Lucy sat bolt upright, instantly wide awake, someone, or something had pinched her.
At sixteen years old it had been eight years since last she'd seen Narnia. While the others had forgotten, as one forgets a pleasant dream, Lucy had clung to those memories like a life preserver as she tried to navigate her remaining childhood and adolescence. First to forget had been Susan, grown up and logical as she thought she was it had only taken the passing of a few months and they're return to school to wipe clean her memory. When conversation with her siblings turned to Narnia she insisted it had been a dream or game and the promptly left the room. Peter was next when the once powerful king was left powerless and at the mercy of others he refused to believe that he had ever been so in control of a country or just his own life. So Peter joined Susan, though he never quite forgot entirely. Edmund never forgot but unlike Lucy stopped believing that someday they might return he knew they'd gone, and he knew what they'd once been but gave up hope of their ever returning.
A familiar voice sounded in the darkness, "Lucy…" It called sending a thrill through her starting in her chest and spreading all the way to her toes, magic. She slipped from beneath her heavy quilt ignoring the cold floor on her bare feet as she followed the voice hurrying to the door as she pulled it open bright white sunlight flooded over her for a moment she was shocked her eyes watered in the sudden light.
Hermione opened her eyes and instead of seeing the dark forest where she remembered falling asleep she lay on her back staring up at a clear blue sky un-obscured by leaves and branches, beneath her hands, which lay curled up by her sides, was something hot, dry, and gritty like sand the sound of crashing waves filled her ears. Slowly she sat, not sore as she would have expected to be after sleeping outside, she stretched as she studied her surroundings. As far as the eye could see to her left and right was a white sandy beach, before her clear blue water stretched to the horizon, behind her rose a rocky cliff scattered with vines and moss towards its grassy top. Maybe she should have more frightened to find herself in this place but here their seemed to be a strange sense of calm and safety. She stood without any idea of where to go or what to do next.
For nearly an hour she walked without seeing another living creature, which struck her as odd. Such a lovely beach she would have expected to be packed, but not even a bird flew overhead. Worry slowly choked out her peace. Gradually in the distance she noticed a figure, first only a black speck growing ever larger until the figure of a person and then a girl became recognizable.
The strange girl continued towards her as she did the same, identical looks of confusion on both their faces. This girl appeared to be a white short sleeved night gown and no shoes. The ocean breeze blew her auburn hair back over her shoulders and as they drew closer to one another Hermione noticed her bright blue eyes.
Finally they met each other halfway. A long silence followed as each sized the other up. Then the blue eyed girl spoke "Who are you and what business do you have here?"
Her harsh tone demanded answer and gave her an heir of importance and authority
` Lucy watched as the other girl seemed to flounder for a response. She had been shocked by her own swift return to Queenly authority, she no longer felt like just Lucy, a shy schoolgirl with a wild imagination and never-ending faith in a place that everyone said was made up but rather like Queen Lucy the valiant once one of the four great rulers of that same land supposedly imaginary land. As the girl thought Lucy studied her for anything familiar, nothing about her was Narnian her dress was distinctly modern and though Lucy searched for anything recognizable in her dark brown eyes or the shapes of her mouth and nose there was nothing. Then she spoke.
"My name is Hermione, and I don't rightly know where here is."
Had this girl, Hermione been called, just as Lucy herself had been, to Narnia? For what reason could they both be needed? In only eight years had peace been so completely destroyed that nothing Narnia could fix it? Lucy studied their vaguely familiar surroundings before haltingly she answered "You're in Narnia. I think—I think we're very near cair paravel—but it looks so different."
"I'm sorry, but where is that? And who are you? Why am I here?" Hermione interrupted panic racing through her like an all consuming fire. "Am I dead, dreaming? Have I been bewitched?"
"No it's nothing like that!" Lucy cut in pulled from her own musing by the desperate questions of her newfound companion. "I think—we've been called here."