The army was on the march. There
were three great contingents: one of talking animals, who had stayed
in Narnia; one of centaurs and other magical people, who had stayed
to the north of Narnia, though it was cold there; and the last were
of fauns, many of whom, had until recently, spy on the evil witch.
And above everyone else there was Aslan, who was present everywhere.
The sun was out of the clouds, and their was a rainbow to guide them
to their ultimate destination. Only the centaurs and like actually
had battle gear, the rest of them relied on their fur, and whatever
things they could muster out of their homes. The centaurs were often
going hither and young, to tell any people that Aslan had arrived.
Generally this meant that one group of animals would go towards
Aslan, and one group went away, going to the witch. In general,
beavers, centaurs, and all upstanding went towards Aslan. Where as
foxes, wolfs, and other thoroughly nasty types went to the witch.
While there were a few exceptions, in both directions, overall the
lines had been drawn.
But one area was the exception:
underground did not contribute any to either side.
While other members of the Army
would skip, or walk, Aslan moved at a sedate pace, all on his own, as
if marching to the beat of another drummer. Gradually, others moved
in time with lion, even if they could not help it. The Lion was
chewing out orders, some softly given, some a bit more harshly, but
even the lion most gentle voice was a great deal softer than the
witches. Eddie would have recognized it, and the rest of the
children, would scream and moan from the witches treatment.
At first only Peter was ahead with
the lion. He was taking orders from him, and listened to the sound of
“Why am I one who was picked out
of so many others? And why am I in what looks to be somewhere in the
Northwest what looks to be Europe or England? Why am I not in Africa,
with all of the rest of my ancestors?” confessed Peter.
“If you were truly African, you
might well be there. But you were chosen because you are American,
and as such, you are about half German and English, and one half
African. And I am not hard of an African group. Because it's me that
shows you, and I come from to families: one from Northwest, and the
other from what could said to be semitic in nature.”
“When did that happen?”
“Only in the blink of an eye by
my standards. You might have been African, and seeing many different
forms than these, but that was not what happened. For a very long
time, the Africans and Europeans were separate, with only the fathers
from Europe mixing with the mothers of African descent. Then it
exploded, and you could not tell who was European, and who was
African. Though people tried to figure it out, mostly by skin color,
which actually was not a reliable way of telling. Me people who think
they are European, have African blood, and many people who look
African have European genes. It was different in European, but not by
much. People have been mixing for a very long time on European
Peter did not did not completely
understand, but he was trying. He remembered that his grandfather was
in fact white, though he didn't think much about it. But what he did
understand, was that all of the races were in fact the same. He
looked at his feet, and tried to say something, but could not spit it
out. It was as if it was a blown in the throat, and he could not
“So what to we do now, is this a
place filled with strangers?”
“This place has happened many
times to me different groups of boys and girls. You're not the first,
and you will not be the last.”
This Peter understood with great
clarity. He and his merry troop were not the first and were not the
last, but instead part of an endless cycle, as if dozens of children
were going to go out to the theater, and come back and think of them
selves as King or Queen. Only every one would think that there story
was unique, because it was exactly the same as anyone else's story.
Looked out, and stared straight
into a ravine, it was a long step, and he realized they had stopped
here for an excellent reason. It was a long way down, but thought he
heard voices from down below, they were strange because they did not
sound human, but feral, as if made by a cat.
“What is below?” Inquired
Peter, listening for an utterance which was not coming.
“You have to prove yourself, and
only you.” replied the line.
Down below there were two voices,
with a great deal of viciousness within them. While he did not hear
them distinctly, he was sure that they were planning something awful,
and he realized that he and only he could stop them. The tail would
stop for it had really begun, if he did not do something about it.
“What do I do?” Ask Peter.
“That's your decision, but
realize everything else will flow from the decision that you make.
You can be heroic, you can be stealthy. And all sorts of other
choices. But it is only for you to judge. No one else will make it
“ I read a book by CS Lewis, but
your saying that it is my choice what happens in these sets of books.
And whatever I decide will be how it is for my two sisters, and
“Your brother has made one
choice, and will make a second choice, but it will be your story.
Because this is the moment that defines what it will be like. For all
times, in all places. You may have read all of the books, but now it
comes time to make a decision. And it is yours to make."
“So I could, for example, go down
and join the witch, rather than you?”
“Yes you could, but remember the
rest of the world will make its own decisions. And you might not like
them, even a small bit.”
He remembered something, about a
person who choose between being fair, and going on with her life. He
thought this was in the second book, but he was not sure. At first he
thought it would fine to look so handsome, because just now he would
be popular with the girls. It was a unique prospect. But then he
looked at pictures, and saw that not everything was right with the
world. People who thought he was fine the way he was, did not liking
being so handsome. Though he didn't look at any pictures, there being
none too see, because it was in the next book, he knew right then
that he didn't want that reality.
He also didn't want to reality of
sneaking around, because it would not be a noble thing, and was
noble. He wondered, for an instant, what his younger brother would
do. Then he realized, his brother was not completely formed, and
would do whatever his brother wanted him to do. Thus, it was not just
for himself, but his two sisters, and his younger brother.
Then with reckless abandon, he
went down the ravine, and result to face whatever was there. Many
people would not have made this decision, but Peter was not among
them. So he tried through the thicket which was a little below, and
resolved to face it head on. It was the noble thing to do, and that
The moment he said put in the
brambles, he was caught by surprise. There was teeth in his left arm,
and then in his right. If he had been a little boy, which was not to
long ago, he would have been spliced in too small pieces. But he had
grown up, and faced head-on is problem. He saw a cat as large as
himself, ready to take another piece out of him. But Peter was not
going to give it that chance, and made a gamble, thrusting straight
forward into its throat. But he remembered that there were two, and
he didn't see the other one.
But he heard him, and without
question, without even really reflecting on his actions, turned
around, and with an even strip sliced the cat from stem to stern. And
that was that, though he fumbled with the sword pulling it out of the
brambles. He stood and listened for a third, but there was no third.
There was only the sound of his own breathing. He was alive, and
hail. He didn't know exactly how he did it, but it was done. At his
feet there were two cats, as dead as a door nail, to use the
expression of Dickens.
Then around by his back, there was
another threat, but he knew that this was Aslan, coming to
“You made the right decision.”
Said the lion.
“You could have done this
yourself. Why didn't you?”
“Because then you would not have
known if you could do it yourself.” Replied lion. And that was
that. It was getting late, and Aslan had other things to attend to.
“You done your work well. Now it is time for your sisters do their
work. Can I leave you to set up camp? Give me your sword.”
Peter did so, knowing that he
would arise from being knight, proud of this fact.
Aslan knighted him, and then
handed the sword back. There was no more to referring to Peter, he
was Sir Peter. And that made all of the difference.
So Peter and Aslan climbed their
way out of the thicket, and directed some faun to take care of the
bodies. Once up in the pavilion, they regaled everyone, especially a
naiad and to dyads with tale of how Peter slew is first pair of
tigers, for that is what they were. No one saw Aslan going away, but
they didn't notice that Saundra and Lucy were missing as well. Once
Peter had made a decision, all of the other parts were put in to