Hear Me Roar: The History of House Lannister in the War of the Ring

Gandalf the Grey

Gandalf was old enough to know firsthand that the white city of Minas Tirith had seen better days. It might better be called the grey city now, the light rain that fell left the normally pristine stone walls darkened slightly. The normally crowded streets were empty save for a few die hard merchants huddled under the overhangs of their stalls, halfheartedly calling out to the wizard as he walked by. Normally Gandalf would have humored them, perhaps purchased an apple or a loaf of bread and innocently questioned them about the goings on of the city. Gandalf had long ago learned that the spirit of a people was far more important than steel when it came to resisting the will of the Enemy, so he kept himself informed of the mood and fortunes of the Men of the West when he could.

Today there was no time for that, Denethor, Steward of the Throne of Gondor, had personally summoned him regarding the rumors that had reached the city from the West. Gandalf had himself heard a few, tales of a great army invading from the West, then it was a the Valar clothed in gold come to strike down Mordor, or perhaps it was the forces of Arnor in the North come to aid their brethren. Given the scattered nature of the rumors and the fact that few refugees or victims of war had come with them, Gandalf had elected to continue his pursuit of information regarding the ring that now resided in a certain hole in Bag End until more information could be gathered. The summons from the Steward had come as a surprise to him, and he wondered if perhaps he would finally find the truth in the rumors.

If the exterior of the city was wet and grey from the rain the throne room of the Kingdom of Gondor retained it's splendor. Gandalf couldn't help but feel proud of mankind's achievements when he walked through those doors, when he doubted his mission he remembered this and knew that the world of man was worth preserving. He was less happy with Denethor, son of Ecthelion, a man who had often proved far too proud and stubborn for Gandalf's taste, but who still lead Gondor in these dark times nonetheless.

"So the wizard shows himself, I was beginning to wonder if you would see me at all during this latest visit to our kingdom," Denethor said. Gandalf saw that Faramir and Boromir were at his sides as the three stood around a table which had a map of Gondor and it's surrounding realms laid over it.
Gandalf took in the sight a moment before speaking, "I see you are planning some movement against the enemy… it must be something truly grand to require both the captain of the White Tower and the Rangers of Ithilien," he said, nodding at each of the brothers in turn.

Boromir's face was grim, "we march to the West Mithrandir, Anfalas has raised a great host and has risen in rebellion against the throne of Gondor."
Gandalf was shocked, committing Gondor's armies to the west was suicide, Sauron would strike like a hammer and scatter the men of the West with ease. "Anfalas is sparsely populated, what hosts could be raised from there? Could this be mere banditry?"

Now Faramir shook his head, "I'm afraid not, I have spoken to men I trust and whoever these people are they have erected strongholds, plowed fields, and built towns seemingly overnight." He paused again as if doubting the words he'd just spoken, "Whoever these men are there are a great deal of them… one scout reported seeing an army of at least ten thousand gathering on the edge of 'their' lands."

Gandalf thought for a moment before turning to Denethor, "surely even in these dark times Gondor holds enough sway to know when castles are being built upon her land? They cannot have simply appeared…"

Denethor sighed, "That was what we hoped you could tell us. If the world of the mystical provides no solutions I am afraid we may be forced to deal with this by the sword." He handed Gandalf a sheet of paper. "A man bearing a seal in the shape of a Lion brought this to me yesterday. He claims to be an emissary of the lord of these men, Tywin of House Lannister." Gandalf took the letter, noting the broken wax seal stamped with a lion.

