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Reviews For Upon these shores
I thought at first this might be Ovid, but of course it's the wrong part of the Roman Empire and besides, although they are both poets, Ovid and Maglor might have less to say each other than these two!
And of course that's a nice touch about "Tertius", a serendipitous case of overlap between Roman and Feanorian naming habits.
Author's Response: I'm sure they'd have enough to talk about for a ficlet (and once there's nothing personal left to say, they can always do a poetry slam/jam session?). I just couldn't resist the idea of having these two meet, TBH. There's no deep thinking behind it, I just have an embarrassing and entirely absurd crush on Cicero really. Thank you for indulging me!
A lot of the names work quite well in Latin. I mean, take Findekáno (or Cánafinwe, same difference) - I'm willing to agree that "hairy commander" sounds pretty stupid, but would we also say that about (dun dun dun) "Caesar Imperator"? XD
Another sweet, charming story about Maglor in modern times. I love every bit of this story, and particularly what both twins did with the experience gained through this encounter. Probably surprising at first that Barrie didn't travel and study music, but followed his passion in a different way, but one which seems to be perhaps as satisfying.
Author's Response: Oh, I'm glad you think that Barrie's choice was (nearly?) as satisfying as the one Maglor suggested to him. I knew Barrie wasn't the type to brave travelling abroad and study, but I also didn't want him to have an unhappy ending. So if that worked out, I'm very happy!
I really can't decide which of these is my favourite, they're all just great. This one might be my favourite, for the part about the oath and the new laws... brilliant job!
Another winner for the "Maglor through history" category! I really enjoyed this. I love how you bring Conan Doyle and Wilde into this, their dialogue was great fun. And the idea for Wilde's story coming from this encounter.. brilliant! :D To have Daeron appear is a delightful detail as well. And Maglor really has mastered the living-through-history-part, hasn't he?
Author's Response: I couldn't pass up the chance of playing with the Daeron/Darion connection, could I? And he's a Grey-elf, too, hah hah. I have to admit that I owe a lof of the characterisation of Conan Doyle and Wilde to Gyles Brandreth's Oscar Wilde Murder Mystery Series, and the rest of this practically wrote itself.
I think he has! I am generally not fond of the idea of "fading", least of all concerning such strong-minded characters as Galadriel or, for that matter, Maglor. And I, at least, don't care to write (or read) Maglor angsting and regretting his way through 10.000+ years of human history. (Why bother?) I like to think that he's quite a resilient fellow, and that once he got over the loss and guilt in which the First Age ended, he fully embraced his chance to start anew and see how it all developed. I suspect he may even enjoy it. (Part of his overall journey may have been inspired by the character of Robert Gadling in the Sandman Graphic Novel series -- Gadling is an ordinary human of the 14th century who decides never to die, and is taken up on it by Dream of the Endless. Every 100 years, he gets to decide whether he wants to go on, and even after he has hit on hard times, his answer to Dream is, "Are you kidding? There's so much to live for." That's sort of the attitude I ascribe to Maglor.) I feel a bit sorry that whenever I add Daeron to these stories, he comes across as a big unhinged, but well - he does come across as a bit instable. (I suppose one can argue whether a Feanorian would be more mentally stable, but if any one is, it would be Maglor!)
Sorry about the ramble - as you can see, I love talking about my stories. :P Anyway, thank you for your comment!
Hah, this is a great choice for a "history meeting" for Maglor. I love he's playing the cello and has an audition with that orchestra, and I love what he's talking about with Oppenheimer. My favourite feature is that he does not deny the fact that he is not human, even if he does not reveal the truth.
Author's Response: Thank you! I'm really happy that you picked up on that. Sometimes, I regret not writing in a detail I had originally planned - Oppenheimer making a connection between the name of "Marc Laurence" and the legendary King Laurin - which I decided was too obscure, too out-on-a-limb, and requiring too much explanation, though it would have given Maglor reason to declare that he is not, at any rate, a dwarf. But, yeah. I liked the idea of the man of science recalling legendary non-humans, and I think Maglor has (after such a long time of learning! ;)) a good sense of when honesty (if not complete honesty) is the best road. :)
Oooh, I love this. The process of taking off his armor to take off his self works exceedingly well and breaks my heart all over again for him:
Perhaps, if he wandered far enough and spoke and thought little enough, he might be able to forget who he was and what had happened. He doubted it, but he could hope.
His reasoning why he might be the last of the brothers is so bittersweet.
"Or perhaps it’s that the world was created by music, so now it looks after the musicians."
I also never realised properly that the Sindarin name might also be a chance for a new identity, or at least a different identity, or a means to leave part of one's life behind.
Loved the scene where they discuss oaths and how Mael winced.
