Sunday, March 24

Chapter Ten

Lyrist was still on the move. Although he wasn't entirely sure how much longer he's going to be able to keep this up. There was not only one, but around the proximity of twenty creatures now shooting eggs at him. After an exact count of ten eggs fired, it duplicates another.  If only he killed the first one to begin with...  None of this would ever happened. But he doesn't know anything about the origins of this creature. For all he knows, engaging in close combat might be as deadly as the range is. Too preoccupied with his thoughts, he gets caught in a blast. And he's unable to completely dodge; the whole radius of the explosion. The upper half of his ear gets blown off. Luckily he didn't go deaf, but he's left with this awful ringing. His pain receptors don't kick in until there's quite a bit of blood. Reaching up, he snatches whatever left of his burnt bandanna and tossed it aside. For a second he thought his vision was beginning to lie to him. When the ledges started to sway from one side to the other. This makes it all the more difficult to maintain his speed without going off the edge. Suddenly he jerks a hard left after an ambushed of chains swooped at his body like slithering snakes, attempting to entangled him till he could move no more. 

Nearing the distance, the pub he's been longing for could be seen plain as day. However each story of the building is floating individually by itself.  And the basement is the furthest one out of reach. If his calculates are correct, the painting has to still be in there. Why else would she go to all this trouble of manipulating a building when the painting can simply be moved. Hopefully he didn't decipher Belinda only flaw before its already too late... for the others.

Crazily Lyrist's arms went flailing when the ledge collapses backwards. With quick thinking, he ends up readjusting his body to aligned himself parallel. This allows his feet to slide down sideways with gravity, instead of roughly skidding along. A couple of minutes of smooth sailing passed by till his head gets bashed from behind. He doesn't even get a chance to figure out what the cause was. Since he's now reeling down the ledge, helplessly rolling. At this point he unsheathed his nails and digs them into the stone to gain back control. His speed drastically decreases, but its still not enough to make him come to a complete halt. And unfortunately for him, the end of the ledge was getting closer... and closer. There's no way to avoid it so he might as well use it to his advantage. As soon as his lower body goes over, he reaches down to grab a hold of the edge. All the while he applies pressure by centering his feet flat against the ledge from behind. Immediately he pushes off with both hands and feet, sending himself hurling through the air. Then he embraces himself by crisscrossing his forearms in front of his face. In just a second or two, he'll be impacting the bricks of the basement's foundation. 

Unexpectedly his body falls straight through, unharmed. But the crash landing was another story. He slams right into a stack of ale barrels. They end up falling over onto his body in a bit of a dismantled pile. One by one he pushes a couple of them aside and eventually climbed out. In the furthest corner, there it was the painting! However this is when he comes to the realization that there's no source of fire to even burn it. Was all his effort for nothing? When he picked up the painting, an idea struck him like lighting. He may not be able to burn it, but he sure as hell can try blowing it up. He pressed the painting securely against his chest and without hesitation, he leaped through the basement wall. He felt his body get sweep away into the wind. Like a baby bird who is pushed out of the nest by their mother, and is expected to soar the skies. But he was no bird... Just a cat that can only hope it has a couple of lives left. Or maybe could perhaps land on all fours. 

He didn't mind the free falling, it's just the air smacking against his face, brought irritation upon his ear. Well whatever was left of it. It pretty much looked like an ordinary ear by human standards now. Plus an addition to that, some of his dreads are missing as well. He wasn't sure why these thoughts were looming into his head. It's only a matter of time before he ends up splattered all over a ledge somewhere. If this was any other situation though, he probably would've enjoyed it. 

Then he saw it..  an golden egg. It came at him like a shooting star, scaling across the night. This might be his only chance, for he may never get another. He must throw the painting at once or else; get caught in the explosion himself. Considering how much damage it already had done. More than likely he dares not going down that route again.

Bending his knees, he curled his legs upwards to his chest, like an lower abdominal crunch. Then he plants the painting behind his feet and kicked off. Not only it'll send the painting forward, but it'll also pushed him further back in the process. He extends an arm in front of his eyes as he witnesses the collusion of the painting and the egg colliding together. All the while he hears Belinda screaming from every  possible direction. This can only mean one thing.. he was successful. Shortly after he closed his eyes due to the blinding white light. Eventually he reopens them... only to find himself lying around in the basement of the pub with everyone else. Although he felt too tired to greet the others, but he didn't have to. They too appeared to be in the same condition as him; exhausted. 

