So I do not run very far before Gimli finds me and stops me. As always he is the one to place me back upon a steady path.
He does not knock. He enters my room with a gruff snort of disapproval.
"What a mess, Legolas! Who do you think will be tidying this up then?"
I can tell you just love writing Gimli-(so do I) as he seems t come very easily and is very physically present when yo write him. Lovely chapter between them and great relationship.
I do think Legolas has become a bit selfish though- he wants Elrohir to accept everything but gives up nothing himself. He is becoming a bit spoilt I'm afraid. And whiny. I suppose it is the sea-longing but thank goodness for Giimli! WHo I love more deeply every time you write him. Perhaps once L gets away from the sea he will get back to his warrior self.
Ah, he doesn't have the sealonging at the moment....at least he is not bothered by it.....so he cannot use that excuse!
He IS whiny, and self orientated. A lot of patients who have been very ill get like this. For a time everyone's world rotates around them, (for good reason) and then things improve, they improve, and yet, emotionally and subconciously they are still left in that "I am the centre of attention" mode. Even people who hate being chronically ill and rebel against their illness get sucked in to this. We see it often in nursing. People undergoing quite a personality change before they emotionally adjust to being well and independant again.
Someone is going to call Legolas on this. Someone is going to lose their temper with him and speak some home truths.....who will it be?? (Hint: It's not Gimli....too obvious!)
I do find Gimli easy to write. He is just so straightforward. Very little angst with Gimli. He is more practical, more, let's just get on with this. It's a breath of fresh air to write.
I just love your Gimli. He is always the voice of reason and manages to ground Legolas.
Maeven is great in this. She understands what Elrohir and Legolas need and Legolas is right in feeling bad about separating Erynion and her. Hopefully all will work out in the end.
I love this chapter. We needed Legolas POV. At least he understands why he runs and he knows it's a bad trait he shares with his mother. Coming to terms and stopping it is another issue in itself. I can understand his anguish here--in many ways he has left Thranduil and the thought that Thranduil also felt him die and return and Legolas has not reached out to him--simply awful! But they are all to blame a bit--Legolas was not himself. Someone should have considered Thranduil in all this mess (I'm looking at you Maewen and Erynion!) yes I know they were consumed with Legolas but still!
Gimli is such a stalwart voice of reason and I'm glad Legolas realizes how integral Gimli is to his well-being. Good for Gimli for reprimanding him--he's still fragile but they can't coddle him forever and sometimes bluntness really works best with this Elf.
I love Maewen's plan. She and Elrohir are really being respectful of each other and of their mutual love of Legolas. But they are starting to understand and come to terms with their differences too. This is an excellent plan--Gimli will be there to steady him, Elladan for his healing issues, and Elrohir to push away the sea-longing and surround him with love. And he can enjoy his home without the sea-longing for once and he and Elrohir can have time to get to know each other in a private, loving way. They need alone time. They need to learn how to communicate without the snark and battle of wits. They need tenderness, quiet time, time to love each other properly. And Thranduil needs to see his son. There is healing only he can provide. This also gives Maewen time with Erynion--to work out how this quadrilateral relationship will work out.
Love love the idea of the trip to the greenwood!!
He does realise his running away during times of conflict and upset is a weakness....but yeah, he struggles to control that initial response though he always forces himself to return. It's like he needs that calming down time. I see Legolas as a little bit ADHD. He gets overstimulated and needs to remove himself to be able to sort through things in his mind. (Although I doubt he understands that, it's just an emotional response to leave) This is why Gimli's bluntness always works so well. It helps Legolas focus on what's actually important!
Ah, now do you seriously think steady responsible Erynion has not contacted his King??? Of course he has! Legolas just doesn't know it yet and hasn't thought to ask. It will come up soon. (Actually that knowledge doesn't really help Legolas. He is more upset his father hasn't recieved a personal connection from himself.) but yeah, Erynion has written....frequently, and Arwen, initially when she wrote to Gimli. Thranduil knows what is happening with his son. But Mirkwood is a long way away and this letter has crossed paths with others, been held up by something, (possibly lost in the chaotic mess on Aragorns desk!) . I imagine both Aragorn and Erynion have had correspondence from Thranduil before this.
I am glad you like the idea of the trip. I have known they would do this for a long time. Maewen and Elrohir are united by that short moment of grief they experienced together. They both of them know the reality of losing Legolas and the both of them will do anything to keep him well and safe. A shared experience like that can be incredibly bonding. Yes, Elrohir has difficulties dealing with his "betrayal" of Maewen but they are a team regardless.
