Author's Note I've had this story idea ever since I saw TTT and the chicks at the Gríma/Èowyn yahoo group got me working on it. So, here's the beginning! Please review - it'll inspire me to write more, I promise!
The world flew past him as he urged the horse to a mad gallop, as he tried to outrun what had happened only moments before - Gandalf's arrival, Théoden's recovery, his own banishment -
His loss of Èowyn.
Èowyn. Gríma swallowed the painful lump forming in his throat and dug his heels into the black horse's side. "Ride, dammit," he swore, although he knew the horse was going almost as fast as it could. Get me out of here.
Suddenly, he pulled on the reins and turned to look back at the proud hill upon which Edoras stood. He could still see, barely, a figure clad in white, standing atop the gates. Watching him?
He turned and urged the horse to a gallop.
The dark rider on the plains began to gallop again. Èowyn watched him go, her arms crossed tightly across her stomach, embracing herself. Tears stung her eyes, but she swallowed them furiously. Traitor! Traitor to my country, traitor to my uncle…
Traitor to your love. To me.
Èowyn turned and saw Gandalf standing behind her, a worried frown creasing his features.
His eyes wandered towards the plains and followed the rider she had been previously watching. "He troubles you, my Lady," Gandalf said softly.
Èowyn turned away. He could not understand. No one would ever understand.
"You don't know why he did it," Gandalf stated, coming to stand beside her.
"He hated us," Èowyn said flatly. "He hated us because he felt we were cruel to him."
"No," Gandalf said with a shake of his head. "Gríma is a man who does not do something without a reward. And he didn't hate Rohan enough to simply be rewarded by its downfall."
"Then what would be his reason be for betraying us?" Èowyn demanded, turning to look at Gandalf. "There is nothing else that he would have wanted badly enough to - "
She stopped when she saw the look in Gandalf's eyes. "You," Gandalf said softly. "He asked for you."
Èowyn stared at him, aghast. "Me…?" she repeated, barely above a whisper.
Gandalf laid a comforting hand on her shoulder. "I am sorry," he said softly, and then he turned away and left her.
Èowyn looked back at the plains in confusion, seeking the dark rider she had been watching earlier.
He was gone.