Friday, November 14, 2014

Happy Birthday, Kal!!!

Happy Birthday, Kallie! Here is the continuation of your birthday story, I hope you like it!
Have an epica birthday! I love you, sister!
*hands her 19 birthday cupcakes*

"Alice!" Aliandra shouted as she ran in the house. She heard distant sobbing. "Alice?"
She followed the sound to Alice's bedroom, where she found the girl sobbing on her bed.
She knocked on the partially open door as she walked in.
"Go away." Alice said between sobs.
"I'm sorry, Alice, but I can't." She replied, sitting on the edge of the bed. "I know this is shocking, and I didn't mean to spring it on you like this, Malark needs sensitivity training."
Alice laughed as she sat up. "How could you lie to me? I thought we were friends."
"We are friends, Al, but things have been set in motion that aren't supposed to happen for a few years."
Alice didn't respond.
"I was trying to protect you, that's all I've ever been trying to do."
"Were you ever my friend? Or were you just following orders?" Alice asked bitterly, turning to face her.
"Yes, and I really do think Jason McCormick is a hottie." Alice laughed. "My only order was to watch you. not let you become my best friend."
Alice smiled, finally losing the cold stare she had adopted.
"Now, ask any questions you have, I'll answer them all honestly."
"I promise on all things sugery and sweet that I will answer truthfully." Aliandra replied, raising her hand and placing the other over her heart.
"Okay," Alice thought for a moment. "Am I really a princess?"
"I'm from another dimension?"
"Okay, I'm not sure how to respond to that."
"Didn't expect you to." Aliandra said with a smile.
"And you're from there too?" Aliandra nodded.
"Okay, so, why can't I know anything abou-" Alice began, but was interrupted by the sound of her 'mother' calling her name.
"We're up here." Alice said, her voice tight.
Mrs. Darwin entered the room soon after, smiling when she saw Aliandra.
"Hi Ophelia, what are you doing here? And why is there a strange boy moaning in pain on my porch?"
Aliandra smiled but didn't respond, only glancing at Alice, who got to her feet.
"Why did you lie to me?" She asked.
"About what?" Her mother asked, looking confused.
"About you being my mother." Alice replied.
"I never lied to you about anything!" Was the reponse.
"You're lying to me right now!" Alice said.
"What is going on with you?" Just before Alice could speak, Aliandra interrupted.
"She knows, Pria, you may as well drop the act."
Alice watched her mother as her shoulders dropped in defeat. "Alright."
"Why did you both lie to me about this? And what couldn't you tell me at the forest, Aliandra?" She said Aliandra's name with bitterness.
"Really? We're back to being ticked?" Aliandra responded before taking a deep breath. "There is a prophecy that, when the time is right, the Lost Heir will return to reunite the Feir Kingdoms. You're that Lost Heir, but you weren't supposed to know until you were 20."
"Because that's when the Prophecy said you were to return 'On the morning of the Lost Heirs twentieth year, the dawn of the new Feirs will rise.'"
"Seems really specific for a prophecy."
"Yeah well, our Oracle is really good."
"So what happens now?" Alice asked after a moment.
"I'm not sure." Aliandra admitted. "I wasn't expecting this to happen so soon."
"Guess your Oracle isn't so good after all, huh?"
"Watch it, Princess." Aliandra said, though there was a lightheartedness to her tone.
Suddenly, Malark burst into the room.
"Hey!" Alice shouted. "Get out!"
"We've got trouble." He said, ignoring Alice completely.
"What kind of trouble?"
"Grenra's cousin trouble."
Aliandra cursed in a language Alice had never heard before. "That's big trouble."
"What's a Grenra and why don't you like his relatives?" Alice asked.
"No time to explain right now, but in short, big monster that will eat you alive." Aliandra said quickly, grabbing Alice's hand and dragging her out of the room and towards the stairs when they heard a loud roar that literally shook the house.
Alice grabbed the railing for balance.
"That was the monster." Aliandra said unnecessarily.
"Well I didn't think it was a kitten!" Alice retorted as they ran out the back door, and stopped dead as they caught sight of a massive monster, easily standing 9 feet tall, with mis-matched skin of blue and black, it looked like a massive bruise.
They ducked as it swung at them, and Aliandra pushed her to the left as she leapt to the right, the monster turning to go after Alice as she crab-walked backwards.
A rock bounced off of its head and it paused, and reached its hand out to grab her, and another rock hit it on the arm with such force that Alice heard it snap; it hung limply at the monster side as it turned to face Aliandra, who was tossing a rock the size of a baseball in the air and catching it like she did at softball practice, and threw it, smacking the monster in the face with such force that it stumbled, but quickly regained its footing and cocked its head at her, studying her, and then a creepy thing happened, even creepier than a nine foot bruise: it spoke.
"Aliandra, you are interfering."
Aliandra looked as shocked as Alice felt.
"You can talk?" They said at the same time.
"This beast? Of course not, it is simply a tool." The monster said. "Too stupid to figure out how to use its vocal cords, but what it lacks in brains, it makes up for in being a brilliant assassin."
"Who are you?" Aliandra demanded.
"Now, now, Aliandra, don't go ruining my fun." It said, and the beast turned back to Alice. "Now back to business."
"Stay away from me!" Alice shouted as it reached for her. It didn't respond and she rolled out of the way, got to her feet and ran over to where Aliandra stood.
"Aliandra, you may want to snap out of it now." But she still stood there, staring at the monster. "Ophelia!"
Aliandra jumped and snapped back to reality, grabbing Alice's hand and running.
"How do we beat it?" Alice asked as they ran to the woods. She heard Malark behind them, shouting insults at the monster, and throwing what looked like fireballs. "Why can't you do that?"
"We can't beat it, it's a member of the Grenra family, they can only be contained, and we don't have the right equipment to do so," She answered. "And I'm a little busy trying to keep you alive."
"Can't you multi-task?" Alice asked. "Duck!"
They ducked just as the monster threw a small tree at them.
"Malark!" Aliandra shouted as they rolled away from the monster that was now stomping towards them. "Any time you want to help!"
"I'm working on it!" He shouted back. He had been weaving his hands in intricate patterns and muttering to himself.
They started running again, but Alice tripped over a stray tree root and hit the ground. She tried to get up, but was grabbed by the monster, who held her at arms length above the ground.
She tried swinging punches, but she was facing away from the monster, its claws digging into her back the more she struggled.
It suddenly dropped her, and she landed hard, her ankle twisting and she cried out.
Aliandra ran over to her and knelt beside her, checking the damage on her ankle.
"It's not broken." She said. "You just sprained it."
"What happened to the monster?" Alice asked between clenched teeth.
"Malark finished his chant." Aliandra said simply. "He took control of the creature and told it to stop."
"Didn't mean for it to drop you that hard though, sorry." Malark said as he approached, though he didn't sound all that sorry.
He turned to the monster and closed his eyes, standing perfectly still.
A light appeared behind it and it stepped into it and vanished as Malark opened his eyes and turned back to them.
"What did you do?" Alice asked.
"I told it to join the circus and it left to find a costume." He said.
"How do you know about the circus?" She asked. "You aren't even from here!"
"We're not forbidden from coming here, you know." He said, then dismissed her and spoke to Aliandra. "What do we do now?"
"I'm not sure." She said. "There isn't exactly a manual for this."
"Do we take her home?" He asked.
"I'm right here, you know." Alice said, waving a hand at them.
"Sorry, Alice." Aliandra said. "We can't take you back to our dimension yet."
"And why not?" Malark asked, crossing his arms. "At least there we'd have the home court advantage."
"Figures you'd be a basketball fan." Alice said.
"Where were you when we were being attacked by the giant monster?" Aliandra said. "It's certainly not from here, it was sent, from our dimension; and that means that there are enemies trying to kill her, and prevent her from getting there."
"Wait, if there are people trying to prevent me from getting to this oh so wonderful dimension full of all kinds of nightmares and killers, why not just go there if that's what they don't want?" Alice said.
"Because you have to have certain skills in order to cross over the dimensional borders, a skill you haven't developed yet." Aliandra replied. "We have to train you before you can move between worlds, and then we can really mess with them."
Alice grinned. "I get to learn magic?"
Aliandra nodded. "Yup."
"This day is turning out better than I thought it was." She said. "When do we start?"

