Because ffn has decided it has a Problem with the Owner's Guides format, or maybe just a Problem with me, the Owner's Guides to Silmarillion characters are now part of a side-story to the 'Care and Training of Elves.'  Our heroine is searching Middle-Earth to find the missing scrolls of the Annals of Catoë.  In her journey, she has come to the Mines of Moria to seek her book in the Chamber of Marzabûl, the Dwarves' hall of records.  Feel free to ignore the story element, but please enjoy the guides!  For the full backstory, in case you actually care, see 'New Owner's Guide to Care and Training of Elves' in the LOTR section.

With permission from Theresa Green.

The Chamber of Marzabûl:  Finrod

            The flickering torchlight reflected on the hewn walls of the passage as Dîm lead the way to the Chamber of Marzabûl.  The cloaked figure of the heroine followed closely behind her guide, not daring to fall too far behind the light.  It seemed they walked for miles and miles beneath the earth before Dîm began to slow and examine the side passages more carefully.

            "Through here," he said at last, thrusting his torch into a grand-looking archway.

            Mary Sue entered the chamber as Dîm began to light the torches held in sconces along the walls.  The room was vast, huge…and filled wall-to-wall with cases, books, scrolls, and chests.  It was not difficult to believe that the accumulated knowledge of an entire race lay within the delved chamber beneath the mountain.  But…how was she ever going to find the scrolls she was looking for in all this?

            Dîm began poking around in a shadowy corner, shifting books aside and moving chests across the floor to get to the deepest recesses of the archives.

            "I know of a couple of places to look for your special Elf-scrolls," he was saying.  "There's more than a few things in this archive that are said to have arrived under mysterious circumstances.  I recall seeing some papers in here that came from one of the Elf-realms."

            "Really?" said Mary Sue.  "How did the Dwarves get them?"

            "Well, that's a long story," said Dîm with a genuine smile.  There was little he loved more than a long story. 

            "How about the short version?" Mary Sue said impatiently.

            Grumbling a little, Dîm huffed and replied, "This stack here," he indicated a pile of books and scrolls, "came from the fallen kingdom of Nargothrond.  These once belonged to the Lord Felak-gundu himself.  After his betrayal by the sons of Fëanor and the desolation of the worm Glaurung, Nargothrond was broken open and the Petty-dwarf Mîm and his sons took over the guardianship of those halls.  Well, once Mîm was no more, some of the folk of Nogrod and Belegost thought it would be appropriate to, er…tidy up, yes, all that mess the dragon had left behind.  Well, some Men got there before us you see, and carried off most everything valuable, but we rescued all of Lord Felak-gundu's own possessions and eventually they were brought to Khazad-dûm for safe keeping.  It is said that some of the scrolls he had came to him under 'mysterious circumstances.'  Truth to tell, no one has really bothered with any of the Elf-scrolls in centuries, so it may be that you'll find what you're looking for here.  Ah!  Here we are!"

            In a great puff of dust, Dîm pulled a long scroll-case free of a large stack.  He offered it to Mary Sue, who accepted it with trembling hands.  The clasp on the scroll was the same as the other five Annals she had already discovered!  She had found the Sixth Scroll of Catoë!

            Eagerly she undid the clasp and unrolled the scroll, anxious to learn its secrets.  As Dîm watched her expectantly, her brow furrowed in surprise.  The scroll was indeed in English, written in the same hand as the others, but it was not part of the Annals.  This scroll appeared to be something different altogether.  Upon the weathered parchment, this is what she read:

Finrod:  The Owner's Guide and Maintenance Manual

***CONGRATULATIONS!***

You are now the proud owner of FINROD FELAGUND! This charismatic and loveable unit is sure to give you many years of pleasurable service. To get the most out of your Friend-of-Men, please read the following manual carefully and follow all instructions. FINROD may be sold separately or in the CHILDREN OF FINARFIN-5 series quint-pack.

