Pairings: Emo!Kahlan/Richard and HBIC!Kahlan/Darken Rahl
Summary: What happens when Zedd fails to reunite the two halves of Kahlan and HBIC!Kahlan makes an alliance with Darken Rahl?
Author's Notes: For the purpose of this fic, the episode 'Torn' takes place IMMEDIATELY FOLLOWING the episode 'Extinction', however Renn isn't there to tell Richard what was in Darken's mind. This fic follows canon up until 'Extinction' with the exception that 'Torn' is no longer episode eleven. I owe a LOT of inspiration for this fic to confessorlove who helped me with plot points and was encouraging me to write.
Disclaimer: I don't own them. I just like to make them do my bidding.
Zedd and Cara didn’t want to disturb the newlyweds and had said their goodbyes the night before at the wedding reception. When morning came the two of them made their way down to the stables. To say they were surprised to see Darken Rahl waiting for them would be an understatement. “What are you doing here, Rahl?” Cara snapped as she took the reins of her horse from the stable hand.
“Is it too hard to believe that I simply came to see you off knowing that Richard and Kahlan are too busy to do it themselves?” Rahl said with a smirk.
“As a matter of fact it is. What do you want?” Zedd grumbled while mounting onto his horse.
“I know what you are doing. I think Richard is making a wise choice in sending you two to D’Hara. You know what needs to be done, Wizard.” Darken kept his voice calm and sincere, he didn’t need them knowing what he really thought of this idea. He needed them to trust him. Only then could he reclaim control.
Cara could barely hold back her laugh at what he had just said. “Let me get this straight. You approve of your brother taking over D’Hara?”
“Cara, I know as well as anyone that Richard will not allow me to resume the throne. Why would I fight him on it when I can stay here and assist Kahlan’s rule?” His lips turned up into a small smile as he watched both of them digest what he had just said.
“The Mother Confessor will not allow you to assist with her rule. She doesn’t believe anyone is worthy of helping her.” Zedd spoke off handedly. “She’ll kill you before you have a chance to threaten her throne.”
Tipping his head slightly towards Zedd, Darken made a mental note to be careful around Kahlan. The Wizard knew the most about what had happened to her after all. “Then I shall be careful. I do find your concern for my safety touching but you both have somewhere to be. I won’t keep you any longer.” Without another word, Darken Rahl strode from the stables, a smirk on his lips; a very confused Zedd and Cara staring dumbfounded behind him.
Former Councilor Williams couldn’t understand the way things her changing. This Mother Confessor, with Darken Rahl at her side would be more dangerous to the Midlands than he could fathom. She may have stripped him of his title when she disbanded the Council and threw them all out like yesterdays trash but he still had a duty to the Midlands. He couldn’t rest and let that heartless confessor and her tyrant mate destroy everything they had worked so hard to accomplish.
He knew there was only one thing to do. Quietly he gathered the people of Aydindril and planted seeds of doubt in their minds. He would tell them that with the Mother Confessor united with Lord Rahl; the Midlands would fall under D’Hara's shadow and face tyranny like nothing they had before. The battles they fought in the war would be for nothing. The brothers, sons and husbands they lost to Darken Rahl and his men would have all died in vain. No one wanted that.
She was in the Council chambers when he found her. She sat regally in her high backed chair, arms draped over the arms and her legs crossed. She looked very much the queen as she dealt out proclamations and punishments to all who came before her. He could scarcely believe that a woman that powerful, who could have the pick of any man in the Midlands would come willingly to his bed. Part of him knew she was using him. He was using her as well. This was all a complicated game of power to them and he knew it. But sometimes he would find himself thinking of her when she wasn’t around and would wonder if it was possible for them to be something more than political allies using each other as pawns in this game.
He watched with rapt attention as she ordered a thief to have his hand removed. Such a cruel move. It was something she never would have done before but now that she was someone else she was so much more powerful. The very air around her permeated authority, she was a sight to behold. He couldn’t lie and say her ruthless authority and ambition wasn’t something he found attractive. It just added to her beauty.
She knew he was watching her. She had known since he entered the chambers. He was lurking in the shadows and she liked it that way. He was of very little use outside the bedchamber and was glad he wasn’t trying to interfere with her rule. His smug attitude bothered her and she hated the way he walked around the palace as if he ruled simply because he shared her bed. Kahlan didn’t even know if she would let him live once they conceived. Part of her wanted him out of the way as soon as possible but she could help the nagging feeling she had that he could be of some use to her.
Dismissing the remaining petitioners she stood, smirking as everyone in the hall bowed their heads. Everyone except Darken. Her lips twitched into a wicked smirk, his disobedience was irksome but at the same time she craved it. Maybe that was why she kept him around?
