Chapter II

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She was about my age, had long brown hair, soft, but terrified gray blue eyes, high cheekbones, and she was incredibly beautiful.

“There must be some mistake.” my father said.

“No sire, there is no mistake. This girl is the soldier that Valerio caught.”

            It shocked me that it was a girl I had been fighting. In our kingdom, girls were never allowed to fight. They were mainly nurses and healers, but never fighters. This girl was probably passing for a man so she could fight, but her eyes were too frightened to be a fighter.

“Do you know who she is?” I asked the guard.


“If she talks and is willing to cooperate, bring her to me.” my father said.

            He left the dungeon, but I hung back a little bit. This girl was so interesting. I had so many questions for her. Why was she fighting? Who were her parents? Where was she from? What was her name? Her eyes met mine and w e stared deeply into them. I eyes then fell to her wrists. They looked like she was chained. Was she a slave or an escaped prisoner?

“Guard, was she chained?” I asked.

“No, my prince. Why?”

“Look at her wrists.” I said as left the dungeons. My stomach then rumbled, reminding me that I hadn't had breakfast yet today. I went to the dining hall, where my mother and father were sitting. I started to gather some fruit, vegetables, and toast onto a plate and sat in a chair and began to eat.

“Derek, I want you to meet me in the training room for swordplay after breakfast.” my father said suddenly.

“Swordplay? Father, we were up past midnight practicing swordplay last night.” I stated.

“And how many times did you win?”

“Five out of five.”

“Henry, do not push him so hard. He can fight well enough, even without Valerio.” my mother said warmly to him. “What he needs to start doing is finding a wife.”

“Mother, no princess wants to marry a prince who has a dragon living with him. I believe the term is 'Slay the dragon and save the maiden.'” I said as I got up.

            I headed for my bedroom to remove my armor. Once I had it off, I changed into a cotton shirt, leather vest, and leather pants. I do not dress like other princes and others used to tease me about my wardrobe. They stopped when Valerio threatened to make them his lunch, if they do not stop. I put my brown leather boots on and went out to the balcony, where Valerio was eating his kill. That was one thing I always found humorous about a dragon. They were they're own hunter and cook. He let out another stream of fire and cooked the raw flesh of the elk. I went over to the edge and looked over the kingdom. People were returning to their homes and their daily lives.

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