Chapter 19: Wake
“Queen Mary,” she looked at the person who just entered her tent. It was her uncle, the grand duke.
“Uncle,” she looked straight into his panicked eyes as he came near her.
“Lets get away from here my queen. I shall bring you back to the palace,” he avoided her eyes and offered his hand to her.
Mary nodded calmly and followed him to the carriage waiting for them outside. There was no hesitation in her movements nor does her face betray her emotions.
As she finally settled in her seat and the duke sat beside her, she spoke.
“Why are you here uncle” she asked the one who has acted as her guardian ever since her parents death.
The old man gulped down and was unable to answer. He asked for the coachman to start their travel.
“You didnt have to kill the innocents if it is me you wanted,” she told him point-blank, making the old man feel bitterness in his tongue as he told her the truth.
“It wasnt me who wanted you dead, it was the whole of the royal family. You cant blame them, for practicing witchcraft and starting an affair with a lowly barbarian. Do you deny any of these charges” he spoke with a vile in his voice.
“I dont deny any. I have practiced the forbidden arts because I had no choice at the moment. You were about to die uncle, you were the first recipient of my learnings. I had to continue when an unknown sickness began to take the lives of our people. How can I not do what I must to save their lives,” she said calmly, without urgency.
In truth, she had lost any hope that she will come out of the carriage alive. This conversation is happening but she knows she cannot sway her uncle.
“And what of the barbarian” his uncle spoke in a dead calm tone. He has made up his mind no matter the way she answers.
“I love him. He is not just a barbarian... he is a knight. He is my knight,” she corrected him as she spoke.
“I will order the ceasefire between your lovers tribe and the crown once I have reached the castle,” the duke assured her as he handed her a flask.
“This is a potent poison but it wont distort your beauty, it wont make you suffer... it will be a painless death,” he continued as she took the flask from him.
“I will drink this, only I have a request,” she looked at him, seeing a father figure who has betrayed her in the end.
“What is it” the duke asked, feeling a sense of pity for his ward.
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“Leave the carriage here. Let him find me, because I fear he wont rest until he do. I want him to be the one to have me in the end. He is the only one worthy to stay by my side, and the only one I want to be beside me. I beg you to grant me my last desire,” she met his eyes and kissed his cheek.
She finds no bitterness in her heart. Even she guessed how everything will end once her crimes were found out. She has no regrets, either of becoming a witch or becoming his.
The duke nodded as she smiled and drank the liquid. She felt a sense of sleepiness afterward as the carriage halted and the duke boarded out, leaving her behind.
“Dominus...” was the last word she uttered before she closed her eyes.
Dominuss face lit up as they finally reached Selene, at last, they didnt meet with any trouble.
He urged his stallion forward and peaked at the carriages window only to order the caravan to stop right away.
He wrenched the door open and grunted as he felt the cold body of the queen. He took her in his arms like she was a baby, and walked with a steady gait inside the palace walls.
He took her directly to her room and laid her on her bed. “My queen, wake up,” he called on her tenderly.
When she didnt move, he whispered again, and again. He held her hand and kissed the same.
“Wake for me, my darling. I need you to open your eyes or else Ill do something to humiliate us both,” he was laughing now, still whispering the words as he forced out some laughter.
“You think I would lie to you. Wake up and let me teach you things you wanted to learn about,” he continued to whisper, his shoulders shaking a bit.
He held her in his arms gently, like a breakable egg he was trying to protect. He sat her on his lap and embraced her trying to warm her up.
He heard knocks from the door to which he answered, “The queen is sleeping. Disturb her again and Ill have your head.”
Whoever was behind the door probably ran away from fear. He punched the wall until his fist was all bloodied, then he went back to her and kissed her hair, sniffing in her scent.
He hummed love songs into her ear and planted kisses on her cheek and lips. She still didnt move, no matter what he did.
“My queen, you know that I will never let another woman close to me. If this is you still trying to punish me, then it is working very well. There is no need to be jealous anymore. Ill tie myself next to you, just smile for me once again, please my queen, I beg you,” he whispered in a broken voice.
If anyone sees him now they wouldnt believe how out of his mind he is, he has seen countless battles and lost his family and friends in some of them, but he has never been like this.
He whispered over and over how beautiful she is and that she should rest and get better. He convinced himself she was very tired from the journey.
He removed her crown and combed her hair then dressed her in her nightgown, this time peaking just so she can slap him, but she made no such action.
Even when he made sure to touch a bit of her skin while he was dressing her up, she did not even open her eyes.
He laid her beside him and hugged her as his shoulders shook from the way he cried.
He cried silently as he held her, threatening her to wake or he will destroy her whole world.
“The barbarians will make this kingdom theirs if you dont wake soon, my queen. They will come here and destroy everything good and beautiful. If you dont say your protest now, I swear Ill make it happen,” but she still lay peacefully even when he said those words out loud.
He let his fingers inside her dress and pinched her nipples, she was cold and her body did not react.
Frustrated, he bit on her shoulder, blood dripping down his lips. Even her blood was cold. He refused to take note of that and licked her blood.
“See, you made a mess,” he said teasing her and crying at the same time as she still lay motionless.
“My little queen, you have to wake. You belong to me, I wont let you leave me. If you think you can try to run away from me like this, you are greatly mistaken. Wake for me or Ill destroy the whole world,” he rocked her body as she lay in his arms. Their bodies intertwined in an embrace as he kissed her cheek.
“If you are sleepy, then you must rest. Even I am tired as well. I am very exhausted at keeping you alive,” he complained, his voice gentle but serious as he kissed each of her fingers.
He fell asleep hugging her, not willing to wake. But then he heard a commotion as people gathered outside her room.
He wrenched the door open, his bloodied lips visible to all as he scowled at them. “I told you, the queen is asleep.”
He didnt realize a handmaiden has reached her bed, he just heard a loud cry and then the words, “The queen is dead!”
He stood there, his eyes blazing as he grabbed the man before him. A noble, a priest, a healer, it doesnt even register to him. It doesnt even matter.
He crushed the skull of the man in front of him before grabbing another and tearing his head off from his torso as well.
The handmaiden cried as he went back to the queens bed, taking the queen away from her. “Tell everyone the queen is alive and well. Do everything but that and Ill find and kill you.”
He dragged the corpses of the two men he just killed and locked them in his adjoining room. Laughing at how the servant girl hurried away from the room.
“They are so noisy,” he complained and went back to his queen, holding her close against his body.
“I love you, Queen Mary. You have to open your eyes for me soon my queen or the corpses will pile up and this castle will stink with blood. Ill make a hell out of your heaven if it is what it takes to wake you. You dont want innocent lives to be lost, right Then save them, my little queen,” he kissed her cheek and added, “save them all from me.”