In the land of Alister, there are two warring countries. When Princess Ashelia's brother dies, she takes his identity as to make his dream come true. But what happens when she get's caught into the enemy's army, and falls in love with Lucas, who is the general, and Prince, of the country she is supposed to hate?


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Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Chapter Two

For not of eternal sorrow, we bring all to honor this blessed life. To the life of the world to come, we pray for the wings of joy to fly you there. The tears will wash away the physical remembrance of you, but the memories will forever remain. May you rest in peace.
            Ashelia watched almost dully as they lowered the empty coffin into the ground. Only important things of hers were brought into there, and a picture of her; picture portraying her smiling, though she recalled how she was practically forced to feign happiness at that time.
            No, she thought, I’m forced to feign happiness all the time.
            And now I am Aeson.
            The ceremony ended in tears, though she wasn’t sure if they were real or not. The people there, she hardly knew. They were nobles, coming only for the publicity. The wives of the Lords of their world Alister would gain pity and rank through tears of sorrow during a funeral of a princess.
            No one was really crying there.
            “Aeson, my brother.”
            Ashelia turned to face the voice after stopping from wandering around the Marcel Garden. Her older brother of one year stood there, his silver hair shining from the sun above. He wore the traditional prince attire, though his was more extravagant than of her brother’s, which she was wearing. It was a blue embroidered tunic, made of the finest material in the world, with gold embroidery. He wore his cape over his shoulder, and his sword’s hilt gleamed at his side.
            “Spiridon,” Aeson bowed. “Good brother. Kind of you to come.”
            Spiridon raised a brow, a little shocked. “But of course! It is only natural to come to the ceremony of my little sister’s death! Though I must admit, it must be harder for you by a thousand fold. You two were always together, being twins and all.”
            Aeson bowed again.
            “I was surprised though. I heard that Ashelia was recovering quite nicely from the sickness…yet you are the one standing before me here right now.”
            “I am nothing but lucky,” Aeson said.
            Spiridon nodded. “Indeed you are. But I would have to say, go rest and eat. You have become more slender in appearance since last time I have seen you. Is it from the sickness also?”
            “The illness we had made it hard to eat,” Aeson answered.
            “Ah,” Spiridon nodded in understanding. “I see.” He started to turn around and walk away, but he paused for a moment and looked back over his shoulder. “I am sorry though, that father couldn’t come. He really wanted to.”
            Doubt filled Aeson, bitterness following soon after. “I understand,” he said to him as his brother started to walk away again.

            Sleep was impossible for her that night. She lay awake under the moonlight shining through the window, sorrow hiding in every thought she had.
            Her brother, dead.
            It seemed too horrible to be true, and she found herself in slight denial at first, but the realization hit her every time she tried to fall into sleep. The moment she tries to clear her head to rest, everything came back to her.
            There were so many things she had planned for her and her brother. After Aeson completes his dreams, they had planned to leave their family, leave their royal blood, and run away from everything.
            Everything they had lived for. The things her father had done, and the things he planned to do were too much for them. They knew their father didn’t think anything of them but a burden, and they knew he wouldn’t mind if they just suddenly disappeared.
            So many things had gone wrong.
            And now he’s dead.
            “Tomorrow,” said Tyrus, his expression a little worried. “You leave tomorrow.”
            Aeson picked at the food in front of him. “Such short notice for this,” he murmured.
            “Your father, King Ezio, had ordered it,” said Tyrus.
            “But that is ridiculous!” exclaimed Stephen, rising out of his chair. “Sending a boy out into the army; what’s the King thinking? Sending his son out like that!”
            “It’s to train him,” murmured Tyrus calmly, though Aeson could sense the worry inside him. “War among the Serennio and the Camuilla are rising. Battles are sprouting up more often, becoming more violent on top of that. Aeson needs to learn how to defend himself.
            Stephen stared at the man, disbelief in his face. “But Tyrus!”
            “You are still young, Stephen,” stated Tyrus flatly. “You do not know the rules of the world yet. You have only just become one of the Royal Guard. You do not know what it entirely means yet.”
            Stephen scowled at him, “I know what it means. To be a Royal Guard is to protect the royal you are assigned to! We are to protect Prince Aeson with our lives! Sending him out to war is only putting him in danger!”
            “And what,” scowled Tyrus. “Does letting Aeson have no skill to defend himself do for him?”
            Stephen froze, his fingers slowly releasing the grip on the table he has had.
            “He’s not a kid anymore,” murmured Tyrus. “You are eighteen now, Aeson, correct?”
            Aeson looked up at him, his expression void. “Correct. I turned eighteen…on that night.”

