Parth Edwen ~ Volume II
Upon becoming an Elf of Rivendell, I was struck by the beauty of its halls, the peaceful serenity of its grounds, and the support and friendship of all the folk who find their way to its peaceful valley. Everywhere there are collections of talented singers and story tellers, and the Bards’ Guild is a fair representation of the talent Rivendell offers.
Currently, the Guild’s Hall of Fire is the home of many new songs and singers both new and old, songs that conjure memories of lands before and times long ago. Inside the Guild House, the Bards are hard at work honing their skills, sharing songs and tales with all who come. There has also been, of late, a very interesting discussion concerning the teaching, nature, and prevalence of Sindarin, as well as the exact nature of the Bards’ Guild. While still a young elf, I was struck by the wisdom in the questions raised by my elder Bards during this discussion, and found that my appreciation for both the Bards art and the freedom of the Bards Guild were increased.
Finally, the research project concerning the Fall of Gondolin has begun, and is well underway. A few loremasters are still needed to cover special topics, and the questions already being asked hint at the in-depth and interesting nature of the project. Wish them luck as they delve into the histories of Middle Earth! And, as always, please stop by to visit and share songs and stories!
Out of all of Rivendell’s activities, the Rivendell Writers Guild might be the most fun to participate in. Here, you get to write poems and stories of your liking or off of the given topic. This month’s Writers Guild was entitled “Rivendell Writers Guild of the Sun”. Another one should be up shortly. Many great pieces were written in the Writers Guild this month.
There was one story this month, and that was one from Aranoth. The story covers Aranoth’s birth and childhood in Gondolin— read how he and his family fared during that city’s fall! In addition to this story, there were a number of poems. Many are about the Heavens, Stars, or long Journeys. Some examples of these type of poems are Carlinniel’s poem entitled “Tonight”, Silent Assassin’s poem “Journey for Love”, and Ailaya Nydrian’s poem “My life for my land”, which is also written as a sort of song. These are just a few pieces written by writers, there are many other writers who write about other topics, so if you’re interested join the Rivendell Writers Guild today.
I pleaded for the day,
and the return of peace.
I hoped against all odds,
but the evil did not cease.
I sat amidst the trees,
golden leaves aflame.
My heart could not delay,
as my hope began to wane.
I made ready for my fall,
willing to risk it all.
Sword and shield in hand,
my life for my land!
I ventured to that place,
where I stared into death.
Black sky, and darkened clouds
our chance hidden within the...
shrouds of smoke, the roaring cries
don’t deny your fate...
The time is now, ride on!
Keep true the oath you’ve held so long.
Dark land! I’ve come to fight,
a tear within the pool,
a sword against the fool.
I trudge on with a goal,
to lessen the final toll,
your hand shall carve among
these heroes unsung...
I cut the heads of many foes,
as the Sea of Death overflowed,
And when my kin fell to the Sky,
I avenged their death in a saddened cry.
And there he was, the Dark Lord
as he opened his most wicked doors.
Ring of Fire, Devil’s Soul
As thunder clouds began to roll
I saw the Kings as they fell,
at the feet of a most dark Hell,
Yet there was one, man’s son
who arose to claim the battle won.
I cried in joy, I cried in pain
peace at last had answered...
I’d done a deed, to save
my world once enslaved.
So now I tell the tale
of my dream to save the light,
and my goal to see the dawn,
again in all its might!
I swam across the lifeless seas
and returned to my home
to bring the news of victory,
and at last to let my dreams....
~ Ailaya Nydrian
It’s been another busy racing season; let’s start with a recap of all the latest sport! At the end of week four, WC was at the top of the table, having won 3 out of 4 games and a draw at the other. By the end of week 5 this had changed to make way for Fangorn, which had won 4 out of 5 races, with KD in second place. And at the end of week 6 Fangorn was still at the top, with Meduseld in second, and Valinor making a very good attempt at reaching the top place. After week 7 Fangorn was still retaining their title with Minas Tirith now competing with it for first. Throughout these weeks Rivendell has been bravely fighting its way towards the top place but has been struggling around 7th place out of 10 kingdoms.
Although we have not been in the competition for first place, it has been fun, and we have been given opportunities to moderate other races. We still have the champion’s race, where all the winners from past races are racing against each other, and the derby race in which one team from each kingdom competes against each other in one big race. Both of which should be enjoyable for all. If you missed out on this season’s races, you can still cheer for your team at these races and think about participating next season. For more information visit the racing booth in the Rivendell forum. Your cheetahs are waiting!
Roughly eight days ago, seven teams of two set out with a small escort from Rivendell. They will be racing from Kazad-Dûm to Rohan. The race will be run is stages, with way points to stop at. Each team has been given a map to show which direction they will take, so as to create an equally difficult race and ensure that the teams do not interact, work or even see each other until quite a ways into the race.
As the riders approach the first way point, the Sirannon, the cold country shows how inhospitable it can be. Food is scare and the teams are having trouble finding substantial foods. Shelter is also a problem, as the area is very cold. Fires are hard starting and hard to keep alive as there is very little food. Morale could be a problem and this early on could create some hardships for the teams. Many dangers await as well, including several wargs that have been spotted.
The teams are neck and neck and while the race has just begun, this looks like it may be a continuous theme. Each has a different advantage and a different disability, only time will tell as to what skills will be needed for this race.
To provide entertainment for their fellow passengers, a group of the tourists formed a small band and presented a brand new piece of music which they had written for the occasion. This was well received, even though one of the musicians was adding to the music even as it was being performed! Following the performance, the passengers dispersed and went their various ways for the evening.
During the night, the ship departed Osgiliath and began its journey to Minas Tirith. The next morning the passengers awoke to find the White City coming into sight ahead of them. After eating breakfast, most of the tourists went up on deck to watch the White City as they approached it. When time came to dock, the passengers waited expectantly before disembarking. On their disembarkment it was announced that they would have a picnic in the meadow before entering the city itself.
Entertainment, friends, laughter and food. It is all happening on the Tengwar Tours. What is planned for the tourists as they enter the White City? What unexpected adventures will befall them? Join the tour yourself to find out!
Ormenel dawned, clear and bright with the promise of another beautiful iavas day. Imladris was astir early, for it was Market Day. The Elves who had arranged to set up their wares that day went early to the courtyard of Lord Elrond’s house...
And so it begins. Bangad Imladris (Sindarin for “Rivendell Trading”) is the Valley's new Market Place. Elves with items to offer in trade set up their wares, some under colorful canopies, others on tables or stands. Throughout the day the Elves and visitors to the Valley come through, and the sound of bartering and merriment ring out. Come see the items crafted by the Eldar, and make an offer for anything that catches your fancy. The Last Homely House welcomes peoples from all over these tree-woven lands, but please read the scroll posted in Lord Elrond’s Halls before bringing your wares to the market!
By now we are all used to seeing our friends and family dressed up in special characters faces and roaming our halls each month. But who were they in August? Due to their outstanding contributions to Imladris, our visitors were chosen with great care by our rulers. Celebrían, wife to Lord Elrond, was played by Khait. The quirky twin sons of Elrond and Celebrían, Elrohir and Elladan, were played by Lclalau and Sérvia respectively. Círdan the Shipwright made his appearance through Avárith. Legolas, whom we all know, paid a visit to us as played by Weny.
Congratulations to everyone and may they continue to be an inspiration of fair play and contribution to the benefit of all in Imladris!
When the moon is pale,
The brightest light
In the sky is he who roams.
His name is in both song and tale;
A mariner, who, facing plight
Did sail to legend and reknown.
