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~ Fragments of Fate And Fire ~ by Spiced Wine Mature
This will be a collection of fics, commissioned art, and gapfillers to flesh out events within my Dark Prince/Magnificat...
The Ways of Paradox by Narya Mature
How do you pass the time when you know you're facing eternity? Maglor agrees to appear in a student production of The...
A liaison in the Great Greenwood by Azukiel Explicit
Legolas has loved Adlanniel since before she came of age, and she has loved him dearly. However, when Legolas volunteers...
Where the Shadows Lie by ziggy General Audiences
The One Ring has been destroyed and Sauron banished to the Dark with Morgoth. But not all the Rings were destroyed with the...
~ The Silence of Dust ~ by Spiced Wine Teen
Returning to Sören’s universe, Vanimórë decides to go to Sydney, Australia to hide from any who might...
Fragments from Middle-earth by Linda Hoyland General Audiences
Ficlets of under 1000 words written for past BTMEM Challenges. They feature mostly Aragorn, Faramir, Halbarad and OCs
Angels and crooks by Nuredhel General Audiences
Bard and Thran has gotten used to their new life but they do still have their jobs and my oh my does that make things interesting...

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04/25/19 12:23 pm
I see Alpha has just brought out her third 'Silvan' book. I can't wait to read it - the first two were amazing.
Spiced Wine
04/21/19 08:28 pm
Tolkien Reverse Summer Bang Sign-up’s now Open. Please see News for the links!
04/18/19 11:55 pm
Praying for you, your dad and all of your family Nelya.
04/18/19 11:03 pm
All the best, Nelya - I hope your Dad is able to go home tomorrow xxx
04/18/19 05:59 pm
Ah, Nelya- so sorry to hear this. Hope all goes well and that he is home tomorrow- they wouldn't be saying that if they didn't think he was well enough.xx
04/18/19 04:06 pm
I'm sorry to hear about your dad, Nelya. I hope he's able to go home soon xxx
Spiced Wine
04/18/19 10:26 am
I am so very sorry, Nelya. I will be thinking of you all, and I do hope he can come home.
04/18/19 09:22 am
Oh my gosh! Nelya! I am so sorry about your Dad, I hope his strength returns and he is able to go home tomorrow. My thoughts are with you all. :)
04/18/19 04:32 am
and my mom was keeping me hopping a bit before he got ill.
04/18/19 04:32 am
I have been quite unproductive recently as far as fic goes. My dad's in the hospital currently with heart failure although good news is he may go home tomorrow!
Shout Archive

Name: Spiced Wine (Signed) · Date: April 24, 2019 18:33 · For: And Who Are You, Sir?
Slowly, he shook his head. “It isn't the belief. It's the noise, the trail it will leave...even if most dismiss it out of hand, there are some who would be curious.” His mouth twisted bitterly. “It's happened to me before.”

I felt my pulse throb in my temples. “What do you mean?”

He folded himself onto the bed opposite me, his eyes full of an emotion I couldn't read. “I once told you that there have been people who knew or guessed my true nature.” He held a hand out to me; I ran my fingers over his palm, then slid them gently between his knucklebones. “Those people were not always...benevolent.”

I felt the now-familiar nudge of power at the edge of my mind. Lightning, fire, adamant. I closed my eyes and imagined sheets of smooth, empty paper curling back, allowing him in. Images flashed – a memory of needles, of sickening, drug-induced dizziness, of suited men under a strange yellow light...

I gasped.

A cool forehead rested against mine. “It's alright. Forgive me. I'm here. It's alright.”

The world righted itself. I was back in the blank little bedroom in Mark's rented cottage. I sat back, tightening my grip on his hand. “Was that real?”

“It was.”

I took a shaky breath. “Shit.”

He brushed my hair back behind my ears. “Do you see now why I try to avoid notice?” Fear echoed under his voice. “I escaped – barely, and it came at a price.”

Ah, this, I meant to mention this. Is this what you have mentioned about certain people knowing who he is?

