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Day 17: A stereotype is a generalization, usually exaggerated or oversimplified and often offensive, used to describe a group. Think about a group that you identify with, either in your real life or in Tolkien's works, and write down at least three stereotypes that do or might exist about that group.

Summary: The orc who swallowed a sword and coughed up a soul.

(If the swearing offends you, blink when you find it.)


March 15-16, 3019, T.A.

The sword-thrust split her armor and pierced a lung. Shrieking her agony, she fell to earth, and now like a blinded animal writhes amid the thousand trampling feet, uncaring of aught, heedless of anything but her pain. Pain. Pain like she's never known – and she's known some! Save that... there is a memory... memory of pain so old, so awful, she'd swooned and woken from it dazed, forgetful, and terrified of remembrance, maddened to murderous desperation with the need of forgetfulness.

But it stayed in her – the memory of that pain stayed with her in every unsightly line of her and cramped, unlovely, miserable thought that made her His.

Soon, though she'll be nothing at all, not even His, and it is as if she's going back – going back there, going back Then, to what was, to the Before she was His, and nononofuckshitshithellfiresHURTSdammitSAVEME - !

She has no one to cry to, but cry she must, and cry she does – of this and all the pain that she has ever brought or borne within this world, wailing weakly, ever more weakly, impotent of everything. For that bloody sword has her pinned to herself like a bull on its own horns! She falls back into herself, suffocatingly, as the sky goes crimson –

- like her blood. Like the fire that seared her flesh. Like the long-ago tears she lost.

Red, red, the world ran red with abandonment...! –

There's blood in her eyes and a dampness on her cheeks – strange salty sting. And she's still screaming, shit she's still screaming, she can't stop – can't stop, because something's coming out, fuck, something's coming... out... of... me – !

A thin, ululating, coppery moan that has but three raw-throated notes to rub against each other, but there they are – the last little music in her that He never touched, surrendered up to the air, and then she's gone.

The sun sets. The moon rises. Faceless men walk the battlefields by the light of hungry bonfires. But they pass her over. They do not see her, nor She who lies curled at her back, long arms – bloodied by sharp-edged armor twisting in them – fast about her and clear grey tears glistening on Her cheeks.

But when the moon is high, and the stars are brightest, then She takes one poor stiff-gloved hand in Hers and stands, draws up a soul that rises like a babe from the grime and horror of its birthing. Ghostly they glimmer unseen in the night, and the One touches the other's cheek; then the west wind whistles, sweeps them up, and like that, they are gone.


A/N: I violated the prompt somewhat. I don't identify with this group, but I expect few would, in fact. There's a reason Tolkien came so close himself to writing them off as irredeemable, because they are so corrupt, treacherous, and vicious, and I'm sure anyone in Gondor, Rohan, or any of the rest of the human or elven world would not have been quite so concerned with the theological niceties Tolkien as the author was. The only good orc in their eyes would be a dead one. And I'm not saying this one was good, just following up on Tolkien's hesitation.


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