xxlucyferxx: (suspiankiss)
[personal profile] xxlucyferxx
Title: Eulogies and Epitaphs
Pairing: Susan/Caspian
Rating: PG - indirect sexual references

Summary: The fairytales never mentioned this part.Sort of ties in with Rhyme and Reason.

Notes: I'm tempted to rant and rave and apologise profusely for posting this, but...yeah. Not really helping. I'm having what some would call a crisis of confidence regarding my writing, so I'm posting even though I'm deeply embarrassed about the quality (or lack thereof), because I need to break this mental barrier. Feedback would be absolutely lovely, and constructive criticism very, very helpful.

Title is from a song of the same name by I Am Ghost. It's a gorgeous song, and I thought it fitted rather nicely.


Eulogies and Epitaphs

Is this what love is supposed to be? Vulnerability and fear?

The fairytales never mentioned this part. The prince was supposed to win his princess over and ride off into the sunset to live happily ever after. The more Caspian learned about fairytales, the more he found himself scorning, even detesting them. Because he was living in a real-life fairytale, he knew, and yet nothing was happening the way it was supposed to.

The fairytales never mentioned the work that came after the battle was won. Economic turmoil and assassination attempts didn’t fit very well into bedtime stories. The hero of the story wasn’t supposed to be so distressed over the turn things had taken. He wasn’t supposed to resent the powers that had brought him victory, nor was he supposed to have nightmares about the deceased villain long after his body was buried and his memory laid to rest. But Caspian did, and he couldn’t seem to stop it. He knew he was doing it all wrong, the whole ‘majesty’ thing, but a part of him found it very difficult to care.

His real-life fairytale princess lay curled up at his side, her soft breath tickling his neck as she slept. He didn’t know how exactly she’d gotten there, because he knew full well, and had known since he was very young, that he wasn’t meant to be loved. Any day now, he knew, she could realise her mistake and leave. It was madness, sheer madness, to care this much about her. But he did. He adored her – how could he not? She was beautiful, she was wise, gentle and loving and good. And he…well, he was Caspian.

The princess’ arsenal of lethal and terrifying virtues was always described with such tender, worshipping care in fairytales. The prince just did his job – he didn’t need virtues. He only needed a sword, and a great white horse to ride in on when he saved the day. Caspian hadn’t even gotten to that part when the whole fairytale was turned on its head, and that was the point where, in his heart, he gave up. He didn’t have virtues, didn’t even have a white horse – it was useless.

But she was still there.

She stirred, smiling sleepily as her eyes came to rest on him. “Good morning,” she breathed, shifting closer to wrap an arm around his waist.

“My Lady.” Maybe he didn’t have to worry so much. She looked so happy. Did he really make her happy? Was that smile really for him?

“Have I overslept again?”

“Probably.” He thought he loved her most at these times, when she was so sleepy and completely vulnerable. She trusted him not to hurt her as she lay prone by his side.

“Oh well. I love you.”

With a jolt, he realised he’d done it again. Gone all pathetic and soft the way he always seemed to when she smiled like that. He couldn’t keep letting himself do that; it would only draw her attention to the flaws he was trying desperately to hide from her even though he knew it was only a matter of time until she found him out. No you don’t, he felt like snapping. Not really, she didn’t. He knew it with perfect certainty. She only thought she loved him. Her wits were dulled by sleep and she didn’t seem to notice how wrong this was. He was mad, absolutely mad.

“I love you too.” That, at least, was the truth. “I’d better get up now. It’s late.”

As he rose, he kept his face carefully blank so she couldn’t see the way her confusion and hurt feelings at his abrupt departure mirrored his own.

(no subject)

Date: 2009-01-13 04:31 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] tideru.livejournal.com
I really liked it, it definitely stirred some emotion in me.

(no subject)

Date: 2009-01-13 09:03 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] xxlucyferxx.livejournal.com
Thanks. :)

(no subject)

Date: 2009-01-13 04:34 am (UTC)
ext_42328: Language is my playground (Default)
From: [identity profile] ineptshieldmaid.livejournal.com
*tilts head* I LIKE this. Much, much better than I liked Rhyme and Reason. Your Caspian makes so much more sense now.

I like his... matter-of-fact pessimism. I mean, yes, he's being angsty and woeful, but he's doing it in such a straightforward mental dialogue.

(no subject)

Date: 2009-01-13 09:05 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] xxlucyferxx.livejournal.com
Thanks! So, er (be honest here), am I striking an ok balance? I was trying to stop Caspian from coming across as just some crazy angsty teenager...I mean, to some extent that's what he is, but there's only so much of that I can put in without it becoming utterly absurd, and I'm very worried about crossing the line.

