Happily Ever After
Kurstair raked through the entrails spilled across the flagstones before him. He chose one juicy, dripping piece of intestine and shoved it in his mouth. Chewing and humming he walked through the remains of the Guard, their bloody bits and pieces squeezing up between his bare, hairy toes. He wiped a furry hand across his lips, spreading red spittle across his grossly misshapen face.When he reached the heavy oak door banded with steel, he burped, sending a choking wave of putrid air into the room - if anyone had been alive to choke.
A stalwart iron lock sat in the middle of the door and Kurstair vaguely wondered if behind him, among the ruins of men, lurked a key.He shrugged and lent his solid, muscled, green bulk against the door but his soiled feet slipped and the door stood firm. He cast around for something to wipe his feet but failed to find a single swath of fabric not soaked in blood or gore. He frowned and the horns on his brow ground together.
This quest was taking much longer than he’d planned and he was tired of the cold castle with its unending halls, legions of guards and their annoying continuous attacks. Irritated, he plucked an arrow out of his thigh and crushed it.With one great mighty roar, rebounding like thunder along the hall, Kurstair slammed his rock-like fist against the door. The great oak beams split and the steel bands bent and the iron lock broke. He thumped it again and the on hundred year old door buckled and splintered with a loud crack. Half of it burst into the room and scattered on the flagstones, the other half swung open on whining hinges. Kurstair stomped through the doorway and entered the sparsely furnished bedroom. A barefoot young woman stood at the window. Sunlight illuminated her figure and golden hair, she shone like a fallen angel. Her hands rested on her hips and she wore a gossamer fine dress that had seen better days. A slight frown marred her perfect, pale, face.
“Well, what took you so long?” she cried, “I’ve been here for days! I had to fight off dozens of damn guards and as for the Prince! Look, I broke a nail!” She waved a delicate hand at him.“Sorry darling, I did my best.” the Monster spoke, “First there was the moat - not like they were going to put down the drawbridge for me and they have biting fish in there! Then I had to climb the walls, all the while damned archers were pelting me with arrows, and you know how I hate heights. And they had boiling oil on the accursed ramparts. BOILING OIL! Look at my skin. Who uses boiling oil anymore...”
“My mother warned me.” the princess muttered, “’Marry a Prince’, she said. ‘Don’t go for the bad boys, they’ll just break your heart.’ She was right, she was so right.”“Oh yeah, I’d like to see some fancy-pants Prince come and rescue you from a fortified castle like I just did!” Her husband yelled.
“I’d be LIVING in the damned castle if I’d married a prince, you dumb-horny-head.”“Fine. Right. Next time you can rescue yourself.” Kurstair turned and left the room. “And you can explain to the kids why Mummy is not living in the swamp anymore, when I send them to visit - to your castle,” he said sarcastically.
“Oh don’t talk to me about the kids!” she yelled, following him out. “That Burgnord takes after you, refusing to wash in anything other than peat mud and you well know that smell is impossible to get out of clothes. Which doesn't really matter because now refuses to wear any. Something to do with his 'Monster' heritage. And Esterbelle, well she told me just before I got kidnapped she was dating a Giant. A GIANT!”“What’s wrong with Giants?” the Monster said, “You know very well my mother is a Giant.”
“Your mother! Your mother! Do not get me started on your mother. The last time she visited all she did was complain, ‘the stew doesn’t have enough toes in it’, ‘the chairs aren’t big enough’, like somehow I’m not good enough for YOU! I’M A PRINCESS!”“You’re a princess all right,” Kurstair said under his breath, “MY mother warned me about them too. ‘You’ll be forever rescuing her’, she said.”
“And I am NOT walking through that!” the Princess said when she saw the carpet of bodies.The Monster threw his wife across his shoulders and their arguing could be heard echoing throughout the castle as they made their way out - if anyone was left alive to hear.