Disclaimer: I do not own Narnia, nor any of the characters/plots related to the 'Chronicles of Narnia'. Everything belongs to CS Lewis. The lyrics I used are from a song by an artist called Corinna Fugate, the song name is also the title of the piece - "Swing Low".
Author's Note: This is based only a little while after The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. The war is still raging, and the children are still at the Professor's.
The young man – no older than mid twenties – fell to the ground, gasping. His body shook as pain washed through him in never-ending waves. The newly made hole in his chest gushed red as he made no attempt to stop the flow, knowing it was futile. His mind flashed back to times gone by; times spent with his family, and, not for the first time, he cursed his stupidity for doing this... for being a part of something that he knew would never end.
His vision wavered, blinkering in and out in a steady pulse that almost matched the beat of his heart as it grew evermore erratic.
The angels glided down to take you away
said "So sorry, I can no longer stay"
Isn't that selfish?
Now, finally beaten, he gazed around the battlefield, saw the hundreds of other bodies strewn across the lands, wondering whether they had felt this much pain when they'd left this life, and wondering whether they would really be remembered at all, or just put upon yet another list of names of those who had not made it through.
Hair that had grown too long shielded his view for a moment as his head flopped forward, murmuring something – whether a prayer to the God he had never believed in or a plea to whoever might be listening, he didn't know. The blonde felt a sudden urge to sleep; despite knowing that if he did... he would probably never wake.
And I'm sorry for what I've done
And for what I'm about to do.
The instrument of death that he loathed so much; that he had been trained to use, and use with skill, fell to the ground with a resounding finality that made him give a hoarse laugh. His friends – no, acquaintances – no... friends... had called him 'unbeatable', 'unafraid', and indifferent. He had been called many things, yet not one of those things would have rang true for the emotions pounding through him as he struggled to breathe.
He closed his eyes, unable to resist any longer. Remembered using a gun for the first time. Remembered the first shot... how he'd hated, loathed, despised the gun and all it stood for. Remembered how he'd sworn to his family, oh, so long ago now, that he would never, every shoot unless he'd had do.
Swing low, and carry me home.
Something that was interesting, that I never quite forgot
You told me that time was the biggest enemy we've got
I wish I'd listened closer to that fear.
Their faces flashed through his mind. His sisters... always beautiful, always laughing. One so serious, one so happy. His brother... so changed in and so many ways, his rock. Sometimes he wished he'd listened to the outraged cries of protest and let them sway him in his decision. But he had been young... foolish, full of idealistic thoughts and emotions about what might and what he thought would happen. A few weeks where he was now though, had changed his entire outlook. He knew... just knew that this was a hopeless cause.
The pain came quicker, more violently, causing his thoughts to trail off as he tried to contain it. Looking at the blank faces around him, staring up at nothing, he wondered how their deaths had been so silent; whilst fighting he had heard not one cry of pain, simply the roar of those still eager to spill blood. Now he was to join those who would be forgotten.
Sing low... swing low
And carry me home.
One more breath. He managed, his whole body shaking with the effort. Another... coming faster now, more painful. Excruciating, in fact. The young man bent low, letting out a small sob – not the first since he'd come here – as the pain threatened to overwhelm him. He whispered yet another apology to his family as he drew out a small slip of paper, reading the note written in his own hand, before slipping it with a shaking hand back into the pocket where it resided.
Keeling over, the son of Raphael and Helen Pevensie, the oldest of four siblings, drew his last breath. Joining the ones around him, his eyes grew wide; unseeing, as his chest rose once, then stopped completely.
One week later
Susan was the first to answer the post. Every morning was the same, every morning she still hoped for news, any news, good or bad. Her brother stood nearby as the postman handed her a letter. Susan's eyes widened, into a small smile. The younger of the two noticed the sad look the postman gave, the small, murmured apology, but his brain refused to register what it could mean, must mean. Opening the letter, Susan read the words aloud in a shaking voice.
"Regret to inform you that Peter Raphael Pevensie was killed in battle. Died saving many lives. Deepest sympathies, Commander Richardson."
With a cry that shook the house, she fell to the ground in tears, covering her face with her hands as she wept. Her brother snatched the letter from her, read it once, before letting it flutter to the ground. He knelt next to his older sister, putting his arm around her and cried with her, sharing in her grief. The youngest of the three ran down the stairs, curious at the commotion. The look on her face was soon turned shocked as she took in the sight. Not a word was needed. Without another sound she turned and ran back upstairs, slamming her bedroom door to collapse on the bed, sobbing.