Title: Dilemma
Author: Allronix
Team: Tin Men
Word Count: 393
Characters: Ambrose, possessed!Azkedellia, mention of the Queen (Galinda)
Rating: PG
Disclaimer: The original Oz was created by Mister L. F. Baum. Misters Long-Mitchell & Van Sickle transformed it into the Outer Zone. None of the above is mine.
Challenge: 16 (hot)


It had been...well, time didn't matter much anyway. Not in this foul pit of a dungeon. Azkedellia's guards had probably broken his left arm, and he could guess that two or three ribs were cracked. Nothing fatal, but certainly painful.

Ambrose didn't want to think of what became of Galinda. Knowing the black heart that now beat in Azkedellia's chest, she was likely dead. Of course, that would mean...he laughed bitterly. With Azkedellia disowned, and Galinda dead, it meant he was the rightful King of Oz. With a glance at the straw that served as his bed, he was both glad his mentor hadn't lived to see this day and wondering what the old Scarecrow would do in this situation – probably unstuff himself enough to get through the bars and sneak out disguised as laundry.

He was calculating means of escape and the odds of them working when Azkedellia marched up to his cell, with a smile that would look better on a snake.

"Ready to give me what I want?"

"Oh, no," he said, tapping the side of his head. "Those plans are staying right here."

She folded her arms. "I need those plans, Ambrose. I also know that no matter what persuasion I use, you aren't going to serve me. Not to mention your alleged claim to the throne. You're just too dangerous to keep alive."

He smiled. "Well, if I'm dead, you won't get what you want, either." Knowing his end was nigh made him a little bold. He silently challenged the haughty brat that had Galinda's beauty, but none of his beloved monarch's other fine qualities. "Kill me, and you not only lose the Sun Seeder, you create a martyr. Now, seeing as you can't keep me alive, and you can't have me dead...what will you do, Azka-D?"

As Azkedellia pondered this dilemma, she paced outside his cell, muttering to herself like a head-case. She looked at him once, and he could have sworn she was terrified. In the next instant, her entire countenance changed, becoming older, harsher.

"I have ways to get what I want, Ambrose."

Mercy of Lurline, even the voice...

As if a circuit suddenly went hot, Ambrose realized the truth. "You aren't the Princess at -"

Cutting him off, she – whoever, whatever she was – ordered the guards. "Take him to surgery."