Maewen understands Elrohir in this better than Legolas. She sees his discomfort and admires the way he is prepared to embark on this totally foreign way of loving for Legolas' sake. She quickly realises they cannot co-exist. Elrohir can cope with the fact Legolas loves another but he cannot deal with the feeling he is morally wrong for inserting himself into their relationship. Elrohir and Maewen need to find a way to love Legolas while keeping themselves at a distance. It will involve sacrifice from both of them. This is the first step.
Oh, and Maewen is right. Much as he feels badly about having this new relationship while she does not have her old one, Legolas needs to leave Maewen and Erynion to sort things out themselves, in their own way which will not be his.
Trust Maewen and Gimli to get Legolas to see sense. I hope that letter gets there fast, though, because I hate to think of Thranduil suffering.
While I admire Legolas for trying to make things right between Maewen and Erynion, I can't help worrying he'll make matters worse in his muddled state. We shall see!
Don't worry, do you really think Aragorn or Eyrnion haven't sent Thranduil a message about this incident before now? They would be truly negligent if they hadn't! But scrambled Legolas hasn't thought of that. As for Legolas trying to act as matchmaker....well he has altruistic intentions but yeah, his control is not great. If the conversation becomes too emotional it could all go wrong. Sweet Erynion is very level headed and calming though. So perhaps it will be ok?
Legolas' tenuous ability to control himself is very apparent in this chapter, as well as the progress he has made with Gimli. Gimli is such a gift to him! But also are the things that shatter his control and trigger his breaks equally apparent, and I worry that is something gimli will never be able to help him recover. It is sad to read his own reactions to his reactions, as if he is watching someone else instead of himself--that ability, the clarity in the midst of his own chaos is worse than not recognizing his irrational actions at all. I will be interested to see how Maewen and Elrohir, particularly, deal with this twist. And how Legolas comes to realize aragorn was not being cold, if in fact he was not. Your descriptions of legolas' perception of aragorns behavior toward him was heartbreaking. I'm not overly pleased with him right now. Then again, as much as I love your bookish aragorn, I'm often not overly pleased with him! Your characterization of him is so good.
I continue to adore this story. Glad to have caught up, and thank you for posting!!!
Lovely to hear from you!
Yes, Legolas is aware of his lack of control even as he is in the midst of it. It doesn't help himself rein himself in though. At the moment he needs an external force, (Gimli) to pull him in and calm him down. He has lost that ability to maintain control over his behaviour himself. He cannot self calm. (Personally I think this has always been a weakness of Legolas and something he has found difficult—for much of his adult life Maewen has helped him— but it is very accentuated now.)
Dont be too mad with Aragorn. There are reasons for his behaviour, and Legolas is not a reliable narrator. Not all he says about Aragorn is accurate. But to Legolas the grief over the damaged friendship is real, even if that damage is not what he thinks it is. Another weakness of his.....if you want to get back at Legolas attack his friendship with Aragorn.
Glad you are still liking it!
Poor Aragorn. Poor Legolas. Poor everyone. How you do heap on the angst you terrible woman:) There are some very lovely moments in this as well
He is getting dressed, pulling a shirt over the lean muscles of his back and I sit, legs crossed, head in my hands, on the bed and gaze at him.
I know who it is from even as I watch it fall. The elegant hand of my father dances across it and I stroke my hand across the words as I pick it up. My name.
Although these are not the only ones- but the lightness of the description is wonderfully evocative of those images.
The awkwardness Elrohir feels with Maewen although she is wonderfully generous.
I know, Aragorn and Legolas are a bit of a mess. Part of that is because Legolas is a rather unreliable narrator. How he describes Aragorn's behaviour here is not necessarily how it actually is. But it is what he expects to see and that becomes a self fulfilling prophecy.
Everyone—readers and characters—have been worried Elrohir will not be able to "share" Legolas but it turns out the most problematic thing is his feeling of dishonour. He just cannot get over the feeling he is doing something wrong being with Legolas and it doesn't matter how open and welcoming Maewen is. In fact the more generous she is the worse he feels.
so glad you like the descriptions because I feel my descriptive writing is my weakness. Narration is a strength but my descriptions are light and short. So pleased they work for you!
I am free and available to tutor Legolas at any time about Noldor history, culture and etiquette. Let me know. I'll make the time. ;)
Honestly Legolas does need to rethink his attitude. I know he and Elrohir have years of bitter back and forth but that is not how they need to frame their relationship going forward. He can't goad him into sharp comments and then immediately doubt his love because of them. That's disingenuous and unfair. They have to find a new way to communicate. Not that they can't tease. I think honestly a little teasing banter would go a long way to soften their conversations and bring them to a better place but they must do it together, in harmony.
