“Why did you accept the offer of marriage?” the queen asked, glaring down at the lord from her throne. Even bereft of courtiers and attendants, she was still imposing; her air of rigid command dispelled all thought of disobedience.
“‘Twas better than the alternative, majesty,” the orc chieftain said. “I’ll not watch the sons and daughters of the clans fall to your knights, not when I could prevent it. My honor demands it, so that we might be allies, and not enemies.”
“Yet you know it was a political maneuver, and not made in good faith. I believed you would not accept the shame–”
He cut her off brusquely. “You know nothing of us, majesty. Not of our ways, not our lives, and not our honor. You’ll not disrespect me by speaking your ignorance…” His tone softened. “…and I’ll not disrespect you for being less than I want in a wife.”
She stepped down from the throne, and approached him. She was a slight figure, barely five and a half feet tall, to his almost seven feet of thick, scarred muscle. She stood before him, neither afraid nor intimidated by his size, and looked up into his face. They were alone, at her behest, in spite of the protest from her Royal Guard.
She grabbed one of his tusks, and pulled his head down to her level with surprising strength. He grunted, and almost put his hands on her, but stopped short.
“Let me make one thing perfectly clear, orc,” she growled, “I think you will find that I am far more than what you expect in a wife.”
I’ve always wondered if (a) I could write fantasy romance, and (b) if anyone would actually read it.