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LJ Idol Season 9 - Week 2

The Sun Tower

Jalon turned to the advisor sitting next to him.  “Bring her to the sun tower,” he said.

Maalor turned in surprise.  “She’s barely a maid…” he drifted off at Jalon’s scowl.  “Of course, master.  As you wish,” he corrected quickly and stood up to make the necessary preparations.  The mage wouldn’t like this turn of events, but there really wasn’t anything anyone could do about it.

“Allow her to finish her meal,” Jalon added as Maalor left the table.

“She will thank you for the kindness, my Lord,” Maalor said.

~~~~~~

Mara couldn’t tear her eyes away from the dais.  The energy being directed toward her was palpable.  She felt the sharp pain of a bony elbow in her side a second time.

“Eat girl,” said the mage beside her.

She really wished he would stop calling her girl.  Mara lowered her eyes and put a bite of lamb stew in her mouth.  She chewed absently but did not taste it.  Throughout the meal, she kept up the pretense of eating, until finally her stew congealed in the bowl.

For the first time, she was glad to be headed back to her small room.

~~~~~~

The raised voices outside her door startled her.  She put down the pages she had been studying by candlelight and put her ear to the door.

“…sun tower…,” she heard an unrecognizable voice.

“…too young,” she heard her masters voice reply.

“Nothing…do…sway his mind,” came a muffled reply.

“She has potential,” returned the mage.

“I will speak with him,” the strangers voice replied, clearly enough to indicate they were right outside her door.

Mara scooted back to the bed as the door opened.  She recognized the man as the one who had sat to the right of Jalon on the dais at dinner.

“Come,” he told her.

~~~~~~

Maalor led her through the castle, up two winding staircases and through numerous passages.

They climbed one final staircase to a large, open, circular room.  The walls were a pale grey, as close to white as anything got in the castle, and there was a large bed to one side.  The stone floor was covered with furs and a lit fireplace was opposite the bed.  A small sitting area was near the fireplace and there was a dressing screen, wardrobe and privy as well.  Candles lit the room, but four windows, currently covered by thick drapery, would allow ample light during the day.  It was the cleanest, brightest area Mara had seen in the entire castle.  The oddest feature, however, was that the room had no door.

“Make yourself comfortable,” Maalor told her.  “The Lord will be here momentarily.”

Maalor didn’t understand what Jalon wanted with the girl.  Of course, he knew, he just didn’t understand.  He had seen so many come and go.  But this mouse of a girl was unusual.  She held none of the beauty of the others, none of the spirit that Jalon liked to break so well.  None of the others had been allowed in Ellisandria’s room. 

This girl was the opposite of Ellisandria.  Where Ellisandria had been almost gilded in her fairness, long shimmering hair falling straight down her back, bright blue eyes the color of ice, her head held regally, Mara skittered about, following meekly behind, her dark curls nearly blending into the night.  It wasn’t until she looked expectantly at Maalor, her eyes dark as sable, that he understood Jalon’s interest.

“Ah, Maalor, I see you’ve finally figured it out,” Jalon startled them both as he spoke.  He turned to face her, “Your name, girl?”

“Mara, Lord,” she stuttered, bowing in an awkward curtsey.

He laughed.  “You will stay here,” he told her.  “You will want for naught,” he continued.

“Her studies, my Lord?” the mage asked from behind Jalon.  No one had noticed him as he followed Jalon into the room.  “She has a gift,” he added.

“She may continue them,” Jalon replied.  “Here.”

“As you wish, my Lord,” replied the mage.

“Am I never to see the outside?” Mara spoke up in quiet alarm, raising her eyes to Jalon.

“You can leave whenever you are able,” he replied with a smirk.

He turned to leave the room, Maalor and the mage following him like the minion they were.

~~~~~~

Mara listened to their footsteps as they faded down the staircase.  She waited a few moments more and rushed to the entry.

Holding her candle high, she backed up quickly as understanding of Jalon’s final words came to her.

The staircase leading to her room in the sun tower was gone. 


This is an entry for therealljidol Season 9, Week 2.  The prompt for this week was "The Missing Stair".  It is a continuation of my entry last week, but should stand alone.  The character, Jalon, was introduced during LJ Idol Exhibit B and if you would like to read that blurb, it can be found here.  Thank you for reading.

