Teradil: The Age of Darkness
Teradil: The Age of Darkness
Y ou called for me, Father?" said Rylan, prince of Teradil.
At seventeen, Rylan was a king in training. He was quite kingly-looking, tall and handsome, his posture always as straight as an arrow. He had neatly-cut blond hair and, as some would say, the bluest eyes in the land. Rylan looked exactly like his father except that he had his mother's hair color and eyes.
"Yes, son, come in," said Reagan, Rylan's father and king of Teradil.
King Reagan was a large man who was a little stout in stature. His face was stern but kind, and experienced from fifty years of royal life. Teradil loved him because he was a paternal king: kind, fair, and true. He upheld the structure and discipline that Teradil had been founded upon, but he was also fair when a decision required his judgment. He tried to help as many people as possible. His heart had never ceased aching for his wife, who died seventeen years prior at Rylan's birth. But as time passed, he seemed to cope with the loss better each day.
Rylan sat down in the king's large, private study across from his father's desk. Books lined the walls in the room, and papers littered the desk.
"I need your assistance with the preparations for the celebration. I do not know what to do about it anymore!" Reagan said with frustration, looking down at a stack of papers. "I am working on the invitations. I do not know whom to invite, or whom not to invite. We can only fit a few hundred people in the royal ballroom. I also just found out that the entire royal family from Austonia is coming! So that adds to the chaos. It is just too much - "
"The entire family, Father?" Rylan asked, surprised.
"Yes, yes," Reagan said quickly, sorting through his papers.
"Even the princess?" Rylan insisted.
"Yes, even the princess will be there." Reagan then realized where the prince's mind was, flinched, and looked up at his grinning son. "Oh, no, no, no... I know what you are thinking."
"I have no idea what you are talking about," Rylan replied plainly.
"You cannot hide anything from me, son, for I have known you since before you knew yourself!" he teased. "You are interested in Princess Emma; I know this. I am just going to say, you had better do away with your feelings for her now because you know it would be disastrous to our two kingdoms if anything were to develop between you two."
"But, Father, I have not seen her in four years! The last time they came to Teradil we became such good friends. After they left, I wanted to see her more, but her parents wouldn't let her out of their tower again. I wanted to write to her, but you would not let me because you said it would be 'bad for the kingdoms.' Explain to me, Father, why it would be so terrible."
Rylan was now standing across from the king. He knew that what he was doing was no way for a prince to act, especially toward his father and the sitting king. Even though this subject had not been brought up in a few years, he recalled his training and sat back down with his head lowered. "I am sorry, Father; I ought not to raise my voice."
There was silence for a while until Reagan said, "That is all right, son. I understand how you are feeling."
Rylan looked up, eyebrows raised.
"Let me explain it all to you more clearly, and maybe you will understand why we have been keeping you two apart all these years." He took a deep breath and began. "Teradil and Austonia have lived side by side for nearly three hundred years - since the founders of Austonia split from Teradil because of governmental and cultural differences. They moved across the forest so t