The Kingdom of Alicorn

The Kingdom of Alicorn

A Story by Claire Darrow

The Kingdom of Alicorn was never dry. Rain fell from the heavens for as long as anyone in the kingdom could recall. The sky was filled with dark, billowing clouds and the land was submerged in a sea of rain water. Knights patrolled the streets in boats, enforcing loyalty to their eternal ruler, King Edvard. The king’s castle sat on the highest hill, watching the kingdom drown below.

King Edvard was past the age of death. He watched himself age instantaneously as the dark magic of the unicorn blood reversed itself. His young skin turned old and wrinkled before his very eyes. Clearly weak and thirsty, he removed a silver key from his desk and stumbled to the basement. He unlocked a cabinet with shaky hands and removed an alicorn full of unicorn blood. He raised the unicorn blood to his lips and drank, immediately regaining his strength.

Young Farah stood silhouetted in the castle window, lazily watching the raindrops race. She often dreamed about what life was like outside of the castle’s walls.

“Good morning, Princess,” chimed her big sister Beatrix. “Are you nervous for the sacrifice?” Farah ignored her sister and continued gazing out the window.

“Beatrix, what is, ‘The Sun?’” asked Farah.

“Where did you hear that?” demanded Beatrix.

“I read about it in a book. It said the Sun was a beautiful ball of light in sky.”

“That’s just a silly story. Go get dressed. You’re going to be late!” said Beatrix.

In the powder room, a white, silk cloak and a crown of golden flowers awaited Farah. Her ladies in waiting bathed and dressed her. When they were finished, they all admired her beauty.

“Oh Farah, you look so pure in white. The King will be pleased.” Farah did not recognize herself in the mirror. For a brief moment, she wondered if she looked anything like her mother. A knock at the door startled her.

“Princess, the King requests to see you.” announced the page. Farah entered the throne room and bowed to her father.

“Farah, your time has come. Today you will slay a unicorn. Beatrix will take you to the edge of the Enchanted Forest. There you will lure a unicorn with your purity and pierce its heart with this,” the king presented Farah with a golden dagger. “Unicorns are vicious beasts. If you are not pure they will rip you to shreds. You must live up to your sister’s legacy or face the consequences.”

Beatrix and Farah mounted their horses and rode off into the storm, towards the Kingdom of Alicorn.

“Beatrix, what is it like to kill a unicorn?” asked Farah. Beatrix’s face turned dark as she stared off into the distance. “Its like taking away someone’s innocence.”

A small fleet of knights awaited Beatrix and Farah at the edge of the kingdom with a boat. The knights bowed to the princesses as they arrived and escorted them onto the boat. As they sailed into the city streets, a knight pronounced their arrival.

“Hear ye, hear ye. All hail Princess Beatrix and Princess Farah!”

Farah waved enthusiastically to the kingdom, but they did not wave back. Instead they scowled and hid their children. Doors closed as they passed. People gave them cold glances as they whispered to each other.

“Beatrix, what’s going on? Why aren’t they bowing?” asked Farah. Beatrix pretended not to hear her sister. Her eyes gleamed with excitement. she seemed to be enjoying the power she held over 

Farah was overwhelmed by the torrential rain and chaos. She felt hatred surround her. The way the common folk treated them, the way her sister was acting. The weather fit the mood too well.

“Unicorn Killers!” Shouted a gang of three swordsmen as they bombarded the royal boat and attacked the princesses. Farah’s gaze snapped towards the front of the boat and she drew the golden dagger. She subdued her attacker, knocking him off the side of the boat and into the sea of rain. A knight seized the other swordsman and placed him under arrest.

“Why did you attack us?” demanded Farah. The man spit in the princesses face. Farah grabbed him by the ear and aimed her dagger at his throat.

“King Edvard lives on at the price of this kingdom. The unicorns are angry” he pointed to Beatrix. “This curse is because of you. You are the reason the Sun vanished.”

“The Sun?” Farah asked Beatrix. “You told me you the Sun wasn’t real.”

 “He’s lying!” exclaimed Beatrix. “Guards! Throw this man in the dungeon.”

“Look around, princess. The proof is falling from the sky” shouted the man as he was dragged away by the guards.

Farah began to doubt her sister and she started to wonder if unicorns were actually as evil as her father claimed them to be.

 “Knights, let us continue to the forest!” Beatrix ordered.

