Other Fan Fiction ❯ Hybrid ❯ Heaven (theme 7) ( Chapter 10 )

[ T - Teen: Not suitable for readers under 13 ]
Hybrid: Heaven (theme 7) [rough draft], a DreamWorks' How to Train Your Dragon fanfic series by Raberba girl
List of themes by AngieChild, Variation 1 for the 100ThemesChallenge group on DeviantArt

A/N: I guess that the canon character I keep trying to debut must really not want to get written or something, because he keeps throwing all these other vignette ideas in my way every time I try to introduce him. -.- Maybe he's mad at me for making him look uncool. So instead, have yet another OC. *sigh*

Told from the perspective of my new princess OC. Warning for NON-sexual nudity, I guess?

o.o.o

The morning of my Cleansing is a cool one. I know that the river will be freezing, but I am the Third Princess and will perform my duty without flaw.

When we reach the river, the eunuchs take up their posts and turn their eyes away from me. My maidens undress me and unbind my hair. I step into the water, which is every bit as cold as I expected, but I begin my meditation and show no sign of discomfort.

My bathing proceeds in peace for no more than ten minutes before one of the eunuchs lets out a cry. I am the Third Princess, this should not disturb me, but it's so unexpected that I look before I can stop myself.

Then I keep looking, for there are marvelous creatures in the sky. They fly like birds, but they have no feathers, and even the smaller one is larger than a bird. The other is so large and magnificent that I am filled with awe. "It is an omen," I say. "I am blessed to be visited during my Cleansing by these lords from the sky."

I am stunned, outraged, when the eunuchs do not give heed to my speech. They are raising their voices in alarm, lifting their weapons toward the sky--

"STOP." They pause and turn to me, their faces ridiculous with shock. I am too angry to berate them, but Iris my Senior Maiden does so for me.

"How dare you raise arms against exalted messengers. Humble yourself," she commands.

The eunuchs lower their weapons and prostrate themselves. I lift my hand toward them to forgive them, but then I turn my face away because I am too disgusted to look upon them further.

The sky-lords have landed. I see now that the larger carries two humans on his back, a woman and a child. I can tell at a glance that the female is a commoner and beneath my interest, so I look at the little boy instead. He has immediately rushed to greet the smaller sky-lord, a beautiful young jet creature who returns the greeting with great affection. Their interaction is so loving and intimate, and the peridot-eyed boy moves and speaks in so much the same way as his jet companion, that I realize he is no base human. They are equals, bonded as brothers.

The two sky-lord children swim right up to me with no reverence, and for the first time in a very long time, I remember what it is like to feel humbled. "I greet you, young lords." I incline my head, and my maidens bow.

The young lords chirr at me in the language of the sky. Jet sniffs at my skin and sneezes at the scent of perfume; Peridot is studying me. From the lack of surprise on his face, I know that he has seen an unclothed woman before; from his curious frown, I know that my body differs from what he is familiar with. I look to the commoner woman who serves the sky-lords, and discern from her face, the similar features and her expression of maternal anxiety, that she is Peridot's mother. Or perhaps that is too high a title to grace her with, but it is her body which bore him. Though she is a servant, she is blessed.

Peridot has turned away from me toward Primrose, who smiles at the honor of his attention. He seems intrigued by her sash, running his palm across the smooth dry silk and poking at the sash's tail which trails gracefully in the water. He exclaims and murmurs in his sky language. Then Jet calls to him and he loses interest once again, abandoning us mortals in order to chase his winged brother through the shallows.

The great sky-lord approaches, and I bow to him. My maidens cannot prostrate themselves in the water, so they cover their faces. The four-winged lord examines me, sneezes just like the younger lord did, and preens a lock of my hair. I tremble, delighted and amazed that he should honor me with such a blessing.

His servant speaks to me in a strange language and strokes her hand over the lord's scales. I am astonished at her audacity, but the sky-lord takes no notice of her touch, shifting instead to examine Iris and then Carnation. Shy Carnation is overcome with the honor of his attention and grows faint; Iris is quick to catch her.

The sky-lord squawks in a worried way, and my heart fills with warmth at the great benevolence of his concern. His servant lays her hand on him again and expresses concern also, seeming anxious for some reason. "You need not worry about my maiden. She will recover." I bow my head to the sky-lord again, and he moves away to recline on the shore.

The human woman accompanies him, and now I see my mistake. Not only does he suffer her touch without censure, but he preens her hair lovingly and is pleased at her intimate proximity as she settles beside him. He loves her, perhaps she is his wife, and the two young sky-lords are their children.

