Reviews for The Mariner's Woe
helenamarkos chapter 1 . 11/4/2014
This is lovely. I am a sucker for the introspective pieces, and also for tales of characters who are bound to their fate. I like that last sentence, because it really does speak to the all knowing god that kind of sticks you for the "greater good". Earendil is ultimately just a pawn in a larger game, and that's a sad, sad tale.

Nicely done.
GeorgyannWayson chapter 1 . 9/15/2014
Hi there! Horribly fandom-blind, but I'll certainly do my best for you! Let's go!

Great opening paragraph, I really love the sense of loyalty that shone through in the narrator's proud declaration of their occupation, the sailor. It's almost like they went through a complete life change; no more is this person essentially their own, but they're tied to their ship forever, and from the narrative, I could tell that they consider it a high honor.

[I was a fool] and right here, I was like "oh, snap, things are about to go downhill". Let me just my seatbelt on here...

Oh, the initial honeymoon phase of the new job. How deceptive it can be, dear narrator. I certainly feel for them, and I really love how honest they were in this observation of [the price seemed light]. But something tells me it ain't all it appears to be...

And here's where things get grim. The classic 'puppet master' set up *shaking my head* I only say classic because throughout history, so many rulers have been subjected to being a puppet at the hand of a puppetmaster, and it never ends well for anyone. Oh, I sure hope SOMETHING good comes out of all this!

As an aside, I love the enriching image of the melted crown with its [pile of twisted metal and cracked gems in a coating of ash]. So beautifully haunting. Though I will say that you used 'twisted' a couple of times really close together [twisted metal...twisted shadow...twisted mockery] and it was a little jarring for me. Maybe consider changing one (twisted shadow maybe) so as to add some variety?

I think of a lot of people can identify with what this narrator experienced with the pain of the people at its clearest when Atalente falls. Sometimes, the thing that stands out the most amidst the things we see can be the most heartbreaking thing of all...sorry, I might be overthinking things here or just being silly, don't mind me...

[that)] rogue parentheses mark here :)

[After all these years] this may just be me, but this sentence looks rather lengthy and really comma-heavy. I'm not sure where exactly you could split it (or even if you could with the way its currently worded), but it's something to think about if you ever decide to come back around.

[...the time of the world's ending] UH-OH...

What a poignant ending; it really made me sit here and just take in everything I just read all over again. You ended this on a great note, and it really served to echo within me. I can't really think of anything else to say, dear writer! Overall you did a great job - the narrative was engaging, the wording rich with visual language and it was just a big ol' joy to read and review. Thank you for writing!
The Bitter Kitten chapter 1 . 9/14/2014
What I really love about this is almost the deconstruction of “And he lived happily ever after” trope. Especially in Greek mythology, there was this idea of the gods intervening and turning people into the trees and statues and animals as a way of saving them from some pressing danger, without stopping to think of how suddenly having leaves and being immobile or made of stone, or not be able to speak anymore would affect a human being. In the same way, it seems like a glorious ‘end’ to become the night watchman and guide others by the light on your brow, but you enumerate all the ways in which being a nearly-helpless watcher can really wreck someone. I’ve always heard that it’s one of the worst things in the world for a parent to bury their child, but you really manage to impress on me the absolute horror of watching your children’s children destroy everything with their hubris and their greed. And then the fallout of that being that your wife and children are lost to you forever.
The way you describe the Valar and their favors reminds me a lot of how people talk and write about fairies and the fair folk, how their bargains are easy and simple on the surface, but have a hidden twist that’s almost worse than what you were trying to avoid by bargaining in the first place.
I also love the subtle work you do with Earendil himself. It’s not very noticeable, but I love his slow and almost imperceptible transformation from a heroic man, to something a little less than a god, and I love that while he was heroic, he will eventually bring about the destruction of the world. I love how his perception of time, death, and morality shifts to something that’s not entirely human as well.

I really like this. It’s subtle and complex. Well done!
MissScorp chapter 1 . 9/14/2014
Hi there! Totally fandom blind here so you know! Disclaimer aside, on with the review!

