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PostPosted: Tue Sep 10, 2013 9:39 am 
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Season 6 Episode 2

[Scene opens on a small vessel caught in rough seas…the sky is black, and lashing rain beats down on the ship, with the wind blowing the vessel this way and that; An Elf fights at the tiller to control it as the wake churns angrily below and climbs from the sea-bed in frothy fists, pummelling the craft…

As we watch a wave surges, rising astern, and a second Elf is ripped from the helm to the sound of snapping ropes and groaning wood; he is thrown forward against the main-mast, pinioned there. An echoing swell rises afore, threatening to break the ship in half between two walls of water. The Elf clings to the mast with all his strength but is torn away and plummets as the bow is thrust up toward the sky. He grabs for the tiller as he falls, his cry barely heard above the roaring winds. He is carried past the other Elf on the deluge that rushes over the gunwales. He makes a grab for him but comes away with only a handful of cloth torn from his sleeve. His cry is abruptly silenced as he meets his end in the broiling sea.

Suddenly there is a loud crack as the boom splits…the mainsail gives way, flying free of the yard arm and tumbling like a winding-cloth across the corpse of the ship. Another Elf hoists himself on the tattered shroud and reaches for the mast. The screams of the others resound as the ship breaks apart beneath them, and the waters suck them into the lightless depths. One grasps at the deck as it splinters, struggling for a handhold, but is dragged below and choked by the waters. The remaining Elf holds silently to the mast, too numb to scream as he sees their blue-lipped faces and broken bodies floating just beneath the surface in their brackish grave. The tumult roars up around him, and he lets go of the mast, letting the waves take him. Fade to black screen.]

* * *

[Fade back in the next morning to blue sky, and a flock of white gulls gliding on the warm currents. Camera pans down to show a placid sea on the shores of Nevrast. Camera pans the horizon and we see a wrecked craft bobbing benignly on the doldrums, the skeletal arm of the mast rising from the water.

The gulls emit a mournful cry as they wheel above the waters and camera turns landward. The storm has thrown seaweed and shingle drift as high as the dunes, and battered at the ruined walls behind them. Panning along the shore we see pieces of wreckage lie scattered, half-washed by the foam; bits of broken wood from the keel, some rope, a piece of the mainmast…amongst it all the camera picks out a sodden body lying motionless on the sand. Focus close-up on Elf’s face as the gulls song continues relentlessly. His face and hair are caked with sand and the tatters of his clothing are stiff from the salt of the sea. Eventually an eye opens as the Elf regains consciousness. He rolls over on to his back, letting the sun warm his front. Then, shading his eyes he lifts his head and sees the wreckage of his ship. Rolling over onto his side he drags himself into a sitting position. He sits and stares blankly out to sea in despair, too exhausted to move, too drained to weep. Cut.]

* * *

[Cut to Hall of Turgon: Camera pans around the hall and we see it is filled many sea-birds that have been driven in by the storm. There is a scratching at the door which awakens Tuor from his sleep in the High Seat: he gets up and walks out of the hall, as the hounds greet him joyfully. One nips at his leggings, trying to drag him forward, while the other stands at the top of the flight of steps, nose to the wind. Tuor realizes the hounds want to show him something, so he moves to follow them. As he picks his way down from the citadel to the shore we see that weed and drifts of shingle have been tossed upon the terraces by the great waves in the night. He descends to the lowest terrace and looking down he sees the Elf wrapped in a sodden grey cloak, sitting against the walls, gazing beyond the beach out over the ridges of the waves. In the hard and clear light his face appears as if graven in stone. Remembering Ulmo’s words to him, Tuor calls out.]

Tuor: Welcome, Voronwë! I have been waiting for you…

[The Elf turns, looking up at the terraces above him. Camera views Tuor from the Elf’s POV. He sees a commanding figure atop the high wall, radiantly backlit by the rising sun, his towering form arrayed in gleaming Elven-mail and a cloak of shadow draped over his broad shoulders. His body is tall and powerful, and his golden hair shines like a crown upon his head. The figure descends the steps to the shore and stands before the Elf.]

Voronwë: [rises and bows to Tuor as a subject before his King] Who are you, Lord? For many years ago my people left this land and none have dwelt here since. And I perceive that despite your raiment you are not of them but are of the race of Men.
Tuor: [He meets the piercing glance of Voronwë’s sea-grey eyes and recognizes his Noldor heritage.] I am, and are you not the last mariner of the last ship that sought the West from the Havens of Círdan?
Voronwë: Indeed! I am Voronwë, son of Aranwë…but how you know my name and fate I understand not.
Tuor: This I know for the Lord of Waters spoke to me yestereve. He said he would save you from the wrath of Ossë and send you hither to be my guide.

Voronwë: [in wonder] You have spoken with Ulmo the Mighty? Then great indeed must be your worth and doom! Surely you must be a king of Men with many to wait upon your word!
Tuor: [laughing] Nay, I am an escaped thrall…an outlaw alone in an empty land. But I have an errand to Turgon the Hidden King. Know you by what road I may find him?
Voronwë: A lord of Men by right you are, I deem. But if you should seek Turgon then vain would be your quest, for even were I to lead you to his gates, you could not enter in.
Tuor: I do not bid you to lead me further than the gate. There Doom shall strive with the Counsel of Ulmo. And if Turgon will not receive me, then my errand will be ended, and the Doom of the Noldor shall prevail. I am Tuor, son of Huor and kin to Húrin whose names Turgon will not forget, and I seek him also by the command of Ulmo…Will Turgon forget that which he spoke to him of old?

Voronwë: [turns away, looking towards the sea. Quotes:] “Remember that the last hope of the Noldor cometh from the Sea…when peril is nigh one shall come from Nevrast to warn thee.”
Tuor: [nods, solemnly] I am he that should come, and I am arrayed thus in the attire that was prepared for me.
Voronwë: Alas, then, for if evil has grown while I wandered and the last peril approaches, I must go to my people. [turns back to Tuor] I will lead you to the hidden gates, for the wise will not gainsay the counsels of Ulmo.
Tuor: [gladly] Then we will go together, as we are counselled. Whither will you lead me, and how far? Shall we not first take thought how we may fare in the wild, and pass the harbourless winter?
Voronwë: [shakes head] I will not give anything away of our journey’s course. But we are hardy and shall be able to last long before the hunger and cold of winter affect us: [brings forth a sealed wallet clasped upon his belt.] In this wallet is the waybread of the Elves…no water nor weather will harm it while it is sealed. Yet we must keep it until great need. No doubt an outlaw and a hunter together may find other ways to gather food before the weather worsens.
Tuor: Perhaps, though it may cause us to tarry on the road. Now, we must make ready to depart. [Cut.]


[Cut to scene in great hall.. Tuor is carving his name in Elven runes on the spear he fashioned during his journey to Vinyamar. He has trimmed his beard and tamed his hair. Voronwë is scavenging for anything useful on their journey. He finds himself a short sword, and also a small bow and some arrows with fletching that has seen better days.]

Voronwë: [testing string on bow.] This bow shall serve. We can fashion new arrows easily enough.
Tuor: [finishes his carving and sets the spear on the wall] I have set this here as a token that I have passed by.
Voronwë: And now we must leave it, and go in haste, following the old road from Nevrast to Brithombar and eastward into Beleriand. Orcs dwell now in the ancient cities of the Falathrim and all the land is infested with spies of Morgoth. Come, my friend. [Cut.]


[Cut to Tuor and Voronwë walking along the dark eaves of the Ered Wethrin. Camera focus on Tuor who turns to look on last time upon the sea. In the distance can just be made out the ancient dwellings of Brithombar and Eglarest. Voronwë halts and watches Tuor.]

Tuor: Let me look my last on the Sea…
Voronwë: [smiles knowingly] No Elf can resist its call. We forsook our paradise across the sea, and it is the hope of every Noldo that we may someday return.
[Tuor turns back and comes up beside Voronwë to look out over the land spread out before them, the woods of Nuath immediately below them.]

Voronwë: Beleriand the Wide: all the land between the Great Sea and the Blue Mountains in the East. We have many miles to go. We shall cross the Narog at the Pools of Ivrin, and then pass by the woven wood of Doriath….
Tuor: The world seems so big.
Voronwë: It is larger than you can possibly imagine, Tuor. There are lands much greater than Beleriand west of the sea, and large plains and seas to the east that have been unexplored since the beginning of time. [Voronwë moves on, the hounds forging happily ahead. Tuor remains still for several moments, then follows.

Cut to clips of Tuor and Voronwë walking through forest, then the two of them sitting on a log in front of a fire where they are cooking venison. The hounds lie quietly gnawing on various bones and scraps tossed their way.]

