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Numenor harbor

B2MeM - I join the ranks of ficlet writers

Posted on 2012.03.07 at 13:07
Tags: , , ,
Hi all,
Well, I started a ficlet on day 1 of Back to Middle Earth month. Good thing I'm a procrastinator as I was able to work in a bunch more prompts over the last several days. Honestly, I don't expect anyone to read this as it's another in the mass o' ficlets coming out and not my best effort. This is my Elendil of Elegy for Numenor musing as he leaves Umbar. Some version of this may well end up in my story.

by elfscribe
Rating:  G
Beta: Russandol (smooch)

With the last of his crew, Elendil climbed up the swinging rope ladder alongside his ship Izré, named ‘beloved’ for his wife Lórellin. He signed with relief when his feet hit the solid planks of the deck.  Finally, finally he was aboard, ready to sail for home.  After slogging about in the mud and cold of the winter campaign, then dealing with one problem after another in Umbar, it couldn’t come soon enough.  He was missing his wife and his boys more and more each day.

It took but a moment to adjust to the gentle roll of the deck under his feet. Once the sea got in the blood, its rhythm remained always with you, so his father said.  Elendil breathed in the moist, salt-laden air, and leaned on the railing, running his fingers over the smooth, varnished wood as he took in his surroundings.  

Seabirds filled the air, squawking with their rusty hinge voices, diving after the bits of biscuit floating about from some accidentally broken barrels.  There were always casualties in moving an army of this size. The gulls were different here than those inhabiting the harbor of Rómenna back home.  Here they had black heads. Briefly, Elendil wondered why.  Looking down at the lacy caps of the waves churning about the hull, he could see rafts of brown seaweed, rising and falling.  

Back on the shore, the walls of the Umbarian Regent’s palace, perched on the top of a high conical hill, appeared painted in gold by the late afternoon sun.  A road wound back and forth down the slope until it disappeared into the city. That road was empty now, when earlier in the day it had been filled with wains and men.

The day was fine, the sky a clear blue. A few serene white clouds cast lavender shadows on the hilly landscape.  A good day to depart if only Manwë’s priests could summon a breeze.  

Elendil glanced over at the other ships in their fleet, scattered over the harbor like a flock of floating swans, awaiting the order to move. To his left was his father’s ship, the Pûh, with its eagle prow. On his other side in the distance, Ar-Pharazôn’s mighty vessel bobbed up and down, its great golden sails and black banner with the silver tree hanging limp in the still air. A dark-robed figure with long red hair leaned out against the railing, strangely quiet amidst the bustle of the crew, but Elendil could feel his eyes from afar, avidly watching him.

Elendil wished they were leaving that black-robed figure behind, the being they had come to destroy but who had surrendered without fighting a single battle. Seemingly no one but him and his father thought this was highly suspicious.  Why wouldn’t Ar-Pharazôn listen to them?  Instead, the King had insisted on carrying his prize back to Armenelos. “What can one sorcerer do surrounded by the might and wisdom of all of Númenor?” he had said.  Elendil didn't know the answer to that, didn't want to.  

There, he felt it – a breath of wind on his face.  In the distance came the cry from Ar-Pharazôn’s ship for the fleet to move.

“Raise the sails,” Elendil called to his crew.  “Prepare to cast off.”

The gulls screeched and dived, as they picked over the floating remnants of flotsam.      

B2MeM prompts fulfilled:Adûnaic-Izré meaning beloved; Adûnaic- Pûh meaning breath or spirit; Beachly & Coastly - seabirds; Colors - lavender, & sky-blue; Emotions - apprehension; Landscape - hill; Of the sea - seaweed; Textures - smooth; Women of Silm - women of Númenor

Note: I had a whole flashback about Elendil’s memories of his wife for the women of Númenor prompt, but it didn’t seem to go well with this ficlet, so it will have to wait.   


spiced_wine at 2012-03-07 20:36 (UTC) (Link)
I am thrilled to read a little bit more of Elegy!

I am not keen on drabbles and short fics unless they're from an established story where I feel I know the characters (and the author absolutely knows them). And you do!

Thank-you for posting this. It's a treat!
elfscribe5 at 2012-03-07 20:40 (UTC) (Link)
Thanks so much Sian! Seriously, I didn't think anyone would bother to read this. *big smooch*
nelyo_russandol at 2012-03-07 21:08 (UTC) (Link)
As excellent as always, elfscribe! I can see this scene fitting at the very end of this first book of Elegy, where Ar-Pharazon is effectively dooming his land and his people. I'll feed you chocolate, hot elves, whatever bribery you want, so that you continue with this story beyond that point. ;o)

Please fon't get discouraged if it becomes buried under the mountain of ficlets. I'm generally avoiding LJ except for checking stamp requests, and I guess other people might be doing the same. It's overwhelming.

elfscribe5 at 2012-03-07 21:11 (UTC) (Link)
Hiya, thanks for the once-over. As you can see I did some major tweaks,including a paragraph reshuffle, so if you see a nit, feel free to tell me.

Chocolate and hot elves should good. I sure want to keep going. Okay, I'm going to spend the next two hours on Elegy. The scene between Sula and Annatar is getting intense. *g*
(Deleted comment)
leaf_light at 2012-03-07 21:15 (UTC) (Link)
I have to say I really enjoyed this. It has a real feel of the sea about it. Plus I love Elendil :-). Beautiful imagery in it too. Speaking as one who has gulls squawking overhead on a daily basis I really loved the rusty hinge description - but so much of it evoked the exact feeling of the sea for me. And shame no-one can tip that nasty sorcerer into a convenient cage for the gods to pick up. Save a lot of future trouble. And poor Sula too, lol.

