"Her father saddled up his fastest stead,
roamed the valleys all over,
Sought his daughter at great speed,
and her whistling gypsy rover,"
Through the woods he roamed, continuously sneaking about whilst remaining hidden to all. He had no particular direction to roam in, and essentially just walked straight ever since his feet landed on his lawn the night before.
"So off I did set,
On my trail of regret,
Where I thought of you now,
In your castle and crown"
it was a different image than this; walking alone through a dark wood with no friend nor any human at all to fall upon when those great moments of doubt crept upon you from behind. You never see it coming. Walk onward. Nothing to fear except fear itself. Those are wise words if you have shit for brains. Do I? Better than that. Not destined for droll behavior. However, as it seems regality is the opposite. What's this? My mind working backwards? Popped a blood vessel. Less blood can flow to my hot head, then making it tepid instead of boiling. Like Tybalt, but his death should be a reminder to my inevitable own. Postponement is all but impossible, but my mind sees it so. What did Tybalt fight for? Ah, yes. Cousins. I don't have any girl nor boy as family though. If so though I must find. In Animo Volvere, maybe he is out there.
His mind was clustered with these kinds of thoughts and he found his sanity decreasing rapidly. He missed her. Even though they never met face to face more than once the image of her appeared before him at the most random times. Anything and everything reminded him of her and the entirety of his love for her burned a hole in his chest. Like a dagger, perforating his heart with piercing agony that brought tears from his eyes streaming down his cheeks until finally falling from his face landing far far down.
He needed to retire his mind of such thoughts full of sorrow and began to ponder on his new life ahead of him. Where would he go from here? Who should he look for? And whom shouldn't he look for? There were tons of ruffians about who would take notice of his aristocratic outfit and take him behind their favorite pub to unleash a bit of violence upon him and steal all he had. He watched his back carefully, and made sure no one was there following.
Up ahead, he saw a light shown through the trees, followed by the sounds of music and moving feet. As he strode closer he could make out chanting and singing from what seemed to be a bon-fire. He took rest by a large tree and peaked his head out from the side to watch. There was a large fire, surrounded by twenty or thirty people in scraggily looking clothing, who were all either playing instruments or dancing around the fire laughing and singing. They were all equipped with swords and bows which proved a point that they were not pacifists. With this knowledge, he debated whether to continue walking, or attempt to make peace with the tribe he had just came upon. The decision lay heavy in his mind.
"Hey!", a voice yelled as the music and singing stopped. The dancing ceased and everyone was starring in his direction. "Who's that?". The Prince walked out of his hiding, to make himself clear to his audience. He raised his arms as a sign that he meant no harm and opened his mouth to speak.
"I mean no harm.", he muttered, hoping no-one should call him bluff.
"If you mean no harm then you don't necessarily mean well.", the man who noticed him stated. "Come forward...show yourself fully to us.". The Prince eased his way forward and all the while kept his hands in the air. He made no sudden moves and stepped out of the wood, into the light of the fire, where everyone could study his features and make their own decisions about him. "Now, what are you doing here?"
"I ran away from my home.", he gulped. "My father is a King to a far off land, and I didn't approve of the life-style he offered me. I left in search for a new one, and hopefully a new home"
"You're not speaking of the King of this region are you?"
"Good!", he smiled. "Because then we'd have to kill you.". The Prince began to shake with fear. "Some may already want to slit your throat for your ties to the crown but...I want to find your usefulness." The Prince began to feel wary of his new peers and again opened his mouth to speak.
"Who are you?"
"I myself am Jawern, my tribe and myself are the Laurens County Crusaders of Truth. We are anarchists. Our purpose here is to over-throw the crown, and establish a country that was lost years ago.", Jawern turned to face the fire, but continued his speech. "You say you descend from regality? That'll put us on the qui vive of you, but don't let our observant view over you unsettle your mind. If you are truly a Crusader of Truth, no-one shall lay a finger on you."
Doesn't give me much of an option does it?
"How shall you know whether I am a Crusader or not?", The Prince asked, as he slowly gained courage among the tribe.
