Gimli is such a force of stability--and not only to Legolas. But how he interacts with Legolas is so integral to Legolas' well being. I can't blame Ithildim for being angry and frustrated but I think Gimli is right. Trust is a fragile thing.
I think Ithildim needed trees and green to calm down, not sand and raging ocean waves. But it made a good parallel to the unrest Legolas has due to the sea even of ithildim's is from frustration rather than sea longing.
Ok I now have a sneaking suspicion of who this mysterious elf or elf like creature who helped Legolas is and I am sure it is the person on the sandbar. I'll be very excited if my guess is right!
Oh Ithildim. Where will he go then? Those last three lines were so sad and ominous.
ooh - a mystery. I get the feeling the unknown elf who helped Legolas is the same as the person out on the sandbar. I lved that moment.
Gimli's right - I'm glad Ithildim didn't use the belladonna on Legolas. He's so fragile I can't see that stripping away what little control he has can be good.
You convey the emotion so well in this chapter. It's almost painful to read, but beautiful too. They're both suffering so much, I wonder how either of them can continue like this. *sniffle*
I can't blame Ithildim for his dark thoughts. As I said before, it must be the not knowing, imagining all kinds of horrors that's the worst. But they've found Legolas at last. Somehow I doubt he's going to be in a good state.
Oh, poor Ithildim. I can't believe Legolas would sail without telling anyone, but at the same time, he's not himself when the sea takes hold, so who knows what he would do. The not knowing must be terrible.
Ah, I love Gimli. He's so steady. I would love to see these two through his point of view during this. Interesting to know Ithildim was annoying him.
Your Legolas is just like mine as far as drugs go. Mine has a weakness with opioids as well....saw a bit of that in Hands of the King. So glad Ithildim didn't give him that belladonna. Legolas would have seen that as a betrayal .... and it would have been. I am slightly disappointed Ithildim even considered it. Thank god for Gimlis sage advice.
Loved the hints about the "other" elf.
Works really well. When Ithildim saw him ...exciting!
But the end is sad, so very very sad. And distance will allow the issues between them to grow.
Think of yourself when your struggling with the balance with Ithildim. Remember back to what it was like, caring and yet at the same time completely over it.....because you can be both and I'm sure you were. Wishing you didn't care so you could just stop.
I think what causes people to give up on a relationship , (normal everyday people in "normal" relationships) is an inbalance. When they feel they give more than they get. And that's where I think Ithildim is right now. He gives and gives and feels he gets less back. It becomes completely unrewarding.
So I have already told you much of my feedback about this section. Ithildim feels very defeated and weary here. He has come to the end of his endurance in this relationship, I think. It's just getting too hard for him. I think you may have personal experience of this actually, thinking back a year or so ago and reading between the lines.
Ithildim has cared for Legolas for a long time, and this may feel like the straw that breaks the camels back.
I am glad Legolas acknowledges he had put Ithildim through the wringer. I think perhaps he does not think often enough about the effect his decisions and behaviour have on Ithildim.
P.S. The medical details make much more sense with only those few little tweaks you have given them!
Woohoo, phew! Re: medical details.
Oh you are intuitive, aren't you? I hadn't even realized part of the pain I was writing about was my own until thinking about it. The things we carry with us without even knowing it...!
I continue to struggle with the balance between Ithildim caring for Legolas and also being utterly done. We will see how I do with this as this story continues...
And yes, Legolas does not think abut this enough, except for when he overthinks it. He is quite a bit like his mother, it turns out, and I do feel for him for that. But still... Ithildim needs a break here.
I'm really liking the way you have broken this up! Major impact in all the right places!
as I said before, that sentence of Ithildim at the end is very telling.
Ooh, I am glad you liked where split it. I was worried the shortness would be off-putting, but I really didn't wan tto shove this little scene in with another! And yes, it is very telling, of many many things, I think...
This is oh so sad. Poor Ithildim. I am quite angry with Legolas for this!
Now I know he had reasons, is not himself, is controlled to a certain extent by the sealonging, but this feels very selfish and quite the betrayal.
I am NOT happy with Legolas at the end of this chapter.
He has ignored Ithildim's pain.
Now you know a little of how I felt reading Maewen and Legolas' story! A grey blob of "not sure who to be mad at the most right now". ;) but yes, you shouldn't be happy with Legolas in this chapter, as it is told from Ithildim's perspective. I'll be interested to see if your reactions change as the plot develops and more is revealed. :)
*sigh* It's so sad that there's this deep closeness between Legolas and Ithildim, yet whatever inner forces at work within Legolas's mind are pushing them apart.
