Elrohir Brings the News to Laia
#1
Elrohir rode hard to the hidden valley of Imladris, hoping to outride the news. But its story of hope and grief greeted him in song as he forded the river. He took his weary horse to the stable, and then proceeded up the hill on foot.

The House upon the Cliff, Taurn Daerebor, did not seem so forbidding to Elrohir as he remembered, as he approached it. Perhaps it was that he knew for certainty this time that its master was not at home.

Before he could knock or announce his arrival, Laia opened the door and stepped out.

That kindly Elf greeted him with a kiss upon his cheek, and said, “Elrhoir! How good it is to see you! Are you well? You seem weary.”

Elrohir said, “You are kind, lady. Indeed, weary am I, for I have made all haste to be here first with the news.”

Laia said, “What news could haste you so? I have heard that the Dark Lord is overthrown, and that Aragorn and Arwen are wed. Or do you refer to news of Lord Mordomin? I would be glad of that, for I do not find his name mentioned in the news that I gather.”

For many days and many leagues Elrohir had considered what his answer to this question would be. Yet when the time came, he was undone. He could only lower his pack, and draw forth the broken pieces of Erufel from it. He offered them to Laia as explanation.

To his surprise, Laia picked up a piece of the sword and said, “This is the sword Erufel. I mean you no disrespect, Master Elrohir, but how did you come by this? And how did it come to be broken?”

Elrohir said, “How is it that you know of this sword?”

Laia said, “I know that folk in the valley call me “the Maid of Mordomin” or worse. But in fact I spend most of my time in the archives of your father. And, among other things, he has been interested to learn about anything regarding the sword Erufel.”

Elrohir said, “Indeed? He spoke to me somewhat of Erufel before my brother and I last journeyed south. I confess I thought it odd, at the time.”

Laia said, “I am not surprised, for the sword is considered to be mythical.

"And yet here you are to lay in my hand the shards of a sword that can be none other than Erufel. I am grateful. Is this the reason for your hasting to Taurn Daerbor?”

Elrohir said, “I regret that it is not.”

Laia said, “I do not understand you.”

Elrohir said, “Forgive me for speaking plainly then: Lord Mordomin carried the sword Erufel into battle before the Black Gate.”

Laia said, “And he did not bear it back. And you bear the pieces of that sword to me. I see.”

Then Laia took all of the pieces of Erufel from Elrohir into her hands, and walked to the edge of the cliff which was nigh. And Elrohir, fearing for her, followed.

He saw her fling the shards of Erufel far into the gorge, and heard her cry:

“Sword-shards? Fiddlesticks!”

Laia flung herself into the arms of Elrohir and wept.

Quietly Elrohir said, "Thus the tales say shall ever be its fate. To rise from the ground, and return to the water."

When at last she was somewhat calm, she said, "Art wroth with me, that I threw away that which you travelled so far me to bring?"

Elrohir said, "Nay, Lady. You did what you were meant to do."

Then Laia said, “I mean to set the cottage alight as well. Will you assist me?”

Elrohir said, “I will. A final pyre to Lord Mordomin. He would approve."

Laia said, "And then will you take me into the West?"

Elrohir said, "To the Grey Havens I will take you, out of love for you, and duty to the friend whom we mourn. But it is not my time to leave these shores."
"Never ask an Elf for advice, for he will say both 'Yes' and 'No'." - Frodo Baggins to Gildor Inglorion
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#2
"Fiddlesticks":question:

So, Laia is to set the little cottage she has helped to tend afire, is she? That brings things to a melancholy close......or is it yet over? Mordomin has always seemed to best the cat with nine lives, having lived through several more already.

(Actually, I imagined Laia's favorite instrument needed a bow of some sort.)
When I die, I will know that I was alive, and that I loved and was loved. (moif)
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#3
Melancholy, perhaps. But with Elrohir's arrival comes confirmation that the forboding that Mordomin spoke of in The Road to Isengard was true; he would not be back. And now, with the delivery of the shards, Laia is free to seek him in the West.
Eldanuumea Wrote:(Actually, I imagined Laia's favorite instrument needed a bow of some sort.)
Really? Do tell! Perhaps I will edit the story to have Laia going into the cottage one last time to retrieve said instrument, before setting the sky alight.

As for "Fiddlesticks" I did insert that for your particular amusement. Although you (and Laia) are much more like Melanie (sp?) than Scarlett. So, it was out of character.
"Never ask an Elf for advice, for he will say both 'Yes' and 'No'." - Frodo Baggins to Gildor Inglorion
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#4
Thanks for comparing me to Melanie rather than Scarlett!

And I recall talk of Laia heading to the West. It's time, then?Angel
When I die, I will know that I was alive, and that I loved and was loved. (moif)
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#5
Now that I think of it, "Fiddlesticks" is a legitimate Tolkienesque expression; Lobelia says it to Frodo in "A Long-Expected Party".

And no, when Elrohir speaks of "love" for her, we are not having an Eowyn-Faramir moment. He is simply speaking of the affection that all the folk in Rivendell have for Laia.
"Never ask an Elf for advice, for he will say both 'Yes' and 'No'." - Frodo Baggins to Gildor Inglorion
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#6
Not a very Elven expression though.