"We will know when the time is right. However now is not the right time. Please, feel free to sit down and join us for the evening. Our tribe has plenty of food and uisce beatha to go around.", The Prince's face began to light up. " And we also have a tent to offer you, but you must share with Mavran, a very trusted man among us. He will listen to your dreams but don't mind him. He keeps to himself besides that."
"Why should I be comfortable sleeping next to someone who is eavesdropping upon my dreams?" The Prince questioned.
"It's the only way we can trust you. He reads your dreams and checks them for any sign that you may defy us. If he does, we know not to trust you." Jawern turned and smiled. "Still want to stay?". The Prince pondered, and said:
"Holy shit!" Nate yelled. "Holy shit! Holy Shit! Holy shit! He's fucked man!"
"Tell me something I don't know, idiot!" Nik snapped as he began to lose his patience. He paced back and forth, contemplating what possible explanation there was to this tragedy, as he watched Nate who jumped around shouting as loud as his vocal chords would permit. Soon enough, Nik had enough of his nonsense. "Calm the hell down!".
"Don't tell me to calm down!" Nate shouted as he continued to calm upwards. "I'm calm as they come.". He continued to jump around, unsure of what to think of the entire situation.
"Look, we're not gonna solve anything by standing here with our thumbs up our asses."
"Yeah," Nate replied. "We should dip."
"You scum-bag!" Nik stepped back with astonishment. "We owe him our lives, we can't just dip when the going gets rough!"
"Just watch me.", Nate sneered as he began to walk away. Nik jumped, landing on Nate's back as he began to strike him with his open palms. "Stop!", Nate pleaded.
"No, you have to stop first." Nik responded as he continued to unleash his raw fury upon Nate's head and back until he finally gave in and yelled:
"Okay! I'll help!". With that, Nik jumped off of Nate's back, and began to massage his crimson stinging palms. While peering downward, Nik was caught off guard by a five finger open palm swift motion to the side of his head, that left an agonizing sting, which could only be treated with more unnecessary violence. Nik then returned and punched Nate in the chest, knocking the wind clean out of him. He fell to the floor, coughing so vigorously that eventually blood was excreted from his open mouth. Nik continued to kick his adversary, while grunting and shouting hateful words towards Nate, constantly berating him.
"Freeze! Don't move!", shouted an authoritative voice from behind their heads. Both stopped, and stood still, motionless. Nik slowly turned around, but was met by a blunt object to his forehead, that sent him plummeting to the ground, unconscious.
Jeff stood as he stared out into the open land, the he called his own. He was ignoring the work that had to be done, in effect of the three silhouetted figures creeping across his farm. Curiosity compelled him to stand still, and only observe. He wouldn't let himself show the first motion of hospitality to these people. He began to intensely study their figures and saw the one in front as a tall, lanky fellow, who kind of pranced as he walked. Not so much a skip as it seemed to be a flourish of excitement of some kind. The second one in line was just as lanky, but slightly shorter, with an afro-like hairstyle that nearly doubled the size of his head. Now the last figure showed a radically different stature. This one was short and stout, almost plump without being full-blown fat. The thing about this last character that sparked flames within Jeff's memory was perched upon his back, and he imagined it as a basket for arrows or such, but as the came nearer Jeff saw the familiar sight of white feathers and smiled.
"There he is", Jeff laughed. "About fucking time."
Jeff was a laconic man of average height, dark brown hair and an expression of either complete ennui or, one of complete joy. At the moment, his face remind stolid, as he peered across the land. When the figures came nearer, Jeff continued to remain still.
"Hey Cholphus.", Jeff uttered softly as the three figures came walking.
"Hey Jeff!", Cholphus giggled as he came to a halt in front him.
"Who's this, man?", Jeff asked with minor curiosity.
"This here is Kerns", Cholphus said as he pointed to him.
"Hello, sir." Kerns smiled
"Sup", Jeff muttered quickly, without the slightest expectation of a response. "And him?".
"Oh yeah, him!" Cholphus chuckled. "He's just some gypsy boy".
"Cholphus!" The Boy roared with anger, "What the hell!"
"Oh sorry!....just some ex-gypsy boy" Cholphus smiled.
"I was never a fucking gypsy!".