           
           
TECHNICAL SPECIFICATIONS:

Name: Finrod, also called Felagund, Nóm

Type: Male Elf (25% Noldor, 25% Vanyar, 50% Teleri)

Manufacturers: Nargothrond Enterprises

Date of Manufacture: Days of the Two Trees

Height: Inferior to most other Noldorin Prince units

Length: In no way a reflection of his height
           
           

ACCESSORIES

Your FINROD is a multi-functional unit, and comes with these useful items:

(a) Silver Crown of Nargothrond
(b) Ring with Serpent Motif
(c) Snowshoes
(d) Costume befitting First-Age Noldorin Prince
(e) Sword
(f) Harp
(g) Handy-Hewer™ mining kit
(h) Pile of Noldorin treasure
(i) Trial-size packet of Moral Fiber™

           
Do not attempt to deprive your FINROD of accessory (a). He will willingly surrender it only to an ORODRETH unit.

           

           
INSTALLATION:

To properly install your FINROD, please be advised of the following:

(1.) All FINROD units are delivered by refrigerated truck.
(2.) Instead of a crate, you'll find your FINROD and his accessories are shipped encased in a block of ice.
(3.) Leave him out in the yard for a few days so the ice will melt.
(4.) Before you know it, the sun will rise and your FINROD will revive.
(5.) Once he thaws out, sing to him for a while then pretend to fall asleep in front of him.
(6.) The sight of your sleeping form will amaze and delight FINROD, and stir love in his heart.
(7.) FINROD will sing you a lullaby, at which point you should get up and greet him.
(8.) You will know installation is a success when FINROD offers you his friendship.
           
           

COMPATABILITY:

All FINROD units are programmed with three modes of operation:

*Humor
*Drama
*Horror

FINROD is beloved by ELVES and MEN alike. In *Humor mode, you'll notice that your FINROD may closely resemble an Inscrutably Super-cute Elfling. This is normal. FINROD can safely interact with any unit other than FORCES OF DARKNESS in this mode. He may make light of dire situations with his 1000watt smile.

In *Drama mode, FINROD is prone to swearing oaths of friendship which may involve the gifting of accessory (b), having serious conversations, and being generally Kingly. He is noble of heart and mind and gentle of temperament, so he will make every effort to get along with any other unit other than FORCES OF DARKNESS. He is especially drawn to MEN units and eagerly befriends them. He may bring stray MEN home to keep as pets. FINROD is also very friendly with DWARVES, easily winning their respect and friendship.

*Horror mode is exclusively for dire circumstances. FINROD is self-sacrificing and will interpose himself between his friends and danger. He will get himself into very ugly situations but will nonetheless face all peril with a song. All FORCES OF DARKNESS are drawn to a FINROD unit in *Horror mode.

           
FINROD comes with the following software bundles installed: Inscrutable Super-Cuteness, Smug Chastity, Friend-of-Men, Occasional Foresight v2.3, Hewer of Caves, Oath of Friendship v2.0, Duel of Songs, Spells for All Seasons, Virtuous King, and Doom of Mandos.
           

           
OPERATING PROCEDURE:

FINROD is an Elf of many talents and you'll find he can be put to one of any number of constructive uses.

Tutor: Are your children having trouble in school? Let FINROD handle their education. Just listening to him makes a person smarter.

Contractor: Planning any extensions to your home? Avoid the hassle of applying for expensive city permits, and have FINROD delve your spacious new additions completely underground. No one ever needs to know about your luxurious subterranean stronghold.

Bodyguard: FINROD is very protective of those to whom he gives his friendship, and will guard the life of another with his own, if needs be.

Translator: FINROD is a talented diplomat, and can act as ambassador between you and any foreign peoples you may encounter. You'll find that he can read the thoughts of MEN, even if their language is not the same.

Fortune-teller: On occasion, FINROD will have episodes of eerie prescience. If you're wondering about the fate of the stock market or the outcome of a sporting event, ask FINROD if he's had any bouts of unusual foresight lately.

Entertainer: This musically inclined ELF delights to share his musical abilities. A singer of great renown, he is also skilled with the harp. Even the crudest instrument in the hands of a FINROD can produce the sweetest songs you've ever heard.