Also yes, he is a completely unreliable narrator and I did catch that aside which at least told me that he and Aragorn have a reasonable conversation about this time at a later date. Gimli is likely to be the savior here again--he gets Aragorn and Legolas and they tolerate his meddling better than the meddling of others. There are so many facets to Elrohir and Legolas has truly only limited his vision to the one Noldor one. He needs too acknowledge the Noldor side and learn about it and respect it. But he also needs to be aware of the Mannish tendencies. His experiences with Aragorn should actually help him with that. And he also needs to nurture the sublimated Silvan/Sindar side of Elrohir. It is a side Elrohir has not explored fully but with Legolas a willing partner he may dare far more than he has before. It's a way to understand each other after all.
Let me know how Legolas schedule looks. I'll bring my copy of LACE and a quenya dictionary.
also- Legolas. Your default cannot be to run.
Ha ha! Legolas so badly needs your tutorlege!!
All your points are valid ones. Legolas is being unfair at the moment. Testing, testing Elrohir's love and at some point Elrohir WILL fail the test. He will snap and say things he shouldn't if constantly pushed because he is not perfect, he is Elrohir who shields himself behind vicious words. Legolas needs to trust. He needs to take the risk and believe Elrohir's love without constantly needing him to prove it. I think this is why they can't tease. Because the basic belief in unconditional love is not there as a safety net behind it yet. That, and the fact literal Elrohir REALLY struggles to understand Legolas' sense of humour.
You are so right that Legolas' experience and friendship with Aragorn will help him connect with that large part of Elrohir that is Mannish. And that is a side of Elrohir—at least within the elven community— that is not recognised or understood. I don't think Elrohir has ever had an elven lover or friend who has been able to accept and connect with that before. Even Elladan does not really "get" that part of Elrohir.
Oh Legolas knows he must not always run. He knows it. You see that in the next chapter. It is something he battles against but sadly often it defeats him. He is trying though....he really does not want to be that person.
He stands, leaning out across the balustrade towards the city, head tilted up to face the stars. His eyes are closed and the wind ruffles his hair sweeping it across his face. The misty rain makes strands of it lay wet across his eyes.
That is a suoerb image- I felt the cold and the rain when Elrohir brought him back in- beautifully described.
And FINALLY Elrohir actually cracks and tells him-
If I had been better, a better son, would she have found the strength to stay? You see Legolas, the Elrohir I really am, who could feel resentment towards someone as broken as she."
And that is a good enough reason for wanting to be silent about it, and good enough reason for hating himself. Legolas is healing ELrohir in this way and rightly- but I do feel he shoud have shared his own secrets after forcing elrohir to talk about his. The images were again, very very good- completeyl visual and distinct.
This is at the core of Elrohir and I do wonder about who he was before his mother's trauma and departure happened....someone different I think. He cannot handle the resentment he feels. He hates himself so much for that and shares it with no one, so big moment for him here.
Legolas is refering to Laerion here. I am aware you haven't read Darkness and I know it is a pain that there's so much crossover between the stories—sorry. But in that story we saw Legolas so consumed with anger it spilled out to destroy his life, and it was long buried anger at his dead brother for the way he died leaving Legolas alone and guilt stricken. Anger he never told anyone about because he was ashamed of being angry at the brother who saved him. So VERY similar to Elrohir here.
I think he did not tell Elrohir in this moment because Laerion—and facing the fact he walked away from Laerion when he was "dead"—is a bit too raw given his recovery is just beginning. He doesn't want to think about it because it will undo all Gimli's hard work. Too emotional.
But Elrohir could SO do with hearing it and knowing Legolas truly does understand exactly how he feels!
I never thought Elrohir Elrondion would weep for the loss of me."
Ah, and there it is, my dear CB. All that angst and insecurity on both their parts! Loved Arwen in the last few chapters btw and I was so surprised to have missed all these lovely updates:)
Glad you liked Arwen! She has a bit of a rough time in this story but she's off to one side, so I am happy someone has "seen" her.
And yes, poor Legolas. It is a revelation to him that Elrohir shed tears over his death. Elrohir has done such a stellar job of hiding his feelings behind a wall of disdain that Legolas never had a clue.
A new chapter!! So happy to see this.
Aargh!! These two need to learn to communicate better! Although I am so happy to see Elrohir bending more--he is having a hard time with the Maewen thing and I thought he would but he's managed to twist it into guilt instead of jealousy this time. At least he is willing to go stargazing with Legolas alone. But Legolas, my dear sweet child--have you truly forgotten your history? I'll chalk it up to the complete mental breakdown after the death experience but this is a challenging topic for the House of Elrond and you can't really fault Elrohir for being a little touchy.