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Happy Birthday, Sky!!!

Happy Birthday, Sky!
Sorry for the wait, I hope you like it! :D
Hope you have a very shiny birthday :D Happy 19th!
*hands 19 birthday cupcakes*

Sally sat at her desk, absently tapping her pencil, thinking over everything that happened.
When she'd gotten home the previous week, her mother and brother had acted like she hadn't been gone for 2 days, and she decided not to question it. She really didn't need to be grounded.
She briefly wondered how long her mother would have grounded her for leaving the current dimension and laughed to herself at the expression she imagined her mother would have.
"What's funny?" Harry asked as he walked in, eating an apple.
"Nothing," she said, snapped out of her thinking. Her brother looked at her strangely, but said nothing.
"Have you finished the History homework yet?" He asked instead.
"Why? You need to copy it?" She asked.
"Nah, maybe next time when your not so day-dreamy." He said, sitting on her bed.
"What's up?" She asked, setting her pencil down.
"Oh yeah right," She said. "You don't normally come in my room unless you wanted something, and you certainly don't eat apples."
He looked confused for a moment before looking at the object in his hand with an even more confused expression which quickly turned to horror and he screamed, throwing the apple at the wall, where it hit, imploded a little, leaving apple insides on her wall, before sliding down and landing in her clothes hamper.
She clamped a hand over her mouth to stop from laughing as her brother hunched over her trashcan and started dry heaving.
"What on earth is going on in here?" Their mother said as she peeked her head in. "Harry, what's wrong, sweetheart? Why are you retching in your sisters bin?"
"" He choked out.
"Oh for the life of... It's just an apple, it wont kill you." She said, rolling her eyes at her son. "They're good for you."
"That's... what... they... want you... to think." He said.
"You are so strange," She said, shaking her head. "Sally, I'm going to the store, do you want anything?"
"Some more orange juice would be nice," she glanced at her brother, still with his head stuck in her trashcan.
"I'm... good." He said.
Their mother laughed as she closed the door behind her. A minute later, Sally heard the car start and pull away.
"Okay, I think you puked out all the apple, you can relax now." She said.
"I doubt it." He said, but he sat back anyway. "I can't believe I ate a fruit."
"Well, I think you've made it very clear that it was an accident." She replied. "What has you so upset that your eating healthy?"
 "All right already, I'll tell you." He said. "It's Syl."
She sighed. "Why do you get so worked up over that Drama Queen?"
He gave her a look that only an older brother can give. "I love her, Sal."
"Why? There's nothing likeable about her." She said. "She treats you like dirt, treats me like I'm less then pond scum, and flirts with any man with a pulse. She's a snob who cares more about her makeup than you, and that's my nice description of her."
He sighed. "I know, but I can't help it. She puts up a front for everybody because she's scared to let anybody in, her mother left her when she was 3 and her dad remarried to an dis-inherited heiress who was always mean to her."
"Wow, she's got you fooled, doesn't she?" Harry's face darkened and he stood.
"Look, I know you don't like her, but I know the real her, ok? So stop acting like some big know-it-all and mind your own business!"
"Hey, your the one who came in here, remember?" Sally said, getting to her feet to face her brother. "You wanted my advice, and here it is: break up with her. She's rude to you and everyone else, she tells lies left and right like its no big deal, and she is dumber then a post! She's not good enough for you, Harry, why can't you just see that?"
"Forget it, ok? I'm sorry I brought it up." He opened the door, but paused in the doorway. "Why can't you just be happy that I'm with someone I love, other than you, who chases boys away like their flies." And he left.
She stared after him, tears in her eyes.
                                                                      * * *
Bram tapped his fingers as he read through the tome. There was nothing useful in it, only obscure references, and he was getting frustrated.
He put his head on the book and sighed. Why did no one document anything useful?
Suddenly there was a sharp pain in his head, and he jerked his head up, thinking he laid his head down on a quill or the edge of the book, but the pain continued.
He massaged his temples and suddenly there was a wave of emotions that were not his.
Hurt, sadness, and anger. He blinked and he was no longer looking at dusty old book shelves, he was looking at a girl sobbing on a bed.
He stared at her. "What in the realms...?" He muttered.
The girl looked up, startled. It was Sally.
She jumped to her feet. "What are you doing? Spying on me?"
"N-no," He said, he was too confused to form coherent thoughts.
"Just go away!" She shouted and he was back staring at bookshelves.
"What just happened?" He asked them, and, naturally, they ignored him. Typical shelves.
                                                                     * * *
Sally sat back down on the bed, wiping the rest of her tears away. Seeing Bram hadn't helped things, she didn't want him to see her cry.
She was the girl that faced the... She cleared her head before she could picture or think its name, she didn't know how she'd explain a monster that shouldn't exist suddenly appearing in her bedroom, anymore than she could explain a strange boy she'd met only a few days ago showing up.
She sighed, and picked up a Kleenex and blew her nose before going to her mirror to see how bad she looked. The last thing she needed was her mother freaking out on her.
Deciding she looked fine, she left her room, pausing briefly on the stairs to make sure she wouldn't burst into more tears when she heard her mothers voice, and continued into the kitchen, where her mother was making something that smelled foreign.
"What are you doing?" She asked.
Her mother spun around at the sound of her voice and smiled at her. "Oh, hi Sally, you startled me, I thought you were at Jordan's."
"No," Sally replied. "And don't dodge the question, what are you doing?"
"I'm cooking." Was the answer.
"Cooking?" Sally said, incredulous. "You never cook."
"I cook you breakfast every morning." Her mother countered.
"You put a pre-made meal in the over for 30 minutes, doesn't count." She said. "The last time you tried to cook, you almost burned the house down."
"Oh, shut up, I did not."
"We had to redo the whole kitchen!"
"Sally Elizabeth you stop talking right now." Her mother said, but she couldn't hold back her smile for long and she laughed. "It's a new dish I heard Margaret talking about, she gave me the recipe weeks ago and I decided 'what the heck?'"
"What kind of food is it?" Sally asked, peering curiously at the pan on the stove.
"It's something to do with curry, I think."
"Oh that's comforting." Sally responded.
"Hey mom," Harry said, coming down the stairs. "I'm heading over to Mi- what is that smell?"
"It's a new curry dish, she thinks." Sally answered.
"Don't ask."
"Okay then..." He said. "I'm heading over to Mike's, and I think I may eat there as well."
