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No Title Yet - a HDM fic
Rating: K / PG or whatever for now
Type: His Dark Materials, pre-trilogy
Spoilers: You should probably read The Golden Compass first unless you already know the history between Marisa, Lyra, and Asriel.
Disclaimer: I own nothing and I’m not claiming to. This is just an original work inspired by a book series.
Summary: A story about Marisa Coulter’s past. Will eventually be MC/LA.
A/N: Except for a couple little poems, this is my first real HDM fic. I am not an expert on the books at all, but I did my best to check my facts so I wouldn’t contradict what information we’re given. The only thing I have changed is that the descriptions of the character will be based on how they appear in the movie. Please no flaming, I’m doing my best.
Alone in her room, twelve year old Marisa Madsen sat on her bed listening to bustling activity in the hallway outside. Her daemon switched between forms restlessly, sharing her boredom. Without a sound, she tiptoed over to the door in her nightgown and bare feet, pressing her ear against the wood.
“Go and look outside” she whispered.
Her daemon instantly became a tiny brown mouse, slipping through the crack between the door and the floor. Watching carefully for hurried passing feet, he scurried down the hallway until he felt that familiar pull marking his limit. She wanted him to keep going, this he knew, but he hated to cause her pain. After a moment’s hesitation, he continued forward, fighting the invisible force, but it was no use. He saw a servant turn sharply at the end of the hallway and realized he was much too far away from their destination to get there without Marisa. Turning around, he raced back to the door as fast as his tiny feet could carry him and slid back under. Safely inside, he changed into a dog and licked her face apologetically.
“You didn’t see anything?”
He shook his head sadly.
She stared down at her feet dejectedly but did not leave the door.
“I guess we could –”
A sharp bark cut her short.
“Shhh! You’ll get us in trouble!” After an apologetic whimper from her daemon, she continued. “I don’t see why we can’t just go pretend to look for mother and father, and if we happen to see something while we’re looking, we see something.”
He had a bad feeling about this. They had debated this plan many times recently and he knew it was only a matter of time before curiosity got the better of both of them.
“Come on, I know you want to, and how much trouble can it really cause? I promise we won’t be gone long.”
Grudgingly he nodded, giving in to her darkest desires as he always did. Marisa loved to see how far she could push both herself and others. He shrank into a sparrow, flying up to perch on her shoulder while she slowly opened the door.
Looking both ways, she found the path was clear, and they darted down the hall, racing for the end. Marisa’s heart was pounding with exhilaration. They were so close now. She was about to see what had been kept from her for twelve whole years. And then it all came crashing down. The door to the downstairs kitchen swung open, stopping her in her tracks. Her father stood only steps from her, holding a large silver tray with a shiny, round lid.
“Where are you off to in such a hurry? I thought you supposed to be in bed.”
“I was looking for mom!” she blurted.
He raised an eyebrow skeptically, “really?”
“Honest I was!”
“Hmm…” he studied her for a minute, “well alright then. She’s downstairs.”
Neither person moved. Marisa realized her father intended to watch her go downstairs, not believing her quite as much as he claimed. Suppressing a sigh, she smiled innocently at him and skipped down the stairs into the hot, steamy kitchen. Stumbling through the whirlwind of bodies and carts, she finally caught the edge of her mother’s skirt.
“Hey honey, I thought you went to bed, what’s going on?”
“I just thought you could use some help.”
“I think we’ve got everything under control down here, hon.”
“What about upstairs? I can put on a dress and carry a tray.”
Her mother looked down at her sternly. “You know the rules Marisa. You are not to be involved in these gatherings.”
Marisa stubbornly placed her hands on her hips. “But why? I’m old enough now, aren’t I? I won’t drop anything, you know I won’t! And I’ll be very good and polite!”
“The answer is still no. I’ll tell you again, Marisa: one day you will be able to go, and when the time comes, your father and I will tell you.”
The little sparrow flapped his wings angrily. “I think you’re lying!” she cried, “I think you’re going to keep me hidden away forever! You don’t want anyone to know I even exist!”
“That’s not true honey. I wish you could go to the party, but trust me, it’s for your own good that you don’t. When it is time, you will go. I can promise you that.”
Marisa turned and stomped off to the shadowy corner beneath the stairs to sulk. What was so special that they didn’t want her to see? It wasn’t fair. She’d been patient her whole life. Her daemon pecked at the walls, scratching the floor with his tiny talons. Footsteps of several servers shook the wooden stairs above her head and she suddenly had an idea. Scooping up her daemon, she placed him back on her shoulder and made her way to the base of the stairs, immersing herself in a group of uniformed individuals carrying trays. They were beginning their ascent now, and she glanced quickly over at her mother, relieved to find her focused on something in oven. Masked by the other workers, Marisa made it all the way back up to the hallway without being caught. She hung back now, feigning a turn towards her bedroom until they were rounding the mysterious corner. With lightning speed she shot forward after them, getting down on her hands and knees at the edge of the opening. Her jaw dropped and she was sure her heart skipped a beat when she peered around the bend.
