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Fanfic / Saerang

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Why, even Gollum might be good in a tale, better than he is to have by you, anyway. And he used to like tales himself once, by his own account. I wonder if he thinks he's the hero or the villain?

Saerang is a Crossover Fan Fiction between A Song of Ice and Fire and The Silmarillion, written by Azrubêl.

On the day they were supposed to leave Essos for Westeros (as recounted in A Dance with Dragons), Young Griff aka the presumed dead Aegon Targaryen, son of Prince Rhaegar and heir to the Iron Throne, his Hand of the King Jon Connington, their companions, and the entire Golden Company are mysteriously transported to First Age Beleriand in the year 456, one year after the Dagor Bragollach. They now have to figure out where they are and a way to return to Westeros.

It can be read here on

Warning: This story relies on a particular Plot Twist to drive the plot forward, so beware unmarked spoilers.

Saerang contains examples of:

  • Alien Sky: One of the first signs the Golden Company get that they are in Trapped in Another World is being unable to recognize any of the stars in the night sky.
  • Alternate Continuity: Leaving aside the very nature of the crossover changing things, the Silmarillion-side of the story actually takes a few liberties in regard to elements of it, though it still largely faithfully follows its canon. For example, the fic's Orodreth is the son of Angrod, which Tolkien once thought of as he reworked the character, whereas in the published Silmarillion he is one of Finarfin's sons. At the same time, unlike the Canon Discontinuity, Finduilas here is still his only child, rather than Gil-Galad being his son as well.
  • Alternative Calendar: It is noted that the time the Golden Company landed at was at the end of the "Fading" season, which Word of God explained was the elven name for autumn and roughly corresponding to our months of October and November (The Elves have six seasons in their calendar, each accounting for about two months).
  • Animalistic Abomination: The giant spiders of Nan Dungortheb, all descendants of Ungoliant. To a lesser extent, Huan the horse-sized hound also counts, at least from the perspective of Westerosi.
  • Authority in Name Only: Harry Strickland is the Captain-General of the Golden Company, but it is clear that his role is only nominal and Jon Connington is treated by the Company as a whole as the actual leader, with the important decisions being deferred to him and his participation in meetings of the high officers.
  • Awful Truth:
    • Jon Connington's greyscale before Amarfion heals as revealing its existence would result in a mutiny and very likely Aegon's death.
    • In chapter 9, when Amarfion informs Jon that he's trapped in another world.
  • Badass Army: The Golden Company wouldn't be widely regarded as the greatest sellsword company in Essos if it wasn't, notably due to their discipline and training. It is their skills that allows them to survive Nan Dungortheb for so long.
  • Big Badass Battle Sequence: The Battle of Tol Sirion, with Switching P.O.V. on opposite sides of the battle.
  • Big Friendly Dog: Huan, Celegorm's hound, is an intelligent, giant wolfhound the size of a horse.
  • Canine Companion: Celegorm is almost always accompanied by his faithful wolfhound Huan.
  • Canis Major: Huan again, who is noted to reach up to Celegorm's chest when standing at full height.
  • Conlang: The Elves frequently use Quenya words and even sing in it. Most often they are left untranslated, but what they mean can be understood from the context.
  • A Death in the Limelight: In typical ASOIAF fashion, the prologue from the point-of-view of Lorimas Mudd is this. Most of the POV characters for the Battle of Tol Sirion are this as well, ending with two POVs showing either side of the battle dying.
  • Dirty Coward: Harry Strickland. However, a lot of his personality can be seen as him just having a more cautious nature that is now Justified by their new and sudden predicament, and it is only seen as cowardice because of Jon's biased perception of him.
  • Dreaming of Things to Come: Orodreth gets a disturbing prophetic dream, telling him to "beware the East". Considering the Golden Company later comes attack Minas Tirith from that direction, it is pretty clear what the dream was alluding to.
  • Dude Looks Like a Lady: Lysono Maar, due to his painted nails, earrings, and makeup, something which Jon is uncomfortable with.
  • Eldritch Location: Nan Dungortheb, the valley where the Golden Company is transported to. It is perpetually covered in mist, the water is foul and undrinkable, and giant spiders, the brood of Ungoliant, make it their home.
  • The Exile: Most of the Golden Company's members consist of exiled Westerosi.
  • Fell Asleep Standing Up: Demonstrated by Orodreth in one of his chapters, since Tolkien's Elves have an innate ability to remain alert and active while resting their minds in a dream-like state.
  • Fighting for a Homeland: The ultimate goal of the Golden Company, which has now become even more literal.
  • Flat World: Arda, as the story is set before the fall of Númenor. Various characters notice how can they see farther into the distance than before, because there is no horizon in Arda.
  • Foreign Language Title: The title Saerang means "bitter iron" in Sindarin as a reference to Bittersteel, the Golden Company's founder.
  • Foreshadowing: Amarfion is the only one of the Edain the Golden Company stumble across who understands the languages of Westeros or Essos, he is quick to befriend Connington (although much of the Golden Company don't trust him), and he's able to heal Griff's greyscale. He's no Edain, he's a certain Maia who was heading to Tol Sirion...
    • At one point, he says to to Aegon "Kings do not brook denials", the exact same thing Ar-Pharazôn is told that convinces him to assault Valinor.
  • Gender Is No Object: It is frequently noted, but not lingered upon, that the ranks of Elven warriors are made up of both men and women.
  • Giant Spider: The inhabitants of Nan Dungortheb, who attack the Golden Company multiple times.
