First Narnia Fiction. Please be nice :)
It was time to leave. Everyone knew that once Aslan had opened the portal to the other world, the kings and queens of old were also to disappear so that they may become a legend once more. The Telmarines looked on with wonder and fear. Once the formidable impossible figures standing before them also left after their dethroned queen Prunaprismia and Lord Glozelle, some were preparing to depart and follow them. There were ones who knew that they had supported King Miraz and his cause and their newly-crowned, young king would demand absolute loyalty. For those who were not prepared for this, a new start in a world where they had originally came from, was ideal if they were able to know for certain if it was safe.
Queen Susan the Gentle was coming forwards to speak. She stopped before the king. A silence full of unspoken words stretched on until she finally opened her mouth. "I'm glad I came back." People wondered at these words but tactfully voiced their questions in a slight murmur. They remained oblivious to how much these words had meant to their queen who had struggled with the memory of Narnia, trying to belong once more to her own world and inevitably blaming this land for the problems that arose. She was the one who had been reluctant, skeptical and cautious. She liked to believe she was the rational and logical one, who was to pull her siblings together if Peter was to fail. She had never dared let go of want for her own happiness and yet she was making this harder for herself. "I wish we had more time together." Caspian replied conversationally yet sincerely, the undertones barely laced with despair. His dark eyes shone strangely. Something was screaming inside of him to stop time entirely, something inside of him detested what was about to happen, he wanted to do something reckless and daring and hold onto something. But he could not even risk a glance at Peter the High King who would surely become his greatest obstacle if he was to do something unsuitable, and there was also Aslan, the great lion. Many years of good breeding and etiquette forced him to gaze at her modestly as he saw Susan steel herself for something, "We never would have worked anyway," she said.
Caspian was slightly rebuffed and confusion caused him to break his resolve and speak out, although controlled, "Why not?" he asked. His honest reaction caught something near her heart but Susan smiled at him before adding, "Well, I am 1300 years older than you." Caspian saw her smile and his confusion melted; he knew he wasn't making this any easier. He managed his own smile, the corner of his lips tugged upwards at her teasing tone. At his smile, her clear blue eyes beamed with gratification, she was not to see him ever again, and she wanted to remember him smiling, although he may be feeling otherwise. She turned around to walk back to Peter and the others, after all, all she could have said had been said and it would be silly to delay any longer but Susan felt empty. Strangely hollow, the odd, damp notion of it being unfinished pressing onto her mind.
She spun around, ran back after him and suddenly kissed him. She felt the surprise spread like a shockwave all around her, but she knew she was doing the right thing. She knew, after what she was doing, she would be satisfied and this business would be finished. She will be able to go back now without any regrets. Caspian's deep eyes widened in the same surprise but he closed them for a minute, to take in the sensation. He had not even fathomed the likelihood of a kiss but her lips weren't alien or inappropriate. Rather, a feeling of total bliss flooded his senses. He was not aware of anything but the proximity of her and her smell of Narnian flowers. As he responded, all the memories he had shared in the adventure, scrolled like a montage through his mind's eye. And in the midst of all the miraculous happenings, she had been there, to make him forget the despair and utter doom of his quest. As she was doing now. If he was able to wish for anything else, he would only ask that he would have been the one to have kissed her, given her something for all the comfort and hope she had given him.
She pulled back and they broke apart. Susan saw happiness mingling with sadness as Caspian embraced her, firmly and as if she was somehow his life-force. Susan buried her face into his shoulder, held him as he wrapped his arms around her. She knew, all this time, they could have said so many things to each other and even now they could, but time was not on their side. As Susan stepped back once more, Caspian's arms fell to his side. Susan had completely believed that if she had kissed him, after she had been in his embrace, that would be enough for her. Nothing would be holding her back, but with horror, she suddenly faced the reality of the situation. As she walked away from him, her steps grew heavier and she wanted to suddenly fall into his arms and connect with his lips again. She felt angry with herself for being so utterly foolish, it felt to her as if she had walked into a trap, her feet, which had become slower with every step she took, suddenly stopped and faltered altogether.
