1. Over a Lifetime
The silver disc of the harvest moon pushes out of the dusk, and hangs on the horizon like an eye.
Under its pale gaze she feels the distance between them. Words crumble before they are uttered.
They are still readjusting to living. Healing takes time.
Éowyn moves a hand through the silence and let her fingertips touch Faramir's hair. He holds himself still...and then tilts his head towards her.
She brushes the curvature of his temple with her mouth. His skin has a taste of sweat and meadow-grass, and a tang of sorrow that tingles on her lips like salt...
The river ran in a blue-green torrent around her ankles; spring still had frost in its kiss. Éowyn lifted her feet out of the water and folded them into the warmth of her skirt.
There are things they will never share and some boundaries that can't be crossed.
But other things can be reached and explored...over a lifetime.
Touch...a language to be learned; the long and the short of it, the soft and the firm.
He had a galaxy of freckles and battle-scars across his shoulders; to be explored close up, or from a distance...like a star map.
The spider ignored the piece of food Elboron had placed by its web as a luncheon offering; instead the ants descended, in a sheet of crawling, billowing delight. Elboron watched them...engrossed.
This part of the garden was allowed to follow its own whims...with only rare intervention. A place of spider-silk and strange embraces...a sage bush curling up around a rose, rosemary nestling in the crook of an apple tree.
Éowyn peered at her son in the strong, pearly light; his small form, perched at the cusp of his future, a bundle of possible outcomes...contained and cradled by the summer afternoon.
DREAMS OF TREES
Sometimes she dreamt of trees, and when she floated to the surface there was a shadow-canopy scattered over the ceiling and a lingering smell of leaves in the room.
He shared the dream with her.
It was a dream of the victory of airy essence over solid form; of floating like gossamer-strings in a summer wood; being ethereal guests in noble tree-palaces and staying until honey-coloured light seeped into emerald-tinted shadows.
To remain within the circumference of his dream she would trace her fingers gently across the slowly gathering year-lines of his forehead...and into the tangled foliage of his hair.?
The area of marshland was there before the sloping garden; a pond, tall reeds - and dragonflies. Éowyn wanted her garden to open on to the wild. She was uncomfortable with confined spaces: enclosed gardens, small rooms, shoes... And she wanted the dragonflies.
She passed away together with them late one summer. She left just a husk; and a void in his bed and in his bones.
But by the reed-pond he did not feel it, as if fragments of her remained and filled the holes.
Time kept her there for him; diffused and reflected in leaves, water and dragonfly-wings.
UNDER THE APPLE TREES
I loved that girl in you who kicked her shoes off even in late autumn and ran barefoot among the apple trees with Elboron. The two of you would mercilessly flatten carefully assembled piles of leaves in sheets of red and yellow and under cascades of laughter...and reassemble them.
I loved that girl in you who continued to take her shoes off in total disregard for certain people's opinion of what was dignified behaviour for a woman your age.
I can still hear the echo of her laugh and the rustle of skirts and naked feet under the apple trees.
Her hair fell through the roof-light along a moonbeam, towards his hand. He hadn't expected to encounter memories of her, here, in the library at night.
He first put his face to her hair as ash-rain fell over Minas-Tirith - and got it covered in smudges. She laughed then...despite herself.
Afterwards they stood silently beside each other in the dusty air; as dusk fell like a blue cloak around their shoulders.
The ash-rain eventually ceased and settled...As will my memories, Faramir thought.
But as he closed his eyes and leaned into the moonbeam, for a fragile second, all was illuminated.
This is a work of fan fiction, written because the author has an abiding love for the works of J R R Tolkien. The characters, settings, places, and languages used in this work are the property of the Tolkien Estate, Tolkien Enterprises, and possibly New Line Cinema, except for certain original characters who belong to the author of the said work. The author will not receive any money or other remuneration for presenting the work on this archive site. The work is the intellectual property of the author, is available solely for the enjoyment of Henneth Annûn Story Archive readers, and may not be copied or redistributed by any means without the explicit written consent of the author.