Long ago, in the quiet kingdom of Swellville, there lived a wicked and powerful sorcerer. He ruled over the people with an iron fist, and he treated most of his subjects like slaves while he hoarded most of the kingdom’s resources and wealth for himself. Many brave souls tried to challenge his reign, but none lived to tell the tale.
After years of living in extreme squalor, one young, gallant couple decided enough was enough. They conspired with the people of Swellville to start an uprising. They convinced the people to join them, and they even got the neighboring kingdoms of Borderith and Astoria to assist them as well.
The morning of the revolution arrived, and the townspeople, along with brave knights from the adjacent kingdoms began to storm the castle. The battle raged on for several days and nights, with no end in sight. The army of rebels fought with vigor and valor, but it was not enough against the sorcerer’s immense power. Many of their lives were lost. Things were starting to seem hopeless, and what remained of the army was growing tired and wary.
Just when it looked like they had all but lost the war, a fearless and valiant knight stormed into the battle. He was able to survive every one of the sorcerer’s spells, even the ones that would’ve killed any mortal man. It was almost as if he was... invincible . The battle between the two raged on for what felt like days. Finally, the knight was able to defeat the sorcerer and the sorcerer was banished to the woods, never to return to Swellville again.
Swellville, now without a ruler, searched to find a suitable replacement. They wanted to appoint the valiant knight that had saved them, but before they could, he vanished. So, the couple that first proposed the uprising was appointed. The couple was kind, just, and fair; perfect candidates for Swellville’s new rulers. However, the kingdom was in ruin from the battle and the sorcerer’s long reign of terror. The couple worked tirelessly to return peace and balance to their kingdom, and their allies in the battle, the kingdom’s of Borderith and Astoria, became their closest partners and aided them in rebuilding the kingdom. Despite this, the job proved far too great for them to impose any real change in the short-term. Even in the present day, they are still working to restore what was once a great kingdom. Now, the couple’s eldest son, Henry, is about to turn seventeen and on his birthday, will be taking the crown. And thus, our story begins…
“What do you think of this place setting, dear?” Queen Siren asked her son, Henry, as she pointed to a set of dinnerware placed out in front of her. Siren and her young daughter, Piper, were circling around an oblong dining room table admiring different formal place settings that had been laid out for them to choose from, while Henry was slouched in a chair at the head of the table, staring off into space. He had been lost in a daydream and completely missed his mother’s question.
“Henry? Darling?” Siren repeated softly. Henry snapped out of his train of thought as he turned to face his mother.
“I’m sorry?” he said, furrowing his eyebrows and sitting up. Siren took a deep breath, clearly a little annoyed that Henry hadn’t been paying attention, but she did her best to hide it as she plastered on a fake smile.
“The place setting. What do you think of it for your coronation?”
Henry glanced at the one she had pointed to and dismissively waved his hand.
“That’s fine. Whatever you guys think.”
Siren could feel her patience wearing thin, and she put a little less effort into hiding her annoyance this time.
“This one will be perfect,” the queen said to one of the royal event planners that had been standing back a little as she waited for the royal family to make their selection.
“Alright,” Siren said to Henry now, a biting tone to her voice, “now the menu.”
Henry groaned as he slumped down into his chair again.
“Mother, we’ve been doing this for hours. My coronation isn’t for another month, can we please take a break?”
Siren clicked her tongue as she crossed her arms over her chest.
“I realize that, but we still have a lot to do. It takes a lot of planning to put an event together like this, you know.”
Henry rolled his eyes but remained silent. Siren started discussing different menu options with her two children, but Henry tuned her out as he got lost in thought again. In all honesty, he would rather be anywhere but here. He didn’t like being reminded of his impending coronation. He knew for a fact that he was not cut out to be king. He had been watching his parents lead (and by his parents, he mainly means his mother) since he was just a young boy and he knew he would never be able to live up to her legacy. On top of that, the kingdom was trying to rebuild after the epic battle with the sorcerer, and Henry wasn’t sure he was the right person to take over such a considerable task. He tried to focus his mind on other things while his mother continued to drone on about something or other pertaining to his coronation party. His mind immediately went to the same place it had been going for the past several weeks; to the boy in the blacksmith’s shop. He was abruptly dragged out his daydream once again as he felt someone sit down next to him.
“What are you thinking about?” his little sister Piper asked quietly enough so their mother wouldn’t overhear. Henry noticed that the queen was now standing on the other side of the room with the event planner, going over something on the planner’s clipboard.
“Uhh…nothing. Why?” Henry answered hastily, hoping his sister wouldn’t press the issue.
“Because you had the goofiest smile on your face,” Piper responded in a mocking tone, “You looked so stupid.”
Henry frowned a little as he stood up.
“Whatever. I’m going to the marketplace for a little while,” he announced to the room. Siren and the black-haired woman next to her stopped their conversation to look at him.
“Henry, we’re in the middle of something here,” his mother said, her tone sharp. Henry just rolled his eyes.
“You know I don’t care about this stuff. Besides, I trust you and Piper. Just go with whatever you think is best.”
His mother sighed heavily but she knew to try to argue with him would futile. He had been resistant to planning this coronation from the very beginning.
“Fine, but be back by dinner time. And don’t forget, you and Piper have your fitting tomorrow. Don’t think you’re going to get out of that one,” Siren replied, her expression serious.
“Yes, ma’am,” Henry responded in a defeated tone as he started towards the door. He took a huge sigh of relief once he was out of the room. He was thankful he was going to get a few hours away from the coronation planning, and butterflies formed in his stomach as he thought about exactly where he wanted to go.
The marketplace was hustling and bustling with shopkeepers manning their booths trying to pull in customers and customers hurriedly making their way from place to place. A few kids playing various games were running at full speed, weaving their way through the thick crowds. Henry smiled to himself for a moment as he watched them. The marketplace smelled of cinnamon and sweets from the nearby bakery. Henry strolled along as he took in the various sights and smells. As he passed a booth with various jewelry, he noticed a young girl no older than eight or nine in a ratty dress and no shoes eyeing a pretty necklace hanging in the middle of the jewelry display. He made his way over to her and knelt down beside her so they were at the same level.
“Hi, sweetheart! What’s your name?” he asked.
“Lucy,” she answered without taking her eyes off the necklace.
“It’s nice to meet you, Lucy. I’m Henry,” he responded. “Which necklace are you looking at?” She pointed to a silver necklace shaped like a heart with a blue jewel in the middle. “Wow, that’s very pretty! Would you like to have it?”
The girl frowned as a longing look flashed in her eyes.
“Yes, but my family cannot afford it,” she answered wistfully. Henry just grinned as he stood up.
“That’s okay. I can,” he said as he picked up the necklace. The girl finally looked up at him, a puzzled expression etched across her face. Henry pulled a few gold pieces out of his pocket and handed it to the shopkeeper.
“Keep the change,” Henry said as he smiled. “Thank you, your majesty,” the shopkeeper responded gratefully. Henry then turned and handed the necklace to the little girl. The little girl’s face lit up like a Christmas tree.
“Oh, thank you!” she exclaimed as she threw her arms around his waist. Henry chuckled.
“You’re welcome! And here. Just in case you happen to find a nice bracelet to match,” Henry said as he handed her more gold pieces. A wide smile spread across the girl’s face as she beamed up at him.
“Thank you, sir!” she said before running off calling to her parents about the pretty necklace the nice man bought her. Before he was out of earshot Henry could hear the mother saying “Honey, that’s the prince,” and Henry couldn’t help but smile to himself a little. He continued to stroll through the marketplace, stopping at almost every booth to buy at least one thing from each. Once Henry had visited every booth, he decided to visit the same place he had been visiting every day for almost a month. He opened the door into the blacksmith’s shop, where the only light source was a roaring fire that was currently being used to heat various metals. On the opposite side of the room, metallic weapons of various sorts were on display. A young boy around Henry’s age was working near the fireplace, and he looked up when he heard the door open. Even though his eyes looked tired from working for so long, his face still lit up at the sight of the prince.
“You’re back,” he said as he subtly tried to wipe the sweat off his forehead. A piece of his light brunette hair flopped down in front of his eyes, and Henry thought his heart might beat out of his chest. He took a few steps forward as he sheepishly grinned.
“Yeah. I uhh…hope that’s okay,” he stuttered out.
“Of course it is. You’re always welcome here.”
Henry could feel the heat rising to his cheeks and he was hoping that the room was dark enough that the boy wouldn’t notice.
“Thanks, Jasper,” he responded. Jasper grinned as he grabbed a broom and started to clean up. Henry had met Jasper a few weeks ago when he stumbled into the shop one day, and he had been enchanted by him ever since. He had decided impulsively to commission a sword from him, even though he had never picked up a sword in his life and he had no idea how to wield one or if he would ever really need too. It became their routine that Henry would visit him at some point in the day, under the guise that he was just checking to see the progress of his sword. Little did Henry know, Jasper was taking much longer than he normally would to finish it because he enjoyed having Henry stop by just as much as Henry enjoyed being there.
Henry sat down at the same table he always sat down at on the left side of the room. They remained silent for a while, with Jasper sweeping up the shop and Henry staring off into the distance, lost in thought. After a while, Jasper started to notice that Henry was being uncharacteristically quiet, and he looked up to see that the prince had a wary expression on his face. He stopped sweeping for a second and called out to him.
Nothing. The boy didn’t seem to notice that Jasper had said anything at all. Jasper’s forehead furrowed as he leaned against the broom.
“Henry!” he called out again, a little louder this time. Henry snapped out of his train of thought and looked up at Jasper with a puzzled expression.
“What’s going on? You seem like you’re a million miles away today,” Jasper asked. He leaned the broom against the wall closest to him and then went to sit down across from Henry. Henry began to run his fingers over a nick in the table as he sighed.
Jasper crossed his arms on the table in front of him as he leaned in closer.