She crossed the room quickly, her white dress billowing out behind her as if floating on the wind. He stepped out of the shadows and tilted his head in the customary way. He knew it would bother her if she wasn’t granted at least that courtesy. “Mother Confessor,” he said his tone submissive but the smirk on his face wasn’t.
That wicked fire in his eyes always pushed her buttons. He knew exactly how to taunt and tease her. She hated him for that. Grabbing his forearm she dug her nails wanting to show him who was really in charge. “Respect is all I ask.” She murmured; her lips an inch away from his. She could feel his hot breath on her lips.
His hand danced along her spine before coming to rest on the small of her back, pulling her flush against him. She let out a squeak at his forward move but did not protest. He leaned in and pulled her bottom lip through his teeth, nibbling lightly. “I respect you, Kahlan.” His hand drifted lower until he could cup her ass, squeezing and kneading the muscle until she moaned. He smirked against her lips, his tongue flicking out to taste her. “You like this.”
“Spirits,” she moaned, taking his earlobe between her teeth and nibbling. “You and me. Bedchambers. Now.”
Cupping her ass he pulled her up, wrapping her legs around her waist. “As you command, Mother Confessor,” he mumbled before devouring her neck and carrying her to their chambers.
As the days passed, Kahlan became more and more uncomfortable with remaining in Aydindril. She didn’t know what but something seemed off. She longed to be in a little cabin with Richard as they wait for the birth of their child. She didn’t know where he was; probably watching as the Mother Confessor and Rahl planed something. She hated it. Kahlan knew deep down that she was first in his heart but he hadn’t been showing it. In the few weeks since their wedding he was becoming more and more distant. She couldn’t understand why he was choosing to spend more time dealing with the politics of the land than with her.
Alone, she walked through the garden, her hand moving to the small swell of her belly that was just beginning to show. As absurd as it sounds she felt like they spent more time together when they were still questing. She missed him when he was like this, spending all his time making sure that Rahl was not causing trouble. She missed the days when he would hold her as she drifted to sleep and still be there when she woke in the morning, a smile on his lips and happiness in his eyes. She wanted that back.
He knew something was wrong. She had seemed distant though maybe he had been distant, he wasn't sure. Either way he longed to see her again. He missed spending time with his wife. He longed to the endless time they had together when they were sealing the rift. Now he was barely home in time to kiss her goodnight before she slept and was almost never there when she woke. He missed the simple pleasure of holding her in his arms. Of course he knew that if he would only put aside his fears and no longer watch every move Rahl and the Mother Confessor made he could have that again. He knew she wanted it even more than he did.
Having heard from a servant where Kahlan was he went to find her. He saw her standing before the flower gardens, her hand on their growing child and his breath caught. She was a vision and he would never tire of looking at her. Quietly he snuck up behind her and wrapped his arms around her, resting his chin on her shoulder. "I've missed you," he whispered in her ear.
Leaning back into his embrace she smiled. "I missed you too, Richard. It seems like forever since I've seen you."
"I know," Richard said with a sigh, "I haven't had as much time lately."
Kahlan shook her head and turned, draping her arms over his shoulders. "You know if you didn't spend so much time with them we wouldn't have to miss each other."
"Kahlan," his tone was softer than before but still firm. "You know I can't. Not yet."
If there was one thing she hated about her husband it was this. The Midlands came before his own wife and unborn child. That infuriated her. "So you would rather take care of the people than your own wife?" Kahlan pulled away from him and crossed her arms over her breasts, her chest heaving with her anger. "Don't you want what is best for me? I don't want to stay here while you keep putting everyone else before your family!"
He couldn't believe her. Did he really think that the Midlands were more important than her and the baby? Shaking his head he just sighed, realizing that this was something she never would have said before the accident but then she would have been helping him with the Midlands. Also she wouldn't have has the added stress of pregnancy and all the hormones that entails. "You know that isn't true Kahlan. I love you more than anything but I have a duty."
"Yes Richard I know! You have a duty to the Midlands as the Seeker. Well I have a duty to this family."
She started to storm off but he grabbed her forearm and spun her around, pulling her into his arms and holding her tight. He wasn't letting go until she heard him out. "Listen to me, Kahlan. You are the most important thing in my life, you and our baby but I'm doing this to protect you. Can't you see that? Don't you realize I want to leave here as much as you do? I want that normal life but it isn't mine to take, yet. There are things still left unfinished."
"I'm sorry," she murmured as he held her close, nuzzling his neck and inhaling his scene. He still smelled like smoke and pine needles even months after the quest ended. It made her smile. That was one thing about him that will never change. It was just part of him.
Richard kissed the top of her head and cradled her against his chest. "You don't have to be sorry. Just remember I love you and that will never change."
"I promise, Richard. I love you."
"Forever, my Kahlan."