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Having New Eyes

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The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes
— Marcel Proust.

Lucy’s making the most of a slow day at sea. It’s fun to relax on the deck of the Dawn Treader and have nothing more to worry about than watching the sun glint off waves in a thousand different shades of blue. It's been a good while since she saw Caspian, and even longer since she saw her brother, but that’s not unusual these days. As soon as the thought crosses her mind, the pair in question spill out on deck together as if summoned, roaring with laughter over some joke or other.

Neither pays her any attention. She thinks, tucked away as she is, her brother and Caspian don’t notice her as they move towards the ship’s rail. Ed is clattering on about something or other; they’re standing so close to each other they may as well be one person. Something about the situation makes Lucy feel this might be a private thing; she moves to turn away, to avoid intruding. Before she does, she sees Caspian stop talking and listen to something Ed’s saying.

After weeks spent around Caspian where it’s been almost impossible to shut him up, it’s interesting to see Ed can interrupt him mid-flow and silence him completely. And, forgetting in the moment this isn’t something she’s meant to see, Lucy finds herself grinning at the idea of perhaps being able to tease her brother about it later.

Forgetting also that she’d chosen to turn away, Lucy looks back towards them. Neither has moved. Curiosity piqued, Lucy lingers a little longer. Seeing Caspian lean to cup her brother’s face with one hand, while bringing the other up to smooth Ed’s hair, she frowns in confusion. She knows Ed and Caspian are close, closer than Ed is with Pete in some ways. But this looks different; she doesn’t think Pete’s ever done this with his best friend. What’s going on?

(And, perhaps more important still, why has Ed not said a word to her about this — Ed, who usually tells her everything?)

Still trying to process what this means, Lucy sees Caspian lean in to kiss her brother full on the mouth in a way that suggests they’ve been doing this for a while. This, in itself, is a shock. But when she sees Ed kiss him back in similar fashion, Lucy hardly knows how to react. People are put in prison for this sort of thing at home, she knows; she heard her parents talking about it now and then, when they didn’t know she could hear them. It’s never made much sense to her; why send people to prison because they love one another? Above all, this is her brother; the idea of Ed being sent to prison just for a kiss makes her want to vomit.

When Caspian moves his hand to Ed’s back, pulling him closer to him, without bothering to break the kiss first, Lucy decides it’s past time to be elsewhere. These two need their privacy.

She must do some hard thinking now, anyway, because she doesn’t know what to do. It’s been very clear, ever since she and the others returned to help Caspian reclaim his throne, that their tenure in Narnia isn’t permanent; Aslan doesn’t let them stay for long. But at the same time, nothing she’s seen between Ed and Caspian today suggests this is something that’ll just blow over. Lucy can only hope she’s lucky enough for Ed to talk to her about this; she’ll do her best to let it happen in his own time.

And that’s the long game. Meanwhile, it looks as if it’ll be up to her to run interference between Ed, Caspian, and Eustace. Because if Eustace learns what she’s just discovered then there’ll be nothing but trouble, and she wants to protect Ed from it if she can.