Rachelle’s lip quivered as she tried her hardest to suspress it. She would not cry in front of him.
“I will leave you girls to yourselves….” Ralt nodded at two of his men who immediately stood not far away from them, making sure they could not escape.
“Why? Why, I thought you also believed he is the real king?” Rachelle’s raggedy gasps unsteadily heaved her chest, she was trying to get rid of the sobs. Ralt kept looking her way with a smile. He was proud of what he had done.
He would pay- one day.
“Look, Rachelle. The Prince is better than you think, he lets me do whatever I want, I do not have to be worried about breaking stupid laws that your king creates,” she turned away from Rachelle shame-faced. “It is hard to follow your king, but the prince is less- well, judgmental.”
Rachelle drew in a breath. “How can you turn a blind eye on what Ralt has done? He has killed families, leaving maimed orphans. He has burned villages, killed women and children, tortured men. He has beguiled the others in believing he should be king so they can fight for him… so they can be one of him.” Rachelle’s memory flashed back to the old man’s face, when he had told her that Ralt had enslaved her and her parents and then when they ran for freedom- killed them, and left her.
“I can remember when you served Ralt willingly, what has changed Rachelle?” She turned away and starting walking to the dark camp. “Did not you yourself save Ralt from a poisoned goblet of wine?” Falina’s eyebrows pointed upward.
“I am sure that you never did anything wrong!”
She left Rachelle standing outside the camp. The two armed men kept watching her every move. She clenched her hands- why could she not see that Ralt was totally evil? How could she not see how he was playing her?
“Rachelle, don’t move- I have you covered,” came a whisper from the bush.
Rachelle almost smiled, but quickly regained her composure.
“We are going to raid them.”
“No, there are to many of them- you wont be able to,” Rachelle stared at the grass as dismally as she could.
“Then, make a run for it.”
Rachelle slowly inched her way to the forest. The guards were watching her more closely, now.
“Now!”
Rachelle dashed out of sight out of the clearing- she heard the yell of the guards as they also came after her, crashing through the rainforest.
Wally grabbed her hand and pulled her up in a tree, they scrambled as fast as they could to the top-most branches.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Falina walked quickly to her tent and thought about what Rachelle had said. Why could Rachelle believe that that king ruled? How could she turn her back on her like that? She shook her head- Rachelle was wrong. Ralt had given her freedom, and that’s what she had wanted.
“Would you come out here, my daughter?” Ralt poked his head in her tent.
“Yes, m’lord.” She eased herself up and pushed back the flap of her tent, as soon as she stepped out one of Ralt’s other guards grabbed her roughly and dragged her to were Ralt was standing.
Ralt grabbed her chin so he could see her face, then slapped her.
“Where is Rachelle?” He spat.
“I- I do not know!” She frowned, her eyes filling with tears, more from his angry face than anything else.
“Don’t lie to me!” he grabbed a fistful of her hair and dragged her after him as he strode out of the camp where they had been standing. “WHERE?” he shouted.
Falina shook her head dismally. “I don’t know!“
Could Rachelle have been right after all?

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Written by Meggie, Copyright. Please do not use.

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