Title: The Princess And The Pilot VII: From The Sky (8/8)
Pairings/Characters (this chapter): Steve/Diana, Queen Hippolyta, Mala, Artemis, Paula
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): PG-13
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: The Amazons hold their historic Contest.
Date Of Completion: February 8, 2012
Date Of Posting: July 1, 2012
Disclaimer: I don’t own ‘em, DC does, more’s the pity.
Word Count: 1461
Feedback welcome and appreciated.
Author’s Note: Also written for my 2012 DCU Fic/Art Angels Challenge. Prompts: Angel (Term Of Endearment), Fallen Angel.
The brave new world
As the sun rises,
Its golden rays
A field of blue
As the stars
And the eagle
"Brave New World"
BRAVE NEW WORLD
The day of the contest dawned bright and clear. Paradise had lovely weather, but that did not mean rain did not fall on occasion. The lushness of the mainland and surrounding islands did not happen by magic, after all.
When Diana had signed up through Mala, no one blinked an eye. As Mala had said, Amazons competing in disguises were not unknown.
Diana mentally prepared herself. She was confident in winning. Last night she had prayed on the beach, asking for the strength and skill to emerge victorious. She had re-joined Steve when the moon was at its highest pint and they had walked the beach together hand-in-hand.
Now as she prepared to take the barge to the mainland, Steve kissed her. “I’ll be rooting for you, Angel.”
“I am heartened, Beloved.” Diana nuzzled Steve’s ear.
Steve smiled. He held on tight, smelling her jasmine-scented hair.
The stadium was packed, not a single Amazon wanting to miss this spectacle. After centuries of isolation, this contest symbolized a sea change in their society. The woman who won this test of skills would be the representative to Man’s World, a place that held bitter memories for most of them.
Queen Hippolyta signaled the heralds, who trumpeted the opening music. Their golden trumpets glinted in the morning sun, their golden armor shining as the Queen stood. “I declare this contest open!” The Amazons roared with applause.
The contestants trotted out onto the field. There was interest in the masked contestant, No. 6, but mostly their attention was on their chosen champions.
The first event was high jumping. All were impressive, and Mala won the event with antelope-like agility.
Javelin throwing was next. The mystery woman won, throwing it with incredible strength. She almost won the discus throw, but another Amazon edged her out.
She eagerly anticipated the hundred-yard dash. She was the best runner on the Island. At the signal to start, she took off like a deer. Her hair streamed out behind her as she flew like the wind, easily reaching the finish line first.
There were other contest of strength and skill that Diana won, only coming in second in a few of them. She was racking up the points and felt confident of winning.
The ultimate test of skill was saved until last. Bullets ‘N’ Bracelets was a contest of nerves of steel. The gun that had been taken off the body of a soldier who had washed ashore years ago was in excellent working order. Another gun and bullets had been given to them, courtesy of Vulcan’s Forge, and the Amazons had learned marksmanship and how to play their favorite game with bullets instead of arrows.
Diana readied herself. She needed all of her concentration as she adjusted her bracelets. Time to win this thing.
The best marksman, Artemis, took aim. She shot at each one of the contestants, who successfully parried the bullets. She continued until only two remained, the others grazed or wounded. Now the remaining two would be given the guns and the winner would be crowned champion.
“The final two contestants remain. The representative of the Amazons will emerge victorious,” Hippolyta declared.
Mala took aim and Diana quickly parried the bullets. She shot next, Mala deflecting the bullets. Mala took aim again.
Diana deflected the bullets, her heart racing with exhilaration. She took aim again but Mala was too quick. The blond took aim for her turn.
Steve could hear the roars of the crowd from the stadium. Intrigued, he listened as he sat on the beach, hopeful for the outcome that he and Diana wanted.
He remembered his surprise and delight when he had learned that Diana was a Princess…
“Queen Hippolyta is your mother?” He held hands with his Angel as they stood on the beach in the moonlight, the waves lapping at the shore.
