Opening Doors

Author: Adina ATL

Nominator: Marta

2005 Award Category: Races/Places: Cross-Cultural

Story Type: Story  ✧  Length: N/A

Rating: R  ✧  Reason for Rating: erotic content, adult themes

Summary: Little is known about Narvi, the other crafter of the Doors of Durin. As the building of the doors nears completion, Narvi thinks of the future and elves.

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Reviewed by: Marta  ✧  Score: 10

There are many things about this story that I could comment on (and a story like this certainly deserves the points), but I think my favourite part is probably the fact that Narvi is female. Finally another author who takes Gimli's words seriously that dwarf-women were often mistaken for dwarf-men. Not that dwarves of either gender get nearly enough treatment in fan fiction, but when they are, it is too often assumed that all dwarves we meet are male. For all we know any of Bilbo's companions could have been female (Now, there is a challenge! Though I think Tolkien probably meant them to be male.), and certainly 1/3 of the original character dwarves we create should be female. But you have taken the superb challenge of writing femslash between a dwarf and a Noldor. I'm not sure you could create a more challenging pairing than we're given here. The Noldor, because there's all of 'Laws and Customs of the Eldar' that you have to take into account when justifying the slash (and in this case Galadriel is married, which makes everything even more complicated, in light of Finwe and Miriel). And the dwarf, because they are widely considered asexual. How many Gimli romances would there be if not for Gimli/Legolas slash? Not many, I don't think. And yet, somehow you pull this off in this piece. I'm really not sure how you manage it, but we likes it. The erotica works. At times it feels a bit extraneous to the plot, but that depends on how you view the plot. If it is just about the construction of the Doors of Moria... well, that is the obvious plot, but it is also a tad simplistic. If, on the other hand, it is about Narvi's embracing of a culture besides her own, the romance is very central. It is interesting to read a story that operates on two levels like this one does. I cannot wait to read the sequel -- which I will do as soon as I can find the time.

Reviewed by: Dwimordene  ✧  Score: 6

There seems to be a certain interest in making Narvi female. It makes for a fascinating dynamic as dwarven and elven frustrations, customs, and errors make themselves known. The author also pulls in an added romantic tension when Galadriel appears┬Śwedded to Celeborn, beloved of Celebrimbor, and the opener of doors figurative and otherwise for Narvi who also desires her, Galadriel is a beautiful enigma. It's an interesting quasi-triangle. This fic draws the reader into a complicated tangle of desire and limitation, and finds dwarven immortality in the students Narvi will teach┬Śmost especially the elvish students. Well worth the read!

Reviewed by: ponypetter  ✧  Score: 4

It is wonderful how little snippets of backstory for Narvi's character are wound into this piece. That Narvi and Celebrimbor speak so frankly with one another and bicker shows that they have been working together for a while, and seem to have an understanding between them. Their conversation over dinner shows that they have come to know each other in a work environment. Like most of us, they come to realize they do not know as much *about* each other as they think.

Reviewed by: nerwen_calaelen  ✧  Score: 1

An odd but interesting tale.