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The King and The Isle Boy

Chapter Text

“Ben! Ah, damn it. Evie go talk some sense into Mal, I’ll make sure Ben doesn’t get into more trouble,” Carlos called over his shoulder as he hurried after the slumped form of Ben.

“Ben, hey Ben!” Carlos called out as he used a crate to jump into Ben’s path, pressing his hands to Ben’s chest.

“She doesn’t want me anymore Carlos, it’s over… I just don’t understand…” Ben murmured looking very much like a kicked puppy and Carlos’ heart went out to the King even if a small part of him was cheering at the fact it seemed like Ben and Mal were no longer and that meant he might have a chance now.

“Mal’s a complicated person, I highly doubt it was anything you did Ben…Shit,” Carlos swore making Ben look at the white-haired boy startled. Carlos gripped Ben’s arm and tugged him over to a large pile of crates and shoved the King down and pressed a finger against his lips.

“Stay down and stay quiet. No matter what you see or hear, you stay here until one of the others come by.” Carlos whispered, eyes hardening as his body tensed up.

“What is it?” Ben whispered as he looked around.

“Pirates,” Carlos said with an annoyance lacing his voice as he stood up and hurried away from Ben’s hiding spot.

“Well, well, look what the tide dragged in.” An accented voice drawled out and Carlos sighed as he turned to see Harry Hook standing a few feet away, his hook glinting in the light of the alleyway.

“A cute little pup all alone, whatever shall I do with you.” Harry purred with a smirk on his face as he sauntered closer, Carlos stood his ground with an unimpressed look on his face. Harry lightly pressed the tip of his hook to Carlos’ freckled skin and dragged it down the boy’s cheek, but not once did Carlos flinch.

“Still running around playing pretend Hook?” Carlos asked voice bored but his fingers curling and uncurling.

“Tch, better than what we’ve been seeing dear old Mal doing over there in Auradon.” Harry scoffed and Carlos tilted his head in a silent agreement that had Harry cackling.

“Captain would be mad if I didn’t bring something of Mal’s back, so pup, what do you say? Want to come willingly or shall we have a bit of fun?” Harry asked, an unstable glint in his eyes as he drew his sword from his sheath as two more of Uma’s crew dropped down from above, flanking Carlos with ease.

Carlos glanced at the two newcomers from the corners of his eyes before he twirled into action; he punched the one of on his left in the gut forcing him to double over. Carlos kicked the man down at the same time as he pulled the pirate’s sword from his hip and twirled it around his hand expertly.

“Hahaha! You still have some fire in you pup! Looks like Auradon didn’t tame you completely!” Harry laughed as he watched as Carlos easily took down the other pirate.

“It made me stronger,” Carlos stated truthfully as his and Harry’s swords clanged together and Harry snapped his teeth at Carlos who rolled his eyes in response to the scare tactic that used to work.

Harry pushed Carlos away and held his sword up ready for an attack, but laughed as Gil appeared behind Carlos and whacked the white-haired boy over the head with a wooden plank. Carlos dropped the sword and his eyes fluttered shut as he collapsed back against Gil’s chest limply.

“He’s bigger than I remember,” Gil said cheerfully as he held Carlos to his chest as Harry leaned down and dragged his hook over Carlos’ cheek again with a deranged smile on his face.

“Let’s bring the pup to the Captain,” Harry decided and Gil nodded cheerfully as he hefted Carlos up over his shoulder and the pirates walked away with Carlos in tow.

Chapter Text

Ben wasn’t completely sure what he just saw, but all he knew was that he was shaking. He wasn’t sure if it was from anger at those two pirates taking Carlos, or being terrified by the fight and then kidnapping he just witnessed. Ben clutched at the crate in front of him and watched the alleyway praying he would see Mal, Evie or Jay soon.

He needed to tell them about Carlos, he needed to get Carlos back, he needed a lot of things so his break up with Mal was pushed to the back burner, after all, they had to get Carlos back now! He refused to leave him behind, Ben felt a growl build up in his chest and he felt more connected to the beast side of himself than he ever did in Auradon.

Ben felt a wave of relief when he saw Evie walking down the alleyway, looking around with a concerned look on her face. Ben tumbled out from behind the crates and latched onto her arms making her yelp in surprise.

