Summary: In a world where Witches are slaves to humans. A young Witch finds herself in the royal palace as the servant of the first prince of the crown. Life as a slave proves to be harder than she had imagines when the she finds herself going through emotional and physical changes when she finds herself in love and her powers growing.
Chapter 8: Set to Motion
She was up to something. I could feel it.
There had been many complaints against freeing the witches. But she did not seem concerned at all. And she spent her days barely arguing with Beryl- which sent even my generals on alert.
This little viper was up to something.
And from the intensity of her focus, I could tell it was something big.
But first I had to find a way to get rid of Clara, she was attached to me and would not give me a break. I could not hope to catch Serena in whatever it was she was planning with Clara joint to my hip.
"I find your idea quite likable Endymion. The use of the Witches for all of our magical practices has seriously depleted our own people of the Blood. Without their presences we will be able to better harness our own powers, placing us at an equal playing field with them." Elizabeth, Clara's close friend stated. I nodded at her, surprised that her statement was very similar to my own thoughts. It was why I had hoped that the idea of freeing the Witches would go well with my people; but it seems as if not everyone wanted to harness that Blood. And not everyone understood why it would be important for us to get back our magics.
Elizabeth was an insightful young woman, and very attractive. Her brown hair was streaked with lighter shades that went quite well together, it was very attractive as are her soft features and voluptuous body. She was a god send. Attractive, intuitive, kind, and not ready to tear my heart out of my body.
"Yes. I believe that too." I stated taking note of the smile on her face and the slight rouse that tinged her cheeks.
Why were women so infatuated with me? I mentally sighed pleased at my charms. I was stuck in my own mind praising myself when a rather course chuckle drew my attention to where Serena was seated.
She was staring at me and trying to hold back laughter. I frowned, what was so funny?
"Serena, do you have something to say?" I asked trying to figure out what was so funny. She shook her head but I could still see her trying to battle laughter.
"Yes Serena. Do tell us what is on your mind?" Beryl's cynicism brought an end to the light hearted meal we were sharing. Everyone at the table turned their attention to Serena who was sitting down innocently trying really hard to hold back a smile now.
"Its just that I find it quite fascinating that you do not know anything about magic and how it works in the living body." I raised a brow, not liking where this conversation was headed, especially since was involved Serena and Beryl facing off- again.
"What do you mean by that?" Beryl asked. Serena sighed loosing that premature smile of hers.
"'The Blood' never vanishes, it is always with us. But it can sleep…or rather become dormant. It is always in us because it is not the blood but rather the soul. It is what makes us who we are, every fiber of our being in infused with magic. A strand of your hair holds your essence and therefore hold magic. It doesn't dwindle with each generation that doesn't use magic. The magic can never be gone unless you cease to exist body and soul. Which is virtually impossible as far as I know." I took in her words, what she was saying reminded me of something someone had told me a long time ago…something my mother had told me when I was younger. And that made me the more suspicious of Serena.
"How could you possibly know that. All the texts state that magic runs in the Blood. And the ancients Texts are not mistaken" Beryl said.
"Yes well, the texts are not mistaken, but people's understanding are." Serena said meeting Beryl's glare with a cold stare of her own.
"What is that suppose to mean?" Beryl asked.
Serena did not answer. And Beryl was becoming infuriated.
"To the ancients Blood was live, it is what keeps everything alive. So when they wrote blood, what they meant was life, that which keeps us in existence both soul and body. It was not a literal meaning but rather a metaphoric one." Beryl did not stare at me as I spoke, she just kept her cold glare upon Serena's person. And Serena being the person she was did not take too kindly to it, she too stared at Beryl her usually sky blue eyes taking on a rather cold ice blue color.
I was certain that I could see sparks flying between them. I was about to step in and prevent any serious problem from arising when Serena rose to her feet.
"If you'll excuse me." She did not wait for permission but turned away from us and walked out.
