( Thanks dear 😉)
The Queen had stopped by her Chambers and called from inside, "Zuri, could you please come in ? I would need your help." A little surprised and intrigued, Zuri went inside leaving Tempest outside. Tempest gave an odd look to her as she went through, one that She couldn't decipher. The Queen was standing inside, with her back to her, her majestic bat wings extended. "Help me with the knots of my gown please." The Queen requested, gesturing to her back. The action was oddly intimate,but Zuri went forward anyway and helped her. But she stepped backwards as soon as she finished and avoided any unnecessary touches as much as possible. The Queen slipped behind the curtains. Zuri waited for a moment, and was turning to go outside, when she heard the Queen scream loudly, her voice filled with pain and terror. She soundlessly unsheathed her both kindjals ( long thin blades were called kindjals back home ) from their scabbards and crept forward cautiously. There were scuffling sounds coming from inside the curtains. She didn't want to alert the Soldiers of her presence, she had better luck at killing them by catching them by surprise. She opened the curtains and jumped in. Five Hybern spies, their faces covered, looked up at her in shock. The Queen was nowhere to be seen. Zuri quickly dashed forward, ducking as one soldier slashed towards her, nearly missing her neck. Then she turned midway, plummeted and stabbed him through his heart. Her other kindjal nicked off another soldier's eye. Dispatching the older foe, she started sparring with the other, ducking simultaneously as few knifes shot past her, aimed at her throat, chest and arms. She moved quickly, judo flipped and stabbed another soldier, holding one as a shield when the knife thrower targeted her again. She killed the remaining both easily. Stepping away she leaned accross the window searching for the Queen.She released a breath that she had been holding and relaxed slightly. But as luck would have it, she suddenly felt a sword at her neck. She had been so godsdamned concentrated on going unnoticed that she hadn't heard the intruder approach behind her. "Don't move, or my sword moves before you do, and i think u have a very good idea of what will happen then." She heard his gruff no-nonsense voice. It was commanding, and held authority, suggesting the probability of him being a Commander. She felt the panic seep into her bones. Trying her best to be tranquil, she replied,"I won't, but you have to assure me of the Queen's safety and who you are." He laughed mirthlessly. "Do you really believe that you're in a position to demand answers from me now ? Keep quiet and give up all your weapons. I might even let u go." His other hand skimmed over her body, her stomach and halted on her waist." Or maybe i won't." He added, his voice taking over a wicked edge. Zuri wanted to throw up, she felt her blood boiling at his advances. Give up her weapons ? Sure as hell not. She would have this bloody male's head and make him chew his own dirty hands. She stared forward and saw the door of the bathroom ajar. She inclined her head backwards and stared at him upside down. Of course he was wearing a mask, but his eyes were black. Allowing herself to smile, she said, " I don't really think you are yourself in the position to restrain me." And brought her head upwards brutally, bumping it on his chin. He squinted and loosed his hold on her for a second. That was all the opening she needed. She quickly extended her free hands and summoned water from the stream inside the bathroom and directed it towards his face. He shrieked and slashed a dagger at her, and gashed her forearm. Then he jumped back pulling up his arms to fend of the sudden attack of the water. She released herself, leapt through the air, and backflipped over his head, stabbing the kindjal forcefully into his skull at the right moment. He shuddered and fell down. She landed beside him on her feet. He was still alive and spitting up blood. " Next time, Think carefully before u choose to threaten anyone. Oh wait", she said mockingly ," I don't think a second chance is going to come." Baring her teeth, she raised her kinjal to stab his brains out when he spoke," Really ? Maybe i would die, but u should really see the slit on your forearm, it might be fatal." She growled again . As if she would let him go. She kneeled down levelling herself with his face. " I hope you're ready to meet the Devil in hell." She whispered and stabbed both kindjals through his eyes viciously. He screamed and fell down, not moving again. She stood up now, staring at the bloody spots on her gown and the room. But suddenly the room spinned. She felt nauseous and fell down. What the hell was happening ? Then She remembered the gash on her forearm that the soldier had spoken about. Dreading the worst, she scented it. Faebane, she realised, her stomach pummeling down south. And not just any trivial amount but a whole solid dose of it, enough to kill someone. She tried to scream, but her throat wouldn't work. Before long, she saw darkness and felt herself embracing it.
