Warning(s): None.
Pairing(s): None.
Spoilers: The Lion, The Witch, And The Wardrobe
Disclaimer: The Lion, The Witch, And The Wardrobe is the creation of C.S. Lewis and the property of C.S. Lewis Pte. Ltd. No money changed hands and no copyright infringement is intended or implied.
Feedback: All comments are welcome.
Author's Notes: This is set entirely in book-verse, which means that these characters are fighting on a much smaller space than in the movie and in a forest. Go back and read the book if you doubt me. :)

This was not how he'd expected to die.

The heat and the noise of the battle pressed in on Edmund from every side. He felt loud and sticky and his arms felt heavier than usual. His sword was constantly in motion and his shield was everywhere at once.

Aslan should be here.

Edmund finished off the opponent before him, watching as the thing fell to the ground. He was sure that there was a name for that sort of creature, but he had no idea what it was.

Now there was a hag before him. She was in the process of casting some sort of spell and Edmund fell on her quickly before she could finish it. Two hedgehogs wriggled out of invisible bindings and leapt back into the fray.

He wanted to take it all back. Ever since the first time he came into Narnia. All of it. When he'd eaten the Witch's food he'd lost proper control of himself, but there had always been a voice in his mind saying, "Wrong! Wrong!" Why, oh why, hadn't he listened to Peter? It was a simple matter to trust one's own brother. If they had all four gone to Aslan, then this entire battle would have been unnecessary.

He passed another statue as he fell back a few steps. Everywhere he looked, a Narnian was stumbling back a step or two. They were loosing this battle by inches.

And there was the reason. He watched the Witch turn another Narnian to stone. Every wave of her wand was another Narnian statue. He sliced off the head of a werewolf as he saw her turn a poor fox to stone.

That Witch was the source of so much grief. The statues in her courtyard, the poor little dinner party back in the woods…

Stupid Turkish Delight. It was a dish that Edmund would never enjoy again.

Everywhere he looked, there was another statue, another dying Narnian. Blood ran down the hills in little rivers, staining all the grass red, pooling in the spaces between the roots of the trees. The shouting and the clash of metal was all around. There were bodies laying everywhere, twisted in ways that they ought not to go. A roar was filling his ears and he knew in his heart what needed to be done.

He had to destroy that wand. Everyone else had been going for her knife, but the wand was the real threat. He gripped his sword tightly in hand, whispered "For Aslan," and began running through the trees.

It was odd, the things that one thought when one was running to one's death. Edmund found himself oddly calm in the face of what amounted to a suicide charge. If he surprised her, he could get the wand. He had a feeling that he shouldn't be so skilled in broadsword fighting as he had become so soon, but all the lessons he'd had at camp had been wondrously easy to master. He had a feeling it was Narnia. There was something about the air here that was good for you.

He'd hated this land until he met Aslan. After he met the Witch, he'd hated everything until he'd met Aslan.

An ogre—two, three—filled his vision. They were taller than he was. Taller than the centaurs were, twisted-looking and soot-skinned.

He barely slowed. One was sliced in two, one disemboweled, and the third he stabbed at where its heart should be. Somewhere, dimly, in the back of his mind, he had the idea that it should be harder to fight off three ogres than that, but he was too focused right now to pay it any mind.

The Witch was just waving her wand to turn one of the leopards into stone when Edmund brought his sword crashing down on it.

The wand shattered at the point of impact, leaving the Witch holding a broken haft.

She turned on him, that terrible, beautiful, horrible, dreadfully white face twisted in anger and spite. "Traitorous fool!" she screamed, throwing the handle of the wand away and attacking with her knife.

Edmund quickly began to feel that there were a few things his sword fighting lessons at the camp had left out. The Witch was quick, strong, and so very skilled. The most horrible feeling washed over Edmund as he fought her. He'd spent hours sitting at the feet of this evil woman in deadly cold. She'd used him against his brother. Against his sisters.

She'd used him against Aslan.

Her knife flashed and he couldn't follow it, but his sword fell to the ground. The knife flashed again and it was buried in his stomach.

She smiled. "Aslan tried to keep me from you, but your blood was mine from the moment you saw me."

He fell to the ground. He hurt everywhere, and his vision was graying at the edges. This was much more painful than he thought it would be. And yet…he'd faced the White Witch. He'd fought her. He'd done it even after all that she'd done to him. This odd strength that he'd had ever since talking to Aslan was driving him to do things he'd never thought he could do before. So maybe he didn't mind the horrible pain. It was already fading some.

Now he could only see little blurs of light and dark, instead of the branches and leaves that he knew to be overhead. If only Aslan were here. He didn't think he'd mind dying so much if he had been able to see Him just once more.

The light was going. Before it was totally dark, Edmund fancied he could hear Peter's voice calling his name and maybe even a hand on his shoulder, pulling him somewhere.