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.
The people were growing restless. Former Councilmen Williams had promised them that the Mother Confessor's tyrannical reign would soon be coming to an end yet she still sat in her throne passing judgment on everyone from young children stealing apples to rapists and murders. Her punishments were always harsh and no one was above her authority. They were afraid of her and with Darken Rahl at her side and his spawn growing within her the people were even more worried. They feared for the future of the Midlands.
Williams had known another attempt so close to the first would be foolish but now security was finally beginning to relax. It was the perfect time. He would rid Aydindril of the Mother Confessor and restore order the proper way. He just had to make plans. This would require much more thought that before.
Their passionate cries filled the halls of the Confessor's Palace, the moans of the two lovers drifting beneath the bedroom door. Kahlan shuddered as pleasure washed over her in waves, her back arching as she cried out his name. "Richard!"
He came with her, his eyes locked on hers as she rode him, her hands braced against his sweat slicked body. Stars spun before his eyes and he gave himself over to pleasure. She sagged against him, burying her head in to crook of his neck and they just lay there together basking in bliss. Both their minds and bodies completely saturated with pleasure.
After what seemed like ages, Kahlan shifted off him and he pulled her into his arms, her back against his chest as he nuzzled her neck. "I love you."
"I love you too," she murmured softly in response, smiling to herself when she felt his hand lightly brushing over her growing belly.
He traced lazy circles over the taut skin protecting their child, his nose buried in her hair as he inhaled deeply. "We haven't talked about names yet."
"No we haven't," Kahlan said with a smile. "But we still have time. The baby won't be here for about three more months."
"I know that but it's nice to be prepared." With that he shifted, kissing down her side until his head rested on her belly. "What name do you want, little one?"
Kahlan smiled, her fingers tangling in his hair and gently massaging his scalp. "Did the baby answer you?"
"No," he mumbled, his lips ghosting across her bare belly as he kept whispering words of love to their unborn child.
She smiled; watching him it was obvious how excited he was to be a father. Everything was perfect in that moment and she never wanted it to end. They were together. Just the two of them and their baby with no distractions. She listened to him coo to their baby for the longest time before speaking. "What names did you have in mind?"
"Katelyn," her murmured before pressing a light kiss to her belly. "Katelyn if it's a girl to honor her mother, and George if it's a boy."
"Boy?" She asked sounding surprised. "Confessors-"
"But you aren't a Confessor anymore, Kahlan. Anything is possible, even a son."
The smile that spread across her face was brighter than a thousand stars. Richard had never seen her smile like that before. "I can give you a son?" She murmured to herself almost as if she didn't believe it.
"Yes, even though I would be perfectly content if we only have daughters." Richard said before pressing his lips to her belly. "Either son or daughter I will love our child more than anything, Kahlan. That I can promise you."
She smiled, her hand stroking his hair. She didn't know what she had done to deserve him but she was glad he was hers and she would treasure him always. That was the one thing she was sure of.
The Mother Confessor stood at the balcony doors staring out at the night sky, the warm breeze causing the sheer curtains to flutter in the wind. It was peaceful. Her arms were crossed beneath her breasts as she watched the stars flicker, the whole sky speckled so it glittered like diamonds.
She didn't hear him approach and stiffened when she felt his hands on her shoulders. "Thinking?" Darken as quietly, his thumbs beginning to work out the knots in the base of her neck.
"There is much to think about." Kahlan sighed, barely relaxing into his touch. She still didn't understand the way he would be so gentle with her as if he had feelings for her. Their relationship was nothing more than convenient, she constantly reminded herself. There was no love, only duty.
"True," he murmured as he gently massaged her neck and shoulders. "That's what happens when you are one of the most important people in the world."
Kahlan sighed, relaxing into his touch as her hand dropped to her belly. For a moment it was so peaceful she could forget that it was nothing but duty. She could let herself feel what she had denied for so long. She didn't love Darken but she was beginning to love their child. Not only would their daughter be hope for the future but she would be a Confessor for the next generation. "Darken? What is this alliance anymore? We have succeeded. We will have a child. Why are we still doing this?"
Sweeping her long dark hair over her shoulder, Darken kissed the base of her neck. "I don't know about you but I'm still here because there is more to this than we thought, Kahlan Amnell. Whether you like it or not."
For a long moment, Kahlan was silent as she stared out at the blanket of stars covering the sky. Eventually she took a deep breath and turned to face him. "You have a point. There is something more." She hadn't known she was ready to admit it to herself but in that moment it all seemed right. They respected each other. They wanted the best for each other but it was nothing more.
