This story is dedicated to hooked. We were chatting via PM last night and she made the comment that she wondered if anyone would ever write a fanfic based on the 80's episode "Trouble in Arcadia." We then discussed how we both loved the episode and all of its Adam/Teela moments. After that conversation and re-watching the episode, I came up with this.
So, hooked—and everyone else—I hope you enjoy this. :) I don't think it's necessary to have seen that episode to understand this story, but it would probably help, though. For those of you who don't know it by name, it's the episode about a society of women who enslaved all men and made them mine beneath their city. (Oh, and for the purposes of this story for those of you who know the episode, let's assume Orko used his magic to go back to the palace before this story takes place. Thanks!)
The eastern sky was darkening as Teela jumped behind the controls of the AttakTrak and set it for manual driving. Because it was getting so late, she knew if she let the AttakTrak drive itself, they wouldn't get home until the early morning hours. That was thanks to her father, who had made the vehicle's auto-driver as safe as possible, which meant slow travel and embarking on twisting, longer routes to dodge rough terrains. To avoid the unnecessary waste of time, she decided that she would pilot the rest of their trip herself.
Sitting in the driver's seat, she casted her eyes about to spot Adam. Almost immediately, she saw him twenty feet away, surrounded by men, women, and children alike. Despite the multitudes of people around him, he stood out drastically and it had nothing to do with his brightly-colored tunic, fur-pants, and tights. Well…not really. Adam would have stuck out regardless of his ensemble, because he exuded his own light naturally. His striking blonde hair, sharp azure eyes, and luminous skin never failed to catch the attention of everyone whenever he walked into a room. The natural pull that he had on people, to make them gravitate towards him, increased when he simply smiled or opened his mouth to make some kind of witty remark about whatever was being discussed at that time.
He was certainly one of a kind, and unknowingly, the entire planet had almost lost him that day. Women from a city called Arcadia had kidnapped Adam and tried to enslave him just because he was a man. The Arcadians had actually believed men to be inferior to women and that they were only good for one thing, and that was manual labor. If she hadn't found the prince and He-Man hadn't saved the day, as usual, she knew most of the planet would have been devastated by Adam's loss, herself included…
But she didn't want to think about that. Not now. Instead, she decided to focus on why they were away from the palace in the first place:
Adam and she had been scheduled to visit the Lowland Villages. King Randor had wanted his son to see their living conditions with his own eyes and to talk to the people. Not only did this build character for the prince, it made the statement that the Royal Family honestly cared about their subjects, and truthfully, they did. Anyone watching Adam could see the truth in that statement: he didn't stay on the city-approved paths that the town officials planned to escort the prince through. Adam had explained to her that very morning that he wanted to see the areas that were unprepared for his arrival. He already knew they would try to take him to the best houses, the best streets, the best restaurants, the best gardens, and so forth. That was what they had done when he had accompanied his father in his youth, after all.
So, what did Adam do when they arrived in each town? He greeted the townspeople and officials merrily and then took off down the streets that weren't decorated, and he didn't avoid the people who looked poor or sick. Instead, he walked straight to them, took their hands in his, and actually talked to them. It was amazing to watch the light that would come to these people's eyes when they saw him and realized that he was there to see them and not the pretty picture that the higher-ups had wanted him to see. Of course, the townspeople who were of higher standing cringed and moaned throughout all of this, never realizing that when Adam saw these unflattering things, it meant changes and improvements would be coming. They would see soon enough.
"Are you ready to go?"
Teela shook herself out of her thoughts and turned to face the subject of her contemplations. He was no longer standing in the crowd; he had come to her and seemed to be studying her closely. "Uh, uh, yeah," she stuttered, fumbling over the buttons to turn the AttakTrak on. She felt a little caught off guard with his sudden presence. She breathed slowly to calm herself down when she felt her cheeks begin to burn. She didn't want to blush, because then Adam would know she had been thinking about him…
She paused at the thought, surprised. "Why would I care if he knows I was thinking about him?" she asked herself."It's perfectly natural to think about him and notice all the good things he's done today." She met Adam's eyes once more as he walked around the AttakTrak to get in on the other side. She couldn't help but notice that her heart sped up when he smiled at her.
"Uh, oh," she whispered softly.
Despite the nap Adam had taken before arriving to the Lowland Villages earlier that day, he was exhausted. He had done a lot that day:
The morning had started off normal. He had breakfast with his family and closest friends, but afterward, he had gone off with Man-at-Arms as He-Man to test one of his latest inventions: a new shield that would help protect the Royal Guard during battle. As soon as he was through running through minefields, avoiding explosions at his feet, and blocking huge chunks of rock that were being thrown at him with the new shield, he had rushed back to the palace so he wouldn't be late when he met with Teela for their trip.
Because he was worn out even then, he had tried to take advantage of the long ride by catching up on some much needed sleep but soon found that endeavor to be impossible. As soon as he had drifted off to sleep, he had almost been thrown into the floorboard of the AttakTrak when the vehicle had hit an invisible barrier that wouldn't let them pass. Curious, Teela and he had separated and tried to follow the wall in opposite directions to see how far it stretched, but soon he had been confronted by two women that he now knew to be from a city called Arcadia. They had taken him prisoner and forced him to work with the other men as slaves deep beneath the city's surface.