I really like this section here: ((I am the sailor of legend, called the lover of the sea. I am the captain of my ship.)) because it epitomizes the lore of the sailor. You've highlighted what people know about men of the sea. They are hooked to it, infatuated by it, take it as a lover. They are the masters of their lives and destiny when they stand at the wheel of their ship and steer her into the untold distance. Tuorion at first is the ever typical seaman, loving sailing the oceans in a quest to save his peoples or repay his debt to the Valar he beseeched for any army in which to defend his people from the new evil trying to destroy it. However, he finds out that his love of the sea is a curse he will spend eternity trying to break.

((The greater the favour, the greater the price.))- a very prophetic and true statement. The more that you ask for, the more that will be required in repayment. Here he asks for things that appear noble (an army to protect his people and a Silamril to guard), and his ((duty was only half of each full day)) in return. He was allowed to ((protect his sons)) and spend time with his wife, whom he loves above all others. His sacrifice seemed worth it. Until more demands were required in order to fulfill the request he made. Soon his duties became such that he was no longer allowed to have his half a day with his wife.

The desperation in this section: ((I fear that if the Valar do not release me from my torment I shall put an end to it the only way I possibly can: by opening the Doors of Night and beginning the time of the world's ending.))ales or clear that he will go to any length in which to free himself from what has become his eternal prison. It adds the breadth of time to this piece and gives is an idea of how long Tuorion has been indentured to his masters.
He has seen the worlds change, the rise and fall of man, the creation of the One Ring, the fall of Sauron.
He's carried out many orders and done many deeds. He's tired and wants to go home, but knows he cannot because he's bound to his masters in eternal servitude for his favor. However, he's become so desperate to change his fate that he is willing to open the flood gates and release a stream of evil that would see the destruction of the world in order to obtain his freedom from his bonds.

This was excellent to me: ((I hear my enemy laughing at me as he stirs behind the impassable doors, gathering his army. He knows my pain, and he glorifies in it.)) because it shows how the ones who he once served faithfully and with pride have now become his enemy because of their having indentured him in such a hellish imprisonment. They know he desires his freedom and relish in denying him it. And Tuorion has reached the point where ((I no longer care, for I am at peace.)).

In all this was a very nice piece! Great job!
StrawberryDuckFeathers chapter 1 . 3/31/2014
. Story of the Week for Reviews Lounge, too! Well done :D . . Fandom blind .

First of all, nicely paragraphed. I liked the 'little chunks' layout; very manageable and kept me reading. Also, as a first impression, the even-looking paragraph gave the story a kind of balanced, equilibrium-like feel- as if all were okay. I like the question you raise in your A/N, which already makes you feel sorry for the character, sailing through monotony for such a long time. I like the reminiscent tone in 'they told me...for the job', since it's like a reflection on a time when Earendil was ambitious, when she/he had hope. I love the sense of hope lost in the repetition of 'I am no longer...' since it makes you feel sympathy, and it's like her/his dreams have all come crashing down to nothing. The tone of regret is great in the first paragraph, and it kept me engaged because I wondered what kind of price the group exacted. The way the remorseful tone carries on into para 2 is nice, with 'I...was a fool'. I think the hopelessness really comes to its climax in the 'bloody conclusion' of the 'thousands' of years of war, as if all that time was spent only to lose the fight. I found it tension-building when Earendil threatened to end time by ending her/his torment...I wondered: would she/he risk the world for her/himself? I also love the fact that he ends without finding out the answer to his biggest question, and it's a very tension-building cliffhanger. Seems like the years of wondering will just carry on. Lovely work!

- - - - - - - - - - - -
(corrupters words) should be 'corrupter's' here, with the possession apostrophe. :) Same case with: (sons other)
(" She had asked) [“This is my dog.”]
If this followed with a dialogue tag, then you’d replace the full stop/period at the end of it with a comma. You don’t need to capitalise the first word of a dialogue tag, unless it starts with a name, or anything else that would normally need capitalising, too. Examples: [“This is my dog,” I said.] [“This is my dog,” he said.] [“This is my dog,” Jim said.]

