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My Sword Sings - Book One - 'My Sword' Series  by Agape4Gondor

'Certain things a soldier and a friend does not need permission for.' Boromir remembered Éomund's words. It was certainly time for not asking permission. He had had the thought in his mind for too many days now. He was very much afraid for Faramir, and for Indis. If they came back to the city with him, would they be safe? Perhaps if he went alone? No, they would just follow him and still be in danger. What could he do? His brow furrowed.

Éomund noted and sat next to him. "What causes you distress, Lord Boromir? We only wait a day or two for Aldor to heal properly. We will be in your city soon."

Embarrassed, Boromir said nothing. Running away was a child's ploy, yet he could think of no other solution.

"It is been a long and hard road we travel, my Lord. Sometimes, in the middle of distress and great trial, thoughts come to us that would be better spoken. May I have your confidence? Have I not vowed to protect you?"

"I am not sure I can put it into words. I do not want Faramir hurt." Boromir's voice dropped to a whisper, not so that others would not hear, but so that he could think as he spoke. "And Indis, though she is strong and courageous… she could be hurt too."

"And who would hurt them?"

"I do not know." The pain in the boy's voice belied his courage. "But I know that I am the cause of it. Mayhap, if I did ask Uncle Imrahil, he would take the Rod. Then they would be safe." By now, the lad was crying silently. "Father would be sad, but I know not how to protect them. If I were older…"

"The threat that is upon us would not be lessened if you were older, Boromir. You are quite old enough now, I think. You recognize the danger and the causes for it. Yet, and I am surprised myself as I say this, you are the rightful heir. If we put another in your place, even if for a short time, we risk further danger. I believe Lady Indis is well spoken in this situation. Yet, I am concerned. Have I not vowed to protect you? Do you question my loyalty -- or my ability?"

Boromir looked up. "Never your loyalty. Father loved you; I know that. What can you do against all the forces of Minas Tirith? If there are those there who wish me dead, what can one man do?"

Éomund shivered. To speak so openly of his own death… he was amazed at the boy's courage. "True. One man cannot stave off treachery. But I am not alone. I carry the weight of Rohan behind me. Prince Imrahil will stand with you. And that means the weight of Belfalas is behind you. We will triumph, Boromir, you will see. There will be danger until we find those who plot your death, but we will find them. Even now, Théoden King has agents in the Mark searching for those who might be involved. They will be found, I promise you."

Théodred came over. "May I sit with you?"

"Of course," Éomund agreed before Boromir had a moment to deny the lad. The discussion was too weighty to last overlong. Let the boy think on what he had said, the promises he had made. It would help, he was sure of it, as would Théodred's presence. Éomund saluted and left them alone.

They sat there, the two boys, for a very long time. Finally, Théodred spoke. "Is there something I can help you with? Perhaps, it is time for another round of snowballs?"

Boromir smiled.

"Am I not your friend?" Théodred asked quietly.

"Of course you are. Why would you ask?"

"I was taught that friends rely upon each other, share secrets, help each other. If you do not want me as a friend…"

"Already too many people know of my fears. I had hoped to save myself some embarrassment by not telling the world," Boromir said ruefully.

"I am not the world; I am your friend," Théodred said quietly, pain at the slighting evident in his voice.

"If I speak now, I will certainly cry," Boromir whispered. "I cannot do that. Faramir will be frightened and Indis, well, Indis will come over and try to 'mother' me." He smiled.

"It is light outside. I need a moment. Let's go." Théodred grabbed his arm and pulled him up.

They both stood and ran to Indis. "We need to go outside for a moment."

She smiled, told them to take Faramir with them, and turned away, returning to her task of changing Aldor's bandages.

Boromir stopped. "I cannot take…" His brow furrowed. "Well, come along, little one," he used his father's term of endearment. "You need to be outside too, I suppose."

Faramir smiled in delight.

They walked through the entranceway and were stunned by the blood staining the snow. There was no sign of Orc. Éomund and Baldor had spent considerable effort, over the last two days, to rid the area of the bodies. From the amount of blood, there must have been a large band of the enemy. The boys moved as quickly into virgin snow as they could. Relieving themselves, they then walked to a clearing where rocks jutted out of the ground. Sitting, they viewed the damage before them.

" Éomund is very brave," Faramir said at last.

"They all are. We are in the company of many brave men," Boromir said.

Théodred basked in the compliment to his countrymen. "Someday, we will be just as brave, I hope."

"Aye," Boromir smiled broadly. "Indeed. We have guides and counselors who teach us well. If we but follow their lead, we should be fine."

Silence again engulfed them.

"I had thought to run away," Boromir whispered as Faramir left them to investigate some animal tracks that he had noticed nearby. "I am afraid for Faramir and Indis. I did not know where I would go or what I would do, but I thought it the only way I could protect them."

Théodred sat, taken aback, his mouth slightly open. After a moment, he said, "I will go with you."

"I believe Éomund would say it would do no good, but I thank you. I would listen to him. Théodred," he turned and grabbed his friend by the shoulder, "if I…" he shuddered, "if I am murdered, swear to me that you will take Faramir to Edoras and protect him with your life." Tears streamed down his face. "I must know he will be safe."

Théodred's own tears fell. "I promise, Boromir," he said solemnly. "Are you sure you will be murdered?"

" Éomund has vowed to protect me, but I cannot believe that one man can do this. I will go with him. If only I had thought further on this," he berated himself, "I would never have allowed Faramir to leave Edoras."

"Boromir," Théodred reminded him, "there is an assassin in Edoras, too!"

Boromir looked into the clear blue eyes of his friend. "Aye. I had forgotten that. The danger before me made me forget the danger behind. I will speak with Uncle Imrahil, if he comes… I will ask him to take Faramir to Dol Amroth. Grandfather will protect him."

They heard Indis' call. "Please do not speak of this to anyone, Théodred."

"Of course not." Boromir made as if to stand up, but Théodred put his hand on his friend's shoulder. "Boromir, our swords are on the packhorse. Did you know?"

"Nay. I did not. Before we reach Minas Tirith, we must convince Éomund to let us wear them. It would be useless to ask Indis. She still thinks me a child."

Théodred laughed. "I know what you mean. Sometimes Grandmother does the same."

They walked back to the cave, arms slung over each other's shoulders. Faramir scampered behind them, incessantly chatting about the pinecones he had collected

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