Felix Markson was thoroughly sick of high school. He had too much homework and too little time.
So instead of using his time wisely, he sat down to play Knights, Dragons, and Heroes with his friends Evangelie Gold and Luke Hansen.
Felix, Evangelie and Luke had been friends for a long time. Luke and Felix met in second grade and they both shared a love of knights and heroes.
The two became fast friends and then met Evangelie.
When she moved to Virginia in fourth grade, Felix and Luke didn't know what to think of her.
They weren't entirely over the "girls have cooties" phase and didn't really want much to do with her.
That is until they saw her sitting reading a book called, "The Knights of the Round Table (Abridged)". The boys, seeing the word Knights on the cover, immediately became best friends with her.
The three of them discovered an online game called Knights, Dragons, and Heroes which was a medieval questing game where you get to go on awesome adventures.
They played it every week religiously ever since.
So Felix ran to his bedroom which looked more like a lair. It was darkly lit with dark gray paint.
Dragons were covering the walls and ceiling and the floor was littered with clothes and garbage. Felix placed his headset in his curly brown hair and logged in to his computer.
He had about thirty minutes before his dad came home from work and he intended to spend it.
"What's up, Felix?" Evangelie asked once they had all logged on. Like usual she was multitasking. On hand on the mouse, one blow-drying her turquoise hair.
Her green eyes looked bright and energetic like she'd had three cans of soda. And, knowing Evangelie, she probably had.
"The sky," Felix joked. Both Luke and Evangelie groaned. "That is the stupidest joke ever. And very cliche," Luke said.
"You gonna do something about it Kylan?" Felix asked, referring to Luke's knight character Kylan.
Luke laughed and leaned back in his chair. His red hair stuck up in all directions like a crazed madman. He grabbed a handful of potato chips and ate them noisily to hurt Felix's ears.
Felix and Evangelie groaned. "Cassandra is going to get you for that! Next time I make a health potion, you get none of it!" Evangelie threatened. Felix laughed. "That'll show him, Ev."
So the knights Torrin, Kylan, and Cassandra started their quest. This day's quest was to rescue the damsel in distress. There were going to be monsters such as a dragon and a chimera.
There would be traps and riddles to solve. But this trio could do it. Even if they were only armed with three swords and six glass bottles, they could do it.
"Yo! Evangelie! Red root!"
"Luke! On your left!"
"Felix! Duck! Throw potion!"
The three kept questing, but then Evangelie stopped them. "You guys! Look at this!" She scrolled over to a glowing bush and hovered her cursor over it.
Its name was Calyxir and it was a potion ingredient.
"Put it in the healing potion!" Luke yelled. He was the most impulsive in the group. Evangelie and Felix yelled in protest.
"That's a terrible idea! First, I'm not wasting a healing potion. Second, we have no clue what Calyxir is. Third, it could be dangerous." Evangelie said.
Felix ran his fingers through his hair. "Yeah, I don't think it's a good move. We have no clue what it will do. Especially to a healing potion."
"See? Felix agrees with me," Evangelie said.
But the forever impulsive and forever idiotic Luke Hansen would not take no for an answer. So he put the plant in his inventory, brewed it into the healing potion, and watched what happened.
Celeste Lemare woke up to the sound of crying. She groaned and pulled her thick quilt off. The night sky was dark as ink but covered with stars, like a lantern with pinholes.
Celeste lit a candle and started to walk to her baby brother's room. She didn't want to disturb his nurse, Helena, and knew she could put him to sleep faster than anyone.
So with tired feet, Celeste softly walked to her brother's nursery.
Inside of a wooden crib sat a little boy, around age two, with blonde hair who was crying his eyes out. He opened them when Celeste came in and his brown eyes welled at the sight of her.
"Celete!" he cried. He called her Celete because he could not pronounce her name yet. "Celete it was dark and mommy didn't come and Helena was asleep and I was scared!"
After setting her candle down, she ran to the crib and picked him up. "Sh sh, James. Go back to sleep. The dark is nothing to be afraid of."
James nestled against Celeste's shoulder. "Show me the 'thars Celete!" Celeste laughed. The way he said 'stars' was so cute and innocent. She carried him into the hall and looked around.
If Mother knew she had taken James out of bed she would have Celeste's head.
The two snuck out and crept down the thickly carpeted hall. Celeste kept her hand over James's mouth so he wouldn't make noise. He obliged and kept silent.
Celeste carried him to a tower and walked up to the top of it. James cooed happily once they were inside of it. It was made of stone but was carved so well it didn't hurt her feet.
They looked out at a window at a sky full of stars. The rosy dawn was teasing the skyline and the stars were turning from silver to gray.
The trees were nothing but black silhouettes against the sky.
James and Celeste stared at it in awe. The wind was rustling the leaves and the birds were chirping wildly. The sounds were calming and made a pleasing background noise.
James snuggled against Celeste's shoulder and closed his eyes. She rocked him softly and the motion made him calm down and fall asleep.
Celeste looked at the stars for one small moment. Then she took James back to bed. The sounds of her slippers and the swishing of her nightgown echoed through the castle.
She hoped nobody could hear because she wasn't technically allowed to take James outside.
She placed James in his crib with a kiss on his head. Then she stole away and crept back into bed.
The door was flung open and the curtains yanked up with a golden cord. "Wake up, your highness!" said a cheery maid with a white apron, a brown dress, and too many petticoats for her own good.
Celeste sat up and pulled off her thick quilt and rubbed at her eyes. "Morning Lauren," she said groggily. Her excursion with James made her sleepless and annoyed.
Lauren took out a white dress that reached her ankles. The neckline was square and had an empire waist. Some gold fabric was on the waist and sash and the entire dress was very queenly.
"Any special occasion?" Celeste asked sleepily.
Lauren avoided eye contact. It was clear she was hiding something. "Not really. Just something Her Majesty wants you to wear."
So Celeste sat down at her vanity while Lauren did her hair. She Celeste's long blonde curls and twisted them with an air of expertise.
Lauren twisted the strands of hair by her face and pinned them with a turtle shell clip.
Celeste put on her petticoat and Lauren pulled the dress over her head. Celeste looked into the mirror. The gold matched her hair and set off her sparkling blue eyes.
Lauren set a gold tiara on Celeste's head and the outfit was complete.
They were both admiring the reflection when a blast of purple light shot around the kingdom and struck Celeste in the heart.