The Lord Of The Rings by Mervyn Peake
Sauron is seven.
His confines, Gondor.
Suckled on shadows; weaned, as it were, on webs of ritual; for his ears, echoes; for his eyes, a labyrinth of stone; and yet within his body something other – other than this umbrageous legacy.
Sauron the seventy-seventh. Heir to a crumbling summit; to a sea of nettles; to an empire of white rust; to rituals’ footprints ankle-deep in stone.
Withdrawn and ruinous it broods in umbra; the immemorial masonry: the towers, the tracts. Is all corroding? No. Through an avenue of spires a bird whistles; the Shire bears away from a choked river. Deep in a fist of stone Gollum’s hand wriggles, warm rebellious on the precious palm. A Wraith shifts its length. A spider, Shelob, stirs …
And Sauron winds between the characters.
He has learned an alphabet of arch and aisle: the language of dim stairs and moth-hung rafters. Great chasms are his dim playgrounds; his fields are dungeons; his trees are pillars.
And he has learned that there is always an Eye. An Eye that watches. Orcs that follow, and goblins to hold him when he struggles, to lift him when he falls. Upon his feet again he stares unsmiling. Tall wraiths bow. Some wear Rings; some in rags.
The Halls of the Dead. The shapes, the voices that throng his mind, for there are days when the living have no substance and the dead are active.
Who are these Dead – these traitors of violence who no longer influence the Steward of Gondor save by a deathless repercussion? For ripples are still widening in dark Rings and a movement runs over the gooseflesh waters though the drowned stones lie still. The characters who are but names to Aragorn, though one of them his father, and all of them alive when he was born. Who are they? For Sauron will hear of them.
(QM: in the TV adaptation of Gormenghast, Christopher Lee / Saruman portrayed Flay. He looks exactly the same)