Okay, Technically AU, because 1. I'm going more from the movie as far as Eowyn's fight with the Witch King goes, And 2. I'm on vacation right now and don't have my ROTK with me. Therefore, I am taking the easy way out and crying "AU"
If memory serves correct, Faramir and Eowyn started their romance before the Ring was destroyed. This is set as their first meeting in the houses of healing.
All characters, etc Belong to Tolkien, his estate, and New Line Cinema.
They have not sanctioned this work. All characters etc are used for amusement purposes. I am not making any money off of this.
BTW: I'm having a terrible time getting the expression mark over Eowyn's name, so you're going to have to live without it.
With a gasp of pain, Eowyn stood. Whether it was from the pain of her battle or the pain of the death of her uncle, she did not know. Though, she did suspect it was the former. Pain of battle would get better so long as she kept living, but to lose her uncle, that was a blow she felt more keenly.
Always had she been drawn to fight. Her love of country was stronger than many who dwelled so prominently in Rohan's army. Yet, she had been denied the ultimate expression of her love again and again, until she ultimately forsook the wishes and traditions of her lord and country. She mused on that thought as she slid quietly through the halls of healing.
Many in her position would regret the choice to ever venture into such a horrendous battle. But, she did not. True, her imagination had envisioned but a tenth of the true gruesomeness that she had seen, yet for all the horror, and all the pain she would not change what she had done.
It was not only the defeat of the Nazgul that made her feel this way. For what many would no doubt laud as a true show of courage, she did not think any more of herself than any man who had fought beside her. She had aided the defeat of one strong foe, but she would not have been able to defeat that monstrosity if she had not been aided by the men that fought the surrounding Orcs. Nor would she have been able to fight such a fight had Merry not been there to aid her.
No. She could not claim such a fight as her own, so how could she name that as her reason for not regretting her choice to join the battle?
Perhaps it was because she was as much a warrior at heart as her brother was. Love of country was not supposed to be reflected in a lady's heart as it was in a man's, yet she had never been able to consign herself to such strictness that was required.
Perhaps it was her sense of justice. Was she to allow others to constantly die in her stead? Who was she to watch as countless men warred while she sat and fretted. If she could heft her own blade, why should she make another fell the enemy for her? Should she not help her fellow man by easing his burden by taking on her own?
Perhaps it was all of those things, perhaps it was none. It did not truly matter. She had done what she had done. And she did not regret it. She regretted certain actions in battle, no doubt. There would always be the lingering uncertainty that she could have done something different and saved her uncle's life. Such doubts were a normal part of life. She was no fool to believe otherwise.
With half-lidded eyes, she looked up at the sky as she slipped out of the door. It gave no comfort to her, nor her restless mind. In truth, she had finally fulfilled the incessant yearning that she prove herself. She had joined the troops as she had always known she should. Her feats in battle had been courageous.
Yet, to her misery, she had found that it had not fulfilled her. Yes, it had taken away much of the longing that had plagued her life, but it had left in its stead a more subtle longing that she had not known was there.
A simpleton she was not. She knew it had existed for a long time. It was only more plain now that she had fulfilled the destiny that she knew was hers to claim.
Her love for her country had been absolute. Yet, what she yearned for was to love and be loved. To share her life with another. But to go that way was folly. No man would ever allow his wife to live with such a warrior's spirit.
Ladies were to be soft and gentle. They were to sooth the souls of their mates, not set them ablaze.
She had found a man who would accept her as she was, but Aragorn's heart was already taken, and in truth, she was not certain that he was truly the one man who she could love. Oh, she thought he was the perfect solution. Here was a man who would not balk at the thoughts that ran through her head. He was strong and had a good heart, a good mind. But, even though she thought herself in love, she knew she was not. She was more in love with hoping he was the right man for her.
Yet, that still left her with a problem. Would she ever find a mate who would love her both as his wife and a warrior? Or would she be forever condemned to choose between two loves?
"Such a solemn look you have. What pain brings you to look so offended at the very stars? Granted a dark cloud still hangs, yet should not you still be glad that you live to see?"
Eowyn turned a little to her left to see a shadow of a man propped up in the corner of the terrace where she now stood.
"I would think, sir, that my business is my own. That I am not a man does not mean that I have no problems to trouble me."
"Indeed not. Did I ever imply such a thing? I merely asked what it was that troubled you. For I cannot rest with my own thoughts, and it would be good to hear another's instead of listening to myself over and over again."
A soft smile crossed her lips, "I beg your forgiveness then for my hasty reply."
"And it is freely given for I would not withhold it when asked by such a fair face."
"If you seek to flatter me, I assure you that you will not succeed. I am not given to swooning nor to love affairs with men with silver tongues."
