Unorthodox Love

A Fable one-shot

Summary: A one-shot of the Love Hurts/Lady Grey quest in Fable 2.

Heavy droplets of rain fell from the darkened skies in Bowerstone Cemetery as Blade wrapped the ranger cloak around his body tighter to ward off the rain and the chill that came with it. Blade's dog followed close behind, ever loyal and obedient to his master.

A light fog rolled into the cemetery giving it an almost spooky quality and given that it was close to night time, it added to it. The fog was nowhere near as thick as the time the idiot twins decided reading a necromantic ritual from a cursed book out loud would be good fun, but it was a little hard to see. Just in the distance, Blade spied the Cemetery Mansion and the pale glow of light emanating from the windows.

Hoping to find shelter for the night, Blade jogged up to the mansion with his canine companion trotting alongside him. Walking up the steps to the large oaken door, Blade knocked on the door as politely as he could. After a moment, a pair of anxious brown eyes peered through the peep hole.

"H-Hello? What do you want?" asked the timid voice.

"I'm just looking to get out of the rain for the night," replied Blade calmly hoping not to scare the mansion's occupant. "Might my dog and I find shelter here?" he asked.

"W-well, alright, but only till morning," replied the timid voice and the door opened up to reveal a strange looking young man wearing dirty clothing and a large hat on his head. Blade surmised that this must be Bowerstone's Grave Keeper.

"You're err… bigger than I thought," the Grave Keeper squeaked out nervously looking very intimidated by Blade's height and strength.

"I won't hurt if you if you won't hurt me," Blade said to the much smaller man.

"R-right! Erm… come in?"

Half an hour later, Blade and the Grave Keeper were sharing a bottle of wine and a beef pie. Despite his initial nervousness towards Blade, the Grave Keeper seemed like a decent if strange fellow. He introduced himself as Victor.

"So, what's it like being the Grave Keeper for Bowerstone?" Blade asked as he took a bite of his slice of pie before taking a swig of wine.

"It's… a little lonely, I'll admit," the Grave Keeper replied sadly. "Not many people come here and talk to me," he said. "Most people think I'm strange," he added shrugging his shoulders minutely.

"Don't you get out into the town and socialize with other people?" Blade asked. "You seem like a nice fellow," he then said.

"I… try not to get out too much," the Grave Keeper admitted shyly. Blade simply grunted in response.

"So, what about you?" Victor asked Blade. "What is it you do?"

"Me? I'm a wanderer mostly, or a sword for hire," replied Blade.

"A sword for hire?" Victor looked thoughtful. "What do you usually do as a sword for hire?" he asked carefully.

"Whatever I'm paid to," Blade said. "Bounty hunting, slave rescues, assassinations, knocking some skulls together or exterminations," he clarified.

"What about, say, retrieving things?" Victor suggested. Blade looked up at that and he could see that the Grave Keeper had a furtive look about him.

"Depends what you need retrieved," Blade said slowly.

"Well… it just happens, I may have a job suited for your… skills," the Grave Keeper said cautiously. "I'll pay you well, for your time and effort" he added quickly.

Blade thought about it for a moment; he was a little low on funds at the moment and the job seemed alright. But it all depended what Victor needed retrieved. Deciding to accept the job, Blade gave a nod to the man who smiled in response and handed him a note with what he needed retrieved.

A day or so later, Blade was in Rookridge looking for a cave where the first part of what the Grave Keeper needed found and brought back. The bandits were still troublesome, but their numbers were in the decline due to their leader Dash having been killed by Blade a few years earlier and Blade culling their numbers every so often.

Finding the cave proved a little difficult as it was at the bottom of the ravine in the Hobbe cave, but the little ugly vermin proved no match for Blade's skill. After a brief search, Blade found the what it was that the Grave Keeper wanted retrieved, thanks in part to Blade's dog who sniffed it.