So glad to see you've written this. Hugs
elfscribe5 at 2012-03-07 21:33 (UTC) (Link)
Squee, good to see you! You have gulls around your yard? I think you told me but don't remember that. They seem far from home. Sooo glad this was evocative of the sea for you. And right Annatar is up to his tricks for sure. Hugs!
keiliss at 2012-03-07 21:23 (UTC) (Link)
I haven't been tempted to post in the middle of all this activity, not the strange collection I've been putting together, lol. Still, anyone who doesn't read this doesn't know what they're missing. I loved it! It's like standing beside Elendil and seeing everything through his eyes. Something that struck me was how wonderful your descriptions are here, the gulls, the water, the seaweed, it's as though you live at the coast and it's part of your everyday (which obviously it's not *g*).

And talk about bringing someone to life with a couple of brush strokes: *A dark-robed figure with long red hair leaned out against the railing, strangely quiet amidst the bustle of the crew, but Elendil could feel his eyes from afar, avidly watching him.*

Looking forward to more.

Edited at 2012-03-07 09:28 pm (UTC)
elfscribe5 at 2012-03-07 21:36 (UTC) (Link)
Hello Kei. Oh yay, it evoked the sea for you. That's great. I have to say I've spent enough time at the shore to know what it's like. It helps to have good prompts like this or I wouldn't have put all that in. Reinforces how important details are.

And good that the Zigur comes through there. I realize you haven't read any of this fic yet. lol. I'm working on the last 2 chapters of this volume.
pandemonium_213 at 2012-03-07 21:55 (UTC) (Link)
Very lush little ficlet, 'Scribe. You've packed a lot of evocative description within a short piece. Great job of invoking the sea, too, from the gulls' cries (rusty hinges is right) to the feel of the ship (says she who lives in a port city and who gallavanted about in Woods Hole when she thought she might become a marine natural product chemist :^D).

I like Elendil's musings on what Ar-Pharazôn said: "Feh! So he's a sorcerer. What's the worst that could happen?"


elfscribe5 at 2012-03-07 22:27 (UTC) (Link)
Thanks Pande. I put Elendil's wondering about the gulls with black heads in there for you, figured you'd appreciate it. As Russa said, Elendil as Darwin?

Exactly. What could happen? lol.

So you were going to be a marine biologist (or whatever a marine natural product chemist is?) lol. I'll just never think of that without thinking of that Seinfeld episode where George claims he's a marine biologist to impress a girl and ends up pulling Kramer's golf ball out of that whale's blowhole. One of the funniest T.V. moments evah!
samtyr at 2012-03-07 22:50 (UTC) (Link)
Oh, I like this! :)
elfscribe5 at 2012-03-08 06:51 (UTC) (Link)
Thank you.
kymahalei at 2012-03-07 22:58 (UTC) (Link)
The sea! The sea! -and shipside no less. I've seen those rafts of seaweed and I've heard those gulls. All at once I'm transported to Elegy and I want to savor every word. I'm so delighted you are on your way again. I don't want to pressure you, but I confess I'm eagerly anticipating more.
elfscribe5 at 2012-03-08 06:54 (UTC) (Link)
I'm sure you're quite familiar with all those sensations. Do you miss it? I'm trying to make some progress here. Going slowly, I'm afraid.
Rhapsody the Bard
rhapsody11 at 2012-03-07 23:03 (UTC) (Link)
Thank you for linking me here, because after a long and tiresome day... this was a treat to read. Now I am hoping for some quiet months so that I can sit down to start with Elegy for Numenor. If this was just a peak of much much more Elendil.. :)
elfscribe5 at 2012-03-08 06:55 (UTC) (Link)
Well, that's lovely to hear. Although I warn you that so far Elendil has a minor role. It will increase somewhat in the next volume. If I ever get there. *sigh*
engarian at 2012-03-08 12:55 (UTC) (Link)
I'll take a little bit, even small little couplets, to get more of Elegy. I am no fan of Numenor, but you made me a fan of it as seen through your eyes many months ago. This was a pleasure.

- Erulisse (one L)
elfscribe5 at 2012-03-08 17:00 (UTC) (Link)
Thank you 1L. Glad you enjoyed it.
chaotic_binky at 2012-03-08 20:56 (UTC) (Link)
I really liked the scene - I could almost hear the sea. The the apprehension felt by Elendil was very well done.
elfscribe5 at 2012-03-08 21:31 (UTC) (Link)
Thanks Binky! Much appreciated.
lisse_c at 2012-03-12 10:52 (UTC) (Link)
I just started reading Elegy and enjoy it and this too!
elfscribe5 at 2012-03-13 04:02 (UTC) (Link)
Thanks for the comments on SWG and here. Cheers!
hhimring at 2012-04-15 12:16 (UTC) (Link)
I just discovered this via the link in Rhapsody's answer to Aliana's questionnaire on B2MeM.
I'm delighted! Both that you wrote and posted this and by those tantalizing things of more to come!
elfscribe5 at 2012-04-15 12:55 (UTC) (Link)
Thanks Himring. Glad you enjoyed this bit. I had no idea that Rhapsody mentioned it. Sweet of her. I didn't post it to B2MeM yet because of feeling overwhelmed by the flurry of posts. The Bingo prompts started me working on a whole backstory with Elendil and his wife, which I hope I'll be able to post at some point.
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