What ever happened in Hildorien?

The best thing about all of that is that the bits of it we need to explicitly tell our audience about can be covered in dialogue between Morgoth and Sauron. We don't have to describe all of it, by any means (we're just getting the story and timeline straight for *us*), but there are bits of it there that we can go to in flashbacks or hint at in traditional Edain art or include bits of in Andreth's story. I can imagine a wonderful tapestry or painting, carefully preserved and carried through the exodus, of Morgoth with the Silmarils in front of a darkened Sun with cowering Unfallen Men (or, rather, Men who Fell literally seconds ago) worshipping at his feet.
In a way i think i would totally love the idea that Morgoth uses golden armour and a golden mask and the white light of the silmarils to tempt men... i mean it would really give the silmarils another meaning, it would mean morgoth acutally uses the light of the trees to blind men.

Then again i think the avari SHOULD play a small role in the edains revolt against the first temple, they maybe were originally meant to be the teachers of men, Melkor spoiled that plan, but not to the whole... the Avari could tell the men about the powers of the west and their kinsmen who were led to the light of trees, and that would be a thing for a *Nuin character to do, and I would like the idea that an Ermon character could be the forefather of the Edain. I also could see a kind of high-priest at work in the temple who could either be Sauron or a *Fankil character. At last i think if the dark Elves play a role it would be a mirror of the role the Eldar of Eressea played to the Faithful at numenor.. they could be the voice of reason or the consciensce that makes the rebellion of the edain/Faithful possible in a way.

The way the fall of the Numenoreans mirrors the fall of the first men I think there should be an equivalent to faithful and Eldar at Hildorien too, and I like the idea of an Ermon-faction and a Avari faction to play these parts. It it a common thing in Jrrts Legendarium that events repeat themsel es in a smaller but much similar scale..

*We could advise our names to Nuin/Teacher and Tuvo/sceptic characters among the elves, in a way i would like to see Mowe and Nurwe in these roles... Fankil in theory also could be an evil man, boosted or warped by Morgoth, in a way a predecessor to the mouth of Sauron. At some point according to Adanels tale, Morgoth did not appear anymore to men in person but only in voice, imitating the first voice in a way.If we find means of magic/technology to make this work, we could have Melkor be at Angband and still impose himself on the Men. I also think that one way or the other at some point that temple should be destroyed or collapse, and Melkor cannot be there in person when that happens.

That could be a good combination of the Edam&eve in garden eden, cain & Abel, Prometheus , and tower if babel motifs Jrrt seems to have been inspired by.
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OK I took Amysrevenge's outline and the changes I propose are in purple:

Morgoth goes off to find Men. Finds them, they are terrified. He goes home to reassess.

Morgoth sends Sauron off to the Men in his Annatar guise. He offers them any number of improvements to their lives (bricks? iron? weaving? bowls and plates and pretty things?) but no improved lighting (which is actually a big deal when you don't have it). All gifts, with no direct costs. He starts asking questions about why they haven't been shown these things before. He reinforces a primal fear of the dark, things that go bump in the night. When they tell him about the Voice, he warns them it's the voice of the evil Darkness that wants to eat them. He primes them for the return of Morgoth, who will come in a time of darkness, bearing great light. Sort of warns them about his appearance, in a way that makes it more impressive and less terrifying. Goes back home.

Morgoth returns to Hildorien in golden armor, with the eclipse, the Silmarils in the darkness, etc. He tells them that the Darkness is coming to eat them and they must choose Now! Which will be their master? Those who still listen to the voice, bring them to me and make them kneel down. Men begin to worship Morgoth. The physical alteration is gradual but begins immediately, in that generation. Morgoth demands a temple, and leaves again.

Morgoth and Sauron are busy now in Angband, but feel like they've got Men under control. They sent a lesser lieutenant (Fankil?) East to watch over things. Something goes wrong under Fankil's watch (I'd like it to involve good Avari, possibly with some intervention from Ulmo?), resulting in a schism, with the Men who will become the Edain heading West. Ermon leads the first group to leave? Things do not look good for poor Fankil is priest-king of the remaining Satanists in Hildorien. Or should there be a battle that destroys the temple?

My preference is for the physical transformation to begin at once, but not in a way that they look different. They just start to feel weaker, to get sick, and then people start to die horribly. They have children for the first time, but childbirth is painful and some
women die giving birth? Morgoth couldn't make infants worship him if they had already been born.

