Silmarillion Blues : Quenta Silmarillion : XVIII. Of the Ruin of Beleriand and the Fall of Fingolfin

The Noldor, strong and numerous, fair well in their alliance with Men.  For about five hundred years at least.  Time gets a bit wonky when dealing with the conniving of immortals, and "patience" becomes a bit relative.  I can't even say that Morgoth was really patient by waiting five hundred years because he built up his resources until he reached "good enough," and rushes out to burninate the countryside without really evaluating his plan.

His opening salvo is fire, rivers of flame, volcanoes, dragons, and Balrogs.  Morgoth's forces wrecked destruction on their unprepared enemy, but many retreated and regrouped, to strengthen those further away from the front and fortify defenses.  Fingolfin beholds the apparent destruction of his people, and calls out Morgoth in challenge.  Their fight is one of legend, a fight between demigods.  Morgoth rends the earth with his hammer, while Fingolfin springs away from Morgoth's blows, wounding Morgoth seven times.  But in time, Fingolfin tired, giving Morgoth the advantage, and three times he strikes Fingolfin down, until after the third time he arises, Fingolfin falls.  He deals one final wound to Morgoth, cutting off Morgoth's foot before he dies.

The hostilities continues for years, and sees the rise of Morgoth's servant, Sauron and the expanded use of Morgoth of not only spies but thralls and deceptive recruiting, claiming sympathy and then betraying.  Morgoth would also take captives and enslave their minds, only to let them "escape" to return home under his control.

These years reshape the landscape of Middle Earth, as Morgoth's power expands, battles rage, and the holdings of Elves and Men shift and condense.  Rulers fall and their heirs take on their mantles.  A decade of a war of attrition, with no clear victor, but many gains by the aggressor held off by determination and blood.


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