To Lord Denethor, Steward of the Throne of Gondor
I, Lord Tywin Lannister, greet your grace in the name of House Lannister of the Westerlands and all of it's people's and on behalf of King Joffrey Baratheon, First of His Name, King of the Andals and the First Men, Lord of the Seven Kingdoms, and Protector of the Realm. Though we know not the Kingdom of Gondor many travelers which we have questioned assure us of her greatness, and by this questioning we have determined that you have likely not heard of the Seven Kingdoms, though the Westerlands can attest to at least a part of their splendor. How we find ourselves here has puzzled many of our learned men, it seems that almost the entirety of the Westerlands has found itself in this new world of strange peoples and places unknown to us. Though we wish to establish peaceful relations know that the sigil of House Lannister is the lion, and like the lion we have claws and those who would threaten us will feel them. I write to request an envoy of the Throne of Gondor be sent to guarantee the safe passage of my son to your city of Minas Tirith to establish formal relations. The man I sent to carry this letter has with him a raven which can return your immediate response to me so that I can alert my sworn lords and their knights of your envoy's approach and ensure he is afforded the proper courtesies. I hope this is the beginning of a long and fruitful relationship.
Hear Me Roar
Lord Tywin Lannister, Lord Paramount of the Westerlands

Gandalf was unsure what to think, clearly this Tywin was confident in his strength, but how strong was he really? What were his true intentions? Did he serve Sauron? Did he even know of Sauron?

Boromir interrupted his thoughts, "we must move quickly before this man has time to muster his full strength, a few battles and he will be broken."

"No," Faramir interrupted, "we should take this Lord Tywin up on his offer and at least see what we are dealing with." He looked around at the gathered faces, "One of the most important parts of ranging is knowing the lay of the land and knowing how many enemies you face, I can't support rushing into this unprepared."

Denethor sighed, "and what would you counsel, Gandalf the Grey?" he spat the Wizards name.
"Sending an envoy to this man seems… reasonable, from the letter it sounds as though these men of the Westerlands are as confused as we are." Gandalf stroked his beard thoughtfully, "perhaps their presence is just the boon Gondor has been looking for."

Denethor shrugged, "Very well, Faramir, gather no more than a dozen men, we cannot spare even that truthfully, and go to these men and determine their nature and intent." He looked at Gandalf, "and I suppose you would accompany him?"

Gandalf thought for a moment, it was vital that war not come to Gondor now, and his presence might prevent it. Traveling with Faramir and his rangers would be quick and light, it would not take long to complete this mission and return to researching the nature of the ring. "Yes I will go, with your leave of course."
Denethor half smirked, they both knew Gandalf didn't truly seek the leave of the steward to do anything. "Granted of course," he sneered.
Sensing that the course had been laid Boromir took his leave, "I will make the arrangements with the quartermasters to gather supplies in case we should need to march west, I wish you luck brother, Mithrandir," he nodded to Gandalf before exiting the room.

Gandalf furrowed his brow as he left the throne room, though he had few material possessions some things would need to be attended to before leaving. Hear Me Roar, what manner of men are they? The rain from before had become a full thunderstorm now, Hear Me Roar… he thought again, the sky roared in answer.

A/N: The premise is that the Westerlands from A Song of Ice and Fire/Game of Thrones are swapped with the westernmost coast of Gondor in 3017 T.A. I chose the place because it's sparsely populated, unimportant to the original Lord of the Rings story, and it's reasonably close to all the major factions involved in the war. In addition Tyrion, Bronn, and the Mountain clans have all been returned, as have all the people of the Westerlands plus their spouses, children, etc. This story was originally published on the forums.

A few other notes for everyone, this starts about a year out from the events of Fellowship of the Ring. The Song of Ice and Fire (Game of Thrones) characters are from just after the War of the Five Kings has started. As for character descriptions the story is a hodge-podge of whichever ones I liked the most from the various movies, books, and tv shows we're discussing here. Hence we've got the Sauron of the movies, the Tywin of the books, the Tyrion of the tv show, and the Mouth of Sauron from the old 70's animated movie. I hope you all enjoy.

since links aren't allowed I'll just say a map of this scenario (generously made by Kilerog, an forum user) can be found at imgur/(insert here)e5FIYyh just put in a . com at the (insert here)