Middle-Earth Fanfiction Awards

Return of the Governess

Author: curiouswombat
Nominator: Linda Hoyland
2011 Award Category: Drabble Series: Men - First Place

Story Type: Drabble : Length: Drabble Series
Rating: General -- Reason for Rating: N/A
Summary: 8x100 words - written for the 'Potter's Wheel' challenges at Tolkien Weekly. A short set of drabbles featuring the young Eldarion and his governess. A sequel to 'A is for Apple'.


Reviewed by: Linda Hoyland -- Score: 7

These drabbles are a perfect delight and helped cheer me up when Britain was in the grip of the worst winter since 1964. Who could not love little Eldarion and his Governess? I am delighted too to find a fellow writer who believes that Eldarion might like dragons and it is sheer delight to see how often he manages to steer the conversation to his very favourite subject! I also enjoyed seeing Eldarion get to know his great grandfather, Celeborn.It is nice to see the ancient Elf getting to know the little boy and Firiel remember her own grandfather.I'm glad Eldarion gets to know the one remaining member of his great Elven heritage that he is a part of. The Governess is a very vivid and likeable original character who is obviously fond of her young charge and able to help him learn well.It is nice to see that Aragorn and Arwen appreciate her. We also get to learn a little about her background in this drabble series. A must read for everyone who loves the unique world of childhood.

-- Thank you so much. I am so pleased that you like Firiel and Eldarion - I have become very fond of them myself, so much so that I am sure I will return to them again sometime.

Reviewed by: Virtuella -- Score: 6

Dear curiouswombat, to think that I almost overlooked this! I very much enjoyed your original governess series, and this is just as delightful as the first one. Again you present a string of very believable little scenes which make the educator in me smile. How typical it is for a young child to be so obsessed with a topic that every path inevitable leads there. With my own daughter, it would always be bunnies, with Eldarion it is, quite appropriately, dragons. I loved the scene where he asks about the “merry heart.” Celeborn is a worthwhile addition to these scenarios and adds a slightly sentimental dimension. I also enjoyed seeing a bit of background for the character of the governess. Very well done indeed, and thanks for making me smile.

-- Thank you. I'm glad that you enjoyed Firiel's return - I have become rather fond of her myself. And that the drabbles work for you, as an educator and mother, is a big compliment. I had a really big smile when I read this review - and again when the results showed that others liked them too!

Reviewed by: Clodia -- Score: 6

I absolutely adore this drabble collection of Curious Wombat's! I read the drabbles singly when Curious Wombat was first posting them and together when the challenge had been completed; they are all individually adorable and put together they make up a neat, funny and ultimately poignant story. Eldarion's governess Firiel must contend with her bright young charge's obsession with dragons, spectral Elvish great-grandfather Celeborn and the losses that she, together with just about every other inhabitant of Gondor, had suffered in the Ring War - and she does so with great panache and good sense, as every good governess should! She's a wonderful character and her interactions with Eldarion and his family make for a delightful read. Maybe one day we'll see Firiel again? I most certainly hope so!

-- Thank you for the lovely review. I'm sure Firiel will be back sometime - I've become rather fond of her!

Reviewed by: ziggy -- Score: 6

Completely delightful series of drabbles which anyone who has children or who works with children will recognise! The structure of these drabbles is perfect too so it is only at the end that to you see the girl herself and can smile at HER and for her, rather than Eldarion's dialogue. One of the things that works especially well is the sense of lightness and childish interest in all things dragon-like or glittering gemlike-a nice reference, although very oblique and perhaps not intended — to the rhyme Bilbo speaks of Aragorn way way back in the Fellowship of the Ring. I particularly liked the gleeful way the writer hits Firiel with Eldarion's response to his Geography lesson-Uncle Gimli lives there... followed by a delighted recognition that there will be gems and it would be the sort of place a dragon would like. Charmingly told and with a real affection for the characters.

