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6 Comments

 
 

Fallen

Dwimordene - 21 Dec 11 - 8:39 AM

Ch. 20: Fallen

It's been some time since I've read Fallen, so I went back and read about four chapters in order to be able to read this one. I'm also so pleased I read the sidebar about Laeron becoming Valacar's apprentice, because then this chapter to could be the punch in the chest it deserves to be.

I love that you can make silences say so much in all your dialogues - what's actually said is very little, but it's the point of a much larger, unspoken meaning and the impact is fantastic. The Narrator and her fears about her home, about her ability to say 'yes' to Beren should he return, and the doubled up fear that his return might perhaps be more difficult to bear than his permanent absence because of what she's gone through.

Valacar's outburst was spectacular - and if he hadn't been so rigid before, it wouldn't have been as effective. Poor man, and what a final toast!

If there is one thing Fallen deserves to be recognized for - and there are so many things, but picking just one - it's that the process of rebuilding is shown for the complicated, difficult, painful and wonderful process that it is. Nothing is easy, everything is in flux, and yet Gondor's greatest generation probably couldn't conceive of willing it to be otherwise.

Sorry about the disjointed, rambly nature of this review, but suffice it to say, I really loved this chapter, and am glad to see Fallen's story grow once more.

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Fallen

Aliana - 25 Dec 11 - 3:32 PM

Ch. 20: Fallen

Hi Dwim,

So pleased to hear that this chapter packed an emotional punch.  I'm also glad that the pause-ridden dialogue is effective--those emotionally repressed Gondorians, I tell ya: sometimes it's hard to get them to talk.

And yes, poor Valacar was long overdue for some kind of emotional outburst, with or without this particularly terrible impetus.  His benediction is actually a slightly modified version of the last line of the Mourners' Kaddish, a prayer for the dead that never mentions death.

Thanks for your comments on the theme of rebuilding--that's something that's been on my mind for the last few chapters at least, and you put it very eloquently.  In canon, Aragorn's return to Gondor is more or less portrayed with unalloyed joy, which makes sense for readers who've been following him since Bree.  But I think that most ordinary people would definitely also feel grief and trepidation as part of the mix.

Best,

Aliana

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Fallen

EdorasLass - 20 Jan 12 - 2:05 PM

Ch. 20: Fallen

It's like Narrator is trying to cajole Valacar into marrying her so she doesn't have to deal with Beren and any possible feelings she might have for him. The utter straightforwardness of her "I know you're into guys, but you're nice to me and I admire you professionally," is kind of hilarious, even while her screwed-up motivation is painfully understandable. Married to Valacar= no dealing with having to tell Beren what's happened =no chance of discovering Beren isn't as understanding as you'd hoped.

 

  If you were inclined toward, you know, destroying your characters' lives, I would read an AU on Narrator and Valacar's marriage of convenience. But then, you know how I am. J

 

I totally HAD A FEELING you were going to do that, but that makes you no less of a giant weaselhead.  Yes. Weaselhead.  Although I suppose it was [narratively] inevitable, Narrator losing someone she's known for years.  And Elloth's reaction is very nice; blaming herself, because he fancied her, and would have listened to her if only she'd tried harder.

 

 

OMG you named the Rohirric guy! ^5!  That was very brave of you. J

 

The remembrance ceremony is lovely, and I am very fond of the way Valacar doesn't say anything until the end. That is one tightly-bound man, my friend;  sometimes I just want to shake him to make him react more deeply because omg you need to EMOTE something sometime!

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Fallen

Aliana - 20 Jan 12 - 3:14 PM

Ch. 20: Fallen

Married to Valacar= no dealing with having to tell Beren what's happened =no chance of discovering Beren isn't as understanding as you'd hoped.

And separate bedrooms, of course.  I'm glad that part was effective for you.

If you were inclined toward, you know, destroying your characters' lives, I would read an AU on Narrator and Valacar's marriage of convenience. But then, you know how I am.

Haha, I actually did kick around that idea for a while.  I think it involved her getting pregnant, and Beren dying at the Black Gate, and was, as you can imagine, completely miserable.  But then, I go in for that sort of thing, don't I?

I totally HAD A FEELING you were going to do that, but that makes you no less of a giant weaselhead.  Yes. Weaselhead.

*Puts on weaselhead hat.*  Yes, I know.  But you didn't think for a moment I was going to let them all make it out alive, did you?

OMG you named the Rohirric guy!

I know, I finally caved.  The idea that Narrator would have had all of these intense conversations with him, and never think to ask his name, was just getting too ridiculous.

I am glad you liked the "wake" at the end, along with Valacar's contribution.  I really enjoyed writing it.

That is one tightly-bound man, my friend;  sometimes I just want to shake him to make him react more deeply because omg you need to EMOTE something sometime!

Wait, having him destroy his dining room set was not emotive? ;)

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Fallen

DKP - 19 Feb 12 - 11:20 PM

Ch. 20: Fallen

You can just sense Narrator's healing, even before she actually admits to being hungry. Thank goodness! I love the wager with Bergil - I hope it crops up again. And I can totally get not being sure herself who she wants to win.

Valacar is quite the safe haven, isn't he? In all sorts of ways. I notice she doesn't feel revulsed any longer. Very astute observations of her, too: about the possible (un)conscious motivations of the East Company man, and that all of us have that darkness potential.

Somehow, I just knew what you were going to do and we'd not see our young man again. Something about his scene in the interlude, I think. Great reaction from Valacar, I agree with another commenter about the emotional punch it delivers; and I loved how Narrator could grieve for someone else she cared about. Lovely wake, and for the first time I think I actually like Elloth!

Seamless continuation, too. :)

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Fallen

Aliana - 20 Feb 12 - 9:30 AM

Ch. 20: Fallen

I love the wager with Bergil - I hope it crops up again.

Yes. :)

Valacar is quite the safe haven, isn't he? In all sorts of ways.

He certainly is, whether he wants to be, or not.  Re: Narrator's receding homophobia, I imagine that she follows a similar trajectory that a lot of people do in RL.  That is, because she likes and admires him as in individual, it becomes harder for her to be judgmental, even if at the end of the day she still doesn't understand him.  I hope it's realistic, in this context.  (Incidentally, I could write these two together to the end of time, I think.  They have such an odd little relationship.)

Very astute observations of her, too: about the possible (un)conscious motivations of the East Company man, and that all of us have that darkness potential.

I think that realizing that has also been part of her coming-of-age process.  Valacar knows that, too, even if he tries to convince her otherwise.

Somehow, I just knew what you were going to do and we'd not see our young man again. Something about his scene in the interlude, I think.

Yes, I did write that with a bit of an epitaph-ish touch, I think.  Also, because it's me, you just know that not everyone is going to make it out alive.

Great reaction from Valacar...

And fun to write (I'm a horrible person).

Lovely wake, and for the first time I think I actually like Elloth!

Haha, she'll be glad to hear that.  Aside from Narrator, she's probably the character who changed the most over the course of the story.

Seamless continuation, too. :)

Thanks!  Easier than I thought it would be, in the end.

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