Costumer: No more going to Wal-Mart for your children's Halloween costumes! With FINROD's Spells for All Seasons, he can conjure a disguise appropriate for any occasion. (Also useful for playing Santa at Christmas! FINROD loves handing out gifts!)
           

           
CLEANING

Standard ELVEN bathing procedures apply. Unlike many ELVES, FINROD loves to play in the dirt. He is frequently filthy from playing with his Handy-Hewer™, so regular bathing is necessary. While FINROD is for the most part capable of cleaning himself, this is no reason you shouldn't be neighborly and give him a hand.
           

           
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Q: I've noticed that, unlike many other ELVEN units, FINROD has no slash mode. How do I get the most out of my FINROD FELAGUND?

A: We suggest you start by deleting his Smug Chastity software. This program causes FINROD to avoid any situation where his virtue is threatened. His slash potential is therefore very low. In addition, FINROD will pine for AMARIË, but because of his Occasional Foresight will not marry her and will therefore refuse all others. Uninstalling his Smug Chastity will change all this and greatly expand his potential uses.

Q:  I followed the installation instructions, but when my block of ice thawed it was not the gorgeous blonde ELF unit that I expected but instead a DUNGALEF THE ORC!  What gives!?

A:  Worry not!  Your DUNGALEF actually is FINROD!  He is using his Spells for All Seasons in order to disguise himself to travel through potentially unfriendly territory.  To break the spell, you can either convince him he is among friends and his disguise is unnecessary, or you can rent or borrow a SAURON unit to forcibly strip him naked (of his disguise).  Either way, it's up to you.

Q: My FINROD is always hanging around in the basement and I catch him scratching around in the corners. What is going on?

A: FINROD's Occasional Foresight program has been initiated by exposure to an ULMO unit. He desires a realm of his own, and is attempting to dig himself a stronghold in your basement.

Q: What should I do about this?

A: Hire some DWARF units to help him out. FINROD easily befriends DWARVES and will pay them with his accessory (h), Pile of Noldorin treasure. In return, they will help him delve his caves, and will even make for him the Nauglamír, a carcanet of gold set with jewels, in token of esteem.

Q: My neighbor has the entire SONS OF FËANOR series, and we want to get together with all our ELVEN units for a hunt. Is this a good idea?

A: Yes and no. FINROD gets along well with MAGLOR and MAEDHROS and will happily go hunting with them. However, FINROD is easily distracted and will most likely wander away during the chase. In addition, CELEGORM and CURUFIN units are notorious muck-rakers, and will endeavor to turn all ELVEN units against FINROD. If you two are not careful, you may find yourselves thrust like beggars from your own gate.

Q: What is this trial-size packet of Moral Fiber™ for?

A: Moral Fiber™ is a specially-formulated cereal for Elves of Incorruptible Goodness. It keeps them stable, regular, and sane. If you give Moral Fiber™ to your FINROD and like the results, you can find this fine cereal at the nearest specialty store.

Q: My neighbor, who has the largest collection of FORCES OF DARKNESS units I've ever seen, owns several WEREWOLF units and they've been giving my FINROD the eye in a way that I just don't care for. What should I do?

A: Talk to your neighbor and find out what she's been feeding them. Chances are she's been giving them Felaground-beef™, the most popular wolf-kibble on the market, which is made from decommissioned FINROD units. Try to persuade her to give them an alternative kibble, such as Beren-bites™. If this does not work, consider investing in a HUAN THE HOUND (Manufactured by All Good Beasts, Inc.).
           
           

TROUBLE SHOOTING

Problem: Your FINROD arrived already thawed out. He acts meek and shows no interest in adventure.

Solution: You have accidentally been issued a FINARFIN unit. If you do not wish to keep this timid but sensible unit, return him to the manufacturers with proof of purchase and the correct unit will be sent to you.

Problem: FINROD is a huge disappointment. He is a useless, cowardly, dullard of a weakling.

Solution: This brainless beauty is actually an ORODRETH. If you have no use for an ELF with more beauty than talent, the return policy is the same as FINARFIN.