“Ben! There you are!” Evie gasped out when she saw the worry plastered over Ben’s face.

“Carlos, they took him!” Ben got out and Evie’s face went from concerned to veiled anger.

“Who?” Evie asked, her voice flat.

“Pirates, one I think Carlos called Hook who I’m assuming is the son of Captain Hook? They said something about taking him to their Captain?” Ben explained as Evie grabbed his hand and pulled him back to the hideout they had found Mal in. Ben and Evie climbed up into the loft where Mal and Jay were talking.

“Uma had Harry and Gil take Carlos,” Evie stated when Mal opened her mouth at seeing Ben again. Mal snapped her mouth shut and anger burned in her eyes, Ben knew if they were in Auradon they would be shining green. Jay swore and lashed out a nearby wall, making a dent in the artwork that was covering the cement.

“She’s going to regret that,” Mal snarled as she looked out of one of the windows.

“E, you and Jay go to Dizzy and get some supplies in case we need to ambush them. Ben, you’re with me, it’s time to see what Uma wants in exchange.” Mal barked out orders. Evie and Jay nodded, Evie sent Ben a look that the King couldn’t decipher before the duo left the loft.

“Let’s go, we shouldn’t let Uma have too much time to think,” Mal said and Ben nodded, willing to follow her lead as the duo left the loft and headed towards what Ben assumed was the docks.

“Ben…” Mal started but stopped when Ben held his hand up and flashed his eyes over to her and wondered what she saw when she blinked and her lips parted slightly.

“We can talk about all of this after, right now Carlos is what matters the most. He got taken saving me and I plan on getting him back. I will let you handle Uma as you know how she and the Isle work, but do not forget I am your King.” Ben stated firmly, feeling bolder and stronger than he had in a long time, perhaps the Isle was affecting him in ways he couldn’t understand, but he liked it.

“Yeah,” Mal murmured as the two came to a stop in front of a shop called “Ursula's fish and chips”. “Here we go,”

Mal shoved the saloon-style doors open and sauntered in while Ben followed a step behind her, taking in the restaurant with the obvious underwater theme. The moment he spotted Carlos he focused his attention on the white-haired boy.

Carlos was kneeling on the floor, his wrists were tied with thick rope to the leg of a chair with bright coral decorating it and his cheek was resting against the side, as he knelt there unconscious. Ben allowed a rumble from his throat when he spotted dark fingers tangled in Carlos’ hair, stroking the strands like the boy was pet and Ben bared his teeth slightly at the sight of a girl their age with aqua hair that must be Uma. He spotted Harry standing on the other side of Uma’s makeshift throne and the burly teen who had knocked Carlos out was standing behind Carlos with his arms crossed.

“Uma,” Mal sated sounding uncaring. “You have something that doesn’t belong to you,”

“From where I’m sitting, it sure looks like the pup is mine,” Uma said back in the same uncaring voice, but anger clear on her face as she stared Mal down, barely even noticing Ben.

“Don’t push your luck, Ben go check on him,” Mal ordered and Ben stepped forward at the same time Harry did, his hook held high and Ben just growled in response. Uma touched Harry’s arm while the son of Hook looked somewhat impressed by the growl the King gave.

“Right this way, I have a table waiting for you. Loser, party of one,” Uma called out as she rose from her throne and Mal rolled her eyes as she followed Uma to a table.

Ben trusted Mal to handle Uma and he quickly knelt next to Carlos. He brushed his fingers over Carlos’ cheek and then his hair, smiling when Carlos’ nose wrinkled adorably and his eyes slowly fluttered open.

“Ben?” Carlos asked confusion obvious in his voice before his eyes flew open wide and he began to tug at the ropes around his wrists.

“Carlos, hey, easy,” Ben cupped Carlos’ cheek again allowing his instincts to take control and he was glad it was the right call as Carlos calmed down as he took in his position and the shop with pirates around them.

“Uma and Mal discussing my price then?” Carlos asked sounding resigned.

“You are not something up to be sold, but yeah Mal is talking with Uma. We’re not leaving you here Carlos, I won’t leave you here.” Ben swore fiercely and Carlos sent him a smile.