Fine. I will let him do as he pleases on his part, but the man was absolutely insane to think that I would stand by and wait for him to deliver to my people their freedom; if he did think that then he was not only arrogant and insane but completely and one hundred percent deranged. Sure, at first I thought was a wonderful idea, but at the pace things are moving along now, it could take decades before my people see true freedom. And we do not have that much time.
He will do what he can, and I will do what I must.
But before I do anything, I must first find a way to get the Senshi to the palace without causing any suspicions.
"How are you feeling?" Mariam asked emerging out of no where. Startled I slightly turned towards her. She was such a mystery and…a perfect candidate for this mission.
If she accepts it.
"Mariam. Can you do me a favor?" Her head slanted to the side and she studied my face for a moment.
"What kind of a favor?"
I explained the mission to her.
She had to leave the palace, go the Whisper Woods in the Eastern part of the kingdom and find her way across the thick foliage of trees and make it to the other side. Alive!
"Those woods are difficult to maneuver. And there are dangerous creatures lurking within them." I nodded. True, Whisper Woods was the best barrier between the Highlands and the mortal realms because of the secretes it housed. Secretes that could steal your soul with a glance, kill you with a touch, and swallow a stallion with a single gulp.
But I needed her to make it across the woods and back to my people before we could commence with the plan.
"Its not impossible. And I will guide and protect you throughout the whole ordeal." She did not respond, just stared at me.
"What of my brother and my owner?" I shook my head sympathetic at her use of the term owner over master. It was a clear that she was not use to or accepting of her enslaved state; which was something a few of the witches' I have encountered can claim to be.
"Your brother I will leave under the care of a trusted friend and as for your master I can free you easily with your permission." She did not agree, to either situations. I could understand her not wanting to leave her brother, but why not her enslaver?
"I cannot leave my brother. And if you free me then my owner will go after him, and he will get to him. If I go I must go with him and the woods are too dangerous for me to risk him like that." I nodded agreeing. Her concerns were well placed, but I needed her to do this. There was no time to find another. It was either her or I would have to liberate all of my enslaved people- and there were alot- all on my own throughout the mortal world.
And no matter how great my power, I could not manage such a feat in such a short time alone.
"I will send you with a spirit guard. And I will make sure that whatever friendly spirits that reside in the forest brings you aid every day and with every step." Mariam again did not say anything. She just stood there for what seemed like hours, thinking.
Then finally she nodded.
"We need to leave anyways. The man is becoming a bother and I might have to kill him to protect my own." I sighed but smiled at her statement none the less, fully understanding the willful need to protect ones own kindreds.
"Come with me." I dragged her into the secluded doors of the library and then through the book cases to the furthest corner of the room.
There were no windows around and barely any light at all, a perfect place for what I was about to do.
I closed my eyes for a moment, and brought the image of my true form to the forefront of my mind. I focused until I felt the change begin to take place.
"Ah! I knew there was something slightly off about your appearance." I looked down at myself, taking a strand of my silver hair into my hands and letting the silver strands fall down.
I knew what I looked like now, the silver hair, the pure white dress, the bare feet…would all be accompanied by silver eyes slightly tinted with blue. And a small crescent moon on my forehead. A emblem of my origin.
"Yes well, my true form most remain a secrete from the mortals here. All those with my blood and the blood of my people know who I am, only the mortals and those who are not of my people do not know. And there are others who can sense it, but are not certain what they sense." Mariam, I could tell was taking in the sight. I could see the understanding sparkling in her eyes as she stared me up and down. Letting the image sink into her mind and ultimately stay there.
I knew I looked completely ethereal. My true form was not that of a mortal. Though I did physically look mortal, my form held an other world ensue to it.
My features glowed with the light of the moon. Everything about this person; everything about Serenity spoke of a world besides this one.
"And who are you?" Mariam asked.
"I am Serenity. Princess of the Moon kingdom and leader to every Lunarian. It is my people that have suffered most under the clutches of human enslavement. And as such I must free them, but to do so, I need your help, will you accept?" She had already accepted, but by tradition I needed her to accept to my true form. To accept with full understanding, with no lies or deception entailed.