“Penny for your thoughts?” he said with a lopsided smile. Henry glanced up and met Jasper’s gaze. His blue eyes were sparkling in the orange glow of the firelight and for a second Henry forgot what he was worried about.
“It’s just my coronation. It’s approaching so quickly. I don’t think I’m ready for any of this,” Henry said as he stood up and ran his fingers through his hair. Jasper tried to focus on what Henry was saying instead of how adorable he looked when he did that. Jasper opened his mouth to speak but Henry cut him off.
“I just need to forget all this stuff for a while. Just go somewhere where I’m not reminded every ten seconds about the coronation or the planning or my birthday. Someplace quiet.”
Henry looked down at the floor as he began to pace. Jasper waited for a second to see if Henry was finished was talking, and once he assumed that he was, he held up his finger and opened his mouth to speak again.
“What are you doing tonight?” Henry asked before Jasper had a chance to make a sound. Jasper just shut his mouth as she placed his hands down on the table.
“Nothing,” he said simply.
“Ever heard of the pixie crystal river?”
So, chapter 2! You guys will learn a little bit more about Ray’s place in this universe. Schwoz will be included too, but he isn’t going to be included for a long while. I have a very specific role for him, but a lot needs to happen first before he can be introduced. Also, this is gonna be a Knight Squad crossover, but I think I’m gonna do it like the HD/KS crossover where they will be included, but they won’t play a huge part. I love them to death, but I already have a lot of events planned with the HD crew and I’m worried doing KS subplots will just get to be too much. Also, I’m not happy with the first like threeish chapters because I have to take time to set things up, but I’m planning by at least the fourth chapter to finally have some action and finally start delving into the main plot. Finally, you guys are gonna get a HUGE hint at the identity of the sorcerer. Let me know what you think of this chapter, good or bad! And I hope you enjoy!
That night after Henry’s parents had retired to their room, Henry started tiptoeing down the hallway from his room to the grand staircase. He had made it down the hallway and past the stairs and was halfway through the foyer before he suddenly froze.
Except, it wasn’t on purpose.
He tried and tried to take a step forward, but it was as if his boots were glued to the floor. Before he had time to panic, he heard a familiar voice approach him from behind.
“Well, well, well. Look what we have here,” the voice said in a sinister tone. Henry let out a deep sigh as he rolled his eyes.
“Piper, what have I told you about using your magic on me?”
Piper ignored her older brother as she circled around to face him.
“And where do you think you’re going?” she asked. Henry plastered on his best fake smile as he tried to erase any hint of annoyance in his voice hoping that if he was nice enough, his sister would let him go. (Although, he knew deep down that that would never be the case.)
“Nowhere,” he replied. Piper raised one eyebrow as she stared down her sibling, obviously unconvinced. “Just thought I would take a little stroll around the yard. Get some fresh air. That’s all,” Henry continued, feigning innocence. A malevolent smile spread across Piper’s lips.
“C’mon, Henry. Do you really expect me to buy that? You’re sneaking out to meet that boy again, aren’t you? That...that commoner ?” Piper interrogated, a hint of disgust in her voice at the word commoner.
“Don’t talk about him like that!” Henry spat. Piper furrowed her eyebrows a little at her brother’s sudden defensiveness. She knew he was getting close to this boy, but his attitude led her to believe that he might be getting a little closer than she originally suspected.
“So? Is that where you’re going?” Piper questioned. Henry exhaled sharply.
“Yes,” he answered through gritted teeth. Piper’s wicked smile immediately returned. She raised a hand and started inspecting her nails as she circled around Henry who was still frozen in place.
“How do you think Mom and Dad would feel about you sneaking out to meet some commoner you barely know at this hour?”
Henry pursed his lips a little as he shot daggers at his sister when she had finally circled around to face him again.
“What do you want?” he asked begrudgingly. It was Piper’s turn to feign innocence. She put on her sweetest smile as she met Henry’s gaze.
“Oh, nothing much. It’s just...you’ll be king soon,” she started. Henry felt a knot begin to form in his stomach. “Why don’t we just say for now that you owe me a favor?”
“Oh, no way! Why can’t I just do your chores or something?” Henry countered. Piper clicked her tongue as she shook her head.
“Favor or it’s no deal. I’ll just have to go tell Mom and Dad.”
“Piper, there is no way I’m agreeing to this.”
“Fine by me. MOM!” Piper started screaming but Henry cut her off, quickly shushing her.
As uneasy as it made Henry feel, the only thing that made Henry feel more anxious was having to face a furious Siren. Although, judging by the devious and satisfied look that was now plastered on Piper’s face made Henry second guess that.
“Excellent,” Piper replied. She started back towards the stairs.
“Uh, Piper? Aren’t you forgetting something?” Henry said as he still tried to pry his boots off the floor, knowing it was no use. Piper had already made it to the second step and she let out a groan and rolled her eyes as she turned around to face Henry again.
“Ugh! Fine,” she said, and with a wave of her hand, pink sparkling smoke swirled around Henry’s feet, dissipating after only a few seconds. To Henry’s relief, he had full control of his legs again, and with that, he snuck out the front door and on to meet Jasper at the Pixie Crystal River.
The Pixie Crystal River was situated in the forest right in between the kingdom of Astoria and the kingdom of Swellville. It was a quaint little place where most of the pixies in the land resided. Lush green grass and dense trees covered the area, with a few mushrooms sprouting up here and there. Instead of water running through the riverbed, multi-colored pixie crystals wove through the ground much like a river would, glowing in beautiful hues of blue, purple, and pink. Jasper was in awe when he first laid eyes on it.
“This place is amazing! It’s so beautiful,” he said as he looked around in wide-eyed wonderment. Jasper wasn’t sure he had ever seen a place so wonderful before. But, then again, he never got out of the shop much.
Henry’s lips curled into a smile. He found Jasper’s amazement somewhat endearing, and he couldn’t help but feel a little excited and happy that he had been the one to introduce this place to him.
“Isn’t it? Charlotte and I discovered it once when we were playing out here as kids,” Henry explained. Jasper felt a twinge of sadness at the mention of Charlotte.
“Charlotte? As in, Princess Charlotte of Borderith?” Jasper asked, half hoping Henry had actually been talking about some other Charlotte.
“Yeah, that’s right. She’s one of my oldest friends,” Henry responded, smiling at the memory. Jasper felt another twinge as he tried to conceal his sudden heartache. Everyone in the kingdom knew of Prince Henry and Princess Charlotte’s impending nuptials once the pair both turned twenty-one.
Little did Jasper know, neither one of them really wanted it. It was true that Charlotte was Henry’s oldest friend, and he loved her an awful lot, but it wasn’t the kind of love where you’d want to get married to the person. They’d both describe it as more like a platonic love or a sibling love. Besides that, Charlotte had a secret long-term girlfriend nobody knew about but Henry: Duchess Anais from another neighboring kingdom. Henry and Charlotte had both tried to talk their parents out of the arranged marriage, but their parents felt that it would be a good way to unify both kingdoms and merge them into one. So, the duo had made a pact; Henry would keep Charlotte’s girlfriend a secret even after they were married and she would do the same, given he ever found someone.
Henry noticed Jasper’s sudden mood change despite Jasper doing his best to hide it, and Henry’s smile immediately faded.
“Hey, what’s wrong?” he said softly as he put his hand on Jasper’s shoulder.
“Nothing. Just tired from work, that’s all,” Jasper lied. Henry nodded, seemingly satisfied with that answer. The twosome sat down on the ground side by side with their backs leaning on a log. They remained in comfortable silence for a while, just listening to the crickets chirp and the occasional chatter of pixies returning to their homes for the night.
“Hey, thanks for meeting me tonight,” Henry said after a while. Jasper had been gazing up at the stars, but he turned his head in order to look at Henry.
“Of course,” he said with a genuine smile. Henry smiled back and he could feel the heat rising in his cheeks for a moment as he admired the way Jasper’s eyes were glistening in the moonlight.
“The coronation...my birthday...it’s all just getting to be too much,” Henry continued as he looked down at the ground. Jasper’s smile immediately faded and was replaced with a look of concern. He continued to watch Henry and remained silent, allowing him to continue to vent if need be.
Which is exactly what happened. Henry started another one of his spiels about his anxieties of becoming king, most of it boiling down to him not thinking he’s good enough.
“I don’t know the first thing about leading a kingdom!”
“What if there’s another battle?”
“What if I can’t live up to my mother’s legacy?”
“How will I deal with the day to day problems?”
Jasper had remained silent throughout the whole spiel, allowing Henry to get out what he needed to get out.
Henry took a heavy sigh after finishing as he ran his fingers through his hair.
“I’m sorry. We came here so I could stop thinking about that. Besides, I’ve known you for close to three weeks and I think at least 80% of our time spent together has been me just venting to you like you’re my therapist or something,” Henry said. Jasper chuckled.
“Welllll,” he answered in a high-pitched voice to indicate that Henry wasn’t totally wrong, and it was Henry’s turn to chuckle.
“Let’s talk about you,” Henry suggested. Jasper felt a little uneasy considering he didn’t like to talk about himself too much, but he didn’t protest.
“What about me?”
Henry thought it over for a moment.
“Do you have any siblings?”
“Nope. Just me,” Jasper answered. “Although, that’s probably a good thing,” he added, a hint of an upset in his voice. Henry’s forehead furrowed as he titled his head a little.
“What do you mean?” he questioned. Jasper sighed as he looked down at the ground.
Henry placed a gentle hand on Jasper’s arms as he leaned in a little closer to him.
“Seriously, what is it?” he continued softly. Jasper wasn’t sure what it was about the Prince that made him want to tell him everything; perhaps he felt like he knew him, given that the royal family always tried to make themselves as accessible as possible to the public. Or, maybe it was because Jasper had been infatuated with Henry ever since they were kids, even before he knew him personally. In any case, there was just something about him that made Jasper feel like he could trust him with his best-kept secrets.
