Susan Pevensie took her seat in the lecture hall, grabbing her pen and notebook. She had been in this room before for several of her classes. And tonight, she found herself there once more for a class. Professor Rothchild had recommened everyone in the Psychology of Economics class attend the lecture happening here. However, from the looks of it, Susan was the only one who took his advice.
Gazing around, Susan saw a great deal of older and dignified looking people there. She was the only young one in the room. Shifting uncomfortably, Susan bit her lip. It brought her back to a time and place too painful to remember.
Susan shook her head as memories of that distant summer forced their way to the front of her mind. She could almost smell the Spanish air, feel the sunlight on her face, hear that soothing voice calling her name…
The girl bit down hard on her lip in order to draw herself back to the present. It was then that she heard the door open once more. Turning to the door to see whom had entered, the young woman’s heart began to thunder in her chest. No! She had to be seeing things. This was not happening. Susan urgently hid her face behind her dark wavy hair, but she knew it would do her no good. The new comer had arrived too late, and the only open seat was the one right next to her…
He was late, and of all the condemnable faults there were to possess when held in a higher social strata, tardiness was surely one of the worst. Honesty bid him admit that he had not wished to attend. It drove his knowledge, placing reasons for all the occurrences and mishaps that had arrived him at the college grounds at half past three; only ten meager minutes before the lecture was to commence. Educated upon the soil of his home country, he was taught by tutors that resided in the family estate and spoke to him not simply of mathematics and chemistry, but of literature and history, and the languages of forgotten times. Spanish was his native, yet Latin and Greek had enchanted him, and though he had dutifully engaged in all manners of politics and economics, those who knew him also were aware that his delight was not in these.
The black linen of his pressed suit seemed to constrict him as he strode onward, down the finely cobbled path lined with shortened shrubs. Green. Everything was almost an unnatural shade of that natural hue, a flick of a sprinkler teasing his hearing as brown irises tossed themselves upwards to the modern lines of architecture, joining with what was surely the aged bricks of the first building of the college. He recalled the instructions given him, and slipped from the hidden pocket of his outer jacket the neatly folded paper that was printed on a map. “Izquierda…” His mother tongue departed without the thought of reconsideration.
The instructions were clear, and the Spaniard arrived with a singular moment to spare. The interior of the hall was heated despite mechanical means to keep cool, and a host of voices heralded the assemblage of crowds. Many were aged, with coats tailored to perfection and ties of strict black. The hum of conversation consumed him, as he blended unflinchingly into the individuals, the only features setting him apart being the tanned, brown of his skin and his trimmed hair that was kept to his shoulders. “Perdón me.” His accent heralded a noticeable shift of eyes toward his direction, but he had long ceased noticing after receiving such curiosity nearly upon every occasion he parted his lips.
Seats were already chosen and the words began to quiet as lights dimmed. A place remained for him and he focused upon it, slipping past knees to gain his purchase. He failed to notice the young woman by whom he would be settling. He failed to recognize the swivel of her vision, the change in her posture. The azure irises that would have reminded him of the ocean or the firmament, or the sapphires of the necklace he had placed about her throat as they lingered alone. He was warmth, and she was the chill of England. A refreshing change that attracted and mystified him. It tore his heart out from his chest, and revealed the organ, in its intrigue of an ancient Mediterranean family, weighed upon the shoulders of a young man far friendlier and passionate than one would imagine. It bared his fascination, attraction, and desire that she never depart to the grey, rock shores of Britain. A Summer love.
He reclined beside her, fetching the notebook and pen he had brought to take notes. It was then he briefly glanced toward the supple lips and visage dotted with freckles. Subtilty rent to shock, constricting his throat, his fingers stiffening. What chances….
Caspian was not supposed to feel anything. He was not intended to see her in every surface that reflected the blue of her orbs. But he had. Now she sat beside him, and it seemed now that the lectures hours would be breathless and useless. She was near, and the palpitating in his chest could not convince his thoughts to disregard it. She was not spe-she was.
He sighed, tracing his pen’s point across the alabaster surface of the lined page. No stream of ink appeared. He repeated the stroke, tipping and straightening, but being unable to coax the black forth. “De toda la suerte.” Whispered the depth of his tone, phrases failing as he did not meet her face and quietly inquired, “Pardon. But you would not happen to carry an extra pen?”
Isolde’s blue eyes gazed the battle field finding herself in a pit of mass destruction. The right leg that was previously injured by the wolf packs leader’s fangs. Laying on the ground near giving up was a massive disgrace. To her and her father. As she turned to pull herself up and in needless to say position. Three hag walked in her direction their spells squired from their ugly fingertips. She needed to be quick and fast. With the tip of , ‘Mor’du” she swung herself over and into their direction. The first hag must of been the youngest was a easy kill. The second,yet middle wasn’t as easy. Isolde slipped though her legs and dismounted her as another creature finished her off. Last but least of the sister charged at her,her brain went mush and repealed ever spell she had coming for her. Once the hag reached her,laying on her face Isolde raised her arms and sliced her right down the middle sending it into millions specs of dust.
