The story was completely my original idea, the characters and events are also mine (though they may seem quiet familiar, but their not who you think they are ... maybe?) Anyways, anything at all that resembles anything from Xena: Warrior Princess belongs to Renaissance Pictures, and everybody else who contributed to the show. No copyright infringement is needed (if there even is any copyright …)
It contains some violence (mostly expressed towards our two leading ladiesL), I mean come on, and the story is taken place in the middle of a war (for the most part). Sex, hmm, of course there is, not overly used, but there are some pretty graphic and steamy scenes, so let’s just say you were warned. If you’re under 18 or the idea of two women showing each others love towards each other bothers you, DO NOT, and I repeat, DO NOT continue reading
I would just like to thank Hannah (my beta reader) for everything! For encouraging me to finish the story, and fixing up any and all of my mistakes.
So if any of you have complaints about the story, or just to thank me for writing this spectacular story (sarcasm alert), OR you just want to tell me how amazing of a writer I am then send all and any of your messages here: email@example.com
Written by cxw
She lay in my arms, the life slowly slipping from her. My heart drops with every labored breath, as she gets pulled farther and farther away from me. Tears sting my eyes, blazing fiery pathways down my cheeks, dropping off my chin, mixing with the river of crimson covering the both of us.
I look down, casting my gaze over her near limp body. My breath catches, and my wandering eyes stop when they land on bright sapphire. A soft smile curls the edges of my lips, catching the infection, her mouth contorts into a luminous smile, lighting up all of the darkness, within, and surrounding me. There’s still hope, she opened her eyes, everything’s alright now.
“Adairia…” I cry, pulling her body closer to mine.
“Isabelle” she mimics, lightly snuggling into my neck.
“There are so many things I want to tell you”
“Shh. You’ll have plenty of time to tell me…years from now”
I drop my head closer to the midnight tresses sprawled across my lap. Gold mixes with ebony, each strand intermingling with that of its counterpart.
Adjusting myself, I lean into her ear. Words form in my mouth, memories flooding my mind, taking over my tongue, and possessing my voice. Slowly the words begin to flitter into the air, without thought I continue.
“…Why must fate punish me, why am I condemned to loneliness?”
“You’re not alone…you will never be alone”
Her thick voice embraces me, caresses my skin, and touches my soul. If she can do this with mere words, I am but a slave of her heart.
Looking into her eyes, I see a promise. A promise of a fight, a promise to live on, and not give into death, and a promise of love that will only continue to grow, no matter how forbidden.
A story arises in her eyes, mixing with the promise that was made because of this story. The story of us, I remember it well, as if it were yesterday.
Every story has a beginning, and an ending, but this is neither our beginning nor our ending.
Four Years Earlier
“…thank you for your time Princess”
“Um…you are welcome”
The toe-headed man abruptly turned and walked away, leaving me in the middle of the ballroom dazed. He had been the fifth ‘eligible bachelor’ that my father had chosen, and like all the others, he bored me to tears. Everything he had said was a complete blur, his words racing right past my ears, but every man that I had met that night seemed dull all the same.
Tightening the green ribbon that held my golden hair upon my head, I walked through the room, making my way to the balcony. It had been a strenuous night, listening to multiple men trying to capture my attention and my heart, which they all walked away with no avail. My heart went out to them, but I always wanted the person I spent the rest of my life with to make me feel a certain way. Of course I had no idea what this ‘feeling’ was, I just knew that it was in the wonderful stories I read, and I wanted it.
Stepping out onto the balcony the noises from the party inside slowly subsided as the sight captured me. It was a glorious night; not a single cloud filled the sky, only a large white moon followed by millions of sparkling stars. Sighing I rested my arms on the cool stone of the rail, the low temperature making me shiver.
I knew I had to choose a husband by the end of the night, my father had decided that once I turned sixteen I needed to have a high classed appealing fiancé. But I couldn’t stop the thoughts from spilling over the edge, noting all the flaws these ‘perfect’ men had. To any other woman they would have been their soul desires; I just wished it could’ve been that easy for me. The pressure of finding a husband, and future king was slowly pulling away my sanity, finally coming to the conclusion that my happiness did not matter to the new kingdom of Scotland that would result in my wedding.
