Posts Tagged ‘Elrond’

Take a quick look now to notice that this chapter’s title is a direct response to Book Two, Chapter 1 of Fellowship of the Ring, “Many Meetings”. That was back towards the beginning, and this is where we’re starting (if we haven’t already) to tie up loose ends towards the conclusion.

In short, today Frodo goes to Aragorn to request that he be given leave to return home. Aragorn and Arwen sit and talk with Frodo. Aragorn says that they will leave in one week, as Éomer will be returning shortly to retrieve Théoden’s remains. Aragorn intends to ride back to Rohan with Éomer, and since that will be the direction that Frodo will take, it only makes sense for him to leave along with them.


Because I guess the only people who care about logic puzzles also are the only people who care about horse racing.

Because I guess the only people who care about logic puzzles also are the only people who care about horse racing.

Arwen remarks that she actually has a gift to give to Frodo. Since she won’t be traveling across the sea with Elrond and all the rest of the elves, she allows Frodo to take her place. It’s a small note here, and totally skipped over in the movie, but WAIT. Is that something that actually makes the character of Arwen important? Oh, it is!

You see, Frodo’s ultimate decision (um, spoilers, I guess?) to leave Middle-earth is only made possible because Arwen gives him this chance. Seeing as Frodo never truly heals from his hurts suffered at the behest of carrying the ring, traveling to Valinor is one of the few things that can give him rest. And it wouldn’t be possible but for this small moment.

Aragorn has nothing to give Frodo, so I guess he’s a terrible friend.

And so this note sits on Aragorn's desk for the rest of forever.

And so this note sits on Aragorn’s desk for the rest of forever.

To be fair, Frodo admits that his chief desire is not to return immediately to the Shire. He wants to head to Rivendell to see Bilbo. For some reason, he expected Bilbo to arrive with the rest of the elves from Rivendell, but he did not make the journey. Bilbo’s health is deteriorating with the destruction of the ring that gave him long life. Sad to say, but the silly hobbit who started most of this doesn’t have much time left.

In slightly unrelated news, I was given a link tonight to a survey that might be of interest to some of you. Some universities are doing a study on the reception of The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug. So, if you’ve seen it, you might want to help out. It’s not the shortest survey (maybe took 20 minutes), but if you’re interested, the link is here:


I don’t care if you feel one way or the other. This is just something that I feel is worth putting opinions forward for. Say all that you like. I probably said too much.

No one dies today.

“‘If your hurts grieve you still and the memory of your burden is heavy, then…'”

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I think this tree is just a big metaphor for Aragorn’s family line.

Well, yeah, it definitely is.

Linus is clearly Gandalf.

Linus is clearly Gandalf.

That is, Gandalf explains something along those lines. Aragorn takes the tree gently and has it replanted in Minas Tirith. The old dead one is actually interred in the same houses as the kings of old.

While this isn’t what Aragorn was waiting for exactly, he sees it as a sign. Apparently, the day he was waiting for arrives along with a slew of elves. Every important elf you can think of (Elrond, Galadriel, et al) shows up. They come to marry Arwen off to Aragorn.

You see, there was a minor detail that mentioned that Elrond’s sons, Elladan and Elrohir, who had originally come down with the Dúnedain to join Aragorn, had left Minas Tirith at the same time that Éomer led the Rohirrim off. There’s no doubt that they rode up to Rivendell to tell Elrond of the victory. Time has now passed for them to return.

Yes, it’s early June now – late June, in fact. It’s been nearly three months already since the destruction of the ring, and we’ve gone through that span of time in about 20 pages. I may grumble about some of the things we’ve been dwelling on, but time has flown by. Too bad nothing special is happening.

Just that wedding or something.

Just that wedding or something.

Tomorrow’s page is literally the shortest thing.

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The specter of the sceptre seemed special since seven specks of spent scent swept skyward.

I like those.

No one dies today.

“And Aragorn the King Elessar wedded…”

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Everything is awesome!

Well, that has nothing to do with Lord of the Rings, but I saw The Lego Movie tonight, and it’s really worth it. Not to plug for totally unrelated stuff, but really. Best movie for me, at least right now.

Anyway, let’s return to Aragorn and Gandalf’s mountain jaunt!

I'm too old for this...

I’m too old for this…

Of course, there has to be a point to this. Gandalf tells Aragorn that his (Gandalf’s) time in Middle-earth is ending, and Aragorn must lead the remaining men well as their king. The lands before him will all be under his dominion. However, Aragorn is waiting for some kind of sign. Gandalf tells him to turn around, and Aragorn sees a single tree growing out of the mountainside. It’s a tree similar to the white tree that Gondor prizes so highly, though it’s impossible to know how it rooted or grew up here.