I also prefer the Avari not to help the rebellion. That kind of implies that fallen Men aren't even able to have a conscience or learn from their mistakes without Elves teaching them. But the Esain meet Avari (and Dwarves) pretty early when they flee. Let's also mention Entwives teaching them agriculture, either in a garbled story, or the Men see some Ents in Ossiriand while travelling away with Finrod and tell him a story about Entwives.

Speaking of Entwives, if they're in Ossiriand currently we need to send them east now that Morgoth has come. That's what Treebeard said they did, and it puts them in the future Brown Lands in time to teach the Edain farming. Maybe all we need is for Celeborn's sister to tell him about the Entwives going east, at the Mereth Aderthad.

Haerangil I know you like the story of Nuin finding the sleeping men in Murmenalda. But much of that imagery got recycled into Finrod finding Beor's people in Ossiriand, and waking them up with music. And we're guaranteed to be able to show that scene in full, instead of just hints or bits of flashback.
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I like most of the outline so far... yes, i admit Tu and Nuin are two favourites of mine and I would love to have some Avari in similar roles, but yet you are right that both, fall and rebellion should come from within the early men. Yet even Adanel admits she does not know if her ancestors met the elves before or after their fall... but i think the fall should at last have already begun, i'm not sure if rebellion has also already started completely without them, but i think they certainly need some positive elvish impact and something that assures men elves are not with melkor to give them motivation to follow the Elar to the west..

To have the edain meet the Entwives is a good idea! That has to happen at one point and maybe the edains trail to the west would be the right time..
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I love that we found a way to blame Feanor for the Fall of Mankind XD

Haerangil if the Avari help the early rebels escape those who want to kill them or even fight a battle while escaping... and then the escaped rebels deliberately don't tell their children what happened at Hildorien.... does that mean the Avari over there will know more about the Fall than the Edain themselves? I don't know if that's a good thing or a bad thing, or if it matters since the wise women do keep the story. (I also don't know if it could ever come up in SilmFilm.)

I think of Hildorien as being in Mesopotamia because Tolkien once identified it with Mesopotamia, and said it was a place unknown to both Avari and Eldar. That doesn't necessarily mean Avari can't be involved in such a battle, though, if some of the Satanists follow them north...

And you know what? I don't think Tolkien ever explained why Dwarves are more susceptible to evil temptation than Elves are. There are a few mentions of entire large groups of Dwarves actually allying with Orcs or Dark Lords, something Elves never do, plus the Petty Dwarves are pretty nasty. I don't think we even know if Dwarves are necessarily fallen or unfallen as a species. I guess it would be hard for them to Fall as a whole species, since they awoke in 4 or 7 separate places.
That was one of my theories in the early discussions on the petty dwarves, that they had been part of a clan that either sold weapons to melkor or even joined him and the orcs in some forgotten eastern war, maybe against the first men.

I don't know if we need avari in Hildorien, i know they had found the Murmenalda in lost tales, but i think early men could wander about in the nearby lands and meet a few avari who did the same, i mean they split up into at least 6 language groups, so they not necessarily at that point had all stayed close to cuivienen.

I also think Hildorien and the mountains of the wind should be located in the ambar equivalent of mesopotamia, that's why i put it there on my version of the middle-earth map...

(Sorry for the bad quality, but the flickr link does not seem to work...)

But my main reason , why i think an early contact between the beginning of the first fall and the rebellion would be necessary is out of storytelling logic...

Rebellious men who had just escaped slavery and demons woul not trust anyone, certainly not a strange race.How could they know these Avari are not in league with Melkor? I doubt there could ever be friendship with such distrustful , fearsome refugees and elves or ents, so if we want the avari to teach men and tell them about the valar and the elves who went into the west, they have to meet some men before they turned fully to evil or at least before they are in severe war and conflict.

I guess some eastern Avari could well remember some details about the fall of men, if not all of the involved elves get killed, which is quite likely if they are just a small group of individuals.Anyway we would probably neber get to hear about it... if Eol knows something he doesn't talk about it, though that could be a reason why he doesn't like men and maybe likes dwarves better.If there had happened something or he had heard some rumours or maybeveven was part of a group elves and dwarves which had fought against evil men.

