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"-Late for the meeting-"

"-Fitting the crown-"

"-Must find her-"

Annaleigh breathes heavily looking around the corner at the advisers. She slowly slides off her silver-colored heels. Annaleigh places the shoes down quietly. She has to find new shoes, she can not go barefoot for long. She leaves her heels there and quickly runs to the door to get out of the palace. She stops by the kitchen very quickly to fill her bag up with enough food to hold her for 5 days. She is about to leave when she stops and hears someone coming down the hall. She hides behind a small bookcase.

"Anna, I saw you" It's the servant woman that has helped Annaleigh dress and do her hair since Annaleigh was 5.

Annaleigh steps from behind the bookcase. The girl hands her a small jade dagger with a fancy gold design on it.

"It'll keep you safe, wherever you are going. Now hurry, before they find you" The woman quickly runs out of Annaleigh's view. Annaleigh takes a shaky breath and quickly leaves the palace. Annaleigh sneaks out into the garden. She hides in the rose bushes as two guards walk by. Annaleigh looks at the flowers, blue roses. Something inside her tells her to pick a couple roses. She uses the jade dagger to cut the stems and the thorns. The roses go into her bag as Annaleigh creeps out of the gates. Finally, Annaleigh gets to the village. As she weaves in and out of the marketplace she thinks about how she got to this point in her life.

Annaleigh walks into her father office. Today it was time she became Queen. She had turned 20 last week and today the King, her father, was holding a ceremony. Her father does not notice her as he continues to talk to the strange man standing in his office.

"Ordered them to be killed. The whole family."

"Why now? After all of these years? Your families have had no contact" The man says in a thick accent.

"This night is my last night as king. If I order you to kill them now, and they catch you all you have to say is, Dryromia royalty ordered you to kill them. You won't get in trouble, my dull-headed daughter will be held responsible and I can come back into power."

The man is silent for a moment. "But what's in it for me?"

Her father lets out a sly smile. "After the deed is done you and your family will be rich. No more having to kill people to barely survive.

The man nods "Then I shall do it. The Caromels will be no more"

Annaleigh takes a sharp breath. The king smiles. He opens his desk drawer and pulls a pair of gloves. He puts them on and then pulls out ten glittering gems.

"These belong to Annaleigh. If These are found in your position on you and Annaleigh will be the ones with a traceable connection these gems."

The man smiles. "Very smart sir. Would you say you are clever sir?"

"The cleverest in the land" The king declares "Why do you ask?"

"Because," The man says with a grin. "If you are that clever then you must know that your daughter has been listening to this whole conversation."

The king pales. "Annaleigh" The king shouts.

Annaleigh gasp and runs off.

Annaleigh tries to shake her head out of her thoughts. As she walks through the marketplace she notices people staring at her. She looks down at herself and realizes she is out of place with the way she is dressed. She quickly looks around for a clothing shop. Annaleigh walks into an old shop, the door missing and the sign falling off. The old working there lights up when she see Annaleigh.

"Hello, young lady. How may I help you?"

Annaleigh stumbles. "Um... I'm just looking but thank you"

Annaleigh looks around until she finds a pair of brown ankle boots. She looks for a bit longer and she finds a pair of pair of cloth black pants and a white blouse without sleeves. Annaleigh goes to take everything to the counter but then in the corner of her eye, she sees a black leather jacket. She touches it and sighs.

Annaleigh calls out to the lady. "What animal is this made from?"

"Oh, none dear. It's made from synthetics"

Annaleigh smiles and grabs the jacket. She walks to a small area of the shop where you can change. Annaleigh quickly changes and looks in the cheval glass. She looks at her sleek blonde hair that goes down to her legs. Annaleigh grabs her knife and takes a breath. She closes her eyes and slices her hair at her shoulders. She looks around the room and spots black shoe grease. She takes a deep breath ignoring the tears in her eyes and rubs the grease throughout her hair. Annaleigh stuffs her dress into her bag. She walks up to the counter.

"How much is this?"

The lady looks at everything then looks at her. "8 gold"

Annaleigh pauses, she knows that this can't possibly cost this much. She almost doesn't want to buy the clothes, but she needs them. Annaleigh sighs and lays the money on the counter. She goes to the back room. Annaleigh slides the dress of her slender body and quickly puts on her new clothes. She rolls the dress up as much as she can and stuffs it in her bag.

She walks a bit further into the marketplace. There are people downtown trading and selling things. Annaleigh looks around for a bit. She goes up to a man. The man scoffs and ignores her. Annaleigh looks at what he is selling. There a bunches of bows and arrows and swords. Annaleigh's eye catches a shiny blue bow and silver arrows. She's not sure why but she needs it.

Annaleigh tries to flag down the guy. He rolls his eyes and comes over. "Yes, little girl?"

Annaleigh points to the bow and arrows.

"I'd like to buy those please."

"What can you offer me for it?"

Annaleigh pulls out her dress. "How about this?"

The man smiles. "Very well then" He hands the bow and arrow and takes the dress.

Annaleigh smiles and walks away. She walks down the path looking for a food seller. She didn't stop to eat before she left the place. Annaleigh runs into someone and falls down. She goes to apologize but when Annaleigh sees the face, she gasps and starts to faint.


Annaleigh's knees buckle and she blacks out as she hits the ground.

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