A dialogue tag is something that describes how something is said, such as: said, asked, snapped, shouted, bellowed, yelled, screamed and whispered.
[“This is right.” He said. ] Not this one…
[“This is right,” He said.] Nor this one…
[“This is right.” he said.] Nope…
[“This is right,” he said.] This one is correct. : )
- - - - - - - - - -
Excellent work. Full of emotion, and your prose style is beautiful :)
Hija del Angel chapter 1 . 3/31/2014

I am a little on the picky side when it comes to LotR, especially Silmaril- my preciousss- so I hope you take this kindly.

It's well written, first and foremost. You have a nice vocabulary, and you didn't hesitate to use it. There is a lot of impressive imagery here, and the story's narrative is clear enough, with a light enough touch on the complicated politics and stuff that go on, that someone who hasn't read Silmaril should be able to get a general sense of what's going on, and someone who has read it doesn't feel like they're being dragged over hot coals being forced to re-remember every single thing that happened around Earendil, and _after_ Earendil, considering he sees all.

Every once in a while I found myself jarred out of the narrative by an... un-fit word choice, and there were a few errors of oversight, such as a missing 'postrophe in 'my sons other descendants'.

Also, 'he knows my pain, and he glorifies in it' ... Glories in it, maybe? I think?

All in all, I like the structure of it, I like the setting of it, I thing Earendil is very in character, and I can see the inevitability in the way you draw these scenes. Nice work.
Ersatz Einstein chapter 1 . 3/25/2014
Technical errors were few and far between, mostly in the realm of punctuation ("the corruptors words," "my sons other descendants," "it's former glory,").
Your use on the image of the mariner, though subtle, was cleverly executed. The first sentences, especially, had some of the same endless, impersonally suffering quality of the Rime ("the sailor of legend... the captain of my ship," "I am no longer the master of my fate").
You made use of canon details and names ("the fall of Atalante," "Ar-Pharazon the arrogant," etc.) elegantly, occasionally using them and moving on. It made your knowledge of the source material clear while increasing the fic's sense of epic scope. It reminded me of the way Tolkien would use language in his descriptions of historical background and legends.
ShadedRogue chapter 1 . 3/24/2014
As someone who has never actually read Silmarillion, I found that your narrative had a very good description of the background story so that a complete noob like me could understand the story that was being told. And I felt that the history was interwoven into the story so well that it came across naturally, rather than as over-bearing as can sometimes be the case when you're trying to include a sizable amount of information into such a short piece.

My favourite part about this piece is your use of language. Your diction is impeccible. It's sophisticated and coherent, but it's not too complicated or flowery. I think it fits the tone of a Tolkien fanfic very well.

I liked the progression of Earendil's story. He starts as someone who is honoured at having been chosen which such a duty, to someone who has been forced to watch for millennia as the world falls to ruin and he descendants are destroyed - and in turn he begins to resent the duty he has been given, to the point where he is actually considering starting the end of the world so that he can escape for it. It's interesting to see how such an honourable man can only be pushed so far before his own desires start to trump the duty that he has been given.

- "I saw my sons other descendants..."
Aprostrophe needed. Son's.
reminiscent-afterthought chapter 1 . 2/12/2014
I know I've read the Silmarillion, but I don't remember a thing of it so my LoTR and Hobbit knowledge is all I'm armed with for this fic.

I love how you start with defining the narrator without making it sound like you're doing it solely for the benefit of the reader. Quite deceptive, the way you've worded it: "I am" really does sound like a definition, but it could be someone trying to place themselves as much as trying to tell another.

"called the lover of the sea" - I personally think it works better without the "called"

The way that first paragraph twists is gorgeous as well; a tad choppy, but I think the first person narrative helps with that. The way it changes from defining to being defined is a clever way of showing the shift of control as well - and destiny too. :D One of my favourite topics.

"my peoples" - wouldn't the old-fashioned english still use "people"? I thought "peoples" is a more slang term.

The sentiment of this is beautiful as well. You mention it as a good thing lost, but neither of those is overdone. The history you weave into this is beautiful as well, and even if I can't remember the Silmarrilon, I can recognise. The length and tiredness that comes with his task is very beautifully shown as well: the perfect opportunity to show the slow progression of history without being forced too often into the present.