"You misunderstand me; I only wish to know what troubles you. As for the compliment, I do not withdraw it, for to say otherwise would be lie. How you choose to interpret it is your own choice."
"And what if I choose to interpret it as an insult? What if I were to say that you do not see the person before you, but only the face?"
"Then I would say that you rob me of my pride, for I have attempted to see the person, yet she persists in only letting me see her face."
"You insult me now."
"And you have given me no choice. I have tried gentility, and you have avoided my questions. I am faced then with only the option of direct attack as diplomacy has obviously failed."
Eowyn laughed, "You are very persistent."
"In this case or in general?"
"I do not know you well enough to give opinion on the second."
"True enough, but again I must point out it is not for my lack of trying."
Eowyn sighed, "You would think me foolish to talk of my conflicts."
"I think of no one's conflicts as foolish. 'Life is not without its trials even to those who appear to have everything.' My brother said that once when I was a youth and complained that he could not understand what my troubles were."
"And did he understand your troubles when you told him?"
"More than that, he shared them. Perhaps he did not feel the same as I, but he did understand and help me with my burdens."
"This brother who shared your pain, he does not help you share your burdens now?"
"He may wish to, I do not know. My brother is dead, and I have no other to whom I can confide."
Eowyn was glad for the darkness as a faint blush of embarrassment flooded her cheeks.
"Forgive me, I did not know."
"Of course you did not know. I just told you. Do not worry. I will not tell your lapse of etiquette to your court. I shall swear it upon this lump of moss."
A shady hand reached out to pat the wall where a small group of lichens was happily growing unheeding of the potential doom surrounding the city.
Eowyn laughed despite herself, "Moss? Was your injury perhaps to the head?"
"Oh, you have a wicked tongue to poke fun of the injured."
"It is no less than what you have done in attempting to gain my confidence."
"Ah, but my goal was indeed noble; yours was one of amusement."
"Am I to repent of trying to find amusement? You would be a hypocrite to deny me it when you started this conversation with a supposed attempt to lighten my burden."
"When you put it that way? No. I suppose I should not deny you such a small moment of merriment when such dreadful nights have past and the future still lies uncertain. Is that what troubles you? The darkness that is not yet dispelled?"
"To say that it does not trouble me would be a lie, yet it is not that which keeps me up tonight. I am troubled by my own heart."
A short grunt accompanied a small movement for her shadowed companion as he shifted his weight from one leg to another.
"A matter of love then rests upon you."
A mocking laugh came from Eowyn's lips, "Does a woman ever have any other type of conflict?"
"If you say it to be so, I would have to defer to your greater experience, but I would not so lightly dismiss such a quandary. Besides, I would think that the Lady Eowyn would not be so simple as to be tormented by simple love affairs."
"You have me at a disadvantage sir, for you know my name, but I do not know yours."
"Would it make so very much difference if you knew it?"
"The sake of propriety demands it. I am, after all, alone with a strange man without my family to accompany me."
A small grunt issued from the shadows, "I assure you; I am in no position to be taking advantage of any lady, let alone one who fights as well as any man."
"You are injured then, more gravely than you pretend. You should not be out of bed, sir."
"Neither should you, but there you stand."
Eowyn shook her head, "I do not need the support of a wall to keep my body aright."
"Who says that I do?" The shadow rejoined.
"If you do not, then why do you not show yourself to me? Why do you hide your face in the shadow of a stone wall?"
A short silence was broken by a loud exhalation of air, "You have bested me at last. I dare not walk to where you are. My strength was weak when I ventured out here, and I have already tarried too long."
"You should be inside then, were you not going to ask for assistance?"
"As I said, I have conflicts of my own to bear. Faramir of Gondor has long been the weakest of his line. I dare not sully it further by such wretchedness. Better to lie here and die than to call pitifully for help, from man or woman."
"Lord Faramir," Eowyn gasped a little shocked, "I had thought by the way you were spoken of that you had a great deal more sense and a great deal less pride."
"I suppose that would be true, but I have disappointed my father greatly in his life. I would not do so in his death."
"And you plan to do this by asking not for help when you need it? That is a foolish thing indeed."
"If you truly think that, then I would suggest you speak what dwells on your mind, for your eyes betray that your mind is in much the same state as my body."
Eowyn shook her head, "You have made your point. I shall offer you a compromise. You allow me to take you back to your sickbed, and I shall speak with you tomorrow, should the sun rise and we not perish before then."
"Agreed," Faramir spoke softly.
So, Eowyn took his hand and guided his arm around her shoulders and together, they stumbled back to where his bed was miraculously arousing little curiosity from those around them.
As she turned to go, his hand reached out to grab her own.
"You will not break your promise will you, my lady?"
"I assure you; I will not."
With that, she bid him goodnight and walked slowly back to her own resting place strangely lighter in heart than she had been for many a day.