it reminds me of beast's castle

3

                           A Z R I E L — C A S S I A N — R H Y S A N D

First Cassian and Azriel appeared in the doorway. The High Lord’s general and shadowsinger—and the most powerful Illyrians in history. They were not the males I had come to know. Clad in battle-black that hugged their muscled forms, their armor was intricate, scaled—their shoulders impossibly broader, their faces a portrait of unfeeling brutality. They reminded me, somehow, of the ebony beasts carved into the pillars they passed. And then Rhysand appeared. He had released the damper on his power, on who he was. His power filled the throne room, the castle, the mountain. The world. It had no end and no beginning. No wings. No weapons. No sign of the warrior. Nothing but the elegant, cruel High Lord the world believed him to be. His hands were in his pockets, his black tunic seeming to gobble up the light. And on his head sat a crown of stars. 

Realtalk: Beauty and the Beast

((Spoilers: DUH))

Okay, but jokes about bad CGI wolves aside, Disney’s latest live action remake just served to remind me what didn’t work in the last few films. Keep in mind this is all my opinion and you don’t have to agree to any of it.

I could appreciate the effort they took in better explaining the lore. The classic film implied Beast could be as young as 11 when the curse took effect for them to be wasting away for “ten years” (as stated in the original Be Our Guest), and a lot of people were left puzzling as to how exactly an entire town failed to notice the ominous castle sitting on their outskirts for all those years. But as with all the other remakes Disney also attempted to flesh out the characters, usually in the form of a heavy backstory, and this is where they always seem to fall flat for me.

This is the main problem I have with live action: they seem to struggle in deciding which tone they want to run with. Do they want to prove they can play with darker and more sombre themes? Those poignant backstories and frequent deaths in the families would suggest so. But then they turn right around and try to emulate the cartoon almost frame for frame. Suddenly the action sequences, one-liners, and visual gags look too hammy and out of place, especially when juxtaposed with the aforementioned Dark Subjects. This isn’t helped by the uncanny valley characters at all.

I’m sure some kids out there find all of this enjoyable and see no problem with the new films (though personally if I saw that CG Lumiere as a child I would have run screaming out of the theatre), but all I could think as I watched Beast tear through the tower pining and singing his heart out was:

“Holy shit Disney, you should remake Hunchback of Notre Dame.”

Think about it: they could play with dark themes all they wanted and it wouldn’t feel out of place at all. The animated film was already one of Disney’s heaviest, in fact I feel it’s been swept under the rug as a result of its heavier tone. The characters themselves are some of Disney’s most subdued and wouldn’t be terribly difficult to translate into live action without changing too much, and they could go nuts with the special effects and locations all they want because it’s got everything.

Medieval city? Check. Tall, ominous towers? Check. Spectacular views for breaking out into song? Check. Political/social commentary still relevant today? Check. Vibrant/fictional locales to pour their CGI budget into? Check. They’ve got one of the best villains in that movie, whether you love to hate him or just … love … him … if you’re one of those weirdos.

But that brings up another point: if they did rework it, I want them to go really dark with it. I’m talking taking cues from their friends in Germany and Der Glöckner von Notre Dame, a musical that managed to preserve a majority of the film while also capturing the weight of the original novel.

Don’t try to redeem Frollo like you did with Maleficent. Preserve all the slimy, misguided, despicable facets of his personality. Don’t gloss over the political commentary of gypsies in Paris, and highlight Clopin’s juxtaposed sides as a result–willing to do whatever it takes to survive even if it means stealing and murdering. We already have one of the most badass women out there in Esmeralda, and finally one who isn’t a damned princess that needs her sparkly dress. Give Phoebus a bigger role, give us time to really see the conflict between his role in society and his moral compass. Focus on Quasimodo’s internal struggle, torn between his curiosity and love for the outside world, but also his blind loyalty and affection to the one man who raised him his entire life.

And for f**k’s sake those gargoyles better be hallucinations to illustrate the toll a lifetime of solitude has taken on the poor guy or I am going to flip some heavy Medieval tables.

And finally Esmeralda dies. No-one gets the girl. Phoebus fails at his job, people get hurt as a result, and he can’t even save the love of his life. And Quasimodo is left utterly broken hearted and alone, with neither his father figure or his friends by his side. The movie ends as the stage play did: with our hunchback carrying the gyspy in his arms in a sad nod to the iconic “Sanctuary!” scene, walking away into the dark unknown, presumably to die as he did in the novel, with Esmeralda in his arms. A sombre Clopin, knocked back down to a beggar (if not dead as well during the seige), narrates the closing scene.

Because life sucks and that’s what you get for attempting to turn a Victor Hugo Novel into anything less than a tragedy.

TL;DR: Disney remake HoND. I double-dog-dare you.

(Oh my god I have not drawn these guys in literal ages. It felt so weird!)

Teenage Feysand Pt. 4

Part 1               Part 2               Part 3

Warning: This chapter has references to sexual abuse

A lot of Angst in this. Don’t shoot me. Also, parallels to the actual books in this part, so all rights to Sarah J. Maas.

Feyre

I was awoken by the sound of footsteps on stone. I sat up and slumped back against the wall behind me. The rigid stone cut into my back, but the pain was a welcome feeling to the dread that had washed over me. I had been down in this cell for what felt like days.

No one spoke to me. No one brought me food or water. I sat alone and stared at the walls around me, drowning in my own thoughts. That was when the flashbacks started hitting me:

I was in a different cell, the walls covered in my blood from my most recent punishment. The King of Hybern was smiling down at my broken form with wicked delight. I looked up at him with a promise of death in my eyes. I knew when I had chosen to take my sisters’ place as his prisoner that it would be hell. Hell was only the beginning of what I was experiencing. I was beaten daily to the point when death was ready to take me away, but he would always heal my wounds and bring me back. This day, I had refused to do my daily chore of cleaning his chambers, and he had beaten me with a large staff until every rib was cracked, and I blacked out due to the pain.

“Such a naughty little human. Tell me, Feyre, if you do not like to make my bed, why don’t you do me the honor of lying in it?” the king whispered as he shook me awake with his booted foot. The pain was so severe that I vomited all over his shoes. He only laughed darkly, “I won’t have you if you are in this state. Do feel better, and remember that you can stop this at any time by agreeing to my offer.” With that, he walked out of my cell, and I was once again left to lay on my small pallet of clothing scraps.

I would never accept his offer as long as I was still breathing. He wanted to attempt to turn me into High Fae by using an extraction spell to steal power from the High Lords across the sea in Prythian. The very thought of becoming anything like those awful creatures made me want to end my suffering by my own hand.