Looking back out into the night sky, I began to speak, thinking my ideals and thoughts to be clearer if said aloud.
“A party, five men, and one princess. All the men being terribly dull, and lacking everything I desire. Okay … the first one wasn’t so bad” remembering the tall handsome man that was the most intriguing of the bunch.
“But he seemed a little, okay a lot insane. God! How am I to make a decision that will not befit me, a decision that will slowly drain my very soul of its essence and…”
Shivers ran up my spin, raising the hairs on the back of my neck. Someone was out here with me, good god that is embarrassing. Pondering repeatedly about my secret thoughts, while a stranger lurked behind me. Adjusting the long sleeves of my gown, I slowly turned around to address the person who had accompanied me on my personal journey of thought.
Before me stood the most beautiful creature I had seen in all my years. A tall frame filled out a long sapphire dress, singed at the waist, leading up to a full bosom. Reaching the strangers face, I was quickly sucked into deep azure eyes, as blue as the sky on a summers day. Looking away, I noticed high cheek bones, nicely carved into her countenance, full crimson lips started moving and I realized the angel had begun to speak.
“…night isn’t it?”
“Excuse me?” I asked, not comprehending the beginning of her words while being lost in her beauty
“I said” pausing to acknowledge the sky “It is a beautiful night isn’t it? I saw you from the ballroom when you came out here. I then decided I would keep you company” she smirked, lighting up the entire balcony with that smile.
Smiling back at the woman, I nodded, “yes, it is. And so are you” I stated, whispering the last of my words, keeping them from her ears, deciding she had heard enough of my thoughts.
The woman stepped closer, and slowly pulled her long ebony hair from its confines, letting it cascade down to the middle of her back making her even more beautiful than before.
“What is your name?”
Blue eyes slightly rose from there restraints, and her voluptuous lips parted, mirroring a look of utter shock. Calming herself, the woman regained her composure.
“Princess Isabelle I presume”
“Of course, and you are…?”
“Adairia, Princess of Ireland”
Now it was my turn to be devasted, the beautiful woman before me was none other than the daughter of my father’s greatest enemy. I was raised to hate the family of King Gregor, but from just a few quick sentences back and forth I had already come to the conclusion that I could never hate this woman.
My body quivered slightly, and my bottom lip slowly dropped as if it weighed pounds. Looking back up at her I dryly smiled and refocused my eyes on the stone floor of the balcony.
Sweet laughter filled the air, taking notice that Adairia was laughing uncontrollably. My lips curled in a slight frown, while my brows creased in confusion. Delicately she laid three long fingers across her mouth, making the laughter minimize.
“I…I am sorry Princess. It is that you looked so terrified” continuing her giggling
“Well I am pleased I amuse you”
Adairia walked over to me, and gently laid a large hand lightly on my shoulder. The scalding heat from her hand burned through my dress, marking an invisible imprint. Rubbing at the material in slow circles, she tilted my chin towards her with her other hand, making me stare into her brilliant eyes.
“I truly am sorry I laughed at your expense. It was not excusable; I can only hope you will forgive me”
“I do” whispering as her touches ripped the breath from my lungs, trying solidly to regain my strength I dropped my head, a question forming in my mind.
“How did you get in?”
Her eyes shone with grief and sadness, letting her hands fall from my scorched skin. The blue of her eyes increased in intensity as the emotions churned inside of her.
“Would you like me to leave?” pleading with her eyes that I would say no.
“NO!” staring at me shaken and startled she moved beside me urging me on with her movements. “I enjoy your company; you are much more interesting than any of those men in there. I was just curious as to how you got in, well, frankly since our families are at war.”
“Yes, the war, complete and utter insanity. Hopefully with my father and King Conall signing the peace treaty, there will be no war between us…”
“A peace treaty?” I gasped at the unknown information, “I hadn’t heard anything about our two countries coming together in peace”
That beautiful smile broke through her lips once again, claiming my full attention, “my family and I are staying among your castle quarters as the treaty is thoroughly examined by both parties, and then hopefully signed”
I couldn’t contain my emotions any longer, this war had been wearing thin on my heart, and finding out that all was to be well between us and Ireland thrilled me to know end. Not thinking, I threw my body at the brunette with full force, causing her to stumble back a few steps from the impact. To my surprise, after the moment had settled, she held me firmly in the confines of her strong arms.