“It’s my parents,” Jasper began, “they’re not the best caretakers in the world. To put it lightly. Often times they pretend like I’m not even there. They provide a roof over my head, but that’s about it. I’ve been having to fend for myself from a young age. That’s actually why I got the job at the Blacksmith’s shop. My boss, Ray, caught me stealing food one time right outside his shop, but instead of punishing me, he asked me why I did it. I was honest, and at that point, he offered to show me the tricks of his trade. He really took me in; made sure I was taken care of. He’s been more like a father to me than my actual father ever has.”
The corner of Henry’s mouth turned up slightly.
“That’s really nice. I’m glad he could do that for you. It sucks about your parents, though. I can’t imagine what it must have been like to have to find your own food at such a young age.”
Jasper just shrugged.
“I did what I had to.”
Henry felt a twinge of guilt as he thought about Jasper’s story. Henry had been blessed with growing up in a lavish castle with two loving parents, where every meal was like a Thanksgiving feast while Jasper had to steal food just to survive. Just then a thought occurred to him and his eyes widened as he sat up excitedly.
“Jasper, you’re amazing!” he exclaimed. Jasper blinked for a moment and his heart fluttered, a little taken aback by Henry’s sudden outburst.
“Um, thank you?” he replied, confused. Henry grabbed Jasper by the shoulders as he looked into his eyes, his lips curling into an eager smile.
“Seriously, thank you! You just gave me my first official decree as king!”
Meanwhile, deep within the woods...
Deep within the woods in a run down old cabin, sat a balding man at his desk where various beakers and papers were strewn about. He was mulling over his latest plan when a tall woman with short black hair appeared in the doorway.
“You rang?” she said smoothly.
“Yes, Lady Cohort,” he answered. “The time is almost upon us. The boy’s coronation is coming up soon.”
“Yes, sorcerer,” she replied. He stood up from his desk and turned to face her, a mischievous and malevolent smile on his face.
“The minute that boy gets his crown I’m going to take care of him, and finally reclaim what’s rightfully mine. Start getting things ready. It’s time to begin phase one.”
The next morning, Henry found himself standing on a platform in front of a mirror that covered the whole wall, while two tailors knelt by his feet, placing pins in his navy blue pants. Charlotte was standing on a platform next to him in a gold dress that matched the buttons and epaulets on his jacket, while another tailor was placing pins in her dress. Henry yawned for the millionth time that morning, and Siren looked at him with concern.
“Are you alright, dear? You have dark circles under your eyes,” she asked. Henry gave her a sleepy smile.
“I’m fine, Mom. Just a little tired,” he answered. Piper snickered.
“What’s the matter, Hen? Stay up too late last night?” she teased, threatening to reveal his nightly excursion to meet Jasper. He shot daggers at his sister, but she just sneered. Siren had a nagging feeling that there was something she was missing here, but she decided to drop the matter.
“Oh, you two are going to look so adorable at your coronation, dear. With your little matching outfits,” she gushed as she clasped her hands in front of her chest, admiring her son and his future bride. Charlotte and Henry exchanged uneasy glances, while they did their best to plaster on fake smiles.
Charlotte’s girlfriend, Duchess Anais, sat behind her hunched at an all too small table for her half-giant figure with Piper, while the pair etched out ideas for Piper’s dress.
“I think we should make the skirt a little poofier,” Piper suggested as she took the pencil from Anais, “I am a princess after all.”
“Speaking of my coronation, I’ve been thinking,” Henry stated, “and I think I found my first official decree as king.”
A grin spread across Siren’s face.
“That’s wonderful, darling! What is it?” she asked eagerly. This caught the attention of everyone in the room, and now all eyes were on the Prince. Henry cleared his throat, now feeling a little uneasy with all this attention.
“Well, every time we have a meal in this place there’s always an overabundance of food that gets thrown out. I mean, why the cooks decide to make full-on feasts for just the four of us is beyond me. It doesn’t make any sense!” Henry began, but Siren’s face turned serious, signaling for him to get on with it, and Henry swallowed hard as he worked to get back on track.
“So, anyway, I was thinking….we never use the guest house out back, so what if we renovated it and opened it up as a soup kitchen type thing? We can donate all the food we don’t eat, considering it’s just going to get thrown out otherwise.”
Siren continued to watch her son for a moment, her expression unchanged, and Henry was a little afraid she was going to flat out reject the idea. Finally, her lips curled into a huge grin.
“Honey, that’s a wonderful idea. Your father and I will start working on the plans as soon as possible,” she responded. Henry smiled. Just then, one of the royal family’s butlers appeared in the doorway.
“Pardon the interruption, Your Majesty, but there is someone here to see the Prince,” he announced. Henry glanced around for a moment, a little confused. Most of the people that came to visit him were already in this room.
“Um...send them up then, please,” Henry replied, and the man simply bowed slightly in response as he disappeared to go fetch the mystery visitor. Several moments later he reappeared and stepped aside to reveal Henry’s guest, who was holding a long, black box in his hands.
“Jasper!” Henry exclaimed excitedly as his face lit up like a Christmas tree, and he stepped off the platform to approach him, much to the dismay of the tailors. Jasper sheepishly grinned at Henry. Henry’s enthusiasm and Jasper’s blushing pink cheeks at the sight of Henry did not go unnoticed by Siren.
“Jasper,” Charlotte and Anais mouthed to each other eagerly before they turned their attention back to the pair. Jasper glanced around the room to see that he was almost entirely surrounded by royalty, save for a few workers, and he suddenly felt out of place and a little intimidated.
“So, you’re the infamous Jasper,” Piper said, her voice a little devious. Henry shot her a serious look as he shook his head a little, signaling for her to keep quiet and to stop insulting his guest.
“I don’t know if I’d say infamous,” Jasper responded timidly.
“It’s very nice to meet you, Jasper. We’ve heard so much about you,” Siren said as she gave him her sweetest smile.
“Oh, uh, thank you, Your Majesty. It’s so wonderful to meet you too,” Jasper replied. He then turned his head away from Siren and the rest of the group so that his mouth was right by Henry’s ear.
“Do I need to bow or something or?” he whispered. Henry did his best to conceal his amusement at Jasper’s question. He subtly shook his head.
“No, you’re good,” he quietly answered back. Jasper turned to look at the room again as he smiled.
“Yeah, Henry hasn’t shut up about you since you guys met,” Charlotte announced, a playful smile on her face. Henry’s grin immediately faded as he shot her a look, which she ignored. Jasper felt butterflies start to swarm in his stomach at the thought of the Prince talking about him to his friends.
“And you guys have been spending an awful lot of time together. Isn’t that right?” Piper teased. Henry’s eyes widened as he glared at her, but she just continued to grin. Henry stood there, desperate for someone to change the subject, which Anais quickly picked up on, and she decided to give him an out before it turned into relentless torment.
“What’s that?” she asked, gesturing to the box in Jasper’s hands.
“Oh, right,” Jasper said, looking down at the box he had forgotten he was holding. He turned so his body was facing Henry as he opened it up.
“Ta-da!” he exclaimed, revealing Henry’s shiny new sword. Henry’s face lit up as he began to reach into the box.
“Henry Hart!” Siren snapped, and Henry stopped dead in his tracks, his happy expression swiftly disappearing. “Did you really commission a sword ?!”
Henry winced as he dared to look at his mother, and he saw that she was furious.
“Yes?” he answered softly.
“Cool! Can I see it?!” Piper exclaimed as she shot up, but Siren held out a hand to stop her.
“Absolutely not! Henry, what were you thinking?! When are you ever going to need a sword?” Siren barked. Henry just shrugged.
“I don’t know. I just thought it would be cool to have one, I guess,” he lied. The truth was, he commissioned it on impulse; he just wanted an excuse to see Jasper again.
“Oh...uh, don’t worry about this one, Your Majesty. It isn’t meant for wielding, it’s just for show,” Jasper interjected. Siren’s expression softened a bit.
“Really?” She asked, doubt dripping from her voice.
“One hundred percent. I even have a mount for it back at the shop. I just couldn’t carry them both,” Jasper continued. Siren still looked skeptical, but Henry could tell she was slowly coming around to the idea.
“Thank you,” Henry mouthed to Jasper and Jasper winked in return, which sent Henry’s heart into overdrive.
“Well...I suppose if you aren’t going to wield it…” Siren said, a little more calmly now.
Since she could tell Henry wasn’t going to get yelled at like she had hoped, Piper quickly grew bored of the conversation and went back to sketching out her coronation dress.
“I can keep it?” Henry asked eagerly. The Queen crossed her arms over her chest as she exhaled sharply.
“I suppose,” she replied. Henry and Jasper exchanged excited smiles before Henry went back to admiring the sword. He slowly reached in to grab it, but underestimated how heavy it would be, and once he pulled it out of the box, the metal end clumsily hit the floor with a loud clang. Jasper pushed his lips together and looked down at his feet for a moment, doing his best not to laugh, while Henry’s friends and sister openly made fun of him.
“Nice move, loser,” Piper said in a mocking tone without looking up from her sketchbook. Anais and Charlotte broke out into a fit of giggles and Henry shot them a look. He gently placed the sword back in the box as he took it from Jasper.
“Finished!” Piper announced as she looked at her sketch proudly. She set the sketchbook down on the table in front of her, stood up, and took a deep breath. She waved her hands over her, and pink, sparkling smoke began to swirl around her, starting at her feet, and as it moved up, her outfit changed from her usual casual wear, tan pants, a blue long-sleeve shirt and a brown leather vest, to a forest green formal dress. The bottom of the dress was poofed out and reached the ground, while the bodice was covered entirely in silver rhinestones. The very top of the dress and out towards the sleeves was a translucent green material with silver rhinestones scattered about. The pink smoke dissipated once Piper reached her neck, and she looked into the mirror and smiled, satisfied with her creation.
