Princess and the Slave by Celia_Rose
Summary:

Sara is a princess, the daughter of a cruel king. Lincoln and Michael are the children of rebel parents that have been exiled because of their parents refused to serve a tyrant. Lincoln steals from the King Tancredi to survive but he is caught. To save himself he must sell himself and his brother to work off the debt for the King... However, Sara takes pity on seeing Lincoln and Michael treated harshly and assigns the younger brother as her slave. She struggles against her feelings for a slave and the wrath of her father to come up with a plan to wed Michael to free him and his brother.

This is in response to a challenge set by SlytherinMalfoySnape and the summary is pretty much just the one written by them.


Categories: Alternate Universe Characters: Agent Danny Hale, Agent Paul Kellerman, Aldo Burrows, Brad Bellick, Frank Tancredi, Haywire, Jane Phillips, Lincoln Burrows, Michael Scofield, Nurse Katie, Original Character(s), Other, Sara Tancredi
Genres: Angst, Drama, Family, Fluff, Friendship, General, Romance
Pairing: Michael and Sara
Warnings: Character Death, Graphic Violence
Challenges: A Fairytale Escape/Sara the Princess
Challenges: A Fairytale Escape/Sara the Princess
Series: None
Chapters: 43 Completed: Yes Word count: 34703 Read: 58680 Published: May 01, 2008 Updated: March 27, 2011
Story Notes:

Here you go Vivian, this is for you, I hope you like it. I had written the first few chapters but they started towards being dark so I will try and sort it unless you dont mind that. I have finished Living The High Life now so I thought I would post this even though I have still got lots of other stories on the go. I really need to finish one of them soon. LOL. I think Rebels will soon be finished. I also want to get a sequel to Living The High Life posted, I have already wrote some parts to that. Anyway, please let me know if this is going in the direction you would like it. I wrote it for you Vivian and I do not want to disappoint. Also, Vivian, if you like fairy tales there is one on here by PBaddict4va and its called Happily Ever After? I havent read it but I remember when they posted it so check that out too.

Of course anyone else who reads this, please do enjoy it.

1. Chapter 1 by Celia_Rose

2. Chapter 2 by Celia_Rose

3. Chapter 3 by Celia_Rose

4. Chapter 4 by Celia_Rose

5. Chapter 5 by Celia_Rose

6. Chapter 6 by Celia_Rose

7. Chapter 7 by Celia_Rose

8. Chapter 8 by Celia_Rose

9. Chapter 9 by Celia_Rose

10. Chapter 10 by Celia_Rose

11. Chapter 11 by Celia_Rose

12. Chapter 12 by Celia_Rose

13. Chapter 13 by Celia_Rose

14. Chapter 14 by Celia_Rose

15. Chapter 15 by Celia_Rose

16. Chapter 16 by Celia_Rose

17. Chapter 17 by Celia_Rose

18. Chapter 18 by Celia_Rose

19. Chapter 19 by Celia_Rose

20. Chapter 20 by Celia_Rose

21. Chapter 21 by Celia_Rose

22. Chapter 22 by Celia_Rose

23. Chapter 23 by Celia_Rose

24. Chapter 24 by Celia_Rose

25. Chapter 25 by Celia_Rose

26. Chapter 26 by Celia_Rose

27. Chapter 27 by Celia_Rose

28. Chapter 28 by Celia_Rose

29. Chapter 29 by Celia_Rose

30. Chapter 30 by Celia_Rose

31. Chapter 31 by Celia_Rose

32. Chapter 32 by Celia_Rose

33. Chapter 33 by Celia_Rose

34. Chapter 34 by Celia_Rose

35. Chapter 35 by Celia_Rose

36. Chapter 36 by Celia_Rose

37. Chapter 37 by Celia_Rose

38. Chapter 38 by Celia_Rose

39. Chapter 39 by Celia_Rose

40. Chapter 40 by Celia_Rose

41. Chapter 41 by Celia_Rose

42. Chapter 42 by Celia_Rose

43. Chapter 43 by Celia_Rose

Chapter 1 by Celia_Rose
Author's Notes:

Please enjoy this. I hope it wont disappoint anyone, its not usually what I write about but I happily wrote upon request. Thanks Vivian ;)

Aldo sighed as he returned to their hut. He saw his two sons and his beautiful wife and they looked at him expectantly. He had been supposed to bring them food but there was none. He had none. He hated this part.

“The forest seems to be empty of game or anything for that matter, I’m sorry, we have to go hungry again,” he said. Lincoln stood out of his seat.

“We cant, father, not again, mother is weak, she needs food,”

“Its alright Lincoln,” she said putting a hand on his arm.

“Its not alright!” he snapped. Aldo sat and put his head in his hands. He was watching his wife starve, his two sons becoming more and more tired of everything. Life wasn’t supposed to be like this. Life wasn’t supposed to be in control of a tyrannous king. The city, which wasn’t even their city anymore was in his complete control. Aldo stood and went outside. He knocked on one of the other rebels hut door. They opened.

“Jane, have you got… I’m sorry I hate to ask-”
“You need food again?” he sighed and nodded shamefully. “I don’t have much myself, I barely have enough.”

“I understand,” he muttered.

“Wait,” she said and disappeared inside, she was back a moment later holding a dead rabbit. “Its not much,”

“That could be a couple of meals for just you,” he said astonished.

“I know, its alright I ate enough,” she smiled and he gratefully received the animal. He returned home and saw Michael pacing and Christina with her head in her hands.

“What’s wrong?” he asked and Michael looked at him, his deep blue eyes pained.

“It’s Lincoln, he‘s gone,”

“Gone? Gone where?” Aldo asked and slammed the rabbit onto the table.

“The city,”