There is now no need for meditation as my maidens resume bathing me, for my Cleansing is already infinitely blessed, my Vision a shared one between myself and my entire retinue. Our eyes are drawn back to the young sky-lords. The boy Peridot catches hold of his brother's tail, or more likely Jet has allowed himself to be caught; the little black sky-lord whirls on his companion and pounces at him, knocking him into the water. Lavender is very young and can't help a giggle as she watches.

The sky-lord children splash about for a minute, then Jet abruptly goes still, his attention caught by something in deeper water. He looks just like my favorite of the hunting cats, so I know he is hunting as well. Peridot knows it also, and sits aside. He builds a palace of rocks until Jet is successful in his hunt and brings a fish to him. Peridot lifts the still-living creature toward his mouth - but we are all startled when a human cry rings out. It is so unexpected that I'm afraid it will shatter the Vision, but it does not.

It is the sky-lord's wife, who rushes to her human son, scolding him as if he was an ordinary child. He protests, and his brother joins him indignantly, but the great sky-lord is calm as he joins his family and breathes out flame. I bow at this expression of his might, and my maidens cover their faces. The sky-bride looks at us for a moment in confusion, as if she does not understand the respect we pay to her husband. He must adore her indeed, to love her so much in her ignorance.

The bride cooks the fish in her husband's fire and gives it to her son. Jet has caught more fish for himself, and the brothers recline together as they eat. The cooked fish and the uncooked fish consumed together are a sign.

"The two worlds have been joined," says Iris. "Blessed is he who has found so much to love in an earthly being; blessed is she who was chosen; blessed are they who play and love and fly together as one, for whom the chasm between worlds is no obstacle."

"Our lady is blessed to witness it," my maidens respond. My title is that of Third Princess, but in my heart I know that I am now Queen, for no other has been blessed with such a momentous Vision.

When my Cleansing is complete, I leave the water and am dressed in my new finery on the shore. The young sky-lords approach curiously. Jet soon loses interest, lying down at his brother's feet, but Peridot watches as I am wrapped in silks and jewels. When my maidens begin to adorn me with flowers, he crawls behind Honeysuckle and takes up the two blossoms she dropped, quickly retreating with them back to his brother. He lays the blooms on Jet's head. The little black sky-lord shakes his head to dislodge them and eats one of the flowers, but then spits it out in disgust. Peridot takes up the other and tucks it into his own hair.

"I wonder," Lavender says longingly, "will they accept such a lowly gift?"

"We will offer, and they will accept or reject as they will." My maidens fill my hands with ropes of flowers, and I approach to offer them to the young sky-lords. Jet opens one eye but otherwise ignores me; Peridot, however, stares as if surprised at the offering - then, to our joy and delight, he takes the flowers from my hands. He lovingly begins to drape them over his brother, who suffers it for a few minutes but then leaps to his feet and shakes them all off. It is a rejection, but a kindly one, for his companion merely giggles and gathers up the blossoms again. He looks very pleased when my maidens weave them into his hair and drape them over his shoulders.

"What does it mean," Lavender asks, "when one sky-lord rejects the offering but the other accepts it?"

"It is not a true rejection." I am watching the young lords, the way they nuzzle and lick each other, and I know that they accept each other so completely that I need only win the favor of one in order for him to accept my reverence on behalf of the other.

Jet is lying on his side now, willingly offering his belly to his brother, who caresses it with great familiarity. Though Peridot's hands work with surety, his eyes are looking at me, as if contemplating my worthiness. Then he moves away, taking up a stick and beginning to run the tip of it through a stretch of dirt.

"Is he...drawing?" Lavender asks breathlessly.

To capture images is the right of high-born women and priests. "He is a sky-lord," Primrose says. "He may draw if he chooses; who are we to censure him?"

We watch this further unfolding of the Vision, but even after all that has happened so far, I am still breathless with awe when I realize that he is drawing me, recognizable in my finery. When his gift is finished, he looks at me and speaks the language of the sky. I bow deeply to accept his priceless gift, and my maidens prostrate themselves. I don't understand the look of surprise on his face, but I smile anyway when he goes to pat Primrose on the shoulder, and when Jet begins gracefully weaving his way amongst my prostrate maidens, examining them. "You do us great honor," I tell them.

Drawing is his right, for he is a sky-lord, but it is my right also, for I am a princess and now a queen. I bid my maidens to hold my skirt so that I might kneel without spoiling my finery. I have never so humbled myself to any but my lord husband and the Divinity, but I am glad to kneel now, for these sky-lords are very kind and it gives me joy to honor them. Jet and Peridot crouch quite close to me to watch as I draw a gift for them in response.

