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for Immortal Hope

5/29/2018 c1 Wildcard2030
So, here I am reviewing an 11 year old story. Oh well, better late than never I guess. Hopefully I can get to some more reviews of these soon.

In any event, this is really strong. I like the Gwydion perspective here, as he has always been one of my favorite characters, and he is in a unique position to bridge the main story (Taran's journey) with the over-arching backstory-the looming threat of Arawn. I think there might be some opportunities here for more Gwydion stories that fill in some more of the plot gaps. I also like how you and other authors have hinted at some kind of past relationship-romantic or otherwise-between Gwydion and Angharad. Lots of potential there as well.

Even though she's in a supporting role here, your characterization of Eilonwy is on point as always, and I love the overall message of hope. This fits in very well with the state of affairs in Prydain at the end of BoT: things are changing, trouble looms, but hope remains.

Well done!
10/5/2017 c1 72Belfast Docks
I hate to say I started to read this story once, and something interrupted me and I forgot about finishing it, but I really like how it ties back to your last chapter of Drabbles.
8/8/2017 c1 Guest
This was cool!
7/13/2017 c1 2Mantis FA
I really like the window into Gwydion's thoughts, as well as Eilonwy's panic immediately after Taran's injury, when she didn't know whether he'd survived. By the time Taran wakes up, of course, she's recovered both her composure and the rough edge of her tongue, but after having to leave Fflewddur, Gurgi and Doli behind to face the warriors, seeing Taran possibly kill himself trying to draw Dyrnwyn to protect her from the Horned King, attacking the giant herself with nothing but her bare hands and teeth in an equally vain effort to protect Taran, getting tossed aside like a house cat trying to pounce on a bear, and finally witnessing the Horned King's immolation, she wouldn't be human if her emotions didn't get the better of her at least briefly.

I hope you'll include some of this material in the webcomic when its narrative reaches the end of the first novel. The whole sequence of Eilonwy's actions is so very *her,* from the initial hysterics and weeping over Taran when she's afraid he's dead, to fussing over him once she knows he's alive, to siezing the sword from Gwydion's scout before gifting it to the Prince of Don himself, to "fluttering around the men carrying Taran, admonishing them indignantly on the proper way to care for him."

The final confrontation of TBo3 is another place where Taran and Eilonwy's actions show how much they care for one another long before either of them can find the words to express their feelings. With only the Horned King pursuing them, it arguably would have been smart to split up, running into the woods in different directions so that he'd have to let one of them go. But it wouldn't even occur to either of them to take the risk that their enemy would pursue the other. Eilonwy could have run during the moments when Taran held the Horned King's attention, and if he'd had a little more presence of mind Taran might even have told her to, but she would no more abandon him to his fate than he would her.

One thing about the series that's interesting to ponder is, at what point between the end of TBo3 and the end of THK did it become possible for Taran to wield Dyrnwyn? How strict is the magic that limits who can draw the blade? The most obvious answer is that it wasn't until he'd seen himself in the Mirror of Llunet, but I wonder. I kind of think he wasn't all that far short even when he tried and failed in the first book, which might be why he survived the attempt. The purpose for which he sought to draw it was as noble as it gets, after all: he was standing between an otherwise defenseless friend and the most terrifying opponent to be found in Prydain. It seems plausible that he'd established his "noble worth" by the end of TBC, after sacrificing the brooch to acquire the Crochan, then committing to sacrifice his life in order to destroy it, even if he didn't recognize it in himself until the end of TW.
2/14/2014 c1 Mestra
I read this chapter from Eilonwy's perspective in The Princess Diaries, so it was quite interesting to see it from Gwydion's. He strikes me as a difficult character to write, due to his experiences and general awesome-ness. I enjoyed the references to the past and Angharad's character, as well as his thoughts on Taran's suitability for fulfilling the prophecy.
7/25/2011 c1 2u r awesome
This was extremely good! i liked the perspective of prince Gwydion! And the flashbacks absolutely positively wonderful! I love your stories! I do hope you update! either way I loved it!

- u r awesome
10/13/2010 c1 Joseph De Cristofaro
yes, The Hunter Rides would have indeed been a great start to this story. i enjoyed this story as much as i have enjoyed the others. i do wonder however, is Diaries finished or is it yet to be? i would very much like to continue reading about Eilonwy's time on Mona. i do find her very interesting after all =)
8/7/2008 c1 15Allen Skylark
Wow, great ending. Sorry I haven't gotten to Pincess Diaries; I'm incredibally busy (have you noticed my low quality oneshots recently?)so I printed your stories! And I write the review on the back (dad's gonna kill me for using the office equipment. Nepotism doesn't save me from the tyrant you know...)

You're portrayal of Gwydion here...is badass. I cannot express how much I loved this unless I had you in front of me and gave you a Smoit-worthy bone-crushing hug! Did I mention the ending was the shiznite? :)

I enjoyed the second paragraph, reading of his strong sense of justice that fed the fury at the cruelty Arawn's champion had worked on innocents and his gruesome delight at watching him suffer the same fate. And the inner confict between his more animalistic rage and the wisdom the compells him to quell it. After going through the same when I was young, I had asked if I was a bad person for this and my mentor replied "Even I tend to slip at times. What truly matters is catching yourself slipping." Well it may be because most of my personal goals revolve around justice and I deal with this dilemma frequently but this paragraph really moves me.