“What? We’re banished he wont get passed the gates! He‘ll get himself killed!” Michael’s eyes were now filling with tears at his father’s words. Christina let out sobs, she was so weak she could not chase after Lincoln and Michael had tried but then his mother had fallen and needed him. She told him to get Lincoln but Michael refused to leave her side.

~~~~~ 

Lincoln had made his way into the forest, karts were always passing at this time to deliver to the city. He was so angry with everything, he was not angry at his father, it was not his father’s fault. It was the King. King Tancredi up in his castle with his pretty daughter all stuffing their faces while the rest of them starve. The poor people inside the city walls were living in such poor conditions that disease was sweeping through and they were all starved. His parents rebelled against the king and for this were exiled. They lived no better than the peasants inside the walls.

Lincoln saw a cart, he ducked behind a tree and waited. The slow moving vehicle passed him and he ran out and quickly climbed into the back. He was hidden by hay, this was a delivery for the farmers inside the walls. Their land outside but still, he would get in. it was unpleasant to be buried in the hay but if it meant saving his family from starvation then he would bear the discomfort.

Finally, the gates opened and the cart rolled in. The minute it stopped Lincoln peered through the hay and when he saw no one watched, he jumped out and brushed himself off. The cart was near the castle gates and so were others. He saw people unloading crates of food. Many crates and all just for the king. He looked at some of the peasants, skinny, sick, and envious of the food that was going to the king. How could he just let his people starve like this? Children! Lincoln saw a small girl and her brother, tiny they seemed, so skinny and sick, sitting among the filth of the streets. This was wrong! It only fuelled his want for committing this theft.

He walked towards a food crate and looked inside it, no one watched. He snatched some bread and stuffed it down his tunic top and then ran.

“Stop!” he heard. He had been seen. He pushed through the people, heading towards the gates that were still open for carts. He was almost there, almost, so close.

Suddenly he was tackled and found himself on the ground, the bread went flying and landed in some dirt. The people looked at it and then at the Kings man who had tackled the thief.

“Well the King wont want it now,” he said and the people all dived for the bread, sharing it out as far as it would go. The little boy had immediately gone to get some but being so small was pushed out of the way.

“Hey, hey! The kid, give him some!” Lincoln called as he was dragged to his feet. The boy got some and he looked at Lincoln in silent thanks and returned to his sister and they shared the small amount between them. It broke Lincoln’s heart but after what he did he doubted that heart would be beating much longer.

End Notes:
I hope you enjoyed the first chapter, I'd love to hear what you thought. :)
Chapter 2 by Celia_Rose
Author's Notes:
Here's the next chappie. I hope you like it.

Lincoln did not return home that night. Aldo was holding Christina as they feared the worst. She was crying for her oldest son and wondering if she would ever see him again. Michael was pacing, his hand to his mouth, tears in his eyes. His brave but sometimes reckless brother was still out there. He was either shut in the city walls for the night, or he had done something really stupid and got caught. That would be awful. They could only dread what would be heading to him. He was so brave and so protective of them, he loved them so greatly that he had risked his life for them.

 

Lincoln was dragged to the dungeons in the castle, the smell made him wretch immediately. It was awful and he could hear quiet crying and loud coughing of the sick. He was scared and it showed on his strong face. He was thrown into a cell and others were in it. They were living in their own waste and that was the terrible smell. He saw a man sitting in the corner, he seemed he was keeping his distance from the rest and then he turned and Lincoln saw that he was a leaper. He saw a young woman huddled in another corner, she had her legs close to her chest and her head in her arms. She was crying. He went to her side and placed a hand on her shoulder. She flinched and then looked up at him. She had scars on her face that would have been pretty before.

“Its ok, its ok,” he comforted knowing the poor woman must be in pain. The dungeons were everything he had heard it to be, it was horrible.

A short, round man came to the gate and bashed on it with a bit of wood. He looked at each of them with a smile of satisfaction at their situation.

“Which one of you just got in?” he asked.

“I did,” Lincoln stood.

“Look after those hands, you wont have them much longer,” he taunted and then walked away whistling a cheery tune. The young woman looked up at him but he ignored her now. He was scared but he could handle it, he told himself.

 

King Tancredi was sitting at his table eating, his daughter by his side and his lords around the table. One was trying to make conversation with Sara the princess, it was obvious he was looking for a way in to become the next suitor the King might choose but Sara was hard to please. She refused to marry unless she loved the man. Her father laughed at this, the word love was not in his vocabulary nor his understanding.

“My lord, I ask you what should we do with the thief who tried to steal from you?” Lord Paul asked.

“Please, I pray you, do not speak of such things in my presence,” Sara said, she hated her father’s cruel punishments but they were out of her control.

“Kill him, cut off both hands it matters not to me,”

“Father, I beg you show mercy, or does that word have no meaning to you?” Sara asked bitterly having been ignored previously. The king looked at her. Her brown eyes held anger and they were desperately pleading with him.

“Mercy? That man stole from me, women have no stomach for this talk,” he said, Paul smiled. Sara was enraged.
“He stole bread, can you blame him, your people are starving,” Sara argued but respectfully, she was still maintaining the submissive and innocence a princess was required to have. The king looked into his daughters eyes and saw sorrow.

“If you stop sneaking food to your bedroom and giving it to maids to smuggle out to the people then I will show some mercy to this… thief scum,” Sara looked shocked. “Yes I do know about it,”

“Father-”
“Sara, if it pleases you I will have him work on my monument.”
“That monument is a waste of time!” she slightly raised her voice but was silenced by her father when he brought his hand down hard onto the table making everyone else look. Sara hated that monument being built on slaves backs in memory of one man: her father.

“That would please me very much, father,” she forced, at least the man was going to live and live without being disfigured.

End Notes:
Thank you for reading, let me know if you liked it. Love Celia xXx
Chapter 3 by Celia_Rose
Author's Notes:

I hope you like this :)

Lincoln was in the dungeon all night, he did not sit; the floor was filthy, he did not speak; the people were sick. He was worried about his family fearing the worst for him, what his sweet mother must be going through. The heavy doors opened as guards walked in and the same short round man with beady eyes stopped at the gate. He looked in at them all, enjoying their misery. He opened the gate and dragged one to his feet.


“The noose awaits you,” he said and the man was trembling and pleading although it would do him no good. “The rest of you can watch out that little window,” he pointed and some rushed to it to get a view. Lincoln was tall enough to see over many of their heads. He saw the gallows and dread filled him.

“What did he do?” he asked.

“Nothing,” someone told him.

“Surely the king cant get away with killing someone for the fun of it,”

“He’s the king he can do whatever he wants,” The leaper in the corner muttered. Lincoln looked at him and then back at the gallows and the light of dawn illuminating it. The man was there in place. His lips were moving he was muttering prayers as they fastened the rope. Lincoln turned, he could not watch this. He heard it, he heard the rope tighten as the trap dropped. He closed his eyes. The round man came back to the gate and he was grinning at him. Lincoln’s stomach was churning.

“Your next,” he said.

 

Michael was comforting his sweet mother, she was so worried about Lincoln he had not been back all night. Something awful no doubt happened. Aldo was pacing. They heard shouting outside and then horses. Aldo went to look and he saw the kings soldiers riding right through and then turning to stop in the middle.

“The house of Burrows,” the leader shouted, it was the Lord Paul.

Aldo stepped out, maybe it was news of his son, he was worried and his throat was dry. Paul recognised him and ordered his men to raid his house. Aldo tried to stop them but he received the handle of a sword knocking him over.

Michael stood and tried his best to fight them away but they were there for him, and they outnumbered him. He was seized and bound. His hands were bound tightly with rope. He was tied to the back of a carriage and then was dragged away. He struggled to keep his pace with the moving vehicle, running along behind it. His mother ran out of the house screaming at them for her sons and she was at her husbands side crying. They both watched their youngest dragged away, he had done nothing. They were powerless to help him.

End Notes:
Thank you for reading, please let me know your thoughts. Love Celia xXx
Chapter 4 by Celia_Rose
Author's Notes:
Here is todays update. I hope you enjoy it. This will most likely be the last one for today but you know I will get the next bit up tomorrow ;)

Lincoln was dragged out of the dungeons, demanding where he was being taken. He saw a carriage being rode in and behind it a very dusty, slightly bruised Michael. He tried to break the grip of the guards who had him so he could go to him.

“Michael!” he called and his brother’s pained blue eyes met his in shock and then relief. They had been worrying about him and he just wanted to hold him, he wanted to hold his younger brother in his arms but they were being taken somewhere. They were cruelly separated so they could not converse.

A huge monument came into view, slaves working on it like ants in their nest, but the work was forced and not necessary. Seeing the men and women and children even, climbing over the monument, bricks and sacks of sand on their backs, reminded him of the ants nest, he remembered when he and Michael were children and he found one. He took his younger brother who was fascinated by it when Lincoln showed him what hard work the ants were at. Taking the forest inside their home to make it stronger and gathering food for the queen ant. He said to Michael “They work hard to achieve a goal, they work to build their home, nothing comes easy in life, not even shelter,” Michael’s young eyes were fixed on him as he listened intently, amazed at the ants achievements. Now they were the ants.

They were thrown together and a bag of stones and brick was thrown at them, to the ground by their feet. Their binds were untied and they looked at each other. They threw their arms around the other, breathing a sigh of relief. Suddenly a whip cracked beside them and they were ordered apart.

“Right, you two jolly boys take these sacks to the top,” it was the short rounded man from the prison. Michael and Lincoln had to obey for fear of the whip. They pulled the sacks up and onto their backs and made their way up the pathway, especially for the slaves. Michael was thinking of the ants Lincoln showed him when he was a child and how they carried pieces of the earth and forest on their backs into their home.

“We were so worried about you, Lincoln,” Michael muttered.

“I’m sorry, I just wanted to… provide,” Lincoln’s voice was quiet.

“I know, I know, it’s just-” he cut himself off as they passed a slave guard. He waited until they were out of range. “It’s just doing what you did now mother has only our father, I do not know why they brought me here,”

“To pay off the bread I stole from the king,”

“You stole from the king? You’re lucky you still have both hands, you’re lucky you still have your life!”

“I know, it’s like he showed mercy, for some reason. Maybe he just wants this lump of brick finished as soon as,” he said bitterly. Michael was out of breath already, he could feel his back giving in, he looked and saw an old man fall. Without thinking he immediately went to help him, dropping the sack of brick.

“Michael!” Lincoln hissed. Suddenly a whip cracked down on his brothers back for stepping off the path and dropping the sack. Michael called out in pain. The whip cracked down again and hit the old man too. Michael helped him up and suffered another blow. His back was stinging. Lincoln could not watch this, he dropped his sack and ran to take the next blow for him. He pushed Michael and told him to reclaim the sack, he did, but he stumbled from the pain that seared through his flesh.

“Back in line, slave!” the guard growled harshly. Lincoln obeyed and the old man looked at Michael in silent thanks for trying to offer help and apology that he suffered the whip. The three of them returned to the line, sacks on backs, pain in flesh, pain in bones and sadness in minds.

 

Sara was looking out of her balcony, she could see the monument, she could see the slaves as tiny as ants from her distance. She wished there was something she could do, but in this time there really was very little that a woman could do. Even a princess was not taken seriously and it frustrated her. She was forced to watch her father drive these men, women and even children into the ground.

 

 

End Notes:
Thanks for reading, I hope you liked it, please let me know.
Chapter 5 by Celia_Rose

They reached the top of the monument with the sacks and placed them. They were directed to the queue for water, at least their thirst would be quenched. The old man from before slowly walked to Michael.

“Young man,” he whispered to get his attention. “I wanted to thank you for your foolishness,” Michael smiled but quickly let the smile die from fear of the whip. “I am grateful but at the same time, you could cost yourself your life and you are too young,” Michael went to respond but Lincoln stepped in.

“Its always been in his nature to help people, he’s like that, his names Michael, I’m Lincoln,”

“Charles,” the man replied. Michael was so thirsty, his throat was dry and his lips were too, his head was aching and his body cried for food. He reached the front of the line and a small wooden cup was handed to him with a stingy amount of water, he went to take it to his lips but then a whip cracked by his feet making him jump and spill it. He looked at the grinning guard with eyes of pain. That was such a cruel and undeserved punishment. The water was splashed on the ground and had soaked into the mud. Lincoln saw this and wanted to run and hit the guard but he knew he would lose his life for that so instead he handed his younger brother his cup. Michael hesitated, he really did need some water but he did not want to deprive his brother, who must be needing it just as much.

“If you don’t take this I’ll spill it on the ground and no one will have it,”

“Linc-”

“Just take it Michael, you look like your about to drop,” Michael hesitated and then Lincoln tilted the cup so he held his hand out to accept it. Lincoln smiled but Michael did not return it. He felt bad for taking his brothers share of water and they did not know if they would get another during that day.

“Back to work!” a guard called to their line and they were forced to fit the heavy bricks onto the next part of the monument. Lincoln hoped that the platform the guard was standing on would fall beneath him and he would plummet to the ground below and die, but Lincoln knew fortune would not be so kind.

End Notes:
Thank you for reading, I hope you enjoyed it, please review. Thank you
Chapter 6 by Celia_Rose
Author's Notes:
I hope you enjoy this update

Sara was brushing her hair in the mirror but she could not remove her mind from the horrors of her father’s treatment to the people. She slammed the brush on her dresser, her hair was the least important thing. Princess Sara. She could not care. She was sitting here in her lavish chamber brushing her hair while other women were at that hideous monument sweating, aching, mud in their hair, dirt on their faces. She started to cry delicately. She gasped when her door opened suddenly.


“Oh I am sorry if I scared you, princess,” it was her maid, a dark skinned woman from another land, and her face became sad when she saw Sara had been crying. “Sara what is making you unhappy?” she asked and went to her side. Sara wiped tears away and smiled trying to hide it.

“Everything, Katherine, everything,” she replied.

“I am so sorry, your highness, this is clearly a troubled time for you but I was sent to tell you that your father needs to speak with you,” Sara sighed and then stood smoothing out her dress and let Katherine lead her.

King Tancredi was sitting in his office in the castle signing a piece of paper and then Paul came in. He stood waiting to be addressed, a smile on his face, it was always present, a little smile of smugness. He thought he was worthy of the throne and knew that he was Frank’s favourite lord. King Frank looked up at him and was about to ask what he was here for when his daughter came through the door.

“Ah, perfect, I wanted the two of you here,” Frank said and Sara looked at the Lord she so despised. “First of all, Paul, what was the reason for you to come to me, I had not yet sent for you?”

“My Lord, there was another death at the monument today, a young man was beaten too severely, he died,” Sara looked at the man horrified. He spoke the sentence like it was nothing to be too concerned about. Someone had died! She was so angry.

“Do you not think that it deserves more concern than what you offer the tragedy?” she asked and Paul let a small laugh.

“My princess, your majesty, but the death of a peasant or a criminal is hardly a tragedy,” Sara looked at him, horrified. Her eyes were wide and she struggled to control her anger. She looked at her father who was smiling.

“Well, thank you for informing me but now I must tell the two of you something,” they both stood before him awaiting the King. “I have been thinking, Sara, it is becoming far more of a concern to me that you are not yet wed,” no, no, no, no, she knew exactly where this was going, she knew exactly her fathers intentions and she would die before letting them come to pass. She remained silent and waited for the rest, she could feel Lord Paul’s excitement as he stood beside her, this was what he had always wanted, access to the throne. To be next in line. “Paul is one of my most trusted and most important lords at the court and I wish for you to wed him,” he looked at his daughter ignoring her horrified expression. It soon turned to rage. She looked at Paul.

“I refuse,” she said plainly and upturned her nose at him.

“There is no choice in this one Sara, you refuse all suitors and now you have no choice, it will be Paul,”

“No, I refuse,” she said again but Frank slammed a hand flat on the table and stood.

“You will wed him, you will obey your father, the King! I am the King and you obey your ruler!” he growled.

“Father, if you wish to find me dead in my chamber this coming morning then by all means suit me to Paul but I swear by the Lord above-” he ran to her and took her by both arms and shook her.

“You do not disrespect your father, the King, you do not threaten me! The ‘Lord above’ as you call him, chose me, I am king so you swear nothing by him! You will do as I say, you will do as I say and if you do not, I will make sure your good name as ‘Oh so sweet and caring princess‘ is tarnished. You follow your threat through but by that time your memory will be dirt!” he was practically hissing at her and he spat through his words and she was trembling. His grip stung her delicate arms, his breath made her face hot and his words made her heart scared. “Get back to your quarters I am tired of this!” he growled and released her. She bowed her head and quickly hurried out of the office and through the castle corridors, trying to hold in her tears. She closed the door behind her and leant against it. She was still shaking and her eyes spilled the water they held and she sobbed. What could she do? She could do nothing.

End Notes:
Please let me know what you think :)
Chapter 7 by Celia_Rose
Author's Notes:
I hope you like the update

A young man had just died. Michael had been there when it happened and he felt guilty that he had not stepped in. Lincoln could see this and Lincoln had been the one to hold Michael back, if he had not then Michael could be the one they were burying today. He was wrought with guilt that the young man had died, and he had not stopped it. He was so thirsty and so tired and in so much pain. His body hurt from the sores of the whip and his muscles cried.

He could see Lincoln was weak but he tried to hide it. He had not had water all day. He was suffering, his lips were dry and his voice was hoarse from the water deprivation. They were forced to continue the work late. It was hard, it was murderous. Children dropped from thirst and only then was a sip of water given to restore them only so they could continue working.

“There was nothing you could do, Michael,” Lincoln said.

“I know,” he replied solemnly as they heaved the next sack on their backs. Heavy, crushing sacks of murderous sand and bricks. The hill was the next blow towards their apparent slow death. The sweat was dripping off them now, losing the precious water that their bodies needed, losing it for it not to be replaced. They would soon, like the others, die of exhaustion, hunger, thirst, or a beating too severe. It was a slow process and Lincoln was sorry he had gotten Michael here. He wished they would just be satisfied with his labour but they had to go and get his brother. Michael’s legs gave and he fell to the ground with a muffled cry. Lincoln quickly put his sack down to help him up and help him replace the sack before a guard saw. It was done and he could see the pain etched on Michael’s face but they both knew they had to push through it.

“Thanks,” Michael muttered before they rejoined the line of workers lugging sacks to the top only to go back down and fetch another but night was drawing close and they had no doubt they would be held in the dungeons until the morning and that meant no sleep on top of no food or drink.

They were not taken to the dungeons, the king did not want his workers to catch disease, he wanted them healthy. Not that healthy since water was given in small amounts. There were wooden cages that held them near the monument so the next morning they could get right to work.

Michael and Lincoln took a space on the floor, Lincoln let Michael lean on his shoulder. Michael looked around at the young and old faces, dirty, tired, solemn. The children’s faces had streaks through the dirt where tears had fallen through the course of the day. It broke his heart and all he wanted to do was hold them, make it better, make them laugh or even just smile like a child should. He would do if he was not so tired. So tired… exhausted… so tired…he needed sleep… sleep… darkness…

End Notes:
Thanks for reading, let me know what you thought.
Chapter 8 by Celia_Rose
Author's Notes:
i hope you enjoy this chapter

Day broke and Michael slowly opened his eyes. He looked across at the child with the tear stained face and then at Charles who was awake. Lincoln was still sleeping, he was so exhausted with no water the previous day. Michael could feel all of his own aches coming alive again as he moved.

“They are coming,” Charles said and Michael looked up. The guards were coming and they all looked mean. Michael winced at what he knew the day would bring. The cage was unlocked and the people made their way out obediently. Lincoln relieved a kick from a guard to wake him. He glared up at him but had to obey. A child was still sleeping and Michael went to help him up but was pushed away by a guard who went in and kicked the child in the ribs. Michael’s eyes were welling with tears at the treatment of such a small child. The little boy woke and quickly hurried to his labour. It was another day that would kill them all a little bit more.

 

Sara woke that morning, she was angry. There must be something she could do, even if she did marry that cruel man, she could do something to rebel against her father. It was her first thought when she opened her eyes. She slid out of her warm bed and her feet touched the animal fur rug beside her bed. An idea occurred to her, maybe she could go down to the monument and find a slave, bring them back here. That would anger her father and that was one thing she did have a choice in; her servants. She could find them anywhere and the king would have to respect her choice. It was the only thing she was able to do. But today she had to go hunting, she would not be hunting, she would be sitting on a horse for the men to impress with their skill. It bored her to the point of crying but she had to pretend. Paul would be there, she knew he would. Her father, and all of the other Lords she despised. The only person she could speak her mind to was Katherine.

“My lady, you father wishes to know if you are ready?” it was Katherine, just as she was thinking of her.

“Fetch my hunting dress and I’ll be ready, I see no need in making my face and hair presentable since I have no interest in impressing any man,” she said and Katherine laughed.

“You wish to discourage the young Lord Paul?”

“Of course,” Sara said almost offended at the need to ask.

“Between you and me, my lady, I do not blame you, I know I am out of place in saying so but he is vile,”
“I know, he is cruel, scheming and I could never love him, never,”

“To love…” Katherine said almost dreamily.

“You have loved?” Sara asked as Katherine came back with her dress.

“Oh many times, my lady,” she replied and Sara laughed, realising she had not meant true love.

“I wish to meet a man, to love him with my entire being, my mind, my heart, my body and my soul, I wish to feel that… power. Love. That is true power, not that of a tyrannous rule, controlling the people. That is not power as such, that is just a form of great evil. Love is true power and if you can love, if you do love then you are invincible. You have everything.” Katherine had finished dressing the princess and she listened to her words and now looked upon her in awe, her brown eyes shiny.

“My lady that was… beautiful,” she breathed.
“So is love,”

“My lady… forgive me,” they heard a voice at the door, it was another servant girl. “I listened, please forgive me,” she was petite with green eyes and a rose bud lips. “May I?” she asked and Sara waved her hand so the woman came in. “You have never known love, if you do not mind me saying such, but it seems… it seems you know exactly what it is, I have loved. I have felt that true power, when I was merely a peasant, I loved. I felt like the world was mine, I felt like I was more important than… anything simply because I had love.”