( yup thanks, cya besties tomorrow, Tata..😉)
( Rowi and Hunt, i Cant post My povs rn coz i gotta sleep... Is it ok if I do it tomorrow, u guys can use my character if u want ... goodnight guys...😌👋)
(wait, can i ask, is there an ot post for acotar wiki too ? On which post is this convo taking place 😅)
( Yeah I'm on guys let Tempest write her pov First, then Hunt will go and I'll write at last )
Zuri watched the scene unfold in front of her eyes like a play. The Hybern soldier dead at the Queen's feet, the Queen's outburst and hysteria, the sudden silence in the ballroom... It was all so surreal. Mentally, she thanked the Gods that she got her weapons and she wasn't helpless now. She quickly strapped them on when everyone was distracted. She had also noticed Tempest barge inside the silent as death ballroom, Ash following her closely. Oh so now he was flirting with her, Zuri thought. It didn't affect her that much anymore though bcoz She realised all she felt for Ash was attraction and infatuation over his looks, him being the only interactive male in the room. Ash asked Eira about what had happened and how the Queen was, and she gave him the answers nonchalantly, still obviously ignoring his attempts to flirt with her. Zuri would have laughed if not for the grim silence of the ballroom. She spotted the Queen kneeling on her knees and tears pouring from her eyes. No one said anything. No one, they were all just absorbing the shocking incident that had happened, It had been so many years since the King of Hybern had been defeated. What was going on now ? She didn't know. She turned to Eira and whispered as softly as she could, " Eira, Should we help the Queen ? Someone should. She looks.... She looks so not like herself, she's shaken." Eira looked up at her, deep in thought.
Zuri watched Tempest walk away, with sadness emanating from her eyes and face. She felt guilty now, for acting stupid and jealous. It was so juvenile of her to do that !!! A part of her wanted to run after Tempest and apologize. But Eira was still here and asked her about their plans to drink. " Weapons first, our foremost priority. We'll get mine first" She told Eira. Eira's eyes lit up at the prospect of checking out new weaponry, by the Cauldron, did this girl love weapons !!! But Eira asked her puzzled the next moment, " How could we call your buddy ride Seahorse here ? I'm pretty sure he/she/it is quite large if it was your ride, I can't believe you parked him in this little puddle of water ???" Zuri felt herself smiling. "Here comes the real fun Eira. You see, Blackjack, by the way it's a he, is magical. He can change his shape and colour to acclimatise with his surroundings. I'll just call him from here, but i need your help " she said. Eira's eyes twinkled with amusement. "Wow, seaweed gal , your ride is very interesting isnt he ? You simply have to let me ride him once, oh the thrill of adventure..." Zuri grinned again," Of course you could, if he allows you. For now just stand here covering my body " "What are you going to do Zuri ? Jump in the water ? Send a wave or a fish to signal him ? " Eira rubbed her palms together and asked. Zuri wanted to facepalm now. " Naw,. I'M going to put my head in the water and call out his name in the stream. He'll understand it and come swimming here. I just want u to cover me, so we won't appear inconspicuous to others. Especially the queen." Zuri reminded Eira. " You don't say, you can actually talk to fish ?? Now that is talent Ria, Somethin useful " Eira said giving her a smug smile. Then she straightened and stood broadly, her tall frame blocking Zuri's shorter one, her back towards her friend. Then Zuri fixed her hair once and muttered to herself,Here we go, and ducked into the water. She didn't get wet of course, because she hadn't willed herself to. But the familiar coolness of the water was soothing. She called on through the water, "Blackjack, Hey bubs, I need you, I summon you." in the mer-language. She waited for a while. Then there was a splash and she saw a tiny black seahorse, almost the size of her palm, squize himself through the drains. "Here you are !!! I'm so glad to see you." She whispered. Blackjack came nearer and increased his size just slightly, so she could get her weapons. "Hurry up, " she heard Eira whisper from above, " The Queen will be here anytime now." Zuri grabbed her weapons and patted Blackjack." Of u go, and alert my gaurds. Tell them to be ready in case anything happens." " Yes my lady, At once" Blackjack replied in his funny tone. Zuri watched him wade back. Soon enough she was back, above the surface of the water, just like before. She almost began to smile, but then she saw Eira's alarmed expression."Something's happened Ria....." She spoke.
