All characters and character likenesses are copyright of C.S. Lewis and everyone affiliated with him and his estate. I only own parts of the plot and any miscellaneous characters I may introduce.

This is a heavily alternative universe based on the Chronicles of Narnia series, and I do not intend to offend any purists out there. Again, I own only parts of the plot.

Sorry about the long wait; my flighty muse became infatuated with other things before I could finish this. Not to mention that life got in the way. Darn life.

'Return to Gold' – Chapter 15 – Wedding Celebration

Caspian wanted to marry Lucy then and there, ready to start the rest of their lives together, eager to be the man to her woman in all ways a married couple were. Lucy however, was the voice of reason, to be echoed by her brothers and Aslan.

"We need time to prepare." She told him as the four of them and the Great Lion sat in the Royal Solar after the coronation feast. Lucy sat beside Caspian on a short settee, a loveseat as it were, feet tucked up under her as she leaned into his side warmly.

"The people are just now getting used to you becoming their King. Too many changes too fast may un-nerve them." Edmund pointed out with practicality.

"There are also political formalities that need to be addressed concerning the rest of the nations associated with Narnia." Peter added. "They need to be informed of the change in leadership and of who you are Caspian, reassuring them that you are no Miraz, hungry for land and power."

Caspian reluctantly agreed with them. He knew that the entire world had been watching Narnia closely, monitoring the situation. Miraz and the usurper kings before him, including Caspian's own father, had plundered Narnia so badly and deeply, that there had been rumors that the Telmarines were planning to invade and take over not only the lands adjoining Narnia, but the rest of the world. It was a truly frightening prospect.

"While your coronation was a new beginning," Lucy spoke gently, laying her head on his shoulder. "Our wedding will be the true celebration. I need time to plan and organize a party of political and personal impact."

Caspian slid his arms around her, cuddling her closer to him, reveling in how soft she was. Her long hair slid over his hands, tangling in his grip. It was just another way Lucy had ensnared his heart. She in turn, was snuggled against him, practically sitting in his lap. Both of her hands were tangled into the loose folds of his shirt, holding them close.

"How much time do you need, Lucy-mine?" Caspian asked her, unable to keep the indulgent gentleness out of his voice. Her green eyes took on a far away expression, focusing on something beyond him and the others in the room. He ran his thumbs under her belt, feeling the warmth of her skin though her thin dress, unable to keep himself from touching her.

"One month." Lucy looked directly into his eyes, firm in her resolve. Caspian sensed her brothers and Aslan nodding in approval. "Give us one month to smooth relations and prepare, and then I will stand before Aslan by your side in the temple."

Caspian kissed the side of her head, longing for that day more than he ever thought possible, happier than he could have ever imagined.

The month between Caspian's coronation and Lucy walking down the aisle was one of the most hectic and busy that Lucy had ever experienced.

Caspian and her brothers spent most of their days cloistered in the royal offices, trying to re-establish the political connections that had unraveled during the dark times and reassure the leaders of the other nations that Caspian was trying to rebuild and reinstate the Golden Age. Lucy saw them mostly at breakfast only, the three of them and the advisors working into the late hours of the night, all of them dropping into bed to get up at dawn and start the process all over again.

Lucy herself was busy as well. Not only was she organizing her wedding, but she was designing the decorations as well as the clothing that she, the man she loved and her brothers would be wearing that day. Her fondest wish was to put the fashions that were worn so long ago back into fashion, not comfortable in the dark and dreary cuts fashions of the remaining Telmarines. Dozens of women, dryads, elves, dwarves and other creatures were at her beck and call, her own personal wedding army.

"Caspian!" She knocked on the royal office doors one day, a few members of her army behind her. "You and my brothers need to be fitted for your attire! I've got the seamstresses here with me as well as servants with lunch. Open up."

"Come in love." His voice never failed to make a charge run down her spine as she pushed open the doors. They were seated at a long table overflowing with maps and open tomes, papers and quill pens scattered everywhere. Their hair was mussed from running frustrated hands through them as well as their features bearing the weariness that they all felt in trying to eliminate the remains of the chaos that had reigned before.

Lunch was eaten in turns as the men were measured for their clothes, women and dwarves muttering numbers and calculations under their breaths. Caspian sat beside Lucy, having been the first to be measured.