“Who was he, Veronica? You speak as though he is dead.”

“He is dead, my lady, your father… apologies, the king… accused him of murder and sent him to the noose, I had to watch him hang,” Sara’s eyes were now spilling with tears, her heart beat strongly at the sad story of her other maid.

“My lady, I beg you do not cry, it was a long time ago.”

“Have you loved since?” Sara asked.

“No I have not,” Veronica lowered her head. There was a small knock at the door and Sara called in. It was a timid servant boy.

“My princess, your father is waiting,” he said and she sighed. Hunting, what a bore. She wanted to stay and talk about love but she had her duties as a princess.

 

Michael was at the bottom of the hill again, he was looking at the sack that had just been tossed to him. It was by his feet. He could hardly breathe. His head felt like it was detached from his body. He was so tired already and had no water. He was amazed at how long some lasted when he felt he would not last the next journey.

“Are you picking that sack up, boy?” a guard shouted, holding his whip ready. Charles appeared at Michael’s side.

“Come on, Michael, better to just pick it up than suffer a blow,” Michael looked at the old man and he winked at him, the sudden optimism from him surprised Michael but it also encouraged him. He lifted but felt that the weight would simply crush him.

 

 

End Notes:
Thanks I hope you liked it :)
Chapter 9 by Celia_Rose
Author's Notes:
I hope you like this chapter

Sara appeared at the front of the castle, her father and all the lords already waiting for her and already mounted on their horses. Lord Paul was standing beside his holding the reigns waiting for her. He held out a hand for her, she looked at him, she was supposed to ride with him? Of course she was. She reluctantly took his hand and he helped her mount the horse, her legs hanging one side so she rode side saddle. Urgh this was too close, she thought as Paul got on in front of her.

Hunting was so boring, Paul promised he would catch a bore, just for her. She did not even like bore. He disappeared into the forest and she waited on the horse. This would be a long day, she thought.

Finally it was over, Paul did indeed catch a bore but she showed no interest, she turned her nose up. They rode back to the castle and she retired to her rooms immediately. Katherine was waiting there for her, she had one of her nice simple dresses prepared and helped Sara into it. Sara brushed her hair and the went out to the court where a carriage was prepared on her request.

“And where are you going, my lady?” the driver asked.

“The monument,” she replied.

 

Michael was at the bottom again, he could not breathe and they had already thrown him another sack, he could not lift it although he tried. His chest was tight, heavy, constricted. Lincoln was by his side, he looked exhausted.

“Michael, you have to try,” he said and put a hand on his shoulder. Suddenly a whip cracked down and stung Lincoln’s back. He cried out and fell to the floor, Michael’s knees gave at the same time, he could not stand any longer. Let them whip him, let them beat him, he just could not do it. Lincoln was whipped again and Michael could hear the faint sounds of a carriage and horses.

“Stop!” he heard a female voice. Suddenly she was by their side. It was the princess, what was she doing here? Michael looked at her weakly. She was trying to help Lincoln to his feet. “Why do you whip him?” she demanded.

“The king said… the slave was disobeying orders… m… my lady,” the guard replied.

“Well from now on he takes orders from me!” she said helping Lincoln to his feet.
“No… your majesty, my lady, please… take my brother… please…” Lincoln motioned to Michael on the ground and she saw the young man was almost dead. This slave was right, the younger man needed to be taken away from this or he would die.

“Guards, take this young man to the carriage, give him plenty of water.” she ordered and the guards had to obey. She climbed into the carriage sitting opposite the slave, his eyes were barely open.

“Is it over?” he asked weakly, his voice was a whisper. “Am I dead?” it broke her heart. No human being deserved this treatment. It seemed he did not know what was happening, where he was or who he was with.

“What is your name?” she asked.

“Michael,” he struggled to say the word.

“Michael, you are not dead, you are coming with me and I will take care of you and when you are well, you will serve me,”

“No,” he muttered and opened his eyes to look at her.

“Shh, just relax,” she said softly.

End Notes:
Thanks for reading, I hope you liked it. Please let me know :)
Chapter 10 by Celia_Rose
Author's Notes:
Another chapter I hope you like it.

Michael woke suddenly, he looked around himself, he was in a lavishly decorated room lying on a huge soft bed. It was foreign to him, it smelled sweet, felt clean, the colours almost hurt his eyes. He felt well rested. The door opened and in came a beautiful woman, he realised she was the princess. He despised the royal family. She sat beside him with a bowl of water and a cloth. She went to clean his face gently but he moved so she could not and he shot her a glare with his piercing eyes.

“Michael, I just want to help you,”

“If you want to help me then don’t touch me, I wish not to be tainted by the touch of a noble,” he spat. “Corruption seeps through your skin,” his words were spoken fiercely.

“Michael, just let me clean your face, your cuts and then I will leave you,” she was softly speaking and went to touch him again with the damp cloth but he flinched. She tried again but he slapped the cloth from her hand and then the bowl. The water spilled on the floor. She stood enraged looking down at him as he lay on her bed.

“I just saved your life! You ungrateful swine! I wish no harm to you, I just want to help you!” she said sternly.

“Harm is a word you know so well. Help is one you are not so familiar with.” he muttered.

“Fine. I will leave you, I’ll return tomorrow and Michael as you lay here tonight, keep one thing in mind, I am not my father,” she turned and left abruptly, clearly offended and enraged.

She shut the door and let out a frustrated huff, her brow creased and her hair a little ruffled. Katherine came to the hall and saw her. She smiled but then noted her anger.

“Everything ok, my lady?” she asked.

“I brought back a servant, he is a difficult human being, a narrow minded, bitter, ungrateful… swine!” she said and then huffed away to the adjoining room. Katherine watched her, taken aback by her rage but she also found it amusing and adorable.

End Notes:
Thanks for reading. I hope you enjoyed it, i hope the MiSa meeting was not too disapointing. Please review. Thanks :)
Chapter 11 by Celia_Rose
Author's Notes:

Hello everyone :)

I hope you like this update.

Katherine smiled to herself and decided to check on the new addition to the castle. She slowly opened the door and poked her head round.

“Did you not hear me the first time?” The young man yelled but then he looked around from where he lay on the bed, “Oh forgive me I thought you were-”
“The princess?” he was very handsome, Katherine could see why Sara had chosen this slave to work for her.

“Yes.” he replied.

“I think you were quite unkind to our lady,” Katherine said.

“She deserved it!” He spat.

“Actually she does not,” The young man frowned at her. “my names Katie or Katherine to be proper,”
“Michael,” he said.

“Well Michael, Sara is nothing like her father, I enjoy serving her, I like to think of her as a friend and not just the lady I serve. I think you should show her a lot more respect the next time you see her. By the looks of you, she saved your life! If you cant give her a chance then you ask me, I say your life was not worth saving! Now, when you are fit I shall see you in the servant quarters until then, remember my words,” she left him.

Michael watched the servant woman leave, he was too angry to think about her words, he knew part of it was about giving the princess a chance but there was no way in this life or the next would he give a noble especially a royal any respect or any ounce of a chance. They all deserved to be treated like the vermin they were. He stared up at the inside of the bed, the roof of the four poster curtains. It was very rich, expensive, if sold would buy food for the entire kingdom, probably. A meal for each household. It disgusted him that he was lying in such a bed.

 

Sara was on a balcony in one of her rooms, she was looking out to another part of the castle, she could also look down onto the courtyard and see maids running the next errand, talking a walk through the elaborate courtyard. The king had statues in it and a pool of water in the centre where birds liked to bathe. It was beautiful and ivy grew up the walls and over one of the archways. This calmed her and she would go and see the young man she had rescued and act as kind and sweet as she possibly could, ignoring his venomous remarks. If they enrage her she will not show it and he would have nothing to feed his disgust and anger towards the rich and maybe he would run out of venom. That was all it would take. It was not her fault or choice that she was born a princess.

 

 

End Notes:
Thanks for reading :)
Chapter 12 by Celia_Rose

Sara walked calmly back to her room and opened the door and stepped in, prepared for an onslaught of bad language from the peasant boy. It came just as she knew it would.

“Get out, get away from me,”

“I wont get out of my own room, slave, I will stay here, if you really cannot stand to be so close to me, feel free to wander back to the monument and continue to kill yourself.” she said in an annoyingly cheery tone.

“Fine!” he said and went to sit up but groaned and fell back down. His back had seized up, he was in so much pain just to move it and having slept in this beautifully comfortable bed had made it worse. He looked at the princess a little embarrassed and she was smiling to make it worse.

“It didn’t hurt that much I can get up,” he said to her like a determined child would. He went to sit up again and the same thing happened, he groaned and fell back down. She was laughing now. “You laugh at my pain?” he asked.

“No, of course not,” she smiled sweetly, “I laugh at your determination to prove to me you are fit to leave and your stubbornness. You despise being near me so much that you are willing to torture yourself?” she asked. He cast his eyes away in embarrassment. “Will you let me clean your wounds?” she asked and he made no attempt to reply so she decided that no answer was a yes. She smiled and disappeared, soon she came back with a bowl and a cloth. She sat beside him and leaned over, she took the cloth to his face and gently, so gently wiped at the dirt. He frowned at her, glared at her, adamant the words of Katie were just words put into her mouth by the princess. He chose to ignore the sincerity of them. He was looking up at the princess, he had never seen her properly and now he was looking at her close up. She was incredibly beautiful but this was a disguise of a demon. Her beauty was what made her all the more cruel.

“You were whipped, I need to clean those wounds before they become infected,” she said and went to help him sit. He was hesitant but he let her. He tried to help as much as he could, wincing from the pain, his wounds had stuck to the sheets and the sheet stung.

“Slowly,” she said and helped him turn over. He saw blood on the sheets from his lashed back, he noticed she made no worry about it, it was like it did not matter. He lay on his front, she carefully touched the cloth to his wounds. It stung a little but she was so gentle, it soothed him. His eyes felt heavy, he had to stay awake, he had to be ready for the demon to emerge. But he was so tired.

End Notes:
Thank you for reading I hope you enjoyed it, I really have to study now or I'll be up all night doing it... again! Lol. :)
Chapter 13 by Celia_Rose
Author's Notes:
This is quite a short chapter but I hope you enjoy it.

He woke in the middle of the night, he could smell food and saw a plate by the side of the table. He went to sit and then he noticed the princess asleep on a chair. That was not normal, a princess did not settle for sleeping on a chair while a slave took her bed. He looked at her a moment, the moonlight glimmered through the window, illuminating her beauty and her auburn hair that now fell loosely over her shoulders. She was not in her night dress but that would make this situation even more inappropriate. She was an amazing beauty, he could not help but let her steal his breath. His back felt a little better and he was able to sit up. He picked up the plate quietly so he would not wake the princess and he began to devour the best food, although cold, he had ever eaten. He wished he could give some to his brother and prayed so hard that he was surviving. After eating, he felt able to get out of bed, his feet touched the animal rug beside the bed and it was soft on his bare feet. He stretched his arms out, feeling all of his aches stretch and heal. The pain in his back was less and he looked at the princess again. She looked so pure but she was still the daughter of King Tancredi. He looked over and saw some clothes, male clothes, clean, crisp, smart even. Were they for him? He went to go to them but tripped up on the edge of the rug and crashed to the floor. The princess woke.

“Goodness, are you hurt?” she asked immediately rushing to his side and helping him up.

“I’m fine,” he said moodily but he was really quite embarrassed. She was not laughing at all but he felt embarrassed by his clumsiness. “I’m fine!” he snapped as she still fussed.

“I do hope so,” she said as she stood up straight. “Those… those are for you to wear, the clothes you have on are filthy, you may have a bath, and then change but maybe not until other servants are up, Katie will be here when the sun heightens.” she really was being kind. He almost felt like a rude peasant boy. Sara smiled, her plan had worked and the young slave met her eyes a little apologetically.

“Thank you,” he muttered. Finally some gratitude, she thought as she tried to conceal a smile that bordered on smugness.

End Notes:
Thanks for reading :)
Chapter 14 by Celia_Rose
Author's Notes:

I knew I would soon battle that writers block for this one 8D

Yay! I hope you like this chapter, it is more about Michael and Lincoln but I hope you like it :)

Lincoln was in the cage again, he was hoping Michael was doing alright, he had not slept well because Michael was not close. Charles came to him, shifting close so he could talk in a low voice so only Lincoln could hear him.

“I heard, Lincoln, I overheard one of the guards today, talking about moving some of us to the other side of the monument, build it up there. Rotation I don’t know.”

“Why does it matter?” Lincoln asked in a low and solemn tone.

“Food and water come more frequent over there, I don’t know why a different guards in charge. That Bellick fellow is a real brute and he don’t care none,”
“How do we get picked to go to the other side?”

“Luck,” Charles said shortly and in his gruff voice.

“It doesn’t look like luck is going to come our way,”

“Just wait and see, boy, wait and see,”

 

The princess had disappeared and Michael was left in her room. What made her think she could trust him? He was a peasant, a poor man, a desperate man. He looked at the bed sheets and saw blood from where his back had been pressed against them. He sighed and started to remove them. It was vile to look at so he felt he should take it off so it could be washed or thrown out, or burnt. He tossed it to the floor and went to the balcony and looked out at the monument lit eerily in the tired moonlight. He hoped Lincoln was doing good, as good as he could be over there anyway.

“Michael,” he jumped and turned to see the princess.

“Are you well? What are you…” she trailed off when she realised that window provided the perfect view of the slaves worst nightmare. “Oh,” she lowered her eyes but only for a moment, she was maintaining her elegant posture and regal air. “Do not sit in the dark, if you are awake.” she said and went to light some of the candles. The flames illuminating her face in a golden light, shining off her hair in shimmering beauty.

“My brother is to be left there to die, I am here, I would rather be there to die with him,” he said harshly.

“I was going to take your brother here but he begged me to take you instead, he saved you, Michael,”

“He… what?” Michael’s voice broke in sadness and love. His brother had sacrificed himself so that Michael could be saved.

“I know you hate me but… I intend to destroy that monument some day, I wish to stop my fathers slave business and neglect of the people, Michael that is the person I am. If you choose to believe me or not, I know that I have told you,” she turned and left. She had to be some kind of seductress playing games with him, using his love for the people against him to make him warm to her. She was not going to get him on her side that easily. He would serve her, he had no choice so he would serve her, but he would not like her and he would not feign politeness or joy. And above all, he would not be seduced.

 

End Notes:
Thanks for reading, please let me know what you think :)
Chapter 15 by Celia_Rose
Author's Notes:
Hey, I hope you like this it has a slightly comical tone and I hope I succeeded. I wanted to lighten it up a little with the arrival of the next day :)

The cage opens at the morning and the men are all lined up for inspection. The women too and then the children. Bellick walked along the line looking all of them up and down with that smile that told them he had power over them all. The leader from the other side came around and glared at Bellick, it seemed like they were almost in competition. He looked at Lincoln and pointed. Lincoln sighed in relief that meant he was chosen. He thought as one of the stronger slaves he would be. He just hoped that Charles would also.

 

Katie had come up to the princesses rooms and had poured boiling water into a wooden tub for Michael. He was grateful and looking forward to letting the water ease his aches and bruises and cuts.

“Did you think about what I said?” Katie asked as Michael began to undress.

“I cannot just believe someone’s words, I need it to be proven to me, I need to see it,”

“She has cared for you, is that not enough?” she asked and then Michael went to remove his pants. Katie gasped. “Oh my!” she exclaimed and began to get flustered. “Oh dear, I…” she started.

“Katie? Where is my-” it was the princess and she cut herself off when she found Katie in the bathroom and saw a naked Michael. She blushed immediately and Michael saw her face redden.

“Oh my lady, I apologise,” he said, and covered himself, it was an offence to expose yourself to the princess, although it was an accident. Katie was fanning herself, she had seen many men naked before her but this particularly handsome man had made her all flustered.

“Oh… oh… I… no… I am sorry, I… I am going now,” Sara said after closing her eyes and then hurrying off.

“I think I’ll stay a little,”

“Katie!” Sara called in an almost strict tone. Katie hurried out and joined her princess. Michael started to chuckle to himself. He had not thought much of exposing himself in front of Katie but when the princess walked in he felt embarrassed. Their reactions could not help but amuse him as he stepped into the tub.

Sara walked onto her balcony and was fanning herself, she could feel her cheeks burning brightly and was extremely embarrassed. Katie joined her also fanning herself, and a sparkle in her brown eyes indicating her excitement.

“Oh my,” Sara said.

“My lady, that is the first naked man you see and believe me there was nothing bad about that one,” Katie said. Sara giggled.

“Oh my, I am so hot,”

“Mmhmm,” Katie said and Sara looked at her questioningly.

“What does that mean?” Sara asked a little offended.

“You’ll know one day,” she said.

“I order you to explain!” Sara gasped.

“Your highness, do not pull that one on me,”

“I am your lady and you will answer me!” This time Sara was laughing a little, she could hardly conceal it.

“It means you have a very handsome and very well endowed young man in that bath tub,”

“Oh my,” Sara said, she was still fanning herself and looked out over the balcony and saw her father. He looked up at her.
“Sara!” he called and Sara pushed Katie back into the rooms as she burst into laughter, smirking at the thought of seeing her father after having had fantasies cross her mind about a slave.

End Notes:
Thank you for reading, I hope you liked it :)
Chapter 16 by Celia_Rose
Author's Notes:

Hey this was written quite fast, I hope it is ok

Sara was in her room giggling with Katie and could hear her father shouting up like he was ordering her to come back to the balcony. She smirked.

“Sara what is happening up there?” he was really angry now but it only made Sara smirk again. She composed herself and then walked back out to the balcony.

“Nothing is happening father,” she said innocently.

“Well then come and see me in my rooms,” he said and she bowed her head in obedience. Her cheeks were still flushed as she walked into her fathers rooms. He was there waiting, he had made a quick return from the courtyard.

“Sara, I heard that you were seen at the monument yesterday and took a slave? Now why would you do such a thing? Was it an act of rebellion?”

“Father, please, of course it was not!” she acted offended at the accusation. “I just needed another servant and I thought from there would be appropriate rather than buying one, father,”
“Right and where is this slave?”

“In the servants quarters of course, father,” she said looking him straight in the eye.

“Good.” he took a step closer, “now about your marriage to Paul, I have made a few arrangements and they have been scheduled around his trip to Jerusalem, well, its more of a crusade actually. Now you can either marry him before, or after,” she tensed up, the crusade started in a week. She could be married within the week. She started to shake. There was a knock on the door. “Come in,” her father said and a servant entered. “What is it?” he demanded.

“Sire, some of the people are rioting, right outside the castle they are throwing animal bones and rotten meat at the castle walls demanding for you to show your face.”

“Demanding? It is only I who makes demands! I am the King!”

“Father, when am I to marry?” Sara asked anxious about this impending union but her father ignored her completely and left to see to the matter. She could be married within the week. This put a damp spirit on her previously good mood. She decided to follow her father and maybe she could help the situation and also discover her fate.

End Notes:
Thank you for reading, I hope you liked it :)
Chapter 17 by Celia_Rose
Author's Notes:
This isnt a very good chapter but I hope you like it anyway :(

She watched her father walk to a balcony on which he could address the people. He stepped onto it and she followed but kept a distance from the edge.

“The next person to throw something or shout obscenities will be hung!” he shouted. The people stopped and looked up at the king in silence for a moment.

“Listen everyone! The king of Scum speaks! We must all obey the mighty King, who lets his people starve!” a peasant spoke and Frank was furious. He had not seen the speaker as the people started to riot again. He went back inside. “Paul, start rounding people up, throwing them in the dungeons. I don’t care if the streets are left empty just get this mess organised!” he ordered. Sara lowered her eyes so they did not meet her future husbands. She followed her father back to his rooms and stood politely but when he did not speak, she spoke.

“Father, my marriage to Paul,”
“Oh yes, well I was considering sending him on the crusade, they say that a noble man must make at least one holy journey if he is to stay in favour with God. I think I will have you wed him before he leaves,”
“Father-”
“Silence!” he hissed.

“If I may,” she braved and his silence, she took it to mean she was allowed. “Father, I am a virgin and if I wed Paul before he leaves, I will be marred, I will not be as desired for marriage, if something were to happen to him, or to you, father God forbid, but if something happened to you, I would already be wed, if Paul was not here, then, who will rule the kingdom?”

“Are you saying that if he were gone, you were already wed to him, something happened to me, then you will not be free for another marriage?”
“Yes father,”

“I see, well, I suppose I can see what you are saying, I will consider this, daughter, now I have much to do. Leave.” She obeyed and left but she still did not know if she would be married by the end of the week or when Paul gets back.

End Notes:
Thank you for reading :)
Chapter 18 by Celia_Rose
Author's Notes:

This is a short chapter but I hope you like it.

Vivian, I hope you were ok during your exam today and when its over, I hope you will find this update and be able to relax :) Also I hope it is ok ;)

Sara returned to her rooms and Katie was still there, she was cleaning the bedroom and fixing the bed and sheets. She looked up and saw the worried look on her lady’s face and was about to ask what was troubling her but Michael came out of the bathroom dressed in the servants clothes. He seemed taller all of a sudden, like he was standing straighter and more proud. The clothes were a sure improvement from his slaves clothing, peasants clothing, dirty ragged. Sara realised that he was indeed very handsome.

“Err… Katie, take Michael to the servant quarters and show him around a little would you?”

“Of course, my lady,”

“Is that how I must refer to you, my lady?” he asked.

“However you wish,” she replied. Mistake. A smile came to his lips.

“Spawn of Satan comes to mind,” he said and even Katie had trouble concealing a smile. She knew Sara would be angered by the comment. Sara looked at the handsome young servant in front of her. Her pretty brown eyes flared in hatred and anger. He was still throwing nasty comments at her.

“If my father heard you say that-”

“Your father is not here,”
“And you don’t think I have the ability to put a man in the dungeons?” she was clearly enraged but trying so hard to not to let it show.

“If you sent me to the dungeons for expressing my opinion then that would prove my point, my lady.” the smile on his face only made her shake with anger more. It enraged her beyond belief and she usually was not so affected by a person, especially a servant. But none had been so bold as Michael.

“You… you are… you… you are insufferable!” she finally found the word and stormed off. Katie was smiling a little, the insult had been more directed at the lady’s father but it was uncalled for. She led Michael, who was smiling amusedly as he followed.

“You know, the lady really did not deserve that, Michael,” Katie said.

“I know,” he replied, his smile remaining.

“Then why did you say it to her?”

“She may not have deserved it at that particular moment but as the daughter of Satan she is soon to be deserving,”

