Reviews for How do we go on?
Beautiful.Lives chapter 1 . 10/30/2017
What a wonderful One-Shot that was! You literally broke my heart, and the last sentences were so full of hope that it was becoming impossible for me not to almost cry!
Really, your writing is just... so powerful! The violence was very present, though not too explicit, and the dialogues... Well, the dialogues almost made me cry! Thorïn's questions seemed so right, and so emotional, and Balïn's answers were just perfect! And Dwalïn... I just love him, because he was always there for his King and his brother, and Balïn and Thorïn were always there for him too.
Thank you very VERY much for such a beautiful reading! :)
MySarcasticGreenCrayon chapter 1 . 2/2/2017
This was both haunting and beautiful. Wonderful writing.
Live4dancing chapter 1 . 12/21/2015
Wow this is so beautifully tragic. You are an amazing writer! Mid way through reading this a song popped in my head "Eyes Open" by Taylor Swift(for the Hunger Games) so I played it on repeat while I was reading it and it went so perfect!
Meysun chapter 1 . 11/19/2015
Oh rest assured, I have read this almost as soon as it was out. But then your work is always so rich, so beautiful, that I have to re-read again, and again, so that I make sure not to miss any of the moving, so truth-ringing details you somehow manage to put into every single paragraph.

Yeeeeees Thorin dealing with Azanulbizar! I couldn't believe it when I first read it - I thought you were dealing with the survivors after the Battle of Five Armies, but no, this is so much better because it's *new* in your world, we hardly know anything save a small glimpse in the 'Halls of Waiting' story.

So now let's comment thoroughly about everything that moved me (hah, gives me the excuse for reading it a fourth time :D).
I felt a little pang for Thorin's ankle, because no doubt I know where that idea came from... That, and his propensy to walk upon it until he limps... *shakes her head in her most Oin-like way*

Of course I totally love your Dwalin. You write him so young, so open and so warm-hearted despite all this grief, and what I really love in that work is that you manage to write Balin close to him, for once. I do not know how you achieve it, but I see Dwalin totally as a strong Dwarf, a true warrior despite his young age, but you also show us the boy he is, and this soft side he has partly because of his character, and also because he helped Groin with the wounded.
I know what just happened between him and Fundin and cannot help but wonder at the way he still seems such a boy, at the treasures of care and love he still holds within for Thorin and his brother.

You also saw the seeds of just how much Dwalin's touch is comforting to Thorin. The way he helps him washing his hands, the way he tries to keep him warm... Dwalin just doesn't seem to see how much it means to Thorin, how much it tells of the depth of their bound that he actually lets him, when he already flinches from Balin...

The contrast between the fires for the surviving and dying ones also left its mark in my thoughts. Yes surely, light and warmth is more needed when you are in pain and feel your life slip away, and it also helps the healers to move and tend to their duties... The horror is all bared, and those who try to survive are left in the darkness - such a powerful image...

I was also struck by the "understanding" you make Balin voice for Orcs. Now that is something I never thought of, and not because they are ugly, but because I believe Tolkien never wrote them as creatures caring for each other. True enough, you can see some bound between Azog and Bolg in the movies, but for me Orcs used to be twisted, selfish creatures who are driven by hatred and lust of blood [that's why I so love watching Helm's Deep battle, no need for compassion when they die :p].
I used to see them as beings whose minds do not even belong to them, just some kind of "tools" created by Evil to achieve his purpose... But here you come and write them almost "human", and it's a bit unsettling - close to what I feel now towards Lancelot (hihi), going from "he's evil and weak and I hate him" to "maybe there were good reasons after all"...
In short, it hit me and made me think, and that's what's so good in your writing.

I also loved Thorin's clear-sighted despair in his "it was not even worth it". I think that's the great drama of his life, that there has been so much death and wounds and striving and fights when all that should have mattered was to stay together.
It probably was worth it, because it allowed Orcs to be defeated during BOTFA, but surely that's no comfort when you have just lost your baby-brother...

I wondered about two things, as well. First: where is Frerin's body? Is it with Thrain, is he the one watching him, trying to prepare him for the pyres? Or is he lying with all the others - you didn't write about him when you described the pyres, and I actually relished it because I was afraid you would write it so well that my own conception would shatter like glass after that, but still I wonder...
And then I also marvelled at their "calm". Thorin's, Balin's... can they truly be so master of themselves after such a massacre? But I guess that's what happens in very dire situations, that you actually push your feelings away and keep going until it's not just a matter of survival anymore...

Your Balin looks so young as well, and I bow to his wisdom and compassion. I also bow to your terrible forshadowing-skills, in sowing the first seeds of the Moria-reclaim into that Dwarf - oh Balin, you did exactly what you warned Thorin against and yet your feelings sound so *right*...
I just loved the way Fundin's son worked, that day. It was a brilliant idea to make them use their belts to record the dead's names... A belt is something you keep around your being, something that helps you stay "upright", and at that part I had tears in my eyes.
It moved me beyond measure when Dwalin said his line about a son of Durin. Somehow his voice sounds like "the truth in children's voices" and I just loved him more for it. I think you can clearly see the seeds of this tender, caring Dwarf beneath the shield of tattoos, crest and knuckledusters - he's so in tune with the Dwalin from 'Through the Darkness' that my heart just warmed as I read him.
Thorin is so quiet, so upright here, that it makes me ache. I am just glad he has Fundin's sons around him to keep him going, because one can clearly see it won't be easy at all - that he won't let even his father and sister close, and that he will forbid himself any tear, any gesture of comfort and any rest.
It's so heartbreaking to see how young they are, and the line where you make them wipe their faces is so moving in that special way you have to *always* leave your readers with some hope.

Yes - how do we go on after this? I guess the only thing to do is to try to keep aware we are not alone. Somehow our thoughts matched in both our works, and I am glad for it :).
This is so long that I stop here, but thank you again for your beautiful words and read you soon I hope :)!
sorrellkaren chapter 1 . 11/17/2015
You give a very personal account of the lives of the sons on Durin. You have your own way of writing from the heart and it is always appreciated. How can one ever understand the cruelty of war? The reasoning that causes thousands of good men to die? You did not presume to answer these age old questions but gave Balin the words to comfort and sustain his future King. That is enough. Many are pawns in the hands of fate and Durin's folk are no different. I too have thought long hours about the horror of Azanulbizar and wondered what Tolkien had seen in the World War's that made him write of such a slaughter. There is always hope, that is how you chose to end this fic and as hope always is, it was inspirational.