|L'histoire française: Conquer
Author: coeurgryffondor PM
There's something beautiful and frustrating and undeniable about her but in the end, she was only ever a pawn to be conquered. / Series: L'histoire française, 20 historical Francis Bonnefoy drabbles. France, Scotland, Jeanne d'Arc.Rated: Fiction K+ - English - Angst/Drama - France & Jeanne D'Arc - Words: 644 - Reviews: 3 - Favs: 4 - Follows: 1 - Published: 04-05-12 - Status: Complete - id: 7991870
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Series: « L'histoire française », 20 historical Francis Bonnefoy drabbles. Written for lj/hetachallenge. Find my table at lj/coeurgryffondor.
"That's one hell of a woman," Seumas murmurs beside him. They lounge in chairs off to one side, watching the young maiden speak strongly with men who normally would have given such a girl little thought. But today was different.
She was different.
"Tell me about it," Francis murmurs dreamily, watching the woman called Jeanne explain. That makes Seumas laugh.
"Promised to give herself to God, that one did," Seumas informs Francis as he enters the tent, throwing down his sword and throwing himself on top of the French nation laying in bed. Francis only moans, shifting to try and get the heavy Scotsman off him. "You're upset about that aren't you? Damn it all, Frang's got it bad for the warrior woman." The Scotsman laughs.
"Stop talking," the Frenchman says half-heartily, burying his face in his pillow. She wasn't even extraordinarily pretty, or witty, or charming. But she was strong and respectable and loyal. Francis had made a passing comment to her the first time they met, a harmless flirtation; she had admonished him for it. She was fighting for his sake, she'd said, and he could take that a little more seriously.
She was a woman after his own heart, just never quite his to have.
Francis screams in angst and anger into the pillow as Seumas presses his head down, laughing at the other's pitiful heartbreak.
The French army, with relief from Scottish troops, takes back Orléans several days after Jeanne arrived. Francis can hardly believe his eyes.
In the distance he can see Arthur watching them, Francis and Seumas. This close to the enemy's lines he can make out just the expression on Arthur's face: anger mixed with confusion and disbelief. It was an act of God that had brought about the French nation's salvation, and Arthur was furious about that.
Seumas happily calls for alcohol, to drink to his brother's defeat.
And Francis lets his eyes drift to the young woman in question who had stolen his heart with her purity and devotion to him and to God.
They watch the English march away in defeat. Someone approaches from behind, a twig snapping under foot. "What do you want James?" Francis moans.
The person stops. "I had thought you would be happier," a female's voice says. Spinning in spot Francis takes in Jeanne. She looks beautiful, humble, not afraid of him but not defiant either. Just… perfect. "We did win."
Francis drops his eyes. "I do not think I am worthy of your kindness." Jeanne laughs lightly, coming to stand beside him and watching the English retreat as well. "I have done nothing to deserve it and everything to be unworthy of it."
"Whether or not you are worthy is not my place to decide. You are my country and a good man," she states, looking him in the eyes. Francis meets her gaze because something in it feels wonderful but something in him says he will not have as much time with her as he'd like. "And I love you, just as I love God."
Seumas had been with him when she defeated the English; he's with him now when they watch the English kill her. She is as brave as ever as she dies, and he's just as powerless to save her, transfixed by her perfection and his love and fate.
It was all just another part of the game of conquest, he tries to tell himself. She was a pawn, never the queen to his king, the willing pawn and Seumas's arm around his shoulders is the only thing that keeps Francis going as he watches.