Rose Riddle

Author: stultiloquentia

Nominator: unknown

2004 Award Category: Races: Elves: Vignette - Second Place

Story Type: Other Fiction  ✧  Length: unknown

Rating: G  ✧  Reason for Rating: N/A

Summary: In which Meriadoc and his apprentice combine politics and horticulture, and Celeborn solves an important question. A Fourth Age vignette set in Rivendell.

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Review scores are not available for 2004.

Reviewed by: Ainaechoiriel  ✧  Score: N/A

This is a bittersweet story about the beauty of the Elves, the sadness at their passing, and hope for the future. Very nice characterization of Merry.

Reviewed by: Thundera Tiger  ✧  Score: N/A

Excellent vignette steeped in double meanings. Both past and future come together as Celeborn gives Merry the key and ponders the strange riddle that is his own life. Very moving and very bittersweet look at post-Ring War Celeborn.

Reviewed by: Dwimordene  ✧  Score: N/A

Well hello, Pilgrim! Celeborn is on a journey in this story, and a very unusual one, or so it seemed to me, with Merry as a most unusual guide. It's fanonical that the Sindar are far more tied to Middle-earth, less likely to leave than the Noldor. But even without such motivations, Celeborn has been in Middle-earth for thousands of years-one might conceivably become attached to the place, whatever one's lineage. But at the same time, he is wise enough to see that the time of his people has ended, and being husband to a Ringbearer has had its effects. Galadriel here is as a force of nature-as Sam said once, you could dash yourself to pieces on her and like a boat on rocks, but neither rocks nor Galadriel would be to blame for that. Celeborn has let himself be affected by the elemental wisdom-in all its folly and repentance-that is Galadriel, and now he is at a crossroads: will he go to her before the end, or remain in Middle-earth? Which is the better path? I think we get a glimpse of future developments when he surrenders the key to Merry, after hearing the talk about the impossibility of trammeling rosebushes. This is a story of growth and letting go, of being wise enough to learn a particular kind of generosity that I don't think comes as easily to Elves, who are so very self-sufficient. And it was all beautifully heralded by the riddle of the other two most famous elvish pioneers of mortaliy: Finrod and LĂșthien. I was particularly struck by what Stultiloquentia did with them just--it was so very right, somehow, to me. The riddle and the tone suited them beautifully, made them mythic, wildly so--they were definitely standing in the sunlight of the First Age, and yet pointing byond it and beyond all ages.

Reviewed by: Ellbee  ✧  Score: N/A

"The strongest roses fair thrive on neglect." I had to laugh at this line, only because I like to excuse my own neglect of my roses by saying I'm trying to breed in hardiness. Meriadoc is a hobbit after my own heart. The contrast between the busy and practical hobbits and Celeborn's vision of a fading Rivendell is a strong one, very moving. I'm always glad to see stories that don't have the hobbits as simply comic relief to the all-knowing Elves. It was refreshing to see Merry able to offer comfort and hope to Celeborn without even trying.

Reviewed by: Larian Elensar  ✧  Score: N/A

It sort of seems fitting that the hobbits get the care of the elves' land after the elves leave. I noticed one typo 'chose another keeper' should be 'choose'