Pairings/Characters (this chapter): Steve/Diana, Paula, Philippus, Queen Hippolyta, Mala
Series Notes: I’ve collected all my Steve/Diana stories that take place early in their relationship under the title The Princess And The Pilot. The entire series can be found here.
Genres: Challenge, Drama, First Time, Romance
Rating (this chapter): G
Claim: For the dcu_freeforall Challenge (Diana/Steve)
Prompt: T 14; P 6: Love At First Sight
Prompt Count: (15/15)
General Summary: Destiny is met as it is love at first sight for Steve and Diana.
Chapter Summary: Diana reflects on her love for Steve.
Date Of Completion: January 27, 2012
Date Of Posting: April 23, 2012
Disclaimer: I don’t own ‘em, DC does, more’s the pity.
Word Count: 1512
Feedback welcome and appreciated.
Author’s Note: Also written for my 2012 DCU Fic/Art Angels Challenge. Prompts: Angel (Term Of Endearment), Fallen Angel.
Diana sat in the tent, the white canvas keeping the glare of the sun from disturbing her patient. Paula had suggested taking him out from the guest room and Diana concurred. She was hopeful that the fresh air might speed his return to consciousness, though Paula had assured her that he was healing.
“It will be some time before he comes out of it.”
“Then I will be there when he does.”
True to her word, Diana remained at Steve’s side. She was relieved by Paula and other Amazons but stayed close. She exercised and did drills with Philippus, and wrote her play while she sat in the tent.
The tent was located in a bountiful grove of purple and pink bougainvillea and yellow and red hibiscus. Palm trees and leafy bushes shaded the tent. Steve was laid out on a comfortable bed while Diana sat in a rocking chair, pleased at its comfort. Their master woodworker, Roberta, had seen the picture of a rocker in a book of woodcuts that had washed up on shore in a wooden crate years ago and had immediately designed it.
Diana listened to the birds singing in the trees and the ocean lapping on the shore as she read a book, frequently checking on Steve.
She knew that she was in love. She had felt the joys of romance before. What surprised her was falling in love at first sight and with a man.
It must be Destiny, she thought as she turned a page. Otherwise I would never have fallen so quickly.
Perhaps the spell would be broken when Steve awoke and she learned about his personality, but her heart did not think so. She was patient and willing to wait, no matter how long it took.
Diana turned to see Philippus standing in the entranceway. “Good morning.”
Philippus smiled. “Good morning. Ready for your sparring session?”
“Yes.” Diana set aside her book and laid her hand on Steve’s head. “I shall return,” she said softly. She followed Philippus outside.
The older woman tossed Diana a sparring pole and Diana caught it, setting her body to await attack.
Philippus circled her as Diana countered, the sea a sparkling backdrop as a long-tailed blue bird swooped past their heads. Neither woman was distracted and Diana made the first move.
The sharp clack! of the wooden poles reverberated through the air as Philippus countered. She made the second move with surprising rapidity that Diana countered.
They sparred for several minutes until Philippus called a draw. She smiled as Diana looked triumphant.
“A draw with you is like a victory with anyone else, my friend.”
Philippus laughed. “You flatter me, Diana.”
“You deserve it.”
The other woman smiled. She set her pole against a tree. “How is your pilot?”
Diana warmed at the words ‘your pilot’. “Paula says that he is healing in a deep sleep.”
“And you wish to be here when he awakens.”
“You are in love with him.”
Diana laughed ruefully. “Is it that obvious?”
Philippus smiled. “Somewhat, though most of your Sisters think you are just fascinated by the first man that you have ever seen.”
“And there is nothing wrong with that.”
Diana frowned. “Are there some who consider my concern for this man wrong?” At Philippus’ hesitation, Diana said, “Medea and Artemis.”
“I am sorry.”
“Nothing for you to be sorry about.”
“I should return to Steve.” She started to turn toward the tent.
“I would still be careful.” Philippus’ expression hardened. “Remember the treachery of men.”
Diana bit her lip and quietly entered the tent, taking her seat and picking up her book. A cool breeze wafted through the tent, gently ruffling Steve’s hair. She felt troubled at first, then at peace as she absorbed the tranquility. She waited with the patience born of Paradise.
Diana finished her book and set it aside. She directed her gaze toward Steve, looking for signs of his awakening but was disappointed.
