Original release date : October 14, 2022
Galadriel and an injured Halbrand arrive in Eregion. Halbrand gives Celebrimbor the idea of forging the mithril with other metals to enhance its strength. Galadriel becomes suspicious and checks into the royal lineages of the Southlands. In the East, the Stranger meets the mysterious trio, who greets him as “Lord Sauron”, whom they are pledged to serve. Nori and the Harfoots manage to steal the leader’s magical staff, which the Stranger then uses to banish the trio into darkness. They realize that the Stranger is not Sauron, but one of the Istari. In Eregion, Galadriel confronts Halbrand with her discovery that he is not a Southland king, and Halbrand reveals himself to be Sauron. She refuses his offer to make her a queen who could rule Middle-Earth alongside him. Halbrand flees to Mordor, while Galadriel, Elrond, and Celebrimbor forge three Rings of Power that are free of Sauron’s influence. Back amongst the Harfoots, the Stranger and Nori decide to travel east, into Rhûn, to discover the truth about his powers. Unsure which way to go, the Stranger chooses a direction based upon the sweet smell in the air, advising that when in doubt, to “always follow your nose”.
* * *
[Halbrand] Whose dagger was it, Galadriel?
[Galadriel] My brother. He was killed by servants of Sauron.
[Adar] After Morgoth’s defeat, the one you call Sauron, he sought to craft a power not of the flesh, but over flesh.
I killed Sauron.
I don’t believe you.
[shouts] Á kuita!
Dilly, get back!
[Nori] I’m all…
But despite our every effort, our decline has only quickened.
[Elrond] This mithril… It is our only salvation.
Nothing diminishes its light.
I will not risk Dwarven lives to help the Elves cheat death.
[Queen Míriel] I’m going to Middle-earth.
All that awaits you there is darkness.
Where is my son?
[Orcs chanting] Adar! Adar!
[Elendil] Let us put this land behind our sails.
Fighting at your side, I felt… I felt it, too.
[Galadriel] This wound needs Elvish medicine.
[all shouting] Strength to the king!
[Marigold] Where are you goin’?
Warn him what’s comin’.
[Poppy] She won’t be alone.
[Nori echoing] You’re not a peril.
[The Stranger gasping]
[in Quenya] We come to serve you, Lord Sauron.
[theme music playing]
[Elrond in English] Gil-galad arrives tomorrow, expecting to be presented with a means of saving all Elvendom.
And we have none.
If only there was some way… of doing more with less.
The Sun itself began as something no bigger than the palm of my hand.
And how could we possibly match the powers that wrought the Sun?
We’re out of time, Celebrimbor.
We must inform the High King of our failure.
Then the Elves must prepare to abandon these shores. Forever.
[horse neighing, approaching]
What has happened?
Enemy lance. Six days ago.
We rode without rest.
Can you help him?
[healer in Quenya] Á tulë koivienna…
[Elrond in English] King of the South lands?
How is it your path crossed with his?
How is it you are here?
How is it you are here?
Come. We have much to discuss.
I should never have set you on that ship.
I should have trusted you. It is a mistake I will not make again.
I leapt from that ship…
Because I believed in my heart I was not yet worthy of it.
I knew that, somehow, my task here was not yet complete.
And when I surfaced, all I could do was swim, and pray I had chosen wisely.
I did not cross that bitter ocean…
Only to drown now.
And nor will I let you.
I have missed you.
What are we to do?
The only thing we can do.
Who’s there? Reveal yourself.
Is Galadriel here?
Shouldn’t you be resting?
What is this place?
This was the workshop of Celebrimbor.
He’s not here, is he?
Well… As a matter of fact, he is.
The master I apprenticed to used to speak of the wonders of your craft.
I never dreamed that I’d ever get the chance to see them in person.
Are you a smith?
Well… Nothing like your artistry.
These gemstones, I’ve never seen anything like them.
What do you plan to use them for?
Fëanor’s jewel craft managed to capture the essence of Valinor.
I had hoped to do the same for Middle-earth.
This is a peculiar ore.
What is it?
Enough for what?
Have you tried combining it with other ores? To better stretch it out?
That wouldn’t be suitable for this ore.
Because in the amounts we need, it would too greatly dilute its unique qualities.
