Title: The Prince's Slave
Pairing(s): Kurt/Puck (main), Finn/Quinn, Kurt/Brittany, Finn/Rachel, Puck/Quinn, Santana/Brittany, Blaine/Karofsky, Burt/Carole, Will/Emma
Warning: Slavery, m/m and m/f sex, violence
Word Count: 4600
Summary: As Prince Kurt's sixteenth birthday approaches, all he really wants is a friend, someone who accepts his oddities and spends time with him anyway. He thought the answer was a slave, but got much more than he was looking for when he bought Noah Puckerman at auction.
Author's Notes: Written for the au_bigbang over on livejournal. Thanks so much to Animegirl23 for beta reading.
Noah's ass was saddle-sore before an hour was up, but he grit his teeth and put up with it since none of the others were complaining. Leaving the city was hard and as he approached the big gates in the wall, Noah almost turned back once or twice, but then he was in the open country, with Sam and Blaine discussing politics. Noah kept his ears open to their discussion, but ultimately just followed along, his eyes taking in the countryside as they traveled.
When they stopped for a few minutes to rest the horses and eat, Noah hissed as he slid out of his saddle, not missing how one of the guards chuckled a little and whispered to his friend, "Thought he'd be used to getting it from the prince by now."
"Maybe the prince gets it from him," the guard's friend replied with a shrug and it bothered Noah how everyone just assumed he and Kurt were sleeping together. That didn't mean it wasn't true, but still. It was disrespectful or something. And these were the guys that Finn, and thus Kurt, trusted with the mission to bring back Lady Brittany safely.
Kurt had been sitting with his father for a few long moments, just telling him about his day, the way he had when he was a small child, when Brother David knocked on the open door and asked, "May I come in, Your Highness? The Bishop has asked me to pray for the king."
"Then by all means," Kurt replied, trying to keep his animosity toward the man in check and giving the guard behind him a significant look, "come in. Far be it from me to interfere with the Bishop's wishes."
David nodded and sat down right next to Kurt, which made the hairs on the back of his neck stand on end, but the prince couldn't figure out how to move away politely. Plus, he was at his father's bedside. If anyone should back off it was David.
The monk said his prayers and was getting up before he turned to Kurt and asked, "Oh, by the way, do you know where Lord Blaine disappeared to? I had some scripture I wanted to show him."
Holding back a mocking chuckle, Kurt coolly told David about Blaine's "ailing grandfather," and he could tell that the clergyman suspected the story right away, even though Kurt dissembled with grace and a considerable amount of talent.
Frowning, David asked, "What did he tell you, prince? Did he…?"
"My discussions with foreign nobles are a matter of state, Brother David," Kurt replied, squeezing his father's hand for that little bit of strength he could give in his unconscious state, "not a matter for the Church."
Through gritted teeth, Brother David said, "Of course," but then he leaned forward and hissed, "You even try anything, prince, and your precious wife is dead."
"Good to see you, too!" Kurt called after David as he stalked away, shivering as soon as he was out of sight. Leaning to whisper to his father, Kurt said, "I really hate that man. Couldn't you wake up, Father? For me? Come on. I don't believe in Brother David's gods or Noah's God or any other gods, but I believe in you. I believe in us, you and me and Finn."
Two minutes later, when one of Burt's fingers twitched, Kurt thought he was imagining things.
Then it happened again.
Dalton was a strange place, Noah decided. Everyone seemed to wear the Anderson family colors – blue and red – even the lay people working in the village around the keep. Blaine brought them in disguised in the same clothing and Noah felt like he was going to pass out until he loosened the scrap of silk around his neck, which seemed to be the fashion for all men in this place.
"Come this way," Blaine said, leading them into a servant's entrance of the keep. "We'll be safe here for a few hours. I'm going to go find my father and-"
"Are you sure he doesn't know about Brittany being forced here?" Noah asked, disliking the idea of bringing another person in on the plan. "He might be working with your Bishop and Lady Sue to keep Brittany hidden. If you go-"
"My gods," Blaine replied, his eyes wide as he met Noah's gaze. "I never thought of that. I know he would cooperate with a simple request to house two women if the Church asked him to. But keeping them prisoner as well? He couldn't be involved in that part, could he?"
Sam cleared his throat and looked at both of them through his long, blonde bangs, "Until we know otherwise, we don't involve anyone else that we don't absolutely need to, alright?"
