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An Anniversary is Coming!

Many Paths to Tread, the sister archive of this community, will be FIVE YEARS OLD on Sunday, July 27!

To celebrate, we will be doing something a little different this year! There will be some one-paragraph story-starters attached to this post as top-level comments by the mods. We invite our members to contribute to continuing each story in the replies to those comments! You may contribute to as many of them as you like and more than once, but we hope the stories will be able to reach a conclusion by Saturday, July 26.

There will be a starter for each of the following: The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, the First Age of Middle-earth, the Second Age of Middle-earth, and Multi-Age. Each completed story will be posted at the archive, with the names of all contributors. (Please be patient with us getting up our starters; they may not all appear at once.)

Here are the rules:
1. Please follow the community rating guidelines.
2. Only post replies that are a part of continuing each story. Save comments and reviews for when the stories are complete. Only mods will be making top-level comments. A separate post will be made for any questions.
3. Keep within the LJ character count for each addition, and if you contribute to a story more than once, try to let someone else add to the story before you add more.

There will also be an Art Challenge for our artist members in a separate post. Keep an eye open for it.

Finally: On July 27, we will begin to take nominations for the 2014 Tree & Flower Awards! Remember, only stories posted at Many Paths to Tread are eligible, and they must be posted at the Archive by Saturday, July 26.

We hope that many of you will come and celebrate with us by creating story and art!

Please comment at THIS LINK if you have any questions or concerns about this challenge!


The Mods

ETA: Deleted comments are only the LJ ping-bot.


Jul. 17th, 2014 07:34 pm (UTC)
Story starter for Multi-Age (All Books)
It had been decided. For now she would still walk amongst her people, but once Galadriel had decided that she could leave all behind their realm would slowly diminish. No, he was not ready to leave these shores, feeling too bound to his people. Celeborn sighed and observed how a patrol disappeared in the woodlands for a much needed patrol. So much work was left to be done still. Sauron had been defeated, but his minions still wreaked havoc where they could.

With a deep sigh, Celeborn planted his hands on the railing of the balcony and as his gazed over Lothlórien, he let his thoughts wander into the past when only the stars netted the skies during the day. How long had it been that she had walked besides him? And there were the years before she became part of his life to consider as well. Soon fondest memories warred with those of days with strife and wars, joy and pain. It seemed so long ago that Celebrían had played beneath his beloved mallorn trees or when had wielded his sword during dire teams… The soft foot fall behind him interrupted his thoughts.
Jul. 19th, 2014 03:20 pm (UTC)
Re: Story starter for Multi-Age (All Books)
"My lord."

Celeborn turned, but saw only the top of the golden head as the elf bowed deferentially. "You may stop this foolishness now that the Lady departs. Nay - I order you to stop this ridiculous posturing she has required. What is it, Valandil?"

The messenger rose, though the eyes remained downcast. "The Lady begs your presence, my lord."

Celeborn was silent for a moment, as the immense sadness nearly broke his resolve. He straightened his already erect spine, however, and collected himself so there was not even a catch in his voice as he replied, "You may give her my regards and bear my farewell kiss to her, but I am unable to witness this departure."

He understood his wife's desire to depart before the diminishing of their wood took hold. The whispering leaves already sighed their regret for the waning of the power of the ring. The heartbeats of his massive mallorns had slowed significantly in the months since the One Ring's destruction. He understood, but he could not bring himself to accept her choice to return to Valinor.

"Go with my blessings, such as they are. And may the wind speed the ships across the sea to the Undying Lands."

The messenger bowed again, habit could not be broken with a single utterance, and turned to retreat in the same soft-footed manner he had arrived.

The destruction of the Ring had wrought many changes, but not his reason for leaving Valinor. Celeborn turned back to stare out over the view of his forest. Feanor's treachery might have been enacted beyond the boundaries of Aman, but its seeds had been planted long before the multitude had followed the mad elf out of the Blessed Realm. He could foresee no future where he wished to return to that place, but he would not ask Galadriel to stay. She had her own reasons for returning.

Perhaps, when his own wood failed, he would go to the Avari. With the fall of evil, the Greenwood would flourish again; it did not stand or fall on the strength of a Ring of Power. Thranduil might not welcome him, but he would not turn him away either, for the king of the Greenwood, Celeborn knew, had no great love for the Valar either.
Jul. 24th, 2014 07:10 am (UTC)
Re: Story starter for Multi-Age (All Books)
Haldir had already taken down his flet. Now he stood with his hand on the silver-grey bark, communing with the mallorn he had lived in so long. He still hadn't made up his mind whether to follow the Lady west or stay on, not really.
Elsewhere, his brothers would be coming to their own decisions...
Jul. 27th, 2014 11:55 pm (UTC)
Re: Story starter for Multi-Age (All Books)
Or, perhaps....

Mirkwood, or Eryn Lasgalen as it was now renamed, was not his only resort. He had a claim on the remains of Imladris as well, he knew, the realm where his daughter had ruled so long beside her husband Elrond. Elladan and Elrohir would not leave with their father, not now when they had been granted the right to defer their own decisions until after the more painful departure of their sister. I could find purpose there, he thought as he looked stubbornly beyond Anduin toward the east rather than to follow his wife's planned path north and west. I can still offer guidance and assistance here. And perhaps, if and when I should choose to join my beloved, I will be able to tell her of the great grandchildren that Arwen will bear. There is still life to be lived here in Ennor, at least for now.

He stood there long, very long. Only when he felt his wife's departure from beneath the last of the mellyrn did he drop his gaze, at last allowing the pain to pass through him. How long it would be before he saw her again he had no idea. Perhaps not for some Ages of the Sun.

Edited at 2014-07-28 05:52 am (UTC)
Aug. 1st, 2014 01:49 pm (UTC)
Re: Story starter for Multi-Age (All Books)
Haldir pressed his palm against the mallorn for comfort. Yes, it would be hard if his brethren would choose another fate than his, but he knew he was not done here yet.

No, you are not… He still needs you for the task ahead. The war may have been won, the healing yet has to start Haldir. You of all knows the hardship of this.

With a sigh, Haldir stepped backwards and knew that the Golden Lady was right. They had come a long way since Doriath where he remained behind when Galadriel and Celeborn had left to explore the realms beyond the Ered Luin. His friendship with Oropher, fighting side by side as both were faced life and death… from the Dagor-nuin-Giliath where Denethor fell to surviving two kinslayings: their friendship had endured much. Yet Oropher had fallen long ago and his son Thranduil had inherited the once beautiful realm. A realm that needed healing as well. Still, he knew, he could not march for Mirkwood on his own, not without being relieved from his duty here. Yet, it would give him closure he needed and the fulfillment of a promise made long ago, even to Oropher’s scion. Whether Thranduil had forgiven him was another matter entirely. He still needs you for the task ahead, and if he understood the Golden Lady, he needed to talk to Celeborn about this for only he could give him permission to leave his post.


Eagles by judy
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