the heavens with the dragon and see the world. Thranduil should be afraid for this son, really afraid.
Ah- I never got an email to alert me to this lovely review - thank you rikwen, so nice to hear that you enjoyed this.
I have always thought the ring would have had a malign influence on the woodelves- they must have felt it somehow when you think the effect it had on Boromir.
And I'm sop pleased you like the OCs- that is so important. Yes- Silaneth is quite determined, but as you say, she has a long time to wait and Thalos may never see her in the way that she will want- or she may change too- it's a crush really. That Naledi is a right slapper! Flirting with everyone.
Next chapters should be a bit quicker now.:)
You are SOOOo greedy, Naleid! I give you Anglach and Legolas and you want more!
It's true - I'm never satisfied when it comes to gorgeous Wood-elves. But be fair - I could have asked for Thranduil too, but didn't. I thought that was rather restrained of me.
I saw Cheekybeak's review. I second the request to find her Sindarin name and let her join in the fun!
You two are dreadful!!! I'll see of I can find a suitable name:)