My dear sister, my loathed betrayal of your trust has indeed led me to my insurmountable defeat of which I must warn you. He's taken her. My loving Breeze was torn from me and now lies in the hands of the Caer. It hates me and I fear it means to do me harm through the breaking of my heart.Endeazia
Please don't take this as a beg for your help—for I will not lower myself to those hideous standards; but as a request for your assistance. My necessities lie in my own powers; but I figured you might feel up to helping me rescue her.
I cannot warn you any further for I hope this isn't what I believe it might be. If I am not to return to my throne please refer to Sven. He will have many answers that I hope he doesn't.
My warmest regards;
My hands shivered at the thought of her letter. Caer—hell—had my niece. I loved her wholesomely; but being the spawn of the murder of my heart and my untrustworthy sister, I could not oblige her request. I crumpled the sheet, tossing it to the trash can before settling into a blanket of dewy leaves and grotesquely shaped wood. It held heat well enough; but still didn't yield too much comfort. I knew Endeazia had her own powers—they were fearfully strong—yet, I worried. She was, after all, my blood that ran through my own veins. We were connected mentally—no, not twins; but spiritually bonded. I could feel her mental pain and uneasiness; but I felt no push to run into the line of danger.
I tossed my head hard against a rock accidentally, quickly recovering from the blurred vision that ensued. Endeazia didn't need my help—she surely hadn't needed my help into my love's home; however, my niece was on the line. Should I honestly let my hatred for her embezzlement of my love kill my niece? It wasn't overly fair; still, I had no wanting to rush into the pit of danger.
My powers are nowhere near as strong as Endeazia's were; I deal with the good spirits of the dead—the future rebirths. Endeazia, however, dealt with the demons and hellish creatures that sulked from the spiritual growth of humanity. Her job led her into dangers I would hopefully never accompany on the battlefield; yet, I still felt a weakness sparking in my brain.
I tore myself off my leafy mattress, regurgitating my steps across the room many more times over before finally deciding I shouldn't aid Endeazia in her battle. Caer was the worst of the three plains; humbly holding the demons of spirits passed. Endeazia's daughter would hold her own—I know she would—they'd all be fine.
Many weeks past after I decided that I was unnecessary for Endeazia's journey, continuing my own job and caring for the spirits of the departed, before I heard of the outcome. I letter inscribed to me with gold laced edges paved my doorstep as I trudged through my doorway. I picked it up on the way in figuring it was Endeazia telling me of her triumphant win.
I sliced open the royal seal and tugged out a rather large piece of parchment. It was rather dusty and used; it seemed this letter had seen some trouble in days past.
I am sorry to be bothersome about my requests. I figured the demon that stole my daughter and will be confronting him tonight.
I know what happened in the past was dreadful and it killed you inside; but I can't help whom I had fallen for. My parents were derived of royal blood, or yours were not. It is not my fault that you were not chosen as his queen—he needed true royalty to bask in the qualities of his throne.
My dear sister I throw my greatest apologies your way and hope that—pray that, you will catch them with your arm and place them amongst your heart strings. I never realized completely how important his love was to you; but if you loved him so much you should no longer be spiteful that he has found true happiness with me.
Caeane, please come see me on fleeting wings once this arrives to you—I should have dealt with my problem by then; and will look forward to hearing your voice for the first time in many, many years.
My undying love;
I creased the letter smugly, tearing a small rip into the page. How dare she believe she had every right to take my king? Had he and I not shared glorious moments basking in the brilliant array that shown from my watery abode? He promised me his heart—yet, it was a pseudo heart dressed ostentatiously in faked kisses and minuet hugs. I could not forgive him; nor could I forgive her. They were murderers dressed in gold and placated as royalty; and their children were the true offspring of Caer.
Her injustices were to smite her one day; and that day I would be smiling towards her. Her life would end before mine; and her captives would drag her bloodied soul to the pits of Caer. For now she remained a citizen of Ares; but soon—oh hopefully soon—she would feel the hell she wrought upon her own sister.
Days past—weeks even—before another rustic letter made its way to my doorstep. This time I had caught the deliverer; a young, wretched soul that seemed almost too ill to move. He smiled weakly; reaching his stubbed limb out to me as though to shake hands. I knew I would not be able to partake in his request as I had nothing I could grasp.
Young man, why do you take on such a rigorous task such as this with your stunted appeal? I questioned, removing the sack pulling down his arm.
My lady, if I may be as bold as to request why you ask me such a superfluous question? he questioned me, reattaching the sack to his shoulder blade.
It's simply quite odd to see such a man as yourself delivering letters like so. This forest is not a kind one; I doubt it has made any exception for you—so why do you partake in this notorious route? my eyes grazed over his appearance; dissecting it with every numbing bite.
