The Petals that Fall: Always Save Me
by Alexis Marie
Title: The Petals that Fall: Always Save Me
Summary: A bonus one-shot for The Petals that Fall story arc. A look at Bash and Mary’s childhood. Mary and Bash play Queen and Knight. During their game, Mary declares, “But won’t you always save me?” Cute fluff. Mash. Mary POV.
Genre: Romance, Friendship
Characters: [Sebastian de Poitiers], [Mary Stuart]
Disclaimer/Letter from the Author:
Hello, guys! This is Marie, bringing you another one-shot based off of my recently completed Reign fic, The Petals that Fall. If you haven’t read it yet, you should.
Like always, Reign and its characters are not mine. However, TPTF’s plot is. Please ask permission before any reuse of any part of this fan fiction.
The Petals that Fall by Marie Meyers. 2013-2014. All Rights Reserved.
Always Save Me
“Take me into the Blood Woods today.”
Mary stared intently at Bash, stamping a foot impatiently. “What are you doing anyway?” Bash was lying on the grass.
“I’m not doing that.”
Mary raised her chin indignantly. “Yes, you are.”
Bash gave her a cool stare. “Don’t pretend to be a Queen. We both know you’re far from it, Mary.”
The insult made her bite the inside of her cheek and retort. “Don’t be a Meanie Head!”
Bash looked away from her, “Sorry.”
To Mary, he didn’t sound very sorry, but Mary could tell he meant it, somehow. But she was still frowning. He was still just lying there.
“Bash,” Mary drawled, irritated, but slowly. She was trying to be calm and elegant. Catherine had told Mary that queens are always collected. She bet Francis that she could act Queenly for one whole day. That was yesterday. Today Mary awoke – and after the initial morning rush, donned a mask that would ensure Francis played King and Queen with her – and slowly said to her maid, “Prepare the bath,” in that best imitation of Catherine that she could muster.
Since then, she had been the perfect example of calm (nevermind her occasional, indignant outbursts). Especially during her lessons, story time, and play time with Francis. That’d way he’d see her acting like a queen, too. Take that!, Francis.
But now Francis was doing whatever he was doing, and Mary had long grown tired petting her horse. She wanted to do something fun. She knew Bash was probably doing nothing, so she had begun to go towards Nostradamus’, the apothecary, window. She saw him a little ways in the grass when she was halfway there.
She really liked playing with Bash. She had been playing with him for the past two days, since he had crossed her path when he’d snuck out of Nostradamus’ room. That had been after she’d been in French Court for barely over a week.
She would have probably never crossed his path if she hadn’t seen his hand appear from the half open window right as she was walking by. The window was somewhat below ground level, the bottom sill of the window even with the height of the ground. So when she had started past ’round the time he was was pulling himself through the window, all she saw was a limb appearing from thin air. Truth be told, it had frightened her into place. She didn’t exactly know what she was expecting – a demon of some sort, a devil, or ghost perhaps – but when she had seen his head and realized it was no situation of the sort, she had become curious as to whom was appearing before her. So she’d gradually inched closer. She had been silently observing him for several moments before he’d noticed her. She had thought it odd that he stared at the ground for as long as he had – as if he had never felt grass before? – and Mary became engrossed in the mystery.
It was sudden, the way he snapped his head up and he gazed at her. She had jumped, initially, starled – but had been drawn almost immediately to his stare. His eyes were wide and blue and clear. The only eyes she’d ever seen so clear was her mother’s, so Mary almost immediately felt more curiosity towards him than fear.
Mary pursed her lips a moment, before letting out a silent huff. This Queen stuff was hard work.
“Tell me what you’re doing,” she demanded, trying to hide her impatience.
“Yes, Your Grace,” Bash told her flatly. “Staring at the sky, obviously.”
“Stop exaggerating. It’s not obvious.”
“Yes, it is.”
“How?” Mary asked, annoyed.
