"I need to talk to you, Kate," Ellie says, a blatant smirk on her face, "So I came back." I want to hug her, as I see her standing in the doorway.
I run over to her, catapulting my arms around her neck.
"I thought you were dead." She chuckles to herself, playing with a bit of loose thread on her shirt.
"Please," she says, her voice growing softer, more serious, "Sit down." And I do.
"What is it?"
"You need to marry Jason." A mixture of relief and annoyance floods through.
"I don't love him," I tell her. She responds by rolling her eyes.
"You don't need to. We just want an image to portray, a leader, a queen." I take a deep breath, running a finger through my dark hair, pushing a lock behind my ear. When I don't respond, she continues, " There's a war coming. If you don't accept this offer, neither side will accept you." Suddenly, I feel years worth of rage, anger, and pity flood to the surface.
"You really think I'm scared? You really think that you can convince me through my fear of death? Well , here's a plot twist for you. I am not afraid anymore, because I've looked pain, and suffering and evil in the face and screamed 'I'm not afraid of you.' 'I'm not afraid', but you cowards are still so goddamn afraid you're hiding in a mask, and using me. I'm not as stupid as you think I am. I'm not a queen, I'm a martyr. Someone who's a target for the enemy side. Whether I live or die, that makes no difference to you anyway." We both sit in silence for a few seconds, before she starts to smile.
"I knew you were the smart one," she laughs and winks at me, "You'll do just fine."