As for her fellow comrades. Most of whom she never laid eyes on till this day. Chills ran down her spin as she watched hundreds before her eyes. The High King fought in his own battle, for he was obviously the king. As she searched swinging at everything in sight. The one and only Caspian X fought along side with a ghoul. Based on his appearance it wasn’t going too well. For all who knew her, she wasn’t the helpful or social kind, but she did have a heart.
With all her legs could she dodged and ran to him just as a ghoul the size of boulder swung at him. She remembered her encounter with Ember and how they fought off one of these together. Without thinking she grabbed his forearm and pushed him just as the ghoul would have.Not waiting for his reaction she spoke, “Come on I can’t fight this alone. May Aslan be with you.” without breaking from his glare. Deflecting an on coming swing from a member of our enemy, hurdled it and cut across its belly.
All around he could see death, but while his mind could be rational his heart was unwilling. He refused to let his weary arms rest but rather lifted them again and again, seemingly pushing to the end of his limit each time and each time finding he could give a little more. “The man who is pressed on all sides learns his true strength,” a tutor had told the Mazin of six years who had complained of muscle cramps. He twisted the scimitar into the flank of one wolf, chasing it back, before turning to slice the shoulder of the boggle on the other side of him. He could spare no emotions of concern for his comrade the Archenlander lord; the most Mazin could do was throw out a slash towards one of the dwarves nearby.
They came in pounding waves, some breaking against the valiant swords and shields of the Narnians and their affliates, but as a group the cruel and twisted creatures regrouped and came again. It was perhaps due to fatigue, but it seemed that the enemy grew in numbers and strength while Mazin and his allies weakened and fell away to be trampled into the flattened, torn grass.
The Telmarine had been beset on all sides, but presently one of the Narnians was at his side and the danger seemed to retreat slightly. Mazin began pressing towards the tenth Caspian, momentarily forgetting the distance between them. Another wolf, one of a pair, reminded him of the difficulty of the task to return to Caspian’s side. Red-stained teeth were bared menacingly at him, and as the Calormene lifted the scimitar again he keenly felt the awkwardness in his limbs, sore with exertion and slightly trembling from blood loss. The bite from one of the ghouls burned with an acute fire that protested shrilly as Mazin dealt a blow to the creature’s chest. It danced away with a scarlet cough but soon returned with more fangs. The former Tarkaan steadied his feet (he remembered when that same tutor had berated him long and hard for losing his balance during a duel) and lifted the curved blade again.
The man was odd and confusing. He looked well-bred, really not of base birth,
No sooner than the Jinn left Rafael’s side to seek dingier skies, Rafael’s tired eyes found familiarity. The rounded chin, the oval face, the high forehead, the thirty years packed into eighteen. Mazin, brother of Lady Aravis. Brown eyes, wide in youthfulness yet considerably fecund, were glanced into from a distance. Rafael’s gaze was not overbearing or showed obvious signs of analytic thought, but it still caught the young man’s attention, and they looked at one another through the crowd of the spraying blood and saliva. Sequences of assorted battles from thousands of years, whitewashed, blurred, rapid, filtered through the fallen star’s vision, obstructing what was really before him. But for a sense of stability of what was tangible in that moment, the fallen star focused solely on the young warrior and the way he held his sword not as if it were an inanimate object, but an extension of his hand, and when he wielded it, it was in a passionate and calculating manor. It may have been arrogant to think so, but Mazin reminded of Rafael in the days of his star youth; unafraid and dutiful.
It was like looking into a mirror of shattered glass.
and yet he squirmed as if he didn’t quite fit in his own skin.
Fangs sank into the back of a star’s neck, stopping at the bone. His skin ripped down vertically as a white cotton sheet is torn neatly with sheers. The impact was too much for the human knees and human grasp, and faulty, they gave way, and Rafael released his sword and fell onto his death bed. Death, laying its back on the ground, opened its arms, ready to receive either aged spirit. However there was only room in its grasp for one of the struggling creatures: star or wolf.
The green eyes told of great knowledge like it had seen so much of the world—
Rafael, on his side, wincing from pain, looked to Mazin.
and perhaps even too much that it has become a burden long ago.
“Take care of Arian…”
That was him.
The High King could not fully remember the first battle he had fought at this place, this ground that had become too-often watered with blood. He could not remember the advancing armies, the ranks behind him, the galloping wave of death and destruction flooding towards him. He could not remember Aslan’s rearrival, that fresh gleam of hope that had fueled Narnia’s side to a victory, powered him in his battle against Narnia’s age-old enemy. He could not remember the Lion leaping over him and defeating the Witch.