Forgive me, but, uh, at the risk of sounding a fool, couldn’t the right alloy also amplify those qualities?
Where I came up, precious metals were scarce as hens’ teeth.
So we learnt to combine them
to harness strengths and hide flaws.
I’ve seen a trace of nickel added to iron to make a blade lighter and stronger.
Might there not be some alloy to amplify the qualities of your ore?
Well, that is… an intriguing suggestion.
Call it… a gift.
[Pharazôn] Soon, he will travel that road which makes an end of every man who walks it.
Black flags will fill our harbor.
It will be our duty to forge for him a tomb, granting him the immortality in stone that no man, not even a king, can attain in life.
Draftsmen from across Númenor have been summoned to capture his visage, so they can propose a design.
Of all the apprentices, you have been chosen to propose one as well.
In the coming days, each of you will be granted one hour with the king.
Use it well.
I know what you have been doing in the dark of night when you thought all eyes were asleep.
I’m sorry. [panting]
Your handmaid will be back in a moment, my king.
Then there is still time.
Time for what?
To warn you, young Míriel.
You’re mistaken. I’m not…
Queen yet? No.
But you will be. So know this, if the old ways of our people are not soon restored, our island will fall.
[Eärien shouting] Help!
It’s the king! Help!
Come. You must go up.
But don’t do as I did. I looked for too long.
And now, I cannot separate what is from what was, what was from what will be.
One object. For all Middle-earth.
I know it sounds strange, High King.
But surely, we should exhaust every possible solution.
Precisely what manner of object?
It would be smaller than previously imagined.
Something that could be carried…
A scepter perhaps.
Or perhaps… A crown.
Why a crown?
A circular form will be ideal.
Allowing the light to arc back upon itself in one unbroken round, building to a power that is all but unbounded.
And you would place all that power upon the brow of one being?
Not just any one being, High King. You.
Perilous are these whisperings…
Sometimes the perilous path is the only path.
I wouldn’t be standing here otherwise.
You should not be standing here at all.
High King, we ask only for the time needed to gather the Elven-smiths and test Celebrimbor’s theory…
Our time runs short.
Yes, that is why…
Shorter than you know.
Since the mountain of fire’s eruption, the Great Tree is all but bleeding leaves.
Soon, the last will fall.
And unless our people leave these shores, so shall we.
There is no Elf in Middle-earth who wanted a solution more than I.
But if this was to be our salvation, I’m afraid we needed it sooner.
But I almost had it sooner.
It was only in speaking with the Southlander that I realized…
The low man? This idea was his?
His suggestions were but the key that unlocked the dam.
We are on the cusp of crafting a new kind of power.
Not of strength, but of spirit.
Not of the flesh, but over flesh.
This is… This is a power of the Unseen World.
I am sorry, Lord Celebrimbor.
You are hereby commanded to disband the city and return to Lindon immediately.
All of you.
Those words, “a power over flesh.”
Where did you hear them?
[stammers] I was conferring with my smiths. I think I… I believe those are my words.
Was Halbrand with you?
What does it matter? It’s over.
[Elrond] High King, wait!
I am sorry…
Grant me three months.
I am owed that much.
You are owed nothing.
Then do it not out of recompense.
Do it because I asked you.
It is a fool’s hope, Elrond.
Merely that. Nothing more.
“Hope is never mere. Not even when it is meager.”
Or have you forgotten your own counsel?
I need royal lineages, bloodlines. Anything you can find on the South lands.
Our records are limited concerning the mortal kingdoms.
I’ll have to scour the catacombs for that information.
[Celebrimbor] Three weeks…
Three weeks for a labor that could take three centuries.
[Elrond] Constraint can be the very progenitor of invention.
Go. Speak of this to no one.
[Halbrand] Don’t be afraid.
Celebrimbor will find a way. I’m certain of it.
All of a sudden, the two of you seem quite familiar.
I’m just offering whatever humble aid I can.
To tell you the truth, I can still hardly believe it.
Someone like me, here, working with the Elven-smiths of Eregion.
Thank you, Galadriel.
For bringing you here?
For saving my life.
As you saved mine. Our scales are balanced.
No, you’ve done far more than that for me.
I’d all but given up.
But you, you believed in me.