Comments

( 45 comments — Leave a comment )
Page 1 of 2
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x_disturbed_x
Mar. 23rd, 2014 12:55 am (UTC)
I'm glad to see more of Mara. :D I like this character!
tatdatcm
Mar. 25th, 2014 08:24 pm (UTC)
Thank you. I think she's going to be a good fit with Jalon in the story and the plans that are slowly coming together in my head.
kecharasmoon
Mar. 23rd, 2014 01:00 am (UTC)
I was already transfixed by the start of Mara's story. Now I'm worried for her!
tatdatcm
Mar. 25th, 2014 08:25 pm (UTC)
I'm not sure whether you should worry or not. :) I'm starting to figure out where the story is going though.
i_will_not_say
Mar. 23rd, 2014 02:38 am (UTC)
I'm suuuuuuuuper glad you went with your fiction idea. And now I want to know what happens next! :D
tatdatcm
Mar. 25th, 2014 08:26 pm (UTC)
Thank you. :)

I'm starting to form a plan for the story, so it will likely continue - depending on prompts, of course.
miintikwa
Mar. 23rd, 2014 06:11 am (UTC)
Well done! I can't wait to read more.
tatdatcm
Mar. 25th, 2014 08:26 pm (UTC)
Thank you. Glad you liked it.
surpanakhalives
Mar. 23rd, 2014 09:08 pm (UTC)
Ohhh I hope Mara will be okay...
tatdatcm
Mar. 25th, 2014 08:27 pm (UTC)
She'll be okay. Eventually.
uncawes
Mar. 24th, 2014 06:32 am (UTC)
Ah, I hope she can find the staircase when she's ready.
Job well done there
tatdatcm
Mar. 25th, 2014 08:27 pm (UTC)
There's the key: when she's ready.

Thank you. :)
jexia
Mar. 24th, 2014 06:37 am (UTC)
*thumbs up*
tatdatcm
Mar. 25th, 2014 08:27 pm (UTC)
Thank you. :)
eternal_ot
Mar. 24th, 2014 11:38 am (UTC)
Would be looking forward to week 3 entry!...:)
tatdatcm
Mar. 25th, 2014 08:28 pm (UTC)
I hope it's a prompt I can work with. :)

Thank you for reading.
kagomeshuko
Mar. 24th, 2014 10:32 pm (UTC)
I don't know why, but I am stuck on that room with no door . . .

I hope you like my entry!
tatdatcm
Mar. 25th, 2014 08:28 pm (UTC)
It doesn't really need a door when there's a magic, disappearing staircase. :)

Thank you for reading.
bleodswean
Mar. 25th, 2014 01:15 pm (UTC)
Really well done. You hooked me.
tatdatcm
Mar. 25th, 2014 08:29 pm (UTC)
Thank you. Glad you liked it. :)
fodschwazzle
Mar. 25th, 2014 04:38 pm (UTC)
Mages always seem so untrustworthy. Nice descriptions.
tatdatcm
Mar. 25th, 2014 08:29 pm (UTC)
I think, in this case, the mage isn't who she really needs to worry about.

Thank you. :)
witchwife
Mar. 25th, 2014 06:50 pm (UTC)
Glad to see more of this story!
tatdatcm
Mar. 25th, 2014 08:29 pm (UTC)
Glad you liked it. Thank you. :)
halfshellvenus
Mar. 25th, 2014 07:39 pm (UTC)
Nice to see more of this, and I love this twist:

“You can leave whenever you are able,” he replied with a smirk.
IF she ever develops sufficient magic. What a heavy-handed motivation for her to learn!
tatdatcm
Mar. 25th, 2014 08:30 pm (UTC)
Glad you picked up the implications in that one line. It was what I intended. :)

Thank you. :)
crimsonplum
Mar. 26th, 2014 04:03 am (UTC)
I'm intrigued. :) A lot of characters here I really want to learn more about. Wonderful world-building, too!
tatdatcm
Mar. 27th, 2014 03:52 am (UTC)
Thank you. I'm glad you've been pulled in. :)
n3m3sis43
Mar. 27th, 2014 02:16 am (UTC)
I really enjoyed this. I'm trying to figure out if Jalon wants Mara as a consort or something more.
tatdatcm
Mar. 27th, 2014 03:54 am (UTC)
Thanks! My lips are sealed. :D

(Hopefully I get prompts I can work with.)
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( 45 comments — Leave a comment )

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