Sériva shifted closer to the chattering fire so that the crimson light of it spilled onto the parchment she held before her. Her hand that held the quill hovering above the page waited eagerly yet pensively for some inspiration so that it may begin the recording of the long and weary events that had taken place of late. Her bright eyes strayed about the camp coming to rest in turn upon each member of the company and those they had rescued. Her heart ached for the company and the peasants yet there was nothing more she could do to pacify the weeping women or to soothe the wounds of the injured – she hardly any knowledge of the healing arts. All that was in her power to do now was to write an account of their quest to the Lord Elrond. Therefore, she put from her mind the sounds about her and let the quill in her hand tell its tale...
To the esteemed Lord Elrond and to those in Imladris that we love,
I write to you on behalf of the company that tracks the lost Palantír across the plains of the lands south of the Hithaeglir. I was among the reinforcements sent out from Imladris after the assault upon the company by a band of orcs and strange creatures at the ruins of Ost-in Edhil.
These creatures were a great mystery to us, for even those among us who have walked the lands of this earth since before the fall of Morgoth have never encountered such beings. Tall they were and robust. The nails upon their hands were as jagged claws and their teeth were sharp and rotten. Their skins were moist and grey of colour, so we named them the Grey Ones.
The wounded healed swiftly, and our best trackers sought out the footprints of those few who had survived to flee. We tracked their party leagues to the south, down to the very Gap of Rohan and across the river Isen. There we came upon a small village. Its blackened ruins still smouldered from a recent assault, and all save a fool could guess that the attackers had been the very creatures we hunted. Their trail led us up into the mountains and into the thicket of a forest. All was not well, and the silence grew ever thicker as we ascended. Torn pieces of peasant clothing caught in bushes, obscene markings carved rudely into trees, Eru, even a small girl too weak to survive the journey were found along our path.
At length, we found the gaping mouth of a cave entrance and entered warily. Each of us knew that a battle lay before us; each prepared himself as best he could amid silent curses scrawled upon the walls. The sound of beating drums became evident, and we followed it into a by-passage and came upon a great hall in which stood those we tracked – captives and captors. It appeared that a sacrifice ceremony of some evil sort was about to commence.
A stealthy approach and roaring battle later the company retreated back up the path upon which it had come, carrying the Rohirric captives with it. A clever plan saw the cave entrance blocked with a landslide and a division between the orcs and the Elves.
As I write I sit by the fireside beneath the trees some way from the place we escaped. Many are wounded and weary, and so we could not go as far as we had hoped. Even so, the scouts have reported nothing that lurks unwanted in the blackness of the night. The wounded are being treated and the weary are sleeping. Soon the Rohirrim will return to their cities and the company shall continue its quest for the lost Palantír.
"In the morning I journey west to Emyn Beraid; accompany me, if it is your destiny. Together we shall seek answers."
Those were the words that began the journey to Emyn Beraid, the Tower Hills.
There has been a feeling of unease, of restlessness, pervading Rivendell of late. Dreams and visions are being shared of a calling to the west. Lord Elrond, and others, have felt this calling. Many curious Elves who have seen Gil-Estel in visions assembled in the Chamber of Audience, eager to discover what this vision meant. It is not the calling, as many of us are quick to reassure each other, but still, a journey must be made.
The destination was set for Lindon. Many an elf took up the call, their nights plagued with dreams and their days unsettled with a longing they could not define. So far they had passed in good fellowship, full of cheer and resolute in their desire to sate these dreams, these visions. Much merrymaking happened along the way, and friendships were been forged. However, all looked eagerly towards the end of their journey. What answer would they receive when they reach Emyn Beraid? A feeling of heaviness began to overtake them, as they drew near They had passed the Shire, and the Elves of Imladris (and one curious Hobbit) gazed in awe upon the White Towers.
The towers were rising before them, and many had questions — was this their goal? Was this where they had been called? They were greeted by Elves from Mithlond, who had learned of a disturbance in the Stone of Elendil, housed in the tallest of the Towers. Elrond led the party into its chambers, and to the Stone itself. As they stood, gazing in wonder and amazement at the palantir, the Stone spoke, or perhaps Elbereth herself. Dread visions they saw, images that were different for each. Now, the Elves and Hobbits must come to terms with the visions granted them, and they must learn what these new visions mean.
~ Eliendriel & Diava Tindómë
For a moment, peace reigns on the southern borders of Mirkwood. But it is a weary peace. Much that once was, is lost. The Gardens of the Entwives lie as a black belt of destruction to the south, and Gorthaur, whom all Elves hate and defy, has once again proven his malice. What is the meaning of such cruelty; what remedy for that which is lost? Yet even when Gorthaur’s forces left a burning tide to cover their retreat, and the Gardens that are now ruined beyond all recall perished in fire and flame, hope was born from despair.
Even at the time when the Alliance marched out from Imladris, dissension spread among the ranks and found its way into people’s hearts. For a long time, the oaths sworn of alliance were stronger than dischord and hard words, and the hosts of Ennorath made up one army: joined together by the same purpose. But the crossing of the Misty Mountains was long, and each step taken into the Eastern Lands thickened the tension. It was not long before the break was clear, and that even a common purpose could not hold the hosts of Gil-galad and Oropher together.
The story might have ended quite differently, had those two host not been forced together against Sauron’s strength. Draped in soot and smoke, the alliance made the destruction of the enemy swift, for Elendil’s knights pressed them hard, and Elves and Dwarves wielded weapons red with blood. And so they had victory, and only the commander of the enemy forces and a small group of his men found their way to escape. But no Elf will ever sing of the beauty of the gardens of the Entwives again, and the forest of Fangorn is watered with undying grief.
And yet, the Alliance was whole again, and with it, hope survived. For on the very eve when the battle was over, Kings and Lords were gathered in the tent of Amdír Malgalad. There were Ereinion Gil-galad, and by his side Elendil the Tall. Dúrin, Oropher and Thranduil sat there also; and in the circle of the mighty, Círdan and Elrond must also be named. Then bonds were strengthened and bonds of friendship and alliance renewed. Once again they were one Alliance, with one Purpose; and none could defeat them.
“Mae Govannen ~ Tiro Ven Elbereth” is the sign that greets you as you walk toward the Gate. When you walk into the The Army House, you are greeted by the blowing of the Horn of the Gate Guard. Since you most likely are an Elf reading this, you will be admitted to the beautiful building which houses the Offices, Barracks and HQ of the Army of Imladris. Here you will see officers and couriers, soldiers exercising, and guards who keep out anybody who is not supposed to be there. The Banner of Imladris and the Army Flag wave proudly in the wind.
When you first enter the building, you come to the General’s Office, where you can talk to our General and Commander-in-Chief, Laebeth. There you can enlist and ask questions about the Army. The Generals are the ones who keep everybody on track and work out strategies and make policy. The Generals are: General Laebeth, 2nd General Aurëthil, 3rd General Rilómë, and 3rd General of Honor Elnarsil.
Further on, you come to where the troops are quartered. The Beriadrim (defenders) have Barracks including a Mess Hall. There they can dine from a menu of tasty dishes, and both officers and regular soldiers can unwind from a day of training and guarding Imladris. The Othrim (offense) have a Round Table where soldiers and officers can get to know each other better. The Army House also has a Smithy where the weapons are made for the Army by Knowledgeable craftsman. They keep archives at the smithy, a record of all weapons made.
There is always a current Roll Call thread where active members of the Army should be sure to sign in. There you can find an up-to-date list of who’s who. If you see one of these warriors or officers, tell how much you appreciate what they are doing! And of course now that you know where the Army House is, you will find it easier to go and join us.
