Digging My Own Grave
Disclaimer: I do not own much. The only thing I do know is that I own Rosalie, most of her family and some of her friends. That's it. You know what is and isn't mine. haha
Chapter Eighteen: Digging My Own Grave
Jacob's eyes shifted at me as I stood on the pedestal in front of the Telmarines gathered in their city that had almost been torn to shambles. I took his notion as a signal for me to step forward, so I did. It was the same place where the Pevensies had left, the same place Caspian and I had announced our engagement, and the same place where I would more than likely lose the trust of my people.
The crowd was growing anxious as I stood in front of them, all eyes upon me. I swallowed hard, but before I could utter a word, a citizen yelled out," Why do we want to hear anything from you?"
"Yeah!" another chipped in.
"You're the reason our country has come to this mess!" a stocky man yelled from the back.
Before anyone else could come in, I spoke," Peace! Please, listen to the words I have to say!"
I did not think they would listen, but to my surprise, there was silence. Complete and utter, silence.
"Now," I said, looking out to the crowd," I know that I have not provided you with the best of protection. I know that both I and my husband have failed at keeping this nation safe and the mistake we've made has cost many Telmarine lives. Many of you may be sitting out there, wondering just why it is that I have allowed the same men that destroyed our city to be the ones standing behind me today."
I paused and glanced back at my brother and General, both of whom, were smiling from ear to ear. I couldn't help but feel sick; this was where the lie began. As the silence grew, I stared out into the various eyes of the people who had endured too much pain as it was.
"They've offered to make a deal with us that I cannot turn down. They have offered us something that could make us all live in peace," another pause came, this was where I had to tell them of Caspian's death, the part which I myself did not know if it was true or not," For I cannot run a country alone."
"What of Caspian?" a man yelled out," Where be your husband?"
Another round of yells went through the crowd," Yes! Where is he?"
"He swore to protect us as well!"
This was a new side to the Telmarines. The last I had known, they were loyal to us, but now it appeared that some emotions were beginning to run short as the supplies the city had began to dwindle even more.
"Please!" I begged them from where I stood," Please, listen!"
Another silence sat in the air.
"My husband is dead."
Gasps, swears, and chatter rang through the crowd, but before it could become too out of hand, once again, I stepped in," He was found dead up North. It can be assumed that he died in battle."
"Against these pigs?" the same man exclaimed.
"It is unknown the specific details, but there will be a memorial service held for him at the castle. Announcements will be held later this week, but please be assured that I have a plan that will allow for the all of us to recuperate from this. I know just as well as you how painful this is…I know…"I trailed off for a brief moment, praying that it was only a lie…praying that I was not speaking the truth.
As the tears were shed and whispers rushed through the crowd, I continued," Caspian would have only wanted for me to find someone else to run the nation," these words stung the more I spoke," So, he picked no other than the man by the name of General to be your new King."
"That dirty pig has been in on the whole thing! He's in cahoots with the filthy slime that invaded our nation!" a woman screamed from the crowd.
I wanted so badly to agree with this woman, but I feared that one wrong word would have me dead. Jacob wouldn't feel bad at all to kill me right there in front of the entire population. Despite the fact, I wanted to praise this woman, I had to defend my lie.
"General is a good man. He is in compliance with hearing Jacob out on what he wants to do for all of us know that we haven't the strength to be able to bring him down on our own. General is willing to aid me in running the nation. All new laws and decrees that are made, will be passed by the both of us. I assure you that he is of no danger to…us." The last words being especially painful.
"I expect that all of you will be respectful of this new shift in leadership. I will still be here, but things are going to change and I pray that all of you will realize that it is only…" I trailed off…involuntarily.
All of this was so wrong. So incredibly wrong. Every single one of their eyes stared at me, some of them not believing, but the most of them hanging on to every word I said. There were few that would outrage, but for the most part, they believed me and that was what disturbed me. They were believing this lie. They were falling in to Jacob's trap. This was exactly what he wanted.
But how could I stop it?
"Rosalie…," Jacob growled from behind me.
Should I not finish this phrase, then they would know that this was a lie. They would know that I was being forced to say all of this…
"It is only for the best," I said, trying to hold back the tears," Thank you, now you will hear a few words from your new King."
Without another word, I turned swiftly on my heel and stood off to the side where both of them, Jacob and Penelope would have a close watch on me. I faked a smile at General, I was told to play up our new arrangement before I took my spot to listen.
I listened, trying to hold myself back as my brother took the stage. He was charming and charismatic. I think he even cleaned up a bit for this appearance. The whole speech (I will save you all of the details) was basically over how he planned to aid me in setting Narnia up for success once more. It didn't take long for him to invite my brother up on the stage and for the both of them to explain that really all they wanted was the best for the country and nothing more (which I knew was a blatant lie).
And even though the people were heartbroken for the loss of their King, I watched as acceptance grew toward these two men. And it made me angry. All of me wished that the crowd would riot and want to impeach the both of them before they could even be coroneted, but it was the opposite rather. Their charms had the people confused.
By the end of the day, it was as if nothing were wrong with them coming in and taking over the country. Their job was accomplished.
The people whom I had thought would stay true, were listening, but they were not staying true to what really mattered. They were true to me, but I was feeding them lies...
