Wednesday, December 23, 2009

An Awakening

It was like staring at the same scene for hours, and suddenly realizing that you were seeing a different viewpoint.

His eyes focused on... a ceiling?... the broad beams spanning the stone ceiling of a place deep underground.

My, my, he thought. What have you gotten yourself into now?

Like early morning sleep shaking off, the Prince found he could move.  But he didn't.  He rolled his eyes to each side as far as he could.  There was someone on his left, but he couldn't focus enough to see who.  He returned his eyes to center and listened.

Water dripped on stone somewhere nearby... a whisper of feet somewhere behind him.  He froze back into the posture and expression he formerly held.

A face loomed over his... upside down.  The Prince forced his eyes not to automatically snap up toward it.  He relied on perepheal vision to take in what was offered.

Blonde hair... fixed, icy eyes... and a subtle breath on his face.  She examined him closely, and slapped him.  He let his head slightly rock from the blow, but showed no response... especially as realization dawned.

Ariya Thule.

Ariya withdrew from his field of vision and moved to his left.  The Prince sensed her checking who ever was there... another slap.  After a minute, she quietly stepped away.  The Prince heard a door open and close.

He waited... for no other reason than in case she was waiting.  After five minutes, he thought, he became convinced she was gone.  He slowly turned his head to the left.

He was on a platform of sorts... wide enough to accommodate his frame.  Roughly three feet to his left was another platform occupied by someone.  The Prince focused his eyes in the gloom.


The magician didn't move.  He stared straight up at the ceiling, unblinking and with no expression as if he were waiting for something to appear.

The Prince decided to take the next obvious move.  He eased up from his place of rest and quickly looked behind him.

A single door stood roughly ten feet back.  Torches lined the walls, sputtering down but still enough to reveal the contents of the room.  Tables lined the walls and were covered with odd glass objects, pewter and assorted other things he didn't recognize.  His scan of the room showed another resting platform on the other side of Arbiddance, but it was empty.

No other exits.  Except...

He raised up a little more to pay attention to a wall hanging.  With one more glance at the door, the Prince placed his feet on the floor and slowly moved toward the hanging.  He carefully lifted it and gazed behind to find a passageway.

He quickly moved back to Arbiddance and looked down on the impassive face.  He snapped his fingers lightly... touched the bearded face.  No response.

"Sorry, friend..." he whispered. "Nothing I can do for you.  That blonde bitch is loose again, and I need a weapon, so off I go and I'll try to come back for you as soon as possible."  He eased off, leaned back and grinned down. "But only if you promise to be good while I'm away."

And behind the tapestry he disappeared.

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