*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.
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.
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.
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.:)