The Story of Jasmine notes continue:
The day before King Aranbrod spoke to his daughter in frightful earnest, “For seven years, you have repaid my patience and generosity with false intentions. Now there is only one choice left. He is from the north, a proud prince of the dark elves. Flavia, THIS time, you cannot refuse him.”
Flavia, upon seeing her father’s stern resolve, knew that she could not oppose him. Before her father left her chambers, she consented to receive Ahearn, Prince of Dockalfar. The King smiles and tells her that tomorrow, he must tend to an important matter. That was why he wanted her to consent. Needed elsewhere, he is unable to attend the event of their official meeting. As he leaves, he mutters something about already being indebted to him.
However, when the next day arrived, the princess lost heart. She had imagined her prince would be filled with art and music, much like the other suitors she refused. But when the prince stood before her, he stood in bloody black armor, his gleaming sword still red-stained from battle. From without, she heard the clamor of UR’s own soldiers rising to arms.
The dark prince bowed before her and took her hand to kiss, but he did not remove his headgear. Feeling the coldness of his armor, she quickly withdrew her hand. When their eyes met, his harsh look pierced hers. “M’lady,” said he, “forgive my appearance, but your outposts have been attacked!”
He then quickly recounted the details of the battle to the court as, no doubt, he would many times in the future. But Flavia was shocked. She did not know what to do, so she stood still, unmoving. Thus, frozen she would not discourse with him on any subject. She found the man, standing darkly before her, to be course and disgusting. She did not want to listen to his account and did not make him feel at ease.
The precious little patience the prince possessed began to fray. At length, he spoke his mind, “You have not only insulted me with your rude and discourteous behavior, but you have disgraced your kingdom. The custom in my country, is not to remove armor when a battle on the field is still active. If this is not your custom, I accept blame for your bewildered silence and forgive you.”
The Prince was agitated, doing his best to rein in his anger. “I am sorry there is no time for gentile wooing. The time is nigh that I return to the battle to the aid of your father. In exchange, you have been promised to me as my wife. Make it so by declaring your love and faith to me and I will fight in your name as my beloved.”
The princess finally found her tongue. ”What? Kill in my name? I find you a rude and woeful companion and will never willingly marry you. Leave me alone and never return!”
“Vain princess — your intentions are now known to me, and clear. This disastrous meeting was only a courtesy. You and I are already promised, whether or not either of us want it. Our fathers have already signed the agreements. And it is why I am called to battle.”
Then Ahearn withdrew.
* Arbethe or Aranbrod — I seem to have been unable to settle upon the right name for the King of UR, even within the same document.
© 2018 DARLENE