They Also Serve Who Only Wait

Author: Branwyn (Lady Branwyn)

Nominator: Kara's Aunty

2011 Award Category: Drabble: Pre-Ring War

Story Type: Drabble  ✧  Length: True Drabble

Rating: General  ✧  Reason for Rating: N/A

Summary: Though it is her place to wait, she finds useful work to fill the hours and days.(Written for the Tolkien_weekly "Diligence" challenge. Exactly 100 words.)

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Reviewed by: Kara's Aunty  ✧  Score: 6

A seriously brilliant drabble, where not all is it first appears. Cunningly worded, this drabble starts off as seemingly homely and comforting, creating a scene of apparent domesticity (sans husband) as the mistress of the house whiles away the hours weaving while her husband is off abroad on some campaign or other, fighting for their future. But the last two sentences prove that nothing could be farther from the truth. No blushing bride is this, no lady wife awaiting the return of her spouse, oh no! Patient she is, indeed, though this is a lady who weaves her delicate silken masterpieces to serve but one purpose only. Branwyn has created a timeless masterpiece using a mere one hundred words, giving us a seductive, chilling drabble that leaves the reader shivering with horrific delight at her mastery of words. Cannot recommend this highly enough.

Reviewed by: Dwimordene  ✧  Score: 4

Clever! I love it - of course, it's not only Arwen who is the weaver waiting for word from the outside world. I love the reversal of expectations here, and for a second, you're confused before the lightbulb goes on. This character doesn't get a lot of fic, but it seems that whenever she does, it's good stuff, and this is no exception. Great job, Branwyn, well played!

Reviewed by: Elleth  ✧  Score: 3

An interesting spin (no pun intended) on Shelob's story. Without looking what character featured in the drabble, it made me think of Arwen for a moment - until the 'menfolk' showed up, that is. Great use of misdisrection, well done.

Reviewed by: Oshun  ✧  Score: 3

Why you very wicked, dirty double-crosser! You really snagged me. I had no idea what you intended to do with this beginning. I was expecting anyone from Arwen to Miriel Serinde, because I had no idea of the context. Beautiful use of language.

Reviewed by: Tanaqui  ✧  Score: 3

Ha! A marvellous bit of misdirection in this drabble - very cleverly done! I love the way the words are so specifically chosen, especially ["dark head"] and ["silken threads"] to lead the reader down the wrong path entirely. Lady Branwyn so often creates something which is unusual, surprising or thought-provoking, and this drabble is no exception.

Reviewed by: Adonnen Estenniel  ✧  Score: 2

What an interesting look at life for people such as this! I liked the way she justified her position--it seemed only natural.

Reviewed by: Levade  ✧  Score: 2

Very cleverly done! It had me confused for a moment, led astray to think of Arwen (imagining Elves yelling those things at her..wha?) and then laughing as it clicked. Well done!