"Well Ms. Keon," Ishmael said outside of his father's office, "it looks like we will be seeing a lot of each other in the not so distant future."

"It appears that way."

"If you don't mind I would like to maybe see you over lunch."

"What for?" Golden rule number one: never date ANYONE from the job. No matter how sexy he is.

"Well to discuss the Civic Center of course."

"Oh," I said exhaling, "Of course."

"Would you mind picking the place? I haven't been in New York very long and wouldn't know the best place as I am sure you do."

"Sure I don't mind. How about you meet me at the elevator at 12:30?"

"Perfect. I will see you then." He turned into what I assumed to be his new office and I went back to mine.

"Janice, call Luna and make a reservation for two at 11:00 please."

"Yes ma'am."



Everyone was there. Jesters, minstrels, it was yet another grand party, in the Grand Hall of the palace. Lounge chairs and overly stuffed pillows covered the walls and the center was secluded for the entertainment. At the moment a group of several dancers swayed and gyrated to the rhythm of the drums.

Everything was in honor of the captain of the army Luther who had just come back from his conquest of the Fabulosa Kingdom. It had only taken him fourteen days, by far beating his record. He had brought back many fair maidens but none were as fair as she.

She had caused a rumpus in the back of the hall and was brought before my father, the king. Her hands were tied in front of her as she stood an easy five feet even. Her hair cascaded around her scowling face as she raised her head defiantly. Even in obvious and pure disgust she was exceedingly beautiful. Her almond shaped eyes in the purest shade of brown pierced anything her gaze landed on. Her hands wrung and twisted in attempt to free her them from their confinement.

"My king," Luther said rising to his feet. "It is my great honor to present to you a pure Daughter of Ra! She is one of my greatest conquests."

"She doesn't look like much to me." Aria, my younger sister said getting up to make a closer inspection.

The hostage said something in her dialect that made Luther laugh, "She has been saying that for most of the journey here."

"You don't think that it is some incantation do you son?" My mother questioned, "I have heard that some of those Daughters of Ra are like witches and are able to turn humans into toads."

"I don't think you have anything to worry about, my queen."

"Does she do anything besides scowl?"

"Actually, Aria, she sings and dances so I have heard."

"Have her sing something for us."

"Yes my king. Sing girl!" The girl didn't move an inch and I couldn't help but chuckle silently.

"Your master said sing slave!" One of the handlers cracked his whip at her but it was suddenly snatched out of his hand, she had managed to catch it before it struck her. The girl flung the whip catching it on the beam high in the ceiling and expertly swinging up onto another.

She untied her hands and said in a clear voice, "I AM NO SLAVE!" She ran to the end of the beam to a window and jumped out.

"Find her!" My father yelled

I slightly rolled my eyes and stood, "Father, I grow tired of this fiasco. I am going to retire."

"Sleep well my son."

"I don't know how with Luther's slave girl running about the palace." A few people, besides Luther, laughed at my tease. I ignored his frown and went to my suite followed closely by my right hand man, Adrian.

"Adrian, what did you think of the girl?"

"She was quiet beautiful sir."

"I agree. A bit high strung but very beautiful."

"I am assuming that you find favor in the girl."

"Now Adrian, you know what happens when you assume."

"My apologies sir."

Late that night, I lie awake in my bed thinking about her. What was her name? Was she a witch or have some supernatural power? I longed to look deeply into her eyes and learn all there was to know about her. I guess you could say that that is my supernatural power. I can read people through their eyes. My father says that it is a sign of a true and good king.

Suddenly there was a crash as a pot by the window fell. A shadow could be seen from behind the sheer curtain. A strong gust of wind blew it into the air revealing the slave girl.

I sat up straight and just stared at her. Her expression had not changed since earlier that night. If she was a witch she was the most attractive witch I had ever seen.

"Come here." Her only movement was to flinch. "I won't hurt you, come here." She approached me cautiously. "What is your name?"

She looked me over and once I had earned a shred of trust she answered, "Rhian."

"I am Damien."

"Crown prince, I know."

"So are you a witch?"

"Not exactly. I am a sorceress."

"What's the difference?"

"Witches are evil and practice black magic. I don't."

"Ah, I see. Could you perform a trick?"

"Of course, I can disappear." She turned but I caught her by the arm and brought her back to me. She was very close and I could feel the rise and fall of her breast against my own chest.

"You don't fear me do you?"

"I do not fear anyone."

I walked around her drinking in her exquisite beauty, "I am beginning to believe that you were a warrior in your kingdom."

"I am. Have you ever heard of the Fabulosan Fire Dragon?"

"Yes, it is said to be the most ferocious of all dragons."

"I tame them."

"Prince Damien! The slave girl was seen climbing into your suite, may we come in and take a look?"

Rhian pushed me back onto the bed and sat on my chest with a knife to my throat. "If you let them I will kill all of you."

"I don't doubt that you would too."

"Prince Damien!"

"You imbeciles, if the girl is in this room she will have to wait until morning to be caught! I am asleep and I would advise you to get away from my door!"

"Yes Prince Damien." Her knife was still in my throat and she didn't seem to have intentions of moving. "I will make a deal with you, you remove your dagger from my gullet and I will get you out of the palace, alive."

She slowly stood and returned the blade into a sheath high up on her thigh. "I do not know why I tried to escape. Your army has destroyed my kingdom. All those who were not captured are dead. I have nowhere to go."

"There is a cottage, hidden deep within the Enchanted Forest. No one is allowed to go into the forest, you would be safe there."

"And what's in it for you? Am I to become your slave, your beck and call?"

"You are no slave. I only wish for your safety. I will cater to all of your needs and I only wish for your trust in return. You claim that you are a tamer of the Fabulosan Fire Dragon, if I were to go back on my word surely you could destroy me."

"This agreement seems odd to me, but I find it to be my only hope."

"Good. I will have Adrian accompany you there before day break."

Rhian looked around the room and went to stand on a corner. "Thank you." She said before sliding to the floor and resting her eyes.