She seemed distant, she smiled when she gave me my jacket back, but that was all. Not a single glance towards my eyes, not the usual calmness. What is wrong? I bit my lip. Did I do something?
The king had decided Chains weren’t necessary, so for the first time she could walk freely. The guards still followed her, but they didn’t seem on their guard. More like this was pretty calming. For the first time she didn’t seem calm. The guards waited to open the door for her, I could hear the heavy breathing.
“Are you sure you’re fine?” I asked again. She nodded at me, then at the guard. He opened the gate. And peoples eyes turned towards her, for the first time, her walk weren’t flawless. She didn’t trip, didn’t look clumsy… she just looked normal. Like any other citizen.
“Rachael” he said coldly, like he have done all the time. She smiled at him. “King” she did a beautiful bow, but still not as perfect as the one she did yesterday or the day before that.
“Any not-“ the king started, looking weirdly at Rachael – first noticing that she didn’t bow flawless and perfect…
“I have a proposal” she started.
The king looked baffled, so did the people behind us. Everyone looked weird and curious on her.
“Let… Let me hear it” the king tried to get the surprised face expression away.
“To be honest these moral discussing are wearing me down, and as I can see on the people and on you, I think it would be better if we mixed the two parts together. Let me do the tests while also being on moral-trial” she smiled like a little girl “I’ll sign a document even”.
The king sat biting his lips. I could see on his advisors they were eager after saying something to the king, but they could not get through. “Fine!” The king declared.
The advisors looked tired and some of them shake their head. One of them started writing it all down, and Rachael got it handed to read through before signing it. Then the king got it, and signed it without looking it through.
As the last day before her first test, it seemed boring almost, they just went through more data – not a single fight between them. When the day ended, people seemed happy and wanting more.
Her hands felt the box, she was standing on, like the tree was new, or weird. When everybody had left, she was still standing. The guards was waiting outside, but she didn’t seem like she wanted to go.
“Let’s go-“ I reached for her hand, but she took it away and into her own hand.
“Somebody wants to yell at me” she looked to the nobles seat “And they are on the way. I suggest you go out – It won’t look good”.
I stared with fright in my eyes. Yell at her? Why would they do such a thing? And why now? It doesn’t seem like the thing nobles are here for.
“I’ll explain later, just leave before they come-“ she looked stiff into the throne. I bit my lip and walked towards the gate, as I reached it, I took a look back. She couldn’t be seen for the capes and people surrounding her.
I took a deep breath, feeling one of their eyes in the back of my neck. I closed the gate behind me, looking at the guard, who didn’t seem worried. I wonder what is going on in there…
“The nobles wouldn’t hurt her” the guard always standing outside her gate smiled to me. “She’s too precious to the kingdom”.
I bit my lip and nodded. He’s right. But yell? Why would they yell at her?
A half hour went by before the doors opened and she came out with her head towards the ground. “Sorry to leave you waiting”. With that we started walking. Her head didn’t look up, she went straight forward, I don’t even think her eyes were open. As we reached her cell, and the guard stood put, I stayed in there, trying to get her to tell me what they said, but she refused. As the night came, I had to leave. When I came home, mom and dad both seemed interested in everything that were to happen tomorrow. They have never seen her fight, even our ant seemed interested. Damn…
As the night disappeared and the day began, the kingdom had showed up in the arena. Everyone ready to see her fight.
I looked down at the arena. What creature will he put out to fight her? A small one? A giant one? One who possesses magical abilities? Or a simple animal from the human world? Every hard animal to kill went through my mind, reminding me not only of my own struggles, but also on the damage they could do to her. As the gate opened, the silent spread like an airborne disease.
“Are you ready?” Dad asked.
“Don’t I get a knife?” she asked smilingly.
“No”. Some people tried getting closer. The Arena is overfilled – some people was half way over the little wall keeping them out on the watching spots.
“Then I’m ready” she answered, still with a smile on her lips.
The gate opened, and with giant steps that almost made her fall, the creature appeared. As she looked at it, with its log in a hand, her face showed horror. Her face then looked at dad, and for the first time, her magic was shown. She raised herself up in the air to be on the height as dad.