"Yeah, but your parents were!" Cholphus retaliated.
"That doesn't make me one! Wait...how the hell do you know that?". Cholphus deliberately ignored The Boy, and moved on to speak with Jeff.
"Think you could do me a favor, big guy?" he asked.
"Anything for you, bud" Jeff smiled. "What's the deal?"
"Well these two butt-heads really screwed themselves over, and they now need a place to hide from The King and his cronies. I thought about it for a fraction of second and came to your humble farm as my conclusion. Whaddia say?".
"Sure, why not.", Jeff nonchalantly responded, and turned towards the two refuges he had to give shelter to. "We'll have a grand time". After that, the four of them stood around in awkward silence which compelled all of them to speak, but all four stood with cluttered minds, unable to process a word to say, let alone a statement or question. The overall intensity of the moment broke all thought control, and their minds were put of a temporal freeze. Finally, The Boy came to his sense.
"So," The Boy cleared his throat. "Who are you?"
"The name's Jeff", he answered. "Fungal Colony Expert, or FCE for short."
"Let me take a wild guess", The Boy sighed, with uncurious lassitude. "You grow mushrooms?".
"Ha-ha, precisely.", Jeff said as he let out a hardly laugh, and suddenly stopped, as he stared out into the field. "Who's that?", he questioned as he directed his finger into the open space behind the boy.
"Looks like someone's been following us, looks nicely dressed." Cholphus observed. "So we're fucked essentially.". The Boy swiftly turned around to see who everyone was commenting about, and his heart immediately sank to a depth he had never experienced before.
"You imbecile!", The King shouted with raging hostility as he began to strike the soldier with the back of his hand. "You no-good piece of shit! A monkey could do your job and not let the two most wanted men in the kingdom escape, to run off and take even more innocent lives!". The soldier stood frightened to death, whilst cowering in fear from The King.
"Sir I'm deeply sorry...the devilish lout tricked me!".
"I have no pity for you!" The King growled. "You tricked me when you said you'd do a good job guarding prisoners, and look what happened you twit!". The soldier continued to cower and stare down, for he could not bare too look at The King in such a mood. Especially when the mood was on account of him!
"Degzano!" The King called out. With that yelp, the soldier began to fear for his life, as The Kings most trusted knight strolled in, and took place at The Kings side, as he stood grimacing at him.
"Sir?", Degzano smiled, while still looking at the soldier with malevolent eyes.
"Deal with this pathetic scum!", The King ferociously ordered and turned his back.
"Gladly.", Degzano said as he ordered his subordinates to aid him in grappling the folly soldier and dragging him off to his ultimate, inevitable demise. He was carried away, kicking and screaming like an unwilling young boy being carried to bed by his father. It was a piteous sight to see a young man cry in such a way. The tears streamed down his face like rain stained windows, with droplets of precipitation trickling down the window pane.
As the echoing sounds of the soldiers cries for mercy waned to an inaudible idea, The Kings anger waxed with great force, that the inhabitants of the room could understand due to the constant occurrence of his anger. However, this time was serious. They all knew that he knew that this could quite possibly jeopardize his claim to the crown. His seat of power was slowly losing it's shine, and the people of the Kingdom were beginning to have no respect for it. Murders were taking place, and the rumors of some band of truth crusaders sent shivers down The Kings spine
"Sir!", yelped the voice of an over-pressured servant, who came sprinting in, drenched in sweat. "The princess...she's gone!". The King dropped all anger with that one dreadful statement. He starred blankly about the room, observing all of the stolid faces of his knights and advisors. He opened his lips to speak.
"Get my fastest stead ready.", he muttered softly.
"So....here you are.", The Boy uttered slightly under his breath, with an irritated tone, hinting that he was not pleased with this outcome.
"Yes...here I am.", she replied nonchalantly. "I'm sorry for any trouble I may have caused you."
"Oh it's no trouble.", The Boy responded with sarcastic cynicism. "Getting thrown into jail for serenading the girl I love, then escaping and nearly getting captured by the most intimidating soldier in the land is what I live for."
"I get it, you're mad."