Author's Response: It's a fic by itself really, but...yes. (Others have known what he is, particularly back in the days when such things were believed in. And then there was the time he was almost burned as a witch. This, though, is why he tries so hard to stay off the radar.)

Name: Spiced Wine (Signed) · Date: April 24, 2019 13:03 · For: And Who Are You, Sir?

 don't think he could truly leave it behind - not while he's still apart from his family, and the few friends he makes are inevitably mortal.


No, although I am glad that he has found Claire and made friends and is *not* going to just bolt now. I just hope Seb and Byrdie don’t queer the pitch! 


I will remember you don’t mind reviews as I started this again from the beginning at the weekend! 

Author's Response: Aww :) you don't have to comment again if you don't want to!!! I hope it stands up on a re-read. As for Seb and Byrdie...we'll see ;)

Name: Spiced Wine (Signed) · Date: April 24, 2019 12:36 · For: And Who Are You, Sir?
The glass barriers came down, and behind the fire and song I felt it, breathed it, slid into it. It was fear and loneliness and horror and guilt and loss – a pit, a mass of silence and black. There was no music here, no light. A swooping, gaping hole yawned open in my gut as I slipped down, down, falling, waiting for an end that never came, for the emptiness went on forever, deeper into despair and grief. I'd always thought there was a limit, a point at which one could go no lower, and from there either stop and stay or turn round and climb out, but I knew with terrible certainty that there was no climbing out of this. Other things caught at me as my heart and mind plunged – hatred, fury, impotence, driving me further down and further in, all those years of tragedy and bloodshed, the memories left to fester because there was no way to move on or forget...

Hold onto me.

Warmth, fire – a song in his voice, and absolute love and trust. It shocked through me like lightning. I felt his arms around my shoulders and waist, heard my heart in my ears, and the darkness dissolved like paint on wet canvas. The grief, though, remained, both the old and ancient, and a newer sorrow bound up with fear. As he stroked my hair, I understood what it was. One day – soon, as he perceived things – he would lose me too, as he had lost so many before.

I kissed his cheek and sat back, took both his hands in mine. “Is that what you feel? All the time?”

He swallowed, and lifted his gaze to the window. “I form...barriers around it. But yes, it is always there.”

I didn't speak. There was nothing to say.

That was so beautiful and so tragic and imagining that as Maglor’s life, I just can’t. I am crying here ;__; He deserves more!

I re-read often. But I tend to think authors might get annoyed if I keep commenting

Author's Response: That would literally never annoy me!

Thank you. It's not his whole life, although it's close to the surface at the moment because of Theo, and the memories that's stirred up, but is always there, I don't think he could truly leave it behind - not while he's still apart from his family, and the few friends he makes are inevitably mortal.

Name: Spiced Wine (Signed) · Date: April 24, 2019 12:10 · For: And Who Are You, Sir?
Ah, Harrison! Well, you’re intelligent enough to handle this.

My awareness sharpened as under patient questioning they outlined their habits, explained what they put inside their bodies and how often. I dug my nails into my palms as rage seared upwards, savage and unfamiliar and intoxicating. I wanted to slap them, shake them until their teeth clicked together, scratch at their skin, make them bleed, damage them as they had damaged Theo – and then the fury turned and sucked inwards, a vortex of scorching air swirling through a flame-lit building. It's your fault. You knew. You didn't stop it. You let them do this.

No, no dear Claire, people are responsible for their own actions.

From time to time he looked at me and smiled, but it was a shallow thing, tracing paper stretched across a ravine.

Gorgeous piece of imagery!

Amazing, beautiful all of this, perfectly going on from the previous chapter.

I’m glad Claire went with him, even if she felt pain, she *can* handle it, and he shouldn’t be alone after that.

The others were brilliant considering their shock, but I think Harrison will be the one here who pulls them together into co-conspirators.

Absolutely wonderful, I am going to re-read again!

