In the Second Age of Middle-earth, the island-realm of Númenor rose to become a mighty seagoing power. The forests of the island could not supply enough wood to build and maintain the huge Númenórean fleet, so when their mariners began to explore the western coasts of Middle-earth, they were drawn to the vast forests of the land that came to be known as Enedwaith. The crown prince of Númenor, Aldarion, was a great mariner and undertook many voyages back and forth across the Great Sea. In the late eighth century IIA he founded the first Númenórean settlement upon the shores of Middle-earth: Vinyalondë the New Haven at the mouth of the Gwathló. His men began to harvest the rich forests of Enedwaith, and so doing they encountered the indiginous folk of the region for the first time. Though indeed they were very distantly related, the Númenóreans recognised no kinship with the Enedwaith, and deemed them Men of Darkness, and sought to push them out of the land. Over time, as the pace of deforestation in Enedwaith increased to destructive levels, the Men of Númenor earned the enmity of the Enedwaith and open skirmishing began.
These two have sailed far from their homes in Númenor aboard one of the great white-winged ships of their people. Setting foot on the soil of Middle-earth for the first time, they have been appointed timber-wards and stationed at a small stone fort in the wilds of Enedwaith during the days of high tension between the Númenórean foresters and the native folk. Their garrison guards the operations of the foresters in the surrounding country and therefore is an attractive target to the Enedwaith, who often strike in night raids, sowing fire and confusion. It is the duty of the timber-wards to defend against these raids, and thus they are well armed and armoured. Both wear mail of polished iron and bronze with a peculiar golden-greenish hue, the cunning work of the the smiths of Númenor. The man’s full-helm protects his face from the sling-stones and firebrands of the Enedwaith, while the woman’s is decorated with backswept seabird-wings and an array of stars, proud emblems of Númenor. They both carry sturdy leather packs equipped with keen-bladed hatchets, for in addition to their duties as defenders, they also assist with the preparation of the felled timber. Yet the forests here, no matter how vast, cannot forever withstand the greed of Númenor, nor can the folk of Enedwaith. Ere the end of the Second Age, both will become just a memory in this land.
I’m trying a little something different and hopefully fun with today’s outfits. Outfits, plural! Usually I feature one outfit in each post, but while I was working on this week’s I couldn’t decide which of these two combinations of Blade of the West armour and crafted Dwarf-make Bronze Armour I liked better. In the end, I thought both outfits were worth sharing on the blog, so I’m beginning new category of posts, called “His and Hers”, where I’ll present two variants on a cosmetic combination, one modelled by a male character, and the other by a female character. I’m not sure how often I’ll run “His and Hers” posts, but I do have a few ideas for the future. Is this something you would like to see more of? Do you like being able to compare the “his” and “hers” outfits in one post, or would you rather see the outfits in separate posts? I’d love to know your thoughts, dear readers!
- Head: Helm of Remmirath (looted — world drop/level 41), Ranger green
- Shoulders: Elven Soldier’s Shoulder Guards (crafted — metalsmith T5; or looted — world drop/general), Rivendell green
- Back: Fancy Woodcutter’s Pack (looted — Yule festival/Hobbit Gift Box), Ranger green
- Chest: Lesser Blade of the West Breastplate (bartered — Harndirion novices quartermaster/tier 1 difficulty Champion armour), gold
- Hands: Lesser Ward of the West Gauntlets (bartered — Harndirion novices quartermaster/tier 1 difficulty Guardian armour), yellow
- Legs: Dwarf-make Bronze Leggings (crafted — metalsmith T1; or looted — world drop/general; or purchased — Thorin’s Hall heavy armour vendor), olive
- Feet: Leaded Iron Boots (looted — Dungeons of Dol Guldur), Ranger green
- Head: Westfold War Helmet (crafted — metalsmith T7), olive
- Shoulders: Lesser Ward of the West Shoulder Guards (bartered — Harndirion novices quartermaster/tier 1 difficulty Guardian armour), olive
- Back: Fine Woodcutter’s Pack (crafted — tailor T3/spring festival Red Gift Box), olive
- Chest: Dwarf-make Bronze Armour (crafted — metalsmith T1; or looted — world drop), Rivendell green
- Hands: Dwarf Leather Gauntlets (looted — world drop/general; or purchased — Thorin’s Hall medium armour vendor), Rivendell green
- Legs: Lesser Blade of the West Leggings (bartered — Harndirion novices quartermaster/tier 1 difficulty Champion armour), olive
- Feet: Boots of the Eastemnet (pre-order — Riders of Rohan), default
Tips: The Helm of Remmirath is a world drop that can be found under several different names. If you don’t have access to this helm, a possible alternative might be the Westfold Campaign Hat (crafted — tailor T7) — if dyed gold or Ranger green it should create a similar look. The boots I used in her outfit drop from scaling instances of the Dungeons of Dol Guldur and at the moment are very frequently seen at the auction house, so they should be easily obtainable for a reasonable price. If you don’t have access to these, there are also a number of Dunland quest rewards that have the same appearance. The recipe for his backpack can be found in red gift-boxes at the spring festival. If you prefer a cloaked look to the forester’s packs used in these outfits, the Rockclimber’s Cloak (crafted — tailor T6), dyed Ranger green, is a nice choice. Alternatively, the Summer Travelling Cloak (bartered — Lithe festival summer rewards vendor/cosmetics), with its tree-motif, is a nice, thematic option.
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