Reviews for The Shackles of Safety
Levade chapter 1 . 9/2/2017
I'm surprised this has so few reviews, so here goes.

It's interesting to me that while Turgon tells her no, he doesn't try to stop her when she actually decides to go. It's like it was her decision all along and he just needed her to do it rather than ask. I never have seen her as a prisoner, except of her own decision. She was an equal with him in her eyes and so it was always her decision to make. I don't blame Turgon for not approving. As a king, rather than a brother, it was a matter of kingdom safety in his eyes.

Which is not to say I would like it. I think it would be a long 400 years in that city, despite all of its beauty.

I love the interaction between her and Ecthelion, one of my favorite and under-appreciated characters. Thank you for not making him weak, but making him complex. It hurts that she missed what he was saying, and that bit about her in Mandos looking back is a bitter twist of a knife (it's goooood).

I always wonder if she allowed herself to be healed and released from Mandos. I hope so. I always thought she and Nerdanel could have some amazing conversations about genius males who made poor choices late in life.
Elenluin chapter 1 . 4/16/2017
I absolutely love this one! I have always had some sympathy for Aredhel, caged in her brother's city, far from the wild men with whom she spent her youth. Whatever happened after, it started with Turgon holding her in Gondolin for too long (no doubt because he feared for her safety - out of good intentions)
CrackinAndProudOfIt chapter 1 . 2/15/2017
Wow! I love the wonderful presence of birds throughout this. The cage metaphor takes on so much power and vivacity with the juxtaposed images of the real Eagles flying and the figurative hen and falcon.

You've captured Aredhel superbly here. Her boredom with the 'permanency' of Gondolin is palpable in her words and thoughts while talking with Ecthelion: always saying the same thing, knowing each other's thoughts. The details in the library scenes are perfect, as well! The difference between a table and a desk, her contentment with dust, even the two distinct drafts of the letter to Turgon - are excellent. They draw such a tremendos parallel between her and her brother.

Ecthelion is heartbreaking, and so strongly characterized. I found the line where he asks who /doesn't/ wish they had wings in Gondolin particularly fascinating. He feels some of what Aredhel does, but he's level-headed enough (calculating those possible outcomes) to think better of it. Amazing :)

I really enjoyed this! Thanks for letting me know about it :D
-Crackers
kim-onka chapter 1 . 12/29/2016
Beautifully written, this piece does a great job of painting the dull and unchanging, stifling atmosphere of Gondolin as Aredhel perceived it. Her battle with her thoughts, trying to organise them on paper, frustration with the feeling of being trapped give the story its pace.
The conversation with Ecthelion is an interesting idea which adds a new layer of wistfulness to the whole situation. In fact, going slightly beyond the text, it feels like a riddle, where the answer is that the thing you sought was always with you: on one level, Aredhel wants to be granted freedom, but it turns out she already has it; on another, she means to find with Celegorm what she could have with Ecthelion. It is her own thoughts and preconceptions that truly trap her, and even after she breaks from some of them, enough to leave, others still endanger her, as Ecthelion points out.
The story as a whole is enticing and leaves me deeply impressed.
Kondoru chapter 1 . 12/27/2016
Yes, in spite of JRRTs idealising, I imagine Gondolin to be an unpleasant, totilarian regime. (yet another area where his

And its simply ironic that Aredhel, wild woman of the noldor, should end up in the arms of the most civilised wannabee Noldor there is...

(What did Eol see in her?)