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Hearts And Beyond

By Jadzia

Romance / Fantasy

Chapter 1

Steps were hear getting near, and the man in the great room wearing a long black robe was standing against a roble table in the center of it, watching with the sprawled papers and the burning candle flickering casting dark shadows around the cold room. The light of its fire gives his brown eyes a touch of red making him seem macabre. Finally, the heavy wooden doors opened and in came no more than ten men wearing dark grey iron armor bloodstain with the life of the ones they slaughtered not a few hours ago that same day. The leader of the group got near the man and kneels, bowling his head to the one who still continue giving his back to them not saying a word.

“My liege” the knight speaks after a few minutes without answer or movement from the man in front of him. “We did as you order-” he couldn’t continue.

“Are they dead?” came a cold voice from the man.

“Yes, sir-” he try to continue but again was interrupted brusquely.

“All of them?” his back was tense and his hands were in a dead grip on the rim of the oak table; Strands of blond greasy hair falling at either side of his face.

There was a silence in the room, it was like all the air was suddenly sucked out of the place and a heavy weigh were settling down in every one of them. The soldier tremble a little for he knew that the information would make his sire angry beyond words, and he really didn’t want to even think of what would be of himself and his family when the man would be informed.

“Well?” the apparent calm of the voice was just an illusion, and everyone in the room knew it.

“Every one of them but-”

“But?!” his voice now was menace, a threat clear in the air. He turn slowly to confront them, his brown eyes still having a tint of red in them, his face pale and looking sweaty.

“The woman… she escape” the soldier said his face not showing the dread coiling in his stomach.

There was a pause, every one of the men in the room yet bowling down in front of their lord held still for his reaction. But after a few minutes without word they begin to worry for their life and that of their family. And suddenly the quiet was disrupted by a loud roar coming from the man in the black robe pushing everything in the oak table to the floor, plates and goblets of the best gold came crashing to the cold stone floor, food and drink spilled like the blood of so many innocent were spilled that treacherous night and the ones to come.

“It was a simple job!” he scream, suddenly appearing in front of the leader of the knights and grabbing him from the neck, his short nails biting painfully in the soldier skin. “You just have to kill the king and his progeny! Just a man and his slut of a wife!” he shout at him, his eyes turning completely red, now no more a trick of the light candle.

“M-my liege- I- p-please… we just-” he try to explain but the man wouldn’t listen.

“It was a simple job” he repeats now stunningly calm, before taking the sword from the waist of the soldier and burring it to the hilt in the man chest. “Like this” he said devoid of repent.

He let go of the now corps, and watch impassibly as it crumble to the ground and blood spill in the cold floor, after a few minutes, he turn his glacial and blood red eyes to the rest of the men still in the room. He approach yet with the sword in hand to them, thirst for blood write all over his expression, but just as he was getting near them a voice stop him.

“My lord it would be imprudent of you to kill these men” came the sultry and slow voice from the shadows of the great room.

“Fey” was all the man said, turning slightly from were that voice came from. “Why pray tell, would I let these scum live? They fail” he said it like he was talking about the weather, not nine lives.

“Yes, but you will need them to hunt down that women if you want to keep the throne” came her sweet reply.

“What do you mean? The throne is mine! She is of no royal blood” he snarls still glaring at the space he suspects her to be.

There in a corner of the room where the shadows lurk and the light could not reach emerge a tall curvaceous women dressed in a black long sleeve dressing gown leaving her shoulders and neck naked making a contrast with her pale skin like porcelain, down her back cascade a wave of long golden blonde hair, her piercing dark blue eyes that glitter with sin and cruelty, two pools of dark water made to sallow any bit of light. Her poise and walk were even and careful but there was a deadly aura surrounding her that made the knights averts their gaze fearing that if they stare too much into them they lost their soul or worse… their life. Her beauty was a deadly weapon.

She slither silently to the man in black, and put a perfect pale hand in his arm and then her blood red lips brush his ear, her eyes still remaining in the nine man kneeling in front of them, before speaking.

“Because… the bitch is pregnant with the late king’s child” she whispers to him, a cruel and twisted smile gracing her lips, before stepping aside to look at him coldly. “And if you don’t kill your brothers first born, there will be an offspring capable of reclaiming the throne from your hands, and if that happen you and I could not rule together like we plan so carefully all this time” she look at his brown eyes before glancing at the corps in the floor, her eyes shining briefly with glee before finally turning around and start walking out of the great room. “Find that women and kill them both, and this time they’re better be dead for good… I’ll take care of our other big problem”

He stood there paralyze with the information given to him, watching the woman who would be his queen walk away from him, giving him an ultimatum. The fear to be dethroned by the flesh and blood of his older brother now dead give him resolution, he would make all of his men hunt down the wife of his brother until her lifeless body was laying in front of him he would not let the matter settle down. He has to give their corps to his future queen. It would be a gift he decides, smirking twistedly, and a beautiful gift indeed.