“I know,” Carlos said simply, leaning almost unnoticeably into Ben’s touch and something inside of Ben settled in a way he hadn’t experienced before even with Mal. Ben vaguely heard the pirates who had been paying attention to Mal and Uma cheer and holler. Ben did hear Mal speak next and it took a lot more willpower than he thought it would to pull his eyes away from Carlos.

“Ben, we’re leaving.” Mal looked furious and Ben tensed, she wasn’t implying they were going to leave Carlos here was she?

“Two hours Mal, if you’re not at the dock with my prize by then, then the pup is mine,” Uma said with a smirk on her lips and Carlos shot Mal a worried look but the purple-haired teen just pursed her lips.

“Ben!” Mal snapped again and Ben growled lowly but he pulled away from Carlos and followed Mal out of the shop. Hating each step he took and once they were out of the shop he broke and punched a nearby piece of wood, watching it splinter around his fist.

“She wants the wand for Carlos, we need to find E and Jay and make a plan. We will get Carlos back but Uma will not get the wand, I promise.” Mal explained, fingers curled into fists and anger obvious on her face and Ben wondered briefly what he missed while with Carlos.

“We better,” Ben snapped out and Mal’s lips twitched into something like a smile but she fought it back fast as she spun on her heel, a plan forming in her mind already.

Chapter Text

“So what exactly is the plan here Uma?” Carlos asked almost lazily as he was tied one of the masts of her ship. Gil was whistling while he tied the knots tight, but not tight enough that Carlos couldn’t breathe.

“Get the wand, break down the barrier and take over Auradon,” Uma said simply as she sharpened her sword and next to her Harry was polishing his hook, holding it up to the sky every so often to make sure he got each inch.

“Yeah no I got that, but how will you take over Auradon? You know nothing about it and what they will do if threatened.” Carlos tried to reason with the daughter of Ursula.

“We raze it to the ground before they even get over their panic at the barrier being down.” Uma rolled her eyes, looking annoyed by all the questions.

“Do you really think it will be that easy?” Carlos scoffed before stilling when Harry pushed his hook under his chin, forcing his head back against the wooden pole.

“With that wand, it will be.” Uma rose to her feet, sheathing her sword.

“Or you can take the easy way out and talk with the King. He’s working on expanding the program that brought us to Auradon, it’s slow going right now and if any of us make one tiny misstep, the whole program goes up in smoke.” Carlos explained steadily, he and Evie had been working with Ben on figuring out how to bring more VK’s off the Isle, but it was slow going and put off a lot by Ben’s Kingly duties and Mal being in the spotlight and not handling it well along with them all still being in school.

“Talk with the King? Make peace with them? You must be kidding me,” Uma looked enraged but her eyes were curious.

“It’s different over there, we wanted to destroy the barrier, we wanted to use the wand just like you did… Then we realized if we that, everything would be like the Isle and… There we were free to be our own people, our parents had no control over us any longer.” Carlos explained, praying that his words were getting to Uma.

“Ben needs help, more help than what Evie and I can give him. He needs an adviser who knows the Isle and it’s people in a way none of us do, you can be that adviser Uma.” Carlos said softly as she stepped closer, listening to every word he spoke intently.

“Pup, that is…” Uma startled to say, eyebrows scrunched together and Carlos waited with bated breath to hear what her reply would be, but it was cut off when another pirate ran out onto the docks.

“Mal is on her way!” The pirate called out and Uma pulled away with a hiss.

“Positions everyone!” She hollered out and the deck was a flurry of action and Carlos sagged as he was cut free of the mast but Gil looped thick rope tight around his wrists and ankles, making it impossible for Carlos to do anything but shuffle.

“Look scared pup,” Harry advised as he shuffled Carlos over to the plank and Carlos peered down into the dirty water, he could swim but not with his wrists and ankles tied like this.

“Welcome!” Harry shouted out from where he had jumped up on the railing.