"Fine, but you know they call that cowardice in some countries, right?" Their mom replied.
"I'd heard the rumor." He said, he glanced at Sally, opened his mouth, and then closed it again. "Later." He didn't wait for a reply and walked briskly out of the house, Sally right behind him.
She caught up just as he hit the lawn.
"Harry," She said. He paused mid-step and turned to face her. "Are you really going to Mike's, or did you say that for my sake?"
His face darkened. "What, now I'm not allowed to spend time with my friends? And whenever I do, I must be lying right? Where do you really go when you say you're going to Jordan's?"
"Harry, please, I didn't mean it that way."
"Sure, you did." He spun around and stalked off.
"Harry," She called. "Harry come on, we need to talk about this."
"No we don't," he called over his shoulder.
 "Harry Robert!" She screamed. "You stop right now!"
He froze before turning on her. "How dare you use my middle name, you have no right to pull that card when you're the one in the hot seat!"
"We need to talk about this." She said as she caught up with him. "You're overreacting to the fact that I don't like your girlfriend, and I don't know why, you've never yelled at me like this before and I'm worried."
He opened his mouth to retort, but closed it and sighed. "I know."
"I know, you're right." He said. "I don't know what's happening, but I can't help myself."
"You need to break up with her, she's toxic."
"I know, but... who's that?" He said, staring over her shoulder. She turned and saw Bram walking towards them.
"Bram Stoker?" Harry asked.
"No, no Stoker, he's someone I met in the park... wait, that's not Bram." She said as the man got closer, he had the same height and build as Bram, but this guy looked meaner.
He paused in his stride and smirked at them before he waved his hand and they both went flying.
Sally landed on something hard and felt something crack, she looked up and had to fight the blackness that was threatening to take over her vision. She glanced at her leg and had to fight the urge to vomit, she didn't think it was supposed to bend that way.
She looked over in the direction her brother had went and saw him unconscious, his head on one of the brick wall things that no one knows the name off that their neighbor, Mr. Pressley, loved. He wasn't moving.
"Harry!" She screamed, trying to move towards him, but every movement sent a wave of pain into her brain.
The man was leaning over Harry like a vulture.
She blinked back more darkness and saw that he wasn't like a vulture, waiting for the prey to die so he could dine, he was studying her brother's head and the, she gulped, and the blood that was running out, almost curiously, like he'd never seen it before.
"Leave him alone!" She shouted, trying to get him away from Harry.
The man glanced at her and smiled, but it was a smile without amusement, it was the kind of smile you give someone when you're trying to be polite about them ticking you off.
"Poor little mouse," He said, he had an accent that she'd never heard before. "Your caught in the trap, can't get out, only one thing to do, to end the pain." He brought out a large knife from his boot and ran his finger along the edge. "Don't worry, I'll help." He stepped towards her and she screamed, which just made his smile grow. "Scream all you want, little mouse, no one can hear you."
"We're in plain sight, you psycho!" She shouted.
"Not in the time bubble, all time stands still, beautiful isn't it, my little mouse?"
She suddenly remembered the supposed bond she shared with Bram, and she sent all of her emotions through it, calling for help that seemed so far away, while the danger was oh so close.
She closed her eyes so she wouldn't see the final blow, but it never came. She heard a grunt and opened one eye to see Bram grappling with the psycho.
She breathed a sigh of relief but sucked it back in as Psycho appeared to be gaining the upper hand. "Look out!" She screamed as Psycho swung with the knife he had retrieved, after Bram had sent it spiraling.
Bram ducked and kicked out with his leg, connecting with Psycho's knee, making it buckle. Psycho used the momentum provided by gravity and launched himself at Bram, tackling him to the ground and punching him whilst holding the knife to his throat.
Sally looked around for something to throw, but there were no convenient rocks lying near her, which was very inconsiderate of them, she instead pulled off the shoe of her good foot and threw it.
It bounced off of his arm, but distracted him long enough for Bram to get out from under the knife and punch him.
Bram rolled to his feet and chanted some words that Sally could barely hear, and a portal opened up behind Psycho, who glanced at it and smirked.
"Until the next time, Sir Knight." Psycho said with a small bow, before turning to her. "And to you, little mouse."
He pulled something out of his pocket and crushed it in his hand, disappearing just as Bram ran forward to push him into the portal.
Bram landed with a solid thud in the flower bed. "Well that hurt." He said, sitting up.
Sally crawled over to Harry and checked his pulse, which thankfully was still beating and he was still breathing, she could have fainted right there.
Bram crouched next to her and put his hand on Harry's head, checking the damage. She punched his leg.
"Ow!" He said. "What was that for?"
"You're late!" She said.
"I got here, didn't I?" He said.
"Eventually." She said. "Who was Mr. Psycho?"
Bram was silent as he examined her brother's head. "He needs medical assistance; call for your mother."
"But who was he?" She demanded. "And Psycho said that no one could hear me call for help."
"And now he's gone, and so is his barrier, now call for your mother." He said. "Your brother has a concussion."
"Mom!" Sally called. "Mom, come quick!"
Her mother appeared in the doorway. "What's with all the..." She said, her voice trailing off. "Harry!"
She rushed over. "What happened?"
"Uh," Sally said, trying to think of something. "Would you believe we got attacked by a psychopath from another dimension?"
"Honestly, Sally, this is no time for games." She said. "What happened?"
She glanced at Bram, and did a double take. "And who is he?"
Before Sally could answer, Bram did. "My name is Bram, yes, I know, my parents thought it would be funny." He said, cutting off her mother's comment about Bram Stoker. "I was walking by and I saw the whole thing, your son tried to balance on the bricks here and slipped."
Her mother looked skeptical but didn't comment. "I'll go call for an ambulance." She said, getting to her feet and running to the house, and a few minutes later, Harry was on his way to the hospital in an ambulance, accompanied by Sally, because her leg had finally been noticed by her mother while they were waiting on the ambulance, and her mother.
Before she was taken away in the ambulance, Sally pulled Bram aside, and by that, she simply motioned him over and shooed away the paramedics, seeing as how she was now strapped to a gurney.
"You never answered my question," She said. "Who was Mr. Psycho?"
He hesitated. "You shouldn't worry abou-"
"Shut up, he attacked me and my brother, my brother, now who the heck was he?" She said; he didn't answer. "You don't know, do you?"
"Not at present, but rest assured, I am going to find out." He said, motioning over the paramedics and walking away before she could say anything else.