Author's Response: Harrison really knocked it out of the park this time. He definitely deserves his own story at some point. Claire will always, always blame herself if she possibly can (despite the fact that she'd tell others in the same circumstances it wasn't their fault). She wouldn't have left him after that; apart from anything else, she was still worried he might bolt, though now he's promised to at least speak to Theo she can probably relax, at least for a day or two. Thank you so much :) people wanting to re-read always makes me so happy!

Name: ziggy (Signed) · Date: April 11, 2019 17:50 · For: Though Hitherto Concealed

Oh wow- what just happened??!! I feel like Rosie will- what was that! He brought Theo back- with Power. 


Oh I have the hairs on my neck and back on end with this. Amazing images just caught in my head and I WISH I coul dpaint. I would paint that moment - I have a wonderful picture in my head of Maglor, on one knee, leaning over him exactly as you describe and starlight in his hair- but gone beyond the physical space as if he's on another plane altogether. Sigh. Beautiful. Your writing always does that for me. Takes me to the place, very physical, very sensual. I always feel that I am exactly there.


Author's Response: Aww, thank you, Ziggy! Yes, disaster averted for Theo, but all that silver light and healing magic won't have gone unnoticed...

I'm glad you like that image. I've had this scene in my head for a long, long time.

Name: Spiced Wine (Signed) · Date: April 07, 2019 21:31 · For: Though Hitherto Concealed

I am thinking, although may be wrong of course, that the fallout...not sure Harrison is going to succumb to the ‘explanations’ — and maybe not Luc either...

Author's Response: I'm saying nothing :D

Name: Spiced Wine (Signed) · Date: April 07, 2019 20:48 · For: Though Hitherto Concealed

Wow, that was an AMAZING chapter. It began so kind of domestically, and uni-centric with everything going pretty well, (by the way, I love how Claire gets so passionate with her subject!) and then the phone call. That was beautifully written, and I just did not expect Maglor to do what he did, not that he wouldn’t if he could, but that it would be so incredible. 


I know Seb and Byrdie if they’re also drugged up might not remember anything, but I think the others will! 


Just wow. Round of applause! 

Author's Response: Thank you so much :D it was a really hard chapter to write because of the disparate elements (I'm so happy you like Claire's passion, I don't think she has it in her to be 'carbon neutral' about anything. Maglor was always going to save Theo, that's been on the cards for a while - but as for what happens next, well, yes, Seb and Byrdie are coked up, but as Maglor has pointed out, his "powers of persuasion" are not infallible. And the others, as you rightly point out, are a different matter...

Name: ziggy (Signed) · Date: April 03, 2019 5:17 · For: The Glass is Rising

This is such a delightful chapter- I know Theo is being an arse but I'm far morevinvested in Claire and Mark/Maglor. Such  charming conversation at the end- just lovely. As always your images are fabulous and rich and I always have such a sense of being there with them.

Author's Response: Well, it is their story really ;) and they have settled into this close, teasing friendship now which is good for both of them. So pleased you're still enjoying this, and I'm glad you're almost at the point where you can move on post inspection, I know how awful they are!

Name: Spiced Wine (Signed) · Date: March 31, 2019 21:56 · For: The Glass is Rising
Halfway through sipping my drink, I choked. “You fought a Balrog?” He gave the lazy, lopsided smile I was now so familiar with. “And won.” I tilted my head, looking more closely. Grief and pain were curled behind the smile – but I couldn't press him, especially not here, where we were far from private. We were running a risk by even talking about it. “Show off.” He laughed. “Perhaps. But honestly, Claire, much of my life has been very ordinary indeed.”

“Would you tell me about it?”

Out at sea, a great scroll of foaming water curled and broke and rushed up the sand. He leaned back, resting on his elbows, face aglow in the pale gold light. “What would you like to know?”

“I don't know. Something that isn't in the books.” I cupped my chin in my hand. “Something ordinary.”

He smiled softly. “Alright.” He lay down on the blanket with his hands behind his head, and closed his eyes. “In my youth in the West, I knew Olórin well.”

“Olórin...you were friends with Gandalf?”