True to its name, the Middle Earth Social Center is brimming with social activity. You can sink into comfy chairs and meet others in our welcoming room, or meditate over perplexing questions in Rings’ room of random comments. Located in the heart of the Shire, the house offers fun, merry making and plates of delicious Hobbit food to everyone in Middle Earth.
The homes of the Elves reside to the North of the Valley, nestled snuggly into the awe-inspiring beauty of Rivendell. The floor of the Valley slopes up into hills and meets the sheer cliffs that hide the land of the Elves. Misty waterfalls pour down into the Valley; yet the homes are set on high enough ground, so that the valley would have to fill with water for them to flood. The homes are largely concealed from view of each other by large stretches of land that are filled with groves of trees that revel in the glory of their height, strength and beauty. In the Valley there are beeches and oaks, pine trees and fir trees and the lovely white birches. Between the groves of trees are sprawled green lawns that may be run through bare footed with no fear of harm. The green grass catches the light of the sun and shines in harmony with the leaves of the trees during the Spring and Summer. Small streams trickle happily about, running down to feed the river. Birds and creatures make their homes in these thickets and lawns; and in the Spring bring their young to frolic with the young Elves. Flowers bloom in abundance, parading every imaginable color from soft blues to trumpeting reds. The flowers grow as readily as the grass and seem to sing for joy of the sun. In the land about the houses, the air is warm and carries the scent of trees and flowers; all fatigue, loneliness and despair is driven away. In the evening the stars look down the Valley, showering their magnificence on the inhabitants below.
~ Inwe Lythian
But one simple bloom stands low by herself,
Afraid of the windstorm that blows,
She huddles and cuddles her poor little leaves,
And on her petals the cold weather shows.
She waits in a forest, for autumn to come,
To claim her once beautiful glow.
She sobs low and lonely, and softly she cries:
“Please, I do not wish to go!”
An old man with green and red leaves in his hair,
Hears the small cry from her lips,
And he rushes to aid her as best as he can,
From the cold, as it bites and it nips.
“Oh please, old man willow,” she said with a sob,
“Do not let the cold winter near.”
“I cannot delay what you hide from, my friend,”
“But I’ll aid you,” he said. “Now please, come here.”
She stood by his side as the autumn wind blew,
But deep deep inside, she grew old.
Her petals were wilting; her eyes did grow dark,
Though the willow did shield from the cold.
“I thank you my friend,” she said with a sigh,
“But I think that I now must pass on.”
“Be brave and be well and be strong, little one.”
And with that, the small flower was gone.
All through the winter, the old willow wept,
Till his tears had dried up into ice.
He remembered the flower he shielded from harm,
And he knew that she went somewhere nice.
So now that you hear of the willow and bloom,
Be free and be well, but be glad,
That you are not one of the pawns in this game,
But please do help those who are sad.
I joined Rivendell and became an elf on the Sunday, July 25, 2004. Feeling a little lost, I introduced myself in some of the newbie threads and received a warm welcome along with helpful answers to all of my burning questions. Having always been enchanted by the Elven race and in awe of Rivendell I decided that it was the kingdom for me.
Soon enough, after much posting and learning about the Plaza, I stumbled across the Animal Care Centre. After spending a short amount of time there I decided to ask for a job, because I liked it there so much. I now work there in the Canine department and it has been a really great way to meet lots of new friends, look after the animals of our middle earth and even earn some points along the way!
My time around the Plaza just gets better and better and I am constantly finding new houses and activities to participate in. So I just want to end by saying a big thank you to everyone on the Plaza that makes it so much fun and thank you Rivendell for welcoming me into your kingdom.
A conversation with Our Lady of the Stars, Elbereth, long known in the Shire as the beloved Blackrose Bugg!
Anything you’d like to say before we get started? Last month Tinw got some rather entertaining remarks from Hoth....
I am not surprised. Hoth can be quite the entertainer, when the mood strikes him. You should see his imitations! He does a PERFECT Three Stooges Nyuk-nyuk-nyuk. And just for the record, we are NOT planning on adding to the Plaza membership as Mo and Luthy have just done. Doting grandparents we would be, happily!
Ok, down to business. I’m sure people would love to hear about your Plaza background. When did you join the Plaza, and how did you get started?
I joined the Plaza on a snowy January Sunday in 2003. A teacher friend of mine had emailed me with the link to the 111 question Bilbo quiz, then in IM she told me about the forums associated with the site. I took one look, fell in, and have YET to come up for air.
What made you join the Shire kingdom?
I have always been a hobbit. Ever since I first read Tolkien’s works, some 30 years ago, I have known in my heart that I was meant to live in the Shire. I never wear shoes. enjoy second breakfasts, you name it...I even named my apartment Bag End, and put that on the front door. (And this was LONG before the movies).
Did you ever think about joining another kingdom?
I was curious about other kingdoms, sure, and thought about what it would be like to be an Ent, or a Gondorian. But never to the point of actually making the switch. I knew that I would just be a hobbit with leaves, and that wouldn’t work.
The Varda icon is beautiful. What made you choose this particular Valar?
First of all, let me thank PG once again for the fabulous Varda icon. When I became Varda, I wanted something that didn’t make me think of the previous Vardas each time I saw one of my posts, so I asked PG for a new one. Little did I know just how phenomenal it would be — although I knew that he would come up with something very special.
The simple answer is that Varda was the Valie that was open at the time, but it does go deeper than that. She is associated with the night, and stars, and I have always been drawn to late night musings staring upward into the sky, watching starlight flicker and dance. Playing the role of the one that actually creates the stars that I have wondered about for so long is thrilling.
Having read the Valinor quotes on the kingdom pages I think I just have to ask: any particular favorite quote of your own?
That is like asking me what my favorite food is! Valinor is filled with wonderful, creative, and VERY funny people who manage to make me laugh out loud at least once a day with their wit. Even in the most serious discussions, someone will pop in with a one-liner that breaks up the entire thread with a light-hearted remark, and gives us all a sense of perspective. However, I would like to say that, as a group, the stunned reactions of those that were recently promoted to Valinor are among my all-time favorites. I heard a rumor that there may be additional Valinor quote pages added soon...keep watching!
Any plans for your Plaza future? A plot to take over perhaps?
Take over? There aren’t enough hours in the day to keep up, much less take over! And the paperwork? Gah! Sign this, order that, no thankee. I am perfectly happy where I am, concentrating on those areas that I feel most comfortable with. At the moment, I am working on the house issues, and trying to encourage the Lore Forums to achieve their full potential. I have started with Books, but will soon be working in People and Races and Locations as well. This is an area that could be even greater than it is, and I hope to play some small role in nudging these forums upward and outward.
Alkthoniel, our wonderful former-Galadriel, now Ladylord of Manwë, the Breath of Arda, took a little time out from her busy schedule to have a quick chat about her Plaza life.
Calebwen: Ok, let’s start at the beginning...what were you like as a newbie?
Ally: I don’t remember much from those days... it was Feb 02. I didn’t have the internet at home at that stage, so my plaza time was pretty much limited to what I could get in a library. As I became addicted to the plaza, librarians became enemy number 1. *g* Always throwing me off the comp! I guess you could call me a somewhat quiet newbie. I didn’t have the time to get really involved until I got the net at home. My first few visits were spent around the movies and lore forums, then I discovered Rivendell and insanity!
Calebwen: What was the worst thing you ever did?