“Michael, she was right, you are insufferable,” Katie said but with a smile as she opened the first door to the servants quarters.

End Notes:
Thank you for reading :)
Chapter 19 by Celia_Rose
Author's Notes:
I think this chapter is quite short but I hope you like it :)

Michael was shown to a spare cot not that he could rest on it, he had chores to do. He was shown to the well outside and told to start taking bucket loads of water all the way up several stone staircases because the king wanted a bath. There were other male servants also set on the task, it would take several trips to fill the tub. It had been so when he had his bath and he almost felt he would rather stay dirty as he watched the servant boys lugging water through the rooms. Now he was one of the servant boys. He was nervous about seeing the king, part of him wanted to take the opportunity to kill him and rid the kingdom of his cruelty but he was not a hero. He was just a young man trying to live. He was there outside the room and a guard opened the door to let him in. he nervously entered, his head bowed low and he mildly acknowledged the other servant spilling his bucket into the tub, the other boy was now on his way out. Michael did not meet the kings eyes. He did not wish to look upon the devil. He went to the wooden tub and spilled the buckets into it and started on his way out.

“Slave!” the kings voice startled Michael and his heart thudded and he felt relieved he had not dropped the buckets onto the floor for surely that would have gotten him lashes. He looked at this king now but kept his gaze low.

“Sire,” he muttered.

“You are the slave,” he spat the word ‘slave’ “my daughter rescued from the monument?” he was mocking her attempts at a rescue.

“Yes sire,”

“Yes she has always been weak and pathetic that way, when she was a child she found a starving dog that had found its way into the castle grounds, she tried feeding it and comforting it, the disease infested creature was all over her. I ordered a servant to kill it, he did, bashed the animals head right open. She cried and I still do not think that Sara has forgiven me, not that I care much it is just another example of her pathetic being,” Michael tried not to smile when he thought of the princess nursing a hungry and dirty dog but it happened. The end of the story Michael felt quite horrifying but it can only be expected from this king. “You are dismissed,” King Tancredi added enjoying the pain in the young mans eyes. He was also angry because this young man was very handsome about the same age as Sara and his daughter did not need any distractions.

Michael went back to duties and had also heard from other servants nothing but good things about Sara. Maybe he had been harsh on her, she did indeed seem very sweet and that story about the dog had a huge impact on him and his thoughts and opinion of the princess.

 

End Notes:
Thank you for reading :)
Chapter 20 by Celia_Rose
Author's Notes:
Sorry its been a little longer than usual but I was struggling with it. I hope you enjoy the update :)

That evening Michael was set to serve the King and the Lords their food and wine. Sara was there too. She spoke politely to the lords and only because she had to, she would much rather just go back to her rooms and converse with real people like Katie and Veronica even Michael and have to endure his rude comments. These lords were all pretentious and annoying and cruel. She felt a lift in her chest and spirits when Michael approached to fill her glass with wine, she wasn’t sure why though. He dared to smile at her and she felt her cheeks blush. Her father coughed and Michael filled his glass too but he was trying to break what appeared to be subtle flirtation. He glared at the slave who bowed his head in apology. The king took his wrist and pulled him close.

“If I ever see anything like that again, you wont be walking straight!” he threatened and Michael broke into a sweat, he knew the threat was not empty.

“F…forgive me, my lord,” he stammered and then was dismissed and he left quickly.

He went to the maids quarters and saw the women pulling dry sheets off rails and back through windows. He was blinded by white and fought his way through a clean sheet to see Katie. She was laughing at him.

“Take that to the princesses room and turn down her sheets, fix her bed, she will be retiring soon and then you come back down here.” some of the young maids were looking at him and giggling at his handsome appearance. He could see them whispering and giggling. His cheeks blushed at this. “Oh and Michael, if you wish to keep rope burns off your neck, or certain body parts intact I suggest you don’t stay up there too long,” Katie said and the girls giggled even more but the warning was serious. He looked at the stones on the floor as he walked away, he tripped at the door on a sheet and the girls roared with laughter and he hurried away embarrassed. His cheeks were burning fiercely and he was quite annoyed that he had suffered numerous embarrassments this evening. He had tripped on a sheet in front of all those pretty girls and they all laughed at him.

He was making up the princesses bed which proved to be quite a difficult task without any help as her bed was unnecessarily huge. She slept on this piece of luxury and many people in the kingdom slept on the cobbles in the dirt. He was even angrier and to make things worse the princess herself entered. He glared at her and she frowned and the force of his glare even made her take a step back. He was patting the sheets, just finishing making her bed but his pats became more aggressive and she felt even a little threatened.

“Is anything wrong?” she asked.

“Everything is wrong!” he snapped and realised it was a mistake. “Forgive me, but you and your father sit up in here on these enormous beds with your wine and food to your hearts content and the people of the kingdom struggle to fight hunger pains or to find a spot clean enough to rest upon,” he sighed angrily, “you are completely oblivious!” he said trying to control his frustration.

“Excuse me, servant, I am not oblivious to such things, there is very little that I can actually do! I slip into the streets and hand them food from the kitchens or I send a maid or servant to do this. My father has only just found out about it!”

“Maybe, maybe you do, do that but you have no idea what it is like to be me or anyone like me!”
“And you have no idea what it is like to be me,”

“Oh I’m sure it is just horrific!” he spat, her face flared in anger and her eyes were filling with tears. “You have no idea what it is like worrying if your mother is still alive, if she has gotten herself a meal to fight her hunger! If your father is coping without you, or your brother! I have no idea if my brother is still alive!” he was almost crying but he controlled himself.

“Actually it is horrible to be me, you have no understanding of my position, do you? Your mind is not open enough to think that I, just because I am princess, I happen to be very unhappy, but your peasant brain would not be able to comprehend the reasons as to why!” she started to leave but then she turned back to him, “just so you know, Michael, I inquired about your brother and he is still alive!” she left with a huff and he felt quite awful. She had actually found out for him that Lincoln was still alive and he had just shouted at her. He would not be still breathing himself if anyone had heard him speak to the princess in such a way. He saw her in the next room, standing by the window arms folded across her chest and looking out of the window, back to the door.

“Sara,” he said timidly at the door, almost apologetically.

“Go!” she shouted and he obeyed and as he left he could hear her sobbing. He felt immense guilt right now as he walked back to the servants quarters.

 

 

End Notes:
Thanks for reading. Please review :D
Chapter 21 by Celia_Rose
Author's Notes:
I hope this chapter is ok. Please tell me if it isnt. I have been steaming through one of y stories but feeling insecure about all the others. I dont know why, i just do. Lol. Please enjoy this

Michael was lying on his cot staring up at the ceiling. He had greatly upset the princess and she had gone to find out about his brother to put his mind at rest. She did not say how he was doing just that he was alive. He wanted to see Lincoln. He wanted to make sure he was healthy as well as alive. He knew how hard it was and the last time he saw Lincoln, he was on the ground. Michael was tossing and turning on his cot, he could hear the other servants sleeping breath but he could not find sleep. He was worrying too much, his mind was constantly ticking, thinking about Lincoln and wondering if he had any other way of helping him. Any way at all really.

He was not sleeping, he had to see Lincoln. He jumped out of bed and slowly crept to the door. He opened it careful not to wake any other servant and then he crept into the halls. He found his way to the castles exit and ran trough the streets towards the monument. He saw the cages and the people, heard the crying and wished he had not come. He ran to them and held tightly to the bars.

“Linc!” he hissed and a head came into view as a figure sat up in the darkness.

“Michael?” he sighed in relief, that was his brothers voice. He came to the bars and Michael could see him better now. “Michael what are you doing?” Lincoln asked.

“I’ve been serving the princess. I’ve been fine,”
“You look clean,” Lincoln commented with a smile that was forced.

“I’m getting you out of here, Linc,”
“Its impossible,” he muttered depressed.

“Not if you put your mind to it, it isn’t,” Michael let an assuring smile pass his lips and Lincoln looked on at him concerned.

“I don’t want you getting yourself in trouble, you got out of this, stay safe. Take advantage of your luck,”

“I’m not leaving you behind, Lincoln,” Michael said firmly.

“You might have to,”

“I wont do it, would you leave me?” Michael asked and Lincoln sighed.

“No,”

“Now you know I cant leave you like this,”

“Don’t get in trouble, the king is not forgiving, you know that,”

“I know. Its so good to see you, Lincoln,”
“You too, Michael, you should go back,” he said and Michael smiled.

“I know, Lincoln, look after yourself in this,” Michael said, his young voice was pained.

“Don’t worry about me, they put me on a different section and water comes more frequent there, I’ll be fine.” Lincoln forced another smile. Michael smiled weakly and slowly walked away.

“Mike!”

“Yeah,

“Don’t go that way, I saw a guard make over there,”

“Thanks,” Michael said and took a different direction, he had not even thought of the guards but he had managed to avoid them. He successfully crept back into the castle and into his cot. No one knew he had been out and he lay down an looked up at the ceiling. His brother was alive and keeping strong but now he just had to think of a way to get him out of that prison.

 

 

End Notes:
Thank you for reading. I hope it was alright
Chapter 22 by Celia_Rose
Author's Notes:
I didnt check this through properly, I hope it is ok.

Michael woke that morning, surprised he had managed to get sleep and he even had a dream, one that caught him off guard and left him a little embarrassed and ashamed. He had dreamed about the princess, if the king knew then Michael would no longer be breathing. All she had been doing in the dream was brushing her auburn hair, in the courtyard while the sun shone off it, gleaming off it, shining up all the different shades of beautiful red and copper and a little brown too. She was like a new exotic flower, one that had not been discovered. She was even more radiant than the sun itself. He stopped his thoughts and wondered when he had become a romantic spouting clichés and poem like references.

He was in the courtyard today helping one of the other servant boys who was up a ladder, hang the new flower arrangements the king had requested on behalf of his daughter. It was widely known that she liked the courtyard. Michael could see why, it was beautiful. The alabaster arch ways and columns all around, swirls of patterns etched into it, delicately and skilfully. The small pond in the centre giving it a sense of life. The flowers around brought a sweet scent to the area and the brightness of the place lifted Michael’s mood. He almost wanted to hum a tune but then he saw her, the princess herself. She was walking with a maid, slowly, leisurely through the courtyard. Michael wanted to go to her but knew it was forbidden.

She looked at him a moment, stopped mid speech to her maid as she made eye contact with the incredibly handsome, and she would not forget how well endowed, young servant boy. But he had angered her beyond belief the last time they met. His total disregard for her feelings and the fact that she is incredibly lonely and angry, trapped in her own life. She quickly tore her gaze from him and continued walking. He was watching her and she could feel his eyes follow. She left the courtyard simply because he was there, working.

The sun had gone behind the clouds and Sara was about to return inside but Paul pulled up on his horse and started to court her. She was not interested and she could not believe she had almost forgot about this man and her impending marriage to him, due to the distraction of Michael.

“My lady, I pray you come with me for a ride through the hills,” he asked and held his hand out to her. She looked down her nose at the outstretched hand and then turned her nose up.

“Good lord, if you cannot see, I believe it is about to rain, so no, I would not go with you for a ride through the hills,” she said coldly and returned inside abruptly. He watched her walk away, anger in his pale eyes and a smile on his lips, he may be angry at her coldness but he still had a plan. He would soon marry her and there was nothing she could do about it.

 

Michael was turning down the princesses sheets again, he always got the feeling that Katherine deliberately passed this job on to him, because she knew that the princess would walk in half way through. Katherine was still trying to convince him that the princess was a good sweet girl. Of course he did not tell Katherine that he was almost already convinced, if not completely. The door creaked open and Sara walked in, she stopped abruptly when she saw him and he noted a sorrow on her face but he would not intrude. They could hear the rain falling outside through the silence of the room. Their eyes were locked a moment, his blue’s soft and her brown eyes with the remnant of anger. He waited nervously for her to speak, but really it was he who needed to say something.

 

 

 

End Notes:
Thanks, please review, I hope you liked it :)
Chapter 23 by Celia_Rose
Author's Notes:
This chapter sort of came out of nowhere, lol, hope you enjoy it.

“I’m sorry,” he said and she looked at him a moment and then folded her arms and leant her body weight on one leg, she arched one eyebrow.

“For what exactly Michael?” she wanted a better apology.

“For being rude and disrespectful and disregarding your feelings, I am sorry,” he looked at the stone floor.

“Well… good… you should be,” she replied forcing more anger, as it had subsided, she just wanted to have an effect. He tried to hide the smile that came to his lips as he knew she was forcing her anger this time. He wanted to say something else to her but he could not think of anything. She really was something spectacular, not like the girls at his village, nothing like them. They would be so pretty that he could see the beauty through the wear and tear of their lifestyle, but this princess was something special in her beauty. He wanted to say something to her.

“You… the courtyard is very beautiful,” he blurted out and she just looked at him a moment and he felt foolish. Maybe they would promote him to the courts fool, maybe with all of his clumsy behaviour, he would be better suited to it.

“It is,” she replied shortly and then started to cry silently. She turned from him but he had already seen her tears.

“Sara?” he asked and she disappeared into the bathroom. He thought for a moment about following her, he wanted to know if she was alright. He decided he would risk seeing her, seeing if she wanted someone. He stepped through the still open door and saw her sitting beside the window, on the stone wall that made up the window sill. “Sara, please tell me what is wrong,” he said softly.

“You don’t have to pretend to be nice,” she spat.

“I’m not,” he replied and walked closer to her. She sighed. “I’ll leave if you want me to,”

“No,” she surprised him. “Stay,” she sobbed. He stood still and awkwardly waiting for her to speak. “It is just hard, being me, I know you think that’s unjustified but it is hard,”

“What is going on?” he asked and sat on the part of the window sill next to her. She looked at him, her eyes shining with tears like jewels. Tiny diamonds falling down her perfectly rosy cheeks. “Its just my father and all the other men at court, I cannot stand them, any of them,” she sighed in frustration. “They infuriate me, they bore me, they all try and impress me but each word that comes out of their mouths makes me loath them even more!” her face went dark and then she clapped a hand over her mouth and her eyes flashed in worry. “You cannot tell a soul the words I speak,” she said.

“I wont, I promise,” he replied assuring her and she visibly relaxed.

“Thank you Michael,” she muttered. Her posture was still regal, even now, as she worried, she still sat with her back straight and her hands delicate. Michael thought it was all very artistic, her beauty and he wondered what she would say to a sculpture being made of her to go in the lovely courtyard. He wanted to make it, he had sculpted before and he missed it, but nothing had inspired him until Sara.

“I never told you… I have artistic skills, if it is of any interest, the courtyard inspired me today, and yourself. If I had permission from the king… would you… let me sculpt you? Make a sculpture to go in the courtyard, do you think he would protest?” Michael asked and she looked at him a moment, her eyes were soft and she looked speechless.

“I… I shall ask him, I would… love that very much, thank you,” she blushed and looked out of the window as the rain poured down. He watched a small smile curl her lips and he felt happy, he had lifted her mood, he had done his job. But there was another job that he needed to think about, but what better task was there where his mind can work and formulate a plan for his brother, than to be sculpting a masterpiece? It would be opportunity to be deep in thought and no questions asked because he would be concentrating.

 

End Notes:
Thanks, please review ;)
Chapter 24 by Celia_Rose
Author's Notes:

Yay! Another chapter for today.

Vivian, I hope it is what you wanted, I tried to make it humorous like before and I hope it is what you asked for. Thank you for the inspiration :)

Michael was looking at Sara a while longer and he leaned back against the wall that was built up around the window. He winced and pulled away, he completely forgotten about his lash wounds. Tears were filling his eyes from the pain. She looked at him a moment.

“Oh dear,” she said, “please, let me take a look at them, I think they need to be checked and I should rub more lotion on the cuts, it soothes doesn’t it?” she asked.

“Are you sure, my lady?” he asked, knowing the action of her rubbing lotion onto his back was highly inappropriate.

“Of course,” she said and stood going to fetch the lotion. He slipped his shirt up over his head and she turned around with the lotion in her hands. She felt herself blush and fumble around like an idiot. Why did she insist on rubbing lotion onto his cuts? Here he was half naked before her and in the bathroom as before. She closed her eyes but when she did that she saw him standing by the tub, fully naked, fully handsome, and the perfect gentlemen.

“Err, Sara?” she heard him ask and she realised she still had her eyes closed tightly.

“Yes?” she asked eyes still closed.

“What are you doing?” he asked.

“Oh nothing, I got something in my eye,” she said convincingly.

“Allow me,” he said and stood but she jumped back, eyes still shut.

“No, stay away, I mean err, hmm, its nothing,” she said, her temperature was rising. “Oh my,” she muttered.

“My princess, is everything…?”

“Fine, its fine,” she said and then blinked her eyes open but she did not look at him, they looked at the floor. He was always handsome, but when he was half clothed, he sent her stomach into butterflies and her body temperature soaring into the sky. She felt all flustered again, the first time she had seen him half clothed, when she was soothing his cuts before, he had simply been an injured man in need. Now, after she saw him fully naked about to get into her tub, she was sent into a bumbling wreck. He was the first man she had ever seen naked, he was young, the same age as her probably, he was incredibly handsome, even when he was dirty. She did not know if she could touch him, rub lotion into his skin without fainting. She realised her breathing had increased and suddenly her dress seemed very tight, especially around her waist and chest. She went to go to him but then changed her mind, she was burning up.

“Whew,” she said, “I just need a minute,” she quickly hurried out of the bathroom and went to her balcony, opening the doors and standing on it, letting the cold rain pour down onto her, cooling her rising temperature. This surely was a change to their serious conversation minutes before, she was trying not to laugh at the situation, she had not expected to get flustered again and she wondered if it was normal to feel so out of control when a man is naked in front of you. Is it normal? She wondered why she felt unable to even look at him, surely that was not normal. He was only half naked, but she kept picturing his…!

“Oh my,” she said to herself. Now she was soaked and the water dripped off the ends of her hair but she was the princess, it did not matter and if he dared to question her. She hurried back in, wet dress trailing behind her. She met his eyes and he raised one eyebrow in question. “I… don’t you say a word,” she ordered to rescue her sentence. He was trying not to smirk at her as it would be disrespectful but she was dripping wet. She sighed and then sat behind him with the lotion in her hands.

“Are you sure you are alright, my lady?” he asked.

“I’m fine, I just… love the rain,”

“You know, when I took my shirt off, you went… rather strange,” he said.

“I…well…” he was now feeling uncomfortable and he could sense her hands hovering over his back and he felt a droplet of rainwater hit his flesh, that would be from her hair.

“If it embarrasses you, I can get Katie to do this,” he said seriously. Katie? Sara thought. Katie would take the advantage to feel the young unsuspecting man and probably grope his bottom whilst rubbing lotion onto him. She shook her head, spraying rain water over him.

“It does not embarrass me, slave, it just… its not even that, its…”

“Don’t worry, my lady, it’s alright. I just would hate to offend you, and if my body does so, then I do not want to expose myself to you,” how could his body offend her? It was purely a work of art, he was tall, lean, handsome, it was like he was made of wonder. He was the perfect man, but… he was a slave and why the hell was she thinking like this? Focus, lotion, wounds. She looked at his back, the cuts as ugly and sore as before, the only thing to mar his perfection. She gently, softly rubbed the lotion onto his back, massaging it into the wounds, slowly stroking her fingers over them. His back was perfectly arched over as he positioned himself leaning his hands on his knees so she could get to his back. A perfect arch, lean and muscular, perfect olive skin.

“Michael…” she started, her pulse was fast and her heartbeat pounded in her chest, she was getting warm again. “Michael, are you happy now? Here, I mean, are you happy working in the castle?” she asked.

“Yes, I just wish my brother was here too,” he replied.

“I can… check in on him everyday if you so wish,” he felt tears fall from his eyes and he was glad to have his back to her.

“Thank you, Sara, I would greatly appreciate that,” he muttered. She smiled to herself, she really felt for the young man, she wished that it would be acceptable to bring Lincoln here to work at the castle but she knew her father would make a stand at two slaves being brought here from his precious monument. She was rubbing the lotion into his skin and realised her hands were travelling lower, down to the bottom of his back, the waistline. There was a lash wound there so she soothed it but was blushing as she did so, tenderly rubbing the lotion in.

“Its done,” she said and he stood, and stretched himself, his back aching from being bent as she rubbed the lotion in. She saw his muscles flexing and his tall lean body reach out and stretch. She was mesmerised but then she was picturing him naked again so she shut her eyes tightly.

 

 

 

End Notes:
Thanks. Please review, I hope it was ok.
Chapter 25 by Celia_Rose
Author's Notes:
Hope you like the chapter.

Michael walked to the servants quarters after being dismissed for the evening. He had a warm feeling inside of him and his back was no longer sore. He had slowly walked out as Sara had her eyes closed, he muttered a thank you and thought it appropriate for him to leave. His body obviously caused her some embarrassment. He was a little shy being half clothed before her, since she had seen him completely naked. Maybe it was the same for her, having seen him that way, seeing him half way there caused the sweet princess to be embarrassed. She was genuinely kind, her touch was soft and tender. He had to rid these thoughts from his mind. He would be hung or worse for thinking about the princess in such ways. He wanted to hold her in his arms. That was what he really wanted to do, not apologise with words, he wanted to do it with actions. He took a deep breath and let it out as he opened the door and stepped in. Katie smiled when she saw him.

“You look a little flushed, Michael,” she said.

“I do?” he asked immediately.

“Been with the princess?” she asked and the blood left his face and he gulped. He shushed her.
“Don’t say things like that, they can get taken out of context, I could lose my… you know…”

“Lose your what?” Katie asked but she knew.
“The king would you know…”

“Yes I know,” she laughed. “Don’t worry, little Michael, or not-so-little as we well know, is perfectly safe,” his cheeks went the darkest shade of red and his eyes even filled with some tears of embarrassment.

“Leave him alone,” a pretty young servant girl said as she came in laughing. “I’m Veronica,” she added for Michael. “She told me about the princess accidentally seeing you naked before you used her bath.”

“What?”

“Don’t look so terrified, this doesn’t get any further than here,” Katie assured, “the king might be corrupt but we aint,”

“Come on, lets go to the kitchens and get some food.” Veronica said and the three of them left. The kitchen was busy, swarming with cooks and servants, supper had already been served so Michael wondered why it was so busy.