A musical half-laugh. “He was not called Gandalf then – and he was not an old man, but a rather beautiful redhead.”

It’s so good to see this, Maglor opening out, and their being able to tease one another about the tortoise and killing Balrogs and knowing Gandalf!

Author's Response: I had such a good time writing all that. I love their deepening bond, and how well they're getting to know each other.

Name: Spiced Wine (Signed) · Date: March 31, 2019 16:27 · For: The Glass is Rising
Oh, this was a lovely, lovely chapter, such gorgeous descriptions I feel I was there, and Maglor was so good at explaining Ósanwe, although Claire does have a gift, a depth, I think, that makes it not an onerous task. I’m going to read it again in a minute.

It made me so sad — his remembering Fëanor and the glass.

Yes, do get Luc around, but hmm, well, it kind of does not surprise me that Theo was a bit homophobic, but accepted it, and yes, I like him, and like Claire, not sure I would have had I known that. But his friends — ugh. I would really like to see Maglor go full-Fëanorion on those two!

Another description that makes me think I was there: Himring in the summer, it always is made to sound such a bleak place, but I prefer this, alive with colour (in one season anyway) — something that was lovely to look at and smell from that fortress that looked across at Thangorodrim.

And wonderful to see Maglor laughing with Claire :)

Author's Response: Ahh, thank you so much! I adored writing that scene, and it was a bit of a last minute addition, I had to shift the dinner scene forward to make space for it so the pacing worked. I couldn't resist though. You're absolutely right that she has a gift for it, and I think it does deepen and strengthen their bond.

Theo...yeah. I've known this about him for a while, and it was going to come out somewhere. I actually think it says a lot about Harrison that he was so forgiving, although if Theo doesn't make the effort with Luc, that might not hold.

I would really like to see Maglor go full-Fëanorion on those two! I have plans - but it may not be Maglor they need to watch out for ;)

I'm so glad you enjoyed the descriptions. I don't know where I got this idea of lavender growing in Himring, but like you, I couldn't resist the idea of a place so bleak suddenly coming alive with colour.

I loved writing their scene on the beach too :D I adore giving them these lighter, gentler moments together. (I thought I'd better stock up on them while I could...!)

Name: ziggy (Signed) · Date: February 02, 2019 22:38 · For: For Plate or Gold

' I love the way this just suddenly appeared- like leavin a book open and sudenly being transported to another time and place:

The Oath did terrible things to us all. Maglor's voice in my mind was gentle, but a warning weighed at its edges like the wind behind a storm, and the sting of lightning hissed underneath. At the end, Celegorm was twisted beyond recognition or salvation. What happened in Nargothrond destroyed him – and Curufin too. Unbidden, in my mind flared an image of a silver-haired boy, laughing wildly as he rolled on the ground with a dog twice his size – and then I saw him again, older, crueller, face streaked with blood. His laugh was high and feral now, his eyes aflame with madness and death, delighting in both, and he snarled like a wolf as it sprang for the kill...


And then back to the mundane of life at Uni and all the terrible heartbreaks and problems, the joy and delight. Just love this.

Author's Response: Thank you ziggy! Sorry I'm so slow responding - holidays and my laptop is broken, I haven't really been on top of notifications. I'm glad you think the contrast works, it's one of my favourite things to play with in this fix!

Name: Spiced Wine (Signed) · Date: January 30, 2019 18:50 · For: For Plate or Gold

some point I do intend to write a proper Nargothrond arc (so many projects...!). The theory about Fëanor’s soul makes so much sense, I'm convinced it's just something Tolkien forgot to jot down ;)


Oh, I hope you do! Yes, it must have just slipped under the radar, lol, never got added to the Silm or HoMe :) but it makes so much sense. Must have been horrendous feeling Morgoth wearing one of them! But the fact that an Elf Fëanor had never seen could ‘wake a great power from slumber’ by just naming the Silmarils more than hints at something ‘sentient’ about them. (I think). 

