The princess is a tenacious young woman.
It’s no forced admission; the Huntsman is glad for it.
It has been a very long time since she has been able to roam free – locked in a tower for at least eight years, she’d informed him. The sure-footedness she’d once had in her earlier years will take time to return to her, much to her gentle annoyance, but she pushes herself back up and moves on after every fall.
She does not think herself above asking for help either. Something he refused to ever do long ago.
He scales a high ridge of rocks with ease and stops to crouch on the edge, watching her. She attempts to follow him, slipping down once, twice, and then making the half-way point the third time, but she slips and this time can’t catch herself, meeting the ground with her rump.
Snow White looks up at him; wet hair plastered to her face, and offers a slightly pained grin.
She eases herself back up to her feet and starts the climb once more. This time she stops at the midpoint, ensuring that her hold is as solid as she can get. Her dark eyes scan the rocks she has yet to scale and he can see that she can’t make it.
She hasn’t the arm length for the reach, nor the strength – he can see it in the way her arms tremble.
He sets his axe down, lowering himself to the ground and reaches out to offer her his hand. That small, gentle smile he’s only seen a few times before appears on her face. He simply nods.
She takes his hand he helps pull her the rest of the way up.
She won’t ever have to ask him for help.