PRINCE Xandur was summoned to West Stongate already. And by Celson, his guardian in the Great League.
Noble Xandur had told himself to never be so distraught about the younger prince’s manner with him.
He’d taught himself to take in good faith, everything messy that might rub on him from the new relation.
Even so, Xandur wouldn’t know exactly what Celson was going to say. What he was going to say to him on that urgent call.
Now Noble Xandur was matched into the big fort at the western outpost of the heirsen realm. That outpost fortification called West Stongate.
The Prince of Olde Glassfield was led down to Prince Celson’s governing house. And right to the doors of his work chamber.
Xandur laid a gentle knock on those giant doors. And Celson’s voice rumbled through the age-worn gates, asking his noble guest to come in.
The Glassfield prince slowly stepped in. Celson halted a writing process just then, to beam a smile at his arriving guest.
Xandur froze in that moment. For he was too stunned and baffled to move a step closer.
The West prince dropped his writing quill in an open jar of ink. He looked up at the surprised noble.
‘How was your flight down here, Olde Glassfield?’ he asked with a smile.
Xandur parted his lips open. He stammered through his response.
‘There was… there was no hitch at all,’ he said. ‘And thank you… thank you for asking, sire,’ he added.
Prince Celson motioned to the sitting space across his desk. ‘Have a seat, Noble Xandur. Make yourself comfortable here.’
‘Oh thank you,’ Xandur quipped as he settled down.
Celson stood up immediately and walked over to his guest; his frantic foot thuds punctuating his next words.
‘Now tell me, Prince Xandur. Tell me about Arstol of the North. Everything about him!’
Xandur couldn’t hold back his surprise at all. He was surprised at how Celson knew already that there was an Arstol.
An Arstol he loathed to the ends of doom.
Xandur rambled about and stuttered. ‘He is… erm… he’s just…’
Right then, Celson stood himself in front of the older prince, his arms crossed behind him in a determined stance.
Then he spoke up, rumbling like thunder.
‘I am your custodian, Olde Glassfield! I am your watcher and guardian. Yet you bypassed me to write Prince Dalleon of Waterfort?!’
Then he brought to the fore a letter he’d been clutching behind him. And he shoved the parchment piece in Xandur’s bewildered gaze.
Xandur hurried up to his feet at once. He bowed the head again and again.
‘I am sorry, sire!’ he pleaded. ‘I am desperately sorry! Pardon my folly, sire! Please pardon me!’
Celson grinned so wide. ‘No Xandur… there’s no need to be sorry. You are new and green; you don’t know what works here.’
He held the older noble by the shoulder now; and with that hand he pulled him down to his seat and settled down in front of him.
Xandur had written Prince Dalleon in the past days about his desire to bring down the Prince of Highland North.
He told Dalleon of his bitter grievance towards the younger prince. Of how he hated Arstol for his standing reputation as a noble heirsen.
And Xandur’s message simply bore the bitter dregs of his vengefulness towards a fellow noble.
But then Dalleon handed Celson an alchemist-copy of the letter, made out from the impressed ink of the original.
And there in Xandur’s bitter outpour, Celson of West Stongate was able to find the answer to a curious bother.
The Prince of the West had spied on Xandur since the day he was grafted into the League.
Yet Celson hadn’t seen the old noble resent him for being made his overseer ever since.
He was baffled at this. And so he became even more curious.
Celson prided himself in being able to read just anyone. For he always took his time to study his targets thoroughly, before he gave his assertion about them.
Yet the West noble’s assertions had always been so accurate and valid. As valid as a daily sunrise and sunset even.
But then, when Xandur never even showed a sign that he was bitter against his guardian, the assertive Prince of the West soon began to think him a dangerous spy.
Celson just couldn’t understand why anyone wouldn’t be bitter.
However, Celson of West Stongate found a seal of the Great League on the Glassfield prince, in that bitter letter he wrote to them.
That seal, that unmistakable seal… was the bitter resentment towards an heirsen on the Father’s side.
It was the grievance for the King of All, slammed on his standing princes.
Celson saw this, and right from that day he found a reason to mete down his own hatred for Xandur.
He decided that day to channel his boiling hate towards the young heirsen Xandur wanted down.
So now, Prince Celson turned to Xandur – where both of them sat in his governing chamber.
‘So tell me about Arstol,’ he said with an eager smile.
‘I’m joining hands with you to bring down that thing. So tell me everything I need to know about your enemy!’
Xandur warmed up and clutched both hands gratefully.
‘Thank you, Your Grace! Thank you really much!’ he gulped.
Right then Xandur’s mountain of resentment for Celson himself, became only a molehill. And there and then he was ready for the new normal.
Yet now, Xandur didn’t know where to begin with Arstol’s case. He wanted to describe the youngster but then he had no thoughts coming.
Eventually he spoke the first words. And they only sounded in Celson’s ears like the call to a dreadful battle.
‘Arstol isn’t Arstol,’ Xandur whispered.
‘Arstol’s far more than we know!’ he gasped.
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© July 2021 Kayode & Tola Olla