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Fantasy a love/hate relationship

david tennant

daydream believer
SleepingInTheGardens SleepingInTheGardens here we go!

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Name: Alexander Jöhnsan

Birthday: August 28

Big 6 Astrology: Virgo Sun, Sagittarius Moon, Scorpio Rising, Aquarius Mercury, Taurus Mars, Leo Venus

Height: 6’2

Build: Slim & Fit

Hair: Auburn, though more brown than red

Eyes: Blue

Marks: Freckles clear on his face as well as multiple scars littering his arms and chest from the years

Sexuality: Biromantic asexual

Pronouns: he/him

Faceclaim: Froy Gutierrez



Highlights-

Stubborn and proud, you are more likely to get a rock to help you than Alexander. You mind end up fainting in shock if you are even able to get a word from his lips that isn’t sarcastic. Yet, despite his mysterious drama and thick walls he builds around himself, he truly does care for those that are important to him. He is a loyal friend and is even more loyal when it comes to relationships. He will do anything in his power to help his family and those he loves. It might not seem like it when you first look at him, especially with the cold and stoic expressions he commonly has on display. Be assured; if you are in his good graces, he will murder someone for you.

His true self shows that he cares for everyone around him. Due to his being an only child, he constantly works to live up to his parent’s expectations. This causes for him to be rather innocent in many aspects of his life.



Likes:

Rainy days were the air holds the scent of the weather to come, lavender, early mornings, reading, star-gazing, independency whenever he needs it



Dislikes:

Obnoxious people, being overwhelmed with duties, lairs, sneaking around behind people’s backs

Gods:
Avrök: God of Sun

Naît: God of Death

Cøeal: God of Water

Wrîūn: God of Fire

Fiyrë: God of Love

Goddesses:
Heïul: Goddess of Weather

Yuiøq: Goddess of Harvest

Tÿius: Goddess of Spring

Vyrē: Goddess of Destruction

Balfë: Goddess of Night

God/Goddess Familial Ties
Married:

Avrök and Balfë

Naît and Vyrē


Children of Married Couples:

Avrök and Balfë are the parents of Wrîūn and Vyrē

Naît and Vyrē are the parents of Fiyrë
Siblings:

Avrök, Naît, Cøeal, Yuiøq

Wrîūn and Vyrē

Heïul and Balfë

Œrnak is the where the gods and goddesses are believed to reside. It is a temple located high in the mountains to the northern coast of Nëlos. The mountains are treacherous terrain, constantly covered in snow. The area is only accessible by one single route that is said to be guarded by the Vuzor, an ancient species of dragons that were created by the gods in order to protect themselves after Cøeal’s betrayal.

It is said that the gods lived in harmony with the people of Nëlos, providing them everything that they needed in order to survive. That was until Cøeal grew overly interested about the people of the land. He decided to emerge from Œrnak one day to personally see those who they helped all those years. He disguised himself as a commoner, living amongst them for many years. The queen at that time, Avalyne, grew quite interested in the man as he was nothing like she had ever seen before. She began to see him behind her husband’s back. Her infidelity ended up producing two children, Pyrton and Wrehn. These boys were said to possess the powers of the gods. They were the first of the magical line of witches and warlocks in Nëlos.

Pyrton wasn’t satisfied with the gifts that he had gained. He was power hungry, always wanting more than what he was able to have. He staged a rebellion, slaughtering the king and his mother. He managed to enchant the soldiers that had been under the king’s rule. He pushed farther and farther into the surrounding lands under the gods couldn’t standby any longer. They stepped in, managing to prevent any further damage. Pyrton was killed and Cøeal punished for having the children he did. In order to prevent the unfairness of the situation, they gave each citizen the gifts bestowed on Pyrton and Wrehn. While they didn’t have the same strength when it came to their abilities, things were level.

Wrehn became king. The Jöhnsan family is direct descendants of him.
 
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SleepingInTheGardens

Junior Member
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Currently Wearing

The colorful scenery blurred past Nikolai’s cracked window. The vibrant fragrances of the grass and flowers, casted shadows of the trees overhead. The dull roar of the car engine. There was so much about this land that the prince loved. That’s not to say he didn’t adore the ocean. Were he to pick, he’d still choose his roots. However, the dry land had many things that his aquatic kingdom didn’t. The scents, the feel of the breeze, the hum of the wind. Were it not for the circumstances, he would be enjoying every moment of this trip.

Nikolai recalled with resentment the moment his parents told him what had been planned without his consent, mind you. He knew he wasn’t the picture perfect prince his parents wanted. He wasn’t quiet and obedient like his sisters. Still, he didn’t think he deserved this. An arranged marriage was already bad enough, but with a warlock nonetheless? He’d had his own run-ins with the likes of them. None of them ended well. Granted, Nikolai tended to be too impulsive and speak first, think later. However, the warlocks always went out of their way to remind him how much Sirens were hated. Though he didn’t particularly like being royalty, he didn’t take kindly to others insulting his own species.

Rumors, that’s the only thing land dwellers knew about the sirens and how they operated. Baseless rumors that they had no way of proving unless they dove into the ocean world themselves. Not being easily accessible was the only thing that made them the common enemy, distrusted by most. In truth, ocean dwellers preferred to mind their own business and leave earthly conflicts to those that lived on it. Nikolai wasn’t dumb, however. He knew the feud between warlock and siren kind had been going on for centuries, far beyond just a simple distrust. That made this marriage idea all the more unreasonable.

How much could one marriage really fix. The only thing it would accomplish is saving face. A carefully crafted lie to ease the minds of the other creatures that watched them. Like putting a bandaid on a stab wound. There was only so much it could cover up. Niko’s head rested against the glass, not entirely sure why he was even going along with this. In the back of his mind, he hoped the warlocks would change their mind once they met, and he had to admit it would be entertaining to be around when things inevitably came crashing down again.

After what felt like hours, the tall structure of the Jöhnsan Royal castle came into view. Nikolai had never seen it in person. Never really had an inclination of interest for it. The warlocks’ taste certainly was quite different than their own. A bit tacky, if he was being honest. He straightened himself up as the entrance gates parted, allowing them inside. His parents chatter beside him sounded muffled, his attention solely on the scenery around him.

He had no idea what to expect to find inside. His parents told him the bare minimum. Come to think of it, Nikolai had no clue who he was even supposed to be getting engaged to. The whole plan was a mystery for him, and it was making him restless. Es they exited the vehicle, his nerves entangled with curiosity grew stronger. They were welcomed inside, led through countless corridors and entrances. Nikolai followed silently, his hand idly playing with the pearl earring handing from his right ear. All he heard was his mother giving him a quiet warning to “Behave” before another large set of double doors openEd in front of them, leading them into the main room.
 

david tennant

daydream believer
Alexander sat in front of his mirror, eyes unfocused as they gazed at his right hand. His mouth was parted slightly while he muttered. Small flames danced along the tips of his fingers, bouncing from one to the next. His nerves had been growing as the time continued to pass. His mother insisted that he wake early that morning to prepare for the arrival of his fiancé. While he wasn’t pleased with the arrangement, he would do what was necessary to help secure relations between the warlocks and the sirens. It was his duty as the only child in his family. He only hoped that the rumors that had been spread weren’t true. He couldn’t bare the thought of the sirens being as despicable as the soldiers would say.

