|“||Royce King was the most eligible bachelor in town. I barely knew him.||„|
|~ Rosalie, on Royce|
Royce King II was a human who lived during the Great Depression. He was engaged to Rosalie Hale for a short period of time, but gang-raped and beat her almost to death with a group of his friends. Rosalie, after completing her transformation into a vampire, returned to kill him and the friends that were there on her last night of being human. He was perceived as being out-spoken and arrogant, but Rosalie was attracted to his good looks and wealth.
He is portrayed by Jack Huston in the movie adaptation of Eclipse.
Royce's family was the richest in Rochester, and his father owned the bank where Rosalie Hale's father worked. Rosalie's family were ambitious and social-climbing, and purposefully crafted a situation for their daughter to meet Royce: her mother sent her to the bank with her father's "forgotten" lunch, and she caught Royce's eye. He began courting her and sent her bouquets of flowers; roses at first for her name, then violets as he thought they matched her eyes. Shortly after, he proposed to her, and she accepted, not realizing that he only loved her for her beauty.
After visiting her friend Vera one night in April, only one week before the wedding, Rosalie was on her way home when she heard drunken laughter coming from a group of men, who turned out to be none other than Royce and his friends. Rosalie hadn't realized that he was a heavy drinker, and Royce bragged to his friends how beautiful she was and then demanded that she showed them. Rosalie refused, and the men gang-raped her and beat her within an inch of her life. They left her for dead in the street, laughing and joking that Royce would have to find a new wife; he responded that he'd have to learn some patience first.
|“||I saved Royce for last. I hoped that he would hear of his friends' deaths and understand, know what was coming for him. I hoped the fear would make the end worse for him. I think it worked.||„|
|~ Rosalie on killing Royce King|
As Rosalie lay battered and dying in the street, Carlisle Cullen found her, alerted by the scent of her blood. To save her life, he bit her to transform her into a vampire.
After discovering her immense, superhuman power, Rosalie reaped revenge on her attackers and brutally murdered Royce and his friends, one at a time. She saved Royce for last so that he would be driven mad with fear. Rosalie stole a wedding dress for the occasion and went in search of her murderer and former fiancé. Knowing that something was coming for him, Royce locked himself in a windowless room with a thick, vault-like door, guarded by two men. Rosalie killed the guards and burst into the room, where she slowly tortured Royce before finally killing him, though made sure not to spill any of his blood as she wouldn't have been able to resist drinking it and wanted no part of him or any of his friends inside her.
In the movie, he locked himself in a hotelroom guarded by three men, but Rosalie found him and Royce panicked when he heard the screams and rumbling outside the door before Rosalie pushed open the door, scaring him completely.
In the book, Royce had pale blond hair and light blue eyes and about 6 ft tall with pale skin. In the film, his appearance was altered to having brown hair, dark brown eyes and tan skin.
From Rosalie's description, Royce was a cruel man who had no regard or value to human life. He cared for nothing but his own entertainment, even if it meant hurting other people. Normally he hid his cruel and abusive self very well with a polite charade, but when he got drunk, he would reveal this side of himself and never hesitate to show his cruelty, nor would he show remorse afterward.
He liked flirting with beautiful women, but was not above abusing them when he could avoid tainting his reputation. His personality seemed quite similar to Esme Cullen's human husband, Charles Evenson.