I am sure Legolas is devastated to realize Thranuil felt all of this--felt his loss, his return, his utter breakdown and scattered fea after the event. He, of all people, knows how much Thranduil has lost and how many have left Thranduil behind. There must be great regret and guilt at doing much the same to him now with no word or gesture of reaching out. But in his fragile state travel is not the best idea--unless, unless he goes with Elrohir? Back to Rivendell, to heal with Elrond and make the trip to the Greenwood to see Thranduil. Part of me likes that idea but it will not give resolution to his rift with Aragorn, which is desperately needed. I am happy Aragorn is not ready to tear Elrohir to pieces but he's got to work on this relationship with Legolas-they both do. It's hurting them both and affecting their healing. they went through this life/death altering experience together and are back from it due in large part to their abiding love and friendship. They need to find the path back to that kind of understanding and bond. I'm thinking Arwen has to be the key somehow to this next step. Can't wait to see where you take this. I hope he runs to Elrohir. I am always afraid when this Legolas runs--it makes me fear for him.
I feel bad for Aragorn--really I do--you know I love him--but may I be forgiven for wanting to smack him in the head sometimes? I feel the urge currently. I know he's damaged and fragile from all this but he's more intelligent and centered and reasonable than this. Really he is. He's got to stop being so stern and standoffish with Legolas. He's got guilt and regret and frustration but it's not helping them move past this at this point so he's got to think of another way to handle this. It can't be all Legolas. They've got to meet halfway.
Ok I really need to smack Aragorn.
You know, I think, despite his frequent protests against the Noldor, Legolas' actual grasp of their history is tenuous to say the least! Not Thranduil's fault, not a lack of opportunity to learn it, but rather because flighty young Legolas struggled to focus on boring history lectures about people he had never met. As a result he has a sketchy grasp of the important incidents but the details escape him. He should have remembered Earendil...but obviously that slipped his mind. He really needs to address this in the future. Elrohirs history is a minefield of difficult relationships. Legolas needs to clue himself up! He can really help Elrohir by enabling him to open up to his Sindar side but Legolas needs to understand the Noldor and Mannish sides better in order to do that.
Their communication does need to be worked on. They are too used to falling in to insults and Legolas is expecting them. He is, at times, baiting Elrohir to see if the sarcasm will appear. And Elrohir will always have moments of bad temper....that's just him....(as Legolas has a terrible temper too) Legolas cannot continue thinking every time Elrohir is snappy it means he no longer loves him. He has to develop some trust in their love.
You are right. Legolas cannot travel yet. This episode demonstrates that. He has come a long way but the recovery is too delicate, too easily upset setting him right back. Imagine if something untoward happened on the road turning him into a jumbled mess unable to think logically? What a disaster. But you are right.....Elrohir IS planning to head back that way.......
As for Aragorn....poor Aragorn, don't smack him too hard. There is a reason he is behaving the way he is. We will see that soon. Things have become a little bit twisted inside his mind, (and partly that's Elladan's fault) Also Legolas is not the most reliable of narrators. Did you catch the moment he says Aragorn tells him later his behaviour was not how Legolas is interpreting it now? Legolas sees an Aragorn who was cold and unfeeling...but Aragorn says he was concerned and anxious.....Absolutely Aragorn is not his normal self but also Legolas sees what he thinks he will see, not what is really there.
Dont worry...they will resolve this!
Yay! I've missed this - so happy to see an update.
Bloody Aragorn, though. He makes my blood boil. I know he's not well himself, but even so...grrrrrr.
I'm not surprised Thranduil's letter set Legolas off again. Of course he must have felt Legolas's pain and fractured spirit, and be frantic with worry. Poor Legolas, to only just realise that. No wonder he's dashed off in a panic. How will Thranduil react when he learns of Legolas's meeting with Laerion?
I think Gimli, Maewen and Elrohir are going to have to work together if they're to bring Legolas back to any semblance of sense.
Oh they SO are going to have to work together! Just as well Maewen is there as a steady female to bring all these stubborn men back on the right track.
Legolas, in the chaos, hasn't thought about his father...and hadn't really given much thought to his encounter with Laerion either...I think it is too difficult, too emotional for him right now so he has shut it out. But seeing his father's pain in front of him has cut through that. And Legolas well knows what it feels like to have the fea of someone you love vanish from the world. It happened when he lost Laerion after-all and that sent him into a state of catatonia.
