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The Kindgom of Heaven and Hell

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1 The Kindgom of Heaven and Hell on Sat Mar 29, 2014 2:52 pm

Faline all but cowered at the back of the great hall. She hated meetings. They were often times full of loud angry men who had a tendency to throw things. This night was no different. The entire village had shown up, despite the raging storm outside. Every man from every family was there, shouting to be heard over the next.
Her father, the Jarl, was seated at the head of it all, one long leg draped over his ornate throne. For a while he remained silent, his eyes not one the villagers, but going from the young woman hiding under one of the tables near the door to her sister who sat on top of it, holding onto a rather heavy broad sword. He shook his head at both of them. 
Oalf sighed heavily and held up a hand to silence the crowd. "I am fully aware of the danger we now face from the outlanders. And I am aware that those who cross our borders are far from human. However, I am not sure if we warrant help from out bordering villages. If we decide to seek help, we will need to go to the king. But...he is a bartering man. I am not sure we have anything he will find worthy enough..."

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2 Re: The Kindgom of Heaven and Hell on Sat Mar 29, 2014 3:12 pm

Cessily hated these meetings for an entirely different reason to her sister. Many times she had been reprimanded by their father for speaking up, when she was there, like Faline to simply look pretty as proof of their family's fine breeding. Cessily, or Cessi as her sister called her, had never shown any interest in the kind of activities expected of a jarls daughter, and so had, against his wishes, taken up the sword instead. Not that it mattered to their village now, she could have been the greatest warrior in all of the kingdom, but would still have been ignored simply for being a female. Right then was no different, she had been about to tell her father that they didn't need to go begging to the king for help, when he shook his head at her, anticipating her outburst.

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3 Re: The Kindgom of Heaven and Hell on Sat Mar 29, 2014 3:31 pm

Faline took in a shaky breath, trying to regain her courage. Gingerly she got to her feet and smoothed down the front of her dress, preparing a tankard of ale for her father. She knew he was going to need it. She handed her sister one first, giving the elder girl a smile. "It will be over soon." She said softly, turning to try and edge her way through the grumbling crowd. 
Heads began to turn as the slender blonde began to move among them. A silence fell that her father wasn't able to accomplish with the wave of his hand. She had a beauty and grace that other women would kill for. What was worse is that she didn't even know just how enchantingly beautiful she really was. 
Olaf rubbed at his forehead, trying to clear his head. "Does anyone have any ideas? Crops? Animals we can give to the king? We must think of something that would spark his attention. There must be something we have that would be worth his attention." He missed the sight of his youngest daughter as she came forward and set the mug of ale on the arm of his throne, placing his fingers on it. 
"Take a deep breath, father." She said gently. "You'll think of something. You always do."

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4 Re: The Kindgom of Heaven and Hell on Sat Mar 29, 2014 4:11 pm

Cessily had a habit of speaking without thinking when she was angry. "Why not just send him Faline?" She snorted before drinking from her own tankard. It was no secret to anyone that Olaf highly favoured his youngest child. She was the picture perfect fair haired maiden, while Cessily herself was seemingly the complete opposite. She had ebony hair and deep moss green eyes framed by long lashes. The only thing that would possibly tie them as remotely related, was their alabaster skin. Olaf had tried several time to marry Cessily off to men far below that which he would pick for Faline, but every one of them had been sent running for the hills in some way or another.
The whispers had begun the moment Cessily had spoken, it seemed many of the men thought this a most excellent suggestion.

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5 Re: The Kindgom of Heaven and Hell on Sat Mar 29, 2014 4:32 pm

Olaf on the other hand was already shaking his head. "Faline is too young. Besides, the king is probably already married." He was quick to interject this, looking around at the men who were beginning to whisper as if he had said nothing at all. His dark eyes settled on Cessily and he gave her a withering glare. She would be spending the next several days in the fields for this. "We have plenty of good crops and the like. There is no need to sell our people like cattle." He went on, having to raise his voice as the voice of his people began to get even louder. 
Faline was looking at her sister as well, trying to figure out why she would make a suggestion like that. And yet...the idea was a good one. If she were pleasing in the eyes of the king...Even if she proved to him that she was worthy to bring him ale and doctor his ailing body... the borderlands would be saved. Her father's headaches would be cured. It was worth the sacrifice.