“Finally!” Uma laughed as she flung her dreadlocks behind her shoulders, as Mal, Jay, Evie, Ben and Lonnie of all people took up their positions on the docks, ready for a face-off with Uma’s crew. Carlos tugged uselessly at the ropes around his wrists, keeping his arms behind his back and he didn’t have to act scared like Harry advised, as he had no idea what was going to happen next

Huh, let's get this party started
I swear I'm cold-hearted
There's no negotiation
I'm not here for debatin'
You need some motivation?
Just look at Carlos' face
Then ask yourself how long you think I'll remain patient
I'll throw him overboard and let him swim with killer sharks
You either hand over the wand or he'll be ripped apart


Now, let's all just be smart
Although for you that must be hard
You'll get your wand
No one has to come to any harm
Don't try to intimidate
Your bark is much worse than your bite
Who's the baddest of them all?
I guess we're finding out tonight

Let's go, bring it on
Better give us what we want
If you don't, it's going down
Let's go, make your move
Peace or war, it's up to you
Give him up and do it now
If you don't, it's going down

We want the wand
Or else the pup is gone
Your time is running out
You should really watch your mouth

Let's go, pound for pound
We're prepared to stand our ground
Put your swords up, put 'em up
It's going down

Oh, oh, oh, make the trade
Oh, oh, oh, or walk the plank
Oh, oh, oh, make the trade
Oh, oh, oh, or walk the plank

Carlos held back a startled noise as Harry carelessly spun him around awkwardly, edging him closer to the end of the plank. Carlos noticed that Jay had jumped down from where he had been standing to join the others and both he, Lonnie and Ben had looks of pure anger on their faces. Mal and Evie had stone-cold faces on and Carlos understood it, but seeing how little Mal seemed to care was hurting a bit.

Ok, look, this is not a conversation
It's a do-or-die situation
If you don't give me back what’s mine
I'll have no hesitation
I'll serve you right here
And I don't need a reservation
That way your whole pirate crew can have a demonstration
Release him now, and we can go our separate ways
Unless you wanna deal with me and the VKs

So that's your big speech, huh?
An empty ultimatum?

Uma laughed as she clucked Harry under his chin as Jay stepped up behind Mal to guard her back as Harry ran his hook through her freshly coloured purple hair.

All it takes is one swing and I'll humiliate him
Matter of fact, make one wrong move and I'll debilitate him
And if he even starts to slip, I'll eliminate him
All it takes is one long look and I'll

Harry! We get it, chill

Carlos inched back from the end of the plank as both Jay and Uma pulled their respective person back to regroup.

Let's go, bring it on
Better give us what we want
If you don't, it's going down
Let's go, make your move
Peace or war, it's up to you
Give him up and do it now
If you don't, it's going down
We want the wand
Or else the pup is gone
Your time is running out
You should really watch your mouth

Let's go, pound for pound
We're prepared to stand our ground
Put your swords up, put 'em up
It's going down

Carlos’ back was bowed as Harry took a hold of his hair, forcing him to shuffle forward another step or two. Carlos’ heart went still in his chest for a moment when Jay handed Mal Fairy Godmother’s wand, they could not be seriously trading the real wand for him, right?

Hey, we don't have to choose
We don't have to light the fuse
Mal, whatever you do, it's gonna be a lose-lose
There's gotta be a better way
Uma, I promise Ben’ll give you your chance
You'll have your say

Carlos tried once again to reason with Uma and he noticed out of the corner of his eye that Ben’s fingers were breaking apart the wooden railing he was holding onto, but he was nodding his agreement with Carlos’ words, proving that Carlos was saying the right thing.

Silly pup! Him? Give me?
He’s gonna give me a chance?
Well, not a chance

Carlos closed his eyes in distress as Uma rejected his offer properly and he yelped helpless as Harry pushed him forward, the only thing holding him above the water was the teen behind him and his heart was in his throat as he looked over at his friends and hoped for the best.

Oh, oh, oh, make the trade
Oh, oh, oh, or walk the plank
Oh, oh, oh, make the trade
Oh, oh, oh, or walk the plank

“…No, it’s too easy. Prove to me that the wand works, oh and nothing too big or the pup is shark-bait.” Uma shook her head and Mal looked at her incredulously. Mal turned around to look at Evie and Jay and Jay jerked his head to the side. Mal cleared her throat and turned the wand on Dude who was sitting on a deck a bit higher and Carlos suddenly understood and fought back a smile.

“While it may seem absurd, turn your bark into a word…Talk dog.” Mal waved the wand daintily at Dude, no sparks showing and that was the biggest clue at least to Carlos it was.