Author's Response: Totally agree - there is *something* in there!!

Name: NelyafinweFeanorion (Signed) · Date: January 30, 2019 16:38 · For: For Plate or Gold
oh Narya! I really loved the mentions of Celegorm--wounded animals, the way he was as a boy, the visions Claire had of him, the way Maglor thought. Just heart rending.
ugh. Theo!
And their absolute creep of a landlord. I'm a bit worried for Theo if he moves away from these three.
And I think Claire is very correct. Mark needs his space. Wonderful continuation that has left me anxious for more!

Author's Response: Thank you :D you know I have a soft spot for Celegorm, despite...well, everything. And, yeah, Theo. Not good.

"Mark needs his space" - they'd have no hope of keeping their secret if he actually did move in!

Name: Spiced Wine (Signed) · Date: January 30, 2019 15:53 · For: For Plate or Gold

can't forgive Beren. And Thingol should have known better than to stir up that hornet's nest. 


As Finrod said to Beren: ‘..he that even names them in desire wakes a great power from slumber.’  And Thingol was thinking of them with covetousness. It’s one of the reasons I believe they did contain something of Fëanor’s soul, just fanon I know, but Thingol should never have gone there. It was not his, not Beren’s not Luthien’s, not Dior’s. 


Author's Response: And Finrod is right. I play with that a little bit in Sunrise over Ivrin, but at some point I do intend to write a proper Nargothrond arc (so many projects...!). The theory about Fëanor’s soul makes so much sense, I'm convinced it's just something Tolkien forgot to jot down ;)

Name: Spiced Wine (Signed) · Date: January 30, 2019 10:52 · For: For Plate or Gold

The Oath did terrible things to us all. Maglor's voice in my mind was gentle, but a warning weighed at its edges like the wind behind a storm, and the sting of lightning hissed underneath.  At the end, Celegorm was twisted beyond recognition or salvation. What happened in Nargothrond destroyed him – and Curufin too. Unbidden, in my mind flared an image of a silver-haired boy, laughing wildly as he rolled on the ground with a dog twice his size – and then I saw him again, older, crueller, face streaked with blood. His laugh was high and feral now, his eyes aflame with madness and death, delighting in both, and he snarled like a wolf as it sprang for the kill...

“I'm sorry.” The strange light around him had vanished before I knew it was there, gone like a candle left in the wind. There was no joy in his eyes now, only grief and regret. “I wish you had known them. Before the Oath, when they – when we were young. You would have loved them.”

I didn't doubt it – and wasn't that what had sat at the heart of the whole bloody mess? Who could fail to love those bright, fierce souls, damned to death and failure, drawing in those around them like towering infernos calling to moths through the night?

Only to burn off their wings and leave their ruined corpses scattered on the ground.


Aww, that made me cry. And I am anti Beren and Lúthien, honestly. Finrod deserved so much more than giving up his life for some besotted fool. I can understand that what Celegorm and Curufin did to Finrod destroyed them eventually. But I almost think it is like a doom just upon them, the Fëanorions specifically, for daring to be so bright. And yes, I think Claire would have loved them had she known them before. 

Well, it would be a good idea to have Mark there, in one way, not in others, — and Harrison seems to be getting closer to saying something to Claire — except it’s not legal. And I don’t think who he is could be hidden ultimately in such close contact all the time. 


Poor Rosie, not her fault, but yes, Theo is behaving like a sulky teen now. The least he could do is apologise, which he has NOT done, not make himself scarce with those two tosses who do him no good at all.

 I am not surprise he aggravates Claire on occasion. 

I do hope they can work something out about the tenancy. 

Loved this chapter :) What a treat on a frosty morning with my coffee! 




Author's Response: Thank you! :D I like Lúthien, but can't forgive Beren. And Thingol should have known better than to stir up that hornet's nest.

Harrison has known for a while that something is off, and it's all stacking up. They're having a hard time hiding it now, let alone if they all lived together full time :/ and Theo, yes, he is being a complete idiot...