"Oh I'm not mad." he smiled back. "I'm fucking outraged! Why the hell did you follow us all the way out here.". A grave look slowly crept up upon The Boy's face.
"What's wrong?", Kerns questioned concernedly.
"Did they follow you?", The Boy asked of The Princess.
"Did who follow me?"
"You're fucking father and his Degzano crony!"
"No they didn't." she began to look skeptic of herself. "At least...I don't think they did.”
"Oh well that's great. That's real fucking great!" The Boy began to pace in circles throwing his arms in the air at every twist and turn in his speech. "We get thrown in jail by this ungrateful bitch, then we somehow manage to escape, and she follows us, potentially bringing the wrath of the crown on us again! How senseless can you be!"
"It's not my fault you jerk!", she cried out. "I only came to apologize!"
"Well you should of fucking thought about that, before you threw me in jail, for only trying to win your heart!"
"I'm sorry, okay!", she began to tear. "I'm sorry!"
"Sorry is not gonna change the fact that you did it! What are you unable to accept love or something!"
"It's hard for me.", she said as she began to wipe the tears from her eyes. "I've been fooled over in the past and I'm not ready to let someone into my life again!"
"What about The Prince?", Cholphus giggled.
"Wha....". The Princess stood in awe. "How do you know about that?!"
"That's not the proper question silly!", Cholphus smiled. "The question is, how could I not know that!"
"What the hell is this guys problem?", The Princess sighed.
"We haven't quite figured that out yet.", Kerns replied. Cholphus continued to giggle quietly to himself, covering his lips softly. The five stood in awkward silence, The Boy still angry, The Princess still quietly sobbing, Cholphus still giggling to himself like some idiot, Kerns still worried about his life, and Jeff, who stood there with a lazy, idle glaze over his lands, unaware of the argument taking place in front of him.
"Woah...what's going on here?", Jeff questioned, completely oblivious to everything. The four turned and starred into Jeff's stolid eyes, who somehow managed to stare right back into all eight eyes at the same time.
"What the fuck! How does this shit happen to us?", Nate yelled at the top of his lungs, completely ignoring the other prisoners in his cell.
"Maybe cause we cause more mischief than anyone in this god-forsaken place?", Nik replied with bitter sarcasm. The two had ended up in the same jail that had previously housed The Gypsy Boy and Kerns, but this time they had no hope of escape. The new guard was told to stand five meters away from the cell at all times, and if one of the prisoners even glared at him the wrong way, he was ordered to slit their throats. Havoc was being brought upon the entire kingdom. The entire idea of justice was now merely an idea, for it had no purpose in this world. The King had lost all will to run a country on proper terms, and found it necessary to kill all who defied him. He had already slain ten that day, for just talking about The Boy who caused so much trouble.
"This is what we get dude, this is what we get!", Nate continued to yell at an unnecessary volume that angered all in his cell.
"Shut the fuck up you goon!", one of the raggedy prisoners shouted, in an attempt to re-create some peace that had been stolen away from him when the two stentorian boys were dragged in, kicking and screaming.
"I don't have to take any lip from you!", he shouted back. "You're just a fucking criminal way past his prime. You couldn't steal cookies from Helen Keller!".
"Nate...just shut the fuck up already.", Nik sighed, in hopes that no more trouble could possibly be brought upon them.
"Thank-you.", the past his prime prisoner sighed.
"Don't think I'm doing this for you. I just can't handle it anymore. Besides he's right. You couldn't steal cookies from Helen Keller."
"Oh is that so!", roared the prisoner. "I bet I could steal more than you snot-nosed little punks could any day.". Both NiknNate laughed with great jocularity.
"Sounds like a challenge, don't it?", Nate squealed with delight. "I reckon this fat fuck thinks himself a thief!".
"Maybe he was.", Nik said with sympathetic sorrow. "But you have to face it bud. You are too old and deteriorated at this point.". The old prisoner stood up with a look of great determination plastered upon his mug.
"I'll show you!". He walked over to the bars, and began to harass the prison guard.
"Hey you!", he antagonized the guard. "You pig-brained, King's cock sucking tool!"
"Fuck off.", the guard nonchalantly responded, hardly noticing the berating prisoner.
