Middle-Earth Fanfiction Awards

Untangled Desires

Author: Linda Hoyland
Nominator: curiouswombat
2011 Award Category: Drabble: General - Honorable Mention

Story Type: Drabble : Length: True Drabble
Rating: General -- Reason for Rating: N/A
Summary: Written for the Tolkien Weekly "Plait" Challenge. 100 words as counted in MS Word Éowyn is not always an obedient wife


Reviewed by: Virtuella -- Score: 10

Dear Linda, this is a very charming drabble that draws in few words a delightful picture of the warmth and sensuality of the relationship between Faramir and Eowyn. It is so well observed that while with other women and girls, he is contented with the plaits because they look good, but with Eowyn he doesn’t like them because he is concerned not with looks but with touch. This is very true - if we go to bed with someone, what they look like is not nearly as important as what they feel like! It is true also that the owners of long hair – especially the down-to-earth Éowyn! – would tend to be less concerned with the aesthetic aspects of their tresses (be they visual or tactile) but with the practical challenges of maintaining them. I remember feeling disappointed when my brother cut of his long curls, but I have to appreciate that they were a real nuisance to keep neat. However, what really makes this drabble a joy is the final sentence. In a single stroke, you make Faramir a heartbreakingly sweet and desirable man. He doesn’t press the issue, he doesn’t selfishly insists, he acknowledges the practical problem and finds a creative and loving way of trying to persuade her nonetheless. It is also his attempt to win her over to a view that however useful it is to be practical, where their marriage is concerned, enjoyment and beauty should be more important. This is most excellently done. Thank you.

Reviewed by: Raksha the Demon -- Score: 10

This is a lovely drabble with a touch of sensuality and perhaps some pent-up sexuality. Linda Hoyland presents an excellent contrast between this husband and wife - Faramir, the romantic, who yearns for the feel of his wife's beautiful golden hair against his skin in their marital bed; and Eowyn, the practical one, knowing how her hair can tangle, being reluctant to unbind it for fear of having to take too long a time to brush out the snarls the next day. There's a wistfulness about Faramir here that is appealing, especially in his fondness for plaits on everyone but his golden-haired wife. And the last line is both cute and perfect; definitely Faramir, living in hope. Only this time, Faramir is not living in hope of Sauron's defeat, or the King's return to Gondor; he has bought attractive combs for his wife and can only hope that she will wear them some day. It is also very Faramir that he does not try to force his preferences on Eowyn. The marriage can be interpreted in this drabble as a union of equals; or at least one where a husband respects his wife; and a wife speaks her mind to her husband. Linda Hoyland rarely writes sensuality; and her use of sensuality, in Faramir's longing for the feel of his wife's hair on his skin, is all the more effective for its delicacy.

Reviewed by: curiouswombat -- Score: 6

This is a lovely drabble. From the moment that I read it I thought that it perfectly encapsulated the relationship between Faramir, Prince of Ithlien, and his beloved wife within in its one hundred words. We see sensible Éowyn, who thinks of her hair as needing to be tamed, tied up, and made to behave itself; and then, in contrast, we have her husband who wants to run his hands through it, to see it cascade down her back, and to revel in the sensation of her hair on his bare skin. I really love the idea of Faramir trying to encourage her to leave it loose with his choice of gifts - and being ever hopeful. There is a slightly erotic air to this drabble which is very cleverly done, as there is nothing overtly erotic written down here at all.

Reviewed by: Darkover -- Score: 4

I would be surprised if Eowyn was *ever* an obedient wife, but it would help if Faramir would tell her *why* he wants to see her hair loose! I very much enjoyed the portrayal of Faramir's appreciation of one aspect of feminine beauty, especially in his wife. And it seems typical of Eowyn that she would be both practical and determined to do things her own way. An enjoyable tale.

Reviewed by: Rivergift -- Score: 4

Sweet and lovely- with a subtle touch of sensuality about it. I do love your delicate touch when it comes to these things- it's perfectly innocent for a young child to read, but adults will think a little more and smile knowingly! Apart from that, you show both Faramir and Eowyn very well- Faramir, romantic, and always respectful of his wife's rights (to her own hair!) and Eowyn, the pragmatic one, though somehow I foresee tangles in her hair soon! Thanks for this lovely piece!

Reviewed by: Adonnen Estenniel -- Score: 2

A funny, light-hearted look at the romance between the Steward and the White Lady. I liked the way Linda worded this, as it makes things seem very fresh and fun.