Author's note: last chapter...who's sad? Do not worry, we shall see Evelyn and Peter again. I will probably add an epilogue to the end, so stay tuned. Thanks for reading!
She could hear the trumpets and horns an hour before she had to go down to the throne room. It did nothing to help her churning stomach. Nor did it do anything to soothe the tense muscles in her wrists and arms and shoulders.
She couldn't help but be nervous. Besides snakes, being the center of attention was her irrational fear. She had other fears, though none as instantaneous or handicapping as this one. Needles, pitch blackness, murky water; they all made her nervous. She knew everyone had a fear, and these were hers. She supposed the fear of the dark came from her childhood belief in monsters in the dark, and she refused even now to sleep without some kind of light, whether it was a night light or moonlight.
She thought being afraid of needles was far more reasonable. She didn't like things in her skin. It was simple as that. It didn't belong; it wasn't supposed to be there. That was her thought on needles. She touched the scar on her lower lip where she'd bitten it hard enough to make it bleed when she'd stitched herself up.
Then she shook herself free of her thoughts and looked once more at her reflection in the mirror. Her gold hair was pulled back in an elaborate braided coil, and she wore only the makeup needed to make her skin evenly colored. She had these areas of skins around her eyes that refused to return to a healthy golden tan. Some of it was pale, some darker. So the dryads and Queen Susan had taken over her makeup. Then they'd put her in a shirt of cream under a tunic of dark gold with a forest green embroidery of long and narrow maple leaves(1). They'd added matching green leggings and dark gold boots. The cloak over it was dark green and clasped at her throat.
Evelyn thought the color scheme was a little extreme, but she liked it. She wasn't allowed to wear any jewelry, since the High King would present the new royal standard for the new territory at the feast. He would also give her the signet that had been made for her as the princess, not his guardian. She wanted her guardian signet with her, so she had found Moon a cute, simple collar and strung the ring on it. The kitten was currently preening in front of the base of the mirror, admiring the ornament. Evelyn grinned down at the little gray furball, who tilted her head back and gave her the feline equivalent of a cheeky grin.
She laughed and scooped the little thing up. She did not have to worry about her clothes getting covered in cat fur, since the Narnians knew how to make clothes beautiful and durable and comfortable. Fur and hair didn't stick to the material, so she didn't hesitate to place the kitten on her shoulder.
Then there was a knock on the door, and she opened it to find Queen Susan. The Queen wore a beautiful purple dress that instantly made Evelyn feel bad for not wearing a dress of her own. "No, you had better not be feeling like that. You look like you in that, and you are what everyone needs to see," the Queen told her, and she nodded.
Sometimes, it was hard to remember that besides the High King, she was the oldest of the humans in the palace. All three of the younger sovereigns constantly acted older than they really were. But Evelyn supposed that came from becoming the Kings and Queens so young. Then the Queen took her arm and led her through the palace to the Throne Room, and left her outside the huge doorway.
Aslan appeared at her side, the lightest gold colors in his mane matching her tunic exactly. She rested her hand in his mane, and then the horns and trumpets changed to a new song. But it wasn't a song. It was a cue. It was her cue to come into the Throne Room. She straightened and Moon purred at her from the marble floor. Then the little kitten wove into the crowd, and Evelyn sighed. The little furball was going to get stepped on doing that. Then she walked forward, into the isle of centaurs with their swords and fauns with banners.
But she hardly noticed the isle. She noticed the dais and its four thrones at the end. All four thrones were occupied, each of the sovereigns making her feel inferior. Their beautiful clothes, glinting crowns, and their overall brilliant splendor made her feel as though she had no place in the Throne Room. She swallowed and set her shoulders back, raising her head to take on any challenge. To those watching, they saw her accept what she was doing and become proud of it.
She stopped just before the steps of the dais, just as she'd been told. Aslan walked up the steps, and she stood looking at him. Then the Kings and Queens rose from their thrones, and she knelt.
From behind her, Evelyn heard hooves approaching and identified it as a centaur. She watched the centaur as they moved around in front of her, and she saw a pair of the boots she associated with a Red Dwarf following. The centaur moved in front of her, and then she felt something placed on her head. Aslan spoke as it was placed, and he announced, "To the Far Northern Wind, I give you Princess Evelyn, the Honorable."
Then she straightened and saw that the centaur was Emmys and the Dwarf was Bican. Bican held a dark blue pillow with a circle embroidered on it where her tiara had sat. She smiled at the two, and then she faced the Kings and Queens. And Aslan. He lowered his voice, and he said to her, "You gave up much to become a Narnian. Once of Narnian, always of Narnian. May your wisdom embrace us until the stars rain down from the heavens."
Then she turned to the assembled Animals and creatures and a cry rang out from all of them, lead by Aslan himself. "Long live Princess Evelyn!" they called, and she smiled in surprised joy.
Later, at the feast, she stepped out onto the balcony and looked towards the North. Then she turned her eyes to the East, and thanked Aslan, who had disappeared already. Not even Queen Lucy had seen Him leave. 'Thank you, Aslan, for never leaving me. Thank you for saving me from myself,' she thought, and then she felt a pair of arms slide around her.
She leaned back against the High King's chest, and his lips brushed her ear as he whispered, "Come on. I want to present your banner and signet and everything." She nodded, then turned in his arms to kiss him quickly. Then they were moving back into the feast, fingers interlaced and hearts forever joined.
Author's Note: Oh, I'm actually tearing up! Stay tuned for the epilogue! Thanks for sticking with me these last three weeks! I published as I wrote it, so if there are questions you want answered, let me know! I've got plenty of before Evelyn and with Evelyn short stories coming, do not worry! And maybe a Prince Caspian sequel? We shall see and read my friends, we shall see.