-- Thank you, too, for this review. I have become rather fond of Firiel and her young charge - so it is always an added pleasure when someone likes the two of them enough to leave such a wonderfully detailed review.

Reviewed by: Darkover -- Score: 4

Each one of these drabbles would be a delight in themselves. Put together, they make a wonderful series that no reader should miss. All the characters--Eldarion, his governess Firiel, Celeborn, Aragorn--are convincingly portrayed. The descriptions are also good, and Eldarion acts in a true-to-life fashion--many a small boy has been obsessed with dragons! A well-written series that utilizes an OC to remind the reader that even after the Ring War, life went on. Well done!

-- Thank you for your lovely review of Return of the Governess. I have become very fond of Firiel and her small charge so it is really good to know that other people like them too.

Reviewed by: Wormwood -- Score: 4

This is a delightful set of drabbles about Eldarion and his governess, Firiel. What makes them so appealing is that Eldarion is portrayed as a real boy with that particular one-track mind children sometimes display. Whatever the topic they always manage to bend it in the direction of their current obsession. In this case, dragons. Towards the end we are given some background on Firiel, giving her a place in the greater scheme of things and making her more than just "The Governess". Written with a great sense of obervation.

-- Thank you so much for the review - I became rather fond of both Firiel and Eldarion over the two series I've written about them and so I am always happy when other people like them, too. I hope to go back to them again, one day.

Reviewed by: Kaylee Arafinwiel -- Score: 3

Oh curiouswombat, this is *lovely*! I do adore Firiel, and while she seems inexperienced, on the whole, I have a feeling she'll learn as much from her young charge as he will from her! And to meet Celeborn - be still my heart! Of course, he's one of my favorite elves (lol, I'm sure you can tell!) I love any mention of Doriath, so you made me very happy with this story. :)

-- I'm really happy that someone else (A) likes Firiel, as I am very fond of her myself since she first came to me in the original 'A is for apple...'; and (B)is a big Celeborn fan. He has only taken centre stage completely in one thing I've written, but he is so often there as a character in my other stories because he's one of my favourites too.

Reviewed by: pandemonium_213 -- Score: 3

This is a charming set of drabbles that all work together to tell a neat story of Firiel, the young governess of Eldarion, the prince and heir. I especially enjoyed the author's characterization of Celeborn as well as his irrepressible great-grandson, who seems to be quite taken with the idea of dragons. Very nice work, cw!

-- Thank you for reviewing Return of the Governess - I have to admit to being really pleased when I was able to bring in Celeborn, as I am rather fond of him.

Reviewed by: SurgicalSteel -- Score: 3

The two things I love most about this drabble series are how vividly the author has brought an OFC to life with so few words, and the realistic depiction of Eldarion as a bright and inquisitive young boy. Very nicely done!

-- Thank you for the review of 'Return of the Governess' - I became rather fond of Firiel and her young charge over the course of, firstly, an earlier set and then this set; and so it is always rather nice when someone else likes them too.

Reviewed by: cairistiona -- Score: 3

A lovely set of drabbles that illustrate what a handful it must have been to be governess to a lively little Prince utterly obsessed with dragons! You've even managed to give a nice glimpse into Firiel's back story. Definitely a smile-inducing set of drabbles!

-- I'm so glad you enjoyed Return of the Governess - I have become rather fond of Eldarion and Firiel so it is a double pleasure when someone likes them enough to leave a review.

Reviewed by: Adonnen Estenniel -- Score: 2

I love both Eldarion's childish curiosity and his governess's forbearance in handling him. Both characters are sweet in their own way, and I really did enjoy reading about them.

-- Thank you - I am rather fond of Firiel and her young charge - and very happy that it won its class.

Reviewed by: Ellynn -- Score: 2

Very lovely set of drabbles, with so wonderful touch of humor - thanks to little Eldarion and his words. Nicely done.

-- Thank you - I am rather fond of Firiel and her small charge so it always pleases me when someone else likes them too.