“That is right.”
“Wow. I’ve never met a royal before. The closest I’ve ever come is meeting Bruce Wayne at a benefit for wounded soldiers in Washington.”
“Yeah, he’s popularly known as the Prince of Gotham.”
“So he is not truly a Prince?”
“Not by bloodline. More like attitude,” Steve said with a smile.
But it really didn’t matter. She could have been the lowliest Amazon on the Island and he wouldn’t have cared. Dina was beautiful and sweet and perfect in his eyes.
He smiled. He really was in love! She had flaws like everyone else, but wasn’t that half the fun finding them out? He was looking forward to the chance.
He would be a good guide for Diana in Man’s World. He would show her what lay outside these islands of hers and she would take her place among the world’s great heroes. He was more than certain that she could more than hold her own with the heavy hitters like Superman, Batman, and Green Lantern.
He turned and smiled at Paula. “Hi, Paula. I’m feeling fine.”
She smiled. “That’s good.” She adjusted her glasses. “How’s the outside world doing?”
“Oh, same old, same old.” He regarded her curiously. “You sound like you’re been in Man’s World.” He had noticed that her speech pattern had changed.
“I have.” She sat next to him on the sand. “I was a project of Hippolyta’s from way back when. She sent me to Reformation Island and I’ve been using my science smarts to help the Amazons ever since my reformation took.”
Steve noticed that she did not volunteer what she had done to be sent to Reformation Island so he refrained from asking.
“Diana said that you hold contests like this for special occasions.”
“Yes. The games the Amazons play on a daily basis are to keep their skills sharp. Otherwise there are special events like this when they hold the contests, which usually consist of games they are already good at.”
“This must be a pretty big deal.”
Paula smiled. “It is. The Amazons have their reasons for staying hidden from the world.”
“Diana told me.”
She looked surprised. “I assume that she told you that you should not reveal this to anyone.”
“Yes.” Steve smiled sadly. “I understand that such an experience would scar the Amazons.”
“It was hell.”
Steve sighed. He could only imagine the pain of enslavement. He thought of Diana in the hands of rapacious enslavers and shivered, glad that she had not suffered like that, Paula assuring him that she had been born much later. Paula put her hand on Steve’s arm. He smiled softly.
“Diana will prevail,” she said.
Steve rested as he waited. Paula had left to return to her lab. He could still get tired easily if he wasn’t careful. He enjoyed the sound of the birds and ocean, the sight of the sunlight sparkling on the sea, and the sensation of the warm breeze on his skin. He could imagine his beautiful Angel running, jumping and throwing with grace and strength. He could hear the faint roar of the spectators carry over the water.
The sun climbed higher in the sky, reaching its zenith at high noon and then the sun began to its slow descent as the afternoon began to wane. He remained on the beach, occasionally getting up to stretch his legs, walking along the shoreline.
He spotted the barge leaving the mainland dock and hurried over to the dock, knowing who was on it. Diana arrived and tossed the line to Steve, who tied if off and embraced her as she leaped up onto the dock, a golden wreath of laurel leaves sparkling in her raven hair.
“I am victorious, my love!”
Steve smiled and kissed her as he lifted her up and whirled her around as she laughed.
Diana and Steve lay together in the tent, the sound of crickets and an occasional night bird call overlaying the steady rhythm of the waves crashing on the shore below.
“This is a big step for you, Angel.”
Diana’s head rested on his chest. She lightly stroked it, her hair tickling his skin as it fell in a glorious cascade.
“It is, but it is one that I am ready to take.” She kissed his chest. “I will need guidance in this strange new world of yours.”
Steve grinned. “Be glad to, Angel.” He kissed the top of her head. “You’re going to wow ‘em.”
Diana laughed softly. “I see that I have someone firmly in my corner.”
Steve’s smiled was incandescent. “Always, Angel.”