The double doors of the Royal courtroom opened wide and sitting in the middle of the room was the Ice King himself. He watched his son as the Prince and I entered, and the veins in his neck protruded as he strained against the chains that contained him. His eyes were alight with a mixture of emotions, but anger seemed to be the most dominant.
I lifted my eyes from where the King crouched on the ground and stared at the rows of at least fifty Firelanders and Icelanders alike. The Queen was close to the throne with two Firelanders at either of her side, holding both of her arms in place. Her eyes were trained on her son, and I empathized with her pain - the kind of pain a mother felt when her only son was in danger.
Cora stood off to the side, and she was free to observe, although the Firelanders that stood around her kept a cautious eye on her. And just to the left of her stood Luca, eying me in anguish.
I had to look away from him due to the guilt I felt whenever our eyes connected. When I did, I landed on another pair of familiar, gray orbs. This face didn't display passion or sadness but contentment and fury. Those eyes belonged to Lady Esmeralda.
I loathed her.
Titus grabbed a hold of the Prince and pulled him toward his father while a Firelander guided me to my right to join the front line of the observers. I kept my eyes on the Prince as Titus positioned him next to the King. He then pressed down on Sebastian's shoulders, making him fall to his knees next to his father. Thankfully, Titus didn't bother to contain the Ice Prince the way he had with the King.
The traitor turned away from the father and son and focused on his sea of onlookers. Even though he hadn't yet slain the King, Titus' face was full of victory. He lifted both of his hands in the air and turned in a full circle so that all could see him.
"You may all be wondering why you have been escorted to the royal courtroom at such a late hour. Well, I can tell you this. Today will be a day that all of you will remember for the rest of your lives. In fact, because of you, this day will be passed down from generation to generation as the most monumental event in history. Tonight, the House of Slanathys will take back its rightful position on the Ice Throne. Yes, tonight, I - Titus Slanathys - will be your new King!" The crowd sang a song of surprise and began whispering quietly amongst each other.
"Silence," Titus shouted, and the noise quickly diminished. Satisfied, he began to speak again. "Some of you may know the type of cruel King we serve - a King only focused on his own profit and not the profit of his kingdom. He is a man who tried to take over land that did not belong to him! He started the war with the Fire Clan, and he made their anger and resentment toward us grow and grow until it erupted. And guess what. They've brought the heat.
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