Middle-Earth Fanfiction Awards

The Same River Twice

Author: Branwyn (Lady Branwyn)
Nominator: Azalais
2011 Award Category: Drabble: Character Study - Honorable Mention

Story Type: Drabble : Length: True Drabble
Rating: General -- Reason for Rating: N/A
Summary: WRitten for the Tolkien_weekly Denethor and his young sons share a quiet moment on the banks of the Anduin.


Reviewed by: Dwimordene -- Score: 5

Nice philosophical reference, though I think Denethor might shudder to be compared to Heraclitus, at least as Heraclitus's legend has come down to us! But in any even, good catch, that both terms - river and person - of Heraclitus's claim are fluid and changing. Boromir's denial of his own capacity to change, coming at such a young age, can then be read as portentous, as an indication of a certain rigidity that will be problematic later perhaps. The same can be said of Denethor. Faramir's fascination with the shifting river likewise could be suggestive of what will let him survive the war. Well-composed, and I love the river's description at the end. Thanks, Branwyn!

Reviewed by: Azalais -- Score: 5

This is a lovely, bittersweet moment which deftly captures, in very few words, the personalities of all three protagonists: Denethor making austere pronouncements; Faramir, the dreamer, gazing at the river's flow; while Boromir just gets on with his digging. It could just be a cutesy childhood vignette, but like all the best drabbles, it's full of layers of meaning and veiled references which evoke the wider fictional universe and thus make it so much more. Boromir's stout declaration [and I will never change] is heartbreaking. I can't help wondering whether, far in the future when Faramir dreamt of Boromir's boat, he remembered this golden sunlit afternoon...

Reviewed by: Tanaqui -- Score: 5

It's rare that a mere hundred words repays re-reading so many times, but that is what Lady Branwyn has achieved with this remarkable drabble. She has managed to pack in an incredible number of layers of meaning into such a short space as she explores the notion of change, constancy and destiny. Every word here does double -- perhaps even triple -- duty in laying out the current scene, the characters of the three protagonists and their eventual fates. This piece really takes my breath away -- and I am more than a little envious of what Lady Branwyn has achieved here and wish I had written this! Well done!

Reviewed by: Darkover -- Score: 3

This is surprisingly thought-provoking for such a brief tale. This drabble is unusual in that it portrays a happy moment between Denethor and his sons, and there are implications for the future. Readers will not be disappointed!

Reviewed by: Altariel -- Score: 3

A beautiful but sad drabble, as young Boromir insists upon his own unchangeability, while young Faramir steps into the same river that will later bring his brother's body to him. I love the language, and particularly the dreamy open-ended feeling to the final sentence, which leaves the reader with the same sense of flux that Faramir is contemplating.

Reviewed by: cairistiona -- Score: 3

A perfect drabble to read on a cold winter's day. I wanted to be there beside the Anduin, dabbling my toes in it with Faramir! Very apt showing of the difference in the two brothers' temperaments, and Denethor's aloofness comes through as well. You skillfully wrung every nuance from your one hundred words.

Reviewed by: Levade -- Score: 3

Lovely, and dreamy with layer upon layer of meaning, this is a gorgeous drabble. It captures so much of the characters and speaks of their personalities and futures. That takes some doing in only one hundred words!

Reviewed by: Adonnen Estenniel -- Score: 2

A wonderfully insightful scene between Denethor and his Sons. I like the added detail upon the oft-used saying.

Reviewed by: agape4gondor -- Score: 2

Lovely yet chilling piece. I'm not sure I quite believe Boromir's statement. But Faramir was spot on.