Luckily, he had been able to convince Ananda—the men's foreman, if you will—to allow him to escape, so he could talk with the queen and convince her that they were over-mining and that the city was about to be destroyed.
Unfortunately, things hadn't worked out quite the way he had wanted it to. It took the near destruction of the city to get the queen to finally listen to him, but eventually she did. With a little help from He-Man, everything worked out fine. But because of that and the subsequent visits to the villages, he was about to pass out. He didn't want to, though. The sun was setting, which meant most of their travel back to the palace would occur at night and Teela was driving. He wanted to be awake incase anything happened. One never seemed to know when trouble would strike on this trip, after all, and nightfall would make any situation worse.
He glanced over at Teela as he rested his head on the back of his seat. Her eyes were focused solely on the trail in front of them. He could tell she was in bodyguard mode and had every intention of getting them home safely and quickly no matter what occurred from this point forward. He knew her resolve and zeal was because of what had happened earlier. He had been captured, and she probably felt responsible.
He hated it when she felt way. Most of the time when he happened to be captured while under her supervision, it wasn't her fault at all. It was usually his stupidity or some happenstance that no one could have foreseen. What he wished Teela would remember is that when those occurrences happened, she had always found a way to save or help him…every single time.
He grinned as he thought about her earlier rescue. Well, it hadn't really been a rescue, per se, but he enjoyed the attempt nonetheless. When he had escaped the mines with Erik's help, Teela had gone below the city to help rescue him. As they were running through the underground network of pipes, they had run straight into each other literally.
He closed his eyes as he remembered the moment. Instinctively, before he had even realized who she was, he had grabbed onto her to make sure she wouldn't fall. His right arm had wrapped around her waist while the other had grabbed the person's arm to see who he had. Teela had been in a similar position with his body.
He remembered distinctly the relief he had felt when he had seen Teela's green eyes staring at him. He had let out a sigh of relief and he had heard hers, as well. Instantly, their stances had turned into one of comfort. They had hugged each other tightly, and he knew that hug would be present in his dreams for some time to come.
He opened his eyes and raked them down her body momentarily.
When they had hugged, she had wrapped her arms around his neck. He was considerably taller than her, so her body had stretched out over the length of his at that moment. They couldn't have been any closer if they had tried…and he liked it.
He had to remind himself then and now that they were only friends. Best friends, yes…but only friends. After He-Man had come into existence, Prince Adam no longer had any qualities that Teela found admirable and desirable for a future partner in the romance department…or any other for that matter.
Still, he couldn't help but wish.
When they got back to the Royal Palace, it was in the early morning hours as Teela had feared, but it was still dark outside. They would be able to get at least a few hours of sleep before the new duties of the day had to begin. Quietly, so they wouldn't wake anyone, they got out of the AttakTrak and made their way inside.
Because Teela and her father had rooms in the Royal Wing of the palace, they didn't have to separate until they actually reached her bedroom. Adam wasn't sure why—it was probably his tiredness, so his brain wasn't working—but he was overwhelmed with an intense desire to tease her one last time before they parted. When she yawned and reached out to open her door, he grabbed her hand and said, "Thanks for coming with me today, Teela. I enjoyed it despite being kidnapped and almost killed in a crumbling city."
Teela raised an eyebrow at him, almost as if she were questioning his sanity. "You enjoyed that?"
He chuckled a little with a grin and whispered, "No, not that, but I did enjoy discussing the differences between a man and a woman afterwards and celebrating it." Like Teela had done to him earlier in the day, he patted her playfully, but because they weren't sitting, he couldn't pat her knee as she had done. So, instead, he wrapped an arm around her and patted her back soothingly.
His actions unintentionally pulled Teela to him slightly, but he didn't really notice. Instead, he paid attention to her face, so he could see her reaction. Truthfully, he was waiting for her to laugh as she always did at his antics, but this time she widened her eyes in surprise. Then afterward, without warning, he was startled to find her lips on his. The kiss was barely more than the meeting of their lips, but it sent shockwaves of heat coursing through his body. Instinctively, he pulled her to him and kept her in that position until she pulled away.
When she did, Adam blinked several times to make sure he wasn't sleeping and that he hadn't dreamed their kiss. When he was sure that he was indeed awake and standing, he questioned, "Teela?" He noticed that she was looking at the floor and not at him.
At the sound of his voice, Teela jumped a little and met his eyes rapidly. "Oh, uh…yeah, um, goodnight, Adam!" Quickly, she backed up to her door and tried to open it even though her back was to the knob and she was facing him. After fumbling with the door for several seconds, she finally opened it and said in a high-pitched voice. "See you in the morning! Remember, we have a combat lesson after breakfast!"
Then, she was gone. She slammed the door in his face and he found himself blinking again. He stood there for several seconds trying to compose himself. Then, he turned and went to his bedroom. As he opened his door, he started grinning.
I know, not the best thing ever. It's more of a supplement to the actual episode than a story in and of itself, BUT I hope you enjoyed it anyway! LOL I will say that I had several different ideas with this episode and this is only one of them. I will probably revisit this episode again in a future story one day.