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my bow shall sing with your sword: eowyn

Suppose I had asked her, thought Haldir, on that day...

Before Legolas had claimed her heart. Before she had even met Faramir. What would she have said?


He was right in the thick of it, where the casualties were heaviest.

He had taken a painful cut to the arm, and never saw the Uruk Hai blade—mercifully, not poisoned—that entered his back, pierced his lungs and grazed his heart.

He heard Aragorn's voice; felt Aragorn's touch; and then...

By the time the fighting had ended, he was buried beneath a pile of bodies.




He was roused from healing sleep—Strange that I should be sleeping, in the heat of battle—by the sounds of men, the Rohirrim—searching for survivors.

He knew he must call to them—tell them he was still alive—but his limbs would not move; his lips would not speak.

And, smelling the flesh of the dead, burning on the pyres, he cried out in his heart: Oh Manwë and Varda! Ulmo! Estë! Help me!




Her little hand touched his face.


The elven healers pronounced him beyond saving. "Let him make the journey with dignity."

But she fetched a human healer and—together—they cleansed and dressed his wounds. She applied the salve with her own sweet hands.

And when—at last—he awoke, she was there: sitting beside him, pale and tired, and—oh—so beautiful.

It healed his spirit just to look at her.


Five days later

"You are recovering your strength, my lord!"

Haldir turned, startled—he had been concentrating so hard on walking that he had not heard her footfalls—and the sudden movement made him dizzy. But the White Lady ran forward, slipping beneath his arm and supporting him on her shoulders.

"Your people have remarkable powers of healing," she said, "but perhaps you have done enough for today!" She smiled up at him.


She guided him along the walkway, to a small door at the rear of the Great Hall, which led directly to the Royal apartments—for, as the representative of both Elrond and Galadriel, he had been treated as an honoured guest, and lodged with the Royal Family themselves.

All the while, he was marvelling at her strength.

"Would you like one of the guards to help you to bed, my lord?" she asked. "Or my brother? Or perhaps Prince Legolas?"

Haldir shook his head. "I am almost myself again, now, my lady." In truth, he had not needed her assistance beyond that first moment, but he had enjoyed her attention.

"Well. If you are sure..." She allowed him to remove his arm from her shoulders. "Let me open the door at least—there." She stepped aside. "If there is anything more you need—please—just send one of the servants to fetch me. And, if you would like some comp—" She stopped in mid sentence. "If you would like me to send Prince Legolas, or one of your other comrades, to sit with you—"

"You admire Prince Legolas," he said.

"My lord?"

What a foolish thing to say! But she had already mentioned the elf twice. And given him his proper title. "He is a great warrior."

"He is Lord Aragorn's right hand."

"The Crown Prince of Mirkwood."

"That is hard to believe..."

"My lady?"

"He is so modest; so unassuming," she said. "Always anticipating the needs of others."

"Indeed," said Haldir, softly.

She followed him to the bed and helped steady him as he sat down. "You do look tired, my lord," she said. "Can I bring you some wine?"

"That would be most welcome," Haldir admitted, "if I am not keeping you from your duties."

The White Lady smiled. "My duties are few, my lord," she said, pouring out a measure of strong, red wine. "Neither my uncle nor my brother believes that I should be burdened with anything more than a woman's responsibilities." She handed him the goblet.

"Yet I heard," said Haldir, "that you fought most bravely in the Glittering Caves, defending the women and children when the orcs broke through."

She blushed. "Who told you that, my lord?"

"I believe it was Prince Legolas himself."

"Oh..." Her blush deepened. "He, perhaps, exaggerated..."

"I do not think so." Haldir twisted the knife in his own entrails. "He is not given to exaggeration. He regards you very highly."

"I think you are mistaken, my lord." She turned her face away.

"I am sorry, my lady," said Haldir. "I am prying; please forgive me. And, please—if there are no others to claim your time at present, will you sit with me a while?"

"I shall be glad to." She took the seat beside his bed. "Lord Gimli has told me much about the Lady Galadriel," she said, "but I should like to hear more about the Golden Wood itself—if you are not too tired, that is. My brother passed through it once, but he is resolutely silent on the subject."

"Perhaps you will visit Lothlorien yourself one day," said Haldir.

"Lothlorien..." she said, experimenting with the strange language, "Loth-lorien. How beautiful it sounds. So different from Rohan!"

"How so, my lady?"

"'Rohan' suggests a people who are rugged, a land that is spare, where life is pared to the bone," she said. "Lothlorien sounds—expansive..."

"You will escape your cage, Eowyn."

"My lord?"

She seemed surprised by his sudden intimacy, perhaps affronted by his use of her name, but he persisted. "You are a rare and precious being, Eowyn," he said "and one day some el—some man—some very fortunate man—will claim you for his own. And he will see the strength and courage in you and—far from trying to restrain you—he will welcome that steel in the companion of his spirit."

She swallowed hard. "How strange that you should say all that..."


The door flew open, admitting four feet five inches of pure energy. "How are you feeling laddie? We hear you have been walking!"

"Gimli!" The Prince of Mirkwood, like some divine being in a silver tunic, caught the dwarf by the shoulders and held him back.

"Good evening, Prince Legolas, Lord Gimli," said the White Lady, smiling as she rose from her seat. "I shall leave the patient in your capable hands." She turned to Haldir. "Good night, my lord."

"Good night, my lady."

The moment had passed. So he let her leave.



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Back to Chapter 7

Chapter 7

The Valar
Manwë - King of the Valar, husband of Varda; delights in the winds and the clouds and all swift birds.
Varda - Lady of the Stars, Queen of the Valar, wife of Manwë.
Ulmo - Lord of the Waters; loves elves and men and speaks to them in the music of the water.
Estë - The Gentle; healer of hurts and giver of rest.


Haldir at Helm's Deep
Click to see clip!


My brother passed through it once
A reference to A Certain Peace by Trinity Helix, in which Eomer encounters a lonely Galadriel.