Author: Aratlithiel

Nominator: unknown

2004 Award Category: Races: Hobbits: Post-War of the Ring - First Place

Story Type: Other Fiction  ✧  Length: unknown

Rating: PG  ✧  Reason for Rating: so much angst!!!

Summary: Sam helps Merry and Pippin to understand why Frodo had to cross over the Sea.

Read the Story

Review scores are not available for 2004.

Reviewed by: Aelfwina  ✧  Score: N/A

A masterful story, the angst felt by Merry especially, is palpable. I loved the imagery of the clock, and of how time was perceived. But the best part was Sam's explanation of what had truly happened at Sammath Naur. This use of a theme found in JRRT's Letters was beautiful.

Reviewed by: Ariel  ✧  Score: N/A

*A breathtaking and BRILLIANT take on those Frodo loved but had to leave behind. This story captures a point I have always held with a clarity that few other fics have ever been able to achieve. The characters are perfectly in character, the motivations are well defended, the story is haunting, true and an incredible tear jerker. In fact, this one makes me cry every single time with the sheer truth of it. I cannot recommend any fic of this author's more highly, though every single one is a classic and stunningly true representation of the characters. Very definitely well worth the read.

Reviewed by: Thundera Tiger  ✧  Score: N/A

Wow. Fascinating and unbelievable story. I'm not even sure where to begin. I suppose I could start with the clock. The clock ticked its way throughout the story and kept harmony and rhythm with the story's changing moods. Initially it was hope and comfort. Familiarity with old belongings. Then it changed to something uneasy. Some future foreboding. It changed again to fear and trepidation, then to anger and resentment, then to wishful thinking, and finally, in the end, to resolution and endings. As for the story itself, it's a wonderful interpretation of the events on Mount Doom according to Tolkien's letters. And I love that it's Sam who figures things out. I love even more his matter-of-fact way of looking at things. His comment that you can't both love someone and wish that things had turned out differently. Because that would change the person you loved. It's a fascinating line of reasoning that I'm going to need to think about a little more. Great tale, and great use of the ticking clock.

Reviewed by: Silvermoon Lady  ✧  Score: N/A

You broke my heart, utterly and beautifully, with this piece! There is no doubt in my mind that this is one of the best, saddest, most hopeful and wonderful things I've ever read. I wish I could say we all had to imagine how badly we would want to stop that clock, to make time give back what it has taken, but it is all too real for us all, in one way or another, one day or the next.

Reviewed by: Lindelea  ✧  Score: N/A

This is a wrenching story to read, skilfully woven and heart-breaking, yet not devoid of hope, even healing. Your love for the characters shines through your writing. The clock ties everything together very nicely, and Merry's emotions, played off the clock, are well-done.

Reviewed by: Ainaechoiriel  ✧  Score: N/A

I wasn't sure I agreed with Sam and even after reading Tolkien's answer, I'm not sure I want to believe. I'd rather Frodo had given in to the ring in the end. It made him fallible. Still, this story carried that premise and did it beautifully. It took awhile to work out when the flashbacks were refering to, but the symbolism of the clock was clear thoughout.

Reviewed by: BelegCuthalion  ✧  Score: N/A

What would Frodo have done if Gollum hadn't taken the ring at the end of the Quest? For many, many readers this has been one of the main questions in LOTR, and in Aratlithiels amazing story it is asked again, mainly by Merry; he isn't able to deal with the loss of Frodo and he's still seeking for explanations. Surprisingly enough it is Sam who offers a piercing comfort: Frodo would never have come home again to stay anyway… I love this tale deeply; it is clever, wise, heartbreaking, bitter and in a strange way soothing and comforting, all the same. Masterly written, with deep love and astonishing insight… simply wonderful.

Reviewed by: Rosie the Hobbit  ✧  Score: N/A

I love this story. I love the way Sam helps Merry and Pippin understand what Frodo had done, and I love that he DID it, rather than keeping his mouth shut because of class differences. Go Sam!