As I lay down that night, I thought of the sky. Not the vast blue of the day. That had always reminded me of the time my family worked in the fields as slaves to those beasts. No, I thought of the night sky, with stars as far as I could see. I cried myself to sleep as I did every night since I was brought to that forsaken castle, and prayed that I’d one day get to see the night sky again.

I was pulled from the memory by the sound of the iron door of my cell being unlocked. I sat up from where I had slumped against the wall and craned my neck to see who was coming through that door. My heart jumped as I saw a head of black hair come into the room, but my face fell when I realized it was only one of the guards.

“The High Lord would like to see you now for questioning,” the young male said as he made to help me up. I almost balked at the kindness, but allowed him to pull me up. My legs barked in pain at the effort it took to walk after hours in a sitting position. I straightened my back despite the protest from my aching muscles and held my head high with pride. The guard led me down a dark corridor to a stone staircase. When he motioned for me to go first, I must have looked shocked because he simply said, “You may be a prisoner, Miss, but you’re still a woman, and I will always allow a woman to go first. It is common courtesy.” I gave him a tight smile that he took as gratitude for his chivalry, and we began our trek up the long staircase. Three hundred stairs up, he motioned for me to veer off down another hall to the right of the landing. I let him lead this time, calculating how much of a threat he may really pose if I decided to make my escape. He seemed to know what I was thinking because his hand never left the weapon at his side. After what seemed like a lifetime of walking, he finally stopped at a thick wooden door.

He opened it a moment later and motioned for me to go inside. I walked into the room cautiously and felt my heart drop when I looked around the room. I was not afraid of the High Lord of the Night Court perched at the head of the long obsidian table that took up most of the room. No, what made my stomach turn and bile rise in my throat was the Hybern commander that was sitting next to him.


Rhysand

Never in my life had I been so…furious with anyone. When my father had sent Feyre away, my first instinct was to shove him as hard as I could. I let the leash on my power slip as I shoved him, and the entire mountain of which the camp sat upon shook. Fear, genuine fear, flashed in my father’s eyes as he was slammed back into the wall hard enough to crack the plaster. He winnowed a second later before I could land another blow. Coward, I thought as I beheld the wall where he’d just been. There, inside the plaster, was a perfect imprint of my father’s body.

A dark smile ghosted my lips at the damage, but it quickly faded as I realized the events that had just taken place.

My mother stood at the entrance to our dining area with her arms wrapped around her delicate body. I walked to where she was standing and took her into my arms, squeezing so hard I’m sure it hurt, but she was the only thing keeping me from exploding. She squeezed me just as hard and rubbed my back.

“I will forever be grateful for all your father has given me since we mated, but I will never forgive him for the decisions he is choosing to make,” my mother whispered into my chest. I nodded my agreement and stroked her hair.

“We’re going to get her back, Mom, and you can be the one to beat Father’s ass for this,” I replied with a breathy, humorless laugh. Her returning laugh mirrored mine as she looked up and stroked my cheek.

“I do not wish to see your father ever hurt, but I cannot wait to see what an amazing ruler you will become. My darling, Rhys,” she said and then she was walking out onto the porch of our tiny house.

“Cassian! Azriel! I know you’re circling above this house. Get down here this instant. There is no time for sulking when your brother’s…girlfriend—crush? — is trapped in that godsforsaken place,” my mother shouted into the night. My brothers swooped down from where they indeed had been flying in circles over the house, waiting for my father’s departure. Cassian looked like he was ready for bloodshed, and Azriel’s arms were already cloaked in shadows. I’m sure I looked as distraught as I felt because Cassian cringed when his eyes fell to my face.

“Dude, I want her back too because, let’s be honest, she’s damn good to look at, but I didn’t realize you were whipped already,” he said as Azriel quickly smacked the back of his head.

“That is not helpful at all, Cassian, and as I recall, Rhys was the only one who held you while you cried when your favorite stuffed animal got its head ripped off,” Az said.

Cassian looked at Azriel incredulously and rubbed the back of his head. “HE was the one who ripped Mr. Twinkle’s head off!”

My mother looked between the three of us and shook her head as if she was rethinking why she ever had children, much less took in two more. We all smiled at her innocently.

“So here is the plan,” she said slowly to get every point across, “We are winnowing to the Hewn City, which is where Rhysand’s father has Feyre. Cassian, Az, you two are to get Rhysand into the dungeon without anyone triggering the alarm. I will distract my mate while you get Feyre out. She probably won’t be in the greatest of shape, but she will have to at least stand. Understand what we must do?”

We nodded our agreement, and I grabbed Cassian and Az as we disappeared into stars and dust. 


Feyre

My old tormentor, the one who beat me all those times for the king, was seated next to Rhysand’s father, talking as if they were old friends. Amarantha turned to me when Rhysand’s father addressed my presence and flashed me her infamous blood red smile. A wave of nausea hit me as I remembered those teeth grazing my breasts. The memories must have flashed in her mind too because her gaze drifted down my body lazily.

I had been starving then, so she was taking in the new, full curves of my well-fed body. Her black eyes seemed to light up as they drank in the new hard planes of my stomach. Rhysand’s father watched our interaction with cool amusement.

“I wonder what my son would say if he found out that you once preferred females,” he said amusedly. I did not let the disgust show on my face.

“I did not prefer females. I did not have a choice in the matter at all”

Amarantha straightened at that and rolled her eyes. “Come on Fay-ruh,” she said, drawing out my name as if it were a plea coming from her lips, “We had fun together. Don’t you remember the way I made you beg?”

I did remember. I also remembered that whenever I refused to pleasure her, I would find myself tied to a table and tortured, both sexually and just physical pain, until I was bedridden for days. I distinctly remember screaming when I relieved myself because of how sore and raw I was. I shuddered then, and she took that as a sign that I was getting turned on. She stood and made to come circle me like a lion circling wounded prey. I whimpered when she fisted her hands into my hair and leaned to whisper in my ear.

“Remember when I would grab you like this and fuck you?” she hissed and snatched my head back. I cried out in pain as tears stung my eyes. The High Lord of the Night Court made a tsk tsk noise, and Amarantha reluctantly let go and sat down again.

“What do you want from me?” I asked, wiping the tears that escaped down my cheeks. Rhysand’s father looked bored as he replied, “I merely want to know what power roils in your veins as we speak. Since you were Made, and you possess some of Beron’s gifts, I am curious as to who else’s powers that you stole.”