Tuor: Know you whether the Falathrim were able to find a safe refuge after the sacking of their cities?
Voronwë: [nods] They made new dwellings upon the Isle of Balar, and on the land of reeds at the Mouths of the Sirion. There now the numbers of the Eldar increase for constantly do Elven kin flee thither from the fear of Morgoth, weary of war.
Tuor: [pondering] How came you, then, to leave the Hidden Realm and sail West?
Voronwë: [glances keenly at Tuor] I did not forsake my people of my own choice: [ turns back to the fire, staring absently into the flames] After the siege of Angband was broken doubt first came into Turgon’s heart that Morgoth might prove too strong, and he sent the first messengers to Círdan at the Mouths of Sirion to seek his aid in shipbuilding, that some message and prayer for aid might come to the Valar ere all is lost.
Tuor: Why were you chosen?
Voronwë: I was born in Nevrast and have the sea-heart of my mother’s people, the Falathrim. When the last ship, and the greatest, was made ready I was eager to be gone, believing that no water could drown the ships of the Teleri. [shivering as he remembers] But the Great Sea is terrible, Tuor…and it hates the Noldor, for it works the Doom of the Valar. For seven years I laboured in Belegaer, from the North even into the South but never to the West: For that is shut against us. At last, in blackest despair and weary of the world we turned and fled homeward, only to be struck by the Doom more cruelly still. For even as we descried the peak of Mount Taras the great storm came up from the West and our ship was broken down to a helpless hull by the fury of the seas.

Tuor: [softly] Yet you were spared…
Voronwë: [bitterly] Alone among my shipmates…I still feel the fear and the bitter loss of all my friends that voyaged with me so long and so far, beyond the sight of mortal lands. [sighs, speaks more softly as he casts his eyes up at the night sky, where the stars shine white and cold.] But very bright were the stars upon the margins of the world, when at times the clouds about the West were drawn aside. None from mortal lands shall come there ever again, I deem. [Falls silent.]
Tuor: [gently places hand on Voronwë’s shoulder] Mourn not. My heart says to you that far from the shadow your long road shall lead you, and your hope shall return to the sea. [Fade]

* * * * *

Fade back into Maeglin’s workshop in Gondolin. As we watch he lowers the back of his hand near to the sheet of silver flattened in front of him, checking it has cooled sufficiently. Selecting a small hammer from the work table behind him he begins to tap lightly on the malleable metal. Ecthelion stands near and watches with interest.]

Ecthelion: : [attempting to make conversation] The King speaks highly of your skills…. it is an honour to have my ceremonial armour forged by such an accomplished craftsman.
Maeglin: [strikes harder with his hammer in irritation. Mutters under his breath:] Does the King think me dependent on his recommendation?
Ecthelion: [evenly] Most would consider it an honour to be held in the King's favour.
Maeglin: [frowns, bending closer to his work] I find his favour is won easily enough ….
Ecthelion: Then it is the favour of another which troubles you?
Maeglin: [glances at Ecthelion shrewdly but he feigns an innocent expression] I know not of what you speak. [frowns again, running a fingertip against the beaten silver, the subtle beginnings of a breastplate taking shape.] There is much in the world that troubles me. Favour with others is among the least of my concerns and desires.
Ecthelion: [gently] I am not blind, Maeglin. I know of what and whom it is that so greatly torments you. And though I am perhaps not what you would seek in an advisor, I have only these words for comfort: that even this, in time, shall pass you by and leave naught but a memory of faint regret.
Maeglin: [his hands still momentarily. Replies softly:] You know not of what you speak…
Ecthelion: [earnestly] I speak as one who has known the burden.
Maeglin: [flatly] There are none who have known this burden. [he continues beating the metal; for a moment the clear ringing of the silver is all the sound that passes between the two.]
Ecthelion: [sighs] Then let me give you this advice: Do not think that your blood-ties will blind Turgon to any transgressions.
Maeglin: [Works more slowly, his hands unsteady.] ] Does my lord speak of a particular transgression?
Ecthelion: [pleasantly] I do not… Yet you are called ‘Sharp Glance’…does the glance extend to yourself?
Maeglin: [lifts an eyebrow to peer up at Ecthelion] I was also called Lomion, by my mother…
Ecthelion: [nods,] "Son of Twilight."
Maeglin: [returns his nod,] If you believe in the prophetic gift of mother-names you will understand some of the occupation of my mind.
Ecthelion: [hesitantly] Perhaps your mother had no thought of prophecy. Mayhap you are named only for the place of your birth, for truly Nan Elmoth knew nothing but night.
Maeglin: [bitterly] And the night serves only to contrast the brightness of the Day…. [[shakes his head; looks directly at Ecthelion] There is a darkness I cannot escape, for it comes from within me, and it will hold no light, no matter how much I crave it. [Camera focus on Maeglin's eyes. Fade.]

* * * * *

A/N: The final scene of this instalment is based on a chapter from a piece of fanfiction called Beneath the Light by Mouse. When I read it I knew that it would be perfect for our script, not least because of how the author includes the line from Ecthelion - "I speak as one who has known the burden."

In our script scenario, this would be a reference to Ecthelion's former unrequited love for Maeglin's mother. At the end of our Season 3 mini-series on Gondolin we had Ecthelion removing himself from Court to devote himself to his military duties, partly because he felt he could not bear to be constantly reminded of Aredhel by Maeglin. However, I do see Ecthelion as keeping a "weather eye" on Maeglin for her sake, and taking this opportunity to warn him that his obsession with Idril has not gone unnoticed...

There is magic in long-distance friendships. They let you relate to other human beings in a way that goes beyond being physically together and is often more profound.
~Diana Cortes

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PostPosted: Sun Sep 15, 2013 10:55 am 
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* * * * *

[Scene fades back in on Tuor and Voronwë walking through the woods of Nuath before Dawn. The boughs have not yet shed their withered leaves, though the frost is heavy.]

Voronwë: I look forward to seeing the fair pools of Ivrin again. Its beauty is unsurpassed. Few remember when, almost five hundred years ago, Fingolfin the High King called a grand feast there. I remember the mist in the mornings, when we could hear the singing of the nightingales and the cry of the diver birds! The moonlight would dance upon the shimmering surface of the waters among the reeds at night.… [camera focus on Voronwë as the two leave the cover of the trees and step into the open hollow under the hills . Voronwë stops, shock clear on his face.] ...Ai!!

Tuor: [from behind] What is it, Voronwë?
Voronwë: The springs are poisoned and Ulmo’s power withdrawn from the waters of the land. [camera shifts to show the view which greets the two: in the grey of dawn where Ivrin births the river Narog is no longer a gleaming spring but a marshy waste. The stones of its basin have been defiled, the trees uprooted and burned.] ‘Tis nothing but a frozen mire. Alas! Has the evil come even here, so far from the threat of Angband?
Tuor: [shakes head sadly] It is even as the Lord of Water said…ever the fingers of Morgoth grope further.
Voronwë: Yet a malice has been here with strength greater than that of Orcs. Fear lingers in this place.
Tuor: [pointing] Voronwë, look! [one of the hounds is snuffling and pawing at an indentation in the damp ground some way off. Camera closes in and we see it is the tracks of a huge animal with clawed feet.]
Voronwë: [sickened with loathing] ‘Tis the tracks of a great Dragon! Yea, a great evil. Not long ago the Great Worm of Angband was here, most fell of all the creatures of the Enemy! Late already is our errand to Turgon…we have need of haste. [They are about to hurry forward, but a sudden movement in the distance makes them hesitate and they draw back under cover again, hushing the dogs. As they watch a tall, dishevelled warrior with dark hair comes out from the trees holding a long black sword, and he too beholds the defilement of the pool, crying aloud in grief:]

Man: Ivrin, Faelivrin! Here once I was healed. But now never shall I drink the draught of peace again! [he turns and moves swiftly away, heading North. Camera cut to hidden Tuor and Voronwë.]
Tuor: Who was that man, who bore a black sword?
Voronwë: [shrugs] A strange light was in his eyes. Some fell doom was upon him. I feel as if some dreadful thing has happened. We should not stay. [They move away in the opposite direction to the warrior. Snow begins to fall. Fade.]

* * *

[We see clips of Tuor and Voronwë crossing a snowy plain under a grey wintry sky, walking through blizzards and slipping on icy slopes. They seek shelter in a cave, and wake to find themselves snowed in. They dig themselves out and press onward, making slow progress, trudging onwards through day and night. The snow and ice does not abate for months and the cold and hunger causes their faces to become shadowed and gaunt. The hounds, too, are skin and bone. When they dare to take a little rest they have to huddle together, sharing body heat with the hounds under Ulmo’s cloak, which although it hides them from foes, does not protect them from the cutting winds. Finally, they cross the stream of Malduin, its inky waters frozen solid and Tuor can take no more, the cold having eroded both his strength and patience.]

