United States

* 15 years old *
* Human *
* Cat lover *
* Writer *
* Reader *

" We don't meet people by accident. Everyone is meant to cross our paths for a reason."

Have you crossed paths with me? It must be fate!!

Message to Readers

I wrote this last year and just edited it. Hope you enjoy! :)

The Lost Princess

February 28, 2019


Prologue-10 years ago-Callestancia Castle
It was a dark and stormy night. Rain beat against the windows, streaming down in little streaks. A girl sat on her bed with the covers pulled high overhead, a small Pomeranian dog next to her. She shivered back and forth, her long brown hair swaying. There she cowered, unable to get out and warn the others. She felt paralyzed.
    There was a quiet creak of a door opening. She pulled the covers higher. She heard footsteps climbing up the stairs. Creeping closer. They were here. Her father had been right.
    Now they were in the hallway. She heard the sound of a sword being unsheathed as well as a few whispers. The footsteps went to the end of the hallway.
    There was a sudden shriek and the sound of a sword being swung, waking everyone up and creating chaos. The guards that hadn't been ambushed realized that the castle was under attack. Some ran to the aid of the king and queen, trying to protect them against the heavily armed attackers. Maids and staff that were unarmed were scurrying away from the attackers while there was a lot of shouting and running.
    Suddenly the girl's door flew open and a man appeared in the doorway. The girl peeked from under her covers and realized who the man was. She flung away the covers and sprinted towards him. He scooped her up in his arms and ran into the hallway, her dog following behind.
    He ran, with her still in his arms until he reached a door. He threw it open stepping inside the room.
    It was a simple closet, or so it seemed. Just a maid's closet holding cleaning supplies.
He stepped inside, shutting the door behind him. He removed one of the cleaners on the shelf which revealed a lever. He hurriedly pulled it down and the shelf swung open, showing a hidden staircase that led into darkness.
The little girl gaped silently at it in surprise. She had never known that the castle had secrets like this.
    The man lit a match and used it to light a lantern that was hanging from a hook on the wall in the maids closet. Then he shut the secret door and hurried down the staircase, still holding the girl. The dog followed loyally behind.
    They walked for five minutes in the underground tunnel that the staircase had led into. Then, at last, they reached their destination. The girl looked in front of her at the door as the man put his hand on the wall and pushed hard, opening the thick wood door.
    The man pushed the door open farther and walked inside. He shut the door and locked all the latches on it to keep out the enemy. Then he set the girl down on the bed and lit the torches on the walls of the small room.
    Looking around the room, the girl saw that the room was very simple with only two beds, a chair, a carpet, and a cabinet. She looked over at the man and saw that he was looking through a small peephole in the door. The man felt her staring at him so he turned around. "They'll be okay," he told her, "They've got guards to keep them safe. If they don't come to this safe house they will surely make it to the other."
    The girl knew that the man was talking about. Her brothers Prince Michael, Prince James, and Prince Thomas. She nodded at him, although she was unsure if this was true. With a sigh she lay back on her bed and fell asleep, holding her dog close.
    The girl awoke several hours later to the sound of more footsteps. She sat up, frightened by the sound. The man, who was also her guard, stood up and looked through the peephole. He looked at her alarmed, and she knew that they had been found.
    Her guard ran to the back of the room and moved the cabinet aside, revealing a small hole in the wall. The man pushed the girl through it and went in behind her.
    The passageway was very small so they had to crawl. They went with the girl in the front, her dog behind her, then her guard.
    They had been crawling for several minutes when they heard shouts in the passages behind them. They doubled their speed if that was possible as they reached the end of the passageway. The girl pushed on the wall and it gave way into a big meeting room.
    The girl looked around in amazement at the room they were in. It was the King's Council meeting building, Hellet Hall. She had never known that one of the underground passages went here. She didn't have much time to think about this though since within seconds of arriving they departed.
    After that though she forgot which way they went. They ran for a while and eventually lost their pursuers. Then, once the guard decided they were safe, he started to walk. She fell asleep in his arms, since at the time she was only five, as they walked to safety and their new life.
Chapter 1
An Evil Plan
    "Leo?" Nikki shouted as she ran up the stairs, "Leo, where are you?" She was getting more worried now since she couldn't find him in his usual hiding places. Then she heard a quiet "woof" from the pantry. With a groan she opened up the pantry door to find Leo on the floor, staring at her with a box of dog treats at his feet.
    "Darn you, you smart little rascal," Nikki sighed, giving the dog a scratch on the head. She began to clean up Leo's mess when she noticed someone standing behind her.
    "Leo," the man said with a sigh, "When will he learn that too many doggie treats are bad for him?" the man said the last part in a cooing voice since he loved the dog just as much as Nikki did.
    "Do you think he'll ever learn, George?" she asked but the man who just shook his head.
    "Don't worry. I'll clean this up," George said, shooing Nikki away. She scurried out the door, pulling Leo with her. She continued to talk to him, setting him down on the couch and petting him. Several minutes later she was reading a book when she heard a knock on the door. She ran and opened it up to find two men in black tuxedos standing on the front porch.
    "Can we talk to Mr. Weinington?" one of them with slick black hair and a briefcase said. Nikki gave them a quizzical look before running back into the kitchen to get George.
    He had just finished sweeping up the last of the crumbs and looked at her in surprise. "Yes?" he asked Nikki.
    "Um. These weird men in fancy suits are here to see you," she told him in an odd voice. "What are they here for?"
