From One Sister to Another
Author's Note: I own nothing :)
Chapter Sixteen: From One Sister to Another
Well after the awkwardness had died out and we had gone back to living somewhat of our normal lives inside the How once more, I found Penelope had made her way into the quarters where Lucy, Susan, and I slept. She had perched herself in the middle of the enclosure.
"Done more exploring, have you?" I asked her as she shot her head up at me.
A smile appeared on her face," You could say that. I can't believe this is where Aslan was killed and then resurrected. It's just so surreal to me."
"I think that would be appropriate to say," I answered with a smirk," It is the proof that our storybooks that were forbidden back home…really are true."
"I always knew they were," she told me and smiled with a smile that made me think of her childhood when she was a baby sitting at the edge of the bed and pretending to be Aslan.
"Have you found anything else exciting?" I asked, after the pause in the conversation.
"Not particularly," she replied," Mostly all I can seem to find are tunnels and more tunnels that would take me years to walk all the way through."
I laughed. She sounded so much older than what she actually was; she looked it too. I still couldn't believe the young lady that had developed out of my thirteen year old sister. Her eyes, still tinted green met my own. Her dark brown hair, identical to my own, was strewn about wildly, but her tan face still shone.
"Tunnels similar to those that you found under the castle in Telmar?" I asked shooting her a sideways glance.
Her eyes widened as she looked directly at me," Edmund told you about that?"
I nodded my head in affirmation," Edmund told me most of you ingenious plan as to how you were going to break me out of that prison. I have to say that I could hardly believe it whenever I heard it. Mostly because…I didn't realize you did so much exploring."
"Behind the backs of you and Caspian, of course," she explained to me, her cheeks flushing," But, yes, I did manage to discover the tunnels whenever I was younger."
A small giggle escaped from her lips as she looked at me," It's rather fun being devious, you know."
I laughed at this," As long as you stay out of trouble, it can be loads of fun."
We both went into a fit of laughter as we sat there. I would have never guessed that all those years Penelope would have been out exploring the castle as well. I would have thought that she would be locked in the house, obeying mother's orders. To imagine her coming up with all of these plans…to imagine her growing up…was so strange.
When our laughing was over, I changed the topic to another sort.
"I believe that I never apologized for leaving you all without any sort of warning," I finally said, after recollecting my thoughts," I think I owed it to at least tell you what I was planning."
Penelope's dark eyebrows scrunched together," You shouldn't apologize for that."
"But I should," I countered," You were scared and worried out of your mind about me and I can't help but feel guilty-"
I was interrupted by the sound of chuckles coming from her mouth," Rosalie, please. Mother knew what was going on the whole time. Of course, I was scared at first and I was angry, but later that night, as father was searching frantically in the woods…she told us what Doctor Cornelius had planned for Caspian and that she was only waiting on the day when you would go after him."
I raised my own eyebrow at hearing this…mother deserved so much credit for all of this.
"She ensured both Jacob and I that you would go after Caspian no matter who or what tried to stop you," she explained to me, tucking a stray hair behind her ear," And we believed her."
"This was before father found out of Narnia, you say?" I asked her, making sure that I was still following correctly.
She nodded her head," Yes, of course Jacob would believe it then. The next night was when things went wrong…" she trailed off, breaking her gaze with me.
I desperately wanted to know. I knew what father had told them, but I wanted to hear it from her side of the story. I placed a hand on her arm," Please tell me."
She released a sigh," It was the day after you left. Father returned late that morning from searching all night and went straight to his bedchambers. Mother tried to speaking with him for quite some time and sent Jacob and I away for awhile. Whenever the evening came back around, father had dinner with us, but soon left for another meeting. He told mother that he would be back by a certain time, but when we went to speak more of you and just where you went to…he walked in on us. As if he knew all this time, Rosalie."
There wasn't any possible way that he could have known though…was there? I guess I couldn't exactly rule anything out. He was sly. And very sly at that.
"While we sat on mother's bed and she was explaining just who Caspian was, father came storming into the room with a troop of soldiers behind him. He started yelling at mother and us, calling Jacob and I off of the bed. We scurried off, frightened by what had happened."
"Then father explained that it was you who had told him everything…that you had been sick of keeping a secret from him for so long. He argued that he thought you had run away in fear of us not accepting you, but I knew better than to believe such things," Penelope told me quietly as she told the story," And after that…he took mother. It didn't matter if we believed him or not…he was going to take her regardless. It was horrible watching them take her and even more painful the second when they took you."
"Then what happened to Jacob?" I asked, a certain curiosity in my voice as I asked," What happened to his belief in me?"
She didn't answer for a moment. In fact she didn't do hardly anything at the mention of Jacob. I had to recall her after several moments of silence," Penelope?"
"Oh yes," she replied shaking her head and coming out of her gaze," Jacob…he is…scared of father, Rosalie. You know that all he has wanted is to have father be proud of him. He doesn't know what he is doing, Rosalie. I tried convincing him, but he said that father's story only made sense. There was no possible other way that father could find out…I don't know if Jacob believes it himself though. I think it might be that he is too scared of what would happen to him if he didn't agree with father."
I nodded for it only made sense.
"It wasn't that hard sneaking away from Jacob," she explained to me," He knew that I wanted to go running after you, so for awhile he locked me in the study, but it was foolish on his part to leave the door open briefly as he checked on other things. As soon as he left the door open, I was out. I had been mentally preparing for the days that you were in prison and I really should apologize for letting you stay there so long."
