The obsidian shade of sky was illuminating the soft twinkle of stars and milky, dim light of the moon, as the noise of slithering increased throughout the hallways. The antique carved designs on the walls were casting soft shadows on each other while bathing in the orange light spreading from the torches fixed on the upper side of the walls.
The whole Palace looked serene and glittering as its creamy structure glowed, basking in the the moonlight, illuminating flattering magical view. Even if the quietness was deafening in the surroundings, it felt as if the Palace was humming with some raw energy which could draw you in and you would not want to get out of its grasp.
A man with the navy blue and black outfit sprinted through the hallway. The moonlight was providing very thin leverage of sight. It was both, advantage and disadvantage as the further way was not very sharp and clear. Still he managed to cut the path rapidly and very carefully, because the hallways were bare from any other intrusion.
He took the sharp turn and started getting down the stairs. The basement was dark but not lightless. There was slight bustle here and there. Pale glow of the torches was illustrating the shadows of their structure while they conversed.
As the man entered into the main hall of the basement, everyone hushed and rushed to him, forming a circle around him leaving a wise distance. He gazed at them with a very unnerving pair of eyes.
He stood there tall and firm, leading others, as the other twelve casted their eyes down. Not submitting, but respecting.
Everybody was sported in midnight black trousers, which were not sticking to the skin like a layer of itself, but were fitted with their forms perfectly. Dark navy blue top, made from thick fabric, covered their lean, mascular upper halves.
Some type of ancestry crest was patched right on the heart; from which the dark curtain of black cape flew to the back of their frame, while resting on the shoulders on the way. Black leather buckle belted vest secured the crest of the cape on the heart from around the shoulders to the torso and trousers itself. The dark cape was tickling the edges of their ankle-high black shining heavy boots.
The man crouched down, placing both of the palms flat on the marble floor; and the others followed one by one. Their movements were so swift and graceful, it looked like they had never stumbled.
The man started chanting some sort of verses. A few lines later the others accompanied him too. Their chanting grew louder and louder by every verse. Even though they were in the basement, the life around the perimeter stilled; as if even the universe itself was incapable of interfering this divine process.
Suddenly, their right palms fisted themselves and collided to their hearts with soft thuds. The chanting stopped abruptly, as the dazzling shine radiated from their fists as the sparkles of the enchanting pieces of their loyalty insisted to be uncaged.
They flew right to the man who was in the center, still gripping the fingers in the form of fist tightly. The sparkles flew around his clenched hand as though willing him to open it, as he held his fist at arm's length. A few minutes later they calmed as the energy in the fist attracted them. They rushed into it as if the fist as a barrier was not even there, and got absorbed.
As the atmosphere became normal after a few breaths, he unfolded his clenched hand slowly. The sparkles were still gleaming in the soft light of torches, sticking to each other as a shapeless shiny object.
On a cue all the others came forward and joined his hand. A blast of blue light dazzled them as the object fixed itself. They returned their averted eyes to the crystal in their hold.
It was an aqua blue smooth jewel. Just like a sapphire. But it was a cabachon. There was not any facet on its surface. It had a gentle glow around its frame, which made it look alluring. I could fit in the palm perfectly.
They huddled together to get a better view. The man handed it to them to admire it by all their hearts filled. He took out the hexagonal wooden box from the cabinet near the corner. He brought it to them and gestured one of them to place the crystal in the box.
Begrudgingly, they let go of the precious jewel and put it in the wooden box securely.
The man closed the lead of the box and together they returned to the entrance of the Palace in the Grand hall. The man instructed the twelve about some areas and charges.
They granted their farewell to each other and separated their ways.