The Iron Queen: Six Feet Under

The Iron Queen: Six Feet Under

Status: In Progress

Genre: Historical Fiction

Details

Status: In Progress

Genre: Historical Fiction

Summary

In late December of 1854, a swarm of kidnappings sweep the streets of England. It takes the children of some the most powerful families in Europe. Let the game of cat and mouse begin! (I've always been bad at blurbs.) Also on regular Booksie.

Summary

In late December of 1854, a swarm of kidnappings sweep the streets of England. It takes the children of some the most powerful families in Europe. Let the game of cat and mouse begin!

(I've always been bad at blurbs.)

Also on regular Booksie.

Prolog (v.1) - Prologue

Chapter Content - ver.1

Submitted: December 10, 2017

Reads: 270

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Chapter Content - ver.1

Submitted: December 10, 2017

A A A

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CONTENT WARNING: SWEARING

My father taught me many important things when I was a child.

Things like “don’t talk to strangers”, “don’t eat too much sugar, or your teeth will rot” and “if you kill someone, please inform the family so we can hide your tracks and so that we are prepared when the constables come to investigate” were all lessons I held close to my heart, and they had kept me out of trouble many times.

I had never been abducted by strange men asking me if I wanted sweets and my teeth were in perfect health, the police never bothered me much either. In fact, the police often came to thank me for my outstanding dedication to aid in their cause. Several times, I had joined them in finding criminals, even when the true criminal was me. Ah, aren’t scapegoats a wonderful thing?

Ever since my ancestors came to pillage Britain in 793, my family has spread like a disease. We understood early on that we would rack up a large number of enemies, so we did the only sensible thing; reproduce by the dozens. Succeed we did.

You can no longer stand in any country in the world, without a member of my family permanently being settled there. Of course, the rest of the world is not aware of this. Our name ‘Kingsley’, has quite many derivations, each version tailored to each language of the world. In fact, Kingsley wasn’t our true name; it was simply a derivation of ‘Kongsly’, which our Scandinavian brothers and sisters still used to this day. But, as with many other words, when you translate it to another language, it can become a quite different word. We use this to our advantage, of course. There is strength in numbers, but there is even more strength when your enemies don’t know how many you are.

Why do we have enemies, you may wonder? Well, let us just say that our methods of becoming as rich as we are do not follow the teachings of holy books or man’s law. Did I mention we are the richest family in Britain? Probably the world, too, but we can never say that out loud. Our lands are vast and our banks are full, to put it simply.  However, you don’t get as rich as we are by following the law.

I recall my father telling my eldest brother how his father had sold him for a night to the highest bidder. 50 000 pounds isn’t bad for one night. It got even better when the patron died in a horrible hunting accident right after he had signed over his entire fortune to my family. Or should I say “accident”? Quite terrible isn’t it? But you don’t stay rich by not playing dirty.

There was only one family who could rival us: The Howards. We, the Kingsleys, and they, the Howards, were moral opposites. Whilst the Howards acquired their wealth and power through legal means… We did not. Slaughter and debauchery was common in my family; in the Howard family, not so much. They weren’t nearly as wealthy compared to us as they thought, but they were still pretty rich. I respected that they could be so rich, yet so moral. Not that they were completely and utterly pure, considering my father’s relationship with the head of the Howard family, but they did manage to follow the law very close. Well, “very”.

The Howards and the Kingsleys had always had a tight-knitted relationship. For hundreds of years my family had cooperated with the Howards in many ways. The Howards had always been great at selling our smuggled goods. They sold, and continue to sell, our goods with a clear conscience; probably because they don’t know that the wares are indeed smuggled.

Surprisingly enough, we kept our bonds with the Howards, not through marriage like most families, but through friendship between the heads of the two families. I did not truly know why our families never united in marriage; perhaps because of age difference, or the rather large abundance of males in my family? Not that this made any sense now. The only son of the Howard head was but two years older than me, and on the occasions I had met him he was always quite the gentleman. A little too much air in his head perhaps, but other than that he was a great person; much, much nicer than me, that’s for sure. However, one of my father’s lessons to me as a child was: “Never marry Charles Howard.” I’ve begged him for a reason why for years, but he just says that it is for the “good of the family” – whatever that means.

There are many things I could say about my family and our ways, but I have been taught to not say those things out loud. We weren’t all bad, though. We have never owned slaves, our servants are paid handsomely and we pay for any expenses they need but cannot afford. We don’t allow spouse-beating, and if you are caught raping someone – well, you will die a painful death. Men and women are seen as equals in my family, and we could not care less about whom you wish to spend your nights with; consent and age taken into consideration, of course. Also, my father and my eldest brother often went out in the night to bash in the skulls of criminals who had escaped the justice system in some way – ironic, I know.

Being a family full of heathens had its perks. We could not blame our bias and hatred on old books and teachings, nor could we justify any of our actions on them. I could not justify killing my neighbour, Bridget, because the bible says to stone women who are not virgins on their wedding nights – not that that’s the reason I killed her – but my example still stands. I could not care less if she was a virgin or not. The bitch deserved to die, that’s all I’m going to say about that. Not that I am not a bitch that deserves to die, because I defiantly do, but it is all a matter for another day.

Actually, it is not a matter for another day. I am a bitch that deserves to die, and lots of people know that, which brings me to my current situation: in which I am in deep trouble. I’ve always had a deep wish to die, coincidentally; I also have a deep wish to live. Conflicting, I know, I had no words to describe it. I cannot deny that these wishes had put me in quite a lot of awkward situations. “Get down from the roof, Mercedes, I promised your mama that we would all eat supper together” was a sentence my father used far too much. “For fuck’s sake won’t you just die already?!” was a phrase quite often used by people who did not like me. It leads me to quite the dilemma. Should I die to please myself, or should I live just to bother my enemies?

I had always been very petty.

My father did teach me many valuable lessons, and I held them very close, however, I do wish that he had put more pressure on “everyone who is not family is our enemy, but treat them as your friends”, because then I might not be in this situation: This situation, where I was drenched in someone else’s blood and with a dagger in my hand. Also, to make matters even worse; a strange pair of footsteps closing in on me.

You see, despite being rather well-behaved, I had quite the talent for getting myself into serious trouble. Most of the time everything went well. Most of the time. However, that was subject to change…


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