The first stroke against Rohan takes place at the Fords of Isen
Saurman watched from Orthanc, standing upon it’s topmost summit at the very center of it’s four needle pointed spires
Four thousand strong have marched from the open gate of Isengard to engage in battle at the Fords of Isen with the Western Mark of Rohan
The iron gate in the wall of Isengard clanged shut as the last of his mighty Uruk-hai marched out to war!
Saruman looked East at the trailing army as it marched to the doom of Prince Théodred, son of the King and Second Marshal of Rohan! On this very night, the first crippling blow would come down upon Rohan.
The Wizard Saruman had taken no chances, he had sent an overwhelming force to engage the Riders of Rohan. Word had come from Wormtongue, only days before by Crebain, that a force of great size was riding forth to Isengard to confront the Wizard and demand retribution.
Wormtongue had done all that he could to waylay this force, but Prince Théodred, son of the King was a masterful man that would not be denied. King Théoden had relented and allowed his son to take a large part of the Western Mark, which were under the command of Prince Théodred to negotiate peace with Orthanc. Wormtongue knew that this was but a ruse to get permission from the King to ride to Isengard. Prince Théodred hoped to attack and possibly cripple the forces of Isengard, by catching Saruman at unawares.
The wizard pulled tightly at his cloak of many colors as it swirled in the winds above the plain of Isengard. He laughed loudly at the impudence of these strawheads. FOOLS! Did they not think that the great and powerful Saurman would not know of their witless plans to forestall him? Saruman looked down at the forces marshaled below, around the Tower of Orthanc. Everywhere preparations for war were being undertaken. The army sent forth from Isengard to the Fords, was but a part of the larger force he planned to unleash against Rohan.
The Riddermark had no conception of the massive forces in motion all around them. This was but the first stroke in a war long planned and of which Saruman was but a part. From Isengard, a force of orcs and wargs marched to meet Théodred at the fords, but from the low hills of Dunland another army marched. The Hillfolk of the Hithaeglir were wild with hatred for Rohan. Saruman had fanned the flames of this old hatred and promised the men of Dunlending, the throne of Rohan if they fought for Isengard.
Even now Prince Théodred was walking into a trap, soon to be caught and crushed between the hammer and the anvil! But beyond Rohan an even vaster Shadow was rising, that would soon spill over like a colossal wave destroying everything in it’s path.
Soon the Dark Lord will unleash the full might of Mordor and crush any who stand against him in the War for Middle-earth…
However, even with battle at the very doorstep of Nan Curunír, it was not the army marching off to the fords that filled the mind of Saruman. No… it was the small band of Uruk-hai sent west two days ago to the River Anduin, that troubled the mind of this wizard. Orders had come from Mordor to move against Rohan and keep the eyes of Edoras on War to the North. Sauron had revealed that the spies he had been tracking had passed through Moria and down the Dimrill Stair, rather than passing through the Gap of Rohan. The Dark Lord intended to capture these enemies of Mordor along the River and did not want any help coming from the riders in the west. Saurman was to engage Rohan in battle and so keep their minds away from their eastern borders.
Saruman had felt a thrill of hope. So… it was the Ring that was being carried South by this company. Saruman had suspected as much, but he did not know for sure until that very moment. Sauron had given no hint about capturing the Ring, but Saurman knew it all the same. He had felt the desire for the Ring in the words the Dark Lord. That very night, Saruman had sent nearly a hundred of his very best Uruk-hai led by the cunning and brutal Uglúk, directly east to Parth Galen in hopes of finding and taking the Ring for himself. Saruman was certain, that anyone passing south on the river, would stop there at the Falls of Rauros.
Saruman knew it was a dangerous game he was playing, but unless he possessed the One Ring himself, than there would be no hope of changing the course of the coming war.
The Mordor Appendices ~ The Time Line of the Year 3018 ~ 3019
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