Alcingeria Volume Two Chapter Twenty Three: Estaire's Heart

Alcingeria Volume Two Chapter Twenty Three: Estaire's Heart

A Chapter by Ryan Henderson
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A pressing matter intrudes Estaire's mind. To resolve it would mean going against her very nature. To let it be could possibly mean something worse.

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Chapter Twenty Three Estaire’s Heart:

Sunday July 25th 1690

            “Everyone. As you are all fully aware, the vampire mafia attacked Semera last night.” Estaire began, addressing her generals and advisors.

            “Yes, and they had an ace up their sleeve!” General Robinson exclaimed.

Estaire closed her eyes and nodded.

            “Indeed. Thankfully, the thing was repelled and the attack failed. Thanks to the incredibly swift messengers dispatched by Captain Allan Drei of Semera’s guard last night, we are now fully aware of what happened.” Estaire said.

“Your Majesty, what course of action do you suggest?” Lieutenant General Williams asked.

Estaire thought for a moment.

            “Our defensive alliance with Yutsa still stands. Now, the mafia spent several days in Stavon, and they came out with that metal war machine. General Robinson, dispatch five hundred men to Stavon when dismissed. We must cut off their access to the mine there. Dunford has none, so they will put up a strong fight to take it back. Make sure they don’t.” She ordered.

            “Yes, Your Highness!” He said.

            “Lieutenant General Williams, send six hundred men to Semera. They lost the better part of their guard, and without reinforcements they will fall in the next attack.” Estaire said.

            “By your orders, Your Majesty!” He replied.

            “Inspector Adams, see to it that the law enforcement officers are especially vigilant. If the mafia has any more ties here in Vulrock, I want them terminated.” She said.

            “Of course, my Queen.” He said with a bow.

Estaire looked around, her light violet eyes falling upon the faces of every man in the room, her mind jumping to other matters that needed discussion.

            “That’s everything for now. Dismissed.” She concluded.

Everyone stood up and exited the room in an orderly fashion. When everyone else had left, Estaire got up and started back to her room, her mouth watering as she thought about Mindy’s tea. She walked inside and sat down at her vanity. She looked in the mirror. Her eyes shone in the daylight coming in from the window, lightening their violet color. Her black hair had grown and was now past her shoulders. She hadn’t found the time to have it cut. She surveyed her face; bags were under her eyes due to lack of sleep. She had only been Queen for a little over two weeks, and she was already feeling the stress of it.

Just then, the door opened and Mindy stepped in.

            “Oh, my lady! Forgive me, I didn’t expect you to be back this early.” She apologized.

            “No, no, it’s quite all right.” Estaire said, standing up to greet her maid.

When she was standing fully upright, she looked at Mindy and frowned.

            “Did you get taller?” she asked.

Mindy looked down at the Queen a little more than she usually did, courtesy of her heels.

            “Oh, I think I did.” She replied.

Estaire’s eyes fell on the cup of tea on a saucer that Mindy held, accompanied by a rose. A smile broke across the Queen’s face.

            “Thank you, Mindy.” She said, taking the tea and rose to her vanity and sitting down.

She sipped it, enjoying the taste. She smelled the rose, inhaling deeply. She closed her eyes, allowing the scent of the rose to whisk her mind away to the memories of childhood. She felt Mindy place her hands on either side of her neck. Estaire winced, pulled out of her nostalgia by a dull ache.

            “I’m so very sorry, Your Majesty!” She blurted, jumping back and taking a knee.

            “Please, there is no need for that. But if you don’t mind, could you…?” Estaire trailed off, turning her head a little and wincing.

Mindy looked up, understanding her meaning.

            “Yes of course, my lady.” She agreed, getting up and brushing the dust off her black stockings.

Mindy stood up behind Estaire and began to softly massage the back of her neck. Estaire groaned, shutting her eyes.

            “My, you’re tense.” The maid remarked.

            “I haven’t been sleeping well. The stress is starting to get to me.” Estaire explained.

Mindy nodded and continued massaging. She worked her fingers into the Queen’s muscles. Slowly, she felt her begin to relax. Estaire slumped in her chair, despite the poise that was constantly expected of her.

After another few minutes, Estaire stood up. She moved her arms and tilted her head from side to side, and then looked left to right. There was no pain.

            “Thank you so much, I needed that.” She said.

            “Of course, my Queen.” Mindy replied with a bow.

Estaire sat back down, drinking her tea while Mindy cleaned the room. She picked up a discarded nightgown and hung it up.

            “I’m sorry, I would’ve done it myself… I was in a hurry this morning.” The Queen explained.

            “No need to apologize. It’s what I’m here for.” Mindy said with a smile.

Estaire went back to drinking her tea. The warmth soothed her further. She sat back and relaxed. She looked out her window, the sun shining on the rose bushes bellow. She could almost smell them. She decided that she would go for a walk in the garden this evening.

Being Queen was stressful. The recent events with the vampire mafia only made it more so. Despite the stress however, she was striving to be the best Queen Vulrock had ever had.

Since she inherited the throne, she lowered taxes, leaving the citizens more money for themselves. She also relaxed the punishments on crime. Rather than have a thief arrested and most likely executed, she decreed that all stolen goods shall be returned and the thief would be released.

And then there were the witches. She had no idea how to deal with that problem. Some were guilty of their alleged crimes, others were not. It was very difficult to pass judgement mainly because most of them were burned at the stake as soon as someone found out they could use magic. There were no trials, just execution. Estaire didn’t want to have that happen, it went against her personal values. However, was that the right mindset? Should she put aside her personal values for the good of the province, or did her values intersect with her vision for Vulrock? She had no idea. Burning witches was illegal in Valgate. Edwin Wayde saw to that. There was no law prohibiting it, only Edwin’s threat. She couldn’t help but wonder how long that would uphold.

Her head began to hurt with all the thinking.

            “Are you all right, my lady?” Mindy asked sweetly.

Estaire sighed and nodded, saying nothing. Thoughts were rebounding off of the confines of her skull.

            “I’m… Just thinking.” She said.

            “Something’s troubling you.” Mindy stated.

Estaire nodded silently.

            “Please, tell me. Maybe I can help.” Mindy offered.

Estaire sighed and gave in.

            “I’m thinking about the witches. I don’t know what to do about them. I don’t want to have them killed, it goes against everything I believe in! Is that selfish? Is it wrong? I have no idea!” Estaire fumed, putting her head down on the vanity.

Mindy pulled up a chair and sat next to Estaire.

            “My lady, of course it’s not selfish. You have something you’re mother didn’t; benevolence. It’s not a sign of weakness, or selfishness, it is a sign of strength and compassion. You have a good heart, my lady. Please, listen to it.” She said softly.

Estaire looked up, a few tears running down her cheeks. She had been torn between herself and her duty to her province. She had no idea which to pick, but Mindy made it clear.

            “Don’t cry, someone as beautiful as you shouldn’t cry.” Mindy said with a smile.

Estaire hugged her maid.

            “Thank you Mindy. I needed to hear that.” She said.

Estaire had made up her mind. She would follow her heart and continue to exercise benevolence.



© 2016 Ryan Henderson


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Ryan Henderson
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Added on April 28, 2016
Last Updated on September 1, 2016


Author

Ryan Henderson
Ryan Henderson

Cobourg, Ontario, Canada



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I will review your work if you send me a read request, I like to help writers get off of the ground, I will also suggest ideas for your work if needed. Please note that I don't really like poetry... more..

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