Tuor: [irritably] How far is it now to go, Voronwë? At last you must forego your secrecy with me! Do you lead me straight, and whither?
Voronwë: [stung] I have led you straight as I safely might! Know then that Turgon dwells still in the north of the land of the Eldar. Already we draw nigh to him, though there are many leagues yet to go, even as the bird flies.
Tuor: I cannot survive this much longer. We have not eaten in days, and this cold pierces my very marrow.
Voronwë: There is no other choice but to press on, or sleep forever in this cold, white snow.
Tuor: [nods] Then let us go as far as we may before hope fails, [mutters] -- if it has not failed already… [they trudge onwards. Cut.]

* * *

[Cut back to the two at dusk. Looking down to the bottom of a tall wooded bank they see an old highway that once ran from Tol Sirion to Nargothrond. Now it is patrolled by the servants of Morgoth. Both the hounds stand alert, their ears pricked and noses quivering.]

Voronwë: [sniffs] Something fell is in this wind. I do not like it. But look! There is fire.
Tuor: Let us hope they are travellers, and will offer us shelter.
Voronwë: [shakes head] There are no travellers in this land. Nevertheless we shall get close as we may. [Tuor and Voronwë approach, and we see that it is a company of Orcs encamped in the middle of the road, huddled about a large wood-fire. The hounds whine as the smell of roasting flesh reaches them. Tuor tries to quietens them.]
Voronwë: [whispers] A raiding party... [Tuor looks covetously upon the flames and draws his sword]
Tuor: [growls] Gurth an Glamhoth! [subtitled: “Death to the Orc horde”] [removes his sword from under the cloak] I would risk death for mastery of that fire, or even a piece of their meat.
Voronwë: Nay! [grips his arm tightly] Rouse them and I will leave you! [hisses] They are not alone…Do your mortal eyes not spy other fires yonder? Would you have them bring their full number upon us? Even if we vanquished this company, more would be snapping at our heels, and I will not approach the hidden gates with the enemy at my hind, not for Ulmo's bidding, not for death! [Tuor looks at Voronwë darkly, and at the last drops his arm and sheathes his blade. They creep cautiously downwind, following the old road.]
Voronwë: On the other side lies Turgon's land, but danger moves before us. I am wary of crossing with the Orcs still so near.
Tuor: [looks at him, haggard and starving. Whispers:] Death is all about us. But I have strength left only for the shortest road. Here I must cross, or I will perish! I will trust to the mantle of Ulmo.
Voronwë: [nods in understanding] Let us go together, quickly, before they catch our scent. But what of the hounds? They may yet give us away…
Tuor: [resolved] I will lead: We shall attempt to cross first, while I make the hounds “stay”. Once we are safely across I will call them to follow. Should they be seen by the Orcs, they may easily enough mistake them for wolves in the darkness. [Tuor drapes them both in Ulmo's cloak and shepherds Voronwë forward, commanding the hounds to wait silently. They have barely crossed the road and passed into a thicket on the far side when the cry goes up…the Orcs have scented or heard them and they rise, turning in their direction, though they cannot see the pair. Sensing an opportunity, the hounds dart out of the undergrowth, dodging the Orcs’ legs, and make a grab for the meat left over the fire. The Orcs turn and chase after the hounds. Tuor and Voronwë take advantage of the distraction to hurry as stealthily as they can, pressing up the slope amidst knots of rowan and low birch until the down in its shadow. They crouch together with eyes wide and sides heaving, struggling to hear where their pursuers have gone. Eventually the cries of the Orcs fade away and Voronwë deems it safe to speak. ]

Tuor: Someday, I vow, I shall be able to put my blade to these servants of Morgoth, rather than flee like a cowed dog…. [looks up as two delighted hounds appear out of the darkness, plunder still clamped in their jaws as they rub up against him. Tuor laughs as the pair sits down to enjoy their prizes.]
Voronwë: May you take joy in the moment, my friend! Here we should be safe. [Pauses] I heard some of their words. I know a little of their speech. They seek one called Blacksword, and I heard the name of Túrin mentioned.
Tuor: Could it be the man we saw at Ivrin?
Voronwë: [nods] If so, then some evil fate has found him. Be glad, Tuor, that you are favoured by the Valar so. [Fade.]


[Fade back in to next morning. Tuor lies asleep under Ulmo’s cloak in the lair. He stirs, and sits up, realizing Voronwë is not with him. Hurriedly he creeps forth out of the lair to see Voronwë standing silent as a stone against the red dawn. He moves to stand beside the Elf and camera shows us before him the tops of distant mountains glinting against the ruddy fire. Below them eastward, is a deep and shadowy vale where a great river lies wrapped in mist.]

Voronwë: Alae! Ered en Echoriath, ered e’mbar nin! [subtitled: Look! The Encircling Mountains, the mountains of my home.] [Cut.]


[Cut to scene of the pair making their way down the valley-side, to the banks of the Sirion. The banks of the river channel have fallen away and its waters are choked by a great waste of stones, so that it is spread out into broad shallows, full of murmuring streams. Further on the river gathers together again and, delving a new bed, flows away towards the forested north march of Doriath. The hounds rush joyfully to drink from the shallows, rolling and splashing in the cool waters. Tuor makes for the fording place but Voronwë pulls him back.]

Voronwë: We cannot cross the Ford of Brithiach in open day, nor while any doubt of pursuit remains.
Tuor: [frustrated] The must we sit here and rot? The cloak of Ulmo will shade us from unfriendly eyes. Time is pressing. We cannot afford the delay.
Voronwë: [Still hesitates, looking back westwards, but all is quiet. Then he looks up and his face brightens into a beaming smile] It is well! The Brithiach is guarded still by the enemies of Morgoth: the Orcs will not follow us here.
Tuor: [confused] What do you see, Voronwë?
Voronwë: [laughing] Short-sighted are you Mortals! Do you not see, up in the sky? The Eagles of the Crissaegrim are here, coming toward us…. [Tuor gazes upwards and soon high in the air we see three eagles beating on strong wings down from the distant mountain-peaks. They descend slowly in great circles, then stoop suddenly upon the wayfarers.. Before Voronwë can call to them, however, they turn with a wide sweep, flying northwards along the line of the river.]

Tuor: What are they doing?
Voronwë: The Great Eagles are the protectors of the Hidden City. No spy of the Enemy has ever slipped past them, and it is because of their vigilance we are safe. Come, now…let us go. If there are any Orcs nearby, they shall be cowering nose to ground until the Eagles have gone far way.

[Tuor and Voronwë hasten down the slope and cross over the ford, wading through the shallows, and clambering over the shelves of shingle. On he far side they come to a gully, the bed of a dry-stream. The Elf halts, his eyes bright with amazement.]

Voronwë: At last beyond hope we have found it. See! Here is the mouth of the Dry River, and that is the road we must take. [they pass into the gully and follow its course northwards. The track slopes upwards steeply, and the sides of the gully rise on either side. In the dm light Tuor starts to trip on the stony river bed.]
Tuor: If this is a road then it is an evil one for the weary!
Voronwë: [grins] Yet it is the road to Turgon.
Tuor: Then I am all the more amazed that its entrance lies open and unguarded. I had looked to find a great gate, and strength of guard.
Voronwë: This is but the approach. Though Turgon is mighty, he trusts still to secrecy. You shall see these mighty gates, but they are a ways down. And yet I will warn you that in entering you are placing yourself in great peril. I may be regarded as a traitor to bring a Man thither, and we should both be instantly slain did they have the slightest doubt of suspicion.

Tuor: I doubt it not. But it comes into my mind that surely news will come to Turgon of our approach swifter than we. Does that bode good or ill?
Voronwë: Neither good nor ill. For we cannot pass the Guarded Gate unmarked, be we looked for or no. But to pass we shall need a greater plea than that we are not Orcs. Blame me not, as one unwarned, for what may then betide; May the Lord of Waters show his power here, and protect us.
Tuor: Forebode no more! Death in the wild is certain; and death at the Gate is yet in doubt to me, for all your words... Lead on!

[The two continue walking up the streambed which winds up to the very walls of the mountains. At last a great precipice looms before them, rising from a steep slope covered in a tangled thicket of thorn trees. The stony dry-bed leads into the thicket, which has grown so low that the pair are forced to crawl under the lacing branches.. At last, they come to an opening in the foot of the cliff, the mouth of a tunnel with a low roof.]