But most other Avari would never get close to the westlands and so would never again talk about their history with Eldar or men, so i don't see a real problem here
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Hm.... so I'm just brainstorming here:

Avari meet fallen Men who worship Morgoth, but they don't share a language... how do they know these guys worship the same Enemy who was in Utumno? And you asked how the Edain would know the Avari aren't also tempters or liars.

...Telepathy? Or Elves "feel fair" and not "foul" ? Is that too simplistic?

Evil Men attack the Avari and try to enslave them?

There are Orcs who have come east, who help the evil priest-kings (and/or attack the Edain?), and the Elves (and Longbeards) attack the Orcs? "Of Dwarves and Men" (in HoME 12) talks of Orcs troubling Edain and Longbeards in Eriador and Rhovanion, but it's a Round-World essay. Do Orcs in that region make sense with our timeline? I seem to recall the timeline was changed so they didn't exist until Morgoth returned.

The Avari tell the Edain "Ick, slavery is evil and wrong, who are these awful creeps who did that to you?" ? But that requires first overcoming the language barrier.

The Edain is part of my problem with how to tell this story. Tell a story of this devastating fall, where the primary practical output of the story is the AWESOME three kindreds of the Edain.
:p It is weird, yeah. To be fair, it also results in Ulfang and his treachery...

Actually it occurs to me, one of the reasons to not show the Fall directly (at first) might be so that the audience doesn't suspect treachery any more than Maedhros does (unless you read the book, that is). The audience and the Elves (other than Thingol) would be like "Humans are awesome!" and then the Fifth Battle happens and it'll feel less like "Yeah, we knew those Satanists were out there somewhere." and more like a horrible, devastating, unforeseen betrayal. (In fact some Elves might ask the Edain "Why didn't you warn us there were people like that?")
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Hmm... on the other side, Ulfangs and Bors people were refugees just as the Edain were... noone would have thought it could be THEM who would become traitors, not more than Bors People or the Halethrim or anybody else. Personally I dont have a problem with Orcs in the East... if one listens to Bereg the Refusers Oration it becomes clear that Men know of orcs, though they maybe do not fully understand their relation to the dark lord at the time...
Were they refugees though, or colonists? (They don't necessarily tell the Feanorians which they are.) Bor's people weren't in Morgoth's pay...
Can we get anything out of Bereg and Amlachs speeches?

All this is but Elvish lore, tales to
beguile new-comers that are unwary. The Sea has no shore.
There is no Light in the West. You have followed a fool-fire of
the Elves to the end of the world! Which of you has seen the
least of the gods? Who has beheld the Dark King in the North?
Those who seek the dominion of Middle-earth are the Eldar.
Greedy for wealth they have delved in the Earth for its secrets
and have stirred to wrath the things that dwell beneath it, as
they ever have done and ever shall. Let the Orcs have the realm
that is theirs, and we will have ours. There is room in the world,

'Truly from the Dark King come all the evils from
which we fled; but he seeks dominion over all Middle-earth, and
whither now shall we turn and he will not pursue us? Unless he be
vanquished here, or at least held in leaguer. Only by the valour of
the Eldar is he restrained, and maybe it was for this purpose, to
aid them at need, that we were brought into this land.

''We took long roads, desiring to escape the perils of
Middle-earth and the dark things that dwell there; for we heard
that there was Light in the West. But now we learn that the
Light is beyond the Sea. Thither we cannot come where the gods
dwell in bliss. Save one. For the Lord of the Dark is here before
us, and the Eldar, wise but fell, who make endless war upon
him. In the North he dwells, they say; and there is the pain and
death from which we fled. We will not go that way.'

About the Easterlings.. i don't know, i never got the impression they were colonists or evil from beginning other than the edain. The borians were farmers and the Uldorians rather nomads... Jrrt is not specific on the easterlings, he alludes that some may have been in secret in morgoths service before, but does that mean the entire tribe or just that he had SOME servants and spies among them?

and the men of Bor and of Ulfang were
marshalled and trained for war, and given fair arms, and they
summoned yet more of their kinsfolk out of the East.

it was after
thought that the people of Ulfang were already secretly in the service
of Morgoth ere they came to Beleriand

the most part of the sons of Men, whether of the people of Uldor or
others newcome out of the East, marched with the Enemy;

But new strength of evil men came
up that Uldor had summoned and kept hidden in the eastern

Uldor the Accursed whom
Morgoth's spies had bought

As it seems Uldor was more in the Knowledge than his father and maybe brothers, he also seemingly has more influence on other related tribes that it first seems, but is his entire people secretly in Morgoths service or just his family or clan. Specifically Uldor is said to have been "Bought my morgoths spies"...

