Maro stood sternly, looking around with a look of power. I quickly met eyes with hers, her eyes were as black as pitch. I gulped and Bo looked towards me, his face soft and.... there was another expression I couldn't explain or know. She began to speak and her voice was rough like gravel and autumn mixed together.
"You may wonder why you all are here? Why you have been picked out from the meekest." She began, staring at each of us.
"I wasn't wondering that at all." Whispered Bo, rather loudly to my ear. I smiled, but then she made eye contact with me again and the smile faded to a rock in my stomach.
"You are here to train. Do any of you know why the Competition exists?" She asked, but before anyone could answer she continued with another death glare. "You are here to become...body guards." A blanket of confusion and kicked whispers erupted. "Silence." She said. The room was quiet as death. "There are 14 of you, and 7 Kings. Half of you will be eliminated in the course of the next year, which I suppose is how long this will last. Maybe longer." She threatened. " And you will serve your chosen King, and protect them all above everything else. Once that is in effect. " She stated "You may do...other things." She said, suddenly shakily. It hit me by what she meant. A slight blush erupted on my cheeks and I felt my face warming. Bo looked at me at that moment also, and grinned. I held my breath. He gave my hand another squeeze and interlocked his fingers with mine. I looked up from our twined hands to see Maro staring at me, from the front of the room. I gulped. She had noticed. I looked around the room, no one else did. They probably just assumed it was another one of her threatening pauses.
We all sat in silence, waiting for her to say more. She simply stared out at us, and then after what seemed like forever she said shakily and nearly bleating "Training begins tomorrow." The she stood somehow straighter, her legs spread, arms behind her back. After everyone was truly sure that she was going to say nothing more, the King Silas roared "Time to leave!" Everyone stood, silently and walked out. As soon as people entered the hallway they began to talk, incessantly- with out stop. Staging their outrage, their not-understanding. They expected to be Queen but they were going to be body guards. I looked back at the closed doors behind me.
Bo had quickly told me that he would find me later, then pushed me out of my seat to follow the gaggle of girls. I bit my lip and tried to find Eliza. On my way up the steps to the door, Maro had stared at me, singularly me and she left a lingering feeling of doom in my stomach.
In the hall, one of the girls- an optimistic one, looped her arm through mine. I tried to pull away but she simply tisked and told me that I was spending to much time alone. That I might have to spend the rest of my life with some of the girls here. I gulped and allowed myself to be pulled to a small alcove in the garden outside.
It was hedge all around us, all varying shades of green. She took me through bends and curves until we reached a place where the hedge was on both of our sides. In front of us was a black, thin, swirling gate attached to the greenery and above it a swirling black metal arch. She pushed open the fence and inside of there.
It was a circled off place in the shrubs, large and a bench was set up along with a few tables and a chess set. Some girls were already there. The girl attached to my arm pulled me with her to the empty bench. She pulled me down and it felt kind of reliving to not have to worry about making social introductions when she could do it for me.
She pulled me down, and sat, holding my hands in hers in her lap, looking at me. Our knees touching. "Whats your name?" She asked me tenderly.
"Liv." I responded briskly, my stomach was curling itself in circles with nerves. I looked around at the pleasant girls, who had all known each other since either nearly two days ago or before. I felt like an intruder.
"I'm Florence." She said, I looked at her. She had pin straight black hair, down to her chest. Her eyes were blue and her skin pale. She was wearing a thigh length skirt that poofed out a little and it was an ivory-manilla color with small black flowers on it. She was wearing little black boots and her black and white shirt was a little short and a small amount of stomach showed. In the end, she was stunning. "Is Liv short for anything?" She asked, her voice soft and quiet and calming and soothing.
I looked at her. "Livia." I gave a slight smile. She smiled back and it was rewarding.
"That's such a pretty name." She said.
"What is this place?" I asked. I had meant to get into a conversation first, but my curiosity was eating me from the inside out.
"This area was made for the first Competition. It's been here ever since, for the girl to be and for them to relax and talk with out any of the Kings."
"Do they know where it is?"I asked, wondering about Bo and his promise.
"Probably, but since we've been here they haven't." She said.
"Oh." I said, looking closer at the wrought iron fence that was apparently really old.