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6 Re: The Kindgom of Heaven and Hell on Sat Mar 29, 2014 4:44 pm

"Funny how you didn't have that kind of morality when you tried to force me into marriage!" Cessily shouted suddenly, the whispers stopping instantly. The elder sister was on her feet now, gripping her sword tightly. "We don't need anything from the king anyway! The reason we are in this predicament is only because you raised your sons to be wastrels!" She added, narrowing her eyes at all the other men in the room.

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7 Re: The Kindgom of Heaven and Hell on Sat Mar 29, 2014 4:54 pm

"I have no sons you stupid girl." Olaf hissed, leaning forward on his throne. "You know nothing of what you're talking about." 
"I'll go." Faline was trying to keep things calm. She stepped in between her sister and her father, her back to the younger of the two. "Cessily is right. Crops and Animals are not good enough for a king. A servant perhaps..." 
"A concubine is more like it!" One of the more crude me chortled from the back. "No man would turn down that lovely little ass!"

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8 Re: The Kindgom of Heaven and Hell on Sat Mar 29, 2014 5:01 pm

"I meant the sons of the whole village, idiot!" Cessily hissed before she whirled around, her sword pointed at the other man who had just spoken. "How about I castrate you right here, then we can send you as his concubine!" This was happening more and more frequently; the elder girl was snapping over the tiniest thing, it was the main reason their father had tried to marry her off in the first place. There were fears that if she took her fathers throne, she would take them to war.

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9 Re: The Kindgom of Heaven and Hell on Sat Mar 29, 2014 5:58 pm

"Cess..." Faline was quick to try and cross the room to her sister, placing calming hands on the elder woman's arm. "For heaven's sake. Stop this. Everything will be all right. Everyone is just worried. So are you. Everyday the outlanders get closer to our villages. What we need is for the king to send back warriors like you to save us." She said softly. "I cannot fight like you. If this is how I can help my people then...you are right. I should go." 
Olaf surged to his feet, rage in his deep green eyes. "I have made my decision. We will send Faline, our best crops, and animals to the king. We will beg him to barter with us. In exchange for a concubine and all our village has to offer....we will ask for protection. One look at Faline and he will give us what we ask for. Cessily, you will see to this personally. As penance for the suggestion of selling your sister as the king's whore, you will not return here unless you are married to a warrior."

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10 Re: The Kindgom of Heaven and Hell on Sat Mar 29, 2014 6:12 pm

Faline would be able to feel just how tense her sisters lean muscles were when their father told her that. "Then I imagine this is goodbye, Jarl." She spat in his general direction. "You blame me for not being the son you always wanted, then refuse my blade when I offer to fight for you! You are a weak coward, and this village suffers for it!"

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11 Re: The Kindgom of Heaven and Hell on Sat Mar 29, 2014 6:26 pm

"Cessily, don't talk to father that way." Faline said softly, pleading with her sister. "We'll be in the kings city. Surely there will be someone there for you. There are warriors all over the palace. Remember mother's stories? You'll find one and be back. I know you will."

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12 Re: The Kindgom of Heaven and Hell on Sat Mar 29, 2014 6:32 pm

Cessily jerked her arm out of her sisters grasp and shook her head. "And look where it got her." She breathed. "No... I would never give so much of myself to anyone." She added, her dress swinging out behind her as she headed for the door. Cessily hated the fact her father had made her wear a dress at all.

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13 Re: The Kindgom of Heaven and Hell on Sat Mar 29, 2014 6:41 pm

"At least you won't have to wear a dress on the trip!" Fallen called after her sister. It would be the last time the two of them spoke until a week later when her father announced that everything was ready for them to begin their journey to the king's land. 
Faline was seated in a carriage, looking like an over dressed turkey. She was covered in jewels and a sparkling dress that made her look like a stuffed pillow. It wasn't hard to see that she was miserable.