Name: Ysilme (Signed) · Date: January 27, 2019 0:49 · For: Our Mythic History

I enjoyed this chapter so much! You really nailed this part of the story, and perfectly so. I was looking forward to the Big Reveal (TM), and my writing brain was also curious how you'd do it and how well it'd work, for I think such a meeting between worlds and beliefs, if you will, is particularly difficult to write, and even more so, to write well. You definitely surpassed all my expectations, and I can only praise once again your outstanding writing talent!

Lots of details to love, too… the name choice! You literally needed to spell it out for me, but that’s also as I’m pronouncing Quenya names (well, nearly all Tolkien names) differently from most English-speaking people (I’m no specialist in this, but from what I gathered also from  the German Tolkien Society, this goes back to Tolkien himself), but once knowing it it’s really blatantly obvious! *g* But also his bare place which can’t be called a home, the subtle physical differences, that it was he who told everything to Tolkien, and why there are differences. Or the Valar “wo are no as the stories would have you believe.”
I also really enjoyed Maglor’s reaction to her reasoning, discovery, and open acceptance. The idea about the Silmarils and Feanor’s soul is intriguing, too, and makes a lot of sense. (Or is this a bit of canon I managed to totally miss so far?)
It’s so good to read about Claires musings about the shades of grey of what is right and wrong, too - this is such a vital and important point, and something so many people seem to miss spectacularly on a regular base. And I love how she reacts to him, and his music, ♥ and now I’m wondering about something completely different. ^^ (Patiently waiting for possible cues and explanations sooner or later, though.)
Those lines when Maglor tells about some experiences - Vesuvius, or the Somme - make me wish even more than ever before to be able to listen to somebody of his life-span and experience tell his tales.

Author's Response: Ahh, thank you! I'm so glad you think I got it right; it took me a long time to write this chapter, I had to have several goes at it.

I'm really happy you picked up on all those details :) yes, it's not really his home, it's just a place to stay - and he has to be ready to move on at any minute. Maglor and Tolkien is a story by itself, and the Valar won't come into this one directly, so there's lots for me to play with later :P

Fëanor's souls in the Silmarils isn't strictly canon; I first came across it in Spiced Wine's stories. But I think it makes sense out of a lot of things; when I read it, it felt like a "missing piece" to me, something Tolkien didn't record, not something a fic author made up.

"and now I’m wondering about something completely different. ^^ (Patiently waiting for possible cues and explanations sooner or later, though.)" - I'm curious, what are you curious about? :)

Yes, Maglor has a lot of stories to tell. In time I hope to get round to most of them. (Not necessarily in this fic, though; I think it's probably more interesting for the reader to experience it first hand!) Thank you so much, Ysilme, it always brightens my day to wake up to a review.

Name: Spiced Wine (Signed) · Date: January 21, 2019 10:25 · For: Unusual Revelry

Oh, yes, Harrison knew Claire knew more than them, but yes, as there are things she can’t or won’t tell, then it’s like — how ‘secret’ is this and hey? 


(Theo...Theo, like me, had wondered if Mark might be ex-Secret Intelligence, and then there was his grandfather's friend. If we made that our cover story, then oddly, out of all of them, he might understand –) 


But could Claire trust Theo not to tell Seb and Byrdie one night when he was stoned? I think the others could be trusted, but Theo is definitely the weak link there. He might promise not to say anything, and absolutely mean it, but...

Author's Response: Ooh, good question. I actually think that, with that story in his family history, he would understand the importance of keeping quiet and the effect that kind of life can have on someone - but he might accidentally let something slip, if he was showing off, or off his face. Of course it isn't the real truth anyway, but the last thing they need is people like Seb and Byrdie getting curious...

Name: Spiced Wine (Signed) · Date: January 20, 2019 22:22 · For: Unusual Revelry

Harrison’s pretty acute. Of course he has the ‘ear’ to hear Mark’s not-totally-English accent, and I imagine he will be thinking about it a bit more now that Claire is obviously keeping some things back. Although perhaps he will too involved with Luc — at least *that* was not a complete disaster — to mull it over too much, except he is still taking lessons from Mark, so will be around him! 