You saw strength in me.
You pushed me to heights that no one else could have.
I will never forget that.
[whispers] And I’ll see to it that no one else does either.
[The Ascetic] Do not be afraid, master.
The more your powers awaken, the more the veil will weaken.
The one placed upon your mind by those who cast you down.
But we have come here to welcome you in.
To bring you to our lands.
[echoing] You know them already.
[The Ascetic] It is called the Hermit’s Hat.
A pattern visible in but one place.
Far to the east, where the stars are strange.
The lands of Rhûn.
Where you will be known at last, for who you truly are.
[The Ascetic] You fell from the stars, yet you are greater than they.
[The Nomad] For fire obeys your will.
[The Ascetic] You fell below the dust, yet dust fears you.
[The Nomad] For it trembles when you are wroth.
[The Ascetic] The winds and waters, the heat and cold.
[The Nomad] In Rhûn, you shall learn to command them all.
[The Ascetic] And every being that walks or crawls shall be your slave.
[The Ascetic and The Nomad] For you are Lord Sauron.
[The Stranger groans]
[The Stranger groans]
[shouting in pain]
[The Ascetic] In time, he will learn to control his powers.
For now, bind him.
What is it?
[whispering] Well, in the grand tradition of bad ideas, this might well be the worst yet.
Well, have you got a better notion?
[Poppy] Third one’s gone.
[gasping] Where’d the third one go?
Better two than three. Now’s our chance.
Brandy foot! Run! [straining]
[Sadoc and Nori gasp]
[The Ascetic echoing] Master, calm yourself.
Nori. Nori, let’s go!
[whirring, whooshing intensifying]
[rumbling, high-pitched ringing]
Make him see.
[Nori] Take it.
We need you. Please, just take it.
Get away from me. Or I wi…
I will hurt you. Again.
What? What have they done to you?
They showed me what I am.
Only you can show what you are.
You choose by what you do.
You’re here to help.
I know it.
Close your eyes.
It’ll only hurt but a moment.
From shadow you came.
To shadow I bid you return!
He is not Sauron.
He is the other. The I star. He is…
[Marigold and Poppy chuckling]
[Sadoc breathing heavily]
Hold still. We’ll find a way to carry you back.
Sorry, good lady.
I’m afraid I’m about to go a’ wandering off-trail.
[voice breaking] Mr. Burrows…
It’s all right, Proud fellow. [chuckles]
The missus will be waitin’.
Now, if you don’t mind, I’d just like to sit a while, watch the Sun come up.
[Queen Míriel] One, two, three, four, five, six, [door closes] seven, eight…
[Elendil] It’s nine…
Stairs to main-post.
You’re doing well.
Patronize me like that again, Captain, I’ll have your ship.
I have you.
And who has you?
Given your loss, I would understand it if upon our return, you wish to take a leave of duty.
You once asked me why I pulled Galadriel from the sea.
I claimed to have had little choice.
But the truth is, I could have left her there.
Could’ve refused to follow her to Middle-earth.
Or stopped my son from doing so.
Yet at every turn, I made the choices I did because…
Because “Elendil” does not merely mean “one who loves the stars.”
I just never imagined it would lead here.
[breath trembling] My father once told me that the way of The Faithful is committing to pay the price…
Even if the cost cannot be known.
And trusting that, in the end, it will be worth it.
[whispering] Sometimes the cost is dear.
[Queen Míriel sighs]
We have little choice then but to keep serving.
And I, for one, will see to it that we make the end worth the price.
Come what may?
Come what may.
[Valandil] Captain. Númenor is in sight.
Elendil, what is it? What’s wrong?
What is it?
What do you see?
[Galadriel] What has happened?
The mithril is proud.
It refuses every effort to bond it with lesser ores.
[Elrond] Tapping into the powers of the Seen and Unseen World seemed to soften the boundaries between the two.
[Celebrimbor sighs] Doesn’t make any sense.
We used enough pressure to fuse the heavens with earth.
It should have held this time!
Patience. This is a journey.
Not every step we take will be forward. It may take time.
Time? We don’t… We don’t have time.
Perhaps that is enough for today.
Perhaps we’ve been pushing ourselves too hard.
[Halbrand] “Pushing ourselves too hard.”
