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A New Year  by Bodkin 18 Review(s)
perellethReviewed Chapter: 1 on 3/25/2006
It is good that at least in the Blessed Realm those things were remembered... for surely by that time they would have been long forgotten in M.E, even Mithrandir's fireworks! That was a nice touch! :-)

Author Reply: The events might be remembered. It's about 600 years on - and the Gondorians are quite long-lived. It'd be a bit like remembering the Armada or Martin Luther. It wouldn't have any direct relevance, but it wouldn't quite have become like King Arthur - not yet.

I think Mithrandir was secretly thrilled to bits to be asked to perform at this event! I can't imagine he gets much chance to show off his skills with fireworks. He'll be campaigning to keep this as a yearly event - and each time the display will be bigger and better!

E2L are determined these events and people will be remembered. And they are very obstinate.

LiannaReviewed Chapter: 1 on 3/25/2006
The festival is a good idea, but I wonder whether those who never lived in Middle-Earth can truly understand. Somehow, you get a perspective when standing at the Black Gate or fighting in Mirkwood that is beyond the comprehension of these Valinor softies.

Unworthy thought: In the world of Men, no matter how much you dislike your parents-in-law, you at least have the somewhat comforting thought that in the ordinary scheme of things, you are likely to eventually have a few decades without their irritating presence. But poor Legolas doesn't even have that hope!

Author Reply: No, you're right. The elves of Aman will never really understand. Their lives are too sheltered and protected. Except for those who made up the Valar's Host in the War of Wrath, none of them have any direct experience of warfare - or knowledge of men and dwarves. Those who have returned from Namo's Halls have their memories, but they have lost their sting, I think, and are more like looking through a glass. Consequently, they have nothing to which they can relate these matters.

I have thought about everlasting son-in-law-hood! Very, very difficult - but it should give them a much better motive for learning to see each other's good points. And Taryatur does have them! They just don't come out when he's with Legolas. They must sort it out, though. It's affecting Eleniel and that's not good.

KittyReviewed Chapter: 1 on 3/25/2006
You did write it! :-)
I had sometimes wondered if you will ever write about this festival! I’d always loved the idea they’d celebrate the New Year in the reckoning of the Fourth Age of Arda to honour the ringbearers and all the others who fought in the wars against Sauron. And the elves of Aman shouldn’t overlook that Morgoth and Sauron didn’t turn evil because of men. One could think the men had made them, considering the behaviour of some elves! In the end the *men* defeated Sauron, not the elves. And how many elves of Aman had kin in Arda who would’ve died if Sauron had regained the One Ring? E2L are right – it is time to rub it in a bit.

The firework was nice. When Gandalf sent the twins away, I was reminded of the FotR movie, when Merry and Pippin stole the big one ;-)

As for Taryatur, his remark was so tactless and arrogant that I have to give credit not only to Legolas for *not* punching him on the nose! Somehow I feel inclined to drop him in the middle of a pack of wargs – he’d deserve it!

I think there is another wager you’ve not mentioned: What will happen first – the elves of Aman accepting this festival as their custom or Taryatur accepting his son-in-law *grin*
Well, probably your tales have to go on for some millennia before we see either the one or the other happen ...

Author Reply: Oh yes. The elves of the Blessed Realm are inclined to be a little blinkered. The Blessed Realm is just that - blessed - and things that go on beyond their reach are just less. They don't really mean anything by it - they just have a quiet conviction of their own superiority. But then many of them have never experienced anything beyond their borders - they wouldn't know Angband from Dol Guldur if you stuck a map in front of their noses. They need educating!

I'm glad you liked the fireworks - I think Gandalf would have loved the chance to play with them. I'm fairly sure he wasn't encouraged to explode that many in the peace of the Blessed Realm. He will fight to keep this festival going for that reason alone!

Taryatur has foot-in-mouth disease. Every time he notices himself saying something offensive, he seems to feel the need to follow it up with something worse! He and Legolas definitely need to sort out their relationship - it's not doing their womenfolk any good! When an elfling feels she needs to act as a buffer, it's definitely time for adults to do something.

I can just see it becoming one of those traditions with a garbled understanding of its roots. It would be even worse if elves weren't so long-lived - at least some of them will keep track of the reasons behind it! And Legolas and Taryatur will learn to live with each other. Sooner or later!