Poor Rosie, I was sad she was upset. (I think, poor Theo too, because argh! WHY? I always ended up feeling sorry (and angry) for men I had to slap down in my younger days. But I used to get so annoyed and furious, and then a bit sorry, but not sorry enough to pity-date)  Had he had not been getting swozzled with those idiots, I am sure he would not have made a twit out of himself. He was doing quite well up until then! And home is the best place he can go, not off with them! Dear Claire, she is so responsible! But there is bound to be fallout! 

Author's Response: Well, Harrison already knew that Claire knew more than the rest of them, but at that point I think assumed it was something to do with traumatic war memories. Now he's starting to realise it might be more complex.

I think Rosie is feeling all the things you describe - and on her birthday, of all things! But I feel sorry for Theo too, he's so clueless.

LOL, 'swozzled', what a brilliant word :D

Name: ziggy (Signed) · Date: January 20, 2019 21:32 · For: Unusual Revelry

oh dear- that ended a bit of a disaster. Poor Theo. What's a guy to do?

Author's Response: Not get totally wasted and embarrass the girl he likes? XD disaster is the word, alright...

Name: ziggy (Signed) · Date: January 20, 2019 21:02 · For: Though the Moments Quickly Die

Just enjoying re-reading this, love it. I am worried about the cat thought- please find him a home.

Author's Response: Ah, don't worry, the cat can take care of himself :) thank you, ziggy, I hope you've had a lovely day xx

Name: NelyafinweFeanorion (Signed) · Date: January 20, 2019 19:48 · For: Unusual Revelry
what a rich and lovely chapter!
Claire is such a caretaker. Watching over them all, planning, cooking, care taking. It's sweet but also sometimes I think a bit of heavy responsibility, even if she seems to enjoy it and fall into it naturally. I think it's something that may remind Mark of his older brother.

The relationship arcs are getting complicated! I love the Harrison/Luc side story and how cute it was that Claire was so oblivious but Mark picked up on it right away. He should know, I suppose, having likely lived through similar many times in his long life. So I've gotten over my suspicions about Luc now!

I don't like Theo's drinking buddies. They aren't good for him. I wish there was a way to detach him from them. It seemed for a bit that the theater friends would win out but not tonight. And after what happened with Rosie I have a feeling he will cling to those unsavory friends even more.

Harrison is a sharp one. I find it captivating how observant but low key he is. I would worry that he would figure it out. He's bright but he's also similar in many ways to Claire. Her intelligence, her persistence, her knowledge of those particular books.

I feel bad for Theo. I think he really needed to wait to let this organically proceed, not rush things like this because he's drunk. It made for an awkward situation and I do think they would be good together! But not tonight, not like this.

Mark's hesitation to get close to anyone makes so much sense. It always has to haunt him, who he is, what's his past, people deducing things when they get too close.

The closeness Mark and Claire have though is lovely. He's a bit more relaxed and funny when he's with her. Joking, turning up his nose at IRN-BRU and such. it's an easy and comfortable familiarity as are the soft moments of contact, touch that you have sprinkled through the narrative. I love that.

Looking forward to where this night goes! and what happens with all of them!

But good for dear Harrison!

Author's Response: Thank you so much, Nelya!

That's Claire all over. I know what you mean about it being a heavy responsibility; I think in part she does it to get away from looking after herself, because that means going back to some mental places she'd rather not revisit. Interesting observation about Maedhros...I hadn't actually thought of that, but you could well be right.

No, Theo's drinking buddies are definitely not good for him - but I'm glad you like Harrison so much :D I've grown very fond of him. He is like Claire in a lot of ways (it makes sense, they are related, and I bet Harrison really looked up to Claire when they were growing up). He hasn't read the Silm, though, so hasn't quite got all the pieces to make the jump.