A light sigh broke through his lips as he paused his muttering. The flames stopped along with it. He turned his head to look towards the mirror. His parents insisted that he be dressed in the finest suit the tailor could make him. He didn’t mind the presentation they were trying to put forth. After all, it was important for whoever he was to marry to find him attractive. If any actual affection was to form, it would be well after their wedding was complete. He needed to be deemed attractive enough to be tolerated for this first introduction. He found himself to be quite attractive, if he was to stroke his own ego.

The sound of the door to his room opening startled him, flinching as the noise travelled to his ears. The flames paused their movements before they quickly faded. He allowed for his hand to drop into his lap then. He glanced over to see who entered the room, though he wasn’t surprised to see that it was his mother. Nothing needed to be said. He knew what time it was by the look that she was giving him. “I will be there momentarily.” He assured her in a quiet voice. He focused back on the mirror, reaching up to adjust the collar on the white button-up shirt he worse. The jacket he wore over it was traditional to his family. The material was black, though there were intricate patterns sown in with golden thread. It was only when he was satisfied with the straightness of it that he stood.

He made his way towards the door and out of the room, making sure his pace was slow enough for his mother to keep up with him. The two walked down the hall until they were greeted by his father. The smile on the elder man’s face didn’t do anything to calm the nerves that were piling within his stomach. “You must be polite. I understand the situation with the sirens is less than ideal, but—“ The king was cut off as Alexander spoke,” But it is important to secure relations. Do not worry father, I am aware.” The king’s expression softened as he nodded his head. He looked to the door that was in front of them, leading towards the main hall. Two guards stepped forward to open them before they walked forward.

They waited momentarily in the room before the doors on the opposite side opened before them. He kept his eyes focused on the family that stepped through. Some confusion flashed across his expression as he only noticed what seemed to be the siren king’s son. He blinked quietly to clear his mind, not wanting it to drift too far. His father seemed to not pay the matter any attention. He stepped forward with a welcoming smile. “I am very glad to see that you arrived safely. I take it the journey was well?” He inquired, all pleasantries of course. The air in the room seemed tense, but it was expected. “This is my wife, Eloise, and my son, Alexander.” He introduced. Both his mother and Alex bowed their heads in formal greeting.
 

SleepingInTheGardens

Junior Member
The interior of the palace matched the exterior. Just as gaudy, and not a thread out of place. Nikolai found it hard to concentrate on the family in front of him as the king went about his introductions. His imagination navigated to every corner of the spacious hall. Curiosity always did get the best of him. It wasn’t until his own father’s voice came forth that he was pulled from his muddle, his eyes blinking in an effort to clear his vision. Adjusting his senses to the dry air still took some practice.

“Yes, it was indeed. It’s good to see you again.” This is when Nikolai took a moment to examine the situation. The king and queen somehow looked exactly how he’d imagined them too, but what caught the young prince’s attention was their son. Nothing in particular about him stood out, other than the fact he was not a princess like he’d been expecting. From what Nikolai understood, the warlocks as a race were very set in their traditions of family and marriage. Yet another thing the two species disagreed on. His own confusion mirrored the young warlock’s who’s name already escaped him.

“This is my wife Seraphina.” Once again, his father’s booming voice pulled Nikolai from his thoughts, though his eyes never left the warlock prince. “And this is my son Nikolai, our youngest.” The wave of confusion in the room was almost comical. Nikolai would have laughed were it not for his own bewilderment. “I have to say, when you asked for my youngest’ hand in marriage I was a bit taken aback.” Rowan spoke again, his hand cautiously landing on Nikolai’s shoulder, giving it a light squeeze. To the outsider looking in, the gesture was nothing more than a show of affection. To Nikolai, it was a silent warning to hold his tongue. “I’d expected to be giving away one of my daughters.” His father’s boisterous laugh echoed against the grand walls.

Cheeky.

Nikolai knew his father well enough. The man knew exactly what he was doing. It was unlikely that the warlock royal family would ask for his hand knowing he had two older sisters, but Rowan feigned ignorance so well it was almost convincing even for Nikolai himself. His mother was none the wiser. “Old traditions must change with the times, I suppose!” the man added. “Niko is our brightest jewel!” The phrase left Nikolai grasping at every ounce of strength he had to keep from bursting out in sarcastic laughter.

What a fiasco.

No doubt he’d inherited his dramatics from his father.

In an effort to keep the peace, he opted to bite his lower lip and keep quiet, his gaze landing on the warlock prince once again. He kept his hands clasped together in front of him as his dark eyes watched the other’s movements, narrowing slightly in suspicion at the man he was apparently supposed to marry as his father trudged on.

“Shall we discuss the details?”
 

david tennant

daydream believer
Alexander stayed silent as the siren king spoke, knowing it was not his place to speak then. His eyes fell on the queen as she was introduced and then onto the son, the prince. He kept his gaze on Nikolai, though it was clear that it was unfocused on the prince himself. He was expecting for a woman to walk in through the door behind him. After all, it was common for princesses to want to make a surprising first impression. The confusion grew clear on his expression when no one stepped in after the brief introductions. He focused back on Nikolai then. It was clear that he was studying the man that stood on the opposite side of the room as him.

The air in the room grew heavier and he could sense his father’s displeasure with the current situation growing. Edmund cleared his throat then, clasping his hands behind his back. Alexander knew his father well enough to know that he was withholding any sudden outrage that would cause for an inexcusable use of magic. “My apologies Rowan, but I meant your youngest daughter. Were my communications unclear?” He inquired. His tone was still rather pleasant, but it was easy to know just how unhappy he was.

Alexander could see his mother’s hand lift to rest lightly on his father’s arm in an effort to calm him down slightly. “Let us move to another room to discuss.” Eloise broke through the silence then. There truly was no way for them to go back on this deal now. It was the only way for this tension between the two countries to subside. It would even open up better trade for them as well. Eloise allowed for her hand to drop before forcing a bright smile to her lips. “Tea has been prepared and we would love for you to join us at dinner after the finalization of the engagement.” She added after a few moments.

Alexander wanted to roll his eyes at the mention of the dinner. He doubted it would be what they had expected now that things had changed this way. He allowed himself to lightly shake his head as he turned to follow his parents into another room. He almost couldn’t believe that this was happening. It was far too much for him to process.

