Welcome to a brand new adventure. I was given the idea of using a game in this one. What a fun idea, my brain went a little crazy trying to settle on only one option. So hopefully this entertains you as much as it did me =)
Let’s get started so you can vote at the end for how you’d like the adventure to continue!
The wool pants itch against your legs. They’re clean and pressed, with a crisp line running down the front and ending just above your shiny boots. Your black shirt is tucked in and the sleeves boast a crease just like your pants.
You pull the shirt straight and remind yourself not to shove your hands in your pockets while your wait in line.
Today could decide your life’s course but only if you make a good impression. Back home, your sister sits beside your ailing mother, trying desperately to take up her basket making business. You tried to help her but your fingers stumble over the little details that make your family’s baskets so specialized.
The morning air bites at your nose, crisp after the sun chased away the dawn mist. Hundreds stand in line with you to make their own good impression, in hopes of standing out somehow amongst the crowd. They’re all in their best cloths, all pressed and standing tall.
You swallow your anxiety back into your stomach.
A horn breaks the general mutterings of the crowd. Silence falls after everyone shuffles their way into a more orderly line against the city wall.
Far to your left, you make out the very tops of three men’s heads as they ride down the line.
As they ride closer, their voices carry to you but it’s their single question to each person that you’re able to make out.
“Can you play the game?”
You’ve no idea what they’re asking. Every person in line answers an emphatic “Yes, your Highness.” But he doesn’t respond to this answer, he just keeps walking his horse down the line, visually inspecting each candidate and asking, “Can you play the game?”
Such an answer does not seem to be what he’s looking for. Perhaps admitting you don’t know the game but can learn it would be a better course. Your mother emphases honesty as a quality the Queen highly values and she should know, she makes the woman’s clothing baskets, sometimes even sitting in her chambers while she makes them in order to size them just perfectly for the Queen’s needs.
The group of three moves closer and your eyes are drawn to the horse blanket sticking out below the Prince’s saddle. The Queen’s Rose insignia flourishes across the rich, purple fabric in gold thread that glitters in the sun.
The workmanship is that of Ander Wilkins. He lives two doors up from you, above the small shop he runs on the street.
You frown. Ander Wilkins’ work is precise, verging just this side of perfection, but the Rose is missing a petal. The Queen’s insignia always has eight petals. The lead man’s blanket only boasts seven.
“Can you play the game?” he asks the man beside you.
“Yes, your Highness,” the man says boldly, going so far as to take a step forward.
The prince’s lips roll inward in a sign of slight displeasure and then his coppery hazel eyes shift to you.
“Can you play the game?” he asks.
You actually meet his gaze. There’s a slight crinkling around the eyes but whether they’re laugh lines or worry lines you can’t decide.
The two men trailing the Prince bookend him in age, one’s much older, one’s much younger. You run some quick math through your head and check the horse blanket on the younger man’s horse.
The Prince is hiding.
A. Address Him Directly?
B. Answer His Proxy?
Blessings and see you Thursday,