Voronwë: This is one of thousands of caves in the Ered Echoriath, and yet is the only way to the Orfalch Echor. Our journey is almost over. [They enter into the darkness, Tuor following blindly with his hand on Voronwë’s shoulder. After a while the ground levels out and becomes free from stones. They halt and breath deeply, listening for a sound but all around is silence. Camera focus on Voronwë’s face - he is clearly troubled.]
Tuor: [whispers] When then is the Guarded Gate? Or have we indeed now passed it?
Voronwë: Nay! Yet I wonder, for it is strange that any incomer should creep thus far unchallenged. I fear some stroke in the dark… [their whispers arouse the sleeping echoes and are enlarged and multiplied, running in the roof and walls of the tunnel, hissing and murmuring like many stealthy voices. And suddenly out of the darkness a voice calls out:]
Voice: [in Quenya, subtitled] Stand! Stir not, or you will die, be you foes or friends.
Voronwë: We are friends…
Voice: [sternly] Then do as we bid. [a tramp of feet can be heard approaching.]
Elemmakil: [unveils lantern, blinding the pair] Show your faces!
Voronwë: [casts back his hood] I am Voronwë son of Aranwë, sent long ago by Turgon King to consult the Shipwright. Do you not know me? Far have I journeyed, yet I still remember your voice, Elemmakil.
Elemmakil: [Walking forward into the light] Well do I know you, Voronwë. But you should remember the laws of our land. Since by command you went forth you have the right to return. [glances at Tuor] But not with a stranger in tow. By this deed your right is forfeit. You must be led as a prisoner to the King’s judgement. As for the stranger, he shall be slain or held captive at my judgement. Lead him forth: [Tuor steps forward and is surrounded by many mail-clad guards with drawn swords.The hounds growl and bare their teeth but Tuor restrains them.]

Elemmakil: [in surprise and consternation] A mortal man, hooded and cloaked? We were long friends, Voronwë. If you had brought one of our own kindred, I would have trusted you. But now you force me to choose between the law and our friendship. He has seen the secret way, and that means I must slay him.
Voronwë: Not so, my friend. I have acted on greater authority than that of the laws of the White City. The King alone must judge me and him that accompanies me.
Elemmakil: [pauses to consider] I shall take you to the Lord Ecthelion, Warden of the Great Gate and deemed the wisest of the lords of Gondolin, save for the King himself. Come with me.

[The captain leads them from the cavern of the outer guard through the tunnel until they see a pale light ahead. They stop before a wide arch with tall pillars hewn from the rock on either side, and between the pillars is a great portcullis of crossed, carved wooden bars, studded with iron nails. Elemmakil touches it and it rises silently. Passing through, they find themselves at the entrance to a ravine like a great narrow slit between the mountains.]

Elemmakil: You have passed the First Gate, The Gate of Wood. There lies the way, through six further Gates, and we must hasten. [dismisses his guards and gestures the pair to continue with him alone.] There is no more need of guards: from the Orfalch there is no escape for Elf or Man, and no returning…
[we now see a montage of clips of the three passing the 2nd to 6th Gate of Stone, Bronze, Iron, Silver and Gold, , as already seen in Enerdhil’s designs from Season 3 (Gondolin.) The shots of the Gates layered so that each dissolves/fades into the next.

Clips end as they approach the seventh, Great Gate of Steel that Maeglin has designed and built. Elemmakil strides forward and strikes upon a bar of the Gate, and the fence rings like the strings of a harp, running in harmony from tower to tower. Immediately guards issue forth from the two towers, clad in silver. Ahead of them is Ecthelion Warden of the Seventh Gate, astride a white horse. He is clad in silver and his matching helm is surmounted by a spike of steel with a diamond set on the point. His shield is studded with thousands of crystals like dewdrops. He dismounts and strides towards them.]

Elemmakil: [saluting] Hail, Ecthelion, Lord of the Fountains.
Ecthelion: Who are these you have brought with you, Elemmakil?
Elemmakil: Voronwë Aranwion, who returns from his long voyages, and a stranger, whom Voronwë demands must see the King.
Ecthelion: [addresses pair sternly] You have been brought to the Last Gate. No stranger that passes it may come forth again, save in death.
Tuor: If the messenger of the Lord of Waters goes by that door, then all those who dwell here will follow him. Hinder him not, Lord of the Fountains… [he throws back the hood of Ulmo’s cloak and the sun sparkles on his helm.] I am Tuor, son of Huor, sent by Ulmo who moves the Deeps to the Hidden City of Gondolin. I bear an errand to the son of Fingolfin, and to him alone will I speak it.
Ecthelion: [inclines head] For my part, no further proofs are needed. I shall escort you myself unto the King’s presence. [speaks to guard beside him.] Send a runner ahead to inform the King I bring him guests. [Guard salutes and hurries away. Ecthelion turns to the Gate and lays his hands upon it. The Gates open either side of the pillar of the Crown. Tuor passes through and stands upon a sward overlooking the vale of Tumladen. He beholds the vision of the White City in the snow, and is entranced.]

Ecthelion: Behold the city of Gondolin. May you take pleasure at the sight, son of Huor. Be light of heart, weary travellers, for rest is found here, and beauty. Light and laughter dwell here, and peace.
Voronwë: [tears of joy in his eyes] There never was a fairer sight.
[Silently upon either side of them a host assembles of representatives of the seven Gates, their captains and chieftains upon grey and white horses. Tuor unclasps Ulmo’s cloak, letting it fall, and the livery of Nevrast is revealed. Cut.]

* * *

There is magic in long-distance friendships. They let you relate to other human beings in a way that goes beyond being physically together and is often more profound.
~Diana Cortes

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PostPosted: Sat Sep 21, 2013 6:43 am 
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Joined: Fri Jan 23, 2009 5:03 pm
Posts: 5199
Location: Green Hill Country
* * * * *

[Cut to scene in hall of the King in Gondolin, around Midday. Turgon and Maeglin argue over plans for the renovation of the lower market. Suddenly a commotion is heard outside and the doors are thrust open as a messenger enters the chamber swiftly.]

Messenger: My King, the guards of the Gates come, with much fanfare, and they bring to you prisoners who found entry by the Hidden Way.
Turgon: [exchanges a look with Maeglin.] Then it has happened…I am betrayed.
Messenger: Nay, Lord…one wears the armour from Vinyamar. [Turgon rises, and departs swiftly from the hall…Cut.]


[Cut to clips of Ecthelion, Tuor and Voronwë walking down the main highway across Tumladen. The hounds, now on leashes, are being led behind Tuor. Shift to view from walls of Gondolin, angled slightly from above: Guards stand solemnly gazing out over Tumladen toward the Mountains. Citizens look out over the wall. Camera shift back to view from behind main trio. Trumpets Party halts at the foot of the steps below the city gates. Camera shift to focus on Ecthelion:]

Ecthelion: [Shouts] Open the gates!

[Camera shift to inside of the Gates. Guards run to open gates and the procession enters. The crowds press in around the party, and the guards have to make them stand back. Ecthelion takes the lead, and walks down the King’s Highway through the centre of the city. The crowd parts as Tuor and Voronwë follow. . At last, the trio ascends to the King’s Square and up the steps leading into the royal palace.

Cut to the top of the steps down into the gardens: Turgon, wearing Glamdring in an ivory scabbard, is seated on a high chair, Maeglin standing beside him on the right, before the throng of guardsmen and people already gathered there. The trumpets sound again, resounding around the walls of the city.]

Ecthelion: [salutes his King. Turns to Tuor] You have entered through the seven gates to stand in the House of Turgon before the Lord of Gondolin. Will you now speak?
Tuor: Hail, Turgon King son of Fingolfin, wisest and greatest of the Noldor east of the Sea! I am Tuor, son of Huor of the House of Hador, and I bring warning from Ulmo, Lord of the Waters. [As Tuor speaks, gasps are heard from the crowd. Turgon gazes in wonder at the tall, bearded Man, finding some familiarity about him.]

Turgon: Welcome, Man of the Land of Shadows. Thy coming was set in our books of wisdom.
Tuor: Hear then the counsel of Ulmo: That the time has now come indeed when all the works of the Noldor shall come to naught. Doom is at hand, and now the Mover of the Deeps bids thee rise up and leave Gondolin forever. Seek the West, and the pardon of the Valar. For in that alone may you be preserved.