Pretty Face ??? Zuri had to admit, she was slightly appalled. Yes, Eira was the most beautiful girl in the ballroom,no doubt, but Tempest speaking in such a way... Did she have feelings for Eira ?? It certainly hadn't seemed so because the Commander seemed like the one who was all business. " Yes, of course, anyone could take a liking to Eira, her Personality is golden, she's not just a pretty face." Zuri tried to keep the sting out of her voice again. She had to get her weapons. But the Commander was still observing Eira's sword, much to her chagrin. She studied Tempest again, wondering how she would treat her friends, would she be loyal ? She certainly seemed the honourable type. And if she was Eira's friend... Zuri put up a lid on her envy and closed it up. She had to hurry anyways. Eira had protested in between, " Hey, people, stop talking like this amazing person isn't here, I can talk too" making Tempest smile. It was genuine. Zuri asked Tempest," I believe your commander from night court hasn't arrived yet ??" She was trying to make a pleasant conversation, for Eira's sake. She didn't want Eira to feel bad, to realise that Zuri wasn't overly fond of Tempest. Eira looked quiet happy to see them talk to each other, so be it. She would make friends with Tempest, but she hoped that Tempest wouldn't drag her only friend away from her.
Zuri observed Tempest a little suspiciously. She had seen the Commander talk about her before and her stance, her way of talking made her appear as a threat. She wanted to stop Eira from displaying her sword but Eira looked at Tempest like she trusted her, like they were familiar. Of course they had danced together and while Zuri had no idea what conversation had taken place, she was certain that they had become friends. Well, she mentally shrugged, if Eira was fine with it, as was Zuri, but she worried for her friend. Eira had a reckless tendency. Zuri nodded, acknowledging Tempest and said, " Nice to meet you again, my lady. I see that you both have acquinted yourselves with each other. Glad to know that." She wasn't, not really. She couldn't stop the allegation from her voice to Eira. Tempest could be playing them both. Zuri just didn't what to say.
Zuri watched the weapons collection with Awe and amazement. Now that was something. She herself had two twin spears and two long thin blades ( Zuri was never the one to use a fancy heavy sword, she hated them, they affected her speed, made her slow ) and two Daggers. But that wasn't an issue. The main problem was that she'd left it with her seahorse Blackjack, strapped to him. Zuri mentally facepalmed herself. Now that was very idiotic of her to walk in here weaponless. She turned to Eira. " The thing is, my weapons are left with my pet seahorse. And he's outside. If I can somehow reach him...." She looked around and spotted a large fountain at a corner. Ahhhaaa, she said to herself, Perfect for summoning Blackjack. "Come with me" she said to a puzzled Eira and dragged her there.
(Hey Cam, hello, yep, I'll write my pov after u post yours ) 😁
Zuri resisted the urge to roll her eyes. Cue the sassyness, she was happy to see her friend again. She shrugged and said, " Well, I don't mind lol, and i believe u would know just the Right place Snow" . Eira's eyes widened with slight indignation at the new nickname, but Zuri pulled her closer and whispered in her ear," Listen Eira, I need to get my weapons and so do you. I don't know why, but i get this impression that every other person in this room is armed. You saw the Commander and the Queen. If something happens, we need to be able to defend Atleast ourselves. You're the only person in this room i trust wholly. That's why I'm telling you about this. Tell me, do u have any weapons on your attire at this moment ? " Zuri hoped her decision of trusting Eira was wise and she might be the ally that Zuri had been searching for.
