Better get it over with as soon as possible. I turned and quickly walked back to Caspian. Before he knew what was happening, I reached up and pulled his head down. This isn't what I pictured when I imagined my first schoolgirl kiss, I thought, and quickly pressed my lips to his.
It wasn't a passionate kiss. Had it lasted a mere moment, it probably could have been called "a chaste peck on the lips." But, being that it was of some importance, it had to last rather longer than that.
I could tell Caspian wasn't expecting anything like this. There was a quiet collective "Ohhh..." from the crowd. I winced internally. Oh dear. Now they'll all think we're in love. But it can't really be helped. This had to be done.
We stayed like that for another few seconds, one of my arms gently pulling Caspian's head down, both of his at his sides. Then I pulled away. Caspian stood for a moment, and then pulled me into a convulsive hug. Two things immediately struck me. First, he was quite a strong young man. Second, I was very short compared to him. I'd had to stand on tiptoe to kiss him and his head was lying on my shoulder, much as Lucy's had been on Trumpkin's when she hugged him.
A bit reluctantly, I put my arms around him. Fortunately my face was away from the crowd, so they couldn't see me roll my eyes slightly. It was clear to everyone that Caspian was rather desperate to hold on to me as long and hard as he could.
It is definitely a good thing that we are for sure and certain leaving, I thought. I don't know how the others would explain the sudden disappearance of their sister. I imagined Peter. "I'm sorry, Mother, but a newly-crowned King from another world fancied Susan and decided to keep her."
I stifled a chuckle and smiled instead.
A dozen feet away, I could hear my siblings talking to each other in low voices. I don't believe they intended me to hear their comments.
"I'm sure when I'm older again I'll remember why..." Lucy ventured carefully.
"I'm already on my way to being 'older again,'" Edmund said with a hint of a laugh in his voice, "and I don't think I want to remember."
I smiled again.
Caspian finally released me, and after one last look between us I walked back to my siblings. I couldn't manage to wipe my smile at their words off my face, even though I knew they would take it as being a result of the kiss. I reached down and took Lucy's hand.
Then I looked at Aslan one final time, hoping against hope, praying that he would know why I'd kissed Caspian, willing him to read the reason in my eyes. I didn't want him to think badly of me, that I'd been trying to play with the new king's feelings or manipulate him.
He met my eyes and gave one slow nod. Relief washed over me, and the tension drained away.
He knows. Even if no one else does, he knows. And that's all I needed.
And with that, the four of us turned and walked through the tree—Edmund, Peter, me, Lucy—and straight into a busy London subway.
I looked down. Gone was the beautiful blue dress, replaced by my stuffy uniform. I could feel that my hair was no longer in curls, but once more pulled back as it had been before we'd entered Narnia. A quick glance showed that my siblings too were once more wearing their own uniforms.
A train slowed to a halt in front of us. The doors slid open and people began to hurry in and out. We simply stood, locked in place for a timeless moment, thinking over all that had just happened.
"Aren't you coming, Phyllis?" A light, slightly perplexed voice broke our reverie, and we all looked into the train.
Phyllis...oh, that's right.
It was the spectacled boy, the boy from the newspaper stand, the boy who'd told me he went to Hendon House. He looked genuinely confused. My siblings and I looked at each other, then spun to grab our various bags and suitcases and bundles. We hurried into the train next to the boy.
"Do you think there's any way we can get back?" Edmund said rather desperately, pawing through his satchel. We all looked at him with puzzled expressions. "I've left my new torch in Narnia!"
As the doors closed, we all laughed—even the spectacled newspaper stand boy, albeit a bit nervously.
Phyllis, I mused as the train began to move. I suppose it's not such a horrible name. I looked up at the boy. Perhaps England isn't so bad after all.
And I smiled.
The subtitles say "I think he means you two." Grammar plus common sense says "That's silly." Peter and Susan already knew they weren't coming back, so of course Aslan meant their younger siblings. Plus, using "to" fits the book. Other lines were altered as well, for various reasons. Link to full AN, with explanations and thoughts, is on my profile under the blurb for this story.
Susan smiles a lot in this. Huh.
And yes, those last two paragraphs are an implied pairing. Susan/Geeky Boy FTW. Because "Phyllis" by Dearheart is entirely awesome.