    "To see me. Go to your room and stay there until I tell you to come out. I need to talk to these men in private. Okay?" he told her firmly. She nodded and hurried up the stairs. She sat on her bed for a few minutes, realizing that she had left her book downstairs. She got up to retrieve it but wavered. It seemed like they were discussing something he didn't want her to hear for some reason.
Finally, she couldn't take it any longer. Nikki knew she had to find a way to listen to the conversation and had a perfect idea. She put her hand up to her ear where her small hearing aid was. She smiled as she twisted the knob, increasing her hearing range. Then she snuck over to her door, putting her ear against it. This was one of her favorite tricks to hear conversations; luckily George didn't know she could do this.
    "We can finally have the people's trust," Nikki heard George whisper. "All we have to do is bring her back to Callestancia. We'll pretend to have the Turves back down, put her on the throne, and I will tell her what to do and how to rule Callestancia. The people hate the Turves and don't trust them. But if we bring the real princess back to them they will be very happy."
    Then she heard the voice of the tuxedo guy with black hair. "In order to take over the countries though she'll need some help. We will have to help her. It will be like she's the puppet and we are the puppet masters. We will control her, make her do what we say."
    "Sounds good. But what we're here for is when right?" She heard George say. "She's trained in sword fighting and is pretty good at it. She knows about the history of Callestancia, Frenendale, Jungbusch, Snudle, and a bit about Angurl, Qurple, and Gukinvile. I think she's pretty ready."
    Now the other guy started speaking. "We can do it tonight if you'd like. We have a carriage waiting right outside that will fit both you and the princess. But the sooner, the better."
    "There is only one thing I ask," George replied, "I know that this could be risky, but no matter what happens I want your oath that you will keep her alive."
    There was silence for several seconds before the guy answered. "We can't ensure that, but we will try our best to make sure she lives," the man told George. A moment of silence followed.
    "Okay. Let me go get her and we can be off," George said, breaking the silence and starting up the stairs.
    Nikki quickly scrambled to put her listening device back into normal mode because otherwise her ear would be blasted with sound. Several seconds later George opened the door to her bedroom to find her lying down on her bed reading a book she had grabbed from her shelf.
    Nikki quickly sat up and looked at George. "What were they here for?" she asked him. She knew that if she didn't show her usual curiosity than he would be suspicious.
    "They are going to take us to Callestancia. Are you ready to become a queen?" he asked with a grin. "Start packing. We'll be leaving in ten minutes." George turned to leave the room.
    "Wait!" Nikki shouted. "Can Leo come?" she glanced down at her dog, who, at hearing his name had stood up and was now staring at them.
    George hesitated for a second and then replied. "Yes. I'll make sure of it." Then he left Nikki to do her packing.
    Packing wasn't hard. She only had a couple of outfits and knew that once they reached the castle she would be given more, so she wasn't worried about that too much. She also added a couple of Leo's toys to her backpack. The only other things that she needed were a few books to read and of course, her tinkering things. It was a hobby that she had. She scooped them all up and carefully put them into a small drawstring bag and closed the top before putting the bag into her pocket.
    Last but not least she opened a drawer to reveal a small silver tiara, coated with sparkly crystals. She moved it back and forth in the light, watching it glittered. She smiled and put it into her bag.
    Then she zipped her backpack closed and flung it over her shoulder as she headed down the stairs. She found George and the two tuxedo men sitting on the couch, but they quickly stood up and bowed when they saw her. They motioned for her to walk out the door, with one of them in front of her and the other behind.
    It turned out the carriage wasn't one of the ones meant for royalty, but instead a plain brown one that anyone could own. The man with the black hair caught her looking at it and explained. "We don't want to have too nice of a carriage because then thieves might try to attack the carriage. This is just a safety precaution. Once we get past the border then we'll switch to a nicer one."
    Nikki climbed into the back of the carriage and sat on one of the benches. George and the man with the black hair climbed in across from her. The other man hopped in the front and gave the horses a whip as they started off on their journey.
Chapter 2

    Nikki wasn't really sure how she planned to escape, just that she had to. She knew that there were a lot of Turves, at least a thousand. They were the group of people that had taken over Callestancia and probably had goals to take over other countries as well. She was pretty sure that the two men escorting them to the castle were Turves.
Ten years before, when Nikki was five they had taken over Callestancia by breaking into the castle and killing the king and queen. She was the only one in her family to escape. Her three brothers had gone missing, possibly dead. They had escaped the castle, but two weeks after the attack it was reported that two bodies had been found by the border of Callestancia, believed to be two of the princes. But Nikki continued to believe that they were alive. They had to be.
    Soon it was night, and Nikki was handed some bread to eat and an apple. She ate them and realized that she was tired, and lay down to sleep. She had passed some time reading but it was too dark to read. The next morning they rode for a few hours before they stopped.
    "We're at the border of Angurl," the man up front informed them. They all jumped out and walked over to the border guards.
    "Names and destination," they requested. They all said their names and then they were let through. It turned out that the black-haired tuxedo guy was called Slick, probably because of his hair, and the other was Gerald.
    "Welcome to Juvnbusch!" Gerald announced as they passed over the border. They all cheered and Slick told them that they would be in Callestancia in less than a week.
    The next few days passed without any troubles. There were only two instances in which Nikki was awake and all the others were asleep. When this happened she pulled out her tinkering things-tiny chunks of metal as well as some screwdrivers and other tools. But those two instances only lasted half an hour each, hardly enough time to make much.