Ally: Hmm... That’s a tough one. The only thing I can recall is when I got caught up with a few spammers, though I still maintain my innocence! It was when kingdoms were nothing but pubs, hehe. Pip and MC decided to close the Rivendell pub and cut down on spam *g* So we all migrated to the plaza famous MT pub. I was in the company of one Cela, a spammer (and mother of Arlo at that point in plaza time lol). She started flinging paint around the pub. Morme got angry and deleted all the Elven posts he clapped eyes on. By this time we had gone on to the Meduseld pub, where a game of pin the tail on the elf had started. The elves needed revenge... insanity ensued. The Riders weren’t happy, the Gondorians weren’t happy, especially Morme! After all this, we complained to Pip about our point loss in the CofA. I was innocent, I tell you! Ara (of the Medieval kind) was in the Med pub, and even she said it wasn’t me spamming.
Since then, I’ve been a saint!
Calebwen: When did you become ruler of Rivendell, and how did you feel when you were offered the position?
Ally: It was November of 2002 when I was given the Galadriel position. I really couldn’t believe it; it took a while for it to sink in. Then I was happy and excited!
Calebwen: During your reign as Galadriel, the kingdom of Lórien was created. What was it like starting a kingdom from the beginning?
Ally: It was a brilliant experience that I wouldn’t swap for anything. Though it was a lot of hard work as well! The other kingdoms were standing there giving us a lot to live up to. Getting the basics going seemed the toughest bit. We had an empty kingdom, a lot of subjects, and nothing for them to do. Yet with a lot of help from the elves, we managed to get a good kingdom up and running. I’m very happy with the way things turned out.
Calebwen: Did you enjoy ruling Rivendell or Lórien more?
Ally: Now there’s another tough question! I just can’t pick a favorite. With starting Lórien, it kind of feels like my baby. Yet I ruled Rivendell for over a year, and spent all my plaza life there as a member... it still feels like home to me. I’m completely torn between the two!
Calebwen: What do you think is the best aspect of being an admin?
Ally: There’s a lot of things to say here: the thrill of suspending members, the buzz from deleting their points, the pleasure of being intimidating :P Yet I’ll go for the freedom. For example, as a ruler you’re rather tied to your kingdom, and there’s quite some pressure since there’s just you and your co-ruler to deal with business. As an admin, I get to roam all over the place, and there’s more of us, so less pressure.
Calebwen: Does the eagle on your icon have a name?
Ally: Nope. Perhaps I should make a "name the eagle" competition. Or I could just say it’s Thorondor or another famous one, hehe.
Calebwen: Do you like being Manwë? Is there another Vali you’d rather be?
Ally: I’m enjoying being Manwë, can’t think of another I’d rather be... perhaps Melkor, lol! I find the icon and character doesn’t seem as relevant as it was when I was Galadriel. There aren’t many opportunities to RP a Valar.
Calebwen: You have mentioned creating an army of eagle-minions. When do you plan on doing this?
Ally: A good strategist never reveals her plans, especially when they involve eagle minions and taking over the world! *wipes memory of all the readers, and leads them to believe they spent the time reading this question dancing around the room with underwear on their head*
Calebwen: Is Valinor really as insane as it’s made out to be?
Ally: We have our moments... after all the serious business of suspensions and what not you have to crack sooner or later, and so we do. *g*
Calebwen: What do you miss most about the "old days"?
Ally: There are a few things. The more relaxed state of the plaza; there were fewer people about and so there was little need to be so strict with the rules and everything. It was nice to just hang out in a pub or something and post insanely without any effort. I guess you could call that chat or spam nowadays *g* But it was fun at the time. I also miss the people I knew back then; there’s a lot of great folk who have left the plaza. It would be nice to see them again.
Calebwen: What is your single best memory of the Plaza?
Ally: I can’t pin it down to just one! There’s so many, everyone would fall asleep if I recited them all! My first good memory is when Lae had just started the Elven Army. I went in and asked for an officer position and she made me 2nd Captain of the Rivendell Defense under Rosie. It made me ever so happy! Then there were the crazy times in the pub with Arlo... we were like cat and dog *g* Also there were crazy times in the KD/Mordor pubs with stripping ponies courtesy of Op, mini umbrellas courtesy of Geep, and many others who hung around the place... Oh, Pip’s marriage to Indur was hilarious! As was my marriage to Uruloki, and later to Eru. The wars we had between the kingdoms have been great, especially Mordor/Riv ones. Ack, too many memories, I’d better stop here.
Calebwen: Do you have any advice for younger plaza members?
Ally: Just jump in and do things, don’t be scared or intimidated by anybody or anything (unless there’s good reason to be! lol!) If you don’t put yourself out there then you don’t know what you’re missing. I’m so thankful for all the friends that I’ve made, and all the fun that I’ve had. None of it would have happened if I didn’t get involved in things-- armies, RPGs, games, anything. Oh, and if you haven’t figured it out by now, forget the points. Do it for the fun!
Many thanks to Ally for her time.
In strolling through the new Art & Fan Fiction forum, my eye was drawn to a story titled “Eveningshade” by Rivendell’s very own Edrahill. Since evening precedes nighttime, the most beloved time of day for evil, and shade is just a great word in its own right, I of course knew I must read this story. I wasn’t disappointed either. Oh yes, I had to endure a description of a green and happy country, blah, blah, blah, but very quickly this wonderful author introduced “the shadow.” My black heart could only swell with pride that an Elfie would include such a character. Following the introduction of the shadow, we soon hear of Shadow Knights, claws, partially burned city - why this is even better than reading the history of the cowardly White City! This story is only in its beginning stages, and I can wholeheartedly encourage you to give it a read. Right now, hopelessness is upon the good people of Eveningshade, what more reason do you need to enjoy this piece of fine fan fiction?
On a scale of 1 to 5 Morgul blades, I give Eveningshade a 4, for no other reason that it is incomplete and I must see the ending to know if evil will win and a score of 5 garnered.
My second story for this month is entitled “FAIRYTALE - Izzy’s Story,” a title that would never have grabbed my attention had it not been written by one of your very own firstborn, Dinuial. This is a very fast-paced story, moving from present-day to a fantasy world in but a few brief paragraphs. We have pirates, but only for a minute. Then we have talk of a handsome evil king, enchanted necklaces, wimpy little flying creatures, wicked frogs, just a smorgasbord of evil to enjoy, with only a smattering of boring old good interspersed to make it interesting. I am waiting intriguingly for what happens next.
On a scale of 1 to 5 Morgul blades, I also give Fairytale a 4, partly because it is unfinished, though much farther along than Eveningshade, but also because of some language issues. This mean minion truly believes that a great writer can find a way to not use derogatory or swear words and still convey the same meaning.
Oh Aredhel! Your whispers to our son,
Your crookéd leechcraft crept and made him run!
You stole my loving blood with snow-capped tongue:
Your wintry words left Daéron unsung!
At your chilling voice gloomy flowers sprung
And by your poisoned death my doom was hung...
My son! Don’t search in vain for guilty tears!
The cursed witch stole my conscience and my wares!
I screamed for endless days and countless years
‘Come back to pitied soul! Don’t disappear!’
Yet all was vain! With bitter tears I fall
On the crags of Gondolin, most cursed of all!
Summer’s Greetings to you all from Fangorn.
This past month has been a great pleasure for all of us who wander these wonderful woods. The late summer sunshine has seen a slight tendency for some of our more senior (and to be truthful also the younger) members to doze and gaze unseeing into the horizon – by this I mean, doing their best impression of a tree.