But I can tell what an Eilonwy-fan you are even though it is suppose to be Gwydion-centric. :) Who by the way was so chattery and hyper when Taran awoke that one would never guess in the boy's postition that she had been hysterical over the prospect fo his death. And it was a magnificent exuse to write a scene where Eilowy beats on Gwydion. That was pure genius.

Eilonwy's attachment to Taran as they carried him off wrought a big "AW" out of me - and that's hard...because I don't "aw". Usually.

My favorite bits are of Gwydion's recollection of Angharad. We've seen little of her in the Foundling, but you captured her and regat so well. And I love how artfully you mingled humor with the dramatic tension in such an exigent situation.

And ofcourse the thoughts of Taran by the end and connecting him and Eilonwy to the theme of the story; Hope. Beautiful.
12/16/2007 c1 29ElouiseBates
Finally, the baby sleeps and lets me have a chance to read and review! This was a beautiful picture of hope-hope for the future in Taran, and hope of the past fulfilled in Eilonwy.

I especially appreciate your use of imagery. You allow the reader to see the scene visually, and while in the case of the Horned King burning that's rather a grim thing, for the rest of it, it is marvelous.

I also enjoy getting a look at this scene from Gwydion's eyes. Actually, I enjoy seeing anything through Gwydion's eyes, as he is such a figure of mystery in the Chronicles. His mixture of savagery and restraint in dealing with the Horned King's death, his combination of tenderness and practicality toward Eilonwy, his bond with Melyngar ... and most especially, his sense of humor, keeping him from becoming too godlike and grim. Lovely piece!
11/22/2007 c1 12PrydainViolet
Oh I had been looking forward to this! And it is so good!

I really like the way you toyed around with Gwydions violent urges towards the Horned King. It made me realize that it must have been something Gwydion struggled with a lot - reconciling necessary violence with enjoyable violence. That must have been scary for him. And seeing Eilonwy as Angharad was so poignant!Along with the hope there is something very sad and haunting about children who are mirrors of their parents I think. Even though Eilonwy represents this sort of second chance, she's still a reminder of the loss of Angharad.

This was a really well done piece! Are you going to explore the Gwydion themes some more? I think you've got a really good start :)
11/21/2007 c1 26adaon45
Ah, there’s something to be thankful for on the day before Thanksgiving: a new story by CompanionWanderer. I can’t tell you how grateful I was to see this; I’ve been Prydain-sick of late, if one can so characterize the longing to return to its shores that engulfs one after being caught up in other things for too long.

I know I’ve said this before, but how lovely it is to see those of us who have suffered from this affliction getting over Gwydion Anxiety. It’s fascinating to see things from the Prince of Don’s perspective. I’m increasingly aware of what an intriguing character he is.

As usual, I love vivid details—Eilonwy blinding Gwydion in a “flurry of fiery hair.” I like Gwydion’s surprise at seeing the mirror image of Angharad in Eilonwy’s face, too. There’s obviously some great backstory waiting to be fleshed out on Gwydion and Angharad—not that I expect you to do a whole lot with their relationship, or acquaintance, necessarily, but you are opening the door for more memories to spill out. Nice bit, too, about the “guarded wariness” in Eilonwy’s eyes that hadn’t been in her mother’s. Living with Achren will do that to you.

And, by the way, I definitely see a point to this story, announced by the title, and the story’s, emphasis on hope. I love that last meditation of Gwydion’s on the rebirth of hope from despair. And, yes, you mention Oeth-Anoeth, a place we need to remember if we are to talk about Gwydion. I’m glad you hint at his experience there, opening the door yet again for a deeper future exploration of the prince’s character. I’d like to know more about Oeth-Anoeth, though as I say so I realize I might sound repellently voyeuristic. Honestly, it’s not that I want to read the details of horrid tortures, but as Gwydion himself says, Achren’s torments were more mental than physical, attacking one’s sense of hope in the same way that J.K. Rowling’s dementors suck out one’s soul, replacing the will to live with the darkness of utter despair. I’d like to know more about how Gwydion dealt with his mental trials in that prison, and how indeed these experiences affected him in ways other than making him more transcendent. Yes, I know, Alexander focuses on Gwydion’s god-like powers in the aftermath of his triumph over the powers of Oeth-Anoeth. Still, one could not go through such horrors without being marked or scarred in some way, even if those very scars brought one a wisdom one had not hitherto possessed. But oh, again, I would love to know more. The bit where Gwydion is disturbed by the “fine line between justice and violence” is another good example of how complex his character can be. Please may I have some more? Maybe as a Christmas present? (or, in my case, Hanukkah/Christmas combo present)
11/21/2007 c1 8Freawaru
Love it! Love it! love it! very cool!

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