    She also had lots of time to think, wondering about George. Was he secretly a Turve? Had he been all along? But if he was, how come he had kept her in hiding and had not reached out to the other Turves until now? Maybe it was just so that she had time to grow. Or maybe he was trying to protect her. Because one thing she knew about George was that he couldn't have faked all the fun times they had together, and how much he cared about her. She ended up with a conclusion: George had a backup plan, one that would save her. But she still had to find her own just in case.
    She pondered all of this over the days they spent in the carriage.
When they got to the border of Snudle trying to enter Frenendale there was a problem. They got out and went to the border and told the border guards their names and destination.
    "Sorry but no can do," one of the border guards said. "We can't let anyone through the border going to Callestancia. The king of Snudle ordered that no one can leave Snudle to go there. I think he has something against them."
    "But we need to get through!" Slick said, running his hand through his hair. The guards shook their head in response.
    "If we let you through the king will have at our heads. You'll have to wait until he releases the order. Sorry," the guard said as he motioned for them to leave. "Don't worry, it should be lifted by the end of this week." They all got back into the carriage and started off. They checked several more borders, but all of them turned them away.
    "We'll have to take the thieves road," Gerald said suddenly. "It can't be as dangerous as they all say."
    "No!" shouted Slick. "It's too much of a risk. We will keep searching."
    They spent the rest of the morning checking the borders to no prevail. Finally Slick gave in. "We'll travel by night so that we don't have to worry about being caught. It'll be safer."
    Nikki knew that when they got to the border it would be the perfect time to escape. Everyone would be distracted by the dark and watching out for the thieves, which would help her. She just forgot about one part of her plan: keeping herself safe from the thieves.
    The sun had disappeared hours before they approached the hidden path. It was extremely bumpy and Nikki had to hold onto her seat. They road the path for about fifteen minutes before they were safely in Callestancia. Then the thieves attacked.
    There were six of them, all wearing dark clothing and loaded with several knives each. One of them even had a bow and arrow, a rather nice one which made Nikki assume that it had been stolen. They sneaked up behind the carriage, not making a sound.
    Nikki noticed them before everyone else and was too alarmed to say anything. They were all on horses, making it easy for them to ride alongside the carriage.
Two of them jumped onto the side of the carriage and opened the doors, leaping inside. One of them snuffed out the dim light from the lantern before Nikki could get a better look at them.
    One of the thieves had already lept into the front and taken out Gerald. Two of them were unhooking the horses while two more were jumping onto the backs of them. She only heard this, and then was snapped back to reality as one of the thieves in the now stopped carriage picked up Slick and Gerald, flinging them out.
    Nikki sat there, clinging to Leo. In a big leap, she hopped out of the carriage and started to run but someone caught the neck of her shirt, causing her to fall on the ground.
    Leo flew out of her arms, and she saw him duck under the carriage, frightened of the horse that some of the thieves were still mounted on. Another one was still in the carriage, shuffling around and trying to find valuables.
    Then he came out and hopped on his horse, and someone pulled Nikki up onto theirs.
    She still couldn't see much, but what she did see were three bodies on the ground. It was difficult to tell if they were alive.
    Then there was a neighing of a horse, and they started off.
    She wondered if all the stories were true if the thieves were the worst people in all of Callestancia, the awful, merciless people she had heard of. She crossed her fingers, hoping those stories were just that, stories.
    Then she turned back around and looked at the thieves. She was now scared and unsure what to do. All of her old worries were replaced by new ones as she looked forward, wondering what lay ahead.
Chapter 3
A Discovery and the Sharing of Stories
    Nikki awoke just as they were pulling into the thieves camp. The sun was beginning to peek over the trees as she looked around. It was still dark out but she could see some of the features of the camp. It was small with a campfire in the middle and six small tents around it. Hearing their arrival, several people came out of the tents and started cheering.
    The man in front of her, who she now realized was only a boy, hopped off the horse and then led it over to a tree which he tied it to. She also jumped off but made a quick decision: she had to make a run for it.
    She started to run, but the boy yelled at her and followed pursuit. At the noise, several others continued the chase.
    She made it all but ten feet before she was tackled and her hands were bound behind her with a coarse rope.
    The men pushed her towards the campfire, making her sit down.
    Now there were eight people gathered around the campfire, a mixture of men and boys. They all stared at her, expectantly. She was unsure what to do or say.
    "What's your name?" the boy who had ridden with her asked.
    "Nikki," she replied, deciding that it would be best not to lie. The boy looked surprised by this but tried to hide it.
    "What's your full name? I'm assuming that's a nickname?" he said, snickering at his joke, which wasn't even funny.
    "Why do you want to know?" Nikki retorted.
    "I just used to know someone with that same nickname," he said, trailing off.
    "What was her name?" Nikki asked, curious. "I might be her."
    "I doubt it."
    "You never know. We could know each other."
    She just shook her head. She couldn't let him know that she was a princess, because that could end very badly.
    "Huh. Refusing to talk. Interesting."
    "What do you want from me?" she asked. "I don't have any valuables. You got what you could from the carriage. LET ME GO."
    The boy just snorted, and reached to his side, holding up her brown backpack. "I don't think that is true," he told her, opening it and reaching inside. He held up her crown and raised his eyebrow.
    Her eyes widened. "Give that back! It's mine!" she shouted at him. He just snorted and waved it in front of her face. She tried to grab it but couldn't because her hands were still tied.