There was gold everywhere; the walls, the furniture, the people, even the rug. Everyone was in elegant, formal attire. Glorious daemons stood proudly next to each person, glancing around the room nonchalantly. Glasses clinked and the gentle hum of conversation filled the room. Her parents’ coworkers expertly floated across the floor, offering exotic looking hors d'oeuvres or refilling champagne flutes. A couple strode into her line of sight, only mere feet away, but the glittering chain of gold on the woman’s wrist held Marisa firmly in place. She had never seen anything so beautiful. She had to have one. There was no question about that. One day she would be that woman: she would wear a fancy dress with gold caressing her skin for all the others to see.
Whether it was from sheer willpower or a miraculous coincidence, as the woman linked arms with her companion to walk away, the clasp of her bracelet came undone. The gleaming band tumbled to the floor in front of her eyes and a golden monkey leapt forward, snatching it up with nimble claws. He scampered back over to her, laying his prize in front of her. She lifted it from the ground and closed her hands around the warm metal. It was hers now. Hers forever. Getting up, she shot one last look into the room to find a young man’s gaze fixed directly on her. Her eyes widened in fear yet her monkey daemon snarled with malice, prepared to fight for the trinket. The man strolled towards her with a smile but she tore down the hallway towards her room, blonde curls flying, and never looked back.
Safely behind the closed door, Marisa clamored up onto her bed, panting. The monkey jumped up beside her and she stroked his soft fur with one hand while admiring her new acquisition sitting on the palm of the other.
She looked up at the monkey. “We shouldn’t have taken it.” She paused, then stretched her arm forward. “Will you put it on me?”
He deftly clipped the two ends together, encasing her wrist in gold. She smiled and shook her hand from side to side, watching the bracelet bounce and refract the moonlight from her window against the wall. Footsteps approached her door and she quickly shoved her hand under her pillow, laying down and pretending to sleep. The door opened slightly, a beam of warm light falling across her body. It remained still for a moment before closing again without a sound. Opening one eye, Marisa could see they were alone once again. She stood up quietly, creeping over to her dresser. Pulling out the bottom drawer, she extracted a lone sock, whose partner never returned from the laundry, and dropped the bracelet inside, knotting the top of the sock afterwards. She buried it beneath the others and carefully slid the drawer closed before crawling back into bed. The monkey curled up next to her, just beneath her pillow, and she absentmindedly trailed her fingers through the golden strands of fur until she drifted to sleep.
1 word 7 letters
I knew i was going to love this
Marisa’s mother came to wake her early the next morning, already back to work after a long, stressful night. The Lord had promised them the day off, but when dessert had been served several minutes late, the luxury was withdrawn. Thankfully she had expected him to find fault and provide said punishment, so she hadn’t bothered to tell Marisa. This sort of behavior was unfortunately common for the Lord and his wife, and every time she was forced to face the disappointment her daughter tried so hard to conceal; the same anger and disillusionment she had seen in the child’s outburst last night.
She placed a hand on the slumbering girl’s shoulder and shook her gently, whispering in her ear. “Marisa sweetheart, it’s time to get up for breakfast.”
The golden monkey growled as Marisa buried her face deeper in the pillow.
“Come on honey, I want to talk to you for a minute before you go wash up. Sit up please.”
Marisa sighed and grudgingly pushed herself upright, brushing back her messy blonde curls to reveal the angry expression on her face. The monkey crawled into her lap, wrapping his arms possessively around one of hers.
“I’m sorry I didn’t get to talk to you about this last night,” her mother began, “but you understand how hectic it gets with these parties. Your father came by after dinner was served, but you were already asleep. Now you were very upset last night that you didn’t get to go to the party, weren’t you?”
Her words met a silent, steely glare.
“I know you like you help us and the other servants, but the parties are different. I know you want to see what you’re missing, and I’m sorry. All I can tell you is that one day you will see. I would swear it upon my life. A party is no place for a child of any age, and we want your first party to be special. We’ve been planning it ever since you were born. As soon as you’re grown, you may go, but you have to wait until then. It isn’t easy, I realize that, and I would change it if I could, but that is how it must be.”
Marisa never broke eye contact and never spoke a word. Her daemon remained motionless, wearing the same scowl on his dark features.
