©2014 Sophisticated Games Ltd and Cubicle 7 Entertainment Ltd
The full wraparound cover to the forthcoming Rivendell supplement for The One Ring
roleplaying game from Sophisticated Games and Cubicle 7.
This image shows Arwen and a young Aragorn.
Painted in ArtRage.
I previously posted the front cover crop here:
A fun story from the Cubicle 7 forums:
Esteemed Customer at the C7 forums: "Did Aragorn keep Narsil in a full scabbard?"
Me: "Here's what we have to go on, from the Appendices. Remember we don't look at anything outside of LOTR, the Appendices and The Hobbit:
'2951. Sauron declares himself openly and gathers power in Mordor. He begins the rebuilding of Barad-dûr. Gollum turns towards Mordor. Sauron sends three of the Nazgûl to reoccupy Dol Guldur. Elrond reveals to 'Estel' his true name and ancestry, and delivers to him the shards of Narsil. Arwen, newly returned from Lórien, meets Aragorn in the woods of Imladris. Aragorn goes out into the Wild.'
So first up we have to decide is this entry written in chronological order. Given it ends with Aragorn heading off into the Wild I think it's safe to assume that it does. With all the inherent dangers of assumption. That's a lot of stuff listed that could be happening concurrently. So there's a chance Estel and Arwen meet before he's gifted the shards of Narsil. But let's assume not, especially as Arwen meets "Aragorn", not "Estel".
We're also assuming that having met Aragorn, Arwen and he actually have some kind of romantic relationship in that year. I think it's a pleasant assumption to make. But another assumption. Romantic love in Tolkien isn't, as we know, greatly detailed.
We also have no knowledge as to whether he carried Narsil around with him at this time. It seems likely that he took it with him into the Wild. But did he carry it around in Imladris, especially when it was just gifted to him? Possibly. I would say probably. But we don't really know from those two sentences.
Before this time we can fairly safely assume he owned a sword. Which could be the one he has in the image. Or it could be the broken Narsil in a full scabbard, based on the later appearance in LOTR. It seems unlikely to me that he'd carry it in a shortened scabbard in his guise as Strider since it might undermine his disguise.
We could talk the practicalities of carrying a sword, hilted for the full length blade, in a shorter-than-intended scabbard, but then we'd need to decide at what point in the blade Narsil was broken, and that seems like going a little bit far.
The great thing is you can decide all this for yourself! Maybe it's Narsil, maybe it's just Estel's sword.
Oh! I've also just realised you guys haven't seen the back cover, which has two riders approaching.
This expands the narrative a little, as I imagine them to be Elladan and Elrohir. Are they coming to keep an eye on Estel's blossoming friendship with their sister? Or are they coming to summon Estel/Aragorn to an important meeting with their father as he has a gift for him? (if we make the reverse assumption and imagine Estel is unaware of his lineage at this point). Or maybe they're just fetching him for some ranging out into the lands around Imladris.
Esteemed Customer: "I have nothing to add, except that you guys are awesome."
Middle-earth, The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, and the characters, items, events and places therein are trademarks or registered trademarks of The Saul Zaentz Company d/b/a Middle-earth Enterprises and are used under license by Sophisticated Games Ltd and their respective licensees.