parsley, sage, rosemary, and thyme
by crystallicrain
in collaboration with cacell

Love imposes impossible tasks-
Parsley, sage, rosemary, and thyme-
Although not more than any heart asks,
And I must know he's a true love of mine..
- "Scarborough Fayre", the Mediaeval Baebes

Notes: Oh hey, it's a new novel-length piece. (: This story is going to be based off of the amazing works by (and in collaboration with) cacell. Her works are amazing, and she's decided to draw an accompanying piece for every chapter I write (which is with her help). She's amazing, and you should give her love and cookies. :D

Chapter art links found in profile.

The young boy awoke to a soft touch on his shoulder. His eyes fluttered open, and they settled on a pair of blue eyes identical to his own.

"Kurt, darling," said the woman's soft voice, "get out of bed."

"Did I oversleep?" asked the small boy groggily, reaching his hands up to rub at his eyes.

His mother smiled down at him, brushing his hair out of his eyes with a gentle touch. "No," she told him quietly. "I'm going to show you something."

Within moments the boy was up and dressed, holding onto his mother's arm as she led him to the castle grounds. He found himself desperately holding back a yawn, realising just how early it was; the grass was still wet with dew, the sky still painted with a few remaining pink and orange hues.

Kurt was suddenly filled with excitement as he realised the path he and his mother were taking led straight to the horse barn. Immediately he had an inkling of what it was that his mother was so eager to show him—the timing was, after all, just about right...

Elizabeth's hand slipped into her son's, grasping the tiny fingers tightly in her own and leading the way into the stable. She let him slide in front of her, resting her hands on his shoulders. She gently pushed him forward to one of the center stalls.

The stablehand looked up at the presence of the queen and smiled, bowing his head for a brief moment. "Your majesty," he greeted her.

Elizabeth smiled graciously at the man before her. "I was hoping to show my son," she told him kindly.

"But of course," he responded, smiling in return. He stood up, and Kurt's eyes widened at the sight before him, every ounce of tiredness that remained in his body now retreating.

A chocolate-coloured foal was laying beside its mother. The filly looked up at the young boy, and she tried to get to her feet. Her limbs with long and slender and she was very clumsy on them, stumbling slightly, yet Kurt was still completely in awe of the newborn. He looked at his mother, who nodded, nudging him forward.

Cautiously, Kurt stepped toward the filly, sheepishly reaching his hand out. At once she leaned into his touch, still shaky on her hooves. Immediately the young boy's face broke out into a grin, his heart swelling in his chest.

"What do you think of her?" Elizabeth asked, smiling at her son as she crouched beside him, her hands holding onto his waist. Again, he turned to his mother.

"I love her!" he responded immediately, his voice breathless. "Mother, she's so beautiful, she—"

"She's yours," she whispered in his ear. The boy's mouth fell open in disbelief. "At least, she will be," the queen amended. "When she's old enough, she'll be your very own. And you and I? We'll go riding every day."

The boy flung his arms around his mother's neck. She laughed, holding her son tightly to her.

"She's mine?" he asked her, still unbelieving. "And we'll really get to ride together? Do you promise?"

She nodded again, brushing his hair out of his face, her hand resting on her cheek. "I promise," she told him.