I promise you I will write about things that don't relate to the masked ball rape scene. In fact, it doesn't happen at all in my multichapter fic. Just, I think it's really important. In terms of the issues it raises and the way it shapes the plot. Anyway, this is inspired by BeBopALula's Beadle fics, which is the version of the character I subscribe to.

Warning: this is pretty damn disgusting. Also there is rape. And one-sided slash. Honestly it's the Sweeney Todd fandom, not effing Princess Tutu, although lord knows there's creepy stuff in Princess Tutu and I've written creepier. Anyway.


Conquerors

It is a boring party. I don't know why I spent all the time dressing up only to find these idiots twisting masks in their hands and shuffling around, pretending to be dancing. My wife's off somewhere, and god help me if I care. All she gives me these days is metered disapproval. If I were to be honest with myself, neither of us ever held interest in the other.

The orchestra, which I'm certain is as drunk as any of us by now, strikes up a sensual waltz. Couples trip all over each other. I focus on the way the light hits a chandelier.

Then I see it.

Him.

The one man without a mask. His arms are around a redheaded beauty, and he spins her around and around, one hand grasping her hip and the other holding her fox mask to her face. He is dressed in fine but wrinkled clothes, and he is handsome beyond anything else.

The orchestra winds down, and still he steps in and out, pulling her along. She collapses against him, and the man smirks.

I feel something claw at me that has not visited in a long time. I imagine what his gray and black hair would feel like to the touch, the sounds he'd make if I pulled on it. I'd reach up, grab his cravat and tug until he choked, until that beautiful skin was tinged in blue and black. It would complement his eyes.

He grabs his partner by the waist, waltzes her away from the crowd. She struggles against him. Her deep blue dress is pretty with the red scratches he's leaving on her arms and neck. Her mask falls. Beneath it she is beautiful and rabbit-like. Big eyes, bigger fears.

I slip into the crowd again, follow them. Every step I take nearer to him makes the colors more alive. With my eyes opened, I see the people are vivid wrong. Laughter swells and goes in waves.

He leads her to another room, and I follow. I am powerless by now.

Once he has her alone he wastes no time in raising her dress, and as she squeals and screams beneath him I watch, taking in the drunken half-grimace from his radiant mouth, the wiry strength of the muscles on his back. I was wrong, before. This is no man to break with words and thrashings. This is a conqueror.

Conquerors require more.

He gasps and moans and calls her things, and in the moment he slams her head into the back of the chair I know he is the most lovely man the world ever created and chipped away at and damn it, it makes him all the lovelier. I want to write sonnets to the way he chokes on his own spit, the slight crookedness of his left leg. I would do anything for him.

I leave before he can see me. Duty calls, the hours have drawn on, and I must collect my wife to leave.

She takes my arm when I find her. She isn't drunk, as I hoped. We take our carriage back, and she says it was a horrid party, they should be ashamed of themselves, and the last thing she wants to do is go back.

We'll be back.

It is a wonderful party and that night when we say our prayers before retiring I silently pray for him, any part of him I can glean or he can give me. I pray for the strength to try to take it all.