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14 Re: The Kindgom of Heaven and Hell on Sat Mar 29, 2014 6:48 pm

Cessily was much more comfortable in her form fitting pants and leather riding boots. The young woman was prepared to strike down anyone who tried to attack her prized sister, wearing a highly polished breastplate that seemed to have been moulded to her torso and her sword was strapped to her back while there was a bow slid through the saddle bag of her horse and a well used dagger in her boot. The elder sister rode outside the carriage where she felt most comfortable, enjoying the feel of the night wind in her long hair. It was almost like Cessily had never been a noble at all.

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15 Re: The Kindgom of Heaven and Hell on Sat Mar 29, 2014 7:02 pm

Faline was miserable. She couldn't breathe. The carriage was stuffy and her dress covered a major portion of it. Not to mention the fact that they were being followed by a pair a heifers that kept eating the hem of her feather hat. By morning she was shivering from exhaustion and nausea. Neither of these made for a very fantastic carriage ride.

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16 Re: The Kindgom of Heaven and Hell on Sat Mar 29, 2014 7:06 pm

The city was a much different place then either sister was used to. Cessily had left her sister seated in the carriage to dismount her own weary horse and hand over the letter their father had given her. The dark haired girl had been in half a mind to steal Faline away, sell all the items they had with them and start a new life for them both. It was a selfish dream though, knowing that it would come at the cost of their whole village.

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17 Re: The Kindgom of Heaven and Hell on Sat Mar 29, 2014 7:10 pm

Faline was peering out the window, doing her best to keep her face covered as her father had instructed. There were so many people and so many noises. If she were out there with her sister, she'd have most certainly found a seller's table to hide under. This was all too much for her.

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18 Re: The Kindgom of Heaven and Hell on Sat Mar 29, 2014 7:15 pm

Cessily treated the entire situation with disinterest. She was pushing her way through the people who had gathered to look upon the newly arrived carriage and was slapping the letter against the chest plate of who she assumed was the captain of the guard. "We have an audience with the king, you will let us through the palace gate now. Though she didn't act like a noble, Cessily often spoke like one in the sense that she wanted people tho think she thought herself better than them. It wasn't the truth, it was just her way of keeping everyone at a distance.

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19 Re: The Kindgom of Heaven and Hell on Sat Mar 29, 2014 7:20 pm

The man looked at the letter and then at Cessily and began to laugh. The men around him began to laugh as well. "A letter gets you an invitation to return to the city gates, mistress." A gruff voice replied. "You must have an invitation from the king with his personal seal before you can enter the inner sanctum. You don't have that." He held the letter out to her. "You have a good day, sweetheart."

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20 Re: The Kindgom of Heaven and Hell on Sat Mar 29, 2014 7:24 pm

One of the worst things this man could have done was call Cessily 'sweetheart'. She snatched the letter up, the slammed her knee into his privates so his mouth was wide open, then stuffed the letter inside. "Don't cry now, sweetheart." She sneered before turning away.

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21 Re: The Kindgom of Heaven and Hell on Sat Mar 29, 2014 7:35 pm

The other men were laughing but it wasn't as loud as before. It got even quieter when the man rose to his feet and moved to grab a handful of Cessily's hair. "Oh no you don't, you little bitch!" He snarled, his enormous fist managing to wrap the length of her hair around his fingers. "I'm not done with you!" 
"Cess!" Faline was struggling to get out of the carriage to try and help her sister but the dress was caught on the door. She was trapped inside with the layers of the ornate fabric nightmare all around her. As it was, she could barely even breathe.

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22 Re: The Kindgom of Heaven and Hell on Sat Mar 29, 2014 7:38 pm

Cessily lifted her leg up just enough for her to grab the dagger in her boot. In one swift slice she had cut through her long hair, leaving the length of it wrapped around the man's fist, while all that was left just barely grazed her shoulders. "Oh, I think we're done." She informed him calmly.

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23 Re: The Kindgom of Heaven and Hell on Sat Mar 29, 2014 7:44 pm

The large man was looking at her, rage in his dark eyes. "You're not getting in to see the king. So, yes. We're done. Go home, borderlander. The king doesn't give a shit about you or your problems." He turned to gesture to where the heifers they had brought had already wandered off. Even a good portion of the vegetables they had brought had been stolen during the exchange. "Have a nice day, bitch." The man snarled.