    She started to growl and he immaturely stuck his tongue out at her. "I doubt it's yours. You probably stole it."
    "What should we do with this?" he asked his friends, who had all broken into separate conversations.
    "Hmm," another boy said, probably a year or so older than the other boy. They looked like brothers. In fact, the first boy who had been talking was about my age.
    "Maybe we should take the jewels off and sell them to the other thieves. They would pay a lot for that, I'm sure," he said.
    "Not a bad idea," another guy said, a short man who was missing multiple teeth. "We could make a bit o' money off a that," he said. His voice was coated with a think Frendal accent.
    Then the first boy glanced back at Nikki, a smirk on his face.
    "What should we do with the little girl?" he asked.
    "I am not little!" Nikki shouted at him.
    "Well, we have to get breakfast. Cloney and Vincent wanted to run another thieving trip. Apparently, the last un' wasn't enough for em'," the guy with the Fendal accent said, ignoring Nikki.
    "Ok. Maybe we can put her under Thomas watch," the boy snickered back.
    The man and the older boy nodded in agreement, pushing Nikki onto her feet and leading her to a tent.
    Behind them, the older boy started to inform the other thieves who were still conversing with each other about another trip.
    Nikki was pushed onto a cot in the tent, with her hands were left tied. It was a small tent, with only two cots. A little boy sat on the other one. She glanced back at the other entrance to see the boy smirking at her.
    "See ya later. Enjoy Thomas watch," he told her. She glared at him as he left.
    Five minutes later she heard the sound of horses trotting away from the camp.
    "So are we going to do anything?" she heard the little boy say in a squeaky voice.
    "Um. Like what?" she asked him.
    "How 'bout sneaking into the food tent and stealing chocolate," he said, a sneaky grin spreading across his face.
    "I guess if you want. But please untie me first. This rope hurts."
    "No," he told her sternly.
    "Then I will tell the boys you ate their chocolate," she replied.
    "Which boys?" he questioned her.
    "The ones who took me in here."
    "Oh. James and Michael. Fine, I will untie you. If they find out that I took the chocolate's they will not be happy," he told her, untying her hands.
    "That's a lot better," she said flexing your hands. Then her eyes widened, realized what names he had said. "Wait a minute. Are James and Michael your brothers by any chance?" she asked him.
    He nodded, and Nikki wondered something. "Did you use to have a sister by any chance?" she asked him.
    "A sister? I dunno. James has talked about a girl a few times but I haven't seen one in years," he told her.
    Nikki nodded and stood up. "Let's go find these chocolates."
    They found the chocolates under a cot, held in a small bag. They each ate four and then walked back to the tent. Nikki thought about running once again but realized that the thing she had realized when Thomas had told her about James and Michael. It was something quite important, and maybe James had already suspected it. (He is the boy that she first met, and Michael is the older one)
    She spent all morning with Thomas, talking and playing with him. It turned out that he didn't know anything about his former life, or his parents. She assumed that James and Michael had kept this from him on purpose. He also said that he believed that he was around six.
    They ate some fruit for lunch, which had been stolen from her carriage. Finally, just when the sun was about to set, the thieves rode back into camp with their loot strapped on their horses behind them.
    Once they had gotten down from the horses, Nikki ran up to James and Michael. "I've got something to tell you," Nikki and James said at the same time.
    Not being able to help themselves, the twins embraced. Not having seen each other for ten years had been hard on them both, especially since they both thought each other was dead.
    Thomas, after they had explained, was full of questions. Eventually though he just became excited.
    "I've always wanted a sister!" he shouted gleefully.
    "Why'd you want that? You have two awesome brothers," James joked, tousling Thomas's hair.
    Then they all sat down and caught up with each other.
10 years ago-Callestancia Castle
    The rain beat against the window as the boy slept unaware of everything in his bed. He suddenly awoke to the creak of floorboards and the faint sound of whispers. He sat up, knowing something was wrong. Something was going to happen.
    He wanted to go to his sister's room. He had to warn her. But her room was across the hall, and that is the intruders would most likely be in a couple of minutes, so instead, he quietly crept through the door on his right. He saw his baby brother asleep in the crib. He grabbed a blanket and gingerly wrapped the baby in it. Then he continued on the door that led to his older brothers room.
    Suddenly, a gunshot pierced the air. He saw his older brother jump out of bed and start running out the door. "Michael!" the boy with the baby shouted. The other boy turned towards him and changed his direction.
    He grabbed the younger boys hand as they ran out the bedroom door. By now everything had exploded into chaos. Guards and maids scurried around, trying to escape. The three boys hurried towards the maid’s stairs, which were now alive with activity. They ran down them quickly, along with many other scared maids.
    Soon they entered the kitchens which they also ran through until they reached the back door. They flung it open and raced down the dirt path that led to the gardens, barefooted. They fled past the gardens until they reached the woods where they bent down to catch their breath.
    As soon as they were ready they continued on deep into the woods, starting their long journey.
    They traveled for five days, eating the berries and fruit that they could find, and drinking from streams. They tried their best to care for the young baby, but also themselves. The older boy was only eight, but instantly took charge on their journey.
    One day, they were following a dirt path when a man approached them. For their entire journey, they had seen no one. Seeing the man walking towards them surprised them, but it was too late to run.
    "Have you got a family?" he asked them, and when they shook their heads he said, "Come with me. I can give you some food. Don't be afraid." the boys were too tired to resist, so they followed him.
