Katherine of Carpenchia: Episode 6

NO I DIDN'T FORGET ABOUT THIS THING OKAY.

CHRISTMAS JUST TOOK UP A TON OF MY POSTING SPACE BUT NOW THAT THAT'S OVER HERE WE GO.

___


Heavy, thick silence descended like a headsman's axe on the room. Then a roar of gasps, shrieks, and shouting rose.

"Attention!" called Lady Elfrea, "Everybody, remain calm!"


"Oh!" cried Lirisse, and fainted.


"Of course, those demons," snarled Lady Arabelle, baring her teeth, "they would, now that we've got a brand-new queen in charge. They see a weak spot. And what," she added, directing her attention to the newcomer at the table, "is she doing here?"


"I lived here, remember?" replied Celine, her eyes veritable ice.


"Enough!" shouted Lady Elfrea. "Another voice at this table, and one belonging to our greatest ally, will do some good, as the Lady Lirisse seems to have been taken out of action at the moment. Boy, bring out the map."


The map was brought, a huge thing written on parchment. When tacked down, it took up most of the table.

"We have intelligence," the messenger boy reported eagerly as he fastened the map to the table, "the Avaldorians are planning to pass by Redrock Ridge! Beyond that, their path is unknown at the moment - although it was certain they will head for here, Anrod! The capital!" He seemed very proud of himself for having figured this obvious bit of information out.


Celine nodded, collected in a crisis, as always. "Marigo will aid Carpenchia," she said.


Lady Elfrea sighed. "And doubtless Citia will ally with Avaldor."


"All right," announced Lady Arabelle, "what we need to do is-"


Unnoticed by anyone, Katherine had been thinking quietly in her sear this whole time. Now, she straightened up and called, "Enough, Arabelle! You are not the Queen here; I am."


"And a fine queen you've been," the Lady spat back, "it's your fault we're in this mess; they perceive you as weak!"


"If it is indeed my war, as you make it out to be," replied Katherine quietly, her eyes blazing fire, "then I shall finish it." She cleared her throat and raised her voice to address the council at large. "Redrock Ridge is not on the path Avaldor has historically taken to attack us - they usually go by route of Elflor's Keep. We will make in that direction, fooling them into thinking they will catch us unaware. Then we will swoop in on their path and attack them from behind on Redrock Ridge. I, personally," she took a deep breath, "will lead the charge."


"Katherine!" cried Celine. "No, that's - no! You - you have to stay at -"


"This meeting has been adjourned," Katherine stated, overriding Celine. "We will resume in an hour."

___


Katherine stood in her mother's - no, her bedroom, looking blankly at the trinkets sprawled out on the dresser as she contemplated what she had just done.


A knock sounded at the door. "Come in." Was it Elsie, at last? Where was that girl?


But instead, it was Celine. "Katherine - are you all right?"


"I'm -" Katherine turned back to her dresser. There was no point in lying to Celine. "I'm right in my mind about going personally to war, if that's what you mean. I am not changing that. But - I'm not emotionally all right, no. I just - I'm upset, Celine, I set out to be a good Queen and it seems that everything and everyone is conspiring against me."


Celine was quiet for a while. "Katherine," she said, "this isn't about us, is it?"


"No," said Katherine, turning around. Growing up, it had been a frequent point of gossip among the nobility about which of the two of them was the smarter, the prettier, the more collected, the more worthy. Hint - it wasn't Katherine. "This is not about us."


"Good," Celine said, relieved.


"Celine - you yourself said, not an hour ago, that I have to be a strong leader. And a strong leader I'm being."


"You don't understand," hissed Celine, "I'm scared for you, Katherine, I'm frightened out of my wits. My best friend, who has not but elementary sword training, is going to fight a war she may never come back from. And without consulting me! How do you think I feel?"


"I - I'm sorry, Celine. I don't mean to worry you - but all our problems, my problems, they'll be fixed, you see, if I can just win this war -"


"Yes, they may," replied Celine, "but you're not going about this in a smart way, Katherine! Throwing yourself blindly in danger to prove a point is not a good solution. There are other ways. You can be a plenty good leader from the safety of Anrod."


"But the symbolism, Celine, the symbolism!" Katherine grew more excited with every breath. "It will be stronger if I go into battle, too."


"I'm sorry," she concluded, "but this case is closed. I am going to Redrock Ridge, and you will stay back here to run the country in my absence, with Lady Elfrea as your second-in-command. Now, if you'll excuse me, I have some preparation to do, generals to talk with." She brushed past her friend and left the room, closing the door firmly behind her.


Celine sighed and stared determinedly at the closed door. If Katherine expected her best friend to let her go to war without so much as a raised finger, she was sorely mistaken.

___

What did you think of this episode? What is Celine's plan? And where are Elsie and Caihanna? 

Hope you enjoyed, and I promise it won't take so long for the next episode to be up. :)

Namarië,
Ellie

6 comments:

  1. Ohboyohboyohboyohboy!
    The thing has returned!
    I must agree with Celine that throwing oneself into battle just to prove a point is foolhardy.
    And exciting.
    But just how is this going to work with Katherine's elementary sword training? She better not have secret powers we don't know about. Does she know much about strategies? I certainly hope she is loads more competent than the council makes her out to be. Cause otherwise... Uh oh.

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    1. I'm glad you're excited :)
      Me too.
      Not very well, I presume. Hah, no, no secret powers. She is more competent in some ways, but less competent in others (such as her tendency to make stupid decisions when emotional, as this episode illustrates).

      - Ellie

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  2. Oooooo! This is exciting! Although I do agree with Gwen on this one. a) It was a bit foolish to just run into a full-out war, and b) how on earth is she going to do this with only elementary sword skills??
    I hope it turns out well in the next episode (or if not in the next one, somewhere in the near future), cause things are gettin' a bit dangerous...
    ~ Suzy

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    Replies
    1. Hah, yes, Celine and I agree very much so with you and Gwen. ;)
      Yup....

      - Ellie

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  3. OOOO I just found your blog and now I feel the need to read the past episodes this is just so fun to read! Do you want to support each other’s blog by following each other?:) Please let me know if you’s like to so I can follow you right back x

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    ReplyDelete

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