The warmth of her body pressed against mine made me feel so strange, and then it hit me, the feeling. The one I had dreamt of having with my future husband suddenly coursed through my veins, igniting a fire within me I had never felt before, and this amazing person had caused it. This amazing WOMAN!
Quickly I withdrew from here, shaking with everything that had just happened, everything that I was feeling. The stir in her eyes told me she felt the same, but tried to hide it with all she was worth.
“S-sorry, I was just so happy” I whispered, feeling embarrassed by my physical gift.
Her voice shook with urgency; deep emotions were causing a storm within her mind, making her shaky and self-conscious.
“I-I have to leave” she mumbled turning around to hide the tortuous look upon her face.
“Wait. Are you sure, I thought that maybe…”
“NO! No, I am sorry, but if you will excuse me Princess”
Turning she walked through the balcony doors and back into the party, leaving me alone to cope with everything that was boiling inside myself. Sighing, I reentered the party as well, feeling oddly empty at her leave. Even when my father would go off to battle I would not yearn and ache the same way I yearned for Adairia, who was of course a mere stranger.
For the most part, I never saw the splendor that was Adairia for the rest of the evening, not until everyone was being dismissed. The party had ended no more than a few moments prior, finally succumbing to my decision and choosing the third man I had spoken with that evening, I had given up all hope of marrying for happiness.
Tired and emotionally spent, I pulled myself up the stairs to my bedchambers, wishing for a pleasant nights sleep. On entering the main hall, I heard my father speaking with someone.
“…Yes, yes. ‘Tis alright, we shall be content in the three chambers you saved for us your majesty.”
I could tell my father was being as polite as he could while rage burned beneath his skin. The tone of his voice confessed that he was not at all happy with his guests, but would endear them until business was complete.
“Thank you, Sir”
My heart stopped, three words had been whispered more than thirty paces away from me, but I knew it could only be one person.
Moving slowly across the hall, I came into view of the five people standing before the guest’s side of the castle. My eyes flickered past my father, King Gregor, and his wife Queen Catherine. Making my way across the three my wondering stopped when my sight landed on Adairia.
Her arms were through that of the last person’s. A tall, dark man impeccably dressed held her close to him, whispering quietly into her ear as the others continued there spew of arrangements.
Anger inflamed my stomach, setting off bells in my head numbing it with harsh pain. I would like to go over there right now and rip him off her. Adairia deserves so much better, she deserves me! What was I thinking! I had never met this man before in my life, but a hate towards him grew stronger and stronger as he inched closer to Adairia.
As if on queue, blue eyes found my lurking ones. Blue and green combined swirling with desperation, and fear. Fear, what could possibly frighten either of us? None the less, it was the most dominate of the emotions that mixed between us.
After acknowledging my presence, she slipped away from the man that held onto her. The both of us looking at her strangely, she refocused her gaze onto the man.
“I am so very tired. Continue your discussion, if you will all just excuse me” they all nodded in agreement. “Father, Mother, good night. King Gregor, I thank you kindly for your hospitality towards my family. And Joseph, I will be seeing you in the morning”
“Yes…in the morning” he winked, thinking her tiredness was an escape from her parents, dwindling the time until she could be with him.
Shrugging off the gesture, she reached for the closest door, and opened it. Before completely emerging herself in the dark room, her eyes flickered over me one last time, with that, entered the chambers and shut the door softly behind her.
It took me a few moments to realize that I hadn’t been breathing during the encounter I witnessed between Adairia and her betrothed. A deep burning sensation pulsated through my eyes, followed by salty tears streaming down my face. Angrily wiping the offending weakness from my cheeks, I stood, and ran to my bedroom, once there I slammed the door hard behind me, hoping the noise could be heard in Adairia’s chambers.
