THE FUNERAL FEAST
Narrator: *The funeral cereomies for the
riders killed by orcs in the valley and those who died of the
black shadow was held the morning of June 12, 3019*
Narrator: *Now it is the custom of the Rohirrim to hold a funeral feast after the funeral ceremony to honor those who have fallen*
Narrator: *The feast itself is held in the ampitheatre, which can hold about 500*
Narrator: *Torches light the cave and the tapestries of Eorl the Young and other honored Rohirrim have been brought forth from their chests and hung upon the walls*
Narrator: *Tables have been placed about the cave and there assembled are the captains of the eoreds not on duty, for not a man can be spared from patrolling the valley*
Narrator: *Wulfhelm is the leader appointed by Bearn to take his place and guide the people in his absence*
Narrator: *He has called this great feast to honor the dead and Eowyn and Pippin, her squire, have been invited*
Narrator: *They are escorted to Wulfhelm's table and Eowyn is seated at his right and Pippin to Eowyn's right*
Narrator: *Down the table to the right below Eowyn and Pippin and sit other lords, those too old to fight, and the off duty captains of the eoreds*
Narrator: *Those relatives of the fallen sit at his left*
Wulfhelm: *Wulfhelm rises from his seat and solemnly speaks these words in honor of the fallen*
Wulfhelm: We are here tonight to remember those who are no longer here, those who have fallen in honor and go to meet their fathers
Wulfhelm: Though they be not with us in body, they are here with us in spirit, for we are the descendants of Eorl
Wulfhelm: Hear ye now all people of Eorl! We will now drink a cup in honor of the fallen!
Wulfhelm: *he takes the cup that is in front of him and passes it to Eowyn* Here, lady, take the cup of honor, drink from it and give it to those assembled
Eowyn: *eowyn, dressed in white, rises from her seat, and takes the large cup from his hands*
Pippin: *watches Eowyn nervously. The dynamic between them has changed since Gandalf healed her. Now Pippin is not sure what to do and is afraid of saying or doing the wrong thing*
Pippin: *smiles seeing her take her old place with the Rohirrim*
Eowyn: *she drinks from the cup and presents it to wulfhelm, then to each one seated at the table, allowing them to drink*
Pippin: *Pippin closes his eyes and pretends he is at the Green Dragon with Merry as he drinks*
Wulfhelm: *Wulfhelm stands at the head of the table, his head bowed*
Wulfhelm: *he raises his head* Do this in memory and honor of the fallen!
Pippin: *His eyes sting a little as he looks at all the grieving relatives and remembers Merry, Frodo and Sam*
Wulfhelm: *He looks down to the end of the table and nods to an elderly man seated there, the eldest there, a scarred veteran of many battles against the orcs*
Eowyn: *eowyn is slightly nervous, but tries to hide her guilt and the memories of her thraldom from her mind*
Wulfhelm: *He says* There are some of us who can no longer fight, crippled from many battles, or aged beyond the strength to do battle *his voice wavers*
Wulfhelm: *his voice grows in intensity* But if our spirits united can empower our brothers to fight, then let them do so!
Wulfhelm: *the men shout* Aye! *at his words*
Eowyn: *after everyone has sipped from the cup eowyn returns to her place beside wulfhelm*
Wulfhelm: *he nods then to the serving women. Then he sits down and they bring them all tankards of mead*
Wulfhelm: Does anyone here have a toast to make in honor of the fallen?
Wulfhelm: *he looks to Eowyn questioningly*
Pippin: *Hathawyn brings Pippin's mead and they share a sad smile*
Eowyn: *she feels his eyes upon her, and says* they fought bravely, let them join their fathers now in honor
Wulfhelm: Aye *he says and raises his tankard into the air*
Wulfhelm: *He looks to the elderly gentleman at the end of the table* To all those who fell, to all those who died from the Enemy's curse. May they know peace in the halls of their fathers
Wulfhelm: *other nobles make toasts and then Wulfhelm looks to Pippin* What about you, lad, have you a toast?
Pippin: *surprised* Me?
Pippin: I could give a toast if it would please you, sir.