“The king is having a ball tomorrow, in honour of the knights and lords off on the crusades, or at least that’s the excuse,” Katie said to him. That meant he would have to endure watching all the worthy lords and gentlemen courting Sara while he just stood to the side waiting to be called to service. The food was smelling delicious but he would not see any of it. He was handed a wooden bowl of soup and a crust of bread. He went to the side and sat at a bench with Katie and Veronica while they ate the simple food. It would have to do but he had to be grateful, it was more than what Lincoln was getting. The bed later on was more than what Lincoln was getting and he hoped his strong older brother will not get sick in the rain tonight. Lincoln was weak, he was hungry, thirsty, tired, there was only so long a person could survive in those conditions. Michaels mind started to focus instead of the kitchen rush, on Lincoln and how to get him out of there.

 

End Notes:
Thank you, please review.
Chapter 26 by Celia_Rose
Author's Notes:
Hope you like the update

That night Michael crept into the kitchen, there were still some servants working at the meal for tomorrow but he managed to snatch two loaves of bread. He took the same route out of the castle and through the town so he could get to the monument undetected. The moon was shining off the cage and he saw all the people cramped up inside of it. He looked at the two pathetic loaves in his hands, it would be spread thinly among them but it was better than nothing. He slowly got to the cage watching his back the entire time.

“Linc,” he whispered and his brother was soon at the cage bars.

“You have to stop coming here, Michael, you’ll get caught one time.”

“I came to give you these,” he said slipping the bread through the bars. “Share it with the others as best you can,”

“Michael, I…” Lincoln sighed and looked at the bread in his hands. “Thanks,” he said and started to wake some of the people, he handed out some of the bread and they all quietly accepted it, Charles was given the other loaf to break to the people. Lincoln came back to the bars with a piece in his hand, he slowly looked at Michael, who was looking at how pathetically the bread had been shared.

“Don’t get into trouble, Mike,” he said.

“Me? Get into trouble? Isn’t that your job?” Michael smiled, a twinkling in his midnight blue eyes.

The music was fluidly streaming throughout the ballroom. The meal had been devoured and now the music was playing and the lady’s and lords spoke amongst themselves, politics and the crusades mainly. Paul was standing dressed in his finest, his mouth curled into a proud smile, his coat was lined with red velvet, not as grand as the kings purple velvet coat that was bigger and decorated with jewels, Paul’s had golden buttons and gold lace lining the edges among the red velvet. Sara was wearing a green velvet dress, she knew Paul was wearing red, so she dressed to clash with him. She had rebelled against her fathers suggestion to dress in her finest red dress to match the lord. He had given her a disapproving look and she had innocently said that her red velvet one had not been worn for so long and moths had gotten to it. She was standing the opposite end of the hall to Paul, watching the crowds dancing. The more potent ale that flowed and sweet wines, the more people danced and conversation drifted to more light hearted. Lords were flirting shamelessly with the young and pretty ladies and they flirted back, depending on how rich he was and the men how big the ladies dowry was. Sara hated this. She rolled her eyes when loud laughter erupted in one corner of the room. She looked at the door and saw Michael and some other servants, dressed slightly more formal than usual.

Michael looked so much better in his modest and simple servant attire than the fashion obsessed lords in their rich coats and smart buckle shoes. He was so much more handsome as well. Sara was torn from her thoughts when Paul approached her. He took her hand and kissed it.

“If you are going to start courting me or even talking to me, I’m going to need some wine,” she said and he smiled amused at the attitude she threw at him constantly. He was going to enjoy tormenting her when they are married. He clicked his fingers at a servant who hurried over immediately.

“Wine, for the lady,” he said and the servant hurried back to them with some wine. Sara took it and thanked him, Paul frowned at her politeness to a slave. “Don’t thank them,” he said. “they are no better than the vermin we hunt in the forest.”

“Is that so? Hmm, you see, a servant clearly has more morals and respect than a lord,” it was an indirect insult and he was not amused. He took her by the wrist and pulled her close in a discreet violent manner and hissed in her ear.

“When we are wed, and when I am king, you will regret every bad word you put my way, you will severely regret it.” she was shaking but she looked at him, their eyes connected, she was leaning away from him as he had pulled her close. Her breath was escaping her shakily and her voice came with a slight tremble.

“Is that a promise?” she asked, her eyes full of hate.

“Oh yes, my princess, that is a promise,” he snarled and then took her hand. “Now, would you like to dance?” he was grinning now. She pulled her hand away and left the hall and headed to the courtyard to be on her own.

Michael had seen some hostility towards the princess from one of the lords, he had been watching her, and detected its subtlety. The lord was careful, but no one else had been watching the princess as intently as he had been. She was looking beautiful in her green dress, her auburn hair pulled up and into a golden lace net with pearls delicately sewed onto it. She had soft curls falling beside her cheeks and her full lips were rouged. He had seen her leave, she looked upset and he wondered if he could slip out of the hall unnoticed and see if he could help her. Most of the lords and ladies were highly intoxicated, the king was in a heated discussion. He could go after her, despite how completely inappropriate it would be, but he wanted to help her.

 

 

 

End Notes:
Thanks for reading, please comment.
Chapter 27 by Celia_Rose
Author's Notes:

Hey, I finally managed to write this. The chapter has been sitting incomplete for a while but I finally managed to finish it! Yay! Anyway, the story has had Princess Bride similarities throughout, well, somewhat different to my original plans for this, but the story with take an even more Princess Bride turn in upcoming chapters but I hope you like it :)

He saw her out in the courtyard and he could hear her crying. The moonlight was casting her in a glow of beauty as if it wanted to light up only her and ignore the rest of the world. Casting a shine of silver over her sorrowful beauty. He was enchanted at the sight and had to shake himself out of his trance. He stepped into the courtyard from the shadow he had been hiding in.

“Sara,” he said and she jumped turning abruptly.

“Oh Michael, its just you,” she sighed in relief.

“Are you alright, my princess?” he asked.

“Oh,” she sighed, “no I am not,” she said in a tearful voice which broke his heart.

“Can I help in any way, my lady?”

“Not really, unless you have a way to make my father kind and Lord Paul disappear,”

“I can offer a kindness to you, listen to your sadness, comfort you,” she smiled at his sweetness. She wanted to hold him in her arms as gratitude but if someone caught them, it would be taken out of context. She kept her distance from Michael, no words that were too kind she spoke to him, she cared for him so she held her emotions back by minimising her words to him. “Michael, I…” she stopped herself.

“What is it, my princess?” he asked.

“I… appreciate your kindness, Michael, I really do,”

“You stopped calling me slave or servant boy,” he said smiling. He could not help himself saying this and the smile.

“I am unhappy, it slipped my mind,” she replied a little flushed in the cheeks.

“What did Lord Paul say to you that upset you?”

“I do not think you know this but my father has arranged for me and Paul to marry,” she saw his face drop in disappointment but he quickly recovered but her cheeks reddened.

“I am sorry to hear that. More than you could know,”

“I know Michael, I do,” she said shyly.

“I… I err, must go back,” he said quickly.

“If you go back, then Paul will see that you are upset,” he offered.

“I’ll go to my father, I think I shall retire,” she said and with that she left Michael sitting in the courtyard alone. He stood and went to return inside before he was missed but it was too late. He saw Lord Paul steaming outside to the courtyard, the mans cold eyes met his.

“Slave! What are you doing out here? You think a break is due? You’re a slave, you don’t take breaks! Where is the princess?” he demanded, sounding more superior than ever.

“I… I don’t know,” Michael mumbled.

“You’re her slave! You must know where your lady is?”

“I’m sorry, my lord but I do not,” Michael lowered his gaze for fear of disrespecting Paul. He could feel the lord’s eyes burning into him.

“Get back inside you worthless animal,” Paul hissed and Michael hurried to obey him. He slipped back to the party to see a lord falling on the floor drunken and his lady friends laughing and clambering to pull him back on his feet. Michael decided to fetch a plate of food to pass through the drunken people, perhaps it will help towards sobering them. He picked up the platter from the table and started weaving his way through the people. They received the food without even acknowledging that he was offering to them. They treated it as though the platter was floating in mid air.

 

Sara approached her father at the head of the room, he was sitting on his throne watching the party pass by. A lady was conversing with him, Sara recognised her as the duchess Caroline and Sara loathed her. Caroline had lots of land and a huge estate that was highly sought after.

“Father,” Sara said politely, “excuse me for interrupting you,”
“No not at all,” the king said, “I saw you speaking with Paul,” he hinted.

“Yes, well, he was… he was incredibly rude to me,”

“Oh I am sure that was just the wine, I think one drink beats him,” he laughed.

“No father, I think that it was just him, he is just like that when your back is turned,” she said boldly. Frank sighed. “Anyway, I am retiring now, father, I am too tired to continue,”
“Goodnight,” he said and resumed his conversation with Caroline. Sara looked at him a moment and then turned walking away. She saw Michael passing some food to the most drunken guests and smiled. He had warmed her heart with his kindness. She was feeling hopeless and lost until he went and sat with her in the courtyard a place she had always considered to be one of the most romantic places she visits. Although, she never experienced anything romantic in it, it was still her special place and she was happy that Michael had come to share the time in it, under the moonlight comforting her.

Michael lay in bed that night in deep thought like he always was especially when he was alone. He was alone now with his mind and with the sleeping breaths of the other servants. He had enjoyed comforting the sad princess this evening. She had needed it and he liked to think that he had helped, at least she flashed him a pretty smile before she retired. He could not allow himself to get too distracted by her, he had his brother to think about. He had the first step in the plan to execute and now that he was sure all of the servants were sleeping, he got up and crept out of the servants quarters. He used the route he had taken before and slipped out of the castle but he heard voices. He recognised one as lord Paul’s and the other was that of a commoner. Why would Lord Paul be associating himself with the lowly? Michael ducked behind a wall and listened.

“As you know I am having trouble with the princess, the whole process is taking far too long,”
“So why have you finally called for my help?” the man had a slight accent.

“In a couple of days I am going to arrange a trip for the princess, a break to show her that I do care and that I am thoughtful, I want you to take her carriage and kidnap her. You will meet me at the witches rock just passed the forest, and there I will reclaim her, essentially rescuing her,”

“And she falls in love and happily ever after, huh?”

“Something like that, maybe it will speed up the marriage process,”

“So when you reclaim her as it were, what happens to me and my men?”

“I shall let you escape,”

“Do I have your word on that?”

“I am a nobleman, my word is more trustworthy than yours,” Paul shot at him and Michael heard this other man grunt a response. Michael’s heart was pounding in his chest and he thought it was time to head back inside. He was terrified of getting caught out. He had to warn the princess, there was nothing else he could do but he had to get his plan in motion. It may be too much of a risk now, especially if Lord Paul was using the same route to converse with his accomplice. He had to get Lincoln out of that slavery and soon, but it seemed that now he had to rescue the princess too.

 

End Notes:
Thanks for reading, please review, let me know what you think :)
Chapter 28 by Celia_Rose
Author's Notes:
Hope you enjoy the update, I knew it wouldnt be as long as last time until I updated, Yay!

His mind was racing as he swiftly made his way back to the servant quarters, he slipped back into the rooms and then found his bed in the pitch darkness. His heart pounded at how close he had been and nearly caught. He tried to keep his breathlessness quiet so he didn’t wake any other servants.

“I saw you slip out,” he heard a voice in the darkness and he startled, he looked around frantically but it was too dark to see who had spoken.

“Its Veronica,” he was terrified, he did not know her well enough to know if he could trust her. “Its very dangerous,”

“I know,” he muttered.

“I hope you do,” she sighed through the darkness. “What were you doing?” she asked but he would not reveal it. It was a secret and he needed to see the princess but she would be sleeping right now.

“I was not doing anything,”

“You don’t have to tell me, but I wont breathe a word to anyone that you leave your bed at night, but I do hope that you are not getting yourself in trouble,” he hoped so too. He really did.

 

Sara was at her dresser in the morning when her favourite servant boy came into her rooms. She felt a light brighten inside of her at his presence but then she saw the sombre expression he carried. The pleading and terrified look in his eyes, he looked like he was lost and knew nothing of the world and sought her out to be educated by her. His big blue eyes, deeper than anyone’s she had ever seen, he was like an angel, he was so handsome and his eyes were so intense it was almost like he was from another world altogether. She smiled trying to offer comfort just as he had done for her the night before. He looked around as though checking no one else was there.

“My princess, I have… I have some news… I cannot explain to you how but I overheard…” he was fidgeting and nervous, he licked his lips.

“Michael what is it?” she stood and resisted the urge to go closer and place a hand on his shoulder for comfort.

“My princess… my lady… forgive me… I… overheard Lord Paul… having a conversation… he plans to have you kidnapped in a few days time… he will send you on a trip and he plans to rescue you but its all staged.” he said as quickly as he could and looked at the scared expression on that beautiful face, but she swiftly disguised it with composure and regal serenity.

“Oh my…” she started. “If this is true-”
“My lady I would not lie,” he interrupted.

“No, Michael, I know you would not.” she looked away from him a moment as she processed the information. “I suppose Paul is not going on the crusade anymore,” she muttered and Michael lowered his eyes. “Thank you, Michael, I… appreciate you… protecting me,” she seemed somewhat detached and a little dazed at the information. “I need to think about this…” she wandered off as though in a daydream. He felt sorry for her and in a way wished he had not told her and rather tried to prevent the trip from happening but he knew that out of his power. There was no way that Sara could refuse to go and she knew that as well as he did. He followed her into the room she had disappeared into.

“My lady?” he asked timidly at the archway. She drew in a sharp breath and composed her lady like posture. He smiled a little at this and wished she did not feel she had to be all regal and lady like in his presence. He moved a little closer to her in the room.

“I have to go when he sends me on a trip, I have to,”
“I know, maybe… I could come with you,”
“Yes, my father would not let me go anywhere without a chaperone or servants at the least, I could pick you… but… I would not want to put you in danger, Michael, I would hate that… if something… you are so kind to me… since you overcame your original thought that I was just like my father,” she smiled. “If something happened to you Michael… I would never be able to forgive myself,”

“Nothing would happen, I promise. Anyway, it was my idea to come along, so you have nothing to feel guilty about,” he smiled back at her.

“My father will insist I take someone and he would usually let me choose, so I could take you and maybe Katie,”

“Or Veronica?” Michael asked.

“Yes, but I have always been closer to Katie,”

“I was just thinking about the way each of them are, we have a look into the future here, I love Katie, I think she’s funny and insane and its clear she cares for you, but being as loud and keen to make her voice heard… she might get herself into trouble but Veronica is quiet and calm,” Sara thought all of this was true but Veronica was also young and very pretty so she could not help feel jealous that Michael could possibly be in love with her. Another servant girl would be more suitable for him than the princess. Of course this was fantasy, she knew it could never happen. He was a slave and that was all he would ever be.

“Thank you Michael for your… loyalty and your… help.” she said quietly.

“That is what I am here for, my princess, I promise that when we go on this staged trip and staged kidnap I will do everything in my power to help you,”

“What if they kill you?” she asked and struggled to keep her voice controlled and calm.

“We don’t know until it happens but I swear I will not let you get taken and not try to protect you,” he said, his voice bold and sincere and she had not realised how truly brave this young servant boy was. The door opened and the servant apologised for not knocking.

“Your father is waiting in his office with Lord Paul for you,” the servant informed timidly.

“Thank you,” Sara replied and looked at Michael, both had a knowing expression, this meet would probably involve her being informed of the trip. “And thanks again, Michael,” she smiled weakly before she left.

 

Her father was standing and leaning over his desk when Sara entered, she saw Lord Paul standing as stiff as ever with a smug expression and she tried to hold back her glare, but it was almost impossible. Her father smiled but his smiles always seemed forced. He straightened up and addressed her.

“Paul has asked for my permission to send you on a trip in two days time,” he informed, “he wants to send you to Lady Kristine Kellerman’s estate, it is a little way from here but it is a lovely and peaceful place with horses and lots of land to ride them,”

“Oh really?” Sara asked faking surprise. “Well, I am impressed, or… is this just a way to make me feel like you are not as much a monster as I thought? Make me want to marry you? Perhaps the sex would be better if I was a little more willing,” she spat and her father was fuming. He stormed up to her but she just looked boldly into his eyes. She looked back at Paul and smiled. “Do you think that I could ever love that creature you call a soul?” she asked with a grin on her face. She received a slap across the face from her father and she gasped from the sting of pain that seared through her soft cheek.

“You need to learn some control over that venomous mouth of yours!” he hissed.

“And you need to make better choices about who your friends are,” Sara whispered glaring at him with tears in her angry brown eyes. “Thank you Paul, I look forward to my trip to your sisters house, I’m sure she is a lovely woman,” she said but her voice seeped with sarcasm. Paul watched her leave with a smug grin on his face. He had succeeded thus far, he just hoped the rest would go to plan.

 

Michael was sent into the town today to pick up a quilt that the king had the towns tailor make, apparently it was supposed to be very beautiful. Unfortunately Michael would not get the chance to sneak to see his brother, it was broad daylight and he would be working the day away on that murderous hill and the murderous monument. Michael went inside the tailor’s shop and paid the tailor and took the quilt careful not to let it touch the floor or the ground outside. He stepped into the dirt the town was forced to live in and sighed, he just wished that these people could live in more comfort. He looked at them and saw their faces were dull, their eyes were sullen.

“Sir?” he heard a small voice and looked around, his eyes moved downward to see a young boy standing by him. “Your brother gave us bread, is he still alive?” he asked.

“Yes, he works at the monument,”

“He saved me and my sister, I think we would have starved to death if we did not have that bread,” the boy said and Michael smiled.

“What is your name?”

“Aidan, my sister is Andrea.”

“My brother is Lincoln and I am Michael,” he suddenly got an idea. “Aidan… would you be able to do me a favour?” the boys face almost brightened at Michael’s request for a favour. He felt he owed the young man because of what his brother did for him.

“Anything,” he replied with a smile.

“When it gets dark tonight, could you sneak to the monument and watch the guards for me, watch their movements and memorise their patterns and habits. Would you do this for the next two nights?”

“Yes!” he said keenly.

“But do not get caught, do not risk anything, I don’t want you to get hurt doing it, if you think you are about to get seen or caught, run, run as fast as you can. Your priority is to live,”

“Yes Michael,”
“Thank you,” Michael felt a small weight lift off his shoulders. He no longer had to risk getting caught sneaking out of the castle. He had a little helper.

End Notes:
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Chapter 29 by Celia_Rose
Author's Notes:
Hope you like the update

Michael had been informed that it been confirmed that he would accompany Sara on her trip. He would be going with Veronica and they were ready to set out. Michael and Veronica had been given smarter clothes with the royal crest on, Veronica wore a dress that was green and Michael was wearing a deep blue coloured suit. When he saw Sara she was in a long white dress and had her travel cloak on. She glanced at him shyly before switching her gaze to Lord Paul who waited by her coach, Michael respectfully lowered his eyes. Sara bowed her head to Paul and smiled in false gratitude for her travel opportunity. Michael was thinking about that little boy he had sent on an errand and he hoped that he was going to be alright, and wise about the situation he had been asked to put himself in. Aidan was the boys name, Michael would not be able to converse or hear of any findings until after the adventure of the kidnapping was over. He looked up as Sara was helped onto the step so she could get inside the coach. Paul and his false gentleman’s approach. Michael was silently seething at the Lord’s betrayal and disrespect for the princess. Michael and Veronica were directed to the coach and they climbed into it. Michael sat opposite Sara and Veronica sat beside him. The coach driver got the horses moving and they were soon out of the kingdom and approaching the forest.

“If this is going to happen it will happen in the forest,” Sara said.

“Yes,” Michael muttered but did not meet her eyes. Sara wanted him to look at her, she wanted some reassurance that this was going to work, that they were all going to get through it. She could tell that her handsome servant boy was a little scared too. Maybe that was the reason he did not look at her, because he could not tell her that they were all going to get through this.

Veronica looked at the younger servant boy at her side and then at the princess and her scared expression, although she tried to hide it. She decided to lean forwards and place a hand on the princesses, Sara looked at her slowly.

“You will be fine,” she assured, “if this happens, the kidnappers will have strict orders from Paul to see that you are not harmed,”

“I was not thinking about that, but thank you,” Sara smiled, “I was thinking that they may have orders to kill anyone I travel with,” she met Veronica’s green eyes and the servant girl sat back in her seat. Sara looked at Michael who still had his eyes cast downward. “Michael,” she muttered and his eyes briefly looked at hers before flitting away again. “Thank you,” she said.

“Don’t thank me yet, Sara.” he muttered and she could hear that he was terrified and all she wanted now was to comfort him or be comforted by him. She hoped that her captors would spare them both, Veronica and Michael, even if they sent the two of them back to the kingdom and she had to face the ordeal alone, anything as long as her trusted servants were spared. The coach was silent and suddenly a sharp sound pierced through the air and they heard the driver cry and then the horses cried after more sharp sounds tore through the air. Sara’s eyes widened as she waited for the next part. The door was pulled open and she saw some men standing with weapons ready to take her.

“Get out!” the apparent leader ordered, he had a slight accent. “All of you out!” he shouted and they obeyed him. He pointed his sword at Michael, “on your knees,” he took hold of Veronica and threw her to his men.

“Stop!” Sara ordered. “Let them go, you just want me,” she said. The leader looked at her with his blue eyes.

“How do you know what we want, princess?” he asked stepping closer.

“My servant boy heard Lord Paul speaking with you about this, we know its not a real kidnapping,”

“Is that so?” he walked to Michael who was on his knees. “Is this the servant boy?” he asked but they were all silent. He kicked Michael’s leg. “Speak!”

“Yes! It was him!” Sara called not wanting them to hurt Michael. Suddenly the leader took Michael’s forehead and pulled his head back holding a knife to his throat. “No!” Sara gasped.

“Spying on your superiors?” he asked fiercely into Michael’s ear.

“Looking after the princess, sir, not spying,” he said as calmly as he could.

“Perhaps you should be punished,”

 

End Notes:
Thanks for reading :)
Chapter 30 by Celia_Rose
Author's Notes:
Second update today because this chapter just sort of flowed from the last. Hope you like it :)

“Perhaps you should be punished,”

“Please!” Sara begged, trying to keep her composure.

“Please what, princess?” the man spat.

“Don’t hurt him,”

“What made you think I was going to hurt him?” he asked and stood up straight releasing Michael.

