clovenbuttercup: (Prince Caspian)

Title: Mistletoe
Warnings: None
Rating: T
Character(s): Caspian X, Edmund Pevensie, Other(s)
Relationships: Caspian/Edmund Pevensie, Caspian & Lucy Pevensie, Caspian & Susan Pevensie
Notes: Filmverse. We know from the book that the Pevensies leave Narnia before Caspian’s coronation; the film is rather more vague about how long they’re with him, but they’re there for the coronation. The coronation of a new British monarch happens approximately a year after they accede to the throne, and according to Wikipedia the preparations inside Westminster Abbey (where British monarchs are crowned) take five months. This implies the Pevensies were with Caspian after the Second Battle of Beruna for at least five or six months, which would allow Midwinter/Yule and Christmas to pass by. So by my thinking, this is not, technically, an AU.
Summary: You never do discover who’s responsible for smuggling it in, but you could kiss them for it.

‘All right, own up; where did this come from?’

It’s the end of Yule, and Christmas is long gone; by rights everything to do with the season should be gone by now, too. Didn’t someone say something about bad luck?

So it’s with a certain amount of surprise you’ve found yourself approaching Susan and Lucy, not noticing or caring Peter isn’t with them but wondering offhand where Ed is, brandishing a small bunch of rather bedraggled mistletoe at them that’s seen better days and has lost the majority (all but two, on inspection) of its berries.

Not that it matters, overmuch; who knows whether Ed is aware you’re meant to remove a berry each time you kiss (all right, wait a minute; since when did I think of Ed in terms of kisses?)

You give yourself a mental shake and try to stay focussed on the task in hand. You suspect it’s either Susan or Lucy; you can’t credit Peter with the imagination, and as you’ve hardly let Ed out of your sight of late, it can’t be him.

‘Ah, come on, Caspian; where’s your sense of fun?’ Lucy smirks up at you and thus places herself at the top of your list of suspects.

‘Pray tell, where’s the ‘fun’ involved?’ You’re teasing; Lucy’s smirk grows. A fraction of second later you notice Ed walk into the room.

‘Ah,’ Susan says, ‘now here’s a reason there should be mistletoe here; where there’s mistletoe, there’s kisses to be found ...’

With that, she kisses you on the cheek. The prospect of kissing her at all brings no enthusiasm, and you refuse to acknowledge what this means. Susan seems to get the message; she shrugs her shoulders, as if to say ‘it was worth a try’, and gives you a rueful smile before leaving the room.

You pluck a berry from the leaves, babbling to Lucy about how ‘tradition’ says to do this, and how without its berries the mistletoe loses its magical properties. Lucy listens to be polite, but it’s clear it’s not something that interests her (which, as she told you about mistletoe tradition in the first place, is not a surprise). Once the conversation falters she, too, smiles at you and says something about dinner before following her sister out of the room.

For a moment, all is quiet.

‘So,’ Ed says, startling you as he speaks from behind you; you’d forgotten he was even here. You turn towards the sound of his voice. ‘Mistletoe loses its magic, does it, once you use all its berries are used?‘ Ed’s eyes lock with yours.

You nod, hoping no-one (particularly Susan, as it happens) is still in earshot. You don’t want an argument over Ed right now; you’re confused enough about him already.

And you can’t tear your eyes away.

‘Yes,’ you say at last.

‘And this miserable-looking bunch still has berries on it?’

There’s something different about Ed’s tone as he says this; if it were almost anyone else you’d call it seductive. But this is Ed; Ed, who is my friend and has no other feelings for me.

Even to you, it sounds like denial.

You break eye contact with him and, to gain thinking time, you pretend to inspect for berries; you already know there’s one left. You raise your eyes back to Ed.

‘Yes.’

The words are at a much higher pitch than normal, and you feel your cheeks warm at the sound. Your mouth has always had a habit of running ahead of your brain.

Ed smirks at you a little, then; you hurry through the rest of what you have to say, the words tumbling over each other to get out.

‘Yes, there’s still a berry left, see?’ You hold out the piece of greenery as if for him to inspect it, but neither of you moves.

‘Good,’ Ed says. ‘Then it’ll be all right if I do this, then ...’ and he closes the gap between you (never large at the best of times, something that’s escaped your notice until now) to kiss you full on the mouth. In contrast to the kiss Susan gave you, you find you want to either lengthen or deepen this one. But before you can react, he moves away.

‘...’

Ed’s smiling up at you.

‘Don’t forget to pluck the last berry,’ he chuckles as he moves further away. His moving away from you displeases you, but you refuse to think about why that is.

‘Ed,’ you say, confused.

‘Mmm?’ His response is non-committal.

‘Ed, you—’ Your throat feels dry, for some reason; you break off, swallow, and start again. ‘The tradition. People don’t do what you did unless...’

You trail off mid-sentence as the realisation hits you. And all of a sudden there isn’t enough air in the room. He’s watching for your reaction, though, and the smile on his face becomes a grin. You don’t think you’ve ever seen him look as happy.

‘I know.’

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