Wulfhelm: Aye, you. Surely you have a toast to make to the fallen? *he asks questioningly*
Pippin: *nods gravely*
Eowyn: *looks over at pippin*
Pippin: *stands on his chair so everyone will be able to see him and raises his tankard*
Pippin: To the heroes who fell in battle, let us honor them for their sacrifice. And for the lands and homes and families they died to protect, may the people return safely to them
Pippin: And to the wounded, may they return to their former health and strength
Pippin: and may we who still fight live up to the heroism of all these
Wulfhelm: *they all raise their cups as Pippin speaks*
Wulfhelm: *he looks to Pippin* a good toast my lad, indeed. Worthy of them
Pippin: *smiles* Thank you
Pippin: *sits back down and smiles at Eowyn, trying to convey that the line about the wounded was for her*
Wulfhelm: *Then he signals to the serving women and they begin to bring food, the rations though are scant, and they must conserve all they can*
Wulfhelm: *Bread, roast beef, a few greens they have gathered from the hillsides and always the mead*
Wulfhelm: Let the feast begin! *he says*
Eowyn: *hathawyn is one of those who are serving food, and she takes a special interest in serving pippin*
Pippin: *Hathawyn sees Pippin's sadness as she brings his food and furtively squeezes his shoulder. He smiles up at her*
Eowyn: *hathawyn brings pippin an extra large piece of beef, some carrots, potatoes and a side dish of the greens*
Pippin: *Pippin's smile grows when he sees the extra big portion*
Eowyn: *eowyn looks at pippin's heaping plate, always surprised by hobbits large appetite*
Pippin: *notices Eowyn looking at his place and realizes he has more food than she does*
Wulfhelm: *When Wulfhelm's plate arrives, he takes his knife and cuts off a piece of the beef, then places in his mouth and chews thoughtfully*
Pippin: *whispers to Eowyn* Would you like to share some of this?
Eowyn: *looks to pippin and smiles* my appetite is not what it once was, but thank you for your offer.
Pippin: *nods, discouraged. He feels he should be able to get her to eat*
Wulfhelm: *a knife and a spoon are all they have to eat their food with and the Rohirrim use their hands as much as they do their knives*
Pippin: *watches to see if she eats her own food*
Pippin: *...in between bites of his, of course*
Wulfhelm: *Wulfhelm cuts off a piece of potato with the knife and eats it. He tears off some bread and dips it in the broth. He looks over at the hobbit and remembers how Bearn told him that the halfling had a bottomless pit for a stomach*
Eowyn: *she eats her food, but chews slowly and thoughtfully, taking drinks from her tankard*
Wulfhelm: Here, lad, come over here, take some of mine. You look like you are still growing!
Wulfhelm: Surely you will grow more?
Pippin: Well actually I am very tall for a hobbit
Pippin: But thank you, if you aren't going to finish that!
Eowyn: *is amused... thinks pippin will grow more sideways, not lengthways*
Wulfhelm: *he spears his last piece of beef and then a potato*
Wulfhelm: *washes it down with some mead*
Wulfhelm: Master Peregrin, I never have developed a fondness for carrots or greens and they gave me too much bread. Take them!
Pippin: With pleasure *takes them*
Pippin: *between bites* You see, hobbits are usually about three and a half feet tall
Pippin: But when I was in Fangorn Forest I drank some ent draught and it made me grow taller!
Wulfhelm: *deciding that the halfling is not going to come and get it, he passes his unfinished food over to Eowyn* Give it to him, my lady
Eowyn: *nods to wulfhelm then passes the plate over to pippin, then passes the empty plate back to wulfhelm*
Pippin: Oh, I'm sorry. I wasn't sure how much was for me. Of course I'd eat it all but I wouldn't want you to go hungry.
Wulfhelm: *when she returns his plate, he pushes it over in front of him as a signal to the serving women to take it away*
Eowyn: *hathawyn comes back and takes wulfhelm's plate and in one hand she has a small dish* i found some extra for you, pippin *smiles*
Pippin: *to Hathawyn* What is it?
Eowyn: *hathawyn says* part of a potato and a bit of greens
Eowyn: *hathawyn says* and half a carrot
Pippin: *beams even more* Thank you!
Eowyn: *eowyn breaks off a piece of her bread and eats it*
Pippin: *Ah the wonderful feeling of being stuffed, a rare luxury now for Pippin*
Wulfhelm: *After finishing his food, he waits until the rest of his guests have eaten*
Eowyn: *eowyn becomes full, her appetite damaged by her addiction to opium. she looks to pippin* would you like the rest of this? or have you had too much already? *laughs slightly*
Pippin: Oh, no, I can finish that for you. Wouldn't want it to go to waste.
Pippin: *eats Eowyn's leftovers too*
Wulfhelm: *Wulfhelm pushes his chair back and stands* And after you have finished dining, there will be some apples. *he pauses* Unfortunately, the last of our supply, so enjoy them.