First Mentions:

-Nimloth: Ancient white tree of Númenor, descended from…

-Galathilion: Ancient white tree made and tended by the Valar, descended from…

-Telperion: One of the great Two Trees, white and shining with a silver light. Yes, there are better records of the ancestry of some trees than of certain family lines.

This is a play by Gandalf to tell Aragorn to get a move on in letting things (read: his friends) go. Aragorn seems to be worried that his line will fail just like all those before him, and somehow this tree signifies for him that it will not. That’s putting a lot of faith in trees, but whatever.

*glorious music*

*glorious music*

Meanwhile, as Gandalf mentions that the Third Age is ending, I have to wonder who decides all these things? What authority is sitting in their towers saying: “Oh, I think it’s time to start a new age. Tell your friends!”? I would assume that it’s actually someone like Gandalf or Elrond, but we don’t get specifics. There has to be some system like the one that Westeros employs with maesters sending ravens here and there to tell people important things.

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Believe in yourselves, friends, and you too can rule the reunited kingdoms of men.

Wait, was that what I learned today? Shoot.

No one dies today.

“‘But this is an ancient hallow, and ere the kings failed or the Tree withered in the…'”

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It’s the end of another short chapter, hurtling us on ever forward.



The plans are being set for the “attack” on Mordor, with a force smaller than that which once made up only a small portion of Gondor’s army. Again, it’s all to try to trick Sauron. Imrahil jokes about this being a…well, a joke, and Gandalf and Aragorn chide him for it. See, Imrahil, this is why you can’t have nice things.

In total, seven thousand will march to Mordor and three thousand remain behind to guard Minas Tirith against the army to the north. They’re all divvied up: two thousand to Aragorn, three thousand and five hundred to Imrahil (because I guess he can have some nice things), five hundred horse and five hundred foot to Éomer, and five hundred more horsed men to the twins Elladan and Elrohir. Remember them? When you’re the twin sons of an important elf lord (Elrond), you get to command stuff.

Elfhelm, of Rohan, is the one chosen to stay behind and lead the defense, if needed. That’s a great example of us all working together now! If a man from Rohan can guard Gondor, we must be friends.



We also have on this page a short metaphor for Sauron and flies. If a fly stings Sauron, will he crush it? No, he will trap the fly, and take its stinger. This is problematic, because I’m not familiar with flies that have stingers.

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I have fought off the urge to image search for flies with stingers. I just don’t want to go there at this time of night.

Days Until The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug: 23

No one dies today.

“‘You shall not be sheathed again until the last battle is fought,’ he said.”

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I’m now coming live from my new place in Austin! However, once again, it was quite the day. That, and then I stayed up too late because I finally had a place to myself for the first time in like a week. I have issues with that.

But, forward unto dawn, friends!

Does that phrase exist normally?

Does that phrase exist normally?

This page is all about Aragorn asking Legolas and Gimli to come willingly with him into a horrible place. As if the name “Paths of the Dead” wasn’t creepy enough, Aragorn recites an old prophecy that calls to him to risk everything. Elrond’s sons brought these words back to his mind, and it seems right that he should be the one to fulfill them. Naturally, Legolas and Gimli are eager to follow.

First Mentions:

-Malbeth the Seer: Soothsayer of old Arnor. Foretold the line of kings ending in the north, and also Aragorn’s journey to the Paths of the Dead.

-Arvedui: Last king of Arnor. This also makes him a very distant relative of Aragorn’s.

-the Stone of Erech: Great stone upon a hill where the men who haunt the Paths of the Dead swore an oath to fight for Isildur. That…didn’t work out.

All in all, the prophesy is pretty straightforward. It clearly tells of the dead men who failed Isildur rising to regain their honor. However, it doesn’t say much about who it will be (other than Isildur’s heir) to call them forth. The tale mentions the man coming from the north in great need, as Aragorn is. The lines seem to come together, so it isn’t a huge stretch for Aragorn to see his part in fate. Thanks for keeping it simple, Malbeth.

Wait...Macbeth? There's some prophesying going on there.

Wait…Macbeth? There’s some prophesying going on there.

Middle-earth doesn’t typically deal in a lot of prophecies, at least not as much as other fantasy worlds do. However, those that do appear are very important, and most often involve Aragorn. They don’t always prophetize about characters, but when they do, they prefer Aragorn.