“I stole nothing. These powers were given to me, and it was not my choice,” I said and I cursed myself as my voice wavered. Amarantha purred at the quiver in my voice and licked her lips. I cringed and focused my attention anywhere but on that sadist. Rhysand’s father merely snapped his fingers, and another guard came in and escorted me out. He was not courteous like the last guard, and he shoved me down the hall and into what appeared to be a giant throne room.

“Kneel, bitch,” the guard hissed and kicked the back of my knee with such force that I fell to the ground. Black splintered in my vision as I tried and failed to lift myself up. Amarantha’s laugh drifted to me from the throne she now sat upon. Rhysand’s father looked at me as if I were a fly that had been circling too long and was about to be swatted.

Just then, someone pulled me up onto my knees and slapped my face. The stinging in my cheek was nothing compared to the pain I was feeling in my chest. My heart, my still-human heart, was breaking at the hands of the father of the boy that I…

I couldn’t bring myself to even think those words now because I would never get the chance to say them. I just bowed my head and accepted the blows as they came.


Rhysand

We winnowed into a long corridor that led to the stairwell that would take us down into the dungeons. Cas and Az slipped off into the shadows to despose of any guards that may come looking. I began walking down the stairs two at a time. I reached out with my power to see if I could slip into Feyre’s mind. I was so entranced that I didn’t see the guard to my left until I received a blow to the head. I whirled and kicked out, bringing the guard to his knees. I held his mind and rendered him unconscious. Before I could alert Cassian and Az, I was hit from behind again. Consciousness slipped from me as I heard the guard laugh.

I awoke to a female scream piercing the air. I groaned as I sat up and rubbed the back of my head where a lump was surely forming. I looked around to see that I was in the throne room of the Hewn City, and I was not alone. My mother was staring at the floor and trying to escape the grip my father had on the back of her dress. Cassian and Azriel were restrained by a group of guards in the corner of the room. I felt a sense of pride at the bruises on the guards, the evidence of my brothers’ struggle to be held. A woman with deep auburn hair and obsidian eyes was seated on my father’s throne. But all of this slipped away as my eyes fell to the beautiful body of a girl crumbled on the ground.

“Feyre!” I shouted as I tried to crawl towards her. I was met with a shield of hard air. I slammed my power against it, but the wall wouldn’t budge.

“Rhys,” Feyre groaned and turned her bloodied face towards my voice. I could see the bruises forming on her cheeks and counted how many there were. That was how many hours I was going to take killing everyone that had touched her.

The auburn-haired woman stood from the throne then and walked to where Feyre lay. Slowly, so slowly, she pressed her heeled foot into Feyre’s side. Feyre screamed in agony, and I vomited all over the floor.

“Please, leave her alone. Please,” I begged. The woman turned to me then and cold amusement flashed across her face.

“I guess this is the one you left me for, Feyre,” she said in a cheery voice, “I wonder how good he’d feel to play with. Shall we see?” She started making her way towards me.

Even broken and bleeding, Feyre stood and shoved the woman away from me. “Amarantha, if you so much as lay a finger on him, I will kill you.”

The woman, Amarantha, laughed, and I watched in horror as she summoned a knife from somewhere and shoved it through Feyre’s chest.

I screamed. Not because the girl I was in love with fell to the floor, but because I felt the knife as if she had stabbed me instead. The wall of air shattered as Feyre hit the ground, and I crawled to her, a puddle of blood already pooling below her.

“No, no, please no,” I whispered as I pulled Feyre into my lap, “Hey, Fey, look at me. Don’t stop looking at me, okay? Listen to my voice.”

She nodded and kept her gray eyes locked with mine. I could see it then, like a black chain between me and Feyre, that now shined like brilliant gold.

“Mates…” she whispered as the realization clanged through her. Despite the situation, I smiled down at her and brushed a piece of hair from her face, “Mates,” I whispered back.

Her face was pale, so so pale, but she smiled back at me. My father’s gasp filled the room as he sensed the bond between Feyre and I. As he realized he had allowed his son’s mate to be killed in his court. I looked at him then with simmering rage etched into my features.

Amarantha was still holding the knife when Feyre whispered, “I love you, Rhysand,” and let her eyes close.

“No…Feyre! Feyre! Wake up. Please baby wake up,” I begged as tears fell down my face. I snarled when Amarantha took a step towards us and instantly misted her into a blast of blood. My mother’s scream pierced the air as Feyre’s body slumped against my chest.

My father, utterly horrified, stepped down off the dais and over to where I sat cradling my dying mate in my arms.

“Son, I had no idea. I thought that she was some sort of spy. I didn’t want to risk it with the coming war with Hybern. Amarantha had contacted me before and told me of Feyre’s past dealings with Hybern. I had no idea she was your mate. I swear it,” he said. He looked back to where my mother was sobbing on the floor, but she did not meet his gaze. A sob broke from my lips as I stroked Feyre’s hair.

“Just bring her back,” I said as I looked down at her face. He looked from me to Feyre and then back to me. Darkness flared from his hand as he laid it against Feyre’s bleeding chest. I reached out for her mind and felt a sliver of life still there. I stroked the walls of her mind gently with my power, trying to coax her to come back to me.

I grabbed that chain between us and snatched it.

I felt her draw in a breath, and relief clanged through me as she opened her gray eyes to glance up at me.

“So, does this make us even for me leaving you on that bank?” she said and groaned as she tried to sit up but failed. A broken laugh escaped my lips as I crashed my mouth to hers.

She kissed me back just as hard until she winced in pain. I leaned down and rested my ear against her chest. We sat like that, with her in my lap and my head against her chest listening to her heart beat, for hours. My father left the throne room after begging my mother to forgive him, to which she told him to go to hell. She came over to where we were clinging to each other and told us to go get some sleep while they sorted this mess out.

I flew Feyre to our moonstone palace at the top of the mountain and laid her feet on the floor of the large bathroom.

I grabbed a wash cloth and some soap and handed it to her. She cleaned her face and neck as best she could. I gave her my shirt so she could change out of her ripped clothes. When she made her way out of the bathroom, I picked her up and laid her onto the bed gently.

She reached out for me when I turned to leave, so I crawled into the bed next to her, wrapping her as tightly in my arms as she could stand it with her injuries.

“You never said it back,” she whispered sleepily.

“What?” I asked softly.

She leaned up slightly and winced with the weight of propping herself up, “I told you I loved you, and you didn’t say it back.”

I looked at her incredulously, “Did you miss the part where I begged my father to bring you back to me? I thought that was ‘I love you’ enough,”.

She rolled her eyes and replied, “Just say it. Unless it’s not true.”

I shook my head but pulled her tighter to my chest.

