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The Wars of the Valar  by Fiondil 8 Review(s)
TariReviewed Chapter: 5 on 6/25/2008
Somehow I don’t think Ilúvatar will allow Melkor to destroy the home he has planned for his other children. Melkor should know better. The Valar have been given the knowledge necessary to thwart any evil he tries to foist upon them.

This was an absolutely fascinating chapter. It boggled my mind

Author Reply: Naturally not, but that is not to say that Atar won't allow the Valar to be tested by Melkor's machinations. Glad you enjoyed the chapter. It is rather mind boggling, isn't it? *grin*

KittyReviewed Chapter: 5 on 12/9/2007
Uh oh, that was what Melkor did? Setting two galaxies up to collide? You know, compared with the Valar using whole stars and even galaxies, even the wars in our modern times seem rather petty in comparison.

I’m sure Vairë will be the best comfort available to Námo ;-)

Author Reply: The phrase "cosmic" takes on a whole different meaning, doesn't it, when describing the wars of the Valar against Melkor? And Vairë will be very good for Námo... she does, after all, marry him in the end. *grin*

ImhirielReviewed Chapter: 5 on 9/30/2007
This chapter was very suspenseful, and the Valars' solution to Melkor's interference very satisfying.

I admit Varda's fits of temper rather take me aback, but I guess she is particularly stressed: the millions of stars are within her purview, and Melkor seems to target them mostly, whereas the other Valar seem to have a broader range of tasks and so more variety.

Varda glowered at them all, muttering, "But they’re my stars. Don’t I have a say in this?"

Uh-oh, dangerous thought, Varda! Don't try to hoard things to yourself!

Námo did not have that fear for his own Máyar, for they were few and for some reason intensely loyal to him, though he had yet to figure out why.

And close upon this thought he shows exactly why his followers are so intensely loyal: because he is humble and compassionate, and because he care about each and everyone.

Author Reply: When you have strong personalities clashing, there's bound to be some friction. Varda is still 'young' at this point (they all are, almost like very precocious adolescents) so she is not as in control of herself as we see her later in the Silmarillion.

We tend to disparage our own abilities, thinking others are better than we. The fact that Námo has fewer Máyar servatns than the other Ayanumuz must make him feel less than the others, little realizing that quantity rather than quality is what counts. Most of the Máyar are uneasy around Námo because of his unique abilities and air of mystery, but we will see that they will come to appreciate and honor those abilities later and the compassion and humility he exhibits will draw others to him, others like Olórin, for instance, who at this time belongs to the People of Manwë and Varda.

eilujReviewed Chapter: 5 on 9/11/2007
A lovely description of how they do these things.

I liked the changing and refining of their view of the situation: it will disrupt the Children’s galaxy beyond repair; “we let the galaxies collide;” “we will let the galaxies collide, but not the way Melkor intends;” “the galaxies will collide whatever we do to prevent it;” “their collision is inevitable, but not to Atháraphelun’s detriment.”

Aulë in particular had to clamp down hard on Aulendil and one or two others. Even Irmo had something of a struggle with one of his Máyar -- Sneaky Author! to put that here, lending credulity to the doubts about Melyanna a couple of chapters later.

... the darkness that they all sensed resided within him. It was not the darkness that surrounded Melkor, but it was unnerving to many nonetheless -- Poor Námo: easy to have self-doubts under these circumstances.

A day or two before you first posted this chapter, I followed a link to an article about the collision of the Milky Way and the Sagittarius Dwarf Elliptical Galaxy. I saved the link to send to you, but then you posted this chapter and I decided you already knew about that galaxy! [The article turned out not to be so scientific -- more of a blog commenting on a scientific article -- the theory was that our solar system may have originated as part of the colliding galaxy. In which case, Melkor’s making trouble turned into good that he definitely didn’t intend, as with the star that he blew up in the earlier chapter. (Apparently the original article *didn’t* mention this theory: it was the blogger’s idea.)]

Another astronomy article for you: (a variable red giant -- with a tail! -- travelling through space with a white dwarf companion). Much featured on various sites, so you’ve probably already seen it.

Author Reply: Actually I haven't seen that particular article but I will look it up, thanks. I did read several articles and such describing what happens when two galaxies collide and have seen photos of galaxies that have suffered a collision in the past and I used that information for this particular chapter. As I am trying to make the physics true to our universe as we know it yet not get bogged down with unnecessary details I have to do a lot of research before I write certain chapters. The one about brown dwarfs, for instance. I knew sort of what they were from my own astronomy classes in college, but I didn't remember the details and had to look them up and see if they were appropriate to the story. Luckily they were so it was fun to put them in as another of Varda's "mistakes".

Originally I was going to have the Ayanumuz set another galaxy on a collision course with the first galaxy to divert its path, but decided on the solution they came up with instead. Hopefully most people found it believeable.

And Námo's "darkness" would be disturbing to many even among some of the Ayanumuz, never mind the Máyar. It makes it difficult for him to accept himself, but obviously he had to have grown into his role as we see in Elf Interrupted.