These men might have been colonists. In some way...
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The first paragraph is lies from a doppelganger (although it highlights the Valar's colossal failure in refusing to ever speak to Men or send any messengers to them, deliberately leaving them open to Morgoth's manipulation). The next 2 paragraphs are real Mortals speaking, I think. They do refer to Men fleeing evil things in the East. That does fit the flat-world chronology that Tolkien wrote, in which Orcs were spawned in Utumno and let loose on the world while Melkor was chained in Valinor.

The SilmFilm writers in Season 2 and early Season 3 rewrote the origin of Orcs, so they didn't exist in any form until Morgoth came to Angband, which was itself less than a year before the Sun rose. That puts a cramp on the east lands having anything other than peace and happiness and bunnies, so to speak.

I would like the Orcs to spread east from Angband at once, but that's going to be very hard to do since we had to shrink the chronology down to only about 1 year long, so there was only 2-3 weeks between Morgoth's return and the defeat of all his Orcs and monsters at the Second Battle.
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We do not KNOW if it's lies by doppelganger, though it is implied they MAY be.And I believe they are.Yet this Doppelganger would use the knowledge and manner of speaking of the Edain if he would wish to sucessfully move them, so i still find the speech valuable.

Even IF there would not have been, say the early Proto-orcs Sauron had finished until Boldog took over the project... over 200 years have passed since the rise of the sun, and when the Noldor return to Beleriand Morgoth already has his orc legions ready... so still i don't see reasons Proto-orcs and or s could NOT have appeared in the east at that time. Apart from any other sort of warped beast that could have remained from the days of Utumno..
Even IF there would not have been, say the early Proto-orcs Sauron had finished until Boldog took over the project... over 200 years have passed since the rise of the sun, and when the Noldor return to Beleriand Morgoth already has his orc legions ready... so still i don't see reasons Proto-orcs and or s could NOT have appeared in the east at that time. Apart from any other sort of warped beast that could have remained from the days of Utumno..
Eventually the Orcs can get there. I'm trying to think of a way Orcs can get there early enough to have some impact on the Edain rebellion and/or the Edain learning that the Elves and Dwarves are their friends -- to address the difficulty you brought up about the Edain distrusting other kindreds.
Could evil Dwarves fill that role? We know there are some. Just thinking out loud here, not expressing a desire.
I was thinking of proto-orcs, feral and not organized at that moment...
"the things that dwell beneath it, as
they ever have done and ever shall" as the Edain might believe what these were , at that moment.

But of course it still COULD be possible that other Orcs deserted from or secretly spread out from Angband or were sent out into other regions by their masters.Like i said, if orcs are ready to be deployed as troops against the Noldor , then they can be deployed at other places as well. Ghengis Khan was able to built up his vast Empire and send out his troops over vast territory in some 30 years , of course these were highly moveable horse-nomads... but still, I think able Wolfriders could do it, if led by a Strong commander.
The SilmFilm writers in Season 2 and early Season 3 rewrote the origin of Orcs, so they didn't exist in any form until Morgoth came to Angband, which was itself less than a year before the Sun rose.

To be fair, the chronology isn't *that* compressed! Morgoth fled the Darkening and arrived in Angband nearly instantaneously. The Noldor wandered in Araman for awhile before crossing, and even the Host of Fingolfin managed to get across the Helcaraxë before the Sun rose. This isn't a single year!

But, yes, we are talking about a very short time frame. Sauron has had proto-orcs (fallen elves) in Angband since they captured elves at Cuivienen, so that is really all that is orc-like that is available to be wandering in the east. There can be other beasts/monsters/creatures if we'd like, though.
To be fair, the chronology isn't *that* compressed! Morgoth fled the Darkening and arrived in Angband nearly instantaneously. The Noldor wandered in Araman for awhile before crossing, and even the Host of Fingolfin managed to get across the Helcaraxë before the Sun rose. This isn't a single year!
OK, sorry for the mistake.

Haerangil do you think either proto-Orcs or evil Dwarves could fulfil the role you're thinking of? (Well I guess you really already answered that in the positive about evil petty-Dwarves.)
I don't know if we needed dwarves of orcs at all to be honest! I think it would not work without at last a bit Avari... but after all the story should be about man.