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The history of Middle-Earth (chibi version): Part 14: Dark in here, isn't it?

7th March 2013 (12:23)

In which the Valar run away like little scaredy-cats.

Part 14: Dark in here, isn't it?

Next time: Part 15: La Résistance lives on.

Chibis by tektek.org
Original story by and copyright to J R R Tolkien, ed. C Tolkien: Primarily based on the Silmarillion, but incorporating ideas from the 12-volume History of Middle Earth series.
Questions and comments welcome!

Artist's note: one thing that surprises me about this part of the story is that Tulkas didn't play more of an active role. In the First War, he was the one who came to Arda specifically to fight Melkor, and was foremost in defeating him. After the fall of the pillars, though, he seems to drop out of things almost entirely. It's Yavanna who's the most determined advocate of an immediate counter-attack against Melkor ("she would ever urge the Valar to that war with his evil dominion"). Tulkas, the mighty warrior, doesn't seem to do much at all once the Valar reach Valinor (to be fair to him, I have skipped over the part where his first instinct is to run after Melkor, until giving up when he sees Utumno's fortifications). Maybe he's too preoccupied with his new wife; but for humour purposes I decided that, like Private Hudson in 'Aliens', he's a guy who talks big when things are going well but falls to pieces after a defeat...

Speaking of falling to pieces, Varda is one of Melkor's fiercest opponents usually, but she also doesn't call for an immediate attack on him at this point. So for consistent characterisation, I decided she is too overwhelmed with shock and grief to pay much attention to current events as yet.


Posted by: erimthar (erimthar)
Posted at: 7th March 2013 19:31 (UTC)

One would have thought that 14 Valar against one would have been pretty poor odds for Melkor. He had his balrogs and his fortress, but the other Valar had their own legions of Maiar as well.

I guess they just weren't willing to risk destroying the world. Plus, none of them except Tulkas and Ulmo (and apparently Yavanna) really understood the concept of butt-kicking anyway, it seems.

Poor Varda. I have a feeling she doesn't get much attention at home.

Posted by: StephenT (stormwreath)
Posted at: 7th March 2013 20:48 (UTC)

I think the "official" reason is that the Valar were worried they'd do to much damage to the world if they attacked Melkor now, but they don't come off particularly well here. (I think Tolkien himself said something to the same effect: that he knowingly wrote the Valar as making the wrong call here.)

I think the thing about Yavanna is, she's the Vala of Nature. Which, as we know, is frequently red in tooth and claw. She isn't as harmless as she looks, even if she isn't personally a warrior.

Varda is heartbroken because she spent so long trying to think of something she could do to make the world a nicer place, while all the other Valar were busy making mountains and seas and clouds and forests - and when she does finally think of something, Melkor promptly comes along and wrecks it.

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