Coralia stared at everyone in the room in disbelief. “B-but Terrasen is a myth,” she stammered, not believing, refusing to believe, that she’s had a living relative this entire time.
“Some people say the same thing about Zariya,” Elder Asher Crius said. “Since both of our kingdoms contain magic in them, we’ve always been considered legends. The only difference between them is that we hide our magic, so power-hungry kingdoms like Adarlan don’t suspect us of welding magical powers.”
“Then why don’t we fight back Adarlan?” Coralia asked, anger flaring in her eyes. “Why must we hide our power, why can’t we just unite forces with Terrasen-”
“It would be too dangerous for Zariyans and Terrasens to meet,” Elder Grace interrupted. She was the only one in the entire kingdom who could talk over the queen and not be punished. “And Adarlan has dark magic surrounding it. We can’t trust anyone from that kingdom, especially if they come from a royal family.”
'That’s ironic since Adarlan is one of our allies,' Coralia thought dryly. But then again, there was some slight tension between the two kingdoms since the Elders refused for the King of Adarlan to meet Coralia in person. The king was a bit annoyed and upset that he didn’t know what the ruler of Zariya looked like.
“I’m going to take a walk,” Coralia said abruptly, turning towards the door.
“Would you like me to come with you?” Magnar asked, concerned for his friend.
“I’m fine,” Coralia snapped at him. Magnar backed up slightly, a look of hurt forming on his brown eyes.
The queen didn’t even give him a second glance before exiting the room and the castle, and heading towards the forest border, near Adarlan.
'How could they keep such a secret from me?!' Coralia silently fumed. 'Especially Magnar, my best friend! I have trusted him with everything, and this entire time he was hiding something.'
Once that thought entered her head, she immediately regretted it. Magnar wouldn’t keep something from her without a reason. He knew she could be reckless, especially if it involved her family, which she had thought were all killed in a fire when she was an infant. He was just trying to keep her safe.
Coralia didn’t even realize she was at the edge of the forest until she felt the smooth stone road under her feet instead of the soft soil she was used to. The fae queen looked around, suddenly alert when she heard the sound of faint footsteps nearby. It was times like these where she was grateful for her heightened senses.
“Who’s there?” Coralia demanded.
“Tell me who you are first, and then I’ll consider telling you,” someone said back. It sounded feminine.
Coralia silently summoned a dagger in her palm but concealed it in her sleeve. Just in case.
“The name’s Coralia,” she said coldly. “But you can call me Your Majesty if you want to live. Now show yourself before I make you.”
“Nice to meet you Carla, my name is noneya buisness,” The voice said, sarcasm dripping from her voice.
“It’s Coralia,” the queen growled. “And don’t take me for a fool. People have said that to me before, they didn’t last long afterward.” Coralia’s fingers twitched with annoyance and tiny red sparks of magic flew into the air. “Now I’m going to ask this again, and this time I want a real answer. Who are you?”
She didn’t hear anything at first before the voice reluctantly said, “Cahir, that’s my name.” “And what are you doing so close to my kingdom, Cahir?” Coralia asked, her voice slightly kinder than before, but only slightly.
Cahir sighed, still concealed by the shadows. “I was supposed to be looking for someone, and I think their name was... Caroline? No, wait...Carol? It's on the tip of my tongue-” She stopped in mid-sentence as if connecting the dots. “Wait, what did you say your name was again?”
“Queen Coralia,” Coralia said, a smirk of amusement ghosting her lips.
“Oh, whoops. Guess I found you then.” Cahir stepped out of the shadows, and Coralia saw a young girl, around her age, that had brown shoulder-length hair that shimmered red in the fading sunlight. She also had olive skin with blue eyes, freckles painted across her face.
And she was also a giraffe.
'How can humans grow so tall???' Coralia thought in disbelief. She was exactly 5 feet tall, and people taller than that made her feel small and insecure. She didn't show this to Cahir, however. She also wondered how it was already close to twilight. Time flies when you're mad at your best friend.
The human standing in front of the queen looked at her. “I need your help.”
I hope you guys enjoyed Chapter 4! Chop should have Chapter 5 out soon, so be on the look out for it! And thank you for everyone who's been reading our story and giving us support! We really appreciate you guys :) I'll see y'all later, bye!!! - Artemis