Title: We Parody You Because We Love You
Characters/Pairing: Richard/Kahlan, Zedd, Cara (almost Z/C)
Inspiration: "they were probably whispering sweet nothings to each other"
We Parody You Because We Love You
"I know I said we could never be, but then I started wearing this leather dress with side slits halfway up my thighs, can't you take a hint?"
"I should be working on my quest, saving innocent people, or possibly ruling a kingdom, I'm not too clear on these things, but I don't care - I love you!"
"I love you! Oh, Richard!"
Zedd held Cara tenderly in his arms, her back arched in a perfect, ladylike curve, eyes half-shut as if she were about to swoon, one wrist flung helplessly to her forehead, the other hand buried in the Wizard's hair.
"That's not funny," Kahlan said. She had her hands on her hips.
"It's not nice to make fun of other people's Epic Love," Richard agreed, but his eyes danced with repressed laughter.
Zedd swung Cara to her feet, and the two performers took an ironic bow together.
Title: Weather Forecast
Characters/Pairing: Darken/Kahlan, Nicholas
Inspiration: "she would always look back and remember the way life was supposed to be"
There were times…
“Mama, mama, look! I’m the Seeker of Truth—whoosh! I killed a gar, that was attacking some innocent people! See?”
Nicholas zoomed around the room, waving his play wooden sword and stabbing the innocent air, while Kahlan, curled in the window seat, watched in sympathetic exhaustion.
Nicholas was Kahlan’s most important responsibility, but she would have watched him with the same fascinated attention even had he not been her sole hope of seeing Richard again. She saw so many echoes of herself in her son—he had her eyes, and the same sharp intelligence behind them, too.
She tried to pretend he was Richard’s, but there was no mistaking the determined set of his jaw, the arrogant smirk on that bright, alive little face…
Which was currently pink and pinched with what Kahlan recognized as the high energy she associated with imminent collapse from exhaustion. Nicholas had been bouncing off the walls all day, because of the rain still streaming down the window behind Kahlan’s back.
With a sigh, Kahlan made to rise, but her husband entered the nursery just then, gave Nicholas one evaluating glance, and swept the boy into his arms.
“Bed for you, my little prince,” he said affectionately.
“NO!” Nicholas protested vehemently, squirming and trying to hit his father with the wooden sword. “Don’t wanna!”
Darken twisted the play weapon out of his son’s hands. “Goodnight, Nicholas,” he said firmly, holding the little boy’s gaze until Nicholas reluctantly quieted.
Kahlan watched him tuck Nicholas into bed. So far he hadn’t taken any notice of her presence. On the whole, she approved—Nicholas came first.
Their son was asleep in minutes, all that pent-up energy finally spent.
Only then did Darken turn to Kahlan, offering her his arm and pulling her up out of the window seat without waiting for her permission.
“My wizards tell me tomorrow should be sunny,” he said quietly. “Thank the Creator.”
Kahlan almost agreed, before she remembered that this was Darken Rahl. She couldn’t agree with him, even about something as trivial as the weather—he was still the tyrant she had given her life to defeat.
But there were times it was easy to forget that she didn’t belong here—that Darken and Nicholas weren’t her real family.
At times like these, she would always look back and remember the way life was supposed to be. When she watched over a very different Seeker of Truth, a man who owed nothing to the D’Haran Empire her son would one day inherit.
And yet…every day, it seemed, she lost a little more of the desperation that had inspired her plan in the first place. There were times when it seemed easier to forget she had ever been anything but Lady Kahlan Rahl.
Characters/Pairing: Cara, Kahlan (hints of C/K)
Inspiration: "as Cara died, she saw Kahlan"
All her years of fighting for what she thought was right—her Sisters and Lord Rahl, source of the strength that justified her existence—had come down to this.
One moment, stretched infinitely long, looking into the Mother Confessor’s cold eyes.
Cara thought she saw condemnation therein, and welcomed it. She deserved worse.
When she thought of the deceit that had convinced her to take her own father’s life, she wanted to die. That betrayal hurt the most—more even than the dark future in which the Mother Confessor’s son, instead of her own, had ruled.
She waited for the all-consuming agony of Confession, reflecting that it could hardly make her feel worse than she did already.
As Cara died, she saw Kahlan. One moment, stretched infinitely long, looking into Kahlan’s suddenly human eyes…
Cara read everything therein, as if she were the Confessor: hot rage, that had turned to cold fury, for what Cara had done to Dennee Amnell; corrosive bitterness directed at Richard, who had denied her vengeance and sought to protect Cara over the woman he swore he loved more than life itself; guilt, for leaving the sister Cara had murdered alone and vulnerable; fear, for Richard’s life, as he once again ventured into the unknown on an impossible quest; pity, for Cara’s losses, her father and her innocence together; grudging respect for Cara’s competence; and shrewd, almost clinical judgment, that Cara’s remorse was real.