"I refuse to fuck off, till you come here, you swine!"
"Not gonna happen.", the guard again sighed, unamused by this futile attempt of escape.
"I could knock you out just like the guard before you!", he further jibed the unwilling guard. In response, the guard got up, and slowly strode towards the ragged old man. "Yeah that's right, get you're scrawny ass over here, you dip-shitted, no-good...". At that moment, the prisoner cries of harassment were cut short, when the guard reached through the prison bars and swiftly cut his throat clean, and continued to watch the poor man drop to the floor holding his neck, with quarts of blood fountaining out between his fingers. The man slowly ceased to move, and lay dead on the floor. The guard smirked, and turned around to sit back at his post.
"Aren't you gonna take his body away or something?", Nik asked of the guard.
"Nope.", he responded, and continued to act uninterested in the prisoners.
"Shit man, we're fucked!", Nate distraughtly cried. The two sat in cold silence, listening to the guard sing to himself:
"Death comes like a thief in the night,
to steal while you sleep, your souls flickering light"
The Prince began to descend, falling rapidly through the files of time and space, carefully observing all that passed him with riveting curiosity for things he never noticed before. To his right was a pocket watch, that seemed to be linked to the waistcoat of an amorphous blob of silk that melted into nothing the second that The Prince took close notice. All around him were distinct sounds of things he never heard before. From far off, he heard the sound of something close to a gun-shot mixed with the clamor of rapiers clanking into each other. He searched desperately for the maker of the sound but it twas no where to be found, only heard.
From above, came crashing down a giant crown. It's thorny exterior came to him. and cut not only his flesh, but perforated his soul with such force that light from the heavens slowly diminished with each new empty space in his existence. He fell farther and farther into the abyss below him, that looked so ominous, and his mind felt inferior to his now ruined soul. His mind was independent from the body, and not as susceptible to pain as his soul was, and remained stolid while everything he called his own began to feel decrepit and useless. He himself was nothing but a mind, floating individually in the oblivion of a realm that made close to no sense to his untainted mind. His body and soul soon became foreign to him, as they slowly departed, drifting away sluggishly.
He was now alone. His sense began to flourish as images of purity and some sort of audacity flashed before and around him. He felt it inherit his soul and body, from far off, but left his mind alone in solitary confinement. Soon, the light from the heavens was there no longer and his mind was enclosed in darkness that tormented his thoughts with such malevolent force, that The Prince thought himself to be more at ease at the depths of hell than here.
The crown was still there, floating in the oblivion around him, spinning in a perpetual motion. It was coming closer. With every passing second, it was closer. His mind remained stationary, regardless of how desperately he wanted to move. However, he did not know how to move without his body. He grew up learning how to make one leg move in front of the other, and then following up with the other, but without legs how could he move. His parents never taught him how to move a mind on it's own. In fact, they never taught him how to move with a body! His parents were never there. He was taught by countless servants and loyal subject to his father. His father however, had always been too busy to occupy his time with such mundane tasks like teaching his only son, and inheritance to the crown, to walk. He wasn't there to teach him to talk either, and when he got those awful marks on his yearly exam, his father didn't stay up late by his desk, showing The Prince the proper ways to go about his arithmetic problem. No, he was not there, not even when the time came that puberty took control of his adolescent age, and his mind grew curious of the uncanny changes happening in his body. To this day, he was never told why his member grew hard at the sight of a beautiful female. The anatomy of both the male and female body was as alien to him as possible.
He desperately, yet unsuccessfully urged his way away from the incoming crown but it was utterly hopeless. The crown was now just feet away, and he sensed it now more than ever. Just as the crowns thorn was about to tear right through his naked mind, he was awoken by the sound of a crackling fire.
He shot up from under his cloth, breathing heavily with so much unidentified symbolism that his brain could not even begin to process it.
"Pass.", said a strange voice from beside him. As the Prince turned his head, he was greeted by Mavran, sitting upright with a nonchalant grimace plastered on his face.
"Pardon?", The Prince questioned puzzled, still half asleep.
"You pass", Mavran smiled. "Condratu-fucking-lations. And you should really read a book on anatomy", he joked as he laid his weary head to rest.