Farah could do nothing but sit in the rain as they continued through the kingdom and towards the Enchanted Forest. The sisters remained silent. Only the sound of the rain and the splash of the oars were audible. As they approached the Enchanted Forest, the bottom of the boat scraped against the ground and came to a halt.

“Are you ready sister? This is where your duty begins.” Beatrice stated calmly. “From here on, you shall be on your own.”

Farah stared into the woods but all she could see behind the trees was darkness. A gust of wind came from the forest, chilling Farah to her bones.

“I can’t do it Beatrix! I want to go home!”

“Farah, if you do not go through with this our father will die!”

“Everybody dies.” Farah said quietly. Beatrix slapped her sister across the face. Farah started to cry. She had no response. It’s not like she wanted her father to die. It just all seemed so unfair.

“Look Farah,” Beatrix sighed. “You can do whatever you want, but do not return to the castle until you have slain a unicorn. You’re on your own.” Beatrix turned away from her sister. “Guards, let us return to the kingdom, alone.”

As Beatrix sailed away, Farah did not know what else to do except cry. She was alone, stuck between a dark forest and the endless sea of rain. For a while she stayed there, unsure of what she should do. Eventually, she decided to venture into the forest. At least the trees would offer some protection from the ever constant rain.

Once Farah set foot into the forest, everything started to change. Instantly the breeze became warm. Within the first few steps, the sound of the rain was replaced by the chirping of birds. In fact, the rain seemed to completely disappear. The whole forest was completely dry. Farah looked up to the sky out of curiosity, and was instantly bewildered by what she saw. Above the trees, where grey clouds should be, were beams of light shining through the canopy. Farah had never before had she seen something so beautiful. For a while, she gazed upwards, admiring the radiant sky.

Farah wandered through the forest until she found a large Willow tree. Still shivering, she hesitated before removing her soaking, wet clothes. She lay down beneath tree and wrapped her arms around her breasts, concealing her naked body. Leaves rustled nearby and a large creature emerged from within the woods. The beast was smaller than a horse but with the head of a deer, feet as big as an elephant and a long, black alicorn jutting out of the middle of its forehead. As the unicorn approached Farah, she backed away, remembering her father’s warning, Unicorns are vicious beasts. If you are not pure they will rip you to shreds. Farah was starting to regret coming into the forest.

“I’m not here to harm you.” Farah stammered, as the beast approached her. The unicorn nuzzled her naked bosom and Farah giggled. The unicorn giggled too. Farah and the unicorn laughed hysterically as the Enchanted Forest melted away.

Suddenly, Farah snapped back to reality. In her hand, was the hilt of a dagger, buried deep in the chest of the unicorn.  She looked frantically around the Enchanted Forest. It was not the same as she remembered. The rain was still falling and there was no light shining from above the treetops. Farah was cold, wet and covered in unicorn blood.

“What did I just do?” she muttered in confusion.

“Did I mean to kill it?” Shiny, silver blood dripped down her arm and the unicorn toppled over, lifelessly. She stared down at the blood sparkling on her fingertips, it smelled so sweet. Farah put her fingers to her lips and tasted the blood. Instantly, her heart beat accelerated and a feeling of pure ecstasy overcame her as her pupils dilated.

Farah sucked the remainder of the unicorn’s blood from its wound. When she was finished, she licked her lips, and giggled in delight. All she could do was smile. She wanted more.

Back in the castle, King Edvard turned in his sleep. He awoke from his slumber covered in sweat. As he sat up, his body started to ache once again. He opened the drawer in his night stand and fumbled for the silver key, then he made his way to the basement of the castle.

As he stumbled down the steps, he heard strange noises. A scowl crossed his face. Who would dare try and steal his unicorn blood. His pace went from a hobble to a scurry as he reached bottom of the steps.  He almost didn’t recognize his daughter. Farah lay naked on the ground, licking the last of the unicorn blood from her fingers.

 “What have you done!” The King shouted. Blind with rage, he took the alicorn from the cabinet and stabbed it into his daughter’s chest. As the life faded from her eyes, so did the strength from the King’s body. There was no more unicorn blood, no way to regain his strength. At last, death overcame King Edvard as he stared into the eyes of his dead daughter.

¨ ¨ ¨

The dark clouds parted as a beautiful light rose into the sky and cast a wonderful rainbow above the Kingdom of Alicorn.

© 2016 Claire Darrow

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Added on August 12, 2016
Last Updated on August 12, 2016
Tags: Kingdom, castle, unicorn, horror, blood, rainbow, alicorn, princess, trip