••• FIVE •••

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Chapter Five



Halls with ceilings that seem to grasp the sky, marble pillars going just as high with intricate carvings, and windows that seem to be endless as my footsteps echo across the marble halls.

Every turn causes another small gasp to escape my mouth, how each room has its own unique spin upon the ostentatious design of the palace. "Are there not too many palaces where you come from?" Travon asks, his voice low as a maid passes bye, avoiding eye contract as Travon said to do.

"Not particularly. There are quite a few famous ones, but I've never been to one this immense and captivating," I explain, looking to the ceiling as paintings of different shapes of the moon, stars, and what I assume much be these people's deities. "None this breathtaking."

Travon nods, leading me to a more secluded staircase, spiraling up in a tower. "It's four stories up, the records room is one that will also astonish you." Nodding, I follow Travon, my feet hitting the hunter green dress that I wear as I remember what Travon taught me: shoulders squared, head tilted high, and make no eye contact whatsoever. I need to play the part of someone with good motives to be here but draw no attention to myself.

My mother had a way about drawing in attention. She practiced how she would walk, the particular placement of her feet when they met the floor, how her arms would move, how she would smile. That was a talent of her's: to draw attention whenever she wanted. She was able to reel my father in that way, fascinating him from the moment he spotted her. She led him on just for fun until she realized her true feeling for him. The media claimed they were a match made in heaven. The media said nothing could go wrong. The media sold a lie to the public, but of course they knew nothing of what could transpire.

"When we enter the records room, I do not know how many people will be there already but stay close by me and we shall find the name of your father."

"Do you think he will be in the records? Hell, I don't even know how long my father has been here for."

Travon shrugs his shoulders. "I've never heard of dimension traveling, my dear, but if your father did anything, it would be in here."

As we finished climbing the stairs, another hall lies before us, twists and turns taking us every way as I find myself looking outside upon a garden. I thought I'd seen some of the world's biggest gardens, but nothing could ever compare to this one. It's long and wide, bushes marking paths as flowers and authentic trees and planted along, fountains and ponds running everywhere. There are some women out, dressed in flowing pastel purple dresses as they take care of the plants.

"Those are nymphs, they take care of the castle grounds," Travon explains, expanding my horizon on just how many creatures of myth live here.

"What of vampires?"

Travon raises an eyebrow.

"Most reside within the human world..." He pauses. "We get along with them, but the elves do not wish to associate themselves with the vampires. The elves find them to be uncivil and always looking for trouble."

"And do you have dragons?" I ask, clasping my hands behind my back as a massive oak door is not too far away.

"They reside within the mountains about a week's journey from here. Dragons are tricky creatures. Either they destroy or keep to themselves."

I think of the Hobbit, how Smaug was one who destroyed and set a president for most of people's interpretations upon dragons. In Beowulf the dragon was greedy as well, ending Beowulf's journey. The books depict dragons as evil, ancient drawing with dragons burning down castle or taking a princess for the prince to soon rescue.

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