Hobbits are folksy enough to use such a phrase, IMO, but it takes me right out of the epic, Silmarillion-esque mood.
Wrestling Darwin on a daily basis.

"Question boldly even the existence of a God; because, if there be one, He must more approve of the homage of reason than that of a blindfolded fear." -Thomas Jefferson
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#7
Quite right, Mike, re. "fiddlesticks".

I'm going to let it stand for now, but when I finish "Mordomin 2.0" I'll have to re-visit it, and have her say something more..."epic".

Flinging the sword into the river is essential (and more suitably epic, if I may say so), although I have a lot of "backstory" yet to write to make that plain.

And for the record, I am NOT now comparing Elda to Lobelia!Rolleyes
"Never ask an Elf for advice, for he will say both 'Yes' and 'No'." - Frodo Baggins to Gildor Inglorion
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#8
Thank Eru!! Though I have to admit, I would love to live in Bagend, as created in the film version.
When I die, I will know that I was alive, and that I loved and was loved. (moif)
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#9
Eldanuumea Wrote:Thank Eru!! Though I have to admit, I would love to live in Bagend, as created in the film version.
But...but...Lobelia never lived at Bag-End. Lotho and Sharky did.
"Never ask an Elf for advice, for he will say both 'Yes' and 'No'." - Frodo Baggins to Gildor Inglorion
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#10
With the Mordomin saga basically wrapped up, I have to ask, what purpose did Erufel serve?

Its discovery and identification were quite portentous. Somehow, everyone knew about Erufel. Mordomin got its name by some sort of "woo-woo" means, rather than perhaps simply reading the name from an inscription on the blade.

Erufel's stated properties don't seem out-of-line for Tolkien swords, but the source of the info seems to be either unspecified "background" lore everyone seems to know (even Laia) or the same means by which Mordy knew its name.

Furthermore, for a blade whose buildup ought to make it capable of creasing Sauron himself, Erufel doesn't really do anything. It scared off one Ringwraith, without putting its stated property of being Ringwraith-proof to any real test. Wielded with Mordomin's prowess before the Black Gate, it took down quite a few soldiers of Sauron, but never got another crack at a Ringwraith or any other truly worthy target. Now, if you could make the case that Mordomin's sally made the difference for the Western host between surviving Aragorn & Gandalf's gamble, and being annihilated, that might be something, but it's a stretch. Even slaying the Mouth, who was ultimately a mortal Man, would not have been special enough IMO to justify Erufel.

Erufel looks like a violation of the Chekov's gun principle to me.

Furthermore, its history, in spite of being well-known in the Imladris community at least, is never revealed to us. Who made it, and why? How did it come to be where Mordy found it, somewhere in the country of Enedwaith? Why was it endowed with its peculiar properties? What does the name mean? And why was Mordomin (obviously) chosen to find and acquire it, yet did relatively little with it afterwards?

It seems to me that Erufel could be eliminated as such, & do little harm to the rest of the tale, if Mordomin can otherwise replace the sword he broke upside the Ringwraith on the road to Isengard.

**Added** I happened to look again at your remarks of May 2nd. Is it possible some of that new "backstory" yet to be posted will answer some of my questions? If so, I will partially reserve judgement pending my reading it.
Many Defeats & Many Fruitless Victories Memoirs Gateway
For I was talking aloud to myself...the old...choose the wisest person present to speak to...
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#11
While I hardly consider the Mordomin saga "wrapped up" since I am struggling through writing Mordomin 2.0, your question is not only valid, but one that has not been raised before but ought to have been, IMHO (i.e., readers have been letting me getting away without explaining it).

I don't know how I have gotten a pass for so long on a (seemingly) magical pale blue sword called "Erufel".

The concept of Erufel is that it appears throughout history, rather like Excaliber. But unlike the latter, it's purpose for arriving is never clear, and it is never decisive in the events that take place. It certainly does not demark Kingship.

Which is why loremasters such as Elrond (and Elrohir) know of it, but discount it.

And to anticipate your question, yes. Eruflel is meant to represent the Hand of Eru.
"Never ask an Elf for advice, for he will say both 'Yes' and 'No'." - Frodo Baggins to Gildor Inglorion
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#12
Which leads to why would such a sword come to Mordomin?

Aside from the obvious answer, which is that I am the author, and I made both of them up!

But, why in Middle-earth would Eru give this vague token of his goodwill to Mordomin, of all people, at 3018 of the Third Age?

Good question. I intend to incorporate it into the version 2.0 of "The Race to the Harlond". Wherein Elrohir, having taken Erufel from Mordomin, will ask, "How do you know that it was not meant that you deliver it to me, and that I should wield it?"

And I hope to have an answer by then.

Correction: the 'answer' will be in the aftermath of the Battle of the Pelennor.
"Never ask an Elf for advice, for he will say both 'Yes' and 'No'." - Frodo Baggins to Gildor Inglorion
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