Speaking of involving Aragorn, did you expect this chapter to turn around from Merry and be about him? That was a sudden change.

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Italics! Always a good decision for riddles and prophecies.

No one dies today.

“‘I hope that the forgotten people will not have forgotten how to…'”

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Blah, blah, blah, moving…blah. I could make excuses each and every day for that, but it would get tiresome. Suffice it to say that until the 15th or so, this might be shortened. I say that because they come and install our internet on the 15th. From Thursday (the 7th) until then…we’ll see what happens. The first few days of that are on the road, anyway.

I am specifically dreading this part of the journey.

I am specifically dreading this part of the journey.

Speaking of journeys, Halbarad and company have journeyed a long way. And Elladan and Elrohir (Elrond’s twin sons) are with him. For some reason, they feel that they have been summoned by Aragorn, even though he did no such thing. Curious…

They come with advice from Elrond, and also a black banner of sorts that Arwen has made for Aragorn. He asks that they hold it for him for a while.

After a while, the column rides into Helm’s Deep, where they mean to spend the night. Merry sleeps soundly, but is woken by Legolas and Gimli.

OKAY. WAIT. STOP. If there’s one thing I get to say today, it’s this: Legolas and Gimli tell Merry that a battle occurred at Helm’s Deep three nights ago. THREE NIGHTS AGO. THREE. Yes, that was three nights ago. Do you remember how long ago we were talking about the battle at Helm’s Deep. Do you really?

It ended on page 542. THAT WAS ABOUT 233 DAYS AGO. I blogged about that on December 21st of last year. Yes, oddly enough, the world was supposed to end that day. BUT, in text-time, that was only three days ago. THREE DAYS. We may be living on Earth, but this story has years of Pluto’s length.

What's that? We don't care about Pluto anymore?

What’s that? We don’t care about Pluto anymore?

That’s weird, you guys.

No one dies today.

“‘There was a battle here three nights ago,’ said Gimli, ‘and here Legolas and I played a game that I won only by a single orc. Come…'”

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Now comes the great debate: Sméagol versus Gollum, nicely contained almost in its entirety on this one page. There’s not much to report in the actual content. Gollum wants the ring, but fights with himself because of the promise he made to Frodo. However, he can’t bear the thought of Sauron regaining the ring, so he must take it from Frodo before that can happen. But no! Promise! Screw promises. Take the ring, run away, and be all powerful. Right? That’s how it works. Sam watches this whole thing go down.

A more visual representation of Gollum.

A more visual representation of Gollum.

Today’s Gollum Meter: 27 – “BIG PLUMMET. The murderous nature shows its ugly head yet again. Look out.”

Ick. Bad things are afoot, especially with Gollum ending on the thought of: “She might help.” Who’s she? Just a friendly spider down the way. He’s planning that already.

But, my main focus today is to look at the structure of the conversation itself. How does Tolkien establish the two different characters inherent in Gollum at once?

Well, it looks quite simple, really. First of all, each personality is given its own new paragraph when speaking, much like two different characters would in any other context. Going a step further, the quotation marks (or, Tolkien actually uses single quotation marks  – apostrophes – instead of the usual doubled variety) are bracketed to define two different characters. What do I mean, exactly? Normally, when a character is speaking for a long time, there end up being separate paragraphs and thoughts in the speech. If the same character continues speaking for a second (or further) paragraph, there usually isn’t a quotation mark at the end of the previous paragraph. Like so:

“But Narsil was broken and its light extinguished, and it has not yet been forged again.

“Fruitless did I call the victory of the Last Alliance?”

See there, taken directly from Elrond’s speech at Rivendell. At the end of that first paragraph (and there is more to that paragraph, of course), there isn’t any quotation mark. It picks up again in the second paragraph. When he finishes speaking (long after this), there is a final mark at the end of that last paragraph.

Punctuation is fun!

Punctuation is fun!

Anyway, this defines the two characters of Gollum as separate, even though, technically, they’re the same person. It’s the little things. That, and also Gollum’s evil personality speaks with much worse grammar and more made-up words. Being evil will do that to you.

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Guess which side says that? The evil one! THREE TIMES.

No one dies today.

“Each time that the second thought spoke, Gollum’s long hand crept out slowly, pawing towards Frodo, and then was drawn back…”

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Treebeard is a fantastic listener. No need to be hasty, because he’ll hear you out no matter what! He listens intently to the story that Merry and Pippin tell, though interrupts frequently for more detail. I can’t argue with wanting more detail. But he’s really interested in the entwives, the mysteriously disappearing female ents.