Jet loses interest before I have finished, and stretches out as if his brother were a pillow to recline on. Peridot continues to watch my work intently, but he frowns as if displeased.

When I finish, the images of the two young sky-lords who have so blessed me and my Cleansing are displayed next to the image of myself. Peridot grumbles in his sky language and reaches out with the stick. I hear one or two of my maidens gasp as he mars the lines I have set, but his domain is higher than mine, it is his right.

It soon becomes apparent what he does. Under his correction, Jet's fierce and awesome lines are softened, until the image of the young winged sky-lord looks endearing and playful rather than severe. "You demean your companion," I muse, trying to puzzle out his meaning. Peridot drops the stick and lays his cheek against Jet's head. The winged sky-lord licks his face. Peridot purrs at him, and they nuzzle each other, then leap to their feet to chase after a squirrel that rushes from one tree to another.

My maidens contemplate the drawings with me, but none of us can fathom the meaning of such deliberate debasement. At last I say, "Has not the sky-lord debased himself for love of his wife? And now the young jet sky-lord is debased for love of his companion. They are lords of the sky, yet they have confined themselves to the earth for so long in order to bless me. They are generous indeed." I lift my hands to the sky in thanks, and my maidens bow.

Peridot runs back to me and shows me a rock he has found of an odd and pleasing color. Jet rubs himself against my legs like a cat, and their affectionate touch is so overwhelming that I am in danger of fainting. I manage to keep my senses, and lower myself to sit on the ground before I lose all the strength in my legs. "Thank you, young lords."

Peridot speaks to me and begins to plait a loose lock of my hair. It is blessed now, along with the other. Those two locks will be dyed when I return home, to retain the blessing.

"For as long as you walk in mortal form, you shall want for nothing," I tell the boy. "Present yourself to any king, show him that you speak to the sky-lords in their own tongue and are loved by them as their equal. You will be given gold and jewels, fine clothing, women and servants and rich food." He cocks his head curiously, as if my speech is no more comprehensible to him than birdsong. "It pales in comparison to the treasures you know in the sky, but it is a token of the esteem in which we hold you."

Peridot steps back and takes hold of the edges of his cloak, spreading the garment wide until I realize that it is not a cloak, it is his wings that he wears. He stands before me with his chin lifted, proud of who he is, a sky-lord who walks in the body of a man. He chirrs at me in kindly dismissal, then turns away to return to his exalted father and mother.

Lavender is very young. As Jet passes by her, she suddenly leaps to throw her arms around him, nuzzling her face against his. We are frozen with shock and horror and outrage; Jet starts away and flares his wings in displeasure, lowering his head with a snarl. Lavender has already prostrated herself again, crying out, "Oh, strike me dead if you must, but I was compelled! I could not let him leave without a caress! I shall die for it, yet I am glad of my terrible boldness!"

We wait, breathless, for surely she has condemned herself to death, and even as I stand horrified, how I envy her as well. Yet after a moment, Jet merely furls his wings again and turns his back like an offended cat. It is Peridot who pounces on Lavender, but after he has crouched over her and closed his teeth on the back of her neck, it is only a warning growl he gives before he, too, turns away.

They are merciful lords, who hand down such slight punishment for such a grave offense. Not only does Lavender still live unharmed, but the blessings are also untouched, for Peridot's stone remains in my hand and his plait in my hair and his drawing on the sand next to mine.

I prostrate myself with my maidens until the sky-lords have gone away back to their domain. Then I rise again and dance my thanks to heaven, and we return home. With such a glorious Vision, and my entire retinue to give testament to it, none can dispute that my throne is now that of a Queen.

o.o.o

Author's Notes: I know this one's really weird; sorry. I had absolutely no plans to write it, but it demanded to be written while I was working on a different vignette. (You'll see what I mean if/when I ever manage to finish that stupid vignette.) "Jet," in this case, means "a deep black;" "awesome," in the older sense, means "awe-inspiring" (I hate how badly the connotations have been corrupted in modern language X'D); a peridot is a green gemstone (it's pronounced "peridoh").

Personally, I don't actually condone the idea of an adult letting a child see her or him naked (unless it's a parent and her or his child of the same sex), but in this story, I was dealing with three cultures different than my own (pseudo-Norse, dragon, and whatever culture the princess is from), so the characters have varying views on this. X'D

The princess and her servants aren't crazy, btw. They're interpreting the experience through their belief system and worldview.

Complete: 8/100

Chapter 9
Chapter 11
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