Middle-Earth Fanfiction Awards

Hope Remains

Author: Baggins Babe
Nominator: Pearl Took
2008 Award Category: Times: Fourth Age and Beyond

Story Type: Story : Length: Short Story
Rating: Teen -- Reason for Rating: Children may be disturbed by the very brief description of certain burial customs and the element of the supernatural.
Summary: Following the passing of King Elessar the hobbits come to realise that loved ones who pass into the next world may still linger to guard and protect.


Reviewed by: Pearl Took -- Score: 6

A marvelous, haunting story of the gentle presence of a special ghost. I will admit, it caught me off guard that Frodo and Sam were buried in the Shire, but it was easy to just realize that this must be an AU where they didn't have to leave and read on. With that firmly in mind the rest of the story pulled me in and wove a beautiful ghost story. I loved the touch of the athelas growing to form a boarder around the graves and the effort the Thain, Master and Mayor took in making sure no one would know something else had been interred with Rosie, Sam and Frodo. The appearance of the Ranger to protect Hancho Proudfoot on his way home from Bree was so fortuitous. And I loved that he had to search his mind to recognize the name the Ranger gave him. A wonderful, hopeful, story.

Reviewed by: Larner -- Score: 5

One of my favorite after-death fics. Aragorn has declared that due to his love of his Hobbit companions his heart has dwelt in the Shire ever since he became High King. And now an odd Ranger is seen repeatedly guarding the Shire.... The special love Aragorn would undoubtedly feel for the Shire and its inhabitants is well expressed, as well as how that love might well continue to be expressed after he was freed from the circumscribed life he knew as King. Goes to show you can put the Ranger on the throne, but not fully take the Ranger out of the King! Heh!

Reviewed by: mbumpus_99 -- Score: 4

I love a good ghost story, and this is as good as they get. The thing is, I can see King Elessar making the request he did, and the hobbits doing as he asked - and the consequences of those two being as is told here. Ghost stories usually contain seeds of truth mixed liberally with wishful thinking, and this one certainly does both. Nicely written. I'd recommend this highly.

Reviewed by: Thundera Tiger -- Score: 4

Great story that does a good job of reaching beyond Aragorn's death to create a tale that still feels as though involves the Fellowship. The descriptions were particularly vivid, and I love how Aragorn's presence was enough to deter some would-be-robbers. But really, the thing that got to me in this story was a single line of someone referring to Samwise as Gaffer Sam. For all his fame and all his accomplishments, Sam would be remembered as a simple hobbit. And that is perhaps the most fitting tribute that I can think of for Sam.

Reviewed by: Lindelea -- Score: 4

Effective writing, setting the scene very well. Not too creepy, which I appreciate as I'm easily "creeped out". Have had this on my MEFA wish list for weeks without time to re-read and write a decent review, and here the awards clock is winding down too fast, still, for a good effort. So consider this a vote of confidence, at least, as well as thanks for sharing your writing. Looking forward to reading more as soon as the dratted schedule lets up for a time.

Reviewed by: Dreamflower -- Score: 3

["Hope Remains"] is the perfect title for this little story of a King's love for a very special group of subjects, a love which even time and death cannot completely sever. It's a very touching notion. I could easily see Elessar's request, and the way in which it was granted, especially in Baggins Babe's universe. And I love the idea of Strider keeping watch.

Reviewed by: nancylea -- Score: 1

possibly the au-i-est thing ever written and oh so wonderful.