This would be Alfred Hitchcock’s favorite page.
The black cloud is made of crows! They swoop in quickly, and Aragorn pushes Sam flat to the ground. Once they are long gone, Aragorn rouses Gandalf. They decide that these birds must be spies. This land is watched, and likely too is the Redhorn Gate. Instead of resting for the night, they must get moving again, much to the dismay of Pippin, who moans about it. Sam, meanwhile, shows a marked disability with maps.
-Fangorn: The ancient forest south of here, near Isengard. We’ll learn so much more about it, but for now, know that the birds are from here.
There’s a special name for these crows: “crebain”. I thought of giving that a First Mention, but in reality it’s just the word for “crows” in the elven tongue. Not worth it!
Fellowship of the LATE: 10 pages
Oh, we’ve hit double digits. This is real.
Now, what’s the deal with Sam here? He apparently can’t read a map for beans.
He’s expecting to see Mount Doom any minute now. In fact, he quite reckoned that one of these great peaks before them would be it, until Gimli starting talking about them. But they’re totally close, right? Sam has no concept of distance, although you would think he’d at least be able to look at a map and see that they would have to cross at least two mountain ranges before even coming near Mount Doom. That’s not distance, it’s just logic.
To boot, he takes a dig at the dwarven language, calling it “a fair jaw-cracker”. In fairness, the hard consonant sounds probably constitute the backbone of his argument, but he doesn’t seem to be able to appreciate the beauty of it. I do, but mostly because I’m a huge nerd. Zirakzigil!
Words My Computer Didn’t Like:
Onward, Fellowship! Over the Misty Mountains cold!
“All that day the Company remained in hiding. The dark birds…”