They were led by two guards towards a larger room that held couches and a desk. One of the smaller tables held the tea and snacks that the family would normally have during that time. Edmund stopped near one of the couches, turning to face Rowan. “We should discuss this privately. Eloise, why don’t you speak with Seraphina over some tea? It will allow Nikolai and Alexander to get to know each other better.” He suggested. Without waiting for a response, he moved across the room to where their conversations wouldn’t be heard easily. It was then that Alexander turned to face the man he was now supposed to marry.

He let out a gentle breath, his expression blank though his eyes were clearly judging the prince before him. “It is a pleasure to meet you Nikolai.” He spoke quietly.
 

SleepingInTheGardens

Junior Member
The air grew dense as the minutes crawled by. All eyes in the room were on Rowan as the warlock king spoke. No, there was no miscommunication. His father knew exactly what the king had meant by “your youngest”. Of course, the sneaky bastard continued to feign innocence, playing off the idea that it was all one big misunderstanding. And who was to tell them it wasn’t? It was his word against Nikolai’s, and the latter always came out triumphant.

As they entered a different room, equipped with everything needed for your typical afternoon tea break, the warlock king pulled Rowan aside, no doubt preparing to give the man a piece of his mind. Just as expected, this arrangement would end in shambles before it even got off the ground. His mother joined the queen by the table with the tea and snacks, while Nikolai remained near one of the large windows.

The siren prince’s eyes stared curiously at the world on the other side of the glass, the rays of sun peaking through the canopy of trees and greenery. Many years on land, and he still found aspects of it fascinating. He wondered if those living here would think the same of the underwater realm he’d grown so used to, not that any of them would ever get to see it. The world of a siren was a lonely one. With no one but the aquatic life to keep them company.

He’d been so entranced in his own thoughts, he almost missed the other prince’s words. His head turned abruptly, the pearls of his earring chiming quietly against one another with the motion. His usual icy blues, covered by the dark brown screen that only appeared on dry land, examined the warlock’s every feature. Part of Nikolai wished he’d been listening before. He truly had no idea what the guy’s name was.

As the prince spoke, Nikolai couldn’t help but stifle a sarcastic chuckle. His arms folded over his chest as he stared back at the man, a devilish smirk forming his lips. “No it’s not.” He spoke not for himself but for the warlock. He wasn’t naive enough to believe the guy was actually happy to have met him. Not when he’d been expecting a picture perfect siren princess in his place. “You and I both know the only one here that’s happy about all this is him.” He added a slight nudge of the head towards his own father for punctuation, his attention only briefly detouring from the warlock. “But A for effort, I suppose.”

Fake pleasantries always rubbed Nikolai the wrong way. This whole encounter reeked of perfected politics and fake smiles. He hated every moment of it. Part of him had wished the warlock prince were different. Maybe then he’d have someone to share his sentiments with. So far, he’d proved to be just as manicured as everyone else in the room. “Don’t worry, I’m sure this will end before it even starts.” He added, his eyes now looking back out the window as he spoke. There was no reason for him to believe they would end up married. This would either end in conflict, or the warlock king would get his way and his son would get to parade around with one of the siren princesses he‘d been hoping for.
 

david tennant

daydream believer
Alexander’s brow furrowed as he heard the chuckle leave Nikolai’s lips. He could already tell that this prince was nothing like himself. The way that he carried himself was rather different. It almost made sense, especially since he was the youngest out of his siblings. He blinked to clear those thoughts from his mind before clearing his throat gently. “That is true, but I do not think it would kill you to act as though you could tolerate an interaction between us.” He stated in a quiet voice, jaw clenching some. It was easy to tell that the siren was completely disinterested in being here. “Besides, you do not know a single thing about me. How would you know if I actually don’t mind meeting you? It would be a shame for the stories that are told about your people to be true.” His lips twitched as a smirk threatened to make its way out onto his own lips.

He took a few steps to the left of Nikolai, deciding to lean slightly against the wall. His eyes fell upon his father and Rowan. His father was clearly upset about everything that was occurring. Rowan just looked smug, almost like his son. Gods, the resemblance was almost enough to make him gag. He already disliked the way in which Nikolai carried himself. It led to an assumption that the prince always seemed to get what he wanted. Now he doubted it was true, but the thoughts were lingering in his mind. He couldn’t shove them away no matter how hard he tried. He turned his gaze to their mothers then. The two women at least seemed to be enjoying the other’s company. It brought little relief to this situation. He turned his head to look back to Nikolai as he spoke once more.

“You truly know nothing of diplomacy. My father is not pleased about this, but he wouldn’t bow out of the deal now. The war has been going on far too long and it has affected both of our kingdoms negatively. Our marriage will be a fix to that situation.” He confessed in a dry tone. He shifted his stance to face him then. “Any suggestion of changing this deal could only lead to worse relations. Neither of the kingdoms can handle that. If you knew anything about what is occurring, you would understand what I am saying to be true. But you do not seem to care, do you?” He inquired. He wasn’t accusing him of anything. He was simply just asking the question. It wasn’t often that he let his mouth turn to such negative tones, but something about this siren irked him.

His blue eyes had narrowed some while he waited for the answer to his question. He was almost growing bored of this interaction, but he knew he needed to stay near Nikolai otherwise his father would throw even more of a fit.
 

SleepingInTheGardens

Junior Member
For a fraction of a second, Nikolai saw the image of the stoic warlock prince crack. Try as he may to keep niceties, Niko could tell the guy was bothered by his words. He much preferred this over fake diplomacy, but he knew it would take a lot more than that to break down the prince’s facade. He briefly allowed himself to wonder if he could bring out that side of the prince again.

“Look who’s assuming now.” The low comment was accompanied by an amused smirk, Nikolai’s head tilting slightly, arms still folded across his chest as he took in the prince’s appearance for the first time since he’d walked in. He was handsome, of course. As expected from anyone in royalty. There was a fiery look in his eyes that did not reach the rest of his features. At the very least, Nikolai had to admit that the warlock prince was much better at putting up an act than he was.

“The fact that you think a marriage with *me* could fix any of this shows how little you *actually* know.” Uninterested as he may seem, Nikolai paid close attention to his surroundings. He knew exactly what was going on between the kingdoms and their rulers. He knew all the god awful things they’d done to one another in the past. The warlocks were guilty, sure, but the sirens weren’t saints either. A unión between kingdoms through marriage had never been successful in the past for *any* nations. The simple fact that his father had brought him along instead of one of his sisters spoke to how much the king did not care about the deal.

“Can you honestly look me in the eyes and tell me you haven’t questioned this arrangement at least once?” Nikolai questioned after a short pause, his stance mimicking the other’s as he leaned against the opposite side of the window as he urged the prince to think for himself instead of regurgitating whatever nonsense he’d been told. Nikolai knew better than to blindly believe what his father told him.

