What a bittersweet chapter. It's good that Maewen makes Legolas see how much his father is hurting and that he needs him.
Obviously Legolas has serious issues with his mother leaving without a word. Just leaving a letter is downright cruel. What was that woman thinking?
This is a bittersweet ending, since we know of the trials Legolas and Maewen still have to face in the future. Even so, it’s lovely to see them share that precious moment under the stars, happy for the time being.
I wish Legolas could have kept his mother’s letter. Now all he will know is her desertion, denying any possibility of finding out her side of the story. I can see now that his heart will be truly hardened against her by the time he arrives in Valinor.
Yes, bittersweet because we know the rest of the story. Still they manage to hold on to that love. It's at the heart of them and what keeps them together all this time.
Legolas should have kept that letter and read it when he was able. Now, as you say, there's no option for him to hear her words when this initial anger subsides. All he has is his rage.
(Which he turns in on himself for a long time as he told us in "Darkness" He decides she left because of him, because he told her when she saved him after Laerion that he hated her. It's not till Thranduil admits in Darkness there were major relationship problems that Legolas lets go of that belief. )
Really liked seeing both sides of this. Legolas does seem very similar to his mother as far as the Silvan influence and the running.
So this takes place after Legolas has split Erynion and Maewen apart with his unSilvan jealousy.
You know I'm now going to want an even earlier story about these Elves!
Ah, no the split with Erynion happens after this...shortly after I think. The three way relationship is surviving tenuously at this time. Maewen talks to us a little bit about this time in Fire. She describes Legolas as slowly reducing his other relationships...only choosing to be with her, while she happily moved between lovers. I think that has been happening leading up to here. As he says, he has only just realised he is "in love" with her. In a way Erynion splitting these two up on the battlefield has enabled them to move closer together. The time apart has them realising.....I can't survive without this other person...
Things come to a head when Legolas discovers Erynion was the one to initiate that. He interprets it badly..of course...and it all spirals from there. I do intend to write that sometime.
I think Erynion has a point, but for everyone's sake, I hope Legolas doesn't find out it was Erynion who reported them. Although considering the levels of angst you enjoy inflicting on your characters, I don't hold out much hope...
Not a good point for Legolas to arrive, and he's hardly in a frame of mind to be rational. Oh dear!
Yes, Erynion has a point. Especially considering Legolas' history with his brother. And the thing is both Legolas and Maewen know this. Why else were they keeping things on the down low? But yeah, Legolas won't take well to hearing it was Erynion who reported them. At this stage the Erynion/Maewen relationship is in full swing. They were. "together" first. I can't see Erynion ever stepping in if Legolas had been the first one with Maewen. Maewen's relationship here with Legolas is serious but still in the early days of them realising just how serious. It's in that space between, "oh yeah, this is a pleasant way to spend the time" and "oh my god this is the person I will be with forever!"
We already know things deteriorate between Legolas and Erynion due to Legolas' jealousy, immaturity and inability to "share" Now we know the catalyst. Even Maewen initially accused Erynion of ulterior motives here, though she didn't really believe it. Legolas will definitely see this as Erynion deliberately trying to keep he and Maewen apart due to jealousy.
As for how Legolas will react. Well we have seen this scene before from his perspective. (In chapter 3) Now to see how Maewen interprets their conversation.
Ooh! I really like getting this backstory, especially after "Fire." Things really are falling into place.
Poor Erynion--he's exhausted, frustrated and now has this maelstrom he's returned too. And an angry Maewen. I can't blame her for being frustrated that he is the one who ratted them out but I can't really blame him either. He loves them both and this has got to be tough--realizing she loves Legolas so deeply. Erynion is her calm, her rock but Legolas is the love of her life and it's a hard thing for him to realize.
And he's really being hard on himself too--separating himself from her also.
His fear of Legolas leaving when he hears of his mother's departure may seem far fetched but I think Maewen is having to work a bit too hard to convince herself of that so I think it's likely more probable than she wants to admit. The running issue Legolas has, just like his mother.
What a horrible moment for Legolas to show up-I'd think he'd still be woth Thranduil but perhaps he did a runner to Maewen as soon as he heard about his mother. Ugh. Nice cliffhanger here!
