Peter Pan: A Novel

the continuation of Peter Pan, in which Peter is haunted by visions of growing up and falling in love

The End of Peter Pan continued…{4} November 4, 2007

Filed under: chapter one — snarkytea @ 6:35 pm
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{ 773 words }

            “…We have not seen you much in Neverland these past several weeks, so I imagine you have been to see her again.” Tiger Lily’s disdain for Wendy went slightly beyond the childish kind of competition for Peter’s heart where it had once remained, and had, since she knew Peter still visited the girl, turned to cold bitterness. It was her fault Peter would grow up like this and be miserable without her. Had she never told stories of Peter and Captain Hook, they would have never met, and had she never spun her Cinderella tales of princesses rescued and transformed, Peter would never have been so stupidly smitten. “Your silence says that you have.”

            “And so what?” Peter barked, jerking away from her again, though he didn’t move far. “I have been to see her several times.”

            “What has changed to make you so sad?”

            For once, Peter could keep up the happy façade and instead bowed his head in shame. “She has a daughter. She is old.”

            “And you wanted to grow old with her? What a silly thought, Peter; you who will never grow up here.”

            “I don’t want to grow up,” Peter said seriously, and indeed it was a strange thing to notice he was not playing any games. He was thoughtful and his face lost some of its twinkling boyishness. “I don’t. But I can’t help it. I visit her daughter as often as I can, even if I don’t talk to her. Sometimes I watch her. She is good at storytelling, too, but she is growing, quickly. The last time I saw her, she was a foot taller, nearly Wendy’s height.”

            Tiger Lily nodded. “She does not want to stall her growing up, does she?”

            “I think she is excited about growing up!” Peter exclaimed, now laughing in his usual manner. “I told her that was silly. Growing up is not exciting, nor is it wonderful or painless.” At the mention of pain, the clouds seemed to swell thicker and a bolt of lightning crashed in the distance over the vast sea. Pain had not often been introduced into the small Neverland.

            Tiger Lily hunched further into her furs and after a long moment of silence stood up. “I see only one answer to your dilemma, Peter, and that is to go to Wendy and stay there with her.” Dusting herself off, she frowned very beautifully, her eyes damp. “You should grow up, Peter. It doesn’t have to be painful. When you are in love, all should be happiness and contentment.”

            She began to walk away and, when Peter didn’t try to stop her, of course she was afraid. Peter’s absence for more than a few days would mean he would forget things from Neverland, just as a few days’ absence from the other realm meant he forgot their adventures as well. Peter’s absence from Neverland meant also that once he stopped believing in it, it would no longer exist, for Neverland was everything Peter had ever imagined as a baby and everything he ever wanted as an adolescent. It was adventure, romance, happiness, and games. Without his imagining it, darkness would overwhelm its green shores.

            Glancing over her shoulder at him, she smiled just enough to assure him her words were wise and rightful, and then whispered, “Please come back and visit now and again, Peter.” Tiger Lily sauntered into the mist, her arrows slung over her strong shoulders and her bow drawn, for she would never be without protection in case of danger, and when the skies were so dark, there was no telling who could be lurking behind a bend.

            The darkness of the sky was so dense it made Peter afraid. He could not see but an inch in front of his face, the Pirate ship over the ledge disappearing into the fog. Rain came in sheets and all happy thoughts had gone from his young body. For the first time in his life, he was forced to make a true decision about something that would change the course of his life forever, and it was so overwhelming and terrifying that he couldn’t move. It was as if a simple inhale would bring him down one path and an exhale might take him down the other.

            And somehow he already had made the choice.

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