“Oh, honey, you look beautiful,” Siren said, as she admired her daughter’s creation. Jasper turned to Henry, shock plastered on his face.
“Your sister can do magic?! Can you?! Have you been holding out on me?” he interrogated. Henry let out a chuckle.
“No, Piper’s the only one in our family that picked up the ability to do magic. She’s been able to do it since she was five,” Henry answered. He then lowered his voice to make sure his sister wouldn’t be able to hear.
“And she’s pretty powerful too. Sometimes a little too powerful.”
Despite Henry’s best effort, Piper still picked up on his last sentence, and she smiled a little to herself. Jasper just nodded in response, satisfied with Henry’s explanation.
“So, if she can do that, how come you have to get your clothes tailored?” Jasper questioned.
“Because using her magic to alter my clothes would be helpful, and god forbid she ever do anything nice for me,” Henry answered, getting a little louder at the last half of the sentence as a hint to Piper, but Piper just ignored it.
The girls continued to marvel at the dress, while Henry and Jasper fell into an awkward silence.
“Well, I guess I should go now,” Jasper said.
“Oh….uhh...right. Let me walk you out,” Henry responded as he set the box containing his sword down before he gestured for Jasper to go through the door first.
“Be right back, Mom. I’m gonna walk Jasper out,” Henry announced before disappearing through the doorway.
“Okay, but hurry back! We need to finish your outfit fitting and then it’s time to look at crowns!” his mother called back, unsure if he was even listening or not.
Henry led Jasper down a few hallways and down two flights of stairs before they finally made it to the foyer by the front door. Jasper looked around for a moment, marveling at how big the place was. A single table with a vase full of flowers sat in the middle of the room, with a grand crystal chandelier hanging above it. Across from the front door stood the grand staircase, that broke off halfway up into two separate staircases leading to the left and right wings of the castle. After admiring the place for a minute, Jasper finally met Henry’s gaze and they both awkwardly smiled at each other, unsure of what to do next.
“Well, I guess this is it then,” Jasper said finally, hoping that the Prince would state otherwise. Henry felt his heart ache a little at Jasper’s words. Was this Jasper’s way of saying he didn’t want to spend time together anymore?
“I guess so,” he answered back. Jasper felt his heart sink. The sword had been the excuse they used to see each other, and now that it was done, neither was brave enough to admit that they wanted things to continue.
Jasper glanced down at his feet as he bit his lower lip for a moment.
“Well, I’m gonna go then,” he said, jabbing his thumb towards the door. Henry’s heart sunk into his stomach.
“Okay. I guess I’ll see you around then sometime,” he said. Jasper just nodded, trying to conceal the fact that his heart was shattering into a million pieces.
“Definitely. I’ll see you around,” Jasper replied before proceeding to open the front door. Right before Jasper closed the front door behind him, Henry spoke.
“Wait! Are you hungry? Let me buy you lunch as a thank you for the sword.”
Jasper felt his heart skip a beat.
“Yes! I mean, um, sure. That sounds good,” Jasper responded trying his best to conceal his excitement.
“Great! Let me just go change real quick. Wait here,” Henry said before speeding off up the stairs and to his room. He got changed out of his coronation outfit and into something more casual (well, casual to him anyway; to anyone else it would still be considered formal) before going to the fitting room again and sticking his head in.
“Hey, Mom, I’m gonna go take Jasper out to lunch as a thank you. I’ll be back soon,” Henry declared as he started back towards the foyer before even waiting for his mother to respond.
“Henry, wait a minute!” Siren called after him as she stood in the doorway, “you have your fitting, remember?!” But it was no use. Her son had already disappeared. Siren shook her head and exhaled sharply as she went back to managing Piper and Charlotte’s fitting. She didn’t like how close her son was getting to this boy; she didn’t like it one bit.
Henry took Jasper to a quaint little restaurant in the middle of town, with white tablecloths and tiny candles as the centerpiece. Jasper didn’t want to admit that it was one of the nicest places he had ever been to, and he might even go so far as to say it was a little...romantic too. But, surely that was just a coincidence.
At the end of the meal, Jasper tried to insist on paying for his half, but Henry wasn’t having it. He paid for their meal and ended up paying for everyone else’s meals as well, telling the waiter to put on the royal family’s tab.
After they had finished, Henry bought them both vanilla ice cream cones from a tiny cart just a few doors down from the restaurant, and now the pair were walking side by side through the marketplace, eyeing the various merchandise at the carts and in the shop windows.
After a while, Jasper stopped dead in his tracks to admire an object in the toy store window, and Henry had taken a few steps ahead of him before he realized Jasper wasn’t by his side anymore. He turned around and walked back to where Jasper was standing as he looked into the window, trying to see what Jasper was looking at.
“What is it, what are we looking at?” he asked. Jasper sighed as he finally tore his gaze away.
“It’s nothing. Let’s just go,” he said as he started to walk away again, but Henry reached out and grabbed his wrist to stop him. Jasper looked down at Henry’s hand now clasped around his wrist before moving his gaze back up to Henry, as he felt a swarm of butterflies invading his stomach once again.
“C’mon, what is it?” Henry questioned. Jasper winced a little as he worked to avoid Henry’s gaze.
“You’re gonna think it’s stupid.”
Henry took a step closer to Jasper as he moved his head to try to get Jasper to look in his eyes again.
“I promise I won’t. Just tell me,” he responded gently. Jasper finally locked eyes with Henry again, and he could see that the Prince was being sincere.
“Do you see that metal bucket in the window?” he asked. Henry turned his attention away from Jasper for a moment to look.
“Yeah,” he replied before he faced Jasper again, confusion etched on his face. Jasper licked his lips and took a deep breath prior to continuing.
“Well, I know it’s kinda weird and stupid, but I’ve sort of always really loved buckets. I think they’re cool, and I’ve wanted to start a collection since I was young. I begged and begged my parents to buy me a bucket just like that one, to kind of get the collection started, but they always refused,” Jasper explained. “See? I told you it was stupid,” he said as he looked down at his feet. Henry felt a pang of guilt again as he thought about the mountains of presents and toys his parents had provided for him growing up.
“That’s not stupid,” Henry responded tenderly. Jasper locked eyes with Henry again.
“You don’t think so?” he asked gently. A slow, genuine smile crept across Henry’s face.
“Not at all.”
Jasper could feel all the heat rising to his cheeks and he tried to look away so Henry wouldn’t notice.
“Hey, could you do me a favor real quick?” Henry asked.
“My sister has a necklace on hold at the jewelry store a few doors down from here, would you mind stopping in and getting it for me?”
Jasper furrowed his eyebrows.
“Why can’t we both do it?”
Henry raised his eyebrows as he frantically searched for an answer.
“Because….because…” he stuttered out, “because...I have to go to the bakery to talk to them about my….cake for my coronation,” Henry answered quickly, pointing his finger in the direction behind him. Jasper crossed his arms over his chest, clearly not buying Henry’s excuse.
“Okay. So, why can’t we just go to the bakery first and then the jewelry store? Why does this have to be a separate endeavor?” he interrogated. Henry swallowed hard, desperately searching for another excuse.
“Well, because….the jewelry store and the bakery are both gonna close soon. So, that’s why,” Henry responded unconvincingly. Jasper continued to stare at Henry for a moment, trying to figure out why he was suddenly lying.
“Pretty sure they’re both gonna be open for a few more hours considering it’s only four p.m. but alright,” Jasper said as he started walking backward still staring at Henry. Henry gave him his best convincing smile as he waved goodbye and Jasper just rolled his eyes and smiled as he turned around, continuing on to the jewelry store. Henry immediately let out a sigh of relief as he quietly slipped into the toy store.
Fifteen minutes later, Jasper met Henry outside of the toy store once again.
“Sorry, Hen, the jewelry store said they didn’t have anything for your sister, and even if they did, they couldn’t give it to me because I don’t work for the royal family,” he said as he met Henry’s gaze.
“Ah, don’t worry about it. I’ll get it later,” Henry lied, knowing full well that there really was no necklace. Henry had a huge smile on his face and his hands behind his back and Jasper immediately frowned.
“Why are you looking at me like that?” he asked.
“I got you something,” he said. Jasper furrowed his eyebrows and smirked as he moved his body towards Henry.
“At the bakery? I just had ice cream, so I don’t think-” he started, but he stopped once Henry revealed the object in his hand.
“You got me my bucket?” he asked softly as a jubilant smile crept onto his face and he took it from Henry. Henry felt his heart swell at the joy on Jasper’s face.
“Henry, you’ve already done so much today. I can’t accept this,” Jasper said as he thrust the bucket back towards Henry, but Henry held his hands up to block him.
“No way! It’s a gift. I’d really like for you to take it.”
Jasper looked down at the bucket and back up at Henry.
“Well, at least let me pay you back,” he insisted, but Henry just shook his head.
“Nuh uh! You don’t pay someone back for a gift!”
Jasper smiled a little as he continued to admire his new bucket.
“Thank you,” he said sincerely as he smiled at Henry. Henry thought his heart might burst.
“Now you can finally start that collection.”
The pair began to walk again in comfortable silence as they made their way to the Blacksmith’s shop. As they reached the door, that same sinking feeling they felt in the castle foyer overcame them both.
“So, I guess this is it,” Jasper said softly as he looked down at his new bucket, trying to conceal his heartache.
“I suppose it is,” Henry said. They looked into each other's eyes for a moment, both of them desperately hoping the other would be brave enough to say that this wasn’t the end. Suddenly, the door swung open to reveal a burly man with dark hair.
“There you are! You told me you were just going out to make a delivery, but you’ve been gone all afternoon!” he exclaimed.
