Down in the throne room, a jovial throng of noblemen and ladies all in fine garments had accumulated, chatting and laughing while they waited for the ceremony to start. The room itself was decorated with garlands of white flowers that filled the room with a sweet scent. The tall arched windows lining the walls let in the golden midday light.
Abianna and Queen Daneiris approached the room. The queen gave her daughter a peck on the cheek then went to the front of the room to join King Aldrich in the thrones. As the queen sat in her stately silver throne, the king rose from his matching gold one.
“My noble pixies, elves, fairies and merfolk, today is the day that the Orlaith will have a new queen and protector. My daughter, Princess Abianna Siofra Asterin, shall take my place on the throne, and with advisory from me and our dear Queen Daneiris, she shall not only govern our fine nation, but help it thrive.” Aldrich declared.
He continued with his speech, but Abianna felt a tap on her shoulder and turned her attention away from her father and instead to the interloper who had distracted her.
“Allerick,” she whispered. “This is not the time.” She tried to come across as cross, but in all honesty, she was happy to see him. She was at the point of when the excitement had worn off and the nerves were kicking in. To see a friendly face was comforting.
“I know, Abi,” he whispered back. “But I had to see you still as a princess before I went on my shift.” Allerick planted a soft kiss on the ivory skin of the princess’s hand and dashed off. Abianna’s heart melted. She adored his dark dishevelled hair and soft blue-grey eyes. His wide smile always made her heart happy, and his jaw was sharp enough to cut.
The two had been seeing each other secretly for the past couple months since Abianna’s sixteenth birthday. They had first met when they were but little children, when Allerick had accidently walked in on one of her lessons. Since then, occasional nights were spent slipping off into minor mischief and fun. No one else knew of their innocent covert romance, and they planned to keep it that way until the day Abianna turned 18 and would choose a husband. Until then, they would have to be satisfied with stealing moments away with each other.
“-if you would all rise for the soon-to-be queen of Orlaith, we will now commence with the ceremony,” Abianna heard as she returned her attention to her father. That was her cue to enter the room and walk to the elevated podium where her parents waited, now both standing.
A broad smile grew on the princess's face and she stepped out from behind the door and into the room. Abianna slowly walked to the dais and felt so much love and appreciation for her parents and subjects. Sitting in benches on either side of her were all the esteemed guests who were gazing upon her and admiring her alluring grace and charm and the exquisite finery she was dressed in. In between the King and Queen’s thrones was a small table one which rested a satin pillow holding Abianna’s coronation crown, a grand golden tiara set with large, sparkling, green emeralds. The light from the windows shone on the shiny metal and reflected off as soft golden rays of light. There was an empty socket in the headpiece where a jewel from her father’s crown would be placed as a ceremonial tradition of the inauguration of her beginning reign over the kingdom. That jewel would then be passed down to her successor, as it was to her father from his father, and now to her.
“Four generations ago, my great great grandfather King Baltair I led our pixie people through battle over the great continent of Avonea against the other species- the dragons, the phoenixes, the fairies, the elves, the merfolk, and the nymphs. When peace was found and the war over, each species settled into each of the now seven great kingdoms. The elves took root in the Chloris Forest, and the fairies found home on Mt. Kezrin. The merfolk claimed the Malik Sea against the west coast. The Eldrid Caverns are now occupied by the fiery, feathery phoenix tribes, and dragons reside in the Keir Caves. Unfortunately, the nymphs all perished in the Great War. And of course, we pixies now abide in our grand Orlaith tree.” Aldrich delineated.
The queen continued the story, glancing lovingly at her daughter before beginning. “For nearly two hundred years, five of the seven great kingdoms have gotten along harmoniously. Our wish is that with a new ruler, we will be able to strengthen and extend new bonds with old and future alliances. My husband and I have great faith that our daughter is more than capable of doing so. She has been prepared since she was but a young sprite to rule our nation. Abianna is so wise and intelligent despite her young age, and skilled with her conjuring and enchanting. She also is of pure spirit and wants the best for all her subjects.” A few wet tears welled up in the outer corners of Daneiris’s eyes. “I can’t think of anyone more fitting to lead, rule, and ameliorate our nation than the princess Abianna.”
The crowd respectfully cheered and applauded. Abianna looked into the loving, bright, and slightly watery eyes of her mother and the joyful and proud face of her father. She was just stepping up onto the plinth with her parents when she noticed the light reflecting off her crown was exhibiting an increasing dark sheen. She looked to the windows and after a slight instance of confusion, she gasped. The glass shattered into millions of pieces as a thick dark cloud of smoke crashed into them