Disclaimer: Narnia belongs to Aslan and Clive Staples Lewis.

Author's Notes: This is set a while after The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, so they're all under the impression that they'll never go back to Narnia or see Aslan again.

Not Home

England is not their home.

Sometimes they get strange looks, from their parents and teachers and friends, when they slip into the old-fashioned manner of speech they used in the Narnian court. Girls giggle at Peter's and Edmund's manners, but the two boy-kings barely notice them, their heads filled with memories of battles and laws and feasts. Boys' heads turn at Susan's and Lucy's regal walk, but the queens remember knights and balls and hunts and look straight ahead.

When a strong wind blows the rustling orange leaves from the tree in their garden, Lucy holds her breath, half-hoping and waiting for the leaves to coalesce into the form of a Dryad. As the leaves fall to the ground, Lucy feels a sudden stab of pain.

Warm fur brushes against Edmund's leg, and he spins around so fast he almost loses balance. His shoulders slump as he looks at the ginger tomcat; large by normal standards, he supposes, but small compared to Narnian toms. Edmund remembers the scent of the Lion's breath, the feel of his mane, and sighs.

Susan fingers the clothes in the shop, wondering why materials that she once loved now seem coarse and faded. She longs for the feel of Narnian fabric on her skin. Susan is interrupted by Helen Pevensie, spinning around in a pure white fur coat.

"How do I look, darling?"

Susan wordlessly selects a dark brown fur coat instead and hands it to her mother.

Someone grabs Peter's shoulder; he instinctively twists away, groping for the absent hilt of Rhindon, before realising it is just one of his friends, fooling around. They pause to watch a group of younger boys mock-spar with branches.

The whole point of fencing is not to simply hit your opponent's sword. Duck, you idiot! Slash at his feet! You just missed an opening! Peter's jaw clenches at the amateur swordsmanship, and his fingers curl and uncurl at his side, searching for a sword that is not there.

At Christmas, Helen Pevensie watches as her children give each other strange presents; a pendant in the shape of a lion, a strange, old-fashioned dress from a vintage store, a miniature model of a knight in armour holding a sword, a panting of trees growing around ruins, and the like are received with delight. But even stranger is the way they carry themselves. It isn't just their sudden, strange manners, or almost regal bearing, or the way they interact with each other. Sometimes they seem unsure, even wary, as if lost, and occasionally they stare off into the distance with a longing expression – as if they are homesick in their own house.

England is not their home. Narnia is.

Reviews would be much loved!

~ Sivaroobini