Yes, Keanu.

However, Treebeard picks up on a lot from the story, and knows that things have been left out. He can tell that big things are afoot in the world at large, but doesn’t want to have to pick a side. There are certainly things that he disagrees with, orcs in particular, but no one truly cares about the ents like the ents do.

Treebeard just needs to vote for the Green Party. This two-party system isn’t working for him.

Okay, if we’re going to turn this into an election metaphor, Treebeard is probably one of the most educated voters out there. He’s been around for a long time, and is extremely observant. He knows everything. He’s already talked about Lothlórien and how it used to be. He’s also interested in Elrond and Rivendell, the Shire, the movements of the orc armies, and yes, even Tom Bombadil. With all this knowledge, you’d think he’d have a pretty good idea of where everyone stands.

BUT, even with that, he doesn’t want to get involved.

And Middle-earth is far more interesting than the world we live in.

Everyone around him is too worked up in their own problems to care about Treebeard. So Treebeard isn’t going to care! As long as he gets left alone, things for him will be alright.

But if someone messes with Treebeard, I’d look out. Maybe, just maybe, we’ll get to see what happens then.

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Who am I kidding? We all know that Treebeard is a docile character, and he wouldn’t harm a fly…

“‘I used to be anxious when the shadow lay on Mirkwood, but when it removed to Mordor, I did not trouble for a while: Mordor…'”

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The length of this chapter is surprising. We’ve now left the riders of Rohan behind, but the chapter with that name drags on. However, it ends in two more pages, as I discovered in turning the page after typing up today’s. It’s the little things like that that keep me going.

Like Twinkies, I guess.

We start today with a conversation about how hard this news (Merry and Pippin’s deaths) will be for people like Frodo and Bilbo. While Elrond insisted that the two be left out of the Fellowship Company, Gandalf wanted them to come. He certainly didn’t mean for them to meet their ends like this.

“He didn’t mean for a lot of things to happen, Sam.”

Yep, he definitely didn’t intend on falling into a dark pit either. Oops.

The night wears on, and Gimli wants to build a fire. Aragorn warns him against doing that, as the woods of Fangorn are full of evil tales. Since their path will likely take them into the forest, he doesn’t want to risk angering the trees. But no need, because Gimli finds sticks already broken from the branches, and uses these instead of harming the living matter. He puts a fire together, while Aragorn broods and Legolas again stares off into the middle distance.

If I didn’t know better, I’d call Aragorn heavily superstitious. However, he has a point. And, as a baseball fan, I actually look pretty favorably on superstitions.

Because having a clean helmet means you’ll never get a hit again.

Strangely enough, the tree above their camp seems to be reacting favorably to the fire. Honestly, this is the opposite response that I would expect, but we’ll go with it. Trees have feelings too.

The supposed state of Merry and Pippin? Still dead.

“It may have been that the dancing shadows tricked their eyes, but…”

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“So small, a thing it is!”

And here comes Boromir’s soliloquy. Use the ring for good! Take it, and command the forces of good and evil. He plans alliances. He wants to shape the world, himself a kind and caring king. Forgetting Frodo, he orates on the good that can come from keeping the ring instead of destroying it. How could anyone think to do anything else?

Frodo, meanwhile, is afraid. As he should be.

Fellowship of the LATE: 123 pages

We are NOT being a fellowship right now. Boromir ruins everything.

But here’s what I’ve noticed: most of Boromir’s memorable lines from the movie are included in this scene. “Is it not a strange fate that we should suffer so much fear and doubt for so small a thing?” he says, spanning the end of yesterday’s page and the top of today’s. That’s said on the trek up Caradhras in the movie.

Additionally, he adds: “It is a gift, I say; a gift to the foes of Mordor.” You might recognize that from the Council of Elrond.

Instead, everything is all thrown at poor Frodo.

And, oh, is it any surprise that this entire speech is going to backfire? Instead of inspiring Frodo to change his mind, he’s scared. I’ve brought up Boromir’s bravado before, and he’s using it in full force right now.

To add insult to injury, he disses Gandalf, Elrond, and all other “wizard-lords”. Because insulting someone’s hero is the best way to gain their respect. If Frodo wasn’t drastically shorter than Boromir, I’d want him to give him a whack upside the head. Perhaps he still should anyway.


“‘My mind is clearer now.'”

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