Pippin: *pales....the last apples!*
Wulfhelm: *He says* There are some apples reserved, however, for the children amongst the people
Wulfhelm: but they have already been distributed throughout the camp
Eowyn: *the news of the apples running out makes her heart sink, and she fears for the food supply that will eventally run out*
Pippin: *Pippin tries not to think of the possiblity of starving. It is too frightening*
Wulfhelm: *he takes his seat again and takes a stout drink of the mead*
Eowyn: *hathawyn comes by again with a tray laden with apples. she offers them to wulfhelm, eowyn and pippin... her eyes lingering on pippin*
Pippin: *Pippin dismally wonders if he will have to spend the rest of his life trapped in this fortress. It wouldn't be a very long life at that*
Eowyn: *hathawyn steps closely to pippin, balancing the plate on one hand she takes from her apron an apple for pippin and she says* this one was left over
Pippin: *his eyes widen*
Eowyn: *eowyn thanks her and dutifully tries to eat her apple*
Pippin: *whispers* Are you sure this is allowed?
Eowyn: *hathawyn says* it is a little soft, and no one would take it
Pippin: Oh, I'll take it, thank you! *grins at Hathawyn*
Eowyn: *hathawyn* but you can have your one apple, your share, and this one that no one else would eat, lest it go to waste
Pippin: *eats the soft apple now to avoid its going rotten, and pockets the shiny last apple he will ever have....no, no, the last apple of the Dunharrow supply, for later.*
Wulfhelm: *Wulfhelm looks at Pippin and thinks: Truly it was, as Bearn said, his stomach knows no bottom!*
Eowyn: *looks to pippin with concern, hoping that he won't make himself sick*
Wulfhelm: *Wulfhelm shakes his head and wonders at what state the halfling's stomach must be in*
Pippin: *to Hathawyn* You can trust me not to waste any food! *laughs*
Eowyn: *hathawyn laughs* that i see! *and then departs*
Pippin: *having cleaned his own plate and eaten Wulfhelm's and Eowyn's leftovers and an apple, Pippin decides to stop eating for now*
Wulfhelm: *he finishes the last of his tankard of ale and signals for another to be brought to him*
Pippin: *tries to ignore his stomachache*
Wulfhelm: *the serving women begin to gather the empty plates and take them away*
Wulfhelm: *Wulfhelm looks down the table and sees a few potatoes, bits of meat, and carrots left over on some plates* Pippin? *he asks* Would you want the rest?
Eowyn: *eowyn takes a drink out of her tankard, enjoying the taste of mead once again*
Pippin: *The food looks awfully tempting*
Wulfhelm: Still I think that you must be growing, and a growing boy... *he laughs* Must have his fill!
Pippin: *But if he eats it he might be sick and that wouldn't be good*
Wulfhelm: *he slaps his thigh at his own joke, and laughs heartily*
Pippin: *smiles at Wulfhelm* Thank you, but I think I have actually had enough for both myself and Merry if he were here
Wulfhelm: We will make a warrior out of you yet, Master Peregrin!
Eowyn: *eowyn laughs, taking another drink of mead*
Pippin: *an uncharacteristic fire lights his eyes at Wulfhelm's words*
Wulfhelm: Well then the hounds will have a good meal for tonight for a change. Their sides are lean
Pippin: *sighs. What a shame that the food must go to the dogs*
Wulfhelm: And we can feed our hounds no longer. They must hunt for all their food now
Eowyn: *the mention of merry brings a twinge of sadness and guilt*
Wulfhelm: *his face grows concerned* Even now we ourselves must set snares to catch the hares
Wulfhelm: For that might be all that we have to eat ere long
Wulfhelm: We did not think there would be such a host gathered here as there is
Pippin: *his pulse speeds up as fear bursts upon him again*
Wulfhelm: And in our haste, perhaps we did not bring enough
Wulfhelm: But we will not eat our horses. Nay, if it comes total starvation, better to be mounted on gaunt, skeletal beasts and fight and die with honor facing the enemy
Wulfhelm: The time of leanness has come upon the Rohirrim!
Pippin: *Pippin would rather eat the horses but says nothing*
Eowyn: *takes a drink, turns to wulfhelm and says* how many now guard edoras and the northern part of the valley?
Eowyn: how many of the enemy and how many of our people?
Wulfhelm: *he turns to her, sighs* By the estimation of our scouts, well nigh a thousand of the enemy patrol the valley and we? We have 3 eoreds
Pippin: *chokes on his mead*
Wulfhelm: *he waits until all the plates have been cleared and all have finished their apples before he gives the signal to call for the entertainment*
Eowyn: *she sighs* i have not been told much of the war, only what has befallen myself
Wulfhelm: Lady, you should not think too much of war, for you are still sick, and the worry would disturb you
Wulfhelm: *He signals for the entertainment to commence*
Pippin: *meets Eowyn's eyes, trying to let both sympathy and respect show through*
Rohirrim Bard: *a young Rohirrim captain off duty, rises from his seat. A bard in peacetime, a soldier in war, he begins to sing in a tenor voice this song*
Rohirrim Bard: Where now the horse and the rider? Where is the horn that was blowing?