"Is everyone accounted for?" Leon asked. 

Fenix eventually said, "I need a drink." 

"I second that motion." Sinner groaned.

"See here!" Sir Emmanuel cheered out in agreement. 

Leon waited impatiently for a response from Blazerine. However one never comes. He sat straight up and looked around the room til his eyes settled upon her. Peacefully she was sleeping away. It's really a rare sight to see her without having a guard up. The majority of the time it's shown, even while she sleeps; in a curled defensive ball.  

Lyrist noticed Leon's distress... whether or not he should interrupted Blazerine's slumber. "Go ahead; she's not enjoying that dream of hers." He said. 

(Sinner: How can he tell?)

"I can hear what's going on in her mind... and the same goes for you as well." Lyrist explained. 

Leon carefully walks to Blazerine by avoiding stepping on the others along the way. When he finally approached, he kneeled down and tapped her cheek to awaken her. The coldness of his gauntlet made her wince. It made him feel a bit bad, but when she comes to, he felt relived by the disturbed look on her face.

"Man... that's one of the most horrible dreams I have ever had." Blazerine muttered.

"Why - What happened?" Leon asked.

"I don't think I should say...since it's about Fenix and Sinner." Blazerine uncomfortably replied wearily.

"Just tell me." Leon insisted.  

"Well..." Blazerine began, "T-they were kissing."


Several minutes of silence passes by.... 


"And that's not even the weird part." She continued, " Sinner was dressed like a woman!" 


"Hey I made one hell of a beautiful woman! There's no denying that!" Sinner unexpectedly yelled.

Lyrist previously had made a mental image based on the thoughts he was receiving from Blazerine. So he actually agreed with Sinner statement. However he's shortly distracted by the noise - wait no the cheering and disbelief of the villagers.

One of the villagers actually opens their home to let them rest for awhile. Since none of them were actually willingly to spend another second in that pub, even if they earned free rooms. 

--------------

Lounging about: Sir Emmanuel suggested, "You must come back with me to Kenelem Kingdom. I'll personally request the king to thank you. Perhaps with some riches..." He continued down a list, but Leon didn't care about any of it. 

"All I want is Sinner to be trialed." Leon said. 


Blazerine and Fenix don't agree with his decision. After everything, Sinner helped them and Leon still wants to do him in? The weirdest thing of all is that Sinner doesn't even raise a single finger to go against his wishes. And who is Sir Emmanuel to deny?

Blazerine watches Argo sadly curl up into a ball on the middle of the floor. It's almost like he understood what fate lies ahead for his master. 


----------------


Kenelem Kingdom is a very peaceful and majestic land, whose gates were always open to all. Many would visit just to marvel at the castle's beautiful structure, that's intertwining with foliage and trees; which create natural arch-ways with their branches. The towers are so tall; it makes those who gaze think of stairways to heaven. However the castle's main courtyard has a gorgeous fountain with two statues; one is a knight in mid strike. And the other is a ferocious two horned creature. One many has never seen the likes of before. It's opened mouth allows a water current to flow out and travel the portions of the kingdom, eventually emptying itself out into the ocean. 


The streets were filled with the town's folks parading happily about. Everybody wore fancy clothing, ones that only nobles could afford. Sir Emmanuel explained that the king taxed the rich until the rich were no more. There's no longer a lower, middle, or a higher class; everyone is just equal.  


Blazerine found herself quite fascinated by those who dressed more creative than the others. Colorful puffy gowns with frilly shoulders, topped off with ribbons tied in bows. A man with a short red jacket and wide yellow leggings started playing his fiddle. Two people gathered in front of him and locked arms with one another. They danced together in a circle as he played. 

Lyrist uninjured ear twitched a bit in rhythm to the high strung tune, although it is hidden by handkerchief wrapped around his head, to bend the ear inward. The other one is left exposed. It's still a nasty sight even though most of the blood has dried up by now. He could have worn the hood of his tunic, but the air will help further along its healing process. At least he's not as bad off as Leon was. He used his sword like a walking cane. 

"Is there some kind of special occasion going on?" Leon asked. 


"Yes the queen has given birth to a son!" The man declared after overhearing Leon. 


"Ah! Such wonderful news indeed!" Sir Emmanuel smiled. 


Blazerine froze up once she realized there's a pair of eyes glaring her way. Fenix was giving her that sort of look that a mother would give a child to demand proper behavior. The two of them were planning on trying to get Sinner out of this trial somehow with a clean slave. But it's really too hard for her not to be mesmerized by all the little do dads and what not's. Rag dolls, some shaped like horses, creatures people have encounter, plus kings and queens. Children running pass them were playing with musical toys such as rattles, drums and whistles. 

