Let’s Make A Deal
“What do you want?” The King stared at the frightening man before him, a sword gripped tight in his fist. They’d come together under a flag of truce and the monster was unarmed, but the King had no doubt that he was still a threat. Others had made that mistake before, he wasn’t going to be one of them.
“To make a deal.” The twisted man grinned and laughed, the broken mockery of a child’s laugh and it chilled the King to the bone.
“I do not deal with the enemy,” the King spat. The black knight next to him made a small gesture and he relaxed, checking his tone.
“My, my, my, it’s a wonder you came at all then. Very well, be gone, I have no time to waste on you, I have better things to do.” The reek of carnage and death hung around the three, reminding the King of the reason he’d agreed to meet in the first place. They were losing the war despite their superior numbers and this was the only way to protect the lives of his people. He had no other choice.
“What do you want?” he demanded between ground teeth for the second time.
“Oh, nothing much,” Rumpelstiltskin teased, steepling his fingers and pacing lightly, not at all affected by the death surrounding them.
“Do not mock me.” The King grew weary of Rumpelstiltskin’s games. Though he was willing to fight on in defense of his kingdom, he desperately wanted peace. War was no way to live, to raise a family and he would do whatever it took to achieve the peace he so longed for. “Tell me what it is you desire Dark One.”
Rumpelstiltskin grinned, his head moving from side to side like a snake hypnotizing his prey and the King shivered.
“Why, the great ruler of this army. I get him, and there is peace.”
“Never,” the King snarled. The black knight’s gloved hand caught his arm and the King turned on him. They didn’t speak, but the King’s face changed and the anger in his shoulders deflated.
“Deal,” the King said, exhaustion pulling at his words and Rumpelstiltskin gave a giddy laugh, clapping his hands and grinning, his sharp teeth flashing in the sun.
The King pulled the dark knight closer, staring into the dark slit of the helmet.
“Please, don’t do this,” he whispered, agony in his eyes. “The kingdom needs you.” The Dark One looked on curiously as the black knight laid a hand on the King’s cheek and squeezed his hand before turning to Rumpelstiltskin. The knight stepped forward, leaving the King behind and removing the dark helmet, a curtain of hair falling loose to frame soft features and bright blue eyes.