Quickly I unlaced my gown, followed by my corset and stockings, leaving only the thin shift on my heated skin. Leaping onto my bed, I closed my eyes, trying to erase all that was the marvelous brunette from my memory. Then a thought struck me, sitting up I began to contemplate what it was that was going on. The both of us were to be married, cursed for the rest of our lives by the parents that bore us, never once thinking what could become of their children when thrust upon such power and pressure.
My eyes began to descend, drooping with the sleep I needed desperately. Putting all thoughts in the back of my mind, I resettled in my bed, and tried my hardest to grasp a hold of sleep. I knew full well that if indeed God praised me with sleep, it would be fitful and unnerving. Deciding that I would try my hand at it, I closed my eyes, and throughout the night I was haunted by sapphire eyes that shone in pale moonlight, hair the color of ink, and a burning touch that heated every inch of my body.
* * * * *
Over the course of the days following Adairia and my meeting, I found myself frantically hurrying through the castle in hopes of catching a glimpse of the stunning brunette. Everyday I would see her, and try to speak with her, but every time she would see me, she would rush away, pulling Joseph with her without a second glance. Her actions were cutting deeper and deeper into my heart, taking piece by piece, and after awhile I gave up knowing she did not want anything to do with me.
Late one night, deprived of sleep, I left my bed, and continued out into the hallway. Stumbling with complete fatigue, I headed for the stairs, but stopped mid-way by a heart-breaking noise. Soft sobs echoed throughout the hallway, loud enough to reach my ears, but quiet enough to drift over all that were asleep. Turning around I tip-toed towards the noise, getting closer with each step. With reaching the receiving end of the sobs, I realized I was standing in front of a the guest quarters, and one particular chamber at that, Adairia’s.
Quietly I stepped into the room, trying my hardest to be subtle, but clumsiness prevailed. I tripped over my nightgown, sending me crashing into the wall with a loud thud. A gasp was heard, followed by frantic movement.
“Adairia…it is me, Isabelle”
“Oh” her reply was whispered, but a touch of relief was evident.
Making my way over to the window, I opened the curtains, letting white moonlight spill into the room. I turned around, and the sight made tears of my own start to form. Adairia sat propped up against the frame of the bed, holding her long legs tightly to her chest. Disheveled black hair hung in messy strands around her face. Her cheeks were red and puffy, and her blue eyes glistened from the tears that constantly fell. Without thinking I ran over to her and pulled her into a tight embrace, setting her head on my shoulder, and running my fingers through her hair in comfort. When I realized what I had done, hoping I hadn’t offended her, I noticed she snuggled closer to me, grasping the back of my night gown tightly.
“Shh. Everything will be alright. I am here, shh”
“…I….hurt…” she choked out between sobs, “…inside”
“I don’t understand. What do you mean?”
Looking up into my eyes, a smile tainted her lips as if everything was alright now that she was in my arms. The smile faded when she saw the smile mirrored back at her. Pulling away from my embrace, she stood, making her way to the door.
“No, you are upset; I cannot leave you while you’re in this state”
“I do not see how my emotions are any of your concern” she stated while trying to hide the pained expression on her face.
“I don’t either. I don’t know why I look for you everyday around the castle. I don’t know why every time I close my eyes I see your face. And I don’t know why it hurts so badly when you walk away” tears fell from my eyes, burning my cheeks, and spilling onto the floor.
Silence swept through the room, the both of us on either side of the bed, crying quietly to ourselves. The silence was broken with a whispered question.
“Is this true?”
“Yes, and sometimes I wish it weren’t, but I cannot deny it anymore. The pain is too much, and I can’t, I can’t…”
My sentence was cut off by two soft fingers gently pressed against my lips; the same burning presented itself when her fingers touched my lips. My heart began beating faster, and my breath was ragged, nothing in this whole world had ever made me feel like this. Finally, her fingers dropped, replaced by cool air hitting the place she had just touched. Tilting my head up so I could look into her eyes, I noted that both of us had stopped crying.
“Why would you run when you saw me?”
“I couldn’t bear to see you. It hurt too much knowing what I wanted, and that nothing in my power could make me possess it.”
Not understanding her words, I tried my hardest to come up with a quick and rational reply. Her hand clasped my cheek; her eyes bore into mine, both reflected pain and regret.
