From a prompt on Tumblr, from GeekHyena: A Gríma/Éowyn argument ending in a passionate kiss.
Whelp... that turned into a lot more than a passionate kiss. Woops...
I'm going to mark this as an AU fic, mostly because sex between Grima and Eowyn is a relatively unlikely possibility. This is probably how it would happen, though, if it did happen and both parties were consenting.
I should note that this is a relationship that is all kinds of fucked up and thus, the sex between them and the mentality of their relationship is also all kinds of fucked up. Please bear that in mind as you enter into this fic.
A Hundred Stitches In
Ninety stitches in and Éowyn was dying, itching, screaming to escape. Ninety stitches of red and gray, blood and armor, stabbed into a blank white background, blank as all the faces in the ladies' circle around her, as plain as the words they would not speak – did not dare to speak – and Éowyn wanted to run.
Embroidery had never been Éowyn's great love. She had not objected to sewing much; sewing was a practical, necessary skill, even for a warrior. She could sew up tears in her tunics and skirts, and create new ones if absolutely necessary. She could even sew up flesh, if the occasion ever arose. But this – this flowery busywork, to 'keep our minds off of things' – it slayed her more certainly than any battle, than any sword.
Today it was worse than usual. Today, not a one of the ladies was talking. For what could they say that would not involve news of the lost regiment, likely slain by orcs, or worse? Their unknown fate hung like chains around each woman's throat, silencing them all.
A few times, they had tried to muster conversation; but each time words had faltered and died away into silence. Éowyn knew it was her duty as the most important lady to continue the conversation, to keep up the others' spirits; but she had never been very good at small talk, and today she could not force the words at all, not even when the other ladies looked to her for comfort.
So the silence stretched on, long and heavy and awful; and with every passing second Éowyn's nerves frayed just a little more.
She needed to move. She needed to stand, to pace, to hit something, to be hit. She was begging for it, sobbing into the silence for it.
What she needed most was not the stitches and the threads, but him.
It once had galled her to think how desperately she needed him to cure the complacency of this awful place, but those times had long since past. Now she accepted him gratefully, taking what he offered her with hungry, greedy hands. He gave her understanding; impropriety; escape. And oh, how much she loved that escape, loved him. Hated him.
Her needle stabbed through fabric, through white, and left a tiny streak of red. She let out a breath, slow and angry, and pulled the needle through again. If her ladies were looking at her, she did not notice; her mind was on other things. On him.
Against a wall, she thought, or pinned down to the floor. That would relieve this tightness in her back – the fight they would have, the bruises she would leave in her wake. An hour with him and she would forget everything: the missing soldiers; the war; this banal, idle task, to keep her fingers busy. To keep her out of trouble.
Oh, she would yet have trouble. She would revel in it.
Two more stitches, and she smiled. She would have to provoke him. It was always better when he was angry. He was rougher then, rough in the way she wanted, the way she needed. The past few times he'd been so tender, cradling her, murmuring sweet nothings into her yellow curls. She had needed that then, she supposed; but not today. Today she needed to be made to scream. Today she needed bite marks and bruises and blood.
A hundred stitches in, and Éowyn was dying.
She was in mid-stab with her needle when the door to the chamber flew open with a horrific bang, startling some of the ladies so much that they screamed. Éowyn, for one, stabbed her finger, and managed quite a long string of curses in the sudden flurry of activity; and was glad for just a moment that something had broken the silence.
Then she looked up, and her heart leaped to her throat and stayed there, pounding, blood singing in her veins.
Wormtongue stood in the door, one hand still placed firmly at its top and the other curled into a fist at his side. Éowyn could not recall the last time she had seen him look so angry. His lips were pressed into a thin white line, his eyes narrowed and icy with rage.
Oh, he was already in fine form. Something had provoked him long before she could. Luck seemed to be on her side today. She had to force herself to stay down in her seat, to look as disinterested as possible. It would only make him angrier, to believe her so aloof.
She put aside her embroidery with just a touch more force than necessary, and rose with a grace she did not feel, smoothing her skirts. "I don't suppose you have ever heard of a little custom known as knocking?" she said, and smirked at the quip. She had come to enjoy this game, probably more than she had a right to; how far could she push the errant counsellor until he cracked and broke? He was far more fragile than he seemed, but stronger at times than she might have guessed.
The remark hit its target, but not with as much force as she'd hoped. Gríma pursed his lips and forced a stiff, half-mocking bow. "My sincerest apologies," he said, his voice a low growl. "I trust I have not disturbed anything of great importance."
Oh, no, Éowyn thought. A thousand times no. Please get me out of here, oh please, oh please...
One of the ladies, a younger, bolder girl named Merewenne, spoke up at once. "You most certainly have," she said, clenching her small fists. "This is a private time for us, a personal time, ladies brought together in comradeship – and we are meant to have no interruptions. How dare you – "
Éowyn barely bit back the words that rose at once to her tongue. Together in comradeship, she thought. How precious. What a sweet thought. If only we would say what we meant and not what we believed proper or right...
