Episode 22: The First Meeting
“I'm glad Tadkeeta's awake,” said Tawaki as he and Dustin walked down the Rue Fait-des-Choses, “but I really miss Kamkenta.” Tadkeeta had been facing a Gary Stu on Ramandu's island, and the Stu had seized the Stone Knife, sending them both to sleep. Agents Kamkenta and Omicron had flown their TARDIS to the Utter East and only Omicron had returned.
They walked in silence a while. Then, Dustin said “Congrats on your getting married today.”
They reached their TARDIS, which was just across the street from Tour Prend Pion pawnshop (which some prankster had relabelled “The Silver Gate”; Tawaki chalked it up to the Cult of the Smut Carver).
“Now,” said Tawaki, “I have a few hours before it's time to go down to the chapel where it will-”
The cloister bell rang. Dustin flew over to the PPC Console. “It's Caspian,” he reported, “thirteen centuries early.”
“Thirteen centuries early?” echoed Tawaki in disbelief.
“To fall in love with Susan.”
“Jadis in a block of ice!”
Susan had had enough. As much as she loved Cair Paravel she could not stand one more insolent suitor trying to win her heart with foolishness. The latest pair had been the absolute worst, two brothers strutting about like peacocks boasting about the prosperity of their fathers kingdom telling her exactly how much each of the jewels in their treasury would be worth. She couldn’t take it anymore.
So like any sane human being Susan had faked near death (for when she faked regular illness they attempted to comfort her with even more stories of their wealth and their obviously imagined greatness on the field of battle) and fled the castle.
“It's a good thing noone sees the flying glass formation behind her,” said Dustin. For their TARDIS was flying under a SEP-field, keeping pace with Susan.
“She's riding a Talking Horse named Laurencia,” said Tawaki.
“Shall we recruit?”
“When the proper time comes. And I think the princes should learn a little responsibility from the Flowers, too.”
“We have some time,” said Dustin, “so what say we play a game of chess?”
“Not enough time,” replied Tawaki. “Maybe a hand of Crazy Eights?”
“Sure.” Dustin got a card deck and they started to play a hand. An indeterminate amount of time later, the loudspeaker began picking up the fic again.
“Never fails,” grumbled Tawaki. “Narrative Laws of Comedy have never let me finish a game during a mission.”
As she thought about it there had been some nice young men who had come her way but who would want to marry someone who was just nice? Susan smiled though as she thought of the rigorous sorting process that had developed in Cair Paravel since she had become of age. Most of the time she didn’t even have to meet the young men to know if they were right for her since her siblings had developed the talent of doing much of the work for her. Peter was always weeding out the weak, Edmund the weak brained, and Lucy the weak hearted.
Two boxes served as a scene divider, and then Susan was lost in her thoughts on how the Popinjays were looking to seal an alliance. She was so distracted she did not see Caspian in her path.
“And it seems,” said Tawaki, “that Laurencia lacks horse sense.”
Susan had Laurencia halt just in time.
Susan’s surprise had left her unprepared for this circumstance and she was thrown roughly from her saddle hitting her head on a small rock nearby. Her vision blurry, Susan watched as the stranger tried to calm the overly excited horse before the blackness overtook her. Sometime later Susan awoke to find a dark haired man sitting near her with his hand on her ankle. From this angle she could only see that he had dark hair and dark clothing but the foreignness of such a thing was enough to make her weary.
Susan Pevensie. Human female. Canon. 33% OOC
She slowly grabbed her dagger that had been at her waist and held it to the man’s throat.
“Declare yourself immediately.” She demanded in her most authoritative voice.
The man slowly lifted his arms in surrender but Susan did not relinquish the dagger that she held at his pulse.
A soft voice answered her with the flavor of lands far away. “I mean you no harm my lady. I am Prince Caspian of Telmar and I am here to seek an audience with High King Peter.”
Susan rolled her eyes and dropped the dagger from his neck. Surely this was yet another suitor. A suitor from Telmar no less…she had not thought that news that she was of marriageable age and a reputed beauty had gotten that far.
“Pulling... Caspian... from... the future,” noted Dustin. “Making... Telmar.. far... from Narnia.”
Susan said she would take Caspian prisoner for making her hit her head.
“For being in the wrong place at the wrong time?” aske Tawaki. “Not very much like Queen Susan.”
Susan Pevensie. Human female. Canon. 42% OOC
Caspian then lowered his eyes to her ankle and went to claim it again in his hands. Susan was so taken off guard by the feeling of his hands on her in such an intimate setting that her dagger went again to his neck.
“Unhand me Telmarine! I shall suffer no tricks. You shall not bind my feet in an effort to keep me captive!”
The prince let out a small breath and a laugh at the same time turning to look at her . “I have no intention of either situation my lady I was merely checking to see if your ankle was broken or merely twisted.”
It transpired that Caspian was not there to woo Susan, and indeed thought she and Peter were husband and wife.
“You and thirty thousand fantards,” grumbled Dustin.
“Oh, they don't think they're married,” said Tawaki. “They simply assume incestuous orgies.”
Caspian said he was not interested in Susan, who said she was relieved. But then...
Susan tried to take a step forward towards her horse and nearly collapsed in pain as she put her weight on her injured foot.
