A/N: These aren't connected. I was following a 10x10 prompt table that I got from I can't remember where. Also, I've never read any of the books and I only saw the movie once. Nonetheless, I like the pairing.
It always seemed so dark. Dark against the pale cheeks, dark brushing against pale ears, dark against the light crown. Darkest against winter's first snow.
Between Peter's fingers it slid like silk, cool and warm and dark against the high king's palms. Gazing down into the half-lidded eyes staring back up at him, Peter remarked, "Your hair is very dark."
"Really?" Edmund panted with half a smile twisting his lips into something that had not yet become familiar," I hadn't noticed."
Edmund could say the most hateful things. Unimaginable things that Peter could never have thought up, never have conceived into words. Spiteful language that stabs at the places and feelings you don't even know you have.
"Brother!" the Just king once laughed, "Brother? Blood doesn't exactly leave me a choice, does it?" And he laughs more, eyes dark in the way that says if he would just let himself go, there'd be tears.
"You…" Peter doesn't have those kinds of words. Not for Edmund, his brother. His companion. His almost lost treasure. "You don't mean that, Edmund!"
But his brother could say the most hateful things.
He's the traitor. He's reached that barely tangible land of redemption through an almost death, but he's still the traitor.
Not just against anybody. Against his own family-which he reminds himself often. His own flesh and blood in exchange for flavored starch and sugar. Sometimes he dreams of holding hearts, those oddly shaped things that aren't actually alike to the real organ at all, and snapping them right down the middle. Those are the kind of dreams traitors have, he tells himself in the gloomy discomfort of waking.
Edmund knows he did wrong. He sees it in his sisters' eyes, the disappointment. He can accept that. But when he sees it in Peter's eyes, it hurts too much to bear. It almost makes him feel like he's the victim.
The first winter went by quickly. Strangely quick, since horrible and awkward things usually seem to last forever. But now the snow means celebration to the beings of Narnia, and there are parties and galas and dinners and parades and guests and a million things to do.
There is plenty of business to be taken care of and if Edmund's eyes seem more haunted than usual, nobody has the time to say something about it.
It seems to go on and on forever and yet when the bright sun yet again settles over Narnia, it's as if it barely happened. It's over, just like that.
The sun is warm above Edmund's balcony. Still, he wraps his arms around himself and shivers.
Edmund is an enigma to Peter. He's something like a book, with moods that change as quickly as the turning of a page. He has a secret story, hidden between the lines of nonsense and misleading words.
Peter has never learned to read that kind of story. He watches his brother's reactions in regard to his own actions, but the things that make the Just king smile on some days can also make him furious and bitter on others. Making him happy all depends on luck, like the rolling of a dice.
Nonetheless, one does not have to understand something to possess it. Peter holds Edmund's heart and views it as the most precious gift, despite the frustration and confusion it brings him.
Peter wants to coddle his brother. Pamper and pet and spoil, because Peter is a king and kings should be able to do that to the ones they love.
Edmund is a king also. He crosses his arms and huffs, insulted, when Peter says things like that. Edmund is a king, and he's not going to sit around like a good little lover just because Peter is older.
Life goes on, regardless of their disagreement on the subject.
The high king only has the heart to really put his foot down after a battle.
Every sword swung in Edmund's direction comes too close for Peter's liking. Every scratch on Edmund's fair skin is a mortal wound in Peter's eyes. Once, Edmund tumbles from his horse and in the brief moment that he is still on the ground, Peter's heart fails to beat. Every battle sets Peter's nerves on fire.
After those times, Peter cannot help but lavish care on his brother. Their bed becomes a battleground, Edmund like an untrained animal that refuses to be pet and Peter refusing to back down until every inch of his treasure has been fussed over and cherished. Peter's hands and lips become his eyes, tracing and studying skin and muscle. The Just king is full of protests, but knots become relaxed beneath his older brother's touches and annoyed grunts become soft sighs. These moments are as much an indulgence for Peter as they are for Edmund.