chapter 3 page 1-2Mature

Āo watched as her little sister slept peacefully atop a straw filled mattress. The sight filled her with peace and revulsion at the same time. She was at peace seeing her little sister with such a calm, happy expression on her face... the face she used to have when they were children. Seeing her soft, platinum blonde hair fall across her pale face.

                The revulsion came from the fact she was sleeping on a peasants bed. She’d even come to accept this as her lot in life. Alessa, the rightful queen of Albion, working her life away as a merchant’s daughter - it was sickening and it twisted in her heart and set her mind seething. The thought of that imposter sitting on the throne was unbearable to her.

                She would see him toppled and her sister fulfilling her birthright, she’d sworn that to herself long ago as a child. That oath had endured for eight years as she infiltrated the nobility, using her power to gain influence in the shadows and then using that influence to further her designs. Her sister had no idea of what she was doing... of what she planned to do. But that was because, as far as her little sister was concerned, she was an only child.

                Āo was only three years older than her sister, the product of a fling between the crown prince of Albion and a Seithr flux-weaver. Such a union was forbidden among the men of Albion but since humans and the Seithr were a different species they thought no-one would know. They thought that their night of passion would bear no fruit... but they had been very wrong.

                Āo should not have existed... she knew that. The chances of such a couple producing a child were astronomically low, but she did. Her mother told no-one save her who her father was. She had always been marked as weak by the other children but only she knew why.

                She never held a grudge against her father for never visiting. It was too dangerous for him. But when she was old enough she travelled to Albion, outside of her family’s ancestral home. By Seithr standards, this was when she was eight years old. Using every ounce of her power as a magician she stayed hidden, learning the art of spy craft from necessity, and watched.

                She watched her adorable little half-sister grow; she watched her father rule with kindness and her uncle, Eadred, stand by him in all things. It seemed he had felt for her father what she felt for her sister. So when the day came where she witnessed him pay the assassin that had her father murdered in his sleep, she felt the betrayal keenly... and she still bore it’s scars.

                Alessa was not her only sibling. As Āo had grown the old king had passed away, and the prince had ascended to the throne and his queen had given him several healthy children. All of them were murdered on the very same night. Only luck had allowed Āo to spirit Alessa away as the fire claimed the others. 

                With all of the heirs dead, Eadred was the only choice of monarch that the nobility had left. He was swiftly crowned and crushed anyone who opposed him. His rule had only slightly been tyrannical, though he was over keen to start slicing off pieces of other nations to add to his territory. He was neither benevolent or malicious but the fact to Āo was that he had murdered her siblings and usurped his sisters place. So, for her, only one thing remained – to see his head on a pike.                

The End

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