What surprised Blade was that the package was the lower body parts of a long dead woman. The smell wasn't too bad, possibly due to the cool dry environment of the cave and the fact the body parts had been wrapped or maybe mummified. There was a note attached the remains and the writing was barely legible as most of the ink had faded away.

It appeared the lower body parts had belonged to one Lady Elvira Grey. Blade vaguely remembered some stories of Bowerstone's onetime mayor and her apparent corruption and her misdeeds. Blade decided to drop the matter and focused on getting the body part back to the Grave Keeper.

After half a day's journey, Blade returned to the Cemetery Mansion where he found the Victor looking over some notes in a large tome. Blade coughed to get the little man's attention. Victor gave a startled noise and saw Blade standing there with the body part still wrapped in his arms.

"You found it!?" the man exclaimed in surprise.

"Aye," said Blade as he handed the body part to the trembling Victor whose eyes were a look of awe. "So, this is part of Lady Grey's body, huh?" he asked casually. The Grave Keeper flinched and stammered for a moment before Blade cut him off. "Not really my business what you want with some long dead woman's corpse. Just want to get paid, that's all," he said.

Victor sagged in relief and said, "Th-Thank you! I thought for sure you were going to call the guards one me," he said weakly.

"I must profess that I'm curious though," Blade said. "From what I heard of Lady Grey; she didn't seem like a saint. Not that I can talk about being a saint," he added indifferently.

"Y-Yes, but well, I like to believe there is good in her, or will be," Victor said.

"So, where do I find the next part?"

A few days later, Blade was traversing the haunted swamps of Wraithmarsh searching for Twinblade's tomb where the next part of Lady Grey's dismembered body was said to lie. The hollow men were an annoyance, but quickly sent back to their graves at the end of Blade's sword and pistol. After a search, Blade found the tomb and entered it. After a while of traversing and disarming the traps put in place, Blade found the crypt where the sarcophagus of Twinblade lay and just next to it was the upper half, sans head, of Lady Grey's body. Quickly taking the body part, Blade left the tomb and Wraithmarsh as quickly as he could and took the first ship back to Westcliff, then hopped on a carriage to Bowerstone and quickly headed to the Cemetery.

Reaching the Cemetery Mansion, Blade found Victor waiting for him. Blade handed the body part to Victor who exclaimed, "Oh, my sweet lady! What have they done to you?" he asked as he held the body part almost lovingly.

"What did happen to Lady Grey, if you don't mind me asking?" Blade said.

A sour look was on Victor's face as he said, "Witch Spotters! A band of puffed up ignorant wretches who preached about righteousness and morality but were too uneducated to see what an amazing creature Lady Grey was!" he spat. "At least her body parts ended up in cool dry places," he said softly.

Blade raised an eyebrow at this but chose not to comment on it. "Where's the next piece?" was all he asked professionally.

"The last piece, the head, is here in Bowerstone," replied Victor. "Somewhere in Fairfax Gardens, I believe," he said. "I'd go with you, but…" he trailed away.

"I'll find it," Blade said stoically as he left the Mansion.

Before heading to Fairfax Gardens, Blade decided to peruse the local bookstore in Bowerstone Market. He hoped to find some information on where Lady Grey's resting place was. Finding a book on prominent figures from Albion's past, Blade found the chapter of Lady Grey and he was mildly surprised to see the picture of a gorgeous voluptuous woman with cascading blonde hair and blue almost purple eyes staring seductively back at him. Blade could see why Victor seemed to be enamoured with the deceased Lady Grey and Blade felt slightly drawn to the picture of Lady Grey as well. Reading the details of Lady Grey's last days, Blade read that the Bowerstone Witch Spotters convicted Lady Grey of witchcraft and dismembered her body into three parts; one was placed in a cave in Rookridge, another was placed in Twinblade's Tomb and the final part, Lady Grey's own head, was placed in her own tomb in Fairfax Gardens. Finding the directions of Lady Grey's tomb, Blade quickly left for the Fairfax Gardens where he quickly found the tomb and entered it.