Her mother looked down at her hands for a minute before reaching under the bed, retrieving a book wrapped in brown paper. “Your father left this here for you last night. It’s a new book about metaphysics. I know your education is not always interesting to you, but I assure you, it is important, and you will thank us for it one day.”
She glanced at the book with slight disdain, finally removing her arm from her daemon’s grasp to accept it. Placing it to the side, she resumed her angry stare, but her mother was distracted, focused in on the golden monkey.
“Marisa, has your daemon settled?”
Finally, she spoke. “Yes. Why?”
Her mother’s face lit up and she threw her arms around the pair. “Oh my dear, this is just wonderful! Your father and I were so worried that you would have a dog daemon like ours. But this,” she drew back to regard the monkey with tears in her eyes, “this is just perfect, Marisa. He is as stunning and unique as we had always hoped your daemon would be.”
Marisa was perplexed by her mother’s strange behavior. Sure, her daemon was different, but what did it matter? What would be wrong with her having a dog? Most of the staff had dog daemons, as did her parents, and they all seemed to be fine. Should she have been more concerned about the shape her daemon would take? She pulled the monkey closer to her body for reassurance. This is what she wanted. She wanted to stand out, wanted to be different from her parents. This was good. Even her mother thought it was good. Her golden monkey was right for her, and she loved him this way, loved him more than anything or anyone in the world.
“Oh Marisa,” her mother continued to chatter, “just wait until your father sees this! He’ll be so pleased. I need to go help him serve breakfast. You get cleaned up and we’ll have breakfast waiting for you in the kitchen.” She kissed her forehead, and paused, admiring the monkey one last time, then practically skipped out of the room.
Marisa looked down at her daemon with confusion, but he simply shrugged. She picked up the book and stashed it back under the bed, considering the possibility of opening it a little later. Wandering over to her little dresser, she pulled out one of her plain dresses and stuffed her feet into her bland, yet practical, shoes. Quickly changing into the oversized sage garment, she turned around and caught sight of her daemon holding a certain sock.
“Put that down!” she hissed, but he held it out to her instead. She pretended to consider his proposal, having decided on a response instantly. “Well, I suppose I could put it on for just minute.”
She took the sock from him, withdrawing their golden treasure. It sparkled even brighter in the morning sun. She slipped in around her small wrist, twirling around the room with her daemon in an imaginary waltz.
“When do you think they’ll have another party?” she asked, not giving time for an answer. “I hope it’s soon. I want to have another look. If we can do it once, we can do it again, right?”
The monkey nodded.
She grinned. “Good, then it’s settled. Come on, I’ve got to brush my teeth before breakfast gets cold.” Carefully dropping the bracelet back into its sock container, she rolled it up and shoved it under her dresses. “Who knows, maybe we’ll even find another one of those.”
I love this
i think its some of your best work
well I didn't think it was THAT good but I'm glad you're really enjoying it.
you are an amazing writer
dont make me come over there
fine then! Ima haul yo white ass outside kick ya back home to yo mama
Marisa spent the morning of her eighteenth birthday like she spent any other: in her room with just her daemon for company, reading from a collection of used textbooks while wearing her stolen bracelet. Her parents now knew of its existence, but she had kept it secret for so long that there was little they could do to set things right without getting her into heaps of trouble. She was allowed to keep it as long as she never wore it outside her room, and she promised to never steal anything again. She had nodded and smiled like an angel, adding a ring and a single earring to her collection over the following months. They didn’t understand these things. They never had anything glamorous; they didn’t know how it felt to have a taste of the forbidden fruit. Besides, they were powerless to control her. They never turned her into the Lord of the house, not once, regardless of what rules she broke, and even if they did, Marisa was confident she could survive on her own. All she had here was a roof and food, and surely it wouldn’t be hard to find those things. And besides, as she had quickly learned from toying with the male servants, most men will do anything for a pretty face.
There was another soiree tonight, and Marisa had spent days planning her spy mission. She desperately wanted a necklace for her collection. A necklace would be easy to hide under her clothes. Her parents had been keeping a tight watch on her however, complicating her search for a safe route to the ballroom. They were usually too busy to notice her before a big event, but now they were around every corner. Perhaps they had seen her peeking last time, or maybe they had found her other accessories. They knew something; that much was certain and she had to find out what. Just to be safe, she tucked her golden treasure into a different sock and buried it in a different drawer before darting out the door with her monkey in tow.