MJReviewed Chapter: 5 on 8/12/2007
What a charming story! As an amateur astronomer, I find this mythical "forming of the cosmos" quite inventive. How does one reconcile myth to what modern science perceives as fact? A very interesting way of going about it. The only science versus myth aspect that I can see might really be a bit knotty is the question of Arda becoming "bent" only after the sinking of Numenor and the separation of Aman. I also have to wonder, will Namo, in his excursions of the dark parts of the forming universe, find himself in a position to witness a planet or its moon eclipsing the star it orbits long before the formation of Arda? Certainly would be a sight to leave a lasting impression (and perhaps inspire precognition).

Good job, Fiondil, I'll be interested in seeing whatever is to come. :)

Author Reply: Thanks, MJ, for your review. I'm glad you are enjoying the story. With regards to the "bentness" of Arda, I will likely address that and other knotty problems in the story, though perhaps my solutions to them may not be to everyone's liking. *grin*

LarnerReviewed Chapter: 5 on 8/1/2007
The physics doesn't bother me, but then I never actually took physics courses, focusing more on chemistry, which I found fascinating. That Namo feels he was nearly raped is very interesting, as I strongly suspect Frodo and Beren and certainly Hurin must have felt similarly after their own experiences. And they find a way to minimize the destruction the two galaxies will experience when they intersect by doing a bit of prophylactic star destruction ahead of time. Very satisfying! Now, for Varda to get to her star nursery to find out why this diversion was planned and executed.

Author Reply: I just don't want people with a real background in physics, astronomy and astrophysics coming at me saying, "You can't do that!" *grin*

Actually, I think any confrontation with Evil is tantamount to rape. I know that I felt unclean just writing about Námo's confrontration with Melkor, never mind experiencing it for real.

As for the star nursery... we shall probably see what Melkor's been up to eventually.

AglarendisReviewed Chapter: 5 on 7/31/2007
Greetings Fiondil!
Ah, so quickly read, and already I suffer for lack of knowing what is going to happen next!
It's comforting to see Namo as young, uncertain, hesitant to step into the discussions of those older than he is. It helps to know that those we might consider to be wise were not always so. He shows such confidence, such imperturbability in other stories, but I like seeing him as his confidence is tested and gained.

My respect and love for Manwe only increases as I read this. I especially like the way he dealt with the crisis while still being aware of Namo's needs and fears. That is the sign of a good leader!

So Varda has a temper, does she? A part of me wanted to think that she never would have said what she did, but she, too, is still relatively young as compared to how she would be now. I'm glad you showed Manwe comforting, and perhaps confronting her also. I hope we see the apology she gives to Namo.

I particularly liked seeing Namo with his own mayar. I hope he gains more as his role is made clear. It was good to see that he has those whom he leads, those who love and serve him without question.

I would like to encourage you to put the meanings of names such as Tindomerel at the ends of your chapters. You always make such good names, and I would like very much to know what they mean.
I know you said you would not be regularly updating this story, but I do hope you realize that I will continue to harrass you until more chapters come forth. This story has me firmly in its grasp!

Author Reply: Hi Aglarendis. Thanks for your review. I may put in a character list at the end with the meaning of names. Many of the OC Máyar here can be found in my story 'Elf Interrupted', although I am adding some more here that don't show up in the other story. While some of my characters' names are created, many are sinply lifted from Tolkien's Legendarium as names of characters he later discarded.

While the Ayanumuz are still relatively young at this point compared to when we meet them in the 'Silmarillion', we see glimpses of what they eventually will become. Manwë is definitely the leader of the group. Varda may have a temper, but she knows her business. Even Námo, young and uncertain as he is, can rise to the occasion when called for as we see how he handles his Máyar during the Song, keeping them in line yet at the same time comforting them, even apologizing to them for what he had to do.

I'm sure that some of the Máyar who have attached themselves to the other Ayanumuz will drift into Námo's camp eventually, and of course, when he and Vairë are joined, her Máyar will then become his as well.

Nieriel RainaReviewed Chapter: 5 on 7/31/2007
What another wonderful chapter! I love how you weave physics throughout this ans have set the Valar as Scientists. It is done so well! *applause* And I am truly loving Námo and seeing him younger and not very self assured. I am looking forward to seeing more of his courtship with Vairë too. They are quite sweet together. Manwë and Varda... it was interesting to see them a bit at odds. Nicely done! But I think what I liked most about this chapter was Námo's care for his Mayar. You are painting such a great tale, and I am loving every minute! *holds out plate* More, please?


Author Reply: Thanks NiRi. This was a hard chapter to write, mainly because of the physics and how the Ayanumuz would respond to the latest threat from Melkor. Námo is fun to write at any stage of his existence and I am enjoying seeing him and Vairë discover one another. And as with any married couple, there are bound to be times of discord and Varda is reacting somewhat emotionally to the situation, rather than attempting to find a solution to the problem.

Námo may not have as many Máyar in his service, but the few that he has are fiercely devoted to him and he to them. There is much love between them and I think that is what attracts Vairë to him, that he has such love for others in spite of his (present) insecurities.

Don't worry... there will be plenty more to come, just be patient. *grin*

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