History has had its full quota, with ancient records of the Hunt for the Entwives being opened, and read for all to see. Mysterious prophecies – from Mandos who else? And visitors from foreign kingdoms – including your own Laebeth feature strongly.
The TreeGarth continues in their relentless desire to curb the weird weather effects of the last few weeks. However having said that, they have managed to track down the source, and are now working on repairing the exceptional damage.
Celebrations seem imminent as the Forest prepares to celebrate its second Birthday, on the eighth day of next month (September). Invitations are likely to be sent to many different people, and we all hope to see many of you there with us.
And so my time to write this grows short, so I shall merely conclude with the brilliant news that the Fangorn Architecture Guild – the Rose, is once more opening its glades to new students – maybe you could come and visit?
May your Canopies spread, and your fruits ripen as Autumn approaches...
~ Thom Greenleaf
Within the past month the Golden woods have gone through some routine activities, and a few new ones starting up. The usual bustling areas of Lórien continue to thrive, such as our Gardens, the Lawn, and of course The Hollow. A few new adventures have started recently, and really seem to be quite popular. The Port of Lórien is slowly growing to be renowned through the other kingdoms, along with the Brave Adventurers that set out towards Harad to investigate a rumor about a lost palantir.
There are always the staple activities of Lórien, and new ones beginning as well, but with all of these, Lord Celeborn and Lady Galadriel always have their say in the matter. Many an elf makes a visit to the Royal Talan in order to have the official approval of the Lord and Lady to create a new activity. Such was done for the quest to seek the palantir, and such will be done always into the future. The newly-opened kingdom shall continue to grow and build, along with the rest of those in Middle Earth, and every month there’s a new adventure to be had.
Greetings and well met friends of the Reunited Kingdom! The warg days of summer are upon us but the White City still bustles with activity.
The big buzz in the city these days are the White Tree Championships. For those of you that are unfamiliar with it, it is an interkingdom football (soccer) tournament that is being hosted by Minas Tirith. The Imladris Ice have fought had thus far and in there first contest walked away with a tie against the Mordor United. The lone goal scorer for the Ice was Serveanthesia who wore out she cleats in a bold move from he own defensive position to grab an early lead. One that unfortunately did not hold. Currently the Imladris Ice are locked in a heated battle with the Medusled Mearas. Currently in the early stages of the first, the Mearas have jumped out to a quick one to nil lead on the strong foot of striker Miny Aranor. There is plenty of time left for the Ice to overcome this hurdle, but will they? The action is fast and furious so don’t wait to check it out. The Current standings and results are as follows:
Group A |
Group B |
Results: Group A |
Gondor Gale 2 ~ Galadhrim Giliath 0
Goalscorers: PeLaie, Dirion Telpelen
Isengard Eagles 1 ~ Brandywine Bigfeet 1
Results: Group B |
Khazad Rock Krushers 3 ~ Meduseld Mearas 0
Goalscorers: Nain Mithrilear ( 3 )
Mordor United 1 ~ Imladris Ice 1
Results: Group A
Galadhrim Giliath 1 ~ Brandywine Bigfeet 1
~ Dirion Telpelen
“He says his name is Narv,” said the strapping young elf, a new and eager recruit who had been lightly patrolling the perimeters of Rivendell when he spotted, to his surprise, the outline of an enormous (horizontally, at least) and decidedly unconscious old Easterling. He was lying awkwardly under several wine barrels, which were now exceedingly empty, unlike the man behind them. He had been immediately taken in for questioning after he woke up, and in his state answered all queries nonchalantly and, unfortunately, truthfully. “We’ve learned much of the goings-on in Mordor from him, and it is surprising to say the least. For one thing, we discovered that those lands are busily preparing for the upcoming Olympics we have been hearing so much about, which will, it seems, be held there! Why they chose such a dirty and evil place I haven’t a clue. But that isn’t the biggest news. There is much else going on, as things are heating up in the Last Alliance, and a monstrous tournament is apparently being held for Lava Snake Fighting. The Easterling says that it is a wonderfully vile event, is this sport, and he also claims that peoples from all over the world are participating in it! Can you believe, the good men and women of Middle Earth participating in such a horrific pastime? On top of that, we have gained news from him that the Lava Snakes of Mordor completed another successful season of racing as well, absolutely annihilating the Rats of Rohan! The Minions are taking a more intellectual approach to the coming months as well, organizing a practice debate with the Dwarves that is currently ongoing. After that, he just trailed off into some nonsense about who really knows what... but I think we got the important things out of him well enough, at least. A good day’s work, now let’s go frolic in green pastures like we usually do before supper.”
[Editors’ note: if anyone sees this extremely disturbed Elf, please take him to Lord Elrond at once for healing. Possibly he was overcome by the fumes from the Easterling’s breath or body odor.]
And with that, the strapping elf danced joyously through the valley of Rivendell, twirling about and singing some ridiculous song with many a “loo” and more than enough “tra-la-la’s.” Looks like he decided to continue where old Narv left off over at yon wine barrels...
Watch your backs, elves,
The beacons of Gondor have been lit! The tops of the White Mountains glow as Gondor calls for the aid of the Rohirrim Cavalry. And Rohan has answered their call! The Cavalry is still recovering from the attack of Easterlings that laid siege at the Aldburg, followed by that of the long-forgotten enemy, the Wainriders, who attacked Gondor back at the end of the Second Century of the Third Age. These warriors were led by a mysterious Istar, robed in a deep crimson red. As he began his assault, he struck the First Marshal Sicilius with his staff and rendered the marshal unconscious, either by sheer force or by devilry, which one we have yet to figure out as our haelands work around the clock tending to him. The Cavalry took a heavy hit from the wainriders, but in the end, the greatest force in Middle Earth defended their land with honor. The safety of our Cavalry as we ride to battle is in all our hearts, and we wish them well as they go to the aid of our strongest ally, Gondor.
However, that does not mean that the streets of Edoras remain silent and empty in the face of war! Indeed its quite the opposite! After the sinister shaving of Eowyn’s beloved Windfola, the queen continued to be the victim of dastardly deeds. Her brother, Lord Éomer, also fell victim as someone foofoo’ed Firefoot, covering him in confetti and pink ribbons and braiding his mane, renaming him Buttercup. Now he stands in shame next to the naked Windfola in the Royal Stables. But alas more! Following the incident with Butterfoot, accusations began to fly around Edoras, so many that a separate investigation had to be set up in the town center. And it was there that the Lord Remy helped provoke the worst pie fight in the history of Edoras, people being creamed literally with flying pastries and pies, many receiving the dreaded “raspberry”! Meanwhile Lord Remy took the opportunity to set up a third throne in the Throne Room and wooed the Lady Éowyn into accepting a proposal for marriage. The two fled from the Throne Room after Remy directly accused Éomer of these treacherous deeds against his own sister. They now are residing in the Aern Fréablod where they are frantically working to plan the wedding of the Century! While Lady Éowyn is planning the wedding, Lord Remy has called for plans to renovate Rohan and make it more tourist-friendly. Imagine Dunharrow as a haunted Cart Ride and Repelling Center! Helm’s Deep as an Amusement Park! The kingdom is in need of cash!
In other news, Lady Eléowyn and Lord Wamba decided not to award Special Ranks this month in order to give them a chance to reassess how they are chosen. We have had two changes of power since the SCRs were introduced, neither being in power when the previous requisites were laid out by the then lone ruler Lana. However, we soon look forward to the return of Freda, Lothiriel, Elfhelm, Hama, and Grimbold in our fair lands. Finally, be sure to check out the August issue of the Rædboda for all the latest in-depth news from Rohan!