Erynion was right. Legolas and Maewen should not have been patrolling together...especially given Legolas' history and they both knew it which was why they kept their relationship so secret. But I had to think really hard about Erynion's motives here. Maewen suggests jealousy although she is not convinced of that and like her, I find it hard to believe it of him. Erynion is Silvan and as sad as it is for him to know he is not the love of Maewen's life that she is for him, I still think he can accept her other love. It is the norm for their people and the stars don't always align the way you want them too.
So I decided as well as his concern for Legolas...and especially Maewen, he worried about himself and his own judgement in the field where Maewen was involved. Outing Legolas and Maewen effectively separated him and Maewen as well. It killed two birds with one stone.
Yes! As always you know my characters so well. Erynion's fear that Legolas will flee has probably been whispering at the back of Maewen's mind as well. She does not even want to go there but I think secretly she is terrified of it.
As you say...Legolas has a pattern of running.
This scene here has already been written from Legolas' point of view, (chapters 2 and 3) and so I am constrained by that including the timeline. Earlier we saw Legolas' talk with Thranduil was brief. And yes he did run...as he does.... as soon as he heard about his mother, he took off to see Maewen.
Now comes the tricky bit. Writing a conversation I have already written...making it the same but different!
“So to put you out of your misery, Thranduil sails first. He has to. He knows Legolas will and he cannot stay and watch him go...plus he has undealt with issues with his wife, and Laerion to meet. Thranduil felt Legolas' "death" even all the way in the Greenwood. That's about to be dealt with in "Fire"”
Oh no! Did anyone think to let him know Legolas was not dead????? Did he sail thinking Legolas was dead? OMG!
Also, Laerion is not reborn yet (right? Since he was able to meet Legolas when he died?), so if Thanduil sails now it will just be him dealing with his wife….what has it been like for her all these years in Valinor? Is she still stuck in the same place she was when she left? I imagine Thranduil, like Legolas, has moved on as best he can, dealing with his grief…..but this does make me really happy to hear Legolas will not be parted from his father!
Ahh...so many questions....all will be revealed in the next chapter of Fire, I'm writing it at the moment. But as Maewen and Elrohir felt the absense of Legolas' fea as a gaping hole in their world so did Thranduil.
Laerion is not reborn yet, but soon will be. He will be in Valinor when Legolas reaches it.
Thranduil does not sail for awhile yet as sailing means leaving Legolas in Arda alone. He goes first but not before he is certain Legolas is "safe" with others as a support system. Some time away yet. So the question is, is Maewen right? Has the Queen spent all this time regretting her choice to leave? And if so, has that taught her anything? Thranduil loves her. He will try again. He feels guilty for her distress and blames the failure of their relationship on himself....or on his position. He was not King when they got together and did not expect to be King either really.
But Legolas? Yeah, he's another story. And a grieving Legolas who has sailed having just lost Aragorn? He's not going to be very receptive.
“She DID take the easy way out. That's it exactly. Have you noticed my Legolas has a tendency to run? In a lot of the stories he does it. He runs to the heights, to the forest, packs his bags and goes home, when things get tense. It's a trait he gets from his mother...running from confrontation. “
Interesting that you mention this, because I was just thinking about how much Legolas runs when reading the story! It is something that he still does even in the latest stories. I always thought it was a part of him being a wood-elf though. So often he seemed to run because he was feeling constrained, and needed freedom and peace to think, preferably somewhere high up! It is interesting that he got this character trait from his mother. It makes me think about how he felt he needed to make sure his father understood he was not like his mother, he was not going to leave him.
Wow, youre still up!!
Well it is part of him being a woodelf...his flightiness, and his mother is a woodelf too....But Erynion is also and he doesn't run. So, no I think it's more an inherited thing fom her, partly nature, partly learned behaviour he has seen all his childhood. And that was exactly why he told his father that. All his life Legolas has been told he is the silvan prince, the one like his mother, he needs Thranduil to know in this particular thing he is not going to be like her. He may run but he always comes back. He does not abandon people.
I both pity the queen like Maewen does, but always was quite satisfied with her slamming the door in her face! (even though both Thanduil and the queen’s warnings about Maewen and Legolas’ relationship prove true. This has me wondering and worry how things end up these two now Elrohir is in the mix. It all seemed so hopefully at the end, and yet you left me wondering if things would all fall apart! I don’t know I could bear that!)