“You had a knife to his throat! You threatened him!” she shrieked.

“I was having some fun,”
“Sir,” Michael said, feeling nervous at the mans attention on Sara. “Can I ask you something?”

“What? Are you going to ask me not to hurt the princess?” the man said turning to him.

“No, because I know you will not hurt her, unless you want to be punished by Lord Paul, but let me ask you, sir, do you really think he will keep his word and let you and your men get away?” Michael looked at the man boldly. “I can help you escape,” he said.

“Michael, what are you doing?” Sara hissed, sounding the least princess like he had seen her but he ignored her.

“You can help me escape?” The man asked sceptical. “So your names Michael? Well, Michael, what does a mere servant boy like you know about escaping? How do you intend to outsmart Lord Paul?”

“I know all your plans, sir, I can help you come up with another plan with Lord Paul out of the loop, in case he does betray his word,”

“Why would you do this?” the man asked and sat down on a tree stump.

“I want something in return,” he said and Sara glared at him, the man sounded interested but he laughed at Michael’s request for something in return. “I want you to leave me and Veronica unharmed and send her back to the kingdom with your false requests and with the news that the princess has been kidnapped and I want you to take me with you,” he met the pale blue eyes of the rogue working for the Lord Paul. There was a tense moment whilst the kidnapper considered.

“Very well, but if you betray me, I will not hesitate to slit your throat!”

“I don’t doubt it, sir,” Michael replied.

“Alright, the names Whistler so enough of this ‘sir’ talk, come on men, lets get moving!” he called and they bound Michael’s hands in rope, tight enough to inflict pain and they bound the princesses but not so tightly. She rode on the back of Whistler’s horse and Michael was dragged along behind. He looked around to see Veronica running back through the forest towards the kingdom. He looked to see the driver of the coach and the horses all dead from arrows. He lowered his head as he passed them, saddened at the sight.

“How long do you think it will take that servant girl to get back to the castle?” Sara heard one of Whistler’s men ask.
“About a day on foot, maybe two,” he replied and Sara felt tears rising in her eyes, she knew she would go unharmed but Michael might not be so lucky. He had made an agreement and as much as it enraged her that he was going to help these people, she still wanted him to survive this. She was terrified of the fact that she would be spending a night maybe two with these people. She did not know what sort of animals they might be.

“Is there something between you and this Michael servant?” Whistler asked her and she swallowed and licked her lips before answering.

“He is my servant,” she said simply, her voice spilling with anger and distaste.

“Ah, I just thought he seemed a little overprotective,”
“He is loyal,”

“Right,” Whistler scoffed. “If you were one of those… you could say well fed princesses, with a snappy tongue, I’m sure he would not be so loyal.”

“What do you mean?” she asked, struggling to control her rage and she heard one of Whistler’s men laugh near by as he rode beside them on another horse.

“You’re one of those women, a rare beauty, a soft spoken woman,” Whistler said.

“He’s being polite, in other words, you’re a whore from the royal house,” the other rider said in a leering sort of way.

“Excuse me? A whore?” she asked completely offended.

“Well an untouchable whore and not because your diseased but the opposite,” Whistler was laughing.

“A whore not meaning the occupation of a whore, but whores are there for men to use for sex, you are there for men to want to use you for sex but cannot, in other words, you are desirable, but unobtainable.”

“I think I understand,” she muttered a little unsure, “I much prefer the word desirable to whore,” she added.

“Of course you do,” Whistler said smiling.

“Where are we going?” she asked.

“We have a camp site just south of here, unless the barbarians have moved on it, if so, I’m afraid you have to witness some form of battle, but I promise you will not be harmed.” he said trying to offer assurance. The threat of battle terrified her even more, that could not assure hers or Michael’s safety, no matter what this Whistler man said. She turned her head to look at the servant boy who stumbled behind them, his hands bound and being dragged at a speed he struggled to keep up with.

End Notes:
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Chapter 31 by Celia_Rose
Author's Notes:
Hope you like the update.

They arrived at the area the rogues had taken up for camping, it was on the edge of a hill but as Whistler had said, the barbarians had moved in. They pulled their horses quietly to a halt and Whistler and his men silently drew their weapons. Michael’s rope was tied to a tree and Sara was left on top of Whistler’s horse. She looked at Michael and he could see how scared she was at the looming battle. Suddenly they heard shouting and then weapons clashing loudly. Michael looked at one of the horses and saw a sword poking out of its packing. If only he could free himself, he could get that sword and somehow attempt to protect the princess as they had just been left in the open.

“Michael someone’s coming,” she whispered. She had a better view over the hill as she was high up on a horse. Michael started to pull at the rope that had him secured, the length of rope flapped around as he frantically pulled on it. He put one leg forward to pull against the rope and push against the tree hoping to wear away the rope.

“Sara, get down from the horse!” he called, “run!” he shouted and she threw herself from the animal and tried to get up with her hands still bound. Michael could see the barbarian that was coming to them. He had seen the beautiful woman, Michael could not let them get her. She ran around a tree and the barbarian was close. He caught her, he held her by her hair and she screamed.

“Let her go!” Michael called as Sara struggled to get away, her hair was being pulled tight, so she could only move so far. Michael frantically pulled at the rope around his wrists, it was cutting into his skin, making his wrists bleed but the most important thing right now was the princesses safety. The barbarian threw her against the tree and started to grab at her. Michael was fuming, he was so angry and frustrated the rope was not coming loose. “Whistler!” he called as loud as he could, so loud, his entire body shook. “Whistler!” he called again and soon the rogue was stumbling up the hill, he was wounded but he saw the princess getting harassed and he went to her. “Free me!” Michael called but Whistler ignored him and went to the barbarian and threatened him. The barbarian man growled at him and Whistler swung his sword in the air and then pointed it at the man. That moment the barbarian engaged in battle with him. Sara ducked and she crawled towards Michael and sat close to him. Michael tried to stand as close as he could so he felt like he was protecting her more. He could feel her tremble and her eyes were wild as she watched the battle between Whistler and the barbarian. He wanted his hands free so he could hold her to comfort her. Michael watched as Whistler fell and the barbarian was swinging his weapon down onto him and the rogue swiped it away as best he could but the barbarian was giving him no chance to get back to his feet.

“Sara, untie me,” Michael said.

“What?”

“Untie me!” he said more urgently and she got to it. In no time he was free and he ran and took the sword from the horses pack and swung it at the barbarian’s weapon as hard as he could and the weapon went flying out of his hand. Michael had to try and overcome his awe, he had not known he had that strength in him. Whistler took this opportunity to kill the barbarian and then they heard some cheers down below and saw the other barbarian’s fleeing having admitted defeat. Sara was staring wide eyed at Whistler who had just killed in front of her.

“Thanks, Michael, I think you just saved my life,” Whistler said and shook the servant boys hand. “I think with a little practice, you’d make one great swordsman, and one great rogue,”

“I never wish to use a sword,” Michael muttered. “At least not to kill,”

“With time, that will change, your still a young lad, you can change in a matter of days,” he looked at Sara and saw that she was scared, in shock after witnessing her first battle. “When you eat, you will be fine, I promise, we have our camp back, soon we shall eat,”

“What are we eating?” Michael asked, he could tell the princess was hungry. Whistler turned to him and smiled.

“There are few options, we could eat rabbit or barbarian,”

“What?” Sara and Michael asked simultaneously and Whistler laughed.

“Rabbit or rabbit,” he said smiling at their reaction and saw them both physically relax.

 

The sun went down leaving them in darkness, the camp was lit by a fire in the centre where a rabbit roasted on a spit. Whistler and his men had set up the tents and everyone was now settled waiting to eat. Michael had been asked to help set up the camp but Sara was still bound and she sat in silence on a log. Whistler went and sat beside her, they both watched Michael as he stoked the fire, the flames flickering off of his face.

“What is between you and your servant boy?” he asked.

“I do not know what you mean,” Sara replied not looking at the man.

“Never mind,” Whistler said smiling knowingly and then got up and went to one of his men. Sara watched him whisper something into the mans ear and then she looked away and back at Michael. He had been incredibly brave today and he proved his loyalty by forgetting about his own safety in order to ensure hers and it touched her deeply. She closed her eyes as she felt some tears forming in them.

End Notes:
Thanks, please review :)
Chapter 32 by Celia_Rose
Author's Notes:
Hope this is ok :)

Sara was wide awake when the men settled for sleep, Whistler made sure he was near to her, so she could not try and escape. His closeness made her feel uneasy and she knew she would not find sleep. She could hear the different animals in the near forest and the men breathing deeply in sleep. Michael was not far off and one of Whistler’s men who apparently never slept was near. He was wiping up his sword, cleaning the blood from it. She could hear the ting of the metal as he stroked a cloth along its edge. It made her skin bumpy and her spine shiver with fear. The fire was still burning giving the camp some light. She looked over at Michael and watched as he shifted position on the hard floor. She had seen Michael and Whistler in conversation earlier and now wondered what they had been speaking about. She was uneasy about Michael seeming to get himself involved with this man, he seemed reasonable but he was a rogue and had engaged in a plot, in a staged kidnapping of a royal family member, he was scheming with one of the corrupt Lords so could he really be trusted? She was worried for Michael and hoped he was smart enough to protect himself in case any betrayal was made by Whistler. If the man could go behind a Lords back and make another scheme then he would surely do the same to a mere servant boy. She looked over at Michael again to see he was awake too. He was shifting position again, clearly uncomfortable on the hard ground of the land.

“Michael!” she hissed and the rogue cleaning his sword looked up. Michael looked at her and then cautiously at the man cleaning his sword. Sara shifted a little away from Whistler and he stirred slightly. Michael read Sara’s expression, although he was cautious about it. He stood and the man cleaning his sword hissed at him.

“You better get back down, boy,” he said.

“My princess needs me,” Michael argued and the man laughed.

Your princess?” he mocked.

“Yes, I am still her servant, I obey her not you,” Michael braved.

“Just don’t go nowhere,”

“I don’t intend to,” Michael replied and made his way to Sara as she was stuck lying with Whistler. Michael took his sleeping blankets and set them out beside her, he lay down as close as he thought was still respectable. She reached out a hand and took him by surprise by taking his hand and holding it. He looked into her eyes.

“I’m scared,” she whispered and he could see she was. He could see her eyes gave away her fear. The princess had probably never spent a night away from her nice big bed and here she was sleeping outside in the open with a group of strange and unpredictable rogues.

“I’ll protect you,” he whispered back with a smile and stoked her hand with his other.

“I don’t wish to give you orders Michael but I do have one, don’t you dare get killed,” she said and he smiled.

“If I did you could get another servant,” he replied.

“When I brought you to the castle from the monument, you were half dead, I took care of you but you still hated me for what I was not who I was. I forgive you that, I found you to be the most infuriating young man I ever met,” she smiled fondly at the memory. “but I know you are more than that, you are a kind and caring young man, you are incredibly respectful, I suppose when someone earns your respect. I watched you today, you are merely my servant but you were still trying to put your own life aside in order to rescue mine, and I would never expect that of you,”

“You are right, my princess, you did earn my respect, I have seen how kind you are and how opposite to your father you are. You care for people’s wellbeing, for people’s lives, to your father, if the blood is not royal then it does not matter if it is spilled,” he looked at her sadly and she knew he was thinking about his brother and the suffering he has been forced to endure. She smiled sympathetically and reached out her other hand and stroked his cheek softly.

“If I had the power, I would tear that monument down and free all the slaves.” she whispered and he felt his heart skipping, he knew she would tear that hideously cruel thing down, he knew she would do it, if only she could. He also knew that if he had the power, he would banish Lord Paul from the kingdom and if he ever came back then he would be thrown into the dungeons for the rest of his life.

“Do not be scared, my princess, please,” he braved a gesture and stroked away a loose strand of copper hair from her face and tucked it behind her ear. He pulled away again, shyly and subconsciously licked his pink lips. She moved her body closer to his, needing some warmth and comfort that Whistler’s body simply was not providing. Michael put his arms around her to hold her, keep her warm and safe and hope that the princess may be able to sleep at least a little on this cold and scary night. He would not sleep, he would lay awake protecting her. He would lay awake and be her guardian angel for this night, he knew he would never get this close to his lovely, kind and beautiful princess, unless he wanted to loose something that was very important to all men. He swallowed that thought down, pushed it out of his mind. He felt Sara snuggling closer, her head resting neatly into his shoulder, like it was meant to be there.

End Notes:
Thanks, please comment :)
Chapter 33 by Celia_Rose
Author's Notes:

Its been so long, I hope I still have readers :(

Sara woke to find herself still close to Michael that morning, she had found sleep, since he moved close to her and held her protectively, she found sleep. Whistler was not the other side of her anymore and she was pleased, she did not want to move from Michael’s arms. He was warm and he was comforting, he was so manly but in an innocent boyish way. She felt dirty though, she wanted to wash but knew she would not get to. Perhaps there was a stream or something near. She looked up at Michael to see him awake, he smiled warmly, pleased that she was able to sleep. They sat up and she looked over at Whistler. He met her eyes and then tossed over a piece of meat, she tried to catch it, but it hit the mud.

“That’s your breakfast by the way,” Whistler said and they all laughed. Michael glared at how disrespectful they were being towards a woman, and the princess no less.

“I was not hungry anyway,” she replied, but her stomach grumbled. “Is there any water near so I can wash?” she asked.

“Go deep in the forest, there’s a little waterfall, I cant guarantee my men wont sneak behind you to take a look at the princesses jewels,” his men laughed dirtily.

“Michael, will you come with me?” she asked. He stuttered to answer her but when she stood he simply followed.

“Wait!” Whistler called. “I’ll come too, make sure you don’t try and get away,”

“As long as I have my privacy,” Sara replied.

She was pleased when she saw the waterfall, it was like a small paradise just for her. The water fell against the rocks and splashed gracefully into the pool of water around it. It was beautiful and it was hers surrounded by green vegetation. She walked to it and Michael made a cough so that Whistler would turn away to give the princess some privacy. He turned his back too. Sara looked back at the two men to see they were giving her privacy so she slowly stripped out of her dress and stepped into the water. She silently made her way to the waterfall and let it soak her. It was cleansing and she almost wanted to share the experience but that would be highly inappropriate.

“I think I need a wash too,” Whistler said when he heard the princesses feet splashing through the water.

“Just wait until she’s finished,” Michael said warningly.

“Why?” Whistler challenged and was then removing his shirt, revealing muscles bigger than Michael’s. Michael took a hold of him anyway and pushed him to a tree, Whistler laughed. Michael caught sight of Sara naked and his eyes were drawn to the beautiful sight, she was a goddess bathing. In his vulnerable state Whistler pushed him away, leaving Michael still staring at the curve of Sara’s back as she washed underneath the waterfall. She would not hear Whistler coming. Michael was not thinking about that right now, he was mesmerized.

Sara was in a world of her own when someone shadowed part of the pool. She ducked under so her body was hidden beneath the water and she turned to see Whistler.

“What are you doing?” she asked scared.

“Joining you, I need a wash too,” he said as though no harm was intended. She could not help notice his muscles and a few scars from battles. It was appealing but he was such a rude man. He moved closer to her and she squirmed away, although he did not try to touch her, he was just after part of the waterfall. She looked around for Michael and saw him staring from the waters edge, he snapped out of his daze when he met her eyes.

“I tried to stop him,” he said and then closed his eyes. Sara did not know what to say, she was stuck in a pool of water with a strange man, and a rogue no less and one who was not shy of inappropriate comments. If she got out of the water then he would see her naked. She was not under the water of the fall anymore, she had moved from it completely and only her head was visible above the surface. When she had wanted to share the experience with someone, she had thought more along the way of Michael, not Whistler. The man winked at her and then he ducked right under, she gasped knowing he was looking at her under the water. She quickly clambered to the bank and called Michael, he went to her, embarrassed at seeing her without clothes when he knew she had wanted complete privacy. He quickly helped her back into her dress and she was huffing furiously. They had to wait for Whistler as they didn’t know the way back to the camp. When he climbed out of the water, Sara slapped him so hard that his head cracked to the side.
“Animal!” she hissed at him.

“Do you want me to deliver you back to Lord Paul, or do you want me to go with your servant boys plan?” he asked.

“Plan? What plan?” she looked at Michael.

End Notes:
Sorry it was so long for an update, please comment so I know you are still interested :)
Chapter 34 by Celia_Rose
Author's Notes:
Hope you like this

He never answered her, even when she ordered him to tell her it. He did not want to endanger her with that information so he remained silent. She was insulted by his disobedience but she stayed close by him.

“When shall we give the princess back?” Whistler asked Michael. He was calculating the best moment and the best way.

“Leave her at the Witch’s rock as you promised Lord Paul but do not be there when he shows.”

“Is that it? Michael, is that it?” Sara raised her voice. “Your just handing me back?”

“It’s the best way, Sara, to ensure he does not suspect a traitor of Whistler,”

“Why is that important?” she asked.

“It just is,” he replied. She pulled him close.

“Why am I being kept out of this plan?” she whispered.

“For your own protection,” Michael replied looking at her with pain in his eyes. He hated doing this to her, she was desperate to know everything. His plan may not work and if the princess knew about it, a rogue may crack under torture if caught and tell the kings men that Sara knew of it. He could not allow that to happen.

“I don’t like this, Michael, I don’t,” she said, “and what about you? What are you doing?” she asked and he looked at Whistler.

“Can I trust you?” he asked the man.

“Of course, you can always trust an unpredictable rogue,” he grinned. Michael took Sara aside, out of earshot of the men and he leaned close.

“Can I trust you, Sara?” he asked in a hushed voice.

“Yes, of course,” she frowned up at him, confused about what he was about to tell her, but relieved that he was revealing something.

 

Lincoln hauled a huge sack onto the pile at the top for the other slaves to unload and start building. He helped Charles with his, the old man was a lot stronger and fitter than he looked. Their lash cuts were healing slightly as they had managed to avoid any recent ones. He heard a whispered conversation and caught the name of his brother.
“What is that?” he asked.

“The princess has been kidnapped, and her boy servant too,”

“Michael?” he asked worried.

“Yes, they say it’s the rogues, they’ve been gone a few days,”

“No, I cant believe it,” Lincoln was about to break down.

“No, don’t do it, you’ll get lashed, boy, hold yourself together, your brother is smart, he will be fine,” Charles reassured. Lincoln hoped he was right. They got back to work.

 

Michael sat with Whistler as they waited for the other men to prepare the horses for travel to the Witch’s rock. He looked at the other man, trying to decide if he really could be trusted. He also had gain from this, so it was not like he was doing him a favour.

“You think we can get to the dungeons then?” he asked.

“I’m sure of it,” Michael replied.

“Our leader… how did you know it wasn’t me?”

“I think you are a little unorganised to be a real leader,” Michael smiled looking ahead of him. Whistler grinned.

“You’re very clever, boy, and my leader is still alive?”

“As far as I know, yes, the name is… not familiar to me, I would have heard it had he already been executed,”

“Right, but you have no idea of his condition, so I am gambling here, if he is not as able bodied from torture, or disease then I risked my life for nothing,”

“I assure you, if the rumours of your leader are true, he is so much stronger than to succumb to disease and torture,” Michael replied, further increasing the rogue’s fondness of him.

The horses were ready and they rode off on them. Sara was on Whistler’s horse and Michael was on the back of another. He met Sara’s eye as she looked back at him. She looked worried and frightened. The horses galloped through the woods and the path led them to a fallen tree so they pulled the horses to a halt. Sara watched as Whistler dismounted his horse.

“We cant stray from the path, we might lose our way,” he said. Sara looked around at the dense forest and suddenly had an idea of her own. She jumped down off of the horse and ran through the trees making an escape.

“Sara!” Michael called.

“Get her back, now!” Whistler yelled enraged.

“Wait! Let me come, she trusts me,” Michael said as they gave chase. Sara ran through the trees, they whipped her soft and pampered skin with their harsh branches but she just wanted to get away.

End Notes:
Thanks, please review
Chapter 35 by Celia_Rose
Author's Notes:
Hope you like this chapter ;)

She could hear the men running behind her, they shouted to her, she could hear Michael but she did not want to go through with their plan. She already knew that Whistler had betrayed Paul, now, how could she look at the man as she walked the first steps of the plan? This kidnapping would likely hasten her marriage to him, which was probably part of the plan too. She did not want to see him, be near him, she wanted to stay with Michael, but he seemed like he was going rogue. She did not like this one bit and so her instinct was to run. Run away from it. She tripped over and cut her arm on a protruding tree root. She cried out and then Michael was down by her side.

“Why did you do that, Sara?” he asked her, the rest of the men were still behind him. He could run a lot faster than they could.

“I just wanted to get away,” she sobbed and Michael boldly brushed her hair out of her face and took her arm to look at the cut.

“I can take care of this for you,” he said softly, she looked into his eyes, he was still there, he was still her sweet and caring servant boy. She was starting to think that perhaps he was not all that clever as he was playing this dangerous game. She looked at him closer, squinting her eyes a little and he smiled and brushed her hair back again. She leaned closer, so her lips hovered near to his.

“I don’t want anything to happen to you Michael,” she whispered and then kissed his lips ever so gently, frowning as she did so, knowing this was wrong. He was her servant. He was almost as low as a slave at the monument. He was nobody. He was her servant. He was her friend. He was her saviour, her bold young rescuer. “I really do not want anything to happen to you, Michael,” she said again but did not meet his eyes, she knew kissing him was wrong.

He sat looking at her in confusion. Why had she kissed him? Why would she do something so wrong like that? A servant boy was nobody to a girl like her. He frowned at her, confused, mesmerised, in love. He had loved her from the moment they began to get along, the moment he saw how kind and sweet she was. Had she loved him too?
“So the princess runs to get her servant boy alone.” Whistler’s voice broke the moment. “Isn’t this nice?” Michael looked up at Whistler, but then ignored him. He looked back at Sara.

“It will be fine,” he whispered to her and stood. She stood with him, he helped her up, tears falling from her eyes, and they returned to the horses and continued to the Witch’s Rock.

It stood there, black as evil, crows resting at the top of it, cawing as though to warn them away. They slowly approached it and then Michael jumped off and helped Sara down from the horse. They all looked around uneasy about this location. It was a quiet part near the woods, disturbingly quiet.

“I think we should leave now,” Michael said to Whistler as he looked around the surroundings. Whistler was about to mount his horse when suddenly roars of men sounded and an ambush unfolded. Whistler drew out his sword and his men followed.