“Feyre, you are a pain in my ass. You are the biggest tease I have ever met. You make me want to choke you daily, and fuck you until neither of us can walk,” I said as her eyes widened, “But, I am irrevocably in love with you. I think I have been since that day you dismissed me like I wasn’t a future high lord. You make me feel normal. I love you, Fey. I felt it today when you almost died, and it felt like my entire world had been ripped from me. Don’t do that ever again.”

She smiled and nuzzled deeper into my chest, “I love you too, Rhys. I guess I’ll try not to die again.”

When I felt Feyre’s breathing even out, I finally allowed sleep to take me.

The Girl Made of Starlight (Part 6)

The Girl Made of Starlight (Part 6)

Beast!Adam x Reader

Part 1: here    Part 2: here    Part 3: here    Part 4: here    Part 5: here

Note: This took longer than expected, but oh well haha. My book came out, so if any of y’all want to buy it, hit me up. 

I’ve been super busy with that and I had a leadership conference this weekend, but I should have some free time coming up, given the fact that school ends soon and I have a four-day weekend coming up. 

The next morning, you arose feeling more refreshed than you had in quite some time. The bed you slept in was so soft and so warm, you felt as though you had slept on a cloud. You looked around as the memories of the night before slowly pieced themselves together. You were in a castle. With a beast. And he had sworn to protect your life. My, had things taken a turn?

There was a knock at the door. Instinctively, you tensed as your eyes darted to it, but then your harsh gaze softened. You were safe here, you reminded yourself.

“Hello?”

“It’s just Mrs. Potts, dear.” Her kind voice called from the other side of the door.

“Come on in,” You called in response. The door swung open and in she came on her tray, Chip hopping along excitedly at her side. “Good morning.”

“Morning, love. The Master sent me to see what you might like for breakfast.”

“Just some eggs and toast would be fine.” You smiled. “It’s been a long time since anyone’s cared enough to feed me.”

“Well, I’ll see to it that you’re always fed, dear.” She smiled. Mrs. Potts hated the thought of such a kind young woman being alone for so long without the promise of meals. You could feel her discomfort at the thought of it and decided it was time for a change in topic.

“So, what is he like?”

“Who?”

“The master of the castle.”

“He’s a little rough around the edges, but I think you’ll find that he has a good heart. You’ve stirred about something in him that I haven’t seen in a long time. Something light. Something hopeful.” She tilted her head in a sort of awkward bow. “Thank you.”

“I don’t know what I’ve even done. The way he looked at me yesterday…no one has ever looked at me like that before. Like I was their entire world.”

“To him, you’re much more than that. You’re his sun, moon, and stars too.” She chuckled a little. “I know it may seem a bit odd, but he’d do anything to protect you.” Chip looked to his mother as she continued to talk, waiting for the cue he’d been promised. The teacup had so many questions.

“Yes, Chip?” you asked as soon as you sensed his unabashed curiosity.

“Miss, who are you? I mean, what’s your name? How did you find the castle? Why does your hair glow sometimes? What do-”

“Woah there. Slow down.” You giggled, smiling. You loved children. “My name is (Y/N). The master led me to the castle after saving me from a pack of wolves. My hair glows because it’s magic.”

“What kind of magic?” the look in his eyes told you that your words had only caused his curiosity to intensify.

“The magic of the stars.” There was a twinkle in your mystifying eyes as you said this. “I can answer more questions later, but I’m sure the Master won’t want to be kept waiting too long. I’m sure that given his…circumstance, he must have quite the appetite.”

“He does indeed.” Lumiere strolled into the room accompanied by a rather disgruntled mantel clock. “Good morning, Mademoiselle. I trust your sleep was satisfying?”

“I haven’t slept this well in a long time.” You smiled. “Thank you.”

“Well, you are our guest, of course. Anyway, Madame Garderobe-” he looked to the sleeping wardrobe. After a moment’s thought, he cleared his throat and tried again. “MADAME GARDEROBE!”

Her response was a deafening string of gorgeous soprano notes. As her doors opened, she was quite shocked to take in the sight of so many of her companions. And a woman.

“A woman! Finally, someone to dress!”

“Madam, find something suitable for our guest to wear to breakfast.” Cogsworth instructed. He headed towards the door along with Mrs. Potts, Chip, and Lumiere. “We shall meet you down there when you’re ready.”

“We will find you something fitting for a princess.” She sang enthusiastically as the door shut behind the others.

“Oh, I’m no princess. Not anymore…”

“Nonsense. I can still dress you like one.”

You had the feeling that you and the Madame would get along just fine…

***

“What if she doesn’t want to stay here? What if I misread everything that happened last night? What if-”

“Master, she seemed very content to be here.” Mrs. Potts reassured him as he paced about the room. He had been doing this for about an hour now. “It’s been a while since she’s had anyone but herself, I think. Perhaps a home is just what she needs.”

“It’s not a home. It’s a prison.”

“For you, maybe.” Lumiere reasoned. “For her, Master, I think it’s all she has.”

There was a long patch of silence. Adam finally stopped moving. His icy blue eyes met those of Mrs. Potts. She offered a small but hopeful smile. Cogsworth looked up at the beast their prince had become. He then looked to Lumiere. The candelabra was quiet for a few moments before speaking.

“Master, all you have to do is win her heart! Just…turn on the charm!”

“The…charm?”

“Yes! Come on, show me the smile!”

“This is ridiculous.”

“Master, we’re running out of time.” Mrs. Potts’ voice was soft, as fragile as the china she was now made of. She couldn’t help but let her thoughts wander to her son. Her precious baby boy might never know the joys of a true childhood again. “Please, at least try to-”

The doors to the dining hall opened.

“G-good morning, mademoiselle!” Lumiere’s eyes snapped up to meet yours. He dipped into a low bow as Adam straightened up, eyes locked on you. You looked absolutely ravishing in the dress Madame Garderobe had made for you. It was purple with swirls of silver, floor-length with a small train and puffs at the tops of the sleeves.

Timidly, you brushed a lock of white hair behind your ear. You were so used to having the cover of the cloak around your head, shielding you from judging eyes. But now…you were so utterly exposed.

“What? Is it too much?” You asked, reaching to wipe away the rich rouge she had rubbed on your cheeks. “I told her it was too much-”

“N-no! You…you look beautiful.” Adam’s eyes softened.

“Thank you.” Your cheeks darkened as the heat rushed to your face. It took you by surprise. You weren’t sure how long it had been since you had made an actual friend, let alone one that had called you beautiful. It felt…nice.

Adam walked you to your seat and pulled it out for you. You sat down in the cushy chair, and gently, he pushed you in before taking his place across the long table. The meal was one of the best you had in a long time, despite the fact that it was just eggs and toast. Adam glanced up at you every few minutes, a slight tug pulling at his reluctant lips. His oatmeal was cold by the time he finally remembered to eat it.

