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~ Magnificat of the Damned. Book IV: Anvil ~ by Spiced Wine Mature
From Angmar to the Dagor Dagorath. The final story in the Magnificat of the Damned series. The Doom and destiny of the...
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...
Let the Memories Be Good by lotrfan General Audiences
Legolas and Gimli must come to terms with Aragorn's aging, as well as Gimli's own. Set after events of LOTR. Written for...
The Bear Incident by Himring General Audiences
During the Years of the Trees: Celegorm and Fingon escape into the mountains, on a dare. Maedhros finds out and follows...
Days of a Valinorean healer by Nuredhel Teen
Being a healer in Valinor brings a whole new set of challenges for Elrond, some really great ones and some not so great...
The song of tomorrow by Nuredhel Explicit
The past reaches out towards the future...A living mystery is being delivered to the king of Mirkwood as a gift and a strange...
The Ways of Paradox by Narya Teen
How do you pass the time when you know you're facing eternity? Maglor agrees to appear in a student production of The...

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Shoutbox

Spiced Wine
08/14/18 12:21 pm
I think it’s important to keep these Tolkien specific archives going, especially with so many dying.
Spiced Wine
08/14/18 12:20 pm
She’s quite willing to keep it hosted on the same server, just the admin/tech work would be done by someone else.
Spiced Wine
08/14/18 12:19 pm
I don’t think we need to worry about the archive going, esteliel just thinks it would be better if someone acted as host/admin who was in the fandom.
Ysilme
08/14/18 11:52 am
Thank you, Spiced!
Kalendeer
08/14/18 10:47 am
So I would be ready to contribute as well and really sad to see the archive go :)
Kalendeer
08/14/18 10:43 am
I am mostly on AO3 but I like Faerie a lot better than FFnet to be honest, and the best reviews I ever got were on Faerie.
Spiced Wine
08/13/18 02:14 pm
If you do, Ysilme, I will pass you email on to Esteliel :) You would make a great overall host for the archive.
Ysilme
08/13/18 02:04 pm
I also might be able to help with the technical site of things. I'll send you a mail, Sîan, for details.
Ysilme
08/13/18 02:03 pm
I'll happily contribute, too. I'd also hate the site to go, although I don't post often (I'm just too slow a writer) and don't interact much as I always think people aren't int
Spiced Wine
08/13/18 10:23 am
It’s a very small amount of money, Ziggy, much less than I had thought.
Shout Archive


The Right Kind of Shield by curiouswombat

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Story notes:
This is set around the time of the 50th anniversary of the end of the Ring War and the start of the reign of king Elessar. It was written, as a number of my short stories were, as a shmoop bingo prompt - I will explain the prompt at the end of part one. The story was originally an exact 1,000 words and had only what is now part one. Part 2 was written especially for Faerie.

The Right Kind of Shield


“The problem with any celebration in Minas Tirith”, Legolas said, “is the formal dining and the balls. I am always happy to visit Aragorn and Arwen, but the rest I would happily give up.”

Tindómë waited. She was sure that she knew exactly what he meant, but…

“You would have thought that they may have learnt, in fifty years,” he went on. “It is quite a long time for mortals. Some of the young women propelled into my path are the granddaughters of those who were so propelled by their own grandmothers.”

“Perhaps,” she answered, trying not to laugh, “they just assume that you spurned them, back in the day, because it is your destiny to fall madly in love with their granddaughter?”

“I have no wish to fall madly in love with any mortal!”

“Ah but, atheg, they’ve heard that Elves believe there is someone that they are destined to love; you have even pointed it out, on one or two occasions, yourself. So they think that your wishes have very little bearing on the matter…”

“Victim to my own bow, eh?” He smiled wryly. “But surely they realise that somewhere there is an elleth whose fëa will sing with mine? Not some aristocratic Gondorian maiden.”

Tindómë shrugged before answering. “Most of them married because it suited their parents – but they all want to believe in true love. They see their mortal king with an elven wife and so they know such a match is not impossible. You are high-ranking, good looking, and eligible. Honestly, Legolas, it’s no wonder they chase after you either for themselves, their daughters, or their granddaughters.”