Blaine nodded and thought for a moment before saying, "There's a friend I trust completely and a good man. His name is Wes and he's a monk in the church just across the town, despite his rather outspoken opinions against the Church. He would be able to find out where Brittany's being held."
"Then we'll go talk to him," Sam nodded, standing up and straightening his disguise casually like he was used to wearing it already. Noah followed along obediently, glad at least Sam knew what to do, because he was in way over his head here.
Burt woke up to his wife and sons staring down at him like he was about to dissolve at any second. "Honey?" Carole asked softly, brushing his cheek. "Can you hear me?"
Trying to speak, but finding his voice gone after however many days of disuse, Burt nodded and coughed. Clearing his throat a few times, he asked, "Where's that rat, Figgins?"
"Just outside, Father," Finn replied, taking Burt's hand and giving him a cautionary look. "He wants to pay his respects now that you're recovering."
Motioning his son closer, and then bringing Kurt in as well, Burt whispered, "I've been hearing everything that goes on in this room, boys, for at least five or six days. You'll want to arrest Figgins for treason, right now."
"He said something to you?" Kurt gasped, pursing his lips in that way he always did when he was displeased.
"Got his whole confession up here," Burt replied, tapping his temple. "And get Lord Evans and Ambassador Chang to the Throne Room as well. They'll be able to testify that I wasn't dreaming it all up."
Finn nodded and left to give the orders while Kurt stayed to help Burt sit up and held a cup of water to his lips. Whispering, Kurt sniffed, "Thank you, Father, for coming back to us."
"Sure thing, kiddo," Burt replied, smiling as both his wife and his son hugged him, Bishop Figgins' protests sounding from through his bedchamber door.
"The princesses are here," Wes nodded, keeping his voice low and his hood over his head, almost hiding his face. Noah didn't like the guy one bit. "Princess Quinn gives all the orders and doesn't allow Princess Brittany to speak. I've been praying for guidance."
"Well we're here instead," Noah scoffed, wanting to get this show on the road. "Bring us to her."
Sam shook his head and put a hand on Noah's shoulder, insisting, "We should wait for night. The longer between when we leave and when Princess Quinn realizes her prisoner is gone, the better."
"I think I should distract everyone by 'returning to the city'," Blaine suggested. "The Bishop and many of the clergy always come to the keep during a homecoming feast."
"What about foreign princesses?" Noah asked, thinking there was no way in the world this plan was going to work. "Do they come to dinner as well?"
"Given the fact that no one is supposed to know they're here – we've been told that Prince Kurt has been abusive toward his new wife and Quinn thought it better that she see her pregnancy to term in Dalton – I doubt they would make any public appearances," Wes explained, nodding sadly at Noah's angered scoff at the idea of Kurt being abusive.
"Good," Sam nodded. "Blaine distracts everyone, Wes leads the rest of us towards the princesses. We take Brittany as quietly as we can."
"Lethal force?" one of the guards asked, like it was a routine question and Noah decided that as good as he was at fighting, and as much as he liked it sometimes, he'd never want to be a professional soldier.
"What are you kidding?" Sam replied, giving Wes an apologetic little bow. "The guards are bound to be fighting monks. Sub-lethal force only, may the gods help us."
"If we do this right," Wes added, "we may not need to use force at all. Stay here. I'll raid the laundry for clothing more appropriate for the task. I'm sure my fellow monks will not mind giving a few items of clothes for the cause of justice and the redemption of the Church in Lima's eyes."
"I'm sure," Noah nodded, sighing as he watched the monk go. Turning around, he saw Sam watching him, so Noah asked, "What?"
"You gotta relax, man," Sam replied, rolling his eyes when Noah made a noise of disbelief. "Yeah, I know this is important. I know Kurt's counting on us to bring Brittany back in one piece, and that might not happen. But if you go into a mission like this all wound up like you are, you're the one not making it home to Lima."
"How would you suggest I relax?" Noah scoffed, sitting on a barrel in the Church basement. "And I swear, if you mention anything about who I supposedly favor in bed, I'm gonna have to punch you."
"Just," Sam sighed, sitting down across from Noah and clasping his hands in front of him as he leaned his forearms on his knees, "do what I do. Picture your most relaxing day and keep that in your brain as best you can. See it, smell it, taste it, tell yourself you're going back there as soon as this little business is over with."