“Does this vest make me look fat?” Dude asked and disbelief coloured Uma’s face while her crew shouted in triumph.

“Give me the wand!” Uma demanded as she held her hand out to Mal when she turned back to look at her.

“Give me Carlos!” Mal demanded back, pointing at Carlos who was now looking at them, eyes wide and fear in them.

“Tch… Harry,” Uma huffed and Harry sighed as he pulled Carlos upright and shuffled him over to where Uma and Mal were facing off.

“Nice to see you again Carlos, sorry about the plank, head thing,” Gil said cheerfully, waving at the white-haired teen as he was marched past. Carlos grunted as he was forced to his knees next to Uma and he looked up at Mal whose eyes darted to him for a moment, just long enough for Carlos to nod slightly to tell her he was fine.

Uma shoved his hand into Mal’s face and Mal repeated the action, wiggling her fingers.

“Harry,” Uma said again.

“Looks like our fun is up pup,” Harry commented as he used his sword to slice off the ropes and Carlos instantly grabbed onto Mal’s hand. Carlos looked between the two girls and the moment Mal pulled him to his feet, she released the wand into Uma’s hand.

“Hurry, come on, hurry!” Mal muttered as she pushed Carlos behind her, Ben grabbing Carlos’ hand and tugging him away from the ship.

“3D printed right?” Carlos asked lowly and Ben just grinned sharply at him, something wild and raw in his eyes and it sent the good kind of chills down Carlos’ spine.

“NO! You do not get to win every time Mal. Get them!” Uma screeched as she broke the fake wand over her knee.

“Ben, Carlos!” Lonnie cried out as she grabbed some swords from nearby and tossed them to them. The two grabbed the swords with ease and back-to-back they began to fight off the pirates that began to swarm then, bursts of colour scattered around the docks as Jay shot smokescreens with a slingshot before he grabbed his sword and began to fight.

“Ben right? I’m Gil, son of Gaston! Nice to meet ya!” Gil said as he dropped down in front of Ben and Ben just bared his teeth and attacked, keeping Carlos in the corner of his eye as the white-haired boy fought off random members of Uma’s crew.

Carlos shoved a pirate backwards with his foot and clashed swords with another one, getting a glimpse of Jay and Harry facing off while Uma and Mal battled. Carlos kicked the pirate he was fighting away and jumped up onto another deck. There he saw that both Evie and Lonnie were holding their own with ease and grace. Carlos leapt over the railing and rammed into Gil, sending him away from Ben who shot him a bright smile that if they weren’t in the heat of battle would have taken Carlos’ breath away.

Instead, Carlos was pulled away by Gil’s sword coming at him and he vaguely noticed how Ben rushed to protect Evie’s unguarded back.

Carlos huffed with effort as he disarmed the taller teen and kicked at the backs of his knees, forcing him to the ground and with a wince Carlos whacked the blond over the head with the hilt of his sword.

“Now we’re even,” Carlos twirled his sword over his hand as he noticed how Mal sliced Uma’s hand and was hurrying up to where Ben and Evie were fighting. Uma started to chase but she stopped to help Harry out of the water, obviously, Jay had managed to take him out in their fight.

“Jay, go start the car!” Evie called to Jay as she, Lonnie and Carlos all joined up by a gangplank that led to an opening, Carlos understanding their plan as he saw them converge towards it.

“I’ll meet you guys there!” Carlos grabbed a smoke bomb from the bag slung from Evie’s hip. Evie looked at him for a moment before nodding and following the path Lonnie was clearing for them, Jay touched her arm in a silent message and Evie watched their backs as they ran up the gangplank and towards where they must be hiding the limo.

Carlos hurried towards where Mal and Ben were stilling fighting, hearing Uma’s raged filled words stating that Mal was her’s as Harry followed behind her.

Carlos ducked under a sword and knocked back another pirate before he spun around with a gasp to see Harry right behind him, sword swinging down at him with a crazy look on his face.

“Not this time!” Ben blocked Harry’s sword with his own, using his free arm to push Carlos back in a protective manner.

“Carlos, get out of here,” Ben said fiercely, a low rumbling to his words.

