Eowyn's Despair - Part One ~ First Sight of Awen
As King Aragorn descended the steps, soft pink petals rained down upon him. Eowyn bowed respectfully like the Lord Faramir beside her, but as he passed her Aragorn got her eye and smiled as she blushed. Eowyn thought she would burst with happiness. Joy was swelling inside her and up through her body, making her light-headed. She loved Aragorn so much.
He was moving forward to greet a group of Elves now, and Eowyn surveyed them with great interest. They were true to the tales she had listened to so avidly when she was a child, in happier times. They looked proud and strong and fair of face, with many centuries of wisdom in their unfathomable eyes. Aragorn greeted them with much wonder- but who was this? Someone was walking towards him, holding a banner up in front of his or her face... Eowyn strained to see who was behind it.
And then the person lifted away the banner and Eowyn gasped.
It was an Elf-woman, and her beauty was beyond anything that Eowyn had ever seen. Her hair fell down her back like a river of night beneath an elaborate silver headdress. Her eyes were of the deepest blue, and she was clothed in a light-shaded green dress, which fell about her slender form and pooled on the ground at her feet. She was staring into Aragorn's eyes, her own full of something Eowyn had never seen before.
"Who is she?" Eowyn murmured to the Lord Faramir. They were not quite yet on speaking terms, though Eowyn had often glimpsed him in the Houses of Healing while she herself had been recovering.
"I believe she is the Lady Arwen," replied Faramir, "Evenstar of her people and akin to Lord Elrond of Rivend-"
But he never finished his sentence, for Aragorn had suddenly seized Arwen and was kissing her passionately.
In that moment, all the world turned to black-and-white around Eowyn as she fought for breath. An icy dread had enveloped her and her mind was numb and empty. She could scarcely believe it as Arwen, her once-solemn face transformed to an expression of pure joy, threw her arms around Aragorn, laughing as he whirled her around.
"Great, isn't it" commented Faramir happily, watching the reunited couple.
But Eowyn, although still in a state of shock, was watching the man behind Aragorn and Arwen, whom she was trying hard not to watch. She guessed that he was related to Lady Arwen, for there was an alikeness between them, but his noble face was etched with many lines and in his eyes, mingled with profound sadness. This must be Lord Elrond, father of Arwen.
Now Aragorn and Arwen were walking down between the people towards the end of the Citadel. Arwen nodded ad smiled at them as they reached out to touch her, brushing her gown with the tips of their fingers, as if they could draw strength from this beautiful lady walking among them, soon to be their beloved Queen.
The crowd behind the couple were pressing in behind them to follow, closing the space through which they had walked. Numbly, Eowyn followed. Her mind was racing, she did not want to examine the image in her head of Aragorn passionately embracing the love that was not she, Eowyn.
He was greeting the hobbits who stood in a row, Frodo, Sam, Merry and Pippin. Even in her grief Eowyn felt the love she fondly cherished in her heart for the courageous Merry. Small though he may be, he had saved her life and helped defeat the Witch-King of Angmar, and she would never forget it. Eomer, in the end had been wrong to doubt him, as Eowyn knew he would have been. But maybe his opinion of the little Shire-hobbit would have changed drastically...
Where was Eomer, anyway? There he was-struggling through the throng to reach his sister.
"Hello, Eomer" she said wearily.
"Sister" rumbled Eomer in his deep voice. Then he looked at her more closely. "Is anything the matter?"
She shook her head slowly "I-''
But some thing was happening... the whole congregation were bowing in front of the stunned looking hobbits! Through blurred eyes Eowyn could see Aragorn and Arwen kneeling in front of them. Belatedly, she sank to one knee as well, her long hair hanging in front of her face as she bowed her head to hide the sorrowful tears beginning to pour down the cheeks.
