Note: Alright, here's the epilogue I mentioned. It's a bit rough, for which I apologize. Anyway, it's supposed to convey the reactions the Pevensies (movieverse) might have if a delegation from Archenland arrived at Caspian's coronation and performed Petros Basileus in a private audience. It also, hopefully, addresses some of the concerns a few viewers had about Peter's character in the play.
Caspian was certain he could have heard a pin drop as the Archenland delegation finished their performance. Realizing that he was the only one able to speak at the moment, the new King of Narnia hastily praised and thanked the actors, noting how their play had brought the Kings and Queens of Old to speechlessness. The delegation had beamed as they were hurried from the room, leaving the five kings and queens alone.
Lucy was the first to break the silence that followed. "But I'm not dead!"
"Neither am I," asserted a somewhat petulant Susan. "And I would like to think I was not so shallow as to marry someone as…as slimy as this Agisto. I don't even recall anyone by that name!"
Caspian tried not to laugh at the disgusted looks on the older queen's face. "I apologize if the play upset you. Archenlandish tragedies are renowned for their beauty, but they were written mostly by Liris of Anvard who lived some six centuries after the Golden Age. Obviously Liris and the other tragedians were not so keen on historical accuracy as they were in writing a good tale."
Peter looked at him, horrified. "Tragedies? Other tragedians? Do you mean that there are more of these things?"
The dark-haired king winced slightly. "Apparently that was a time when Archenlanders particularly enjoyed the theatre. Tragedies were particularly popular and, well, so were stories of the Golden age." He felt it wise not to mention the comedies. Professor Cornelius had forbidden Caspian from reading them, due to their…content, and Caspian was still trying to wipe away the memory of the one time he had disobeyed his teacher's edict.
Lucy, always trying to find some good in a bad situation, tried to do so with this. "It…it was an interesting story."
Susan gave her sister an appalled look. "Lucy! You were killed. I married your murderer."
"My eyes were gouged out!" exclaimed Peter, feeling somewhat sick at the thought.
Susan continued. "Peter's eyes were gouged out. And he exiled Edmund from Narnia! Not to mention, again, how you and I both died. Lucy, the play was not interesting, it was horrifying!"
Lucy shrugged, "Well, maybe, but it was only a story. It didn't really happen that way, and people know that, don't they Caspian."
Caspian quickly agreed. "Of course. I believe Archenland is supposed to have one of the best and most accurate records of the Golden Age in their great library."
"Besides," Lucy continued, "Edmund doesn't seem that upset about the play."
All four turned to the youngest king who was leaning nonchalantly against the wall next to Peter. Edmund smiled. "Of course not. I came off looking really good in it."
Lucy laughed, Peter looked startled, and Susan looked offended, so Caspian jumped into the discussion again to try and diffuse a potential situation. "According to Doctor Cornelius, the Archenlanders have always been fond of King Edmund and Queen Lucy, especially Edmund, possibly due to the Defense of Anvard. In fact, most Archenlandish literature about the Golden Age features King Edmund as the hero."
The grin on Edmund's face grew larger. "Really? I suppose that does make sense, though." At the glint in Susan's eyes, though, the grin began to fade.
The eldest queen smirked. "That does explain much."
"Like what?" asked Edmund warily.
"Like why the female contingent of the Archenland delegation was watching you like you were Christmas come early. I'm sure if they had a chance they are like to steal you back to Anvard, if their hungry eyes are anything to go by."
Edmund's eyes widened. "What!" he yelped. Lucy giggled as Edmund sputtered indignantly. "But…but I'm only eleven!"
Susan was not deterred. "Oh, I'm sure they were only looking out of consideration for their daughters."
"Daughters!" Caspian let out a laugh then at the younger king's red face. Edmund glared at the new king. "I would not laugh if I were you, Caspian. I may be a King of Old, but you're the ruling King now. I'm sure that will be much more appealing to any Archenland daughters."
Caspian went slightly pale and, realizing that if he stayed much longer that Edmund might start making good on his veiled threat, he turned quickly to the queens. "Susan, Lucy, I hear that the delegation from Galma will be arriving soon. Would you care to accompany me to meet them?" The girls were able to stifle their laughs at his anxiety, but were gracious enough to aid him in his escape.
This left Edmund and Peter alone, which was exactly what Edmund intended once he had realized that Peter had said very little after Susan finished recounting the 'horrors' of the play. The Just King, always attuned to his brother's moods, saw quite clearly that the High King was brooding. "Peter, what's wrong?"
