San stood watching. Watching the hundreds of people laughing. The hundreds of people dining. As he saw his people smiling and joking with one another, he concluded that his life was made up of good moments. The women dressed in their very best and delightfully played with cards and gossiped together while dining with their families. The men drank and smoked thick cigars while arguing over religion and gloating over their beautiful women. The ballroom was full of joy, wealth, and prosperity dancing before the prince in a colorful daze. All the people dressed in expensive bright colors and raised their glasses in honor of the prince that stood before them. Prince Sanmit’s pale face glowed in the candlelight with his blonde hair pulled back in a low ponytail. Throughout the celebration he basked in all the riches and glory that his royal status brought him. He was known for his pride and all who loved him had high ranks of power. San held his chin high staring out at his people, his deep blue eyes full of gratification, and took his glass in his hand, tapping it gently with a butter knife. When all became quiet he lifted his glass with a charming smile and breathed deeply.
“No one in this world could be more content than I am now. I have truly been blessed with a loving people who sees this man before them with pride. On this day, the day I have reached the age of eighteen I promise a future of unspeakable joy and celebrations to all who can afford it!” The crowd laughed and cheered in approval at the end of the prince’s speech and continued to giggle and chat.
Soon enough King Aarav finally stepped through the ballroom entrance holding a chain in his hand. The king stood about six feet tall. He was strong, gripping tightly on the chain in his hand. His son clearly inherited his looks, but had yet to gain the experience that lined the king’s face. Aarav smirked and abruptly pulled on the chain that had the king’s knuckles white from the effort it took to keep the chain from slipping from his grasp.
The chain only stretched about four feet meeting a cuff that wrapped around two smooth dark hands. A half dressed woman stood shaking, her long black curls resting on her shoulders. She was looking down but soon raised her chin to see the crowd before her laughing hysterically as the prince approached her. Her brown eyes were full of fear. There were bruises on her upper arm from being roughly handled by the king. Aarav stepped closer to his smirking son, handing the chain to San.
“For this special day, I could think of no greater gift than a virgin slave! This flawless witch will do just the trick for an eighteen year old man!” San laughed at the sight of this poor helpless and insignificant slave that stood before him. Every part of her body was trembling as the prince approached her and she turned her head to the side so as to avoid eye contact. San grabbed at the slaves chin and forced her to look at him. She pulled back and tried to look away again. San smiled and turned to look at the crowd.
“She is afraid to look upon my face!” He laughed hysterically before speaking again with pouty lips.
“Who wouldn’t want to see me?” The crowd laughed and ladies all around fawned over the young prince. San turned back to the slave girl and grabbed her chin once again and forced his lips onto hers. The slave hastily peeled her face away from the selfish prince and reeled her head back before spitting in his face. San’s previously playful and arrogant attitude quickly spiraled into a harsh and dominant demeanor. He wiped his face before grabbing a handful of the slave’s hair and forcing her to her knees.
The slave cried out in pain and scratched at the prince’s hands in an attempt to free herself. The crowd began to cheer for the prince to punish her and he smiled. He looked out into the crowd, but a single woman stood out. She was tall and had her hair tied up in a bun. A small top hat adorned with purple ribbons sat on her head. Matching the ribbons that trailed down her back, her silk dress draped on her form; it’s ruffles elegantly falling behind her. She was neither cheering nor laughing. She stared at the prince with intense almond shaped eyes, which were her most prominent trait. They were small, bright, beady things that were occasionally obscured by her hooded eyelids blinking. She was frowning but not in a way that suggested sadness or pity. Every aspect of the woman seemed to portray her as powerful.
San felt his throat go dry and broke eye contact with the strange woman. He gulped and turned his attention back to the disrespectful girl in front of him, taking his discomfort out on her with a sharp tug at her scalp. The girl squealed in response before he bent over to whisper in her ear.
“You serve a very forgiving man. Tell these people that you regret your blatant disrespect for your prince. Say you will do anything to make it up to me. Maybe then you will no longer suffer pain.” The woman yelped pathetically as he continued to tighten his grip on her hair but she eventually swallowed and hardened her expression, still clawing at San’s wrist.
“I will not confess to any sort of remorse! That would be a lie!” The crowd’s volume increased. Some started throwing their food or their drinks at the young woman until she was covered in soups, potatoes, and wine. The prince pulled the slave’s hair to bring her back to her feet and let go of her hair just briefly. The woman sighed in relief when the pain ceased but looked at the prince confusedly when he instantaneously pulled the girls wrists to his chest and grabbed a key from his father. He forcefully unlocked the chains that kept her bound before clasping his hand stiffly around her wrist with his right hand. He then pulled her arm behind her back, shifting it higher up until she screeched in pain, while using his left hand to latch onto the hair hanging near the back of her neck and pulling it down, forcing her chin up to face the ceiling. She whimpered softly and the prince let out a victorious gruff and pressed his face against her head with his mouth not quite an inch from her ear.
“This will end better for you if you were to simply apologize young slave!” The woman moaned loudly before finally screaming out a response.
“My dear prince I am sorry! Please have mercy! I will say anything! I-I will do anything for your forgiveness!” The prince softened his grip and threw the young slave onto the ground while she sobbed uncontrollably. He smiled smugly while the crowd laughed and cheered. All but one. All except the woman standing in front glaring at the prince with disappointment. San shuddered but quickly lightened his face again. Smiling and laughing along with the crowd. A guard locked the slave back up in her chains and dragged her to her feet. The people would boo as she passed by them, some still throwing food. She walked numbly past all the people with tears streaming down her face. The guard led her through the whole crowd before finally disappearing in the shadows.
After a few more hours of celebration Prince Sanmit finally thanked his guests for their audience and exited the buzzing ballroom to get rest for the night. However, his tracks were soon stopped by the tall woman in the purple dress who stood in front of him, this time, with a smile.
“My dear prince! This celebration was simply wonderful!” Her accent was a thick English one. She seemed to be middle age. Probably her mid thirties. There was black lace decorating the woman’s silk dress. She had a black tear shaped diamond hanging from a thick and eccentric silver necklace with flowery designs covering her collar bone. Her makeup was very sophisticated. Her face was covered in a white powder with pink circles giving life to her cheeks. Her lips were a deep maroon color, darker than the wine that she held in her hand, and her eyelashes were long. They reminded the prince of spider’s legs curling up around the woman’s hooded eyes. San was nearly frightened of the woman standing before him but he attempted to give her a charming smile.
“Yes! That it was.” He gently took the woman’s hand and kissed the top of her palm.
“Thank you so much for coming, but I’m afraid the celebration is over and it’s time for me to retire for the night.” The woman smiled warmly and gave the prince a half hearted curtsy without losing eye contact.
“Of course my prince. I wouldn’t want to deprive you of your night with that slave. I’m sure she can’t wait for more of your dehumanizing physical abuse.” San frowned and glared at the woman, but dared not to challenge her.
“Yes. Well-uh goodnight fair lady.” The prince turned away from the woman and began walking down the hall. The woman kept her gaze fixed on the prince and smirked as he walked further away.
“Goodnight.” The woman said giddily under her breath.