The Shire is always very active this time of the year. With all of the activities that are happening, it is amazing that we Hobbits are ever bored. Here are some of the events that are making the Shire such a great place to be a Hobbit.
The Lost Adventures is a wonderful adventure where the Hobbits have no clue what is going to happen. It is a grand adventure where you must choose one item from a great array of items that you will think that you need. The item that you choose determines whether or not you will proceed with your adventure. In the end, there is only one Hobbit who will choose all of the right items and make it to the end of the adventure. It is a really fun and exciting way to get those non-adventurous Hobbits out to explore what Middle Earth has to offer.
The Shire Players Performance of Snow Elf and the Seven Hobbits is a great way to relax, sitting and watching a play of the finest actors, actresses, scriptwriters, technicians, directors, hairdressers and makeup crews that the Shire can muster. Did I forget to mention the hard-working props and music experts? This is a must-see play, and the whole Shire has been ranting about it. It is a comedy that has the crowd rolling on the ground in laughter. Please feel free to drop in and watch, as I assure you that you will not regret it.
Have you ever just had a really bad day? Did you ever want to tell someone and trust that your secrets will not be repeated? Sandyman’s Mill is a diary where you can come and vent your frustrations out to the world. This is not an ordinary diary. This is a lost, tattered diary that is only found when someone needs it. Vent your frustrations. Yell about your palantir. Give it all that you have, and you are sure to feel better when you are through. Then you take that diary and throw it where you see fit. You will find that it is actually very soothing.
Hello! Being new to the business of reporting, I surely did not know how where to start; after all the White Council is a big kingdom! Yet, it seems inevitable to start with the new and exclusive “Doom on the Wizateers” an Istari-reserved RPG. But there is also a new pub running. It is called the Back to School Pub. Here you can order whatever you want and talk about everything. And you would not want to miss the debate teams’ tryouts entitled “Merry was more important than Pippin in the Quest”. Meanwhile, it looks like the Túringole team is going to achieve this time what was not done last time, the win. And if you are a wizzie, a wizateer, or a diplomat, join us in the Round Table of Orthanc a place for kingdom business. Additionally, the White Council is discussing the magic of the Vala, Ulmo, in Coa Ingoleva. It is worth checking out.
There are also the chances to have a “therapeutical stay” at the Loony Bin Clinic, solve riddles at the Riddle Nebula, visit our tech wizards in the Fires of Industry or hear a nice story at the Isenharbor. You can also cheer on the Isengard Eagles or the Gondor Gales or plunge into dust and lore in the Orthanc library. And do not forget the Moonlight Karaoke lounge where the doors are open for all screechers... I mean talented singers.
And one more thing, Ye Olde Staff Shoppe is waiting for all your staffs in the Market along with the other shopkeepers. So come visit Isengard and check it out for yourselves. Every wizard would be glad to help you around.
~ O Illuvatar
[Editors’ Note: As we go to press, momentous tidings have reached us from the Council of the Wise(guys)! Philthrandir has stepped down, and in his place a new Saruman has appeared! Beware, beware, for that mysterious figure known as the Grey Pilgrim has arisen to shake the councils of the mighty and the mighty strange.]
’Bash’ in the literal sense of the word, however, when Achoo (Tulkas) knocked her out cold during a friendly boxing match. The usual flow of Banishments-into-the-Void continues as they have for the past two-and-a-half years, sometimes driving the Valar even farther insane. ‘It’s so tiresome and it gives me bad-hair days’, remarked Pip (Estë), while Peeg (Oromë) was said to have mass suspended the whole of Arda last Thursday so he could watch ‘Return of the Killer Skirts’ in peace on the TeleVala Channel. Luthy (Yavanna) was seen accepting bribes from an anonymous Istar during a highly secret meeting taking place in the ‘Lórelll Inn’, the local pub. Seregon (Vána) and Arlo (Ulmo) are still not talking to each other after Vána’s remark last month at the Annual Máhanaxar Festivities that ‘[Ulmo] is a mope-eyed weasel with the verbal skills of a dead Tree.’ Supposedly Arlo stole Sere’s anti-wrinkle cream after that, but Vána’s spokesmaia refuses to deny or confirm this. Speaking of beauties, Beeb (Varda) has donated her Magic Mirror to Lairë (Galadriel) after the mirror told her that she was ‘by far the ugliest woman he had ever laid eyes on.’ The Valinoréan High Court is not disclosing any information about the alleged prosecution of Magic Mirror Inc.
Fëa (Vairë) and Bael (Nessa) have released their new album, entitled ‘Dirrrges’. Your reporter can exclusively reveal some of the titles on the album: ‘Woe to the Exiled and Wow to Estë’s Lipgloss’, ‘Oh How Jolly Sing the Bells of Valmar’ and ‘Holidays at Helcaraxë.’ Meanwhile, Hoth (Mandos) has caused yet another scandal by prophesying that the Dagor Dagorath, the End of the World, would involve ‘a pink umbrella, a drumstick and thirteen liters of diesel oil’, after which Endymion (Lórien) whacked him over the head with his pink umbrella, stuffed a drumstick up Hoth’s left nostril and drenched him in diesel oil.
Quote o’ the Day/Week/Valinorean Year:
Pip: ARLO! You perfect little angel! I do SO snog geese!
Rivendell is renowned for the long memories of its loremasters, none surpassing Elrond. But even our younger members pride themselves on their knowledge of history, culture, and Elder Days. So gather your tomes, gather your wits, and sharpen your quill. We invite you to test yourself against one of them in our famous Lore Quiz.
The Downfall of Ar–Pharazôn , last king of Númenor
In order to subject Sauron to himself, Ar–Pharazôn sailed with a great host of ships to Middle-Earth. He took Sauron back to Númenor as a hostage in order to make sure he fulfilled his promises to serve Númenor, but this in the end only served the hidden purposes of Sauron. Slowly but surely, Ar–Pharazôn fell under Sauron´s influence, returning to the worship of the Dark and Melkor, and eventually yielding to Sauron´s requests that he cut down Nimloth the Fair, the White Tree of Númenor. Under the influence of Sauron, the Faithful or Elf-Friends were persecuted, and sometimes even used as sacrifices to Melkor in the great silver temple that Sauron had caused to be built.
As the years passed, Ar–Pharazôn became a powerful tyrant, and yet, as his life drew to its end, he could tell that death was near for him. Sauron counseled him that the Ban of the Valar should not apply to such a mighty ruler, and Ar–Pharazôn hearkened to his advice. He prepared a great fleet with which to assault Valinor and win immortality for men from the Valar, and set out in his ship, Alcarondas, despite warning signs from the Valar.
He had second thoughts about his quest when the ships reached Aman, but pride overruled this in the end. He and a host of men camped in Aman, and in response the Valar temporarily relinquished their rule of Arda, calling upon Iluvatar to change the world. This he did, and the great fleets of the Númenoreans were swallowed up, and Ar–Pharazôn and his army were buried beneath falling hills, there to be imprisoned until the Last Battle, or so it is said.
One of the most tragic characters from Silmarilion is Túrin Turambar, the only son of Húrin and Morwen. The story of Túrin is linked to that of his father, who was captured by Morgoth after a defiant last stand in the battle of the Nirnaeth Arnoediad. After imprisoning Húrin, Morgoth placed a curse on his family. "Behold! The shadow of my thought shall lie upon them wherever they go and my hate shall persue them to the ends of the world." (Unfinished Tales, The Tale of Childen of Hurin). This is the event that sets the environment for Túrin’s tragedy.