Caspian's eyes, which had followed Susan saw her falter and his gaze immediately flickered to Aslan. The immense lion met his gaze and his yellow eyes saw through him like as if he was clear glass. Caspian felt himself drown in those all-seeing eyes and grew dizzy but he stared determinedly back, he would not feel ashamed for what he was thinking and what he felt for her. Then, the overpowering might of his stare abated as Aslan blinked. Caspian simultaneously averted his eyes to view Susan, sympathetic as she looked panicked at her siblings. The rest of the people held their breath. Susan looked helplessly at her older brother Peter as he shot her a look of confusion. Edmund gave his sister a pained, empathetic look whilst Lucy, the most understanding suddenly took a step forward.
"I'll go first," she spoke boldly as she passed Susan. Susan hardly had time to give her a weak, relieved look of thanks but before Peter could walk after her and Edmund after him, Aslan moved as if to stop her. Lucy stopped in her tracks, her face shone with innocent wondering, "Is anything wrong Aslan?" she asked with a clear, ringing voice. The lion sighed, and even newly-born babes in the Telmarine crowd ceased mewling to stare as the lion stood, blocking the portal to the other world between the two entwining trees.
"Perhaps," the lion murmured, "It is not time for you to leave."
He turned his head towards the four Pevensie children and rapidly discontented mumbling broke out among the assembled. "We have played our part here Aslan," Peter voiced loudly. He moved in order to talk privately with the lion but Aslan shook his head. "Remember when I told you Peter, that you will not be returning here anymore." Peter nodded attentively. The lion continued solemnly, "You have played your part here but some have not." Peter tried to hide his disbelief as Aslan pressed, "And some are not ready to leave Narnia, never to return." Peter's head immediately turned to Susan, who gazed back at him, her eyes guarded but hopeless.
Lucy caused him to divert his gaze as she tugged on his sleeve, "Peter, it's nothing to be ashamed of, to want to stay." She whispered. Peter stepped back, mute as a voice from the Telmarines yelled, "They were sent to their deaths! Look how they fear to step through the portal that leads to oblivion!" The muttering in the crowd that had risen, died down as Aslan's gaze worked upon them all but Peter's heart grew heavy as what he had predicted in his mind unfolded before him. "I'll take eleven mice and myself to the otherworld, your majesty." Reepicheep immediately took his cue, brandishing his small rapier. Mice followed behind him with dignity but Peter saw Caspian's expression and knew he could not allow for Reepicheep to leave Narnia and Caspian's newly-gained kingdom. "Your new king will need you," Peter spoke heavily; "You can not leave now, Reepicheep."
Reepicheep blinked at the comprehension of these words and bowed low, "Your majesty's words ring wise and I am honoured to do as you bid," he admitted slowly as the rumblings in the Telmarine crowd grew louder by the minute. Peter looked around worriedly at the faces in the assembled as it grew darker when none went through the portal.
"Our chief," a brown mice behind Reepicheep stepped forward bravely, putting a hand on Reepicheep's shoulder, "Eleven of us will still go through - "
"You don't have to," Edmund interrupted, unable to help himself as the mice seemed willing only to go through without his chief in order to settle the disgruntled gradual roaring of the crowd.
"We do, sire." The mouse paused to let the words ring sincere, "It will be our family's honour." The mice implored with his eyes and Edmund found that he could not refute to its plea.
"Very well," Aslan unexpectedly growled and the Telmarines suited themselves as they watched attentively once more while Reepicheep knighted the brown mice to become the chief of the eleven that was to go through the portal. One by one, the Narnian mice disappeared between the two entwining trees.
"You now know it is safe," Aslan growled, "Let anyone dispute it now,"
There was utter stillness as Aslan turned his giant head to look at everyone in the crowd, then slowly, groups at a time, clutching at their valuables, they parted from the assembled, to disappear between the portal after treading gently around Aslan. Lines of people disappeared and finally, the rest of the assembly stood firm and there was none left to go through the portal. The remaining Telmarines were allowed to return to their homes and Aslan slunk away, leaving the portal still open.
