Suraya entered the place cautiously, trying not to make any sound. There was no need, since the house was empty, but Suraya thought that it was good manners not to make a mess in someone else’s home, specially when they were not there. She shouldn’t even be there, but she tried to relax, looking at Eilamat’s eyes. Those eyes were always calming, and when she needed to calm down, his eyes were the ones to help her. “Just a little bit— Be careful with the fire!” Suraya said, then sighing. She looked at the instrument she was holding and then realized she had been walking with bent backs, a movement to protect her ehru, unaware of that. She smiled and shook her head. It was not wet; perfect.
“…Talk us to death?” she asked, chuckling a little and sitting on a chair, wondering if it had been that same chair in which the Queen of Valor had sat hundreds of years before. When Master Tumnus comes back, then he can choose what to do with us, but for now, it’s time for music. “I was thinking about how cold it is, even if it’s summer, and the rain falling today— Well, this is what I wrote,” Suraya said, and then she started to play.
The sharp whines and lingering whinnies of her erhu echoed in the small cave. Eilamat simply listened to he music, breathed in the sweet tasting humidity, and ceased to think of the possible consequences there was to braking into Tumnus’ home. His eyes closed, then opened to look at Suraya.
Her forehead and temples were peppered with sweat, but her hair and neck were wet because of the rain. Despite the flames that cast shadows on her copper skin, she played on, as if the stickiness of her damp clothes and the thick air inside the faun’s home did not bother her. He was always intrigued how whenever his sunshine played her music, her soul seemed to separate from her body. With the gentle downward curve of her lips, she almost seemed to be in a different place, a colder place, a darker place. She was in winter though the world was in spring.
Her music only reflected what everyone in the Great Woods was feeling. They all knew somehow summer would end soon, and winter would begin.
Though Suraya doubted, she had a greater amount of faith than Eilamat. And in a way, he depended on that.
“Do you think this will all be over soon?”
Ca-lor-men? -licks lips- Ca. Lor. Men. Calorie? Calvary? What’s a Ca-lor—that? Narnia… Nar. Ni. A? Did I get it right? First time here, I think. Narnia is not on Earth, is it?
Let me get that for you. -takes bottle and opens it- I think… -squints at bottle- “Take one capsule three times daily” -takes one for self and gives one to Eilamat- Swallow—don’t chew. It tastes bad if you do. I know. I tired. Oh? You’re not sick? So how does that… that… stutter? Is that what you call it? How does that go away? And—you’re not gay? -sighs- You’re more confusing than the others around here. -waves hand around left ear- be quiet, you.
U-um… Spare Oom, you’re f-f-f-… Y-you’re f-from Sp-p-p-are Oom then. -has a sudden chill and rubs his arms with his hands- A-are y-you c-c-cold?
-hands her the bottle and then takes pill- -inspects it, lifting it to the dim sunlight, pretends to put it in his mouth, but throws it behind him instead- M-my stu-stu-sutter is f-from… … … -shrugs, really not knowing-
-flinches and looks at her- Yes I-I a-am gay. I l-like yo-your com-company.
… … … … I wasn-wasn’t s-saying any-anything.
Their own brother.
Suraya knew what the Wolf was trying to do. It would not be the first time someone betrayed her. It would not be the first time Narnia saw something like that. Even the sky was darker now, and her heart was prepared. She could feel the musky scent of Eilamat’s skin, and she reached her arm to touch his blouse, her almond eyes looking only for his azure glance. She could see his ears, his hair, his arms. His shape against the sun’s light. Her leaves were happily enjoying the day, when her spirit was troubled. This was not the place to any of that. This was a place of adoration. This was the King’s place.
Tell me the story
“Cease your threats, Fenr—” her heart stopped when Eilamat’s eyes met hers, so fast she could barely breathe. She felt her back falling on the ground, but her Moonlight’s arms protected her, holding her carefully so she wouldn’t hurt herself. If that wasn’t love, then what was it called? Was there any word to describe their feelings?
about how the sun
“Moonlight!” she gasped. Suraya’s fingers looked for Eilamat, trying to grab his clothes, to grab his hair. She wanted to hold him there, so he wouldn’t get hurt. So he wouldn’t have any ideas of protecting her until death. Death was not allowed. She wouldn’t allow him to die. She smelled blood.
loved the moon so much
Stay down? And wait for him to die? And watch him die? Perhaps she could not fight. Perhaps she would not be of any help, but Chrysanthos needed her. The creatures needed to react. They needed someone to inform them. They needed to help her. They needed to help her keeping her Moonlight alive. How tremendously selfish. Her heart broke. She loved him so very much.
he died every night
Chrysanthos wasn’t too far away. When Eilamat attacked, when his eyes glowed with fury, Suraya was fast, raising once again and running behind Eilamat’s back, quickly reaching his brother. Chrys had his face so pale, his eyes were widened, his chest was heaving. Suraya breathed with difficulty when analyzed the situation. She did not know what to do. Holding Chrys’ hand, Suraya cleaned his mouth with her dress, getting a bit dizzy as she saw all the blood. If she protected Chrys, perhaps Eilamat would love her? Perhaps it would make sense to use such banal words? Perhaps he would understand that she could not live without him? The Elm got closer to her, crushing, smashing. Killing. She lay over Chrysanthos, holding him tightly. He was family, like Eilamat was. Her Moonlight. She would not allow to watch her forest die without doing anything. Never.
to let her breathe
“Aslan,” she cried. “Don’t let us die.”