My lady, appearances are quite deceiving. What you tend to believe is not always what is actually the true case. For instance, if you close one eye everything seems to distort—but you know for a fact that the world is not quite that way. You have seen the world through shaded eyes; you do not see all that is seen. I may look small and not muscular to you; but I know my own strength—and some choose to see it while others ignore it blatantly. My dear, excuse my rudeness if it has been viewed as such; but I do not see it as rude. He left the note at my step and stumbled away, the forest welcoming him willingly.
I tore open the letter ignoring the slight stress it put on my fingers; the paper was soggy and molded, carrying the wrong royal seal. It was still of Endeazia's kingdom; but it wasn't her signature. I slowly extracted the folded sheet of parchment and spread it out across my desk.
My dearest aunt;
You never showed. Not once have I seen you my entire life; but my mother has written you extraneously throughout my life. Her righteousness seemed dim when she entered her office every other week to send you her news; but I never thought too much of it. However, recently I found her journal detailing her life. It spoke of you extraordinarily; I had never seen so many references to one person. It seems as though her life has been ruled by yourself; regardless of her never encountering you.
I come with news of truth; some you may find hard to hear—but I will be at the kingdom if you need a shoulder. You remember my father—your late love?—well, he has been controlled by the darkest of the demons of Caer for the past twenty years; since my father first announced his love to my mother. You remember the day, I am sure—you rue that day, I know. This demon was bent on extracting his revenge on my mother; and he succeeded last night. He plotted the kidnapping of my sister to lure her away from the protection of her castle and then slaughtered her outside the castle gates. She saved my sister and my own lives.
Caeane—at your receiving of this parchment please make haste for the castle to join the mourning of your late sister. She loved you so much—so much so, she refused to give you a true reason as to why she took your love away.
Your loving nephew;
I clenched the paper hard in my palm, squeezing any ounce of water that might have placated its delicate edges. My sister was dead—worse yet; I had allowed her demise. I threw the piece of misery hard against the rugged walls of my house and grabbed my coat. Many questions were to be asked when I got there; but I wasn't going to allow her memory to suffer any longer. My sister—my only true love—was dead; and I was her demise.
Rain fumbled across my brow clumsily, hugging the curves of my face and tickling my nostrils. It had been two weeks since I left for my origins—where my heart lay blanketed in roses and tears. Endeazia had fallen—that I was sure. She was never one to fake a letter to chance a meeting with myself; always caring for me even in times when she'd know she'd lose me. I tugged at my cloak, attempting to hide myself from the light. What demon spawn had I become that I would allow such tragedy upon my own blood? I remember that moon swollen night when we descended from the clouds—all of us; the offspring of true royalty, the true mother of this land—Ronoa. My sorrowful folly was extreme bitterness; I knew it now—I knew it then, but I never felt the true terror is sought upon my eternality. A sword drug across my chest wounding my breathing without a mark of indecency wrought upon my bosom. True sorrow knew only my name and breathed heavily in my ear anytime I fought for life with my breath.
Two bitter, agonizing weeks past me—an eternity to proceed; and still I continued moving through that blanket of woody thorns. My ears were met with a triumphant brood of trumpeters and the melancholy sounding of drums. I heard his voice—Estaban; I heard it, screeching against my senses with horrible intensity. The droll rendition of remembering filled my heart with a pitter-patter of soulful requiems. I wanted to move far away from my demons; but that just wasn't possible. I knew nothing of the outside world—who was I to believe Estaban would find me truly fit for life as queen?—and a sensation of claustrophobia set in quickly. Millions of passerby faces glued themselves to my memory; their façade of misery was no use to me, only I felt true sadness.
I proceeded vicariously through the numbing crowd, slowly approaching the castle walls. I knew not which strangers had welcomed their own selves into the bloodline; but I knew I had to homely exchange my feelings with my new brethren—Endeazia would have wanted it. A stocky guard met me at the doorway encompassed in more platinum then I had seen throughout the town. Was it normal for the wealthy to dress so ostentatiously whilst their commoners dressed in filth? It was the first time I would feel the horrid hand royalty had slammed into place amongst this land; and I would never truly forget it.
You're name? he murmured. His breath filled with the stench of dead fish and its warm mustiness meandered across my face. He seemed to be at least six foot eight, wearing a thick, maroon tunic encrusted with gold threads. A heavy axe was strapped to his left shoulder—sure he appeared a shining beauty of horror; but with the metals that made that axe he could barely kill the dirt.
Excuse me? I am here to see Acynthus, the words rolled off my tongue; authority staining their pronunciation.
Everyone comes to see the Prince; that does not mean I will allow you passage, his words were mixed highly with a smugness that made me want to slap him.
Do you realize you I am? I questioned. Do you?