Rohirrim Bard: Where is the helm and the hauberk, and the bright hair flowing?
Rohirrim Bard: Where is the hand on the harpstring, and the red fire glowing?
Rohirrim Bard: Where is the sping and the harvest and the tall corn growing?
Rohirrim Bard: They have passed like rain on the mountain, like a wind in the meadow;
Rohirrim Bard: The days have gone down in the West behind the hills into shadow.
Rohirrim Bard: Who shall gather the smoke of the dead wood burning, Or behold the flowing years from the Sea returning?
Rohirrim Bard: These words do I say in honor of the fallen, the memory of our past, the exploits of our fathers, and the deeds of our men
Rohirrim Bard: *all are silent at his words, and they think upon them and the dark shadows that have fallen upon their people*
Rohirrim Bard: *they do not applaud for good reason*
Rohirrim Bard: *he bows and leaves*
Eowyn: *the heart fills her heart with a sense of melancholy, and a slight chill goes through her. indeed, the days have gone down in the west, or so it seems*
Wulfhelm: *Wulfhelm falls silent for a moment and then says, almost to himself* Seven thousand against their thousands. This cannot be done!
Eowyn: *she overhears him* you speak of the armies, do you not?
Wulfhelm: *trying to lighten the mood, he looks down at Pippin* And you say, Master Halfling, that for once your stomach has been filled here?
Pippin: *smiles sadly* Yes sir, thank you
Wulfhelm: Master Pippin, you are our honored guest. We would do more if we could
Eowyn: *waits patiently for wulfhelm to answer her question*
Wulfhelm: *Tries to ignore the words of Eowyn*
Pippin: *looks to Wulfhelm with a mixture of gratitude and confusion. Bearn used to treat him like a nuisance*
Eowyn: *she feels nervous, a stranger amongst her own people. she asks again softly* where is the king and the army of rohan?
Wulfhelm: Eomer king goes now to attack the enemy
Eowyn: *a sense of urgency about her* i have been told little of the war
Wulfhelm: My lady, I hold your rightful place now by appointment. I would rather that you had it than I!
Wulfhelm: But you ask of the war? Eomer and the army ride to to Helm's Deep where they will join with the men of Gondor to fight against the enemy
Wulfhelm: Gondor brings 9000. With our 7000, that makes 16000 against their masses
Wulfhelm: Now you know about the war
Wulfhelm: Perhaps now if I have answered your question, our guest will tell us about the place from whence he comes
Pippin: The Shire?
Wulfhelm: Yes, that is the name I hear it is called
Pippin: Yes, that is what it is called, our own Shire *smiles*
Pippin: Well, everyone there is shorter than I am.
Eowyn: *her mind reels with his words.... the west faces overwhelming odds and numbers.... the massive black horde of mordor. she takes another drink of mead*
Eowyn: *she wonders if wulfhelm wishes not to stress her after suffering from withdrawal illness and the shadow, or does he suspect she is still a thrall?*
Wulfhelm: Then, Master Peregrin, short they must be indeed!
Wulfhelm: For when I first saw you, I thought you but a lad
Pippin: And we all live in holes. Not dirty holes but very comfortable ones, with walls and rooms and many good things
Pippin: Yes, compared to the Big Folk we are very short
Pippin: But to me, the first Men I saw looked terribly large
Wulfhelm: And you have journeyed a long way have you not, Master Peregrin?
Pippin: *nods* A very long way
Eowyn: *she begins to feel the familiar feelings of frustration, the noises in the tent mix and blend into one large chattery voice loud in her ears*
Pippin: I set out with my cousin Frodo, his gardener Sam, and Merry whom you knew
Wulfhelm: *he replies sadly* Aye, I knew Master Brandybuck
Pippin: *returns the sad look understandingly*
Wulfhelm: He fell in honor upon the blood drenched fields of Pelennor. May he rest now in peace
Pippin: *bows his head* Aye
Pippin: The four of us spent many pleasant evenings in the Shire, at each other's homes or at the Green Dragon, our favorite tavern
Eowyn: *her eyes blaze and stronger feelings of hatred for angmar stir inside her* yes... may he rest in peace, for indeed he did win great honor
Wulfhelm: If your consumption of ale at your tavern equals your consumption of mead here, then indeed Master Peregrin, you have a huge thirst! *he laughs*
Pippin: *smiles at Eowyn, so relieved to hear her say that. He remembers her insisting that Merry was an evil man who poisoned her*
Eowyn: *she simmers, and takes a large gulp of mead, wincing only slightly*
Wulfhelm: *he looks down to both of them and smiles at them, then returns to his mead*
Pippin: *laughs wth Wulfhelm* Aye, I could drink all three of them under the table!