    When they reached a camp, they were given some bread and water. Then they were given a tent to stay in for the night, which they did. The next morning they awoke, well rested. After breakfast, they told the man their story, and he pitied them. He said they could stay with him and his friends under one condition: they had to work for him. They easily agreed and started working for him.
    They did small jobs around the camp, and eventually, as they grew older, learned the art of thieving. They didn't like thieving, but they always remembered that man's kindness and their promise to him. Unfortunately, he had died several months later in an attempt to rob a carriage filled with gold.
    "And that's our story," James finished. Then Nikki told him hers. When they were done they ate some bread, and Nikki even convinced Thomas to eat his carrot.
    "If you can convince him to eat his vegetables, then I think he likes you a lot," Michael told her. "I've never been able to do that before."
    Nikki was happy to have her brothers back too, and they spent the rest of the week spending time together. They didn't have any problems until four days later when they were sitting around the campfire eating dinner.
Chapter 4
Narrow Escapes
    They were talking about their old life in the castle, and how wonderful it had been. Then Nikki suggested that they go back to the castle. "If we want to go back to that life, then why don't we?" she asked them.
    Michael just shook his head. "It's too dangerous. We don't have an army on our side, you know."
    Nikki sighed. "What if we gained support and then tried it? If we went back to Callestancia then we could get people on our side. When I was spying on the conversation I heard them talking about how the people hated the Turves. This could be our chance! Rally up the people, and boom, we've got an army."
    James nodded. "It's not a bad idea….dangerous, but we can do it." He gave Michael a stern look, but he just shook his head and started to say something, but Nikki couldn't hear it. A loud thundering sound had started, making Nikki cover her ears. Suddenly James was by her side and she could vaguely hear him asking her what was wrong. He shook her and she could tell he was worried.
    "There is a loud sound, I can hear it," she said, tapping her hearing aid. James reached up to his ear, turning up his own hearing aid. They had both been born with ear deficiencies.
    "Horses are coming. Probably looking for you. We better pack up and go."
    After saying that he ran into the tent and got his things. Nikki and James did the same, and they also packed up the tent. Then they slung their backpacks over their shoulders and took off running.
    They shouted for the other thieves that people were coming, but it was late in the night and some were already asleep. They had just left the camp when they heard horses thundering in behind them.
    They continued running for quite a while and didn't stop to rest. When Thomas complained Michael just gave him a piggyback ride and told him to keep quiet. By morning they had slowed to a walking pace and eventually stopped by a stream.
    "We'll keep going towards Callestancia. Maybe we can camp by the border, and eventually cross," Michael told them.
    James and Nikki nodded in agreement. They both knew that once they got close to the border they would be able to convince Michael to go over. So they rested for a little while before setting off again.
    On the second day of their travels, they heard horses again. Nikki had kept her earpiece in and heard them first. She quickly warned her brothers, but they all knew that they couldn't escape this time. The first time the thieves had been able to distract the searchers, but no one could distract them now.
    Nikki started to climb the nearest tree and motioned for the boys to follow. They all scrambled up it just as five horses passed below. Nikki let out a small gasp seeing George and the two tuxedo men on three of the horses. There were also two other men, heavily armed with a sword each and several daggers.
    They got off their horses and studied the campsite. They hadn't had enough time to pack up their things, so everything was strewn everywhere. Then she saw George look up at the tree and thought he saw her. She backed farther into the leaves, hoping he was still on their side. "I think they went to the stream to get water," George said, "We should go there. The nearest one is that way. I'll stay here." George pointed to the left, and four of the men left, leaving him alone. After a minute George looked up into the tree.
    "You're safe. Don't worry, I have a plan. Come down you can trust me," George said. Nikki shuffled a little and then started to climb down.
    "He already knows we're up here. We can't hide anymore," Nikki told them. They followed her down.
    Then George started to speak again. "Pack up your things quickly. Move to the south, towards Callestancia. When you get there go to the pink and purple house with the dead flower garden. That is my Aunt's house, and she will take care of you. I am on your side. I'll direct them the wrong way. Now hurry," with that he pushed them towards their things.
    They only grabbed their backpack and clothes and left the rest including their tent. Then George motioned for them to leave, and took out a knife. "Please don't, George. Don't hurt yourself," Nikki pleaded as he took the knife and cut leg, making blood spill everywhere.
    "Go and make my sacrifice worth it," he told Nikki, pushing her away. She nodded and a tear slid down her cheek. Then they started running away, towards their home.
Chapter 5
Finding Allies and Old Friends
    They ran as fast as they could for the next ten minutes. Several minutes after they had left, they heard the men returning to the camp and heard them shouting at George. Nikki felt bad at leaving George with those evil Turves but knew that it would have been impossible to convince him to come with them.
    Soon they stopped to rest, and luckily Nikki hadn't heard any horses in her ear device. While they rested, Nikki took out some of her metal scraps and used some screw to put them together. Then she added some knobs and handed it to James.
    He slid it into his ear and looked at her happily. "I can hear everything!" he exclaimed, turning around on the log he was sitting on. He gave her a smile, and they got up and continued walking.
    They walked through the night, knowing that they were close and hoping that it would be easier to pass the border at night. Soon they were at the border and saw the guards. The moon was very dim, making it hard to see much.
    They crept to the edge of the woods. James motioned that they all crawl, and crouched down. He held out his hand and listened. Then he laid down and started to slowly crawl.
    They crawled past the border guards, who were looking at the road, not the sides of it. Soon they were in Callestancia and they stood up when they reached another patch of woods.