Dont be too hard on Aragorn, there is a reason he is being so stiff and awkward around Legolas. Things have become a bit jumbled for him as well. And also, all is not how Legolas tells us it is. Some of Aragorns bad behaviour actually only exists in Legolas' mind, not reality.
A few painful truths here. That Elrohir doesen't know what Legolas needs and that in the last years it must have been very hard for Legolas to deal with him.
I like that they're making progress here, even if it's painful for both of them. At least they learn about each other's past.
They really are strangers at this point and they do need to deal with the legacy of past hurts. Elrohir finds it difficult to hear that Legolas doesn't trust his temper will not flare to hurt. But Legolas is justified. Elrohir has a way to go to prove he is not going to fall back in to old habits. The both of them need to start fom scratch and learn what makes each other tick.
I really like Elrohir here. His insecurity and his realization that he is way out of his depth when dealing with Legolas. Now he realizes that they don't really know each other and that he doesn't know how to deal with Legolas.
Yes. Elrohir rushed in to this...because things were at a crisis with the sealonging...and now that acute situation has settled he suddenly realises—he doesn't know Legolas at all!
Oh I was so not expecting this conversation but it is so right.
These two have so much to learn about each other and it is hard to see they still have the weapons to verbally hurt each other. Elrohir is far more restrained than usual and I am proud of him for it--the Maewen comment from Legolas must have hit him hard. That he offered to get her so calmly--he's really growing emotionally in these circumstances.
The talk of Legolas' mother made me sad-it is a heavy burden he has carried and he is so right that he and Elrohir are similar in this. I've always felt the twins never properly dealt with the loss of their mother and that there was much sublimated anger and resentment at her that they turned outward--to the Orcs of course but also to those around them. It was good to see that come out here and it was compelling to see scattered, broken Legolas being the one giving comfort and consolation to Elrohir--as well as permission to feel, to feel anger/betrayal/ abandonment. I think it is a step in the healing process that he can do this and it is a huge step forward in their relationship. They have so much to discuss and learn about each other.
Oh I am glad this took you by surprise!
These two really know nothing about each other. Elrohir has spent so much time pushing Legolas away he doesn't understand him and doesn't know any of his back story. They are more similar than either of them realise.
Elrohir really was controlled here wasn't he. The comment about Maewen did hurt. As it was designed to. Legolas was pushing his buttons on purpose. I think the horror Elrohir felt when Legolas confessed to always feeling Elrohir's sarcasm is just below the surface—that he is waiting for it to emerge—was what held him back. That was painful for him to hear and he really didn't want to fall into the trap of showing Legolas he was right to doubt. And that was exactly why Legolas spoke like that, (although it's true, Maewen is an expert at looking after him ) he was trying to prompt a reaction.
Their default communication is bad...and has been for years...it's going to be difficult to forge a new way of interacting.
Im glad my take on Elrohirs mother made sense to you. He beats himself up about his anger and resentment and does not acknowledge it so it spills out into the rest of his life. Legolas, of course, was refering to his feelings about his brother here.....the fact for long years he raged about Laerion sacrificing himself for him, leaving Legolas with all that guilt, but he could not bring himself to talk about that to anyone. We saw what that did to him in the end in Darkness.
Legolas had to step out of himself to do this for Elrohir...he had to think about things from Elrohirs point of veiw. Yes, a big step in his healing. Not just controlling his own emotions but thinking beyond them to see the world through someone else's perspective.
So far it has been Legolas benefiting in this relationship. Elrohir disperses the sealonging for him. But in actual fact Legolas has as much to offer Elrohir as well with his more open, accepting personality. Elrohir needs that in his life.
I think Legolas has been of more help to Elrohir than the other way round. So lovely that Elrohir is finally able to remember the years of happiness with his mother. I hope Legolas will also be able to get past his bitterness and forgive his own mother.
Well, Elrohir clears away the sealonging so Legolas can actually function.
But in this chapter, yes, Legolas certainly helps him. It's a two way thing, this relationship. Remember Legolas himself is not good at this talking about things business. In Darkness he hid away feelings for centuries he should have discussed. Being able to tell Elrohir about his anger towards his mother is as helpful to Legolas as talking about his mother at all is to Elrohir. If attempting to help stoical, serious Elrohir open up encourages Legolas to share, it's helping him.
As as for Legolas and his Mum...oh that's a whole other story, and a difficult one. Can he overcome his bitterness? I am not sure yet. Maybe they have a happy ending in the future, but not when he first arrives in Valinor. I know that much. Elrohir will have to repay this favour tenfold then, to encourage a reconciliation.