Eowyn's bedroom was at the very top of the House of Kings. She wanted to sink onto her bed and weep and weep, but she didn't. Her wild spirit did not allow the tears to come. Instead, she tore off her gown of butter-cream pale gold, and threw the simple crown of bight twisted gold from her head onto the floor. She pulled on her bright white gown that she had always worn at Edoras and laced up the practical white boots that she used to stomp up and down in on the stone `balcony' in front of the Golden Hall. She gave a choked laugh at the memory, but quickly stifled it, for the image of Edoras made her think of King Theodon. Lost in battle. She had been told that he had died right beside her. He had been like a father to her. And she had never even said goodbye.
Hot tears again filled her stormy grey eyes as she moved to the window. Aragorn's and Arwen's coronation and wedding had been a few days ago now, but joyful merry-making was still living in the Hall below. When Lord Denethor had reigned there it had been gloomy and full of despair. Now in the time of King Elessar it was full light and laughter.
Eowyn looked down out of her window. The new White Tree was flourishing beside its pool of clear light. A symbol, a promise of life and new hope for the times of the King. And the Queen.
Eowyn sighed. In her sorrow for the one whom she loved but did not love her in return, she had not partook in any of the partying still going on, although she sometimes thought she should stay up late at night at the feasts, for her dreams were troubled by the darkness of the Witch-King...
"Stop it" she mumbled, hugging herself as she started to shiver. But it was no good. She could still feel his armoured hand as it closed about her throat, choking the life from her, still feel the almost unbearable pain as it rushed up her arm...
Still shivering, she looked out of the window again. The standard of Gondor waved and slapped in the wind, slowly unfurling as the breeze caught it, to reveal the Tree of Gondor, its seven stars wrought of brilliant gemstones. Arwen had made this wonderful standard for Aragorn to carry into battle, and everyone admired it and the love Arwen had for their king.
Arwen, Arwen, Arwen! Suddenly Eowyn's shieldmaiden temper flared. She needed to be alone...She wrenched open her door and nearly flew down the great sweeping marble staircase. Through a door to her right, she was in the Hall, its statues silhouetted in the arched windows. Tables had been laid out on the cold stone floors and were crammed with food which people grabbed eagerly. At the top of the Hall, King Aragorn sat in a throne, and Arwen, her long dark hair falling about her shoulders sat in another to his right. The air was rich with raucous laughter as the people ate, drank ale, and sang songs, new ones, which sang of Elessar and his Evenstar.
Eowyn was in no mood to join them. Just the sight of the beautiful Elf by Aragorn was enough to fill her with a vicious and hateful rage. She stormed along the edge of the Hall, out of the huge front doors and down the steps. Ignoring the guards flanking the doors, she walked briskly up the pathway between the immaculate green lawns, past the White Tree, and up the Citadel. She broke into a run, not stopping until she reached the very point of the Citadel.
The City of Kings reached out on either side of her. It was a wondrous sight; she could have stood here for hours studying it. No wall enclosed the point; if Eowyn took one step from her extremely dangerous position she would tumble down, down, down...
And she had to admit, it was a thing she was very nearly tempted to do.
Lord Denethor, in flames, had hurled himself to his death from here, Eomer had told her. She hoped it wasn't unlucky to stand on this spot.
She looked at the road stretching from Minas Tirith to Osgiliath. Faramir had nearly died trying to defend it for his father's mad will.
Funny...why had she thought of Faramir just now?
Her waist-length golden hair streamed behind her and her white robes whipped around her slender form. If she closed her eyes she could almost be back at Edoras...
And suddenly, she realised.
She would have to go back to Edoras.
Wild panic arose in her chest. She would remain a shieldmaiden for the rest of her life, only to wither and die when the long years of her life were utterly exhausted. Yes, she had had glory; yes, she had had renown, but really, who would remember that now, in the times of joy and peace?
She could have been a Queen. All of this could have been hers, if only Arwen hadn't come along and not gone out West where she belonged! Eowyn felt a bitter hate for the Elven princess.
And then bleak despair overcame her and she wept for the love of Aragorn.
~Sorry if this is a bit bad, (or if this subject has been done before) but it is my very first LOTR story. Please submit comments, criticalness welcomed! ~