"You can't just leave me locked in here! Francis!" The heavy metal door closes in front of my face, the latches fall into place with a groan that sounds like finality. "Francis! FRANCIS!" I scream after him until I see him turn the corner, disappearing out of sight. "Francis, damn it!" I slap my hand against the door and it barely rattles.
I turn around, my breathing coming out ragged. I never thought he would actually go through with this. Doesn't he see that my country needs me? That he's locked me behind bars like an animal while my people, while my mother, struggle? I turn around once more to try again.
"I am the Queen of Scotland, I demand to be let out of this cell!" I direct to the guards stationed outside, but they don't seem to hear me at all. "I am the future Queen of France! I am your future Queen, do you understand?" Their stoic demeanor doesn't change, as if my words are nothing but air, my voice no more than the thunder outside.
"I will have your heads when I am crowned!" I exclaim one last time, banging my hand against the door so hard it throbs, but I can barely feel the pain Their loyalty lies with Francis, it's useless.
I feel like a caged bird as I pace the walls of the cell. I refuse to sit on the dusty floor of the tower, as I feel it would be like accepting defeat. Minutes pass by torturously, the storm outside raging with thunder that shakes the castle. The atmosphere seems to match my emotions perfectly.
But as the time goes on, I can't hold on to the feeling. I can't help it when my heart beats slower, as I find nothing else to do but lean back against the walls, when pacing the cell in my high-heeled court shoes becomes too tiring. My breathing calms, and stupidly all I want to do is weep with frustration; at Francis, at not being on a boat to my homeland at the moment, at the fact that I can't hate him for this.
When I hear the sound of boots approaching the cell, though, and at the sight of him outside the door, my anger returns stronger than before. My blood boils.
"Let me out of here." I tell him firmly, as he steps inside and then closes the door behind himself.
"Not until I'm sure you can't get on your horse and catch up to your brother." He says calmly, and I just stare at him, disbelieving. How dare he? "I brought you something…in case it gets cold." He nods to the thick fur cape in his hand. He extends it to me, but I grab it and just throw it to the side of the cell, where it falls with a muffled thud. I can't give a damn about how I act anymore. I'm furious. It's ridiculous that he'd bring me anything to make my stay more comfortable when he's the reason I'm trapped here in the first place.
"Mary, I didn't come back to fight with you." He tells me, ignoring my actions as if he expected them, and perhaps he did. He probably knows me better than anyone, which makes this stunt of his sting even more. He understands how much my country means to me, or I thought he did.
"Well I don't know how you hoped to be received? Do you think I'd thank you?" His words and calm demeanor do nothing but fuel the anger in me. My tone of voice growing louder is even more prominent against his composure.
"I'm sorry that it came to this." He tells me. "Truly. But you'll see it later; I'm doing this to protect you."
"Locking me up? Making me a prisoner in my own home?" I ask him mockingly. "Protection! Is that what this really is about? Or are you trying to get back at me for something I've done? For my threats to France? Or what I did to you months ago?" I throw every single word I can think of at him, far too overwhelmed to be thinking clearly.
"You could've died on that journey, and then what would have been of Scotland? Of me? I'm trying, to keep my wife safe." He tells me slowly, almost through his teeth and I know I've hurt him, but in the heat of the moment I can't seem to care.
"Then that's your problem! I'm not just your wife. I'm not some nobody whos only concern in life is to make her husband happy. I am Queen! I have a responsibility to my country. Your parents still rule this one! You are but a prince, I don't expect you to understand." I know it's low to pull my rank on him, and I've never done it before, but I am seeing red. And it tints my words as I feel cornered, trapped, faced with a truth in his words that I don't want to acknowledge in my anger and frustration. He runs his hand through his hair, rubbing his forehead like he does when he doesn't feel well. I can see that I've hit a nerve when his demeanor changes, his collected front crumbling before my eyes.
"Mary, for God's sake! Stop this. I had proof. You would have died had I not found out about James' footman. Do you understand? How could I let you get on that boat? How can you not see that you need to stay here, at least for the time being? That I'm doing this to protect you?" He walks closer to me, his eyes earnest, emotion coloring his voice. I take a step back. "I'd rather you hate me if that means you're still alive to do so."
My feelings run wild inside of me, a white hot anger that I'm not used to and so many more things, and with him so close, the smell of him overwhelming me and his blue eyes hard but begging me to understand, even the thunder breaking the sky outside…I do the only thing I can think of. Anger and desire both pulsating inside me, I pull him down for a kiss.