            “Aeson,” called Nicia, quietly, as she walked cautiously through the shadows of the bookshelves and pillars around them.
            Aeson stepped out of the dark shadows in the corner of the vacant library, expression full of dread. He didn’t dare look at her.
            Nicia saw him, and nearly exploded into tears as she ran to him, her heart leaping with relief.
            “Aeson, my love—” Nicia froze as she got a better look at him. The features were there, she knew; the distinctive shining silver hair, the hazel eyes. But the features were all too soft.
            “Ashelia…” she uttered the words while realizing what everything meant. The truth rising out just as her heart started to pound faster and faster, the tears falling down. “Aeson…he’s dead.”
            Ashelia looked at her, sorrow rising out as tears also started to fall from her own cheek. “Nicia, I’m so sorry,” she cried softly, her hands balling into fists from the pain and frustration she felt. “I tried so hard to save him, but I couldn’t. I’m so sorry!”
            Nicia ran over to Ashelia, embracing her into a tight hug. “It’s okay,” she murmured softly. “You having known all this time…it is a little bit of a relief.”
            Ashelia continued to cry on her shoulder, feeling Nicia’s own tears falling down. “My dear brother and my best friend. I would not be worthy to be called a true friend if I could not simply tell.”
            Nicia squeezed her tighter. “And you never said a word.”
            “You are a servant of this castle. You and your family serve my father. How could I possible take the risk of having you two separated by a careless utter about this?”
            Nicia calmed herself down, knowing her troubles were far too small compared to that of Ashelia’s as of now. She pulled away, forcing Ashelia to face her, eye to eye. “Ashelia. Do you know the risk of taking your brother’s identity like this?”
            “I need to,” she stated strongly, determined.
            Nicia looked at her, then reached back to take the clip in her hair, causing the long blonde waves to fall down around her. She held it up in front of Ashelia.
            “This is my good luck charm,” Nicia said, holding up clip with the pink and white crystals and diamonds spread around in shape of a flower. “I am entrusting it to you.”
            Ashelia stared at her. “Do not joke with me, Nicia! I can’t take this!”
            “You can,” corrected Nicia. “And you will.”
            “You made this yourself, have you not? With your own hand, and the diamonds and crystals you had bought from your own workings?”
            “Yes,” said Nicia, her expression serious. “And it is now yours.”
            Ashelia shook her head, backing away. “I cannot take this.”
            Nicia sighed. “You are leaving tomorrow, correct?”
            Ashelia slowly nodded. Nicia looked at her with concern. “Do you plan to stay as Aeson—” Nicia paused, clearing her throat as it cracked from saying his name. “—for the rest of your life?”
            Ashelia averted her eyes, looking at the ground. “If that’s what it takes.”
            Nicia stepped closer to her again, holding up the clip. “Being a boy for the rest of your life…you will need this to remind yourself of who you really are. Please, Ashelia, take it.”
            Ashelia stared at her, disbelieving.
            “A last request from your brother’s secret lover… and your best friend. I beg of you, please take it.”
            Ashelia shook her head in disapproval, but she took the clip in her hands.
            Nicia nodded in satisfaction and looked out the window of the library. The moon was high up in the sky, yet she knew dawn was to break soon.
            “You leave at dawn, I heard,” Nicia murmured. She looked back at Ashelia and drew her into another tight hug. “I am sorry, but I believe this might be the last time we see each other, my Ashelia. Take your rest, for your life will become more difficult a millions fold.”
            Nicia drew away, and the tears that flowed calmly down Nicia’s face made Ashelia to start crying again. Nicia softly laughed sadly, wiping away the tears from Ashelia’s cheeks. “Know this, Ashelia. Stop crying, for if you want to be successful in being Aeson, you have to let go of yourself.”
            “And completely become him,” she nodded. “I know.”
            “No,” Nicia corrected, drawing back and towards the door. “In outward appearance, yes. Your reactions, like your tears, in front of people, yes. But please, inside, never let go of yourself.”
            Ashelia nodded, and watched Nicia go, long blonde hair, blue eyes, ragged servant clothe and all.

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