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The King of the Golden Hall
Now that Gandalf has returned from the dead, he serves as the captain of the hunters. He leads them to Theoden’s halls, and tells the guards that they have come back to return the horses that Eomer had lent them.
The four companions enter the hall after leaving their weapons behind, but they do not get a warm welcome. Theoden is reluctant to show gratitude; he says this is because Gandalf almost always heralds bad news and asks for help. In truth, it is because Saruman has a secret hold on him in the form of his advisor, Wormtongue.
Gandalf frees Theoden from the wicked influence of Wormtongue. Gandalf then asks Theoden to release Eomer, who has been held prisoner of Wormtongue’s counsel. Eomer returns and lays his sword at Theoden’s feet. Theoden realizes his mistake in trusting Wormtongue. He decides that he will himself lead the riders of Rohan against Saruman. Wormtongue is sent away.
Theoden gives Shadowfax to Gandalf. He proclaims that Eomer (his heir) and Eowyn (his sister) are to rule in his place until he returns.
The war on the Orcs escalates as the narrative remains diverted from Frodo, as well as Merry and Pippin.