Firefly

Above the realms of men, dance the Light Elves of Alfheim. Wise, immortal and captivating... These creatures are blessed by the Aesir and have harnessed the power of flight. But when war strikes down upon them with fire and doom; nothing can be saved except from the anger for those whom had committed such despicable acts. Text and illustrations copyright © A_Books_Magic_Moment 2014 The right of A_Books_Magic_Moment to be identified as the author of this work has been asserted in accordance with the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored as a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise, without the prior permission of the author.

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22. Alva

Alva's Apartments, Angabar

She watched as they laid out all of her clothes for the ceremony. Is it a ceremony? She thought, frowning. I suppose it is... That made it seem all the more a burden on her heart. The dress was red silk, a chiffon layer of black over it; creating a mask and mixture of hues from the colours of her house. There was a dark cape folded up over a rack, ready to be clasped to her shoulders when the main piece was finally being worn. The maid behind her drew on some petticoats, a belt corset tightened around her waist. Knowing that it was the way of her house to be so diverse from the others, Alva gladly accepted the rare item of clothing while the maid tightened the strings. Her breathing was slightly smaller in terms of the length of her breaths, but she would soon get used to. As for shoes... She wasn't allowed her comfortable, knee-high boots but instead had to go barefoot.

Finally, the dress was brought around her, clasped at the back by some sort of fastener. The sleeves hugged at her arms, a black silk over a red which covered half of her hands. The chiffon was connected to it from under the bust; opening in a slit to flow down to the ground. A maid came over with the cape, the gold fastenings clicking onto the corresponding clasps. The sound was distinct in her ears, a clear snap sounding throughout the small room. Alva felt rather heavy, with all of the petticoats and the small corset plus the cape and heavily layered dress. Yet, still, she had to have her hair braided and pinned; to have oils and perfume smothering her skin; jewellery placed on her neck and wrists and ankles. Why is being crowned involve such a disastrous long preparation? Alva inwardly sighed, dreading the next few spoils of her coronation day.

The maids sectioned her hair into a middle part all the way down, then the halves into quarters, and finally eighths. From the lower quarters they left it to curl from some sort of product made of a beautiful smelling oils. Celtic braids and waterfalls with accents all were eventually braided to the ends. Then they were wrapped up over each other, creating lines at swirled up her dark hair high above, near the crown of her head. Pins of gold, with pearls at the ends of them, were snatched up and sneaked into her thick hair. From some movements they glinted, catching at the light.

Picking up a vile of clear oil, the maids dabbed it along her neck - giving her the scent of jasmine. They pulled up a set of jewellery, red rubies with a silver frame. One small bracelet was fastened around her right wrist, another on her left ankle. A sense of balance was accommodated with the placing of the small chains. Alva turned her head to the side as they brought a necklace of similar making around her neck. It fastened at the back, resting just above her spine. "Beautiful," Eerika said from the doorway.

Alva turned, surprised she was here. "Shouldn't you be waiting in the Main Hall, my lady?" She rose, the servants having disappeared right after the High Lady had come. The servant's door, a hidden gateway at the side of her chambers, was just drawing to a close as Alva spoke again. "Could you not resist seeing the dress?" Alva teased. She knew it was bold, however thought it would be allowed since it was her coronation day. Why not have a little fun?

"Maybe," Eerika walked closer, touching her hands briefly against Alva's, "But also for something else." Alva felt the smile slowly slide off of her face. There was something in the High Lady's stance, in her eyes, her breathing, her touch... that made this day a little less fun. "There will be enemies," her voice was a whisper, "there will be allies." Their breathing was the only thing in the room. "There will be deals;" another breath, "not all good. Not all bad." Eerika gripped her hands tighter, pushing on with her thoughts. "There will be death..." she bowed her head, "and life." picked up her eyes to Alva's deep ad soulless ones. "Hate and anger also, with love and kindness." one hand had been dropped, Eerika's limb tracing a pattern on Alva's forearm. "There will be those who think they can do better than you," an exhalation of breath, "those who think that they could not help at all." Eerika tapped on her arm for a moment, an irregular beat. Alva felt some sort of power emanate through their slight connection. Her heart fluttered, not used to the surge of magic.

"My lady...?" Alva stuttered it out, a breathy half-question.

"I bless you, Lady Alva Firefly, for the things to come I hope you will remain calm, steady, united with your heart and mind. I bless you, for your friends to be true and remain by your side, that your enemies be few and your life to be happy. I bless you, for beauty and love to be yours forever and always. I bless you, to be happy and pleased with this life and make the world a better place by your touch. I bless you, for the world to rejoice at your existence and hope that nothing may ever harm you - be it physical or emotional. I bless you, for eternal glory to hold you in a never wavering grip; for there to be a time when you may lay down and forget what happened in the past and not worry about the future. I give this to you, by my blood I swear it shall be yours."

Eerika kissed her brow. A small light flashing, signalling the sealing of the High Lady's blessing. Too shocked to even utter a syllable, Alva remained like a stature - frozen to the spot. Eerika looked at her, a hint of sadness in those blue eyes, and left without even a word. "Thank you..." Alva mumbled even though the Elf was long gone.

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