2009 Award Category: Times: Second and Early Third Age - Honorable Mention
Story Type: Story ✧ Length: Ficlet
Rating: Teen ✧ Reason for Rating: Death on a battlefield. Not graphic.
Summary: In a battle against Yrch, Elrohir is crushed by the discovery of who his foe really is.(This is 500 words per MS Word that is complete.)
Reviewed by: Larner ✧ Score: 10
If indeed Melchor and later Sauron and Saruman were able to corrupt Elves, Men, and perhaps other races into becoming orcs, such encounters as this, in which one of Elrond's sons recognizes a kinsman in the creature facing him, must have at times been overwhelming. To look into the face of such an enemy and recognize someone one used to know and love, one who disappeared long ago and suddenly is there again, his very nature lost through whatever tortures and rituals were used to create orcs! Ah--such a profound shock. I do wonder how much capability Sauron maintained to allow himself to do this, rather than breeding the foul things as seems to have been more common. One would expect these first-generation orcs to be particularly effective weapons to use against the Free Peoples of Middle Earth. Certainly the shock of recognition nearly cost this Peredhel his life! I would think that in the wars against Melkor it must have happened with some level of frequency, and would have been intended, as was the rain of heads over the walls of Minas Tirith, to have paralysed the defenders with horror. If so, I would think it a most effective tactic to employ! Extremely powerful and thought-provoking. Agape doesn't do horror often, but when she does, it is mot effective!
Reviewed by: Thundera Tiger ✧ Score: 6
Elrohir's shocking realization is, of course, the primary purpose behind the story, but my favorite part actually consisted of a character note that occurred right at the very the beginning. I don't see it very often, but when I do, it always enriches the characterizations of both Elladan and Elrohir. I love the idea that though their life is primarily elvish, in matters of war, they hearken to their mannish side. It creates a fascinating character with an usual balance. They can be both elves and men, depending upon their need, and there are advantages to both. Unfortunately, there are also disadvantages, and Elrohir's perception reveals to him a devastating truth. Wonderfully executed and brilliantly characterized!
Reviewed by: Russandol ✧ Score: 6
Sometimes I have wondered how the twins survived for as long as they did once they began on their Orc-killing spree after their mother was tortured. A most likely explanation is that someone or something made them see reason before their luck ran out. I can also imagine Elrond's dismay at watching his sons slide down that path of violence, and them feeling trapped, unable to escape from it. This story explains just what the release trigger might have been like I have read in no other before. The ending hit me unexpectedly: when I read the last couple of lines I froze, as Elrohir might have done when faced with such an enemy, who turns out to be... well, something far more terrifying and yet no more than an Orc. Wicked, Agape!
Reviewed by: Virtuella ✧ Score: 5
This is a very chilling story indeed. I am not sure if you mean to say that this Inglor had actually been turned into an orc or whether the resemblance was a hereditary one, but that doesn't matter anyway, the ambivalence actually adds to the appeal of the story. If the first orcs were corrupted elves, then we can't know how long they would be around, and so this kind of encounter would be not only credible, but /likely./ Would it ever be possible to completely lose that elven spark? Maybe not, maybe there are creatures forever trapped in an orc existence, who can still /remember/. And Elrohir recognizes not only that, but also that he has the seed for evil within him. *Shudders*
Reviewed by: Linaewen ✧ Score: 4
This is a haunting story that explores the relationship between Orcs and Elves in a sad and almost terrifying way. There is nothing quite so disconcerting and disturbing as when one finds oneself confronting a much-hated enemy, only to discover that enemy is a friend -- not only that, a much-loved member of the family. Such a discovery must have shaken Elrohir to his very foundation. Now I wonder how his encounter with this enemy and friend affected his future battles? This is one tale I shall not easily forget!
Reviewed by: crowdaughter ✧ Score: 3
What a horrifying AU. I rather go with the idea that the transformation had been done at the very start, in the First Age, maybe, but not later, and that the Orcs of the Third Age were not freshly transformed Elves anymore; but in this story, the idea works very well. Chilling! And very well done!
Reviewed by: Súlriel ✧ Score: 2
What a horrific double blow this fic delivers, yet, in the quivering of my gut, I know both rings true.
Reviewed by: NeumeIndil ✧ Score: 2
Talk about a Frenemy! I've always felt an odd sort of pity for the Thralls, and you've done an excellent job illustrating why in this piece. Nicely done.