Oh gosh! Maglor as Mallory and at King Arthur's court! And both he and Daeron with Sarah Bernhardt, this chapter is such a treat.
Author's Response: Thank you so much! It was a lot of fun to write.
Maglor's mention of his being a "commie" was intriguing, was this during his Feanorian days? I'm always thrilled when I read stories about Maglor in history.
Author's Response: I actually think that he may have been sold on the idea several times. For starters, while it's hard to figure out just what the economy of Age-of-the-Trees Valinor may have been like, I am assuming that some form of collective labour and redistribution took place (with additional bartering/ trading goods for favours, I suppose, and of course a great deal of supplies simply coming from the Valar, though I assume that the Elves would take part in, e.g., harvesting on the fields of Yavanna). At any rate, I'm assuming that in spite of the hierarchical political structures, the economy might have bordered on communist. For two, I'm assuming that one of the reasons why Maglor keeps on going (and this is what makes Maglor in history fun, right? It's no fun to imagine him mourning his way through 10.000+ years. He must have picked himself up at some point, right?) is that he a) never quite looses his resiliency nor b) his idealism. I take it he was very excited about the Forgiveness theology of the Gospel when it reached whatever part of the world he was in at the time, that he was seriously taken by the ideals of the American and French revolutions, and that when the squalour of early industrialisation (in the aftermath of the Napoleonic wars, no less!) led to the grand new ideals of international communism, he'll have been quite convinced by them, too. (In spite of what may have become of previous high ideals in the meantime). Oof. What a sentence. I hope you can make sense of it.
I am not actually sure whether his mention of being a commie alludes to his youth in Valinor, or to the days of Engels and Marx themselves. Your pick, I guess! :)
This is a terrific contribution to the "Around the Fire" challenge. Just exactly the kind of haunting stories of obscure origins that served as entertainment around campfires or on cold and stormy nights by a cozy fireside. Actually, in my adult life I only experienced stories like that in Mexico City when the electricity, not surprisingly but unpredictably, went out during a dinner party or an evening meeting and people whiled away the time waiting for the lights to come back. I never minded those interruptions because of the stories!
Loved Himring's suggestion of using that island to frame a story. You handled it beautifully. I will read it again I am sure. Thinking of reading it to Alex also. It's kind of thing he would love, if I preface it with short introduction to Maglor for him!
Loved it: a great success of a challenge entry!
Author's Response: I love the kind of storytelling settings that you mention, so I'm thrilled your seeing this story in that tradition! I'm in awe that you experienced this in real life. In spite of the nuisance of the sudden lack of electricity, it sounds rather cozy and lovely - like modern-day Canterbury Tales!
I couldn't resist Indy's prompt - I knew that if I only write one thing that month, it would be this story. (As it turned out, it was the only creative thing I wrote that month.) I'd love to know what Alex thinks of it, if you get around to reading it to or with him! Thank you so much for your wonderful review!
"You disagree?" the king asked sharply. "Do you not think that oathbreaking is the worst of crimes?"
Máel cautiously set his harp aside. "I have come to realise, my lord, that there may be more important things than an oath."
--Yes, there are and Máel understands this all too well. I am very glad that Alfred chose to listen and learn from his 'counselor'.
Elfstruck by an elf who had actually suggested that Barrie should attend a conservatory!
But I guess Barrie really didn't want to go away, not even for the music, not even to come back afterwards.
Had Maglor met Louisa Williams, too, during an earlier visit?
I really like the descriptions.
Author's Response: Yeah, I think Barrie so much didn't want to go away that he completely ignored that piece of advice. That, and he may have been afraid that the Elf would come back precisely during the time that he was gone. Poor Barrie. ^^
Heh! Actually, my idea (though I didn't put that into the story) was that poor Louisa Williams was the reason why Maglor withdrew to Himling. Whether she was a student, or an admirer, or an actual lover, I am not sure myself. But she had to do with Maglor, somehow, and when he realised that she was getting too attached to him, he went to his refuge... and now learns from the children that Louisa did a pretty good job of finding out into which direction he'd disappeared. She's not a native of the Outer Hebrides, she actually came (and stranded) there because she was searching for Maglor. Whether her reasons are similar to Barrie's or whether they were of a romantic nature, I'm not sure, as I said. I guess it's a sad little piece of sidestory that I may or may not explore further. Thank you for asking! :)
Thanks, I'm glad you do!
Murron! I love her! Practical and headstrong and so, so wonderful.
Whatever the truth, the monastery had been built upon the fundaments of an older structure, though whether it had been a castle or merely a farmstead, nobody knew. An Elf-king would hardly have built his castle on a lonely, windswept rock far out in the Western sea, Murron thought.
Aaaah! Oh, Beleriand… And the monks building their own monastery there and grains of the truth still there.