The awkwardness between Legolas and Elrohir is painful here. Btu at the end, Elrohir finally gets it and tells the truth. This is only going to work if all three of them are completely honest with each other.
"I have wept for the loss of you for years, Legolas. Since the Dead Marshes I have wept—alone—because I lost you."
*Sniffle* that was so sad, but I'm glad he finally said it. Maybe there's hope for them after all.
It was a bit of a surprise, even to me, how awkward they were. Until now we have just seen snippets of them through Gimli's eyes. Legolas has been pretty shattered and pliable. This small broken thing Elrohir could coset, protect, and care for. He was good at that. But now the real Legolas is beginning to show himself. And that Legolas is volatile, mercurial and wild. (And on top of all that, damaged so you have to tread carefully) Poor stoic Elrohir doesn't know how to handle this at all. He has spent years watching Legolas, yearning after him, but he is clueless when it comes to interacting with him. Let's face it, all they have done to this point is yell insults at each other!
Add to that Elrohir's feelings that he is somehow "wrong" being in the relationship, (he's so honorable, the poor dear) and you get a difficult tense mess.
You are right. Elrohir needs to be open and honest. He is not used to that, he is used to covering his feelings. He has a lot to learn.
Oh I need Gimli to drop by and give Elrohir a swift kick in the arse!
Stop second guessing yourself, fool of a Noldor!
Maewen is FINE with this. Ugh I knew he would have issues but I wasn't expecting him to be unhappy breaking up their time. He's worried about being the third wheel when this relationship and recovery process all but demand a third wheel.
And he's just so stoically unable to get a joke, this poor dear Mannish stiff Noldor.
Do what you do best Elrohir--love this beautiful, wild, unexpected Elf with all your heart. It will be worth it. Just focus on providing a safe haven of love and sex!
You see what I mean!
Elrohir has to try and fit this new relationship into his old belief system. So while he logically knows Maewen is fine, and even welcoming, deep down he feels like the baddie. Like the destroyer of families he would be deemed to be in Noldor society. He can't see past that at the moment. The fact both Aragorn and Gimli share that view of him right now doesn't help. It only reinforces the way he is seeing himself. Everyone has been concentrating on whether he can share Legolas but in fact the problem at the moment is can he live with himself as he tries to?
He is very honorable and for all that logically he knows this is fine inside it feels dishonorable to him.
And yeah....he's not good at joking, at least at the moment. In fact he is discovering he doesn't really know Legolas at all!
Elladan's brilliant here. He recognises the truth in Gimli's accusation and doesn't get defensive, but springs into action. Now Elrohir needs to do as he's told and go and be with Legolas.
Yip, Elladan at his best here. The blinkers are off. He still has his own issues but he is a healer first and foremost and the suggestion he has not been his best in that regard horrified him. Elrohir? Do what he's told? .......surely you jest?
Oh wonderful to see an update!!
I was thinking that Elrohir has WAY too much to attend to right now but you just sorted things perfectly and he is able to do what he needs to do, what he MUST do, which is tend to Legolas and focus on that. The rest will fall into place. Elrohir and Elladan will not remain at odds. Legolas recovering due to Elrohir's help will eventually settle Aragorn down (as will a healthy dose of dwarvish invective and grumbling and Gimli clarifying that Aragorn is off base with his issues with Elrohir!)
I really feel the most sorry for Arwen, who is somehow holding the center here, despite having little support from the others. Elrohir must feel awful that she knows and has known about Elladan and he's been oblivious. And that he hasn't been there for her. But he can make it up to her later--she needs him to focus on Legolas because that will help her friend and her husband.
Word of advice to Elrohir: don't piss off the dwarf. Gimli will have his back and defend him to the ends of the earth if he sees Elrohir truly cares for and cares about Legolas. He'll get Aragorn in line, he'll help support Maewen--Gimli will do whatever needs to be done and support him fully if he is convinced it is in Legolas' best interests and what Legolas wants.
You are right to be sorry for Arwen. She has quietly been struggling on while all the men around her fall apart. (Isn't it always the way.) Elrohir did have an insight into her stress and weariness that first evening after the accident but promptly forgot about her because of his own problems. He will make a belated attempt to help now....and she gets support from other sources.
Elrohir will feel terrible about the fact she noticed Elladan's sealonging when he didn't. Elladan and Elrohir have a much closer connection than either of them have with their sister but Elrohir simply wasn't looking. The possibility of sealonging didn't even enter his consciousness. Partly because his mental make up is so mannish. That's the way he sees the world. Because he "feels" that way he never imagined Elladans reality was so different. Arwen, on the otherhand, is the one with Galadriels power over others minds and she cannot resist using them. Elladan's defences were never going to work with her.