As conversation from the two men behind them grew more heated with every passing second, Nikolai silently counted down the seconds until either the warlock king lashed out, or his father stormed out of the castle, throwing a fit over not getting his way.
 

david tennant

daydream believer
Alexander’s jaw clenched some as he listened to the siren prince continue to talk. He wanted to keep this exterior up as long as he could, especially with both of his parents in the room with them. He had been warned to be as nice as he could. If he wasn’t, it could ruin things for them. He almost scoffed at the thought. He was aware that things were already ruined for them. There was no way that this marriage would turn out well. This went against every single belief that his people had. The siren king almost seemed to be mocking them by doing this. He glanced over his shoulder towards the heated conversation that the kings were having. He then returned to looking at Nikolai.

“Unlike you I don’t have any siblings to hide behind. While this marriage won’t be an end-all, it will help. That is unless you prefer to let our civilians keep murdering each other for no good reason.” He mused. This conversation was beginning to bore him. There was something about Nikolai that lit a spark of anger in his chest. He couldn’t tell if it was the way in which the siren carried himself or just the general smugness he seemed to have. It was almost unbearable. He had been about to turn away until his next question.

He stepped closer to the prince, allowing his voice to drop into almost a whisper. “Of course I have questioned this arrangement. You may think me such, but I am not an idiot. I am not happy to be forced into marrying someone that I do not know, especially a siren. I am trying to do the proper thing here. Maybe you should open your mind to doing the same.” His words were harsh. He forced himself to take a few steps back then. It seemed as though there was no reason for him to even bother trying to get his point across. Nikolai didn’t understand where he was coming from. He doubted he ever would.

It was only then that he noticed the conversation between the two kings stopped. Edmund stepped forward, clearing his throat. “The matter is settled. Nikolai and Alexander are to be married. This union will be great for both of our people.” It was clear he was still very unhappy with the arrangement, but there wasn’t anything that he could do to change it now. Alexander’s expression dropped into an unreadable mask. He crossed his arms across his chest, not bothering to look over at Nikolai. He didn’t want to know his reaction to this all.
 

SleepingInTheGardens

Junior Member
Of course, it was just his luck he’d end up with a know it all prince. The picture perfect model of obedience. He, like many others, always assumed they knew Nikolai best. The spoiled one, the youngest, the one that got to hide behind his big sisters and father’s protection. No one batted an eyelash at his troubles because of course he had none. How dare he have troubles of his own when less fortunate people exist in the world. When he had loving family that sheltered him.

Nikolai did not respond the the other’s comments. Not for lack of words, nor because the warlock was correct on anything he was saying. He simply refused to lay out his vulnerabilities for a stranger to see. Especially a stranger that already had him pegged as the spoiled prince that hid behind his siblings. No, he chose to keep his mouth shut for once. His jaw clenched at the knot in his throat, growing bigger still once the warlock king made the announcement. It was just what his father wanted. The perfect recipe for tricking the warlocks and getting rid of Nikolai all in one fell swoop. He wondered how long it would be before the warlock family saw his father’s true intentions. He wouldn’t say a word, of course. It would only be taken as his unwillingness to cooperate, like it had been just now.

The golden locks fell over his lashes and eyes as he looked down at his shoes, avoiding the prince’s gaze. He could hear everyone shifting around him, but he kept his head bowed, willing his features to return to their usual poker face. Once he finally looked up, his gaze shifted towards his father. The look of being absolutely pleased with one’s self was one Rowan wore often. Today, it seemed to be more present than ever. He’d finally gotten what he wanted. A way to control Nikolai.

His mother got to her feet, her hands clapping in excitement as her and the queen exchanged a few smiles. Her attention then fell on Nikolai, brows knitted together slightly in concern though she gracefully played it off. “Niko, dear. Are you alright? You don’t still have that pesky headache, do you?” The young prince allowed a smile, one hand adjusting the crown of pearls and aragonite adorning his head. Another prop in the grand show.

“A little. I’ll be fine.” He waved off her concern, regaining his initial composure that he’d walked in with. He’d be damned if he let Rowan, or anyone, get to him now.

“Well then! Shall we celebrate the good news?” The man’s voice rang against Nikolai’s eardrums making his hands twitch in the slightest. So subtle that anyone looking close enough still may have missed it. He made the mistake of looking towards the warlock prince as they walked, the look of a helplessly trapped animal flashing briefly across his features before it was quickly replaced by a halfhearted glare.
 

david tennant

daydream believer
Alexander expected a reply to come quickly from Nikolai. It seemed that the prince’s personality paved the way for snide remarks in response. He was rather surprised by the lack of words. Yet he didn’t let it show. He didn’t want for the other male to know that he was pleased with the silence that filled the air between them. He let out a gentle sigh and shifted to look away from him. He didn’t want to see his reaction to the words that Edmund said. He was sure the other male was just as displeased with it as he was. It went against every custom that his people had. They would probably be hated by the warlocks, and he wasn’t particular ready for that.

He watched as his father walked over towards him. The warlock king’s face was an unreadable mask. “I did try everything that I could Alexander. There was nothing for me to do. It—“ Alexander was quick to cut him off. “I know, it would’ve only made things worse.” He was quiet, not wanting for the sirens to hear what he was saying. Edmund nodded then, turning to his wife. She offered them both a small smile, forcing it to grow when she heard Rowan’s words. “Yes, let us celebrate. The chef will have dinner ready in a few hours, but we would love to take you on a tour of the grounds.” She suggested. She glanced to Alexander before she spoke again. “We do have a lovely garden. Why don’t we start there?” She clasped her hands together before she began to lead the way out through a different door across the room.

Alexander finally looked back to Nikolai then. He raised a brow at the change in expression. He hadn’t expected for the other prince to look towards him in such a way. That was until he began to glare at him. He rolled his eyes before following after his mother. He kept his gaze ahead then as they walked. He could hear his father having a quiet discussion with one of the guards, knowing that he was telling him to make the announcement about their engagement. He couldn’t wait to see how it would go down.

It wasn’t too long before Eloise led them out to the back of the house. The gardens were large and displayed many different flowers. There were multiple different fountains as well as a pond that had benches surrounding it. She paused near the pond before turning to face the siren family. “This is probably Alexander’s favorite place on the grounds. I am sure that he will teach Nikolai much about the plants and how to care for them.” She commented. The words were enough to cause the tips of Alexander’s ears to turn red. He believed her words to be completely unnecessary at that current moment.

He turned his gaze towards the ground then, seemingly more interested in his shoes than his surroundings. He didn’t want for anyone to know just how much he enjoyed this portion of the estate. It was where he came to hide as a young child whenever he got into trouble. He used to sneak out during the nights to stargaze as well in one of the open portions of the garden. This area meant a lot to him and he didn’t want to let Nikolai know the extent of it.
 
