The moment he was thrown into his cell, Guinevere was brought to him. No one protested when she told them she was putting herself in the cell with him. She wanted a confession, for her father and her mother and her brother. She wanted to make the snake spill everything.
Once in the cell, Bernard and Caleb were seated on the bench out of the reach of the UV light – which that, along with garlic weakened Van Gould. And although he was weakened, he still managed to smirk. I’ll knock that smirk right off of his face if he’s not careful. but instead of being violent, Guinevere just stood in front of him and showed her amusement.
“Nice day, isn’t it.” She smiled and looked around the cell. “Like your new room? Of course after your punishment, you’ll need certain necessities, like a toilet.” The smirk dropped as soon as she said ‘toilet’. “Oh yes. You heard me right.”
“Don’t I need a trial first?” Ayden looked from Guinevere to the two men on the bench.
“Sorry, we already held your trial…I guess maybe we should’ve invited you, but you’d find a way to weasel out of it. Besides, I don’t think Yuki would’ve been able to testify with you so close by.” His eyes darted back to Guinevere. She looked into them and saw the fear. “I don’t know why you’re so afraid…you did it. Now it’s time to suffer the consequences.”
“So what, you’re the judge, the jury, and the executioner?” She nodded. “Where’s the mercy in that?”
“Just because my mother was merciful, doesn’t mean I am. I think you’re forgetting exactly who I am. I’m a Straud. We’re not known for mercy when it comes to people like you.”
He jumped out of the chair and reeled back, preparing to punch her. Guinevere held her hand out and he held that position. She opened her arms and shook her head. “Why do you insist on making things oh-so difficult for yourself? I’m in no mood for this.” She pointed to the chair. “Sit the fuck down Van Gould.” He did exactly that, compelled by her command.
“If I’m already guilty, why are you here?” He asked, defeated.
“To tell you your sentence. And to get some answers.” He looked up at her and sighed.
“I guess I have to, don’t I? Ask your questions and let’s get this over with.” That was surprisingly easy. Maybe too easy. Guinevere was on high alert even though there was no way he could hurt her. Or maybe he really has given up…I just proved he can’t win against me.
“I guess I’ll start from the beginning. Why did you try to murder my grandfather?” He looked surprised. Wasn’t expecting that, was he. She chuckled. “I own my grandmother’s shop, did you expect me to not find the letters?” Once again, he looked defeated.
“He was pompous. Arrogant. And he mistreated Morgan constantly. He only created the League out of pity for me, he felt sorry that I was a half-human bastard and wanted to include me in royal things since I would never be king.” Guinevere held her hand up, silencing him.
“Did he tell you all these things? Or are you going off of your vast insecurities? Because he loved you, Watcher knows why, but he did. You were his baby brother, and he valued your advice. And Morgan, that woman was a witch and a bitch. She mistreated him. She manipulated him, verbally abused him. She used him for his position and for the immortality he gave her. Obviously, she did the same to you.”
She crossed her arms and braved herself for the answer to her next questions: “Why did you kill my mother and brother?” She didn’t know for sure if he did it but took a chance and asked anyway.
“Your brother should be obvious. He was the heir, and he sure loved his human lovers. It was so incredibly easy to give him the poison.” The sick asshole is so pleased with himself! “I knew my nephew and your mother were soulmates, so he would never have children with another woman…and to prevent any other heirs, I had to kill your mother. It was much harder to kill her via human, so instead I would offer to help with the frogs and the fish, I would inject them…it took much longer but in the end, it worked.” Guinevere wanted to kill him where he sat, but she knew she wouldn’t be able to emotionally do it.
“Why didn’t you kill me back then?”
“You were my only way to becoming king. If you became queen, I could marry you, have an heir, then kill you and become king regent. Granted, I didn’t expect you to be strong-willed. So instead, I would just kill you and hope the League saw that I should become the king because I, by default, would be the heir.” Guinevere stood, disgusted. It was hard to imagine how he could speak so casually about this.
“Well it’s a good thing I made a will to prevent any of that from happening. I covered all loopholes, and there would have been no way you could become king.”
“So you anticipated your death?” He was amused at the very idea: His eyes glittered with joy, and he had a smug smirk on his face.
“Yes. I did, I still do until your death.” Guinevere returned the smirk. “Which shouldn’t take long. Maybe 30-40 years? All that time, locked in a tiny cell to contemplate your mortality and inevitable death. Then I’ll be free from worry once your ashes are thrown in the trash.”
“Before I formally tell you your sentence, I have one more question: The fairies told me that my family was never supposed to die and that fate had been changed. I’m not sure how to ask this, but what happened that changed it? It changed because you killed them. Did you wake up one day and decide to kill them?” Van Gould shook his head. His face was serious.
“If they lived, I would have died. My wife…she was a seer and told me of my demise, so by killing them I thought I would live. Obviously not.”
“Then they all died for nothing.” The mention of his wife sparked another question. “Speaking of your wife, did you kill her?” He shook his head.
“No. I loved her. She…she had seen what I had done and would do. I think that was my breaking point. My actions had been such a burden that she couldn’t handle it and killed herself. It might as well have been me that killed her though.” That’s why she was a touchy subject. I feel horrible for thinking he killed her…I honestly can’t imagine how that must have been, I would be beside myself if I were in his shoes. I would’ve stop my horrible actions and tried to better myself, for her memory. Instead he went ahead with it? He truly is evil.
“Thank you for answering my questions. I feel confident with my ruling.”
“I, Guinevere Rose Straud, hereby find you guilty of: two counts of attempted regicide, two counts of attempted murder, three counts of murder, one count of regicide, multiple counts of human tampering. Your sentence is: humanization and imprisonment for the rest of your human life, and the humanization and banishment of your biological offspring. The sentence will be carried out on the next full moon. You will remain in this cell until then, and your children will remain with Lord Vatore in his home until then.”
“I beg of you, not my children. They’re innocent in all of this.” He protested.
“Don’t you dare speak to me about innocence. My family was innocent. I can’t speak for the older humans, but Yuki was innocent. What’s two more innocent people? This is the consequences of your actions, so I hope you can live with them.” She misted herself through the bars and looked to the two men on the bench. “Make sure to line the door with silver and seal it so he can’t escape.” She left without a second glance to Van Gould, though she was having second thoughts about his children. An eye for an eye…Don’t you dare, we need this assurance so we can move on with our life. I don’t know about you, but I would like some peace for once. No more worrying about being killed at any moment. You’re right. It would be nice to just live life for once.