"I do apologize for disrupting so lofty and auspicious an activity," Gríma said, with a twisted, mocking smile. Éowyn could have kissed him then and there. "But I'm afraid my business could not wait." He turned his eyes back to Éowyn, cutting, cold. "My lady, if I may intrude upon your ever so important conversation with these ladies, I would borrow you a moment or two."
A hundred moments, at least, she wished. One for every stitch. But the game was no fun if she made it easy. She folded her arms across her chest and arched an eyebrow. "Is it so urgent?" she said. Say it is. Make me come. Make me.
To her surprise, that simple question, with all her resistance put behind it, was the one to hit its mark. His fingers curled into a fist, his knuckles going white with the force of his anger. "You may be assured," he said, through tightly gritted teeth, "That I would not have interrupted if it wasn't."
Éowyn did not budge. "Are you certain you must remove me from my current company? If you would just tell me what this is about..." You are not playing well enough. Make me come. Make me bend. I know you can.
Gríma drew in one sharp breath, quick and angry. Éowyn bit back another smirk. If he had the chance, he would take her for everything she was worth for this obstinacy. "I doubt it is a matter you wish for others' ears to hear," he said. "Now – "
No, she thought. You do not get off that easily. "I have no secrets from these women, sir. Now state your business clearly, or go."
For one disappointing instant, she thought Gríma would surrender. He stood frozen in a rage, mouth partly open, fists clenched so tight Éowyn thought he must surely be making his own palms bleed. But then a smile crept over his face – an ugly smile, a dangerous smile – and Éowyn knew she was truly, truly in trouble.
"If you insist," he said, his voice sweet and warm as bread and honey. He removed from his belt a letter and unfolded it with a flourish. "A servant found some letters in a secret box inside your chambers. He brought them to me, fearing that someone meant to harm our dear White Lady's stainless reputation by setting her up. If you're amenable, I can of course read you some of the content of these letters – though the more delicate of your ladies may wish to close their ears, for the content is quite lewd in nature – "
Éowyn flushed dark red and dove across the room, snatching the letter from his hand – one she'd written and left for him. That isn't playing fair at all. "Outside," she said, glowering at him as she passed. "Begging your pardon, my friends, but I am certain such content need not be presented to any public crowd; and I would know what it is I am to be accused of before anyone else can hear it."
"I hope it's nothing serious," a lady called after her, but Éowyn knew they hoped it was, and would always hope it was. Rumors would be flying before the day was out; and no doubt the imagined content of the letters would be far worse than anything she might have written.
She glanced at the letter in her hand and flushed red once more. Then again, perhaps not...
She did not bother to look at Gríma as she swept past him out the door. That would exacerbate his anger; and now she was angry too. However filthy her reputation had a right to be, as far as anyone knew to this point, she was spotless. For him to cast aspersions on her was to overstep his bounds, by more than he should ever have dared. He bowed her out with a dramatic sweep of his arm, pretending to take no notice.
"Ladies," he said with a sneer, and slammed the door shut behind him.
The silence of the hall enveloped her, a blissful silence now; and Éowyn released a breath she had not realized she'd been holding.
"That was a filthy trick you pulled," she said, turning to face him. "There had better be some truly excellent reason for your impudence or – "
She gasped and took a step back at once. Gríma was right behind her, his face inches from hers, glaring. Éowyn half expected him to slam her back against the wall right then and there. She tried a flippant smile, but felt it wavering. "Oh, dear," she mocked, "I've made you angry. What is it I've done to upset you now? Did I stare too long at a servant boy passing by? Or did I ignore a summons you left for me? I assure you, if it is the latter I have not received any – "
"Who is Ranulf?" Gríma growled, and at that both shock and horror burst and rushed through Éowyn's veins. She knew the man, of course, as Gríma suspected; a friend of her brother's, someone Éomer had hoped to see her married to once. She hadn't seen Ranulf in several years, but he had returned from the latest scouting party full of confidence, courting and wooing her at every opportunity. Some of her servants had even claimed to hear him bragging that he would have the White Lady to wife before the year was out.
She had done her best to silence him, to make it clear to him that he was most certainly not in the running for her affections; but he was too bold and too stupid to listen, the kind of man who believed whatever woman he wanted would inevitably succumb to him eventually. He had even come to watch her practice swordplay, and mocked her mercilessly each time she made a misstep. She had dueled him then and there, and beat him too; but that had only seemed to make him more determined. He would have her, and tame her too, he claimed; but Éowyn knew the fate of men who made such claims in Gríma's hearing, and for once had left him to his doom.
Her mouth dropped open, but no sounds came out. What could she say to the accusation that was implied? Ranulf was nothing, had never been anything; in fact she was rather surprised it had taken Gríma so long to find him out. She had half-expected Ranulf to be shipped off into battle weeks ago.
But Gríma did not know that, and his rage and jealousy were like living, breathing beings pressing down on her from either side. "Who is he?" Gríma repeated, voice echoing in the empty corridor.
