Philipa wrote:Aiwin I see you were struck by hurrying running down stairs and corridors in complete blackness. Something only survival would help urge you on to do. That concept just blew me away. Which is more frightning...the darkness and unknown or what hunts you?
That's exactly it Philipa! Would they have gone that way if Gandalf hadn't insisted they run? Although they didn't really have a choice but to go in the passage.
Which brings me to another thought I had when first reading this chapter. How was Gandalf going to keep the orcs, trolls, and other dangers from going after them by himself? How did he know that "swords were of no more use"? I don't think the Balrog had made its presence known at that time.
Lindariel wrote:But, as upset as I was, I also had a feeling that they HAD to lose Gandalf, because as long as he stayed with the party, no one would really grow. They would continue to depend on him for all decision-making and problem-solving, and this was clearly set up as a journey of self-enlightenment or self-fulfillment for each character in their own way.
I suspect Gandalf had that same feeling, which is probably why he insisted on facing the dangers alone. IMHO of course.