Noah closed his eyes and two different scenes came to mind. The first was playing with his sister in the sunlit castle courtyard, chasing her around as she laughed and Kurt watched with a smile on his face. The other scene was Kurt lying beneath him, skin pure silver in the moonlight from the prince's large picture window, smiling up at him and pulling him into another of a thousand kisses.
"There you go, man," Sam smiled, breaking Noah out of his reverie. "Just keep thinking about whatever you were picturing. That's the goal. Get Brittany out of here safely and get back to that."
Nodding, Noah rolled his neck and tried to let the rest of his anxious muscles relax as he pictured both scenes again. "Good goal."
"I'm sorry, Sire," Figgins said, his voice as calm and as careful as Kurt had ever heard it. "I'm sure you were just dreaming while in your incapacitated state. I never said such things. Of course I support your right to rule without Church interference. My place is only to be your moral guide…"
Kurt watched as his father's anger grew colder and colder and it made excitement well up in his chest. Clearing his throat angrily, Burt called out, "Lord Evans?"
"Yes, your highness?" Harold Evans, Sam's father and one of the major Earls of Lima, said as he stepped forward, so the rest of the court could hear him.
"Did you or did you not speak to your wife while visiting my chambers during my convalescence?"
Kurt watched as Lord Evans looked back at his very blonde wife in confusion and nodded, "I did, Sire."
"You told Mary that your daughter, Stacy, was having trouble with her dancing lessons, did you not?"
Looking more than a little shocked, Lord Evans nodded, "Yes, Your Highness."
"Is this not also true: your wife suggested a new pair of dancing shoes, to which you objected because of the cost, as all your fortune is tied up in your real estate holdings?"
"It is," Evans nodded and Kurt watched as whispers slithered through the court, from one noble to the next. Kurt understood the surprise. All indications were that the Evans family was one of the richest in Lima. To learn of their economic distress was like learning pigs had begun to fly.
Smiling at Figgins, Burt continued as he asked, "And Lord Evans, was there anyone in the room besides you, your wife, and myself?"
"No, Sire," Evans replied. "We were granted the honor of visiting you without guards, which is why I spoke of my family's money troubles. You heard me?"
"I did," Burt nodded. "I heard everything anyone said around me for the past six days. Yes, even you Ambassador Chang," Burt said, pointing to Sir Mike's father with a laugh. The Ambassador blushed and laughed as well, nodding to those around him that he knew what the king was talking about. "And I heard Bishop Figgins telling me exactly how he and my daughter-in-law Quinn conspired to bring this throne in line with the Church, ruling them as one, even though our laws and traditions strictly forbid such mixing."
Concerned mutters filled the Throne Room and Kurt almost smiled as he recognized the tide of the court's opinions shifting away from Bishop Figgins. Then biting one nail nervously, Kurt prayed that he hadn't made a mistake sending Noah to Dalton just a day before the King woke up. Burt would have been able to set everything right without putting Noah in danger and yet now there was no way to stop whatever was going on in Dalton before everything happened. Nothing to do but watch Figgins get dragged away by the guard and hope that everyone Kurt cared about came home safely.
Getting into the Princesses' quarters was easier than Noah expected and slipping past Quinn and her child – Noah's child, now that he thought about it, his heart aching for her – was too easy as well. Noah approached Brittany's bed carefully, so he wouldn't scare her, and Sam watched his back, while the other guards kept watch on their escape path. Touching Brittany's arm softly, Noah whispered, "Lady Brittany? Britt, wake up."
The woman awoke with a start and took a deep breath like she was about to scream. Noah recognized the impulse as one his little sister always used to have when he had to wake her up and get her out of the house on nights his mother turned violent, so he clapped a hand over Brittany's mouth, hissing, "Shh! Shh, it's me. It's Noah."
Brittany repeated his name as a question, her voice muffled under his hand as he kept it over her mouth for a few seconds more.
"Yeah. Kurt sent me and Sir Sam to come get you and bring you home."
When Brittany nodded, Noah let her go, surprised when she wrapped her arms around his neck and pulled him into a hug, whispering in his ear, "She wouldn't let me bring Santana, Noah. I would have come wherever Quinn said, as long as she let Santana come too, but she wouldn't."
"You can't trust Quinn," Noah told her, helping Brittany out of the bed. "She wanted to take your and Kurt's baby away."
Britt nodded sadly and then hurried to get dressed, motioning for Noah and Sam to turn away. After a moment, she whispered, "I'm ready to go home."