A moment later his lips were on hers as his arms wrapped tightly around her, pulling her ever closer. His fingers tangled in her luscious locks and he deepened the kiss, his tongue plundering her mouth. He walked them backwards towards the bed, the back of his legs bumping into the side and he fell backwards, Kahlan cradled against his chest.
His kiss ignited a passion in her that had been lying dormant, her hands exploring ever inch of his muscular frame. She savored his touch wanting to prolong the inevitable before finally giving herself over to desire. They both craved it and as clothes were discarded she knew there would be little sleep tonight.
Months had passed since his first attempt on her life and Councilor Williams knew that he needed a way inside the palace. He wanted the Mother Confessor dead and it was the only way. Arrows had proven unreliable. It didn't take him long to find one of the young, naive serving girls from the palace. She was only too willing to do what he asked after complimenting her and treating her in ways a man never before had.
Lauren was innocent but the moment he placed the vial in her delicate hands she lost some of that. She agreed to pour it into the Mother Confessor's food the first chance she got. "Make sure you put it in something cold," he reminded her as she bounded off like an eager puppy wanting to please her master.
He smiled as she disappeared through the winding maze of people filling the streets. The Mother Confessor would be dead before he knew it. He was sure of it and then, then he would have his rightful place on the council once more. It might take Lauren time to poison her but he knew she would succeed and he could be patient.
"It's been too long. The attempt on my life was three months ago. There should have been another by now." The Mother Confessor worried over her lip as she watched the two men before her.
"Security has been increased since the first attempt. Maybe they don't see getting past the guards as worth the risk." Richard asked, his hand resting on the hilt of his sword as he watched her mull over his answer.
"That's not it," Darken said with a shake of his head. "They are lulling us into a false sense of security. The next attempt will be soon. I can feel it."
The Mother Confessor casually observed them both, her eyes flicking from Richard to Darken and back again. She leaned back in her chair and rested her hands on the swell of her belly. "Then increase security again. Darken's right, they are trying to fool us but we are no fools. I want this dealt with and the person behind it caught. I will not have to worry about this for the next four months and after that worrying over if they will make attempts on my child as well. This ends now."
Richard nodded his agreement and turned to speak with the head of the Home Guard. Out of the corner of his eye he saw Darken close the gap between him and the Mother Confessor. Richard watched as his brother kissed the top of her head, his hand drifting down to cradle their unborn child. The sight made him sick. He couldn't take seeing his brother's hands on the image of the woman he loved.
His task was forgotten for the time being. He needed to see Kahlan. He knew she was more than likely resting. The baby would be here in two short months and she seemed to be getting bigger every day. He just needed to hold her and remind himself that she was still there and still loved him. That was the only thing that truly mattered.
Lauren spent time learning the routines of everyone in the Palace before she even thought about making her move. She might have been naive but she was far from stupid. She was biding her time until she could empty the vial into the Mother Confessor's glass without anyone noticing.
She learned all of the Mother Confessor's favorites and plotted which things would work best to slip the liquid into. Her only problem was the other Kahlan, the Seeker's wife. They favored the exact same foods and there was always some made for both of them. She was never sure which tray was going to which woman. There was only one thing to do.
When morning came Richard kissed the forehead of his still sleeping wife before slipping down to the barracks. Ever since the Mother Confessor put him in charge of the Home Guard he spent far more time there training the soldiers and getting to know his men. It was an important just and he used his authority to make sure his wife was well protected especially now with someone after the Mother Confessor and Kahlan's quickly advancing pregnancy.
He knew he would be needed later in the day for more discussion regarding the assassination attempts and wasn't looking forward to it. Every day it seemed that Rahl and the Mother Confessor were becoming more open in their relationship and everyday it hurt him more and more.
Richard couldn't stand seeing them together. She was his even if she didn't care for him. Kahlan Amnell had always been his. Every part of her. His only solace was that she was happy. He wanted her to be happy even if he would rather have her happiness found in his arms. It had been easier when she was cold towards everyone but Rahl seemed to be bringing her out of her shell bit by bit. Sometimes he could swear she smiled at Rahl and even part of him wondered if she had feelings for him. He couldn't comprehend how she could feel something for that monster yet feel nothing for him. That was the thing that confused him the most.
