Sauron commands his servant Saruman to the Palantir for questioning. The Eye was wreathed in flame and shadow.
Saruman pulled back from the Palantir… exhausted, shaken and spent, long the Eye held him demanding answers.
Upon the plain below, within the shadow of Orthanc the servants of Saruman cowered as light flashed and faded a withering red within a high window of Mount Fang… they felt the power of the Eye!
Saruman withdrew to his study deep within the chambers of Orthanc.
He held out his hands… they still shook from the intense questioning from the Dark Tower. Even now, the burning Eye, lidless and wreathed in flame was in his mind. He poured himself a glass of red wine… and filled his silver pipe with the herbs from the North… ah… the North… the North… what was in the North? In the far Northwestern corner of Middle-earth a secret lay… but is it the precious thing he has hoped and longed for? Gandalf the Grey… a fool of a wizard always meddling in affairs too great for him know more then he has told.
Saruman considered what he had been shown in the Palantir of Barad-dûr… huge numbers of orcs… trolls… and men from the south. Armies so vast that they crowded the plain of Gorgoroth and crawled like ants beneath the fires of Mount Doom. There are none powerful enough in Middle-earth to stand against such reckless power.
As the smoke swirled about the head of Saruman from the “Longbottom Leaf ” as it was called by the churlish settlers in the North… these little people… unschooled and boorish, the wizard Saruman considered this land called Shire. A land that now the Eye of Mordor looked upon. Sauron had summoned Saruman to the Palantir to questioned him long about the Grey Wizard and whether he had knowledge of a land called Shire… and a creature called Baggins?
One of Sauron’s spies that watched the city of Minas Tirith, said that this grey beard had entered the libraries of the white city and then he had fled north… why the north? Those lands were long dead and empty… Eregion was long ago devastated by war and plague… the elves fled West and the men of Arnor killed in war. Sauron has sent his spies north to follow the Wizard. They lost his sent upon the Greenway… the wizard had not made for Rivendell as the Dark Lord had suspected he might… his trail was lots in the downs to the west.
Sauron commanded Saruman to capture this grey wizard and imprison him in Isengard… then he could be brought to Barad-dûr… and questioned.
In the darkness of Saruman’s study, the wizard contemplated the final words of the Dark Lord… “This grey wizard knows much… too much… he may even know where the One Ring is hidden. Find him… and bring him to me for questioning!”
Saruman played a dangerous game… for even as he was compelled to do the bidding of his new Master… the wizard thought about possessing the One Ring for himself. Saruman had long spied out the lands of the North, curious as to why one of the Istari would be interested in such a lowly land and it’s people. Now Saruman was beginning to suspect that Gandalf knew more than he pretended to… and that Gandalf the Grey was playing a dangerous game of his own.
Saruman decided to send a message to Radagast the Brown… yes… the fool Radagast would play his part well…