Chapter 9

Alys was on strike, refusing to go to sewing and embroidery.  She decided she would go with Matthew to his next class.  Maybe they could rearrange the schedules so they had all the same classes. 

“What’s your schedule?”  she asked him.  He gave her the paper.  It read:

10:00-Diplomacy

11:15-Reading and Writing

12:30-History

1:45-Lunch

2:15-Geogrophy

3:30-Art

4:45-Swordsmanship

She crossed off geography and put riding in its place, then looked where they were going next.  Art, yes!  Alys loved art, and she had missed her art class that day.  Alys looked at the rest of the subjects.  They seemed so much more worthwhile then embroidery and sewing.  She told Matthew that she was going to rewrite both of their schedules so their lessons were all together, and let the teachers know when they were teaching.  He agreed that that would be a good idea.

            When they reached the art room Professor Davisen greeted them enthusiastically, saying how glad she was that Alys had made it.  She also gave Alys her sympathy of what had happened that morning.  Alys smiled at her, then grabbed a parchment and a pen.  She had both of their schedules, and she rearranged everything so they both read.

10:00-Diplomacy

11:15-MWF: Reading and Writing, TTS: Geography

12:30-History

1:45-Lunch

2:15-Riding

3:30-Art

4:45-Swordsmanship

She gave Matthew his copy, then pulled out her chalk drawing of her cottage.  It made her homesick, but happy as well.  Continuing to work on her drawing, she carefully picked out each color of chalk.  She first outlined the pencil lines with the correct color of chalk, then slowly shaded each area with the same color.  She finished 15 minutes before class ended.  She gave Professor Davisen her drawing, and then walked over to Matthew to see what he was doing.  He was painting a picture of a girl, who it was she didn’t know.  Not wanting to invade his concentration, she stood a few paces away.

The girl was beautiful.  Her dark brown hair went to her elbows. Her brown eyes were large and filled with love and compassion.  She was wearing a simple dress with bands around her arms.  Around her neck was a small necklace with what looked like a family crest.  With one last flourish Matthew finished the painting, writing the name Karina next to it.  Since he was finished Alys walked up behind him and said,

“That’s a wonderful painting.  She’s very beautiful.”  Matthew looked up and said,

“This is my sister, Karina.  She’s a year younger than me, and she’s going to be the Queen of Glod.  My younger brother, Joseph, is 9.  He will be the king of Solemn someday.”  Alys smiled thoughtfully.  She had always wondered what it would be like to have siblings.

“I would like to meet them,” she told Matthew. She figured that she could meet them when she rode in the competition in a week and a half.  Matthew nodded,

“We’ll make sure you do.”

After Art they went to swordsmanship.  Alys thought that it would be super fun, and she was correct.  Matthew helped her pick out all of the equipment, then began helping her with the basics.

“You better not let your father know you’re doing this.”  Matthew said.

“I know,” she replied.  This was her first secret.  Matthew nodded solemnly.  He didn't want to get Alys in trouble with her father, but he knew that she would if he found out.  Somehow they would have to keep this whole thing secret.

Alys was quite good at sword fighting.  She beat Matthew in three of the five matches.  For a moment it made her feel better, but she still had an uneasy feeling.  SHe wasn't sure if she wanted to keep this secret.  Though she wanted it to be for the best, the more she thought about it, the more she wanted to confide in someone.  So, after Swordsmanship was over, she said a hurried goodbye to Matthew, then ran to her room.

The End

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