Gleneen - 118 years later

Shay turn around in the old cot, her light brown eyes adjusting to the dark of the room was no obstacle for her to see the little room that has been hers and her sister since she could remember, so she knew were everything was, from the cot to the little squeaky plank going to the door separating the bedroom from the other part of the little house. In all her twenty-one years of living in that town with her little family she could never remember feeling so unrested and most of all, with a nagging feeling that something bad was going to happen.

“Shay, are you still awake?” came a voice from the other side of the little bedroom.

“Yeah” came the reply from the young woman, turning her body toward her sister form, she could barely make out the silhouette resting in the other cot. “What about you Kyra?”

She hears a sigh from the other girl, before a response came.

“You know I always have problems sleeping at night” a pause, then. “Why are you awake? Usually you sleep like the dead” she jokes a bit.

“I just- I don’t know… I have this weird feeling and just can’t sleep at all” she shrugs even when her sister could not see it. “Let’s just… go to sleep, well at least try” were her finals words, before both girls went silent, and eventually fall in an unrestful slumber.

The next morning both were awoken by their adoptive mother, to start the labors of the day; meanwhile Ruth their mother cocked breakfast for them three, both girls went to the nearby river in the woods to bring water in two big buckets, and tend to the chickens and the two pigs at the back of their little house, with the old dog Mars.

“Do you think the war will get near to us?” Kyra suddenly asks, watching the water run down the river, her black eyes having a lost look in them.

Shay who was looking at the morning pale blue sky was brusquely take out of her thought by that question, she turn her light brown eyes toward her sister, and remove a red hair strand of her face, before answering her.

“I don’t really know… but I hope that the Fair Folks win this godforsaken war for good” she said moving to grab the other bucket and replace it with the empty one. There was a pause and then she comment. “There’s saying that the army of the Ailill is wreaking havoc between the army of king Fachtna, that old bastard” her tone was more than derogatory, it express contempt.

“Just to be safe do not repeat that in the village or we most likely than not will be hanged before sundown” Kyra said grimacing. “Do you think is true what the rumors say? About a witch with the skin of a maiden and the heart as black as coal?” she wonders out laud, putting back a long strand of black hair behind her ear, her light tan skin shine like honey in the wee hours of the morning.

“I guess everything is possible… but it could always be a lie” she shrugs, and stretches her arms above the head, feeling her bow at her back tense by the action. “But that certainly explain how the old bastard have keep the throne for so long, and no simple mortal have been able to kill him… how old they say he is now?” she mutter distractedly.

“One hundred and something more or less” the dark hair girl said, pulling the last bucket of water out of the river and with it herself. “Now let’s get back to mother and have breakfast, we’ll need the extra energy for the others activities of the day” her smile was genuine.

“Alright” was all the redhead reply, after each one took two buckets of water she commented. “What do you think The Fair Folks looks like? I mean they said the Elves are the most beautiful of all, with their classic pointy ears, and stuff… but that they’re as cold as winter itself… and then there is the Moors, the land where they live with the other creatures, like the Dwarves, fairies, giants and other habitants” she ramble while walking, trying to keep the water from spill all over the place. “It would be wonderful to see by my own eyes! They say the Moors has the most tallest trees and the most clearest water in their rivers, and a whole magnificent flowers never seen in other part of earth” she sigh wistfully, but came back to the present time when she hear a chuckle from beside her.

“Don’t forget the Dragons!” Kyra add smirking. “The almighty force of a beast so large that even the Elves has respect for… breather of destruction, born from the hottest fire with big wings and sharp teeth and claws, a magnificent animal long time forgotten” she finish her recount of what they both have read long time ago when they were both little girls dreaming of stories with magical animals and faraway lands to try and forget they were not wanted in their own village.

“Yes, let’s not forget one of the greatest force on earth!” the red hair young woman said, smiling brightly. “I recall that there was a mountain hosting one of them; if we are lucky one of these days we could sneak around mother and go visit this fellow” she jest good nature.

“Deal” was all her companion said, before they became engrossed in their own thoughts, while keeping their chores moving like any other day.

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