After the castle's previous horse farrier and his wife retire, a younger relative named Freya Hanson is hired as his replacement. Freya is a young woman from the neighboring kingdom of Jansfjord who has been forced out of her hometown. She comes to Arendelle looking to start her life anew. Elsa takes a liking to the new farrier and the two slowly become friends. Soon, however, this friendship turns into something more.
Becoming Free is a 31-chapter Frozen (2013) Elsa/OC fanfic. Unlike a large amount of other Elsa fanfics containing Original Characters, Elsa's love interest does not have any powers nor is she royalty. It can be read here.
Becoming Free has a sequel called Becoming Family about Elsa and Freya adopting a child. There is also Free, a series of one-shots set after Becoming Free but before Becoming Family, and Unconstrained, which are limes and lemons.
These fanfics contain examples of:
- Assassination Attempt: A spy disguises himself as a guard and tries to kill Elsa. Freya gets shot instead and loses her ability to work as a horse farrier. The assassin knew of Elsa's and Freya's relationship as well but it was regarded as Malicious Slander. Later, another assassination attempt occurs against Elsa but Freya also stops it.
- The Beard: In the second chapter of Free, Freya gets jealous of a ladykiller prince named Ulrich who flirts with Elsa. Noticing his resemblance to Freya and his friend's resemblance to Elsa, Kristoff suggests that someone is trying to matchmake them. As it turns out, Ulrich and Lars are in a Secret Relationship of their own. They flirt around with women in order to keep up appearances. Ulrich flirting with Elsa, and Freya sneaking off with Lars to talk, ends up averting speculation about their actual relationships.
- Career-Ending Injury: The injury Freya receives near the middle of Becoming Free does irreversible damage to her arm, meaning she that is unable to do most of her job. Elsa decides to make Freya her personal guard now that she can't smith.
- Closet Key: Freya is this to Elsa. Previously Elsa hadn't even thought of romance due to repressing her emotions most of her life. It isn't until after she learns to accept her powers and begins opening up to others that she starts to think about such matters. Early into the story she realizes she isn't interested in men and later she realizes she's in love with Freya.
- Dark and Troubled Past: At the start of the story, Freya is haunted by the recent events that caused her to leave her hometown.
- Dark Fic: They are mildly darker than Frozen (2013), describing issues such as homophobia.
- Deliberate Values Dissonance: Certain characters have 1840s-era views on topics such as homosexuality.
- Does Not Like Spam: Anna has begun to dislike sandwiches because they remind her of Hans.
- Gayngst: At the start of Becoming Free, Freya is repressing her sexuality due to fears she will be ostracized (or worse) if others found out.
- Heteronormative Crusader: Freya was run out of town when others learned she was a lesbian.
- Incompatible Orientation: Freya kissed a friend of hers once and had to leave town because of it.
- LGBT Awakening: Freya acted as Elsa's Closet Key, but she wasn't the only factor in Elsa realizing her sexuality. Reading classical Greek literature, along with looking at the paintings in her art gallery and putting herself in the characters positions, helped Elsa to realize that she's lesbian.
- Love at First Sight:
- Freya is instantly infatuated to Elsa but it takes several chapters for it to evolve into proper love.
- Elsa falls for Freya when they meet but doesn't recognize her feelings as romantic at first.
- MasculineFeminine Gay Couple: Freya and Elsa. Freya is a trouser wearing stable worker while Elsa is an elegant queen.
- Mistaken for Gay: Freya mistook her Pseudo-Romantic Friendship for a Childhood Friend Romance and kissed a girl she knew. Her friend ran off afterwards and later her family came, burned down Freya's house and stole her belongings. Freya narrowly escaped alive.
- Musical World Hypotheses: Elsa delivers a diegetic song in private after realizing her sexuality.
- Parental Abandonment: Freya's parents died when she was younger due to a fever.
- Post-Stress Overeating: Anna makes an offhand comment that she gets hungry when stressed.
- Saying Too Much: Anna accidentally lets it slip to Elsa that she and Kristoff have gotten past first base. Elsa doesn't mind and trusts her enough on the topic.
- Secret Relationship: Elsa and Freya keep their relationship a secret to everyone aside from Kristoff, Anna, Olaf, Sven, and the trolls. Kai and Gerda notice but don't mind.
- Tears of Joy: Elsa starts to cry when Anna shows her the dolls she ordered the local toymaker to make.
- Wham Episode: At the end of chapter 18 someone tries to assassinate Elsa. Freya takes the bullet for her.