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  • Indis dies before Orome ever comes for the Eldar, taken by the Hunter. She does not become an Orc, her fate is not that cruel. But she still dies in agony and in torment, and will remain in the Halls of Mandos for a long time to come.
  • Many years later, Finwë is haunted by Míriel’s death, but he does his best to care for his son, hoping, one day, Míriel will return.
  • Fëanáro grows to adulthood, and even with no stepmother and half-siblings, Míriel’s death is a scar on his soul. Still, he tries, for his father, for Nerdanel, for his children.
  • Míriel finally returns, a thousand years after her death, when her son is fully grown and has three children of his own.
  • Finwë and Fëanáro are, of course, overjoyed.
  • But things are never quite as they should be between the King and Queen of the Noldor and their only son. Míriel has been gone a long time, and does not know how to be a mother. And for all that Fëanáro has longed for his mother’s return all his life, he does not know how to be her son. He cannot be. Fëanáro has his own duties, his own children to care for. He loves Míriel and she loves him, but their relationship is awkward.
  • (And part of Fëanáro resents Míriel, for not returning sooner, for not being there for him as a child, for leaving him and Finwë grieving and lost for so long. He suppresses this part of him, buried it deep, but is there.)
  • The seven sons of Fëanáro are born and grow, and none doubt that these Princes of the Noldor are destined for greatness. 
  • And yet, when Finwë or Fëanáro or Nerdanel look upon Seven Princes, none of them can quite shake the feeling that something is missing. That there should be some other children to laugh and play and learn with the Sons of Fëanáro. Finwë introduces his grandchildren to the young Noldor and encourages them to play with them, but it never quite seems right, somehow.
  • Fëanáro still forges the Silmarils.
  • And as always, his fixation upon them is his own. There is no world where Indis and her children are responsible for Fëanáro’s obsession with the Great Jewels.
  • Fëanáro’s relationship with both his parents and wife grows strained, though Nerdanel does not leave him. Things are not that bad (yet).

 

  • Then the Darkening comes.
  • Things are a little different, this time around. Melkor desires the Silmarils, but they are well-guarded in Tirion, so he assumes the form of an Elf and quietly slips among them in the night, sneaking his way into the vaults of Finwë’s palace.
  • Finwë and Míriel find him and try to stop him. 
  • They do not succeed.
  • The King and Queen of the Noldor are quietly murdered and their corpses and the theft of the Silmarils are not discovered until the next morning.
  • Fëanáro weeps and rages over the corpses of his parents, but even as he vows vengeance, the light disappears. The Two Trees are gone.
  • In the aftermath, Fëanáro vows a bloody revenge and swears his Oath, supported by his sons. Nerdanel is troubled, but she understands her husband’s desire for revenge.
  • But when they go to Alqualonde and demand the ships, Olwë still says no.
  • There is still a Kinslaying.
  • It is here that Nerdanel turns back, but very, very few follow her. Nerdanel is clever, strong, brave and wise, but she is not and never has been a politician or an administrator or a commander.
  • The Noldor go over the sea. In greater numbers this time, since the only leaders they know are the House of Fëanáro. The ships still burn, for they are evidence of theft and murder, but not until they have transported all the Noldor over the sea.
  • It is not enough.
  • Fëanáro still rushes ahead recklessly and gets himself killed. 
  • Maitimo still agrees to Morgoth’s offer to meet and bargain, and is still captured.
  • There is no rescue, in this world. Maitimo is hung from the Thangodrim, and it is there that he remains for a century, until his will is broken at last. (But the worst is yet to come.)

 

  • Maglor is King of the Noldor now.
  • Maglor tries, he really does. But his brothers are difficult to herd and once the truth of the Kinslaying comes out, the Iathrim are actively hostile to them.
  • Still, the Noldor spread out, building a great number of realms (if not as many as in another world) and establishing the Siege of Angband.
  • Sometimes, Maglor looks at the map of his kingdom and wishes he had more leaders, more princes and generals. His brothers are clever and strong, but there are only six of them.
  • A friendship between the Eldar, Men and Dwarves is still formed. Caranthir is the one who does it, and he builds a rich and prosperous realm. Most of his brothers are not quite so cosmopolitan, but they know their position is too weak to turn down help.
  • The Siege of Angband still lasts four hundred years, but when the Dagor Bralloch begins, it is even more devastating than it would be in another life. 
  • For Morgoth’s armies are led by a horrifyingly familiar figure with red hair, gaunt and clad in black armour. He is halfway between an Orc and an Elf, with claws and fangs and hideous scars marking his skin, but nothing which renders him unrecognizable. His name is still Maitimo, in mockery of who and what he once was. And when the Noldor see him, their despair and horror is another victory for Morgoth.
  • Amrod, Amras and Celegorm’s realms all fall. Amrod dies, but Amras and Celegorm are captured. Morgoth is very proud of his work with Maitimo, and now, he thinks that he would like to get as close to a full set as possible.
  • Maglor, Curufin and Caranthir do their best to hold their kingdom together, but it is a failing effort. 
  • The years pass and Morgoth’s grip extends across all of Beleriand. Eventually, Caranthir’s realm falls as well, razed by an army led by the Balrogs and dragons and Caranthir's own corrupted brothers. A number of Balrogs are slain, and the Noldor make their enemy pay for this victory. But it is Morgoth’s victory in the end.
  • Caranthir, at least, dies, but Curufin is captured by those who were once his own brothers and delivered to Morgoth. 
  • Maglor learns of this from a broken Celebrimbor, who describes the fall of Caranthir’s realm and the twisted forms of Maitimo, Celegorm and Amras, riding at the head of Morgoth’s armies. And Maglor realizes there is no hope of victory. Not like this.

