The Princess

"Ellie! Ellie, this is important, listen to me!" A shrill voice cut through Ellette's thoughts. She looked up and sighed.   "I was praying, Luna. What is it?"   "The Silenean Empire is what! Dad said gold sails were spotted! He wants to see us both now!"   Ellette blinked. The Silenean Empire had always seemed like a distant story. They'd never come to the Heartlands before. Had they already heard about the prophecy? Was that why they were here? She stood up and put a hand on Luna's shoulder.   "All right. I'm coming. Calm down, Luna. It'll be okay."   She and her younger sister made their way through the palace halls to the throne room where their father was waiting. He paced back and forth, obviously anxious. When he heard footsteps, he looked up, and relief washed over him.   "Ellette. You're all right," he said, gathering both of them into a tight embrace. He let go after a brief moment. "There is danger, my daughter."   "Luna said it was the Silenean Empire," Ellette said. "Is it true? Have they come because of the prophecy?"   "I'm afraid so. We knew something like this might happen when Gossmein started rallying their forces. But I never thought this..." He shuddered.   "We'll speak to them. They'll see reason," Ellette said confidently.   "No," her father replied. "They won't. I wish I had time to explain everything... But I'm afraid all I can do is protect you. When we heard about Gossmein, I had the builders start constructing a secret chamber. You must go there-"   "What?" Ellette was incredulous. "And leave you and Luna to the Sileneans?"   "You must," her father insisted. "You are the Child of Ancients. You must survive."   "He's right, Ellette," Luna said. Ellette looked at her and saw in her eyes that their father had already talked to her about this. "The world needs you."   "You need me. I know my power hasn't manifested, but maybe it will! I have to try!"   Her father smiled and shook his head. "Oh, my daughter. Your destiny is more important than us."   Ellette started to protest, but before she could get a word out, a guard burst into the throne room.   "Your majesty!" he said breathlessly. "The Sileneans are here! They say they've come for the Child of Ancients!"   Ellette's father looked at her sadly. "There's no more time." The palace shook and he turned back to the guard. "Take her to the chamber. She'll be safe there."   The guard nodded and took Ellette's arm. "Please come with me, princess," he said. Ellette looked to her father.   "Remember," her father said, "when the night dies and the day is ushered in, it has begun. Now go."   The palace shook again and Ellette heard the sound of armored footsteps approaching.   "Go!"   The guard began pulling her out the door. She stumbled the first few steps, but then ran after him, looking back at her home for what she knew would be the last time.

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