“Can we not be friends?” I asked, hoping that the reply I wanted to hear would leave those full lips.
“Friends…would be nice” smiling down at me, she put both hands on my shoulders, “but you really should try and get some sleep.”
I hesitated, worrying that she had only said what she did in hopes of being left alone. She saw the nervous tension that claimed my body; kneeling down so we were eye to eye she held my hand in promise.
“I will see you in the morning; we will get to know each other”
With that I turned away from her, and headed out the door. Right when I was about to shut the door I heard her voice waft through the crack and caress my ears.
“Yes…?” I asked, peering back into the room
“For being a friend.”
Smiling to myself, I shut the door, and walked through the darkened hall, and into my chambers. Happiness and excitement rushed through my body, making me feel more alive than I had in a very long time. The feeling of heartbreak and sadness were behind me, and sleep quickly claimed me, presenting me with dreams of what tomorrow could bring.
* * * * *
The next morning I was lying in my bed, still half asleep, when I heard a soft knock on my door. Opening my mouth to tell the guest to come in, but nothing came out, realizing my throat was far too dry to accumulate words yet. I was about to go to the addresser, when the door slowly slide open, and there, making their way into the chambers was Adairia. A smirk pressed against my lips knowing from now on that this woman kept her promises.
“Isabelle…are you awake?” She whispered, incase I were asleep, not too wake me.
A sigh filtered through her lips, splashing into the room. She turned towards the door intending on leaving, quickly I tip-toed over to her until I was mere inches from her. Bending my knees, I leaped onto her back, and was retorted with a shrill shriek as the surprise surrounded her.
“For heaven’s sake Isabelle…you scared the living day lights out of me” she giggled, bending to let my feet touch the floor. Being the court jester I was, I held on tighter, making her bend further, until we both fell onto the floor in a laughing heap. Minutes passed, consumed with excessive laughter, and tears from the exertion.
“I haven’t laughed that long…since I was child…maybe your age” Adairia breathed, slightly out of breath.
“What do you mean my age, I am not a child!”
“You are on your sixteenth year, are you not?”
“Then you are a child…”
“And what year are you on Princess” I scoffed, sliding closer to the woman
“My twenty first”
“Really?” asking, truly shocked by the gap of our ages
“Yes. I was your age when I met Joseph, well became betrothed to him…” a sadness pressed in her eyes, I put my hand on her forearm, comforting her, and urging her forward with her words, “we married two passing years after”
“You are married to him!” my response came out breathy with surprise, husky with sleep, and jealousy? “I am sorry, I was shocked.”
She stood up straightening her long golden gown, feathering around the falsely accentuated hips, and tugging on the over sized sleeves. After fixing every wrinkle in her dress, her head bent, and I was captured by the sapphire eyes.
“For three years. He’s to be the King of Ireland” she said, extending her arms, and uncurling her fingers to lift me up from the cold floor. Taking her hands, she pulled me up, proving her strength with the firmness, and ease she attained by lifting my weight, as if I were no more than an enfant.
“You are so strong” I whispered, trying hard not to verbalize my thoughts.
“My father trained me as if I were to become a soldier. I was the son he never had…”
“I am so sorry…”
“No, I am use to it…it has been that way my whole life” she smiled down at me, and put a firm arm around my shoulders, “You should get dressed, than, we can spend the day together…if you want to.”
“I wouldn’t want it any other way”
* * * * *
Hours later, after I had gotten dressed, and we each put something in our roaring stomachs, we headed out, walking around the kingdom idly, being pleased with just the others presence. The sun shone with an ethereal glow, illuminating the quarters, making everything seem euphoric. The sky was a light blue, matching Adairia’s eyes, and with the sun shining on her; she became the most heavenly being I had ever seen.
“What are your hobbies?” I asked, truly interested in her response, and trying to stop my insistent staring.
“I love to read, it puts me at peace when nothing around me is pleasant.” She thought for a moment than continued. “Sparring, well, though I was forced to do physical training, I had a knack for it, and I enjoy it immensely.”
A thought ran through my mind, and without hesitation, it slipped from my lips.
“Can you teach me?”
She giggled slightly, she turned towards me. “Why would you need to know how to defend yourself?”