He could not remember the dance with death he had endured on this field when he had returned to Narnia. He could not remember the armies, their uneasy peace strange with held-back tensions and bristlings as they focused their attention on a rope-marked square, where the High King of Old and the Telmarine usurper circled and jabbed at each other’s defenses. He could not remember the cheers of the Narnians and the jeerings of the Telmarines; just so, he could not remember the fierce, determined glint in his opponent’s eyes. He could not remember the false Telmarine King sprawled face-down on the ground, stabbed in the back by those he had trusted the most.
Peter could not remember those specific battles, could not call to mind those details that differentiated them from all those that had ever been fought in this land before. But he could remember the despair that had flooded those fields, only to be replaced by a sudden, surprising thrill that had let him known that victory for the Narnians and for his people was at hand.
That thrill was nowhere near now.
Perhaps Peter could not remember the first Battle of Beruna, where the White Witch’s nightmares had flooded the field, but he could see them in all their terrible power now. And he could see brave Narnians and Archenlanders falling, the bright candle that was their lives, their determination, their hope, getting harshly snuffed out to turn to crimson stains on unseeing eyes. This could not go on. They could fight until every last valiant soldier had fallen to the too-watered ground, and yet there would be no victory. Peter could see that.
The old wolf he was fighting knocked him to the ground again, but Peter wrenched him off, just barely. His leg, encased though it was in silver armour that had been tinted with blood, felt as if it had been crushed, but he forced himself to his knees, then to his feet. The old wolf ran off, but Peter made no move to follow him.
Peter ran towards the larger part of the Narnian forces, his left leg threatening to crumble beneath him and slowing his pace slightly. Perhaps he could not remember the times he had spent studying the tactics of the battlefield, but Peter could see that there was no way for a Narnian victory. Not this time. Those brave Narnians and Archenlanders still standing must retreat, or they would be swallowed by the forces of Jadis, those forces that kept swarming onto the field in greater and greater numbers. Peter did not want to allow the Witch to win, and he was not one of those haughty generals who shied away from retreating.
“Retreat!” he called, his straining voice carrying across the field as best as he could. He yelled again, making sure that those fighting for the Lion could hear him, that those who were still left alive would hear and follow him. “Retreat!”
There were too many that laid there, trampled by the nightmares and beasts that knew no bindings of respect and honour, and as Peter repeated himself, the desperate single word slicing through the air again, his face stung with the salt water, warm from sweat and cold from tears, that had found its way into the gashes and damages of war that had already crusted his face with blood.
The High King of Narnia was a young man named Peter, and he was not above tears.
Caspian had wondered what it would feel like to die. It was no poetic measure when truly confronted. The sagas and ballads of minstrels were entirely forgotten in the fray that rendered countless fallen upon fields that ceased to gleam green and in contrary surrendered their breadths as a canvas for a portrait all stroked in red. He found his mind empty as it contemplated the chill of death, and it surprised him further that no deluge of regrets and considerations assaulted him to drowning. Those irises the color of freshly cultivated earth browned in the sun of spring, were conscious enough to perceive the final ghoul that had, despite retaining injuries from the Tenth’s skilled blade, emerged as a manner of victor. It had been entirely knowledgeable to the affects of a deeply executed bite near his cerebral cord, and in the wake of this it had recoiled, summoning its final movement.
Yet his eyes were also aware of the rushing shape of a Daughter of Even, that dodged and hobbled, but swiftly came even in the face of hindrances. Weighted, swollen limbs failed to summon in response to his command, twitching and rolling, grasping the tarnished, moist handle of his sword, but failing to comply to the wish to defend. Then the bobbing form took quantity and details, as hands twined about his arm, shoving. He tipped forward and landed severely upon his side, gasping, even as her words whispered near him and she moved to battle a newly encroaching foe.
The flowering of sharp pain in his back and the darting of same through the cramped muscle of his upper bicep, awoke the delirious shock that had result from previous trauma. A spark alighted in his orbs, its flame licking past his mind, and surging through his body. The ghoul had stumbled in vexation at being unable to cleave his royal skull, wobbling on tenuous limbs, and screeching as it sighted him, crouched upon his knees, swathed in the blood of his comrades and disguised in the brushing of dirt. It barreled in rage, determined to finish what it had begun and claim the prize of such flesh. But its faltering resolve collided with the steel of Telmarine crafting, head gaping open to the biting chill, and spilling forward in a repulsive substance of fluid and bone.
Caspian rose, a great growl masking the agony flaming against his spine, accent biting forward in resistance toward the inevitable. Defeat.