“Because I’m lying on the ground literally staring up at the sky. Honestly, Mary.” It sounded like a reprimand.
“Sebastian, please don’t reprimand me; as a fellow child it seems rather odd. I am a Queen, also; it is not respectful.”
“Mary, why are you acting like that?”
“So calm. You’re usually acting obnoxious and nosy – like a wild animal, or something.”
“You’re the wild animal. Bore,” Mary said in a flash of anger.
She heard Bash let out a bubble of laughter.
“What?” she snapped. How dare he call her a wild animal. She was an elegant and beautiful queen. If he was going to be a meanie head, she could be one, too.
“I’m just relieved to know that it’s the real Mary that I’m talking to,” Bash said.
“Um, well who else would it be?”
“I don’t know, someone elegant.”
“Meanie,” Mary grumbled, sitting beside him.
“Says the girl who called me a boar.”
“Because you called me a wild animal! And nosy!”
“You are nosy. And you don’t act very dignified.”
“Francis says that kind of stuff to me. The other kids here do too.”
“The opinion of those other kids don’t matter. But if Francis says it then it is probably true.”
“So you think it’s true?”
“But that isn’t a bad thing. At least to me. I mean, I think I’m giving up. I mean, you’ve been around me three days now. I guess I’m quick at accepting things.”
Mary gave him a frown. “And what, exactly, have you accepted?”
“Lots of things. But in regards to you? You’re just a wild, mean, impatient girl.”
“I’m not mean!”
“You have a tongue.”
“And you don’t?”
She saw him give a smile. “Not really.”
“So full of it.”
He laughed again. “Shush. Watch clouds with me.”
“I don’t want to. I want you to take me to the Blood Woods.”
“Mary, it is not a place for children.”
“You wanted to go three days ago.”
“I’m not immature like you are.”
“Improbable. We’re both kids. We’re both immature.”
“I’m an older kid than you. I’m less immature.”
Mary glared. “Whatever.”
She supposed she could watch clouds for a moment. Even though there was nothing exciting about the idea. She was begining to wonder if Bash was a boring boy. The day before, he had yelled at her for interupting his reading.
Mary decided to say her thoughts out loud. “Bash the Boring Boy Boar. Likes to read books and stare at clouds. Because he’s Bash, the Boring Boy Boar. He probably enjoys his chores.”
“You should never write poetry. You have no talent.”
“Come on, Bash!” Mary argued. “Why can’t we go in the woods? What’s the real reason you won’t take me?”
“Why do you want to go?” He asked her.
“I’m bored. There’s nothing exciting to do in this courtyard. I want an adventure.”
“What makes you think I’m qualified to take you on one?”
“Because you’re the most intriguing thing I’ve encountered so far here.”
“Bash, you never answered my question?” Mary said pointedly.
“Sometimes the woods aren’t very safe.”
“Is this a fact that you know?”
“Mary,” Bash sat up, and turned his clear stare on her, “I will never tell you.”
“I’m a queen, and I demand it.”
“Are you going to have my head? Because you can have it, because I don’t care. You need to believe me. The woods aren’t safe right now.”
He wasn’t that much older than her, only by two years, but in that moment Bash seemed so much more adult than Mary ever seen a child. She felt so small and uncertain. Her irritation turned to somber curiosity. But – a part of her wasn’t sure; should she even ask?
“Bash,” she whispered, “have you seen many bad things in there?”
Bash looked down and shook his head. “I haven’t seen anything bad,” he whispered, “but weird things happen in there.”
“Oh.” Mary processed the information. She sighed glumly. “Drats.”
“I made a bet with Francis that I could act elegant for the whole day, but you made me lose.”
“Don’t blame me for your temper,” Bash sounded irate.
“But he was going to play Queen and King with me if I won!”
“Should have won, then.”
Mary frowned. Then she looked at Bash. He could play with her. After all, it was his fault she lost.
“Play with me.”
“I’m not doing that, either.”
“I’ll get the guards.”
