A collab fic I started with the awesome ChasingDreams! Who offered to help me when I posted this prompt over at dreamwidth on the rotg_kink meme. I randomly got this idea in my head of "Beauty the Beast" with rotg characters in place. She is helping me write this story and I am really grateful! They're not guardians in this story, but they do have their guardian-like powers. (Why? Because this is a Disney inspired fanfic and I can. C:)
Enjoy my pretties!
Long ago, a race of creatures lived upon this earth.
Noble, proud, full of mischief and sometimes malice, the púca–shape-shifters, skin-changers–roamed freely, teasing and tempting and leaving travelers astray. The greatest clan of these, the scion of the first of the skin-changers to land upon the world, lived in a castle tall.
The youngest of this clan, the proudest of his race, was a youngling, fae and strange and lovely, full of power.
He did not like how his cousins would lead the others of the worlds off of cliffs and down dangerous paths, but he kept silent. And they led astray still.
Yet, the moon watched them, as they played their games and wreaked their havoc across the lands, ducking in and out of shadows to escape the moon-man's eyes.
And he was not pleased.
They came like lightning, nightmares and fears and deadly shades of black with glowing eyes of gold, the creatures form the shadows. Like-kin-but-not-kin, they ran rampant through the pookas' tunnels beneath the earth and charged across the expanses of the world, destroying and slaying every last pooka they could grasp.
The youngest of this first clan hid away, gathering what friends he could to safety inside his castle, and barring the windows with his magic and the door with his back, choosing his easiest form to shift that he may spare that energy on protection, and not the keeping of his shape.
But even that was not enough. They broke through his magic, tearing them away from him, as though hacking off a limb. Still he fought, valiant and brave until at last it was only he and his two closest companions, a daughter of flight and a fallen star. He pushed them behind his back, and kept them between himself and the stone wall of the tallest spire of the castle. Breath ragged, soul bleeding magic and spirit from the tears and breaking of his shields, injured and nearly collapsed, still he stood his ground, backing up and defending with all ferocity he could claim, until he stepped into the bright light of the full moon, streaming down from the sky through a hole in a broken window high up the wall.
And he changed. The fearlings fell back, dissolving to dust. He was held in gentle but foreign hands, mending and stopping up the soul bleed, yet locking him into the form he had chosen, tall and strong and fleet, but soft and warm and… strange, a mockery-form.
What pookas remained after the great purge were hunted as beasts soon after, and only he remained, invalid and lain up in his castle, with only his two friends to watch over his sleep. He tossed in his dreams as he felt the last of his kin dying, terrible nightmares in his head until he felt truly alone. And then he woke to the moon in his window.
The man in the moon had claimed his powers as punishment for his complicity, and spared his life for his love and loyalty.
Until he tried to end it all–the agony, the heartbreak–leaping from his window. And the moon was angry.
Then he was alive, and would remain alive, for he had scorned the moon's gift to him. Now he was cursed. To ever surround himself with spring, with rebirth, with new life as his grew longer, as all that he had known faded away and the deaths of his people tore at his soul until he could not feel, never to know the peace of death, of winter's greatest release.
In another part of the world, winter was perceived much more peacefully. Adults scurried about preparing the harvest to last them through the desolate months, while children played in the snow banks and tossed snowballs at their brothers and sisters. Thin blankets of white lay across the fields, covering roof tops and trees. The air was crisp and chilly, while the wind occasionally sent a gentle burst through the town, tormenting the inhabitants with its chill.
One boy in particular, however, was not affected by the cold like his neighbors. He joined the children in their snowball wars, danced while snowflakes rained from the sky, and most importantly, found great pride and escape in ice-skating. This boy was known as Jack Frost, only a name befitting a winter lover. He was walking into town early morning, finding childlike amusement in his puffs of visible breath as he went to run errands.
He and his father, Nicholas St. North, were not born in this quiet little village, but they had been here for so long they could call no other place home. Jack's mother had died in childbirth, but North, as he had become known throughout the village, doted on his little boy to fill the role of both parents. He was firm and strict when needed, but he lavished Jack with affection and gifts. North had the wonder of a child, and relished in creating toys and trinkets for the towns children as well as his own son. While the adults often gossiped and thought of him as a man with a few loose bolts rolling around upstairs, his toy making abilities were well received during the Christmas months, and he was a huge favorite amongst the children.
