Middle-Earth Fanfiction Awards

For the Dark

Author: Forodwaith

Nominator: unknown

2004 Award Category: Races: Rohan - Second Place

Story Type: Other Fiction : Length: unknown
Rating: PG -- Reason for Rating: N/A
Summary: Tolkien says that Gleowine, Theoden's minstrel, "made no other song" after the King's death. What became of him?


Review scores are not available for 2004.

Reviewed by: Marta -- Score: N/A

Oh, I liked this story! Tolkien never mentions a custom like this, but I can see it given the Rohirric custom. The bond between Theoden and Gleowine is well-drawn, and Gleowine's grief was convincing. I especially liked Forodwaith's use of details and the interaction between Gleowine and the horse. Overall, it was a very nice story. This was the first time I'd read it, and I wouldn't mind rereading it some day.

Reviewed by: Larian Elensar -- Score: N/A

Touching. Almost had me crying, especially at the part where he leaves the hall, but says goodbye to no one.

Reviewed by: Dwimordene -- Score: N/A

Wonderful and bittersweet story that brings to life a character who had really no more than a name. Although we anticipate the story's ending simply by reading the title, Gléowine has in fact faced 'the dark' before in a way that is, perhaps, more terrifying than dying in fact. To fall from a warrior to a cripple in a day's time is in a way to lose the life that he had, and it is to his credit, and to Théoden's, that they force themselves to face that amputation of Gléowine's future and to build Gléowine a new life. And Théoden is well-repaid for his insistance that his friend not surrender to the dark prematurely, as Gléowine serves him through the long dark of mental debilitation following Gríma's ascendency. The two repay each other amply, and part as friends should. I love that although Gléowine, after Théoden's death, finally follows the old custom, in Middle-earth, the westward lie the Undying Lands, and so perhaps a little grace for Gléowine as well, beyond what he has earned for himself with steadfast service to his king and friend.

Reviewed by: Thundera Tiger -- Score: N/A

I'm not even sure where to begin my comments for this story, because it means so much and there is so much to it, despite its short length. The first person narrative can be an interesting phenomenon because while we get to know the thoughts of the person speaking, it's sometimes more difficult to know the person himself. Others are painted much more vividly through this narrative. But that's not the case here. Gleowine is just as strong a personality as Theoden, and the portrayal of their friendship is the driving force behind this story. And it also seems to be the driving force behind Gleowine, for Theoden is gone and so too are the bright days for Gleowine. LotR is filled with stories of friendship, from Frodo and Sam to Legolas and Gimli, and I think that this story could fit right in with those. The characters are real, the events are beautifully drawn, and the ending is very much akin to the endings of the other friendship. Great story.

Reviewed by: Viv -- Score: N/A

There is some fancy and impressive research going on here. It shows in the immersive texture of your Rohan. Devil's in the details, they say, and you certainly got those details right.

Reviewed by: Ellbee -- Score: N/A

You draw a sad but not sentimental picture of a man who can no longer ride in a rider's world. Your character is so matter-of-fact about everything, that I found I couldn't pity him, even at the end. A very refreshing change in an angst-filled fandom.

Reviewed by: Ainaechoiriel -- Score: N/A

That's a sad ending but it certainly explains why he never made another song. Good story.

Reviewed by: Llinos -- Score: N/A

Dark indeed and hauntingly sad, but strong images. I especially liked the "man's braid" insult.