"Shhh," Éowyn hissed, grabbing his arm and pulling him away from the door. "Someone will hear you."
He tore his arm free of her grip, stopping at once. "I don't give a damn who hears," he spat. "Just tell me who he is."
Éowyn flinched. "He's a friend of my brother's," she said softly, knowing it would only make things worse.
Worse did not begin to describe it. "What a surprise," Grima spat, slamming a fist into the wall. "And what is he to you, my Éowyn? Is he also a friend of yours? Or is it something more?"
He spoke the words as if they were blades against his tongue. Éowyn drew in a shallow breath, steadying her heart, her nerves. She had wanted to make Gríma angry, but not like this. Not this badly. "He's nothing," she said. "He has always been nothing."
A long pause and a few shaky breaths later, and Gríma took hold of her, pressing her back and back until she bumped against the wall. "Swear it," he said. "Look into my eyes and swear it to me."
She looked, deep into the fathomless cold blue. "I swear it," she said.
He did not release her. If anything, his grip on her seemed to tighten. "He struts around the Golden Hall and claims you will be his," he said. "He seems quite certain of it."
Éowyn made a small attempt to break free of his grip, but Gríma only pressed her back. "Would you trust his word over mine?" she asked. "Let go; someone might see."
"Let them see," Gríma snarled. "Let them all see. Perhaps that will finally silence his wayward tongue."
His voice was rising again, steadily growing louder in the quiet of the hall. The ladies were no doubt at the door, hoping to catch snippets of whatever letters Gríma had claimed to have found; and the wood and stone of the wall was grinding into Éowyn's wrists, into her back, biting into her skin just as she'd longed for. Heat spread through her veins like wildfire, devouring her, hungry and wanting; and it took great effort to keep herself from squirming. She bit down on her lip, hard, and tried to think of something to say. "I tell you, he is nothing, whatever he may say," she said, keeping her voice low. "You know where my heart and desire lies."
"Do I?" Gríma said. He rolled the words on his tongue as though he'd tasted something bitter. "I know what it is you beg for in the dark; but if it hadn't been me you would have found someone else."
The accusation stung, more than Éowyn wanted to admit. "There is no one else," she said.
"Oh, not now; but perhaps there will be one day, someone stronger and more handsome but just as devious, to take my place," Gríma said. He was talking out of anger now; Éowyn saw fear somewhere in his eyes, the fear that drove all of his nightmares, that motivated every move he made anymore. "Someday you will look at me and I will no longer be enough. Someday you will look at me and you will know you deserve better – "
Éowyn growled and wrenched one wrist free of his hands, reaching down, taking hold of his necklace, and pulling him to her. "What I deserve," she said, her voice a deep murmur, "Is what I want; and what I want is you."
She yanked on the chain a little harder, and pulled his mouth to hers, and prayed that this at last would shut him up. And oh, it did, for a moment; until he caught her wrists again and shoved them roughly back against the wall, pinning her once more. Then his mouth was everywhere, against her lips, trailing down her throat, dancing across her collarbone, nipping at her shoulders; and it was no longer he whom Éowyn needed to keep silent. It was hard enough to keep herself under control.
The tension in her coiled and tightened deliciously, screaming to be broken. She trembled desperately beneath his assault, letting sensation erase all thought of her idiot suitor, and the embroidery circle where no one said anything of substance, and the hundred stitches left sitting on her chair.
He dropped her wrists long enough to catch her skirt and pull it up around her thighs, fabric sliding up and up and leaving her exposed. Gasping, frantic, she struggled to escape, hissing, "Not here, they'll hear, not here," but of course he didn't listen, and of course she didn't want him to.
"I suggest you learn to bite your tongue then, princess," he purred, sliding an arm around her hips and scooping her up off the floor, angling her towards him. "Unless you want one of your lovely little friends to come investigating? Wouldn't that be delicious... perhaps I should make you scream, after all."
She almost did scream when he entered her with a single sharp thrust, filling the aching space between her thighs. She managed to swallow the cry before it broke, tightening her grip on his shoulders, on his hips. She cursed him over and over in a throaty whisper, barely biting back her cries with each thrust. Her curses dissolved in half-pleas, half-sobs as he took her harder, sliding deeper inside her and teasing the most tender parts of her. He'd found all the little places that mad her scream a long time ago now, and knew how to exploit each one, playing her like an instrument. He bit and clawed at her now, fingers digging deep into the tender skin of her hips where he held her steady. He licked and sucked along the lines of her collarbone, down to the space between her breasts where her gown couldn't cover her.
The tension within her tightened and rose and howled, begging to break, begging for release. She arched against him desperately, biting down so hard on her tongue that she tasted blood; and when her hips started to rock of their own accord, harder and faster against his, he pressed his mouth hard over hers to silence her scream as the tension finally shattered, a long building slow shatter that broke her and left her sagging against him, almost sobbing.
He held her steady against the wall for a long moment afterward, stroking her hair and whispering tenderly in her ear a string of words, only one of which mattered: "You're mine... my Éowyn, you'll always belong to me; you're mine."