The Return of the King is the third part of J R R Tolkien's epic adventure The Lord of the Rings. The companions of the Ring have become involved in separate adventures as the quest continues. Aragorn, revelaed as the hidden heir of the ancient Kings of the West, joined with the Riders of Rohan against the forces of Isengard, and took part in the desperate victory of the Hornborg. Merry and Pippin, captured by orcs, escaped to Fangorn Forest and there encountered the Ents. Gandalf returned, miraculously, and defeated the evil wizard, Saruman. Meanwhile, Sam and Frodo progressed towards Mordor to destroy the Ring, accompanied by Smeagol-Gollum, still obsessed by his "preciouss", After a battle with the giant spider, Shelob, Sam left his master for dead; but Frodo is still alive - in the hands of the Dark Lord are massing.