You chuckled as you felt his feeling of sudden realization. If he could have blushed, he would have.

“I’m not going anywhere.” Your words were reassuring. “So perhaps you could stop worrying about it so much.”

“I’m sorry, it’s just been-”

“So long since you’ve had anyone.” You paused, a small smile forming. “I think I understand.”

“How…” He paused, swallowing. “How long have you been…”

“Alone?”

“Alone.” The word felt heavy on his tongue. It was too familiar. Too real.

“I’ve been on my own for…A long time. I lost track about a century ago.”

Adam’s blue eyes widened. You nodded.

“I know. I hardly look it.”

“So you’re…immortal.”

“It seems so, yes.” You nodded. “There are legends about people like me, about the children of the stars. A lot of them say that when we live our purpose, we’re finally free. Well, I mean, free to live out the rest of our lives without the weight of the world on our shoulders.”

“To be human.”

“To an extent, yes.” You nodded. Adam paused, a question billowing up from the back of his mind.

“What do you believe your purpose is, then?”

You were quiet for a long time before answering with absolute certainty.

“To stop Ferdinand.”

Tags:  @i-wished-upon-a-star-one-night @jessie-ohler @ellie0813 @ficbucket @dead-lee-15 @dragon—scales @justasadlittleblogger @amazingangelaaa @quickies-with-quicksilver @itsintothegreatbeyondstuff @thisismycrazyme @supernaturalshenanigans @mirkwood-edhel @unprofessional-inhumanbeing @unabashedgentlemenpirate @amazinglybrilliant @superheavymetalunicorn @melodicartist612 @rockyrae @forest-elf-eruraina @lookingforgranger @allineedisconnor @superwholockianwitch @an-anxiousace-from-outerspace @girl-obsessed-with-things @iamthemaskhewears @tangle-of-ivy @ciaprincess @keithseabrook27 @fizzylollipop12 @geeky-girl-394 @sayukoi

Game of Foreshadowing: S04E07 “Mockingbird”

In the long wait between seasons I thought it would be fun to pick a random Game of Thrones episode from earlier seasons and see if it contains any foreshadowing for events in S7 and possible events in S8. 

Disclaimers: I am aware the limits of using invented D&D scenes to draw endgame conclusions, so if you dismiss some of these theories I totally understand. The writers are never as clever as they think they are. I will use quote formatting to paraphrase what’s going on in each scene. There may be some scenes omitted in my analysis. This isn’t a recap; I’m only pulling out things that I think are relevant for future events.

The first episode I’m going to talk about is S04E07 “Mockingbird.” I think this one could be seen to heavily foreshadow love/relationships in S7 and S8.

.

Keep reading

If You Love Someone

Originally posted by easycompany

Originally posted by royalprotection-rp-blog


Originally posted by butterflysfics

Tale as Old as Time Masterlist

-

“This is some storm.“ Maeve shuddered, pulling a covering tightly around her shoulders, holding an umbrella over Diane’s head. The aforementioned woman wore thick, warm furs to protect herself against the harsh wind and rain as they walked through the village, heading to the tavern.

“At least we’re not tied to a tree in the middle of nowhere… surrounded by bloodthirsty wolves.” She whispered. Maeve did not know whether she should laugh or cry as she thought of Diana all alone in the cold. “You know it’s not too late. We could always turn back…” Diane’s eyes narrowed and she turned to her companion.

“Why would you want to? The old spinster is getting what she deserves after treating me so harshly. Calling me ugly, denying me from my one true love. Impossible.” Diane snapped, “My god Maeve, why do you care about her well-being? You can not even hold an umbrella correctly!”

Maeve immediately lifted up the umbrella, flushing with shame. “It’s just… every time I close my eyes… I picture Diana stranded alone. And then when I open them… she’s… here!” The woman gasped, arm lowering.

“Do not be ridiculous Maeve, the idea of that is simply…inconceivable….Just as your ability to hold the umbrella!” She huffed, turning to see Maeve staring at something behind her.

The library was dark, but the rooms above it were dimly lit with candles. Diane could not believe her eyes when she saw Diana in the window, a woman beside her. “Who is she?” Her tone was similar to before Diana was tied up, making the hair on the back Maeve’s neck stand up.

“That is Emily Prentiss. She takes care of the books when the director of the library is away on business.” Diane simply said nothing, but sharply turned her heel, marching away.

“Miss?” Maeve called, running after her. “Where are we headed? What is going on?”

“Maeve, I have a plan. A plan to get everything I ever wanted, and no one can stop me.”
-
(Your POV)

“What are you doing y/n?” A voice inquired from behind your figure. You spun to find Alex Blake behind you. She had been the castle librarian, historian, and your old tutor, but she had been transformed into a bookend. You had not see her much since the curse was placed. “It looks as if you are polishing the mirror you were gifted.”

“‘Gifted’ does not seem like the correct word.” You mumbled, placing the object upon your table.

“Nevertheless dear, my question still remains. You seem to be anxious, why is that?”

“I was hoping to give this to Spencer. He seems lonely and I believe if he were to see his mother, he may feel more at ease here. I know I have already introduced him to the wonders of the library, but I do not think I have given him enough. He saved my life, and has somehow given new meaning to it.” Alex smiled softly at your sentiment.

“I realized I have now changed. I wake up every morning, excited and overjoyed that he is apart of my life now. The staff used to be so cold, but now I know and care for them. I am no longer the person I used to be….That is all thanks to him.”

“I believe that you are in love.” Alex chuckled. “That is wonderful! It is what every one has been waiting for!”

“Then you know I cannot allow him to remain here?” You sighed, turning away from her gaze. “I care for him too much to allow him to be separated form his mother, and forced to be with me.”

“Y/n… there is to be a ball for the two of you tomorrow, yes?”

“Yes. He has been helping restore the palace to its former glory, and I suggested making use of the ballroom. I hope to…” You broke off your sentence. “The mirror will be his to use however he wishes. A…parting gift. My goodbye.”

“I believe you are very wise Princess. I believe love is like a dove. You must give it room to venture, and be free. The tighter you try to hold onto it, the more it will try to get away.” You stayed quiet, looking out your window.

“You have taught me well. I will and have always treasured you, even if I have never said it.” You failed to notice between your conversation that she climbed up on your vanity, pressing her cold lips on your cheek.

