Chapter 12

As part of the wedding day festivities Phillip had planed an impressive event including street theatre, acrobats then he and the two Alexander riding into the arena followed by a parade of Gods and Goddesses with Phillip added as a thirteen deity.

"Stay close to me." He instructed his son before taking a swing out of a leather skin; he had been drinking all morning and was now slightly drunk.

They mounted the horses and before the set off Phillip held then up to stop.

"I have decided that I will go into the arena alone." He said "Let's go."

King Phillip went alongside his son.

"Be grateful that you are here today." His father "After your public display."

"Not the Gods father." Alexander replied "But you."

His father let out a hearty laugh "Haven't you see my boy, today I am a God."

He continued to laugh as he thumbed Alexander on the back.

They dismounted at the arena where they were joined by Pausanius the captain of the king personal body guard.

"What are your orders?" he asked

"Have your men wait here for I will go in alone."

Pausanius bowed "Yes, my lord."

He turned to his company to deliver their orders.

"Are you sure that is wise father?" Alexander asked starting off after his father

"Of course, I want to show the whole of Greece that I am no tyrant in need of protecting." His father replied

They walked towards the entrance in silent and Alexander continued to follow long after his father told him to go.

His father stopped walking and glared at his son.

"I told you to go." He snapped

"But father I really think that…" he started to say but was cut off when his father grabbed hold of his upper arm and marched him back.

"I don't want people to get the wrong idea, you know about us…so for the sake of Zeus stay out of sight."

He turned on his heels and towards the light of day leaving Alexander opened mouthed.

In a funfair King Phillip appeared in front of his people, arms open wide and causing the people cheer and clap.

Suddenly a guard came to sand in front of him; Phillip was shocked to find anyone in the arena with him after he told them no one was to it took a second to realize it was Pausanius.

"What are you doin…?" he demanded but was cut off when Pausanius pulled into a hug.

There was a flash of steel glinting in the afternoon sun briefly before disappearing into the king's body.

A strange hush descended on the arena and everyone watched as the dagger withdrew and Pausanius shoved aside the Kings body and ran.

Outside the arena unaware of what had just happened inside the arena, Alexander paced.

Curse him he thought over and over again curse him to the furthest part of the underworld

Someone crashed into him.

"Hey." He called out in surprised

The other body fought to get away and Alexander saw that it was Pausanius.

His face was white and sweaty; his eyes went wide with fear when he saw the crowned prince before running even faster away from him.

It was then that the screaming and shouting stared.

"MURDER!"

A1exander looked back into the arena and then at the direction that Pausanius had fled he looked down at his hand, the hand that he had grabbed hold of Pausanius to steady him it was also the hand that Pausanius had pushed away, the hand was stained blood red.

It was then that the two halves of his mind clashed and he spun on his heels pushing his way through the waves of people that were coming in the opposite direction after Pausanius.

A tiny crowd of people had gathered in one half of the arena and Alexander had to shove passed.

Somebody had put a cape over the king's body which lay in a pool of blood. Alexander threw himself down on to the body staining his clothes and wept.

Someone hurled him up by the arm.

"The king lives, made the gods bless Alexander son of Phillip."

He looked at the speaker and found it to be Hephaistion. He opened his mouth but the words couldn't come out so he closed it again.

Hephaistion saw the shock on his face "You're king now." He repeated

Someone picked up the King's fallen crown and handed it to Hephaistion who placed it on his head and his other arm was held up by Ptolemy who took up the chant which soon spread around the arena.

To shocked to do or say anything Alexander looked around at the people some where rejoicing and signing praise others stared at him with malevolent intent and there in a sea of white dressed in red unmoved by what was happening around her was his mother.

"Yes, he said to himself "I am truly a King."

Epilogue

Several weeks later a company of horses rode through a wood and stopped outside a wood hut.

One man jumped down and hammered on the door till it was opened by a woman with a small child at her hip followed by a man.

"Bow to the king." He snapped when they stood there looking blankly.

"That won't be needed." said Alexander dismounting Buecephlas and walked, with Hephaistion in tow up behind the guard.

When the Kaysa and Helen saw that the king was the blonde traveler and his friend dressed as a general they dropped to their knees pulling the children down with them.

"No you don't need to do that." Alexander replied softly picking up young Cleo and helping up Petros.

Kaysa and Helen looked at each other before sheepishly standing up causing Alexander to smile.

"A winter ago you took in to travelers lost in the snow, you shared what little you had to offer." He said "And now the travelers have returned to repay that kindness."

Alexander turned to a small group of men and waved them forward.

The men carried in chests of money, baskets of food, jugs of wine, farm animals and wood for building.

The family watched as the debt was repaid.