Mariam nodded and I smiled, taking my hand and pulling off a strand of my hair to give to her.
"Here, this will protect you and let all know that you are under the protection of the moon. If however you reside in anyplace that the moon's light cannot reach you, then you will go unprotected. Stay under the gaze of the moon, and it will protect you from everything and anything." Mariam took the strand, and it wrapped itself around her finger. Then it glowed and became a small silver band around her hand.
As soon as she removes it, or perishes then the strand would return to begin my hair and vanish. That was a safeguard, to make sure that no one gets a hold of it and places any hexes or other bad magics on me.
I gave her some spending money and broke the bonds that kept her enslaved. Which was easy since she carried her owner's belongings with her at all times. With her freedom, came her brother's. She gave me a slight nod of approval- having felt the weight of enslavements fall apart- Mariam promised to go and retrieve her brother then leave at dusk.
With that settled, I made my way to the kitchen.
I was starved. I needed to eat fast and go get some rest.
The day had been stressful and Darien was not giving me any lea way. He was suspicious of my activities- as rightly he should be.
I finished off dinner with the cook and some others, several of the witches were staring at me in awe. I was certain the aura from my previous transformation still clung to me like a cloak and they sought it out like a freezing body seeks warmth.
It was my job as the leader of my people to feed them Moon magic. So right now, that sheen of moon light that was around me, was a temptation to their magical appetites.
A temptation I could not afford to indulge at the moment. Not without risking my identity being revealed.
But there was nothing to be done about it. The light that seeps from me, seeks out the people and enters them almost like they are sponges. There was no way to stop it.
By the time we were done eating diner, I was seriously depleted.
It was a good thing I had freed Mariam and her brother before arriving for diner.
Because by the time I was done eating, I didn't have enough magic in me to cast a simple summoning spell.
I rushed out of the kitchen, not wanting anyone to see me in this weakened state, and not wanting to make them feel guilty for something that was beyond their control.
I stumbled my way to the bedroom, holding onto the wall and tripping over each and every stair case I came across until I reached my destination, the fifth floor.
The guards standing about rushed over when I crawled to the top floor on my hands and knees.
"Are you alright?" One of the men posted to watch the floor and guard against unwanted guests asked. I nodded. But he ignored my reply because he picked me up, walked towards the only bedroom on that floor.
Opening the door, the guard went in with me in tow the guard posted in front of the door stepped aside when he saw me.
"What happened?" He asked. The one holding me shrugged.
"She just came up here stumbling over. I'm going to take her inside." He stated, the guard in front of him nodded and stepped away from the door.
The one carrying me attempted to put me down on the couch, but with the way I was at the moment, I would need a large amount of space to tumble around in.
"bedroom." I murmured. He nodded, hesitating for a few minutes- literary, he stood there in the middle of the enormous living room staring at the bedroom door as if it was the gates to hell themselves, but then eventually he did pick up his feet and head in the direction of the bedroom.
I moaned when my back hit the soft mattress, silken covers and feather light pillow. I let my body sink into the bed, moaning again for a second time at how completely satisfying my body felt at having such a luxurious sleeping space.
"What in…"Darien's voice was a mere distant memory to me. I heard him and was aware of that strange tone in his voice- a tone that I couldn't quite place, not that I care at the moment in the face of my fatigue.
I turned to the side, sighing my whole being elated and completely satisfied. I could feel sleep dragging me down into blissful oblivion.
"Errr.. Your highness…not…seem." All I could hear now was the disjointed bits of conversation. My body was far gone and my mind was quickly following.
"…away…bed…now…die." I heard Darien's voice again. I heard the movement of feet and then felt the bed dent in…someone was sitting on the bed.
I felt warm hands against my face, then someone's warm breath as soft wet…lips? brushed against my temple.
…Darien…that scent was his. And those hands were his…then the lips too must be his.
Why was he being so tender with me?