Rumpelstiltskin with a brand new twist!
Our tale begins with a couple on their wedding night. It was a good night as party’s go, many guests had the time of their lives. It wasn’t until the end of the night that the newlyweds managed a moment of each other’s company, and this was only because the party conspired to carry them off to the honeymoon suite. Laughing and whooping in merriment a crowd of revelers grabbed flowered garlands and began to twine the couple together, wrapped up they were then walked, dragged, carried to the double set of doors and their new suites just beyond.
As Elliot leaned in to give his friend some ‘advice’, Bianca was able to smell the mead on his breath.
“It would be better had I the foresight to get just as drunk” she thought. When Elliot pulled back she snuck a glance at Aaron. He was blushing brightly at the friendly ‘advice’ and suddenly Bianca felt a bit better. “Maybe this won’t be so bad. He has been a gentleman all night. And even though he is also just as drunk as Elliot he hasn’t mishandled me in any way”.
Aaron gave Elliot a shove, sending him back into the crowd, knocking everyone back a step or two.
“Alright everyone, it’s true that I am a man among men, But seeing as how I have drunk enough to drown a horse, even I could not please you all” Looking down at Bianca he then yelled “Off with you now, I am taking my wife to bed” Spreading his arms, he pushed open the doors to the sound of cheering and good-natured cat calls. The strings of flowers that had held them together fell to the floor and Aaron took her hand leading her through the doors and into marriage.
Looking around Bianca took in the plush décor of the room. It was not a huge room, but it was big enough and had its own fireplace. She took in at a glance the armoire that looked as though it could hold ten people, and still have room to spare. The bed, that was to be hers and Aarons for the rest of their lives. Could she do this? She didn’t know Aaron, had only met him a few times at social gatherings and lunches. Only once had they ever been alone before today and that was only a week ago during the hunt. That had been a chance meeting though, not knowing the hunt was planned. She had slipped away from her parents for some time alone with her book. The only place that afforded any privacy was the woods just on the other side of the waist high wall that neatly kept the castle contained within.
She had settled her cloak upon the ground and sat down, hunching a bit so that if anyone were to glance out a window she would not be spotted right away. The sun was warm on her skin and caused her hair to sparkle slightly. She was reading a romantic passage when she heard the baying of hounds and the pounding of hooves a ways off. Thinking she was still in a good enough spot to stay hunkered down, she stay put. She did not notice the lone rider making his way towards her, so deep was her nose in the book.
‘Aaron gazed upon her, as she reveled in private thoughts and dreams. ‘Well, there she is, this could be a perfect time to tell her. Nobody else is around and she can still back out if she were to choose to do so. If I gave her the reason for why she should say no’. He thought to himself. ‘Then what’, he wondered. What could we possibly tell her parents or his, for that matter, why she suddenly did not wish to marry him? No. Better to simply go through with it then, after a few weeks, tell her. ‘And hope she doesn’t think me too vile to be around’.
With these thoughts chasing themselves around his head he had not noticed how close to her he had gotten until he almost stepped on her feet.
“I know that decorum dictates we have a chaperone, but I do not think there should be anyone who could see us at the moment.” He said aloud, breaking her reverie.
Bianca nearly jumped out of her skin at the sound of his voice. Looking up in surprise she was about to utter a scathing remark just as the man dropped to his haunches beside her and she was able to see it was Aaron. “My Lord, if it please you, I would ask that you bend a little lower? I am at the moment hiding from any duty or responsibility my mother may find for me.”
“Oh if that is the case, then yes, I think I can do that. Although if anyone were to look out the window, they will see poor Chestnut here looking lonely and rather out of place as he is saddled and should be in the hunt” Chestnut took that moment to paw at the ground and snuffle about in Aarons hair looking for an apple or bit of grain. Smiling Bianca leant back against the wall and started to ask why he was there and not in the hunt, when at the same moment, Aaron started to ask her why she was out hiding from her mother.
The pair laughed together, drawing it out a little too long due to nerves and on Bianca’s part, shyness.
‘Hold it together Bianca’ she chided herself. ‘He is just a man, and as such, just like any other man.’ But unlike any other man, he was sitting closer than proper manners allowed. She could almost feel the heat coming off of him. Certainly she could smell the musky scent he gave off. It was warm and inviting, smelling of green woods, his horse and lightly of sweat. A smell, that reminded her of home and warm fires on chilly spring nights. “Are you to hiding from someone or something”? she inquired.
Glancing about Aaron leaned in close, brought his hand up to his face and stage-whispered “Only from my father, who is to intent on giving me ‘manly’ advice about the bedr…No, not anyone really. I was in the hunt and grew bored.” Leaning back quickly he sucked in some air and puffed out his chest. Blowing out the air Aaron said “Why don’t I walk you back to the castle, I can show you around the gardens and we can see how long it takes for someone to discover us together” “That sounds like a fine plan, let me gather my book and cloak.” Picking her book off the ground Bianca got to her feet and was about to grab her cloak when Aaron bent over and scooped it up, his hand brushing the length of her arm as he did so.
Fire and a tingling sensation spread outwards where his skin touched hers.
Standing up again Bianca smoothed out her skirts with clammy hands. “You know Aaron” She began but was interrupted by a shrill voice coming from the direction of the castle.
“Bianca Marionette! I have never seen the like, cavorting with your betrothed without a chaperone”! The shrill voice had increased in pitch and volume the closer its bearer moved towards them. Hands on her ample hips Bianca’s mother looked as though she were to start in on her daughter again, and caught herself. Using her right hand to brush some errant strands of hair from her face, she gathered her composer and turned to Aaron. “This is most unusual. I am not normally thrown into a situation like this and was momentarily caught off guard. I do assure you however, that this situation shall not happen again until the day you two are wed.” Somehow, with a directed glare towards Aaron and a tilt of her chin, she made him aware where she thought the blame was to lay. “Come Bianca, we must ready the hall and go over the menu”.
“Good day to you Lady Catherine” Aaron said. Turning towards Bianca he continued “And until our nuptial day, I bid you warm days and restful nights”. Bianca was stunned into motionlessness. Her mother’s outburst , which was completely out of character had rattled her more then she cared to admit. Vaguely she was aware of Aaron saying goodbye and was able to muster her own reply “Good day to you as well Aaron, until our wedding day, happy hunting”.