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SleepingInTheGardens

Junior Member
Conversations faded into the background the moment Nikolai looked away from the warlock prince. The surroundings blurred, gaze focused only a couple of feet ahead of him. His parents’ voices registered faintly, though Nikolai couldn’t be bothered to listen. Surely, nothing they said would make this situation any better. He simply followed the group, his deep eyes unfocused. No longer observant, Nikolai was only a bystander now.

By the time he came to, they stood in the middle of a garden. The queen shared a bit about her son as they walked. It was only then that Nikolai registered the prince’s name. Alexander. A common name. One that Nikolai would be hearing much too often for his liking from now on. His curiosity, now refocused, took his attention to the kaleidoscope of colors surrounding them. Each fragrance fighting for dominance. The waters of the fountains held their magnetic pull over the prince’s instincts. He could feel his fingers tingling at their tips. Being away from the ocean for too long always made him fidgety.

“Oh, well that’s perfect!” Seraphina chimed, her hand landing on the small of Nikolai’s back, forcing his attention back to the conversation. “Niko always says his favorite part of being on land is the flowers and the stars at night.” The siren prince gave an audible groan, now wishing he’d never shared that piece of information with her. Everything he said could and would be used against him eventually.

He hadn’t missed Alexander’s reaction over his own mother’s words. It seemed both of the queens enjoyed over sharing. Nikolai made a mental note to not share any personal thoughts with his mother from here on out. She always claimed to be on his side, but when it came down to it, she did whatever was necessary to please her husband.

A breeze ran through the garden then, a few scattered pedals landing on Nikolai’s hair as he stepped around one of the fountains in an effort to move away from his mother. Alexander’s presence loomed over him, though he refused to make eye contact. He knew the prince stood nearby, and in the first moment he felt a hand land on his shoulder, he almost imagined to see his face. But the hand was much too gruff, belonging to none other than his father.

Rowan’s previously jovial expression turned to scorn as he looked down at his son, dark eyes swishing from side to side to assure no one was listening. “Don’t mess this up for me, do you understand?” A squeeze of the shoulder, easily passing off as a gesture of reassurance to any outsider, made Nikolai flinch. His brows knitted, eyes burning ember at his father’s words.

“Let. Go.”

It wasn’t Nikolai’s words, but the fast approaching queens that pulled Rowan away from his son, his features immediately morphing into that of a proud father. Nikolai’s stomach knotted at the sight, his heels immediately turning him in the opposite direction. Had he slower reflexes, he may have collided with Alexander in the process.
 

david tennant

daydream believer
Joy was clear on Eloise’s expression as she heard Seraphina’s words. “That is wonderful! Alexander used to keep journals mapping the stars. I believe that there are still some in the library. I am sure he would love to show them to Nikolai.” She confessed. Her words were enough to cause Alexander to roll his eyes. With his gaze being focused on the ground, no one saw it. He was grateful for that. He could only imagine the scourging look his father would give him if he knew how he had reacted. He found there to be little realize for his mother to continue to share in the way that she did.

It was only then that he finally lifted his gaze to look around him. Curious eyes landed on the interaction that was taking place between Rowan and Nikolai. Despite not being able to hear a single word that was being spoken, the air between the two seemed rather uncomfortable. He raised an eyebrow as Nikolai turned and almost collided with him.

Despite the attitude he had before, he knew when he needed to place it to the side. There was no reason for him to be rude in this moment, especially since it seemed as though something was wrong with Nikolai. Genuine concern flashed across his expression as he watched the siren prince turn towards him. He doubted that he would want to speak with him, but his words escaped his life before he was able to stop them. “Are you alright?” The question was quiet, loud enough for only the two of them to hear. There wasn’t any venom behind them as there had been before. He instinctively reached a hand out, though he did seem to realize what he was doing while he was doing it. He paused in his movements to gaze at the other male. He could hear his mother talking behind them, blurring their conversation to where he believed it would just be for the two of them.

He adjusted his gaze to look back behind them towards the fountain near where Rowan stood. He narrowed his eyes before he muttered a few things under his breath. The breeze picked up until it was a strong gust of wind. He was able to use this, with a flick of his wrist, to manipulate the stream of water that was already in the air to shift course and splatter Rowan. He could hear the gasp from his mother. “Oh dear, my sincerest apologies! I will make sure one of the gardeners comes to check on the mechanics of the fountain.” Eloise was quick to apologize, though not a word was spoken by Edmund. If anything, the king was doing his best to hide a smirk from breaking onto his lips.

Alexander hoped the distraction would last them long enough for Nikolai to answer his question, if he even wanted to. He didn’t like the way in which the prince’s mood changed after speaking with his father. He knew that moment particularly well himself. Despite his mixed feelings for the other male, he wasn’t a heartless monster.
 
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SleepingInTheGardens

Junior Member
The look of dismay that flashed across Nikolai’s face the moment his eyes met Alexander’s was short lived. The distraction of the overexcited water fountain didn’t serve the purpose Alexander had probably hoped it would. All it did was remind Nikolai of how, for once, he’d rather be in the ocean.

His dark eyes, clouded with anger, narrowed as if to question the prince’s intentions. Just moments again, he’d been berating the siren prince with his words. The notion stirred a feeling of longing within the prince, longing for someone that understood him for once.

“I’m fine.” He lied. “Don’t need your help.” He lied again. Help is the one thing Nikolai had been needing for years, and never received. Instead, he rebelled, looking anywhere else other than the castle for a thrill. For anything that made him feel like he had control over his life. Alexander represented everything his father wanted him to be, and that irritated Nikolai more than he could put into words. Before the warlock could respond, their mothers caught up to them, Seraphina’s lips morphing into a soft smile as her gaze shifted between the boys.

“Well you two seem to have hit it off.” Nikolai felt the fire of his father’s words burn deep within his gut, his features morphing into a twisted grin in order to hide his discomfort. If he couldn’t beat them, he’d join them, and wait for the perfect time to destroy them. Warlocks were always painted as the villains in the sirens’ story, but in this moment they were nothing more than a nuisance, and there was nothing Nikolai wanted to see more than to watch his father burn.

“Yes, I think we’ll get along just fine.” His words sounded as sincere as his mother wished they were, and the tour continued. Nikolai’s gaze studied every inch of the castle, for what he didn’t know. He never strayed too far from Alexander in an effort to keep his mother happy, and his father happily fooled.

It wasn’t until they’d been left alone once again that Nikolai spoke, his gaze looked unfocused. “Ever been to the ocean, Alexander?” There was no ulterior motive behind the question, aside from Nikolai’s need to get to know his enemy turned ally. The more he knew, the less likely it would be for him to be blindsided again.
 