DreamflowerReviewed Chapter: 1 on 3/25/2006
Oh! Oh, Bodkin! This is just so wonderful!! I loved it so--it is just as I thought it might be, those who took part, and most especially, the two remaining members of the Fellowship, struggling to make the complacent understand the courage and fortitude of two little hobbits.

I loved especially seeing Olorin transformed once more into good old Gandalf. *sigh* And that was a might display of fireworks, worthy of both the Bagginses. Of *course* the Matter of the Ring began with Bilbo and Smaug.

The toasts made me tear up.

‘My friends,’ he said. His voice filled the space without any apparent effort, and any eyes that he had not already gathered settled on the High King. ‘A toast. A toast to those whose courage in a desperate quest brought about the downfall of Sauron and his hordes. To the Ringbearers – to Frodo Baggins and Samwise Gamgee. May their names and deeds never be forgotten!’

Legolas raised his glass and drank. ‘To Aragorn, son of Arathorn, and Gimli, son of Gloín. To Meriadoc Brandybuck and Peregrin Took. To Boromir, Captain-General of Gondor. May we meet again in the days beyond days.’


The truth is, Legolas will never truly feel whole himself until he *is* reunited with his *other* family, that Company that set forth so valiantly into the face of impossible odds.

What *would* it take to convince Taryatur? What does he need to experience in order to appreciate the true worth of his son-in-law, and to begin to realize the real sacrifices that happened in Middle-earth? I'm thinking of Scrooge, here, and his ghosts...

Thank you so much for this. I love it to pieces!



Author Reply: The trouble with a lot of the elves in the Blessed Realm - certainly all those born after the end of the First Age - is that they have little frame of reference for anything unpleasant. Veterans - like Taryatur - are unlikely to have spoken about their experiences. Those who have lost family members, either to exile or death, are likely to have sanitised their experiences because they won't want to think of them suffering. And many of those up to 6000 are just too young to know. And it is very, very difficult for those growing up in perfect safety to understand what it is to live in fear and to confront dangers that want to take more than your life.

Olorin loved turning himself into good old Gandalf. I think if the twins and Legolas tried to give up the idea of this event, he wouldn't let them! A chance to be bearded, gruff and scruffy - and explode his best fireworks - all for the best possible reasons. This is a celebration that will run and run.

The quest affected Legolas - as standing before the Black Gate changed the twins. And they share the experience of what came afterwards. They all have those missing from their lives with whom they long to be reunited - and they will not see them again until the world is remade.

I think Taryatur might have a Road to Damascus moment soon. I hope.

Thank you. I'm glad you liked it.

utfrog98Reviewed Chapter: 1 on 3/25/2006
Wonderful story. It certainly is complete and well conceived, but I want to know how long it took, who won the wager, etc.

Thank you for a lovely New Year's gift.

Author Reply: Oh dear! More ideas to play with! I expect it took a long time - elves, after all, are immortal and don't change very quickly. Who won the wager? They haven't said!

Thank you. I'm glad you liked it.

NilmandraReviewed Chapter: 1 on 3/25/2006
I love that Olorin did fireworks! Yeah! Its a good reminder to all of them just who he is. I hope the festival of the New Year became well ingrained in the heads of all the elves.

Author Reply: Olorin was probably secretly exceedingly pleased to let loose on the firework display. I can't imagine the Blessed Realm being a place where he is encouraged to let off loud bangs very often. I expect he, at least, hopes this becomes an annual event! And E2L can be pretty persistent when they have an idea stuck in their heads.

Jay of LasgalenReviewed Chapter: 1 on 3/25/2006
A lovely tale, Bodkin. I like the whole cast of your tales appearing one after another, all with their own view of events. I think, though, that the twins are right at the end: that the festival will pass into custom and tradition - and people will still not understand the true significance of it.

Author Reply: And - did you notice? - not a single asterisk! Pretty well everyone was there - no Finrod, but the cast was getting ridiculously large! And yes... it doesn't matter how much you try to pass on the understanding of these things, there is no substitute for having been there. If we have experienced something similar, it can increase the empathy to the point where we have a pretty good understanding, but here in the Blessed Realm, most have no point of comparison, so even their immortality cannot help them bridge the gap. But it won't stop E2L trying.

harrowcatReviewed Chapter: 1 on 3/25/2006
Not within the scope of my usual reading fare Bodkin but I enjoyed this a lot.

Author Reply: Thank you - it was fun to write. I'm sure those who remembered those days - and knew the sacrifices made - would want to be sure that those who made them were remembered. I'm glad you liked it.

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