No, I'm afraid not. Please leave, he smiled a toothless grin and pulled the silver helmet back over his grease ridden hair. His dark skin was riddled with moles and hair grew from every nook and cranny his skin had to offer.
My name is Caeane. I am the sister of Endeazia.
His face struck a chord as his partner pulled him away. They whispered to each other before again meeting me with a challenge, Really now. As far as I know, Queen Endeazia ne'r mention'd she had a sist'r. This time the other spoke up. His pronunciation matched the look of the brute, but his eyes sparkled bright blue like the morning sky. His skin was clear, olive in color, and his body was well built and rugged. Unlike his friend, his gaze gave you a calm you never knew—but his weaponry would tear you to shreds before you muttered his name.
Ask Acynthus and Estaban—they will know me. Go, now; I demand you.
Once again the men contemplated my statement before deciding one would go whilst the other remained watching me. It was my luck the dangerous one remained in place. A scar that had forgone my noticing appeared to me; it was long, grotesque, and marked his neck and the bottom of his chin. It was like none I had seen before; but I could feel the power that prospered in its marking.
Where did you get that scar? I asked, placing my hand against it. It was rugged and worn; years had seen this scar and still it remained unhealed.
It's none o' yer bus-ness, he pulled his face away. Whether he had wanted to tell me or not, I knew he had been seen by a demon.
I knew better then to continually question a survivor of a demon's attack, and left my conversation hanging. Time edged on slowly before the other guard arrived back with his King. I looked from the grotesque figure to their highness—no, not mine, I was more to him then that; I could tell, his eyes would not lie.
Caeane… my beautiful Cae he whispered, grabbing my hand and laying his head on mine. Apparently I hurt you.
I snagged my hand away from his, pulling all of myself away—distancing myself. Sir, I have no heart for you any longer. You may do as you wish; but leave the past where it is. How ironic I sounded—having allowed the pass to destroy every part of my soul that I held dear. I followed the past; I even mingled with it occasionally—and here I was telling the origins of my problems to ignore the past. Hah! I sounded so hypocritical. He smiled lightly at me with faint eyes and guided me through the gates. His guards bowed at his leaving—it was odd; but I felt no inclination in my entire life to bow to any other life form—that included "royalty". Bring me to Acynthus.
Why do you wish to see my son? he perplexed, eyeing my wish wistful suspicion.
He is the one whom beckoned me here—not you—and I wish to speak with him immediately, I mouthed automatically. I had no desire to remain alone with this devil in gold any longer; he was the bane of my existence; my evil.
Cae, please speak with me. You know I had nothing to do with the demon—don't you? It was not I whom married your sister; it was that thing dressed in my skin. How could I have been so unintelligent as to leave you alone in the forest? I loved you, his words sounded almost rehearsed—as though he had planned them for this day years ago.
I cannot believe that—you are the demon; you were not enveloped by one; you simply are the man-eater ostentatiously parading as a good king.
My dearest Cae—
Don't call me Cae! That name shall never stain your tongue again—I thrust my trust out the door to plague those who were dull enough to believe it were more than a façade; for I was ill to allow such fathoms of a just heart to endow me with young love jolly.
He rubbed my ear softly, tugging my shoulder harshly into his chest. Cae—I love you; I always will should I be struck down now for my lies.
If she ought to strike you down now I should not be near you, I pulled away, twisting my body in an agonizing rage. As I was about to scream utterances not appropriate for the small ears, Acynthus was beckoned into the room.
I assume this is my aunt, he purred, caressing the floor with each step he took, How nice to be acquainted with thou. He approached me nonchalantly, callously grazing the gold, ribbed stair railing etched in fine ivory décor. Everything about my nephew seemed so easy; so suave—he reminded me of his father. White drapes lathered with a shimmering thread graced his broad, yet elegant, shoulders. A loose, ivory robe fell from his neck, lined in gold and cinched at the waste with a gold band. Black thread pulled a tight fabric around his arms, leaving a diamond shaped space along the fronts of the arm. His pants extended from the gold belt in tight white, with those same black embroidered diamonds going down the front and backs of his legs. Tall black boots inched up to his knee, these also fit snuggly. His hair matched his fair cloak in its paled beauty. Strands hung messily in his face and across his eyes. He shook these strands from his smooth skin and looked at me—looked through me—with bright crystal white eyes. His skin was the foil to his pallid appearance—dark, tanned.
I stood my ground, edging forward to take his hand politely, My nephew Acynthus. It is quite a pleasure to meet you.
He tugged me into a hug happily. Dear Aunt! We are family, why so formal?
It was odd to be touched by someone considered "family". What was a family but more than a soul-tied bond? I felt the emptiness in his meanings of family—yet his face showed no sign that he was rather displeased with me.