"You look tiered." She reached over and cupped his cheek, willing rest and relaxation into the man she loved. He had smudges under his eyes and he hadn't shaved in several days. Caspian closed his eyes and leaned into her touch, sighing in happiness.

"I am." He confessed. Lucy was proud that he was enough of a man to admit his weaknesses to her, unafraid of being himself. "I am just glad that I have Pete and Ed to help me, to smooth things over when I make a blunder."

"It's all part of learning." She ran her hand through his hair as he ate, trying to comfort him and give him peace. While she was attracted to him on a basic level, she knew that the tender feelings of wanting to comfort and support Caspian were what love was supposed to be.

"We didn't know what we were doing when we began; we were blessed to have Narnians in our court to help and guide us. All will be well, you'll see."

Lucy was indeed correct, as she often was according to Peter and Edmund. The leaders of the rest of the world sent emissaries to the wedding who presented not only wedding gifts but peace treaties and trade agreements to Caspian and his advisors. He was given a break the day before the wedding, allowing him to recover from the stress of the past month. He spent the morning sleeping in, the noon hours being fitted a final time, and that evening preparing his present for the woman of his dreams. Caspian wielded no magic, but he had the will and the resources to get what he needed done.

The morning of the wedding dawned sunny and light, a cool dew lingering from the night before, making everything sparkle. Caspian knew that he wouldn't be able to see Lucy until that afternoon, tradition keeping the bride and groom apart. Servants were bustling about, hanging up strands of fresh flowers and ivy, and setting up the extra tables and seating in the grand hall for the wedding. The once dark and dreary Telmarine fortress had been transformed into a stunning castle full of light, life and color. Pots upon pots of flowers and plants bloomed everywhere, sunlight streamed through newly cleaned and opened windows, and lighter colored drapes softened the hard edges of the stonework.

Two hours before the wedding Peter and Edmund entered Caspian's chambers, followed by their valets, having agreed to get ready together.

"How are you holding up?" Edmund asked jovially, a rare smile on his face.

"Ready to have the circus over with." Caspian sighed, just wanting Lucy to be his wife already, to hold her knowing that there was no measure on the time that they had together.

"It won't be over until long after you retire tonight." Peter replied with a shrug. "The entire castle will be celebrating well into tomorrow."

Caspian however, was thinking how he and Lucy would be celebrating. Becoming one in the most literal sense of the word, joining in a way that no one would ever be able to sever. He could almost feel the satin of her skin and see the milkiness of her complexion, mouth watering in anticipation of how she would taste.

Caspian's dress robes were in the traditional red and gold of Aslan and Narnia, the fine crimson cashmere shot through with threads of gold silk. The clothes were designed to be luxurious and rich while being light and airy enough to be worn comfortably. Lucy designed them well, knowing Caspian preferred comfort and practicality over anything else. The clock in the tower struck the half hour, signaling it was time for the men to take their places.

Lucy thought she would be nervous on the day of her wedding, but it couldn't be further from the truth. She could barely wait to meet Caspian at the alter in the temple, to stand with him in the glow of Aslan's love. Her body longed for his touch as it had the night that she was afraid that she would be ripped from his grasp forever.

The morning was spent dressing her long hair into a long braid, light magic woven into the hair to keep it smooth and in place, keyed to release upon Caspian's touch. The braid was wrapped around the crown of her head, flowers woven into it, making her appear like a dryad.

Her dress slipped on next, light golden silk accented with crimson embroidery. The back was cut deep, nearly to the middle of her back, while the front also dipped low, revealing a bit of cleavage. The dress was modest by anyone's standards, but touched close enough to scandalous that Lucy knew Caspian wouldn't be able to keep his hands to himself. She felt alive and womanly as she felt her maid lace the back of the dress up, plumping her cleavage even more.

Her mind's eye could see Caspian's eyes go black in the firelight, mouth curved into a smile of male satisfaction. His large hands would caress and explore as he pulled the dress from her body, spilling her hair down her back. Her hands would touch skin that had never before been kissed by the sun, knowing that every powerful inch of his body was hers to worship and love.

As the clock in the tower struck the quarter hour, Peter knocked on her chamber door, ready to walk her down the aisle to the man she craved.

