Another option for Feanorians this season is Azaghal and Maedhros (and/or their courts) establishing friendly relations, perhaps after Dagor Aglareb.)
So, what I have now:
Maglor also will move the Feanorian camp to the opposite side of Lake Mithrim, to get out of Fingolfin’s way. There would likely be an argument from some of his brothers (and we can showcase that he can’t keep them in hand), but they all realize that Fingolfin’s folk outnumber them. I think this is an opportunity for Amras to say something snarky and sarcastic like “Sure, let’s all run away
, and hide from the consequences of our actions! Let’s bury our heads in the sand and pretend we never set ships and people on fire!”
If Fingolfin hasn't reforged his sword yet, now is the best time.
I think the ambassadorial trip of Angrod, and the conference in which Caranthir insults Angrod should happen before Fingolfin is declared King. Also the Noldor should meet the Sindar, send scouts to explore the area, and Cirdan should send his messenger to Doriath, before Fingolfin is crowned. That’s the order it happens in the books. We also need to include Maedhros giving back everything that was stolen from Fingolfin’s people (and not burned) plus additional gifts, horses, and livestock – this should also be before he cedes the crown, or the day afterwards.
What I mean is, Episodes 2 and 3 in your outline should be mostly switched places, MithLuin.
I suggest Episode 4 in your outline can be full of Eol’s flashbacks, and him complaining about these things to his gloomy servants.
This is also a season in which we’ll need to get used to using the Sun, Moon, and seasons to show time passing, even lots of time passing. We won’t be specifying how many years are passing, but we cannot allow the timeline to be shortened or contracted. So we should start in Episode 1 by showing that a few years passed as Fingolfin’s people “rested and grew strong”. Not to mention Maedhros needs to rest for a while. In my mind, it took the Noldor another 2 years to sit down and decide on a King because it took that long for Maedhros to be physically and emotionally well enough to deal directly with politics, and for anyone to hold him up seriously as somebody ready to take on kingly duties tomorrow.
Here’s the order of events that appear (or at least, occur) in this season, for reference (according to the Grey Annals, so, some undated events aren't included). I've color-coded them a bit:
2 Fingolfin’s host entered Mithrim and learned tidings (from Feanorians, in SilmFilm)
? this is probably when the Sindar and Fingolfin's host meet, and Cirdan sends a messenger to Doriath.
5 Fingon and Thorondor rescued Maedhros. Reunion of the Noldor.
6 The Ñoldor set a watch upon Dor-Daedeloth, explored Beleriand and the north], and met many Sindar. Finrod sent Angrod as an emissary to Doriath. Thingol was not especially welcoming, said they could live in the northlands but nowhere else.
7 Noldor held council. Angrod brought Thingol's message. Then Maedhros waived his claim, and Fingolfin became High King. (Afterwards Turgon’s folk settled Nevrast, the House of Finarfin settled Tol Sirion and Dorthonion, and the House of Fëanor settled NE Beleriand.)
? Ulmo sents indecipherable messages to the Mortals
? Morgoth learned of the Mortals’ awakening and went to Hildórien. (I suggest using Sauron instead)
20 Mereth Aderthad
50 Turgon and Finrod traveled to the Meres of Twilight, and Ulmo sent warning dreams to them
52 Thingol prompted Finrod to go to Nulukkizdîn. The great Dwarves stole Nulukkizdîn from the Petty-Dwarves, and gave it to Finrod. The Noldor and Dwarves began delving Nargothrond in secret.
53 Ulmo spoke to Turgon, and helped him find Tumladen
60 Morgoth returned to Angband. Dagor Aglareb. The Siege of Angband began.
64 Turgon’s folk began building Gondolin in secret
65 The Noldor helped rebuild Brithombar and Eglarest. Finrod Felagund’s folk built Barad Nimras.
66 Galadriel told Melian of the death of Finwë and the theft of the Silmarils
67 Angrod told Thingol of the Kinslaying and Losgar. Thingol banned Quenya (and jewels).
102 Nargothrond was full-wrought
116 Gondolin was full-wrought. Ulmo spoke to Turgon. The folk of Turgon secretly moved to Gondolin.
150 First meeting of the Dwarves of Eryd Luin and the folk of Caranthir
155 Orcs attacked Hithlum and were defeated
260 Glaurung, the first Dragon, attacked Hithlum and was defeated. (Soon after, Telchar wrought the Dragon-Helm and gave it to King Azaghâl.)
