Disclaimer: None of them are mine I have but borrowed them from the Prof. for a while. If Faramir was mine I would lock him away some place safe so he didn't have to suffer all of the awful things that befall him in fanfic.

Summary: What is the one thing the loyal Steward of Gondor would never dream of doing? Well batten down the hatches, hold on to your hats, pray for him because he's going to.........

Author's Note: I am intentionally vague about the dates but this happens some years after the end of the war of the ring. Oh yeah and both Saruman and Wormtongue will appear because it takes more than a cut throat and a few hobbit arrows to keep real evil out of action!

Thanks: To the generous Lady Wenham whose command of the comma is something to be truly envied!! Thanks Chuck!


Come to Harm

Chapter 1 - Harm

It was late.

Faramir's horse snorted as the snow began to fall. It was wet sleet, half way between snow and rain - the first sign of winter's approach was as early as it was unexpected. Faramir leant forward and patted the horse's neck encouragingly.

He pulled his cloak about himself as the freezing wind shivered through him. He looked up to the darkening sky. Away to the west it was still brilliant blue as the day lingered, but the rolling dark clouds had chased the light from the rest of the sky. Not only were they the clouds of night, Faramir could sense they were also full of snow.

On either side of the road, the trees of Ithilien still held on to the last remains of the orange and gold leaves of autumn but the snow was settling on them, turning them to white.

Faramir cursed under his breath. He had known that he had dwelt too long in Minas Tirith, but his duty to his King was too important to shirk. There had been hard bargaining in the council chamber followed by a number of issues which he, as Steward of the City, had to adjudicate on in the lower courts. And all the while precious time had slipped away, and the winter had snuck up on him.

He sniffed and forced his horse on at a careless pace for the conditions. He would not normally display such recklessness, but he had been away from his home for too long. Now all he wished was to kick off his boots at his own hearth with his family.

He had bid farewell to the King as he pushed his papers messily and with uncharacteristic quickness into his bag. The King had rolled his eyes.

"Stay at least for tonight," the King had said, but his voice had been gentle. He had nodded in quiet acceptance when Faramir had responded.

"Nay Sire, I have completed my duties. I must away. Eowyn has done without me for too long."

The King had grasped his shoulder and hugged him close. "As ever, my steward, you have fulfilled your duties to great effect as only you could. The city will miss you as will I."

Faramir had smiled. "Thank you, Sire, although I am sure that you exaggerate my worth. Anyway the City and you need only miss me for a few months. I shall return after the snows. Have no fear."

The King had finally let go of the younger man. "Go with haste, Lord Faramir, and give my wishes to your family."

But it had been half way through the afternoon before Faramir had finally exited the gates of the beautiful city. The smell of snow was on the wind, but he ignored it. Already he had spent a week longer than he had promised away from his beloved Eowyn, and he was determined to get to her as soon as he could. He pointed his horse toward home and spurred it onwards.

As the darkness of the night settled over the fast whitening landscape, Faramir knew he should stop. The horse was tired and would find it more difficult to keep his footing in the worsening conditions, still Faramir pushed him onward. He whispered soft words of encouragement to him and even sang a few elfin melodies.

The sleet had graduated into real snow. It rested on his shoulders, Faramir pulled the hood of his cloak even tighter over his head. He was shivering uncontrollably. He allowed the horse to slow but refused to stop. He knew the road well and planned to stop at the crop of caves further up the valley. There they would at least have shelter from the wind.

As he rode his thoughts turned to the welcome he would receive when he finally made it home. He knew that Eowyn would wrinkle her nose in mock anger when she saw him. She would have some cutting remark about his lateness which he would ignore as he swept her up in his arms and kissed the frown until she could hold it no longer.

Elboron would be there, pulling at his tunic sleeves, desperate to show his father how well his sword skills had improved, and wishing to tell him of the latest story he had read. Little Cirion would be there, tottering on chubby legs and chattering endlessly in a language that only his mother seemed fully able to understand. Faramir would lift him high in the air, and the little boy would giggle uncontrollably. When he thought of his youngest son, that outrageous giggle was always the first thing that came to Faramir's mind.

Despite the freezing weather, Faramir smiled at the thought of what awaited him. He could be there with them this time tomorrow if the weather would just let him. It could snow until the summer as long as it let him pass first!


"It's freezing!" Wormtongue whined again. "You're supposed to be a wizard! Can't you at least make fire?"

His companion held him with his customary withering gaze. "Of course I can make fire!" he snapped. "But I have no need of it, and so you shall suffer!"