Before she could fall she felt two strong arms around her waist supporting her. She was shocked by the closeness of him. His reflexes were fantastic she would give him that not to mention his chest…
Susan was not the only one affected by their proximity. Caspian had thus far been attracted to the young Queen thinking her eyes were the most beautiful he had ever seen but having her in his arms shook something inside of him and he was quite reluctant to let her go.
Susan shook her head slightly telling herself to focus more. Giving herself a little more space within his encircling arms she managed to breathe a slight “Thank you.”
A spatial wrench yanked the TARDIS to Cair Paravel, where Susan was leading Caspian.
“Will you be all right?” asked Dustin.
“I took my anti-Bloodwrath medication this morning,” said Tawaki.
Caspian helped Susan onto her horse and retrieved his from a nearby tree. They rode for nearly an hour until Susan brought her horse to a stop. Caspian rode up next to her. She pointed over his shoulder. “There it is. Cair Paravel. Not bad eh?”
Caspian looked at the castle and was momentarily speechless. This was not the stone castle and fortress that he had grown up with. This was a Palace. He couldn’t truly decide which was more beautiful the woman beside him or the Palace. They seemed to fit one another perfectly.
“Something” changed in Caspian, and they went into the palace.
Tawaki pulled a copy of The Voyage of the Dawn Treader out of his pocket. Dustin had a copy of The Horse and his Boy. They dropped the SEP-field around the TARDIS. Tawaki set the disguise to mask his Borg implants, Dustin activated a SEP-field around his wings, and they exited.
“Get behind us, bad romance!” they chorused. “Get behind us, temporal distortions. Get behind us, out of characterness. The power of Lewis compels you!”
An author wraith materialized outside the TARDIS.
“Author waith!” yelled Tawaki. “Thou art charged with possessing Queen Susan, with making her ride a Talking Horse in peacetime (thanks for nothing, Adamson), with pulling Caspian from the future, with plotting to trivialize Ramandu's daughter, with making Telmar far enough from Narnia for word of the new regime not to have reached there, with making Susan feign near-death, with making her weary of a stranger's foreignness, with stripping a Talking Horse of all sense, and with seriously infuriating PPC Agents!” Tawaki and Dustin plunged their books into the wraith, which tore apart under the stresses of canon exposure.
Dustin went to meet the princes while Tawaki went to meet Laurencia.
“Who are you?” asked the Horse.
“I am Agent Tawaki Penguin of the Protectors of the Plot Continuum.”
“'Protectors'?” asked Laurencia.
“You noticed how things have been odd lately?”
“Like how it seemed as though my head were filled with fluff, and Susan was riding me in peacetime. And I'm not up on my international affairs, but last I heard there was noone named Caspian in the Telmarine royal family.”
“Well, when things like that happen, we go into the scene and take down whatever is messing things up.”
“Did you hear what was going on by Cair Paravel?”
“Yes, but I did not understand.”
“An author-wraith had possessed Queen Susan.”
“Does this happen often?” asked Laurencia.
“Yes. We just wipe everybody's memories when we are done, so that they can continue to function normally.”
Laurentia was interested. “Can I join you?”
“I am here for no other purpose than to recruit.”
Tawaki called Dustin. Tawaki led Laurencia to the TARDIS.
“What is that?” asked Laurencia.
“That,” said Tawaki, “is a TARDIS. It is what we travel in.”
Tawaki led Laurencia in. “It's bigger on the inside than the outside!” she exclaimed. “How can this be?”
“Later,” said Tawaki.
Dustin entered the TARDIS with Prince Gaius, Prince Gustavus, and Caspian, and closed the doors.
“It's bigger on the inside than the out,” observed Gaius.
“My sister Liz is the only person I know who can explain,” said Dustin. “Well, her and the Disentangler.”
Tawaki activated the newly-installed Mass Neuralyzer to wipe the Narnians' memories. Dustin piloted the TARDIS to Cair Paravel some years after The Voyage of the Dawn Treader and activated the SEP-field. Tawaki neuralyzed Caspian and opened the door. Caspian staggered out. Dustin closed the door and flew the TARDIS to PPC-HQ, Nouvelle Calédonie, and into the town's newly-opened TARDIS dock. He dropped the SEP-fields around the ship and around his wings and opened the door. He was explaining his genetics to the recruits as they exited, and not succeeding very well (dragons being insentient in Narnia).
“Tawaki?” said a blonde in a black slit skirt, a black t-shirt, and Implausible Crossovers flashpatches.
“Yes?” Tawaki thought he knew her, but could not place where.
“I'm the Disentangler.” Her voice carried more than a note of frustration “And before you ask, I was in a Lord of the Rings/Forgotten Realms crossover and Legolas shot me thrice.” This was her fifth regeneration; over the years, she had been: electrocuted by Emperor Palpatine, carved up and left for dead in a DIS cell by Twp'atwt, infected with Krytos, roasted by Visser Three's Balrog morph, and now this.
“How is The Agent?” asked Tawaki. “Is he all right?”
“Yes; he was not harmed. Incidentally, he will be transferred to Temporal Offenses to work with you. Dustin, while Tawaki and Tadkeeta are on their honeymoon.”
“Speaking of which,” said Tawaki, “the ceremony's in half an hour (unless TFTB have sent Tadkeeta on a mission).”
“I will see you then.”
For the masochistic among you, the fic can be found at http://www.fanfiction.net/s/4337466/1/The_First_Meeting .