Wulfhelm: *he laughs heartily* I would hear good tales of drinking and good food and good times and good friends
Wulfhelm: Would that we could sit at a roaring fire with our tankards in our hands and sing the songs of old. Aye, in peace, in peace
Pippin: *nods, sadness beginning to creep on him, for he will never have that again*
Eowyn: *sulkily drinks the rest of her tankard. soon a serving lady pours her another*
Pippin: *wonders why Eowyn is upset and hopes he didn't say something wrong*
Wulfhelm: Then, Master Peregrin, let us hear tales of this place from where you come, this place where the halflings dwell
Eowyn: *their words flit by her ears unheeded as she contemplates the situation of the war, and in dunharrow*
Eowyn: *is angry at herself for being a part of mordor, even if it was against her will*
Pippin: Well, you know that we had that terrible Ring right under our noses in the Shire and didn't know it. Frodo's uncle Bilbo had it before he left it to Frodo
Wulfhelm: The Thing of evil? The Creation of the Fiend?
Pippin: *nods seriously*
Pippin: *tries to lighten the mood again* So Bilbo, not knowing what it was, used it to play a joke!
Eowyn: *her grip on her tankard tightens when she hears them speak of the enemy*
Pippin: He wanted to leave the Shire and move to Rivendell on his 111th birthday
Wulfhelm: The Fiend's heart is black, his deeds darker. Ever does he seek to do evil upon the face of Arda. He follows in the wake of his master, Morgoth, acursed be his name!
Eowyn: *nods and takes another large drink of her mead, angry at the enemy and herself*
Wulfhelm: And you say this Bilbo had the Ring? Why did he not destroy it? Did he not know its power?
Pippin: *stops his story abruptly at Wulfhelm's outburst. He agrees with it all but would rather not think about it*
Pippin: Oh, no, he had no idea what it was
Wulfhelm: Cast it into the sea, burn it in a fire, drop it into a pit in the ground. Why did he not do these things?
Eowyn: *curses sauron and angmar and all of mordor in her mind as she silently drinks*
Pippin: Those things cannot destroy it
Wulfhelm: *Wulfhelm finishes his mead, then signals for another to be brought to be brought to him, Pippin and Eowyn*
Pippin: Even if it were hidden it would still be found, because...well, Frodo told me it wanted to be found.
Pippin: The only way to destroy it is to throw it into the Cracks of Doom in Mordor, where it was made.
Eowyn: *she feels she is in shame and disgrace for her deeds out of thraldom.... she desires to do something to win back her name, to redeem herself... she takes a drink of her mead and turns to wulfhelm*
Wulfhelm: It is a noble thought, Master Peregrin, to destroy the accursed Ring but it is obvious to all that that was never done
Wulfhelm: And we now face the consequences of its preservation
Eowyn: *her eyes glimmer with anger* curse him and his ring and the evil nameless land!
Wulfhelm: *he raises his tankard of mead* Aye, lady, curse his name and may he go to the Void with his master!
Eowyn: *nods and takes another drink, then begins to speak* a thrall i was, but a thrall no longer. i wish to be pardoned for my deeds against the mark
Wulfhelm: *he drinks from the tankard* Lady, I bear you no ill will!
Wulfhelm: What is to be pardoned?
Eowyn: *looks down, ashamed* i fought against my own people and served the enemy for a time
Wulfhelm: *he looks over at her with amazement*
Wulfhelm: There is naught to be pardoned, so no pardon I can give
Eowyn: *thinks: yet still i am in disgrace and shame* i wish to do something to amend my deeds, to fight for my people and prove myself once more
Wulfhelm: *he thinks, Pity have I for her but there is no reason to pardon for what has she done? Nothing. She has been a captive, a slave*
Wulfhelm: Lady, you need to prove nothing. You have been ill. You are recovering
Eowyn: still i desire to fight, as i once did
Wulfhelm: You are no longer captive to Mordor. You have been freed. You are freed!
Wulfhelm: Fight? What talk is this? Have you not seen enough of war at Pelennor?
Eowyn: *her face is determined* the war still goes on, whether i have seen enough of it or no
Wulfhelm: Nay, I will not allow you to be sent to fight. Your place is here among your people!
Eowyn: if not beside my brother then with the eoreds in the valley
Wulfhelm: Nay, nay, your place is here!
Wulfhelm: If you ever fought, you might not be so lucky next time. You might pay for your folly with your life!