Yes, it is sad. It makes me sad for them! I am glad their closeness is coming across, because that means it is hopefully believable. It is just one of those moments for them that so many couples have--where it could be the end, but it doesnt have to be. Thanks for reviewing!
I probably don't know your characters well enough to grasp all the subtext here, but it's clear there's more than just sea-longing affecting Legolas's behaviour. However, the fact that he has these two opposing forces in him - the desire to sail and his reluctance to face his mother has surely got to result in one Wood-elf in a very fragile emotional state. Add to that the reality of facing the mortality of his friends, and things aren't looking good at all. But running away isn't going to help matters either.
Most of Legolas' characterization in my stories is laid out pretty clearly in Enough, so if you have read any of that you are probably caught up a bit. I think far more than I write so unfortunately no one knows my characters like I do! There's a lot in my brain that is not on paper. :)
No running away isn't going to help. And while he does run away, we wll lean that things are a little more complicated than that, and there's going to be quite the learning curve for the two of them, I think.
Thanks for reviewing!
Ah....well the slash haters are going to have problems denying THIS chapter. What will they make of it?
I feel so very sad for Ithildim here as Legolas runs off again. Together... not together....together....not together. How incredibly draining for him, and in a way...disrespectful.
I am left feeling like he deserves better than Legolas is giving him. Legolas is not listening. He may be right; Middle Earth is a safer place and Ithildim's worry could be misplaced but the fact remains Ithildim IS worried, and so instead of telling him why he should not be Legolas needs to acknowledge that he IS. and find a compromise, a way of allowing himself to travel while assuaging Ithildim's concern.
If Legolas takes too long coming back he might find Ithildim no longer waits for him.
You are well aware of what is going on in this story, but yes... Ithildim's waiting is not going to last forever.
They both have things to work on. Ithildim assume Legolas' weaknesses are weaker than they are, and Legolas assumes Ithildim knows what is going on in his head.
Things change when you go from friends or coworkers to partners, and they have not quite worked that out yet...
Thnks for the review!
For some very strange reason I forgot this story was from Ithildim's point of view and had it in my head it was Gimli. (Why did I do that.. why??) Anyway that caused me some difficulty at the beginning of the chapter —until I sorted it out—because Gimli seemed to be behaving very strangely. I could not, for the life of me, work out why he would send someone for tins of tomatoes. It seemed very ungimli-like for some reason!
anyway now I have remembered it was Ithildim all along I am worried.....very worried about these two. Ithildim is getting tired. In fact he reminded me strongly of my Erynion who, while lovely and steady and caring has reached the end of his tether in dealing with a mentally unwell woodelf. I get that same vibe from Ithildim....like it's all rapidly becoming too hard for him, too exhausting and starting to damage his own wellness. I think Saida sees that.
The line at the end suggesting maybe Ithildim might forget he loves Legolas was chilling. (At least that's how I took it)
who will Legolas confront as a substitute for his mother? If it's Ithildim that will go very very badly! If it were MY Legolas and he was going to Minas Tirith I would guarantee it would be Aragorn he raged at. But I do not know the dynamic between your Legolas and Aragorn particularly well...so maybe not.
I'm really enjoying these. Such a lovely moment where Legolas assured Ithildim that he never forgets him, and I loved how he noticed the cramp in Ithildim's hand.
Really glad you are enjoying these. Those little moments of love--the cramp, for example--are what I love about love. Perhaps it will last for them!
You know, I don't think Legolas' damage CAN be fixed without dealing with the source. Ithildim and he can muddle through and patch it up but until he confronts his mother....either in Valinor or in his own mind, it won't be mended.
He needs to face it, what it is that holds him back. Maybe a potential loss of Ithildim would be enough to push him through and confront his fears. Aside from that I can't see him do it. He will avoid it at all costs—except the ultimate cost of Ithildim.
I like the fact one reason he delays going to Valinor is this not wishing to meet his mother. Makes perfect sense.
That is a huge part of the reason, I think. He has not quite forgiven her (as I remember you saying once, he has nothing to forgive!). I wrote a piece about his deciding to forgive her, and then scratched it, and I don't think he is there yet. I don't think he will ever forgive her, and I don't think he has to.
