I didn't want to start another chapter by apologizing, but I think I might ... I'll try to update more often from now on, but I can't promise anything because I need to study for exams (you know it is), but I'll be able to write A LOT in about 2 weeks! Hope you'll like this chapter!
"What's with the sparkle in your eyes?" Sarabi asks Taka when she sees him next. There's something different about him. Something that she's never seen before in him. It seems that he's shining from the inside, that he's decided to turn his world upside down, that he's chosen to finally do something with himself, instead of always bending the knee in front of the King—of the future King.
"What are you talking about?" Taka replies.
He doesn't look away, and he cocks his head to the side, his ears moving back and forth, as to really understand what Sarabi is asking him, as to pretend that he doesn't understand what this is all about.
"You look different," she explains.
He waves the subject away with his tail, and Sarabi understands that he doesn't want to talk about it. So, there is something going on, but she won't get to know what. It's not that it bothers her because she knows that Taka has always had his secrets, but it kind of upsets her because she thought he'd share anything with her.
But she doesn't show her disappointment nor her anger. She cracks a smile and playfully jumps on his back. He tosses her to the side, and she falls on her back, four paws in the air. They both laugh, looking at each other.
"Hey, Sarabi," a familiar voice shouts.
Her head shoots straight up while Taka looks over his shoulder, already knowing what's coming next. "Hi, brother," Mufasa says while sitting down next to them.
For once, he's alone, without all his fan club tagging along. That doesn't make him less important. In fact, he almost seems royal. Almost. The way he looks at his younger brother, it's as if he's waiting for him to look down, to submit to him. But to Sarabi's astonishment, Taka doesn't. He even gets up on his paws and walks straight to his brother's face.
"Leave Sarabi alone," he hisses.
Mufasa laughs dryly. "What makes you think she wants to be left alone?"
Taka frowns for a moment, and he looks back at Sarabi, wondering if she really does. Maybe he's wrong. Maybe she is interested in his brother. Everyone would. Being with Mufasa means becoming Queen. Who wouldn't want that? Taka hoped that Sarabi wasn't like that, but maybe she is. Maybe she's just like every other lionesses in this Kingdom, looking for more power.
But Sarabi's not like everyone else, and she's proven it more than one time. She gets up on her paws, too, and she comes beside Taka, looking at him with concern in her eyes. She's never seen him act like that, and it worries her. She doesn't want him to get in any trouble, and if Ahadi sees them like this, challenging each other, Taka will pay the price for that mistake, not Mufasa, no matter if he's the one who provoke his brother.
"He's right," she tells Mufasa. "I don't want to be your friend. I am Taka's friend, and since you two can't get along with each other, I think I need to choose." She takes her eyes off Taka to look at Mufasa who seems dumfounded. "The choice is easy. I don't want to be with you," she says to Mufasa. "I don't want to be your friend."
With that, she turns around, her tail moving behind her as to express how annoyed she is. Taka should be proud or should at least be content that he's won something over his brother, but somehow, he isn't. Sarabi is a loyal friend. She's never done him wrong. She wouldn't have today, either.
"Taka, are you coming, or what?" Sarabi growls.
He turns around and see that she's waiting patiently for him, but is getting impatient. He nods at her before turning to face his brother again.
"It's not over," Mufasa says.
"Is that a challenge?" Taka asks.
"Can't be," Mufasa replies. "You have no chance of winning."
With that, he heads toward some of his friends that have been waiting for him for a moment. Taka looks at him leave, powerless to do anything against him. Mufasa is right. Taka has no chance of winning. Mufasa has inherited all the strength lions are supposed to have. He'll be strong when he'll grow up, maybe even more than their father. But one thing Mufasa doesn't have is the brain. Not that he doesn't have one, but he doesn't have all the intelligence that Taka has. If there is a way to beat Mufasa at his own game, Taka is going to have to figure that out by himself. He can't tell Sarabi that he's planning on going to war against his brother. It wouldn't make any sense for the both of them. For the sake of the Kingdom, things should stay the way they are; Taka should keep ignoring Mufasa. The Pride Lands doesn't need a war between two cubs, especially not between two heirs.
Taka catches up with Sarabi. "What did he tell you?" she wonders.
"I think he wants you," Taka says simply.
Sarabi laughs. "Isn't he already supposed to wed that lioness?" She didn't remember her name, but she overheard Uru, Taka's mother, and another lioness' mom talking about marrying their cubs. It doesn't truly matter that he doesn't love her, but Taka knows that he'll come to care about her, and that he's not going to want Sarabi when that happens. But until then ... Taka doesn't know, nor does Sarabi.
Taka shrugs. "I don't know. It's not decided yet." He pauses. "They were hesitating between two cubs, but I haven't figured out who, yet."
Sarabi sighs. She doesn't really like this whole idea of marrying someone your parents have chosen for you, but it's important because Mufasa will be King. He can't go fool around with an Outlander or with someone else, for the matter. He needs to stay focus.
"Taka," Uru calls.
Her son's head turns around. She comes next to him and Sarabi, and something about her immediately suggests that she has some news to break. Taka notices that Mufasa is right behind her. It could have been a family reunion, but Ahadi is nowhere to be seen.
"Oh, Sarabi. I'm glad that you're here. I wanted to speak with you," Uru says. She sits in front of them, and so does Mufasa. His whole mean attitude is gone, and now he's just back to being sweet Mufasa that Uru cannot resist.
"About what?" Sarabi wonders. She's never truly interacted with the Queen before.
"Your parents and I have decided something," Uru says. She turns her head to Mufasa who's looking straight into Sarabi's eyes which makes her uncomfortable, along with Taka who wishes Mufasa could find another target.
"And what is that?" Sarabi's voice is very calm. She doesn't fear anything. Her parents would never choose something for her that they think she wouldn't want. They have always been careful about that, and they want her to live the life she wants to. Therefore, Sarabi isn't worried.
But when Mufasa looks up to speak, she feels like she's been betrayed.
"You will be my Queen."
chaos in the sky: Thank you for the review! I'll try not to have you waiting for too long next time!
kate: I hope they do, too! I've always had a soft spot for them, haha. Thank you for reviewing!
BLACK CAT: Oh, you are very welcome! Thank YOU for reviewing and reading! Means a lot, too. Hahaha, I can't promise that Sarabi won't fall for Mufasa, but ... you shall see if she will or if she won't. One thing I can say .. Taka won't stay still. He's not going to look at her fall for her brother (that is if she does), I can promise you that.
jtechwriter: Thank you! I know! I mean, if he turns out to be a good guy in the movie, maybe it's because he learns from some bad mistakes in his life, and I don't think that Scar/Taka has always been bitter or mean to him. I needed to find a reason; I needed to understand myself so ... you know :) I hope you liked that chapter !