Title: The Roman and the Fawn
Pairing: Crossover fic, of the characters of Quintus (Michael Fassbender from the film Centurion)/Tumnus (James McAvoy from the film Narnia)
Inspired by myself posting this on my own journal:
Followed by camellie prompting me with what was supposed to be 3 sentences and what turned into this lol
The Roman and the Fawn
How far had he run through this freezing wasteland? The ice in the air was biting at his bare-chested skin, his feet long since numb with cold as he run through the thick white snow of the highlands. They were gaining on him, could hear the voices of his captors on the wind. He ran faster, somehow finding the strength, but he wasn't used to this weather, this snow, he was a proud Roman from the land of sun, so he fell, tripping on his freezing feet and rolling down a bank of snow. Every snowflake felt like thousands of tiny daggers stabbing at his skin, and when he looked up, fearful that his captors would be riding over the horizons edge to take him, an entirely different creature was looking down at him.
Quintus stared, wondering if this biting cold was now making him hallucinate.
"Hello." the creature said with a smile, shuffling it's hoofed feet and furry legs in the snow, "My name is Tumnus, and...who might you be?"
Again Quintus stared, the freezing snow against his skin forgotten. The creature had the upper body and face of a human, but its legs and feet, and horns, what...what was this thing? Standing there with a simple red scarf wrapped around its neck, an umbrella shielding it from the falling snow, and the brightest, brightest blue eyes the Roman had ever seen.
Those voices sounded again and Quintus was knocked back to reality. Scrambling up from the snow, his bound hands making life far more difficult than needed, he tore his gaze away from his hallucination and turned back to run.
"Oh! No no you don't want to go that way! Nothing but snowy mountains for days!" the creature yelled, trying to run after the Roman.
Quintus finally stopped when he got to the top of the snow bank, staring out into the distance at nothing but white, white and more white. Panting and shivering, the voices gaining and hope lessening, he turned back to the creature behind him.
He stared, chest heaving, before finally speaking, "What are you?"
The creature seemed taken aback, and gave him a questioning smile as though talking to an uneducated child, "Well, I'm a Faun of course," he chuckled, "Though, what might you be? Some kind of...small mountain troll?"
Quintus would have laughed if his lungs weren't freezing over where he stood.
"You look very cold though," the faun said, and he gestured with his umbrella to another mound of snow not far from them, "There's a door hidden in that snow, I live there. It's quite warm I assure you, why don't you come in for some tea?"
Quintus was still debating whether or not he'd gone crazy, but looking between the gaining voices, the endless snow, and a possible homely warmth, Quintus found himself just crazy enough to accept the offer from this...faun, this Tumnus.
With nothing but a curt nod Quintus walked towards him, the faun smiling a bright smile before turning towards the snow mound. Tapping it with his umbrella the snow fell away revealing a thick wooden door, and Tumnus opened it quickly and shuffled inside, shaking his head and tapping his hooves on the stone floor to rid himself from any snow in his fur. As Quintus followed in behind him a welcoming heat burst like bubbles across his cold chest, tingling his skin and instantly warming every inch of him.
Tumnus closed the door with a bang, deliberately hard, listening for the snow outside falling back over the door shielding its location in plain sight to anyone travelling past.
Quintus looked around this secret hideout, dark aside from the busy bright fireplace and the odd candle lit around the walls. Tumnus walked to his side and smiled, before gesturing to one of the two carved wooden chairs by the fireplace.
"Please, sit! I'll make some nice hot tea for you."
Still looking suspiciously at the fawn, but his body too thankful of the heat to really care what kind of magic he was, Quintus sat down on the chair, leaning into the fire, lapping up the heat. He could hear the tingling of mugs from the wall behind him, and Tumnus' voice from the kitchen area.
"So, you never did tell me your name, or what you are?"
Quintus stared at a collection of little carved wooden fawns on the mantle, "My name is Quintus. I'm a Roman solider...a human." He added, never thinking he'd be explaining that to anyone.
Tumnus' excited face popped around the corner of the wall, "A human? Really? I've heard tales of humans but never actually seen one for myself! How exciting!"
A few moments later he walked in with a tray and two large cups of steaming tea. Placing the tray on a table near the chairs he held one out for Quintus to take, before Quintus raised both his bound hands and his eyebrows.
"Ah, yes, sorry, let me get that for you." He hurried back into the kitchen, "I must admit I thought it was some kind of troll tradition or something, but as you're not a troll I guess not." He came back in with a small sharp knife, holding it out slowly at the wary look on Quintus' face, before gently hacking away at the tight ropes and passing the mug of hot tea into his hands.
"Thank you." Quintus said, rubbing one red raw wrist with his hand while taking a sip of his tea with another, unable to take his eyes off the smiling fawn sitting in the chair opposite him.
"Is there anything I can do to help with that cut on your chest? Looks a little painful."
Quintus shook his head as he swallowed his tea, "It's fine, I've had far worse."
They sat in silence for a moment as Tumnus drunk his own tea, before Quintus asked, "So, have you always lived here?"
"Oh yes, for hundreds of years. It's a nice warmly little home don't you think? The winters are ghastly but oh, you should see these mountains in the summer, all the beautiful wild flowers and the little bunnies, such a lovely peaceful place."
Quintus stared at the long ears and the little horns, a small quirk to his lips, "Are there other fawns?"