Turgon: [somewhat indignant] Do you think I have been idle during these long years? Do you think that I do not yearn for Valinor? I sent messengers to Círdan of the Havens, bidding him build ships and seek the West. How many have returned? Only Voronwë Aranwion, who stands beside you. The West is closed.
Maeglin: [leans close to Turgon, speaks soothingly] My lord, Gondolin lies still hidden from the eyes of the Black Shadow. Even were the Enemy to escape the eyes of the Eagles, he could scarcely assail us here. Are we to abandon all that we have toiled and bled for these hundreds of years? Are we to place the fate of thousands into the pitiless hands of the Powers, who dwell in bliss in the West and care nothing for the troubles across the Sea?
Tuor: [looks about him at the crowd] If you place your lives in the hands of the Valar, such an act of faith may stir them to action against the Dark Enemy.

Turgon: [squares his shoulders stubbornly] Why should I trust the Valar to save us now, when they have been deaf to the Elves these longs years? My father, sister and brother are dead. Where were they when Hithlum was sacked, or the Havens destroyed? Where were they at the Nirnaeth, in our hour of need? Though it be the counsel of Ulmo himself, who guided me long ago to Gondolin, I will not do this thing. I am King of Gondolin, and no will shall force me against my counsel to imperil the dear labour of long ages gone.
Tuor: Then only will I bid you remember the words of Ulmo that he spoke to you long ago: “Love not too well the work of thy hands and the devices of thy heart; and remember that the true hope of the Noldor lieth in the West, and cometh from the Sea.”

Turgon: [stands silently, and stares into the distance, his head held high, and his hands clasped tightly behind his back. Heaving a great heavy sigh, Turgon turns his gaze back to Tuor and gracefully descends the steps.] I knew your father, Tuor, and loved him as a son; the more so because he saved my life and that of my people, sacrificing his own to keep us safe at the Nirnaeth. I also know that Ulmo is the friend of Man and Elf. But I cannot place my people upon so fragile a hope. The Doom of Mandos lies on us still. If they will not give us pardon, we must trust to our own strength, the strength of the Noldor, and this city. If these are Gondolin's last days, then stay you awhile, and come to know this city before memory is all that is left of her, if you would. [extends his hand to Tuor.]
Tuor: [clasps Turgon’s hand warmly] I would.

[Turgon gestures him to come inside for refreshment. As he climbs the steps, Tuor gazes up quietly at the King's tower above the hall, squinting against the glare of the sun. Camera also angles up and we see Idril standing at the window of her room. Idril leans gently against the sill, her eyes on the Man below. Fade.]

* * * * *

[Scene open on Tuor’s suite in the King’s tower. Immaculate marble walls shine in the sunlight that streams in through the large stained windows. Lush woven rugs cover the tiled floor, and each piece of furniture is a piece of art, loving carved and gilded. Tuor looks uncomfortable…

He leaves the room, walking down stairs and through corridors, walking faster until he finds a door that leads outside.. Looking around he sees house after house of shining white marble. The cobblestones are pale grey and laid in precise patterns along the lanes and squares of the city. Intricately carved fountains overflowing with fresh spring water decorate the squares,, spraying glistening drops over the trees and flowerbeds.

He wanders aimlessly into a garden where tamed roses climb in orderly rows over the gazebos and balustrades.. He touches the soft, silky petals of a peach-coloured rose.]

Idril: [softly] My mother made this garden once, in a world across the great sea.
[Tuor spins around, body tensed and his hand going to his sword hilt. He freezes, taking in the figure in front of him. Golden hair tumbles in soft curls over shoulders clad in pale blue and cool grey eyes regard him calmly.. His mouth goes dry. Idril smiles at him, reaching out to rest her slender fingers over his and he realizes, abashed, that he is still gripping his sword.]

Idril: I will not harm you, nor will any other in this city. [lets her hand fall to her side.] The entire city is a memorial to what we left, from the white buildings to the cherished gardens and the trees in front of my father’s house. Gondolin does not look towards the future, we dwell on the past here,
Tuor: [nods awkwardly, struggles to find words suitable to address such perfection] Is Gondolin so untroubled that it can cultivate such beautiful flowers?
Idril: [smiles again, eyes glittering in amusement.] It is peaceful here, but none may forget the Exile and the Nirnaeth. [holds out her hand to him] I am Idril…I would like to welcome you to our city. I remember your father well.
Tuor: [stares] Forgive me, I am no stranger to the Eldar, for I was raised by their hand after my mother passed Even so, it is hard for me imagine one so youthful should have known my father before me. [takes her hand and lifts it to his lips. Idril’s cheeks grew pink at the kiss and she lowers her gaze to the ground; following her gaze Tuor notices her pale unclad feet beneath the hem of her gown. Reaching out he places a calloused finger under her chin and tilts her gaze back to meet his. Breathlessly:] I am Tuor…
Idril: [blushing] Yes, I know. You came from the sea… [breaks off, embarrassed] …but I should let you speak for yourself!
Tuor: [shakes his head] I could listen to your voice for ever…it is sweeter than the music of the sea itself!
Idril: [giggles in delight.] Walk with me, son of Huor… [Tuor holds out his arm and she places her hand in the crook of his arm.] Tell me, does Gondolin fulfill your expectations?
Tuor: It exceeds them, my lady. I feel as if I have just come from darkness into light. There is so much life here, in the fountains and the trees…
Idril: And what of where you came from? Had you no-one to mourn your departure?
Tuor: My mother departed Hithlum never to return after the death of my father, when I was but a babe. I was fostered by Elves in the Land of Shadows…we lived always under a cloud of fear.

Idril: [eyes downcast] I regret now greatly that Huor must have died to protect the Hidden City.
Tuor: And yet, having seen it, I do not. If Gondolin were to lie cold and dark under a clouded sky, then all light would pass from the north. He sacrificed his life to preserve this beauty… [brings Idril to a halt, forcing her to look up at him again.] …and so would I. [the two gaze deeply into each others eyes. Idril raises her hand to gently touch Tuor’s beard, wondering at its softness.]
Idril: [musing] And yet there comes a time when all things must fail. [drops her hand again, turns to look out over the city] I had a dream three nights before you came.
Tuor: [transfixed] What did you see, my lady?
Idril: I saw the White City in flames. The trees were burning, the fountains were dry. Her maidens and young children were lying out on the streets, all dead. Night had fallen. [shivers, remembering]
Tuor: [covers her hand that is through his arm comfortingly.] Let us pray that your dream was of things that might not come to pass, rather than of those which will. [looks down as the sunshine sparkles on the neckline of her gown] What is that jewel you wear?
Idril: [Puts her hand to the green gem] It is the Elessar, a symbol of hope and healing, the greatest treasures ever produced by Enerdhil our chief jewelsmith. It is said to make the weary fresh and strong, to make the downcast fair and light of heart, and the wounded whole. One may find healing in its touch.
Tuor: Then, dear lady, in your fair hands this city is doubly blessed... [Idril looks up into his face, returns his smile. Cut.]

* * *

[Scene opens in gardens below the Tower of the King. Set high on a pillared arcade, the Tower is built of white marble, the courts inlaid with marble fountains spilling clear, foaming water. Beside the steps to the Tower are Glingal and Belthil, trees of gold and silver made in memory of the Two Trees of Valinor.

Maeglin sits on a bench, sketching a likeness of Idril. He looks up to see Tuor walking among the fountains. Lost in thought he is as yet unaware of Maeglin’s presence as he is all but hidden by the rise of a fountain bowl. Maeglin observes him through the streaming curtain of water. Tuor is clad in a plain leather jerkin, his flaxen hair brushed loose and beard trimmed neatly. Tucking the sketch away, Maeglin stretches his legs, and rises from the bench, moving towards Tuor who has stopped to gaze into the fountain. Camera cut to shot of Tuor’s face as he stares at his reflection in the softly rippling pool. He starts as Maeglin’s reflection appears beside his.]

