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Inside a large room, surrounding a grand round table, where ten men that included The King of Asadia, his two sons as well as the King’s advisors for the troubles that has been fallen the country since the start of the war.
“Your highness, The Bridge connecting the east village to the remaining sectors of the kingdom has been seized by the humans. A trade convoy has not been able to deliver the people of Esciba their food supply and other vital necessities for several days.” Head Advisor DaeJac paused for a moment before taking a deep breath. “In short, the people in Esciba will starve soon if we do not solve this dilemma with urgently.”
The room was quiet as everyone waited for the king’s response. Kenjara watched as his father took in the severity of DaeJac’s words. His eyebrows were drawn together as he massaged his chin. “Have the humans made any demands? Are they open for negotiations?”
“Other than—than the usual ca—call of surrender, no your majesty, they are not op—open to negotiations,” King Eanuu’s youngest advisor Trius responded nervously. He was the youngest advisor ever appointed to any king as well as the most easily rattled. It did not help him that his father was the head general of the army, General Midigain of Esciba. They hailed from the small town that was currently experiencing the greatest turmoil.
Kenjara found the contrasts between father and son to be very interesting. Trius was a short, medium build man with long scraggily dirty blonde hair and brown eyes that expressed his naivety. His father on the other hand was a large muscular man with short black hair, piercing blue eyes and an intimidating demeanor.
“Have they made any threats to the people of Esciba? Have they shared their plans for the village?”
“No, your majesty,” said DaeJac. “I believe we should send some of our men to the village to handle this situation quickly and quietly. We do not want the people of Asadia up in arms over this minute situation.”
There was a small grunt from Midigain. It was obvious that he didn’t take kindly to DaeJac calling his hometown’s situation minute. King Eanuu could see that he wanted to share his opinion with the other heads and the King himself was curious about what Midigain had to say. He was, after all, the most successful general that the people of Asadia had seen in over a century.
“What do you believe we should do, Midigain? This is your area of expertise.”
“I agree with DaeJac. We should send a small team of our best warriors, regain control of Esciba and those who dare threaten us should be brought to Mador prison where they will be interrogated for information of the humans’ next plans of action.”
“I disagree, that plan is premature. We do not know how many humans reside in Esciba or what weapons they are equipped with,” Kenjara interrupted. “It’s obvious to me that the weapon that they have in their possession is quite powerful, powerful enough that the village people are not able to protect themselves against the humans.”
“Do you not have faith in the soldiers of Asadia?” questioned Midigain.
“That is not the case. I have all the faith in the world in the men that fight in the name of Asadia. I do not, however, under estimate my enemies. That is a very dangerous way of thinking.”
“It’s even more dangerous to overestimate an enemy. We know that the humans have no strength. So wiping them out should be relatively easy.”
“Exactly, so why aren’t the villagers able to rid those vile creatures themselves? The people of Esciba also have demonic power, perhaps not as great as ours,” Kenjara conceded, “But enough to defend themselves from such an attack.”
“And what do you believe we should do young highness?” Midigain asked mockingly. Kenjara ignored the man’s rude behavior and spoke to the other men around the round table.
“We should first infiltrate the besieged village to see how the people of Esciba are wavering. The soldiers on this mission should also ascertain the number of humans inside the village as well as what weapons they are using. With the help of Tiraz, the humans could be equal in strength to us. We should not take any chances.”
“It seems that your son will be a fine ruler, your majesty. He has the wisdom of his ancestors and your eldest son has the strength of many warriors. You have done a grand job with these two,” The eldest and most respected member of King Eanuu’s top advisors. Cijol was born before the war started. He was very tall with long white hair and an equally long beard. He dressed in old Asadian attire that consisted of a modest white gown and robe.
Cijol was also one of a few Asadians that knew what it was like to live in a world of peace. It made him one of the most important people in the world, not because of his age and wisdom but because his memories of Asadia’s golden years gave the people hope that peace could once again reign over Asadia’s lands.
“We thank you Cijol for your kind words and I agree with you Kenjara. Your approach is exactly what I had in mind therefore we will send our best infiltration unit to Esciba tomorrow morning and they are expected to report back to us by the end of tomorrow night, Midigain. You all are dismissed.”
“Yes, Your Majesty.” Midigain said reluctantly before giving a bow and exiting the room with the other men. King Eanuu waited until everyone had exited the room, except for his two sons, to address Kenjara’s issue with his mate. No one knew about his son’s unmated status except for a few trusted palace workers and he did not want to compromise things by allowing more people into the equation. Belonoth closed the door behind Midigain before turning his attention to his father who kind expression had turned to one of worry.
“How is your mate Kenjara? I was informed that she fainted upon her arrival to the castle.”
“Yes, I am afraid that the excitement of our run in with Tiraz was too much for her. She is doing well, according to the castle physician.”
“That is grand news.” The king said as he stood from his seat and went to meet his two sons by the door, “When will you mate her? The times are growing more dangerous and we cannot have you fighting unmated. You and your mate’s life will be in danger otherwise.”
“I am aware Father and I do intend to complete the mating ritual as soon as possible but I cannot do that until she agrees to and that will take time.”
