A rose and…a sword… I heard myself thinking. A rose insignia sword was pierced straight through in my chest. My vision was blurring, and I knew whoever had stabbed me successfully pierced an area where I wouldn’t survive long. I closed my eyes, ready and waiting for the darkness to take me...I’ve always hoped that one day I could get along with my sister…but I don’t think that will happen anymore.
“No!” I heard her scream, “You can’t leave me! Sister, you still have to explain!”
She held me up to her chest and although my vision was darkening, I could see tears falling as they hit my face. I reached up to touch her and smiled, my hand covered in blood smeared her beautiful face. Her silvery hair that was almost white touched my face. Her sad expression and face smeared with blood didn’t suit her. I shouldn’t have touched her…
“Shiro…” I tried to speak, “Find Ducere…he will…explain.”
I felt my vision go dark and my blood covered hand that caressed Shiro crashed onto the ground, darkness finally took me. Shiro cried and let out a loud, sad wail which seemed as though it would pierce the heavens. A pair of twins, Jack and Alistair, were badly hurt in the fight but stood nearby and had their heads down, heavy in silence. Shiro’s desperate cries rung through the Kingdom of Roses and a moment of silence between both factions, the Red and White Queens, final war, had ended…
Chapter 1: Hong’s Story - Traitor
Slash! The Red Demon had used her rose-insignia sword to pierce her enemies’ heart. Her face and body were covered in blood as more of the enemy soldiers started to run forward. Some of them we afraid to fight her, but did not want to lose to the Red Demon simply because of pride.
“Die, demon!” An enemy soldier lunged forward, but he was too slow.
Her cold, fearless eyes managed to pierce through his armor and slit him quite aggressively on the throat. She was silent, but deadly as she continued reigning down on her enemies.
Twenty, twenty-two, twenty-eight… She counted the number of victims that fell on her sword. The last one stood in fear and walked back into a tree. Thirty-two, she thought to herself as she ran towards him then almost seemingly disappeared. The enemy was taken by surprise and scanned around him before he felt cold steel run through his head. The Red Demon had struck him from above and he died instantly, falling heavily onto the ground. The Red Demon had killed most of the enemies sent to her by the Kingdom of Thorns. She heard a rustle nearby and quickly flicked her sword toward her own soldier. The blood from her blade splattered onto him from her fast movement, but he didn’t react.
“My Queen, the other soldiers have been taken care of.” A one-eyed boy, probably a few years older than her, bowed.
She held her pointed sword at him for a couple of seconds before placing her weapon, the Rose, back in its sheath. The Red Demon turned and started walking towards her castle, her soldier stalking behind her. They reached the castle within a half hour. Seems like the enemy has infiltrated further into our territory, she thought to herself. Something is off...
“The Red Queen has returned! Open the gates!” A watchman yelled at the top of his lungs.
The gates opened, and the Red Queen was home. It didn’t particularly feel like home since her own people were afraid of her. Several women rushed back into their homes and some of the men stared at her in pure awe. The blood she was covered in didn’t help since her fiery red hair and red eyes caught everyone’s attention, but maybe they were staring because they could not move their legs since they also feared her. Whispers among the kingdom’s streets started again as usual. Every time the queen was sent out with her soldiers to battle against the Thorn soldiers, she would be the last to return with her faithful servant, Jack. She continued walking down the street towards the entrance of the castle.
“Let’s go, child!” A mother noticed the queen and tried to usher her daughter away from the streets where she walked.
“But mommy! My balloon is in the tree,” she pouted.
“I’ll buy you a new one,” the fear in her eyes as the Red Queen drew closer were making her sweat.
The Red Queen stopped before them, “What seems to be the matter?”
The mother, probably around her mid-thirties, bowed and couldn’t look into the queen’s eyes. “Your majesty,” she gave a small curtsy which the queen was uncomfortable with, “my daughter’s balloon had flown into the tree when she wasn’t paying attention.”
The little girl had long black hair and large round eyes. Her face turned white as soon as she laid eyes on the queen and quickly grasped onto her mother. Her mother was clutching onto her dress, the folds of her nice dress were a bit wet from her sweaty hands. The Red Queen looked up and bent her knees before leaping into the air and grabbing the string from the balloon.
“Here,” she handed it to the girl, but she was too frightened to receive it, so she pushed it towards her mother. The mother's hands shook as she took the balloon from the queen. The balloon string was smeared with blood stains from the queen's earlier battle. The mother gasped and let go of the string, this time the balloon flew away for good.