Lyrist exchanged a small glance with Fenix because he knows the behavior Blazerine is displaying, reminds him of Fauna; that child - like curiosity of the world. Especially the expression she had when the kites took flight. Hand - made butterflies, doves and even fierce dragons filled the sky. The dragons have long streams ribbon which wavers into the wind to represent fire. The prettier ones have dazzling wind chimes attached to them at the ends. 

Sinner roughly smacked Fenix across the shoulders blades then yelled, "C'mon you're not one who would spoil a good time!"

"You seem to be taking this well, for a dead man walking that is." Fenix angrily blew him off. 

"Hey like they say; live each day like it's  your last my boy." Sinner slyly smiled.

Running through the crowd to reach them was a little girl calling out, "Papa, papa!" The closer she got, the clumsier her steps become. She nearly trips over the blue gown that's too big for her short stature. 

"That's not yours is it?" Fenix just had to ask.

"I don't think so. I never have been here before." Sinner unsurely shrugged. 

"It's you, it's really you papa!" The little girl happily leaps into Sir Emmanuel opened arms. 

"Elizabeth, what are you doing runnin' around and 'bout? You're supposed to be in bed darlin'." His voice was lovingly and sterned at the same time. 

"Papa you so silly, I'm not sick anymore!" Elizabeth cradled his face through the opening of his helmet with her itty bitty hands. Then she gasped at the sight of his black eye. "Papa what happen to your eye!" 

"Honey it's nothing to worry about. Did the king sent for the chocolates after I didn't return?" He sweetly asked her. 

"Yes, yes!  The brew, It was really good!" She giggled cutely.

He placed his daughter around his shoulders and sighed of relief, "King Luican must have expected the worse...  Thank the angels he looked after her." 

"He sounds like a great king." Leon said. 

Sir Emmanuel turned to him and said, "Yes he's been so kind to my family and I....  After my wife, and her twin sister disappeared. It's been hard, you know?" 

"Yes I can relate to similar circumstances." Leon replied rather coldly. 

"Leo!" Fenix began to yell, but Leon cuts him off right away.

"He'll get what he deserves. Justice will serve him for his crimes even if it's not for all of them." Leon calmly spoken. 

Lyrist isn't interested in interfering or interacting with the laws humans have created. It's not really his place to say anything about those regards anyway. Although at the same time he knows Fenix and Blazerine will do otherwise. Shortly after that thought crosses his mind. A grotesque face quickly glooms his face. Argo; the wolf was sitting comfortably right next to him. He doesn't dislike members of the wolf family because of the obvious. It's more of a jealousy trait; due to humans shunning cats over superstitions, and favoring the dogs instead. Cats hatred for dogs mostly lies with tail movements. Tail movements mean different things between their kind and his kin. To a cat, wagging a tail means displeasure or even anger. However Lyrist realized from Argo that it's a formal greeting in social behavior to indicate happiness.

While the two of them were still arguing, Sinner approached Argo. He gave him a soft pat on the top of his head and chuckled, "He seems to have taken a liking to you."

"Yes... how unfortunate." Lyrist said to him. 

"Look I'm going to be frank with you kid. If something does happen to me. I want you to look after him and Blazerine. She risked her own life to save mine and my boy's life." Sinner explained.

"I am quite aware." Lyrist pointed out.

Sinner looked over at Blazerine then continued on, "There's just something different about her that seems kind of precious, you know?" 

"Maybe it's because she's someone who can truly comprehend and understand the value of others, passively without even knowing herself.  Always thinking, and questioning everything...  Acting different around certain individuals. It's a feature that only someone with a high level of intelligent could even be able to do. 

You wouldn't believe it but most other humans aren't capable of that basic thought process. - But basically  more specifically she knows how to act for each person, depending on who she's around. Doing so... in a way that puts others more at ease, by adjusting to a level that they're automatically comfortable with. I've seen this done with Fenix, Fauna and myself... however she has yet with Leon." Lyrist finished speaking his mind. 

"That's some mouthful." Sinner chuckled. 

Blazerine wanders away from the others to explore around by herself. Shortly she comes across a man who announces himself; as the king's personal royal messenger. He stood there before a decent size crowd of jesters. They were all wearing brightly colored clothing, masks, eccentric hats. All the above has different patterns from motley, polka - dots, stripes, zigzags and even some with splotches. 

