Request for GingerAlchemist
Arthur sighed and slumped his chin against the heel of his hand. A small farmer and his family had waited in a line for most of the day and the previous night, just to ask the king if he could possibly lower his taxes. Like that could ever happen.
However, the current king was fair and just, so he didn't send the man off with guards at his heels. Instead, the bearded man leaned forward in his chair, danger twinkling in his eyes. "I will raise and lower the taxes as I feel fit. I would suggest now that you take your loved ones and leave. Thank you."
Still shaking, the farmer sadly turned from the king and made his way back to his family, tired head lowered and once strong shoulders hunched under the power of his king. Just as the meager looking family had left through the heavy wooden doors, one of them came running back.
The prince's head perked up as he recognized the girl as the eldest of the children. Her (e/c) eyes were sad, but not angry like the majority of those who had run back into the room. The guards posted at the doors lunged for her, but she nimbly dodged them and ran up to the king's throne.
Disregarding that what she was doing could get her beheaded, she knelt with her (h/c) head nearly touching her king's feet and pressed a kiss to his boot. Without saying a word, she left a parcel at his feet and got up, running back to her unsuspecting family.
Interest twinkling in his emerald eyes, Arthur pushed himself off of the side of the throne where his father stood and knelt to pick up the peculiar package. The king sat dazed in his seat.
A note scribbled on old paper lay on top of of thin piece of tissue that protected whatever the actual gift was from the ink of the letter.
Arthur could hardly make out the crude letters and words, but quickly deciphered the letter before lifting the tissue.
'My King, my Queen, and my Prince,
Please take care in the coming days, I feel a storm coming fast.'
Under the final layer of wrapping, a heavy quilt was folded with care. Dropping the trash, Arthur kept the note pressed in the palm of his hand as he draped open the quilt, taking in the care and craftsmanship of the gift.
"Silly girl," he muttered under his breath to his father, "She could've sold this in the market for a healthy sum."
Something shone in the old king's eyes. "But she didn't. And we'll have to thank her for it."
You woke up to the sound of knocking on your front door. Your father was out in the fields behind your house with your brothers and your mother had taken your youngest sister with her to the market.
Carefully, you got out of bed without waking your sisters and ran over to the door. Pulling it open, you pushed a loose strand of hair behind your ear and informed the visitors of your father's absence.
"If you'd like, I can make tea and you can wa-"
"That won't be necessary."
Looking up, you were shocked to see the prince standing at your door, a rather bored look on his face. Blushing furiously, you crouched down in a low curtsy before your prince. "Excuse me, my prince, I did not know you'd be visiting us. My father is out in the fields, but-"
He interrupted you again, sighing heavily as he spoke, "Didn't I tell you that I didn't come for your father?"
You licked your dry lips, "Then my mother. She-"
"No," the prince said, voice rising dangerously. You cringed away from him, causing a bitter chuckle to escape his lips as he leaned closer. "Did you really think that my father would send me here for a poor farmer or his wife? I'm here for something much more," he paused, emerald eyes searching your own, "precious."
Startled by the prince's words, you fell backwards. He stepped out of the doorway, looking at one of the many servants brought with him for the journey. "Saddle a horse for her."
Many thoughts ran through your head, none of them, however, being that 'her' meant you.
"Ah, wait! Your Highness!"
The tall man paused, one boot already in the stirrup of his own horse, and looked back at you with dull, green eyes. "Yes?"
Blushing, you looked down at the dirt dulling the warm color of your shoes. "I- uh. I can't-" you stuttered, pushing at the ground with your toes, "I can't-"
"Ride?" you heard him say, his voice closer than it had previously been. He was back at your doorstep, blonde head ducked slightly to see your face under your (h/c) locks of hair. You pursed your lips and the prince sighed.
He looked towards the sky as he pondered your dilemma. "I can just-"
But the prince interrupted you again. "Come with me."
Swiftly, he took your hand in his and lead to you to the chestnut steed that he had previously been seated on. Dropping your hand, the prince wrapped his hands around your waist, lifting your onto the back of the horse just above the saddle.
You panicked slightly and wrapped your arms tightly around the horse's neck as the prince heaved himself into the saddle. Warm breath tickled your neck and gentle arms stretched over yours, carefully prying your hands off of the stallion.
Another puff of air hit your ear as the prince sighed. "Just relax," he muttered, resting your hands under his on the reins.
Obviously, you couldn't. "I- I'm sorry your Highness, but it's not proper for-"
Stiffening, you kept your eyes straight ahead, waiting for further explanation.
Which was provided. "Call me Arthur. You will be staying at the palace now, might as well feel comfortable around me."
You rolled the name around in you head for a moment. "Arthur," you repeated, slouching up against your prince and choosing to block all thoughts but those of the prince's name from your head for the time.