The familiar creak of the iron gates being opened reverberated through the still hours of the early morning in Avana. Horses trotted, entering the compounds of the castle and tugging along the fine carriage with heavy grunts.
It had been a long journey from the town of Mira to the kingdom but had been done for a meaningful purpose.
One of the knights of the castle approached the carriage with a stern expression on his face. They had not been informed of the presence of any visitors by the Prince yet had let them in due to the royal symbol engraved upon the wood of the chariot.
"May I ask what is your purpose of visiting the castle milady?" The knight asked firmly to the woman seated inside.
Her voice, soft as silk, answered, "Prince Alexander expects me. I am here upon his demand."
"Do you have any proof?" The knight requested politely.
A pale white hand elegantly stretched out a letter, and it looked crispy new - almost as if it was unopened. Containing the royal seal in the center, it read:
Invitation to the Palace of Avana
To: Lady Annalise of Mira
From: Prince Alexandar
With a slightly raised eyebrow of curiosity, the knight nodded and signaled to one of the others to report to the palace. The driver of the carriage gave a respectful bow, almost timidly, before opening up the door to the carriage and helping the lady out.