 

  • The King of the Noldor rides to Doriath’s borders, and begs for an audience with Thingol.
  • The marchwardens of Doriath are unmoved at first, but are taken aback when Maglor offers his own life as recompense for the Kinslaying, if only Thingol will grant an audience to a Noldor envoy.
  • The marchwardens carry the message to Thingol’s court. The Iathrim are shocked, but Thingol at last relents and grants an audience to Maglor at Melian and Lúthien’s urging.
  • Maglor makes his case. He pours all his grief and rage and fear into his words, mustering all the charm and eloquence he can. There is no force in Beleriand that can defeat Morgoth. Only the Valar may do that. Yet, the Valar will never listen to a plea from the kinslaying Noldor...but they might listen to one from their kin.
  • Maglor pleads with Melian to return to Valinor and ask the Valar to intervene.
  • Melian is troubled and cannot deny the truth of Maglor’s words, but she cannot leave her husband unprotected.
  • But then Lúthien steps forward.
  • Moved by Maglor’s words, Lúthien offers to go to Valinor and plead with the Valar for help. She too is their kin, after all.
  • Thingol at first refuses her, insisting she must stay in Doriath.
  • But then Melian speaks and her words are grim. She warns that if Morgoth is not stopped, then he will overrun all of Beleriand and then all of Middle-Earth. Melian cannot hold him at bay forever. Doriath will burn, and Lúthien…
  • Lúthien would be a prize that Morgoth desires greatly, a daughter of one of the Unbegotten and a Maia. The torments he would inflict on her would be unimaginable...if he did not wish to make her his servant as he has with those sons of Feanor he has captured.
  • Terrified by Melian’s words, and though he will never admit it, moved by Maglor’s pleas, Thingol agrees to Lúthien’s request with a heavy heart.

 

  • Lúthien makes her way to the Falas, and from there to Valinor. She is allowed entry, her half-Maia nature earning her at least that much.
  • After arriving in Valinor, Lúthien goes to the Ring of Doom. There she sings. She speaks of the sorrows and horrors of Beleriand, of the atrocities Morgoth has committed and those he will, and how Middle-Earth is doomed if there is no help, with all the passion and charisma that she would have mustered in another life to plead for her beloved.
  • The Valar are at last swayed by her words, and agree to help.
  • But the Host of Valinor in this world is different. Precious few of the Noldor stayed behind or returned with Nerdanel, far too few to make up an army. And the Vanyar alone cannot defeat Morgoth.
  • Despite their misgivings, the Valar agree that a larger force of Maiar and even Tulkas himself should accompany the Host to Middle-Earth.
  • By the time the host of Valinor arrives in Middle-Earth, things are desperate. Hithlum has fallen as well, with the surviving Noldor forced to retreat to Doriath, where the Iathrim reluctantly allow them in. As Morgoth’s forces encroach and even Melian’s strength is challenged, the Eldar cannot afford to quarrel with each other.
  • The war lasts 47 years, and by the end of it, not just Beleriand, but large parts of the land beyond it are gone. Many are dead, including Thingol and Oropher and Círdan.
  • And Celegorm and Amras, killed by Ingwion. Curufin, by Celeborn. And Maitimo, slain by Maglor’s own hand.
  • Morgoth is cast into the Void, the Silmarils removed from his crown and given to Maglor by Eönwë.
  • The Silmarils burn. Maglor’s hands are tainted by the Kinslaying, and nothing he does can fix that.
  • It is the last straw. Maglor shatters and fades away, dying in mere moments.
  • When Eönwë states that the Noldor must return to Aman, Celebrimbor agrees. What is left for them, here in these broken lands where they should never have come? Some Noldor choose to stay, no more than a few dozen, but of the few hundred survivors, most of them follow their last prince back to Aman to sue for pardon.
  • The surviving Iathrim build a new realm with Lúthien as their queen, her capital a place that, in another world, would have been called Imladris.
  • And as Lúthien looks out upon this scarred and broken Middle-Earth, with both her father and mother lost to her, and so much sorrow and tragedy that should never have occurred, she wonders if, perhaps, things could have been different.