Maeglin: [coolly] Master Tuor, of the House of Hador. How fare you in our City?
Tuor: My Lord… [bows respectfully. Replies a little awkwardly] I feel a stranger…an oddity.
Maeglin: You are: the last to pass through the Gates who was not of the Gondolindrim were your father and his brother, who stayed not long. The last to come to dwell here was myself, and that is many years in the past.
Tuor: [glances up at Maeglin with warmth] Then I am not alone. How came you to this place?
Maeglin: Gondolin was my mother's home, and for her sake I was accepted, though I was born in Nan Elmoth, beyond Doriath to the East, where I became skilled as a blacksmith.
Tuor: A worthy skill…
Maeglin: Little time do I have to spend in the smithy. Now my place is delving into the dark places of Amon Gwareth, burrowing deeper and deeper for such jewels and metals as I have not yet the skill to work. I am a miner, a dweller underground; my House is named for the Mole.
Tuor: [nods and turns back to the fountain, listening in silence to the gentle rush of the water.]
Maeglin: [studying Tuor again] Do you seek answers in the water?
Tuor: [smiles faintly] I hear but the echo of my questions. Still, I find solace in the sound. The waters shall never speak ill to me.
Maeglin: Do you fear that Turgon will?
Tuor: [sighs] He does not speak of the Message. With each day that passes Ulmo's words grow dim in his mind, for they stand pale against his own pride and stubborn will. I fear his devotion to this Kingdom.
Maeglin: [curious] Why do you fear? Are you not granted the privilege to leave? You need not be encompassed in our destruction.
Tuor: I fear, because I too begin to feel the hold of this City and the Lady which lights it.
Maeglin: [swallows uncomfortably, his mouth suddenly dry as he perceives a rival for Idril’s affections,] Truly the hold of Gondolin is not in its stones. [looks away, not wishing to hold Tuor’s gaze. Stares numbly at the flowing waters.]
Tuor: And you, my lord, what is it that you ponder, and does the fountain answer you?
Maeglin: [arches his neck.] I do not ask anything of it…I am merely reflecting. I will speak to Turgon on your behalf.
Tuor: [inclines his head in deference] Then you will set my mind at ease. [Cut.]

* * *

[Cut to Turgon standing on his balcony, hands to the stone-carved railing, face to the mountains. Maeglin moves up to stand beside him, a slight wind lifting the hair off his neck.]

Maeglin: I was wondering, my Lord, if you had spared any further thought for the words of the Valar?
Turgon: Look at it, Maeglin, look at Ondolindë with me. [Camera pans out over the view and we see mounds of gold and grey mallorn trees, slender birches, dark evergreens, courtyards strewn with white blossom, and green-clothed hills of grass, the fountains like showers of diamonds, the mountains standing shadow guard from every perspective… Streams of shimmering water tumble though tree grove and graven stone. Turgon continues softly:] I am an Exile: In Valinor I left behind Tirion that I loved, and on the Helcaraxë I left behind Elenwë whom I loved, to come to Middle-Earth. I am left with little belonging to me but a daughter and a kindred and a Curse. I may never look again on that which I left behind! [sweeps his hand out towards the view] But here in this City lives again the image of fair Tirion. I have built this kingdom of stone upon my heart, and there shall it stand forever.
Maeglin: [looks at Turgon with a twinge of pity. Looks out over the King’s garden below, hoping for a glimpse of Idril amid the flowered trellises and carven statues. Muses aloud,] What has become of Idril Celebrindal? She has been elusive of late.
Turgon: [smiles, unconcerned] She walks by the city walls with Tuor. [turns from him towards the inner chamber.] Come, Maeglin… [Maeglin freezes, feeling a stab of betrayal through his heart like a hot blade. His fingers clench at the railing. Fade.]

* * *

There is magic in long-distance friendships. They let you relate to other human beings in a way that goes beyond being physically together and is often more profound.
~Diana Cortes

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PostPosted: Sat Sep 28, 2013 8:50 pm 
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Joined: Fri Jan 23, 2009 5:03 pm
Posts: 5199
Location: Green Hill Country
* * * * *

[Scene opens on cracked earth and stone, illuminated blue by a Feanorian lamp set high on a rocky shelf. Maeglin is crouched on his haunches, back to a tunnel opening within the Amon Gwareth; he drives a wedge more firmly into a loosed boulder. He pauses, mid-blow as a voice calls out behind him:]

Talagand: Maeglin? - there you are! Why do you hide yourself inside the earth? ‘Tis a filthy place… [Maeglin shoots a glance over his shoulder, recognizing the foppish Lord of the House of the Harp as he ducks through the black cave and into the glow of the lamp. Talagand continues jovially] Yet the darkness suits you well, Lord of the Mole-people!
Maeglin: [standing to lower the lamp nearer to the stone he is hewing] And you not at all, my Lord of the Harp… Take care that you do not blacken your finery. [takes up his pick and axe once more. Lightly he begins to split apart the rock.] What need have you of me?

Talagand: [blandly] I have come on the King’s behalf… Turgon calls a council of the Houses of Gondolin. He wishes to speak regarding Tuor and the Message of Ulmo.
Maeglin: [releases his tools, rubbing his palms against the dirt to dissipate moisture.] He wishes to speak, but will he listen?
Talagand: [leans back, flicks at imaginary dirt on his jerkin.] That also is his objective. Will you offer opinion?
Maeglin: [shrugs] I depends upon the words of the other lords.
Talagand: [reflects pensively] When Tuor was brought before the King, I did not at first believe him to be a Man. He seemed cloaked by visions I still do not understand, yet am haunted by: visions of desolate ruin, and at the same time of hope and life…[turns to Maeglin, gravely] What think you of this Messenger?

Maeglin: [rests hands on the rough stone boulder, replies slowly] I think that I do not like that such power is placed in a single Man... He is but a mortal. Should we indeed give such dominion to any other than ourselves?

Talagand: [grunts in agreement] You are wise to mistrust in his power. Only the king should have such power over others…
Maeglin: [shakes his head] I do not talk just of power over the circumstance of a life. [laces his fingers] Tuor's command is of the heart, which governs the spirit: that is not for another to intervene with. Should we place our hearts in hands that will fall in time?

Talagand: [places had on heart in exaggerated fashion] My heart lies ever in Gondolin. [knowingly] Ah, but my friend, is your heart yet your own? And would you have it for your own, if you could? Would you take back such a gift, to end both the deep grief and immeasurable joy of the freedom in giving it?
Maeglin: [closes his eyes. Replies softly:] You are right. [stoops to retrieve the tools he has dropped to the ground.] My heart is already not my own. I have no need to fear Tuor.

Talagand: Exactly…no need to fear the power of love: it is the bringer of life!
Maeglin: [harshly] And death… [hands trembling] Look at my mother, killed by my father… his love would have killed me also…
Talagand: [places comforting hand on Maeglin’s arm] Ah, but it was your mother’s love which saved you, Maeglin!
[Maeglin shrugs off Talagand’s hand rudely. With the pick and axe he deals heavy blow to the rock before him It splits open with a deafening crack: the heart is porous black, and there is no gem within. Maeglin gestures at the broken fragments of rock.]

Maeglin: [breathing heavily] There lies Gondolin, friend, and your heart likewise.
Talagand: [turns pale, mops his brow with a lace handkerchief] You trouble me.
Maeglin: [snaps] Then do not trouble my presence!
Talagand: [fawningly] My wish is only to help you –
Maeglin: [slams the axe forward into solid rock, the pain lancing through his wrists.Talagand takes a step back nervously. Maeglin lets the axe fall, dropping his hands.] Go head. I will see you at the council.
Talagand: [bows and steps back] Then I take my leave. You may rest assured of my support… [He exits. Maeglin looks down at the shards at his feet. Camera focus on a single, glittering white jewel cast among the debris. Cut.]

* * *

[Cut to Council chamber. The lords of the Houses of Gondolin are seated, their faces cast as stony as the table before them. The King sits at the head, grave and resplendent in gold, red, white, bearing on his crest the Heart of Fingolfin, the Sun of the House of Finwë, and the Moon. To his left in blue mantle is Egalmoth, an opal brooch signifies that he is Lord of the House of the Heavenly Arch. Beside Egalmoth is Ecthelion of the Fountain, silvered and steely. Maeglin is dressed as always in unadorned black. On Ecthelion's left is Lord of the House of the Golden Flower, Glorfindel, young and keen, his tunic is embroidered with tiiny golden flowers and his cuffs banded with gold. He speaks with Duilin of the archers of the House of the Swallow. Duilin is clad in dark blue and purple hues; his sharp eyes search all present, but ever return to the face of Turgon. Talagand is next, lord of the House of the Harp, vain and foppish, he enjoys the soft life. Down from Talagand is Penlod the Tall, who leads both the House of the Pillar and of the Tower of Snow, and the green-clad Galdor of the House of the Tree; finally Rog of the Hammer of Wrath, strongest of the Gondolindrim. Soft conversations gradually dim, and all heads turn to the king as he signals for order.]

Turgon: We all know of the Doom of Mandos which was laid upon the exiled Noldor, It was said that all our works within Middle-Earth shall be destroyed. Ulmo, Lord of the Waters, led me to this hidden valley of Tumladen that I might build a kingdom unseen, and so would be protected. But he did not think that by doing so he protected us from the Curse, only delayed its consummation. Three-hundred and seventy-nine years ago I left my castle on Mount Taras in Nevrast, but at the bidding of Ulmo left there a suit of armour upon the wall, that in time, he said, I would recognize his messenger. In that same armour, [turns his gaze to each lording turn] has come Tuor, son of Huor of the House of Hador whom we sheltered years ago. And he brings a message of warning, of short time before the Curse is fulfilled and Gondolin perishes. His advice is to go down Sirion, to the sea, to the Havens, and leave the Hidden Kingdom before it is found. We must now decide what course to follow. [For a moment the lords keep silent, looking to each other as though to read the thoughts of the others present.]