You are to meet Breziegh soon, but first we must make haste to the funeral, his mask cracked, revealing an altered face of dimmed hope. He stood taller than me already; but his age was given away in the unmanliness of his demeanor—he must have been around 13. Memorial services here are not like most areas you may visit—we celebrate the loss of a loved one as we understand their suffering has ended.
His words were honest, true, and just. He sounded just like me in thinking and he acted similar—Esteban never did escape me—did he?
Who might I ask is Breziegh? I let the small words escape my mouth; true curiosity brimming from my lips.
Oh, she is my sister, Acynthus lulled, his vocals softly numbing my spine, She is quite the character.
Will she be at the services?
Yes, of course, it's her mother!—you'll meet her there. My aunt, please head upstairs quickly and robe into something more suited of the royal air, he pushed me up the stairs laid in ivory stone and turned himself quickly, speaking briefly to a servant who then began following me.
Excuse me; I do not believe I need an escort? I spoke blatantly, Why do you have one following me?
Oh, she is not following you—she is guiding you to your room and robes, Acynthus smartly replied before frisking himself down a long hallway guided by his father.
Hello m'lady, my name is Aeon, her breath was light and sweet, I was one of Endeazia's ladies in waiting. Please follow me to your quarters.
I followed her up the snow colored architecture rimmed in gold and patches of ebony. Twisting spires held immense staircases higher than the ceilings while carvings detailed every patch of untamed molding. Wild white doves meandered through the hallways cooing love songs out the many high windows. Each window allowed some of the sun to breach its crevices making the ivory tire glitter like the gold that laced this kingdom. My room was near the end of the fifth floor, a painted black door allowing me access to the area. The ceilings were high for this altitude, adding to the awe the castle inspired. Aeon nodded a head at the bed where an outfit had been picked out for me to wear, Have a lovely day.
She left with a soft thud of the door and I began to rummage through the room. Semi-transparent pallid drapes folded from the awnings of the bed, caressing the floor softly. A closet connected itself through another ebony door that was decorated with white flowers. These white roses laid petals across the soft carpeting leading to a huge array of them around my -blocked- My window was large with a black seat. It cut out like a balcony; but did not allow the freedom a balcony did. I soft breeze cascaded through the opening rustling the roses at its entrance. Beauty plagued this hellhole—that was for sure. I pulled the gown off the bed—wouldn't you guess it?—white. It was definitely fit of royalty—it draped down off the corseted mid section beautifully, protruding out into somewhat of an upside down cup shape. The bust was loose material sewed in a rectangular shape that fell in somewhat at the arm pits before creating a small poufy sleeve. Out of each sleeve was more tight material that laved down with that same black lined diamond holes that Acynthus had worn. Yes, the dress was stunning; but it was not my type. Still, I wore it at the request of my nephew.
I peered out my window at the soft sky view—still afternoon—before pulling myself up and walking out the door. Aeon was there—dressed in white also; but not nearly of my caliber—and she grabbed my hand and pulled me back in the room, Dear, your hair, it isn't right.
What is wrong with my hair? I asked, pulling the strands. I had left it how I always did: undone and wild. It hung across my shoulders lovingly, blockading my slender neck from view.
She sat me down and began pulling strands up wildly, tossing them into this messy bun—of sorts—and pasting white roses throughout the strands. One small braid hung off the side of this nest, snaking past my bosom. There.
As she finished a voice approached at the door—it was Esteban. She casually slithered over to him and bowed; walking from my room as if she owned it.
You look beautiful, he smiled, uncrossing his arms and putting forth his hand, M'lady Cae, please walk with me to Endeazia's funeral. His slick blond hair hung roughly in his crystal blue eyes. His jaw was squared, covered in a five o'clock shadow. He wore gold rimmed, square glasses that made his jaw even more masculine.
I've fallen once and I do not plan on it happening again, Esteban, please, refrain yourself from calling my Cae, I pushed his hand away and strutted out the door. He followed me helplessly; I almost felt his breath—hot—against my neck.
It had been hours since my arrival into this city and now I was seated in my sister's chair awaiting her burial. Sadness had begun calling my name once more; and I knew it, I felt its icy hand playing my heartstrings. Acynthus sat to my right while Esteban sat to my left. He often tried to hold my hand, but I would refuse him quietly and listen to the man preaching of my sister. No one knew my sister well—not even I; for if I had cared for her before I may have taken the time to know her. However, fate played its cruel game again and pulled my sister's hand from my grasp. There was one face I did not see, however, and her name was Breziegh.
The crowd began to sing as the fires erupted around my sister's body—this was the easiest way to reintroduce the body to the soil and send the spirit to Fea Arda. Her white hair—like mine—burned softly with her skin. She and mother earth had become one that day; they now breathed together, saw together, spoke the same words. It was as though you could hear her voice serenading the wind as they white ashes stumbled into the breeze.
How can so much white have planted itself on so much darkness?