"Here - e,  here - e, I welcome all of you licensed fools on behalf of the king's absence. He's granted only the best buffoons can be selected to entertain tonight's Annual Ball; thrown in celebration of the newborn prince, Slavador! Now chop, chop, and show me what you got!" He cried out while throwing his parchment to the sky. 

Blazerine watched some performances, from acrobatics, juggling, music, fire breathing, and more things she has never seen before. But really most of all... she's surprised by two look alikes who approach her. They're small enough to be mistaken as a child. The only difference is their colors; one was yellow and the other was green. She guesses it's probably to help identify them individually. And their outfits were fluffy with patchwork styled patterns. Bells jingle and jangle from their long pointy hats; that are three sided. 

The green one up stepped forth and announced, "I'm Ge!" 

Then yellow one introduce himself right after, "I'm Mini!" 

Ge: And were a broken,

Mini: shatter gemini. 

Ge: Always together!

Mini: Cause were twin brothers,

Ge: Bounded by mothers' blood.

Mini:  Always connected, 

Ge: Yet always dissected. 

Blazerine tried to say, "Yeah that's... pretty - " 

Ge: Annoying! 

Mini: Cause we finish,

Ge: each others,

Mini: sentences! 

"Is that the only thing you can do?" Blazerine asked.

Ge: Of course, 

Mini: not!

When Ge tipped his hat to the side, Mini had reached in and snatched a small leather pouch. Blazerine thinks it must of have been sitting on top of his head. The two of them fought amongst themselves, wanting to be the one to show their skills. Ge claimed himself as victor after Mini had keeled over. She watches him loosen the pouch and take out a tiny pinch of sand. Then he sprinkles it precisely across the middle of his palm. 

"Are you ready?" Ge softly whispered before blowing the sand softly into her face.

At first Blazerine didn't think anything had happened until... The Jesters' eyes dastardly shift to the sides of their heads and enlarge in size, along with their ears that become floppy. Their heights never did change... but everything else did. From nose shrinking, fur sprouting up, and lastly prominent front teeth. There now were two bunny rabbits standing in front of her; wearing human clothing. 

"Hey that's pretty cool." Blazerine laughed. 

Mini declared, "Any person you find attractive will appear to be a bunny." 

Ge held up two fingers and further commented, "For two hours." 

"Two hours? Were suppose to be meetin -" Blazerine suddenly yelped out after being grabbed from behind, by the collar of her trench coat. She didn't even have to turn around to see who it was. It's always a routine, a normal interaction if you will, between her and Leon. Well at least by his standards anyway. 

"You don't have time to be messing around with these clowns." Leon sternly said. 

Ge: Just clowns!?

Mini: No sure - re 

Ge: We are fans from the TALES, 

Mini: of the great Sandman!

"I've had already enough tales for this lifetime  Thank you very much, we'll be going now." Leon sneered. 

He forced Blazerine along, although she could of have easily slip her arms out from the sleeves, but it would expose her illness. Not only to him, but to everyone else.

"Look..." Blazerine begun, "What's ever happening between you and Fenix isn't my fault. So don't take it out on me." She paused for a second and then added, "Even though... he's right and you're wrong." 

"You're siding with him, you of all people?!" Leon yelled.

"People have the ability to change. For the good or the worse. You gave Fauna a second chance. Why can't you just give him one?" Blazerine protested.

"He doesn't deserve another chance, understand? Trust me you don't know him like I do." Leon exclaimed.

"Whatever..." Blazerine rolled her eyes.

"Now hush! You should be preparing yourself for when you meet the king. You're going to be his honorable guest." Leon said.

"Honorable guest?" Blazerine repeated.

"Yes many would be honor to have a legend; the one who carries a sacred orb. And who knows, we may be invited to the Annual Ball. Formal wear..., dresses, music and dancing." Leon explained. 

"Dancing? I don't do dancing okay. Or anything associated with it." Blazerine mentioned.

"Nonsense, since you have all the time to fool around with those new so called friends of yours." Leon pointed out.

"You're going to punish me over that? Man come on, you're treating me like a little kid! I'm older than you are!" Blazerine argued.  

"That might be so, but you're not mentally. For a future reference if you're going to act little. I'm going to treat you like you are. So until that head of yours catches up, deal with it." Leon threatened. 


