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\'\'\'Author\'s Preface\'\'\' The fear of spiders has struck terror throughout the ages in many of the races of Middle-earth. I know, for I have traveled far and I have heard tales that would chill your blood and set your heart to pounding within its fragile cage. Not just tales for the nightmares of children have I recounted, no! For ever since that which the Elves called Ungoliant passed south, cloaked in nighted darkness of spider form, leaving a barren swath behind her across the land, spiders of evil intent have dwelt in the dark places beyond civilized lands and preyed on all who lose their way and fall for their expertly wrought traps.