Kay here's chap 2, and can I just say, I blame a childhood lullaby for this part of it. And has anyone else ever noticed that the songs to put kids to sleep are always so sad? I sing it to myself all the time and it always leaves me with a bittersweet tang in my mouth. It's a lullaby in spanish about a princess from a foreign world who fell in love with a blue bird, and would sing to the little bird that visited the garden and told the bird if he ever left her she would die of a broken heart. Scumbag bird left and the princess died of love. The bird never returned to the garden. But for some reason I always pictured the princess in a tower overlooking the garden. I'm pretty sure a lot of this story is influenced by the bittersweet feelings of my childhood lullaby. It was so pretty yet so sad. Anyway, here's part 2 so enjoy ;) and review please!
"I have to leave. I don't want to but I have to. My mother, she was an idiot and now there's the riots and I didn't want any of it but I'm the cause so I have to go."
"Slow down, breathe, cause of what?" Adaline payed no heed to Soren's soothing voice. She wanted to tell him before they came for her. For the past 3 years they had been bestfriends. Well, he had been her only friend. And now she had to give him up along with her freedom. Now she had to be alone again.
"My mother. She can be highly persuasive when she wants and she had men who owed her favors and others who fawned over her. Now there was an attempted assassination in the court. It's split right down the middle. She's convinced some to side with me being the Ruler Elect. Mother may have the court ear but the Queen has the brunt of the court. So we need to flee. If not we'll surely be assassinated. The stable master has the horses ready and we're supposed to set out in an hour. He's taking me somewhere and mother's going to hide at one of her suitors castles. I can't stay here any longer Soren." Pleadingly, she searched his face for some sort of emotion. Adaline had thought Soren was her best friend, but he was over 100 years old, surely her leaving wouldn't change a thing.
Glancing down at Adaline, he brushed her bangs out of her face, "You cut your hair."
"I'm going for a new look. Some people are using my image as a rally against Abby while it's also the image others are looking for to kill. Long hair doesn't do well on the run."
"Where are you going?"
"I don't exactly know. Stable Master said that we'll be safe, where not even the birds can reach us. He's always been like a second father to me. Ashes, who am I kidding, he's more of my father than that blissful King."
"So where are you going?" Soren tapped his foot, impatient for a straight answer.
"Well I don't know exactly. Ashes, Soren, if I knew I'd have told you first off. All I know is that in his homeland the place was majiked and so no one goes there. Unless you're from that village no one even knows of its existence." She wouldn't cry. She never liked it here so if anything this was a new chance to leave. But she had a friend now, how could she say she didn't like it here. Now Adaline had to leave the only other person who didn't treat her with distain or indifference in her whole life. To leave for a prison over a potential war she didn't even want to be in, let alone be the cause of.
Soren's eyes had that distant look, the same all seeing look he carried whenever lifting his gaze to the sky. Abruptly they zeroed in on Adaline and she was comforted by the blazing blue in the dark night.
"I'll follow you."
Exaspirated, Soren puffed out a wisp of air before carefully stating again.
"I said I'll follow you."
Arching an eyebrow at her confused face, he continued patiently, " You can't expect me to stay in these woods forever. I'd have left long ago to traverse this new planet had I not met you 8 years ago. Seeing as you are the only acquaintance I have that does not generally shy from my form, I will follow you. I told you We are a social people. We do not like to live alone."
"And just like that you'll follow me, even though we're probably never going to come back here and I'm probably going somewhere far away where not even the whispers of others will find a way to whatever abode we march to."
"If it becomes too boring than I might leave, but generally I don't see that happening so yes, I'll follow you."
Adaline laughed. Soren took it as a confirmation that it would now be as he directed.
"When Garyth said that he was from an isolated village with strange superstitions, I had not taken him to be quite serious about how strange and isolated this place really is."
"It is a far cry from the King's Woods and the people, while generally nicer, make up for their lack of arrogance in attention to superstition. He was right to choose a place like this; no one will head here for good reason. This place is cursed."
Surprised, Adaline turned to Soren, "You mean it isn't just a superstition. The story he said was true?"
"While they seem to take measures a bit too far, their ability to detect Other presences is uncanny. This village has more majik potential than any of those silly mages in your court. The children alone have finer senses than any of your mages."
Adaline glanced down from her tower. A few moons had passed since Garyth had led her here. He insisted she call him by his first name as she was no longer a princess anymore. Adaline knew it was for the sake of survival, but still her identity as a princess had been all her name's worth. Now, empty from such a title, she felt bare. Garyth had not changed in his actions to her, a slight comfort in her times of madness. He still treated her as that of a gentle father with a spoiled daughter. He had told not even her mother where he would hide Adaline. When the coast was safe, she would return. Until then, Garyth and Adaline traveled, Soren following a days behind, deep within the country land. She had cried when she no longer could smell the salt of the ocean on the breeze, but that had been the end of her tears. Instead, the deeper into the land she traveled, the more Adaline discovered her new identity.
The second illegitimate Princess Adaline had ceased to exist; instead, a young stable boy Adal immerged with his father Garyth as they made the trip back home from visiting the palace. Adal was adept with handling horses, and became a fair hand with knives. Her hair now was most a few inches long, not that of a woman, but that of a man.