“I have always known. I wish you luck, for parting is never easy, no matter how many times you have done it.”
-

(Third Person POV)

“Mademoiselle Turner, a woman of high stature, such as yourself must know that I don’t usually leave the asylum in the middle of the night, but I believe you will make it worth my while.” Mousier George Foyet, head of the insane asylum, sat across from the two women in the parlor of Diane’s home.

“My good sir.” Diane faked a smile as she handed a few gold pieces to Maeve, who stood beside her. The servant passed the currency to the leering man who wasted o time to inspect its realness. “The situation resembles this. I’ve got my heart set on marrying Spencer Reid, but he needs a little… persuasion.”

“Mousier Reid is very concerned about the health of his mother. The worry is…overtaking his time.” Maeve carefully clarified.

“Everyone knows his mother is an absolute lunatic. She forced me to help her the other night. She was convinced that Spencer was taken by a terrible beast, and mentioned talking teacups, a castle in the middle of the forest, and that it was covered in snow. May I remind you that it is summer?”

“I believe the woman sounds harmless, even if her brain may be starting to go.” Foyet sighed, rubbing his nails on his shirt, eyeing the objects around him greedily.

“We may agree to disagree. My point, Mousier, is that Spencer would do anything for the safety of his mother.” Her eyes gave away the meaning of her seemingly ordinary phrase.

“So am I to understand that you wish for me to throw Diana in the asylum as bait to persuade the young man into marriage with you?” Diane nodded. “I do not believe I understand why you would chase after a man who clearly does not have any interest in you when there are so many others that do.”

“I am not paying for you to understand, you simpleton.” She barked, shoulders squaring up. “Do you agree to my terms?”

“You drive a hard bargain Diane.” Foyet snickered, standing and bowing deeply. “But how could I refuse?”
-

Once Diana had been healthy enough to venture outside of the library, she insisted on Emily leading her over to the tavern, and exposing Diane for who she truly was. She was convinced that with Emily by her side, everyone would finally believe her. The large crowd the tavern inhibited quieted down immediately at the sight of the two educated women. The silence was broke down by a triumphant cry.

“Diana!” Diane cheered, running over to the older woman and wrapping her arms around her. “Maeve and I were so concerned! After you ran into the forest we tried looking for you but we feared the worst!”

“The lies that slip from your tongue are despicable. You tried to kill me and you left me to the wolves.” Diana pushed herself away, crossing her arms.

“Darling, It is s one thing to rave about your beasts and castles but it is another thing to accuse me of attempted murder.” The crowd mumbled incoherent ramblings.

“Diana… do you have any proof of what you’re saying?” A young barmaid, Elle Greenaway asked, a hand coming to rest upon Diana’s shoulder.

“Ask Emily, she rescued me from death.”

“Emily Prentiss! You would hang your accusations on the testimony… of an old spinster who wastes her time reading books when she is supposed to be watching over them?” Diane chuckled, a few chiming in with her. Emily kept her calm, observing the selfish airhead in front of her.

“I believe Diana mentioned that Mademoiselle Donovan was also present. She saw it all.” Emily uttered.

“Me?” Maeve squeaked, eyes wide. Diane never mentioned that she would also be involved in this plan.

Ah, right. Don’t take my word for it. Maeve… my dearest companion… did I… your oldest friend and most loyal compatriot… try to kill the mother of our dear friend Spencer?“ The way Diane smiled may have seemed innocent to others, but to Maeve it was almost as terrifying as knife to her throat. If she answered truthfully it was highly doubtful that anyone would believe her seeing as Diane’s parents helped found the town of Villanueve. If she lied, as Diane wished her to do, Maeve would live to see the next morning.

"No, she did not. Diane is the sweetest person I have ever known and is not capable of any malicious thought, let alone a murderous action.” Maeve swallowed thickly not being able to look anyone in the eye.

“Diana… I dealt with your delusions the other night but it pains me to say that I believe you have become a danger not only to yourself, but to others. No wonder Spencer ran away. He must have been so exhausted having to deal with your lunatic ramblings and accusations. You need help, sweetnesss. A place to heal your troubled mind. Everything’s going to be fine. Let me introduce you to my friend, Mousier Foyet.” At the mention of his name, the man seemed to appear out of thin air.

“No…no please you cannot do this to me! You cannot hide me away because I chose not to subject my son to your horrors.” Diana tried to step away from Foyet’s grasp, only to bump into associates of his. “Emily! Elle! Someone, please!” She turned, hoping to find a compassionate face only to realize that Emily was gone, and no one dared to speak up.

“Please!” Diana screamed as she was dragged into a cage within a carriage. Her begs and pleas fell on deaf ears, as did her sobs. “Spencer….someone….help me.”

-
@phoenixwwitch @totallynotn3rdy95 @cool-bluemoon @amarislestrange @rogerthatsgt @marieannfandoms @bekaperk  @dontshootmespence @mariadrinaa @charcoalblack-ish @queenelsaschyler @captainreid @drunk-fairytale

Venue of the Day!

Neuschwanstein Castle

Fun fact: This castle was apparently the inspiration for Sleeping Beauty’s Castle in Disneyland and Disney World’s Cinderella Castle! (Personally it reminds me a little of the castle in Disney’s Beauty and the Beast movie too?)

As always, if anyone knows the photographer, please add their name! =)

One of the things I love most about the scene where Beast is getting ready for the ballroom dance is Lumiere’s expressions–he is not kidding around anymore or taking any more of the Beast’s bullshit. His expressions are also gold (literally and figuratively) and is just a little terrifying. Just a little. 

“Damn straight you’re gonna listen to me, bitch.”

*Aggressively reminds the Beast if he doesn’t tell Belle how he feels tonight, it will be too late and Beast will have to live in a castle with no servants. DARK AND VERY VERY DUSTY!*

The face of a determined man right here, people. 

And as a bonus, one of the Beast’s subtle expressions through this:

“Shit. Lumiere’s mad.”

You better believe it, Adam. (But seriously though, being reminded that when the last petal falls, he’ll be living all alone in a castle knowing his servants are for all intents and purposes dead because of him…yeah. Like hell Lumiere (along with Plumette and Mrs Potts) are gonna let him forget.)