Lauren didn't want to waste anymore time. She knew the Councilor was getting impatient and she wanted nothing more than to please him. She hoped that once she had done what he wanted he would court her officially and maybe someday they would be wed. She could barely imagine someone simple like her marrying someone of such importance. When the breakfast trays were being put together, Lauren slipped into the kitchen. She was well aware that both women had been taking breakfast in bed, their condition making them wish for nothing more than staying off their feet.
Unnoticed, Lauren pulled a small crystal vial from her apron and emptied half the contents into the glass of fresh persimmon juice on one of the trays, quickly hiding the vial from view what the servant came into the room and lifted up the trays. She couldn’t do anything else but pray the right tray makes it to the Mother Confessor.
Amanda brought the Mother Confessor her breakfast, knocking on the door and slipping inside when she heard her call for her to enter. The maidservant bowed slightly and brought the tray to her. The Mother Confessor was a commanding presence even when in bed and growing with child. Setting the tray on the bedside table Amanda smiled softly. "Your breakfast, M'lady."
The Mother Confessor nodded her thanks before taking a sip of the cold persimmon juice. With a flick of her hand she dismissed the young girl letting her get on with her tasks for the day. Kahlan ate in silence like every morning. Darken having already left to see to something of importance. She didn't mind. She liked this time when she was alone. It was only her and the life she could always feel in her womb.
It was times like this when she let her guard down and would allow herself moments to think of their child. She nibbled her toast and gently caressed her growing belly. In these quiet moments in the morning she was grateful to Darken. She could look past his arrogance and see the good. He had after all given her a great gift, even if she chose to think of it like that. There was peace and she was continuing the line of Confessors. Everything was perfect.
Absently she thought that it was time she talked to him about a name for their daughter. The time where she wanted him dead had passed. He saved her life and now she was willing to let him be part of their child's life. She would have to talk to him after dinner, she decided. Their baby had gone too long without a name.
The other woman was much friendlier. Amanda always liked tending to Lady Kahlan's needs. She was a sweet woman and they always had the nicest conversations. She hoped that when the time came she had her child that Kahlan would ask for her help. She loved children and could only imagine how wonderful a child of such a sweet woman and the Seeker would be like.
"Good morning, Kahlan." Amanda said as she entered the room.
Kahlan glanced up from her book and smiled at her friend. "It's nice to see you today, Amanda."
She was always impressed that Kahlan knew her name. Even more impressed than she had been the time she asked her to call her Kahlan instead of Lady Rahl or Lady Kahlan. She still couldn't believe that someone could be that genuinely sweet. "Did you sleep well?" Amanda asked as she set the tray on the side table.
"Not as well as I could have. The baby decided to keep me up most of the night." Kahlan rubbed her large belly for emphasis and smiled at the young girl. "Someday you'll know what it's like to be robbed of sleep by an unborn child."
"I can only hope so." Amanda smiled as Kahlan took a sip of her juice, it was wonderful to see the way she lit up when talking about her growing family. "Have you and Richard decided on a name yet?"
"We have a few choices," she said with a shake of her head. We still have time though. We have two months to pick one.
"I'm sure whatever you decide will fit the child perfectly."
"I hope so."
Amanda smiled, tilting her head towards the breakfast. "You should eat before it gets cold. After all you are eating for two."
Kahlan nodded and speared a chunk of melon with her fork. "Thank you Amanda. You are always looking out for me."
Smiling, she bowed her head in difference and stepped backwards. "I should let you rest. I have many chores that need attending. Summon me if you require anything."
"I'll let you know but I'm fine for now," Kahlan said with a smile.
Amanda nodded before taking her leave. She had much to do and only so many hours to finish it in. At least she had gotten to talk with Lady Kahlan. Her day always seemed a little bit brighter after speaking with the sweet woman. She hoped that would never change. She needed that normalcy in her chaotic life.
By mid- afternoon Lauren was starting to worry. She had yet to hear of the Mother Confessor falling ill and the poison was supposed to act quickly. She hoped nothing had happened or that clumsy Amanda has spilled the trays or something. Councilor Williams would be most displeased if she failed. That much she was sure of.
Nervously she went about her chores, washing the dishes and cleaning up after the noon meal. She would have to know soon. Something would have happened by now.
She felt horrible. She could feel her temperature rising the longer she sat there. It was uncomfortable and she just wanted relief. She was nauseous and her head was spinning. She didn't know what was wrong. She had been fine but now, something was different. She was drenched with sweat and her head ached. The world swam before and suddenly it was back. She fell backwards against the pillows as she lost consciousness.