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Rising to the Challenge  by annmarwalk

Théodred brought the two children back to Edoras, riding with him on his own horse. He knew they would not immediately accept their new home – too many changes, too much pain. They would need to be coaxed, gentled, like the hurt, frightened creatures they were.

Give them something, his old nurse had suggested, to break the ice. Then she astounded him by producing two long-forgotten treasures: a tattered stuffed pony, and a small wooden sword.

He gave Éowyn the pony. Much later he remembered the envious gleam in her eyes as she watched Éomer, slashing the air with his sword.

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