Beauty and the Beast vs The Force Awakens

• “Far off places, daring sword fights, magic spells, a prince in disguise”; i. e. Takodana, Starkiller Base, Ach-To; lightsaber duels; the Force; Kylo Ren is technically a prince, since Leia is a princess

• “Here’s where she meets Prince Charming, but she won’t discover that it’s him til chapter 3”; Prince Charming, as I said above, is Kylo; won’t discover until chapter 3, i. e. Ep IX, the third “chapter” of the sequel trilogy, possibly when Kylo’s redemption begins and Rey begins to fall in love with him

• The way Belle looks at the Beast when he steps into the light in the dungeon and she’s frightened by his appearance is reminiscent of Kylo stepping from behind the rocks on Takodana and letting Rey see him for the first time, and she’s frightened by his mask and lightsaber

• As the Beast leads Belle to her chambers, she begins to cry, like Rey did in the interrogation scene. The Beast grows empathetic, and awkwardly attempts to speak to her, much like we see Kylo empathize with Rey’s memories of loneliness and isolation

• “But if the master doesn’t learn to control his temper, he’ll never break the spell”; we see Kylo throw several temper tantrums throughout the film, and he won’t be able to turn to the Light before he learns to let go of/control his anger. Remember, anger is the path to the Dark side.

• “She’s not a prisoner, she’s our guest” vs “You’re my guest”

• The broken furniture in the West Wing of the Beast’s castle, very likely the murdered employees of the castle the Beast killed when the curse was first cast, reminds me of the ashes Kylo keeps, supposedly of his “enemies” that he’s killed. Presumably he wouldn’t want Rey to know that’s what they are, and would try to hide the truth of it from her, much like the Beast forbids Belle from going to the West Wing.

• When Belle first sees the true face of the Beast in a tattered portrait in the West Wing, she looks confused and intrigued, almost the exact same expression on Rey’s face when Kylo removes his mask.

• Belle and Rey both escape from their respective captors into a snowy landscape

• The scene where the Beast rescues Belle from the wolves and a corresponding scene between Kylo and Rey will likely happen either in ep 8 or ep 9; my guess is in 8; afterward, Rey’s feelings about Kylo will begin to change, just as Belle’s did for the Beast

• The Beast collapses, gravely wounded on his arm, into the snow…do I really need to explain this one?

I believe we’ve caught up to where TFA ends, with the Beast/Kylo wounded in the snow and Belle/Rey looking back at them. The rest of the movie is the developing of the romantic relationship between the Beast and Belle, and we haven’t reached that point in the sequel trilogy with Kylo and Rey just yet.

Now, disclaimer: I think a lot of these parallels, if not all of them, are unintentional. However, while the specific parallels might be unintentional, I believe the story of the Beauty and the Beast trope between Kylo and Rey is not unintentional, and in playing into this trope they subconsciously borrowed from one of Disney’s most memorable stories.

pocket-elf  asked:

Prompt: "Real is just a matter of perception"

Alright, so this prompt somehow reminded me of Beauty and the Beast - I wanted to write a 300 word drabble to the theme, but it somehow ended up just a tad longer… ;)

Fic: A Matter of Perception (on AO3)

He’d wanted to run, at first. Every cell in his body had screamed at him to get away, flee this enchanted castle, terrifying in its strange, abandoned beauty, with its even more terrifying master. Yet Alec had stayed. It had been his choice, after all, to exchange his freedom for Izzy’s.

Family Thursday: “Miniba”

This post was going to be proof positive that “Miniba” is Zackley’s child who was planted in the Survey Corps as a spy, but some theories write themselves and this one went in a very different direction. I’m leaving it as Family Thursday even though there is no longer anything “family” about it…yet

Something that has plagued many of us since chapter 83 isn’t the “Armin vs Erwin” debate but rather how the soldier known as “Miniba” found Erwin and carried his near lifeless body all the way from outside the walls to the innermost part of Shiganshina and up onto the roof. Take a moment, please, and look at the size of that city and let me remind you that Erwin is nearly 6′2″ tall and weighs 202 lbs.  

It’s humanly impossible, I tell you, so either Isayama is taking great liberties with physics and logistics or Miniba isn’t human. And if “Miniba” isn’t human, there’s only one alternative—that’s right, Miniba is a titan shifter.

It wouldn’t be the first time a secret shifter has heroically saved someone. Think back to chapter forty to the flashback of Ymir and Historia on a snowy mountain trying to save the injured Daz. That portion of the manga has always puzzled me, because why would anyone want to save Daz? He’s a terrible character! But, still, there was Historia lugging his lifeless body through the snow while Ymir mocked her. Eventually Ymir transformed under the cover of darkness to get him safely down the mountain.

The mention of Ymir’s letter in this chapter is to remind us of her, and of that snowy day, and how all these things are connected. Because they are. Ymir secretly transformed to save Daz and Miniba to save Erwin. It was foreshadowing. I’m sure of it. 

I can’t end this theory without revealing the true identity of “Miniba”. The whole reason we started calling this character “Miniba” in the first place is because when they appeared in chapter 70, many of us were struck by their uncanny resemblance to Nanaba.

It’s obvious to me that “Miniba” is Nanaba who was accidentally transformed by the Beast Titan at Castle Utgard and wiped of her former memories. Since we’ve established that Mike is the Cargo Titan, I’m happy to report that this means a future reunion for these former squad mates.

4 of 7 // snk crack theories week 2016

A Gift That Keeps on Giving

Here is a one-shot from the GF-BATB AU that @saisai-chan bestowed upon us. This is my take on the library scene. I also took the liberty of incorporating the idea that Fiddleford was found by Stan and brought back to the castle into this story.


The morning sun radiated over Pines castle as two young children were strolling around the snow-covered back gardens, taking in the beautiful scenery around them. Dipper was guiding Racoon Wife the family horse around, gently leading her with the reins. Racoon Wife bent her head, softly nuzzling the boy with her enormous nose. Dipper chuckled at the horse’s display of affection before pressing his forehead against her nose and petting her neck. 

Mabel walked beside Waddles, her pet pig, while she admired the grand evergreen trees above her. Waddles sensed the presence of Gompers, the the anthropomorphic foot stool and began to run towards him. The leg chair bleated in alarm and ran away in fear, which only encouraged the pig to chase him. Mabel shifted her attention towards the animals and wanted to engage herself in the fun.

“Waddles, Gompers! Come here you two!” She shouted playfully. The two animals, heeding her words, began to sprint at her. Unfortunately, they were unable to stop running and they accidentally pummeled the girl into the snow. Mabel gave a loud ooof as she toppled to the ground. Her brother was startled by Mabel’s call and he immediately ran towards her to help her out.

“Mabel! Are you alright?“ He asked concernedly. 

Keep reading

Of Beasts, Beauties, and Slightly Bruised Dignities (Beauty and the Beast, 2017)

2017!BatB-verse: What if the Beast overheard and saw Belle clobbering Lumiere with the stool? Also takes a little bit of inspiration from the 1991 animated version too. 

Originally posted by gafou

Belle is jolted out of her dull thoughts by the clanging and creaks of the prison door suddenly opening. Pulled back to reality, she scampers to her feet, staring at the shadow of what appears to be a full grown man on the floor flickering with candlelight right outside the door. 

