A/n: Okay, so now that finals are over I can work on my stories. I've reached an impasse in a few of my other works but I am hoping finishing this story will help me to remove my writers block. Enjoy!
Ilosovic felt like there was a fire in his soul, he felt like his skin was being pulled apart.
"Ilosovic Stayne." A commanding voice called out to him.
A blinding light was shining into his eyes and he couldn't pin point the location of the voice, "Name your crimes against Underland." The voice said.
"I willingly served the Red Queen, I willingly helped to kill hundreds of people… I betrayed my inner morals to feed my selfish desire of power."
"State the crimes you have committed against family and friends."
"I killed my father, I betrayed Bain and helped to destroy his village, I have betrayed and murdered many who helped to raise me."
There was silence a moment as the pain continued to rip him apart, it converged towards his heart and up his spine towards his brain.
"Name the crimes you have committed against yourself."
Ilosovic hesitated, what crimes had he committed against himself?
"I know of none!" Ilosovic screamed in agony as the heat increased.
"There was one." The voice said.
Ilosovic had a flash back to when he was a child, he stared out the window and watched as his father beat and drowned his mother.
"I don't understand!" Ilosovic called to the voice, the light intensified as well as the heat and Ilosovic wasn't sure he could handle it much longer.
"You let fear and powerlessness rule your world and instead of trying to learn from your mistakes… you allowed yourself to become the victim and so to kill and take revenge on anyone who tried to make you powerless. You failed to see that in serving the Red Queen you were at your weakest, you allowed yourself to believe that there was power in cruelty."
"I disregarded my own beliefs in the pursuit of something I always had to begin with." Ilosovic said finally understanding.
"With your new life… what do you plan to do?" the voice asked.
Ilosovic didn't have to think this time, he looked directly into the light and spoke clearly, "I will spend the rest of my days in contrition, and I will serve the White Queen and her court and I will do what I can to uphold the laws and rules of Underland so set fourth by the White Queen and the rulers before her."
"And of the girl Alice?"
Ilosovic felt his chest grow heavy, Alice, how he hoped to live through this to see her.
"I will do everything in my own power to make her happy and to protect her."
"Marry her?" the voice asked.
"I… yes… I will if she will have me."
"Reflect upon this moment Ilosovic… you have all of eternity to serve the White Queen and her people."
Suddenly the bright white light disappeared and Ilosovic fell over onto the floor holding his sides in an attempt to keep the bile down.
He managed to glance between strands of his tangled locks to se the White Queen and suddenly realized it had been her talking the whole time.
"Congratulations Ilosovic…" she said with a small smile, "You have survived."
It was a sunny day in London, which was odd in itself since most days it was cool and rainy. But for some reason today the sun shined brighter and warmer then usual.
Helga, the current house keeper kept herself busy with the house work while she waited for the lady of the house to return. The poor woman had been in a state of depression for weeks now, ever since Alice had disappeared.
The maid had no clue how the girl could have ran away but that was the current guess as to where she went. For all they knew she was lying dead in a gutter somewhere.
Helga tried to look on the bright side but it was hard, Helen's eldest daughter Margaret had moved back in so as to comfort her broken hearted mother, the handsome devil Lowell had come with her and Helga was not much fond of him. He was a cad, a trickster, sadly it was not her place to voice such opinions.
It was on this day when everything seemed brighter then normal that the doorbell was rang, Helga hustled from the kitchen to make sure that the person on the doorstep didn't have to wait long.
However the maid had a disturbing surprise not only to find it was of course Alice on the stoop, but she was standing on her own with out the wheel chair, and a disturbingly tall man stood next to her. Helga had to look up and up to see his face which she decided was handsome and honest if not slightly scary.
Alice moved across the threshold and took Helga in her arms, "Oh it's good to see you Helga!" Alice said in a joyful tone. "Is mum home?" she asked motioning for the tall man to follow her in, he had to duck just slightly to make it through the door but Helga was still to shock at Alice's mobile return to really notice to much.
"Y-your mother?" Helga asked in confusion.
"Yes, my mother. I will only be in town a few short days and there is a lot of planning to do. I am to be married." Alice said smiling up at the large man who smirked down at her.
Helga glanced at the man whose dangerous eyes flickered to her and he nodded, the maid took a deep breath and then fainted.
Alice watched as Helga passed out, "Well I suppose it could have been worse." Alice said examining the unconscious maid on the floor.
Suddenly a noise came from the kitchen and Alice looked up to see Lowell entering, he came down the entrance way and stopped dead in his tracks.
"Alice?" he asked in shock. His eyes didn't even shift to the large man next to her; they locked onto her and stayed there.
"Hello Lowell." She said in a slightly lower tone.
"What are you doing here? You're supposed to be dea- I mean… you're missing." Lowell said just barely saving himself from a huge mistake.
"I am not dead Lowell, and I was not missing. I was away with my fiancé, Ilosovic. Where is my mother?" Alice asked.
Lowell suddenly noticed the towering figure next to her and gave a nervous smirked, "My my big boy I see." He said.
"Lowell, my mother?" Alice asked again.
Lowell seemed to shake out of his stupor long enough to stay, "Yes, she has gone to town with Margaret to find some sort of fabric or something."
Alice sighed and then turned to the man next to her, "Would you like to wait?"
Ilosovic nodded and then said, "Best to meet them now then never… but this is your sister's husband?"
Alice nodded, "Then allow me a word with you sir on the proper way to treat your wife." Ilosovic moved forward and spun Lowell around, the two moved down the hall and Alice smirked.
Yes, she had told Ilosovic all about Lowell.
A gasp was heard behind her at that moment and Alice turned to see her mother standing in the doorway, bags of strange colored fabrics dropped and before Alice could speak she was enveloped in a bone crushing huge. Tears soaked her neck as her mother sobbed into her.