The older boy looked ready to reply with a fallacious "nothing", but the look in his younger brother's eyes stopped him. Peter sighed. "The play wasn't so inaccurate, was it?" he stated more than asked.
Edmund stared at his brother. "Were you watching the same play as I was? How in Narnia could you think it was anything other than a complete fabrication? None of that ever happened."
"But it could have." Edmund furrowed his eyebrows, not understanding what Peter met. The High King elaborated. "The failing of the Peter in the play was his pride. He listened to that Agisto's flatteries, thinking that they were rightly deserved as High King. He didn't heed his siblings' warnings. And he got his sisters' killed, and…and he exiled his brother! He sent him off into the Western Wilds with no protection and with hateful words. He thought only of himself and lost all he held dear." Peter's words fell to a whisper. "And that was nearly me."
"It was! I didn't listen to Lucy or Susan in council; I didn't listen to your misgivings in private. I thought I was right because I was High King, thought I could do everything myself because I was Magnificent. And so many suffered for it, died for it. You nearly died, you and Lucy and Susan." Peter looked at Edmund with haunted eyes. "Don't think Helti the Griffin didn't tell me how you only escaped the slaughter at the castle by throwing yourself off a tower. I nearly got you killed, Edmund! How am I any different from the Peter in that play?"
Edmund crossed his arms and frowned at his brother. "Don't you dare think you are to blame for what happened, Peter. Yes, you made mistakes, but we all did. Caspian deviated from the raid plan and started calling up the White Witch. Susan berated you instead of supporting you, forgot that we four work best as a team. I agreed with you that the raid was the best plan, not to mention how I messed up with the torch signal. Actually, I think Lucy is the only one who didn't make a mistake."
Peter was not convinced. "Ed, those mistakes weren't what got those soldiers killed, weren't what nearly killed you. That was me. Me and my pride."
Edmund shook his head and placed a hand on his brother's shoulder. "Pete, I won't say you weren't prideful, because you were. But you were not like the Peter in the play. In his pride, he threw his family away. But, even at your worst, you never did." The look on Peter's face showed that he still did not believe that. "Look, Peter. If Lucy had insisted on going across the gorge even without us, what would you have done?"
"Followed her," Peter answered without hesitation. Let his little sister go anywhere without protection? Never.
"And if Rabadash had managed to seduce Susan despite what we found out about him?"
Face turned menacing with fury, Peter said darkly, "I would have ridden to Calormen, killed him very slowly and painfully, and brought her back to Narnia."
Edmund nodded in full agreement. He hesitated slightly before he asked his last question. "Peter, if I had ridden to war with Lucy and she had been killed, would you have hated me?"
Peter's eyes widened in horror at the thought. "Never! I could never hate you, Ed, especially for something that was not your fault." Understanding dawned on the High King. "And I could never send you away, no matter how grieved or angry I was. I…If anything happened to Lucy or Susan, I don't think I could handle it without you there. I would be lost."
Edmund smiled, both at Peter's words and at the fact that his brother was finally seeing sense. "You are not that play's Peter. That Peter is some playwright's fanciful imagining of people he never knew. You are so much more, and so much better. This Liris could not have written us more wrong."
"I don't know," Peter matched Edmund's smile with one of his own. "I think he did a wonderfully accurate job portraying you."
Laughing, Edmund struck a mock-haughty pose. "Well, of course. I am Archenland's most favorite king." The serious tone was broken as the two brothers laughed together.
After a few moments of refreshing laughter, Peter regained his composure and, eyes glistening somewhat, hugged his brother tightly. "Thanks, Ed. You really have always known the right words to say."
Edmund hugged him back, something that always seemed easier for him to do in Narnia than England. "I do what I can, Pete."
Pulling away, Peter's smile turned into a mischievous grin. "I know. And I feel it is my duty, as High King, to make it well-known to all how you are as noble and just as you are shown in that play." Peter's face was almost pixyish with delight. "I'm sure the Archenlandish ladies will be particularly interested to hear about all your virtues in detail."
Edmund's mouth dropped open in shock. "What! Peter!" he yelled, but the High King had already dashed from the room. Edmund raced away as well, hot on his brother's heals and yelling loudly. And all was right in Narnia once more. Except for the fact that one of the ladies actually did try to steal Edmund away to Archenland, but that is another story.
Hope you enjoyed this bit of levity after the tragedy!