As for Gimli. He and Elrohir have common ground in their love for Legolas but they haven't found that yet. Elrohir will defend his brother above all else and as he needs to be careful to respect Gimli so Gimli needs to learn to respect that twin bond. At the moment it is simply one more thing Gimli sees as a threat to Legolas. Elrohir and Gimli need to thrash out a working relationship but it is quite a way away yet!
Gimli is great. He manages to voice all the thoughts about what is wrong with this relationships. A disaster waiting to happen, indeed. There are serious misgivings that this is going to work and Gimli points them out quite clearly.
Gimli is Legolas' staunchest defender. He is right to have concerns. There are so many warning signs and places this whole love triangle could disintergrate. Gimli has strode in to this situation, no preconceptions, no swirling emotion like all the others and he cuts right to the chase! He is even blunter in Chapter 35!
Hooray for Dwarves and their sensible, perceptive clarity! Of course Aragorn is suffering as Legolas! Of course Arwen can't seeit either. Of course they all need their heads banged together- good thing Gimli's there to do it!!
Dwarves may not be as pretty, or as wise and learned as the elves consider themselves, but they are sensible, straight up, and practical. (At least mine are,) Gimli cuts through the waffle and angst and sees right to the heart of the problem. Elrohir and Elladan could learn a lot from him.
Lets hope they up their game now!
Go Gimli! I'm still not convinced that Elrohir is able to share Legolas, but hopefully Gimli's made him think beyond the present to what the future might bring. Now I just hope the twins can get over the humiliation of needing a dwarf to point out some home truths so they can see what's the matter with Aragorn!
Oh so humiliating for such wise Elves to need a dwarf to point out what was under their noses all along. The twins need to pull finger and get their act together. Home truths indeed. They should have thought of this themselves before now.
Oh well, there is still time to redeem themselves. :-)
What would any of them do without Gimli?
Oh!! Gimli is truly a dwarf with a mission. Yes, I'm glad he is the one who has seen all the damaged individuals in this event--not just Legolas but Eldarion, Aragorn and Arwen. Gimli may not have realized Elladan's own issues but he doesn't know him well at all.
He's certainly got Maewen's back. He's really not to be blamed for his concerns about Elrohir--he's only seen the difficult, prickly side of Elrohir and Legolas is too precious to Gimli for him to risk Elrohir's well known volatile temper down the road. It's a valid concern, Elrohir's ability to share, and even though Maewen sent him and supports it there is more that they need to hammer out for the long-term. Gimli is not playing the short game here--he sees what has to happen to get Legolas through this but his concern is the (as he sees it) inevitable crash once things return to a semblance of normal--when all the extreme emotional outbursts have settled and they have to resume their more normal lives in non-crisis mode--how are these puzzle pieces going to fit together then? Gimli may not be there at that point--he needs to know he can leave and have a stable, cohesive, dependable support system for Legolas.
Gimli also brings home the point of the twins and how enmeshed in each other they are--they've scratched the surface of how this must change with the Elrohir/Legolas revelation but they haven't solved it yet. And Gimli knows that.
Once again our dwarf proves the most perceptive of them all. He ferrets out the parallels to Legolas' damaged fëa manifesting in Aragorn and he has picked up on the fact that Arwen soothes Legolas in a fainter parallel to Elrohir. There is more to be discovered in that realization I think. The Maia blood is more at work here than they realize I think, faint though it may be. Although perhaps there is some mind touch capability from grandma Galadriel as well.
I don't think this conversation between Gimli and Elrohir is over but I think the twins need to spend some time with Arwen and Aragorn--although I feel poor Elrohir is going to be pulled in too many directions; Legolas needs him to quiet the sea so he can put the shattered pieces of himself back together in some way. Elladan needs the sea to recede to be able to heal the others to the best of his ability. Arwen needs her brothers, as does Aragorn, and Eldarion needs to keep his growing bond with Elrohir also, now that his parents and Legolas are not themselves. That's a lot to shoulder.
Gimli has arrived with a fresh set of eyes, unburdoned by the emotions that weigh the others down and he has seen it all! Some of this is down to his natural curiosity and astuteness but also it is because he does not have the preconceptions the others have. He does not have the healing knowledge of Elladan but he knows his friend. He KNOWS Aragorn, and he knows that this behaviour is not Aragorn at all. He has been ticking this over in his mind all this time. Trying to solve the puzzle...did you notice? From the moment he laid eyes on Aragorn he worried about him. Although he has not mentioned it to us I think the instant Elladan told Gimli what was wrong with Legolas Gimli has been watching Aragorn for signs of similar trouble. The twins didn't think on it. Elrohir has been wrapped up in anxiety about Legolas. Elladan has been angry due to his sealonging, and burdoned with Legolas' care which has been draining. He has taken Aragorn at face value.
