Chapter 2

1765 Words
-Ashes- I hated seeing her ride away. I hated we were both going our separate ways to win this war, but getting people together was something Laelia was good at, while I was better with strategies. But before we could put our plan in motion, we still had one stubborn elf king to convince, and then I would be travelling to the South where we would eventually meet up to go convince Mefan. “She will come back,” Rathilion said beside me. I turned to look at him. He stood with his arms crossed, as his eyes met mine, and he smiled. “She always does,” he said. “Yes, she always does,” I said. Laelia always found her way back to me in one way or another and I hoped it applied this time as well, but right now my focus had to be somewhere else, and so I turned around and walked with the others inside to find Rathilion’s father. “I am not sure what else we can do to convince your father,” I said, as we walked through the many hallways. “He is very stubborn.” “That he is, and he believes as long as we do not seek out war, then it will never find us.” “And what do you believe?” I asked him. Rathilion smiled, shaking his head slightly. “Am I not trying to convince him?” he asked. “You are, but this man raised you. Are you saying a little part of us doesn’t believe the same thing as him?” I asked. Rathilion just got a dark look, as I asked him. “What?” I asked. “He was never very involved in my life, unless he had something to criticize,” he said. I understood. My father and I had not been very close either. We were the next kings, and therefore they had treated us as such, shaping us into the kings they wanted us to be, but who said they were perfect? My father had gotten himself killed by my brothers, and Rathilion’s father was hiding. Even if he believed he wasn’t … he was. He didn’t seek out the war, because he believed it wouldn’t find him. He feared it. “So, has anyone got a suggestion as to what we need to do to convince him?” Henry asked. “Let us just find him to begin with,” I said. “No,” Rathilion suddenly said. I turned to him, looking confused. “What do you mean, no?” I asked. “We need to find my mother,” he said. “If anyone can convince him, it is her.” “And you think she will listen?” “I hope so.” We continued through the palace, until we came out to a big garden where the grass was white, and wild animals ran around, grassing and just enjoying the little warmth the sun was providing. In the South it never got cold, but here in the West things were slowly changing from warm to cold. Rathilion led our little group consisting of, me, Henry, Will and Carter. He led us further into the big garden, until we came to a big open area, where she was sitting just by a fountain feeding some little deer. She was very beautiful, with long white hair and pearly white skin and a long light blue dress covering her from her neck and all the way down to her feet. Her eyes were the same color as Rathilion’s, a very light green, but when she looked at you, it was like she knew your darkest secret, and therefore, it was hard to look her in the eyes. “My son,” she said, as we neared her. “You bring a threatening aura with you.” “I have only come here to talk,” he said. “You have come to try to make me convince your father to go to war.” “There is going to be a war,” Rathilion said. “Whether or not he decides to join it.” “You should listen to him. He knows what war can bring,” she warned her son, without even looking at him. She was focused on the little animal in front of her, who even let her pet her. It just blindly trusted her, even though it was a wild animal. It was rather strange to watch. It showed the power she had to make such a scared little animal trust her so easily. “Mother, this time it is not something we can hide from,” he said. “Why do you seek it?” she asked and turned to him. “What?” “War. Why do you seek it? Glory? Power?” she asked. “It is the right thing to do. They need our help!” “The dragons and humans have easily settled their differences without our help. Why are we now getting involved?” she asked. “Because they need us to. Ashes and Laelia should sit on the throne. They will bring a new era with them!” “How do you know?” she asked. “How are they different?” “You know how,” he said. “You see the power in them too. The hidden strength.” The queen finally stood. She was tall. Her son was only a few inches taller, and she carried herself just like a queen would. Chin up and her back straight. Nothing would make her bow. “I see it,” she said calmly. “But how do I know they would use it right?” “Have they not proven it already?” Rathilion asked. “Laelia has … I am not so sure Ashes has,” she said and turned to me. “How do I know you will not abuse the power you will get?” “You think I carry a darkness,” I said. “You are right. I am. I always have. I have desired blood and war. I didn’t mind the lives I took, because they meant nothing to me, but I have changed.” “Really?” she asked. I nodded. I had changed. Very much. And because of one person. “Laelia. She brings me peace, and with her by my side, I will make sure to rule fairly,” I told her. “And what if she doesn’t stand beside you?” she asked. I looked at the queen confused. Why wouldn’t she stand beside me? Laelia loved me and I loved her. There was no one else who could stand beside me. “What do you mean?” I asked. “What if your queen dies?” she asked. I felt my heart stop for a second, just from the words being spoken. My worst fear. Laelia’s death. She had given me light and life, and with her death, that might disappear. I slowly came to understand the queen’s concern. If Laelia wasn’t there to bring me balance, could she really trust me with the crown? “If she dies …” I hated just saying it. “And I find myself broken from her death, I will give the throne to Will. He is the next in line.” I turned to look at Will. He just froze right on the spot. I could have said my brother too, but Ladon was too young, and he was wild. He had never been trained to be king, but Will had. He might have been the second in line, and not received the same training as James had, but he knew more than anyone. “Will,” she said his name slowly and we turned our attention to her. “Step forward please.” Will did as he was told and walked over to the elf queen. She studied him carefully and looked at him from many angles. My heart started to beat stronger and faster, as the silence got longer and longer. What if she said no? What if she didn’t see Will as a good heir? But I knew he was. He was most likely the best one. Even if he was rather quiet. He would be a good and fair king. “I see hidden strength in you as well. Potential, and not the same darkness, as I see in Ashes,” she said. No one had the same darkness as me, I thought, but of course, I didn’t say out loud. It was best to just let the queen decide without accidently making her like me any less. She finally stopped studying Will and turned to her son. “This is very important to you. Why? Is your obsession with this Laelia really that strong?” she asked. My hands tightened at my sides at their own will. I didn’t mean to. Rathilion had not done anything to make me think he would take Laelia from me. But I understood her heart had become confused from the time I had pushed her away, and I was not surprised to hear Rathilion had an interest in her too. She was truly one of a kind, but I would not lose her again. Ever. “I want peace,” Rathilion said. “So, you say, but you want something else as well,” the queen said. “I believe in new times, mother. I believe we cannot just sit by, as these lands get taken over because we are too afraid to do anything. To seek out war does not mean we seek blood. Sometimes we just cannot hide any longer, and we need to take action,” he said. She just slowly nodded before turning to Will again. “I would like to see you as king,” she said. “Maybe I one day will.” Did she believe we would die? Or Laelia would? I hoped not, but whatever convinced her, I was fine with. “So, you will speak to father?” Rathilion asked. “No, but I will support you when you bring it up to your father again,” she said before walking away. We watched as she disappeared into the palace again. “Well, that went well,” Henry said. “At least we have her support,” Carter said. I sighed. This did not go as planned. I just hoped Laelia had not run into any trouble yet.
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