George Crawley, heir of Downton, with his Mama, Lady Mary Crawley ~ Downton Abbey, episode 5x06 promotional stills.
Michelle Dockery as Lady Mary Crawley in Downton Abbey: Season Two (2011) (Set 1)
Michelle Dockery as Lady Mary Crawley in Downton Abbey: Season One (2010) Set Two
They say your life flashes all at once in front of your eyes when you’re about to die, but there’s only fear and a mild disappointment in Matthew Crawley’s heart as his car rolls over itself and crashes loudly on the side of the road.
This is the end, he thinks, and all goes black.
He wakes up with a start and it’s day and he’s in a forest. His car is nowhere to be seen, no coat, no bag, no phone. He starts walking hoping he’ll meet the road at some point because he knows the country around the abbey by now, and the forest is not very large, but he wanders for hours, and all he finds is a narrow path between the lines of trees, and he follows it as the sun starts setting and the temperature drops.
There’s commotion in the distance, he can hear shouts and what sounds like many horses galloping in his direction. He hides away in the trees as they pass, but they’re also his only chance, he thinks, and so he jumps on the road before they run too far and calls them back.
They’re around him in less than a beat, pointing weapons at him, not shotguns or rifles, to his surprise, but swords and spears, and when Matthew looks up at the strangers his eyes wide as he takes in their look, for they’re all dressed as medieval knights.
They’ll take him prisoner, they decide after a small debate, and they’ll bring him back to “the castle”, and if a small part of Matthew hopes at first that they’re taking him to safety, that maybe these are actors rehearsing for their next scene, or history fanatics reviving some famous battle of the past, his heart soon drops when they leaves the trees behind and the gentle slope around the now familiar bulk of Downton Abbey comes in sight, only there’s no pretty seventeenth century building there, but a smaller castle stands in its place, with strong circular towers and narrow windows.
He shakes from cold and fear, and when they take him by the arms and drag him inside, he thinks that he must have gone mad, or maybe he’s dreaming, because what his mind is telling him is just not possible.
His arms hurt from the pressure of rough hands around them, though, and the strain in his legs is real, and he almost stumbles as he’s pushed through the crowd into a huge, bare room.
“Welcome to Dountone Abbeie,” one of his guard whisper to him mockingly, before unceremoniously dropping him on the hard stone floor, right in front of a wooden throne.
They leave him there and stand a few feet away, and he can feel everyone’s eyes of on him, hear the sniggers of the closest men, and his heart is racing in his chest, his breaths are coming in shallow.
When he dares to lifts his face there’s no laughter in the dark eyes of the woman who is looking down at him.
“My name is Mary,” she tells him in a cold, but clear and authoritarian voice, and the crowd falls silent. “Lady of this land and ruler in the name of God. Who are you?”
And Matthew swallows, sweat sliding down his neck, as fear pools low in his stomach.
Time travel AU, by patsan.
Blatantly inspired by Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander.
Would I ever admit to loving a man who preferred someone else over me?
Make me Choose!!!
Elizabeth Bennetor Mary Crawley.
Women like me don’t have a life. We choose clothes and pay calls and work for charity and do the season. But really we are stuck in a waiting room until we marry.