He remembered. He remembered the breathless, weightless moments of falling. The gazing into the uncertain expression of a general that had, once, swore with oaths to the service of the Caspian name. He had behold the earth splitting in trenches, surrendering to the mastery of ancient roots, parting as waves upon the ocean to the steady prow of a masted ship. He remembered the taste of victory, as copper and sweet upon his palate, bitter in its winnings but sweet that the fields of Beruna had once more been preserved. He remembered kneeling before the Lion, the gripping talons of unworthiness and guilt being shed by that terrifyingly majestic visage and voice. He recalled washing in the clear, mirror waters of the Ford, and the parade toward the castle, with the merry music of peace, resting upon Narnia’s bosom.
A boggle squealed at its realization that its shoulder had departed its torso, snorting as a swine until its throat was severed. The weakness moaned in the motions of his weapon, sighed in his ear, embraced him. He was battling upon borrowed strength. I owe my life to you, brave soul. Thank you, my lady. He thought of her that had thrust him from the path of the villain. He sought her and found his purchase, wishing to express his gratitude and mentally marking to do so after. After the horror and desolation. After the floods of adrenaline and waning persistence.
An enemy fell, only to be replaced by another, a wolf snarling its rage at his knees. It gnashed, and his agility lent him to dodge. It circled and returned, maw, bleeding from numerous lacerations, folding upward in hatred.
Marrow compromised as the canine, blind with its thirst, was slaughtered. Even as the warmth of blood drenched him a cold drove downward into his heart. A gripping, merciless dread. They had lost.
“Retreat!” He heard his own voice, bellowing it in strained, painful cracks. “Retreat!”
Bewilderment crossed the faces of those around him, but at his gestures and fierce adamancy they fled, fighting as they drew back. He halted to wrench man and beast alike toward the rear. If they lingered they would be cut down, and Caspian wished to know no more. “Retreat!”
((Meh. Headache. I am so sorry all.
I have a portion of Caspian’s final reply done. I’ll try to get it posted tomorrow, and there is no need to bump up the dates for me. Amy can go ahead and write upon her reply.))
It was the silence that bated her breath, hung upon her lips, bathed her form and suffocated her heart as the door opened; as the woolen emerald flashed, worn and dull yet familiar. It was those two azure irises with skin creasing about them, gazing at her with a smile that banished the haunted shadows in their depths, that laughed with his lips as his arms opened. It was the shriek as the daughter flew and collided with that sturdy frame of her precious father; her Da that she buried her face into and swore with her breath to never let go.
1) Give me a pairing.
2) Give me an AU setting.
3) I will write you a three-sentence fic.
Sí,hijo de Miraz. *Sebestian frowned. His mother had not told anyone of his presence yet?* Your father is among the people who know I am here.
How old should I be, cousin?
You have met my father?
*silences for a moment, pondering, wetting his lips after a moment and nodding amiably* I hope you parted with him upon healthy terms, for I care for him very much. *he purposefully excluded any bitter remarks that might allude to Miraz’s involvement in his relations with his father*
Well…*earthen irises divert briefly* Upon the last occasion that you were in Narnia, you were no more than child. A babe. I thought perhaps you would be then be younger. Five, six. *chuckles* I was wrong. That much is clear.
Caspian the Tenth? ¡Hola primo!. *smiles* Soy Sebestian.
Hijo de Miraz? *a fragment of steel penetrates the surfaces of earthen orbs, questioning for certainty at this claim* If such is the case, than we are cousins indeed. Yet Tía Prunaprismia did not inform us of your presence here. *swallows, suppressing any distaste or vestiges of animosity that might mar his potential acquaintance with his young relation. He did not have to be his father’s son. No.* That would certainly explain your familiarity. I believed you were younger… *chuckles airily, yet with a twinge of weariness*
Bienvenido to Narnia.
That is why I am here, King Caspian. Otmin and a regiment of the Witch’s army have made their move and attacked. It is a limited force, and only serves to draw off some of our forces. It is not completely undefended by our own, but the main attack will be on Beruna and she has judged rightly that dividing to two locations will weaken our army. However, it has also weakened hers, and she does not have the counsel of her minotaur general.
Than it is both loss and gain. The Prince Andrew of Archenland and his regiment of archers have moved to defend with others whom we have deployed in that area. Several wiggles, Puddglum among them, are there in addition. It is their home. I fear for its condition after these conflicts.
*glances in his direction, fingers drumming in restless consideration* Though it is true that the absence of her general puts her at a disadvantage, the brute’s strategies are ruthless and he himself is threat enough. I worry we will not be enough to hold both the marshes and Beruna. But we have to try. If we lose Beruna, the ramifications shall quake our entire cause.
Where shall you be, Finrod?
Saludos, mi señor. Are you in need of something? *irises of warm earth scan the visage of the young man before him, a familiarity creasing his brow, for there is something of a quality in him that he knew* Perdóname, señor. Have we met before? I am Caspian. Caspian the Tenth.