Jack huddled his cloak closer around his body as he finally made his way to the town square. He had been sent to retrieve some new tools for North, and while he was fond of winter he hated making his way through the cold to do menial tasks such as running errands. But since North was the breadwinner, Jack was stuck with the secondary role of being the gopher. To make his trip more entertaining, he decided to indulge himself in some mischief.
Nothing particularly harmful. A few wind-blown skirts (Jack always grinned at their dramatic gasps), a couple small patches of ice to watch the baker slide along with his basket full of French loaves, and his boredom was quickly elevated. Jack had a reputation for being an unrelenting prankster, which caused much dismay amongst the town folk, particularly the women. Everyone marveled over how he was so good-looking, tall and thin with sinewy limbs, a smile full of unusually perfect teeth, large blue eyes that sparkled with life, and a mop of shaggy dark hair tainted with white of the snow. He would have easily been the most qualified bachelor in town, if he had the interest and the personality to match. Jack was not interested in settling down though, and craved adventure and freedom beyond the town's borders.
"Jackson Frost!" An older woman screeched as she struggled to control the billowing bundle of blankets in her arms. Jack hurried on his way, but chuckled under his breath. Although they knew it was him, Jack was not outright obvious with his mischief. He had the wind on his side and the power of the snow to aid him. A wave of his hand and a snowflake would appear. The snap of his fingers and a patch of ice materialized out of nowhere. He had a special gift, the ability to create snow and ice, to imprint joy onto others during a usually morbid time of seasons. More often then not though, Jack used his talents for his own mischievous amusement.
"You won't be smiling once your father hears of this!" The woman shouted after him as he hurried along. A fellow neighbor stood besides her, sighing.
"That Jack, it's such a shame he is how he is. He could easily have any woman he wanted with those good looks of his."
"No amount of being handsome justifies acting like an irresponsible child!" She huffed, folding her pile of blankets under her arms. Her friend nodded in agreement. "That boy is eighteen years old, it's time he started acting like it!"
Jack continued his trail of tricks as he finally reached his destination, earning him curses of his name and shouts of surprise. He was childish, but not incompetent. He knew what the towns people said about him, chastising him behind his back for "not acting his age" and "refusing to grow up", and being horribly influenced by his child-like father, who they viewed as a grown man with a child's mind locked up inside. Most often, they commented on Jack's good looks and how if he had the right personality, a more "mature" personality, he could easily be the star of the town.
Jack didn't usually say much to their comments; confront them about their gossip and harsh words behind his back. He had little reason to care. He refused to be like them, old and bitter from age and letting the harshness of reality kill their spirits. Children were happier for good reason, because they managed to see the good in everything and were able to enjoy the simplicity and innocence of the world around them. That was the kind of life Jack preferred, and the kind he would always live, snide neighbors be damned.
Finally, Jack reached the shop. His mood turned brighter as he stepped inside, the little bell above his head ringing loudly to announce his presence.
"Ah, Jack!" The shop owner greeted him, his accent as thick as his mustache. He reminded him a lot of his father, being of such thick stature with enormously broad shoulders and the good-natured personality to go along with it. "How can I be of service to you, young lad?"
"Hello." Jack beamed. "I need to get a couple things for dad." They conversed casually as he got Jack the tools he needed, ruffling the boys' hair as he teasingly scolded him for his pranks Jack couldn't help but laugh about to him.
"You better watch out, or all this trick playing will come back to bite you in the arse." Jack chuckled, gathering up his purchase.
"Have you looked around town lately? No one has what it takes to out-prank me."
"That may be so, but angry women will finally have enough and beat you with rolling pins. Better grow eyes in the back of your head." The shop-keeper said as he jabbed the teen in the forehead. He smirked and assured the man he'd keep on his toes. Thanking him, Jack headed back out into the cold, this time with a more vigorous energy.
He made his way through town mischief-free, but that didn't stop the whispering that was still loud enough for him to hear. He just rolled his eyes. Jack learned to stop caring long ago what the towns' people thought of him. It simply wasn't worth it. He was not content to be just like everyone else, to be a generic sheep in a large herd. He was gonna make a name for himself and get beyond these damn borders, no matter what the cost.
As he was nearing the small bridge that would lead him on the path back home, Jack's eye was immediately drawn to the ice pond on his right. It was the perfect size, neither too big nor small. Considering the time of the season, he had no reason to fear the ice being too thin. He shifted the weight of his skates against his back, carefully drawn together and hanging over his shoulder, hidden under his cloak. He fulfilled his errand, now it was time to have some fun.