------------

Sir Emmanuel brought them to, The Great Hall; it's the most important room in the castle. This is where feasts are held for special occasions or to greet visiting guests. The windows throughout the room are arranged to let in a good amount of sunlight. Golden tapestries were hung in-between them, to help brighten up the dull stone walls. In the middle of the floor, there's a red carpet, which strictly leads straight up to the king's throne.

Servants were busy preparing a single wooden table that's on a platform. This is solely for the king and his family to eat breakfast, lunch and supper. The lesser ones below are for his guests and knights. However his guards, along with the servants eat in a separate banquet hall. 

So much for everybody being equal Leon thought. (You can remove the title, but you can't take the mentality of the class away.) 

Fenix thought the servants clothing were bizarre. They wore green dresses that have huge bottoms, but the upper waist is tiny as can be. Why wasn't it the opposite? The bigger the top look, the bigger the gal's chest would appear. And the giant yellow bow is doubled knotted in the back...  It would be just another annoying obstacle to get to the goods. 

A guard sounded a trumpet upon the king’s arrival. Everyone bowed, except for Blazerine; who wasn't exactly used to these royal formalities. Although it is unheard of for women to bow like a gentlemen. A woman from their time, always would curtsey, but that usually requires the right garments, such as a dress or a gown. Leon rationally corrected her behavior by forcing her half way down.  Plus she has her mind on a bigger matter. At least to her it was anyway. Whoever she finds attractive would look like a rabbit? (But how did she even find the jesters to be attractive? Unless being mysterious is the cause behind all of it? I guess that would mean Leon could possibly be furry as well. Since the armor makes him come across that sort of way too.  Never seeing a facial expression that could help decipher, the meanings behind his actions or thoughts. 

 And what about Lyrist? He's drop dead gorgeous and he's looks the same. Yet again he did say any person, which he's far from.) 

That's when she noticed Lyrist was looking her way. Once again she had forgotten about his whole mind reading bullshit. It's really too hard for her to keep a clear mind at all times, especially in this awkward situation. It's still embarrassing nonetheless, she thought. 

"You do not seem acquitted with our customs. What backwaters did you come from?" King Lucien asked. 

He approached, wearing a red embroidered sur-coat, which has no sleeves, but the arm holes were made purposely large to reveal the lavished undergarment. And the fur mantle hung around the very back of his shoulders, almost like a cape. Lastly the jewels from his crown glisten in the sunlight, brightening his dark brown hair, that's the same as his cleanly cut, trimmed beard. 

"Back waters?" Blazerine repeated. 

(Is he insulting or belittling me? I can't really seem to tell which, but he sure as hell is looking at me, like I'm some sort of lower life form.) 

She turned to exchange glances with Lyrist again, for an answer. He simply nodded yes in return. Although he knew it's really the last thing she wanted to hear right now, but he's the only one who's actually been honest with her... and she hopes it stays that way. Otherwise she would feel more alone than she already does. 

All the while, Leon was explaining to the king about Blazerine's head injury. How it has made her lose common knowledge of the world and what's in it. The conversation eventually leads up to explaining how she's a guardian of a sacred orb. After she shown the orb to prove all they were told. The king's face quickly changed, for he now looked at her in a different light. Sir Emmanuel and Sinner were shocked as well, because it was the first time they've heard of this. 

King Lucien signaled a servant and commanded, "Quickly set the guest table at once!" 

"That would be necessary." Leon kindly declined. 

Blazerine knew that would've made Fenix upset or even mad, but his mind was elsewhere. 

King Lucien laughed, "Strictly here for business I presumed." 

Sir Emmanuel finally spoken up, "They've lifted the singing curse off Calgeen, and even myself. I brought them here to humbly request for you to award them on my behalf." 

"Ah, I see...." King Lucien begun. "I will accept your request." He turned to them and said, "For helping my knight in his time of need. I will grant you an award."

Since Blazerine was standing in between Leon and Sinner. She couldn't help, but overhear him speaking so ill of the king. And how Leon purposely didn't mention her killing the leader of the Blood Pack. (Is this the same very king he claimed to being selfish and not helping his own people? Something seems a bit off here. I'm starting to wonder if there's something behind what Leon has said.) 

Suddenly Lyrist horribly cringed in pain, before holding on dearly to his head. Thoughts were coming at him in all directions. For some reason he's unable to pinpoint his listener's ability, which will help delude the others out. Why was this happening to him? He only tried to pry into King Lucien's head, but for some reason he did not receive any thoughts. The harder he tried, the worse he felt. It's the second time in his life this has occurred. The first; was Charles from back at the Mournful Moon Inn. What exactly does this mean? Could they possibly be connected somehow? Or maybe it's because of his ear injury? 