The Wolf jumped, but old, old bones creaked from the sudden effort. Agility rippled over the limbs, manifesting into energy which drove the Wolf back, and although the full brunt of the oak’s attack was successfully avoided, the Wolf was not fast enough to evade the attack altogether. The vine’s tip scraped the top of the Wolf’s left forepaw, stinging the area despite the snow and weathered skin embedded in the fur. When the Wolf landed a meter away, he lay heavily on one side, his smarted paw nothing but gossamer on the dark grass.
Ungoverned by the sun’s blinding fingers, shadows were a single entity, a velvet cloth laid waste across the forest, its shape contouring to all trees and animals and the beech dryad supporting the weakened rowan wood god. The chief of the Secret Police motioned for his Wolves. A group of four, led by the tawny Idonea, rushed out followed by another pair of Wolves.
The Secret Police moved seamlessly, their bodies gliding through the large shadow, their pointed nose and purposeful stride cutting the cloth but leaving no wrinkles or frayed edges. Silent, their padded paws caressing the night’s snow, they yield to the shadows’ domain but all too quickly emerged from their clutches. Idonea snatched the beech dryad, her alabaster fangs penetrating the atramentous locks. With the beech dryad tied to her, compelled to listen to her as a puppet would to its master, the tremendous, tawny Wolf plucked the beech dryad and forced the arms to release the rowan wood god. The other three Wolves stalked for the kill. Idonea held her ground as the Wolves attacked the dryad. The dress was torn. The lissome limbs akin to beech tree branches were clawed and chewed. Hair that smelled crisp tasted limp.
The sun waned. Bleak, dreary, the color of sunshine lost their luster to the shadows. As the day fell into the palms of darkness, a pair of Wolves assaulted the defenseless rowan wood god. Further in the forest, the elm tree trashed about. Another nod came from the chief of the Secret Police. Wolves barked at the elm tree and uncontrollable rage came enlightened. It found its purpose in life—snapping branches lashed out for the rowan tree itself.
The ancient Wolf’s orders took only a small intake of breath. It was unlike Otmin’s crazed tactics and it was also utterly different from a human’s plans where they must be shouted over the clashes of weapons and the screams of warriors, just like what was happening somewhere else in the Great Woods. The Wolf’s ears twitched at the sound of the just King and the prince of Archenland screaming for control of the battle. Useless, messy, barbaric. Unlike theirs, the Wolf’s orders were silent and swift. From the chaos occurring under the supervision of his beta, the Wolf receded to the prayers to the Lion tainting the air around him. Maugrim glanced at the beech dryad, the rowan wood god, and then to the oak wood god and asked, “What now?”
Hind legs kicked the roots behind him, launching the Wolf to the edge closest to the beech dryad. He bit the barricade and, without checking if it had perpetrated pain on the wood god, Maugrim sprinted and bared his mighty fangs at Eilamat.
In life there is recovery and collapse, despair and relief. However these things rarely come in pairs. But on this day they did. The wood god’s soul collapsed while the sun recovered, the leaves of Eilamat’s tree were relieved with light while the sight of Jadis’ chief put Eilamat in despair. Every nod of the graying muzzle was a blow to his chest, and the sun was mocking him.
All the woe and regret was so forceful, that he gave into a bitter cry. Bloody sweat dripped down his forehead like his mind was crying too, everything was too much, too much. Too much to swallow and digest. Too much to comprehend and calculate. Too much, too much. In this moment, Eilamat was the mirror image his brother; broken, frail, praying Suraya’s supplication to Aslan backwards. All these tears, where did they go? If one could capture them a water parched soil, then perhaps it would have value. Otherwise, it was all a waste, just an endless cycle of grief and death and loss. But why does suffering for creatures not have an end? Why must the death of loved ones be repeat and repeat, never finish, never resting? But this is life: the war, the sacrifices, the anxiety, the joy. And all of the sudden Eilamat hated it. All his hope in loving it again rested in killing Maugrim.
So once the fangs were bared at Eilamat, he drove right to the thick, hairy throat, to give it a quick snap. “Stop this or I will,” came a sharp, ugly whisper from Eilamat’s swelling throat, after he had pounced on the wolf and they both laid on the warm dirt.