High slanted walls with sharp stone, long spikes point down from the ceiling, looking malicious even as they simply hang. There is no chatter of bats, no hum of insects skittering across the floor, little legs clicking as they scurry and bump into each other in the dark of the cave.
Once they had lived there. The shift of leathery wings breaking the air and the chatter of incessant rodents and bugs as they snap at each other with their talons and claws scraping the dirt.
He used to amuse himself by crushing them with the butt of his staff; only partially so their green insides spewed out onto the cold stone floor. Then he would watch them wriggle and squirm, amber eyes glinting as he smirked down at them, pointed teeth shining in the dark. When the pathetic creatures took their pitiful last gasps of life, he would scoff. Weaklings. Then toss them aside for another. A new toy to amuse himself with.
Strangely enough, it was Pitch who offered to find him a new companion, although Jack had often received the brunt of many nightmares of half squashed bugs crawling into his eyes and mouth, legs tapping down his tongue, bodies pressing against the walls of his throat as he choked on screams, their sharp teeth snapping at his eyes until he woke with a start.
It really shouldn’t have been a surprise that Pitch disliked his little hobby.
Yet the fact that he had told Jack he was bringing him a new ‘companion’ shocked him. In all his years with the Nightmare King, Jack had never once heard him speak of bringing another person in on their little ‘team’. In their little twisted ‘family’. Yet, two days later, there she was, dress barely clinging to her body in tatters as she shivered into Pitch’s side, the man’s lithe hand on her shoulder… almost protectively. Jack had frowned at that. Pitch hated everyone… but he didn’t question him. Sure he scoffed and ignored the girl, flying off to cause some trouble, never letting on that he somehow liked the way her golden hair fell in her face, or the way her green eyes looked at him with curiosity behind her shining fear.
For the first few weeks they simply passed by each other. The girl- Rapunzel humming beneath her breath as she cleaned the dank cave, brining a strange form of light to the depths. Not like sunlight. No. Jack hated sunlight. Sunlight melted his handiwork, brought his season to a jolting halt. She… she was different. Her soft smiles made his chest tighten and stomach turn. But not in the way being sick flips a stomach. More like how flying felt. Light and fluttering. Exciting. Beautiful.
It was strange how much he needed to be by her side as the days went on. And slowly, one by one, the carcasses of the crushed insects disappeared.
And none joined them.
Jack simply hovered over her shoulder. Making sarcastic comments as she turned to smile at him, giggling. He would smirk.
And yet, he would always feel a slight bubbling in his chest, turning his tell-tale smirk into a smile. Softly edged and warm.
Although he would never admit it, of course.
Jack Frost was icy.
He was cold.
He did not love.
Not even pretty girls with golden hair. Not even the voice like honey, sweet and smooth. Not even how her smooth skin felt against his, warm lips pressed against his icy ones, fingers trembling over a quaking pulse, teeth nipping at tender, swollen skin. A hushed sigh and a throaty moan.
He didn’t love it.
He didn’t love her.
That… that would be impossible.