Kahlan removed her hand from Cara’s neck.
Cara hardly dared breathe, recognizing how close she had come to a death she surely deserved and almost desired—and marveled at what she had seen in Kahlan’s eyes.
Surely, the weight of her crimes had driven her mad, to think she could read a Confessor’s thoughts.
And how could anyone possibly feel so many conflicting emotions at once?
What bothered Cara the most later, though, was neither Kahlan’s pity nor her hate—it was the superiority, the ‘I spared my sister’s killer, let all marvel on bended knee at my mercy.’
Mostly because, almost every day, Kahlan made Cara want to marvel on bended knee.
Title: Kitten Alert
Characters/Pairing: RKC, hints of C/K
Inspiration: "all her training hadn't prepared her for this"
“I am Mord’Sith,” Cara muttered savagely, as she maneuvered her way onto the next tree branch. Leaves fell to the distant forest floor, probably getting caught in Kahlan’s bodice…
Distracted, Cara’s gloved fingers slipped a little on the rough bark, and she had to shift her weight quickly in order to balance.
“Just a little further!” Richard called. “You can do it!”
He was hanging precariously from a branch about a body length above Cara, the kitten he had insisted on rescuing cradled protectively against his chest. It was showing a remarkable lack of the appropriate outraged spirit, and had so far neglected to bite or scratch him.
Cara doubted that it would extend her the same courtesy.
“I have broken more men than I can count,” Cara went on grimly, as she continued to climb, “I have led armies, I have withstood torture that would make any of you three beg for the Underworld, I have outlined Darken Rahl’s eyes with kohl—“
At that, Richard raised his eyebrows, and had the audacity to grin down at her.
Cara refrained from explaining that it was no laughing matter, and had actually involved an unusually complex and arcane assassination plot, and concentrated on her climb.
After all, if both she and Richard, who had neglected to realize that once he retrieved the kitten he would be as stuck as it had been, since that last branch was impossible to get down from one-handed, fell out of the tree to their doom at Kahlan’s feet, there would be no one possessed of the Breath of Life left to revive them.
She owed her Lord Rahl care for both his life and his dignity—the latter was far more difficult than the former with Richard.
But the fact remained that all her training hadn’t prepared her for this. “I am Mord’Sith,” she concluded, finally within range.
Richard gently held out the kitten. It resisted leaving the comfort of his arms, and clawed futilely at Cara’s leathers once she had a firm grip on it. “And Mord’Sith,” she said, in defiance of her current position, “do not rescue kittens in trees.”
Title: Under His Spell
Characters/Pairing: Darken/Kahlan, Richard/Kahlan
Inspiration: "for a moment, Kahlan wondered what it would be like to give in"
Under His Spell
“This isn’t you,” the Seeker begged, eyes dark and wide and skin a map of pain. “Kahlan, please—you can fight this, I know you can.”
Even helpless and in chains, the Seeker of Truth remained confident, ready to die rather than to give in to Kahlan’s Lord and Master, Darken Rahl.
Abstractly, she admired that determination.
“Kahlan,” he went on, as she circled him, the hem of the white dress she still wore brushing against the cool stone. “Remember the first time we met—I saved you from a D’Haran quad, and you nearly killed me? Zedd named me the Seeker, and you told me you were sworn to protect me with your life. On your way to find me, you lost your sister—all because of Darken Rahl, the tyrant who slaughtered and enslaved your people!”
Kahlan made an impatient noise at that. “I remember I thought that once,” she said. “Lord Rahl showed me how wrong I was. You will learn, Seeker, that my Master desires nothing but peace, throughout all three territories.”
“It’s a spell! This isn’t real, Kahlan—you can fight it, I know you can!” The desperation in the Seeker’s tone was palpable now. “And my name is Richard, Kahlan,” he added, tears forming at the corners of his eyes. “I love you. You love me. Just—unchain me and we’ll go and find Zedd and he’ll fix you, and everything will be the way it was.”
He looked so sincere, his heart shining out his eyes—for a moment, she was arrested by the sight. For a moment, Kahlan wondered what it would be like to give in.
To flee with the Seeker—Richard—and fight the ultimately hopeless battle against Lord Rahl and his armies. To wake every morning to that smile, that “I love you” as casual as breathing.
But then, the Seeker wanted the Wizard to ‘fix’ her. Kahlan didn’t need fixing. She felt more whole than she ever had. She had a purpose. She had love. She had victory.
She had everything.
“The Confessor,” Lord Rahl said smoothly, stepping up behind Kahlan and putting a possessive arm around her waist, “is mine.”
“NO!” the Seeker cried, thrashing futilely in his chains.
But Kahlan, turning in Lord Rahl’s embrace and pulling him down to her for a lengthy kiss, paid Richard Cypher little attention.
She had a man worthy of her love and her service now, and he wasn’t the Seeker of Truth.