It's June and time again for Snippets of Story from Whisperings of the Pen!! I'm not including any yet from Children of a Legend (my current June Crusade/NaNoWriMo project) because May's Snippets were all from that story. I thought you'd like to get a glimpse of my other stories. :)
The two girls rounded a corner and there in front of them stood the palace. J heard B gasp as she took in the sight, and though J herself had seen it many times in her fifteen years, she, too, stopped for a moment in awe. Grey stoned and solid, the palace stood like a benevolent giant amidst the clumps of vacuous town homes and shops. Massive towers stretched to the skies, elegantly laced with ivy and roses. It was the perfect picture of grandeur.
But between them and grandeur marched a tall iron fence and a hundred of King Jakken's guards. J scowled. There would be no close glimpses of the new princess. The guards were strategically placed and the gate meticulously closed so that no one could get past them.
The Twelfth Kingdom
Leaving the door open, J darted to B's side and tenderly placed a hand on her cheek. It was like caressing fire. B thrashed around when J's hand touched her, completely throwing the holey blanket aside. J placed both hands on B's shoulders and tried to calm her friend.
“B! It's fine! It's me, Josette! Don't you know me? Princess?”
B groaned and shrugged off J's hands, oblivious to her cries.
“No, no!” J sobbed, trying to tuck the blanket around B's shaking frame. “B! Can you hear me? You will get better! You must get better! I need you!”
J was so focused on her friend that she never saw the shadow in the doorway, a shadow that rested on the door for only a moment and then disappeared.
The Twelfth Kingdom
Halidorn, the heavy guard sitting to the right of Jayn, appeared more interested in the apples in his hands than anything else. He had already polished off two red apples and was preparing to begin munching on a third. Halidorn carefully shined the apple on his sleeve and then eyed the fruit contemptuously.
Lianne saw Halidorn lean toward Jayn and say something. She rolled her eyes. He's probably asking Jayn for a knife to cut any bruises off.
Sure enough, Jayn produced a small knife, sighing as he did so, and Halidorn went to work carefully cutting a small discolored chunk out of the apple. Once the bruise had been removed, he examined the apple again before taking a bite. Food was Halidorn's greatest love, but he couldn't tolerate bruises or imperfections.
By this time, the rest of King Leroy's company had caught up to them. Lianne suppressed a smirk when she spotted her father's royal adviser and cousin, Azadon Taimenlore. Azadon inhabited a rather shortened form which looked very misplaced atop his large, black stallion. Complaining seemed to be his favorite pastime, and right now was no exception. Even from where she stood, Lianne could hear Azadon grumbling under his breath.
“Horrid weather; it ruined my good cloak.” He moaned as a stable hand helped him dismount. “Nothing but stale bread to eat. Nothing but treacherous waters to see. Nothing but dead fish to smell.”
“Carl! Carl, where are you?” Tabby hollered as they staggered into the lobby.
An annoyed voice drifted out of the small office adjacent to the lobby. “I'm busy, cat girl! And for Pete's sake, don't yell. You'll disturb my guests.”
“As if you care!” Tabby shot back. “I brought you more guests!”
Carl's face immediately peeked around the door jam, his mouth stretched into a wide grin. “Well, why didn't you say so in the first place, Tabby?” His smile faded as his eyes took in the two strangers, one young, one old and unconscious, and both covered in blood.
“Tabby! You know my hotel is a fine establishment. I cannot take in filthy vagabonds from off of the street.” Carl shook his head. “No, my uncle did that, and it nearly drove him to ruin. I will not follow in his unsuccessful footsteps. Now, get them out of my lobby!” He turned to go back into the office.
“Wait!” The boy called out, digging in his pocket. He pulled his hand out and displayed a wad of bills. “I can pay you. How much?”
Carl's eyes gleamed when he saw the money. “Oh, let's not worry about the price now,” he said, walking forward swiftly. “We really must get a doctor to look at your companion. Gracious! She's out cold! Bob!” He bellowed, turning to the office. “Call a doctor! We have a poor woman here in need of medical attention!”