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david tennant

daydream believer
Alexander studied the other male’s expression as he gazed at him. Despite everything he spoke earlier, he did hope that Nikolai might tell him whether he was alright or not. He would never like sirens. He heard stories of the war from soldiers that had returned and each was worse than the last. Yet, the two of them were to be married to each other. They would have to learn to tolerate their company and he would like to least have some polite communication going forward. He believed it would help the awkwardness in their situation.

His brow furrowed at the response to his question, knowing that it was probably less than true. He didn’t push though. It wasn’t his place to. “Alright.” His own response was simple, dropping the conversation at that. The look that Nikolai gave as he turned still bothered him though. He didn’t know why, but there was just something in it that turned his stomach. He guessed it was just the association to Rowan. The siren king was manipulative, to say the least. He showed his true colors that day by bringing Nikolai here instead of one of his sisters.

He forced his expression to turn neutral, aside from the small smile he brought to his lips as the two queens came to their side. “I believe we will as well.” The response was polite. It was for the first time that day that he truly went silent as they continued to walk around the grounds. He seemed to be in another place. It was common that he lost himself in thought. His mind was the only place that he found true comfort. He didn’t have to worry about the expectations that his family set for him. He liked to think of one day running off to the mountains. He always wanted to see Œrnak and leave an offering for the gods. He doubted it would happen though.

He stayed like this until the tour ended and their parents left to give them space to get to know each other more. He leaned against the windowsill, looking through the open window towards the hills in the distance. He glanced to Nikolai at his question. “I have once, when I was a boy. It was when they tried to create the treaty decades ago. It was very peaceful, despite the continuation for the war.” He admitted. He paused for a second before speaking again. “Why do you ask?” He was curious to know the answer. He wasn’t ready to let his walls tumble down just yet.

He shifted his gaze to look towards the sky. Clouds were beginning to form, signaling that there would be showers that afternoon. “It seems the gods are happy with us today. It looks as though it is going to rain. Heïul is weeping with joy.” His voice was quiet. He doubted the Nikolai knew of the gods and goddesses that the warlocks worshipped. He let out a sigh before turning to fully face the young prince.
 

SleepingInTheGardens

Junior Member
The clouds that loomed overhead were almost reminiscent of Nikolai’s state of mind. Foggy thoughts surrounding his every move to match the darkening weather. He watched the puffs move across the sky, never once looking away from them as Alexander spoke.

“Just wondering…” he muttered, the comment of a peaceful ocean leaving Nikolai’s throat burning. His fingers gripped the windowsill tightly, brows furrowing. His skin yearned for the feel of the water to wash away some of the gloom that seemed to be following him around. His mind and body begged to be freed, roaming the lands or the oceans for a sense of clarity. “Your god has some twisted sense of humor.” His head didn’t move, but his eyes shifted over to where Alexander had settled. It may have sounded disrespectful to the warlock, but in light of what had brought the siren here, it was fitting.

Contrary to what the prince had said earlier, Nikolai didn’t think him to be a fool. If he had dared to hope, he’d do so thinking Alexander could somehow read his silent warnings. That proved to be wishful thinking, however, as the prince took his words to be uncaring, just as smug and egotistic as his father. The notion made Nikolai want to gag. He truly was no different than the rest.

“There’s an old tale of the seas that parents tell young ones to get them to listen.” He spoke again, his gaze still unfocused and tone airy, as if what he was saying had little importance. To the ignorant ear, it did. Nothing more than bedtime folklore. “It’s said that there once was a king and his son. The son was so unruly that the king made a deal with a warlock and put him under a spell.” The familiar sense of dread settled within Nikolai. Perhaps he was saying too much. His eyes danced delicately from Alexander to the sky, and back, gauging how far he could trudge on. “Each time the son disobeyed, great storms ravaged the seas and its inhabitants.”

Finally, Nikolai’s head turned, his full attention on Alexander now, though his grip on the window remained. “Charming, isn’t it?” The sarcasm dripped from his words, accompanied by the same smirk he’d been wearing since he arrived. There was a silent storm that only his eyes held, the upturned corners of his mouth never reaching them.
 

david tennant

daydream believer
Alexander glanced back towards the window then, not thinking much of the situation. The siren prince seemed different than he had before. He assumed that it had something to do with the words that his father spoke to him earlier by the fountain. It wasn’t his place to pry, especially since he barely knew the other male. He doubted they would truly ever get along. This would be a marriage for politics, not for love. He didn’t even know his own feelings towards other men. He always found them to be rather attractive, but never would act on it due to the traditions of his people. He blinked then, knowing his mind was wondering towards a place it shouldn’t.

A soft smile came to his lips at the comment. “I wouldn’t say she has a twisted sense of humor. Everyone believes that the rain washes away what is old and no longer necessary. It brings new life to things. Heïul must be happy for some reason today. Who knows? Maybe she is glad that the war is finally coming to an end.” There was no venom behind his words. For the first time that day, he seemed content. The looming presence of their parents was gone and he finally felt as though he could relax some.

He listened to the story that Nikolai told him, his smile only growing as he did. “Indeed it is.” He agreed with a shaking of his head. “It seems as though you took that story too literally. I have heard rumors of your behavior. I am sure that whoever said them blew them out of proportion, but you do seem to be quite the wild child.” He mused. It was obvious that he didn’t think anything more of the story. He finally met the other male’s gaze. There seemed to be no humor within him, which was odd. It was only a story, right? That thought was the first that came to his mind and stayed present there no matter how hard he tried to push it away.

“It almost reminds me of the old stories of the gods my parents used to tell. There is a god named Cøeal who rules over the seas and water. He is the reason that we have our magical abilities.” He admitted. He lifted his hand then, the small flames from before returning to dance on the tips of his fingers. He closed his fist and they disappeared. “I have heard there are some people that worship him obsessively. Maybe it has a connection with the story your people tell.” He commented.

Outside the window, the wind began to pick up. It stirred the tree branches and the flowers. He shifted to close the window as he knew the storm would be starting soon. “Do you think there are any truths in the stories our people tell?” He inquired. He couldn’t escape the sinking feeling within his stomach at the look Nikolai gave him.
 

SleepingInTheGardens

Junior Member
Only stories. That’s all they ever would be to the blissfully ignorant. Nikolai never believed in things he couldn’t see. Neither love nor peace nor gods. For a moment, he wondered what it was like to be Alexander. Surely, his father was strict. Placing high expectations on his only son. His mother silently supporting. Despite not knowing the family well, he almost had the full portrait. It was the same image Rowan had carefully crafted for his family. The only difference was that for Alexander, it was more than likely real.

