Nissa Premiere looked at Michael, her King, the old soldier, who had picked the eldest of the twelve dancing princesses. Not the prettiest, not the cleverest, but the one with the greatest will.
The first of them.
He grinned at her and reached over with a weathered old hand to take the first sip of her cup. He always took the first sip of her cup, and the last sip.
He always had the first slice of her meat. The first crust of her bread. He ate little else at their feasts. That was why there were so many courses.
He knew what kind of feast she wanted to give him. He was an old soldier. They enjoyed their campaigns against each other. Eventually, she was going to win.
When the banquet was over and the dancing would begin, it was always signalled by the sharp shots of rifles. Three of them in quick succession.
He always smiled at her when the rifles were fired. The silver and gold and diamond branches were always prominently placed on the table.
Read the rest via the link in the description!