“No, you won’t.”
“Oh? Are you sure?” Mary took in a deep breath. “GUARDS! GUARDS! GUAR-”
“Shh!! Shut up!” Bash covered her mouth with his hand. “Mary!”
“Play with me then,” Mary mumbled from behind his hand. Though her voice was muffled, she saw Bash’s glare of resignation.
“You manipulative, little cheat.” Bash moved his hand.
“That’s not very nice, Bash.” But Mary was grinning, soaking up her victory.
[ T ][ P ][ T ][ F ]
“Am I the King then?” Mary heard Bash grumble, moments later, after moving to the tree clearing (so they wouldn’t be spotted).
“No,” Mary said, “Francis is the King.”
“But he’s not here.”
“He will always be the King. I’m going to marry him one day and make him my King consort.”
“He’s marrying you.”
Mary frowned. “There’s nothing wrong with that. Stand here.” She pointed to a spot in front of the tree, watched as Bash got into position, then – almost forgot he needs something else! – looked around them frantically.
“Mary,” she heard Bash say with a tone she didn’t quite like, “what are you doing now?”
“Looking for your sword,” Mary responded, choosing to ignore the tone of his voice. She eyed the ground around them a moment longer before spotting a stick. “There!” She exclaimed. “Get it!”
“So bossy,” Bash murmured, but he did as he was told. Picking up the stick, he asked her, “So what is this for?”
“Wait just a second.” Turning her back on him, Mary reached up her arms to grab the nearest branch on the tree behind her, and then another, hoisting herself up into the tree. She took a deep breath before calling out to him, “You need a sword to fight the dragon!”
“A dragon? What – ”
“It’s huge! It has white scales and purple, mean eyes. Its talons are sharp, its wings long. It’s flying towards you right now!”
“Here it comes, Bash!”
French Court was gone. They were in a forest. Bash had been escorting her to a neighboring kingdom to negotiate a way of evenly distributing land and food rations between the two kingdoms (it had been a very harsh winter).
As they’d been passing through the forest, they had heard a terrible shriek resound around them as a terrifying yet beautiful dragon hurled down towards them. Bash had drawn his sword, prepared to battle, but this fierce dragon had avoided him, reaching out its talons and grabbing hold of the top of Mary’s carriage!
Luckily, she opened the carriage door with haste and avoided the creature. For protection, she had climbed a tree, leaving Bash on the ground to defeat the ferocious creature.
“Bash! Do you see it?”
“Mary, this is ridiculous.”
“Bash!” Mary urged, “Dodge it! To the left! Now!”
As the dragon came for him, Bash veered to the left, narrowly missing the terrifying beast as it flew overhead. It reared back, seething, shrieking and hissing I’ll will towards Bash as it charged him again.
“I see it!” Mary watched as Bash raised his longsword high, striking at the beast as he dodged its attack. The dragon opened its mouth wide.
“It breathes fire!” Mary cried. “Use your shield!”
Bash raised his shield high, right when a breath of flame flew from the dragon’s mouth. He grunted, trying to push against it.
“Tell me – why am I doing this again?” he yelled to her as he struggled against the dragon.
“It’s after my royal necklace!” Mary explained. This pendant – the dragon must be lured by the way it shines. We must not let the dragon have it! It’s the symbol of good will towards the neighboring kingdom!”
Bash swiveled on his heels, crouching low and rolling as the dragon barred its teeth.
“No, I mean” – he yelled at the dragon as he struck its back with his blade; it didn’t seem to phase the dragon, who flew high in the air and straight back down. It flicked its tail and Bash raised his shield, crying out as the impact knocked him back. He fell on his back; Mary gasped. The dragon flew towards Bash, ready to tear him to pieces. Bash used his shield to hold it back.
In between breaths, he continued – “why…am I…fighting…a dragon… in the first place?”
“Because you’re a knight! You were sent to protect me!” Mary yelled, watching Bash push against the dragon.
