Author: Kat Lee
Fandom: Once Upon A Time
Character/Pairing: Rumple/Belle, mentions of past Belle/Mulan and Belle/Ruby
Challenge/Prompt: 1_million_words Bingo: The Devil
Word Count: 1,290
Date Written: 12 June, 2016
Disclaimer: All characters within belong to their rightful owners, not the author, and are used without permission.
I have tried so many ways to get you out of me. I tried to find my own adventure, my own story, but every path always leads me back to you. I found adventure. I found possible love or, at least, affection. I found some one else with whom I could share my days. I found two women who care deeply for me and who would have even tried to fight you to keep you away from me, but our stories always lead us back to each other.
I tried to convince myself what I shared with Mulan could lead to something greater, something more, but the truth was, the entire time I was with her, I couldn't stop thinking of you. I couldn't stop wondering where you were or what you were doing or fearing that your darkness might take control of you without me there to help you. The same held true in Storybrooke when I spent nights with Ruby. Even the wildness of her wolf paled in comparison to your sensual ferocity.
I know the beast within you is good for neither of us. There are those who whisper that you're the closest thing our world ever saw to a true Devil, and those who say that you're worse than the Devil. I've heard it even said that the Devil would run from you, and having seen your fits of temper, I can not necessarily disagree with them. But you're my Devil. Good or bad, you're my Rumple, my one true love.
Some nights, I can not believe what I did to you. I can not abide staying within the home you made for us, because I am reminded of you and the love you tried to give me with every step I take. I spent hundreds of days as the Queen's prisoner. I marked the days away with jagged lines on the cold, stone walls. Finally, I forgot the days, but I never forgot you except when the curse made me. Even then, I knew I was waiting not for something but for some one.
I've always been waiting for you, Rumple. You've always been my One, True Love, and you still are. Our stories are destined to entwine time and again until we finally do get our happy ending. You keep saying you deserve a happy ending, and you do, but it's right here where you left us, where I had to make you leave us in order to try to save you.
Don't you see, my love? I never stopped loving you. I can not, no matter how hard I try. But I also can not let the evil within you overtake the good. It's up to me to save you just as much as you've saved me physically time and again. I have to say you, and I know no other way at this time other than to send you away until you've realized where your happiness is and all you risk every time you indulge your darkness.
This isn't about Hook. This isn't even about you lying to me or your own weaknesses. I'm weak, too. I want so desperately to call you back to my side. I ache to have you near me again. I cry out for you every night. Sometimes, I feel like I'm trapped again, but Regina is no longer the evil person who holds me still in her torment. I'm held still by my love for you.
I want to beg you to come back. I want to plead and whimper until you kiss me again. I want to scream out my own rage at all the injustices we've endured and all the torment through which we must yet prevail. I want nothing more than to be with you except for one thing: I want you not to become lost in your darkness.
I feel like I've lost you now, but if you succumb to that darkness, I will have forever lost you. At least, this way, we have a chance. At least, this way, our stories will yet connect again. I know you won't stay gone. I drove you away with your dagger. I commanded you away. I could just as easily command you back to my side or order you to give up the darkness, but love can not win that way.
You have to want to give up your evil ways. You have to want to deny the darkness within you and the power, as well. You have to want to put me first, to put us first, to let nothing deter our love. You have to want to put us first. I know you do. You just don't want it -- want us or me -- badly enough yet, but you will.
You will come to put us first. You will come to want me as desperately as I do you. Our love will yet conquer your darkness. Only then can we be together again, but I know it will happen. I know you'll come back to me, and I'll be here waiting, still wearing your ring, still yearning for your kiss, still loving you just as much as I have since our days together in your castle.
I saw your good then. I still see it today. I will always see it, but you have to learn to see it too, Rumple, and not just see it but be it, embrace it. Be the man you're meant to be. Be the man I love and of whom I will be so very proud. Of whom I already am proud.
You're not a Devil, my love. Your fate isn't to be the Dark One for all eternity. You're just a man, a good man who's tried so hard to do what he feels is right for his son, for his people. Don't think I don't remember that you are the one who saved the children from the battlefield. Don't think I don't realize that you took the mantle of the Dark One not so that you would no longer be a coward, as your previous wife called you, but so that you could provide a future for your child. Don't think I don't know you, Rumplestiltskin, for I know you better than you know yourself.
And I know where you belong. You belong right here next to me, loving me as I love you for the rest of our days, but until you're free of the darkness, our love will also not be free. So we have to fight. For you, for our love, for our entwined destinies, we have to fight, and we shall. But we shall do more than fight. We will win, and in the end, when all is said and done, when the darkness and curses are gone and only love remains, we'll still be standing side by side, hand in hand.
True Love will triumph for us, too. You'll see, but first, you have to learn to put us first. I'm waiting, and I'll wait as long as it takes, still loving you every day. As the marks fade away and time becomes indecipherable, I'm still waiting, still loving you, and I always will. I know you'll come. Just as I always returned to you, just as Snow and Charming always find each other, I know you'll come back to me. I only hope when our time of waiting is over that I'll have the man I love, my Rumplestiltskin, not the Dark One, beside me, because only then will we be able to have our happily ever after.
I'm still waiting, Rumple. Come home to me. Come home to our destiny. Come home to our happy ending.