The group walked past Eowyn to approach the King. Both the Dwarf and the Lord Aragorn walked as if they had a secret purpose. The Elf Prince called Legolas walked tall and proud, with the wizard Gandalf in tow. The looked quite feeble next to the young Elf, but then again, he was very old.
Grima whispered something into Theoden’s ear and the aged man nodded solemnly. He looked terribly weathered and fragile. If you blew on him, he just might break into a million pieces.
The group stopped a few meters from the throne, each bowing deeply to the King. Gandalf stepped foreward, leaning on his staff. “Hail Theoden son of Thengel! I have returned.”
The King looked to Grima and said slowly, labouriously, “Why should I welcome you, Gandalf Stormcrow?”
“Justly said my Lord,” praised Grima.
“The courtesy of your Hall is lessened of late Theoden King. Seldom has any lord of Rohan recieved such guests.” said Gandalf.
At that moment, the wizard threw off his cloak. White brilliance overtook the room. Eowyn had to shield her eyes from the rays, they were that strong.
Gandalf held his staff out in front of him, poised to strike the King. Grima wailed, “Did I not tell you fools to forbid the wizard’s staff?”
All the solemn guards standing on the sidelines began to ambush the group. Aragorn, Legolas and Gimli immediatly began to punch and kick, knocking most of their assailers out. Some men fled, others backed off to stand once again on the sidelines.
Grima, seeing his chance to flee during the brawl, began to slip away. The Dwarf, however, saw his escape and threw him to the floor, standing on his backside.
Gandalf now approached the King, staff ready. “Leave him snake! Be gone!” He pressed foreward, the power of his spell pushing the King back into his chair.
Eowyn, fearing for her Uncle’s life, rushed out from the shadows to run to his side. As she swiftly passed before Aragorn, he reached out a paowerful arm and grabbed her wrist, bringing her back to him. He placed his other free hand on her shoulder and pulled her close. She turned her head and looked on at him in rage, her crystal eyes ablaze. “Not yet,” he whispered in her ear.
She surrendered to his grasp as tears began to roll down her fair cheeks. He wasn’t hurting her, but she never permitted anyone to do what he was doing to her at this moment. She felt horribly helpless and trapped as she looked on to her Uncle, writhing in obvious pain.
“Never! I’ll never leave him! If I go, so does he!” she heard him grunt, sweat beginning to pour down his face. Gandalf was now only a few feet away from him, staff blazing.
“Too long have you sat in shadows and trusted in evil promptings. I bid you, come forth. Arise! Theoden, King of Rohan!” cried Gandalf triumphantly.
There was another bright flash and Theoden convulsed once more, slumping in his chair as if dead. Eowyn shook free of Aragorn and ran to her Uncle, kneeling at his side.
“My Lord? Uncle?” she asked, sobbing. Slowly, as if waking form a long sleep, he lifted his head to gaze into her lovely face. All the years of age that had once lined his visage seemed to dissapear, leaving behind a rejuvinated King.
“Eowyn? My niece? Is it really you?” he asked.
Fresh tears welled up in her eyes. “Yes Uncle, it is me.” She grasped his hand warmly as it gently cupped the side of her face. She looked back at Gandlaf to see Aragorn standing beside him. He smiled and lipped Im sorry, pointing to his wrist.
She smiled and nodded slightly in return, turning back to the King. She had a weird fluttering in her chest. What was it about this man that intrugued her so? Was it his stunning good looks, or the way he gazed soulfully into her eyes, as if no one else mattered?
She blushed lightly under her tears. Thinking such things at a time like this, she thought. Theoden began to rise. She took his arm and helped to support him as he hobbled down the stairs.
Gandalf smiled. “Your fingers would remember theie old strength better if they gripped your sword.”
A trembling guard produced the King’s sword mumbling, “Hail King Theoden!” then retreated back into the shadows. Theoden took the scabbard and slowly began to unsheath the sword, grasping the hilt with strong fingers. All his former might seemed to return instantly.
He looked his guests over then told two of his guards to throw Grima out, threatening death if he ever returned. Gimli reluctantly got off the slimy man’s back and he scrambled out of the Hall before the guards could get him. Looking out a window, they saw him ride off into the distance.
Theoden turned back to Gndalf, thanking him and observing the crowd again. Finally he asked, “Where is my son? Where is Theodred?”
Eowyn looked up into his Kingly face, trying to hold back her tears. “My Lord, your son is dead. He was badly wounded in the last battle.”
His face turned suddenly grey. “My son…dead?” he murmered.
Gandalf came to stand beside him, a hand on the King’s shoulder. “Let me take you to him,” and he silently led him away.
Eowyn, ready to burst into tears once more, couldn’t bear to be around the men any longer. She fled to her room, completly missing Aragorn’s call to stay. She flung herself onto her bed, sobbing for the loss of her dear cousin.
Aragorn will wait, she though. For now, I must mourn. She turned on her side and wept into her already tear-stained pillow.
She didn’t hear Aragorn silently follow her to her chambers. Now he fingered the Evenstar’s necklace nervously as he listened to the Lady’s muffled sobs. I’ll talk to her later, he though and slipped away to leave her with her thoughts