The hallway appeared vacant, but she knew it wouldn’t be for long. Taking a deep breath, she sprinted down the hallway at full speed, halting the moment she rounded the corner and flattening her body against the wall. She looked both ways and took off again, her panting breaths and pounding footsteps echoing off the walls. She raced through the winding corridors until she reached the utility closet nearest the ballroom, where she stopped for a moment’s rest. This was her final destination, and still no one had seen her. She was home free now. Inside the room, just beneath the ceiling, sat a vent that led to right to the ballroom. Luckily for her, a shelving unit stood right under this target, and the mechanic always left his tool box unlocked. With a few quick turns of a screwdriver, she could have the vent open and a clear passage. It was getting to be quite the tight squeeze though. She had almost gotten stuck last time, so hopefully she would still be able to fit. She reached out a hand to turn the knob, and to her dismay, the door swung open before she could touch it. There before her stood her father. What horrible luck.
“Marisa! What on earth are you doing over here?”
“I was just… looking for Albert: there’s a loose floorboard in my room, I was hoping he could fix it for me.”
“Oh, well not to worry, I’m sure he’ll turn up soon. Good thing I ran into you though. Your mother wants to see you. She thought you were still in your room and didn’t want to disturb you. She’s in our quarters, don’t keep her waiting now.”
“No sir I won’t.”
“Good girl, hurry up then.”
Marisa turned around, cursing under her breath, and headed back to her starting point. Now she wouldn’t get a test run in the vent. If she couldn’t fit tonight, she would be hard pressed to find another viewpoint before the party was over.
Though she knew it was a horrible truth, Marisa had grown weary of her mother through her adolescence. Marisa was a lady, but she could stand on her own two feet. Her mother always seemed weak to her; always needing her father to carry the heavier trays, falling ill more than most, napping away her days off. How frightfully dependant and boring. There was so much to learn, so much to that could be accomplished. Didn’t she have any drive, any desires, any hunger for something more? How could she be content with their lives as they were when they were missing so much? Marisa never wanted to find herself like that. She liked to climb the ladder, and when she reached the top, she built another. There was always something new to learn, to take into your hands, to make your own.
She stared at the heavy wooden door in front of her which opened to her parents’ room in the main servants’ quarters. Her daemon tugged on her skirt, encouraging her to feign forgetfulness and simply retreat back to their haven, but she was here now, she might as well get it out of the way. She could only postpone the confrontation for so long.
The door opened to reveal her mother, facing her expectantly. “I’ve been waiting for you.”
“I know.” Marisa’s tone was even, her voice absent of emotion.
“Sit down. I need to talk to you about tonight. It’s very important.”
She trudged over to the bed and perched on the edge, ready to dart out the door as soon as possible. “What about tonight?”
“Marisa dear, do remember the promise your father and I made to you?”
“I don’t know; which one?”
“We told you that one day you would be allowed to go to one of the Lord’s parties.”
Her heart was pounding wildly now. “Yes.”
“Today, you are a grown woman. It is time we let you out on your own. You will attend the event tonight.”
Could her mother possibly be telling the truth? She couldn’t sound too excited, just in case. “Really?”
“Yes. We told you the time would come, and it has arrived.” She got up and walked over to the closet, picking up a large white box from the floor. “This is for you,” she said, handing Marisa the box, “your father and I have been looking forward to this since the moment you were born.”
Marisa lifted the lid to find a glorious midnight blue gown. She stood and held the fabric against her body: it was just the perfect size, cut with a low scoop both in front and behind, with a subtle shine in the right light.
“But I don’t understand. I always thought I was going to be helping you serve.”
“No, no dear. You will never have to carry a tray of drinks or appetizers. Not after tonight. This is why your father and I were adamant that you be kept out of sight from the Lord and his guests at all times; because we always intended for you to join them one day.”
“Yes. Tonight you will put on this dress, and I will fix your hair and makeup, and you will wear that bracelet of yours, and you will go to the party as a guest. You will tell no one of your life here. You grew up in the countryside and only just arrived in town. And you will find a nice gentleman to take care of you.”
Marisa’s eyes widened and the monkey leapt in front of her protectively. “What?”
“It’s the only way Marisa. You don’t belong here. You deserve better. I won’t have you become another servant.”
“But I don’t want to be dependant on someone else to take care of me!”
“Marisa, your father and I have gone to great expense for this. If you are ever to do something we ask of you, this is it. You are young, and I know you’re certain you can do this alone, but please, just do this one thing for us. Promise me you will charm a gentleman tonight and let him take care of you. What you do once you are settled is up to you, but you must choose your moves wisely. The politics of these people can be a dangerous game. All we ask is that you follow in an established man’s shadow until you learn the game, and then, if you still wish to go out on your own, that is your choice. We only want the best for you.” There were tears running down her face now. “Promise me Marisa. Promise me, and keep this promise.”
Marisa merely nodded, for she had no words.
love the update Kelly