Maedhros beholds the Sun Picture

Maedhros, captured by Morgoth, chained high up on the cliffs of Thangorodrim, lifts his face, stirred to life after the endless hours of his torment by some new sensation, and beholds Anar, the Sun, rising up over the Earth for the first time.

I've had this scene in my head for a long time, it is of course nowhere to be found in the Silmarillion as written, but nonetheless it would have had to have occurred, given the chronology of events. Really I would love to do a series of everyone's reactions to the First Dawn; the noldor making their way east across the ice, thingol and his people emerging from menegroth, anticipating they don't know what, maglor and the others in hithlum, morgoth and his creatures, some struck blind, others withered and burnt to smoldering, ashen rock where they stand, even the reaction of the middle-earth itself; the great pale light from the east speeding over woods and hills, devouring the night-blue darkness, sending it's radiance in great spear shafts through the boughs of the trees, piercing down through the deepest canopies, birds stir in their nests and take to the air singing new songs, flowers and leaves that had lain dormant since the world was made spring open to meet it in an eruption of color, and somewhere, far away in some random corner of creation, Men awaken. It's such a huge game changer on all fronts, and so much more of a big deal, all things considered, than the Trees of Yavanna - rooted, stationary, illuminating only the Undying Lands - had been (really the sun and moon are the trees, but, like humanity, like the elves, like the very earth itself, they have morgoth's taint on them, and more and more it seems his contribution to creation is both god-odained and indispensable) but of all parties affected I always come back to Maedhros; chained and left to die in agony, with nothing but regret; for the Oath, the Kinslaying, the Doom of Mandos, the betrayal at losgar, the loss of his father, and that he wasn't strong enough to stop any of it from happening, and then this titan rises in the sky and warms his riven, tormented skin, and tears of joy well in his eyes and he chokes and sobs, laughing; the Valar have not abandoned them (that's what I was thinking anyway, I don't know how much of it i managed to convey)

As is so often the case with tolkien (and I'm of the mind that it always bears repeating) the events and characters of Middle-Earth, particularly those of the more elevated, mythological Elder Days, feel like some parallel universe version (or possibly ancient inspiration) of the legends and myths that have come down to us from real life cultures like the greeks, romans, or nordics; in maedhros' case there are substantial shades of Prometheus, altered as if by the time the story had reached the greeks the details had become changed or confused, but the key elements are still in place: this superhuman being banished from paradise for some offense, chained to a mountain by the gods, an eagle of the Sky-Father was involved in some capacity.

overall I'm pretty pleased with how this came out (it was important to me not to skimp on the physical effects of several decades being hung out to dry, even for an elf fresh out of valinor) but looking at it now i realize that the perspective in a little off, I'd intended this to be a "seen from below" angle, hence the foreshortening on the chest and chained right arm, but I'm not very good at drawing faces from below, and the angle of the cliff unfortunately conveys more a seen from the side than seen from below view (though I never pictured maedros as just hanging in mid air, more laid against the stone at some tourturously uncomfortable steep angle, something that would take a lot longer to kill him and, conveniantly, give Fingon some footing)
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