(no subject)

Date: 2009-01-13 09:22 am (UTC)
ext_42328: Language is my playground (Default)
From: [identity profile] ineptshieldmaid.livejournal.com
I think you are, here. He's coming across as angsty in his own right, rather than as a conduit for authorial angst, which is always good. He's coming across as, shall we say, a Troubled Young Man bearing very adult responsibilities, rather than a drama queen. Seems a good balance to me.

(no subject)

Date: 2009-01-13 09:26 am (UTC)
ext_42328: Language is my playground (Default)
From: [identity profile] ineptshieldmaid.livejournal.com
Yes, I think the maturity might be the difference. Susan and Caspian, at sixteenish, are in adult roles, with adult responsibilities- they're both going to be 'older' than your average modern sixteen year old. Caspian, with his kinda screwy upbringing, and Susan, with the whole changing worlds thing, haven't matured... evenly, I guess, so in some ways they'll be all out of order. But neither of them feel like angsty teenagers here, they feel like young people who don't fit into the 'teenager' model of growing up, at all.

(no subject)

Date: 2009-01-13 05:19 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] amethyststeam.livejournal.com
I really love this. :3

The only slightly awkward part is when he says "Oh well. I love you."--it seemed a bit....out of place, for lack of a better word (a little confusing, also)---but that's probably the effect you were going for, so just ignore me.

Really, really good. :)

(no subject)

Date: 2009-01-13 09:06 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] xxlucyferxx.livejournal.com
Aw, thanks!

Like Kitoky said, it's actually Susan who says that, not Caspian...don't know whether that improves it or not, but meh.

I'm really glad you enjoyed it! <33

(no subject)

Date: 2009-01-13 09:27 am (UTC)
ext_42328: Language is my playground (Default)
From: [identity profile] ineptshieldmaid.livejournal.com
I had to do a doubletake to figure out who was saying it- the line itself is LOVELY, but the transition and markers around it aren't clear.

(no subject)

Date: 2009-01-13 06:50 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] kitoky.livejournal.com
I was able to comprehend the flow of it, but maybe it's because I have way too much experience reading such subtle and beautiful pieces such as this one.

Most writers follow the basic rule of every other line dialogue---so it was easy for me. It's only frustrating when the writer doesn't follow the rule and doesn't have clear markers as well.

(no subject)

Date: 2009-01-14 08:39 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] amethyststeam.livejournal.com
Oh, I see. That makes sense! :)

^_^

(no subject)

Date: 2009-01-13 06:52 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] kitoky.livejournal.com
^@amthyststeam: It was Susan who said "Oh, well. I love you." They exchanged some words about oversleeping, and he softens up right until she says that she loved him, and so he reacts coldly again, trying to keep it out and in between them, not letting it get to him.

Oh lucyfer. Please never stop typing. Because there's something enchanting about your Caspian and the type of relationship your Susan/Caspian is played out. I love this piece in relation to Rhyme and Reason. I LOVED IT. I mean, my heart just flutters and there's something swirling around my stomach and just my feeling that is just so heartbreakingly familiar.

I love your alternative Caspian. I love this sort of side to him, because it fits. It makes sense. And it matches so well with Rhyme and Reason and why Susan finally decides to leave. And now that we're reading from Caspian's POV, I think I would've much preferred if she stayed, to be adamant, to prove him wrong like she knows he needs to be proven wrong. That he was capable of loving and most importantly being loved because she was there ready to love him.

My favorite part is most definitely, "I love you, too." That, at least, was the truth. Because it made me feel so incredibly sad for him. That he knows that he loves her, and thinks he shouldn't because she couldn't possibly love him for who he was because he was never meant for love. [flails]

Gah. Such an .amazing. piece. Definitely one of your best. Coupling this with Rhyme and Reason was just superb. Amazing job.

(no subject)

Date: 2009-01-13 09:08 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] xxlucyferxx.livejournal.com
Ok, you have no idea how much it meant to me, reading this.

Thank you, basically. I'm so glad you liked this, and thanks so much for your kind words. Makes me feel, I don't know, like maybe I can do this if I keep working at it.

:)

(no subject)

Date: 2009-01-13 09:41 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] agenttrojie.livejournal.com
The princess’ arsenal of lethal and terrifying virtues

That is a really, really good way of describing it. I feel so sorry for Caspian in this. To have the things you want and you love, and yet to feel like you don't deserve them? That's tragic. And beautifully written, I might add.

(no subject)

Date: 2009-01-13 10:43 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] pinknarnian717.livejournal.com
that was great!

(no subject)

Date: 2009-01-14 01:40 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] stephie-nhbg.livejournal.com
awesome, in a very sad kind of way, you definetly managed to convey his emotions very well. :)

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