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24 Re: The Kindgom of Heaven and Hell on Sat Mar 29, 2014 7:51 pm

Cessily sighed heavily, and let her sisters gaze in the carriage doorway. "Whatever happens, I love you." She breathed before turning and plunging her dagger into the large man's side. Cessily summarised she would be arrested immediately, and taken to the dungeon in the belly of the castle. Faline would be taken too as an accessory to what had just happened. At least then they would be inside, and Faline wearing all that finery, word was bound to get back to the king. It was a huge risk, but she didn't know what else to do.

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25 Re: The Kindgom of Heaven and Hell on Sat Mar 29, 2014 8:00 pm

Faline learned that when she thought a day was bad, it could always get worse. She could do nothing to help her sister as she was hauled out of the carriage like a rag doll. She was forced to watch as they beat the elder woman within an inch of her life. Aside from commenting that the giant feather pillow was screaming, no one seemed to even notice her. It wasn't until late that evening that the king was even notified of the incident at all. 
The "feather pillow" was taken to a room off of the king's study and locked in, awaiting word from him on what to do about her and the one now being held in the damp dungeons.

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26 Re: The Kindgom of Heaven and Hell on Sat Mar 29, 2014 8:07 pm

Cessily knew that hadn't been one of her best plans, and it wasn't the taste of blood on her mouth that alerted her to this fact, it was the irons around her slender wrists and the fact that all her armour and equipment had been taken. It was dark enough that she couldn't even tell if she was alone, never mind where Faline was.

The king was discussing Faline in that very moment. He hadn't seen her yet, only heard word of the rather over dressed woman who had been brought in with what they assumed was her bodyguard. "Well did you ask her if she knew the other woman?" King Lucian was sat in his throne room sighing wearily. This sort of thing didn't interest him at all. His father had only been dead two weeks, and already he resented the old man for daring to die.

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27 Re: The Kindgom of Heaven and Hell on Sat Mar 29, 2014 8:18 pm

Cessily would get nothing but a gruff snort and a soft rattle of chains from across the dungeon to tell her that she was not alone. It only only give her a hint that it was not another female that she shared a cell with. A rat squeaked in protest at something and skittered across the floor, stopping to taste the edge of her boot. It was trying to see if she would make a decent meal for it's kin. 

The servant cowered at the king's feet, shaking his head. "We...couldn't get much out of her. The dress was all over the place and she was sobbing so loudly...we thought it best to let her calm down and then let her speak to you first, sire."

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28 Re: The Kindgom of Heaven and Hell on Sat Mar 29, 2014 8:23 pm

Cession felt its teeth tasting the leather, then suddenly it squeaked loudly and then it was silent. Cessily had stomped her foot down on it, even without her eyes having adjusted to the dark yet. A moment later her own chains were rattling quietly as she tested what exactly she was chained to.

"Bring her in." The king commanded with a wave of his hand. "Probably some other village girl sent as an offering." He muttered, proving that Faline wouldn't be the first 'gift' sent his way.

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29 Re: The Kindgom of Heaven and Hell on Sat Mar 29, 2014 8:37 pm

"Don't pull so hard." The voice that broke the silence was like a blade wrapped in silk. It may have been soft, but it wasn't hard to guess just how dangerous it was. "Whatever is chained to you is tied to my neck."

Faline was brought in an dropped at the foot of the throne in a heap of ridiculous feathers and ornate fabric covered in jewels. She couldn't have been more humiliated if she'd been brought in naked. As it was she couldn't even see the king. She was fighting with the feather hat that had gotten caught with one of the layers of the skirts.

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30 Re: The Kindgom of Heaven and Hell on Sat Mar 29, 2014 8:41 pm

"That isn't exactly a reason for me to stop pulling." Cessily replied icily, though she did cease her movements, for the moment.

Lucian allowed Faline to carry on struggling for a moment of two, a rather amused smile on his face. Finally he couldn't take it any long and leaned down to help the poor girl at least untangle herself from that ridiculous hat. Faline would first see the kings warm honey coloured eyes that berated the fact he wasn't a cruel man, even if it was better for people to think that.

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