And because there was nobody there to listen, he admitted, „I'm glad I'm not alone here.“
Maglor’s music! That description!
„Please calm yourselves,“ said a grown-up and pleasant and not-at-all-ghostly voice, clearly audible even over the thunderstorm. „It's been centuries since I murdered anyone.“
And this is where I burst out laughing. Oh, Maglor.
„Sometimes I do,“ the man said. „But when I get too entangled in the business of Men, I need to withdraw to places like this – especially to this place.“
Now I just want to give Maglor a hug.
„As for you, Murron -“ Barrie expected Maclaurin to talk sense into his sister, as adults were supposed to do. But Maclaurin was no ordinary adult. „If it is your desire to travel the world, then that is what you must do.“
I will have to leave this place soon; my refuge has become compromised, and it is time to move on.
Poor Maglor. :(
Hmm… Murron remembers the night better than Barrie does, doesn’t she?
Miss Williams, who taught the village children for many years to come, and who – for all her learning – figured that there were more things between Heaven and earth than were taught in schools or university, said that Barrie must be elf-struck. Eventually, that was the explanation that was most widely accepted.
Poor Barrie. (I seem to be saying that a lot, don’t I?)
I really like the two sides of the coin here: how Murron thrived after meeting Maglor and Barrie didn’t, that Faerie isn’t safe or to be fully understood and that neither one lives in truly socially acceptable ways afterward.
Lovely story, Lyra!
Author's Response: Phew! I'm so glad you enjoyed this. I was terrified of writing Maglor in a way that you wouldn't like, so I'm really relieved you want to hug him instead. And yay, happy that the description of the music works for you. I find that so hard to pull off.
Actually, I think they both remember the night equally well; they just deal with it completely differently. Murron, who doesn't believe in fairies or ghosts, puts it behind her as a figment of her imagination in reaction to spooky "phe-no-me-na". To her, it was all a dream, so takes the practical message from it and puts the rest behind her. Barrie is ready to believe in ghosts or, for that matter, meeting an Elf, so to him, it's all real, and he can't put it behind him. So he doesn't dare to leave the area in case Maglor comes back (aside from not really wanting to leave, anyway), and eventually tends the island in case that brings the Elf back faster.
It's a bit ironic that the sceptic profits so much more from the elf's counsel than the believer, but that's faery gifts for you, eh?
But for what it's worth, Barrie isn't exactly unhappy; just unfulfilled.
Anyway, thrilled that you liked Murron and Maglor and the whole story! :)
Ooh! A Maglor-in-history fic!*flails* Thank you!!!
I will leave a longer review in the morning as I'm about ready to get ready for bed, but I wanted to say that I love this.
I love the idea of Daeron inspiring The Picture of Dorian Gray.
Author's Response: Isn't it irresistible? :D Though probably a bit unfair to Daeron.
I really like the layers in their conversation, even though Oppenheimer has no idea of them.
My favorite part is "Gone were the haunted but youthful eyes of the small-town boy, replaced by something ancient and inscrutable. Suddenly, the aging scientist was gripped by a powerful sense of fear as old superstitions, long since overcome by reason, awoke in his mind."
Author's Response: Thank you, I'm glad the layers come across! And I'm really thrilled you enjoyed that part. It originally was a lot longer - I wanted to explore Oppenheimer's childhood superstitions, and wondered for a while whether I should lead him in the wrong direction by references to the mythical dwarf king of Laurin (-> Laurence!), and then decided that this would lead to far, and boiled it down to that one sentence. So I'm very happy to hear that it works!
Hah! A most enjoyable read. I may not be particularly drawn to slash, but I could see these two as brothers of the heart, at least, despite their differences. And why not, after all? :) It was most amusing to see Mr. Wilde and Sir Arthur trying to figure out the truth.
Author's Response: Wow, you're a fast reader! I'm particularly happy that you gave this story a try if you aren't drawn to slash (although, as I said, nothing actually happens, and of course it remains open whether Oscar Wilde's suspicion is correct). Yes, every now and then I like to toy with the idea that Daeron and Maglor actually went through history - or some of it, anyway - together. They have their differences, but they also have quite a bit in common... :)
Glad you found Mr. Wilde's and Sir Conan Doyle's attempts at figuring out the truth entertaining! Thank you for your comment!
This is quite an interesting start, I'm intruiged about his very large decision to completely cast away his past and now former self ... apart from the harp.
Author's Response: Thank you! I'm afraid he'll find out that it doesn't exactly work this way, but I'm glad he gets some credit for trying ;)
Ah, I love Maglor angst! I liked the little touch of morbid humour and irony you had in there about Maglor's being the last one alive despite his being "not much of a fighter".
Author's Response: Thank you for your comment, and thank you for liking the read :)