The way this ends with a question is very clever as well; the narrator will probably never know the answer to that, another layer of subtlety with which to conclude the piece.

Beautiful work.
Sofia Volpina chapter 1 . 11/1/2013
You have a rich and ample vocabulary, so it fits this Silmarillion fanfiction nicely.

While your twist on Eärendil's story is interesting, it alters Tolkien's character and the signification of his tale and legend drastically. I understand that he carries a great burden and yes, I can understand how circumstances might have very well driven him on the verge of insanity. But still, rather than being a psychological novel, Tolkien's work is all about the legends and the messages, meanings, and archetypes that they carry. And, well, having Eärendil wonder whether he should open the Doors of Night and bringing about the world's end to spare himself of further torment... that pretty much changes everything he incorporates in Tolkien's original story.

Don't let this sound too harsh, it's just debating... :) You have a good writing style and I enjoyed reading your story (and it's the first time I say this for a first person POV)!
starlight.moon.princess chapter 1 . 7/11/2013
This is wonderful!

This is beautiful and unusual look into Earendil's story, definitely one I've never seen before.
you're right, someone who has to sail the heavens for so long and see his line crumble and fall would be bitter, would view immortality in the form of a as a curse.

You've written this brilliantly, with just the right amount of poetic language to make identifiably based on Tolkien's works, which is hard to do, so I commend you for it!

I do have a question about Elwing, though - from what I remember, she is able to turn into a sea-bird and visit her husband, and he in turn can visit her. Also, having chosen the fate of the Elves for the sake of Luthien, she is as immortal as her husband, so I'm a bit confused by the implication that she's dead. Or am I reading too much into this?
I do wish his relationship with his wife was more explored so that we could understand why he cannot see her anymore, or why she - and Elrond, again immortal - are apparently dead.

Apart from that though, I love the way you've set up the story to hint to the reader that it will be Earendil who will open the Doors of Night, and even though fight Morgoth, still cause the end of the world.

I love the last line, because it's not only a brilliant way to end this, it's also a very pertinent question that is asked a lot of times in regard to a higher power, and i think you showed Earendil's suspicion along with the growing seeds of hatred very well.

Well done! :)
Edhla chapter 1 . 7/5/2013
Awesome! It's been years since I read the Sil, but I'm familiar with what we have of "Earendil was a Mariner" and always liked the story though, as you point out, realistically it would kind of (completely) suck.

I really like your high language here, which is only fitting considering the subject matter; though in the first paragraph, the word "job" did strike me as a little un-silmarilly ;)

"The Valar exact..." Yes. Yes they do. Damn.

"As Beleriand sank." I love, love that story and all implied in it.

"She had asked teasingly..." I'd remove the capital letter from "She", but I really, really loved this moment between them.

"The time of the world's ending." Such beautiful rhythm of prose!

And a sad and unsettling ending. I really loved this. Well done x
Wanderer in the Night chapter 1 . 3/6/2013
Ooh. Very conspiracy-like, I like it a lot. :-)
Freya's Valhalla chapter 1 . 2/18/2013
Wow. You know what's the most fascinating thing about this work? That I had never, ever, conceived this side of Earendil. When I read the Silmarillion, it did strike me to learn that Earendil had actually desired to choose the fate of men, but in the end had refused for his wife, since one would usually not imagine that Earendil, one of the most reknown figures of elven history, had wanted to be counted among his mortal kin.

Your point of view makes total sense, in fact, it's absolutely fascinating how it makes so much sense. And the last phrase says it all.
Virtuella chapter 1 . 6/8/2012
Ah, thanks for directing me here. Yes, I can see this, a rebellious mind like those we find in ancient Greek myths. The tone and cadence of this piece is very well done and fitting for the topic. I would take out "Correspondingly" in the first paragraph, though, because it is unnecessary and it jars.

I found the long paragraph about Numenor a little dull, probably because it only tells us what we already know. For something like that to work, you'd really need to bring out the stylistic fireworks. ;-)
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