The Beast Within

In a world where magic is outlawed and virtually extinct, Princess Fiamatta suddenly finds her world turned inside out by the traitorous word. From royalty, to fugitive, to leader of the rebels, Fia is forced to work with a handsome, arrogant magician she found locked away in a dungeon.

btw, this is my NaNoWriMo story so criticism is much appreciated! Thanks :)


13. Act 12

It happened that evening. I was sitting at the desk in my study, evaluating how much money we would have to use this year to compensate for the loss of crops, when Ida came flying into my room. She locked the door behind herself and propped herself against it, panting hard. Surprise colored my face and I opened my mouth to question her but she just shook her head. “Your majesty, it is not safe for you anymore. Your father has died, and Straiyer has discovered us. You must leave the castle.” She said as her heaving breaths turned into short quick ones. She looked as if she would flee at any minute, which is probably what I should have done. Instead I looked at my hand, the one my father had held in his lap not so very long ago. For a moment, I could even feel the warmth from his hands. But then it was replaced by the a cold wetness. My tears fell silently, landing in my lap. Suddenly, nothing seemed to matter. What was everything worth if I had lost the only family I had ever known? Why did any of it matter anymore? The soft pressure of a hand on my knee pulled me from my thoughts. My eyes looked upon Ida’s face as she knelt before me. “Princess, I am sorry for your loss. The king was beloved by his subjects, and the entire kingdom will grieve for this tragic loss. But, now is not the time for tears. You must carry on if you are to prevail against Straiyer, because while everyone is in grief he will be putting his plan in motion. “ The strength in her voice was enough to stop my tears and bring my mind back to reality. I nodded my thanks and stood. She followed and looked up at me. “Where is Straiyer now?” I asked her, my voice was solid and strong, like I needed to be. “He is in a conference with all the high officials. He said that he had finally concluded his investigation on the king’s accident. “ She reported. I turned away from her, towards the window to think for a moment. The silence filled the room, getting louder and louder as it demanded a response from me. “Princess?” Ida asked quietly. “I want you to leave the castle immediately. Take only what you can feasibly carry in a pack and make your way to the Irian province. They have been loyal to the royal bloodline since ancient times, no matter what Straiyer says, he will not win their loyalty.” I tell her. She nods but does not move. “Is there something else?” “I have an older brother who lives in the in the city outside the castle, he is staying at a tavern there where he works. It’s called the Raven’s Perch. Am I allowed to bring him?” She asked quietly. I nodded, visibly sending relief through her as she left the study. Now it was time for my part. I walked to the council room, where Straiyer had been holding his meeting with the high officials. They were all filing out by the time I had arrived. When they caught sight of me they all hushed as Straiyer moved to the front of the group. He did not even attempt to hide his self-satisfied smirk. “Princess Fiamatta, it is my deepest regret to inform you that you have been found guilty of harboring a magician, and using his secrets to murder his royal majesty, the king, to gain the throne.” His deep voice echoed down the hall, but I stood my ground against it. From the look of the high officials, he had them convinced, and they had decided to convict me in that meeting. “It is against the law to hold a trial without the accused being present, Straiyer, and therefore your conviction is invalid.” I told him, looking him dead in the eye. This time no fear coiled deep in my body, only a resound resolve. “True, but the law does not apply to those who are associated with magic, Princess. Now, will you go quietly or do I need to call the guards to escort you to your holding cell?” His smug arrogance tainted his voice. “Where is your proof that I have conspired with a magician?” I demanded. And then, Straiyer produced something I had not been expecting, actual evidence. He held in his hand the map I had drawn to the dungeon, with the mystic words at the bottom. I had not even known it had gone missing, and with Ida following him, when had he been able to get that? He saw the surprise on me and used that to press his point true. “This is a map, with your handwriting on the bottom, that leads to a dungeon that holds your sorcerer. This alone is enough to tie you to magic. Now,” he said turning to one of the officials, “alert the guards that Princess Fiamatta will be in need of an escort to a holding cell, where she shall wait for her sentence.” The official nodded and sent his attendant off in search of the guards. “Wait, “ I said, trying to hide the desperateness from my voice, “how do you know where that map leads to? Or if there truly is a magician? Before making such a grave conviction, should you not at least verify the truth of that map?” I asked the high officials. This seemed to get them thinking, and I could see the slight confusion on Straiyer’s face as he wondered what I was doing. “There is no need for that, it is simply a way for her to stall the inevitable” Straiyer told the officials, but most of them seemed to agree with me. And soon they were all insisting that they go to the dungeon to see for themselves, this wizard. I smiled at my small triumph, but now that we were going, following my map to the dungeon, I had to figure out what was going to happen when we arrived. I knew the officials would not trust any statement that the wizard gave, but it was better than walking to a holding cell. The journey was silent as we made our way to the dungeon. When we arrived at the door the officials all crowded to get a good look at the door. The lock in the middle puzzled them and they demanded me to open it. I kept my mouth shut, knowing anything I said would only incriminate myself more. One official asked about the words at the bottom of the page, which got the others questioning about them too. Straiyer stood among them, a devilish grin on his face. He knew he had me, but he seemed to enjoy watching me drown as the officials insisted that I read the words aloud. I sighed, as the paper was thrust into my hands. I approached the door, my heart thudding in my chest, as I got closer. I reached up and grabbed one of the torches, to prepare myself for the darkness about to come. My eyes did not even need to read the words scrawled at the bottom of the page, they had already been burned into my mind. “Dicit mihi apertum est”

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