“Sorry, Ray. Henry and I sort of lost track of time,” Jasper said sheepishly. Ray’s attention then turned to the Prince.
“Ahh...the delivery was to Henry. I should’ve known. You’re the only one that ever hijacks my employee,” Ray said sharply. Jasper’s eyes widened at Ray’s harsh tone. He couldn’t believe his boss was really talking to the Prince like that.
“Ray!” Jasper cried, but Henry just shook his head.
“No, he’s right! Sorry, Ray,” Henry said sincerely. Ray just gave Henry a wry smile.
“C’mon, Jasper, let’s go,” he said as he gestured for Jasper to follow him inside.
“Can you just give us one more minute? Please?” Jasper begged. Ray looked between both boys, their eyes pleading, and he let out a sharp breath.
“Ugh, fine! You have one minute! But, hurry up! You still have work to do, and the sun’s gonna go down soon,” and with that, the door shut with Ray disappearing behind it. Jasper turned his attention to Henry again as they both stayed in an awkward silence.
“I better get inside before he comes back,” Jasper said as he jabbed his thumb towards the door.
“Yeah, I better be getting home too. I still have a lot of coronation prep to do, and I’m sure my mother is furious by now.”
More awkward silence.
“Well, I hope I see you around sometime,” Henry said softly, shrugging. Jasper nodded.
“Yeah! Hopefully!” Jasper responded.
“Okay,” Henry declared, and with that, he turned around and started back towards the marketplace in the direction of the castle. Jasper watched him go for a minute, hoping with all of his might that Henry would just turn around. But, he didn’t. He just kept walking, and Jasper finally admitted defeat and went inside when Henry had completely disappeared from view.
Ever since he had taken that first step away from the shop, Henry’s mind and body were screaming at him to turn around and tell Jasper that this wasn’t it. He kept thinking about how stupid and unnecessary it was that they were both willing to give up the friendship they built just because they didn’t have a viable excuse to see each other outside of just wanting to see each other for the sake of it. He sincerely debated turning around several times, but he was too afraid that Jasper would reject him. Maybe Jasper really wasn’t his friend, and he was just being friendly because Henry was a customer. Maybe he actually saw Henry as sort of nuisance, and he was secretly happy that their interactions were coming to an end. After all, at least half the time Henry spent with Jasper, Henry was complaining about how scared he was of becoming king. Henry would probably get irritated after a while too if the tables had been turned.
When Henry finally reached the castle, he swung the front door open to find a furious Siren.
“Henry Hart, do you know what time it is?! There is still so much that needs to get done today! You don’t just walk out like that without permission, especially when we’re in the middle of something-” Siren began, but Henry soon tuned her out. His mind kept wandering back Jasper, but now instead of feeling butterflies at the thought, all he felt was heartache.
A few days passed, and try as he might, Henry couldn’t stop thinking about the boy in the Blacksmith’s shop. He tried to focus on his coronation planning, but something would always trigger a memory he had with Jasper. After three days of not seeing him, Henry was lying awake once again, thinking about how ridiculous it was that they stopped communicating, just like that. He tossed and turned for hours, but just like the nights previous, his mind kept racing, preventing sleep. Finally, in the middle of the night, he decided enough was enough.
“This is so stupid,” he mumbled to himself as he threw the covers off himself. He got up and grabbed a jacket, not even bothering to change out of his pajamas as he snuck down the hallway and out the front door.
A few warnings! My first fight scene is in here, but that’s like...the first fight scene I’ve ever written so it’s cringey and just...I hate it but I’ve rewritten it a thousand times and I can’t quite get it to where I like it, but this version is the one I’ve liked the best. It isn't too grotesque, but
I DO mention blood and a couple of injuries.
Also, you’ll see what I mean when you read it but the part about the dragon is....dumb and embarrassing but idc I’m keeping it and I don’t accept criticism on it lskdf.
A little over twenty minutes later, Henry wove his way through the mostly empty streets of the marketplace, a few stray lights from the buildings surrounding him illuminating his pathway. He listened to the soft chirp of crickets from the woods that encircled the kingdom as he struggled to remember exactly which way to go in order to reach Jasper’s place. He had never actually been there before, but Jasper had mentioned it enough times that Henry was positive he could find it.
Although, it’d surely be easier if it wasn’t the dead of night.
As he continued to the edge of town, he mentally kicked himself for his impulsive decision, realizing then that even if he could find the right house, he still wasn’t exactly sure which room was Jasper’s, and it wasn't like he could just go up and knock on the front door.
Besides that, what was he going to say once he got there? He started imagining scenarios in his head as he walked, trying to find the right words to say, but none of them felt quite right.
He stopped dead in his tracks then debating whether it would be best to just turn around and forget about the whole thing.
What if Jasper had just been nice to him because he was a customer and the Prince? Maybe he didn't actually want to be friends with Henry, and what a mistake it would be to just show up to his house uninvited in the middle of the night.
Still, Henry was almost positive from their previous interactions that Jasper was being genuine, and he really did enjoy spending time with him.
He continued internally arguing with himself, pacing on the cobblestone street. He almost decided to return to the castle, but when he started back home, sure that his mind was made up, something inside him convinced him to continue on with his original journey. It almost felt as if something was pulling him towards the other boy.
Something as simple as asking someone if they wanted to remain friends shouldn’t have caused him so much deep-seated turmoil; it wasn’t like he was declaring his love or anything. But thanks to growing up as royalty, he didn't have any solid friendships with anyone his own age outside of Charlotte and Anais. He had no point of reference to base his interactions on and thus, this was all new territory to him.
When he finally reached the outskirts of town, he noticed a small, slightly rundown house at the very end of the road, and he was sure then that that was the place he was looking for. In the front by the pathway stood an old white picket fence that was busted in several places, the paint chipping off, matching the outside of the house, with overgrown weeds weaving around it. Lining the front of the house on either side of the front door was two flower beds, now full of dead withered flowers, with big patches of dry cracked dirt in between. The windows looked as if they hadn’t been touched in at least a decade. If Henry didn’t know any better he’d assume this place was abandoned.
Thanks to some lucky twist of fate, he noticed a light shining through a window to the left of the front door, and Henry was able to spot Jasper sitting at a tiny wooden desk with his nose stuck in a book. Despite the fact that it was the middle of the night, Jasper still hadn’t changed out of his work clothes from the day before.
The fence stood open just a crack, and Henry pushed through it slowly, the old rusty hinges squeaking loudly as they moved. He froze for a moment, praying that he hadn’t woken up Jasper’s parents with the noise. The inside of the house remained still and quiet, with not even Jasper noticing Henry’s presence, and Henry let out a sigh of relief as he made his way to the other boy's window as quietly as possible, the dead grass crunching softly under his boots.
His room was small, minimal. The desk Jasper was seated at stood on the right side of the room, and a twin bed sat against the wall opposite him. A wooden wardrobe was placed near the foot of the bed, and next to it in between the wardrobe and Jasper was his bedroom door which was fully closed.
Henry approached the window, and took a deep breath, raising his index finger to tap on the glass but he stopped just before making contact. Jasper still hadn’t noticed his presence, and Henry knew this was his last chance to back out. He still hadn’t worked out what exactly to say or what to do, and he contemplated it for a beat longer before deciding just to wing it, hoping that the right thing to say would come to him in the moment. He knocked gently on the pane, trying to be quiet enough so Jasper’s parents wouldn’t hear. Jasper jumped at the noise as he turned to see the Prince sheepishly waving at him. He noticed that Henry was still in his pajamas save for the jacket and his hair was an unkempt mess. It was the first time he had seen him in anything other than formal wear; the first time he had ever seen him as anything other than polished and put together. He did his best to conceal a smile as he thought about how adorable he looked. He moved out from behind his desk and made his way over to the window, softly pushing it open, doing his best not to make too much noise.
“Not that I’m not happy to see you or anything, but what are you doing here? It’s the dead of night,” he whispered, a hint of confusion in his voice.
Henry inhaled sharply.
“This whole thing is stupid!” he blurted out.
He mentally facepalmed, while Jasper narrowed his eyes a little and put his hands down on the windowsill in front of him, leaning his head out towards Henry.
“What is? What do you mean?”
“This whole situation! What I mean is...” Henry paused, his eyes shifting down as he started fiddling with his hands.
“Look… Do you enjoy spending time with me? I mean, do you want to continue to see each other?”
The corners of Jasper’s mouth slowly crept upwards.
“Yes. To both,” he answered. Henry’s eyes snapped back up to meet Jasper’s, a hopeful expression crossing his face.
“Are you sure you’re not just saying that? Because, it’d be fine if you said no, it wouldn’t hurt my feelings or anything. I don’t want you to feel pressured-”
“Henry,” Jasper interrupted, a crooked smile still plastered on his face, “I’m not just saying that. I really do like you a lot.”
Jasper noticed the subtle change in Henry’s expression at his last comment.
“I mean, I enjoy spending time with you a lot,” he hastily added. He was sure he had seen the slightest hint of disappointment in Henry’s eyes at his correction but he convinced himself that it had just been his wishful thinking.
“Cool. Because I enjoy spending time with you too. I know you've finished my sword, but I feel like we’ve kind of become friends in the process,” Henry replied, trying, and failing, to conceal the eager tone in his voice.
“I’d have to say I agree. Speaking of, is that my sword?” Jasper said, pointing to a scabbard hanging haphazardly off Henry’s waist with a leather handle sticking out. “Well, I guess your sword,” he corrected. Henry glanced down at the ground for a second as he felt the heat rising to his cheeks.
“Oh, uh...yeah,” he replied.
“You know that’s just for show,” Jasper said, as Henry looked up to meet his gaze again. Henry rubbed the back of his neck, his cheeks now bright pink.
“I know. I just...thought it looked cool,” he said timidly. Jasper’s smile widened.