There was a beat of silence as Nikolai’s gaze locked with the warlocks. He felt… still. As if he couldn’t quite speak. The wind outside howled against the closed window, shredded leaves mimicking the sound of raindrops against the glass. Nikolai’s mischievous grin had faded now, leaving behind a hollowed frown. He tore his eyes away, looking past Alexander to the empty halls, wondering if anyone was listening in.

“Don’t be foolish.” A halfhearted scoff accompanied his words. “They’re only stories…nothing more.” For a moment, the siren prince felt seen. As if Alexander had read his thoughts, but that feeling quickly vanished with his words. There was no place for hope in Nikolai’s world anymore. He sighed, slipping his hands into his pockets as he walked on. He wasn’t in any hurry to go back to the parents, but the longer he remained around Alexander the more vulnerable he felt.

The space around them was silent, the only sounds heard being the gentle taps of their shoes against the tile. Nikolai trudged ahead, reverting back to the unbothered persona he had walked in as. His gaze nonchalantly swayed towards the prince beside him. “So what do you do in here all day besides playing with fi- ah!” his steps came to a halt, hands quickly reaching for his temples. The pain that shot across his head was sharp enough to make him dizzy. He reached out, attempting to steady himself against the wall, willing his knees to not cave. Images of violent sea storms flashed across his mind as a warning, as if to answer his question from earlier. He had said too much.

He took in a sharp breath, filling his lungs with oxygen. Not his preference but it’s all he had right now Appearing weak in front of anyone, much less a warlock, wasn’t something he could live with. He quickly steadied himself, slowly releasing his grip of the wall, eyes averting Alexander’s gaze. “Sorry… headache.” He attempted to continue the walk, but his legs betrayed him, trembling as he fell to his knees.

How humiliating.
 
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david tennant

daydream believer
Alexander knew something was off the moment that he met Nikolai’s gaze. The air around them seemed to freeze, his ears filling with a ringing sound. It was enough to make a shiver go up his spine. He forced himself to blink a few times, the ringing replaced with the sound of the rain from outside. His own frown slowly came to his lips as he glanced out the window. The storm was much stronger than what he anticipated it to be. He could hear claps of thunder in the distance, though wasn’t able to see any lightning.

“You are now truly going to think I am a fool, but I do not think that they are just stories. There has to be some explanation for how my people for their powers. You might believe me to be some religious idiot, but I truly believe the gods are real.” He admitted as he glanced down at his hands. His steps were slow to follow after the siren prince. He wasn’t keen on meeting up with their parents just yet. There was more he wanted to say to him and he had little time to say it.

“It is just like the prophecy that has been passed down through my family for generations. It talks about two kings giving a blessing and breaking a curse in the sea. I thought it was interesting in connection with the bedtime story your people say.” He explained. He glanced towards him as they walked, not believing that there would be any reaction to it. He didn’t seem superstitious at all. “Cøeal betrayed the gods and he rules the sea and water. You truly don’t think there is any truth in this?” He asked once more, unable to help himself. He found it rather hard to believe that Nikolai didn’t.

He fell into the silence then with a frown on his lips. For the first time that day, he truly seemed bothered. It wasn’t just the situation that they found themselves in, it was something more, something unspoken. He bit gently down on his bottom lip. His steps were slow as he walked a few paces behind Nikolai. That was until the man collapsed.

He quickly moved towards him, kneeling beside him. “Headache my ass.” He muttered as he carefully wrapping his arm around the other prince’s torso. He was gently in his attempt to pull him to his feet. He brought him over to a chair in the hall, forcing him to sit there. “How long have you been having these types of headaches? I am not the best with healing magic, but I could try to alleviate some of the symptoms.” He offered.
 
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SleepingInTheGardens

Junior Member
The strikes of pain spiraled throughout Nikolai’s head, bouncing from one side to the other, pressure building up behind his eyes. At one point, it became almost unbearable. Alexander’s incredulous comment didn’t register. The siren simply took the guide without question, planting himself on the chair he was taken to. He kept his head bowed, eyes shut, lips pierced to keep from crying out until the pain finally subsided, leaving behind a dull discomfort and a tightness in his chest that he preferred to not acknowledge.

His chin lifted, gaze catching the warlock’s. He truly, for the first time since he’d arrived, actually looked at Alexander closely. His eyes burned with the hope and optimism that only came with ignorance. His striking features contrasting against the dim hallway lighting. Something stirred within the depths of Nikolai’s stomach, hypnotized by the deep blues staring back at him. The feeling was unwarranted and not welcome. The siren’s own gaze sharpened, brows furrowing out of sheer habit.

“Doubtful.” He huffed, arms moving to hug his own chest. He felt bare and unprotected. Much too far from the safety of the ocean. He may not have been defenseless, but staring back at Alexander, that look of what could be taken as worry painted on his features, he surely felt like it. “I’ve had them since I was a child. I can handle it myself.” He thought back to the garden, and decided to adhere to his original statement of not needing help. Asking for it had never been, and most likely would never be, Nikolai’s strong suit. He was stubborn as a mule and he knew that, but knowing wasn’t enough to change the habit.

The claps of thunder grew louder with every passing moment, eventually accompanied by lightning. Nikolai’s head turned towards the window, the bright flashes highlighting his features in intervals. “Still think your goddess is happy?” The question was rhetorical. He didn’t plan to wait for an answer. His attention turned back to the prince, a callus look on his face. “Keep believing in nonsense like gods, prophesies, love…none of it will do you any good. I assure you.”

Nikolai once believed in the intangible. He believed in the love of his parents and sisters, in the mystics of the seas that would protect him. The shooting stats that would grant him wishes. All of that was burned long ago, along with his freedom. There was nothing left aside from what he could do with his own hands. Still, he remained in the chair. Uncomfortable as he may be, being alone with Alexander was proving to be a lot less troublesome than being around his father.
 

david tennant

daydream believer
Alexander’s gaze held concern for the other male. He hadn’t expected anything like this to happen. It was rather odd. That concern was short lived with the way in which the other male acted roared him. “I am just trying to help you Nikolai. Do you know why you get the headaches?” He inquired. There were multiple things that he could think of that might be able to alleviate some of the symptoms. The warlocks who focused specifically on healing managed to come up with incredible things over the years. He was sure that he might be able to use some of their practices if it came down to it.

It was then that he noticed Nikolai officially met his gaze. He blinked, not having expected the intensity that he looked at him with. A lump formed in his throat, though he was quick to swallow it down. The ringing in his ears returned and it felt like the room around him froze. It was only at the next clap of thunder that he was snapped free from the trance of his own making. He bit his bottom lip gently. Maybe he isn’t terrible. He just seems to be rather stubborn. The thought was short lived as his eyes narrowed and his expression fell at his last words.