"Lyrist!" Blazerine freaked out when she saw blood trailing down from his nose. 

Lyrist was taken by surprise when Blazerine rushed to his side, regardless of the situation.

"What's wrong?" She asked him. 

He looked down upon her with his glassy eyes then whispered, "I can't control it- the thoughts- they're getting louder and louder." 

She leaned in closer to say, "Focus, focus only on me, okay?" 

King Lucien urgently requests a servant to take Lyrist to one of the guest rooms to clean up. She wanted to help him, but Leon undoubtedly would tell her no. However in this very moment she could care less what anybody has to say about it, so she followed them, without saying a single word. 

Leon couldn't figure out why of all days Blazerine had to choose to rebel, not only to him, but in front of authority. Luckily for her, the king didn't think much of it, because he thinks she’s not in the right state of mind. Otherwise it would've have been out of his hands… for the punishment the king decides to give, due to her lack of respect. And there wouldn't be anything he could do about it. Despite these minor step backs. At least everything is still going according to his plan. 


 He lifted his finger and pointed it right at Sinner before making his demands, “I want him; a fellow member of the Blood Pack to be trial for his crimes.” 

The atmosphere drastically changed after his statement. There’s fear spreading throughout the eyes of all the servants. One of them was so shaken up; she accidently drops a pitcher of wine. Immediately a group of servants gathered around to help clean the spill. 

King Lucien took a seat at his throne, because of how serious this matter has now become. With a strong, but yet clear voice, he yells, “Guards cease this man at once!” 

“No you can’t do that!” Fenix cried. 

“I am the king; I can do whatever I see fit!” King Lucien tells him. 

“Blaze – the guardian would not allow this!” Fenix protested.

“The guardian isn’t of clear mind to be making any decisions, let alone judgment. I advice you to close your mouth right now! Unless you… want me to remind of where you stand, BEFORE a king.” King Lucien argued. 

Fenix didn't know what to say. It's honestly one of the very few times, he's loss for words. Even if he had any, he runs the risk of jeopardizing Leon's reputation as a Templar from Norman Church. All he could do now is just hang his head low while his father is escorted to the dungeon, to await his trial in a old dirty cell. 


------

Blazerine stopped in front of the door frame. She wanted to avoid getting in the way of the servant; who's assisting Lyrist.  But from where she is standing, she can see that the guest room has oil paintings on every single wall. She doesn't have the slightest clue who they were. Other than it's obviously some sort of heroic figures or perhaps even portraits, which could possibly be generations of the royal family.

(Of all rooms he had to get this one.. I doubt he's going to be too thrilled about all of these paintings.) 

The servant left briefly, only to return with a bowl of warm water and some handkerchiefs. 

"Is he going to be alright?" Blazerine asked her. 

"Yes, his nose bleed has stopped completely, but he has a little bit of a fever. He refuses to let me tend to him any further. Here, maybe he will let you." The servant gently pushed the bowl into her arms. 

"But I don't know anything about -" Blazerine begun to say. 

"No worries, just dampen the handkerchief and place it upon his forehead. After a while... soak, rinse then repeat. Wow you really have forgotten everything, haven't you? Sheesh... what a nuisance." The servant grumbled out of annoyance. 

Blazerine watched her walk away and said, "What a bitch...." 

(Wait..a minute. She said he has a fever. I could've sworn Lyrist told us that he's incapable of getting sick ever. What exactly is going on with him?) 

Shortly after that thought, she stepped inside the room and closed the door behind her. Lyrist could be seen; lying sprawled out on a large bed, covered in warm blankets and furs. It looks far more comfortable than their usual pallets or bed rolls. And it's probably mainly because the mattress is filled with feathers, instead of hay; like the beds are from the taverns inns. 


Blazerine approached close enough to ask, “Are you awake?” 

She sat down on the edge of the bed, waiting for an answer that never seems to come. For awhile, she just stares down at her own reflection in the bowl’s water, which is sitting securely in the middle of her lap, along with the handkerchiefs. Then suddenly… a pair of arms wrapped around her waist from behind and pulled her back towards the bed. Before she knew it, the bowl fell to the floor, spilling water everywhere. Not only that, but Lyrist pulled her in for a close embrace; one that isn't easily capable of getting out of. One single leg of his was wrapped around both of hers. His arms locked right beneath her breasts, holding her firmly in place. At this rate it might as well have been a bear hug, according to Blazerine. 