I am also reminded when reading this story about Leoglas’ confrontation with his brother when he died. What Legolas said really was true: his brother’s died destroyed their family. Not that it was his brother’s fault, obviously, the same probably would have happened had it been Leoglas who died that say instead. But it also highlights exactly how much Legolas has lived through past his brother’s death. He really is not the same Legolas his brother knew. He’s not the same Legolas in this story either. He has grown so much.
This was a great start to the story! You have made me love Thranduil and Legolas’ relationship, and I am so glad for Thranduil’s sake, as well as everyone else, that Legolas did not die that day in Minas Tirith. Legolas really is all Thrnaduil has left. But now I am worried about how Legolas’ eventual sailing is going to impact Thranduil….ach! There really are no perfectly happy endings, are there?
So to put you out of your misery, Thranduil sails first. He has to. He knows Legolas will and he cannot stay and watch him go...plus he has undealt with issues with his wife, and Laerion to meet. Thranduil felt Legolas' "death" even all the way in the Greenwood. That's about to be dealt with in "Fire"
Elrohir and Legolas have a long road to travel before they are secure with each other...there are a lot of issues still between them. They have begun to explore that in the last two chapters of "Fire".
Laerion's did indeed completely destroy this family. It's not his fault. And you are right, the intervening years have changed Legolas so profoundly Laerion doesn't know him at all. THIS is the Legolas, Laerion knows, this young, immature, finding his feet in the world Legolas. It's so very far from Legolas now.
Thanks for all the lovely reviews! I have to write more of this!
Ah! I love that moment between Legolas and Thranduil! I am glad to see Legolas is no longer running away from his hurt and the pain in his father eyes, and reaching back towards his father. They needed each other.
Maewen was a nice surprise this chapter! I feared she would be immature and selfish still at this time in her life, but she is not. I can see how good she is for Leoglas, and how, right now, she is the more mature one. I wonder if it was the quest that really matured Legolas the most, or had he already grown more mature before that? How many years before the quest is it?
Yes, it was the quest that changed Legolas. How could it not? He did a lot of growing and returned a very different Legolas. Maewen. As you say, she seems the more mature one here. Elves live so long I figure it takes them some time to fully become adult in maturity.
And that was when it all went wrong for Maewen.
She gave up a lot for her relationship with Legolas, she gave up Erynion. At the time of this story she and Erynion are still together. But not for much longer. Having given up SO much she could not deal with Legolas returning so changed, with the mortals who where suddenly so important to him, with the new life he wanted her to lead. It all made her bitter for the Legolas she had lost and insecure.
I don't think this is all that many years before the quest. The Erynion/Maewen/Legolas thing all explodes soon after this story, (you'll see why in the chapter I am writing now) Gollem and the quest are not that long after.
Well….I feel a bit better disposed towards his mother now, but still think she took the easy way out. She may not like confrontations, but my god, how could she not see how much leaving without saying good-bye would hurt Legolas? And that she thought Legolas hated her…there are some serious communication problems with this family!
Thranduil is amazing tho. I love how you have written him :)
Another good chapter, I am off to read the next!
She DID take the easy way out. That's it exactly. Have you noticed my Legolas has a tendency to run? In a lot of the stories he does it. He runs to the heights, to the forest, packs his bags and goes home, when things get tense. It's a trait he gets from his mother...running from confrontation.
She has obviously done this all her married life. They talk about her running off to her village when she cannot cope. And she cannot cope with saying goodbye to Legolas......so she doesn't.
Such a bad mistake. This will resonate right through to Valinor, when he finally arrives there. Legolas doesn't forgive easily.
She thought Legolas hated her because—after his brother's death—he retreated into an almost catatonic state. No one could reach him, (this is all described in "Darkness") and in the end she found him where he was hiding out in the darkness and dragged him out screaming. Literally. He was so distressed at having to face the reality of his brother's death he told her then he hated her for saving him.
Yeah, the family communication is appalling.
Hi Cheeky :waves: I am off to start this story at last!
Oh, I cannot believe Legolas’ mother sailed without even saying good-bye! That is what happened right? It’s just…what on earth was she thinking? How could she have done that? I am seriously pissed with her right now!
It was strange reading Leoglas here because he is obviously young. He’s a bit of a brat, and yet still has a good heart underneath.
Great first chapter! You have me eager to read more :)
Hello! So excited to get reviews from you!!
