A War of Two

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Chapter 3

At the appointed time the moon did rise and the King did exactly what had been predicted for him to do. He gasped his last breath.The physician hurried from the chamber and woke the page immediately.“Wake the Prince,” he said.“Inform him that his father is dead, and that he is now the King.”

The page rushed down the hall and did exactly as he was commanded. “My Prince,” he said when he had entered the Prince’s antechamber.“Wake.”He called a little louder when the Prince did not appear right away.When Prince Alemark did come he said, “The physician told me to tell you that your father is dead and that you are now the King.”He bowed to the Prince and turned to exit the chamber.

“Where are you going?” the Prince wanted to know.

“To wake Lord Aleheardt and tell him as per your previous instructions,” the page told him.

“Ah-h yes,” said the Prince, remembering himself. “Go immediately.Tell him to meet me in my father’s chambers.I would see for myself that he is dead.”

That night the criers were out in the city.“At the ninth hour the King is dead,” they cried.Cella heard them in the back of her stall as she prepared for sleep.“Well,” she whispered to herself, “it has happened as predicted.”Petra heard it in her rooms in the castle wall.She whispered a prayer before settling down to sleep.Timthé, who still was with her mother also heard it.The criers moved up and down all of the main streets of the city.In the various places that the messengers had stopped for the night, they did a masterful job of letting the common people know.At dawn the riders were sent out.They did as they had been told, notifying all the lords.Criers went out in all the towns and villages of the kingdoms.Notifying the camps of the nomadic herders was more difficult.But they were not so important to Prince Alemark.

The prince entered his father’s chamber. He looked at the old sunken man in the bed.He bent and put his ear to the man’s chest.There was no sound there.He put a small mirror to the man’s nose.But it did not fog up.“Well father,” Alemark said.“You are finally dead.Now I may finally have my will as king.If you think I was a bad boy before, you haven’t seen anything yet.You were always gentle with the people, even when you had to fight wars.Now these people will find out what Devine right of Kings really means.”

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