“Not without you or Mal,” Carlos said stubbornly and quickly climbed a nearby ladder, watching for a moment as Mal and Ben fought off Uma and Harry and when the moment was right he hurled the smokescreen down onto the deck, dark purple covering everything.

“Come on!” Carlos shouted as he dropped from the ladder, grabbing Ben’s arm and together the trio ran up the gangplank and into the tunnel while Mal kicked the plank away and smirked at the fuming face of Uma.

“That was insane,” Carlos, panted as the whole group of them piled into the limo and Jay started to drive towards the exit.

“You’re okay right Carlos, they didn’t do anything to you did they?” Evie fussed over him, brushing his hair off of his forehead.

“I’m okay, just got tied up a bit too much for my liking is all. Coming back for me was dangerous and risky, why didn’t you just leave?” Carlos looked at Mal who was staring out the back window intently while Ben clutched at Carlos’ knee at his words.

“We were not going to leave you behind,” Ben replied firmly and Carlos ducked his head to hide a blush that was forming.

“What Benny boo said, besides we’re rotten to the core and we don’t leave each other behind,” Mal said glancing at Ben and Carlos from the corner of her eye and realization flashed for a moment.

“I know it was dangerous and all, but that was kind of fun!” Lonnie piped up and Carlos let out a laugh.

“You’re one of us now Lonnie, just wait soon Evie will be making you clothes as she did for Ben.” Carlos teased and Lonnie blushed at the praise.

“Oh, I have always wanted to design dragons!” Evie hummed and pulled Lonnie into a conversation about that.

“Almost through the barrier,” Jay called over his shoulder a few minutes later.

“Mal, your magic is working now right?” Carlos spoke up and in answer; she smirked and flashed green eyes.

“Make another barrier, Uma is dead set on getting out and breaking down the barrier. She will not let this chance pass by so easily.” Carlos said.

“You make a good point… Just in case she tries something… Make it strong like a tree, make a barrier between you and me.” Mal murmured as her eyes burned green and a matching colour barrier shimmered to life around the hole in the barrier.

“Good call, look what just got bounced back to the Isle.” Mal laughed as she watched Uma get tossed back by her barrier and wiggled her fingers mockingly at the pirate.

“That was smart Carlos,” Lonnie commented and Carlos smiled as he petted Dude.

“I’m just glad Uma and all her craziness is behind us for now. I’m exhausted.” Carlos yawned, the adrenaline from the fight and kidnapping fading from his veins.

“I think you of all people have earned a nap, you’re safe now.” Ben chuckled and draped his arm over Carlos’ shoulders, tugging him close. Carlos’ face burned but leaned against the King’s firm and warm chest and found his eyes closing on their own

Chapter Text

“Earth to Ben, hello,’ Evie snapped her fingers in front of Ben, snapping the King out of the haze he was in as he stared aimlessly out of the window of his office.

“Oh, Evie, hi.” Ben shook his head before looking up at the amused daughter of Evil Queen with a sheepish smile on his lips.

“You forgot I was coming in for our meeting didn’t you?” Evie didn’t sound offended she sounded amused.

“Maybe?” Ben offered up weakly before sighing and leaning back in his chair, cracking his back as he did so.

“What is so interesting out there anyways? Oh, I see,” She giggled when she peered out the window, seeing Carlos playing with Dude in the grass below.

“Just ask him out, honestly why are you making this so difficult.” Evie huffed as she dropped into a chair, inspecting her nails as she spoke.

“Mal and I just broke up and told everyone at the party. It’s too soon and I don’t want him to think he’s just some rebound…Not a lot of people even know I’m Bi so there is that.” Ben tried to explain and Evie studied him as he spoke with a thoughtful look on her face.

“I guess it’s different on the Isle, but I see why you’re being careful and we appreciate that because no one hurts Carlos and gets away with it.” Evie’s voice went dark for a moment, but Ben didn’t mind because whenever he thought about Carlos being taken by Harry and Gil and then being held as hostage by Uma, the beast in him roared in anger.

“Seriously Ben, it’s been three months since that party and everything with Uma. You’ve just swamped yourself in work and pushing for more VK’s to come off the Isle, I think you’ve earned some downtime at least.” Evie said softly as she leaned forward and placed her hand on Ben’s arm.