Yes, as you now know Legolas' Mother sailed without saying goodbye. And that left him feeling as if he was to blame for it all. He felt that for years. (It's dealt with in the story "Darkness in Your Heart" Eventually Thranduil told him it was nothing to do with him at all. She blamed Thranduil for Laerion's death and their relationship crumbled.)
so glad Legolas felt young. He was obviously deliberately written that way but it's hard to go back in time and change a character like that and be sure it's worked.
He was a brat. My Legolas has always had a hot temper and a tendency to sulk. Here he behaves a bit like a sullen teenager. He still has a lot to learn.
It's interesting to read of the events in the palace from Maewen's point of view. To see the Queen's departure is more than a family matter but one that affects the whole realm.
It was considerate of Thranduil to give Maewen news of Legolas first. Even though he doesn't approve of their relationship it's kind of him to take her feelings into account. Another enjoyable chapter!
Thranduil doesn't approve, but it's Legolas and Maewen as a unit he doesn't approve of, not Maewen as a person. And at the moment it's happening. He can't ignore that, so he has to acknowledge it. And I think, at that moment, perhaps he just wanted to talk to someone who might understand because they love Legolas too. He is feeling the strain and missing his wife, who would have been the only one to truly understand his worry and grief at this news......although she may well have blamed him to be honest.
Good for Maewen to do her best for Legolas. It's strange that the queen orders her to stay away from Legolas, though. I thought the queen was Silvan, or am I mixing her up with another story? I suppose if she is Silvan, her warning will come from the heart - it must be relating to what's happened between her and Thranduil.
So sad for Legolas and Thranduil, though. I'm really looking forward to the reunion in Valinor story when you get around to it!
Yes, the queen is Silvan. Her warning comes because of problems she and Thranduil are having/ have had. She is trying to prevent Legolas going through the hurt they are in their relationship. Same reason Thranduil warned Legolas in the first chapter.
And Maewens father disapproved as well. She tells us that in "Fire"
Maewen and Legolas prove them all wrong in the end...... But as we know they have a fair bit of heartache getting there....so everyone warning them off each other has a point.
At this stage Legolas and Maewen believe Legolas to be completely silvan in nature. He isn't of course as we see in "Fire" Despite her angry words to the queen, Maewen is wrong. Legolas' mum DID know him best. She knew that despite his silvan appearances there was a fair dollop of his Sindar father's nature also lurking below the surface.
Legolas is a littel bit hysterical here- like a child- partly I assume the shock but perhaps also the drugs he had only a moment ago and the venom. But he is the centre of everyone's universe and so they all gather round, kindly and lovingly - dear Erynion and Maewen. I think maybe Thranduil shoud leave him be for a bit though- although he is wonderfully fatherly and that soothing thing that only Dads can do is very nicely written- fab writing!
He IS young here, a novice warrior and rather damaged by his brother's death which he has not recovered from yet, ( that was a bit stunting of him emotionally) And because of the utter mess he was in after that they do all tend to coset him a bit.
Thranduil blames himself for Legolas' mother leaving. She blamed him for Laerion's death and has not been able to get past that. ( that's in "Darkness") he is very, very, guilty. Leaving Legolas alone is something he is unable to do right now. :-(
Oh FINALLY catching up with this. Poor old Legolas- how we like to torment him! It does seem very selfish of his mother to just leave like this- but she was clearly trying to communiate with him but he didn't want to know right then. And of course, here is MAewen to comfort him and give him everything of herself- she's rather lovely I think.
Somehow I missed these reviews..sorry!
I am glad you like Maewen. She has her faults but she is loyal and courageous. Legolas' mother is rather broken by grief and not functioning particularly well. And so she makes this terrible decision to leave...which I think she regrets eventually for many long years. And Legolas struggles to forgive her this...but that's another story!
I hope Thranduil comes to appreciate Maewen's value and rightness for Legolas, because she's so good with him here. The moment with Thranduil made me well up - I'm so glad Thraduil came for Legolas and they were finally able to share their pain. If Maewen hadn't let Thrandul know where Legolas was, I can see Legolas trying to avoid him, which would have been a disaster.
The final line makes the tragedy of Legolas's sealonging all too plain. It's going to force him away from the land and many of the people he loves. I'm just going to have to hold on to the hope of a happy reunion with his mother and brother - although the reunion with his mother will be difficult considering she abandoned him without saying goodbye.