Entering the tomb, Blade found the sarcophagus of Lady Grey and pushed the heavy stone lid off which landed with a rumbling thud as it hit the floor. Inside the sarcophagus was the mummified head of Lady Grey, all dried up and wrinkled. Blade could almost picture what Lady Grey must've looked like in real life as he examined the head. Giant beetles quickly rose out from the ground around Blade, but with easy powerful swings of his sword, he killed them all and left the tomb of Lady Grey.

Entering the Cemetery Mansion, Blade found Victor in the basement working on a strange machine. "Have you found it?" Victor asked Blade desperately. Blade held up the head of Lady Grey and Victor almost looked like he would break down into tears as he gently took the head in his grasp.

"At last, after so many years!" the Grave keeper sobbed almost hysterically before he looked at Blade and said to him, "You must think I'm some sort of pervert? A real creep?" he said with a dry chuckle as he walked over to the machine he had been working on moments before and placed the head in perfect arrangement with the upper and lower body parts.

"But, well, I've been in love with Lady Grey for so many years, ever since I found a picture of her," Victor said. "She's been the one woman I could talk to, the one woman who wouldn't turn away from me in disgust!" he declared.

"You see, this procedure, it's not just about resurrecting and reanimating dead tissue, it's also a love spell," Victor then said as he walked over to a nearby lever. "I'll take care of her forever! Just like she deserves! We'll be so happy!" he proclaimed. Blade moved to stand nearby in case anything went wrong.

"Stand back! It's time!" Victor yelled as he pulled the switch and a crackle of lightning and vapours of green fog, the body parts of Lady Grey came together and then…

Lying on the table was Lady Grey, resurrected or reanimated, whichever one, wearing her regal purple silk dress, her skin pale and flawless, dark eye shadow on the lids of her purple-blue eyes and her pale golden hair cascading down one shapely shoulder. Lady Grey sat up and looked around before her eyes fell on Blade who could only stare back in wonder.

Victor looked ecstatic his procedure was a success. "It worked! Oh, my sweet lady! How do you feel?" he asked the resurrected Lady Grey in delight.

Lady Grey appeared not to notice the lovestruck Grave keeper as she looked at Blade who looked back at her in awe; she seemed more beautiful and alluring than her picture showed her to be.

"You… brought me back?" Lady Grey asked Blade. "You are magnificent!" she proclaimed in reverence and adoration in her eyes.

"Er… well, it was… actually me who er…" Victor said trying to get Lady Grey's attention but she continued to ignore the man.

"I have been asleep for so long, but I am ready to live again and to love for the first time!" she declared.

Realisation seemed to hit Victor and he exclaimed in horror. "Oh, no! The love spell makes her fall in love with the first person she sees!" the Grave Keeper yelled and then he looked at Blade who spared him a brief glance. "You've got to go! Now!" the little man shouted pointing his finger at the door.

"I thought my heart had died long before I did," Lady Grey said to Blade who went back to looking at her. "And it beats now for you!" she added in deep adoration.

"You can get any number of women to fall in love with you! But this is my one chance at true happiness! Please go!" Victor pleaded with Blade who silently approached Lady Grey who then said, "There's something about your eyes; they're so beautiful, so captivating!" she said in a breathy whisper as Blade stood close to her.

"Oh, please, leave!" Victor begged, tears streaming down his dirty cheeks. "Time's running out! Can't you see that Lady Grey and I belong together?!" he sobbed hysterically.

Blade simply pulled out his pistol and aimed it at the sobbing grave keeper who was on his knees weeping pathetically. Lady Grey then said, "Let's buy a house together, let's get married," she said lovingly.

Victor didn't get a chance to beg again as Blade squeezed the trigger of his pistol and Victor fell back on the ground with a hole in his head. Blade then embraced Lady Grey who did not resist. Inching his lips to hers, Blade then kissed Lady Grey softly who kissed him back passionately.

The End.