Egalmoth: I do not know what there is to decide… We must heed this and leave before all is destroyed. [some of the Lords are startled that he is so bold, so quick to take a stand.]
Penlod: You are hasty in decision, Lord Egalmoth. If our Lord King has reason to doubt this Man, then his opinion is not without merit. Let us consider what in the message was truth from Ulmo, and what were perhaps Tuor's own words.

Maeglin: --And that perhaps they were all of the mind of Tuor?
Ecthelion: [turns to Maeglin sharply] Did you not see that with which he was cloaked? It was an impenetrable mist. His voice caused the very ground to tremble. It was not of his own power that this came about.
Maeglin: [concedes] It was an impressive show from a skilled speaker. But more is needed to prove he came of a Vala than a commanding performance.

Duilin: [neutrally] He wears the armour and carries the sword of Vinyamar…
Ecthelion: [firmly] He fulfils the prophecy: for no other reason could he have found the ruins at Nevrast in the precise time that Voronwë Aranwion was there. He was intended to guide him here to Gondolin.

Maeglin: Yes, there is also Voronwë his companion… [slides his eyes from Ecthelion, turning his chin towards Turgon.] My lord set the armour in Vinyamar in the sight of many. Could not this Voronwë have met with Tuor and led him not only to Gondolin, but even to Nevrast, telling him the tale of Ulmo's promise?

Penlod: [icily] Voronwë is above suspicion.
Rog: [perplexed] What would be his purpose in doing this? Though I do not doubt your intent is not such, you sew needless distrust, Lord Maeglin.
Maeglin: [lifts eyebrow feigning surprise and raises a palm of peace] I do not know what his purpose would be, nor do I say that it was so. I simply show the width of the margin of doubt, and pray that my lords give this matter the consideration and investigation it deserves.

Glorfindel: Alas that we look too deeply with our eyes at a matter of heart and spirit. Ecthelion saw the will of Ulmo in this Man; I also feel the burden which is laid on his soul. Perhaps it is not prudence but prejudice which holds us in doubt.
Maeglin: [biting back his anger] You speak with perception, Lord Glorfindel, yet I hold myself innocent of this charge, for it is often that I forget Tuor is not of our kind, nor has not always dwelt among us as a friend. But I have said all that I wish, and I would now listen to the judgement of others. [turn to Talagand abruptly, giving him a smile and a nod.] My Lord Talagand has not shared his opinion on this concern. [all eyes focus on Talagand and he takes a moment to fold his hands atop the table, jewelled rings catching candlelight in a purposefully distracting manner.]

Talagand: [pleasantly] I confess I am not well educated in this matter, but is not Huor who with his brother was sheltered here the father of this Tuor? Could he not have disclosed the matter of Gondolin to his son?
Turgon: [firmly] He could not: Huor perished in the Nirnaeth while Tuor was yet unborn. Even if he had had the will to share his speculations with his wife- for he knew not in certain our location- she could not have given this information to Tuor, for she also died shortly after giving birth. And, [more softly] I know that Huor had not the will to tell, for he was an honourable Man.

Talagand: [nods attentively.] Then I must make a second observation: the Curse of Mandos is a matter of Elves, the Noldor specifically. Why then would a Man have cause to become involved?
Ecthelion: Nay, it is a matter of the Noldor and the Valar, and it is on Ulmo's behalf that he comes.

Egalmoth: [voice raised] As I see it, the matter of the messenger is irrelevant, as is the hour and perpetrator of our destruction. We need only know that the hour comes, closer tomorrow than it was today, and Gondolin no longer is a name of half-believed legend but a city known to be real and true. That which is real can be destroyed. We must leave for the Havens.

Galdor: [gently] The people of Gondolin will not be so easily uprooted. Many have survived the destruction of other homes, other friends. Some will try to flee in panic, without reason or knowledge of where they go. All hearts will be crushed by the foreknowledge, and left without will to fight.
Penlod: Then you mean for us to sit and wait for an attack?
Galdor: I would not spend my life in wait. I say rather live until our doom is come, then fight with what we may.
[Maeglin looks to Turgon but the King’s eyes rest on the disquieted face of his long-time friend, Ecthelion.]

Ecthelion: [softly] I do not like to let the chance of hope pass us by. I think not of my valiant House, who would give their lives many times over in defence of Gondolin, but of the children, the young Elves who have not yet submitted their lives to a City or a lord, but still grasp their future with their own hands, their own purpose. I would not have them stilled. [straightens his back] I have heard the hearts of my lords, and against some I speak. But that of my King, I will yield to.

[His pledge is taken up by Glorfindel, by Rog, by Talagand and Penlod and Egalmoth and Galdor.]
Maeglin: [relieved, knowing Turgon’s mind will not be swayed] As will I…
Duilin: [stands, bowing slightly] I will follow the will of my king, but I do not yield my heart.

Turgon: Then I reject the bidding of Ulmo, and refuse his counsel. [Maeglin sits back, pleased, but Turgon soon wipes the smirk off his face...] But I will not ignore the warning of the Vala: the possibility of treason has been ever present, and now more so. I declare that the entrance to the hidden door in the Echoriath shall be blocked up…thereafter none shall go forth from Gondolin on any errand of peace or war, while the city stands. [Camera pans round the shocked faces of the lords. Turgon stands and exits the Council chamber. Ecthelion follows. Cut.]

* * *

[Cut to Turgon and Ecthelion in the Tower of the King. Turgon reaches his desk and sits with his head in his hands. Ecthelion pours them both a goblet of wine.]

Turgon: [takes goblet gratefully] Tell me, my friend, do you think I do wrongly? Am I wrong to not heed the words of Ulmo? Am I wrong to stay in Gondolin, against the counsel of the Valar?
Ecthelion: [prevaricates] Your reasoning is understandable…we all felt betrayed by them long ago.
Turgon: [eyes his friend knowingly] But you nevertheless feel I should listen to them?

Ecthelion: [shrugs] It was Ulmo the Vala who led you here, and thus far he has hitherto kept us safe.
Turgon: I know it well, my friend. We are in the midst of a desolate land prowled by the spies of Morgoth. But, here, we are hidden. The eagles of Thorondor protect us faithfully, and the mountains shelter us. Even if we were found, no enemy, however big the army, could assault the city. You must realize what it would mean to listen to him: [Camera close-up on Turgon’s face] I am afraid, Ecthelion…afraid of what is to come. Afraid to move, afraid to stay here. I have lost my faith, for I see too much. They say the Elves do not age. Yet for some, what the body shows not the mind reveals only too much. I must be strong before my people, but within me my heart is failing. I wish only to live and die with Gondolin.
Ecthelion: [places hand on Turgon’s shoulder comfortingly] You are right, my lord. Gondolin shall yet stand. Hope is not lost. [Fade.]

* * * * *

There is magic in long-distance friendships. They let you relate to other human beings in a way that goes beyond being physically together and is often more profound.
~Diana Cortes

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 09, 2013 6:55 am 
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Location: Green Hill Country
[Scene fades back in on Arvernien, near the mouth of the Sirion. The year is clearly ending, as a light dusting of snow covers the tall brown grass and leafless brush. A few seagulls fly about, apparently playing in the light breeze. Snowflakes drift lazily. Camera focus on Annael as he leads his ragged party toward the sea, entering screen top left. Annael and Lagorthal lead, with the women and children clustered behind them. Faervel brings up the rear, with Elhedril slightly in front of him. Camera focus on Faervel. His missing eye is bandaged with a strip of cloth, but he seems strong and straight. The Noldor sword hangs from his right hip, carefully wrapped in a deer’s skin so that only the hilt shows. Faervel smiles as he looks up at the gulls. He lays a hand on Elhedril’s shoulder.]

