SCALES-11

"Oh hell no." I muttered under my breath.

THERE WERE NO OTHER OPTIONS, YOUR MAJESTY. THE KING REGENT HAS BEEN GIVING AWAY ALL OF THE ROYAL STEEDS.

"I think you mean royal STDs." Eversio sighed, before shrugging his shoulders, "It sure beats walking to the palace."

He walked to the horse's side, swinging his leg over it nimbly.

"Coming, recruit?" he asked, holding out his hand.

I looked at the horse again, carefully - at the pink and purple mane, the silvery white skin and the long horn protruding from its forehead.

"You expect me to sit on a unicorn?" I asked incredulously.

The horse turned to me and, to my shock, replied.

"I prefer the term purebred unicorn." he said in a deep bass voice, "And my name is Rocky."

"Um...hi Rocky." I said quickly, "I...hope I haven't...offended you?"

I was talking to a horse. A horse.

"I would feel right better if you let me take you to the palace." he replied, his strong British accent making it a bit harder for me to understand what he was saying.

"There," Eversio said, "You heard it straight from the horse's mouth."

I groaned but took Eversio's hand and made my way by some miracle onto Rocky's back.

"You nearly dislocated my wrist." Eversio complained, "What have you been eating?"

"I have heavy bones." I explained, "It comes with being tall."

YEAH RIGHT.

"Shut up Bob." 

Eversio turned Rocky around and flicked the reins, setting us off at a gallop down the dusty road.

To my surprise Rocky moved rather quickly and I had to secure my arms around Eversio's waist to keep from falling off.

DON'T GET TOO COMFORTABLE. Bob quickly commented, making me roll my eyes.

The landscape changed rapidly as we rode along, the horizon expanding until I could no longer see the stone walls or ceiling. A reddish light was cast over everything, like the fires of a perpetually setting sun. We passed burned fields, barren forests and herds of unnaturally large boars grazing the sparse ground.

We grew closer and closer to the dark spires in the distance, and whenever we passed someone on the road they would salute the prince by bringing both of their fists up against their chest to make an 'x'.

Maybe a few hours later we passed through an intimidating-looking drawbridge, and I shuddered to think what was swimming in the black ooze that filled the moat.

Eversio passed through the courtyard and hopped off of Rocky as we approached the doors, helping me off before handing the reins to who I presumed to be a stableboy.

We walked into the palace and I instantly felt my eyes widen. 

"No way."

The End

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