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Story meme

 November, 11 2005

Future histories


Here is a meme that did the rounds on LJ recently; not only was it fun, it was a source of ideas:

Ask me what happens after the end of one of my stories.

I've always been a bit confused about the palantíri -- I've always conceived of them more as videphones; minus, as Denise points out, the sound. The point being that they weren't crystal balls, or even Galadriel's mirror -- which could show things that "had not yet come to pass," or things from the past that its mistress had not witnessed herself. I thought that the info conveyed by the palantíri had to be info "entered" into the "system" by a user of a palantir. If I'm making sense, which I might not be.

Am I wrong in my understanding? I thought that Denethor was mistaken in believing that his skill was what showed him the things he saw through his palantir; rather everything he saw was being fed to him by Sauron. I figured that Sauron probably lured him to relying more and more on the palantir by showing him things that helped Denethor, or at least seemed to help him, perhaps even sometimes at small cost to Mordor in the years before the Ring War. It would have given Denethor a false sense of confidence in his abilities, and blinded him to the fact that Sauron was poisoning him. If Sauron had spies in Minas Tirith, they could have discovered Boromir and Andrahar's secret; Sauron would have known about Denethor's great love for his eldest son, and driving a wedge between them would have doubtless been right up the Dark Lord's alley. My larger question/point being: could the palantíri show a user something that neither he nor any other palantíri user knew about?

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