He acknowledged the truth in what she said, but finished “It does not stop me thinking, quite often, that I would rather face yrch.”

“What you need,” Tindómë told him, “is the right sort of shield…”

……………………………………………..

“Obviously I wouldn’t work,” Tindómë said, “although Lithôniel would have been perfect, if Orophin wasn’t invited in his own right.”

She paused, and then continued, “Of course we could just put Galanthir in a dress... As he is always your ‘servant’ on these occasions no-one invited to all the formal stuff will ever have noticed him.”

Legolas looked as if he was considering her suggestion, seriously, but Tindómë knew that look. “Why put him in a dress? I could simply introduce him as my intended and let them think what they will.”

Tindómë now did her best to look as if she was seriously considering his suggestion. “No-o-o-o – maybe not. Gondorians are a bit, uh, stuffy about such things.”

“Perhaps you are right,” Legolas conceded, “so any plan to look at Gimli with cows’ eyes would probably not work either...”

“I’m sure he’d be relieved to know that,” Tindómë said, straight faced.

Eventually they discussed ‘the shield’ in earnest.

“It would be best if she genuinely was a single elleth,” Tindómë decided. “But she needs to have been in Ithilien long enough, or have known you long enough, to realise that you totally do mean her just to be a shield; that you aren’t really considering such a match.”

“I think, nethig, there are very few ellyth, to be honest, who currently harbour such aspirations. So who do you think would most enjoy the court of Gondor for a month? Who would most easily tolerate all those women being, oh so politely, unpleasant to her?”

Tindómë thought through the unattached ellyth for a little.

“I have it!” she decided. “Eriathwen.”

Tindómë’s former ‘housemate’ from Lothlorien had followed her to Eryn Ithil when their other friend, Boroniel, had sailed West with some of her family.

Tindómë warmed to her theme. “Although I know that Eriathwen wanted to go starlight bathing with you in the past – and might even have done so for all I know...” She glanced at Legolas, whose face remained totally impassive; ‘I’ll take that as a yes, then,’ she thought, before continuing out loud, “but she certainly doesn’t think of you seriously as a possible life partner.”

Now in full flow she continued, “And even though she lived all her life in a talan, before coming to Eryn Ithil, I don’t think she’d mind the Citadel. She’s Galadhrim – I can’t see her letting anything faze her.

“And you just know that, being Galadhrim, she’ll look down her nose perfectly at any Gondorian noblewoman who as much as looks at her sideways let alone insults her. She would so totally enjoy playing the part.”

Legolas grinned. “You are absolutely right, nethig, why did I never think of this before?”

“Because you are a male and not sufficiently devious,” Tindómë cut in, before he could say anything more.

……………………………………………..

The Elven party rode towards Minas Tirith.

“We will pause at the gates,” Legolas said, “so that Gimli and I can point out their finer points to ‘my intended’.”

“You’re enjoying this, aren’t you?” Tindómë asked, from behind him.

He considered for a moment. “It will certainly be a different game of ‘behaving as they expect’,” he answered. “As long as you do not suffer because of it,” he added, nodding towards Eriathwen riding beside him.

She had entered into the deception with enthusiasm and she really did look the part she was playing.

“Oh no, I am quite sure I will not suffer – no matter how annoyed some of the mortal women might be to find me at your side, I will look at them serenely.”

She demonstrated.

Tindómë had been right; no-one could look quite so disdainfully down their nose, whilst remaining expressionless, as one of the Galadhrim!

“Tindómë, Lithôniel, and I are going to attempt to predict who will be the most rude… we shall enjoy it,” she finished, with a fleeting grin.

Perhaps as well, Legolas thought, not to mention that the ellyn were, instead, making wagers on how long it would take before he and Eriathwen would ‘be swayed by the desires of the body’...

He grinned back and, for the first time in fifty years, rode into Minas Tirith clearly bearing a shield.
Chapter end notes:
The new part two will look at those wagers between the ellyn - and will have a very different rating to this part...

Oh - and the schmoop prompt was 'pretending to be a couple'.
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