We eventually near the Council Chambers and turn on a suspiciously empty hallway. Strange. We continue to walk through it but Josiah suddenly stops in place. I look at him and see his gaze staring at the shadows. “What’s wrong Josiah?” I ask, quickly looking to where his eyes have fixed on, but see nothing except darkness. I have to act like I can see whoever is there. No one knows that I can’t.
“We have company, Your Highness.” As soon as the words escape Josiah’s lips, a female voice breaks the silence from where I’m looking at.
“Princess Sennala! How wonderful you look today!” A figure walks out from the shadows. I recognize her. Noble Aliyah. She’s accompanied by her guardian who follows closely behind her. Not surprising, he’s always been that way. She walks closer before speaking again in a low voice. “Shame it’s ruined by your horrendous personality.”
I steel myself before replying. “Hello Noble Aliyah. A pleasure to see you as well.”
She scoffs. “Don’t pretend. It doesn’t suit you.”
I let out a short sigh. “Fine. What do you want Ali?”
“Better. Now… No one for an instant believes it’s just a coincidence that you stole the book of the Covenant the day before we have to discuss the Hunter’s delegation. Explain. Now.”
Before I can say a word, Josiah interrupts her. “Watch your tongue, Aliyah. Don’t forget you’re speaking to our princess.”
She looks at him dead in the eyes. “And when is she going to act like it? You and I both know that what she did reflects poorly on all of us. Stop defending her Josiah! She’s not a little girl anymore. The nobles want answers. I want answers. Not during the council meeting. Not after. Now. Here.” She looks irritated.
“As long as there is life in my body, and air in my lungs, I will always watch over her. Be that as it may, it is the princess’ decision whether she wishes to answer you or not,” he looks at me. “Your Highness?”
Ali looks back at me. “Well? Sennala?” She looks impatient, tapping her foot on the floor incessantly.
I take a moment to think. Should I tell her? Is it the right time? I don’t know, but I need to tell her something, she’s a noble after all. Okay. Here goes nothing.
“I needed a way out of the guardian ritual!” I blurt it out rapidly, but just as the words leave my lips I quickly notice the look on her face change. I made a mistake. I shouldn’t have told her. Reaper, save me.
“You what?!” She takes a moment to process what I just said before speaking. “Are you insane?!”
“Aliyah.” Josiah’s low voice interrupts her.
“No Josiah, she’s completely lost it this time! Not only did she defile the sanctuary but also stole the covenant, our most sacred text to what? Break our most sacred ritual?” I’ve never seen her so furious.
“Ali, it’s complicated!” This time I interrupt her and she turns to face me with a sharp gaze. I continue. “There’s so much I haven’t told you. Please just listen to me for once? I can explain.” I plead with her. I need her support on this. It’s essential.
“No, I’ve had enough of your excuses and petty reasons! All of the other nobles have as well. Your actions have always been outlandish, from keeping your mother’s name, Reaper hold her, to completely missing our sacred ceremonies. We’ve been patient with you, Sennala, in hopes you’d fulfill our one and most important ritual. But now you say that you’ve been secretly trying to find a way out of it?” She scoffs. “Appalling.”
“Aliyah, please. Let me explain. I promise I have a good reason.” I’m getting desperate now.
She stares at me for what seems like an eternity, measuring and analyzing me before speaking again. “Fine.”
I let out a gentle sigh of relief. She caved. Wasn’t that too easy? “Thank you Ali. It’ll make sense I promise.”
“For your sake it better. One last chance Sennala. And this isn’t for you, it’s for my King. He deserves better.”
Her words pierce me like a dagger, but I deserve it.
She continues. “I’ll convince the other nobles to listen, but this is your last chance. After this, you’re on your own.” With that, she turns around and starts walking away. Her guardian, who’s been silently observing this entire time, bows to me and quickly follows behind her. There is nothing but silence left in her wake.
“You handled that well, Princess.” Josiah speaks again.
“You think so?” I look up at him. “I’m pretty sure she hates me more than ever now.”
“She could never hate you, even if she wanted to. Disappointed and angry yes, but hate? No.”
“Disappointed?” I look at him inquisitively. What is he talking about?
“It is not my place to say.”
“Josiah?” I prod a little more.
He looks away. “Forgive me, Your Highness, but we’re going to be late to the meeting.”
I sigh. “Fine. Keep your secrets for now, but we’re talking about this later.”
“As you wish.” He replies.
It takes us very little time to finally reach the front doors of the Council Chambers without any more interruptions or problems. Four Night Stalkers guard the front. They see me and instantly kneel. I ignore them and instead stare at the large doors dreading the moment I have to enter.
“It’s time.” Josiah’s voice breaks my thoughts.
“Can we just stand here for a moment?” I give him a nervous smile.
“I’m afraid not, Princess. We’re out of time.” He gives me an apologetic look.
“Don’t look at me like that. I had to ask. Okay… Let’s go.” This time I lead and Josiah follows my pace forward.
Time to face my father.
- Under Lexa's Boot
- YA Novelist - Fantasy and Sci-Fi Addict
Hey I'm AeroKaia. I'm an author who's currently writing Reaper's Kiss and trying to keep up with my own release schedule (fingers crossed). It's always been a dream of mine to become a writer and share my stories with the rest of the world. Although I prefer to stick to Fantasy and Sci-Fi with a romance focus, I love writing all kinds of stories within the teen fiction category. I plan to release a YA Sci-Fi story at some point after I feel ready. One story at a time, right? Haha.
I'm a huge fan of The 100, A Discovery of Witches, and I'm currently watching Shadow and Bone.