    "I think George took me to his Aunt's house once. It's not far from the castle," Nikki said, leading the way.
    They didn't arrive at the right house until almost morning. The moon was still out and the sun had not risen. They walked cautiously up to the door and knocked. No one answered at first, but when they knocked again a woman about fifty opened the door. "Come inside. George told me you might be coming."
    The house was small but cozy. It had a small couch and table in the front room, and they saw a kitchen in the back as well as stairs that led upstairs. They sat down on the couch to rest, and the woman went into the kitchen. A minute later she came back out with a plate of cookies which they gobbled up.
    "Let's see if I can guess your names," the woman told them. She studied them for a second and then pointed to Nikki. "I've met you before, though it has been a long time. Nikki, right?"
    Nikki nodded and the woman pointed to Michael then James. "You must be Michael, and you're James. And that is little Thomas," the woman added. "I'm Mellian, but you can call me Mellie. It is a pleasure for me to meet and house your highnesses," Mellie said, with an elaborate bow.
    "You kids must be very tired. Here, follow me. I've got some rooms for you to stay in." The kids followed her upstairs into a hallway. She pointed to the room at the end. "That's my room. This one's yours, Nikki," Mellie said pointing to the right. "And that one's the boys."
    They all went into their rooms. Nikki's was pink and had a big bed in the middle of it. There were big pink and purple curtains on the windows, and a big fluffy rug as well as a dresser and desk along the wall. She laid down on the bed and fell asleep.
    Nikki awoke a while later and saw that the sun was already setting. She rubbed her eyes and then got out of bed. She found a door that led to a bathroom in her room, and it had a towel so she took a shower. She put on an outfit that was in the dresser, assuming they were for her.
    Nikki went across the hall to her brother's room but didn't find them there. Their room had two bunk beds, one on each wall. Both of them had blue sheets and comforters. There was also a dresser and desk like in her room. Three of the beds were unmade, proof of which ones her brothers had slept in.
    She walked out of the room and down the stairs and found her brothers on the couch eating sandwiches. Mellie greeted her and handed her one. "Sit down and tell me your story," Mellie said.
    Nikki started to tell Mellie the story. She told her about how she had heard George talking to the two Turve men, and the thieves and seeing her brothers. She told Mellie about how they had escaped when they knew people were coming and about how George saw her in the tree and his message. "I thought I couldn't trust him when he was talking about betraying me but….I think he was under pressure with those two Turve men. But he saved me, he saved us," Nikki finished, motioning to her brothers.
    Mellie nodded. "That's a tough story. When George gets here we can talk to him about the plan. There is a secret group that has been looking for you four, you know. George was part of it, but some of the Turves found him out and he pretended to be working for them while secretly working for our group. We call it to hope, because we believe that Callestancia still has hope and can be brought back to what it was. We have hundreds of people who have been waiting to take over the castle. With your children nowhere, more hope will be added to the rebellion."
    They were all happy to hear this, knowing that they could be part of returning Callestancia to what it was. "We'll get to live in the castle, right?" Thomas asked hopefully.
Mellie nodded. "Once we win you will get to live in the castle, yes." she handed them all a second sandwich.
Suddenly, Nikki heard something. It was a scratching sound and a whimper that she recognized. "Leo!" she shouted running to the front door. She flung it open and a ball of golden fur lunged at her. Everyone in the room joined Nikki by the door.
"Leo? Is this….really Leo?" James said as he pets the muddy dog. Mellie left the room and came back with a towel and dried off Leo's paws.
"He left the castle with me. I couldn't leave him behind," Nikki said. James nodded and gave the dog some scratches.
"I thought I'd never see you again Leo," James told the golden furball. Leo had been the family dog when they lived in the castle but loved Nikki the most.
Chapter 6
The Letter and Start of a Plan
Several days passed until they received word from George.
"We got a letter!" Thomas screamed as he ran inside. He started to tear it open, but Michael snatched it out of his hand.
"I don't think that's for you Thomas," he said. "Nikki! The letter’s for you!"
"You don't have to yell Michael! Also, Thomas, I thought someone died when you started screaming. Please try to be calmer," Nikki told the boys as Michael handed her the letter. She started to tear it open when she sensed that someone was behind her. She whirled around and saw James who had been peeking over her shoulder.
She then went to sit down on the couch so that her brothers could see the letter. It turned out to be from George.
Dear Nikki and brothers,
I hope that you have made it safely to my Aunt Mellie's house.  
"Hey! He didn't even mention our names!" Thomas said, making Nikki paused her reading. She was saying it aloud because Thomas couldn't read. She sighed then started to read again.
I wish that I could come to see you and talk to you in person, but the Turves would suspect something. We have to put a plan into action and soon. They have decided that they are going to make a fake figure that looks like you but isn't, that way they can follow the same plan they were going to do with you. Tell Mellie that she needs to gather up all of the Turve rebels who are in the group Hope. They need to all meet at Hullet hall at the darkest point at night in two days. I'll be there with my plan. Tell everyone to come with weapons, and bring some yourselves. That is when we will attack and take the castle over. We will call it Hope day. The code word will be hope. Please be safe and I will see you soon.
Best of Luck,
    "That's all. Now we know what to do. Thomas, can you go get Mellie?" Nikki said. Thomas ran upstairs to get Mellie but didn't return until ten minutes later, just as he finished telling her about the letter.