The smile on Tumnus' face melted away, and he pursed his lips together staring at the fire, "There used to be. They all moved further up North. There were rumours of a terrible darkness spreading upwards from the south, but I didn't listen. I like this land, my home, I didn't want to move away from it."
Quintus swallowed his tea slowly. Perhaps the darkness they were talking of were humans, the Romans. Himself.
He was getting very sleepy.
"I'm sorry..." he breathed, before his eye sight suddenly swam before him and the mug slipped from his hands, Tumnus springing up from his chair in surprise as Quintus fell forward off the chair onto the floor, groaning as he felt the fawns hands rolls him over onto his back.
"What did you....do to me..." Quintus breathed slowly, mind swimming in half darkness, the fire hot on his one side.
"Oh my goodness I'm so sorry!" Tumnus panicked, "I put a few special herbs into the tea to help you relax and sleep, you looked ever so tried, but I think I may have put a bit too much in there."
"Wha..." Quintus groaned, not really knowing what he was trying to say, his entire body feeling like a heavy boulder weight.
"Um...I don't think I'm strong enough to carry you anywhere more comfortable. Um, I....oh! Here!" Tumnus quickly pulled a fluffy woven blanket from the back of the chair he'd been sitting in, one he often curled up under in front of the fire while reading a book, and draped it over Quintus' bare chest. He then knelt behind him, knees together, before gently lifting Quintus' head to rest against his thighs, his head lulling against the soft fur.
Quintus' relaxed immediately, the heat from the fire, the soft feel of the blanket against his skin, and the beautiful velvety feel of the soft fur against his head, tickling his cheek where his head lay against it to one side.
"I'm so sorry," Tumnus whispered as Quintus closed his eyes, too tired and too exhausted to think, "Please forgive me for being careless, but you just get a nice sleep, I'll stay here and keep you nice and warm." Tumnus gently brushed his fingers across Quintus' snow wet hair and smiled. "Whoever you are, it looks like you've been through a lot. You're safe here."
Perhaps he could finally make a friend in this wilderness, and the last thing Quintus remembered before falling into a welcome and deliciously comfortable sleep, was just how warm that fur was, and if Rome would ever forgive him if he just stayed here.
Quintus did end up staying, for a while anyway, Tumnus giving him a correctly measured amount of herbs in his tea each night so he could sleep well, letting his body heal from the pain and the cold. During the day they talked about many things, about the history of the fawns, the trials of human kind, of family and long distant friends. Tumnus treated him to a little musical number on his small strangely shaped flute, and he looked so happy that he had someone to play for Quintus couldn’t help but laugh heartily, affection growing more and more each day for this little lonely and kind fawn.
But Quintus knew he would have to leave eventually, he had to find the legion, his commander, find anyone who was Roman and get back to his post. He couldn’t abandon Rome, no matter how tempting it was to stay with this mystical creature, with his tea and his fireplace and his soft furry legs.
When he told Tumnus one morning he was planning on leaving today, the happy smile that had grown wider every day on the fawns face fell, his ears drooping.
“I have to return to my people.” Quintus said, and the words felt hollow in his throat.
“I understand.” Tumnus replied, reluctance clear in his voice.
“Before I go through I want you to have this.” Quintus pulled out a small wooden figurine from his pocket, a miniature human, standing tall, and passed it to the fawn, “Just a little something to remember me by, so you know you have a friend amongst the humans.”
The look on Tumnus’ face had been worth keeping it a secret, carving it on the times the fawn had wandered out into the snow to collect food for them. Tumnus took the figurine as though it was the most precious item to him, his ears twitching in happiness, looking up at Quintus with such a grateful expression.
“Thank you, so very much. Oh but, I don’t know if I have…”
Tumnus quickly looked around his little home, before spotting his red scarf hanging up behind the door. His hooves clunked on the stone floor as he took it down, turning to his new friend, “Here. To keep you warm, and to remind you of me, a friend amongst the fawns.”
Quintus took the scarf slowly, soft to the touch, just like everything about this fawn, and gently wrapped it around his neck. “Thank you.” He said quietly, smiling gently, before reaching out and resisting the urge to pet him, instead pressing the backs of his fingers to his hair near his ear, before letting his arm drop to his side again.
“I should go.”
Tumnus smiled, a sad smile but one of acceptance, and turned around to open the door. Immediately the freezing wind greeted Quintus’ still bare-chested state (the fawn appeared to own no upper body clothing, and even if he did it would have been far too small for him) and Quintus turned around to look once more upon the sweet fawn who had taken care of him, standing in the doorway looking up at him.
“Stay warm.” Tumnus said, “I know I haven’t felt this warm in a hundred years.”
Quintus smiled, the warmth rising in his chest seeming to keep the cold at bay, “I will.”
“Will you come back here again? Maybe?”
“I don’t know.” Quintus replied honestly, “I hope so.”
Every day and every night after, the little carved human figurine sat on top of the mantel piece, the only human form amongst the fawn, and Tumnus looked up at it each night and smiled, that same warm feeling returning to him.
But nothing made that warm feeling return more than the sound of a horse outside his door one day months later, a clumping sound like someone falling off the horse, and with a cautious curious peek through his door Tumnus would burst forth into the snow, dragging the injured and barely conscious Quintus back into his home, tending his wounds, loving the smile he was given in return.
The legend of Quintus and his legion would fade forgotten into history, the only evidence of any human roaming those parts would be in a collection of wooden figurines, carved together with a fawn, sitting snugly together on a mantel under the snow.
Just like the two beings sitting snugly together under a blanket in front of the fire.