“I don’t. I just find it would be intriguing, and, since you are interested in it I thought…”
“I suppose I could show you a few moves. But we don’t have any weapons…”
With that, I ran through the field we had just begun to walk among. Quickly, I found the tree I was looking for, a large tree stood, towering over me. Running along the bark, I examined all the pieces of wood that branched off. Finding two quite long, and thick, I plucked them from the tree, without ease, and set them on the grass, plopped down beside them, and motioned for Adairia to sit beside me.
“Branches?” she asks me, finally taking a seat in the cool grass opposite me.
“Of course, they will do perfectly. Won’t they?”
“I have never used…sticks before, but I suppose we could tr…”
“Great!” I exclaimed, cutting her off, “let’s start!”
She started laughing, blinding me with her gorgeous smile. Slowly she pushed her body off the ground, and started unlacing her gown. I gulped loudly, unsure of what it was that she was doing.
“W-what are you doing?”
“Taking my dress off silly. You can’t fight when you’re restricted by material” she stated as if it were the most normal thing to say.
“And you don’t want to get it stained…”
“I am not going to bleed am I?” I croaked, getting more nervous as the time passed.
“Oh heavens no! I meant if you lost your balance and fell in mud, or slid in grass”
Looking away from her, I reached behind myself, slowly loosening the restraints of my gown. The laces rose higher, and my small arms could not reach. My whole life, maids and servants had catered to my every need, undressing me before bed was one such job. Struggling to get my gown off I began groaning and mumbling with frustration. My ministrations stopped when I felt large hands grip my shoulder’s, squeezing firmly to halt my motions.
“Here, allow me”
A soft moan escaped my lips without thought as Adairia’s hands slid down my shoulders, and continuing over my back. I shouldn’t be feeling like this. She’s a woman, I am a woman, this is wrong. How can it be that I am attracted to a stranger, someone I haven’t known for more than a couple days? How can I be attracted to a woman? My thoughts ceased when I felt cold air brushing against my skin. Looking down, I realized that she had slowly started pulling the gown from my body. The thick fabric pooled over my feet, slowly I stepped out of the gown that now lay on the ground.
“Thank you…” I stated, turning around to face Adairia. She was mere inches away from me; her close proximity was eliciting quiet a response from my lower regions. What’s happening to me…?
“Your welcome” she said, pulling her long midnight-hued hair behind her ears, stepping away from me, giving us each some well needed space. “Let us begin.”
* * * * *
“No, no, no. Isabelle look. You hold it like this.” Adairia giggled, holding her stick horizontal, grasping it with both hands, one facing skywards, the other facing the ground. Her false tough bravado lifted from her face at my attempt at the same stance she was holding.
“Like this?” I asked, finally mimicking what she was doing.
“Yes perfect. Now, make sure you have a good grip. When I bring my sword…stick down onto yours, you have to push up, making me stumble backward, so you now have the upper hand, that’s called blocking. Understand?”
“Uh…I think so…let’s try it”
Adairia swung the stick around in a graceful manner, twirling it around her body, and coming to rest pointing out towards me. She ran full force at me, squeezing my eyes shut with mock fear; I held my stick tight, and waited for the right moment. Seconds later I opened my eyes, Adairia’s stick was raised high above her head and coming down at me fast. Quickly I pushed up with my stick, impacting with her hard hit; a loud thwack was heard at wood hitting wood. I just kept pushing, and of course, Adairia wasn’t even budging, then she began to raise her stick again. But this time I was ready…or so I thought.
Her stick came down with a deafening crunch, but before she hit my false sword, I leaned up and pushed her backwards, trying my hardest to run her into oblivion. But, because of my clumsiness, I tripped, falling head first into her stomach, making her fall from the forceful pain. Something hard, and warm, had landed on me, the pain from the weight of the object coursed through my abdomen. Looking up I was captured in startled blue eyes, releasing the pain that seconds before consumed me.
“Well…how was that?” I giggled, knowing full well I had made a royal fool of myself, but for some odd reason, it didn’t fret me at the slightest.
“It was…good” she replied, laughing slightly.