If he hated one thing, it was his faith being question. The warlocks were very religious people and her believed there to be a lot of truth in the stories told. His people had to get their power someway. The explanation from the gods was the only one he would accept. He understood the severity of the pain that Nikolai found himself to be in, knowing it was a proper reason for his words to be shoved aside. It still brought back that familiar feeling of annoyance though. He tried to shove it aside to focus solely on what was happening in front of him currently. His annoyance began to win though.

His jaw clenched as he heard the dismissal come from his lips. “You truly do not know that Nikolai. Just because you don’t have any faith doesn’t mean that I don’t deserve to have any. I know that there is truth in every tale that is told about the gods and about the prophecy. After all, why would we be getting married if there wasn’t? There was to be some truth in the uniting of our two peoples.” His words were much colder then they had been before. It was clear the offense that he took to what he said.
 

SleepingInTheGardens

Junior Member
Self sabotage had always been one of Nikolai’s best skills. He faltered, wondering if he should apologize for insulting Alexander’s faith. After all, what he believed would have no impact on the siren as long as his trap remained. He sighed, carefully pushing himself off the chair to assure he didn’t still fall dizzy. He brushed his sleeves out of habit, eyes peering up at the prince with the same intensity he had before.

“You’re right. You can believe whatever you like.” He decided against apologizing, if only for his own stubbornness. Still, he acknowledged his mistake, and corrected his words. “But don’t expect me to.” His eyes felt heavy, the lingering numbness from the headache making him feel tired. The storm outside raged, as if warning them of what was to come. A tempest like this was sure to rile up the seas. Nikolai frowned. Alexander’s presence posed a threat to the walls he’d worked so hard to build over the years.

He decided to give it one last heave, hoping the warlock would leave the subject alone. He’d made the mistake of bringing it up, now he would be the one to end it. “I left faith behind long ago, Alexander.” His eyes held a silent warning to the man, hoping against hope that he would understand. “And I’ve told you I’m fine…I don’t need your help.” His tone lowered at the next few words, as if whispering would somehow save him. “Just…let it go…”

He moved past the prince, shoulder brushing gently against his arm. The halls were quiet again, until a familiar voice pulled Nikolai from his daze. “There you two are!” Seraphina mused, her lips twisted into what could be perceived as a proud smile. “You’ll have plenty of time to spend alone. Let’s go have dinner.” Nikolai flight the eye roll, steps taking him past his mother towards the dining hall. He eyed the windows of the palace, wondering how high up they were. All he needed was a minute alone. That was more than enough to slip out undetected.
 

david tennant

daydream believer
Alexander’s expression didn’t soften any at his next comment. This was something that he wouldn’t take lightly. His eyebrows had furrowed, causing lines to crease his forehead. His eyes had narrowed some as well as he watched each move the siren prince made. A loud clap of thunder interrupted the silence that was currently in the room as he tried to figure out what he wanted to say next. He didn’t seem to be startled by it. His eyes just stayed on the other male with an icy chill to him. If he had been unhappy before with their arrangement, this was ten times worse.

“That does not mean you need to be rude when I speak of my faith. A little respect will truly get you a long way.” His tone was the same as his expression. He normally would’ve appreciated the effort that had been made to amend some of the damage brought on by his original statement. He couldn’t find it in him to do so this time though. Nikolai crossed a line that was near and dear to his heart. The wind caused for one of the branches of a tree to hit lightly against the closed window from before. It was only then that he glanced away from Nikolai.

He let out a dry chuckle, shaking his head. “Fine. I offered my assistance, but as you are too stubborn to accept any it, you can suffer on your own.” He was well aware that his own words were very childish and that he shouldn’t have spoken them. This entire situation was causing for his stomach to twist in knots. He believed there was much more to this situation that he wasn’t being told. He brought his arms up to cross his chest, the fingers on his right hand clenched tightly in a fist. It helped calm his mind and allowed for him to not do anything he might regret.

He didn’t speak as Seraphina walked into the room with them, nor did he bother to speak as he turned to leave the room as well. He knew the direction to the dining hall like the back of his hand. His steps stayed in pace with the others, wanting to be their guide in case there were to get lost. After all, the castle was very large. He recalled getting lost many times when he was a child. It wasn’t too long until they walked into the hall, the table decorated with gorgeous white plates with intricate drawings painting on the clay. He moved to his usual seat then. He glanced around to see the placement of the chairs. He realized that Nikolai would be directly across from him.

Edmund looked to Alexander as he walked into the room, trying to catch his son’s eye to offer him a reassuring smile. Worry settled on his expression when he noticed the downturned eyes that he had. He was beginning to think he made a dire mistake by allowing this proposal to go through. Nonetheless, he pushed a smile to his face and took his seat alongside everyone else.
 

SleepingInTheGardens

Junior Member
Suffering alone wouldn’t be anything new to Nikolai. Alexander’s displeased expression was exactly what he’d been aiming for. He ignored the way it bothered him. There was nothing new in the statements. He was stubborn, yes. Unruly. Detached. Headstrong. Too blunt for his own good. All the negative things no one would want in a fiancé. The warlock’s reaction was warranted, and yet it brought a bitter taste to Nikolai’s mouth.

As did the claim from earlier, when Alexander accused him about not caring. In a sense, he was right. Nikolai didn’t care what happened to him. He didn’t care what others thought of him, so long as it kept his people safe. He followed in silence, hands hurried deep into his pockets. Alexander walked ahead, leading the way. Seraphina stayed close behind him. Nikolai slowed his pace, quietly slipping away from the duo the first chance he got. His chest felt tight, like his lungs no longer wanted oxygen. His head light, spinning, each step heavier than the next.

Unsure of where he was even going, he walked on down a darkened hallway. The storm outside grew restless. Nikolai felt a burn in his chest that could only be described as heartbreak. His people were surely hurting with this storm, even miles away from the ocean but he could still feel their troubles. For a brief moment, he wished he had a god he could pray to that would alíviate some of the damage. What had he done so wrong?

Walk came to a slow stop, his legs unable to carry him any further. Tired body leaned against the wall for a moment before sliding to the ground. His breaths came out in short bursts, one hand clutching at his chest as if it would alíviate the pain. He doesn’t know! Why are you doing this? The thoughts were almost louder than his staggered breaths, as if the person responsible could hear him. A clap of thunder shook the palace, and for a brief moment, Nikolai wished Alexander won there to offer his help.

Seraphina joined her husband at the table, he smiled beaming with feigned excitement. “Wow, this is truly amazing. Nikolai, I think-“ she paused, Rowan’s gaze moving around the room with hers. “Niko?” The queen’s eyes slowly widened, looking at Alexander as she spoke. “Wasn’t he right behind us? Did he get lost?” Beside her, Rowan gave a grunt that sounded closer to a growl, his brows knitting in frustration. “This best not be another one of his little stunts.” The comment was low, mainly meant for Seraphina’s ears. The man didn’t bother to check who was around them that could listen.
 

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