Supposing that’s the trouble.
Supposing we’ve been using too much force?
[Elrond] Meaning what?
Meaning that the metals shouldn’t be forced to join…
But more drawn or coaxed together.
Now, if that’s true, we’ve been…
[laughs] we’ve been doing it all inside out.
Quickly. Dismantle this. We start again.
We found it.
I don’t know how we missed it before.
It’s too much power for one object. [panting]
We need two.
We’re making two.
It’ll need to be something…
Come, see for yourself.
Not until you tell me who you are.
You know who I am.
Who you really are.
[chuckles] Galadriel, I’m afraid I don’t…
There is no King of the South lands.
The line was broken.
The last man to bear your crest died over a thousand years ago.
He had no heir.
I told you I found it on a dead man.
No, on the raft, you saved me…
On the raft, you saved me.
You convinced Míriel to save the Men of Middle-earth.
You convinced her. I wanted to remain in Númenor.
You fought beside me.
Against your enemy. And mine.
Tell me your name.
I have been awake since before the breaking of the first silence.
In that time… I have had many names.
[Finrod] Lose your footing again, sister?
It was just a little tumble, is all.
On your feet now.
[straining] Get out of my mind.
[Finrod] Please, sister.
Look at me.
My old dagger.
You’ve kept it safe all this time.
You have been very brave.
You have fought so hard. For so many years.
To complete the task that I could not.
Your task was hunting Sauron.
My task was to ensure peace.
But I learned that was Sauron’s task as well.
No, you died.
Along with countless others, because of him.
He was seeking a power not to destroy Middle-earth, but to heal it.
Just as your fellow Elves are seeking to do this very moment.
You needn’t lie to them.
Simply let the work proceed.
Do you remember what I whispered to you under this very tree?
[whispers] Touch the darkness once more.
[breath trembling] My brother is dead. Because of you.
Galadriel. Why would you say that?
Why would you say such a thing?
Galadriel. Come back to me.
[echoing] Look at me!
Galadriel. Look at me.
You know who I am.
I am your friend.
You are a friend of Morgoth’s.
When Morgoth was defeated, it was as if a great, clenched fist had released its grasp from my neck.
And in the stillness of that first sunrise, at last, I felt the light of The One again.
And I knew if ever I was to be forgiven…
That I had to heal everything that I had helped ruin.
No penance could ever erase the evil you have done.
That is not what you believe.
Do not tell me what I believe.
No. You told me.
After our victory, you said that whatever I’d done before I could be free of it now.
You deceived me.
I told you the truth.
I told you that I had done evil, and you did not care.
Because you knew that our past meant nothing, weighed against our future.
There is no such future.
All others look on you with doubt.
I alone can see your greatness.
I alone can see your light.
You would make me a tyrant.
I would make you a queen.
Fair as the sea and the Sun.
Stronger than the foundations of the earth.
And you. My king.
The Dark Lord.
No. Not dark.
Not with you at my side.
You told me once, that we were brought together for a purpose.
This is it.
You bind me to the light. And I bind you to power.
Together, we can save this Middle-earth.
I see no difference.
And that is why… I will never be at your side.
You have no choice.
Without me, your people will fade.
And the shadow will spread and darken to cover all the world.
You need me.
I should have left you on the sea.
A sea you were on because the Elves cast you out.
They cast you out for deigning to beg them for a few petty soldiers.
What will they do when you tell them that you were my ally?
When you tell them [voice distorting, echoing] that Sauron lives because of you?
[yells] And you will die because of me.
[Elrond echoing] Galadriel!
Galadriel, stop! Elrond. It’s Elrond.
Where did we first meet?
Seaside. When I was first orphaned.
I was alone. A young, half-elven boy, without friend or kin.
You gave me water.
[in Quenya] Á cuith tessë, Galadriel.
[in English] Celebrimbor. Where is he?
Workshop. He’ll almost be finished by now.
[Elrond] Galadriel! Galadriel! What has happened?
Is it done?
Galadriel. You’re as wet as a river rock.
Because I pulled her from the waters of Glanduin.
The Glanduin? What happened?
Where is Halbrand?
He is gone. And I doubt he will return.
And should he ever, none of us are to treat with him again.
What happened by that stream?
You spoke to me once of a mistake.
