The Death Curse
Glowing Red Eyes
Kimi had meant it when she said shed never leave the princess all on her own again; she had slept in the princesss room ever since she woke from her deep sleep, and by now, Lela knew her sleeping habits. Despite Kimis strong conviction to always protect her, Lela joked that if men ever stormed into her room with drums and trumpets to take her, Kimi would be oblivious to it as she would be deep in sleep. Kimi did not find that joke funny.
Kimi was fast asleep, Lela noticed. If the soft snores weren enough to prove that, poking Kimi with her fingers did. The young maid didn move, it was almost as if she were dead.
Lela grabbed the worn-out black cloak Kimi took with her whenever she talked about leaving the castle, and put it on. She remembered Kimi saying it was for her late father, and for a split second, she contemplated taking it with her. Lela held her shoes in her hands and ran to the door, and with one final look at the sleeping girl, Lela ran out of the room, shutting the door as quietly as she could.
The hallway was just as Lela imagined it to be; Lanterns lit the hallway, light bouncing on the gold on the walls to make the hallway brighter. Lela wanted to study every single detail on the walls; if it was real gold, and how rich shed be if she stole some of the equally golden lanterns to sell, but she didn have time. She wanted to go outside the castle, dance with the night breeze, and then return quickly before Kimi woke up.
Lela marked every turn she took as she wandered all alone at night, hiding like a professional; like all those spies in action movies that shed watched when she was younger. She liked the thrill, and for a moment, she let herself believe she was one of them.
Lela ran down the stairs, pretending to be Kimi when any guard asked her who she was and what she was doing wandering around the castle, ”the princess would like a cup of water, ” Lela would lie with the best imitation of Kimi she could muster, and each time a guard would believe her, she would smile and pump the air when she was away from their sight.
Wandering at night never amounted to anything good though, especially when one didn have a precise location, and Lela would soon find out why.
Lela had taken a few unmarked turns, maybe more than a few, and before she knew it, she was outside; her covered feet buried in the grass, moonlight shining beautifully. Lela smiled as she looked at the stars stained sky. It was beautiful.
Ahead of Lela, was the garden, and though she heard a voice in her head tell her to hurry back inside, Lela didn want to go inside until she had touched one of those pretty flowers, so she walked, and then she ran the distance to the garden.
The garden was big, beautiful, and very different from all the gardens she had seen in real life and movies. Lela smiled, closed her eyes, and took in deep breaths.
It was the first time Lela felt this much peace in her life, whether or not this was her life, she was grateful that she got to experience total peace, which was short-lived when she heard shufflings coming from her right, then muffled voices. Curious, Lela followed the sounds until she saw two men, one dressed in the same tunic as the guards she had passed in the castle, kneeling with his palms pressed against the other as he begged, and the other dressed in black robes, his very long hair hiding his face, with a long blade in his hand.
”Say your last prayers to the Holy Dragons, ” the mans voice was deep, deeper than an ocean, Lela feared.
”Please forgive me, ” the guard begged, and then the sword connected to his neck, taking his head with it as it went flying towards Lela.
”I- ” Lela started, but no words could form as she watched the mans head roll towards her, then it stopped, the mans lifeless eyes stared back at her, urging her to run, but Lela was frozen in place, she willed her body to move, but her brain was in shock and wouldn give the command. She had just witnessed a murder! A man had just killed another man and she had watched it happen. Lela shut her eyes, praying to the heavens that she unsee what she just saw, but the image was branded like a tattoo in her mind, all she saw was the blade taking off another mans head.
Lelas head was spinning, her heart rate increasing, beating furiously against her rib cage. She felt pain where her heart was, and it wasn pain from seeing a man die a gruesome death, it was physical pain from having had something similar happen to her.
Foreign memories danced in her head in a blur. They weren her memories, but that didn stop her heart from aching. Lela shut her eyes tighter as her head banged loudly, and then she could see, although barely, she could still see; She was in the garden and there was a man before her with his sword sticking into her flesh, her hands were on the mouth of the sword, hoping to stop the sword from entering her flesh, but there was a pushing force from the man holding it; his eyes were blood red, glowing in the dark, long hair flying about his face.
This was the princesss death.
Lela sprung up to life, her eyes wide like saucers, she wanted to yell, but there was a hand over her mouth. The murderer was behind her. The man smelled like blood and death. A wave of fear drowned Lela. The mans sword was too close to her, and his bloody hand was over her lips, stopping her from making any sound. Tears flowed freely from Lelas eyes at the realization that this man was the man that killed the princess, and he was going to kill her too.
Fate and Order had been wrong, they had been so wrong. They said the princess gave up and died, but how was the princess supposed to fight this giant who was skilled with a sword? Once again, Fate and Order had made a fool of Lela and if she was going to die, she would die cursing them.
”Its just like you to cry, ” the deep voice resonated through Lelas spine, sending current to every part of her body. The man was big, bigger than her. Lela was a fine five foot five, but this man seemed to be ten feet tall, his body could cover hers four times over, but that wasn what Lela paid attention to. Her attention was on his words, ”its just like you to cry. ” He sounded like someone who knew her, but she didn know who he was, except that he killed her.
The man, noticing that the princess had something to say, took his hand away from her mouth, wiping the blood and tears on his black cloak. He turned to the princess so they were standing face to face. His face was barely visible from all the hair covering it, but it was those eyes that gave it away; they were a glowing red, just like she had seen.
She looked just like she looked that night, tears pouring from her eyes, her clothes tattered as she called him horrible names. The man shook his head to rid himself of the memories from that night.
”I swear I didn see anything, ” Lela pressed her palms together as she lied.
”I promise you that if you let me go, Ill keep my mouth shut. in fact, I never came out tonight, I didn see you or that guard, ” Lela just got a second chance at life, and she wasn about to die at the hands of the same man that killed her. Fate and Order told her to change her fate, and she was going to do exactly that.
”Just please, let me go, ” Lela begged. The man smirked, his eyes on his blood-dripping sword. He wasn looking at her, it was the perfect time to make a run for it, Lela thought, she had forgotten the height and size of the man, she underestimated his big body, and horror filled her body as she watched in shock the way the man ran after her, catching her after taking three big steps while she was sure she took ten.
”Where do you think you
e going? ” His deep voice asked her, her tiny arm in his large palm.
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