“You were right, boy, he betrayed us! You and the Princess take cover!” he yelled and they ran near to the rock. They watched the King’s men attack their new friends, some fell, and the rest were captured. Michael held Sara close, shielding her eyes from the bloody sights of the battle. Michael watched as Whistler was tied up and dragged back to the kingdom, the crows swooped down to feed on the bodies. Paul approached them as they sheltered by the rock. He looked at Michael, forcing away his distaste at the closeness he was to Sara right now. His face showed his bitterness. Sara saw this and to save Michael from any of Paul’s wrath, she pulled away from him and ran to the lord, throwing her arms around him.

“Thank you, Paul, thank you for saving me from those vile men!” she said like a desperate damsel in distress. Michael cast his eyes down out of respect for the nobleman who stood before him. He was still looking at Michael but then a smile curled at his lips.

“I would hate to think you had something to do with this kidnapping, Michael,” he said coldly and Michael looked up at him, scared.

“No, Paul, he protected me,”

“He is a servant boy not a bodyguard Sara,” Paul said.

“He would never do something like that, a simple servant boy, kidnapping a princess? How ridiculous does that sound? A kidnapping takes a measure of calculation, well thought out planning, do you think that a servant boy, with limited education, if any, would be able to do such a thing?” she forced a snobbish laugh, apologetically looking back at Michael. Both were relieved when Paul joined her laughter and walked away, with his arm resting on Sara’s back, guiding her to his horse.

“Get the servant on a horse, we must return to the castle at once,” Paul ordered. Michael followed one of the men to a horse already trying to think of an alternative plan.

End Notes:
Thanks, please review, I hope you're all still reading :)
Chapter 36 by Celia_Rose
Author's Notes:

I am back into this story now so I think updates will become more frequent. I hope people are still reading this, I have big plans for it ;)

Paul was not a stupid man. He saw the way Sara looked at the servant boy Michael. It was a problem. He could not have Sara distracted by her servant boy so something had to be done before the wedding. Paul decided to go to the king and expose his ideas but not to get Sara into trouble with her father, more to get Michael in trouble. He knocked on the door to the kings office and was granted entrance.

“Your majesty, I must express my concern about the servant boy Michael,”
“My daughters servant? Why? She says he protected her from those vile rebels, she says he cared for her.”

“I’m not convinced, please, allow me to question some of the rebels, I will get it out of them, I have my ways,”
“I know you do Paul and they prove to be very effective, do you really wish this sort of stress upon my daughter? She seems to like her servant boy,”

“Yes, your majesty, she does, a little too much perhaps?” at this the King looked up at Paul, his face painted with intrigue and distaste.

“You don’t suspect…?” this king looked away. The very thought of his daughter with a servant repulsed him. “Take Michael, I want him questioned, under torture if necessary,”
“Its always necessary, my lord,” Paul replied and the king smiled.

 

Sara was in her bedroom with her nurse who was cleaning up her cuts and scrapes and rubbing a soothing ointment over them. Michael was at the door watching, Sara met his eyes every now and then to flash him a smile. He returned it warmly. Katie noticed a few of these exchanges, she knew all along there was something between the two.

“Sara was telling me how brave you were,” Katie said with a slight smile.

“I wasn’t,” he mumbled.

“Don’t be modest, those rebel types are dangerous, I’m just happy the two of you were brought back safely, I believe you were probably the reason why the two of you are both still alive,” she raised her eyebrow at Michael.

“You were brave Michael,” Sara said and smiled. Katie stood and excused herself, leaving the two of them alone. Michael walked to Sara and got down on his knees before her. He smiled up at her but then his face crossed with sorrow.

“We can’t be together, Sara, I… wish there was a way but there just isn’t,”

“I know,” she took his face in both her hands and brought it so his intense eyes were looking into hers. “I know,” tears trickled down her cheeks. “I wish there was a way, I wish we could run but then they would think that I have been kidnapped again, and by you, I hate to think what they are doing to those men right now and I would just die if it was happening to you,”

“It wont, I could take you far away from here, Sara, I could work until I have money to marry you and we can live somewhere people wouldn’t know us, we could do it Sara, we could run away together, I could rescue you from this prison, save my brother-”
“No! Michael it can’t be done, no matter how much I wish it, running away with you, saving your brother, just cant be done, I do I wish it so much with all my heart but life is just cruel, I will be forced to marry Paul, it is set and it will happen,”

“It doesn’t have to happen that way, my love, it doesn’t,” the door burst open and in came Katie looking panicked. Sara stood to meet her.

“Forgive me, your majesty, but I just spoke to one of the servant boys who was running his errands and he overheard a conversation between Paul and your father, they plan to frame Michael for your kidnapping, torture him until he admits his involvement!”

“No, no, this cant be true, oh God,”

“It’s fine, Sara, I can take them on, I can take all they have to throw at me, the one thing they can’t hurt is our love,”
“But they can and they will! By hurting you, they hurt me and I cannot bare to think of you under torture Michael, they are cruel and sadistic, no man can take their torture methods! Michael you have to run!”
“I can’t do that, Sara, I must stay! If I am to save my brother, I need to be here!”

“Go Michael! I order you to leave! Run! I want you as far away from them as possible so nothing can harm you!”

“You order me? Sara, nothing you say will make me leave your side!”
“Forget about me, Michael, this is about protecting yourself! I can help you back into the kingdom, I can help you to rescue your brother, I promise, now please just go! They’ll be coming for you right now!”

“If I run, Sara, that will make my guilt confirmed for them, but it is not true!”

“I know that, we know that, Michael, but please I am begging you, I am begging you to run, I will help you get back, I promise!” he looked at her, her desperation was overwhelming, her eyes were filled with tears and her pretty face was contorted in anguish. He loved her, and so he had to do as she asked.

“Fine, I will run, Katie, will you help me out of the castle?”

“Yes of course! I can take you through the kitchens, Paul and the King would never set foot in there.”

“Thank you,” he turned back to Sara and held her face in his hands, he kissed her on the lips softly. “I will return, my princess, I swear to you,” he sprinted away with Katie who was flustered with nerves as they headed to the servant quarters and the kitchens.

 

Sara slumped down into her chair, she was exhausted, physically and emotionally. She loved Michael so much it hurt, she always had, from the moment he spat his first venomous words at her, she loved him. It made her smile. She hoped that he got away. Her door opened abruptly and Paul, and his men were standing in her room. She looked up at him, her eyes rimmed with tears, her expression defiant.

“Where is Michael?” Paul asked calmly.

“Try the rebel hideout!” she spat indicating that she knew about his intentions. His face twisted in disgust at her. He ordered his men to wait outside and so they did. He shut the door and slowly turned back to Sara before advancing on her. He took her by the throat and lifted her from the chair pinning her against the wall. She gasped and whimpered at the violence.

“You and that boy? You dirty, disgusting whore! A servant? You would taint your blood with that of vermin? If you ever have children then what do you think they would turn out like?” he growled at her.

“Paul, you’re hurting me, let go!” she cried. “Please,”
“You better still be a virgin on our wedding night, I will find that servant boy, I will crush him slowly, make him suffer more than any man ever did!” he hissed and then released her. “I hope you can forgive yourself for what you will put him through!” he stormed out, leaving her to crumple to the floor in a sobbing heap. She was trembling, her entire body shook and she could not control her fearful breaths.

End Notes:

Hope you enjoyed the chapter, please review and let me know.

Chapter 37 by Celia_Rose
Author's Notes:

Hope you like this next chapter :)

Paul ran down to the servant quarters in a fit of rage, he pushed passed servant boys, knocked servant girls to the cold stone floor. He stormed through them all, kicking open doors to adjacent rooms. He finally came to the kitchens and was greeted by a flustered cook, surprised to see him in the lowly kitchens. He was more flustered because something against king and lords was going on in his kitchens. He had seen Katie and the servant boy Michael to the exit door himself.

“Where is he?” Paul growled at him and the cook tried not to show just how terrified he was to be part of this.
“I…. err… what? Who?” he stammered.

“You know who! Do I have to send you to the dungeons to get it out of you!” the cook got down on his knees begging for mercy.

“Please my lord! Please, I know nothing about anything, please I beg of you!” he cried and then Katie came through with a basket of bread. She smiled at Lord Paul and curtsied.
“What brings you down here, my lord?” she asked casually. “Would you like to test this fresh bread?” she offered him the basket. Paul looked at her the anger was evident on his face. He knew something was going on but he could not figure what.

“Where is the servant boy Michael?” Paul asked.

“I sent him to the hall, my lord, we are preparing this evenings feast,” Katie replied as casually as if today were any other. Paul looked from her to the cook and then turned on his heel and left. The cook exhaled and looked at Katie to say how close he had come to torture.

“Don’t be so scared of him, Gerard, he might be a lord but one soon to fall,” she winked after whispering her words to him.

“Tell me what you know,” the cook asked and she just smiled before setting the bread aside and returning to the princess.

 

Michael slipped into the poverty struck kingdom, running through the streets covered in dirt and human waste. The stench was sickening, he saw sick people, with no home, sleeping on these streets, he knew not if they were sleeping or dead. Something had to be done about these poor people, innocent, suffering people. It might well be in his hands now, but he was and always will be a poor servant boy, son of rebel parents. Not activist rebels like Whistler but rebels non the less. He was watched by the people, his clothes much cleaner and better quality than theirs. A poor man grabbed at his ankle, begging for help. Michael realised he had a missing leg, his teeth were rotten, his beard was matted and his clothes had holes in, no doubt providing his frail form with no warmth whatsoever.

“Help me, please,” the man begged.

“I can’t, I’m so sorry,” Michael replied and pulled himself free. He ran towards the gates of the inner kingdom when he hard his name called.

“Michael! I did what you asked!” he turned to see the small boy called Aidan who he had asked to watch the guards habits at night by the monument and their patterns of movement for when he broke his brother out of the cage.

“Really? I had completely forgot I apologise,”
“I heard you were kidnapped with the princess, its no wonder you forgot,” little Aidan smiled.

“What happens at night by the monument? I have slipped passed the guards before but that was when I was alone, next time I will not be,”

“I saw only two guards both nights, one near each group of cages, but they wander some, they talk, and wander away from the cages,”
“That would be the moment to break, thank you Aidan, I must run now, the king wants me dead,” Michael left the boy and ran towards the gates. He stopped in his tracks when some guards saw him, looked directly at him and started towards him.

 

Paul took the steps down to the dungeon two at a time after finding that Michael was not in the hall, he ordered the door to be opened and then he entered. The stench hit him like a wall and he coughed but pressed forwards. He slammed his hands onto the bars of a cell and demanded Whistler to approach him. Whistler looked around at him, his blue eyes were tired but he managed a crooked smile upon resting them on Paul’s treacherous face.

“What took you so long to come and greet us, welcoming us into your home?” Whistler asked mocking the lord. “This place looks about right to house one such slimy, treacherous snake such as yourself,” Whistler stood to meet Paul’s eyes.

“You are in no place to insult me, rebel,”
“Rebel, yes, but also your co-conspirator but then it was always a likely possibility that you would betray us so here we are, well and truly betrayed.”

“Well and truly where you belong!” Paul spat. “Now where would Michael go?”

“What do you mean?”
“I know he was working with you after you kidnapped him and the princess! What are your plans? What are his plans?” Paul demanded.

“I have no idea what you are talking about,” Whistler smiled.

“Bring me the rebel king!” Paul grinned and watched Whistler’s face drop, his eyes fill with concern. A door opened and in came two guards dragging the limp, beaten body of the rebel leader.

“John! What have they done to you?” Whistler asked.

“About everything but nothing I cant live through,” the bold leader replied but got a punch from a guard.

“We haven’t severed any limbs yet but we could,” Paul grinned.

“No! Don’t!” Whistler cried.

“Whatever they do to me, boy, I order you not to tell them anything they want to hear!” John said.

“Tell me, boy,” Paul grinned to emphasise the belittlement, “everything, where Michael is, what he plans, everything and your leader might get to live intact.”

“I can’t let them do this to you, John,”

“They could cut off every part of my body but if you tell them anything, they win!” John was struck again, this time rendering him unconscious.

“Good hit,” Paul said to the guard and then turned back to Whistler. He saw the tears in the mans eyes, he truly cared for his leader, believing in him completely. That was exactly what Paul was relying on.

End Notes:

Thank for reading, please review :)

Chapter 38 by Celia_Rose
Author's Notes:

 I am glad ideas have stopped coming to me but i have so many unfinished stories lol. I feel as though this one might be slowly reaching the end. There is still plenty left of it though. I wish i had not submitted so many ideas all at once because i dont think i will manage to complete every one of them. Can i ask the people reading this, if you are also reading other stories of mine, could you tell me which ones you would prefer me to continue? I may get to them all later but which ones are your favourites and you would like to read to the end? Thank you

Michael ran towards the open gates, the guards called to the men on top to close them up to keep Michael inside. He ran as fast as he could but they were closing. He was almost there but the gates slammed, tall above him, looming over the kingdom along with the unsightly walls keeping in the poverty and horrors. Michael looked around and saw the guards coming at him, the little boy Aidan was on their heels, pulling one trying to slow them down. He was struck in the face by the guards boot and Michael ran, he could not be captured, it would all be over if he was captured. He jumped over the sleeping homeless and crashed through a market stall, apologising quickly to the owner before running again. He was met by yet more guards, severely outnumbered and running out of time. He took another direction but there were more guards. He was surrounded, it was over. They closed in, he had no way out and they beat him down before arresting him. Michael was dragged to the dungeons and thrown into a cage on his own but he could see Whistler and the others and Paul was near as well.

“I suppose I can stop torturing your leader now, my men have done the work and brought Michael to me.” he grinned. John was thrown into a cage on his own as well. Michael sat, broken, he was destroyed, there was no hope for him or for his brother now. They would both surely die.

 

Sara was in her rooms with Katie sitting at her dressing table. Katie had attempted to console her but the dread feeling inside of the princess was preventing her from relaxing.

“I saw him to the door myself, Sara, he will be fine.”

“Who will be fine?” Paul came in without knocking. Sara stood to meet the smug grin on his face. Katie was flustered and she curtsied.

“The servant boy, Peter had a cold, but he is better now.” Katie lied.

“Really? Leave us.” he ordered and Katie looked at Sara and then obeyed the Lord. Paul walked to Sara, close so she could almost just see him as a blur. “Michael, he has been captured, his guilt in your kidnapping will surely be punished, you have no worries about that and we are to be wed shortly after.” he grinned. Sara held her ground, kept a bold face, fixed eye contact. “What? No reaction?”

“He was not involved in my kidnapping Paul, but he is just a servant boy, he helped me, but he is lowly so why do you think I should care so much?” he looked at her for a moment and then smirked before leaving. She exhaled sharply and then closed her eyes.

Michael sat in the corner of his cell, he knew Whistler and the others were looking at him but he didn’t care. He had failed. He sat lost in his own thoughts and failure.

“What happens now?” Whistler asked trying to get some response from Michael. “We were supposed to be broken out of here! What happens?”
“I don’t know!” Michael yelled. “We die, we failed, we got captured, they execute us for kidnapping the princess.”

“And your brother?”

“He dies at the monument.” Michael muttered.

“You give up? That’s it, its over?”

“Its over.” Michael muttered. He heard the main doors to the dungeon open.

“Michael.” he heard a female voice and looked up. It was the princess. She went right up the bars of his cell and he joined her from the other side. They held hands through them. “I’m so sorry, Michael, I’m so sorry it ends like this.” Michael got a sudden glimmer of hope and he held her hands tighter.

“It doesn’t have to, Sara, I’m innocent and you know that, my brother does not deserve to continue being a slave to the King. You can-”
“Wait, Michael? What are you saying?”

“I need your help.” she looked into his pleading eyes and wanted to help him so much but what could she possibly do?

Sara returned to her rooms and flopped down onto her bed in a very un-princess like manner and she cried into a pillow. She had to cry loudly and did not want anyone to hear her so she sobbed her heart into the pillows. She wanted to help Michael so badly but his face when she had told him that she could not, his eyes lost some of their light like he had died already, it broke her heart. Why was there nothing she could do to save the life of the man she loved? She sat up an idea sparking in her mind. There was something she could do but it was risky. A risk worth taking if it might save Michael.

Chapter 39 by Celia_Rose
Author's Notes:

I tried to make this chapter quite fast paced to fit in with the show, lol, I know it's AU but when you read it you'll see why I tried to do this. Let me know if it worked.

Michael sat in his cell. There was no way out of it. No way to rid the guards. He whistled to get Whistler’s attention. The man looked up from his distressed position and then he crawled towards the bars that joined their cells.

“I made you a promise, I would help you get your leader out of here, now I am going to make you another promise, if you can help me. I’ll get you all out.” Whistler looked at him and then his men, thinking about it.

“What do you need?” Whistler asked.

“Get the guards attention.” he said.

“That all?”

“I’m working on the rest.” he said and sat back. He looked at the guard as he stood by the doors of the dungeon exit. “Get him near my cell somehow.” Michael hissed.

“Hey!” Whistler called. The guard looked round and stepped forwards. “I keep seeing something up there, its like, I nothing I’ve ever seen before.” the guard looked at the far wall where there was a small window slit.

“Are you crazy?”

“Yes, but I can see it!” Whistler continued.

“I saw it too, boss.” another of Whistler’s men said helping out.

“You can see it good from just here.” Whistler stepped to the outside corner of his cell that was right by Michael’s.

“I’m not coming near the cell, so don’t try that.” the guard said and stepped back to his post. Whistler desperately tried to think of something else that would help. He looked at Michael and then there was a knock on the dungeon door. It opened and the Princess walked in again. She looked up at the guard, her expression was sultry. She brought her hand up and stroked the guards cheek.

“What are you doing m’lady?” he asked.

“I know this is so wrong but… I am tired of being a virgin, I know I am soon to marry Paul but… he wont be kind, I know he wont. I was just hoping for you, a compassionate man, a better man than him to show me some tenderness.” the guard looked at the prisoners who were all watching confused and expectantly. He frowned sensing something was wrong.

“What’s going on here?” he turned his back on the princess and all of a sudden she struck him over the back of the head with the chair he had been sitting on.

“There’s me thinking he would fall for that. I‘m no seductress.” she said and lifted the keys off of his unconscious body. The men in the prison looked at her awestruck, they did not know she had that in her. She unlocked Michael and then took his hand and was about to run with him but he pulled back. He took the keys and unlocked Whistler and the rest of them.

“What are you doing?” The princess asked.

“I promised them and they’re going to help me.”

“Michael, if you try and save your brother, they will catch you and kill you.” she said concerned for his life. He pulled her into his arms as the rogues collected up their confiscated weapons. He kissed her. “I love you, and so I will never die.” he said and received a sword from Whistler.

“We need to open the gates for the other rebels.” Whistler said. “If we gather as many as we can, we have an army.”
“We have a small army here, its too risky. Besides you need to live up to your end of the bargain before we go near those gates. I will not let you run.” Michael said glaring at the untrustworthy rebel.

“We storm the castle.” Whistler said instead.

“Michael!” Sara gasped.

“We have to do this, we have this rare opportunity to make things right!” he shouted. “We are armed and already inside the castle. This never happens and so we go on to find the king.”
“Michael, don’t kill him, please, he is my father.”

“I wont.” Michael assured and then looked at Whistler. “No one will.” Whistler and his men left the dungeon and killed off the unsuspecting guards just outside of it. Michael took Sara’s hand. “I need you to be safe.” he said. “Go somewhere, back to your rooms.” she nodded and left the rotting dungeons and hurried back into the castle. She was terrified for Michael as he was taking some of Whistler’s men to the monument. The rest were attempting to take the castle over. She could hear the sounds of metal clashing as she ran through but she refused to look at any bodies. Her eyes streamed with tears but she held onto her strength. It was all she had right now.

Michael looked at the men Whistler had left him and he went over what he knew of the monument with them. They looked strong, able and determined.

“I got you men your leader back, can I trust you?” he asked and looked at John who was also with them.

“You are a smart young man. Loyal and trustworthy, I will not betray you and if my men do, any of them, I will kill them myself. I admire your bravery, boy and so we will follow you and your plan. We will get you your brother back.” Michael felt relieved at the words from John.

“Thank you. Now there are two guards to overcome, it wont be a problem, they guard the two cages full of slaves. We get passed them and open both cages, letting all of them free. This will give us more men to fight beside.”
“Men? Half of them are women and children and the men will be exhausted and in no fighting state.” one of the rebels shouted.

“We’ll see what we can do. We‘ll take the ones how feel able.” Michael said and led them out. He stopped by some of the bodies and got an idea. “Help me.” he said and the men followed what he was doing. They removed the guards clothes and then dragged the bodies into the cells and locked them in. There was only enough guards clothes for some of them, so the men who looked cleanest donned them and Michael led the way. He led them all through the small exit he had found when he escaped to go and see Lincoln. It had now been a while since he had seen him or had word, he was worried if his brother was even alive!

“You sure this is going to work?” John asked. Michael looked around at the men he was leading through this. They all looked anxious but ready. Half of them were probably scared but these types of rebels were known to be fearless but fear was natural and these men were still human. Michael looked out into the town. People were still walking around, still trying to scrape together some food at this late time of night. He caught the glares from the people of the kingdom as he was dressed as a kings guard. They hated him. Soon they would understand and soon they will no longer be hungry. He walked passed them hoping he would not lose face in this, hoping he would not lose his strength. He continued towards the monument, he saw it was getting bigger at the top of the hill. The slaves had been worked hard. He stopped with the men behind a bush, they looked at the cages. They could smell it from where they were, the unclean prisoners, sleeping in their own waste. It was horrific. They could hear crying of men and children alike.

“You all have your weapons concealed?” he asked and they nodded. “When I have got the guard to turn his back to open the cage, you kill both of them.” he ordered and they were ready. He stepped forwards and called for the attention of the guards. “I have new slaves for the monument.” he said.

“The king has not issued for any. The cages are as full as they can be.”

“Then maybe you should have this scum make some new ones?”

“Who do you think you are?” the guard asked. He looked at the new slaves and recognised John Abruzzi. He was a rebel leader and no way would the king issue him to be a slave, this guy was waiting execution. These men were up to something. He knew it. Michael knew he knew it. He could feel the sweat on his head start to bead. There was only two guards.