Soren laughed at this new persona but seemed to not mind. He still called her Adaline and she still felt like the princess who found a Creature Boy back in the woods at 9 years of age. If on the trip to the hideout Garyth noticed Adal slip away at night, he paid no heed.
It took about 50 days to get to his village, and Adal soon understood why he claimed none could find her there. Shrouded in the mist of the mountains, Drythn lay in a forgotten land. They had not bothered to stop in town; instead, Garyth took Adal to a steep chasm where they left the horses to graze in a meadow. All traveling would now be done on foot. From there the two and a shadow hiked before a clearing slowly immerged. There, through the majik sodden forest, lay a garden. The flowers glowed ethereal in beauty, a mix between exotic and long forgotten warmth. After the fields of violets and flamboyant reds, the cottage lay still. Adal held her breath, wondering if it were okay to breath and disturb such silence. She jumped when Garyth plopped his hands on her shoulder before steering her through the untouched flowers and into the home.
"The people of my town call it 'Svynth's Cottage' because of the man who once lived here. His name was Svynth and long ago he was a powerful mage. Some believed him to be a demon. It is said he was a man full of himself, eager to prove how best he was in any field. Yet every summer he would retreat to his garden here where only this humble cottage lay. No one knew how such a glamorous man could own such a humble home, and many came to see it as his one flaw. Those who he bested and boasted his winnings to came here in the summer to end his life. It was rumored he retreated here each summer as a way of renewing his strength and that in the time he stayed here; he could do no harm. The men broke into the cottage but Svynth was not home. He had left to gather some herbs from the forest. Instead, the men had found a girl a moon shy of her 10th year. Frightened, she ran deep into the cottage and they followed. They believed with the likeness she shared with Svynth she must be his heir, and therefore his downfall." Garyth led Adal further into the empty cottage.
For a ghost cottage it was well kept. In fact, Adal realized the cleanliness of the cottage did not constitute what an abandoned cottage should look like. There were no broken windows, ruined chairs, upturned desks nor creature-eaten walls. The cottage had few supplies but everything remained in pristine condition. There was a small desk in the far right corner, chair neatly tucked in and a hanger just above on the wall. The kitchen was fairly simple layout consisting of a large hearth. No ashes lay under the pot; no window they passed had a shiver of dust covering the light. Opening the door on the far left, Garyth and Adal continued down a narrow wooden hallway.
"The cottage was magiked, the men realized. For the hall the girl ran down was far longer than the outer appearance of the cottage. Desperately she took a left and ran up the stairs. In her haste, she had run to the place she felt safest in. In her haste, she had forgotten her room was a tower with only one entrance. Svynth's magik hid the tower from sight so that his daughter could look at the garden and speak with the birds when he was not at home. Hidden, he had no fear of any spies seeing her presence. He did well to not let anyone know of her existence. The men barged through her barred door where she tripped and scooted to the window. The one man lunged to grab her but she was quicker. Unfortunately she did not look when she dodged and tripped before falling out her window. Svynth had arrived home in time to witness his daughter fall to her death in the garden he lovingly built for her."
Garyth paused at a door before mournfully turning to look at Adal. "Enraged, Svynth went mad and killed the men in the same field where his daughter lay dead. No one had known the secret Svynth hid in his cottage had been a child. She had been the only piece holding the man from truly becoming a demon, and without her presence, he soon fell to one all had feared him to be. The flowers stopped growing; the birds no longer flew to the tower. Alone, Svynth disappeared from the world, wasted away by grief and anger intensified by the demon he had become. Many years passed after his death. One day the flowers began to bloom. The cottage remains clean though no one cleans it. They say Svynth's daughter haunts these halls making sure the home is perfect for the day her father receives redemption for his pride and evil acts. She cleans in hope that he may come home."
They had reached the tower by then. Bathed in the fading lights of the wayward sun, the room glowed with a childish innocence. The walls were pink with small intricate flowers carved on their faces, the bed tucked securely in the corner. A small dresser curved with the wall of the tower, a mirror stood regally beside it.
"No harm will come to you here, nor will you have any visitors. My people are superstitious and pity the girl. None want to disturb her."
"And you're sure nothing will happen to me." The last thing Adaline needed was a crazy Other coming to haunt her on top of her starting a war for the kingdom.
"She is kind to lost souls. I think it's because her father was, and is, one. Besides, so long as you don't do anything to offend her I'm sure you'll be fine." With that said Garyth tousled Adaline's hair before retreating down the stairs.
"The food replenishes itself so you will have no need to worry. She will take good care of you."
"And how can you know that!" Flabbergasted, Adaline sat down on the perch near the window and hoped Soren would come soon. She would not admit she was scared, after all she was now Adal, and men of age had no fear. The creaking of Garyth walking down the steps paused, "I've met her before." And he continued down.
And the end of part 2, haha i'm starting to figure out how the first scene I wrote is gonna come about, after all, it's not a circle truly unless the ends tie together. Well, hope you enjoy ^^