And because Elladan and Elrohir as narrators stated Aragorn only suffered from physical aftereffects readers believe it.
Gimli really is Maewens defender. There is nothing you can do that will endear you more to Gimli than look after his friend...and Maewen has done that. She has—since "Darkness" —poured her love on to Legolas to keep him safe, to her own detriment often, and Gimli loves her for it. And you are right...he plays the long game. He needs to see beyond Legolas' immediate need for Elrohir and ensure it will be safe months down the track. And he does not trust Elrohir. He has only seen him until now behave negatively. He definitely does NOT trust him with Legolas!
He passes no judgement, he is prepared to accept it. But bottom line...Legolas much be emotionally safe.
So Gimli has noticed Aragorns emotional damage, and Arwens burdens, (which Elrohir told us of and promptly forgot,) AND as you say, the twins closeness.
now can these twins pull themselves together and sort it all out?
Gimli is just so great at this point on the story. He is just what Legolas needs but he also is not going to let anyone else be complacent--he's going to get to the bottom of all these swirling issues and figure things out or call out the appropriate players. It is great to see how he is with Maewen here--she really had issues with him in the past and it's reassuring to see she has become aware of his goodness and value as a friend to Legolas.
Poor Gimli though--all this Silvan love mess is bound to be confusing and uncomfortable for him. Erynion is wonderful as usual and it is so gratifying to see that Maewen, despite her Elven age, is truly growing and maturing in her understanding of Legolas and those he loves. I am still concerned about this love trapezoid forming here. I think Erynion is very wary and ambivalent and you can't blame him one bit--once bitten twice shy seems an apt phrase here. He loves Maewen and Legolas but the strain in put on their friendship was considerable--can he risk it again? Maewen no doubt needs him--his calm and soft, encompassing love--especially now with such a more volatile Legolas.
Legolas desperately needs Elrohir--he now grounds him in a way Mawen cannot and it is an incandescent love that fills a void in him. I think he can manage both Elrohir and Maewen, especially since she is open to it. I have worried about poor Elrohir--he is so Noldor and Mannish--there is no Silvan and precious little Sindar in his makeup. I worry how his one-love heart will take this but I think the shock of losing Legolas jolted him out of his preconceived ideas and he will be determined never to lose him again, even to the point of having to share him. I can't wait for Gimli to have his conversation with Elrohir next!
I've told you how much I adore Elrohir in this story?
Wow, the best kind of review! When the reader "gets" all the characters.
Gimli and Maewen have come such a long way havent they. Maewen has allowed herself to really see Gimli. She knows how good he is for Legolas. And Gimli, although he disapproves of how she acted initially when Legolas returned fom the quest, appreciates the care she lavishes on Legolas now. He has become quite protective of her.
Erynion most definitely is wary....and ambivalent. He doesn't trust Legolas' new attitude and with good reason because Legolas is quite unbalanced at the moment. For Erynion it is all about Maewen and although he worries about his friendship with Legolas mostly he wants to protect her.
Legolas does need Elrohir. And Maewen now recognises that. Easier for her to come to terms with as she realises she also needs Erynion but still cannot lose Legolas. I love that word incandescent. I might borrow that at some point if I may.
Ah, but poor non-Silvan Elrohir who has very little Sindar to help him either. Can he do this? That is the question. But you are right...the shock of losing Legolas may well enable him to achieve what he could not before.
So glad you like him. Perspective change back to Elrohir in the next chapter. His conversation with Gimli will be... Fiery. Gimli does not trust Elrohir and Elrohir doesn't take well to Gimli's blunt confrontational style!
I'm with Gimli here! Oh the complexity, the emotional tangle, the deliciousness of it ! Love it all. Love Maewen and Erynion especially. Erynion very much:)
It is a mess isn't it....one huge entangled mess. So glad you like Maewen.....and Erynion. I love calm, gentle Erynion. In my other universe.... The Legolas/Elrohir universe I killed Erynion off in "Walls of Glass" Legolas was assaulted by a mysterious group of men and his friend Erynion was killed. When I started writing this "het" universe I put Erynion in th story "Darkness" as a nod to all those readers like Naledi who read both universes. Now...as I have written quite a bit of him, I regret EVER killing him off.