This novel is limited to 100 free copies due to its part in Inkitt’s Novel Contest.
The sound of footsteps echoed loudly through the corridor. I needed to see what was going on. That was all that mattered right now. It was a matter of life or death, and I was almost out of time. A loud rumble that sounded from the planet’s very core filled the corridor with vibrations that shook the ground. I struggled to keep balance. When I finally pushed open two heavy doors and ran down the steps into the courtyard I was greeted with a sight that caused a gasp to escape my lips. The empty night sky was illuminated with a soft orange glow. As my footsteps approached the gates that had supposedly kept my home safe for so long the stench of something burning became stronger in the night air. The town below the hill which I stood on was alight with a fierce blaze, and the sounds of explosions and screaming left a ringing sensation in my ears.
“Annaliese!” came a voice, causing me to turn around. Relief swept through me as I recognized the figure limping toward me. That relief quickly dissolved, and fear settled in my stomach.
“Julian,” I breathed, running into his arms. He embraced me with such force that he might never let me go. His face and arms were covered with battle scars and blood stained his armor. I looked over him and noticed his badly injured leg.
“You’re hurt Julian!” I exclaimed.
“It’s just a scratch,” he reassured me, taking my hands in his own. We entwined our fingers and gazed into each other’s eyes.
“I told you to stay inside,” he whispered.
“How could I? How could I simply sit by and watch this happen?”
“It’s far too dangerous out here. We have lost half of our men already. We’re at a loss of what to do,” he told me.
“What are we going to do? Must I enter the battlefield?”
“No!” he said firmly. “You must never go somewhere so dangerous. I will fight for you, so hard that I would be fighting for both of us, but you must never find yourself in such a hideous place.”
I said with a tiny voice, “I just wanted to help.”
He took me back into his arms. “You can help by staying in the castle where you are safe. If I were to lose you I do not know what I’d do.”
I nodded, knowing it was better that way. He tilted his head down and kissed me tenderly. With one final look at me, he took off toward the burning town.
I stood gazing after him for a time, but knew I had to get undercover or risk getting killed. I hurried back across the courtyard, but was stopped suddenly by the sound of girlish laughter. I froze in my tracks, my blood running as cold as ice.
“Well well, running away are we Annaliese?” A wind tore through the air, and a figure appeared in front of my eyes dressed from head to foot in a sweeping dress the color of lilac. A pretty, yet hypnotizing gaze met mine.
“Adrina,” I replied.
“So, the Princess wanted to fight, did she? How touching. But you’re not in any position to be fighting anyone, especially me.” I took a fearful step back from my confronter.
“What do you want from me?” I asked, trying to sound bold. A dark glare appeared on Adrina’s face.
“You know what I want from you.”
I knew this would be a bad move, but I did it anyway. I ran from Adrina.
“Don’t run from me!” Adrina shrieked. Within seconds I’d been caught by Adrina’s strong hands and pushed roughly against a marble column. A cry of pain escaped my lips, and I tried to shrink away from Adrina’s glare.
“Give it to me,” she hissed.
“No!” I cried, struggling. Adrina took a step back from me. She held out her hand to the side, like she was reaching for something. Her hand gripped onto something invisible, and pulled. Another figure was pulled out of thin air and into Adrina’s grasp. I gasped.
“Elodie!” I cried. Elodie saw me, then Adrina, and screamed.
“Let her go!” I cried, hurtling toward her. Adrina sent a wave of air at me which pushed her back into the column. I collapsed on the ground, gripping my shoulder, my face scrunched up in pain.
“Stop!” Elodie shrieked frantically.
“Give me the damn key Annaliese!” Adrina spat at me. She held her hand to Elodie’s throat and added, “Or your precious little sister won’t see the light of day.”
“I can’t!” I choked. I sent a pleading look at Adrina, who didn’t buy it. In a swift movement, the air was filled with a horrific cracking sound and Elodie’s limp body fell to the ground at Adrina’s feet. I gazed in shock at my sister’s body. A cry of disbelief escaped my lips. Adrina kicked the useless body away from her and bent down so that she was towering over me.
“Give me the key,” she said slowly, menacingly. I was about to refuse but suddenly Adrina was knocked aside. I gasped. “Julian!”