“I understand son but time is of the upmost importance.” The king sighed when his son nodded his head in understanding. “You should go see your mate now.”
“Yes father.” Kenjara gave a short bow before exiting the room.
The king turned his attention to his first born who had been quiet as usual. Belonoth has always been a man of a few words. “How has your mate, Princess Maelya, been doing? I have not seen her for sometime now.”
“She is fine father. She had been busy caring for the people in the village. She has become fascinated with the orphanage in the center of town for the children that has lost there parents during this war.”
“It seems that she is ready to birth children.” The king knew the signs when a woman was ready to have children. One of them was immersing herself with the young people to feel the void while they waited for one of their own.
“Yes. She had made her intentions clear. I, however, do not believe that it is the right time to bring children into this world. It is far too dangerous. Neither her nor I will be able to care for the child properly.”
“Maelya seems more than capable to handle a child but I do agree. A child born during such turmoil is not for the best but I do believe that your mother will disagree.”
“Mother will understand. She did not want Kenjara and I involved in this war.”
“But she also wanted both of you around. She was experiencing a great pain and longing for children and believed that both of you brought happiness into the castle at a time when there was none and surprisingly, you did. You should think about this adequately before making a decision. Remember that this will not only affect you but your mate as well.”
“Yes father. I will give the situation more thought before making a final decision. I do not wish to upset my mate but I will do what I believe is best.”
“Good, then we should meet your mother in the dinning hall for breakfast.”
Belonoth nodded in agreement before following his father out of the room and into the corridor that led to his awaiting mother.
The intense sunlight woke Jennifer from her sleep. She opened her eyes before closing it abruptly, blinded by the light. She thought back to what she thought was a dream and laughed a bit when she thought how ridiculous it was. “Demons, magic, superhuman strength? What did I drink last night?” She said to herself. She rubbed her eyes before stretching her hands over her head. When she finally opened her eyes she let out a loud scream when she saw an older looking gentleman at her bedside starring at her curiously.
“Who are you?” She asked as she pulled the bed covers over her body but stopped when she realized that she wasn’t in her night gown but in the clothes that she wore the previous night. She looked around the room and realized that she wasn’t in her home either. Everything seemed to be very expensive, far more than the amount of money she made at The Lounge, and the room was decorated in a medieval theme. “Where am I?”
The older man ignored her questions before walking out the room and closing the large double door behind him. Jennifer quickly got out of the bed and ran to the large oak doors after the man. She was terrified, thinking that she had been kidnapped. Jennifer didn’t know where she was or who she was with, or what they intentions were. She leaned against the door and heard the man’s foot steps getting further away. She placed her hand on the golden door knob that resided inside of a lion’s mouth. She wasn’t surprised when the door didn’t budge when she pushed it. What gave her a scare was the warning growl that came from the two tiny lion heads.
Jennifer yanked her hand away from the door before slowly backing away the animated door knobs. She ran in the opposite direction towards the stone arching window. She looked outside and was immediately hit with a large gust of wind. She was several stories above the ground; she couldn’t even see the ground, just a whole bunch of fog and clouds.
“What is going on? Where am I?”
“You are in Asadia madam, the greatest kingdom in the entire world.” A distinguished voice said from behind her. Jennifer turned around slowly before shrieking loudly. The creature before her was small and goblin-like with gray skin and a skinny body. Its ears twitched in different directions as it stared at her with its large black eyes. Its boney hand massaged the other as it smiled, baring it’s sharpened teeth. Jennifer suddenly began to feel dizzy and quickly sat on the bed. The creature’s smile became wider which only struck more fear in her heart.
“You’re not going to eat me are you?” She asked attentively. She spotted a coat of arms that had two swords mounted beside it. She was ready to make a made dash if she did not like its answer. The creature followed her eyes to the swords and quickly shook its head no.
“I am not going to harm you, Your Grace, I am merely a castle gorfain sent here to ensure your safety.”
“A hybrid of a gnome and goblin.” The gorfain explained. “My name is Maiandingeir.”
“Can I call you Maian?” Jennifer asked after trying to sound out the name several times. The gorfain nodded its consent. “Are you a male or female?”
“MALE!” Maian shouted, insulted by the question.
Jennifer covered her ears to protect them from the high pitch sound.”Alright, there is no need to shout,” Jennifer said after it was safe to lower her hands.
The creature looked shocked by its own response before scurrying over to Jennifer. He quickly got on his knees and tried kissing Jennifer’s feet. She backed away and lifted her feet onto the bed. The gorfain looked like it was about to follow but stopped as soon as his hand touched the mattress. “Please forgive me, Your Grace. I do not know what had come over me.”
“It’s alright, just don’t shout again.”
“Yes, Your Grace.”
“What is this place again? I never knew such a place existed.” Jennifer said as she turned around to look out the window as something caught her eye. The scaly body was quite large. She could only distinguish large black wings, reminiscent to a bat’s. A loud growl followed by a feeling of intense heat was enough for Jennifer to decide that the creature outside the window was a dragon. “This place is right out of a fairytale. I must be dreaming.”
