Chapter 2

1510 Words
-Carter- I see them standing there. I see them smiling at me, as they welcome me. My mother at my father’s side, James beside him and then Will a little further behind the rest, just like always. He is always a little further away, liking not to be the center of attention. My mother waves me closer. They all stand there on top of the stairs leading inside the castle. Our home. I can see her lips moving, telling me to come closer. I smile at all of them, taking the first step, but my foot freezes. It is like it is stuck to the ground. I look up at them, seeing them turn away, as they start to walk inside. “Wait!” I call. They don’t hear me. They walk inside. I see the big doors closing behind them. I try to pull my leg free, but I simply cannot. It won’t move. I won’t move … then I feel it. A hand on my shoulder. I turn around, staring into pitch-black eyes, a small smile on his lips. His skin is dark and everything about him screams he doesn’t belong here in the North. No one has such dark colored skin. “Mefan?” His smile grows a little and then I feel it. Like him almost pulling me backwards, even though I don’t move. Everything around me spins. The castle disappears like my family, and then … I sat up, shaking, and sweat breaking out all over my skin. The blanket around my lower body clung to me, even though the material was thin and breathable. My hands had tightened around it, and I could even see small holes where my nails had dug through it. I quickly let go of it and then covered my face with my hands. I felt … No, I felt nothing. Just numb. I was dead, and now I wasn’t, but I wasn’t alive either. I didn’t know how to explain what I was. I slowly moved my hands away, seeing the dark lines running over my palms, in between my fingers and then over the back of my hands before going up my arms. What was this? Why did I have this? This was not the skin I knew. This was not me, but now it was. What did I do now? I was a prince. The fourth in line for the throne. Not that I had ever really wanted it. I had seen James and Will work hard enough. Will was, in a way, a backup should something happen to James. The rest of us only received a little training, and I didn’t like it very much. It was boring to be king, clearly, and I was happy I never had to sit on the throne. Instead, I used my time having the time of my life. Bedding women, joking around with my brothers, training with them, going riding … I went to war a few times as well, but I would rather not think about that. War was what cost me my life, but I was happy to lay down my life, if it meant my sister would sit on the throne. I had never thought about it, until I saw it with my own eyes, but she was meant to be queen. She was meant to rule beside Ashes. A dragon. Me supporting, even befriending a dragon. It was hard to believe, but then again, I had become friends with a … whatever Mefan was. I had not liked him in the beginning, but then I had stayed with him for a while, seeing he wasn’t so scary after all, yet now I found myself resenting him. He should not have brought me back. I was better off dead. I really was. I saw now, after hearing how my siblings were doing, that … that I lacked something. While all of them were starting families or getting married, settling down, I had never felt a need to, and still I felt like I was missing out on something. My dream had always been to travel. See how far I could go, but never to marry. It made me think there was something wrong with me. Made me think that perhaps I was meant to die on that battlefield. Will certainly didn’t deserve it. He had a son now, and he should have been there to see him grow up. But he wasn’t. I was alive... in a way, but I didn’t deserve it. I threw the blanket away and walked naked over to the balcony. My room was facing towards the Great Blue Sea. I couldn’t see it from here, but I knew it was there. I could travel to the Sea Islands from there. If I had heard correctly, Catla was ruling there now, living peacefully with her son. Criseus’s child, but she had been allowed to stay there, since she wanted no war or any trouble. She just wanted to be allowed to live with her son, and Laelia and Ashes granted her that. She was no threat after all, just another woman who, like Laelia, had married for an alliance. She most likely hated Criseus or at least didn’t like him very much, and I couldn’t imagine she had much to do with the war that her husband had been a part of. Though I wouldn’t mind travelling over there, just seeing what that world was like. It certainly had to be different than this one, right? Sadly, I wasn’t going anywhere. I had been thinking about travelling home, seeing Laelia and my brothers, and telling them I was alive, but I couldn’t. I somehow now found myself bound to the mystery man. Mefan had brought me back, and this was the consequence of it. I tried not letting it irritate me so much. I was alive after all, and he had been right. I should be grateful, but I just found myself with a bitter taste in my mouth. I no longer felt anything. I was just stuck. Even food had no taste, even though my body still wanted it. Not as much as it used to, but it still had a need for it. I sighed, leaning my arms on the railing, and just staring into the dark night. For some reason, the sun no longer gave me much strength. No, but the night made me feel renewed and powerful. It felt like coming home almost. Which was a strange feeling. The North was my home, not this strange land with red sand and even stranger people living in it. I pushed away from the railing, going over to grab a blanket and wrap it around my waist before going over to a small jug that still had some wine in it. I poured it into a cup before going over to the balcony again. I leaned against the railing once more, only to soon feel like someone was watching me. I turned my head and on the next balcony he stood. Usually he was always covered, but now he wore nothing but a pair of pants, his dark chest bare and even his hair was no longer covered. It was longer than I had expected, reaching down to his shoulder and a dark color. The soft breeze blew through it, making it come alive in the dark night. A long moment past, as we looked at each other. It was strange, whenever he looked at me, I found my heart beat a little faster. No, it was more like it came to life. I knew it was because he had brought me back, and I now found myself somehow connected to him. It had not been like this when I had been alive … really alive. I slowly stood up straight, and his eyes ran over me, from my eyes and down my body over my bare chest, and for some reason it felt like something was going on between us. Like a force pulling us towards one another. A pull. It was almost electric, and I had no idea how to explain it. I had never before felt anything like it, and then his usual cruel smile spread on his lips. The left side of his mouth curved upwards. He crossed his broad arms over his chest, and then he slowly turned around, walking inside again, making me feel confused as to what had just happened. This was not normal! It had to do with the fact he had brought me back. How else did I explain my racing heart, the goosebumps on my skin or the fact my throat felt so dry that I downed the rest of the wine? How else?! I ran one of my hands over my face before rubbing my eyes with two fingers, and just trying to shake this feeling. This … this need almost. I found myself almost wanting to go over there. But to do what? What was happening to me?!
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