RUTH: A Tale Of Luna’s Birth


His eyes scanned the surroundings keenly. He held his breath momentarily when he saw some movement a few feet ahead of him. Smirking, he approached on the light feet.

Unfortunately, he missed a dry twig on the ground, and when it broke under his foot, the person on the other end got aware of Zeriths presence.

”Shit! ” He cursed under his breath, as the figure moved speedily ahead.

Not wasting more time, he chased behind the running figure.

He was surprised at how fast she was running as if she was chased by a tiger.

”Bertha! Stop! ” Zerith called again.

Bertha turned her head to see how far he was from her and, that was where she made a mistake. She lost her footing and fell on the sloppy ground. She shrieked in fright as she rolled down the slope, that was covered with leaves and pebbles.

Zerith followed her down the slope balancing his feet. At the end of the slope, he found Bertha curled up in fear.

Panting, he smirked at her.

”I told you to stop. ” He said.

Bertha removed her hands from her face and stared back at him, still feeling dizzy.

Zerith extended his hand towards her. ”You need to get back to the palace, Bertha. My Lord is very upset! ” He said in all seriousness.

Bertha gulped down nervously. She knew that this charade was bound to end in this way. She should not have thought of doing this in the first place.

Cursing her fate and tendency of making bad choices, she took Zeriths hand in hers. Zerith effortlessly pulled her up, and she stood on her feet. She dusted her dress of the dirt.

”Shall we, My Lady? ” Zerith gestured for her to start walking.

Rolling her eyes at his sarcasm, Bertha began stomping in the direction of the Longhurst palace.

Some minutes later, she heard Zerith asking, ”Are not you tired of this Bertha? You know this plan is doomed to fail. ”

”All credits goes to you! ” She grumbled.

Zerith smiled at her answer. He saw her tendrils sticking out of her braid. Her dress was dirty at places from the fall. Bertha was in her early twenties and was an attractive young woman.

She looked pretty all the time but, she looked cute especially when she was grumpy. Zerith, who was in his late forties, liked to tease her.

One might say that Zerith had a thing for Bertha, and maybe he had, but it was beyond a romantic feeling. They did not share a brother-sister relationship, neither they were best friends.

They were just two individuals who genuinely cared for each other and had different societal statuses. They were comfortable with each other and, that cleared all the obstacles between them.

”Are they very mad? ” Bertha asked after some time.

Zerith sensed the worry in her voice. ”Lady Cordelia is just… Lady Cordelia. She is more worried than mad. But My Lord… he is.. ” he searched for the right words.

”He must have set the whole palace in chaos. ”

Zerith shared her humour and laughed, nodding his head. Bertha only sighed dejectedly, knowing well of what was about to come her way.

Soon they walked through the gates of the palace after climbing the hill. Bertha put her head down, knowing the gazes she received. Zerith patted her on the shoulder in encouragement, as they walked to where Ralph and Cordelia were waiting for their daughter in the garden.

Cordelia stopped rocking in the chair, and Ralph looked up with furrowed brows as Zerith walked Bertha in their way.

”Bertha? ” Cordelia was relieved to see her.

”Zerith! Why is she alone? ” Ralph stood up and walked near them.

”I found her alone, My Lord. ” Zerith answered.

Bertha avoided looking up. Her fingers kept fidgeting with her dress.

”Look at me! ” Ralph commanded.

But Bertha was too scared to do that. Her eyes wailed up with tears.

”I said look at me! ” Ralph thundered, and Berthas head shot up. She looked at him with misty vision.

”Where is she Bertha? Where is my daughter? ” ralph asked in a hard tone.

They knew if they found Bertha, then they would find the main culprit easily. That was why Zerith went behind Bertha and not the princess.

Bertha was a loyal maid of the Longhursts. She took her mothers place after her death. And since her childhood was living in the palace. She was closest to Ralphs daughter, as she was not only her head maid but also a childhood friend.

The two women of similar age were inseparable. If one wanted to find one, then they looked for the other and they would find them together. Bertha was like her shadow.

”Bertha, please tell us where is she? ” Cordelia pleaded.

Berthas lower lip trembled to hear that pleading tone from her. But her lips were sealed. She had promised her friend to not say a word to her parents. Bertha glanced at Zerith, asking for help, but he remained solid as a rock.

”Fine! Zerith, bring my stick. ” Ralphs patience was running thin.

Everyones eyes widened hearing his order.

”My Lord… ”

”Zerith! Bring. My. Stick! ” Ralph was not in the mood of listening to anyone.

Cordelia tried talking sense into her husband, but he was not ready to budge.

Helplessly, Zerith brought him his stick. The long brown thick stick terrified Bertha.

”I am asking you for the last time Bertha. Where is my daughter? ”

Instead of answering, Bertha embraced herself to get the punishment. In a rage, Ralph raised the stick in the air. He was about to hit Bertha with it when someones strong voice rumbled from behind.

”Father, STOP! ”

Every head turned around to see angry hazel eyes glaring at Ralph. Ralphs demeanour suddenly changed, and the stick fell from his hand and on the ground. His face lit up in joy seeing his daughter safe and sound.

”Theodora! My princess! ”

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