"You look beautiful Lu." Peter tucked her hand through his arm. "Mother, Father and Susan would be proud of you." His voice was gravellier and rough, a sign that he was holding his emotions in check.

"Thank you." She said softly. "For everything."

The wealth of meaning behind the words brought tears to her eyes. Peter had been her rock and protection for so long, long before their first journey into Narnia. He had faith in her when the others didn't; he protected her from the sometimes harsh nature of Susan and Edmund as well as the world. He let her be the dreamer that she loved to be, wanting to keep her innocent wonder in tact. He understood her better than the others, being the first to believe in her and the last to lose hope in her.

"Caspian is the man I had always prayed you would be with; I'm glad you found him." Peter swallowed thickly. "I'll always be there for you, even though you will depend on him first, as you should. He will become your home and protector, as he should. I am proud of you and I love you, little one."

Lucy threw her arms around him and let herself indulge in a few tears, feeling the familiar warmth of her brothers arms hold her safe for the last time, knowing that soon her comfort will come from the arms of another man. Sniffing with a bright smile, Lucy pulled him to the doors of the grand hall, ready to begin the rest of her life.

Centaurs, ever regal in countenance, drew open the doors at the end of the great hall as fawns trumpeted the arrival of their once and future queen. Caspian felt his chest clench in anticipation, Edmund sniffing slightly beside him, trying to stoically hide his emotions. Every guest stood and turned to watch Lucy and Peter slowly stride down the aisle, early afternoon sunlight making them glow. Caspian's eyes were fixed on Lucy, unwilling to blink for fear that the image before him would vanish. She was a vision in gold, radiant beyond anything he could have ever imagined. Her smile was bright, even with traces of tears in her eyes, as well as Peter's eyes.

"Take good care of her Caspian." Peter handed Lucy over to him. "Love her like none other."

"I swear." Caspian felt the air shift slightly, part of the magic of the wedding ceremony having been fulfilled. Lucy's hand was soft and warm in his own has he helped her kneel in front of Aslan before kneeling as well.

"I call upon the two of these people to begin a journey, one that will last a lifetime and will bind their loves together as one." Aslan's voice, rich and full of love, flowed over Caspian, filling him to overflowing with peace and power.

"The step they are about to take is not to be taken lightly." Liquid gold eyes turned to Caspian.

"Caspian, king by virtue of my blessing, do you vow to accept Lucy, child of my heart, as your wife? To stand by her and protect her until you join my in my a Father's land?"

"I swear it so, Aslan the Great." Caspian promised, meeting the Lion's eyes, feeling the truth of his vow echoing in his soul.

Lucy felt as if he were watching herself from the outside, her body having taken over as her mind whirled. Never in a million years had she imagined that she would be marring, let along be living with the man of her dreams in the land of her heart. It was a dream that she hadn't dreamed of, a prayer she wasn't aware of having asked for. Kneeling before her true Sovereign King Lucy felt Caspian twine his fingers with her own as he swore his vows.

"Lucy, child of my heart, do you vow to accept Caspian, king by virtue of my blessing, as your husband? To stand by him and protect him until you join my in my a Father's land?"

"I swear it so, Aslan the Great." Lucy swore, smiling into the loving eyes of the Lion who knew her heart.

Lifting a giant and butterfly gentle paw, the Great Cat, Lion of the East, touched the brow of both Caspian and Lucy in turn, blessing them and manifesting their crowns as rings shimmered to life on their left ring fingers, never to be taken off again by hand or by spell. Closing her eyes Lucy bowed to Aslan before standing, mirroring Caspian's movements beside her before turning to look at the man she was made to love.

"I give you, King Caspian the Tenth and Queen Lucy the Valiant."

Caspian bent swiftly, kissing Lucy deeply and lovingly, slipping his arms around her, her own hands tangling in his dark hair. While the kiss was far from chaste, it was restrained enough that Lucy knew that Caspian was holding back. Soon he pulled away and led the procession to the dining hall, beginning the rest of their lives together.

And that is that. I'm capable of writing the wedding night, but I just don't think it would fit well with the thread of this story. I may do another version of the Dawn Treader in this universe, but I may not, since I have two Dawn Treader stories up already. Please let me know what you think.

Also, for Jaguarsolaris, I plan on putting up a one shot of Peters POV soon, since you brought up that amazing idea. Stay tuned, I hope to have it up soon.