Fearing that Túrin might be killed or enslaved, his mother sent him from their home in Dor-Lómin to the Elven realm of Doriath, where he was adopted by King Thingol. Coming of age, he joined Cúthalion, fighting the Orcs of Morgoth on Doriath’s borders. However, after Túrin caused the death of Saeros, one of Thingol’s counsellors, he fled into exile, being too proud to ask for forgiveness. He met a band of outlaws who dwelt in the forest of Brethil, killed their leader, and became the new leader. He stopped them raiding houses of men and set them to attacking Orcs, until he was eventually betrayed by one of his own followers. Túrin was captured by orcs but saved by Beleg, his old friend. Túrin embarked even deeper on the path of tragedy, when he accidentelly killed Beleg with his own sword. After this incident, he was guided by an escaped slave, Gwindor, to Nargothrond his former home.
Túrin’s pride eventually caused the realm of Nargothrond to be revealed to Morgoth, after Túrin convinced King Orodreth to build a bridge over the river in order to lead open acts of arms. The result was the destruction of Nargothrond by Glaurung the dragon and a host of orcs. Mortally wounded during the battle, Gwindor told Túrin: " But for thy prowess and thy pride, still I should have love and life and Nargothrond should yet stand a while" (The Silmarilion). In the moment of his death, Gwindor gave Túrin the chance to avoid his fate, by telling him to rescue the lady Finduilas, for "she alone stands between thee and thy doom. If thou fail her, it shall not fail to find thee" (The Silmarilion) For Gwindor had been in love with Finduilas the king’s daughter, but she had fallen in love with Túrin instead. On his way to save her, Túrin came face to face with Glaurung and was mesmerized by the eye of the dragon, while Finduilas was being carried off. Glaurung deceived him into believing that his mother Morwen and his sister Niennor were living in misery in Dor-lómin, so Túrin abandoned Finduilas to save his family. In Dor-lómin, Túrin found his house empty, as his mother and sister had left for Doriath. Húrin’s lands had been seized by an Easterling, Brodda, who had wed by force one of Túrin’s kinswomen, Aerin. She told Túrin where Morwen had gone, but in his rage, he killed Brodda, and so sealed Aerin’s fate: she burnt herself alive.
After these events, Túrin tried to find Finduilas, but he was too late; she had been slain by her captors. He remained in Brethil, where was Finduilas’ grave. He found there a woman he called Níniel, "Tear-maiden", who had lost her memory, and took her as a wife. When Glaurung attacked Brethil, Túrin managed to kill him, but was badly injured. When Níniel came to search for him, Glaurung told her with his last words that she was Túrin’s sister. Hearing this, she leapt off a cliff. When Túrin awoke, the lord of the folk of Brethil told him who Níniel was and what had happened. But Túrin didn’t want to believe it and killed the lord. When he got word from Doriath that the lord had told the truth, he killed himself.
This is the tragic story of Túrin Turambur, the one who will slay Morgoth at the end of time, at the Last Battle, as was phrophesied by Mandos.
Laurië lassi lantar terë i vista,
Laurië lassi topir i talan,
Laurië lassi lútula amba i súrissë
Golden leaves fall through the air,
Golden leaves cover the ground,
Golden leaves floating upward in the wind
A rose by any other name...
Maps of these great lands East of the Sundering Sea are often found in the graceful tongue of the Elves, but mortal cartographers sometimes translate our words imprecisely. Here follow some simple explanations you can give to the next Mortal who wishes to know more about Ennorath.
Rhudaur ~ "East Forest" is the name given to the lands in Eriador that encompass the Ettenmoors and northern Misty Mountains, the Trollshaws, as far west as the Weather Hills, and as far south as the Angle where the Bruinen joins the Mitheithel. It was once part of the northern Kingdom of Men, and is where Imladris lies. Rhân means "East", and taur is "forest", here softened to daur.
Amon Sûl ~ "Weathertop", Men name it, but it really means "Hill of Wind". On its summit was built a great watch-tower by Elendil, wherein lay the chief Palantír of Arnor. The tower was destroyed in 1409 of the Second Age when three factions fought for control of the Seeing-Stone, and the stone taken to Fornost. All that remains on Amon Sûl now is a ring of stones. Amon "hill" is seen in the names of many hills in these lands, such as Amon Lhaw "Ears Hill" and Amon Hen "Eye Hill. Sûl "wind" is recognized by many from the name Manwë Súlimo.
Andrath ~ "Long Street" is what we of the Eldar call it, though in the tongues of Men it is known as the North-South Road, or the Greenway, the road they made in the days of old to unite the Kingdoms of Arnor and Gondor. It runs from Fornost in the north, through Bree and the now-ruined Tharbad, passes through the Gap of Rohan, and hugs the White Mountains all the way to Minas Tirith, Osgiliath, and Minas Morgul. And "long" can also be seen in the name Anduin. Rath "street" is also seen in the names Rath Dínen "Silent Street" and Rath Celerdain "Lampwrights’ Street"
Minhiriath ~ "Between the Rivers", for this is the land lying between the Baranduin and the Gwathló. Devastated by the Great Plague in 1636 of the Third Age and terrible floods in 2912, it remains mostly deserted even now. Min is "in between the", and siriath is a plural of sîr "river", here softened to hiriath.
Eryn Vorn ~ "Black Woods" we name them, and little else is known about the thickly wooded land in Minhiriath that begins where the Baranduin meets the Sea and covers a large peninsula. Morn "black" is seen in the names Mordor "Black land" and Morgoth "Black Foe"; here it has been softened to vorn.
Enedwaith ~ "Middle Folk" is the name given to the lands south of Minhiriath. Once it was part of the Kingdom of Gondor, but the people were mostly killed in the floods of 2912, and the land has been all but empty since. It comes from enedh "middle" and gwaith "folk, people".
Emyn Beraid ~ "Hills of Towers" we call them, or the Tower Hills, although the Halflings name them the Far Downs. They lie between the Shire and the Gulf of Lune. Upon them were built for Elendil three towers by the Folk of Gil-galad, the White Towers, which stand there still. Emyn is the plural of amon "hill", and is seen in Emyn Muil "Slaves’ Hills" Within the highest tower, named in the Ancient tongue Elostirion, "Star-Watch", lies the Stone of Elendil, the Palantír that is ever turned to the Undying Lands.
Baranduin ~ "Brown River" it means in our tongue, although the Periannath of the Shire call it the Brandywine. Baran means "brown", while many will surely recognize duin, a word for a long and large river, from the Anduin, Glanduin, or Celduin rivers.
Over the last few months, I have had several requests for advice on how to store and collect herbs and other flora and fauna. Last month, as you may remember, I described some ides for the storage and transportation of herbs, so this month I thought that I might consider the second question – how and when to collect your herbs.
For a flowering herb, such as lavender, when the active ingredient required is the head, it is best to wait until the stems fall over of their own accord, usually after the flowers have germinated. They may appear to be drying out naturally, and when this begins to be the case, harvest them.
Alternatively, you may want to collect an oil from a flowering herb, and the procedure here is again to wait until the complete head has opened. After a few bees and wasps have visited it, you will know that the nectar is running so to speak, and you can harvest them. Cut the blooms away with as long a piece of stem as possible, and remember to hang upside down, or lower the head, to ensure that the sap all collects in the top.
Non-flowering herbs, or rather herbs where the active ingredient isn’t the flower requires a slightly different approach. The best leaves are usually those, which are tender and small, often found at the top of the stem. Wait for them to be fully open, and then pinch them off in the morning, before the sap starts to flow fully during the day.