I know it catches him off guard as he doesn't return it right away, but I tangle my hands in his hair, pulling, roughly, and bringing him impossibly closer to me. If he was confused before, it's over now as he walks me back, pressing me hard against the stone wall, his tongue pushing my lips apart. His mouth takes possession over mine, he bites my lower lip, and I scratch at the nape of his neck in return, making him hiss. It feels like fighting more than kissing, as we seem to battle for dominance, and I like it, I wouldn't have it any other way.
We claw at each other with an animalistic need, in a hurry to get rid of our clothes and I moan from the back of my throat, my mouth falling open as he sucks at my neck, hard. I push of his jacket, then his shirt, my hands finally finding bare skin and running over his back, my fingernails raking down once he reaches the spot behind my ear, his tongue hot against my skin.
Neither of us says a word, as if speaking would break the spell we find ourselves inside of, and it would. I don't know what this is, but I can't think about it as I feel his fingers untying my skirts, his hand grabbing my ass and pulling me against him once the clothes fall to the ground.
It's pure desire that drives me as I hurriedly take care of his pants, and before I know it we're both naked and his fingers dig into my hips as he presses me against the wall. It would be painful if I wasn't so distracted by the way he claims my mouth again. I give him back in kind, not restraining myself in the least. I taste blood suddenly and I don't know if he's bit me too hard for once or if it's me who has done it. And I don't care.
He pushes me down on the floor, and we fall on a tangle of limbs on the lush cape he brought me, it's probably not thick enough for me not to feel the cold stone floor hard on my back. But I barely can sense anything else but him, his taste inside my mouth, his fingers unforgiving on my body for the first time, unrestrained. He kisses me with a passion that feels like liquid fire, and his touches ignite everywhere they land.
I feel his fingers probing at my entrance, and when he feels just how wet I am for him he knees my legs apart to take me but this isn't how I want it. I push at his shoulder, and he stops immediately, pulling away from me but before any of us can regain our clear heads I use the momentum to push him again, rolling us over until he's on his back.
He notices my intent then and I see lust flare even more intense in his eyes. I hold on to his chest for balance as I sink down on him torturously slow. I see him close his eyes, his fingers digging into my thighs but he doesn't pull me down, letting me take my pleasure from him. Control our movements. Soon enough I find a rhythm, coming down on him again and again in a way that makes me moan far too loudly, but I can't care about the guards outside. Francis grabs onto my hip, his other hand pinching my breast almost too roughly, pulling a groan from my mouth.
My breath comes faster after that, and I can see him straining toward his release as well. One of his hands sneaks between our bodies, right above where we are joined, and he touches me in tandem with his thrusts, in a way that has me clenching around him in seconds, and he follows me over the edge.
I sink my nails into his shoulders as my climax washes over me, leaving me breathless and spent, but also draining the fight out of me. I look at him, exhausted beneath me, sweat covers our skin and I can smell the scent of our sex in the air, I don't dare look to the door and find if we have an audience of guards. I don't know what came over me. I pull away from him, as his fingers come up to push my hair behind my ear gently but I look the other away, and climb off him almost in a daze.
"Mary?" He touches my shoulder as I face the other way, but when I pointedly ignore him he turns around to get dressed. I look over my shoulder and catch sight of the angry red marks across his back, marks that I made myself, as I can also see the perfect half moons on his shoulders. I try to ignore his wince as he pulls his shirt on. The brief satisfaction I felt in the moment is now gone, as my anger has simmered down to something less violent. I search for my dress, opting to wear it without a corset as I will not ask for his help to tie it. And as I pull it over my head, I feel the stiffness in my body, the knowledge that I will be sore in the morning.
I'm still angry, I still recent him for locking me in here, but I burned all the hot rage that consumed me… fucking him, I think almost with distaste, but there is really no other word for what we just did. And with a clear head is easier to see his reasoning. I understand that he was afraid for me, much like I was for him months ago. But he couldn't trust me. And this decision of his may cost my country, so I can't find it in me to forgive him, and I don't know what this is. This feeling is new to me, and I hate it so.
"Mary…" He says with uncertainty, but I look at him sharply before he can ask any questions I don't know the answer to myself. He doesn't push.
"I'll stay with you until I get word your brother has sailed." He tells me instead, but I'm busy studying the floor. He sits down, settling himself in front of me on the other side of the cell.
"I love you." He says.
I look away.