    "Thomas! You were supposed to wait for us!" Nikki scolded him. Thomas just scowled and stuck out his tongue at her. She glared at him and gave Mellie the letter.
    "This is good. George will meet us soon and Callestancia will be returned to its former self," Mellie told them, "And in the meantime, do your children know how to use a sword?"

Chapter 7
    Sweat dripped down Nikki's forehead as she swung at James, who was panting harder than her. He was a good sword fighter, but Nikki knew more about it than him. They had spent the last two days preparing for the battle that would soon begin by sword fighting, learning to read, and learning to write. They had also spent some time sending out messages to the neighbors, going to houses and leaving a paper saying hope in invisible ink that could be found with a lemon was the message.
    They were all excited for the battle, and the chance to be back in their castle. Even Thomas was excited if only to live in the castle. Finally, it was time.
    They left Mellie's house an hour after the sun had fully set. They took Leo with them, hoping he would be helpful. They found their way through the dark carefully without light, knowing that the Turves patrolled the streets at night. They soon arrived at Hullet Hall, which was a big building that had many meeting rooms. It used to be for the king's meetings but was now full of Turves in the day.
    Nikki picked the lock on the door and slowly opened it. There was a big entryway, and on both sides of it were doors leading into rooms. Nikki unlocked the first one on the right and slipped inside.
    They carefully lit the lantern they were holding and set it on the table so they could see the room better. It was big, perfect to fit all the people who were expected to come. There were chairs all around a big table, and along one wall there were windows. The blinds on them were closed so they couldn't see outside, and people couldn't see inside.
    An hour later George came in. Nikki and Mellie both greeted him with a hug and the boys with handshakes. He sat down between them and then they waited some more.
    "Hope," they heard someone whisper from the hallway.
    "Hope is here," Mellie whispered back. A person silently crept into the room and greeted them with smiles. She was old, probably in her sixties. Then she let out a small gasp.
    "Is it really you, your highnesses? After all this time….you are alive! I never thought I'd ever get to meet any of you!" she said, "Also, I'm Belinda," Belinda said as she shook their hands.
    In the next half hour, more and more people came, all armed with swords, daggers, or bows. They all gathered around the table as they discussed the plan. Finally, it was time.
    Nikki walked over to a blank section of the wall and pushed. It swung inward revealing a tight path that would about. She nodded to George and he grabbed a lantern and went in, crawling down the path. A group of fifteen men followed him in, on their way into the castle.
    Michael led the group of main attackers who followed him out of Hellet Hall. James led another group of people out, following Michael's group. Nikki then followed with ten of the remaining people, the backup group leaving only Mellie, Thomas, and a few of the Hope supporters who couldn't fight.
    Hellet Hall was luckily close to the castle. They walked in their waves, so they wouldn't be too loud. It was only a ten-minute walk to get there.
    Michael's group surrounded the front castle and took out the guards that saw them. James had his group surrounding the back half of the castle. "All clear so far. Entering castle now," George said from his earpiece into everyone who had one which was all of the royal children, Mellie, and a handful of other people. Before they left, Nikki had taught people to make them so they had more.
    "Good. Precede to phase three," Mellie told them, "I don't see any lights on yet. Remember, get Herston first. He's the one in charge."
    Herston was the person in charge of all the Turves, as well as Callestancia. Once they got him they would have the first wound in the Turves armor. So that's what they were aiming for. They hoped that by morning Callestancia would be back to what it had been seven years before, or at least on the path to becoming what it was.
    They waited outside while the attack went on in the castle. Everyone was crouched down, hidden behind bushes or trees. It was more than half an hour before the first fight broke out. "Attacking now," George announced on his earpiece.
    A scream could be heard from the castle, piercing through the night. It woke everyone in the castle up. The sound of running and shouting could be heard, as well as swords clashing. Nikki and all the other archers who were in her group put their bows at ready, prepared to shoot.
    Some people ran out, but they were just maids. The battle raged on for an hour, and the Turves were slowly being pushed out of the castle. Bows fired arrows and people fell from both sides.
    "Surrender!" Some of the Hope people shouted. "We've got you surrounded!"
    What was left of the Turves tried to run, but were cut off by other people who had joined the fight, including civilians who wanted to help their kingdom.
    "Stay here," Nikki told her team as she ran to help fight. One of the men tried to protest but Nikki kept running. She joined James and Michael and they all stood back to back and told others to do the same.
Chapter 8
Home Again
Just as dawn was started to break through the clouds the Turves surrendered. Herston had been killed and the Turves new leader Vellen was the one to surrender. He and the remaining Turves were escorted to the dungeons while the maids and remainder of the people started to clean up the mess.
    Everywhere there were cheers of joy. They were free from the Turves, free from ruthless reign. People who heard the noise came out of their houses and celebrated. Some got into carriages and went through the streets shouting the good news.
    By noon the castle was clean and Prince Michael ordered a freedom feast. Cooks rushed about preparing the meal, and people came from all over Callestancia to celebrate. There was a three-day celebration held that they called the Freedom Days. The castle opened to everyone and was filled with people who celebrated.
    On the third freedom day, hundreds of people sat Inside in the chapel. Thousands more were outside the castle, waiting silently. The royal families song played loudly as the four royal children walked down the aisle.
Nikki wore a long, white dress embroidered with purple and blue lace, and covered in beautiful flower designs. On her left was Thomas, who was wearing a fine white suit with blue on the edges. He smiled happily as he skipped to the song, which was his favorite.