Reepicheep rode on Edmund's horse, rather subdued as the four Pevensie children and Caspian on horseback returned to the castle. Getting the people who wished to leave, safely through the portal had taken a lot of time. Already the sun was starting to sink and the pitch of night paint itself in the sky.
Once the horses were taken away by the stable hands, Caspian excused himself and retired early without many words spoken. Once Caspian was safely out of hearing distance, Peter immediately rounded on Susan.
"That was really well done Susan," Peter started angrily, "What was all that about?" he shouted.
"Well, if the kiss wasn't glaringly obvious," Susan retorted defensively, "Honestly Peter, what do you want me to say?"
"I don't know what Aslan was thinking. How long are we staying now?" Peter yelled.
"Don't have a go at Aslan now," Lucy piped up, "He left the portal open, you can go any time you want."
"And the whole thing was about to slide out of control. How could you have been so selfish?" Peter continued.
"Well Aslan seemed alright with it," Edmund interjected.
"No, Aslan had to accommodate for Susan because she was unwilling to go back to the world that we belong in." he glared meaningfully at his sister. Susan glared back and Peter continued his pacing, "And why didn't you want to go back, you're the one who is meant to be logical. Logically, we ought to have gone."
"As I said," Susan began, her own anger starting to flare, "As if the kiss wasn't glaringly obvious Peter. Do I have to spell it out for you?"
Peter furrowed his brow, "The kiss?" his mouth tightened, "Oh no, you wanted to stay because of Caspian?" Susan was not entirely sure whether this was wholly the reason why she had not been able to bring herself to go through the portal so did not say anything.
"She likes him," Lucy added softly. Peter always had a soft spot for his youngest sibling and therefore sighed and lowered his voice. "It's alright if she does, but we have to go back, if not now, later. It will be the same unless you are planning to stay her for a good century or so, which you aren't planning to, are you Susan?"
Susan had never thought about it but when Peter spoke, he made perfect sense. Even if she stayed a day longer or even ten years, nothing was going to change. The fact that she had to leave wasn't going to change. Leave Caspian, leave Narnia. It was better to leave now so that they could get along with their lives. Nothing was going to change, unless, she was planning to stay in Narnia until Caspian died of old age or something, which would indeed be something like a century.
"I don't know," she answered truthfully but Peter narrowed his eyes at her tone, he knew her too well, "You aren't, are you Su?"
"Well, it doesn't matter does it? If I want to stay a century," Susan said coldly, "We stayed for a long time last time we were here and still managed to get out of the wardrobe only a minute later."
"You just don't get it do you?" Peter suddenly yelled, his tone scathing, "We were in Narnia for a very long time and we have just that much trouble trying to get used to living in London. You want us to go through that again, grow up to be adults to go back to England to be children again? Not that that didn't cause us enough problems last time. You know all this! Now you're going to give that up just because you think you like, Caspian?"
Susan felt the words hammering upon her and felt the back of her eyes sting with tears, "I just don't know Peter, I don't know," she screamed.
"It's late," Edmund, who had watched on quietly spoke firmly. Peter and Susan gave each other daggers before Edmund steered his brother away towards the rooms they were lodging in at Caspian's castle. "We'll see you two in the morning." Peter brushed Edmund's arm off him and disappeared up a flight of stairs, Edmund followed him dutifully after sparing a sympathetic look to his two other sisters.
Susan glanced at Lucy who had been sitting on the edge of a stone well near the stables. The horses whinnied at her behind Lucy as Susan stared at her younger sister, waiting for her to speak words of common sense, judgmental and harsh but Lucy was not like that. "We should go too, it's late." Lucy got up as she saw her sister shiver. Susan nodded, unable to say anything in case the tears threatened to spill onto her cheeks.
A/N: Please just waste a second to press the button and review. Yes, the nice purply blue one that says 'Review.'