Happy New Years everyone! Here we finally are! The story I've teased you with for months will now begin and with the assurance of Team Prince, I'm certain you'll love it!
So without further ado...
Title: The Death of a Prince
Beta: Alice's White Rabbit
Pre-reader: brierlynn03, AgoodWITCH, LunaEclipse17
Summary: At age 7, Edward Cullen witnesses his father's death. Traumatized and terrified, he blames himself and runs away.
Two minor league criminals stumble upon him when he wanders the streets at night, freezing and starving, and they decide to take him in. Years later, Edward is confronted by his past and must decide if he'll take his rightful place as the head of the Irish mob or remain with those who raised him. Based on the plot for The Lion King, which belongs to Disney.
Disclaimer: All publicly recognizable characters, settings, etc. are the property of their respective owners. The original characters and plot are the property of the author. The author is in no way associated with the owners, creators, or producers of any media franchise. No copyright infringement is intended.
Caius Cullen, the clan chief of the Cullen crime family and younger brother to its boss, sat at his regular table at The Green Leaf restaurant and bitterly puffed on a cigarette. Both patrons and staff who knew him and would otherwise engage with him avoided his table because not only could they see he was in a foul mood, his disposition affected the entire place.
The young, blonde waitress he favored to serve him approached and silently placed a steaming bowl of traditional Irish stew in front of him. On any other day, he would have shamelessly flirted, and she would have playfully rejected his advances, knowing it would lead to a better tip, but now, she slowly backed away without a word, only keeping her eye on him on the off chance he'd request something more.
He aimlessly ran his fork through the dish before stabbing a piece of mutton, raising it to his mouth with little enthusiasm.
"I have to say, Caius, I've rarely held you in particularly high regard, but this is just pitiful." Charlie Swan entered the restaurant and sat down opposite Caius without any fear. He'd dealt with the younger Cullen brother often enough to feel more confident than the others in the restaurant. "Feeling sorry for yourself over a bowl of stew is below even you."
"What do you want?" Caius didn't even look up. Charlie Swan was all bark and no bite and not worth his anger.
"Playing dumb isn't the look for you. You know why I'm here. He's on his way, and he will demand your reason for missing Edward's baptism."
Finally, Caius averted his attention from the stew and gave Charlie an empty look. "Shouldn't you be at home with your own baby and wife? It would be safer for you than to constantly put your nose in my business."
"As your boss's, and brother's, secretary and advisor, I have little say in where I put my nose. It's in the job description. But you should know he's quite angry with you."
"I'd better say my prayers then," Caius said in the same deadpan tone, but then he reached inside his suit jacket and pulled out his Colt. He casually placed it on the table without acknowledging it, but the subtext of the action was clear. "I suggest you leave and let me eat my lunch in peace."
Charlie eyed the gun. He didn't want to believe Caius was impulsive enough to shoot him in a restaurant filled with people and with the boss on his way, but the younger Cullen brother was unpredictable, and it made him dangerous. However, Charlie masked his worry. "I can't do that until the boss tells me to be somewhere else."
A sinister smile was the first sign of life in Caius' eyes. "I was hoping you would say that." He picked up the gun and aimed it at Charlie. The sound of the hammer being cocked caused the other patrons to throw glances in their direction. "Gives me an excellent excuse to put you out of your misery."
At the sound of his older brother's voice, Caius rolled his eyes exasperatedly. "Great," he said under his breath.
"Put that away immediately," Carlisle Cullen, the boss and head of the Irish mob in Boston, said, his voice filled with authority.
"Perfect timing, boss," Charlie said and cleared his throat to disguise the slight tremor in his tone. He stood up from his seat and placed himself next to Carlisle.
The gun was holstered with great reluctance, and Caius glued on a fake smile filled with contempt. "Carl, my dear brother, it's so rare to see you mix with us gutter rats," he said with false enthusiasm. "What can I do for you?"
Having dealt with Caius their entire lives, Carlisle saw right through the façade. His younger brother had always been jealous of him, but he had remained manageable as long as he held some authority within the family, hence why Carlisle made him his second in command when he stepped into power upon their father's demise.
Up until he and Esme announced her pregnancy, it had satisfied him, but Carlisle knew Caius had held on to the hope of one day leading the family himself. Unfortunately, Edward's birth had thwarted those goals.
Carlisle stubbornly held on to the civility established between them despite Caius' behavior and continuously pushed all warning signs away. "Esme and I missed you at the baptism today," he said in a calm and collected manner.
"Yes, regrettably, something came up that I couldn't reschedule," Caius said, not even attempting to hide the lie. "It was careless of me to not tell you."
"As my brother, you should have been there. Your absence made us look divided when you should have been next to me." Anger simmered right under the surface, but Carlisle kept it under tight wraps. He hated when his brother got a rise out of him.
"I was next to you," Caius said with a tight jaw. His bitterness was seeping through the slipping mask. "Until you and your wife decided to have that little—"
"Watch your tongue before I cut it out." Carlisle could take Caius' antics, but he'd never tolerate him bad-mouthing his family. "That's my son and the future head of this family you're speaking of."
"Yes. Your heir and the prince of the mob. I should practice my curtsying." Caius stood up and tossed a few bills on the table next to the now-cold bowl of stew. The Cullens never had to pay at The Green Leaf, but leaving a tip was only good manners. He turned to leave the restaurant, but upon passing Carlisle, the older brother grabbed his arm and stopped him.
"You're not leaving until I say so, Caius!"
"Is that an order"—he glared at Carlisle and curled his lip in disgust—"boss?"
"Don't test me."
"I'm not. Do with that as you please." Caius shrugged off Carlisle's grip and left the restaurant without another word.
Carlisle's angry energy drained out of him, and he sat down in the seat his brother had occupied while Charlie resumed his own. The waitress came forward and removed the dish.
"Mr. Cullen. Mr. Swan. Can I get you anything?" she asked, as familiar with them as she was with Caius.
"Two coffees is enough for now, Jane," Charlie said.
"Right away, sir." She left again, and Charlie gave Carlisle a sympathetic grimace.
"He always makes it harder than it has to be, doesn't he?" He didn't have to clarify that he was talking about Caius.
"I don't know what I'm supposed to do with him. It's impossible to keep him satisfied."
"You know what the generals are saying about him. If he keeps this up, he might not give you a choice, and they're ready to … well—" He ran his index finger across his throat in a slitting motion.
Carlisle sighed. "How I wish you were joking."
I hope you had the new years eve you wanted! I did! Spent it with friends and having the best time!
So what are your thoughts? Are you as excited as I am? Because I'm pretty fucking excited for this!
I haven't decided how often I'll post a chapter yet, but the story is fully written and complete so I'll see you pretty damn soon, I'm sure.