Later that week…
"This really is a dreadful dress," Emily murmured as she laced the back of the black gown I was to wear to the funeral that evening.
I stared at myself in the mirror, knowing that I had to have looked like an awful mess. Ever since I had learned that they were bringing Caspian's body to the memorial, the realization hit me. He had to be dead.
"I am so sorry, Rosalie," she whispered, grabbing a black veil that lay on the vanity behind her.
I couldn't speak. I could hardly say anything. His body. His cold body was going to be laid out in front of me and I was almost certain that I would not be able to contain myself. Caspian saved me. Caspian was my best friend. The only memory I still had of him was his ring that was enclosed in the far back of my vanity drawer. He was dead…that was the only option at this point.
She placed the veil atop of my head and placed it over my eyes. It was nowhere near as long as the one I had worn just a few months prior to the day, when Caspian and I had been married. It was still thick enough to where if anyone looked at me, they would not see my tears.
A knock could be heard from the door, but I only knew of it because Emily was soon dragging me toward the exit. Without another glance in the mirror, I was exiting my vanity.
"You are being offered to see the body," she whispered to me," If that is too much-"
"No," I stopped her and turned my head toward her," I want to see him."
It seemed like eternity, but eventually I found myself standing in the grand hall of the castle. In front of me stood a casket that was adorned with many types of flowers and such, a crown placed on the top. I found it curious that the casket was closed.
General came walking up to me," Do you believe me now?" he asked, motioning toward the casket.
Not making eye contact with him, I looked over at the casket," I will believe you when I see him."
"I don't believe you will be doing that dear sister," Jacob said, somewhat somberly as he placed a hand on my shoulder.
I rolled my shoulder out of his grasp before saying," And why's that?"
"The medics say that his injuries were much too brutal to be shown to the public."
"But surely," I argued, looking my brother straight in the eye through my veil," They will allow it for me."
"Rosalie-" Jacob argued, pulling me away from the casket.
"Please Jacob," I looked at him, my eyes bulging with tears. If I wanted anything in the world, it was to see my husband, gory or not, one last time.
For a brief moment, as my brother's hazel eyes stared into my own, looking straight into my heart. I thought that he would allow me to see my love once more, but he merely shook his head. There was no smartness in his tone, in fact, he said nothing, but simply turned on his heel and began walking alongside General. As they left, some more of the servants came up to me to lead me to where my seat would be for the service.
However, I was no idiot.
Jacob's ploy was very clever. He was a brilliant liar and for some reason, I felt unsure about this whole plot. For some reason, my instinct was shouting at me to do something. As the servants lead me along, thinking I was too unstable to be able to walk on my own, I immediately broke out of their grasp and ran with all my might toward the casket.
I had to see him.
I needed proof.
With tears in my eyes, I threw open the latch that kept it closed and then threw open the top of the casket. My heart sank as I saw his clothing. The same riding gear he had worn that same day when he left to fight these monsters. His skin was the same coloring as it was when he were alive, but his face was covered. It may have been useless, this may have been all I needed was his clothing to see that it was him, but my hand reached up for the veil that covered his own face.
And my heart fluttered.
"Lady Rosalie!" the servants were in a fluster as they swarmed around me, but I wanted to jump for joy.
"It's not him!" I yelled, a smile growing on my face," Caspian's not dead! He's still somewhere! He has to be!"
"What do you-"
It didn't take long for all them to recognize that thought the man that lay in the casket may have resembled my husband greatly, it was obviously not him. This fellow was not nearly as, ahem, good looking, if I do say so, as Caspian. His skin, now that I more closely saw it, was not nearly as dark.
"Rosalie!" Emily exclaimed running toward me and I immediately embraced her.
"He's still alive!" I exclaimed again," There's still hope."
She looked right at me and said," This is wonderful news!"
Before the celebration could get out of hand, I noticed that Jacob and General both had re-entered the room, fury written on their faces. Immediately, I broke away from Emily and stared hard at them, lifting my veil from my face.
"You thought you could get away with this?" I challenged Jacob, raising my brow.
He snarled at me, hardly finding the words to speak.
General spoke for him," You've only dug your own grave, Rosalie. This was very foolish for you to do."
"I would be so bold to say that it would be the other way around, General," I growled at him," You are the foolish one. This only means that Caspian must still be living somewhere, which means that he is somewhere working hard to come back to us."
Jacob smiled at this," I wouldn't be so sure of that, sister. Enjoy the rest of today and this evening, Rosalie, because tomorrow it will be you that explains why the dear King is not dead. It will be you that explains how you faked his death to get more attention."
"That's not true and you-"
"I told you it was a bad idea," Penelope snarled at Jacob as she appeared in her own black attire next to him from the stairway," I told you!"
"Shut up!" he attacked her before turning to me," It's not like lying isn't one of your many talents, Rosalie. What's once more?"
That was the problem.
I wouldn't lie anymore. In fact, I was determined that by the time the next day rolled around, I would no longer be in Telmar. I would be on my quest to find Caspian with or without the assistance from anyone else.
No longer would I be his little puppet.
Author's Note: There it is! I actually still have quite a few more chapters planned out…I have a feeling that this story is going to be much longer than the first one, so stay tuned! Also, make sure you tell me what you think :)