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Chapter 36

"Well that's just brilliant." Cadman said. "THAT'S JUST BLOODY BRILLIANT!"
Cayle and Finn flinched at the volume. "Hey, Cadman, neither one of us has any desire to be deaf, but thanks for trying." Cayle said.
Cadman glared at him and then stormed off towards the camp, leaving Cayle and Finn to follow.
                                                                         * * *
She slowed Krennan to a stop and dismounted, intending to lead him, but he wouldn't move.
"Come on, Krennan." She said. "We've got to go."
He shook his head and pulled back, taking the reins from her hands and backed up.
"Krennan, no, we can't go back." She said, reaching for the reins, but Krennan trotted backwards again. "Krennan, they'd arrest me for the money, you know that."
He snorted and pawed and the ground. She sighed.
"You're not going to let me leave, are you?" In response, he shook his head and trotted back up the road again before pausing and looking at her expectantly.
She just couldn't win with that horse.
                                                                         * * *
"Was the mission a success?" The king asked as the group were escorted into one of the larger tents.
"Yes and no." Cayle said after a hesitation.
"What does that mean?" The king asked.
"Well," Cayle started. "We rescued her."
"But then she ran away." Finn finished.
"Why would she do that?" The king asked.
Cayle opened his mouth to reply when there was a commotion outside the tent.
"This is the King's tent." One of the guards said.
"No, really? And I thought it was the bathroom." A voice replied. "Let me through."
"You cannot enter armed." The guard insisted.
"Do I bloody look armed?" There was a hesitation.
"You cannot enter without the King's permission."
"Well then, go get me permission." was the answer.
There was a pause and then one of the guards walked through the entryway and bowed respectfully to the King.
"Your Majesty, my apologies, but there is a woman who is insisting on seeing you." He said.
"Allow her in." The King said; the guard bowed and left and a moment later, Deanna walked in.
"You really need to get better help." She said, Cayle and Finn stared at her.
"What?" She demanded.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Chapter 35

(Sorry this is late, but I finally felt like writing, yay! :D Hope you enjoy!)

Cayle began to take off the armor, grateful to be free of it. He rolled his neck to loosen it, those helmets were heavy. He glanced at Deanna, who was now free of the clothes she had disguised herself with, but had stripped a piece of cloth from one of them and tied her hair back off her face. She had her eyes closed and her face raised to the sky.
"When do I get my horse back?" She asked.
"When we get that ankle taken care of." He said.
"I can take care of my ankle, but I want my horse."
"Ankle first." He said, glancing over at the kings' camp, where he saw Cadman walking back.
"Send one of your flunkies to go get him." She said.
He looked at her with an eyebrow arched. "'flunkies'?" he repeated.
She shrugged as Cadman walked up and handed her the water and a bandage. "Thank you." She said as she took them and began to fix up her ankle.
"Wow, she has manners after all." Cadman said, which earned him a glare in return.
"Cadman," She said, as she poured the cold water over her ankle, flinching from the cold. "Could you go fetch my horse for me?"
"Why?" He asked. "You can't go anywhere."
"And why not?"
"Because we have to claim the reward." He said and Cayle could have punched him.
Deanna looked up from her task of wrapping her ankle. "What?"
"You heard me."
"You, for lack of a better term, rescued me for the reward?" She said.
"Why else would we do it?" He said.
"Cadman, shut up." Cayle said, but he knew the damage had been done. Deanna looked back and forth between them and then slowly got to her feet, flinching when she accidently put weight on her ankle.
She glared at them both before she looked around until she saw the stables and began walking towards it, picking up her back and boots as she passed where Cadman had dumped them.
"Hey, where do you think your going?" Cadman called after her.
"Getting my horse." She said.
Cayle punched Cadman in the arm.
"What?" He demanded, rubbing his arm. He had removed his own armor while in the camp.
"You moron! Why did you do that?" He said.
"What? I'm supposed to not claim the reward simply because you've got a thing for her? She's a criminal, Cayle, whether you like it or not, and justice has to be given, that's how it works."
"But you didn't have to bring it up like that." Cayle replied.
"What would have preferred? Lying to her? Cayle, I didn't think you had it in you." Cadman said as he started off after Deanna.
Cayle fumed for a moment before following.
                                                                            * * *
Deanna reached the stable and heard a familiar whinny and smiled. He was here.
Relief spread through her as she reached the stable and saw him there, waiting for her. She dropped her things and hugged him.
She stepped back to make sure he was ok and he head-butted her as if to say "You know I can take care of myself, don't worry".
She smiled and patted his neck.
"You know I'll always worry about you." She said.
"Deanna!" She heard Cayle shout and she rolled her eyes and turn to face him as he came running up, right behind Cadman.
"Now what do you want?" She demanded, picking up a riding blanket and putting it on Krennan's back.
He opened his mouth to say something when they heard someone shouting. They all looked towards the camp to see a figure running towards them.
"Finn?" Cadman said.
Deanna set about getting Krennan ready to leave while they waited for Finn to catch up. When he did he almost passed out.
"Whoa." Cayle said as he steadied the swaying boy. "You alright?"
"Yeah," He gasped. "I'm fine; came to tell you that the soldiers are back, and the King has ordered everyone to pack up. They're leaving in an hour."
"The ruse worked?" Cadman said, and Finn nodded.
"The King has requested that we accompany him, for our protection." Finn said.
Deanna secured her pack to Krennan's saddle and leaned up against the stable to pull her boots back on. She unlocked and opened the stable door and led Krennan out before mounting.
"Well, have fun with that." She said. "Better luck next time, boys."
She kicked Krennan into a run and left the three boys in the dust.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Chapter 34