Jack eagerly made his way towards the pond. He sat in the snow as he put on his skates, not worrying about the wet and cold that would seep into his clothes. He had an amazing tolerance for rigid temperatures, thanks to his special gifts. As soon as the blades hit the ice, Jack's body went on autopilot and gracefully made its way around the pond, as if it knew the patterns and paths it had to make by heart. Ice-skating was a particularly dear hobby to him. It was something he thoroughly enjoyed, he found he had a very natural knack for it and was admired by the children for the tricks he could pull off. He discovered he could make beautifully intricate frost patterns on the ice through his blades as he twirled and skidded along. But the main reason Jack enjoyed doing this so much was because it was his own personal escape. No having to put up with the annoying towns people, no pressures from his father, nobody to bother him – just him and mother nature as she permitted him to dance on her floor and twirl through the air.
Jack was so caught up in his activity that he failed to notice he was being watched from afar. A very tall, thin man shrouded in elegant black blended in with the shadows against the trees, arms crossed and a devilish smirk painted across his lips. Golden-gray eyes followed the boy's movements carefully, taking time to memorize the curves of his body as he skated, the way his clothes hugged to his contours when that damned cloak wasn't blocking his view.
This unsettling admirer happened to be Pitch Black, the most sought after bachelor in the town. He was everything a wife wanted in a husband; suave, charming, mysterious, good looking, and most importantly, wealthy and prosperous. Pitch had served as a general, bringing the small village many victories over its life, and with his smooth words, helped bring additional revenue in with his horse races. People would flock from miles away to come see these races, providing a very glorious and rich period. Pitch was a hero amongst the town.
He could easily have any woman he wanted. But he continued to remain unwed, as he secretly found none of the town's women worthy enough of being his wife. He would settle no less for the most beautiful girl in town, how could he allow a plain peasant girl to hang on his arm? It would be a disgrace. Pitch saw no hope for him in this provincial town, and was starting to think of how he could plan to do his courting beyond the parameters
And then he saw Jack Frost.
Jack was not a girl, and could certainly never be a wife. But he was beautiful, easily the most gorgeous person in town. He was a little young for Pitch, but that never stopped anyone. He also was stubborn, defiant, and independent, all qualities that should have deterred the older man from interest as that was the opposite of what he was looking for.
But he found he liked that Jack was that way. He liked that he didn't succumb easily to a few pretty words and a bat of the eyelashes. He would put up a fight, he would struggle, he would resist Pitch and defy him to hell and back once his intentions were made clear, as previous subtle attempts flew straight over the boys head.
All the more reason Pitch was excited and wanted him even more. It filled him with a great delight, the mere thought of breaking Jack of his strong streak, manipulating and tweaking him until he came to depend on Pitch, craved his affections and presence, easily opened up to him both emotionally and physically. Lust consumed him, and he decided he had been lurking in the shadows long enough.
Slowly making his way out into the open, Jack continued to remain oblivious, doing a rather impressive jump through the air and landing gracefully. The boy was skilled, it was pleasing to see him interested in personal hobbies, to see and crave more beyond life's ordinary events. Pitch was far from ordinary, why would he want a lover that was?
Just when Jack had finished a new jump he was practicing, soft clapping snapped him out of his daze and he finally noticed the older male watching him, looking oddly interested in him.
"Your talent is remarkable Jack, I must say," He finished clapping. "You clearly have dedication, though the rest of the town would vehemently question that notion."
Jack wasn't quite sure how to take that. Was he just complimented or insulted? Or both? And why was Pitch all the way out here… watching him?
"Thank… you." He decided on, unsurely. "So, what are you doing here? The great and mighty Pitch Black taking time out of his busy schedule to talk to little old me?" He put a hand over his head, mimicking a dramatic young female. "Why, I do believe I just might faint." He said, lowering his voice to make it sound higher pitched.
Pitch chuckled lowly, "Always the clown." He crossed his arms again. "I have a proposal for you, dear boy."
"You're proposing to me?" Jack quirked an eyebrow, smiling idiotically.
"Don't twist my words." Pitch's voice was calm, but with a hint of bite to it. "Is that anyway to treat someone who's trying to extend an invitation towards you?"
"An invitation to what?"
"To accompany me for a drink." The bachelor made an elegant sweeping motion with his hand, holding it out in Jack's direction. "Indulging in a little bit of adult… pleasure would certainly be a benefit to you, Jack." The way his tone suddenly became softer and rich, and the way he was eyeing Jack more intently made the winter lover realize there was deeper intentions behind this plan then simply sharing a drink at the tavern. This was how Pitch often talked to women, especially when he was cooking up a scheme to get them to do something for him. Jack wasn't going to fall for that!
