Disclaimer: I do not own the Chronicles of Narnia or its characters.
A/N: I wrote this around 3:00 on Easter morning. It just hit me as I was getting ready for bed, and I had to write it down. It has a decidedly Christian theme, obviously. I hope you enjoy this story and perhaps get something out of it.
It was Easter morning when Helen Pevensie gently herded her four children into the church, heading towards the pew they usually sat in. Well, she herded her three youngest, for her eldest son, Peter, stood patiently behind her as he took his absent father's place in escorting her to their seat. Jonathon Pevensie was still off fighting in the Continent, but Peter had easily filled the fatherly role. What surprised Mrs. Pevensie the most was that the other children accepted this without a qualm.
Mrs. Pevensie repressed a sigh. It still surprised her how much her children had changed three years before after returning from their evacuation to Professor Kirke's house. They had left her at the train station, scared, bickering, and hurting, and returned home in just a few months calm, happy, and intensely loyal to each other. Even Edmund, the unfortunate black sheep of the family, had returned strong, yet humble, and with a keen sense of justice.
The family sat down, Peter at one end sitting next to Edmund who in turn was next to Lucy. Susan took her place gracefully next to her sister, and Mrs. Pevensie sat next to her eldest daughter. As the priest spoke, Mrs. Pevensie reflected sadly at how she had neglected her children's religious upbringing. They had gone to church regularly when they were younger, but when the bombings started their attendance had dwindled until they went only at Easter and Christmas. Both she and her husband professed faith in Christ, but it saddened her to realize that she did not know about her children. Dear Lord, forgive me my neglect. Do not let my children suffer from my sins.
Mrs. Pevensie was dragged from her silent prayers at the animated whispering near her. Looking over, she saw Lucy pointing something out to Edmund from the Bible lying in her lap. Mrs. Pevensie studied Edmund's face, startled when his eyes lit up in excitement. Her youngest son in turn began whispering back. She was about to shush them when Peter leaned over, a frown on his face as he reprimanded his siblings.
Edmund looked a little sheepish, but the fireball that was Lucy refused to dim. Enthusiastic about what she was reading, Lucy kept pointing at her Bible and whispering. Whatever she said must have struck a cord in Peter, for the young man jerked back, his eyes wide. Grabbing the Bible, Peter hastily flipped through the pages, apparently pointing out different passages to his two excited siblings.
At one point Edmund tried to drag Susan into their confidence, but the young woman just hissed back that they should be quiet and that they were making a scene. The whispering continued, until some of the nearby parishioners began sending them annoyed glances. Apparently Peter noticed this, for when the choir began singing he led Lucy and Edmund out of the sanctuary, Edmund whispering something to Susan before leaving. Confused, Mrs. Pevensie made to follow them, but her daughter stopped her, just saying "Let them go." So Mrs. Pevensie stayed for the rest of the service, confused and wondering at just what had Edmund had said that made Susan clench her fists until her knuckles turned white.
After the service ended, Mrs. Pevensie walked quickly outside to find her missing children. Susan did not join her, saying only "I hope none of my friends noticed how silly they were being. Letting childish fantasies disturb church." The mask on the young girl's face slipped only a moment, revealing a hidden longing, before she composed herself and darted away to talk to her friends .
Leaving the crowd of people, Mrs. Pevensie searched the church grounds until she came near the forest that stood behind the church. Near the edge, she saw Peter with Edmund and Lucy sitting close by his side. Standing unnoticed in the shadow of a great tree, Mrs. Pevensie watched the three siblings. Their speech was still animated, particularly Lucy's, who looked like she was about to burst with happiness.
She only heard parts of their conversation. One word used repeatedly was 'Aslan,' though she had not idea what it meant. There was talk of a battle, and of a stone table which, for some reason, caused Edmund to hang his head, tears painting trails on his cheeks. Peter, his own eyes glistening suspiciously, only hugged his brother tightly, whispering comfort.
Then there were more words that did not make sense: the stone table breaking, a castle, a wound, a cordial. The tears turned to happiness and laughter, the lightness of which lifted Mrs. Pevensie's heart. There was such joy among them, like during Christmases before the War.
The joy seemed to grow too much for Lucy who scrambled to her feet, kicking off her shoes. With a bright laugh, she began dancing, her feet moving lightly across the grass. Grinning, Edmund stood to join her, both dancing complex steps as if they had danced all their lives. Mrs. Pevensie felt transported to another time, a time of kings and courts where men and women would dance to the sound of a minstel's harp.
This dance had no harp, but Peter, tapping his foot to catch the beat, began singing a melody that sounded so sweet to Mrs. Pevensie's ears. It was a song full of fantastical creatures, fierce battles, and gentle ladies. The world seemed to have stopped spinning by then, the only reality the children-not children in front of her.
At last Peter came to the end of his song, and the other two ended their dance, Edmund bowing nobly over Lucy's hand. Peter stood and walked over to his siblings, drawing them into his strong embrace. Lucy grinned at her older brothers. "We found him. He's here, just like he said he was."
"Yes, Lucy, we did find him," answered Peter, as Edmund just nodded his head, too full of joy to speak.
With those words, the spell broke and the world returned to its normal rhythm. Susan called from nearby, asking her siblings to hurry up so she could get home in time to change before going to her friend Esther's house. Peter, Edmund, and Lucy looked sadly at each other before hurrying after their sister.
Mrs. Pevensie moved to follow, when something caught her eye. In her hurry, Lucy had left her Bible behind, apparently open to the page that had so enthralled her. Picking it up, Mrs. Pevensie silently read the sentence that Lucy had hastily underlined, a shiver of unknown joy running through her at the words: "Then one of the elders said to me, 'Do not weep! See, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has triumphed.'"
Smiling, Mrs. Pevensie closed the Bible and walked towards the church where her children waited. Then the woods was empty, no one there to marvel at the brilliant gold color the sun painted on the treetops. And perhaps, if anyone had been there, they might have heard the mighty roar of a lion in the soft wind that rustled through the forest.
God bless you, and Happy Easter!