"We're going home," Noah promised, taking her hand and following Sam from the room.
Kurt watched as guards took Bishop Figgins away in heavy, humiliating chains and Burt called, "Cleric Kinney?"
"Yes, Your Highness?" a monk said as he stepped forward, nervous as all the eyes of the court turned to look at him.
"It's my understanding that when the Bishop is indisposed, Brother David is in charge. Is that true?"
"It is indeed-y," the Cleric replied with an air of someone who was trying too hard to please, "but no one has seen him for the past few days. I will step up until he can be found. Services will go on as usual."
"Good," Burt nodded, giving Kurt a small smile for a reason the prince couldn't quite discern. "The people need to know that a few bad apples did not spoil the entire Church. I believe there is still good to be done, do you agree as well?"
"Of course, Sire," Kinney nodded. "The Church will make every effort to root out those working with Bishop Figgins to break the law of our great country."
"Thank you, my friend," Burt said, sighing as he looked out over the court. "Now if you'll excuse me, ladies and lords, I need my rest. Please address my son, Prince Kurt, if you have any further issues you'd like to discuss."
"Not Finn, Your Highness?" someone called and Burt shook his head.
"Finn has decided to take a position as General Beiste's second in command," Burt announced, and it was a surprise to Kurt that he hadn't heard this before. "Prince Kurt will be my successor as king. Anyone got a problem with that?"
Lords and Ladies looked at one another and the throne room became eerily silent. Kurt didn't like it at all.
"Watch out!" Brittany cried as they were hurrying down the halls of the Church monastery. Sam ducked instinctually and Noah followed right after, pulling Brittany close. A throwing knife hit one of the guards in the back with a wet, sickening thud.
Drawing his sword as he turned, Noah saw a large figure bearing down on them in the dark hallway and Brittany gave a frightened squeak. Sam got between them and the figure, hissing, "Take her and go, Noah. Get out of here!"
Noah wanted to stay and fight, but he didn't know how much help he would be and one of the guards who was still standing fell in beside Sam, their swords clashing against the monks' and breaking the stillness of the night. A third guard waved Noah forward and followed as, sword still out and held forward like Beiste had taught him, all three of them ran, Brittany holding tightly to Noah's free hand.
Someone cried out in anguish just before they turned the corner and Noah found himself hoping it wasn't Sam who had been injured and tried to hold onto that image of Kurt in his mind. They were getting home. They had to.
Noah was just pushing Brittany up onto her horse when the figure caught up to them, slashing out at Noah with a long, curved sword. Shit! He didn't know how to fight this guy!
The guard at his side blocked one blow as Noah gained his bearings and began to fight back. Actually this wasn't so bad. His heart pounded wildly in his chest and the blood rushed through his ears, but Noah held onto his memory of Kurt, letting it protect him and spur him on as he fought. Their opponent was good and he got the other guard down, injured but not killed, and turned his full attention on Noah.
"You should have just left Prince Kurt to me," he hissed and suddenly Noah recognized him as Brother David – the Brother David they had run from when they left Lima. "He was mine until you had to go and grab his attention."
Blocking another blow, Noah couldn't help but laugh, "He was never yours, monk. Kurt has always despised you. You make him sick to his stomach."
"I was working on it," David replied, dodging one of Noah's blows with a spry twirl of his monk's robes. "I would have gotten to him eventually if it wasn't for you."
"You would have tried to force yourself on him," Noah shot back, "and been hanged for it. And if you love him so much, why did you help kidnap Kurt's wife and his unborn child?"
"He doesn't need them," David insisted. "Finn's going to be king and Quinn's going to be queen. Kurt doesn't need a wife or a child or a fucking manservant!"
Noah saw an opening and went for it without thinking, stabbing David in the chest with his thin blade and dodging David's last blow. Leaning in toward the monk's shocked face (Noah thought he might be even more shocked, but he wasn't going to let it show) the servant hissed, "That's future Consort to you, buddy," and pulled his blade free.
Sam came running up to them then, his face covered in blood and his arm held tightly against his chest. "We've gotta go," he whispered, hopping up onto one of the free horses, despite his injuries. "If they find out you've spilled a monk's blood on sacred ground, Noah…!"
"Shit," he hissed, sheathing his sword and pulling himself up behind Brittany on her horse. "Let's get out of here!"