On Nikki's right was James, who wore the same suit as Thomas except it was bigger and had green at the edges instead of blue. And finally, holding James' hand was Michael who wore a fancy suit that had different designs on it and blended colors that made it look astonishing. It was meant to look like something that could only be meant for a king or a king-to-be.
When they reached the end of the aisle they stood in front of the priest. He first addressed Thomas. "As the youngest of the princes, will you, Thomas Jeremiah Ruttlath, the third son and fourth child of the former queen, Queen Meredith, and the former king, King Harold, except the role as Prince of Callestancia?" the priest asked Thomas.
"Um. I thought I was already a prince. And can you please just cut to the chase? I'm getting hungry," Thomas told the priest. Beside him, Nikki and James broke out in laughter and Michael was trying hard not to laugh. The people in the crowd were also laughing.
The priest wiped a happy tear out of his eye. "Okay. So do you except the duty of being a prince?" he asked Thomas again.
"I do!" Thomas shouted, puffing out his chest. "I am Prince Thomas. Please bow down to me!" the people in the crowd bowed to him, and a few started laughing again. Then a boy came up to the priest with a plush blue pillow, and on top of it was a small silver crown. The priest took the crown off the pillow, dismissed the boy and announced, "Today I crown Prince Thomas Jeremiah Ruttlath of Callestancia!" and with that, the crown was placed on Thomas's head.
He grinned and pointed to the blue throne that was smaller than the others. "Is that for me?" he asked. When the priest nodded Thomas ran over to it and plopped down on the plush cushion. He let out a sigh as the audience broke into more laughter. Nikki just shook her head.
"You know he's a lot like you," Nikki told James playfully. They exchanged a smile as Nikki stepped forward.
"As the third child of Queen Meredith and King…." the priest started but was interrupted.
"I'm not gonna be young forever! Like I said before, cut to the chase!" Thomas shouted from his throne.
The priest just cleared his throat and continued. "I think you know who your parents were, so I'll skip that part," when he said this the priest shot Thomas a quick glare. "So will you, Nikola Rebecca Ruttlath accept your role as the only princess in Callestancia?"
"Yes, I do," Nikki answered as the boy came back with another pillow and crown. This pillow was purple though and the crown was gold and had white diamonds on it.
"I now crown you Princess Nikola of Callestancia!" the priest shouted, placing the crown on her head as the crowd cheered. Nikki walked over to the purple throne and sat down next to Thomas.
"As my first order of being a prince," Thomas started. Nikki covered her face with her hands. Would he ever learn to keep some thoughts to himself? "I would like to expand my throne so that I can lay down on it! I would like it to be done by tomorrow evening so please start working as soon as you can," he said, now sprawled out on his throne.
Nikki just shook her head. Then James stepped up. "Do you, James Carl Ruttlath, except your duties as a prince of Callestancia?" the priest said it fast, hoping to not get interrupted by Thomas but it didn't work.
"Thank you for cutting to the chase, Mr. Priest. Thank you so much. Everyone, please give him a round of applause!" Thomas said as he started clapping his hands. Nikki sighed as James crown was brought out, the silver version of hers.
"Do you except this crown?" he asked James.
"Yes, I do."
"You are now crowned Prince James!" the priest shouted as applause came from the crowd. James joined Nikki in his green throne next to hers. She looked over at Thomas.
"Here. This is a piece of candy. You can eat it now," she told him, handing him a piece of gum. Thomas popped it into his mouth and James gave her a quizzical look. Then Thomas opened his mouth to speak but couldn't. The gum had made his teeth stick together.
After a few seconds of trying to pry his mouth open, he gave up. All the eyes in the room were on Michael as he stepped forward. "Do you accept the role as King of Callestancia, ruler of this fine country, in charge of bringing it back to what it once was? Do you accept responsibility for this land, and all of the people on it? And will you do everything for the good of your people, only from the good of your heart? Do you except this all?" the priest asked Michael.
"I do," Michael said as the crown came out on a pillow that could be considered a royal blue or a royal purple. On it was a big crown made of solid gold and encrusted with fine white diamonds.
"I now crown you King Michael!" the priest yelled as the crowd roared. Michael walked over to his throne and sat down, causing the crowd to scream louder. All of the children rose from their seats as the crowd bowed down. Then they slowly descended the walkway and walked outside where they were greeted by even more people.
"All hale King Michael!" the people shouted.
Chapter 9
Starting Over
    The rest of the week went by quickly. After the crowning ceremony, there was a big feast where everyone was invited. The children got to sleep in their old beds again, except for Thomas who no longer fit in his crib.
Michael had insisted on staying in his old room instead of sleeping in the king's room. He didn't want to have to live in the room where his parents had died. He told this to Nikki and James, but to everyone else, he told that it was just because he liked his old bed better.
    There was a memorial service two days after the crowning ceremony in which everyone who had died, both Turves and Callestancian's were buried and there was a special ceremony for the king and queen.
    The rest of the week Michael had spent establishing new relations with the neighboring countries since many held grudges against Callestancia because of the Turves. But luckily most had gotten over it and made agreements.
    Other than that things were back to what they had been seven years before, or beginning to be. Thomas had started to learn his manners, which he had none of. He was starting to learn when to talk and when to not; Nikki's sticky gum had taught him a lesson. To get it off he had to drink a nasty drink that he hated and said he would never talk when he wasn't supposed to if Nikki kept her gum away from him, although they both knew that that wasn't true.


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  • February 28, 2019 - 1:38pm (Now Viewing)

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