Problem: Your FINROD unit seems pensive, moody and sad.

Solution: FINROD has recently witnessed the expiration of a BËOR unit. This is his first experience with units that do not last forever, and your FINROD's gentle heart is breaking. To cheer him up, you must entice him with some distracting activities, such as offering to let him delve your cave.*

[*Note: This will provoke one of two reactions, depending on if you have uninstalled the Smug Chastity software.]

Problem: Some neighborhood ELVES are planning an offensive, and naturally your FINROD wants to go along. You are concerned about his safety.

Solution: Buy or rent a BARAHIR to send along with him. Should disaster befall them, BARAHIR (or possibly another unit of the HEROES OF MEN series) will not fail to come to the rescue of a FINROD in need.

Problem: A ragged-looking BEREN unit has showed up at your house, waving around a ring and beseeching your FINROD for aid.

Solution: The ring is indeed the Ring of Barahir. When in need, BEREN is programmed to seek out the nearest FINROD unit for help. Your FINROD will fulfill his Oath of Friendship programming at any cost, so you will not be able to dissuade him. Pick a couple of other units to accompany them and pack them sack lunches, then send them on their way.

Problem: FINROD has been missing for weeks after leaving with BEREN, and you notice your neighbor's CELEGORM and CURUFIN are smirking an awful lot.

Solution: Unfortunately, your FINROD has likely been made into Felaground-beef™. Accept our condolences and a coupon good for 10% off your next purchase of FINROD FELAGUND.

           

           
FINAL NOTE – GUARANTEE

All FINROD FELAGUND units come with an expiration date. Until that time, your unit and all his components are under full warranty. After his expiration, you are advised to return your FINROD to the manufacturers to be used for Felaground-beef™, and you will receive a voucher for a discount on your next purchase of FINROD. Good luck and enjoy!

           

Felaground-beef™ and Beren-bites™ flavored MEATIES kibble are registered trademarks of Hellhound Cuisine.
Moral Fiber™ cereal is available at specialty stores.

*          *          *          *          *

            "Well I'll be!" exclaimed Dîm, who Mary Sue realized at last was reading over her shoulder.  "Can you read that chicken-scratch?" he asked her.

            "Yes," she said.  "This is good stuff, certainly, but it isn't what I'm looking for.  It must have something to do with those 'synthetic Elves,' mentioned in the Introduction.  But it's not one of the Annals of Catoë," she said in a disappointed voice.  Looking back over the text for a moment, she muttered aloud, "What's this about a 'Dungalef'?  I don't get it."

            "Hmm…" said Dîm, scratching his bearded chin.  "I think we have a copy of The Lay of Leithian around here somewhere if you'd like to read it…"

            "No!" Mary Sue quickly replied.  "No, that's alright!"  The last thing she needed was another boring book.  "There's only one thing I want, and that's my very own Elf!"

            "Too bad, lass, very sorry," Dîm replied as he reached for the Scroll of Finrod to take it back.

            Mary Sue drew it out of reach.  "Ah, perhaps I should still hang on to this one anyway, er, just in case."  She smiled sweetly, batting her eyelashes at Dîm.

            The Dwarf shrugged.  "Suit yourself.  Come, there's a few more Elf-scrolls over here.  Maybe that book you're after is among them."

            Carefully re-rolling the Scroll of Finrod, Mary Sue resealed it and tucked it safely into her satchel with the five Annals she had already found.  If the quest didn't work out, it seemed like having her own FINROD unit might not be a bad second choice.

            Mary Sue followed the squat form of Dîm her guide as he lead her deeper into the archives.

NEXT:  Túrin

*          *          *          *          *

A/N  In honor of one of the bravest Elves there ever was.  Hope I did him justice.  Please review!

'The Owner's Guide and Maintenance Manual' format belongs to its creator, the wonderful Theresa Green, and is used here with her permission.  The 'software bundles installed' is my own adaptation.

Felaground-beef™ and Beren-bites™ flavored MEATIES kibble are registered trademarks of Hellhound Cuisine.

Moral Fiber™ cereal is available at specialty stores.