My weekly response to Ermilia’s weekly Picture it and write prompt.
“Do you have to push so hard?” The branches were digging into my scalp. My sister had been working on my hair all morning and I wanted to scream out of frustration. The braiding and weaving was for the coronation that would take place today on my twentieth birthday.
“Don’t whine Lilium,” said my sister.
“Don’t call me that!”
“It’s your name, and you better get used to it,” She said.
My father was the only person who ever used my full name. I’m not embarrassed of my name. Most elves are named after things of nature. He told us my mother enjoyed flowers more than anything else in the forest and shortly after our births; she named me Lilium for my blond hair and for my younger sister’s red hair, my mother named her Dahlia. One of the few stories I have of her and us since she died when I was five and Dahlia had only been three. An incurable fever of the forest had taken her life.
It really wasn’t about my mother, because I don’t even remember her. It was because of last leaf fall. Colored leaves had just begun to fall when father had taken Dahlia and I out for a hunting trip. Along with forty of the finest royal guard, but that hadn’t stopped his death. Ambushes are swift and deadly. If he hadn’t given the order for our escape, we would have also died that day. I had wanted to stay, isn’t that what all those years of training had been for or were they so that we could run away, as our King, my father, fell to the muddy earth. I could still hear the way he shouted my name, as I argued. “GO LILIUUUM!”
“Lily, are you listening?” I had been staring out the window. Turning to the mirror in front of me I could see tears had fallen from my deceitful eyes. It had been a long time since I allowed myself to think about that horrid day.
“I’m sorry Lily,” she said.
“It’s okay. I know you didn’t mean anything.”
“What are you thinking about?”
Father’s death and the fact that we don’t know our mother, how am I going to rule our people, why couldn’t you have been born first?
“Nothing, It’s nothing. I’m only nervous.”
“Don’t lie to me, Lily,” She said. “You never cry, well in front of people anyways.” She looked down at her hands. I hadn’t even noticed, but my hair was complete. I was now ready. We would make our journey to the cresting hill where thousands of our alliances had gathered. When the sun begins to set, the ceremony will start and at last sun light I will take my vow to protect our people even at the cost of my own life.
“How do you know I can do this,” I asked.
Her eyes were shining emeralds in the mirror. “Because father always believed in you just as I do.”