The soldiers walked into the throne room with their load, setting it down in the middle of the room. The duke still sat upon his throne, looking smug.
Fools, he thought to himself, if only they knew what I have planned.
He motioned for his Captain of the Guard to open the chest, and when he did, the duke smiled at the sigh of some of the most precious treasures in the land.
"Thank you, this will do nicely." He said. The head soldier bowed. "I suppose now you wish to bring the Lady Marianna home?"
When the soldier nodded, the duke addressed his captain.
"Go and fetch her for us, would you?" The captain bowed and left through the side door.
The duke motioned for his men to move the chest closer, and he smiled when he saw the precious stones and money up close. They were the most vibrant colors.
The captain came running back through the side door, startling the duke. He was accompanied by two more guards.
"My lord, the girl is gone!" The captain declared.
"WHAT?" The duke screamed, standing. "How?"
"The window was open, my lord, she must have climbed out."
"There was a guard posted below!" The duke said. "How did she get past him?"
"I've sent men down to investigate, my lord, we'll find her."
The duke seethed. "Your men are useless. You are useless! I ordered you to keep her in her room, was that so difficult? She was not meant to leave, you imbecile!"
"Is there a problem, duke?" The soldier asked. The duke closed his eyes and silently cursed his outburst. He had forgotten about the soldier.
"No." He said, trying to regain his composure. "Not at all."
"I would certainly hope not." The soldier said. "I will send my best men to scour the countryside for her, if you could send yours to investigate the castle grounds. Do we have any idea how long she's been gone?"
"No," The captain said, looking at the duke cautiously. "But she couldn't have been gone long."
"Then I suggest we get right on that." The soldier said, and turned to his own men. "The Princess Marianna must be found safe, go gather the troops, I will be with you shortly."
The soldiers bowed and then rushed from the room. The head soldier turned back to the duke.
"Is there any where in the town she could hide? Any nooks or crannies she could fit? If she believes her life is in danger, she will do her best to keep hidden, and the Princess is highly resourceful. It would also be good to make sure your men are not armed, at least not visibly, to make them seem more approachable."
The duke seethed silently. How dare this, this commoner tell him what to do, yet he smiled and nodded to his captain. "Do as he says."
The captain bowed after a moments hesitation. "At once, my lord."
"If you do not mind, duke, I will rejoin my men." The soldier bowed and walked out, leaving the duke alone in the throne room, his fury growing with each heartbeat.
                                                                      * * *
They dragged her until they were as far out of sight as they could manage. "I think here's a good place." Cayle said, letting to of Deanna's arm, while Cadman did the same.
Deanna fell onto the ground, hard.
"Ow!" She said, then raised herself up on her arms and turned over so that she was sitting on the ground instead of being face first on it. "Isn't it bad enough my ankle is sprained? You have to try and break bones?"
"Sorry," They both said, but she could tell they were hiding grins.
"Morons." She muttered and flinched as her ankle started to throb. She unwound the makeshift bandage around her ankle and groaned inwardly when she saw it was beginning to turn purple. "Terrific."
"That doesn't look so good." Cadman said and she gave him a look.
"Wow, really? I hadn't noticed, I am so glad you are here Captain Obvious." She said. "It would have been fine if you hadn't been dragging me over all those rocks; it took all of my willpower not to scream."
"Not my fault." Cadman said.
"No, it's both of your faults." She said. "Get me some water."
"Well, aren't you full of demands," Cadman said. "Cayle I can see why you like her."
Cayle punched him on the arm, hard. But Cadman was still wearing the guards' armor and just smiled.
"For my ankle, you buffoon." Deanna said. "If I wrap it in cool water it should help the swelling, now off you pop."
He rolled his eyes but walked over to the Kings' camp nonetheless.

Friday, May 16, 2014

Chapter 33

She landed hard on her ankle and stumbled. Cayle caught her arm to steady her and she stepped on her ankle and clamped a hand over her mouth to keep from crying out.
"I think my ankle's sprained." She whispered.
"Oh wonderful." Cadman whispered. "Can you walk? Or do I have to carry you?"
"I think I can manage, if you don't mind going slower than normal." She replied.
"Great, this is just great." He said, picking up her pack and swinging it over his shoulder. "Shall we go?"
They headed out at a slow pace, keeping an eye out for guards.
"Duck!" Cayle whispered and she did, accidentally putting weight on her injured ankle and she bit her lip.
She glanced at Cayle and saw that he was saluting someone, before nodding to her and continuing forward.
Cadman helped her up and she limped along, hating herself for landing so hard on her ankle.
They were almost to the castle wall now, having managed to avoid the guards and servants, and Deanna couldn't wait to be out there.
They had just hid from another patrol of guards, and were waiting for another group of servants to pass so that they could figure out a way to open the gates, when they opened and a small party of soldiers, all baring the crest of a crashing wave.
"The King's soldiers." Cayle whispered.
"What are they carrying?" Deanna asked, noticing what seemed to be a heavy trunk being carried by a few of the men.
"Treasure? Maybe that's the ransom money." Cadman said.
"Ransom for what?" Deanna asked.
"You, or at least who everyone thought you were."
"Marianna?" She asked.
"Yeah, how did you know?"
"When I was first brought here, they kept calling me Marianna; the reason I was still there was the Duke was supposedly making up for my less than great treatment." She explained.
"I see." Cadman said. "But where is the real Marianna?"
"How would I know that?" She said.
"Will both of you be quiet?" Cayle said. "Now's our chance."
"But how are we going to get through?" Deanna asked. "You could make an excuse but I'm not dressed like a guard."
"True, but maybe if we disguised you.." His voice trailed off as he looked around for something to disguise her with.
"Disguise me as what?" She asked.
He walked over to a clothes line and took some things down and threw them at her. "Put those on."
"It's your disguise." he said. "If anyone asks, we're throwing you out on the Duke's orders."
She wasn't convinced, but put the clothes on over her regular ones all the same, she put an extra piece of cloth on her head to hide her hair.
When she was done, Cadman and Cayle each took one of her arms and began dragging her towards the gates.
"Halt!" One of guards atop the gate said, and they paused. Deanna held her breath. "We have been ordered not to let anyone out of the city."
"And we have been ordered to throw this ruffian out of the city." Cadman replied. Deanna kept her head down and pretended to be unconscious.
The guard hesitated.
"We can't disobey the Dukes orders." He finally said.
"Neither can we." Cadman said. "So it would seem we've reached a stalemate."
The guard looked to his companion, who shrugged.
"Alright." The guard said finally and he and his fellow guard opened the gate.
Cadman saluted with one of this hands and nodded to Cayle and they dragged Deanna out of the castle.

