Chapter #11

The queen walked the silent halls.

All slept, but she. Her gowns were gone, exchanged for trousers and armor beneath a commoner’s cloak. She would have a small window to slip past the guard.

She could wait no more.

Into the throne room, she made her way to her empty throne and, just as swiftly, removed her crown and placed it into the throne beside another throne where the king’s crown sat untouched. She turned her attention to the sleeping imp who lay, huddled at the foot of her throne.

“My love,” she touched his bare shoulder. He stirred.

“My Queen?”

“Come,” she said. “We must go.”

Without question he uncurled himself and stood. He stood eye level to her, just inches taller than her.

“Where are we going?” he asked, as she led him out the main hall and through the silent courtyard. They had caught the changing of the guard, just as she planned. They slipped through the shadows to the stables. Per her instructions passed to her page boy, she found a plethora of travel bags waiting for her.

“I cannot stay here,” she said once she knew they were alone and she was busy with the horses. “And I cannot leave you. And there is somewhere we both must go. It is imperative that I see you there.”

He followed her lead and mounted his horse as she mounted hers.

How do I tell you my Lord and King that a Wisened One lives far beyond this realm? Deep beyond the Shadowed planes, far beyond the Forest of Doubt, across the Black seas of Despair? 

“How long before we get there?” he asked quietly, riding alongside her. His rhythm already matched to hers.

“A while, Dear One,” she said.

He began a light hum that seemed to delight him and told her that he had already forgotten the line of questioning he had meant to start.

How do I tell you my Lord and King that I can no longer sit idle in my hall, hoping and waiting for your Mind to return to you? That I have a Calling?

“I have a place that I must go, and it is imperative that you be with me when I arrive there,” she said plainly, suddenly feeling the need to explain the journey that lies ahead.

He paused his humming as if lost in thought.

How do I tell you my Lord and King that it is my sworn duty to deliver you to your destiny? For where we are going lies the Power to heal you, my Love? And I can no longer wait and watch, helpless as you’re lost to the Darkness of the Mind. And I must go for I have a Mission, a Calling. And you, my Love, you are part of this. There is a reason why I call you ‘King.’ 

“My Lady Queen?” he asked, breaking the thoughts of the Queen. “You’re crying.”

“Oh,” she said, wiping a tear from her, surprised to see that a tear had slipped to her cheek.

“Why so sad?” he asked.

How do I tell you my Lord and King that your sadness is my sadness just as my joy is your joy? Just as your laughter is my laughter? I’ll not stand by a moment longer, not so long as there is hope for us down another path, behind another door…

“Doors, sometimes, do not always come to us,” she said. “There are many doors that lie far ahead. Door that, if they are to be opened, require a grand journey first to get to.”

And so long as their is power and breath in me, should our fate lie behind one of those doors that exists far beyond at the edge of the world, if our happiness and your joy and laughter is there beyond that door, I would more than walk the length of the world for you to bring you to that door where you may once again be happy.

“For you, I would walk the world over again and once more time,” she muttered.

“My Lady Queen?” her Imp King asked.

“Never mind,” she said. “Sing to me, My Love?”

And without a moment’s thought, he burst into a happy song.

A soft smile pulled at her lips.

The whole of the wide world for you, she thought, allowing herself to slip into his song.