“You’re right, it really pulls the whole pajama look together,” he teased. Henry cracked a smile and chuckled as he glanced down for a second, now entirely flustered. They stood in silence for a moment, not really sure what to do next but not quite ready to separate yet either. Henry started fiddling with the hem of his jacket while Jasper continued to watch him, a soft smile on his face.
“It’s really late so I should probably get going. Let you get at least a little bit of sleep,” Henry said finally, looking up at Jasper. Jasper’s smile immediately faded.
“I would invite you inside but if my parents even suspect I had someone in here without them knowing, I’m as good as dead.”
Henry nodded in response as his heart sank.
“I get that. As I said, it’s really late so I should go,” he responded, taking a step back to leave.
“Hang on,” Jasper interjected, straightening up again as Henry looked at him expectantly.
“If you aren’t too tired yet, maybe we could go somewhere. Like, maybe the Pixie Crystal River?” he suggested. Henry smiled.
“Yeah!” he exclaimed, “That sounds cool,” he said a little more calmly, shoving his hands in his jacket pockets as he tried desperately not to appear too eager.
“Just give me one second,” Jasper said, and he sat down on the edge of his bed while he pulled on a pair of work boots. He stood up and grabbed a sweater that was slung over the back of the chair by his desk, and he started to pull it on as he climbed through the open window, softly sliding it shut behind him.
A little over a half an hour later, the pair walked in silence through the forest outside Swellville, weaving around the trees and brush, careful not to trip over exposed roots, the dead leaves crunching beneath their feet. A chilly fall breeze picked up around them, giving an ominous howl as it blew through the trees.
They heard a loud snap of a twig behind them, and the duo whirled around towards the noise, trying to make out a figure in the blackness but to no avail. They exchanged uneasy glances before going forward again, this time a little more cautiously. They were able to move a few more feet before they heard another snap, this time slightly closer than before. Henry felt like his heart was beating in his throat, but he did his best not to show how terrified he was, with Jasper doing the same.
“What do you think that was?” Henry whispered, a hint of apprehension in his voice. Jasper glanced around them, looking for signs of anything that might give them a definitive answer, but it was too dark for him to be able to see more than a little ways ahead of him.
“Probably just an animal or something,” he responded, though deep down he wasn’t exactly sure. Jasper’s answer didn’t do much to ease Henry’s anxiety; even if it was just an animal, it sounded big enough that it could potentially become a threat to them if it got close enough.
They both heard a noise again, this time dangerously close, and they both spun around to see a figure approaching them from the darkness, with two more following suit. Henry instinctively moved closer to Jasper, so that they were shoulder to shoulder, and both boys steeled themselves, expecting the worst.
Emerging from the shadows were three gruff looking men, dressed in ratty clothes. The one in the middle, presumably the leader, had scruffy looking hair, and a scar on his left cheek. The other two were considerably smaller than their leader, but still rough-looking nonetheless, and all three of them towered over the two teenage boys. The leader of the pack had a sinister grin on his face as he eyed the two of them.
“Well, well...look what we have here,” he said, his voice raspy, menacing, “The soon-to-be King of Swellville. Now, what are you doing all the way out here in the middle of the night? Don’t ya know it’s dangerous?” he continued, getting intimidatingly close to Henry. Despite the fact that Henry was absolutely petrified, he wasn’t about to let the object of his affection or the thieves see that. He kept a stark expression as he put his shoulders back, standing up as straight as possible.
"We're not looking for trouble," Henry said, sounding as tough as he conceivably could, but there was still a bit of shakiness to his voice.
“Maybe we are,” one of the other thieves responded, taking a step closer to the both of them. Jasper moved a bit, putting himself somewhat in between the group and Henry.
“I’ll give you whatever you want, but you have to agree to let us go, unharmed,” Henry declared, putting his hands out in front of him as he continued to try to deescalate the situation. The leader shared an amused look between his two men before looking at the Prince again. A crooked smile spread across his face, revealing his rotting yellow teeth.
“That puts us in a bit of a predicament here, because see, what we want is you , dear boy. Say, boys, what kind of ransom you reckon we could get for the Prince of Swellville?” he said, addressing the two men on either side of him. The two men just chuckled as they took a few steps closer.
What happened next occurred in one hasty blur for Henry.
Jasper reached across Henry’s waist and pulled out his sword, pointing it towards the thieves as he put himself fully in between the Prince and the three men. He had a fiery look in his eye that Henry hadn’t seen in him before.
“If you want the Prince, you’re going to have to go through me and trust me, you don’t want to do that,” he growled, his voice low and threatening. The three thieves let out a hearty laugh, but Jasper continued to eye them, unwavering.
“You really think you can take on all three of us?” the leader asked, his voice dangerous. Jasper narrowed his eyes as he got in the thief’s face, refusing to back down.
“I don’t think , I know .”
The thief’s smile faded as it was replaced with a look of annoyance. He swiftly pulled out a sword and raised it above his head, thrusting it down towards Jasper. Jasper quickly reached up and put his sword in between him and the other man’s blade. Despite the fact that Jasper had acquired some muscle with his job, he was still significantly smaller than his opponent, and he struggled a bit under the thief’s brute strength. He could feel his knees beginning to unwittingly bend as he continued to try to push back. One of the other thieves lunged their sword towards Jasper’s stomach and Jasper lept back just before it could make contact with his skin. Before he had time to think, the leader was plunging his sword towards Jasper once again, and Jasper thrust his sword upwards, blocking the blows. His movements were a bit clumsy thanks to the added weight to Henry’s sword, and he instantly regretted using heavier materials in the production of it.
In his defense, it did look nicer that way.
Jasper ended up under the thief’s blade again, and he could feel his heels digging into the dirt beneath him as he buckled under the weight of both the sword and the criminal’s strength. Jasper mustered up as much energy as he could and he pushed back, succeeding in pushing the thief completely off of him. The thief was caught off guard by Jasper’s strength, and he stumbled back a little. One of his comrades took this opportunity to swing their blade at Jasper, but Jasper reacted quickly, blocking every one of the other man’s advances.
As Jasper fought off the two men, the other thief slowly made his way towards Henry, a menacing smile on his face.
“Um, Jasper...little help,” Henry said as he stumbled backward until he felt his back slamming into a tree.
“I’m a little busy at the moment,” Jasper shot back, blocking the thief’s blade mere inches from his face. Jasper was able to push the other two men back far enough to give himself a few seconds to grab a dagger he kept strapped to his ankle.
“Here!” he said, tossing it to Henry as Henry clumsily caught it.
“What do I do now?!” Henry asked helplessly. He had never been in a fight before, let alone a sword fight, and now he was stuck in one with an opponent much more skilled than he was, with only a dagger to boot.
“Don’t die!” Jasper shouted back, bending backward, just narrowly escaping one of the other men’s blades.
Before Henry had time to think, the other man was thrusting his sword right towards him, and he hastily ducked right as the thief’s sword dug deep into the tree behind him. Henry rolled out from beneath the thief’s arm, while the thief fought to pull his sword from the tree.
“Ha!” Henry exclaimed triumphantly, a wide smile spreading across his face. The man turned towards him and abandoned his sword as he pulled a dagger out from beneath his belt.
The thief jabbed his dagger towards Henry, and Henry ducked once more, instinctively lunging his dagger towards the other man. The dagger dug into the skin of his thigh, and the man let out a howl as he faltered slightly. Henry pulled the dagger out and grimaced at the blood that now stained the tip of the blade.
“Oh, that’s gross,” he said to himself, as he held the dagger awkwardly out in front of him. Before he really had time to react, however, he noticed that his opponent had now regained his composure, and was watching Henry with a dark expression. Henry’s eyes widened as the thief started slowly limping towards him, and Henry took off in the opposite direction.
Meanwhile, Jasper continued to fight off the other two men, expertly blocking their advances and even managing to put a few minor scratches on his adversaries, but he could feel himself growing tired quickly. His arms were beginning to ache and he was running out of breath fast, and the added weight of the sword wasn’t helping matters much. One of the other men lurched towards Jasper, and Jasper took a step back, falling flat on his back after tripping on an exposed tree root. The impact knocked the wind out of him, and he coughed as he tried to refill his lungs. The leader of the group thrust his sword down towards Jasper, and Jasper rolled away just in the nick of time while the blade dug deep into the dirt. As Jasper scrambled to his feet, wincing at the pain shooting through his back, the other man plunged his sword forwards towards Jasper, and Jasper clumsily tried to block it, but not before it put a sizable gash in his arm. Jasper cried out in pain, instinctively gripping onto his arm while Henry froze as he looked towards the noise.
“Jasper!” he called out in concern, but before he had any more time to react, the thief that had been pursuing him stabbed his dagger straight towards Henry’s chest. Much to his surprise, Henry was able to block the other man’s blade with his own, and he took the split second the thief used to bounce back in order to get out of dodge once again.
“I’m fine, Henry,” Jasper declared as he did his best to ignore the searing pain. The leader’s crony tried to sneak up behind Jasper during his vulnerable moment, but Jasper used his non-injured arm that now held his sword to elbow the criminal square in the face. He heard a sickening crunch, and he knew then that he had broken the thief’s nose. The thief dropped his sword and fell to his knees as blood started pouring out of his nose.
The thief that had been chasing Henry caught up to him once more, and he thrust his dagger towards Henry’s neck. Henry took a step back and leaned backward, only just missing the blade. He lunged his dagger forward once more, using all the strength he could muster, and this time it sunk deep into the man’s shoulder, too deep for Henry to be able to pull it out again. The thief let out a wail as he fell to the ground. Henry looked on in horror at what he had done.