I’m only making matters worse…I should leave before I make my subjects even more nervous.The Red Queen turned away from the woman and child and walked longer strides to avoid the people surrounding them. Jack followed behind as they both entered the castle. The soldiers that had returned were covered in bandages and were being treated by the best doctors. Some of the soldiers saluted their queen and the others just stared as she passed them.
“Jack,” she called, “investigate the board members and their servants. Something about my earlier battle doesn't seem right.”
Jack bowed and turned away from the queen. He was a man of little words, but that was mostly because of a trauma he suffered from. The queen had found him amid her battles with the Thorn soldiers. Jack, who was around 16 or 17 years old with dark brown eyes and light brown hair, was shackled to a tree by a Thorn soldier. The Red Queen took him home with her, even though she was around the same age as him, the war between the Kingdoms of Thorn and Rose had been ongoing since her father’s time.
As she had her servants clean Jack, they found that he suffered from amnesia and there was evidence of abuse. He ended up losing one of his eyes and had to cover it with an eye patch.Most likely abuse from the Thorn soldiers that camped there. The 15-year-old queen had patted him on the head and ended up taking him in. 5 years had passed since then and the war between Thorn and Rose was at a stalemate.
After jumping into the shower, bruises and scars were visible all over the queen’s body. There were several hidden scars on her own face, but these scars weren’t related to any of the battles with the Thorn soldiers. She closed her eyes and touched the scar behind her ear. There was a slight bump and a scar where she remembered…
“YOU’RE NOT MY DAUGHTER!” A figure screamed, “A DEMON! THAT’S WHAT YOU ARE! A DEMON!”
The Red Queen tried to forget about the past as she quickly turned off the water and dressed herself. She didn’t want the servants nearby to see her scars and give them more reason to fear her though she was also uncomfortable being around other people. After throwing on some fresh clothes, she placed her sword on the hilt and quickly walked to the throne room. Jack was waiting for her to return. Fast work as always, she thought.
“It’s as you’ve said your majesty,” he whispered into her ear the culprit’s name.
She stood in front of the royal seat, used her sheathed sword and brought it down loudly twice onto the ground. Bang, bang. She sat and waited. After several minutes of servants dashing about trying to locate all the board members of the royal palace, the board members gathered. The Red Queen’s loud double tapping from her sword was a signal for them to meet her in the throne room.
“Your majesty, Queen Hong, has requested an audience with the members of the Rose Board.” An announcer began before sitting near the queen to record the meeting event.
The members bowed or curtsied and stood still. Some of the members obviously were hoping she would have died in the battle and made a grimacing face. Not all of her subjects liked her, but it was something she could not waste her time on with an ongoing war with the next kingdom. The queen had seen this too many times and didn’t think much of it. If they wanted to kill her, why couldn’t they do it themselves? Probably because they want to be the next ruler, but they're afraid to do so. Hong had thought to herself. She stood from her royal seat and the board members flinched.
“The Kingdom of Thorns has infiltrated the borders,” she spoke loudly, “and managed to get close to the castle before they fell to my sword as well as my soldiers.”
Hong took several steps down from the royal seat and walked among the members. She could hear them holding their breaths as she looked at every single one of them. Some of them whispered amongst themselves, worrying about the Thorn soldiers as well as their lives if the Kingdom of Thorns were to step foot into the castle.
“As you all know, my father had desperately tried to thwart off the King of Thorns,” her steps echoing in the throne room, “Ever since his Royal Highness had passed, I have been doing my best to keep the Thorn Kingdom off our lands. I assume you all understand what the King of Thorns is like.”
A tyrant who craves war, women and money…A man not fit to be a King. Hong remembered her father’s struggles between their kingdom and Thorn’s.
“Evidently enough,” she stood in front of the board member, “someone has leaked information…Precious information that would have cost many of your lives.”
A seemingly young man that was dressed well stood perfectly still and tried not to look into Queen Hong’s eyes. His jet-black hair and eyes quivered and he dared not to look at the queen, but eventually locked eyes with her before crumbling onto the ground.
“PLEASE YOUR MAJESTY! IT WAS AN HONEST MISTAKE!”
Queen Hong ushered Jack to take the traitor and turned away from the board member, “Off with your head…” she said.
The other board members, shocked at Hong’s announcement of his oncoming death, continued to stay still. They heard his pleading cries and couldn't utter a word until he spoke as he was almost dragged out of the throne room.
He laughed hysterically, “YOU’LL PAY FOR THIS! DON’T THINK YOU’RE EVER SAFE QUEEN HONG, YOU RED DEMON!”
End of Chapter 1…………………………………………………………………………………...................
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