Eowyn: i fear not death, and i should have fallen at pelennor
Wulfhelm: You did not, and great fortune that you did not!
Eowyn: *thinks: so they all say.* so i am to wait here, to either starve or die by the hands of the enemy when all is lost?
Wulfhelm: Encourage the people, Lady Eowyn. You can at least be with them..... at the last
Eowyn: the men go out to fight and the women guard the house. then when the men are killed, the women are left to burn in the house
Eowyn: *thinks: either way death is certain*
Eowyn: but i am of the house of eorl *thinks: though i no longer am worthy of that title* and a shieldmaiden who has already seen war
Wulfhelm: Lady Eowyn, you shall not go fight!
Eowyn: i have already fought! if a man were wounded, he would fight as soon as he were healed. but not i, for i am a woman
Wulfhelm: Lady, we have not a horse to spare for you. Our men need their horses and none would lend you one. You shall stay here!
Eowyn: *is not daunted. has been through this many times before..... has she not seen war? has she not seen battles, fighting, killing.... been taken to the very pits of hell?*
Eowyn: *her determination is stronger than ever* i have a horse, which bore me from the nameless land
Wulfhelm: This horse of yours has already been claimed, for he is of the Mearas strain and belongs to Rohan by right!
Wulfhelm: I would have myself strapped upon my saddle and ride him rather than let you go out!
Eowyn: i have been told i stood before the nameless enemy himself. certainly i can fight once more in battle
Wulfhelm: You are too weak to wield a sword, even if it were appropriate for you to do it. I consider only your welfare, Lady Eowyn, and the welfare of your people
Eowyn: i deem myself well enough. i was told when i was first captured i could barely walk
Wulfhelm: *The guests continue to drink their mead until the eldermost gentleman signals that he wishes to leave. He bids his farewell to all and thanks the host for the provender. He rises to his feet and is assisted out by his young grandson*
Wulfhelm: *Then slowly one by one, the others give their farewells, and go to their tents and pavilions for sleep has come upon all of them. A few nobles remain, still drinking their mead*
Pippin: *has listened with growing excitement. Eowyn wishes to ride to battle again! Here is a chance to follow in Merry's footsteps!*
Wulfhelm: You are not well, Lady Eowyn. Not well by any means!
Eowyn: the war goes on whether i be well or no, and as each day passes, what little hope we have runs out
Wulfhelm: I will speak no more of this rash idea of yours. You will stay here, stay here and heal!
Wulfhelm: And if your horse is to be ridden by anyone, I will ride him myself, strapped in the saddle
Wulfhelm: For my leg is maimed, the work of an orcish blade
Pippin: *wonders if Eowyn is well enough to fight, and if she will sneak off as she did with Merry*
Eowyn: *falls silent and sullen, her muscles tense and taunt. she takes a drink of her mead, and fumes quietly*
Pippin: *fidgets in his seat*
Wulfhelm: *he finishes off his mead, the number he has consumed that night forgotten* We will speak no more of this as I say. You will stay here
Eowyn: *under breath* and die slowly of starvation, if we are all to die
Eowyn: *finishes her mead, a hundred thoughts storming through her mind*
Wulfhelm: Now I hereby proclaim the feast over, the dead honored
Wulfhelm: *he rises to his feet and bids his farewell to nobles, Pippin and Eowyn*
Eowyn: *she rises to her feet thanks wulfhelm for the feast*
Pippin: *thanks Wulfhelm as well*
Wulfhelm: *he limps as he walks across the cave, but he turns back and says* Aye, the dead have been honored, which is appropriate. Now our task is to look to tomorrow and whatever evil that may bring with it
Wulfhelm: *he nods to them and then turns again and leaves the cave, hobbling as he goes*
Pippin: *His mind turns it all over. Suppose she does insist on disobeying. They could both lose their honor among the Rohirrim for this. And what if Eowyn is hurt in battle? They will all shun him!*
Wulfhelm: *Now except for a few nobles who have drunk too much mead and fallen slumped in their seats, Pippin and Eowyn are the last remaining guests*
Pippin: *looks up to Eowyn with raised eyebrows* My lady...what do you intend to do?
Eowyn: *looks to pippin, and says without emotion, deep in thought* i do not know
Eowyn: *she motions for him to follow her, and she exits the cave and begins the long walk back to her tent*
Pippin: *lags a little behind because he is stuffed*
Eowyn: *her path is veering, away from any who are in the field...*
Pippin: *His eyes widen as he sees where she is going*
Eowyn: *she motions to pippin to talk with her*
Pippin: *holds his stomach with a grimace as he quickens his pace to join her*
Eowyn: *she halts and waits for him*
Pippin: *walks up to her, stands on tiptoe and whispers* What is it, my lady?