She IS good here....so much better than she was at times in Darkness when their relationship was a mess of previous mistakes and bad feeling. Here it is new and so she can be bold and direct with him. Hopefully they find their way back to this position one day. They haven't quite made it there yet. There are still past issues between them that hold them back.
Thranduil does come to appreciate her. We saw that at the end of Darkness when he called her daughter....but how long it takes him to get to that position I don't know. He had issues with his wife because she was silvan, and she left him and hurt his son. It will take a long time for him to realise perhaps Legolas and Maewen will not play out exactly the same senario as he and his unnamed wife did.
Yes...the final line. That's exactly what I wanted it to do. Because this young Legolas can see no way he will ever be separated from his beloved forest except, perhaps, by death. But WE know he was.
As for his mother and brother....I will write that reunion one day. It won't be the best. Legolas has a habit of holding on to a grudge and I think it will take him a long time to forgive her, not so much that she didn't say goodbye, (although that will be a part of it) but the fact she abandoned his beloved father. By the time he gets to Valinor it has been just him and Thranduil for a long long time.
He had his reunion with Laerion in "Fire" didn't go so well either as he chose to return to Arda with Aragorn. A decision Laerion cannot understand. So when they meet again that will be interesting as well!
Why haven't I read Darkness??? Have I just missed this? Will be spending some time on htat- how do you manage to be such a prolific writer and I take ages. If I read too much I don't write. Sorry- feel bad to have skipped your fic.
Um...I don't know? It is first person and I know that's not your fav. And it's a het romance/angst, lots of my regular readers deliberatly skipped that story :-) Because of the het....and the female OC. I don't mind, really I don't. You can't please all the people all the time...right?
But it does contain a heap of stuff re Legolas and his brother/mother/mess of his entire life. And a huge, stupid fallout with Aragorn, not Legolas' finest moment.
I could tell from the last chapter there was bad news to do with Legolas's mother, but I assumed she was dead. I agree with Legolas - leaving without waiting to say goodbye seems harsh. She must have realised how this would wound him. And later, I guess, will come the guilt that he couldn't save Laerion and therefore send his mother away, too. I hope, if he eventually reads the letter, it will help him understand.
Ah, it must be too long since you read Darkness! we knew Legolas' mother sailed then and Thranduil told him it was because she blamed Theanduil for Laerion's death and could not forgive him.
Have you noticed whenever Legolas has an arguement or there is conflict and high emotion Legolas runs? He does it in all the stories. Runs from Aragorn, runs from Maewen, runs from Erynion. The only one he doesn't run away from is Gimli. I decided he must have got that trait from someone and it definitely wasn't Thranduil who doesn't run from a damn thing. Turns out it was his Mum who hated confrontation and conflict and spent her marriage running back to her home village when the going got tough. Now she has run away to Valinor and she didn't have the guts to sit through the difficult farewell scene she would have had with Legolas.......so she just avoided it altogether.
Oh- none of this feels good. I have a nasty feeling about his mother's absence, the anxious crowd (allvery very well written CB) and hte fact that Thrnaduil is there withhis emphasis on not losing 'you'- hinting, as well as her.
I do like the ay you are buidling your characters here- through actions and plot and not just reams of info. Maewen fading into the crowd is worrying too- but perhaps Thranduil losing his beloved will mean he relents.
Glad it all felt ominous to you! Of course it is. I know you have not read Darkness so other readers will have the advantage over you. They already know what's about to happen here! Can fill you in if you want. Was going to but then i thought maybe you'd just like to read this blind.
Will Thranduil relent??? Well, that all depends WHY he lost his beloved!
Oh, poor Legolas. I think he's about to get more bad news than he can handle.
Thranduil's assessment of Legolas's relationship with Maewen was spot on, even though Legolas refuses to see it. He might be wild and Silvan(ish) but we know from your other stories that he's more Sindar than he likes to admit when it comes to love.
A promising start! I'm looking forward to seeing more, even though it looks like Legolas has a great tragedy to face :(
Yes, it's angst...so things are not going to be particularly happy and shiny for Legolas. Poor baby.
Thranduil was indeed bang on the money here relationship wise......note to Legolas; yes, your Mum is Silvan, that means your Dad has been married to a Silvan for centuries, that means he knows what he is talking about. Stop and Listen.
Of course Legolas doesn't. Why would he? Could have saved him and Maedwrn a lot of angst if he had.