Friday, May 9, 2014

Chapter 32

The guard took his post outside her room, leaving her to pace inside. Could she risk her original plan? Or had the Duke increased the guards?
She glanced out her window and her hopes fell: there was a guard standing below. She cursed and resumed her pacing.
She sat on the bed, staring at the wall, trying to think of a new escape plan when a rock came flying in through the open window, hitting the dresser.
She stared at the small stone as it sat on the floor, and looked out the window just as another came flying right at her.
She ducked as it hit the wall behind her.
"Is everything alright in there?" The guard outside asked.
"Yes, everything's fine, I tripped." She said, hoping the guard would believe her.
"Alright, Lady." He said.
"Why does everyone keep calling me that?" She muttered as she got to her feet and cautiously approached the window and looked down.
The guard was still standing where he had been, but now there was another guard beside him. She shook her head and walked away from the window and picked up the first rock.
It was a normal rock that had somehow thrown itself into her room. She had no explanation.
"Pssst!" She heard someone whisper. She looked around, but saw no one.
"Pssst!" The voice repeated, more insistent. "Don't make me throw another rock up there!"
"What on earth..." She muttered as she walked back to the window and looked down.
Both guards were looking up at the window, one had another stone in his hand.
"It's us!" He whispered.
"I don't know an 'us,'" She said. "Try another window."
He sighed loudly. "There's no time to be a smart-ass, okay? Get your stuff and get down here."
"No, Prince Bodil, of course it's Cayle, now hurry up will you?" He whispered.
She rushed over to her pack and tossed it out the window, and just as she was about to follow, there was a knock at the door, she froze.
"Lady Deanna?" She recognized the voice of one of the maids.
"Hold on." She whispered to Cayle, before she closed the window and walked over to the door and opened it.
The maid was standing outside holding a tray of food. "Your meal, My Lady."
"Um, thank you." Deanna said, taking the tray. "But there's really no need to call me 'my lady.'"
The maid bowed and backed away without answering, so Deanna just closed the door.
She set the tray down on the table and took a biscuit from the plate before walking back over to the window and opening it again.
She looked down.
"Well?" Cayle asked. "It's not that far."
"Mind over matter." She recognized the voice of Cadman.
"Yeah, thanks." She muttered and swung her feet out the window and jumped.

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Chapter 31

(Sorry this one is really short)

Deanna watched as the guard walked over to one of the other soldiers with the wave on his chest and spoke quietly to him.
The soldier nodded and walked quickly to the door, glanced at her once, and, once the guards opened the door for him he walked through, and she saw him start sprinting before the door closed.
What was going on?
                                                                         * * *
The king was very generous, allowing them to stay in their camp while he tried to think of a way to get Deanna out of there without letting the Duke know that they were on to him.
Cayle paced.
"Will you stop that?!" Alroy said. "He said he'd take care of it, there's not much else we can do."
"We could get her out of there."
"And just how do you suppose we do that?" Cadman asked.
"We could go in disguise." Finn suggested as he absently picked at his boot, when he glanced up, everyone was staring at him.
"What?" He demanded.
                                                                         * * *
"You summoned me?" She asked, turning her back on the door.
"Yes, my dear, I was wondering if you would consider extending your stay." The duke said.
"Why?" She asked.
"Because of the escaped prisoners, of course! We can't have you wandering the countryside on your own, can we?"
"I can handle myself." Deanna said.
He smiled. "I have no doubt of that, however we do not know how dangerous these men are, and it is best to take precautions."
She raised her brow, but didn't respond.
"Guard, please escort the Lady Deanna back to her room."
The guard bowed and then motioned for Deanna to follow him, which she did after a final glance at the door.
She had to get out of here.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Chapter 30

(I'm sorry about how incredibly late this is, I know it's been literally AGES since the last chapter, blame the writer's block. Anyway, here is the new chapter. Enjoy!)

She followed the guard through the halls until they reached the throne room. He stood by the door and motioned for her to go through; with a sigh, she obliged.
The Duke was sitting on his throne, a fixed smile on his face. There was someone knew standing in front of the throne, he had an air of skepticism about him that disappeared when he saw her, being replaced by shock and then determination.
"What's your price?" He asked.
The Duke made a show of thinking about it. "Oh, I don't know, it's a very valuable prize I have found, I should think it would take more than money for me to relinquish it."
Deanna frowned. Prize? What prize?
The guard motioned for someone behind him to come forward, and the crest on his chest became visible to her. A crashing wave.
Then it hit her.
Marianna of the Shore.
Deanna really needed to get out of here.
                                                                            * * *
The guard burst into the tent, startling the King.
He bowed hastily, remembering etiquette. "I'm sorry, My King, for the intrusion."
"That's alright, Albert, what's the matter?" The King said, noting the guards' expression.
"There are some men that walked into camp, My Lord, they are asking to speak with you." He said.
The king thought a moment before nodding and getting to his feet. "Take me to them."
"Oh yes, what a brilliant idea, just walk right into an unknown camp and ask 'can I speak with whoever is in charge here?' what could go wrong?" Alroy said from where he sat with the others with their hands on their heads as the guards pointed spears and swords at them. "We could get bloody CAUGHT for one thing!"
"Will you shut up?" Cayle said exasperatedly. "It would have been worse if we'd snuck in.
"Silence!" One of the guards said, cutting off Alroy's tart reply.
"Make way for the king!" One of the guards said, and they all parted, bowing, though they kept their weapons trained on the group.
"Hello," Cayle greeted. "Forgive me, but, where is your territory?"
"Cayle!" Alroy exclaimed.
"What?" Cayle demanded. "I don't know who he is! Just that he's a king!"
Alroy turned back to the king. "My apologies for my companion, he's a moron."
The king smiled. "It is alright." He said. "My name is Harmon, and I am the King of the Shore."
"Nice to meet you," Finn said.
"Finn!" Alroy said.
Alroy sighed. "Doesn't anyone here know how to greet royalty?"
"No." Was the collective reply.
"May I ask what brings you to this castle?" Cayle asked. Alroy sighed but didn't intervene this time.
The kings face darkened. "The Duke of this castle has taken my daughter captive."
"Your daughter?"
Cayle frowned. "Deanna didn't mention another captive..."
"And whom is this Deanna?"
"She's the girl being held in there." Cayle said.
The king frowned. "Then where is my daughter?"

