Oh, this was totally awesome! I don't think it can get any better for any elves through the ages story outside of the Ways of the Paradox! ;o) (Ok, I might be a tad prejudiced here as you're touching architecture history here, which is a subject dear to my heart. )
Maglor lay a thoughtful finger on the reliquary and slid into the Song.This, so much this! Tolkien's Creation Myth and he whole idea of the music is probably my most favourite part and idea of the legendarium, and I've always imagined it being more or less like this. But it's rare, in my experience, to see people getting into the idea o this degree.
A girl of about fifteen with a colourful bag and curly hair saw him watching, and said in hesitant, accented English, "It is the sea god, Oceanus."
This made me laugh. For one, at some time I've been just the same, *ducks*, but I've also encountered this over and over again when working at a tourist guide, or just visiting any architectural monument myself. Love this!
I also so love the part where Maglor choses to mentally go back to another time, including the fact that he can do that, will do that, and how well this brings home to me what havin the life-span of an elf means.
Thank you for another glimpse into your wonderful Maglor's life, and for giving me such a fun time reading it!
Author's Response: Aww, thank you so much, Ysilme, I'm so glad you like it! Yes, Maglor is incredibly close to the Song, more than any of the other Elves I write, although I think initially I lifted the idea of the Song as a sentient thing from Ziggy's work. I'm so glad all the "tourist-y" notes ring true, and that the tonal shift at the end works, with Maglor sending his mind back through the centuries - thank you for reading, and for such a lovely, thoughtful comment!
'But the skull of St. Valentine - if indeed it was his - overhung its wooden plinth, mottled teeth gripping the edge, as though it might leap back to life and bite through the glass.' A fabulous image! Great writing as always, full of rich images and layered so nicely with the passing of ages. Love this precursor to the Ways of Paradox.
Author's Response: :D thank you, ziggy! Someone said I should write a Valentine's fic about Maglor. I'm not sure this is what they had in mind, but I enjoyed writing it anyway!
This is really lovely! Evocative and rich with detail (and, of course, Maglor quotes Byron!). I have no idea why Maglor's in the 21st century or Italy or why he's going to Scotland - but that just means I have to explore the rest of your writing. :) I really enjoyed this interlude! Thanks for sharing!
Author's Response: Ahh, thank you so much, Marchwriter! I'm glad you liked this and that it works even though you haven't read the rest of the stories. My Maglor never sails, hence still being around in the 21st century, and kind of drifts about between Italy and Britain, with occasional diversions elsewhere. The series is a work in progress and I'm unhelpfully not writing it in chronological order, but if you do dip into the others, I hope you enjoy!
Ah Narya what a lovely one shot!
I liked the poignancy of his recollections.
and this bit where somehow his presence soothes the other and some of who he is shines forth.An elderly gentleman with a cane muttered angrily under his breath, shaking his head and glaring at the offender. Maglor caught his eye and smiled. The man blinked, then lifted bushy black brows and grinned slowly back, his eyes widening as though gazing on something wondrous that he had only ever half-believed in..
I love the reference to the sea god and the old tale of the broken vow. Still so hard after all these years. So many years, so many cities, so many people, so many experiences, so many names. So much loneliness among throngs of people. Such an isolation to his fate. Lovely.
Author's Response: Thank you! I'm glad you liked that bit; I didn't plan it, it sneaked in there on its own :D but I think the old gentleman is like Claire, perhaps - "sensitive" to what Maglor is. And I'm pleased you spotted the references too - although, yes, all those crowds and all that busy-ness just underscores how lonely his life has been.
Oh, I like this :) And Maglor searching for St Valentine’s memories.
The man blinked, then lifted bushy black brows and grinned slowly back, his eyes widening as though gazing on something wondrous that he had only ever half-believed in.
:) He ade a difference to that man’s life — a touch of mystery to the heart.
And, hah! Not wanting to tempt ‘old tales’ —
so this is before he goes to St. Andrews. I love the way you’re weaving this together.
Author's Response: Thank you :D I deliberately left it ambiguous as to whether it's *actually* Valentine's skull in there, since people can't even agree who he was. I'm glad you liked that little touch with the old man - I thought perhaps he is like Claire, and could see or sense something about Maglor.