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Medium Dawn Felagund of the Fountain

Caranthir Romance Drabble Day!

The (Cyber) Bag of Weasels

bread and puppet




"About as much fun as a bag of weasels"...when I first saw this Irish adage, it made me think of the life of a writer: sometimes perilous, sometimes painful, certainly interesting. My paper journal has always been called "The Bag of Weasels." This is the Bag of Weasels' online home.

Caranthir Romance Drabble Day!

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feanorians
Because I have more people I want to write for than there are days in December, some days will necessarily have multiple pieces. Today is such a day. Today is Caranthir Romance Day. Because I sometimes honestly believe that I am friends with Caranthir’s most passionate core of fangurls, I usually end up giving stories about him the most as gifts. And romances are popular—particularly when that unreferenced “she” could be anyone!

So today, I have written two Caranthir romances, each five hundred words (though slightly different formats) and each a different pairing. The first is dedicated to Kasiopea, who is always such a help and inspiration to my work. A while back, she asked for a short story about Caranthir’s betrothal to his wife, and the story is in progress and forever unfinished. One day (soon, I hope), I will finally finish putting all of the words in my mind onto paper.

“Falling/Forever” is about Caranthir during the days of his father’s exile in Formenos when—according to my Felakverse—he first fell in love with his eventual wife Taryindë.


Falling/Forever
I. Purple

She loves purple.

She lifts an orchid to brush against her face, smiling, savoring. Or stares into the east, where the black sky and silver Treelight and reflection from the sea made a purplish hue along the horizon.

I lie upon my back and count the numberless stars overhead—or at least I pretend to. Really I am watching her.

A slender hand extends to the east, as though she can gather that purple sky and bring it to her. I think of armfuls of purple flowers bound in ribbons of the same and wonder….

But no. I don’t dare.

II. Unsound Emotion
I tease her about it because she is not the sort to adore such a dainty color, preferring to ride hard alongside her brothers during the Spring Hunt to sitting primly like the ladies in Tirion, drinking spiced tea from mugs trimmed in purple.

She punches me for my insolence, hard jabs delivered to my side, knuckles and ribs. Bone and bone. It hurts and leaves bruises spreading beneath my skin, blue edged in purple.

“Look,” I say, lifting my shirt. “Your favorite color!” and this time, she pinches me under the arm.

“That mark,” she explains, “will be red.”

III. Black
“Purple,” she tells me, “is better than black.”

For I adore black and wear little else. “It is easy to match clothes in the morning,” I explain, “and I don’t have to worry about stains.”

But purple, she says, is the color of nobility. Of honor and courage. And of proper love, not the sort defined by red and ruled by unsound emotions but the kind that lasts over ages, as trusty as a heartbeat.

Purple is the color of beauty—not youthful, frivolous beauty—but the kind that doesn’t fade.

And at last: Purple is the color of forever.

IV. Falling
“Then what is black?” I ask her.

She answers: darkness, nightmares, the end of the world. Black is the color of falling.

“Nonetheless,” I tell her, daringly, “I think that you would look nice in black.”

Both of our faces turn red: the color of unsound emotion.

There is a festival coming up in celebration of spring. The beginning of spring or—she says—maybe the ending of winter. “Are they different?” I ask, and she shrugs.

“Perhaps.”

Though winter lingers, flowers are already emerging from the soil, and I am careful not to tread them. Especially the purple ones.

V. Forever
I dally long before making an appearance at the festival, for I feel silly. And I look silly too, judging by the way my brothers glance quickly at me and look away, careful not to laugh.

I suppose that purple is just not my color.

And the one for whom I wear it is not even here.

I am about to return to my chambers and exchange the purple tunic for a black one when I see her. Her face is reddened, like mine, and she wears a black gown with purple flowers affixed.

The colors of falling. And forever.



For atanwende is a quibble about Caranthir and Haleth. Heroine has written such beautiful stories about this pairing that it is sometimes hard to force my mind back to my own verse and remember that Haleth/Caranthir is not really canon. This piece is set before their romance escalates, when Caranthir is still having naughty thoughts about his companion under the pretense of teaching her how to properly defend herself with a sword.

This quibble does contain mild sexuality but should be suitable for teenaged and adult audiences.


The Lesson
I gave her a sword and taught her how to use it. Because I feared for her, I said, and her safety as the chief defender of her people. Folding my hand over hers, adjusting her grip in the hilt. “That is correct,” I said, yet I did not want to let go, for I loved the touch of her skin. Her pale hair, eager face turned to mine. Freckles across her nose, giving an illusion of perpetual youth but for her gray eyes far too grave.

“Once,” she told me, “my eyes were blue.

“Then my father and my brother died.”

Yet it was a midsummer’s day, beautiful, with a sky so blue and untroubled as to sear the eyes of one who gazed too long upon it. “Today is a day full of hope,” I told her, tightening my hand on hers, “and thoughts only of the future.”

How I longed to see her turn to me and smile as her eyes met mine. Blue eyes met mine. I adjusted her stance. She resisted my touch, then succumbed. She moved with me, flesh no longer resisting the touch of flesh. Slowly, she parried with me. Like dancing, I longed to tell her, but I suspected that she knew nothing of that.

She was but twenty years old—young in the years of her people and a mere babe in the years of mine—yet there were lines beside her mouth from too much frowning.