One you said you would not make again.
You’re making that promise very difficult to keep.
Were it easy, it would not require trust.
So, do we proceed?
We must make three.
Three? Why three?
One will always corrupt. Two will divide.
But with three, there is balance.
The powers we forge today must be for the Elves alone.
Untouched by other hands.
Galadriel, I have determined that the purity of the lesser ores in the alloy is crucial.
I need gold and silver of the most exquisite quality.
I need gold and silver from Valinor.
True creation requires… sacrifice.
[Nori] Do you remember anything more yet?
[The Stranger] Fragments. Impressions.
More has come. But to discover the rest, I know I must go to Rhûn.
They were wrong about your name.
What if they’re wrong about that, too? Or lying, or…
What they said, I knew to be true with a… a certainty that I can’t explain.
They, um… They called you something else. “I star.”
Is that your kind?
In your tongue, that means “wise one.”
You’re really not coming with us, are ya?
Betimes, our paths are laid before us by powers greater than our own.
In those moments, it’s our task to make our feet go where our hearts wish not to tread.
No matter the perils awaiting us on the way.
Sounds a bit like an adventure.
Alone, it’s just a journey.
Now adventures, they must be shared.
Think I’ve had about as much adventure as any Harfoot could ever hope for.
Says here, if we go north-ways, we have thirty days of clear trail.
All fresh grass and no trolls.
Hey, hey, hey!
All downhill, look like…
You’re holding it upside down.
[sighs] Sorry, Malva. Nothing but steep slopes and brickle-brambles for weeks.
Well, if you’re so quick and wise, why don’t you do the trail-finding?
Watch out for little ones and stragglers.
Nobody goes off-trail!
[Harfoots in unison] And nobody walks alone!
Sounded better when Sadoc said it.
Wish the old goat were still with us.
You’re a part of something bigger now.
[Marigold] He needs ya.
And you belong out there.
[woman] Good-bye, Nori!
[man] Be careful!
[Nori] Be well.
[Poppy breathing shakily]
Did you pack your lantern?
Right. Here’s snails for the big fella.
You know how hungry he gets.
And an extra blanket in case you get cold. Right.
Let’s see ya.
Here you’re heading into the big beyond and I haven’t taught you a bloomin’ thing.
Oh. Hey. Sure you have.
Always quench your fire with water and earth.
Don’t squat by a river. Never know when you’ll need a drink downstream.
And a Harfoot without manners is as like to get far in life as a square wheel.
I was listening to all of it, Father.
Find where the river runs. Where the sparrows learn their songs.
[cries] I will, Mother.
And I’ll be careful.
[both chuckling, sniffling]
[Nori breathing shakily]
You’ll be bold.
[sniffling, chuckling] Oh, go on. Go on.
Go on. Before you lose your nerve.
Or we lose ours.
[Poppy shouts] Wait! Nori!
Why does everyone I love the most always have to go away?
‘Cause I think if we didn’t, then we’d never learn anything new.
You’ll come back? Promise?
You promise to look after everyone?
[laughs] Course I will, ankle-head.
You’re my best friend in this whole wide, wild world.
I’d do anything for ya.
The world’s not that wide, Poppy. It’s just that we’re so bleedin’ small.
[Poppy] Stick close to that tall fella.
He’s a good friend in a spot.
Not so good as you.
Are you certain?
More than ever.
Well, they’re all waving at you.
If I turn around, I won’t ever be able to leave.
Well, then perhaps it would be best if you lead off.
Uh… Uh, now that it comes to it, my feet feel heavy as iron.
Not to mention, I haven’t an inkling which way to go.
There it is.
Are you sure?
There’s a sweet smell on the air this way.
When in doubt, Elanor Brandy foot…
always follow your nose.
[Harfoots cheer and laugh]
[woman singing] Three rings for the Elven-kings
Under the sky
Seven for the Dwarf-lords
In their halls of stone
Nine for Mortal Men
Doomed to die
One for the Dark Lord
On his dark throne
In the Land of Mordor
Where the Shadows lie
Where the Shadows lie
One Ring to rule them all
One Ring to find them
One Ring to bring them all
And in the darkness
In the Land of Mordor
Where the Shadows lie…
Where the Shadows lie…