The pathetic creature snivelled and pushed himself back into the darkness of the cave to mutter dejectedly. His companion was an imposing figure as he sat at the cave's mouth. Although his clothes were now rags, they had obviously once been of the highest quality. He was tall even when seated and thin, and his white hair and beard hung straight down to well below his shoulders. He had the air of one who was used to being respected, but more than that it appeared that he was not quite of this world. The snow that blew in from the storm outside did not fall on him in fact it left a distance around him, so he sat in a dry, untouched circle.

He closed his eyes and sent out his spirit. It was hard for one who had once been so powerful to realise that he must learn anew the skills he had once taken for granted. But Saruman was nothing if not patient. He had suffered a grievous blow, it was true. He was still forced to wander like a nomad, but slowly, very slowly he was beginning to regain the power that had been stolen from him. Once it was fully gathered, his patience would be rewarded. Those who had treated him with such little respect would feel the full force of his vengeance.

"Shut up you snivelling worm!" he hissed. "Someone is coming."

Wormtongue lifted his head and licked his lips hungrily. He crawled to his master's side and peered out into the blankness of the storm.

"Who?" he asked.

In a swirl of robes, Saruman stood up. "Get your bow," he commanded, "For what good it will do us."

Wormtongue cackled. "My bow," he muttered. "Yes I'll bring him down, and then we'll have food!"

Saruman clasped hold of the smaller frame and squeezed it painfully. "Do exactly as I say," he commanded. "For I will rip the life out of you if you fail me again!"

Wormtongue could not hold the other's masterful stare and simply whined in terror.


Visibility was getting worse and the snow got deeper as Faramir climbed upwards from the valley floor. He began to worry that he wouldn't even to be able to make it to the caves he was heading for.

His horse was picking its way through a particularly deep drift, Faramir was just coming to the decision that he was going to have to dismount when the horse suddenly shied away to the left.

Taken by surprise, half frozen and his senses dulled by the wind and the snow Faramir fought to control the horse. It reared onto its hind legs and began to slip crazily.

Faramir shouted over the roar of the wind to try to calm the frenzied horse.

Because his attention completely taken on quieting his horse, he did not see two dark shapes moving through the trees toward him. The first time he became aware of them was when the arrow hit him in his left shoulder.

He gasped with both pain and surprise. His horse whined and reared once more. This time Faramir could not hold his seat, he fell backwards into the drift. He landed with a bump that jerked the breath from his body. Blackness took him.

"Stop the horse!" Saruman screamed as he strode through the snow to the point where the rider had fallen.

Wormtongue threw himself towards the horse but it was thoroughly spooked. Galloping blindly it rushed away and was soon lost in the storm.

Wormtongue fell to his knees in the snow, his eyes never leaving the last point he had seen the horse. "No, no, no," he kept muttering disconsolately.

His master's voice, booming through the storm, pulled him from his miserable reverie. He stood up and scuttled towards the sound. Saruman was standing over the form of the unconscious rider. Wormtongue might have been mistaken because of the noise of the storm, but he thought his master was chuckling to himself.

"Has he got any food?" Wormtongue asked, about to move forward to search the body.

Saruman stretched out his long arm to stop him. "This is far more important that food!" he said. "Look at him."

Wormtongue looked at the face of the unconscious man. He was young and handsome, his reddish blonde hair the same colour as the growth of stubble around his face. Wormtongue was mesmerised by the trickle of blood dripping lazily from the side on the mouth. He licked his own lips hungrily and felt his empty stomach groan.

"Don't you recognise him?" Saruman pushed.

Wormtongue looked again. There was something vaguely familiar to him, but his thoughts were overcome by a feeling of revulsion as he realised this man was everything he was not.

Saruman laughed and kicked the man roughly. The man groaned weakly.

"Still alive then, that's good!" He turned to Wormtongue. "Let's make sure we keep it that way."

"Who is he?" Wormtongue asked.

Saruman could not hide the satisfaction in his voice as he said, "Worm meet Lord Faramir, Steward of Gondor!"

Wormtongue's mouth fell open in shock. He looked from his master to the man on the ground and back again, his tongue flicking in and out of his mouth.

Finally he hissed, "That is the husband of Eowyn?"

Saruman laughed. "Yes, I'd quite forgotten you had a shine for her, didn't you? Well he has what you yearned for, Worm. Is he not lucky to have fallen into our company on a night such as this?"

Suddenly Wormtongue did not feel quite so cold or hungry. He looked down at the helpless man below him bleeding on to the white snow, and he began to laugh.

"How fortunate indeed," he chuckled. "For without us he might have come to harm!"