Eowyn: i desire to fight, to avenge my honor. i believe you know that
Pippin: But are you sure you are strong enough?
Pippin: Think what the Rohirrim would feel if you were to be killed.
Eowyn: it matters little, but i am recovering and the main part of my strength has returned to me
Eowyn: i wish to join the king and the army and fight at helms deep
Pippin: *His lips part in astonishment*
Pippin: *He stares at her for a moment*
Eowyn: first i must go to my tent and get a few things, and then to the armory and stables
Pippin: Wait, my lady.....if I took you to battle and you died, I would not be surprised if your people killed me
Eowyn: *she begins to worry... what if he were to tell on her?* but do not hinder me! my mind is set
Pippin: Are you sure you can do this? You are not making another desperate suicide attempt?
Pippin: Forgive me for speaking so bluntly
Pippin: but these are grave times!
Eowyn: you do not have to go with me. i do not ask you to
Pippin: *bursts out* Oh, I want to go!
Eowyn: i only ask the loan of your sword, for a brief time
Pippin: I want to go, I want to fight and avenge Merry
Pippin: I want to live up to his name.
Eowyn: *she smiles gravely*
Eowyn: then i understand your desire, and you shall go with me into battle
Pippin: *the full realization of it hits him and his eyes fill, but he smiles up at her radiantly*
Eowyn: first we must go to my tent *she motions for him to follow*
Pippin: *walks with her*
Eowyn: *before long they arrive at her tent. she enters and gets a tenderbox on the table, strikes the flint and lights the candle on the table*
Eowyn: *she turns to him* now pippin, your sword
Pippin: *draws it* It is not very big for you
Pippin: Will we only have one sword between us?
Eowyn: i do not plan to use it for battle
Eowyn: *she takes his sword with one hand and with the other she reaches behind her head, gathering up her long hair and pulling it to her side*
Eowyn: *she holds the blade up to her hair, and slowly begins sawing... it shall be still long but as a man's now*
Pippin: *feels a pang because her hair is so beautiful, but knows it will be better to have it shorter*
Eowyn: *she feels a slight twinge of sadness but supresses it. when she finishes, she shakes her remaining hair out and says* pippin, is it even?
Pippin: *looks at the back of her hair* Yes, it's perfect.
Eowyn: *she looks down at the mound of hair on the floor and she wonders* what shall i do with it?
Eowyn: *she bends down and picks it up, answering her own question and hides it under her bed*
Pippin: That's good
Eowyn: pippin, wait outside for me. i must change
Pippin: *sheathes his sword and then steps outside the tent*
Pippin: *while she changes, he slowly takes the blue hair ribbon from his pocket*
Pippin: *He contemplates the ribbon for long moments, then he ties it around his arm*
Eowyn: *she takes off her dress and puts on the clothing she has worn since leaving edoras*
Eowyn: *she gathers up a small bag of things, snuffs out the candle and leaves the tent*
Eowyn: *her cloak is about her, her hood drawn over her face* come, now we go to the armory tents
Pippin: *nods and follows her*
Eowyn: *as they go she talks to him* we will take no food for they need it here
Pippin: But how will we eat?
Eowyn: we will gather a few waterskins but that is all. we won't eat
Pippin: *Pippin is glad he pocketed that apple*
Pippin: Then how will we have the strength to fight?
Eowyn: perhaps we shall find something along the way
Pippin: *decides to hope for that*
Eowyn: *after a while of walking they arrive at the armory tent*
Eowyn: *she takes pippin by the hand and they enter..... it is not guarded and few are in that area*
Eowyn: *armor, swords, helms, shields, spears and other gear hangs on racks on the wall, or stacked on tables and in bins*
Eowyn: you are already wearing your halberk from gondor, but you need a helm
Pippin: I have a helm from Gondor in my tent
Eowyn: all right, we shall get it when we leave
Eowyn: you are all ready well equipped
Eowyn: *she searches around and finds a padded vest and a halberk and slowly begins to put them on, smoothing out the rolls in the mail as it bunches up*
Pippin: Do you need help with that?