I love writing how close and easy Mark and Claire have become with each other - yes, he does laugh and joke more when he's with her. The guard comes down, so to speak. I hope you like what I have in store for them next :)

Name: Spiced Wine (Signed) · Date: January 20, 2019 12:42 · For: Unusual Revelry

(I relayed the conversation. “Of course I didn't tell him anything he hadn't worked out for himself,” I added. “But...well.”

“Indeed.” He drew up one knee and gazed thoughtfully along the burn, where a heron was swooping close to the water. “What do you suggest?”

I combed my fingers through my hair, gently unravelling the tangles knotted in by the wind. “I'm not sure. I've been saying for weeks that we should tell them something, but I have no idea what.”

“Neither do I.” He quirked his mouth humourlessly. “I can't even tell them as much as I told you, before you realised the whole truth.”

“No.” I could imagine how the others would react to that – the wary, closed-down look in Harrison's eyes, Rosie hurt and disappointed. Theo...Theo, like me, had wondered if Mark might be ex-Secret Intelligence, and then there was his grandfather's friend. If we made that our cover story, then oddly, out of all of them, he might understand – but I'd also assured Harrison that the secret I was keeping wasn't dangerous. It was probably too late now to try and pass Mark off as a deep cover operative. Not that it would be very believable anyway; I doubted that field agents, active or retired, made a habit of telling their stories to second year undergraduates.

“Do you see now why I don't let people get too close?”)



Yes, this is getting more complicated. The more you know someone, or rather, get close to them the harder it is to hide things. 

Author's Response: Indeed. It might be easy enough for Mark/Maglor to "blend" at a distance - there's nothing *too* remarkable about a very attractive postgraduate who also happens to be a talented singer - but little things add up, over time. And the others may not be quite like Claire but they aren't stupid. Harrison, in particular, turned out to be far sharper and more observant than I originally planned.

Name: Spiced Wine (Signed) · Date: January 20, 2019 10:07 · For: Unusual Revelry

I wish Theo would ditch Seb and Byrdie — I have known people like that; toxic friends, who are not really friends at all! Theo is quite sweet really, but easily led! 

Author's Response: Yes, he is; I've known a few like him, and like Seb and Byrdie too. But he won't ditch them without a push. He's not as tough as Claire, or even Harrison or Rosie, really.

Name: Spiced Wine (Signed) · Date: January 19, 2019 22:46 · For: Unusual Revelry


Oh dear, that sounds like a typical day that starts rather nicely and then crashes into awkwardness. Poor Theo. 

But Harrison and Luc :) 

Claire’s desire to try and protect people is so strong in this chapter; she arranges the party, cooks, also tries to make Mark feel comfortable — she really tries to look after everyone. I’m not sure how they would manage without her! 
The Waste Land as a production. :D Wow. I was reading the Four Quartets recently. 
Mark’s refusal to drink the cocktail, lol — no I can’t see it myself!  


Author's Response: Standard university life, unfortunately! We had a number of similar (although not identical) incidents in our friendship group. You might remember me mentioning a certain boy I nicknamed Smiley...although at least that wasn't public!

I had to laugh a little when everyone was getting suspicious of Luc in the last chapter. I was thinking "yes, he is important, but not in the way you all seem to think!"

Yes, I do think things would come to pieces a bit without Claire - although they did all manage without her last year. I do enjoy writing the family dynamic, though.

Oh, I LOVE the Quartets - my favourite work of Eliot's. And yes, Mark and that cocktail; I think he would be a drinks snob, he can afford the good stuff, and his palate probably isn't adapted for weirdly sweet/artificial stuff. He gets snobby about ice cream in 'Of Lapwings, Hares and Speckled Eggs.'

Thank you so much, as always! <3

Name: Spiced Wine (Signed) · Date: January 14, 2019 19:14 · For: Though the Moments Quickly Die

Oh, wow, what a marvellous picture! You can just feel the cold and the wind, and hear the sea, and then the ruins behind them. Love it so much! 

Author's Response: Me too. I love bunn's work, I always feel like I am right there.

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