“You wouldn’t know about this place because you are not of this world which is the same for many of the people from here. Very few people have been granted the knowledge of multiple dimensions as a way to protect impure minded beings from trying to dominate another realm.” Maian explained. “The Allos family has protected Asadia for many generations but I fear that this war has become too much for King Eanuu to handle. The threat from the humans has become too great.”
“What are you talking about? What war?” Jennifer felt her stomach drop. The only thing that she could imagine that was worse than being trapped in a foreign land was if the foreign land was in the middle of a war.
“The war that has been waging for thousands of years, Your Grace.”
“Why do you keep calling me ‘Your Grace’? I’m not royalty.”
“You are the prince’s mate; therefore you are a princess of Asadia.”
“I hate to burst your bubble but I’m no prince’s mate. I don’t even know a prince. So why don’t you let me out of here?”
Maian tilted his head to the side curiously before he squint his eyes in confusion. “But the Prince brought you here himself. These are his chambers.”
“Look, Maian, I don’t know a prince from Adam so let me out of here, huh?
“I’m sorry your highness but I am under strict orders not to allow you to leave this room until the prince returns.”
“Look here you little—”
“Maiandingeir, what are you doing here?” A calm, soothing voice interrupted the start of Jennifer’s threat.
She looked in the direction of its origin and was surprised to see the man that was at the club the previous night except he was dressed in a black suit and white shirt. The light blue tie around his neck brought out his gorgeous baby blue eyes that sparked in the sunlight. Jennifer thought he looked very handsome.
“I asked Tasaneth to look after her until I return.”
“Yes, Your Highness. Tasaneth asked me to take over for him while he returned to his household duties. He said that since the princess is awake—”
Kenjara tuned out the gorfain and looked at his mate that was staring at him with a mixture of fear and curiosity. She looked just as beautiful as she did the previous night. He turned his attention back Maiandingeir who was still rambling on. “It is alright, Maiandingeir. You may leave.”
“Yes, Your highness.” The gorfain bowed before making a quick escape.
Jennifer did not know whether or not to be relieved at the presence of a familiar face or terrified. The sight of a human was nice but this was the same human that kidnapped her and brought her to this strange place. She decided to be scared when the prince began moving towards her. “Don’t come any closer. I know self defense,” She warned.
“I will not hurt you. I could never bring you harm. You are, after all, my mate.”
“I don’t even know you.”
“There is no need to,” Kenjara tried to explain; “We were destined for each other the moment we were born.”
“Don’t give me that crap.” Jennifer stood off the bed and made her way to the coat of arms. The guy was very attractive but he also was crazy and she knew that she would most likely have to fight her way out. “Look, I don’t know who you are or what this place is or if this is even real but get me out of here.”
“You are in Asadia—”
“I’ve heard that from Maian.”
“Maian?” Kenjara asked in confusion.
“The goblin look-a -like that just left and I think that you all are crazy or rather I’m crazy for seeing a goblin look-a-like,” Jennifer said as an afterthought. She looked past Kenjara and saw what looked to be a fairy fly by, she started hyperventilating. “Oh my god, I am crazy.”
“Calm down, love.”
“Do not call me that!” Jennifer shouted she made a mad dash towards the opened door but Kenjara caught her easily. She struggled for a while but soon began to relax. Jennifer didn’t know if it was because she was tired or from the warmth that seemed to flow out of Kenjara and into her. She laid her head on his chest slowly as Kenjara began rubbing her back soothing. He tried to calm her down through their connection by sending her small bursts of energy.
“Everything is well, my love. So do not worry yourself. No one will hurt.” Jennifer only nodded and continued to rest in Kenjara’s arms. She didn’t know how long they had been in that position with her hands lying lightly on his shoulders and his arms lying lightly on her back and her waist. She felt herself slowly drifting to sleep and just when she was about to Kenjara released his hold onto her.
“What are you doing?” Jennifer tried to hold onto Kenjara but he pulled her hands away and sat on the bed. Now that she was calm he thought it would be the best time to speak to her. If he waited until after the affects wore off then he may never get the chance again.
“I would like to speak to you.”
“You are my mate.”
“Yes.” Kenjara said as he took a seat next to Jennifer. “You and I were meant to be together. It is our destiny. As my mate you will be my better half, the other part of me that makes me whole.”
“It sounds like you are asking me to be your wife.”
“You could call a mate that except it is much more. I will be sharing my life with you and you with me. If you feel pain, I will feel pain. If you cry, I will feel your sadness, and if you smile I will feel your happiness and vice versa.”
“That sounds nice.” Jennifer said with a smile. She swayed a bit as the feeling of sleepiness was coming over her. Kenjara started to work quickly. He grasped Jennifer’s shoulders and forced her to look into his eyes. He hated to take advantage of her weakened state but he had no choice. His mate had become hysterical at the mere thought.
“I’m glad you like the idea because we will have to start the bonding process as soon as possible all you have to do is promise me that you will follow through on this no matter what. A person’s promise in Asadia is a binding contract.”
“I promise.” She mumbled before succumbing to the darkness.