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Chapter 29

Deanna sat on the bed, staring out the window, lost in thought. How was she supposed to get out of this mess?
The only way out she could see was the direct approach: right through the front door.
She sighed. This was more complicated then she'd anticipated. She decided to make a break for it that night, after everyone had gone to sleep. She looked out the window and saw, to her relief, that the Duke hadn't put guards under her window.
Of course, he probably didn't think she'd use the window, it was after all, the third floor.
She nodded to herself, satisfied that she came to a decision, whether or not it was wise remained to be seen; she just had to wait it out and see.
                                                                           * * *
The flag had been stationary for quite some time, with a foot soldier being sent up to the gates and admitted.
"We should wait until he comes back before we make our move." Alroy said, and, after some arguing, they all agreed and sat down to wait, with Cayle pacing some more.
By the time the sun settled into the western horizon, Cayle had made a path in the dirt from where he'd been pacing. 
"Will you stop that?" Cadman snapped. "You've been pacing for hours!"
Cayle opened his mouth to respond when Bart interrupted before he could. "I'm with Cayle on this one; she should have been here by now."
"Do you think she got caught?" Finn asked.
"Maybe," Cayle said.
"Maybe she just decided to trick us." Cadman suggested. "She is known for being able to manipulate."
"But if she had, she wouldn't be able to get her horse back."
"Why do you think she cares so much about this horse?" Cadman demanded.
"Did you see the look on her face when we told her he was alright? She cares, trust me." Cayle said. "She wouldn't trick us if it meant not getting her horse back."
Cadman sighed. "You're sure?"
"Of course I'm sure!" Cayle said. "Something's gone wrong."
"Well," Cadman began, getting to his feet. "I suppose we have to go investigate, otherwise we wont get our reward.. What?" Bart had given him a withered look.
"Let's go then." Cayle said.
"If we have to." Alroy said, also getting to his feet. "How are we going to get in?"
"Something's happening!" Finn whispered. They all watched the gates as they opened and a foot soldier emerged, heading over to where the flag had been stationary for some time. His pace was quick and the group could tell his shoulders were tense, even from the distance they were at.
When the gates closed behind him, he broke into a run.
"Well, I think this is our chance." Bart remarked.
                                                                        * * *
She gathered her belongings and opened the window, she looked down. It looked farther then it was, but there was still the possibility of breaking a bone, which wouldn't help her escape plan.
She looked around for something that could help her.
The bedspread was too thick to be helpful; the curtains, however, were just right. She ripped them off the rod and tied one end to the bed, and let the other end fall out the window.
After a test yank, she sat on the window sill and looked down, prepared to slide down, when she heard a knock.
She looked up at the and froze. She quickly dropped her bag and walked over, opening the door just a little so that whoever was knocking wouldn't see the window behind her was missing its curtains.
"Yes?" She said when she opened the door.
"The Duke requests your presence." The guard said.
"Ok." Deanna said, silently cursing her luck. She slipped out the door and motioned for the guard to lead the way and followed, her eyes never ceasing to move as she looked for an exit.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Chapter 28