At the same time, the leader plunged his sword forward towards Jasper, aiming it straight for his chest. Jasper moved to deflect the hit, but given how worn out he was, he miscalculated, and the blade slashed across his face. Jasper hissed and took a few steps back, putting his hand to his face as he felt the warm blood begin trickling down his cheek. Jasper’s nostrils flared as a dangerous expression crossed his face. A triumphant look crossed the thief’s face as he lowered his sword ever so slightly. Jasper was visibly exhausted at that point, and the thief seemed sure that the boys were wearing down to the point of surrender. Jasper knew this was his one chance to deliver the final blow. He glanced around quickly, thinking over his next move swiftly but carefully. He jolted forward, using the thief’s lowered defenses to his advantage, and the thief was so thrown by Jasper’s sudden move that he staggered backwards, tripping over an exposed tree root, landing hard on the ground with a loud thud. The impact had caused him to drop his weapon, and before he could even process what had happened, Jasper had his sword pressed to his throat. The slightest movement would cause the sword to start cutting skin.
“I think it’s best if you and your crew move along now,” Jasper snarled. The thief looked at him, his expression unwavering for a beat before he finally exhaled in defeat.
“Fine,” he snapped. “Wouldn’t be worth it, anyway. Let’s go, boys,” he seethed as he reached for his sword, but Jasper moved so that his sword was in between the man and his weapon.
“I don’t think so,” he snarled. The leader’s nostrils flared in anger but he didn’t protest. He pulled himself back up, watching Jasper with a scathing expression. He started off in the opposite direction, grumbling as he went. The other two followed suit, but Jasper remained at the ready in case one of them decided to turn around to try to surprise them. He waited until they were well enough away before he allowed himself to relax. He slumped his shoulders and let out a deep sigh as he tried to catch his breath again. His arm and cheek were throbbing with pain, and sweat was beading down his face.
“Where did you learn to do that?” Henry questioned, awe and admiration dripping from his voice as he staggered over to Jasper. Jasper blushed a little and smiled as he shrugged.
“It gets kinda boring in the shop so Ray and I would mess around sometimes and I guess I just picked up a few things.”
“‘Picked up a few things?!’ Jasp, you just defeated two huge thieves, you know that right?” Henry responded, stopping just a few inches from Jasper. Jasper’s lips curled into a huge grin as he tried to contain his excitement over the fact that the Prince was impressed with him . He knew his cheeks were probably beet red at that point, but he prayed that the darkness would help conceal that fact.
Jasper stood up straight as he flipped the sword one-handed into the air, catching it by the blade, pointing the handle towards Henry for him to take it. Henry winced at the blood-stained on it before he grabbed it. He hesitated for a moment before finally placing it back in his scabbard. His look of astonishment was quickly replaced with concern as he began to study Jasper’s injuries. He reached out to gently touch the other boy’s cheek, but as soon as his finger made contact, Jasper hissed and instinctively pulled back. Henry quickly put his hand back down.
“That looks bad. We need to get those taken care of. C’mon, the castle is closer than town,” Henry said as he led Jasper through the trees towards home.
A little while later, Jasper and Henry stumbled into Henry’s room, with Jasper’s non-injured arm hung around Henry’s shoulders.
Henry’s bed was up against the wall right next to his bedroom door so Jasper only had to take a single step before he was able to plop down on the edge, letting go of Henry in the process.
“Wait here,” Henry said, as he left the room for a moment to go to the supply closet in the hallway where his parents always kept a set of emergency supplies.
Jasper leaned back on his good arm, flinching a little at the pain in his other arm and cheek as he glanced around the room. He had only been in the castle one other time before, but he hadn’t been able to see Henry’s room yet. Compared to the rest of the castle, his room was relatively small, but it was still at least three times bigger than Jasper’s. The bed was a king-size with four posts on each corner with intricate designs carved into the dark wood. Directly opposite the bed was two french doors that led out onto a balcony. On the wall to the left of the bed was two doors side-by-side. One of them was propped open slightly, and Jasper could see a huge walk-in closet behind it that he was pretty sure was the same size as his entire bedroom. The door next to it was shut, but Jasper assumed it was probably a bathroom. On the other side of the bed to the right, were a few steps that led up to a landing that stretched out and included a seating area. Underneath the landing on one side was a desk, and on the other side were cubbies built for storage that were overflowing with various odds and ends. A few of the items Jasper recognized as being sold by a lot of the merchants at the marketplace where Ray’s shop was. At the head of the bed, seated in front of Henry’s mountain of pillows was a red and blue stuffed dragon. Jasper reached for it and smiled a little as he admired it.
Just then, Henry made his way back into the room, carrying a bunch of gauze, bandages, cotton balls, and alcohol in his arms. Henry nudged the door shut with his foot before going to sit next to Jasper, allowing the supplies to fall on the bed next to him.
“I like your dragon,” Jasper said as he put him back in his spot in front of all the pillows. “What’s his name? Assuming he is a he.”
Henry felt his cheeks get warm as he began to pour some of the alcohol on one of the cotton balls.
“He is a he,” he responded, putting the cap back on the bottle before facing Jasper, “but he doesn’t have a name,” he lied. Jasper sat up a little and smiled.
“C’mon, what’s his name?”
“Roll up your sleeve,” Henry said, ignoring Jasper’s question. Jasper playfully rolled his eyes as he did as instructed. He put his elbow on his knee, sticking his arm out a little towards Henry. Henry moved a little closer to Jasper, and he started towards Jasper’s arm with the alcohol-soaked cotton ball, pausing for a moment right before he made contact.
“Ready?” he asked. Jasper’s smile immediately faded as he steeled himself.
“Just do it.”
Henry placed the cotton ball on Jasper’s cut and Jasper immediately hissed and squeezed his eyes shut at the stinging sensation in his arm.
“Will you please tell me your dragon’s name so I can focus on something other than the searing pain?” he pleaded. Henry took a deep breath as he continued to clean the wound, trying desperately to concentrate on what he was doing instead of thinking about the muscles in Jasper’s arm, or the fact that his dragon had probably the most embarrassing name in the history of stuffed dragons.
“Kid Dragon,” he mumbled. Jasper’s eyes popped open as a teasing smile spread across his lips.
“I knew I could get you to tell me.”
Henry’s mouth fell open a little as he stopped what he was doing for a second to meet Jasper’s gaze. He tried to hold his pretend offended expression at Jasper tricking him, but Jasper’s smile made him smile and he playfully hit Jasper’s knee before he went back to attending to his wounds. Both boy’s smiles disappeared when Jasper hissed at the renewed shooting pain in his arm.
“So...Kid Dragon, huh?” Jasper said, flinching.
“I named when I was five, okay,” Henry responded, his skin getting hot as he tried to ignore the embarrassment he felt, “And I can’t change it now, he’s used to it.”
Despite the pain, Jasper felt a small smile creeping onto his face as he watched Henry.
“I like it. It’s kinda...unique,” he responded genuinely. Henry grinned ever so slightly as he looked up at Jasper for a moment. Jasper was watching him, and there was a certain...tenderness in Jasper’s eyes that Henry couldn’t quite place, but nonetheless it gave him a warm feeling in his chest and for a moment he forgot about everything else besides the two of them.
He snapped out of it after a moment, tearing his gaze away from Jasper’s as he reached for supplies to start bandaging up Jasper’s arm. Once he was finished with that, he poured more alcohol onto another cotton ball and reached up to clean the cut on Jasper’s cheek. Jasper instinctively tried to move his face away from Henry’s hand, which only led to Henry trying to get closer, even though their knees were already touching and if he moved any closer he’d practically be in the other boy’s lap.
“I know it hurts, but would you please stop moving? You don’t want this to get infected,” the Prince pleaded as he tried to place the cotton soaked in rubbing alcohol on Jasper’s cut again. Jasper winced before he allowed Henry to touch his cheek and he flinched at the stinging sensation the alcohol caused. After Henry felt that the wound was clean enough, he gingerly placed a bandage over top. He put his hands down as he kept his gaze locked with Jasper’s.
“So, how does it look? Do I look tough?” Jasper asked jokingly. Henry grinned.
“Oh, yeah. Very manly,” Henry replied playfully. Jasper smiled. Henry studied Jasper for a second, and he felt a twinge of guilt over how beat he looked. He couldn’t help but feel that this was all his fault. If he had just waited until morning to go see Jasper… Not only that, but he had somehow managed to leave the fight unscathed, while Jasper was injured in a few places, Henry wondering then if there were other places he was unaware of.
A familiar yellow glow began spilling into the room, and both boys turned their attention to the double french doors to see the sun beginning to peek out over the horizon. Henry turned his attention back to Jasper. Even though he looked tired, his eyes were gleaming in the sunlight, and he had a look of admiration on his face.
“The sunrise is kinda cool, isn’t it?” Jasper said as he continued to watch, “Everybody always talks about how pretty sunsets can be, but we fail to realize how pretty sunrises can be too.”
“Yeah, we do,” Henry responded softly, although he wasn’t really sure he was talking about sunrises in that moment.
Henry suddenly became extremely aware of how close he was to Jasper. He became overly aware of the fact that their knees were touching, excruciatingly aware of the fact that he could practically feel the warmth radiating off of Jasper, they were so close. Henry felt like his heart was going to leap out of his throat. At that moment, an unexpected thought crossed his mind. He thought about sweeping the stray hair from Jasper’s eyes. He thought about just reaching out, brushing his hand against Jasper’s cheek. He thought about what it would feel like to just pull him close, to completely close the gap between them, imagining what it would feel like to have Jasper’s lips on his. He replayed that scenario over in his head about a dozen times.
“Why are you looking at me like that?” he heard Jasper say, and he snapped out of his train of thought to see that he had leaned in even closer to Jasper, with Jasper looking at him with a curious expression. He also took notice of the fact that he had gotten almost uncomfortably close to Jasper and Jasper hadn’t made any effort to move away.
“Uhh, sorry. It’s nothing, I wasn’t looking at you like anything,” he replied, moving back a little. Jasper gave him an amused smile. He sensed that Henry was lying, but he didn’t try to press the matter.
