So this is my first ever non-zutara FF therefore its my first Moonacre FF as well. This brings joy to my soul like no other! :D Anyway, this is an AU ending of and post-movie FF. So I hope you enjoy. Updates will very, chapter lengths will very. R and R!

Chapter One

All it took was one shot; one ear piercing, terrifying, silence-shattering bang to change the lives of not only Robin and Couer DeNoir, but the lives of Maria Merryweather and her family as well.

It was a large, angry DeNoir man that fired that life changing round. He'd arrived at the cliff only moments after Maria had come-to from her seemingly lifeless state on the back of the Sea Unicorn. She was standing directly in front of him—an easy target, nothing blocking his shot, nobody in the way. It was the overwhelming sense of duty and honor that made him pull the trigger—he really thought that he was doing the right thing. A flicker of doubt went through his mind, after all, Maria was just a young girl. But, he reminded himself, she was not only a disgusting Merryweather, but the blasted Moon Princes nonetheless! Then, baring his teeth in the stunned silence, he squeezed the trigger and one single bullet flew through the air, a stream of smoke trailing in its wake.

Maria closed her eyes tight; she wasn't ready to die—not again tonight. She heard a band—one sharp, echoing noise, then felt herself falling; her shoulder crashed into the ground with a sickening thud and a shot of pain rushed through her arm. Her eyes snapped open at—well—the lack of any other pain. Sudden disorientation sunk into her brain as everything before her unfolded in slow motion. Everyone's eyes were on her...or rather the boy behind her. Her gaze skimmed over everyone's sickened, horrified faces, and finally as she picked herself up, Robin. He was lying fewer than four feet from her, his face twisted in pain. His gloved hands were clamped to his side.

"Robin!" She wasn't sure if she screamed, whispered, or thought. Hands shaking, she rushed to him and helped sit him upright. His chest rose and fell in short, uneven breaths, and his pale lips were quivering like she never thought possible.

"Princess!" He growled as she tried to pry his hands from his side. His brown eyes met his silver ones fiercely, silently warning her that she wasn't going to like what she was about to see. She had never seen a look so desperate on any man's face—let alone Robin's!

"Robin DeNoir," Maria whispered harshly, gripping his wrists and wrenching his hands away. "I will not let you die! Do you understand me? You will not leave me, not now." She pressed her hands to his wound firmly. His blood seeped through her fingers, making scarlet trails across her skin. Hot tears burned her eyes as they threatened to fall down her face.

"Princess," Robin hissed again, gripping her upper arm as tight as he could. Her eyes flicked to his face, and suddenly she was ashamed of her tears. The corners of his lips twitched in a forced smirk. "Maria," he said, lowering his voice to a whisper that only she could hear and raising his free hand to her cheek. "I'll be alright, Maria. I promise. I've never broken a promise to you, have I?" Maria shook her head slowly. "Good."

"We have to get him home," Coer DeNoir said softly, appearing behind them. His eyes were glassy and his whole body visibly shaking. He had be so cruel to his son these past few days and now the bitter taste of regret filled his mouth. Coer looked down at his son, his one and only heir, with fear in his heart and worry in his eyes.

"Home?" Sir Benjamin asked, his voice coming loudly. Robin flinched in Maria's arms. "Are you mad? That boy needs a doctor!"

"I've trusted our physician with my life longer than you, Mister Merryweather, have been alive. I do not believe that he is the only competent man of his practice for miles, I know it!"

"The village has an excellent doctor, Mister DeNoir. He is proven to be one of the best in the entire bloody country! Do you really believe that your physician will be able to—not only extract the bul-"

"Robin!" Maria cried, shaking his limp body. It had only taken a few moments for him to fall unconscience—whether it be from sheer pain or something she could not see, Maria did not know (but Lord, did she hope it was the former). "Please, Uncle Benjamin! The DeNoir castle is so much closer... I don't know... I don't know how..." Maria couldn't bring herself to say it. The thought of losing someone else so soon frightened her to tears.

"He needs a professional!" Uncle Benjamin said firmly.

"What he needs is someone he trusts!"

"That's enough!" Loveday erupted, her voice quaking with anger. For a moment, everyone's eyes were on her—save Maria's whose were glued strictly on Robin's face. "Robin needs help and you two are going to stand over him and fight like a bunch of children!" She glared between her father and her fiancée. "This is not a matter of who is right and who is wrong! This is a matter of life...and death. We will take him to the DeNoir castle."

"Loveday, if you give me some time, I can send for a-" Benjamin started calmly.

"Time," Loveday said, her gaze falling softly on her bleeding baby brother. "Is something we have very little of."


So, that's the end of chapter one. Review please, it'll make my life. Peace and love,

~She Poe