livingintrinity: (Sherwood)
[personal profile] livingintrinity
The pool opened into a bower of sun streamers and green in the shades of fading new spring and the whisper of promised emerald summer. There was a rock formation which jutted upward for twenty feet in the Northern area just beyond them, trees crowning onward from it, and just beyond westerly was a worn path with rivets from cart wheels which wound its way through the dappled grove.

"This," Marian said, with an awe and love that was never, and would never, be tarnished by time. "Is Sherwood forest."

Date: 2007-04-24 05:32 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
There's enough caution in her question--caution that is not aimed directly at him--that Caspian blinks at her in surprise, not a little pleased that she seems concerned for his welfare.

Still, she looks worroed, and while he thinks she needn't be, he nods and tries to explain.

"'Tis a chance, of course, and it's possible we never will reach the edge, or even come close to it, or find even one of the seven lords. We might have to turn back, if our food or water won't last us as long as we hope, or if foul weather comes up. Never fear, lady, we will return home again. I would not abandon Narnia, even for the Utter East."

Date: 2007-04-24 10:23 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
He takes the crust, but there was something troubling about her prior words and about her fleeting optimism.

"Thank you," he says, and whether it is for the crust of tart, the well-wishes or this visit itself remains unsaid.

Sorely sniffs and lips at his hand, and once the treat is gone Caspian runs his hand under the mane. "Would you?" He turns to her, hand still on Sorely's neck, and smiles. "I'd like very much knowing that you are thinking of us during the voyage."

Date: 2007-04-26 01:39 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
"I would like, aye."

The thought of Marian thinking well of him--of them, that is, of the voyagers--suffuses Caspian with simple pleasure. He can feel the warmth of it creepiing up his neck and into his face.

"Thee are very kind, lady, to do so. For someone you've only just met, I mean," he adds, glancing over at her while Sorely, untied and following behind him, nudges at his shoulder with a soft nose, companionably.

Date: 2007-04-26 01:58 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
"Nay, it is not too bold." And to tell the truth, he rather likes the way Marian speaks her mind, alternately wistful and dreaming, quick and bright. It's refreshing, after the ladies who visit him in court at Cair Paravel, nice enough though they are.

He swings up into the saddle and Sorely prances, rested and questioning, mouth moving at the bit. "Had we met under different circumstances, I'd have thought you a native of Narnia for certain--but that isn't what you mean, is it?" Even though it's true. With her dark hair and fair skin, she could easily be a daughter of the Telmarines who had remained--or a maid of Archenland, mayhap, one who loves the woods and the mountains."

Date: 2007-04-26 02:13 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
"It is, very different."

Might it be that the pools of the wood were mirrors, held up to different worlds to show their far-off twins? As a child, Caspian had ever felt cut off and alienated from those he knew as his only family, even from those whom all said were his people.

He hadn't felt at home until he was hurled as by a wind into the wild joy on the Dancing Lawn; not until he had fled the castle he had grown up in.

But he knows his own story; it is Marian's he is interested in hearing. "You seemed well-loved in the fairgrounds," he says, gently, keeping Sorely at a walk next to his mistress and her mount. "Why do you feel so?"

Date: 2007-04-26 02:33 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
"Lady," says Caspian, who has never truly learned the art of thinking deeply before speaking his mind, "your free speech is only another of your charms, and those who would silence you would do better to keep a greater hold on their own mouths. I take it those you speak of now are the men who took power once your kind was gone?"

He hadn't liked the silence, but what Marian tells him might even be worse. It is horribly frustrating to listen to accounts of a lady of his acquaintance being insulted or pushed aside, and unable to do anything at all about it besides try to cheer her or listen to her as best he can.

Those men, he thinks, are fools.

Date: 2007-04-26 02:48 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
"Nor should you sit aside and do nothing."

He taps at Sorely, who catches up easily, head tossing. "Perhaps it is they who are wrong about what a lady may or may not do. There is a Queen whom I know, a dear friend, who used to ride with the archers into battle, despite anyone who tried to stop her. Do what you must, to protect your people. When will your king return? Has anyone news of him?"

Date: 2007-04-26 03:20 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Winning. Caspian has been in enough battles to realize exactly what that might mean for the people here, and he has seen lists of his own all too often.

And the thought of Marian and the violent death she describes makes his hands clench against the reins, so that Sorely tosses his head and sidesteps in confusion. He glances down, and finds that his knuckles ar very pale.

"Then pray, do not get caught." His voice came out low, barely heard over the breeze that shuffles the new leaves around them. "I won't ask what those actions might be; not here. I'm sorry to have brought up sorrowful subjects, lady."

He'd sooner see her smile, but this is a part of Marian, as well, and he finds he admires it as much as he does all the others.

Date: 2007-04-26 03:30 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
He follows the movement of her head, grateful for the interruption. "Aye. Do you think your father will be there by now?"

It isn't that he's worried, merely curious. Marian spoke of her father with a great deal of fondness, and he's sure that Ravenkeep's master is a fine man.

Date: 2007-04-30 05:05 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
The temptation is to say aye, I'd like that, for he would, dearly. It would be a pleasure to meet Marian's father and to tell the man how impressed he is by the way his lands are kept--but they have already been gone a long while and he is eager to return to Narnia and the preparations for his voyage.

"Perhaps another time," he says, though his voice is a little wistful. "I'd not want to disturb him, and this has already been a very pleasant visit." Nor put Marian in a nealrly unexplainable situation. "We ought to make our way back to the Wood, if you'd not mind."


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April 2007

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