"I really need to get going. I have to help my father." Jack made his way to the pond's edge, grateful he had put his stuff on the ground facing the direction of the bridge – opposite of where Pitch stood. The guy was always kind of unnerving. Right now he was being downright creepy.
"Come, come Jack, I mean no harm." Pitch began to make his way towards Jack, which made him hurry to get his skates off faster. "We are both adults, are we not? This is a perfectly normal activity I'm proposing." He began to come closer. "Your dedication to your father is truly admirable, but you don't allow yourself freedom beyond the apron strings. I merely wish to get to know you better." Every last inch of you, Pitch added mentally as delicious images of Jack, exposed and bare, inhibited his mind as he fawned over the idea of getting into the boys pants. He wondered if Jack was as cool to the touch as he looked.
"This sudden interest in wanting to "get to know me" is flattering," and downright creepy as hell, "but I'm not naïve like everyone believes me to be." Jack didn't even bother to put his shoes on; he simply tied together his skates and hooked them back over his shoulder, gathering the rest of his things. He would gladly walk the rest of the way home barefoot if it meant getting away from Pitch faster. "I don't buy that saintly attitude you fool everyone else with. You're up to something, and I want no part of it. Now go bother someone your own age." With that, Jack began to leave, but was stopped by his arm being grabbed instantly. He turned, an incredulous look on his face.
Pitch looked even more determined, and then smiled. It was an unconvincing smile, full of false sincerity and reassurance.
"Jack, my dear boy. Your lack of confidence in me is heartbreaking." Jack resisted the urge to snort. This guy was worshipped by every man and woman in town, one person not liking him shouldn't have been a huge concern.
"Please… come spend the afternoon with me." Despite Pitch's efforts at a gentle tone, it still sounded more like a statement then a request. "You have no reason to fear me; I mean no ill-intent. I enjoy your different perspective on things, your independence and spirit, your determination to make something of yourself. I wish more men were like you. You are truly one of a kind. Won't you indulge me with your company?" At this point he had pulled the boy closer, looking deep into his round blue eyes. He wondered if they looked even better wide in fear and submission, trapped underneath him…
"No!" Jack yanked his arm away, hastily putting a reasonable distance between himself and the older man. "I told you, whatever you have up your sleeve, I want no part of! There are plenty of other people would love to give you your company, so go bother them!" With that, Jack turned his back to him and made a beeline for the bridge. As the cold engulfed his bare feet, he suddenly got an idea.
"Jack, wait, just give me a chance-"Pitch was cut off as he was suddenly and unexpectedly belted in the fact with a decent size snowball. The force of the hit made him stumble backwards, landing on his rear in the snow. As he wiped the snow from his face, obnoxious young laughter made his eyes snap open.
Jack stood on the bridge, grinning widely. "I figured as the great General that you are you would have seen that coming! Better stay on your toes, Pitch. You wouldn't want the town to hear about that Jack boy getting the better of you, right?" With a mischievous cackle, he mock saluted the elder before hightailing out of site.
Pitch remained on the ground for a few seconds, stunned at what just happened. Then fury consumed him from head to toe, causing him to stand hurriedly as he growled between his teeth, wiping the rest of the snow off his skin. That foolish, incontinent, disrespecting brat! How dare he act such a way towards a man who could easily have him ousted and executed with no repercussions. The stupid boy had no idea what kind of trouble he was getting himself into. Pitch Black got what he wanted, when he wanted. It was the least this speck of a village could do in exchange for his noble and exceptional service to these lots of brainless peasants.
And Jack was going to learn that very quickly, and very harshly. He would make the boy succumb to him, and become his. And Pitch would be lying if he said he wasn't going to enjoy the process.
Jack slowed his run down to a steady walk the further he got from the pond. Honestly, that guy just earned himself the title of Weirdest Man in Town. To be so openly expressive in lusting for someone of his own gender was one thing, but to do so towards someone like Jack, who was so many years his junior? Shivers raked through him, and he knew it wasn't just the cold.
All of a sudden, a loud noise shook the ground around him, startling a gasp out of him. A giant burst of smoke shot into the sky, slowly transcending into thin gray patterns. Jack cursed under his breath, making a dash for the source, ignoring the discomfort it caused his feet.
"Damnit Papa, what did you do now?" He muttered as he hurried home.