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November, 12 2005
OK, folks-this is the general forum now for questions that don't seem to fit in any of the other threads. I'm going to sort some of the earlier posts into the appropriate forums, but it might take a while, so bear with me. I'll delete the ones that have already been reposted by their authors.
Just out of curiosity, what are folks' objections to Hethlin and Elrohir? Isabeau has confirmed that in the Unabeauverse Elrohir wouldn't be very happy in Valinor. Who knows, perhaps events will transpire that will make Valinor much more appealing for him -- like if he meets the one available elleth in Middle Earth that he hasn't yet met, falls madly in love, and sails West with her after Arwen dies. Could happen, right? But as it is in the story right now there's nothing like that on the horizon for Elrohir, so a story ending with him slinking dutifully off to Valinor to fulfill an oath that Elrond regrets extracting from him would be a sad fate indeed for Elrohir.
Which leaves remaining in Middle Earth as an option for him. And if he did, why would he be inappropriate for Hethlin?
I must say that I am puzzled by what seem to me like pro forma objections to Elrohir -- except that he's in the way of everyone's favorite suitor, Imrahil. I know that others see in the story we've got so far evidence of Hethlin falling in love with Imrahil -- but where is that happening? I've missed it entirely. Imrahil loves Hethlin but we've had nothing to indicate that she reciprocates in any way. Hethlin has realized he's an attractive man, but there's a long distance between finding someone attractive and loving them. Almost all of their conversations have been between a superior and subordinate, or teacher and student -- there's lots of warmth, but Hethlin is asking questions and Imrahil is giving advice. Terrific! Important relationship! But love?
Hethlin got it on in Edoras with Elrohir when Imrahil was knocked out in the next room. If she had any feelings for Imrahil in a romantic direction, that would be a very weird thing to do. Granted, he hadn't confessed his feelings for her yet, but it does suggest that she wasn't thinking of him in that way at all. And in the latest chapter of Silver Swan, Hethlin doesn't have a moment's hesitation about joining Elrohir in the fields, nor even a thought for Imrahil. She's embarrassed when she encounters him along with Eomer and the rest of the gang, because it's obvious what she & Elrohir were up to, and she's a modest girl. But there's no indication that she feels torn between Imrahil and Elrohir.
We agree that Elrohir and Hethlin have a strong friendship that is multi-leveled. They've helped each other, consoled each other, and more to the point have conversed with each other privately many times as peers. Despite the fact that he's 3,000 years old, Elrohir seems to have a lot of, for lack of a better term, issues. Feels inferior due to what he perceives to be a lack of gifts that Elladan and Arwen (and Elrond) have. He's still looking for a raison d'etre that involves something besides killing orcs. In that sense he and Hethlin are a lot closer to each other in terms of where they are in life. Elrohir and Hethlin have talked about these things, as friends. To me, that is significant and meaningful interaction -- and I don't see where she's had that with Imrahil. She and Imrahil have spent very little time alone with each other -- they spent lots of time in each other's company on trip to and from Lorien, but almost always with others.
It's not that I'm 100% convinced that Elrohir is "the one" for Hethlin, but as I've said before I don't see why he can't be. The only answers I've received on that front are "he'd be breaking his oath" (which he never should have been asked to make in the first place) or "not fair for Elrond to lose all his children." But is it fair for Elrond to keep his children if doing so makes them miserable? That's fair? I guess I'm the lone Elrohir supporter in this discussion, although it's not even that I support his "suit" because it remains to be seen if he even has one. But I really am puzzled by the conventional wisdom that he can't be the one Hethlin ends up with.
Already I think their parting, when it happens, will be heart-wrenching for both of them. I know I'll be teary!
Actually I suspect she won't end up with either Elrohir or Imrahil. It dawned on me last night who that second white bird in Faramir's dream might be. Not Imrahil. Not Amrothos...
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