  • Hidden Elf Village: The city of Nargothrond, of course.
  • The Homeward Journey: The goal of the Golden Company and arguably the premise of the story. Though the Golden Company and Aegon eventually decide to try and make a kingdom in this new world, since they have no means of returning home.
  • Hot-Blooded: Celegorm and Curufin, as usual for the sons of Fëanor. They get even more furious once they learn of the deception perpetrated using their House's name.
  • Idiosyncratic Episode Naming: Just like in A Feast for Crows and A Dance with Dragons, chapters are mostly named with a title or nickname that refers to the POV character they're being told through. Duck is the sole exception, though it uses the formal "Ser Rolly" because of his newfound status. The chapter titles can also change, as with Jon Connington's chapters going from "The Lost Lord" to "The Soaring Griffin".
  • Language Barrier: No one speaks the Common Tongue in Beleriand, so when the Company meets inhabitants for the first time, they can't communicate with them in Common or any other languages from the known world. The only exception is Amarfion, who can understand the Company just fine.
  • Medical Monarch: There's a subtle echo of this, the famous "the hands of the king are the hands of a healer" from The Lord of the Rings, when Aegon works with the healers to treat the wounded of the Golden Company after a battle against the spiders of Nan Dungortheb.
  • Metaphorically True: When Aegon and Jon Connington are told the story of the Oath of Feänor and the First Kinslaying, a lot of the recounting is this, when it isn't outright lying (notably, Melkor and the Silmarils are both completely absent from the narrative).
  • Multinational Team: The Golden Company is a pretty diverse army, made up of Westerosi, Lyseni, Lorathi, Dothraki, Summer Islanders, and Volantenes among others. The high officers and commanders are just as diverse.
  • My Greatest Failure: The Battle of the Bells for Jon, where he failed to capture Robert Baratheon and stop the Rebellion early. It's to the point that he has constant nightmares about it.
  • Names to Run Away from Really Fast: Nan Dungortheb, "the valley of Dreadful Death".
  • Noble Bird of Prey: A hawk briefly appears to guide the Golden Company and it is taken as a good omen. Readers of Tolkien would know that hawks and eagles are the servants of Manwë, the Top God of the Valar and the Big Good of Middle-earth, so there might be some truth to it being a good omen.
  • Nostalgia Filter: Orodreth has it hard for Aman, longing for the days the Elves spent in Valinor and Beleriand paling in comparison. It is shown to be one reason for Finduilas' frosty relationship with her father, his constant pining for it while seemingly demeaning the land she was born in and has only ever known.
  • Oathbound Power: It's implied that Rolly swearing his Kingsguard vows in Middle-earth gave them some supernatural power of their own. He is constantly alert and sleeps lightly in case he needs to spring to action, and it's all done so subconsciously it surprises him.
  • Omniglot: Aegon and Halfmaester Haldon, which doesn't help them understand the language of a surviving boy the Company rescues since it's an alien language.
  • Ontological Mystery: Exactly how and why the Golden Company was transported to Beleriand is unknown.
  • Our Elves Are Different: To be expected when the setting is Tolkien's Legendarium. More specifically, since this is the First Age, most Elves are part of the Noldor tribe, though Sindar also appear.
  • Our Orcs Are Different: Obviously, the men of the Golden Company are revulsed when they first see orcs, especially since they are fighting alongside them as part of Melkor's forces, leading to some musings from Aegon about them being on the wrong side, the side of monsters.
  • Praetorian Guard: Duck is the first member of Aegon's Kingsguard and its Lord Commander.
  • Private Military Contractors: The Golden Company, a company of mercenaries or "sellswords" in Westerosi parlance.
  • Royals Who Actually Do Something: Aegon, who leads a charge to rescue men of the Golden Company under attacks by giant spiders. He also wants a more proactive role in the Company and asks Jon to let him in on the meetings of the high ranking officials.
  • Secretly Dying: As a result of saving Tyrion from drowning, Jon Connington has contracted the greyscale, starting with his right hand. He plans to hide his illness until he gets Aegon on the Iron Throne. Thanks to Amarfion, however, his hands are healing.
  • The Siege: The Battle of Tol Sirion, with the Golden Company attacking and laying siege to the fortress of Minas Tirith
  • Switching P.O.V.: The fanfic employs the same narrative format as A Song of Ice and Fire. The main viewpoints so far are Jon Connington, Duck, Orodreth, Finduilas, and Celegorm. Other different POVs are A Death in the Limelight, such as the prologue and the Battle of Tol Sirion.
  • Trapped in Another World: Jon Connington, Aegon, and the Golden Company have arrived in this new world suddenly, and with seemingly no way out.
  • Unexpected Successor: After the disappearance of Orodreth following the capture of Minas Tirith, his daughter Finduilas is promoted into being Finharyë, the King's Heir, as a result of now (presumably) being the last surviving member of the House of Finarfin save King Finrod.
  • Unwitting Pawn: The main tragedy driving the story forwards: because they met him first, he helped them, and is their sole source of information on this new world, Aegon and the Golden Company are completely unaware that they are being manipulated by Sauron into working for Morgoth in his omnicidal war against the peoples of Beleriand.
  • Wham Episode: In chapter 9, Amarfion reveals that he's actually Sauron.
  • Young Future Famous People: Expected since the story takes place during the First Age, so there are plenty of cameos of characters who become important later in the First Age and/or later Ages. Celebrimbor, the future creator of the Rings of Power, appears as part of the Feänorian retinue of Celegorm and Curufin. Orodreth and Finduilas (for a given value of "young"), who have important roles in the The Children of Húrin, are Point of View characters.