Faervel: It has been long since I left, but some things I will never forget. The sound of gulls is one of the more pleasant. [points to gulls] Do you see the birds? They are a sure sign that we are getting close. .
Elhedril: [frowns] Why? We have seen the same birds for weeks now.
Faervel: Look at them again, penneth. Those gulls are not searching for food. They are playing, because they know where they can get fed as soon as their bellies complain. Only a prosperous town has enough waste to keep so many gulls content, and yet Círdan’s people had retreated to the Isle of Balar ‘ere I left on his service.
Lagorthal: It seems someone else now has a settlement close to the sea…
Faerval: [musing] So it seems…perhaps a new influx of refugees have seen fit to establish themselves on these shores.
Annael: Maybe you should take the lead? I know only a vague direction, and we may miss –
Lagorthal: [lifts a hand for silence] I think we are found. [freezes]

[Several armored Elves rise from the grass, bows drawn. They wear the livery of Círdan’s guard, and look serious. They relax as soon as they realize the newcomers are Elves. Annael releases a drawn breath as the Elf Captain lowers his spear. Enelyë steps up beside Annael to greet the guards.]

Enelyë: [to Captain] Your weapons frighten the children.
Elf Captain: My apologies, Lady. In these troubled times, we dare not allow any to approach us unwatched.
Annael: We are glad you found us. Our march has been long, and some of us were wondering if we would ever reach safety.
Elf Captain: Where were you coming from? We have had no word of any settlements within traveling distance of us for some time now.
Lagorthal: We began our journey far to the north, in Dor-Lómin. Our people are now scattered. [Camera shift to Faervel, smiling wryly.]
Faervel: Captain! Is this the ‘Welcome Home’ I get after so long an absence?

[Camera shift to Elf Captain, who looks stunned. Elf Captain smiles, then grins and pushes his way through the clustered Elves to reach Faervel. Elf Captain pauses, startled by Faervel’s rough appearance.]

Elf Captain: Faervel, you scapegrace --- You look like you have been several rounds with a warg! [hugs Faervel]
Faervel: Thank you. [bows] To think I look that good…
Elf Captain: What happened to you? We heard about Nargothrond, and then –
Faervel: On my honour, I will give you the entire story from start to finish. First, can we get the children settled somewhere where they do not have to listen to us? Then, once we are settled by a fire with a drink or two you will hear an adventure worthy of song.
Elf Captain: So long as you are not the one singing it. [both laugh] We will take you to Lord Círdan. No doubt he will be eager for whatever news you bring.
[Camera pan back as Elves exit, lower right. Camera shift to Isle of Balar, where the distant rooftops can be seen glinting in the sun. Camera fade.]

* * *

[Camera cut to Círdan’s Hall. Dor-Lómin Elves enter, escorted by Guards. Círdan leaves his high seat to greet them, smiling welcome. Celeborn, Ereinion, and Galadriel stand beside him.]

Círdan: Welcome, kinsmen and friends. You seem to have traveled far and through rough lands. We would hear your tale, and what news you may bring to us of –
[Camera focus on Faervel and Elhedril. Faervel gives Elhedril’s shoulder a light squeeze and whispers “Stay here”. Then he steps away from her, moving firmly forward.]

Faervel: Tales can wait, my lord. We have walked for weeks, and not all of us are warriors.
[Camera focus on Círdan, shocked by Faervel’s appearance. Ereinion cringes. Celeborn and Galdor flinch, and Celeborn looks away. Other Elves gasp, horrified and sickened.]

Círdan: We believed you dead! When we heard that Nargothrond had fallen, and the few survivors said …
Faervel: [short bow] I promise you, my lord, that there is no news we bear that will not keep for an hour or two. Let us see our small folk settled. Then, when we are presentable, you shall hear all you wish to.
Círdan: [nods] Of course. [glances right. Camera shift to Galadriel, standing to one side. We hear Círdan speak telepathically to her: [color=green][I]My lady, might I trouble you to help with this?]

Galadriel: [bows, then comes forward with a smile of welcome. Enelyë greets her with equal friendliness] Welcome. It was not so long ago that my lord and I arrived, in much the same manner as you have come to us. Once you are clean and fed, things will not look so bleak.
Enelyë: I thank you, Lady. We are among our own kind at last, and that in itself is a relief.

[Camera follows Galadriel as she moves past Enelyë, leading the refugees from the hall. Faervel steps back to give her room, and catches the wrapped blade of the sword as he moves into the crowd. As he does, he moves through a shaft of sunlight that spills through the tall windows. The silver inlays on the hilt flash, drawing attention from many in the hall. Camera cut to Ereinion, who recognizes the device in the hilt. Camera cut to Galadriel, who also knows the sword and is shocked to see it here A tense, whispered conversation ensues between Celeborn and Ereinion in Sindarin, subtitled:]
Celeborn: What is the matter?
Ereinion: That is the sign of Fingolfin's house. How came this ragged stranger to have such a treasure?
Celeborn: We will ask him, but let it wait until his guard is lowered...

[As the refugees exit, Celeborn moves closer to Círdan and lowers his voice]
Celeborn: My lord, how is it that you allow a soldier to speak so in your hall?
Círdan: [nod, wry expression] That soldier may speak to me in any way he sees fit. He will in any case. I allow it because once, long ago, that man spoke truth to me and I ignored his words. Had I not, much of the horror of the past years might have been averted. Never once has he reminded me of this, yet I bear it in my heart waking and sleeping. [Celeborn nods, thoughtfully. Fade.]

* * *

[Camera fade in on Settlement at Arvienien, afternoon. Camera focus on Faervel, seated comfortably before a small house. He looks clean, his hair is brushed, and his eye is covered by a soft leather patch worked in silver. A small table beside him holds a cup, a set of sharpening stones, a pile of rags, and a bottle of oil. Several small knives and daggers lie on a cloth on the ground, oiled and cared for. Faervel is cleaning Ringil, stopping occasionally to sip from the cup or stretch his legs. Ereinion and Celeborn approach. Ereinion steps very close to Faervel, and Faervel looks up when the shadow falls over his work.]

Faervel: Did you want something?
Ereinion: That sword bears the mark of my cousin’s house. I would hear how you came by it.
Faervel: If you want a story, then pull up a patch of ground. [sets Ringil on the cloth, still wrapped in the oil rag] I am always pleased to tell of my heroism, when the audience is safe and comfortable.
Celeborn: [smiling] You took it in a fight, of course.
Faervel: [wry grin] Actually, no. The fellow that had it did not need it anymore, and had no objection when I wrapped my hand around the hilt.
Celeborn: Surely there is more to the tale than that.
Faervel: There may be, but without a drink you will not wish to listen. [to Celeborn] I have more wine and cups inside, but my feet have not forgiven me the boots I was wearing while we walked here. [Celeborn fetches cups and wine]

Erenion: Who had the sword before you?
Faervel: Some big ugly brute with a belly that hung over his belt and breath so deadly it could slay the unsuspecting at thirty yards or more. I have no doubt it was pleased to trade such a master for a handsome fellow like myself. [sips wine, looks to Erenion] Is that what you wanted to know?
Erenion: [looks confused]
Celeborn: That is not a bad story. [nudges Erenion]
Erenion: Yes. Thank you for the tale. I had wondered the fate of the sword after it left Fingolfin’s keeping. [firmly] We are glad to have it returned safely.
Faervel: Returned?
Erenion: Of course. [stands] That is the sword of Fingolfin who was high king of all our kind. I am the last scion of that line, after his younger son, Turgon, who has hidden his people away from this land and its troubles. You have my gratitude for your trouble in bringing it to me, and –
[Camera shift to Celeborn, who shakes his head at Erenion’s words and moves out of the path between Faervel and Erenion. Faervel stands slowly and pulls off his eye patch. Erenion’s words trail off as he sees Faervel’s scar exposed. Camera cut to Faervel, his missing eye revealed, his cheek slashed and puckered, his eyebrow cleaved by the slow blade. The cut is healed, but badly disfiguring.]

Faervel: [slowly] My ‘trouble’ in bringing this fine blade to you? You have no idea what you are saying. Look at my face![Erenion steps back, glancing at Celeborn for support. Both are tight lipped, and stay out of the conflict.]
Faervel: [softly] Do you know that this blade glows blue when Orcs are near? I saw it glow in the hands of an Orc captain as he used it to slice our own people as if they were sides of cured meat. I saw it glow as it slowly opened my face. It glowed even brighter when I took it from him and shoved it through his mouth.
Erenion: I … I
Faervel: Do you wish to pay the price I paid for this treasure, Elfling?
Erenion: Do not condescend to me!
Faervel: You are unblooded yet, but your time will come. When you have earned this blade, when you pay the price I paid to win it, then you come back to talk to me. Until then, go back to your nurse! [Camera pull back as Celeborn guides Erenion away from Faervel. Faervel returns to his seat, picks up Ringil, and continues oiling the blade while muttering to himself. Camera cut.]

End of Episode 2

There is magic in long-distance friendships. They let you relate to other human beings in a way that goes beyond being physically together and is often more profound.
~Diana Cortes

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