Fandom: Hemlock Grove
Series: On the Outside Looking In
Pairings: Peter/Roman, Peter/Letha
Warnings: Minor angst
Word Count: 675
Disclaimer: If I owned it, Peter and Roman would make out.
Summary: Shelley Godfrey believes in fairy tales.
Shelley grows up reading books about magic and cursed princes. The girl grows up on thrilling adventures involving captive maidens and no matter whom the hero is, they always finish with true love. So Shelley reads and dreams of being like those rescued princesses. She dreams of becoming pretty from a kiss and longs for the day her prince will come.
Of course, those dreams don't last. As Shelley grows older, she learns that life is hard and even fairy tales have their share of blood and heartbreak, quite a lot of blood when Disney's PG versions are stripped back to the grim originals. But even in those stories there are princes. There are still monsters to be slain and curses to be broken and while Shelley is losing faith that she will get her transformation, she knows her mother is a dragon in desperate need of smiting by a hero brave and true.
Olivia is the main reason for the girl's belief in stories. Her mother is a thousand wicked stepmothers, evil queens, and vengeful witches all wrapped up into one. She terrifies Shelley more than anything else, more than bullies or high school or the thought of being weird for her whole life.
The girl fears her mother as deeply as she adores her brother, though Roman Godfrey is a boy in need of rescuing. Olivia may hate her daughter but she truly loves her son and somehow that's actually worse. Shelley's mother doesn't care enough to break her. She receives dismissal rather than attention and she is eternally grateful to her brother even as she watches Olivia turn him into someone that she doesn't recognize.
Roman is a prince locked in his ivory tower, his heart bespelled to coldness and no hope left in his eyes. By the time he reaches high school, Letha and Shelley are the only people who still see Roman's softer side. He smiles for his sister and his cousin as he does for no one else, but even Shelley sometimes wonders if he’s a monster deep inside.
So while she still dreams of rescue, she doesn't dream for her sake. She doesn't need to be a princess as much as Roman needs a hero. She could be the plucky sidekick if someone would only find a way to bring her mother down.
Shelley is not expecting Peter. No one has moved to Hemlock Grove for as long as the girl can remember and the other teen doesn't seem that special at first glance.
But he's kind to Shelley when most are cruel and he meets Roman's insults with an easy smile that takes the sting away. Peter barely seems to notice the wall of thorns that has grown around her brother and something in Shelley’s heart says, “Finally.” After all, the hero of a fairy tale is rarely royalty. Most heroes are poor but plucky peasants who use cleverness and kindness to earn their happy endings and a princess at their side.
So the girl isn't surprised when Roman and Peter soon become the best of friends. She sees them together all the time, her brother comfortable in Peter's space like he's never been with anyone, and Shelley has few doubts about where this tale is headed.
She knows her dreams were answered. Roman may claim that he only wants Peter's help to stop the local murders. He may claim that Peter is a werewolf. But Shelley knows the truth.
Olivia is the only true monster in these parts and Peter is the hero who will slay that evil dragon, defeating her mother and sweeping his prince's heart away. It’s destiny, plain and simple, and even when the other boy starts dating Letha, Shelley's belief in romance doesn't die. She may not be an expert on either love or magic, but she's seen the way that Roman looks at Peter and true love always wins out in the end.