In the Midst of Adversity: Part IV
Cyrene waited for Eomer outside the King’s Hall after the guests had been lead to their chambers.
Eomer was surprised to find her there, especially after the thoughts that had come over him at dinner, but he acknowledged her with a bright smile.
“Eomer, I don’t need your permission, but I would like to have your acquiescence. I will to ride with the army tomorrow. “
The Marshall’s eyes showed his surprise. “I thought you would stay with Eowyn, Cyrene”
She looked him straight in the eye. “You know of my vow of bringing fame and honor to my people. I have to go into battle to accomplish that. And you have no better archer among your people. You need me.”
For a moment Eomer thought of denying it and begging her to stay behind. But for all he knew about her and the respect the amazon had earned in Rohan, he couldn’t deny her request. “I will be honored to have you fighting at my side, my dear friend. “
“I thank you Eomer, you have been a true friend for me. I will cherish your and Eowyn’s friendship and love for all my life.” She gripped his forearm in greeting but Eomer pulled her close and embraced her. Cyrene felt for the first time in her life the close contact of a man's body and panicked. This was very different of holding Eowyn and consoling her about Theodred’s death. She wriggled and fought against Eomer’s touch.
“Eomer let me go!” She said harshly, and as he didn’t release her immediately, she pushed hard against his chest. “Eomer, what are you doing?”
Eomer didn’t hear her at first, but reveled in the feeling of her body against his and the smell of jasmine in her hair. He felt her pushing him away and reacted, letting her go.
“Excuse me, I didn’t mean to intrude. Milord, Milady,” the soft voice of another person in the passage said.
Both turned to see the elf standing in the passage.
Cyrene took the opportunity to free herself of Eomer's arms, turn and walk away.
Eomer saw her leave and turned to Legolas. “May I help you, Master Elf?”
Legolas saw in the eyes of the man no animosity but regret. He just nodded and inquired if there was perhaps a garden on the castle grounds. Eomer showed him the way to the garden and both men parted, each one immersed in his own thoughts.
Cyrene walked into Eowyn’s chambers, looking for her. Eowyn stood at the tall window, her eyes lost on the horizon.
“You will keep the city and their people safe, my sister. I am very proud that the king decided to leave you in charge of Edoras and it’s people” she said.
Eowyn didn’t answer. She still stood looking at some point in the distance.
“You are going with them, aren’t you Cyrene?” she asked after a while.
Her companion, who stood patiently in the room, waiting for Eowyn to speak to her, said simply “Yes.”
Then the Lady of Rohan turned toward her best friend and hugged her fiercely.
“Come back, bring Eomer back and try to protect the King! Can you promise this to me?”
Cyrene smiled sadly: “My dear sister, I’ll do whatever the goddess allows me to do and keep the promise. Your brother and uncle and I will come back from this battle to Edoras and to you.”
She hugged the other woman, remembering Eomer’s behavior earlier.
Cyrene decided to talk to Eowyn about what she had observed at dinner.
“Eowyn, are you attracted to Aragorn?”
“Was I that easy to read”? Said the blond beauty smiling sadly.
“To me, you were”
Eowyn turned again to the window, her eyes lost dreamily in the distance as she continued. “He looks as if he has so much power but also a great responsibility and sorrow. There is experience and knowledge, but also hope and resignation. He is so courageous but also so humble. I have never known anybody like him”
Cyrene sighed. She knew little about men, but she instinctively knew what Eowyn was talking about.
The Lady of Rohan turned to the window again. “Aragorn feels to me like a burning candle drawing a moth to its light, casting a spell over me. I feel like I am thirsty and he is the sweetest water available, the only one that can quench my thirst. If he touched me, I would go up in flames”
Cyrene reflected on the words of her friend. ”But I don’t know if he feels the same about you my sister … is this what being in love feels like?”
Eowyn turned to her and smiled sadly. “Yes I think this is what it feels like, you feel overwhelming joy and deep sorrow, if the other one doesn’t feel like you. You almost believe you couldn’t live another day if the one you love doesn’t share the next breath you take. And deep in my heart, I know Isildur’s Heir has already given his heart away.”
Cyrene put her arm around Eowyns shoulder. “I wish I could take the sorrow you are feeling now, my friend, and also wish the Goddess never lets me feel the same. If you need me, I will always be there for you“
Eowyn nodded. She knew there was no better friend to her than Cyrene, but they would have to part. She told her, “May I help you prepare for the fight, sister?”
Cyrene put her arm around Eowyn’s shoulders and said, “Of course, I feel honored to call you my friend and sister.”
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