Arrows and Apples
Disclaimer: I don't own SWATH. If I did, I'd repossess all of Ravenna's clothing.
Pairing: Snow White/William
Spoilers: Everything. Read at your own peril if you haven't seen it already.
Snow White doesn't marry William because it's expected of the daughter of King Magnus and the son of Duke Hammond.
(Everyone expects it because politically, it is a good match. She scoffs at that. For a moment she is tempted to propose a marriage for herself to Eric or even Beith just to spite them. Though she understands, from what little political training she received as a girl, that they are right about her and William in that sense, they do not understand what she knows about marriage. She knows what a marriage without love looks like. It is her father splayed across his bed with a knife plunged into his heart. If she is forced to marry William for politics and not for love, she will resent their marriage and him for it. When Duke Hammond tries to subtly bring up the topic of marriage, she bites back a rude remark and tells him that she is much too busy restoring her kingdom to its former glory to be contemplating marriage. The Duke is smart enough to change the subject back to charters.)
Snow White doesn't marry William because they have been betrothed since infancy.
(In fact, she is informed by the Duke after they have defeated Ravenna that the betrothal he and her father had drawn up had been voided many years ago. When she asks him why, he tells her that William asked him to. Before Snow White can feel hurt or angry, he tells her that William's reason for voiding their betrothal was that if she was still alive, he didn't need an ancient piece of paper to marry the girl of his dreams. She'd been too embarrassed after the words "girl of his dreams" to have caught the Duke admitting he only allowed it to humor his son since he'd been sure she was dead. The Duke also admits that if he'd known she was alive all this time, he never would have done it.)
Snow White marries William because he is the only one who understands her.
(It is William who notices how she shivers at the sight of apples. Refuses to walk through the courtyard where the old apple tree stands. Avoids looking at the stuck pigs with apples in their mouths at the celebration feasts. Later, she hears through the castle grapevine that the tree has been fallen and that it had been the work of William with the help of Eric and the dwarves. And one night, during another one of the celebration feasts, William feigns a raucous drunkenness Eric would be proud of and proceeds to shoot an arrow at the apple in the pig's mouth. Everyone watches as the arrow, carrying the apple, sails into the fire. The hall erupts with cheering. People jape at William and scold him for trying to show off while intoxicated. He just laughs, and when no one but Snow White is paying him attention, smiles at her from over his cup that, if anyone notices, was full of water and not wine. All she manages is a weak smile in return, but that seems enough to make William light up as if he had just achieved victory against an entire army.)
Snow White marries William because he is hers.
(She tries to remain strong, but there's only so much smiling and pretending everything is alright for the kingdom that she can take before she breaks down. Like a thief in the night, she flees her room. The room that was once Ravenna's before it was converted into queen's chambers for her. Creeping about the castle, she goes to the one place that seems safe to her. It's horribly sad that that place is her old cell. It was once her prison, but now she thinks it might have been what kept her safe from the real world all these years. Safe from corrupt lords, assassins, and the responsibility that has been put on her shoulders to fix a broken world. She wonders if they understand that she is broken and needs fixing too. She doesn't hear him come in, but rather feels the weight of his form dip the mattress behind her and his arm settling on her waist. The frame of the sad little prison cot creaks under their combined weight but holds. It holds them forever it seems. He doesn't say anything, just stays there with her until she decides she is ready to go be queen again. For the rest of that day, he is at her side, like he always had been when they were children. Like he always will be now that they have found each other once again.)
Queen Snow White and her Prince Consort William marry for love and not politics.
(It is as happy an ending as any two people can ever have after what they have gone through together.)
AN: Even though I should be updating my other stories or even writing a one-shot accompaniment for To Have a Heart, I'm writing this. What the actual fleep? I don't even ship Snow White/William. I'm so sorry Eric. So sorry. (Sobs) At least I've made some SW/W fans happy. There are too few SW/W fics out there and all of them are angsty. I felt bad.