“W-what are you doing?” She squealed. 

“I can hear it…” He said out of nowhere. 

“What?” She doesn't understand what he means by that. 

“Your heart is beating so loudly and fast, making it all the more easier to focus on. The pain is finally starting to subside….” He replied with his eyes falling closed. 

She nervously yelled, “You embarrassed me on purpose!"  More words would have spewed from her mouth, but she stopped… after realizing he’s now asleep. 

Was he pretending to get his own way? For all she knew, he could be one of those feral cats; that reverted to their wild ways in order to survive. Wait what is she thinking exactly? Well... maybe in only certain situations. Cause yet again, he does act more like a house cat, if anything.  

Soon as she tried getting up, his grip tightens around her body, preventing her from leaving. 

"You were faking it!" The tone of her voice is rather shaky, because she’s quite startled by the whole circumstance. 

"I was until you moved." He claimed. 

“Pssh… whatever… the case is. I’m not –“Blazerine words trailed off after a blanket was thrown over on top of her, completely covering her from head to toe. She didn't understand what his reason was till she heard the door opened, followed by Leon’s voice. 

“Where is she?” Leon asked.

“Where is who?” Lyrist played dumb. 

“Don’t give me that load of lard!” Leon raised his voice. 

“I presume she was with you. Perhaps she’s roaming the castle. You of all humans know how child-like she can be from time to time.” Lyrist replied.

Leon looked off to the side and said, “So you overheard.” 

“I always do.” Lyrist simply smiled.

 “I don't know what has gotten into you Lyrist. At first you were so greatly indebted to me... But now you seem to be attaching yourself onto Blazerine." Leon paused briefly before further commenting with, "What's the reason behind it? If you mind sharing."

"Let's just say the two of us are equally weighted down upon the scales, when it comes to being what you humans call "normal." Lyrist replied. 

"Really this again? Look if you see her. Tell her that she's attending the ball tonight, whether she likes it or not. She better be on her best behavior, because I'll be damned, if I'm going to allow anyone else think I have been traveling with savages all this time."
Leon finished his statement before leaving the room. 

“You can come out now.” Lyrist reassured her, but she refused to come out from beneath the covers. 

She smacked her forehead while muttering, “All of this is so unnecessary…” 

“Hm..?” He’s now intrigued by her choice of words. 

“Don’t you think he’s taking this vengeance thing with his father way too far? I mean… it’s more than likely a chance he’s going to end up regretting it. But still something does not seem right.” She couldn’t help but wonder what it may be. 

“You’re starting to believe he might be right about Sinner. It’s only natural since you’ve known him a lot longer than him.” He explained. 

“It’s just how Sinner rambles on about how selfish the king is, but the king is the complete opposite. It’s almost like he’s been brainwashed into thinking surpass what he sees in front of his own eyes."  She rubbed her forehead, still trying to make sense out of everything.

He peeked through the covers to say, "Unless we are the ones who are truly blind.”

 Not even minutes have passed when there’s a knock at the door. Blazerine froze in place after recognizing the voice. 

“Are you two done yet?” Leon knocked even louder this time.

“Wait he knew this entirely time?” Blazerine glared up at Lyrist. 

“How wouldn’t I, unless Lyrist has gained about extra two hundred pounds or more in the last hour?” Leon declares. 

“Wait a minute… he’s calling me fat! He’s not getting away with it!” Blazerine tossed the covers aside and scrambled out of the bed. She angrily threw the door open to intentionally smack him in the face with it. “Oh, how unfortunate, your helmet got in the way of your FACE!” 

“Most girls would jump towards the occasion to dress up.” Leon said.

“Oh you mean most girls… like Fauna for example?” Blazerine asked.

“Blazerine…” Leon began to say.

Blazerine yelled, “You know damn right we should be out there looking for her! Instead of fooling around like this! And for what, revenge of a childhood? At least you had one… I don’t get what all the complaining is about –“ 

“Do you want to hit me? Will it make you feel better?” Leon offered to take his helmet off. 

“What are you crazy? You and I both know you’re not allowed to do that –“Blazerine voice trailed off after Leon shoved her back into the room. 


Lyrist immediately sat up when the door slammed shut and said, “Yes by all means, expose your rational thinking by solving you’re quarreled with violence.” 