"That was my foot!" Alroy said from in front of him.
"Sorry." Cayle said to the darkness ahead of him.
"How long is this tunnel?" Cadman asked. "It seems to go on for ages."
"We've been in here for five minutes..." Finn said.
"Shut up." Was the response.
"How on earth do you boys ever get anything done?" Bart commented.
"Slowly." Cayle replied.
"I think I see something ahead." Cadman said. "It's a light!"
Anxious to get out of the dark and dank tunnel, they all hurried their pace, tripping over each other's limbs in an attempt to get to daylight and fresh air.
Finally, they emerged into sunlight, being temporarily blinded by its intensity after the darkness.
"Ouch." Cadman said. "That smarts a bit."
"Just a bit." Cayle agreed.
"Where are we?" Alroy asked.
"I have no idea." He replied, walking ahead a bit. "I think we're outside of town."
"I can't even see anything." Finn said, blinking rapidly in an attempt to regain his sight.
"Aha!" Bart exclaimed. "I know precisely where we are!"
"Lost?" Cadman said.
"Not at all." Bart said. "We're a mile out of town; the stables are over there."
He pointed to a small structure that stood right outside of the giant stone walls that loomed overhead.
"Well, that was easy." Cadman said.
"Where is she?" Finn asked. "Wasn't she supposed to meet us here?"
"Maybe she couldn't get away right yet." Alroy suggested.
"Maybe." Cayle said, though he didn't sound convinced. He started walking over to the stables, the others following behind.
                                                                        * * *
Deanna was escorted back to her rooms and left there, with guards posted outside, while inside she paced, trying to think of how to escape.
There was a knock at the door and a small woman entered, her mouse brown hair cut short. She carried a silver tray with food on it. She bowed and then set it down on the table near the window and left without a word.
Deanna eyed the food warily, was it poisoned? She found that, after being told not to leave, how comfortable she had become here, and how now that comfort is her prison. She laughed at that thought. Who knew?
She sat down and looked at the plate for a minute before deciding that she really was hungry. She picked up the fork and started eating.
                                                                       * * *
He paced back and forth, alternating between looking at the stone wall and the sky.
"Why are you pacing?" Cadman asked.
"No reason, why do you ask?" Cayle said.
"Oh I don't know, because you seem a little on edge." He replied.
"Shouldn't we get going?" Alroy asked. "We don't want them to discover that we're gone while we're still here."
"We can't leave yet." Bart said. "We wait for her."
Alroy sighed. "I really don't understand why everyone is after that girl, what did she do anyway?"
Cayle stopped pacing and stared at him. "You really don't have a clue do you?"
"No." Alroy said.
"Well, let's just say she killed someone very important for a very stupid reason."
"What the hell kind of explanation is that?" Alroy replied.
"A vague one, I believe." Bart said.
"She killed the Prince of Albernath because he supposedly had information on a man named Herndon, who by the way, doesn't exist." Cadman explained. "She ran, and a bounty was put on her head and that's where we come in."
Alroy laughed. "You're bounty hunters?"
"Yes, got a problem with that?"
"No no, it's just, you three? You don't seem like assassins."
"Then what do we seem like?" Finn asked.
"If I had to guess?" Alroy said. "A farmer, a wannabe knight and his wannabe squire."
"Guess you've got us pegged, huh? Mr. Runs-from-bandits." Cadman said.
"Boys, please." Bart said exasperatedly. "Must you keep arguing?"
"It passes the time." Cadman said, glaring at Alroy, who glared back.
"Something must have gone wrong, otherwise she would have been here by now." Cayle said.
"What makes you such an expert?" Cadman asked. "You spent maybe five minutes in her company and suddenly you know everything about her, and now your acting like your...." He trailed off and a look of surprise and amusement came over his face. "No way."
"What?" Finn asked.
"Shut up, Cadman." Cayle said with a warning in his voice.
"No way!" Cadman said, ignoring it. "You fancy her, don't you?"
Cayle ignored him and looked at the stone wall some more.
"Oh my god! You do!" He was laughing now, and Cayle was visibly getting angrier and angrier.
"I agree with Cayle." Bart said. "Something must have gone wrong."
"What should we do?" Finn asked.
"Good question." Cadman said, regaining his composure.
"Should we go in after her?" Finn asked.
"And risk being thrown in the dungeon again? No thanks." Cadman said.
Alroy rolled his eyes, but didn't say a word.
"Yes, Finn, that's exactly what we should do." Cayle said.
"Whoa whoa whoa!" Cadman said. "Don't we get a say in this?"
"All in favor?" Cayle said, and he, Bart, and Finn raised their hands. Alroy and Cadman shared a glance, and Alroy shrugged and raised his arm.
Cadman hung his head. "We are going to die, I just know it."
"With that negative attitude? It's almost certain." Alroy said.
"I'm not going to dignify that with a response." Cadman said. He sighed. "Alright already; when do we go? And how do we get in?"
"Simple." Cayle said. "We walk right in the front door."
He pointed towards a carriage that was just visible in the distance, heading towards the castle.
They were just able to make out the flags that the foot-soldiers carried: a wave crashing onto the shore.
"We are definitely going to die." Cadman said.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Chapter 27

Deanna went through her room for stuff that she thought might come in handy at some point, stuffing the items into a saddlebag she'd found.
There was a knock at her door and she jumped. She hid the saddlebag under some pillows on a chair and opened the door.
                                                                          * * *
They followed him down the halls, past the prisoners reaching through their cell bars, grabbing at them, crying out for help and some crying out for blood.
Cayle walked next to Cadman in the lead and, after several minutes of searching and finding nothing, finally broke the long silence.
"Are you sure you know where this is?" He asked. The moment the words left his lips, he wished he'd never spoken them.
"Of course not! You think I'm a bloody bat that can see in the dark?" Came the reply. "All these hallways look the same! How am I supposed to know which way is which?"
"Um, gentlemen." Bart said.
"Well why didn't you leave a trail for yourself?" Cayle demanded, his temper flaring.
"GENTLEMEN!" Bart yelled, startling the arguing men into silence. "Thank you; now if you're done arguing, I believe Finn has just found our way out."
Cayle and Cadman shared a look before following Bart's gaze to where Finn was kneeling next to a hole in the bricks. He was wearing his pride on his face as clear as day.
Cayle knelt down beside Finn and looked out through the bricks. It was a tunnel. He glanced at Finn, who was still grinning.
"Oh shut up." He said.
Cadman knelt next to them and peered into the darkened tunnel a moment before reaching behind him and taking the lantern from Bart and crawling into the tunnel.
"You go next, Finn, then Bart, then you, Alroy; I'll go last." Cayle said. Finn nodded and followed Cadman inside, followed by Bart and Alroy.
Cayle took a look around him at the barren dungeon, the criminals roaring at each other through their bars. How had he not heard all of this racket when he was in his own cell? He shook his head and crawled after the others through the tunnel.
                                                                      * * *
A guard greeted her when she opened the door.
"My Lady," He said respectfully, bowing his head slightly. "The Duke requests your presence."
"Alright." She said, stepping out into the hall and closing the door behind her. "Lead the way."
He bowed and turned on his heel and lead her down the long halls until they reached the first room she ever saw in this castle.
The Duke was sitting on the throne, just like the last time she'd seen him. But what held her attention was what was in front of him, or rather who.
The maid who had shown her the dungeons was kneeling in front of the throne, head down and shoulders shaking as she sobbed, pleads escaped her lips between her trying to catch her breath.
The Duke, who looked like he was enjoying the sound of the maids sobs, looked up when she approached the throne. He smiled at her.
"Welcome, Lady Deanna." He said.
"What's going on?" She asked.
"Oh nothing, just the norm inside the castle." He said and snapped his fingers and two guards approached the sobbing woman and half carried, half dragged her out of the room.
Deanna saw one of the men whisper to her when he was out of the Dukes sight. He was comforting her.
She returned her gaze to the Duke, who was still smiling at her.
"How are you enjoying your stay here?" He asked.
"It's fine." Deanna responded.
"Everything is satisfactory?" He pressed.
"I suppose." She responded, her suspicions being roused.
"Good." He said.
"Why?" She asked. The smile was becoming unnerving.
"I was hoping you would consider extending your stay." He said.
"Thank you, but no thank you." She said. "If that's all, I think I'd like to leave now; thank you for your hospitality, but I really must be off."
His smile slipped. "I don't think you understand,"
"Understand what?"
"It wasn't a request."
Her eyes widened and she stared at him before turning on her heel and making a run for the door. Two guards stepped in her way, blocking the door, she spun again and found that there were now guards on every exit.
She looked around a moment longer before turning her eyes back to the Duke, who was smiling again.
"How could I refuse?" She said.