I really think Celeborn’s messenger to Doriath needs to be Annael. We need
to establish that he is a character ASAP, and convince the Hosts to allow him to be a character sooner, rather than later.
In my mind, the politicking among the Noldor is going to be a lot of continued tension and uncertainty after Maedhros is rescued, but I wouldn’t say that only some of his brothers are glad to see him. I think at first he just leaves Maglor to keep taking care of things. Officially he's only a regent, but the Noldor are effectively still divided in leadership.
When Maedhros decides to cede the kingship, I think he makes it a surprise to Fingolfin’s side partly to make it clear that he didn’t have some secret agreement with Fingolfin and wasn’t pressured or bribed into doing this. As for his brothers... in my mind, he realizes (especially after Caranthir’s charming
response to Angrod) that he can’t let them shoot their mouths off or argue with him during a delicate diplomatic council, while he’s trying to cement the reconciliation. So he gathers his brothers beforehand and tells them: This is what I am doing, no
you do not have any say in it, no
I do not need to hear your arguments against it, no
I will not change my mind. I am the eldest and the chief of this house, and you will obey me. He probably has to shout them down, but we can show that he easily does so, unlike Maglor. And he tells them that during the council if any one of them says anything undiplomatic or rude, or gainsays Maedhros, he’ll have his guards escort them out of the room at once. Nobleman guards will be conveniently on hand as the bearers of the [unnecessarily fancy] chest containing the crown of Feanor. In my mind, that's how he prevents Caranthir and Celegorm from starting a shouting match during the council.
I think Fingolfin is going to look at the absurd job Feanor did reforging their father’s crown (with the 3 empty Silmaril-holes), and decide to reforge it back to what it used to look like.
There's something interesting going on with the House of Finarfin, and I want to make sure we tell that story well. Finrod, of course, will never marry - we saw that he left his Vanya girlfriend behind in Valinor. Angrod is already married. We have not introduced Eldalotë as a character yet, but she's almost definitely with them in exile. She's Noldo. Then, with the arrival in Middle-earth, we get the Galadriel-Celeborn and Orodreth-some Sinda lady romances. Both of them marry one of the Sindar. Obviously, this shows them getting along with the Sindar swimmingly, but also perhaps makes some of the other Noldor look at them askance. After all....Finarfin was the prince of the Noldor who married one of the Teleri. This willingness to marry the Sindar (along with Thingol's continued welcome of them in Doriath) could be seen as an indication to the other Noldor that the House of Finarfin is 'going native' or aligning itself more closely with the Sindar than the rest of the Noldor. There should be some distrust/scorn expressed over these marriages (though obviously not be everyone). It would be tempting to make Turgon one of the judgmental ones, but I'm not sure that fits.
The point of all this, of course, is that when Aegnor then falls in love with a mortal woman, it brings up the same issue, but much more sharply. Like, what, just because your brother and sister married into the Sindar, you think nothing of marrying someone from a different species!? And of course Aegnor won't marry her, but Finrod can't be the only one who knows about that relationship. I know we are using Aegnor/Andreth to introduce the possibility of a mortal/elf marriage before Beren and Lúthien, but I'd also like it to be the culmination of the story of the House of Finarfin being all too eager to marry outside the tribe.
The idea of the whole arc, of the House of Finarfin being the most ready to make friends with Sindar, and relating that somehow to Aegnor’s situation, is an interesting idea. I do think that among the princes, making the Feanorians judgmental about it will be enough. Most of the Noldor are willing to mingle with the Sindar, and there are other Noldor who marry Sindar. Voronwe and Pengolodh are both interracial, and I’m certain there must have been many other interracial Elves in Beleriand.
That doesn't mean that no Noldor view the Sindar as inferior Moriquendi; I'm sure many do, and not exclusively among the Feanorians. However, I don’t like the idea that this could come between Turgon and Finrod’s friendship. They’re best friends, like brothers, and while they’ll part ways early to set up their secret hideouts, I’m sure they part as best friends. I also don’t think Turgon, who married a Vanya, would have much of a leg to stand on. But... it's also not like Turgon. He lets his daughter marry a Human, and there's no mention that he hesitated or was uncomfortable about it.
But this is the season where we can show how from the start, the House of Finarfin are the most diplomatic and the most successful overall in making friends (discounting Caranthir's spectacular Dwarf-based success). Finrod is going to shine as the man who makes friends with everybody.