A/N: there, just something I'd thought I'd do on a whim. I vaguely remember reading a story similar to what I've written here, but for whatever reason that story isn't there anymore and there seems to be a disturbing lack of Lady Grey/Hero of Bower Lake pairing stories here, so I thought I'd rectify that. To the original author of the Lady Grey/Hero of Bower Lake oneshot, I do apologise if my version rips off your in any way, but some say imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, but I do apologise regardless.

Anyway, I just thought I'd do this little oneshot because of plot bunnies and to let off some steam whilst I work, or try to work on updating some of my stories plus try to get a new crossover written up.

My newest crossover is a Game of Thrones (big surprise)/Goblin Slayer crossover where Aegon VI (another big surprise *sarcasm*) ends up in the Goblin Slayer universe. The idea was inspired by a Red Dead Redemption/Goblin Slayer crossover where our boah Arthur Morgan after being left for dead by Micah and Dutch in the main story is given a second chance at life and with some of his guns, he lands in a goblin cave and meets Goblin Slayer/Orcbolg/Beard-Cutter and becomes an adventurer. My story does follow a similar thread, minus Aegon dying of course. I've just started getting into Goblin Slayer and while some people don't seem to like it very much, I kinda like it so that's something at least.

And just to give y'all an idea of my GoT/Goblin Slayer crossover, here's a short scene, enjoy!

The two moons, green and red, hung high in the night sky, bathing the land below in their ethereal glow. In the middle of the plains, a small campfire glowed brightly in the night and a thin column of smoke rose in the air. Hanging above the fire was a small kettle within which bubbled a broth filled with vegetables and herbs and permeating a savoury smell. Seated around the campfire were Goblin Slayer, Aegon/Hedge Knight, Priestess and their new comrades, High Elf Archer, Dwarven Shaman and Lizard Priest.

Provisions were shared among the group and High Elf Archer spoke up, "So, why did you all become adventurers?" she asked the group.

"Me?" Dwarven Shaman spoke up. "For the exquisite cuisine obviously," he said with a chuckle. Lizard Priest handed the dwarf a skewer of roasted meat as High Elf Archer spoke, "Well, I for one wanted to see life outside..." she tried to say when Dwarven Shaman exclaimed as he took the first bite of his skewer. "My word! This is delicious!" he declared and High Elf Archer spoke up angrily, "Hey! Don't interrupt when I'm speaking, Dwarf!" she spat angrily.

"Go on, High Elf," Aegon said to the young woman. "Why did you become an adventurer?" he asked politely.

"As I was saying!" High Elf Archer gave Dwarven Shaman a glare before saying, "I wanted to see life outside the forests and to see new places and wonders," she said. "What about you, Hedge Knight?" she asked demurely.

"Well, it just sorta... happened by accident, I suppose, and it seemed like a good way to make some money," Aegon admitted.

"By accident? What do you mean?" High Elf Archer asked curiously.

"Well, I woke up in a goblin cave and that's where Goblin Slayer found me and I helped him destroy the nest," Aegon replied omitting the details of where he was really from. "After he brought me back to the guild, I signed up to be an adventurer and I started helping Goblin Slayer out with his jobs and we became a party after that," he said. "A few months later, Priestess joined our party," he added giving Priestess a friendly smile.

"What about you, Orcbolg?" High Elf Archer asked Goblin Slayer who simply said, "Goblins."

Everyone barring Aegon stared at the armoured adventurer for a moment before High Elf Archer said, "Yeah, we kinda had that one all figured out," she deadpanned.

Lizard Priest spoke, "I wish to go through the trials of my ancestors to become a dragon," he said in his regal and noble manner. Priestess looked a little nervous whereas Aegon looked intrigued. "Can anyone become a dragon?" he asked Lizard Priest who shrugged his broad shoulders and replied, "Only my people have shown that capability. I have yet to see a human, elf, rhea or dwarf do it," he admitted.

"Interesting..."

"Would anyone like some soup?" Priestess asked as she held up a ladle full of the broth in the kettle.