Slowly, she braced both of her hands on either side of the grass beside my head, and tried to push herself off of me. Her face inched closer to mine in the process, making me shiver as her warm breath caressed my cheek. On its own accord, my torso began to tilt up, coming closer to Adairia. My lips were a hairs breath away from hers; I could feel the tremors rushing through her as I made contact.
Our lips brushed, causing a fire to ignite in my stomach, spreading through my veins. Her lips were soft, warm, and very inviting. The kiss was bittersweet, we both knew this shouldn’t be happening, but we couldn’t deny that it is what we both wanted. It felt as if it lasted forever, as if I would slowly die in the warmth of her lips as the time passed, but in reality, it lasted merely seconds.
Moments later, Adairia broke the kiss, gasping with the loss of oxygen. Quickly she rolled off of me, and sat crossed legged on the grass beside me. Long fingers brushed the swollen lips that had seconds ago melted into mine in a searing kiss.
I sat up, moving to face her, both of us staring into each others eyes, trying to find the right words to say. Her eyes were a dark blue, glowing with the light of the afternoon sun, and fear clearly emanated from them.
“We can’t do this” she spoke in a hushed whisper, tears escaping the watery eyes.
“We are not doing anything wrong”
“Everything about this is wrong, don’t you see. I have a husband and you a fiancé…”
“Do you love him?”
“What?” she asked shocked.
“I said” pausing, I crawled a bit, moving closer to her, “do you love him, Joseph?”
“I-I-of course I do, he is my husband.”
Tucking two fingers underneath her chin, I brought her face towards mine, staring into her eyes, trying with all my will to make her understand. Softly, I brushed away the stranded tears with my thumb.
“I love you” I whispered, cupping her cheek. “Every night before sleep possesses me, I see your face. When the sun rises, waking me, I imagine your smile. Whenever you’re not around, my heart aches for your company. My skin tingles and burns when you touch me and my soul sings when you speak…” Grasping a hold of her hand, I look up, and see the tears replenish themselves in her eyes. “Do you feel it too?” Suddenly, she jerked away from my caressing hand, stood, and began pulling back on her dress.
“You can’t love me. We’ve known one another for a few days at the most. You’re but a child, you don’t understand the concept of love…This is wrong, I cannot love you”
“The question isn’t if you are aloud to love me. The question is…do you love me?”
Adairia lifted her gaze to look at me. Her fingers that were moments ago deftly lacing her gown, now lay still. Fresh tears welled in her eyes, and burst over the edge, cascading steadily down her defined cheeks. Finishing the last tie, she quickly turned around, and ran towards the castle, her long muscular legs carrying her at an amazing speed.
“What have I done?”
* * * * *
Blue moonlight seeped into the room, drenching everything in its own eerie aura. I sat in the corner of my chambers, back pressed tightly against the stone wall. Clad in only a thin nightgown, I was freezing, but I couldn’t make myself move, and the numbness that consumed me made everything that happened earlier seem dreamlike.
A soft knock shook me from my depressed state. My heart starting beat rapidly, “could it be her…? Swiftly the door jerked open, revealing a matured woman, brown hair piled atop her head speckled with the discoloration of age. Sadness reclaimed my heart, realizing of course it wouldn’t be Adairia, I had offended her, and there is no possible way she would ever want to see me again.
“Isabelle…? Are you alright?”
“I…am...fine mother” I coughed out, chocking on my sobs.
“Oh darling, why the tears? What’s gotten you so upset?”
Her head shook with motherly disapproval as she approached me. Her aged but manicured hands reached out towards me, beckoning me into her arms. Trying hard to stay strong and will myself to cope with the relentless heartache, I crumbled, and ran into her awaiting arms. My tears left soft wet imprints on the thin material of her evening dress. Softly she stroked my hair, cooing me into a more controlled and mannered state.
“Is it your fiancé? The marriage? Honey you can tell me, don’t you know that. I am your mother first, and your queen second”
“Oh mother. It has nothing to do with Gavin! It-it, it has to do with…Adairia”
“Adairia? Adairia! King Gregor’s daughter? What has transpired between the two of you? Has she done something to you—if she has, so help me go—“
“NO!” I screamed, frustrated at my mother for not understanding, but loving her for the same reason. “She hasn’t done anything wrong at all. It, it was me. I did something terrible! And now, our friendship is ruined!”