My knight stood protectively in front of me. Adrina quickly recovered and lunged at Julian. He fended her off and I watched fearfully from behind him. My gaze fell onto Elodie’s body, and fresh tears welled up in my eyes.
“Why?” I whispered. Adrina’s eyes were cold and dead, they weren’t what they used to be. She wasn’t who she used to be anymore.
“You know why,” Adrina spat. I stood up shakily.
“I won’t let you do this. You wouldn’t do this...” I trailed off. I gulped and then boldly said, “I promise I will save you.” Adrina may have better combat skills, but she was nothing compared to what I could do. I knew the only way to protect Julian and myself and restore peace would be to use the key.
“Julian, I’m going to do it,” I said. Julian’s face paled.
“You mean...that? No...No you can’t!” he protested. I stepped away as he tried to reach out to me.
“I have to,” I whispered.
Julian took my hands in his and replied, “Then let’s do it together. Okay?” I slowly nodded in agreement, feeling touched that he would make such a sacrifice for me. I reached inside of a pocket that had been sown into my corset, and pulled out a golden key.
“No...stop!” Adrina growled. I held the key above her head and shouted.
“I call upon the angels to appear before us, and take on their duties as protectors of this universe!”
A faint golden light surrounded us. Adrina lunged toward us but was sent flying from the glow that enveloped us.
“As the Princess of Starlight, I hereby order you to protect this world, this universe, from the dark forces that try to defy us. I command a barrier to form throughout the universe, in the form of lanterns.”
I gazed up at Julian’s face. He caressed my cheek, not only as a sign of affection, but as a promise that we would one day be reunited. I tilted my head up at the sky.
“And I promise that I will save you all,” I whispered. A blinding light hugged our bodies, shattering us into tiny lights that spread across the universe.
LouiseJ2: I enjoyed the detail you went into with regards to the case. It made the UNSUB appear believable. The crisis in the middle of the story was my favorite part, very dramatic but not over the top. I feel like sometimes pairings can be overdone but I liked that some of the relationships were a little...
Hudson: Your story was fantastic Erin! The Rising Sun was one of the first stories I read on Inkitt, and I have to say I don't regret the three to four days I spent pouring through the story.Probably the biggest strength I see in your writing is your characterisation of Eliana, Oriens, and the rest of th...
Nymeria: Really can't get enough of this story. It flows well, it captivates the reader from page 1, and throws you into such a well-written, well conceptualized world that you'll believe it's real. Everything in the book is meshed together really well. From character backgrounds to plot twists, you can t...
Schaelz: I was intrigued from the second I started reading, and it kept my interest the whole way through. Chelsea has a way with words that will enchant you until the very end. She is very poetic with the way she mixes genres and keeps you on the edge of your seat. The main character is also very relat...
MegaRogueLegend666: I love this story so much. It's impossible to describe my excitement with each new chapter in words. The author has such a good writing style, very good descriptions of the fighting and character descriptions/emotions. the plot is also amazing! This fanfic could be a side anime show or novel ......
Ruby0h: Overall I thought your story was really good! It drew me in right away and kept me interested as the story progressed. I loved the character of Kayla being inserted into this story, and the way she affected and shaped the life of the original story into something totally new and interesting. I lo...
RodRaglin: Sounds like an interesting story, LesAnne.Here are some things you might want to consider when you revise this draft."Show don't tell." You've probably hear this before and wondered what's the difference? Well, the difference is as a writer you're telling your reader what's happening rather than ...
JWalker: I loved this story from start to finish! It flows at a really nice pace and the story world feels so real. The fight sequences are a treat especially when Isanfyre is training to become a warrior. I found the names really cool and thankfully easy to pronounce. Personally I have always struggled w...
Elizabeth Robbins: 4.5 starsAs far as apocalypse stories go, this one took a new direction. I'm glad someone finally addressed the need for a vampire apocalypse! This is sort of a multi-genre festival of delights. With hints of forced societies, vamps, hunters, romance, apocalypse, government conspiracy, and thrill...
FreakyPoet: "you made me laugh, made me cry, both are hard to do. I spent most of the night reading your story, captivated. This is why you get full stars from me. Thanks for the great story!"
Sara Joy Bailey: "Full of depth and life. The plot was thrilling. The author's style flows naturally and the reader can easily slip into the pages of the story. Very well done."