Zuri hoped she wasn't blushing when she answered, " Oh, it was nothing, but a dance. I'm sure Ash already has had more lovers than my fingers and toes counted altogether", and let out a small laugh. She waited for the anticipated flare of jealousy or envy at this statement from herself, but.... To her surprise, she wasn't affected. Not really. Zuri had an idea that Ash could be her friend, all the most, but not her sole lover, never. She hadn't even expected that. But she had observed the Queen looking at them, all the time they were dancing. Was it because she was unhappy that Ash was enjoying himself with Zuri, and not acknowledging the Queen's presence as he did always. The Queen had said about her being a 'complicated' character. Aren't we all complicated, just pretending to be perfect, Zuri wondered. She said, " Of course my Queen, It's just that I am not very comfortable with anyone reading my mind. My father was tricked in a similar way by daemati once, when he was all polite and hospitable. Hence Pardon me if i sound rude,but please don't read my mind again. As for the king..." She almost trailed off and then leaned towards the Queen to whisper," ..... Do u really know that much of his secrets ?? It must have felt so heavy, keeping those secrets to yourself my lady. I don't mean to pry but I could say I fairly relate to how you feel." She leaned back, lest anyone spotted them in such a compromising position. The Queen was after all... Married.
( Heya Rowi, I'm sry,. I slept off yesterday, i was really exhausted )
The Queen's face looked sorrowful, Zuri wasn't an expert in reading anyone but even she could notice a twinge of sorrow and... Regret ?? (She wasn't sure) in the Queen's eyes. She replied, " Yes your highness, Ash dances rather majestically, and it was really good, but I'm afraid I'm not a very elegant nor trained dancer, Our ways of dancing in Corinth back home are very different. I got tired rather quickly ", trying to sound not very apologetic. It was true. Ash danced with liquid grace, he made it look like he was spinning without much effort and had been doing it since ages. Zuri straightened a fold in her dress and played with a pearl. At the corner of her eyes, she saw the Queen looking at her with an almost wistful expression. Well if the Queen was taken with her appearance.... She shook her head mentally. She wasn't ready- not yet to flirt with anyone now. Godsdamn her if she even knew how to flirt. And the Queen was a daemati, she reminded herself again. " My most sincere apologies, My Queen" , she said clearing her throat, " If I appeared arrogant or rude the last time we danced. It wasn't really my intention to hurt you, but I was taken aback when I learnt that u could read my mind. I'm sorry, and I hope all is well between us again." Zuri glanced at the Queen, waiting for her reaction.
Zuri watched him go in silence... He was a good male after all, she thought... But she wasn't thinking wisely now. It had been attraction with Ash, he was also very good to her, but she needed her friends now. She stood up and stalked towards where Tempest and Eira were dancing. They looked beautiful together. Like pretty dolls. Zuri watched them in silence
( Rowi, I'm sry , Hunt thought that i fell asleep but i was typing sry lol )
( what Hunt nopes, I'm here )
Zuri was suddenly in ash's arms. She felt nice and warm but... They're in a ballroom. This seemed inappropriate. She eyed the drink in his hand greedily though. Ash looked at her And realising it, helped her drink it, as gently as he could. The drink ( cranberry water ) tasted heavenly to her parched mouth. She was more than grateful to Ash. Feeling better, she tried to free herself from his arms, but he still held her close. "Ash... " She murmured.." Ash, we're in a ballroom now, and u can let me go now" He looked questioningly at her, as if he quite didn't believe her, but released her from his embrace slowly anyway. Zuri saw Eira dancing away.. with.. with Tempest ? That was very surprising because she certainly didn't see those events unfold. You would, her mind whispers, if u weren't busy falling in the arms of a gentleman u just met, her subconscious whispered to her... Zuri told Ash," Thank you Ash, that was very nice of you to help me..." that was the first time she called him by his name