“What have you done, Isabelle? You can trust me.”
With those words, I took a few deep breaths, mustering my courage. Hopefully in telling my mother the entire affair, I would be freed of the guilt and shame. Or, I could be completely exiled of my family. Finally deciding that I needed someone to confide in, someone that loved me, and has loved me for my whole life. I began my story, depicting every moment between the two of us. Beginning with the night on the balcony, and ending with the bittersweet kiss that ended in pain for the both of us.
When my story was finally finished, I pulled free of my mother’s embrace, and hid beneath the thick sheets on my bed, dreading what was to come next. Moments passed, and the silence was making me sick. Uncovering my head, I turned towards my mother.
“I am a disgrace to this family! I am pure evil incarnate! Only a being so evil could act on the sins I have!” I paused catching my breath, the anger raged within me as the silence continued. “Tell me what you’re thinking!”
“You are none of those things. Yes, this act was an abomination. Yes it goes against everything you and I believe in. But you are not evil! You can’t help who you love, but you can choose not to act upon your initial thoughts. Think about the Kingdom, you have to marry Gavin! It is the only way…”
“Do you not think I know that, Mother? I tried to hide it; I tried to hold it inside myself, but I couldn’t, I just couldn’t lie anymore…”
Out of no where, her arms snaked around me, pulling me into a tight hold. The warmth and love emanated from her. She doesn’t hate me!
“You have a lot to deal with. I will leave you for the night. Isabelle…Adairia and her family are leaving in two days. Soon all of this will be but a dream. Goodnight” after the last word escaped her lips; she shut the door firmly behind her, leaving me in my thoughts.
My throat ached from the screaming, and crying. Everything within me cried out in pain for multiple reasons. All I wanted to do was sleep, but I knew that with all the things running back and forth in my mind I would not get any rest. Not tonight, and maybe not for a very long time.
* * * * *
Hours past, and I had all but given up on sleep for the night. It was close to dawn, I could see the beginnings of pinks and oranges illuminate the horizon. My eyes were sore and puffy from the tears that continuously fell, and still fell at the almost beginning of a new day.
Rubbing away the newest members that cascaded down my cheeks, a knock stopped my insistent movements. It was far too early for it to be my mother badgering me again…but if not for my mother who could it possibly be? Again, my heart began racing at a stupendous speed, making my sobs ease, and my breath ragged.
The knocking continued, hesitantly I eased off my bed and walked over to the door.
“A moment please…” I said, trying to get the person opposite the door to speak. But my ears were retorted with the same silence.
Belatedly I opened the door, praying to god that he would grant me one final wish, even after everything I had committed. The door was completely open, and I found myself staring into a face hidden behind long midnight strands of silken hair. Adairia stood, staring at her hands, not realizing the door was now open. Startled, she looked up, and as all the other times, I was again captured in sapphire orbs, looking deeply into my green eyes.
I laughed in my mind at the image of her; she looked as I did, both with blotchy red cheeks, and glistening puffy eyes. But I have to say, she wore it wonderfully, even in the horrible state she was in, she was by far the most gorgeous thing I had laid my eyes on.
Scared that she was here to tell me just what kind of a disgusting demon I was, she smiled. Pearly white teeth glistened against red lips. The light from her smile warmed my heart, and I then knew everything between us was well. But I couldn’t stop a particular thought, “how am I so lucky?”
A frown creased my face, letting her know I was deep in thought. Lightly grasping my arm, and making me step farther into my room, closing the door behind us.
I couldn’t stop the tears from falling, I was so grateful with everything that could have possibly happened to me, this happened, Adairia. And knowing she forgave me made everything so much better.
Looking up into her eyes, a silent question was passed from me to her, “why did you come?”
Ever so slowly, she inched closer to me, closing the gap between us, letting our breath collide and mingle. Her blue eyes bore into mine, and the smile permanently etching her lips. Our mouths set agape, our eyes buried deep in one another’s soul, and then so quietly she whispered,
“I never gave you my answer…”
She then descended her lips onto mine.
Continued in Part 2
Return to the Academy