"Oh Alice! Where have you been! A fright you've given me, oh an absolute fright!"
Alice felt a second pair of arms and could smell the perfume of Margaret joining with that of her mother's.
"Mother, you must come with me, I have so much to tell you!" Alice said as she managed to pull away and take her mother's hand.
"You just got home darling… please come and sit in the parlor… you must tell me everything!"
"Alice… why is Helga on the floor?" Margaret asked eyeing the still unconscious maid.
"Shock I suppose."
"Shock of what? You?" Her mother asked.
Alice held up her hand and showed her mother, "I am to be married!"
Margaret sat next to Lowell who had suddenly become very shifty and nervous, Alice's mother was on Margaret's free arm and Ilosovic stood behind Alice as she sat across from her family and shared the fabricated, but still very happy, story of how her and Ilosovic met.
"As you know I went over seas. I met many people and Ilosovic was one of them. He was working as a guard for a king I met. When Lord Ascot's ship the Wonder stopped at a port to resupply he saved me from falling into the water. Lot's of shark around that area of the sea you know. We spent much time together talking and becoming acquainted but then my ship had to depart. I promised to write to him about my trip and to let him know when I returned to London so he could visit."
Alice waited to see if there were any questions, when none came she continued, "You see don't you? When my letters to him stopped he thought I was in trouble. Ilosovic managed to get a hold of William and William informed him of my little accident. He came as soon as he could, that is as soon as the king would let him. He paid a street boy to deliver me a letter the night I disappeared saying that he knew someone who might be able to help with my legs and feet. I left and Ilosovic took me to his friend who managed to heal me." Alice concluded.
"But why didn't you tell us all of this? Surely you knew we would be more then willing to help… we would have paid!" Alice's mother said sounding more like she had caused an injustice to Ilosovic then anything else.
"I was afraid you wouldn't allow it. I was afraid you wouldn't believe his friend could help." Alice replied looking down with grief.
Alice's mother gazed upon her daughter and then turned to Ilosovic, "So you now wish to marry Alice?"
Ilosovic nodded and took a sip of the tea that had been handed to him earlier, "I am sure you hoped Alice would marry a Lord or Duke of some kind but I assure you the title that I hold in my Queen's court is much more important then either of the aforementioned statuses."
"And what are you exactly?" Alice's mother asked trying to be respectful.
"I am a Knave of course."
"Knave?" Both Helen and Margaret asked at the same time.
"Indeed, you don't have the title in England I presume? I am the guard and advisor to my king. He makes no decisions with out consulting me first; I guard his life, his family and his land. I am also his chief military instructor and his fencing tutor."
"Very impressive I am sure we all agree, but in that position surely there is a chance of causality… what should happen to Alice if you were to be killed?" Lowell asked seemingly having found his backbone.
Ilosovic had seemed to be prepared for this question, "Alice has freedom to choose what she wants to do, be it to come home or stay at the palace. Since I am the king's advisor my family and I have special privileges in his court. Should something happen to me, Alice will be allowed to live in the castle and stay on the court as long as she wishes. The king made it clear when I started to work for him that my family is his and his is mine."
Alice's mother looked shocked, "So, she shall be living in the palace with you? A castle you said?"
"Indeed lady Helen." Ilosovic said with a smooth node of his head, "But I can not and will not marry her with our your consent."
Alice took her mothers hand, "Please, I have never wanted anything more in my entire life. He is who I love mother."
Helen seemed to debate a moment but then smiled at her daughter as a tear came to her eye, "Alright Alice, I give my consent."
Alice smiled and hugged the woman fiercely, "I love you mum." The girl whispered to her.
"I love you too."
Ilosovic… please bring me a glass of water will you?"
"No tea tonight dearest?"
"No… I am not sure he likes tea." Alice called.
The large man entered the room holding a teapot and two small teacups; the image was enough to make Alice giggle.
"Doesn't like tea… who does he think he is? If he is going to live with us he must learn to like tea." Ilosovic said
"You are starting to sound like the hatter." Alice said.
"Don't compare me to that mad man, he is such a pain."
"Are you still sore over the fact his long sword beat your precious short sword?"
"Don't tease me you shall hurt my feelings." Ilosovic faked a sad face and Alice swatted his shoulder.
"Honestly though, do you still hate the hatter?"
"No… I don't hate the hatter, I'm incapable of hating anyone ever since that damn potion of the queen."
"She saved your soul." Alice said.
"By turning me into a pussy cat?"
"She didn't turn you into a pussy cat, look what you did to Lowell, he can't even walk down the street with out looking behind him."
Ilosovic smiled a little and then handed Alice the tea, he placed his hand on her belly and said, "Doesn't like tea… preposterous."
Alice smiled back and then took a sip of her tea right at the baby kicked. Ilosovic felt it and his smile grew, "I hope he is big and strong like you." Alice said.
"I hope he is as brave and beautiful as you." Ilosovic said as he leaned back stared at his wife.
For the first time in his life everything was okay, and for the second time in his life he knew he loved someone more then himself. The first person he had loved was Alice; the second was his unborn son.
How things have changed, he thought with content, and for once it was for the better.
A/N: So I know it's the generic ending where she gets knocked up and they have a baby but the ending I wanted I couldn't quite make end. I wanted Ilosovic to be teaching her how to ride a horse and use a sword but I couldn't get it to flow so I did the very basic/a lot of writers do it ending where she has a kid. I personally don't like peggo but I suppose since there isn't a sequal I won't have to worry about it.
Thank you for all the wonderful reviews. I plan to make other AIW stories when I have more time and story ideas but for now I need to finish my other two stories I am currently working on. Thank you for all the helpful critics and such and I hope you liked reading it as much as I liked writing it.