Title: thy eternal summer shall not fade
Rating: no more than G, probably
wordcount: a little over 1,000
A/N: Kink meme, original request being: FE9/10; Bastian/Lucia; formal, traditional courtship (bonus points if Lucia finds the whole thing rather silly)
This was such an excuse for me to use Shakespearean sonnets. The title (and quotation) come from sonnet XVIII. (A) daily rose means thy smile I aspire to
I attempted to get Bastian's voice right, not sure if I actually succeeded, but I tried. He's not particularly easy to write, you see. The thicker prose style is also to mesh with his narrative.
At precisely the time when the golden disk of the sun was at its peak, the roses arrived. He had them imported from Begnion, the finest roses to be found in all of Tellius. They were plump, and colored deep crimson, a shade deeper than any mere blood-red The fragrance of these roses was such that it seemed a fitting, even fortuitous gift from heaven. He of course, being a noble knew the floral language intimately, but had double-checked through the libraries. He would lay them, thornless lest she prick her finger on the stem (though she had pinpricked his heart many times with that sharp, errant and yet beautiful tongue. He wished her not to feel the same)
He carried them in bundles and swept through the room until he came to this, special on, blessed as it was with her presence. His lady reclined on a chase, though her hair had been shorn when she was last captured, she was just as lovely, if not more so with cut locks. He was convinced that she could pull off any style, whatever dress she wore turned becoming when it graced her slender body. He felt a little upsurge of pleasure when he saw her wearing the dress he had ordered made for her, it was a dress made of the purest snowy white with gilded thread and a low cut front that tastefully showed off her beauty without ever defiling it with tawdriness. At her neck was the sapphires he'd paid half a fortune for, set in te finest gold. He would've paid far more, half his kingdom,all– just for that one touch of fire, one spark of that smile, of Spring, of summer's heat, it's passion most devoured–. She was a most loved muse and often he had to stop whatever mundane task he was doing to jot down the poetry she had inspired thus. She had taken to sighing and withstanding it, but he still remembered just how sharp those doe-hooves could be.
He laid the roses out before her, one by one and she took one in her hand and breathed in the scent before lying it beside her.
"This really isn't necessary," she said.
He took that elegant, white-marble into his own and kissed the back with such tender devotion as to melt even the coldest of the frosty ice queens.
"My dear lady if it would take a thousand summer's warmth in just one kiss, if it would take ev'ry jewel in the land to lay at your feet and ev'ry rose to cover where you rest your head then let it be done now or let my life be forfeit."
"Now that's a bit dramatic, even silly, Lord Bastian."
"I would gladly play your fool, your idle plaything to take as you wish if only for a token, a kiss, a touch– this body is yours, your humble servant to do with as you please."
"I didn't take you to be a masochist," she replied. "I suppose I'll have to store away such knowledge, Lord Bastian." Her smile was not innocent, he had known her the first time and every time since to be no blushing maiden. She was one to set even the most cynical alight, though he had no intentions of ever sharing her. The cynics would have to remain thus as he tasted a bit more of paradise.
"Masochism? What be it but love? Only to you dear lady do I crave such sweet pain. You are more intricate, so much as to be sublime. Nay, heaven's hand itself shows through you and fortune beams when you so much as laugh. It would be a most well-wished fate for your hand, that bridal kiss until death spirits us away."
She half smiled, "But you've already won. I've accepted."
"And ev'ry day I shall thank the morning light for allowing your face to shine upon me. Ev'ry day I shall win over that gaze to me again and prove myself worthy of one such as yourself! But first, allow a poem–"
"You know what I think about poetry," she said.
Her reservations aside, he took it as a chance to begin. Count Fayre did not need to resort to reading poetry from books or prepared scripts, no he memorized whole books of poetry to be recited back to the court or his lady alike.
She leaned back, seeming half amused by this. She would never be tamed, even in the stony halls of his own manse there would always be something for him to still win over, a part of her to woo. She was not entirely his and perhaps never would be. Mayhaps this was the mystique of her, the eternal water that he sought to capture but always slipped through his fingers only making his desire increase.
The spark of a muse that playfully was his and not his, and thus he became a thousand myths and legends and lovers. He was Pygmalion to Galatea, Hephaestus to Aphrodite, Tristan to Isolde.
And yet Count Fayre was not accustomed to losing. He was a sly, cunning man who was as wise as he was guileful. He could be ruthless but had long ago chosen a more nobler path. He would not resort to trickery for trickery's sake, nothing beside the duty of his country and simple humor – he would embrace no vileness, no greedy, hapless way would he walk. Through this he was determined, more determined than he had ever been. His goal of winning her should be achieved, even if it took until his death bed to complete such a task.
He cleared his throat and started in his best dramatic voice. "Shall I compare thee to a summer's day? Thou art more lovely and more temperate –"
And she smiled.