Chapter 1

Fourteen years later, in the kingdom of Solemn, there lived a child, known by everyone as Alys.  She and her horse, Bruno, were famous in the village of Ernest.  This young maiden of thirteen was a bright spot in the town.  To all she was famous for her skills of taming animals.  She was a lively young girl, in which you found much curiosity.  That is why everyone but herself was surprised when she was summoned to the palace of the kingdom Ondger.  Though a small amount startled, she was overflowing with curiosity.

"Why must I look my best?"  Alys asked her Nana as she was polishing her shoes.  Her Nana replied,

"Now Alys, you are going the palace of a neighboring kingdom.  You are representing Solemn, and, more importantly, Ernest."  Alys did not, however, like this explanation.

"I am no princess!"  she protested, "I want to be myself!"  Mauria tittered at this. "Don't laugh at me!"  Alys giggled, for she herself thought her statement silly, how that she looked back at it.  "Of course I'm not a princess!"  she told herself, more than her Nana.  Mauria cuckled,

"You can believe whatever you want to, Alys."  and, for that day, they left the conversations of princesses and palaces.

The next morning was the day of her departure. 

"Be good!"  Maria called, "I will join you at the palace soon!"  But Alys had more than her Nana showing her off, the whole village seemed to have shown up with greetings of luck, safety, and even sobbing goodbyes.  Alys, however, was cheerful, and brightened the town of Ernest one last day.  the child wore a bright yellow sundress with lime green sandals on her feet.  Bruno's harness was woven in blue rope, while the saddlebags in orange and green.  Everything about that girl,  sitting on that horse, radiated happiness and creativity.  Even her sunhat was sky blue!

How this young girl managed to dye everything she owned so bright and colorful stumped every man and beast in that town, but they were grateful for it all the same.

As they showed Alys off, many of the townspeople wondered whether their lives would ever be the same.  Meanwhile, Alys was thinking the same thing. 

“Now Bruno,” she said, having no one better to talk to, “I don’t think Nana was being completely truthful with me last night.” She paused, as if hoping her horse would answer her. “Now, imaging if I really was a princess,” she laughed, “No! That’s silly, me, a princess?Never!”she shook her head, still laughing madly at the idea. “No, I’m just a joyous peasant girl from a peasant town, Not a princess!” she then shrugged off the idea and began humming her favorite tune.

79 measures later she was finished, both with the song and her lunch.  It was midday and she was in no specific city at the moment.  No, at that moment the small girl was in a meadow, a luscious green meadow that was blooming with wild flowers.  She was sitting under an apple tree, Bruno munching apples off the ground as well as grass.  She stood up and led Bruno over to a stream to fill up her flask and water Bruno. 

As Bruno drank, Alys ran about the meadow.  She made a ring of the brightest flowers she could around the brim of her sunhat.  She braided even more flowers into her golden hair.  Even in the beautiful meadow she managed to add more beauty, more cheerfulness, because that is how little Alys was, cheerful.  Bedecked in flowers, Alys flopped onto the grass in exhaustion and stared at the cloudless sky.  As she laid there, Bruno trotted over and whinnied.  Alys jumped, than looked at the sun. 

“Oh my!” she exclaimed, “We’ve been here much too long!  Down Bruno!”  Bruno sat so Alys could mount him, then stood again and began following the sun while Alys consulted a map.  “We’re almost to Flete,” she muttered, “Which means we’ll be entering Ondger in about an hour.”  She bit her tongue, “So we’ll reach…what’s the capitol called?  Well, we’ll reach the capitol before dinner!”  And, folding up the map, she trotted on.

As she passed through the town of Flete people stopped and stared at what they called, “The yellow girl on the horse,” for blonde hair was very uncommon here.  However, Alys didn’t care at all that people were staring, for she had her, looking at the palace of Ondger, which was visible from the town. 

The people in the town did not appreciate “the bright girl” passing through the town.  “Look at the nerve of her, dressing like that while the queen is as dead as ever!” they whispered and, “Where on earth did that child come from?  Hair as gold as straw, clothes as bright as the sun, impossible!”  but the worst muttering was made by one of the kings knights,  “We should shoot her right off her horse!” he told a townsman standing by.  Luckily, he didn’t actually act on that comment.

Alys, though not much bothered by the muttering, was still thoroughly glad to be away from the town and on the last leg of her journey. “We’re almost there boy,” she told the reluctant horse, “Only 20 more minutes.”  She gave him an encouraging pat, and pushed him into a gallop, “20 minutes.” She said under her breath, “20 minutes.”

The sign at the entrance of the kingdom read, “Welcome to Ondger, we hope you enjoy your stay in the capitol.”  Alys walked through the gates, and the first thing she noticed was the palace.  It drew her attention so much that she wanted to get a closer look, so she wandered towards it, captivated by the view.  When she arrived the gates were open, you are allowed to roam through the gardens as you please.

The End

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