The house of Ahaziah sat dead as a statue amidst of wailings in the town square. Terror rained in the eyes and hearts of Stanton’s men and women—the great tree of Ahaziah house—ruler of Savardoram, lay still in his bed.
Men, women, and children were lined up in chains heading to the dungeons—led by ruthless guards shouting vulgarities.
The sight…oh the gory sight…he never saw it coming master Koshi said lowly to his friend master Tarwin as they were being led to the dungeons.
What about the lady highnesses?
They were nowhere to be seen. It’s as if they were never in the castle, disappeared into the night
I hear the tree and cup have vanished master Tarwin threw in. The ladies in front gasped turning to look at them.
No don’t turn, just look forward and pretend you didn’t just hear this. For your own safety, master Tarwin said quietly. What about the book?
Quiet! A guard behind shouted, laying his whip onto the delicate skins of those close.
Do you know if your highnesses are well she asked?
Ahh…by the gods of the…
You two, I told you to be quiet the guard screamed out, approaching and raining the end of his whip on their backs. Now move and quietly, an unrelenting expression plastered on his face.
The city of Savardoram burned with turmoil—iron clad steels run down the cobbled streets and dirt run towns of Savardoram causing havoc. Dust swiveled up the air making it hard and difficult to see—the ground cried, as blood spilled from all sides, old and young scrambled out of harm’s way as icy cold blades against their bodies ended their cries for mercy. Motionless bodies lay strewn across the hard ground with iron hooves trampling over them.
“I want them found—dead or alive, I want them found”, Master Maskin shouted out to his men.
“Find them or it will be your heads I serve to his lordship”.
Master Maskin Hauza, of the “Dormitrin clan—a poor peasant boy with a surge for power burning deep in his gut, had joined the king’s army at years thirteen, fighting the battle of Crimlon, and rising in ranks to eventually be the kings personal guard. He saw it as an honour and privilege to rise to such height and prided himself of it.
Unfortunately, his treachery to the kingdom was never seen coming.
Soldiers scrambled into houses tossing and breaking everything in reach—women screamed for sympathy in their homes as their bodies were being exploited and mutilated, children cried out for their parents and men, unfortunately were subdued and arrested—those who resisted were instantly put to the sword.
Master, they’re not here his second hand Captain Zaire called out. We’ve searched every inch of this town, and they are not in sight.
Well do whatever it takes to find them—search all four cities, high, low, middle, whichever way you have to.
If it takes a lifetime to find them, then so be it—none shall rest or have peace until they’re found.
Going back, the young soldier shouted, move out, to Alvamay we head—I don’t care how you do it men; find them he said with a menacing snarl on his face.
“What about them” sir Keon asked pointing to the bound group on the ground.
“No use for them, kill them. His lordship has enough of them”.
The next four weeks were spent travelling Alvamay, Wentimore, Zavidaar and Edamore in search of the lady highnesses. The kings of the four lands—lord Johaan of Alvamay, lord Leighton of Wentimore, lord Thaddeus of Zavidaar, and lord Vihaan of Edamore—had gone up to the land of Prestious to help their friend lord Arlo fight the Shruus people over border disputes not knowing the outcomes of their lands.
“Find them, Captain Zaire shouted out every time they entered a new town not wanting to get on the bad side of Master Maskin. The eclipse is almost upon us”.
Captain, sir Keon called out, “we’ve searched high and low, and they are nowhere near these towns. How sure are we that they are here?”
No one questions or undermines him. Just do as he says.
Besides, they are bound to show up soon enough; they can’t bear to leave their kingdoms for too long. We will be waiting for them when they do show up.
Round the men up and move out.
What about the prophecy?
To hell with the prophecy, we have other matters to attend to.
In the end, fifty thousand citizens of Alvamay, Wentimore, Zavidaar and Edamore perished at the hands of captain Zaire and his men whiles others were displaced. Master Maskin headed out to brief the “Kalismont”.
Dressed in the finest of silk from their kingdoms, lady Adira of Alvamay, lady Bellamy of Wentimore, lady Dillion of Zavidaar, and lady Elspeth of Edamore, rode their horses through the bare lands of Finola to Galinkin.
They had been at a gathering on behalf of the lordships when word was sent to them about the attack. Without much time to waste, they were taken out and led to a strange road.
Follow the staff; it will lead you to your destination.
Lady Adira holding the staff of light, commanded it to lead the way
You think Grandor made it back safely Adira?
My dear sister Bells, I’m as lost in this as you are. We can only pray the gods protect our people as the lords are away in Prestious.
A few more days, and the prophecy will be upon us she said breathing heavily from exhaustion.
The sun, burning like deadly venom running through ones veins expelled its rays onto their radiant skin—their cloths clinging to their bodies and outlining their heaviness. This was the first time the sun burned with viciousness.
Bellamy, does the sun need to burn this much?
I’m afraid so Dillion, the rage of the land causes it to burn with such fury. Unfortunately, none of us can do anything about it.
Tired with exhaustion and fatigue, they welcomed the scenery of the clear blue skies, birds flying and chirping up above, the roll of green valleys and mountains as they rode along, and the hushed flow of the rivers, helped them forget the burning sun and the events of the previous night.
As evening time approached, the sun slowly went down casting its fiery glow over the sky and danced over the horizon—the evening breeze cooled their sticky bodies calmly satisfying their quench for relief from the scorching sun.
They found a tree close to one of the flowing rivers and rested under it. The horses were watered and their feet rested before continuing on with the journey.
By night time, they had made it into the land of Galinkin—down the winding road they went leading to the cave of Galinkin. In time, the cave came into sight and they made their stop in front of it before Brainy.
Ahh Brainy, called out lady Elspeth, do we get a question today?
The four women slowly made their way towards him in anticipation of his answer.
I believe I can make an exception for today seeing your little conditions, he said slyly, but I will get my question and answer before you leave.
Very well, duly noted!
Brainy rolled the stone away from the cave, making way for the ladies to enter.
Queen Emeril…Queen Emeril…Adira called out
Oh my! Your highnesses, I was not expecting you today.
Yes, unfortunately, certain unforeseen circumstances made as journey in today.
Well I guess we should get you all settled in.
Yes, Your Majesty!
Please see to it your lady Highnesses are well settled in, then come help me get things started. We have a long day tomorrow.
Yes Queen Emeril.
Queen Emeril left to join the council on matters concerning the enchanted forests whiles Ariel saw to the four ladies.
Ariel! My good friend! It’s so nice to see you. You remember my sisters…
Yes, of course. Welcome your Majesties. I trust your trip was well?
Please follow me.
Lady Adira, Lady Dillion, and Lady Elspeth were respectively shown their rooms, the last being Lady Bellamy.
Once out of ear shot, Lady Bellamy turned to her friend and asked, “How are you faring my dear friend”
So far so good! I’m not sure anyone suspects and Queen Emeril has been so good to me.
I have a favour to ask you. Things are a bit dicey back home and in order for the prophesy to come true, the survival of Savardoram depends on the continued existence of these babies. Please promise me “should anything happen to me, you will take care of them”. “I promise”.
I better get back to queen Emeril. I’ll talk to you later.
In the days to follow, preparations were made for the arrival of the little heirs. Word was sent to Lady Bellamy’s sister of their safe arrival.
Back in Savardoram, Lord Johann, Lord Leighton, Lord Vihaan and Lord Thaddeus returned weeks later with their soldiers to find their respective towns in shambles.
What followed next was an adventure no one saw coming.
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