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The illusion of submission

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Becket had a soul surrounded by stone.

He concealed this with an appearance of utmost flexibility but for any of his seeming merriment, his sanctity in bodily pleasure and companionable adoration for Henry, the truth of his person was his dispassionate advice, the self denial of pleasure which allowed him to sit happily in ice baths for elongated periods of time.

This cold, resistant essence of his tantalised Henry, for no one and nothing was more attractive to a King than the rare thing which presented him with a challenge.

The quest for Becket's true allegiance was of paramount importance to him.

In pursuit of it Henry shifted as he had learnt to, during immature years, when passed between courtiers and educators, who alternately spoilt and neglected him, between the inferior position of a courtier to his friend's affections, with it's attendent bowing and scraping, to the barging arrogance of a King.

So it is that sometimes that Henry is passive and amused by Thomas' resistance to him and at other times he wants to beat loyalty out of him


Thomas wore a meagre smile, that nonetheless gained a sublime radiance to Henry for being directed solely toward him.

Becket's constant steadiness of gaze was close to worship, he was the type of man whose love could make a King feel like a King!

Surely this was in his soul?

Drunk, Henry simply threw himself upon the question without repair.

"I love you Thomas!"

Not receiving any response and certainly not that which he convinced himself would surely come this time, he screamed at the stoic Becket.

"It's true!"

"Did I ever imply that I doubted it my prince? I do not."

The inequality in his temperate response appalled Henry who growled.

"So impenetrable, and cold!" And with an intemperate kick to the small of Becket's back, pitched the man to the floor.

Thomas sat where he had been kicked, and as he did so, still, silent and alone. Henry could tell that he had just caused that thing dead inside his dark love, to swell yet more fiercesome against him and yet unable to help himself he flew to his feet aggressively and stood, looming over his friend.

"What would it take for you to shatter? What pressure could I apply, that I have not already to induce you to?"

Rising slowly to his full height, which was rightfully in slight deficit of his King's, Becket solemnly intoned to him, as if in mourning of the fact, "I know not."

Becket stood close to his friend almost touching him, eyes clear and blue and direct upon him for he does not now or ever waver in attention or lack in the cues of desire.

Enraged, Henry pulled away.

"You've too much pride!"

This made Becket laugh heartily and his King joined him. But laughter could not hope to do much besides delaying awareness of the divorce between them and in time, weak in the pull of his emotion, The King slid, dramatically serpentine, to the ground, before Thomas, and with hand affixed to the bottom of his tunic declared toward him.

"You've too much pride because you've stolen all of mine from me!"

Henry regret at once the disgusting nature of the truth and wished hard that he had the slightest excuse for the telling of it, but he had none, besides the desire for attention.

At certain moments he would sacrifice any amount of dignity to turning Becket's underlying resistance.

"Get up from the ground my Prince," Becket said, his voice was that of a father and his eyes were at once full of a softness which had to be false, for there was no shew of it even seconds previous.

It forced lava up from Henry's soul.

"Pity? How dare you, regard me, with pity when I asked you for your love! I am still your King! If I am on my knees, how dare you question my desire to be there!"

Thomas laughed at that.

Again, appallingly pleased to see he had bought Thomas a slither of pleasure, no matter how thin, Henry found himself laughing in duet.

"My prince...?"

Confusion made Becket's look of scrutiny such a look of subjugation, that his King wanted to scoop him into his arms. When in time Becket made the minutest sign of openness to this possibility, Henry briskly held him, all the while in receipt of the knowledge that true surrender to him, had years of work ahead of it to truly invade Becket's icy heart. Standing to stare at the man he wanted he warned.

"I do feel sure that I will murder you one day, just to crush that kernel of independence inside you."

"I would welcome it my prince, I am yours to do with as you please."

Henry was able to hear anticipation in Thomas' breath, even before he lay his mouth to maul his neck.

"Now show me my rightful appreciation." Henry demanded, with something approaching a King's natural dignity, but wearing the stain of a desperate child upon him, for as Thomas sank to his knees, wearing all the appropriate garb of desire. As the touch of his tongue swayed Henry's hips, the King's heavy feeling was still not still.