Harvesting roots is always a problem, for it is often difficult to gauge when the right time is to take them. Usually I would advise to wait until the flower has fully bloomed, but before the seeds germinate, as this will allow the longest time for the root to swell. As always, clean gently with cool water (a quick dip in a pan of still water and then a light shake usually works), to get the worst of the dirt off.
I hope that this has helped you, and if you have any specific queries then please do not hesitate to contact me – a letter addressed to myself, and sent to the Mockingbird Mail Service in Fangorn should reach me within a day or so of you sending it!
~ Thom Greenleaf
Gandalf Peregrin Sam
Sauron Meriadoc Gaffer
Brandybuck Took Orc
Baggins Aragorn Bilbo
Orange you glad you don’t live in Mordor?
Tara way to get to through Moria faster?
Juicy what Legolas just did?
Candy she-elf ever listen to daddy?
Wendy Eyebrows raise, people listen.
Ice cream who?
Ice cream every time I see a minion!
I just have one question... Why do people pay more attention to Legolas than me?
This is Rumil isn’t it? Listen kid, you gotta face facts. Legolas can shoot better, has better hair and a whiter smile. May I suggest some therapy for your self-esteem?
I really hope he gets the help he needs...*sighs*
How come my House is flooded? I don’t think I did anything wrong..
~ Flooded in Fangorn
Have you had Arlo for a visit recently?
Ahh the wrath of Ulmo...
I have been offered an endorsement for Nike... would it be morally wrong to take it? If not how much should I ask for?
~ Endorsed in Edoras
Selling yourself for money is wrong, very wrong. You should turn them down... and as a side note try Elf Bran Cereal..it’s Divine!
Well..that’s all for this month! See you next time!
Part the Seventh
Then Mori fled, but swift she came.
They called her by her elvish name;
And there she halted sniggering.
For months she ruled, and a spell
Her voice laid upon Rivendell: Splendour,
And insanity fell on fair Alkthoniel
That in Rivendell lay glistening.
I take pen in hand to tell you the good news. You may have seen this in Vairë’s tapestries, but if not: I’m a father! Míriel gave birth to my first son earlier this week! I’ve decided to name him “Finwion” (son of Finwë). Creative, isn’t it? Míriel named him “Fëanáro”. I really don’t see the reasoning behind it, as at the moment he seems to be more like a spirit of water than a spirit of fire judging from the amount that he’s been crying.
Maybe that’s why Míriel has been so tired lately. I haven’t been getting much sleep myself. But Míriel still hasn’t recovered from the birth. I wonder, do the Vanyar take this long to regain their strength? I must go, as Finwion seems to want something and Míriel is nowhere to be seen.
Míriel hasn’t been herself lately. She just mopes around, and is even too tired to make tapestries depicting the latest gossip! As I’m certain you know, that’s most unlike her. (Have you seen the one she made feaTúring you and Ló – never mind, it’s beside the point.) I was wondering if she could come stay in your gardens for a time? It might give her a chance to confirm the rumors revitalize herself.
But of course Míriel can come and stay for a while! I would be thrilled to have her – after all, it’s not as if I have anything to hide!
I am writing on behalf of your wife, who has decided to leave her body. In brief, she says not to wait up for her. In full, she says,
Finwë, it’s been great. But bearing Fëanáro was too taxing, and I desired release from the troubles of Arda Hastaina. I won’t be back – sorry. Be sure to wash the tapestries, remember, drip-dry. Tell my mum and dad I said “Hi”, and make certain that Fëanáro has a bath at least every other mingling of the lights. Oh! And could you please visit my body now and then and pick the dead leaves out of my hair? (I knew falling asleep under that tree was a bad idea!) Ta, I’ll be seeing you on the other side. Kisses, Míriel.
My sincerest condolences. Now, I must go weave the look on your face into a tapestry – it’s priceless.
I am most upset! Míriel refuses to return to her body. While I can somewhat understand her motivations, you must agree that this is most unfair to myself! Now I can’t have any more children, and am the only elf in Aman to walk in sorrow – and the neighbors will talk, you know. Can you please talk her into coming back or something?
Dear Mandos, Ulmo, Vairë et al,
Finwë’s been whinging again, but he’s sort of got a point. I think we should probably discuss this. Ring of Doom, tomorrow, a bit after mingling? Tell me if it’s too early.
|See you all there,|
As you requested, here is the transcript of the meeting of the Valar. There’s enough material in there to keep the lawyers on Tirion going for at least ten Valian years. I’ve put it in a nutshell for your convenience. After coming up with the statute (You can remarry, if Mimi agrees not to come back) the conversation went sort of like this:
Manwë: Well, it’s fair, but it accepts Arda Marred which is bad bad.
Aulë: I think that this comes from Eru, not Arda Marred.
Ulmo: I don’t.
Yavanna: Me neither.
Nienna: Hey, it’s not like it’s their fault.
Ulmo: Actually, it sort of is. Míriel’s too stubborn and Finwë’s too impatient. She might come back.
Vairë: She won’t. Believe me, I know.
Manwë: No you don’t. Námo, whaddaya think?
Námo: Evil will come of it, but good will too... eventually... I’ll give it a pass.
Manwë: Okie dokey.
That basically sums it up, although Námo was extremely out of character. He only said “doom” once!
I spoke with Míriel and explained the terms of our doom to her. Although I said that by dooming Finwë to loneliness she was also dooming herself to disembodiment till the end of Arda, she refused to reconsider. It would seem that she is doomed to be stubborn in this matter. Nevertheless, I’ll wait for ten years before declaring my doom.
|Official Doomsman of the Valar|
~Ten Years Pass~
It seems I have been doomed to pronounce my doom upon Finwë and Míriel. A pity, for an evil doom will come of it, but good is also doomed to come of the evil.
|Yours in doom,|
|Official Doomsman of the Valar|
My condolences about Míriel! I’ve heard that you’re depressed. Why not come and stay with me for a while? The light of the trees might do you good. You can work on your tan, too. Honestly, you’re as pale as you were at Cuiviénen!
|Hoping you can come,|
P.S. Have you met my sister, Indis?
I’m getting married again! I met Indis, and WHAM! Love at first sight! We’ll be getting married soon – I’ll send out the invitations shortly. Hope to see you there!
P.S. Please don’t mention this to Fëanáro – he’s a bit touchy, I’d like to break the news to him myself.
I jutht heard thith from Eärwen, but decided not to believe her until I heard whether or not it wath true from you. Terrible goththip, Eärwen ith. Are you or are you not marrying Indith?!? If you are, I mutht protetht! It ith dreadfully dithrethpectful to my dear departed mother, even if the Valar did give you permiththion.
Furthermore, I have heard that you have dithcontinued the uthe of the motht exalted, excellent, eminent “th”, a Ñoldorin tradition thince our awakening, for the ingloriouth, ignoble, ignominiouth, thuggethted-by-a-couple-of-thmart-aleck-upthtart-thcholarth “th”!
Pleathe, confirm me in my hope that thethe dreadful rumourth are nothing but that – rumourth.
Yes and Yes.
Scribe’s Notes : While sorting through these letters, I have edited the ‘th’s to ‘s’s for readability purposes – except in the case of Fëanor, on account of his making such a fuss about it.
Rich in beauty, with never ending peace and tranquillity,|
Incredibly busy, yet filled with fun,
Victorious, even when we fail to beat our opponents,
Eroding away at the heart of evil,
Never prepared to give up on the fight,
Day after day as the adventure continues,
Elrond leads us forward, with wisdom and grace.
Loving, caring and full of kindness.
Loyal to their kingdom.