Leon took his helmet off, but didn’t expect to receive the kind of reaction he did from Blazerine. She began to laugh hysterically out of nowhere, really for no reason that’s apparent to him. 

Lyrist shook his head while saying, “Whoever she finds attractive will have the appearance of a bunny. However I think the time for it is about to end if my calculations are correct.” 

Blazerine laughter stops the second Leon said, “You find me attractive? At least you don’t have bad taste.” 

Blazerine panicky waved arms in the air and pleaded, “No, no, no!” 

Their conversation is disrupted by a knock at the door. However the person behind it didn’t wait for permission to enter. Unexpectedly the person turned out to be actually three servants. They introduce themselves as Lillian, Syrian and Matilda with a curtsy before Blazerine. 

“Sorry milady, but we must hurry!” Matilda latched onto Blazerine left arm. 

“For what..?” Blazerine asked. 

Lillian latched onto her right arm and said, “The ball milady!” 

“Excuse us.” Syrian exclaimed while pushing Blazerine out the door from behind. 

She was dragged off to a room that was pretty similar to Lyrist’s, but with the exception of a wooden tub placed in front of a lit fireplace. Off to the side, a tall narrow mirror could be seen. It’s been awhile since the last time she’s actually seen her own reflection. And quite frankly, she didn't like what she saw; a dirty underfed woman that’s been sleep deprive. Although when she insisted bathing by herself, they refused until Fenix ran pass the room, butt ass naked. 

He was screaming, “I rather wear rags than these clothes!” 

Blazerine stared in awe, because there’s a bunch of servants chasing after him in the hallway. Lillian, Syrian and Matilda quickly excuse themselves from the room and join the chase. Blazerine took this opportunity to lock the door by fastening the latch. Turning around, she slumped up against it from behind, while sighing of relief. If it wasn’t for him, she would be in trouble. It made her wonder if he had planned this all along or is he just being his goofy self? 

Looking back across the room, her eyes fallen upon the tub. She thought, how would anybody feel clean by using this method? Bathing in your own filth isn't even sanitary. However she doesn't really have much of a choice. 

Approaching the tub, she notices rose petals are floating at the surface. And to her surprise the water in the tub was actually warm! This probably will be the closest thing she’ll ever get compare to a warm shower. Immediately upon her discovery, she quickly wiggles out of her clothes and slips into the tub. Several times she splashes water onto her face. Then she lays her head back with her arms resting along the sides. For a while she spaces out, not really thinking about anything in general. Other than how long has it been since the last time she’s been able to relax like this? Shortly she closes her eyes after that thought, but eventually drifts off into sleep.

It was just the two of them; just like old times. They were sitting in a small tiny room, although she didn't have the slightest clue where or when, but it doesn't matter. 

Haven lungs must be as black as my bed sheets. Blazerine thought as he took a long drag from his cigarette. It’s a bad habit he picked up back in high school, but despite the damage it’s doing to him internally, it’s the only thing that keeps him calm since my incident.

I guess it’s almost the same as me taking a hot scorching shower. I feel like it cleanses me of the spiritual growth somehow… I believe, no I pretend it helps me. And ever since that day, every night; I have the fear of sleeping. Not only because of the nightmares, but I actually wake up in other places; not knowing how I got there. It happened so often, I ended up living with Haven temporarily. He would make sure to lock me in a room every single night. But I’ve been dealing with it for such a long time, so I’m able to put up with it. 

For some reason I was now locked in my room. I peel up the sheets and climbed into this supposed safe haven. How ironic, I thought. I lay back my head then closed my eyes, while taking in a deep breath. This is when I try to think of happier times. You know, well… of the very few friends I ever had. Then I heard a familiar sound from underneath the bed. My heart stops for just a moment. Even though I don't actually feel it; I still know what is happening. The long, slender claw grips the edge of the bed and slither towards my body like a serpent. I gasp as I feel the warm of its breath on my neck. Those powerful claws of his were holding me down as I realize it’s a dragon. I scream and try to escape but to no avail. It laughs loudly in my ear and kisses me as the agonizing pain erupts. I feel the blood flowing from my neck and I can no longer speak. I cry in pain from the repetitive event. But it isn't tears that escape my eyes; I feel the warmth of blood bury my cheeks as if someone had gouged out my eyeballs. Louder it laughs at my demise. As soon as I was about to die... I woke up. 

Blazerine wasn’t sure how long she had been asleep, but she was no longer in the tub; she was lying in bed, in a dress. Wait a second, a DRESS!? 






















                                      

 



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