Chapter 1

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Celosia shot up into an upright position and stared at the walls in front of her. Sweat droplets beamed on her forehead and her breathing was heavy. She closed her eyes and let out a sigh. She kept herself propped up with her hands on the edge of her bed. Stretched from her back the leathery wings she possessed flapped uncomfortably. Outside the keep, bells were being rung. Her mother came hurriedly into her room. She shuffled over to Celosia and curled her arms at Celosia's waist, lifting her out of bed she set her in a chair. Grabbing a brush from the dresser she began to brush the knots out of Celosia's hair. Her mother, Lady Elia, was a average woman. She had waist length ginger hair, and chocolate brown eyes. Her voice was soft, just loud enough to be heard. Her mother pulled a gray dress from the wardrobe and draped it over the edge of Celosia's bed.

Shortly after Celosia's mother helped her get dressed she began to comb through her daughters hair again. She separates the hair into sections, braiding it. Once finished her mother wrapped her arms around Celosia's waist and hauled her into a wagon. Lady Elia wheeled the wagon out of the keep and towards the stables. Horses neighed loudly as they pawed the ground, slightly startled by the presence of Celosia and her mother. Reaching a stable in the back, Lady Elia opened the gate and lead out a black mare. Moments later Celosia was pulled out of the wagon and placed upon the mare by two guards. Gripping tightly on the reins with one hand she gently patted the horse to get it moving. A screech was sounded behind Celosia. Crawling amongst the loose strands of straw on the ground was Eira, Celosia's baby Antarctic Dayfrill, in other words a baby dragon. Small snowy crystals lay on the ground from where she walked. Celosia smiled down at the dragon.

"Lets go, Eira." Celosia gestures to a small basket attached to the saddle.

The baby dragon screeched again before spreading her wings and fluttering clumsily towards the basket. Gripping the edge of the basket, Eira climbed in and propped her head on the rim of the basket.

Moments later Celosia was joined by her parents on either side of her. Her father wore nice silver clothes with black trimmings and her mother wore a matching dress with jewels outlining her neck.

The bells kept ringing.

The people of Ellessa had gathered in the center of the courtyard. The  people conversed amongst one another, questioning why a meeting was being held.  Celosia remained on the horse, leading it between two throne-like seats. Her mother and father sat in the chairs beside her. Lord Ivan, her father tapped a staff on a stump next to his chair. The milling people stopped their movements and looked up towards Lord Ivan.

From across the courtyard a man in ragged clothes was dragged towards Lord Ivan by two guards. His screams of pain and struggle echoed, causing small children to huddle by their mothers legs. Being forced onto his knees the man begged for his life. Lord Ivan stood, he raised his hand for attention and walked towards the begging man.

"My lord...please...I beg of you!" Cried the man.

Lord Ivan ignored his pleas. He drew his sword from its cover and placed it at the base of the mans neck.

"I Lord Ivan of House Wren, third of his name execute you before the gods for conspiring against us to have my daughter murdered. Here I sentence you to die. Your last words will be spoken now." Lord Ivan shouts.

"I only act on the kings orders. Your daughter will destroy this land. She will be the end of us!" The man spat before looking at the ground.

Lord Ivan lifted the sword. He held it in the air for a short minute before bringing it down swiftly on the mans neck. Blood spilled over the wooden stage. It dripped onto the dirt before pooling at the base of the crowd. The mans head rolled back towards. Celosia. It lay upright where the dead mans open eyes stared lifelessly at Celosia. She stared back for some time before the head was removed from the courtyard.

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