“Who…said…I…want…to…protect…you?” Bash panted.
Mary paused. “But won’t you always save me…?” Her voice was quiet, an unintentional whisper, and she sucked in a breath. Bash snapped his head up, and Mary found herself staring at his eyes. They were so blue, as dark, deep, and beautiful as the crystalline waters that surrounded her castle in Linlithgowshire, back in Scotland. Back home, Mary always felt secure with the water around her, always felt as if its unfathomable depth could swallow up any threat that dare try to cross it in any attempt made on her life. Surely, the deep sea she found herself looking at now – the two piercing, deep blue orbs framed by dark lashes – surely, they’d offer her the same protection? Wouldn’t they?
Suddenly, Bash shifted his gaze and refocused his attentions on the dragon. Using his shield, he pushed against it, and struggled to his knees. It slackened its assault, flying back a ways to open its mouth again. When its tell tale fire blazed, Bash pushed against it, running forward hard and fast, driving his blade into its stomach.
The dragon thrashed and shrieked in pain, creating gusts of wind the propelled it away from Bash’s reach. It wobbled – flying into a tree – before maneuvering itself into the sky. Mary and Bash watched wordlessly as it vanished into the horizon.
Bash turned to her then, flicking the blood of his sword before placing it in its sheathe. Walking towards her, he stopped in front of the tree and held out his arms.
“Your Grace,” he said, bowing his head a moment. Mary blinked, confused. Then incredulous.
“I’m not going to jump!” she exclaimed. “I’ll fall!”
“I will catch you,” Bash said simply.
Mary frowned. “You – ”
“I will save you,” Bash interjected, stopping Mary short. “I will always save you.”
Blinking a moment, Mary swallowed against her rising panic, willing herself to calm. With shaking limbs she stepped to the edge of the branch, then jumped swiftly, squeezing her eyes shut as she felt the wind through her hair and against her royal gown. She felt herself falling…and then felt the warm impact of his body as his arms wrapped around her and she was crushed to his chest.
They fell back, both grunting. The impact stung slightly, but for Mary it was worth the safety that she felt now. She laid against him a moment, bound to him by his arms.
“Let’s wait until I’m a bit bigger before I try to catch you again,” Bash finally said, with a sigh.
Mary smiled into his chest. “You’ll catch me again?” she asked him.
“If I’m protecting you against dragons like this, I’ve no doubt.”
“Well, you did wound it. But our journey is not yet near its end; the dragon may return before our adventure is over.”
“Then, get off of me,” he nudged her, “and let us continue our quest.”
Mary sat up. “But of course.” She grinned before standing. She held out a hand to Bash, and he took it, jumping to his feet. “Thank you, my brave knight.”
Bash grinned, “But of course, Queen,” he told her. Then together they made their way – on foot – through the forest.
AEN: What did you think? Was it cute? Yes; Mary has a bit of an overactive imagination – but it’s funny, at least to me. I imagine Mary was quite indignant and bossy in childhood.
I never really touched up on too many memories between she and Bash in The Petals that Fall. I’d like to think that Bash liked to talk big, and was a bit prideful, but also truly enjoyed their moments together.
If you don’t know already, I have recently opened a forum for TPTF. I have yet to update, but subscribing to the forum will keep you up-to-date on all TPTF news.
Also, I haven’t been able to upload fan fictions to my [FFnet] account. For some reason, once I select the category l am left with a blank page – despite any devices or browsers I use. I’ve heard and read on health forums that many other writers have experienced this as well, though I haven’t read of any solutions. In order to post new stories to [FF] in the future, I may have to make a new account (until the issue is resolved). So be on the look out.
Also, follow my WordPress blog (mariemeyers . WordPress . com ….no spaces), my tumblr (jusslex), and my twitter (meyermariea) for more news and just because (;
Remember to review! Thanks for reading!
~Marie Meyers, 2015.
Copyright of Marie Meyers, 2015. All rights reserved