But he does need to confront it, which may mean confronting a surrogate for his mother, and I think I know who that is going to be, but it's not exactly fair to that person but then again... I have a feeling you probably know who I mean. We can discuss in message to avoid spoilers as I brainstorm.
The potential loss of Ithildim is a big thing, I think. Your comment made me rethink how powerful that would really be to them and, like I said, sparked a bit of a new storyline in this, which you may catch onto from the verrrrrry heavyhanded foreshadowing in chapter 5. I couldn't be bothered to edit for subtlety... Oops.
ANyway, as always,thanks for your thoughtful review. While my Legolas is not quite as avoidant at yours he is... A piece of work.
Well! I wonder what honourable Faramir had to say about that? Naughty Elboron!
The interaction between Ithildim and Legolas here is lovely .....and very intimate and domestic. The sealonging seems almost like an absence seizure.
But while Legolas was thrilled and excited by this request of Elboron all I could think was —the child is another mortal for him to love and lose.
Poor Ithildim. The responsible part of this God parenting is obviously going to fall to him.
Oh yes! Honorable Faramir! But partnered with slightly cynical and fiery Eowyn, I expect his response will be tempered, and I imagine he will be happier than disappointed. But! I do not yet know, for he has not yet told me! ha.
The theme of losing people is rampant here. Ithildim is a steadier force than Legolas, and always has been, from childhood, and especially established that way in their captain-dynamics. Elboron's family may make a bumpy ride for them.
You are an astute reader, as usual, and you know Ithildim so well, it seems, that your insight is invaluable! THanks!
This makes me sad for Ithildim, (you know I have a major soft spot for him,) because their relationship seems so ....lopsided....not all that it could be, and while the sea-longing is obviously a current issue the real problem for Legolas and Ithildim is —I think—Legolas' fear of love. How sad to be afraid of that.
That is perhaps more related to his dysfunctional family and his mother's betrayal than the sea. Legolas is frightened of allowing anyone to "own" him as she felt she did. If you love someone you hand them power over you, the power to hurt. I don't think Legolas is able to do that.
Ithildim describes Legolas falling in and out of love with him and suggests it is Legolas' fickleness that causes this, (which is painful in itself), but to me it seems that in fact while it may seem to Ithildim that is what happens, actually Legolas loves him too much to be able to cope.
When he backs off it is not because he has fallen out of love, it is because the love frightens him, makes him feel out of control, and he tries to hide from it.
How to fix this emotional damage? that is the question. These two deserve better :-(
1) Legolas' mother did a number on him, I think. I am not sure he has ever really recovered from that, which further complicates the sea-longing, as I do not think he is ready to face her. (Not that Enough is finished, but you know the end, so.) "If you love them you hand them power over you"--god, this is so true, and so eloquently put. Will think on this in regards to L!
2) You said somewhere about absence seizures? Maybe it was your review on chapter 2. But, anyway, again! You are such an attentive reader! This is going to come up in later chapters, I think, been percolating in myy head, because Ithildim has known Legolas when he had a head injury--when they were such young adults--(To Rekindle Hearts) and because neither he nor Legolas no much of the sea longing, they may pull some band-aid fixes frm that time in their lives. But, again, this story is still telling itself, so I don't know!
I don't do that often. Publish before at least finishing the plot. I would have used to have thought it horrifying, but now it is very freeing! Ha.
Yeah, I don't know how to fix that emotional damage. If you know, do tell. They are good for each other, but they are so often just slightly out of sync, always a tug of war, and lots of guilt around an inability to be vulnerable..
This is delightful- the description of a quite wayward and wild Legolas, caught by the sea is really lovely. And the relationship is warm, affectionate and close.
So glad you are enjoying it! I'm having a lot of fun with this one. The sea and all the ways it can be interpreted and the breadth of the ways to play within canon are just wonderful to explore. And glad you like their relationship--it has been an iinteresting one, that crept up on me
Wow you were right on the poetic part - you had me entralled - I really, really liked this. I fel so badly for both Legolas and Ithildim. Will yo write anymore? In any cae - I loved this - beautiful peice of writing.
Glad to know you enjoyed it! I am writing more on this. This is my current "don't obsess over plot and syntax and just write" project! Can't promise how frequent it wlll be, but it will come. I must catch up on your writing, btw--I've been out of the loop for a while! Thanks for taking the time to review.:)