Last week, Galadriel (Morfydd Clark) and Halbrand (Charlie Vickers) made discoveries not only about the island kingdom of Númenor, but also each other. After uncovering records at the Hall of Law with new ally Elendil (Lloyd Owen), Galadriel now believes her travel partner to be the exiled heir to the throne of the Southlands and is eager to gather a joint army to fight the evil that threatens the area. But unlike elf soldier Arondir (Ismael Cruz Córdova), the two of them have not yet faced the enemy. What was only hinted at in Episode 3 was fully exposed in the fourth episode of The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power, which introduces viewers to its monster-in-residence, Adar.
The collaboration between Dwarves and Elves appears to be going swimmingly, but Celebrimbor (Charles Edwards) suspects that the Dwarves are harboring some kind of secret. These suspicions are confirmed when Elrond (Robert Aramayo) pays a visit to Khazad-dûm and Prince Durin IV (Owain Arthur) and Durin's wife Disa (Sophia Nomvete) go out of their way to lie to their Elf friend about Durin's extracurriculars. Elrond finally catches on, discovering that the Dwarves are mining a new metal — one that is lighter than silk, more precious than gold, and stronger than tempered steel. An accident in the old mine prompts the Dwarves to shut down their side hustle, but it likely won't be for long. By the time Mithril makes an appearance in The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit, it will be the rarest of metals, but in The Second Age, we are about to see what an abundance of the impenetrable silver steel can accomplish — for better or worse.
In Númenor, in her usual bull in a china shop way, Galadriel manages to offend Queen-Regent Míriel (Cynthia Addai-Robinson) in her attempt to create an alliance between Men and Elves. When Míriel dismisses her request to form a joint army, Galadriel demands to speak to the true leader of Númenor, Míriel's father, whom she believes is held captive for his controversial loyalty to the Elves. This sedition lands Galadriel behind bars with her pal Halbrand, who suggests that a better strategy would be figuring out Míriel's greatest fear and helping her conquer it.
When Galadriel wrangles her way to the old king, she discovers that Míriel's father not a prisoner, just an old man in failing health being cared for by his daughter. Míriel reveals that her own reign began only as an attempt to quell the rebellion of the people of Númenor, who revolted against her father, the newly coronated king, for wanting to renew relations with the Elves. The two women reach an understanding and declare a truce.
There is not only human dissent facing Númenor. Míriel has recurring visions where the petals of the White Tree start to fall and a tidal wave obliterates her kingdom. It is not a random dream, but a prediction from one of the Palantiri, a seeing-stone gifted to the Númenoreans by the Elves. Even worse is that what apparently will set the apocalypse in motion is the arrival of Galadriel. No matter — Míriel is about to ship Galadriel off, which should stop the downfall of Númenor, right? Wrong. Despite Galadriel taking her leave, the petals have already started to fall. Míriel appears to have no choice but to escort Galadriel back to Middle-earth, herself, along with a group of volunteers. It seems Galadriel will get her wish for both a union and an army, after all.
After his botched escape from the Orc labor camp, Arondir is taken to the leader of his captors. Adar (Joseph Mawle), the being that the Orcs affectionately refer to as "Father" — if a bit worse for wear in his current state — is definitely a fellow Elf. Although their meeting is brief, Adar sends Arondir off with a clear message to the villagers in the Watchtower: Forsake all claim to the Southlands, or else…
What the villagers don't know is that under their own roof brews the beginnings of Sauron's army. While human healer Bronwyn (Nazanin Boniadi) is busy making sure the Southlands' refugees are fed and sheltered, her defiant teenage son Theo (Tyroe Muhafidin) has been forging a stronger connection with the magical sword created by the Dark Lord himself. A fellow villager, who appears to have real knowledge of the sword, tells Theo to rest up because he will be called upon by Sauron. Seems mother and son will be soon pitted against each other about something other than breaking curfew.
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