Little did Henry know, Jasper was having the exact same thought.
Henry took a deep breath as he tried to shake the image from his head. He looked out of the double doors towards the sunrise as he tried to think of something, anything else, but it was no use. Jasper was already so close...it would be so easy...
“Henry, are you awake?” Henry heard Siren’s muffled voice call softly from the other side of the door, and the pair’s eyes went wide as they shared a panicked look.
“That’s my mom! Hide!” Henry whispered breathlessly as they both scrambled to their feet. Henry pushed Jasper into the closet and slammed the door shut behind him just as his bedroom door swung open.
“Hey, Mom! How’s it going?” Henry announced a little too loudly.
“Hey, sweetheart. What’s going on, I thought I heard voices?” Siren said as she scanned the room.
“Just talking to myself,” Henry replied as he plastered on his best fake smile and leaned awkwardly against his closet door. Siren furrowed her eyebrows and frowned.
“Are you alright, dear? You’re acting strange.”
“I’m fine. Just tired.”
Siren continued to study her son for a moment. She knew he was lying, but she wasn’t sure she really wanted to know the truth.
“Okay. Well, get dressed. Breakfast will be ready soon and after that, we need to go over the decorations for your coronation.”
“Oh, I can’t, Mom. I’m...going to Charlotte’s after breakfast. We have…” Henry started as he desperately searched for an excuse, “dancing lessons! She thought it’d be a good idea if we took some lessons before my coronation.”
Siren narrowed her eyes at her son as she watched him closely.
“Alright,” she said slowly as she started to shut the door, “but be back by lunchtime. We have a lot we need to get done today.”
Henry gave her a clumsy thumbs up.
“You got it,” he responded as he gave her a crooked smile. Siren furrowed her eyebrows again at her son’s odd behavior as she nodded and shut the door once more. Henry let out a sigh of relief as he relaxed and opened the closet door.
“That was close,” he said as Jasper stepped out. They stood in silence for a moment.
“I better get down there soon or she’s going to come looking for me again.”
Jasper nodded in response.
“I need to get to work anyway.”
“Now we just need to figure out how to get you out of here,” Henry said as he crossed his arms over his chest.
“I’ll just climb down the vines,” Jasper responded matter of factly, referring to the vines that were currently crawling up the side of the castle next to Henry’s balcony. Henry looked at him incredulously.
“You’ll climb down the vines,” he echoed dryly, “It’s like three stories down, do you really think you’re going to be able to do that?” Jasper just grinned.
“Piece of cake,” he replied as he opened the double french doors and went to the right side of the balcony where the vines were growing. Henry followed him out and watched as Jasper analyzed the plants for a moment. Once he had it worked out in his head, he turned and winked at Henry before he carefully climbed over the railing and started down the creeping plants. Henry went to stand by the railing in order to watch him. It was awkward at first, and Jasper almost lost his footing a few times, but after a minute he got the hang of it and he was able to climb the rest of the way down with ease. When he was a safe enough distance down he jumped the rest of the way and backed up a little in order to look up at Henry. A huge smile was on his face as he held his hands out in triumph.
“See? I’m more than just my devastatingly good looks,” he called up, loud enough so Henry could hear, but not so loud that he could be heard from inside the castle. Henry just rolled his eyes and chuckled.
“Goodbye, Jasper,” he called down, trying not to be loud enough for his parents or sister to hear.
“Bye, Henry,” Jasper said as he gave one last look at Henry before he started dodging behind different shrubbery in Henry’s yard, trying to avoid being able to be seen out of any window on the castle’s first floor. Henry continued to watch him for a moment with a goofy smile plastered on his face before he turned to go back inside to get ready for breakfast.
Okay, I know this is a bit unusual, but I started this story about two years ago, and canon screwed me over so much that I can't bring myself to finish it. I posted a post on Tumblr where I gave a detailed plot list of what I had planned so I'm doing that here too just so any readers that are still around can get some closure. I hope this doesn't deter anyone from reading any of my other stuff, because I've got a lot of fun stuff planned for the future! Anyway, here you go, fam.
- Of course Henry and Jasper were going to fall in love, like that feels obvious lol
- Henry was also going to eventually figure out that Ray is the VK
- He’d then learn how Ray became invincible in the first place
- The story goes that he was very sickly when he was an infant and so his mother made a deal with a wizard in order to grant him invincibility and ensure his survival
- I hadn’t quite worked out what the consequences of that deal were yet, but they weren’t good
- Oh, and the wizard? Schwoz
- After Minyak stole Schwoz’s spellbook, he implored the help of another villain in order to steal those weapons that Knight Squad used in the finale against Ryker (the ones that can remove invincibility spells 👀)
- The villain that helps him is Gwen
- Meanwhile, Henry and Siren end up having this big blowout because she knows about him and Jasper and he wants to take Jasper to his coronation as his date, but Siren is adamant about his arranged marriage
- I know that seems a bit cold, but the reason she doesn’t want him with Jasper is that she knows it can only lead to heartbreak and she doesn’t want that for Henry
- She talks things out with Jake and (perhaps this is a bit OOC but idk who else she could have this discussion with) he finally is pretty much just like “listen…Henry has given up SO MUCH of his childhood for his princely duties, and he’s never complained once. Don’t you remember what it’s like to be seventeen and in love?? Don’t you think our son deserves to experience that?? Besides, the marriage is still a few years away, and how many relationships do you know of at his age last that long??” So then Siren’s like “okay, fair” so during Henry’s coronation party, she tells him that he can go get his boo 😂😂
- So, Henry sneaks out to the garden with Jasper and he’s going to tell him that he loves him (I know cheesy and cliche but kskfkd) but before he can, Minyak shows up
- This launches this big long battle
- The first OG storyline was that Minyak seemingly loses but he gets away, but before he does, he tells Henry he’s going to take away everything he loves, starting with the thing he loves most
- So, Jasper dies (I’M SORRY)
- I had part of that scene written out which I’ll include, but keep in mind that it’s a first draft, and I wrote it close to maybe a year or even two years ago, so it definitely wouldn’t be the same if I were to write it today (also, warnings, mention of blood.)
- Of course, Henry’s devastated, so he’s starting pleading to Piper to bring him back using magic, but her magic isn’t strong enough for something like that
- So, then Henry asks Ray if the wizard that helped him as a kid could also help Jasper
- Ray hesitates
- Technically there is a spell, if done by the right person, that can bring a person back from the dead if the spell is cast within 48 hours from the time of death
- But, the price of bringing someone back is VERY high and that’s why it’s barely ever performed
- Henry doesn’t care, he wants Jasper back
- So, Ray reluctantly tells Henry where he can find Schwoz
- I have that scene written out too, but same deal
- Henry, Piper, Anais, and Charlotte all start on this journey into the mountains to meet this wizard
- Of course it’s treacherous
- They encounter a dragon, but Charlotte gets it to chill because surprise! She can communicate with animals
- I hadn’t decided on the other obstacles yet, but it uses all of the kids’ skills; Piper’s magic, Anais is a sharpshooter, and Henry’s kindness and empathy (I know that sounds strange but hopefully it wouldn’t be in context)
- Anyway, they locate Schwoz and he’s…well Schwoz ajdksk (meaning he’s eccentric and wild much like he is now, just with magic instead of science)
- He doesn’t want to bring Jasper back and first because consequences and all that
- But Henry makes his plea, so finally Schwoz agrees
- it ends being an eye-for-an-eye type thing, so Jasper lives but Siren dies a few days later
- Here’s part of that scene
- I HATE that I was following that trope of killing a woman to further a man’s story, but Siren was the true ruler of Swellville, so killing her off creates a new obstacle for Henry because we all know his dad’s fucking useless. Also, Henry never wanted Jasper to find out about the deal or why Siren died, so he kind of distanced himself from him
- but then the show pissed me off so I changed the storyline after the big battle
- Jasper still died (I’M SORRY AGAIN)
- And Minyak actually won the battle so the kingdom fell to him and everything went to hell
- A year passes and eventually Henry goes to Charlotte and Anais and is like “we gotta find a way to fix this”
- so Ray tells them about Schwoz and they go on their journey
- and Schwoz is like “I have a spell that turns back time”, but he only had enough power to do it once, so Henry really needed to make it count
- so they end up going back in time a whole ass year and Henry just runs to Jasper
- and Jasper’s like “I just saw you yesterday?? why are you freaking out??”
- but of course, Henry’s breaking down because he thought he’d never see him again and now, here is! Alive and well! and all smiley! and happy!
- so they go through the battle again, but this time Henry knows what happens and he’s ready for it
- also forgot to mention that the Knight Squad helps out both times
- with a little Tiara Thief thrown in their cause I MISS THEM
- Ray ends up getting hit with the weapon that takes away invincibility
- Henry and co. pretty much win but in a little twist, Minyak gets a second wind and he tries to kill Henry, but Ray sacrifices himself last minute to save him (lmao I know, but suspend your disbelief here)
- Anyway, Henry takes over the VK mantle after his death and also as just as a way to protect his kingdom
- Charlotte says “fuck your rules” and comes out about her secret girlfriend, and both her and Henry are like “we’re the rulers now, we’ll combine the kingdoms, but we are NOT getting married”
- and I mean like, they’re king and queen of their respective kingdoms, nobody can say anything lsjflskdf
- nobody does, though. everyone loves duchess Anais, and Henry’s so kind and compassionate and a good ruler that the people of Swellville are just like “as long as your happy, dude” sladkflsdk (of course, it breaks all the teen girls’ and some boys too, but it is what it is lol)
- so anyway, you all know Henry and Jasper end up together in the end
- and uhhh?? I think that’s it.
- also here’s two more scenes I had written out that I’m absolutely cringing at but slkdfjl I wrote them so now y’all are gonna have to look at them