I almost laughed at her apology. Not in a mocking way or rude way, but merely because it was ironic that the savior of myself was apologizing for saving me, in a sense.
"Do not apologize," I answered her," It is because of you that I am still alive today. Do you understand?" I asked, looking right into her eyes, demanding an answer.
She looked right at me and said strongly," Yes. I do."
Penelope had been forced to grow up much too soon. She deserved more than this. She deserved more of a childhood than this. I had heard mostly everything that I had desired to hear from her and with the small amount of innocence she had left in mind, I finally made a promise to her.
"I will never make you speak of them again," I told her, making this promise to myself as well," We will never forget what has happened in our past, but we shall live with the fact that Jacob has made wrong choices, but he is still our brother. I could not ask you to relive any more of this plan for I know it pains you, as well as myself, to relieve the betrayal of our family."
She nodded her head with agreement, " I agree."
There was another break in the conversation, but she soon filled it," You know that I tried to save Doctor Cornelius as well."
Doctor Cornelius had almost completely slipped my mind. My tutor, my teacher, and my friend…had it not been for him I would have never escaped. Guilt surged through me as I thought of Doctor Cornelius, probably killed by the Telmarines as well.
"You do not have to tell me," I assured her, quietly.
"No," she answered," He's alright. He left me a letter…I believe that I dropped it in the scurry, but he claimed to have a place where he knew he could go to and not be found. I haven't the slightest where he could be, but Rosalie, he was confident that the would be safe."
Relief rushed through me at the sound of this. I hoped that Doctor Cornelius really had found a safe place to hide because the Telmarines would more than likely kill him had they found him. He had a death sentence on his head just as every other rebellious Narnian creature.
"That is good to hear," I replied with a smile, recollecting on the memories with the old man.
"I thought so," she answered, returning my smile.
We sat in silence for a moment as all of the information said sat in. The story that we had lived in so far replayed throughout my head.
"Things have changed so much, Rosalie," Penelope said as I leaned back, trying to relax for the first time in weeks.
"I know they have," I answered," I know."
"Will they ever go back to the way they were?" she asked me, rolling onto her stomach," You and I running through the courtyard with Caspian chasing us? The adventures we would dream up? Do you ever think that those days will return to us?"
I looked up to the dirt ceiling overhead and examined the roots and holes going throughout it. She proposed a great question that I did not know the answer to. I assumed that those days were long in our past…the days of peace and innocence…yes those were only the days of a child. We were being forced to grow up so soon that I doubted we would ever see such days.
"I cannot answer that for sure," I said to her faintly, running my fingers through my hair," I think that the days of our childhood are over."
She rolled over to her back and looked at the ceiling with me," Will you and Caspian ever become friends again?"
She could have stabbed me with a knife and that would have felt less blunt than those words.
I was shocked by the words that came out of her mouth. She had already been able to pick up on this fact that Caspian and I were not as close as we used to be. I could safely assume that she pieced it together after she had seen Peter and I together as well. The boldness of her question was what surprised me the most. It came out of nowhere, seemingly.
"Penelope, I don't-"
"Rosalie, surely you can forgive him," she interrupted, shooting me a look," I have seen the way you two look at each other now. There is something missing…something wrong."
I didn't know if I could ever fully forgive him. There was a piece deep inside my heart that was still devoted to rebuilding my friendship with Caspian. There was still hope, but the more I was around Peter, the less that hope prevailed. She was right…there was something missing.
"It's hard to say," I sighed," I don't know."
"Perhaps, you should stop focusing so much on the High King and focus more on your first close friend," she told me and the words stung coming from her," You know I saw you kiss him. I heard what you said about Caspian and how you felt bad about all this…I heard everything Rosalie and if I know you then I know that you still love Caspian. Even if you wont admit it."
" Where is this coming from, Penelope? I think it is uncalled for," my mouth dropped open and my body tensed up once more, I felt it was appropriate that I add," I never loved Caspian."
"You lie!" she argued back," It would be a far-fetched lie to say that you never cared for him in such a way. I saw the way the two of you looked at each other and it's still there even today, hidden underneath the lies you have created. I know you Rosalie-"
"Just how well?" I asked, angered by her accusation," You must not know me well enough to know that I have discovered a new love for the High King. He was there for me in times when Caspian was not."
My own words surprised me.
She scoffed this," Oh, Rosalie! Can't you just stop it already? If it weren't for Caspian, I would argue that you wouldn't be here. He's saved you so many other times."
"Penelope, I don't like the way you are treating me! You haven't any right to say such a thing. I don't know what's gotten into you."
"How can you love someone you've barely known, Rosalie?" she fired back," And how can you destroy a friendship over one little act?"
At the time that this conversation happened, I was so furious with my sister for doubting me that I stood up and stormed out of the room, but now as I sit here looking back on it…I realize that she was right. I would not learn this until later, however.
Author's Note: Alright, so here's just a little sister to sister bonding time. Thanks to reviewers! Love you! Check out the poll on my profile :) Next chapter will be up tomorrow, for sure!
Also, I feel it's necessary that I comment on Doctor Cornelius. I apologize that I have not included him very much into this story. As we learned in this chapter, he has safely gone into hiding for the time being. I know this does not follow the book nor the movie and I apologize for that. It only helps the story flow better.
We've got more action coming! Promise!