When Noah, Sam, and Brittany returned to Lima, Kurt was waiting for them on the castle steps, the scouts having spotted them half an hour before. All of them looked weary and after sharing a look with Noah, Kurt rushed forward to help his wife down, cradling her in his arms and helping her toward their rooms. Noah trailed behind them silently while Sam stayed to talk to Finn and get his injuries looked at.
Once Brittany was in Lady Santana's caring arms, Kurt kissed his wife's forehead and pulled Noah into the servant's room, hugging him tightly as soon as the doors were closed. "Thank you," he cried, letting everything go and blinking the tears so they would finally fall. "Thank you, Noah. Thank you."
Noah kissed Kurt, long and slow, and led the way to the bed, collapsing down on it like he was exhausted. "I did what you asked, my prince."
"You did," Kurt nodded, kneeling to pull off Noah's dusty boots. "You've done exactly what I've asked for and more, Noah. I can't believe of all the slaves in that market, I got lucky enough to choose you."
"Yeah?" Noah asked, as if he didn't believe it, watching as Kurt undid the buttons on his shirt one by one.
After taking his lover's shirt, Kurt nodded and leaned forward to press a simple kiss to Noah's lips. Pulling back, he smiled and whispered, "Happy Birthday, Noah Puckerman. You're a hero, you're a free man, and the Crown Prince of Lima loves you."
Noah laughed a little and raised his hips as Kurt tugged on his trousers. "May God have mercy, Babe."
"Because this past year has changed my life forever and this next year? This next year, I don't want anything more to change."
"It won't," Kurt promised, laying down next to his lover and running a hand over the skin and the muscles that he'd missed so much while they were gone. "A hundred years from now, you'll still be with me, even if we're both dead. Tribes people believe in an afterlife, don't they?"
"Sort of," Noah replied, wrapping his arms around Kurt and holding him close. "For a hundred years with you, I'll believe anything."
"Me too," Kurt nodded, laying his head on Noah's shoulder and breathing him in, bathing in the scent that was beginning to smell like home.
Six months later, Kurt's son was born and Noah watched his lover hold the baby with this adorable look of wonder and joy painted across his face. When Kurt turned and shared a smile with Noah, it felt so good it almost hurt deep in his chest.
After a lengthy indictment process, Quinn and her child were sent back to Lima by the Dalton authorities and Finn got that divorce he'd been waiting for, happily taking custody of the child he knew was not his. Noah got to meet Beth for more than a brief glimpse here or there when she was almost a year old. He knew he couldn't really be her father, not when everyone thought she belonged to Prince Finn, but he was happy enough being able to see her whenever he wanted.
Two years – and several dozen lonely, sleepless nights – after Beth's return, Brittany gave birth to another son, who they named Burt after his recently deceased grandfather.
Six months after little Burt's christening, King Kurt and Queen Brittany's divorce finalized, while Finn married Rachel.
Three years later, after all the political moves Kurt wanted to make had been made, Kurt named Noah his Consort. As they passed a throng of both well-wishers and protesters outside the Church, Kurt paused and asked close to Noah's ear, "Do you know that woman?"
Following his King's line of sight, Noah caught a glimpse of one very familiar face in the crowd. Frowning, he let go of Kurt's arm and approached her, asking, "What are you doing here, Mother?"
"What?" she called back, above the other voices trying to get Noah's attention. "I can't go to my own son's sinful wedding?" Adding insult to injury, she spat at Noah's feet. "If I'd known this is what you'd turn into, I never would have sold you."
"Well then, I'm glad you did," Noah replied, more calmly than he thought himself capable. "And I'm not your son anymore. You gave up that right the second you signed me away."
Beside him, Kurt spoke again close in his ear, "This is too personal for the crowd to know, love. Just let her be and come home with me?"
Nodding, Noah gave his mother one last look, told her, "Sarah's fine, by the way," and turned back to his King, following the man who owned his heart down the rest of the Church stairs and into their private carriage.
Kurt held him close and stroked his hair and whispered, "I'm glad she sold you, too. It means I've got the family I've always wanted."
Noah sighed and nodded, pushing away thoughts of his estranged mother and focusing on letting himself be happy, despite her.
Thanks so much for reading all the way through. I'd love to know what you thought!
Also, since this was a big bang entry, the lovely rinnia drew a few illustrations for this story that you should check out: rinnia. livejournal .com/329119. html (remove the spaces after pasting into your browser).