“Forgive my intrusion, mademoiselle…” 

She does not like the sound of his voice at all–he sounds almost as menacing as the terrible monster of the castle himself. Grabbing the nearest weapon she can pick up–a stool of all things, and an expensive-looking one at that–Belle edges closer to the door, trying to see who it is before he can see her. 

“…but I have come to escort you to your room!” the owner of the tall shadow finishes his sentence. 

“My room?!” Belle echoes, confused and frustrated at all this carrying on–did she have a room or not? “But I thought–”

“Oh, what? That once this door closes, it will not open again!” 

Belle has to give it to whoever this stranger is–he could do an impressive mimicry of the Beast’s terrible noise. 

There is still no sign of whoever this man is, staying out of her sight, only his shadow on the floor. 

“I know, he gets so dramatic!” the man chuckles. 

Belle freezes as her eyes follow the shadow on up to–

What the hell is that?! 

She gasps in horror as a little candle man…thing greets her cheerfully before his hands–no, candles–slip from the lever. He lands on his feet with a grunt, and starts ambling to her, still cheery. 

“Hello!”

With a scream, Belle hurls the stool with all her strength at the candle man thing, screaming again as it hits its target, snuffing out the wicks. Belle’s heart pounds in her chest, adrenaline coursing through her whole body, as she stumbles back, only to flinch when a great roar shakes the foundations of the prison. 

“WHAT HAVE YOU DONE?!” 

The Beast looms in the shadows, eyes flashing furiously in the candlelight as he lumbers to check on the talking candlestick now trapped under the remains of the stool.

Keep reading

A Broken Beauty (Beauty and the Beast, through a warped lens)

The prince’s parents had been away, and kidnapping was always a concern when you’re a prince, so when a stranger came to the door and demanded hospitality as if it were her right, he had ordered her escorted out the gate. Instead of returning with a more appropriate attitude, the woman had declared that he and his castle were cursed. Everyone had a good laugh at that, and he had gone to bed, secure in his state. The next morning was when he had discovered the woman had not been someone to laugh at, when he woke, his body twisted into something that vaguely resembled the minotaurs in the bedtime stories his nurse told. (He didn’t like to admit it, being 10 years old and all, but he still LIKED having bedtime stories. They made it easier to fall asleep.) The castle appeared empty of all life, other than him, but he could hear his servants, all around him, in his mind. It wasn’t until the day he called out to someone through the front gate, and he heard their terror that he realized he could hear what people were thinking.

At first, it had been fun to hide near the gate and terrorize people passing on the road that ran from Paris to Barcelona through what had been his family’s principality before the curse and now, since his parents had never returned and he had no idea what had happened to them, was simply one of the many lost principalities of Europe. The lure of terrorizing travelers wore off in time, and he tried to get people to come, to visit, hell, to even talk to him, but all fled as soon as he tried to speak. even when he hid his form under heavy cloaks from his family’s wardrobes.

As the years passed, he became more and more lonely, especially when he grew older and his body began displaying desires that he had no idea what to do with, but that the voices he heard when he visited the stables gave him plenty of suggestions. Then one night…

“Master! Master! Wake up, your Highness! An intruder!”

The prince shot upright in his bed and looked around. “An intruder? SHOW YOURSELF!” As his anger that someone would intrude on his home washed over him, his voice changed to a bestial roar.

“In the Great Hall, your Highness! He’s pawing through the silver!”

The Prince focused his attention on the Great Hall, and sure enough, there was a stranger there. He prodded into the man’s mind, and recoiled with a curse. The man was exactly the kind of person his parents had warned him against, so many years ago: the kind he had thought the old woman was when he had her thrown out of the castle. He snatched up the flamberge from the rack beside his bed and crept through the castle, hoping to catch the thief in the act.

He leaped into the Great Hall, just as the thief was stuffing silver into a bag. The point of the sword caught the thief under the chin, and he froze, dropping his bag and the silver he had stolen. The Prince rummaged through his mind, discovered he had been watching the castle for weeks, thought it was abandoned, and had already planned to claim he had been driven into the castle by bandits - not so far-fetched, since a band of his ‘clients’ was searching for him because they were dissatisfied with the service his whore had provided, and wanted to discuss the matter, most likely at dagger point. Now this monster was holding him at sword-point, with a sword that would require a man two hands, but this beast held as if it were a dagger. This beast, it … no, he. He. Hmm… maybe there was a way out of this after all.

“Hold, friend,” the thief said, his voice all snake oil and false promises. “I can see you don’t want to shed blood, or my head would already be laying on your floor. Why don’t we see if we can come to an … accommodation?” The thief looked the beast up and down and hoped, his thoughts loud enough to be painful, that this male beast that walked on two legs had the appetites of a man.

“This is such an empty hall, and you look like a man who knows what he likes. I have a daughter, just old enough to be ripe for marriage, who I would be happy to send to live with you and make this castle more of a home, if you will only allow me to leave with my life.”

The Prince became more and more suspicious, the more the man spoke. He reminded him of the serpent in his nurse’s reading of the story of the Garden of Eden. His suspicions came to a sudden stop when the man mentioned his daughter, and he saw an image of a girl, younger than he felt himself to be despite how many winters had passed since the curse had been laid, chained in a dungeon. “Ah, well,” the thief thought, “It’s too bad this beast is so good with a sword. I could use him in place of the dogs,” his mind filled with an image of the girl pinned down and being repeatedly raped by a pack of dogs, “but I’d have to be alive to take advantage of that. If he’s as virile as that enormous prick suggests, though, he won’t be able to resist -”

The Prince tossed the sword aside and grabbed the thief by the throat, then lifted him so when he roared into the thief’s face, he sprayed him with spittle. The thief fainted.

When the thief awoke, he was laying on the road outside the front gate, with a note pinned to his coat. The note, written in impeccable script, said the following:

Dear Master O'Conner:

Since you live in the village of (here he named the thief’s home, a village only three days travel from the castle), I am granting you exactly seven days to deliver upon your promise. Your daughter will appear at the front gate of the castle by the seventh day, ready to be married to me.

If your daughter is not delivered as agreed upon by you, then The Beast of The Castle shall hunt you down and carve off a pound of flesh for each item you attempted to steal from my castle. And, yes, that includes the coins you have hidden, in your boots.

Given your deadline, I would advise you to begin walking. NOW.

Your humble servant,

Prince Frederick

The Prince watched the thief leave at a commendable speed, and then retired to the castle’s dungeon, to prepare Miss Aislinn’s welcome.