What does your voice sound like? Do you smile often? Do you…do you have a wife and children?
She allowed herself a moment of selfishness. She wanted Steve unattached and amenable to her. She smiled slightly. Love could be selfish, indeed.
She allowed herself to daydream.
Diana walked with Steve hand-in-hand through a meadow of purple flowers. She was wearing a long, filmy chiton and he wore a short toga with gold clasps to match hers. They both wore gold laced-up sandals and the breeze was warm as they walked.
They did not speak, smiling at each other as they enjoyed the bright sunshine and blue skies. White, fluffy clouds scudded by as colorful birds flew and sang.
Steve stopped and drew her in close for a kiss.
Startled, she turned around. “Yes, Philippus?”
“Your mother requests that you join her for dinner.” When Diana automatically looked back at Steve, Philippus said, “Do not worry, Paula with stay with him.”
“I would prefer to stay here.”
Diana sighed. “I will go.”
Philippus silently walked beside Diana as they headed for the barge. Once aboard, they both remained silent until the barge docked.
“I will take care of this,” Philippus said as Diana disembarked,
“Thank you.” Diana shaded her eyes as she looked up the cliff. She started walking up the stone steps.
One she reached the Palace she nodded to various Amazons she passed. The interior of the Palace was cool, her sandals gliding silently over the marble floors. She reached the dining room and Hippolyta lifted her head from the scroll she was reading.
“I am glad to see you, Daughter.”
“I cannot stay long, Mother.”
Diana took her seat. The table was laden with bowls of mangoes, oranges and lemons and platters of boar meat. Freshly-baked bread was available, and Diana dipped a slice into a small dish of olive oil.
“How is the pilot?”
“Still unconscious, but Paula has given him a good prognosis.”
Hippolyta arranged fruit on her plate and speared a slice of meat. “I have not seen you since you rescued this man.”
“I feel responsible for him, Mother.”
“Admirable, but you have duties here.”
“Nothing pressing right now.” Diana cut her meat as she picked up an orange and neatly peeled and separated the sections.
“But you must pay attention to what is going on.”
“I do, Mother.” Diana picked up her goblet of wine. “But there are no conflicts at present.”
“Fortunately.” Hippolyta drank her wine. “There has been talk.”
“About what?” Diana ate a piece of meat.
“Your attendance to this man.”
“He was seriously ill, Mother. I wish to see him through this.”
Hippolyta’s eyes looked right through Diana, or at least it felt that way. Diana quickly took a sip of wine.
“Of course. Once he awakens, we will give him time to recover, then he must return to Man’s World.”
Diana felt her stomach contract. “That may be some time.”
They ate in silence for awhile, then Hippolyta said, “You must be careful.”
“Becoming infatuated with this man.”
I am in love with him, Diana almost said, but refrained as she realized how silly that would sound. She had not even heard his voice or seen his eyes yet. Perhaps nothing would come of these feelings, but for now she wanted nothing more to get to know him before he had to return to his world.
“I am not infatuated with him, Mother.”
“I hope not. It will bring you nothing but heartache.”
Again Diana wanted to speak but refrained. She understood her mother’s fears. Heracles had betrayed her and the Amazons had fallen to slavery, enduring humiliations and degradations that made Diana’s blood run cold when she remembered the stories told to her by Medea and Artemis.
“I understand that you are concerned, Mother. I appreciate it.”
“I just do not wish to see you hurt, Diana.” Hippolyta sighed. “He will be leaving us.”
Diana did not respond but tried to concentrate on her meal. She simply did not want to think of never seeing Steve again.
Diana turned in her seat. “Hello, Mala. Come in.”
Mala entered the tent and pulled a second chair up. “Do you need help bringing Steve back to the house?”
“No, I can handle it, but thank you, anyway.”
Mala gazed at Steve. She asked, “Will he revive soon?”
“I certainly hope so.”
“He will have to return to Man’s World.”
“Yes.” Diana ignored the constriction of her stomach.
“A shame. Well, he cannot stay forever on this side island. Not being able to step foot on Paradise Island would limit his life here.”
They sat in comfortable silence for a time before Diana brought Steve back to Paula’s dwelling for the night.
When Diana brought Steve out to the tent in the morning, she briefly left him to get a new book from Paula’s library.
When she returned she nearly dropped the book.
Steve was awake.