“I just really want this to work,” Ben said, unsure if he was talking about the program or him and Carlos.

“Just talk to him and trust your heart… Besides Jay and Mal are already planning on how to get you two pinning idiots together if neither of you get your act together soon.” Evie winked as she stood up, smoothing down her skirt.

“Wha? Evie!” Ben sputtered, cheeks flushing as she laughed lightly at him before winking.

“Take a leap of fate Ben, it’ll be worth it,” Evie called over her shoulder as she strode out of Ben’s office. Ben leaned back in his chair and pushed himself over to the window and propped his chin upon his hand as he watched with a small smile as Carlos laughed and rolled in the grass with Dude.

“I’m the son of Beast and Belle, I’m the King of Auradon and I can tell a cute guy how I feel… Right? Right.” Ben said aloud, giving himself a pep talk in his office. Ben headed towards the door of his office when the leather jacket Evie had made for him to wear on the Isle caught his eyes from its place on the hook beside the door.

Ben smiled as he changed his suit jacket for the leather jacket and something inside of him settled and he adjusted it again before striding out of his office with more confidence than he had before.

“Ben!” Carlos beamed up at the King when he caught sight of Ben coming towards him on the grassy hill, laughing as Dude licked at his chin.

“Looks like you two are having fun,” Ben couldn’t help but smile at the obviously and adorably happy look on the smaller boy’s face.

“It’s just such a nice day and I think that we both were feeling a bit cooped up. Do you want to join us?” Carlos smiled when he noticed the blue leather jacket that Ben was wearing.

“Sure,” Ben wiped his hands on his pants before he lowered himself onto the grass and laughed as Dude wiggled out of Carlos’ hold to jump on his lap.

“How are things?” Carlos asked as he watched as Ben petted and cuddled Dude, cooing quietly at the fluffy dog.

“They’re okay, just dealing with the backlash and all the paperwork with getting the next batch of VK’s in for the next term,” Ben said honestly as he peered up at Carlos.

“You know that you don’t have to shoulder everything on your own, I know Mal is itching to do something behind the scenes,” Carlos suggested and Ben hummed in agreement, mentally adding that to his to-do list right after telling Carlos how he feels.

“Are you sure you’re okay?” Carlos touched Ben’s knee, eyes full of concerned and Ben decided to bite the bullet.

“I really like you,” Ben blurted out, cheeks flushing at his bold words.

“I really like you to Ben,” Carlos said, head tipping to the side in confusion.

“No, ah, no I don’t just like you Carlos. I really, like you, like more than a friend should. Oh, I’m so bad at this!” Ben groaned as he buried his face in Dude’s fur to hide his shame.

“Ben, Ben, hey, look at me.” Carlos tipped Ben’s head up and leaned forward, pressing their lips together in a soft, chaste kiss. Ben’s eyes fluttered shut and he felt like his every nerve was on fire in the best kind of way, he thought he had this with Mal but with Carlos, it was all-consuming and Ben fell headfirst into it.

“I like you too Ben, I’m just kind of glad you didn’t serenade me though,” Carlos said teasingly as Ben blinked at him before his lips turned up in a silly smile.

“Don’t remind me,” Ben groaned and buried his face in Carlos’ shoulder, smiling wider as Carlos petted his hair.

“I think it was cute, is this why you were so nervous when you walked over?” Carlos asked and Ben sighed through his nose, regretfully pulling back to look at Carlos properly.

“Yeah, I didn’t want you to think you are a rebound or something like that. I just really like you Carlos, I think I always have in a way but I didn’t notice those feelings until you were taken by Uma. Then they just exploded out of me,” Ben explained and Carlos listened patiently but laced their fingers together on top of Dude’s fur.

“I guess the Isle is different huh?” Carlos murmured to himself before cupping Ben’s cheek with his free hand.

“However it happened I’m just glad it did, let’s just take this one day at a time, sound good?” Carlos said as he bushed his thumb over Ben’s cheek, loving the cute blush the King was sporting.

“One day at a time sounds good to me,” Ben agreed and leaned forward to press their lips together in a kiss, pleased he had taken Evie’s advise and told his boyfriend how he felt. After all, this felt so right and Ben just knew that his future with Carlos was a bright one.