I counted carefully, and she matched her steps to my voice. For each count, my heart pounded hard against my chest, three times. Sweat prickled beneath my light armor. Yet her movements were careful and studied, and I knew that she was not watching the way that my body danced so perfectly through the air, as light and graceful as a breeze. Our blades knocked together in an awkward, reluctant rhythm.

Her lips followed my count—one, two, three—but she spoke no word.

Her people had come with crude weapons: knives chipped from stone and heavy hammers that wearied one’s arm to wield. Nay, a sword suited her better: a beautiful weapon that complimented her grace and intensity. We began to move faster. She was seamless, boneless. Beautiful.

Yet no match for my skill. When the pace quickened yet again, I easily disarmed her and stood upon her blade in the dust, watching the way that her chest rose and fell rapidly inside her leather armor. The sheen of sweat on her skin. Her eyes turned to mine and reflected the blue sky, and for a moment—

Quavering fingers touched my face, a thumb tracing the contour of my cheek. Her lips were damp and slightly parted, and I lowered my face to hers for a kiss.

I felt it then: a jolt as her lips met mine and the kiss of stone, having cut through my armor in a single swift stroke and coming to rest—cold—against my bare skin beneath.
  • Oh classic! Punto for Haleth. Hehehe.
  • I know that the drabbles with Carni and his future wife were supposed to make me thoughtful and grave, but I swear I couldn't help giggling out loud when I read about them dressing in each other's favorite colors and being all silly about it. Loved it to bits.

    As for Carni/Haleth... to this day, I remain reluctant to even reading stories about them. Of course, I am reading those written by the talented people on my f-list, but I can't see Carni and Haleth together. Just can't. Even if it's pretty dam hot how she catches him off guard and presses the knife he thinks so primitive against his bare skin. (Yumm!)

    Hat's off to you for another batch of great drabbles.
    • I actually did mean for the Carnistir/Taryinde to feel a little awkward and silly. Carni in Felakverse isn't the most socially graceful Noldo, nor is Taryinde. I think you read my longer romantic comedy "When the Stars Smile" that I wrote for Tarion last year?

      As for Haleth/Caranthir...I know that you can't abide with Elf/Edain pairings. ;) I actually do tend to like this one only because it's not beautiful-Elven-woman-falls-in-love-with-irresistible-mortal tripe. Somehow, males Elves and female Edain just work better for me. Dunno why. :)

      But thanks for reading, as always! :)
  • Oh! I love the way how you captured Caranthir's voice in both works. The first one he's young and insecure, in the second one he's marred by life already and it is the young, eager Haleth who wants to explore everything. I really loved Caranthir & Haleth: there is this natural chemistry between them that sizzles of the screen here. With the first story, it's cute and youthness of both is there, but there I sense more the natural way on how elves perceived finding a mate (as if it was a given), but with the second piece Caranthir knows now that outside Valinor: nothing is a given. Greatly written *nods*, let me know when your stuff goes up at FF.net, I have you on my alert list, but for some reason those pesky things don't arrive. I want to add these fine works to my C2 (best Silmarillion stories) :)
    • Thank you, Rhapsy, for your kind words! I'm so glad that people are reading and enjoying these ficlets. Sometimes, I fear that I post so much that you all must be tired of me and roll your eyes when you see, "Oh, geez, Dawn's posted another story...." :^P

      (Though with all these novels I'm writing, I have a feeling that I'll be quiet for a while. But...ai...it just occured to me that they'll all be finished at the same time too, most likely. Damn.)

      Anyhoo, this series of ficlets is up on the Pit of Voles, proving that the alerts in fact do not work. ;) But here is the url:

      http://www.fanfiction.net/s/3275677/1/

      And thank you for adding me to your C2! I noticed that the other day (not that I check my stats weekly or anything like that *shifty look*) and am really honored. :)
  • Haleth/Caranthir is not really canon.

    But... but it is! *pouts* ;)

    Apart from that: *squeeeee!*. Thank you soo much for this, you really made my day! :) ♥ And I can soo totally see Haleth doing that. See, that's why I keep telling guys to never underestimate a woman. ;-P

    I also adore the other drabble-series.

    “It is easy to match clothes in the morning,”

    Mwahaha. Actually, when I want to look good but have no nerve to waste time on my outfit I usually wear all black, too. Because I think it looks instantly rather elegant. I do so at the moment, for example. ;)

    Ah yes, it's a good thing my birthday is in June... this way I may have a story by you every six months...

    *hides*

    :-P
    • You're welcome! I'm glad that you liked them! In the Carni/Haleth, I was trying to show his pride and her more subtle abilities. He doesn't really "get" it until then. That's why I called it "The Lesson": They both have something to learn!

      (But mostly him. :^P)

      And I wear black all of the time. For one, I am very fair-skinned and blond, so pale colors tend not to look well on me. Secondly, like you said, it is just an easy, elegant outfit. Actually, I wear all black so much (as does my boss) that he used to joke when I first started working there that the reason we were getting on so well was because we both knew how to make black look good. :^P

      And Carni's point about the stains is well taken too. Today, I decided to wear a white shirt, and at dinner, I naturally dipped a boob in black bean-garlic vegetarian "chicken," so now I have a stain in a very inconvenient place!
      • Today, I decided to wear a white shirt, and at dinner, I naturally dipped a boob in black bean-garlic vegetarian "chicken," so now I have a stain in a very inconvenient place!

        Ah, that sounds a lot like me... Last summer I wore a light green shirt when I went to have a pizza with my dad and ended up covered in tomato sauce... ;)
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