"I'll have some," High Elf Archer said quickly and Priestess gave her a bowl of steaming soup. Taking a spoonful of the hot broth, High Elf Archer put in her mouth and gave a little moan of delight, "Mmm! It's so light and gentle!" she exclaimed.

"Well, if we're all bringing something for evening meal, here's what I've brought," Dwarven Shaman said as he pulled out from his pack a large earthenware jug within which sloshed some liquid. "Dwarven Fire Wine!" Dwarven Shaman declared proudly. "Brewed in dwarven cellars," he added.

"Dwarven… Fire… Wine?" High Elf Archer asked.

"Ah~ don't tell me that you've never had a drink in your life before, Long-ears!" Dwarven Shaman teased.

"Of course, I have!" High Elf Archer protested indignantly as she took a ladle of the booze and drank it. Almost immediately, High Elf Archer's cheeks went red and she coughed and spluttered as she swallowed the obviously potent alcohol. Dwarven Shaman laughed uproariously at this and Priestess quickly offered some water for High Elf Archer to drink. "Anyone else keen to try some?" Dwarven Shaman asked the rest of the party.

"Eh, sorry, I can't," replied Aegon regretfully. "We all agreed I would take first watch tonight," he said mindfully. "Don't want to spend it in a drunken stupor," he added jestingly.

"It'd make the night go quicker," Dwarven Shaman said temptingly.

"Maybe another time," Aegon chuckled. "But since we're all to offer something, how about some venison jerky?" he suggested as he brought out a paper packet of strips of meat which looked cooked and juicy.

"Venison jerky, eh? Wouldn't that be a little tough to chew on?" Dwarven Shaman asked.

"I had Padfoot Waitress make this special," replied Aegon. "It'll practically melt in your mouth, I promise," he said.

"I'll try some then," Dwarven Shaman then said as he took a strip of the jerky and popped it in his mouth. He chewed, his eyes closing in rapture and he exclaimed, "My word! It does melt in your mouth! Who made this you say?" he asked.

"Padfoot Waitress at the Guild. I asked her if she could make me something that wasn't so tough to chew on, but would still keep a long time," replied Aegon. "In the short time knowing her, I've learnt that Padfoot Waitress loves making foods that adventurers will love to eat, so I'm glad it seems to be working thus far," he said with a smile as he took a strip of venison jerky and popped it in his mouth and chewed.

There! Just a shot little scene of what my Game of Thrones/Goblin Slayer crossover looks like and I have set up a voting poll on my profile showing a list of lovely women that Aegon could woo and a lot of them are OCs I've made based on fictional characters and real life people and I've given those OCs names in keeping with the Goblin Slayer universe. For instance, Amazon Warrior is based on none other than Diana of Themyscira AKA Wonder Woman from DC Comics. Another OC is Female Barbarian based on Red Sonja from Dynamite Comics. So, feel free to have a vote on the poll and give your two cents and I will try to get the first chapter of that crossover out soon.

Also, in other news, I am trying to work on my Red Dead Redemption/Game of Thrones crossover, but the lack of reviews is really discouraging. *Unhappy face* I don't really write fanfiction for free (I want to avoid lawsuits for copyright infringement!), but reviews encourage me to keep writing and I do like to hear from my readers on what they liked about my stories and not just short little reviews that say "good chapter" or "update faster!" I write to my own schedule and I do face issues like anxiety, depression and schizophrenia which plays havoc with my writing. You couple that with a lack of reviews on some of my stories, and it really does discourage me from writing more and it makes me unhappy because I want to share my creativity with you all and I want to hear or read your reviews of my work.

I mean, I'm guilty of not leaving more reviews on other people's stories that I read, but I've come to realisation that leaving a review on someone's work helps encourage that person to write and not just reviews telling them to update more. I try to leave reviews telling the writer what I liked about the story or chapter or update or whatever. So if we could learn to leave reviews more often, I think the quality of stories on this site will go up.

But I'd rather not turn this into a soap opera, so I'll just leave this here and see what you all think.

Be kind to one another,

Angry lil' elf.