PART SIX: THE IMPOSTOR PRINCE
Ismead continued to stare at Thea unashamedly before turning to Alyan and observing him with a sneering, insolent expression on his face. “Nothing can make a pauper like you even close to resembling a true Prince,” he asserted arrogantly.
“Hold your tongue or I shall cut it out of your mouth,” the Commander threatened Ismead through gritted teeth.
“My, my how the tides have changed in Wintria. A few moments ago, you were ready to die for me and now you would have my tongue? Astonishing,”
“You are a fraud and shall be struck where you sit. The throne belongs only to the Prince of Wintria and you are clearly a fake,” the Commander countered.
“Now there’s just the thing, Commander Isha, who is the true Prince and who is a fake? Shall we examine the facts?”
“Talk is cheap. Remove your unworthy posterior from the throne of Wintria or have it removed for you,”
Ismead chuckled. “Is that right? And who shall unseat me from the throne? This pauper? Or perhaps you and your rag-tag bunch of misfits? Do you truly think that I am without my own defenses? For shame, Commander Isha. For shame!”
Alyan received his first vision as the Prince and had a split-second to react or Commander Isha was as good as dead. A warrior cloaked by an invisibility spell attacked Isha with deadly intent but Alyan’s quick non-verbal shield charm stopped the attack from even bringing so much as a scratch to the Commander. Alyan then muttered a spell that revealed all warriors present in the room under the invisibility spell. He was astonished to have known the spell instinctively having never learnt it before then.
“Only a coward uses such underhanded tactics,” Thea chastised him.
“Is that right, my love? I beg to differ… We must all do what we can to ensure that we survive and win,”
“You’ve sunk so low, Ismead,” Thea said angrily. Alyan’s firm and reassuring hand on her right shoulder calmed her down.
Ismead observed the gesture and immediately gave the order to kill Alyan and anyone who defended him. Alyan turned to face the warriors that threatened the Commander and her squadron and ordered them to stop using his naturally bestowed power of compulsion to reinforce the order.
The enemy warriors immediately froze in place like statues, compelled by the Prince’s order. He then turned to Ismead and said, “You have served your country well, Ismead but now it is my time. The throne belongs to me. I shall not humiliate you or seek to decrease your dignity. You shall remain a nobleman and shall lead a comfortable life. Do not insist on forcibly occupying my throne. Surrender peacefully and you shall have sagas written about your bravery and leadership.”
“What do you know about being a Prince? What right do you think you have to remove me from this throne? You weren’t here with them! You didn’t know them! Prince Stilbe was my father just as Protector Lilea was my mother. They raised me and I worked hard for this country- I was and still am a great prince. How dare you ask me to just give it up like that?”
“I know that you are a great prince and I know you loved my parents- of course you did, you grew up with them caring for you and loving you as their own but you cannot continue to live this falsehood of a life. I am sorry but the throne belongs to me by birthright. I can only hope to emulate your great example but I must take up this mantle whether I want it or not,”
“I could forgive your taking my throne as hard as it might be but I will never forgive you for taking my Thea away from me. I adore her and yet you have stolen her away from me. I would so happily forsake this throne if only for her loving embrace. I long for Thea’s heart and I would give up anything I have just for her,” Ismead said looking longingly at Thea who appeared unmoved by his revelation.
Alyan felt compassionate for Ismead’s plight. He knew that he’d be unable to let go of Thea himself if faced with such a difficult situation. He also knew that Ismead truly loved Thea. If only he could give Thea away; perhaps he could have taken up the throne without incident.
“Give her to me, Alyan, and I swear that I shall give you the throne back with no struggle- Alyan, I will swear my allegiance to you just- just give up on Thea for me,”
Thea turned to face Alyan. He smiled at her and then said, “I wish I could have such courage, Ismead, but Thea is the one thing I can never give up. I’m sorry. You shall not lose dignity if you willingly surrender- the women of Wintria all love you and you are certainly not without your charm. You shall surely find a mate befitting of all your love and affection,”
“I cannot love another woman. My heart belongs to Thea. She- she was mine first. She belongs with me,” Ismead professed. Thea sighed as she observed him remembering her relationship with him. He had been an ideal mate; romantic and caring. She had not lacked a thing and by his side and had been granted many privileges inaccessible to most people including nobles. She knew that he truly loved her and it broke her heart to see him in such a state.
“Thea, please come with me. The Prince can choose any other warrior to protect him. He can have any other woman he wants- please- please just come with me,”
“Ismead, I wish that I could turn away from my destiny but I cannot. Please understand. Please just surrender. Your heart will heal- it will adjust. Please just give in,”
Ismead nodded his head rapidly with his eyes twitching repeatedly. Ismead then spoke in a very low tone, so lowly did he speak that it was difficult to make out what he was saying if one did not listen keenly enough…
“I understand. Fate is a cruel mistress. Then I shall take my leave but before I do, Thea, know that I will always love you- nothing shall ever change that. Well, Prince Alyan, enjoy ruling your Kingdom in peace without my blasted interference,” he said bitterly before shutting his eyes and giving up his spirit, his lifeless, frozen corpse falling onto the ground with a large thud.
TO BE CONTINUED…
Looks like you made it to the end… Didn’t read previous entries? Fret not, let my fairy wand light the path to the previous parts of this story… Follow the paths and unlock the secret scrolls to the previous parts… Enjoy…