“Now!” he said and the rebels drew out their weapons and killed them both. Michael tried to catch his breath while the men were looking for the keys.

“Michael!” he heard and looked up to see the old man Charles looking out through the bars. He forgot his own breathlessness and went to the bars whilst the others tried to unlock it.

“Where’s Lincoln?” Michael asked.

“They took him.”
“Took him where?” Michael panicked.

“He stepped in when a child was getting beaten and I just saw them drag him off. I don’t know what happened. I‘m sorry Michael.” the bolt clicked but Michael did not register the men John had arranged who were fight worthy, or the others running back to their families. It was a joyous moment, ruined by the fact that Lincoln was not in it.
“This isn’t over, we have to find him.” he said looking at John with his deep eyes piercingly angry. Inside he was terrified for the worst.

End Notes:

Thank you for reading, let me know if it was ok?

Chapter 40 by Celia_Rose
Author's Notes:

sorry everyone, my inspiration ran dry for a very long time but hopefully it will keep up again now i have it back

Michael looked around himself at the faces, the expectant faces, waiting for him to make a move. Awaiting his order to move, to attack. The men who had come out of the cages looked worn, tired, weak. Hopeless. He started back into the town and they all followed. He entered an inn, it was barely existing but it would have food. He took the inn keeper aside and told him who they were and what their plan was and that they were not the kings guards so there was no need to cower.

“These men have come from the cages at the monument, they need some food, water and perhaps you could throw a bucket of water over them. They’ve been living in their own waste, sir, I beg for your help. I promise after this night, all will be better, and the king will no longer reign and your kindness will be repaid.” the inn keeper looked sceptical. He called his son out.

“Pip!” a teenage boy came running through.

“Yes father?”
“Go and check the cages at the monument, tell me what is going on.” he said and his obedient son ran out. Michael stood holding eye contact with the skinny inn keeper. He was skinny but looked bold, strong and determined. Moments later Philip returned.

“They are empty father, no one is watching them!” he exclaimed.

“You tell the truth, boy, I will provide you and your men food and water, I will also provide you with my sword.” Michael smiled and the men were all fed and cleaned in the fastest way. They ate so fast, they were all so hungry and thirsty. Michael left them and went with the inn keeper, his son and John outside.

“What is your name, good man?” Michael asked.

“Philip, my son is also Philip but we call him Pip.” The man smiled at his son. They were the spitting image of each other. Both slim, both brown haired and blue eyed. Michael smiled and looked up at the sky, the night time cover was his friend tonight and the stars were gems of luck.

“Any idea where the guards take a slave if he has been disobedient too many times?” Michael asked and Charles stepped out of the inn to join them.

“They are punished but after the punishment they always die.” he said. Michael took in a deep breath and let it out but it came shaky, he closed his eyes and steadied his voice before he spoke again.

“Where?” he asked.

“To the right of the monument but they are always guarded.” Philip said. Charles looked at the young Michael and he took his arm.

“I’m sorry, Michael, I think it may be too late.”

“It is not too late until I see him dead, we go and get him and then see if it is too late.”

“It’s suicide.” Charles said.

“I’m getting my brother back, old man, you do not have to help me.” Michael started walking towards the monument, John followed as he had promised and the inn keeper followed with his son. Some of John’s men joined them to increase their chances. Michael peered around another bush, he could see some guards walking up and down. He squinted his eyes and saw some men tied to poles, their arms secured high above their heads. One of them must be Lincoln. “How long do they leave them that way?” Michael asked.

“As long as they feel like.” Philip replied.

“How long ago did they take my brother?”

“About two days ago.” Charles said.

“He’s been tied to that for two days?” Michael gasped. He wasn’t sure if he could handle this but it would all soon be over.

“What’s our plan of attack?” John asked.

“I think we should just charge them.” Philip suggested.

“Yes, that is what we do.” Michael replied.

“This is suicide.” Charles said as he prepared himself with the sword one of the rebels had given him.

“Alright, go!” Michael said and they ran at the guards shouting as they collided in battle. The guards hesitated as they could see some of these men were dressed in the uniform of the guards of the castle but then they clashed swords and were soon overcome. The clang of the metal, the shouts of war and the cries of dying men. Michael had blood on him now, he looked at his skin, it was red, he wiped it on the uniform as best he could. He looked over at the men, tied up and half dead. He could feel tears bubbling up inside of him, a sob of despair was rising in his throat.

“Lincoln!” he shouted. “Lincoln!” no reply. He ran through the men, searching. “Lincoln!”

“Michael.” he heard behind him, a pained and weak response. He looked around and saw Lincoln. He was secured to two poles and it was clear he had been whipped severely. He looked up at his little brother, one of his eyes was half closed from a beating, it was black and his lip was cut. Michael looked at him horrified and went to him. He held him but Lincoln winced. “Careful there.” he said. “How’d you do this?” he asked.

“I wouldn’t just leave you, Lincoln, I know you wanted me to go without you, get out the first moment I got but I was always going to come back for you.” he called Charles over to help him get his brother down. Lincoln fell weak against his brother but Michael held him up. “Someone get him food and water!” he called desperately and held Lincoln close.

“I’ll be fine.” Lincoln whispered. “Did you save everyone else?”

“Of course, I could not leave them.” he muttered. The rebels were releasing all of the others and trying to ease their thoughts as they died. Tears spilled from Michael’s eyes as he watched this and held his wounded brother. “You need rest, I’ll take you to the inn, the keeper will find you a bed to rest on, others from the cages, too weak to fight are also resting there.”

“You have such a good heart, little brother,” Lincoln said and tried to smile. John kept one eye on the brothers as he pried a sword from a dead rebels hands. He grimaced a little at the sight if the blood spattered corpse. One of the guards was nearby he was injured and whimpering.

“Die with some dignity, you fool!” John said and then finished the guard off with a swift hack to the neck. Michael watched him do this and then called someone to help.

“Someone help me!” Michael called and led his brother to the inn with the help of John and any others standing by awaiting for their assistance to be needed.

Sara was sitting in her room, she could hear metal clashing, men shouting out, men dying, there was war inside her castle, in her home. She hoped Michael was safe, she hoped he found his brother and he was also safe. She could hear fighting in her beloved courtyard, she got off her seat and looked out over it. Suddenly her door burst open and she screamed. She looked and saw Paul raging towards her. She went to scream but he grabbed her and threw her to the ground. Her knees bashed into the cold stone floor. She pulled herself up again and then he grabbed her by the throat and leaned close to her face.

“I know you let them out! Your not a princess you’re a witch! You should be burned! Your evil and I’m glad I have not yet married you!” he hissed as he gripped onto her throat tighter. She struggled to breathe but then she found some strength and kicked him in his manhood. He released her and she gasped as she hit the floor. She crawled to her bed to pull herself to her feet and look him in the eye but he kicked her down again. He drew out his sword and raised it high.

“Hey!” Paul turned to see one of the rebels. The second in command, Whistler. “She’s a princess so you treat her like one.” Whistler said as he marched forwards with his sword drawn. They entered battle in Sara’s quarters and she quickly ran to a wall and stood back, watching the scene. She got on the ground again and tucked her head in her arms trying to block out the sounds of battle. She heard hurried footsteps and when she looked up Paul was gone, Whistler was coming towards her, he held out his hand.
“My lady.” he said and she took his hand letting him help her up.

“Its nice to see you finally have some manners.” she said, her voice still shaky from the violence.

Lincoln was rested up and Michael was marching on the castle with his makeshift army. All of the men were ready for this, their faces wore masks of hate, their eyes a soul full of rage, peering through. Their weapons ready and justice hanging over them, tonight was their night. This was the night when good triumphs over the evil and love can run as free as the streams in the woodlands, and fill the hearts of all. This was a fight for justice, a fight for love and freedom.

End Notes:

be great 2 hear from u all again

Chapter 41 by Celia_Rose

They marched through the same way they had escaped and found that the castle was already filled with battle, clashing swords, shouting, roaring, the men fighting for freedom ran straight towards these sounds. Michael took to the stairs and wandering the halls, he had to find the king, that was his fight. He realised he had never killed a man before, he had no idea what he would do once he found the king. He heard a noise in one of the rooms, something had been knocked over but there were no signs of battle in these hallways. He opened the door, the room was dark, no candles were aflame.

“Who’s in here?” he called. He heard another rustle. “Show yourself!”

“Please don’t hurt us.” he heard a small female voice. He ran out to the hall, grabbed a torch and illuminated the area where the voice had come from. He saw a servant woman and a boy. They looked scared.
“I’m not going to hurt you, me and my men are here to bring justice to this kingdom, put things right.”
“You wont win this,” the woman said, “he will stop you and hang you all, there is no way this kingdom will ever be free.”

“Michael!” he heard from the hall and saw John coming along with a couple of men. He raged in and went towards the servants.

“John, no! They’re innocent!”

“Nobody is innocent, boy, nobody, where is the king?” he demanded from them. They cowered from his roar. “Where is the king, tell me now or so help me god!”

“John! Leave them!” Michael shouted, putting a hand on John’s arm to calm him. “We will find him.” Michael left the room only to be met by a charging guard weapon high ready to strike. Michael instinctively ducked and then thrust his weapon into the mans gut. He watched horrified as the man fell dead. He had to push the feeling away, this was war, and he had to win.

Paul had collected some men, they had gathered in his quarters where the battle had not yet reached. They stood in a line awaiting orders. Paul signalled to a handful of them and made them stand to one side.

“The rest of you will find these rebels and kill them! Stop them immediately and whatever you do, do not let them near the king!” they nodded and then left to their duties. “You men, will find my wife, you will kill whoever is protecting her and you will return to me with her!” he ordered and they marched off. He sighed but then heard battle close by, he looked out of his window and saw one of the gardens getting destroyed by battle. That was fine, he couldn’t care less about flowers. He wanted to find Michael himself and kill him. He drew out his sword and marched out of his rooms and towards where he heard some battles. He hoped that stupid boy Michael was there, he wanted to put his sword to good use.

Michael and his men ran down a corridor and ran into another small group of people, they all shouted and raised their weapons but then recognised each other, laughing a little they lowered them.

“Well done boys, I think this would be where the king resides.” John said “well done for having the same idea, the more of us the better when we go against the king.”

“Whistler,” Michael saw and greeted him, then saw Sara. “Sara?”

“Whistler saved me from Paul, he attacked me,”

“Are you alright?” Michael asked, sheathing his weapon and touching her beautiful cheek.

“I’m fine, Michael,” she took his hand away from her cheek and kissed it.
“When you two are done.” John said. They smiled a little embarrassed.

“He’s right this isn’t the time.” Michael looked at Sara, “you need to be someplace safe, hide in one of these rooms.”

“Alright, I will just be a distraction for you.” she hurried into one of them and hid in a corner. They continued down the corridor and crept round a corner when they heard voices. They saw a small group of guards, it was as though they were guarding a room. Perhaps the king was in that room.

“Plan, Michael?” John asked.

“To fight.” they charged the guards, weapons ready, they entered battle, Michael tried not to think about killing these men and just doing it, he had to survive this, for Sara, for Lincoln, for the kingdom. Soon the floor was covered in bodies and not just the guards, they lost quite a few men too as manoeuvring in these corridors was difficult. John was wounded badly and Whistler didn’t look too good either. Michael seemed to have come out of it with just a cut on his cheek where a sword grazed him but he had killed the man before it did any real damage, like take out an eye. He hated to think that this was easy for him, that he was so graceful in the art of war, so graceful in killing. John, though injured, burst though the room the guards were standing near. Whistler finished off the last guard as he tried to crawl away. Michael winced and entered the room where John was. The king was sat at his dresser, John stumbled in, unable to stand upright any longer.

“I wondered how long it would take you rebels to find me,” the king said.

“Michael! Kill him!” John growled, Whistler stood in the doorway, leaning against the frame, watching. “Michael! Kill him!” John shouted the words again that echoed through Michael’s mind.

“No!” Sara came running in, “Michael please he’s still my father!”

“This is what we came here to do, Michael! So do it!”

“Well, this is a stroke of luck, everything I want in one place, Sara, Michael, the king safe,” Paul was at the door, he managed to de-weapon Whistler who went to attack and stabbed him in the thigh so he was not able, “now lets end this.” he grinned at Michael who readied his sword.

End Notes:

Thank you, please review

Chapter 42 by Celia_Rose

Paul stepped towards Michael who raised his sword, Paul effortlessly swiped it out of the young mans hands with his own sword. He grinned cockily. Michael stumbled backwards and Paul moved closer, holding his sword to Michael’s throat.

“I’ll enjoy this.”

“No! Paul please!” Sara shrieked and went to stop him but her father restrained her. “I’ll marry you! But please spare him!” she begged.

“I don’t think so, princess, I’ll kill him and your father will ensure you still marry me so I can get the best of both.” Paul said arrogantly. John went to help but fell to the ground from his wounds from before. Paul laughed, looking at the remainder of Michael’s allies, helpless, injured. He raised his sword high about to strike down on the poor servant boy when suddenly, someone came running into the room, an axe held above his head, before Paul could turn around, the axe was in his back. He stumbled around to look at his killer, it was a large built very dishevelled looking slave. Lincoln.

“Cowardly death for a cowardly lord!” Lincoln spat. Paul stumbled forwards, his sword ready to strike down his killer, the king went to draw his own weapon but Whistler by then had staggered towards him, a sword tip pointing at the kings throat.

“I wouldn’t, if I was you.” he held a smirk on his face as the king looked defeated. Michael picked up his sword and disarmed Paul who fell to his knees. Michael saw red, he thrust his sword into Paul’s chest, to hasten his death.

“That’s for attacking Sara!” he kicked Paul’s body off of his sword. Michael then raged towards the king, weapon ready.

“Michael no! Please!” Sara called, her face a picture of horror, her big hazel eyes begging.

“He tortured innocent people, he tortured Lincoln!”

“He’s still my father, I do not want to see him dead, but we need to overthrow him, send him and all of his loyal lords to the slave pens, they can finish off that disgusting monument but the dedication of the monument can change, we can dedicate it to our fallen heroes!” Michael relaxed and walked away, she was right. Lincoln ripped the axe from Paul’s back and turned to see the king rise from his seat, weapon drawn, he was about to kill Michael.

“No!!” Sara cried. Lincoln threw the axe, it skimmed the kings head cutting his ear clean off! Whistler was back in position with the sword at the kings throat.

“I told you that was a bad idea.” he said as the king panicked about his ear. John clambered up, went to the kings dresser where his crown sat.

“I wanted you dead. I would kill you myself but I refuse to murder a father in front of his daughter. You are a lucky man, your daughter saved your life, too bad you’ll never see her again.” he picked up the kings crown and tossed it out of the window. “Oops.” he grinned. More of the rebels came running in at this point.

“We have arrested the king! He is to finish that monument as a slave, in place of you.” Sara said, “by my order, take him to the dungeons!” she said. Her father pleaded with her as he was dragged passed, she did not look him in the eye and did not shed a tear, for at least his life was spared. Michael went to his brother, arm over shoulders.

“You saved my life, twice, thanks, but how the hell did you get up here in your state?”

“I just couldn’t let you go in alone, little brother, I had a feeling you might need me, so I grabbed an ale, then headed up.” Michael laughed.

“I’m just glad we’re all safe.” Sara came and wrapped her arm around Michael’s waist, smiling at Lincoln.

“My lady.” Lincoln politely bowed his head.

“No formalities needed, Lincoln, you were a hero of this battle.” they heard a wince and turned to see John fall to the floor. He was gripping one of his wounds. Michael immediately ran to his side.

“Damn, I don’t think I’m going to make it out of this castle, Michael.” he said through gritted teeth as he collapsed flat on the floor.
“We’ll get you a doctor, stay with us!” Michael said.

“No, I can’t, just see that my men are taken care of,” he coughed and blood trickled out of his mouth. He had held out long enough to see the fall of the king but his body was just too wounded to get through the injuries. “I saw the end of King Tancredi, I am dying a happy man.”

“I’m so sorry, John.” Michael said as his eyes became shiny with tears, a man he had fought beside, as an ally, a friend, was lost to this battle.

Word spread that Paul was dead, the king had been arrested, his men surrendered. The castle was filled with cheers, laughter, celebrations. The joy was so great that it could be felt in the air. The heroes that had seized this victory stepped out onto the kings balcony, they could see the battle had spread to the main courtyard and their allies were cheering and then the cheers were directed up at them. Michael, Sara, Lincoln and Whistler smiled, then Whistler was shouting down to his men, waving his sword in the air as celebration, congratulating them for surviving.

The battle had spilled into the kitchen and Katie and Veronica were assisting the rebels, using any utensil they could get their hands on. Katie was just about to take up a cooking pot to crack over one of the guards heads when a servant boy came running in.

“Lord Paul is dead! The king is in the dungeons! We are all free!” he yelled and Katie grinned smugly at the guard as he dropped his weapon. She placed the cooking pot on the side. A guard had pinned Veronica in a corner, he looked at her scared face, trying to decide whether to take her off and rape her or admit defeat. Katie came along, cooking pot back in hand and knocked him out with it. She helped Veronica straighten up, brushed her off and then they ran off into the celebrations. Katie shouting out, cheering with the best of the men, when suddenly, one of Whistler’s men grabbed her, grinned and then planted his lips onto her. Veronica giggled. Katie pulled away, slapped him for being so forward but then resumed kissing him.

On the kings balcony, Lincoln and Whistler’s injured forms were supporting each others weight while they cheered with the rebels in the courtyard below. Michael and Sara gazed into each others eyes, the loud shouting and cheering faded to oblivion, they smiled, tears escaped Sara’s eyes.

“I’m sorry about your father,”
“It was my idea, that bastard deserves it. I just didn’t want to see him die.”

“Understandable.” he said. “But still…”
“It’s ok Michael, the people are free, that’s all I cared about.” he pulled her closer, they smiled bigger than they had in a long time and finally, they finally had a kiss for all to see, one they did not need to fear, a pure, perfect kiss. They did not realise but the cheers grew louder at their embrace, at their kiss.

End Notes:

Merry Christmas everyone! I dont think you will see this over the next few days as you will all be enjoying your Christmas food and drink over the weekend, but at least it will be here for when you retun. Love Celia xXx

Chapter 43 by Celia_Rose
Author's Notes:

here is the final chapter, hope you like it

Sara and Michael were in her quarters, they could still hear the rebels cheering in the distance, their freedom had been a long time coming. Sara wandered over to where her balcony was and she could look out onto the courtyard, the sun was shining now, shining through the open top of her courtyard and straight into her room. She could feel its warmth and closed her eyes to absorb it. Michael stood awkwardly against her bed post, he crossed his arms, then uncrossed them and let them flop by his sides, he looked at Sara, the sun engulfing her, illuminating her radiance, she looked like she was being sent down from the heavens in a ray in sunlight. Her auburn hair looked even more red and she appeared to be in some sort of trance. He boldly stepped over to her and gently swept some of her heir behind her shoulder and kissed her tenderly on the cheek. She opened her eyes and smiled, then turned around to him. She looked at his handsome face, a cut on his cheek, one on his forehead, were the only things that marred it. One day they will be scars, but they will serve as a reminder to her what a hero he was. She took his hand and led him to her tub, they had it filled with hot water and indicated it was for him, he smiled, remembering the last time she let him bathe in her tub. He had stripped naked in front of Katie and Sara had walked in, seeing him naked. Sara remembered she had been so embarrassed and Katie so flustered, they were both fanning themselves at the balcony while they let him bathe. She smiled to herself at the memory. It seemed like so long ago now.

“I’ll clean your wounds,” she said, getting another memory of when they first met, he had been beaten by one of the guards at the monument, whipped badly and she had rescued him, then cleaned his wounds. He had resisted her kindness at first, believing her to be like her father. They went into the bathroom, she sat him on a chair and took a cloth, dipping it into the hot water in the tub. They met eyes, warm blue on hazel gold, she looked away a little shy, but then lifted the cloth to the wound on his cheek. He was boldly watching her, she dabbed at the blood, cleaning it from the cut, he was looking deep into her eyes. She moved to the cut on the side of his forehead, it had cut into his eyebrow. He lifted his hand to her cheek, moving her hand away from his face. She nervously met his eyes.

“Now that your father is not in rule of you and I do not have to appeal to him, how do I go about asking for your hand in marriage?” she smiled brightly, but became flustered.

“I… oh I… don’t know, perhaps just ask me?”

“Sara… my love… will you be my wife?”

“What would that mean for the kingdom?”

“We would rule it together, perhaps with Lincoln, Whistler and some of their most trusted men as advisors.”

“You’ve got this all figured out haven’t you?”

“It was just an idea.” he said, feeling bad for getting ahead of himself, and assuming he would be welcome in the castle as a leader, from his peasant origins. It was not how the ways went. “Or we could appoint someone else and you could come and live with me and Lincoln at our parents, I will need to return to them soon anyway, they will be worried.”

“Michael… I love you and I would be honoured to be your wife and the kingdom would be lucky to have you on the throne.”

“Sara… you are the most wonderful person, trust me when I say we will rule this kingdom together, return it to order, I have no idea what it takes to lead a kingdom, you do, so I am here as your husband.”

“I’ll let you bathe,” she said standing.

“Join me?” he asked.

“I think not, Michael, that would be extremely inappropriate since we are not yet wed, I would like to keep my modesty.” he smiled at her resuming her uptight demeanour as a lady of royalty.

“Then perhaps you can wash my back? I do not wish to be out of your company for a moment.” she softened as he said this, a warm smile crossed her face. He began to strip, she turned around, embarrassed and waited until he was under the water before she returned her eyes to him. She pulled the chair up and reclaimed the cloth.

“You do not really have to wash my back.” he said, “I just didn’t want you to leave.”

“I want to wash your back.” she proceeded to do so, the warm sun spilling through the window. He smiled as she softly soaked his back in water and gently scrubbed around the almost healed wounds from his whipping. His body was strong, she could feel the muscles in his shoulders as she washed them, his perfectly masculine form dripping wet, she made a sharp intake of breath and felt herself become hot and flustered again, but hid it. She boldly discarded the cloth and used her hands, she rubbed his shoulders and leaned closer, her cheek was beside his, she could smell his masculine scent, it made her hotter, but this time she embraced it. She kissed him tenderly on the cheek, he turned his head to meet her lips with his. They hovered over each others lips a moment as they looked into each others eyes.

“I cant wait to marry you, Michael,” she whispered, looking at him, the sunlight covering him splendidly. She loved him, this would be her husband, the man she would stay with for the rest of her days, the thought made her stomach flutter and she smiled at him again.

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