Book 3, Chapter 10 Notes from The Two Towers

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The Two Towers Book 3, Chapter 10

They walk slowly to meet Gandalf and he tells them that it is time to pay Saruman a visit. He invites them to accompany him, but warns them to beware the wizard's voice. They enter the black stone of Orthanc with Theoded and ascend the stairs to a closed door. Grima's voice asks them what they want. Theoden orders him to get Saruman. When Saruman speaks, every other voice sounds wretched in comparison. He opens the door and Legolas and Gimli are amazed by his likeness to Gandalf. Saruman showers praise on Theoden and tells him that he may still be saved from evil. Theoden is silent and looks nervously around. The silence lingers until Gimli speaks and tells him that the wizard cannot be trusted. Saruman asks Theoden to make a private peace with him. Theoden does not respond. Eomer berates the wizard, but Saruman turns calmly and tells him that he is not a murderer and less than the men of Rohan. Theoden speaks finally:

"'We will have peace, when you and all your works have perished-and the works of your dark master to whom you would deliver us. You are a liar, Saruman, and a corrupter of men's hearts. You hold out your hand to me, and I perceive only a finger of the claw of Mordor.'" Book 3, Chapter 10, pg. 237

The riders are amazed at their King's resolve. Saruman speaks with repressed rage and tells Theoden that he will be the one to perish first. He turns to Gandalf and asks why he will not listen to his advice. Gandalf asks him to take back the words he spoke at their last meeting. Saruman praises his fellow wizard and asks him to join him in the tower. Some of the men worry that Gandalf will join Saruman. There is a silence, but then Gandalf laughs and tells him that he should have been a jester instead of a wizard. He tells the fallen wizard to come down from the tower and surrender his claim to it. Saruman refuses to leave even when Gandalf promises he will be able to go freely. Saruman turns around to leave, and Gandalf stops him with a startling command. He tells him that he must stay in Orthanc and then exposes that he is now the one in white robes. He breaks Saruman's staff and casts him out of the council of wizards.

As they turn to walk away, a heavy object is thrown after them. Pippin picks it up but Gandalf takes it from him. Gandalf needs to find Treebeard and tell him what has happened in the tower. Sauron will destroy Saruman if he gets the chance. Gandalf says he will leave Saruman where he is. He introduces the others to Treebeard. Legolas asks if he and Gimli may travel through the forest later, and Treebeard hesitates because Gimli bears an ax. Legolas explains that the ax kills only orcs and Treebeard is content with this. Gandalf says it is urgent to get Theoded back to Edoras. As they leave, Treebeard recites a line of poetry about the hobbits. He is not surprised that Saruman refused to leave the Orthanc. He promises that the ents will watch over the fortress and prevent him from leaving to cause trouble in the world.

Topic Tracking: Sacrifice 6
Topic Tracking: Trust 6
Topic Tracking: Metamorphoses 7

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