“You can’t be serious. I can fight something that has evolved passed the surviving brain” As she said it, most people turned around staring at her. I tried not to smile too much to her.
“One of you will leave the arena dead, that is the rules” Dad said “And besides that – even if I wanted to let you out, I can’t. The Arena protects us from the creature and you, and you and the creature can’t get out, unless one of you dies”.
Slowly she hit the ground; the creature looked strange at her.
She smiled at it, and suddenly spoke another language. It didn’t sound like words, more like she was whistling. Suddenly it hit the log after her, she avoided it by rolling in the dirt.
“Fine!” she sat down on the spot, closing her eyes, sitting patiently.
“I refuse to fight” she said. The giant swung the log, hard enough to kill her, I sat on the edge of my seat when it hit. Dust and small parts of the log was flying around in the air, making me unable to see her. Slowly as the dust and tree fell to ground, you could see her. A smile on her lips, and her eyes still closed. Sitting were she had sit, not moved an inch. It started punching, and for the first time you could see a bubble around her. Of course! A shield of some sort! The people started applauding. Dad seemed on the edge. I understand him – how long can she keep this up? The giant started walking back to the gate, then it ran and tried hitting as hard as it could, only to be swung back into the wall. It took the remaining of the log, and hit her hard. But the log just went up in pieces. It kept trying – keep forcing itself to continue. She didn’t move, she barely breathed. The people was starting to get anxious for something to happen, they started moving a lot around, pushing each other gently to get closer. Then a scream amongst the people was heard, and everyone looked her way. A young boy, max 2 years old was falling towards the ground inside the arena. Somebody must have pushed the woman, and her child must have fallen out of her arms… The giant must have heard the scream too, it started walking towards the boy, with every step making the boy jump a little bit above the ground. It howled, and started hitting the ground with it hands, the white hair covering it shakes wildly, and the boy’s jumps got a little bit higher. There were silence amongst the people and in the arena. The boy’s mother had started crying, which was the only sound to be heard.
It was near enough to kill it know… I looked down into the ground.
Someone gasped, and I opened up again. The giant had hit where the boy were, but at its back she was running with the child in her arms. She stopped at the edge, as far away as she could be from it. From looking at her, you could see she was checking if he was okay. The creature started running towards her. The swung him behind her, on her back. He was sitting there, looking tired.
“SOMEONE OPEN UP!” the people wanted to save the kid suddenly.
“It can’t open unless the creature dies, or she dies” Dad reminded the kingdom. Rachael heard it too, she started running around the creature, trying to escape it just for a little bit.
She started talking the weird language again, and the giant howled again. She was fast, on its back to hit it in the eyes. It felt back and she rolled around on the ground. The kid didn’t get hurt – as I saw the shield around him. The giant ran to her, and hit her with its hand. She feel back, blood running out of her mouth. She got up. “I give you one last chance to surrender”
It kept running towards her. “Fine!”. As it reached her, she jumped, and landed on its back. With her hand she hit down in the back of its neck, to pull something out, throwing it on the ground to roll around herself, and then watch as the creature started walking backwards hitting its head from side to side, before falling and dying. She ran to the wall, to sit the kid there, as she walked away it took it hands towards her, like it didn’t wanted to be left on its own. She sat down on her knees on the ground. As the guards came in, the kid was taken and she was in chains once more. Everyone left, and Dad and I rushed to the nearest healing center, where the kid had been put. He didn’t have a scratch. It seemed weird that he was so healthy. The mom came and got him back, before rushing home. For the first time Dad and I went to the cells, to see her. She was sitting in there, she wasn’t smiling.
“Is the kid okay?” she asked.
Dad bit his lips. “Yeah, but you shouldn’t ask to fight and then refuse doing it!” She got up looked angry. “YOU KNOW DAMN WELL I DON’T WANT TO KILL CREATURES THAT HAVE A MIND CLOSE TO OURS!” as she yelled she turned around looking out of the window. Dad wanted to go, and as we turned around, I could hear her sigh. “For your sake, remember what day it is tomorrow”.
We left, and the door to the cells closed behind me. Why is she so angry?