Candy. She’s sweet like sticky, salty caramels. Wrapped up in fancy paper, costing twice as much as regular milk caramels. Sticky–because it’s dangerous to even look at her. If I stare too long, she’ll notice.
If she doesn’t notice, I’ll die.
Salted–because what else would make these wounds hurt so beautifully? Rubbed into every raw crevice, pressed into the gaping hole, even as bloody rivers carve their way down my chest.
Wrapped in fancy paper, because who–really?–would wear such things in this day and age? She’s no princess–or nun. Yet she shrouds herself in layers of elegant fabrics. Yards upon yards of handcrafted wonders, stamped with shimmering gold–or painted? I don’t know which.
Does it matter?
Ah. Movement.It feels like flying.
Everything is blurring. The sky won’t stand still and–AUGH.
It hurts. It burns. But oh, my dearest mother, it hurts.
How did I end up here? Halfway across the courtyard? I was by the gate but oh–what lovely arms these are. Her voice is lovely. So pretty–but sad? Why sad? Oh. She looks as if she would cry.
No, no, no.
She should not cry. She should never cry.
I will die, after all. Mortals aren’t meant to live on this plane–not with–her.
She is no princess. She is nothing but a goddess.
It is an honor to relinquish my final breath in her gentle embrace.
Arielle cast a glance over one shoulder, eyeing the dying guard. She looked to the visiting Lord and hid her frown behind a well-timed snap of her fan. They were late and she’d been forced to sit in the scorching sun, drawing nothing from its harsh energy, but complete disdain for the outdoors–yet again. “I thought you were granted safe passage through the mountains?”
This planet was certainly nothing like her homeworld and it irritated her every time she noticed. What a mess this had all become.
“I thought you were granted safe passage through the mountains?” She spoke, carefully. Lightly. Trying to be civil. And Kind.
Lord Gerwon waved a hand, his smarmy smile growing wider. “Tis of no consequence, dear lady. Do not trouble yourself.”
Arielle flicked her fan back and forth, her shoulders gradually lifting and squaring into the stubborn set that meant she would have her way. “I had sent summons–and an invitation.” Golden eyes narrowed. “May I see the letter?”
The ruddy face began to sweat. “I ah, it is with my page. I believe it was left at the-”
“Have him fetch it.” She snapped the fan shut with enough force that his pale blue eyes leapt to her face. “Now.” She smiled, pleasantly. “It isn’t becoming to keep a lady waiting.”
He forced a smile in return, then growled to one of his attendants. The young man skittered off, his face equally red.
Lord Gerwon held himself stiffly in check.
A minute passed. Two.
His gaze darted to the side.
Arielle drew herself up.
“I-I’ll fetch it myself,” he muttered, waddling away as fast his short legs would carry him.
It was hard to ignore the fact that his sword was perfectly tailored to skim just above the ground. No–wait–both swords.
He should’ve been relieved of all weapons.
Her mind made the connection in the same instant that he whirled around, lunging for her, blades outstretched. She hadn’t even seen him draw them.
Movement was limited. She stumbled back a step and went down. Blasted ceremonial gowns! The fall hurt–her wrist had taken the brunt of her weight, but that was of little concern.
Lord Gerwon continued to advance, a crazed look in his blue eyes–his white-blond hair freed from the jeweled clasp and now dancing about his face.
Air. Wind. Yes.
Arielle threw one hand out, pulling as hard as she could. She felt her magic answer her, just as Lord Gerwon moved.
The dying guard appeared between them, his body conveniently absorbing a death blow meant for her. She shuddered against the unexpected weight and the empathic feedback of such blatant hatred.
Why? The thought circled in her head as she froze time and gently eased the guard’s body to the ground. The sword was removed–and replaced in the chest of its owner.
The guard would die–except for that was a poor reward for such heroic service, even if unknown to the minute of the very act itself. She’d extracted the cruel sword from his bleeding chest, sadness filling her at the unnecssary violence of it all. He had done his duty and even more so. reached to one ear and unfastened a pearl drop earring, crushing it between her fingers and trickling the powder over the wound.
Shereached to one ear and unfastened a pearl drop earring, crushing it between her fingers and trickling the powder over the wound.
Light spilled from her slender fingers as she drew on the sun’s harshness to heal one of its own people. It seemed to take forever, but couldn’t have been longer than mere seconds.
For time stops for no woman or man, longer than mere seconds.
Strength flooded her as she stood to her true height, towering over the would-be assasin. Her eyes blazed and time resumed.
Lord Gerwon choked and gurgled, disbeliving eyes fixed on the fat blade protruding from his chest. His own magic sparked feebly, trying in vain to heal a fatal wound.
“It would interest you to know,” Arielle said, calmly. She hefted his second sword in hand, testing the weight. It was lighter than her practice swords, but it would do–it had leapt to her hand at the slightest call. “That my father said to behead you on sight. I thought to verify whether there were any redeeming qualities buried within your rotund self, but apparently such hopes were greviously misplaced. Allow me to remedy the error of your continued existence.”
There was no protest to the blade whistling through the air. The lifeless head fell heavily to the floor of the stone courtyard.
She let the sword fall with a noisy clatter, rubbing at her aching wrist. It took a moment’s concentration for a healing spell to reach that specific point. Relieved of the minor injury, she now focused on her ruined fan.
What a pity. It had been a favorite.
She grimaced at the now bloody spectacle in the otherwise pristine courtyard.
Pity. That had also been a rather likable place to brood…
Snapping her fingers at the newly healed guard, she bit back a smile amusement as he gasped into existence, frantic, trembling hands patting over his chest. “Consider yourself to be in my immortal employ.”
He started, faintly.
She wrinkled her nose. A gaping mouth was attractive on no man. “Shut your mouth and clean this courtyard. Dispose of the body however you please. Meet me at evening’s hail at the front steps. We leave tonight and ride ’til morning.”
He licked his lips, waiting.
She perked a brow.
He ducked his head. “As her lady…wishes.”
She smiled. Good. Maybe he’d prove his usefulness again. A brush of softness on her hand made her start and she stared down to see that he held her hand to his forehead, eyes closed.
When she drew her hand back, he released it, mouth shut and dark eyes filled with absolute adoration.
It was a good sign. She ackoweldged it as her station required. His mouth shut and dark eyes filled with absolute adoration.
The smile he gave her was nothing compared to the blinding adoration in his pitch black eyes.
A/n : um…yeah. So I haven’t freewritten anything in a LONG time. Whoops? Enjoy the short oneshot. I just had this pouring out of the brain and couldn’t bother to stop it.