Light Lingering

Author: mir_noldoris

Nominator: Altariel

2011 Award Category: Post-Ring War and Beyond: Gondor - Third Place

Story Type: Story  ✧  Length: Short Story

Rating: General  ✧  Reason for Rating: N/A

Summary: In the new Age, in the library of Minas Tirith, Faramir makes a surprising new friend.

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Reviewed by: Altariel  ✧  Score: 10

A beautifully written and extremely sensitive account of the friendship between Faramir, and the son of his liege-lord, Eldarion. At the start of the story Eldarion, a young man of seventeen, returns to Minas Tirith after a decade spent with his mother's people and his great-grandfather, Celeborn. Listening to the gossip of his son's circle, who tell him that Eldarion refuses to fight and most likely cannot use a sword, Faramir feels a powerful sympathy with the youth, remembering ["another boy, silent and troubled, torn between a hatred of spilt blood and loud company and the compelling sense of duty that had driven him to learn to defend the land he loved"]. He resolves to befriend him. But Eldarion has a number of surprises in store. Firstly, Faramir finds him in the library of Minas Tirith in the unfrequented Adûnaic section. Secondly, the boy is no ["apostle of peace"], as Faramir has persuaded himself, but is performing a sword dance ["older than Doriath"]. Thirdly, Faramir find himself ["explaining himself to a slip of a lad"]. Lastly, the boy hardly knows his southern heritage at all, slipping up over Faramir's lineage [" Faramir was not a vain man – far from it – but he had never yet met a seventeen-year-old who did not know his grandfather's name off-hand"]. But it is because of their shared view of the horror of warfare that the man and the boy bond, and this gives Faramir the opportunity to give Eldarion what has so far been lacking from his education - full access to his Númenorean heritage. Scholar of Adûnaic (where Aragorn is not), and visionary (of the Land of Gift's troubled history and of Eldarion's promise), Faramir is the link between the past and the future of Eldarion's mortal heritage (where ageless Celeborn has provided the link to his Elvish heritage). The second chapter of this exquisite story shows us Faramir as an old man, and his one-time pupil, Eldarion, full-grown, still with his distaste for war, but accepting the lesson that it ["must be"]. And Eldarion is - of course, inevitably - a mighty mariner. Faramir the dreamer, the old man, looks to his pupil with hope: ["Hope for Gondor, and hope for those to come after I am gone, and for this race of ours that came out of the sea – even as you will return to it from journey after journey. White light, and the failing of the storm. We are safe in your hands."] Exceptional work, Nol. Well done.

Reviewed by: The Lauderdale  ✧  Score: 9

There are many stories about Faramir's relationship with Aragorn, but this one posits a bond between Faramir and Aragorn's son. Long fostered by his mother's people, Eldarion is out of place with his new peers, lacking their more southerly education and interest in combat. Faramir, a man with a greater love of peace than war, can easily relate, but he knows the lessons that Eldarion must learn if he is to be a ruler of Men. During a beautifully written library encounter, he lays the groundwork through which both he and Eldarion will come into their own. A later encounter provides a pleasing treatment of Faramir in his older years, and a wonderful realization of the grown Eldarion, who has become a true descendent of lost Númenor. Because we know so little of Tolkien's Eldarion, he tends to give the impression of a lesser scion mired in Aragorn's illustrious shadow. mir_noldoris' Eldarion, in contrast, is a mysterious and intelligent boy who grows into a remarkable man, and a worthy successor to both Aragorn's throne and Faramir's teachings. It is easy to see how Faramir should come to love Eldarion. He is the calm behind the green wave.

Reviewed by: Dreamflower  ✧  Score: 5

Dare I say that this particular view of Eldarion is unique? It is not one I have ever seen before, yet it is fitting. I love the way Faramir quickly responds to what he sees as a kindred spirit in the young prince, one who ["loves not the sword for its sharpness"], and takes him under his wing. It all the story had contained was that first chapter, it still would be a memorable story that made me think. But the second chapter takes it a step further, as we see the youth whom Faramir mentored now grown to man's estate and making his own difficult way to his station in life. Clearly he has grown to honor both his lineage and his teacher. A lovely story.

Reviewed by: obsidianj  ✧  Score: 4

This is a story about Faramir and Prince Eldarion in whom Faramir recognizes a related soul after some unfavorable remarks of his son's friend. I had a feeling that the boys mistake Eldarion's reluctance for swordplay when I heard that the young prince spent a long time with his elven kin in the North. I loved the sword dance and that Fararmir found the young heir in the library among the oldest books.

Reviewed by: Adonnen Estenniel  ✧  Score: 4

What a wonderful piece of writing! For myself, I have often had it in my head that Eldarion was not of his father's school of warrior-king, and finding someone else who had written a piece that reflected these ideas was a delightful surprise. Beyond all that, the writing of Light Lingering itself was brilliant and stylistically appropriate; simple and understated, yet effective all the same. What a fantastic story!

Reviewed by: Mysterious Jedi  ✧  Score: 3

This beautiful two-shot tells about the blooming friendship of Faramir and Eldarion. More than that, however, it offers food for thought about important issues that affect us in real life even today.

Reviewed by: Ellynn  ✧  Score: 1

Lovely story about friendship between Faramir and Eldarion. I like it.