Eowyn: *she smiles at him, having gotten it on successfully* nay, but thank you
Eowyn: *she tightens leather arm braces about her arms, and puts a surcoat over her halberk, fastening it with a belt*
Eowyn: *then she moves over to the swords and chooses one and tests its weight. finding it to her liking she selects a sheath for it and straps it to her belt*
Eowyn: *she then goes and takes two daggers and attaches one to her belt and gives the other to pippin* you might need this
Eowyn: *she moves to the helms, and puts a padded arming cap about her head, and finds a helm that fits her well... then gets a shield for herself and finds a small one for pippin*
Eowyn: *she passes it to him*
Eowyn: *she goes and gets a green cloak and puts it on*
Eowyn: *she motions to pippin* now to the stables, if you are ready, and we shall get dushtala, my horse
Eowyn: we must hurry
Pippin: Yes, my lady
Pippin: *Pippin now wears a white and green surcoat of the Rohirrim instead of his Gondorian colors*
Eowyn: *she leads him to the stables and looks for her horse.... dushtala nickers a greeting for her as she leads him out of the stall*
Pippin: *He carries his sword, small shield and dagger*
Eowyn: *she hands pippin a rope attached to the horse's halter* here, hold him, while i find a bridle and saddle
Pippin: I have to do something before we leave *holding the horse*
Pippin: I will be quick
Eowyn: we must hurry, what is it?
Pippin: I must say goodbye...no, I can't say goodbye looking like this...I must leave a note....
Eowyn: pippin, you shouldn't, but if you must do so, give me the rope
Pippin: *brightens and gives her the rope* Thank you!
Pippin: *runs off*
Pippin: *sneaks back to his tent trying to be quiet*
Pippin: *writes hastily*
Pippin: Dear Hathawyn,
Pippin: I did not know you for long but your memory is precious to me, as I hope mine will be to you.
Pippin: Thank you for everything. May you survive these times to live a long and happy life.
Pippin: Where I go I cannot tell you, but I am wearing your hair ribbon on my arm.
Pippin: Goodbye, my dear maiden of the golden ale. --Peregrin Took
Eowyn: *she takes the rope and ties the horse to a ring on the side of the stable wall. she looks around and finds a saddle*
Eowyn: *she puts a pad on the horse's back and then puts her saddle on top and tightens the girth*
Eowyn: *she looks around and finds light armor for the horse and puts it in place*
Eowyn: *she tightens the rest of the armor and saddle and all straps*
Eowyn: *then she takes a bridle in her hands and puts the bit in the horse's mouth, pulls the bridle up and fastens the straps*
Eowyn: *she unties the rope and puts it in her cloak and stands, holding the horse and waits for pippin*
Pippin: *runs to the food tent and slides the note under the side of the tent, hoping Hathawyn will find it*
Pippin: *hurries back to Eowyn*
Pippin: *He looks strangely sad and excited at the same time*
Pippin: I am ready, my lady.
Eowyn: now pippin, we will have to steal a dark cloak. perhaps someone left one out to air and forgot to bring it in when darkness fell. it is summer and they will not miss it badly
Eowyn: *she leads her horse and leaves the stables*
Eowyn: pippin, see if you can find a dark cloak while i hold my horse
Pippin: *goes to the laundry tent, which is deserted because of the feast*
Pippin: *rummages through the clothes until he finds a black cape with yards and yards of material--perfect*
Pippin: *folds it up and takes it to Eowyn*
Eowyn: *she takes off her green cloak and puts the dark one underneath, then puts the green cloak over it*
Eowyn: *normally it would be a bit warm, but she had felt cold ever since she left lugburz*
Eowyn: now pippin, i will lead the horse until we get to the stair leading down. we shall go where there are few people, and this darkness will hide us
Pippin: Yes, my lady
Eowyn: *quietly they make their way through the camp and when they get to the beginning of the stairs, she halts*
Eowyn: now pippin, up we go *she helps him on the back of the horse*
Pippin: *grins as Eowyn lifts him onto the horse*
Pippin: *He settles himself on the back of the horse*
Eowyn: *she throws the reins over the horse's head and holds them as she climbs up in front of pippin*
Eowyn: hold onto me as we go down the mountain
Pippin: *breathlessly* Thank you...let's go!
Eowyn: *she urges her horse forward, saying softly* skaat, dushtala, ukh izgu *and trusts his senses to get them down the mountain*
Pippin: *It is steep going, and Pippin is grateful for Eowyn in front of him*
Eowyn: *they go down the mountain path, one switchback after another, past the statues of pukel men, her cloak hiding pippin riding behind*
Eowyn: *at the second switchback the horse stumbles but catches himself*
Pippin: *stifles a gasp*
Eowyn: *she pats him on the neck to steady him*
Pippin: *He cannot see much, but it is better than being found*
Eowyn: *slowly they make their way down the stiars of the hold until last they reach the harrowdale valley floor*
Eowyn: *she says softly* call me dernhelm, and eowyn no longer... and you shall be called holdwine
Eowyn: now onward pippin, onward for the mark
Pippin: *softly but with intense passion* Onward for the Mark! For the Shire! For Merry, Sam, and Frodo!*
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