“No one understands me. I don’t want any of these guys; they just won’t leave me alone!” I said to my best friend, Sarah Heart.
“Well, Μαρία, try not to look so nice!”
I am 17; long black hair, hazel eyes, and deep red lips, am about 5’8”, and have unusually pale skin. “I don’t ever look nice, and you know it! Besides, you’re the one who looks great, one of the best in Femenino.” Sarah is 16, long blond hair, blue eyes, pale pink lips, is about 5’, and has very tan skin. “They only like me because I am almost of age.” Here on Femenino, when a girl turns 18, she is ready to be wed. The guys are born with their wings patterns. When the girl decides to marry a certain person, she will mirror the design the guy has after they both say their vows.
“Μαρία, why do you always talk down about yourself?” Sarah said.
“I don’t know, but can we discuss this tomorrow? I’m tired.”
“Ok, but tomorrow we’ll talk about who you’re going to marry. You only have 1 week left to decide.”
“Ok, Sarah,” I yawned, “good night, sweet dreams.”
“Yeah, I’ll have sweet dreams, of the prince marrying me!” she said with a devilish grin. No one knew the prince’s real name, so we just called him ‘prince’. We laughed at that, “but, good night, girl, we will definitely talk tomorrow.” I fell into a fitful sleep, plagued with the question of who I was to marry in 1 week.
Raven black hair, one eye brown, one eye black, tall, tan, and body like a warrior.” kiss me, Μαρία” he said, “Never leave me, please.”
“I won’t leave you, ever, I swear.”
I woke up, not knowing who the man was. ‘Well, all I know is, it’s time to make a new potion.’ “Ok, let’s see, a bit of baby’s breath, wild flower, lilac blossoms, and a pinch of rose petals. Ok, add them in boiling water, mmmmm that smells good. Hmm, now, before the dream with him, what did I do with the potion? Oh, yeah, I dabbed it behind the ears, and everyone was happy to see me, even, surprisingly, the girls.”
“Maybe I shouldn’t try it, because some of the girls have never liked me, and I’m probably going to forget what I did, and wonder why they are happy to see me all day, I’m always forgetting things, that’s why I put all my spells in a book, after all.” I mumbled to myself. I went to write it down, calling it the ‘Like Me’ spell. Ok, I have the ‘Love’ potion, a few body, hair, and ****** changing spells, a ‘Find it’ spell, a spell to bind the heart to a specific person. Oh, cute, I still have the spell I made when I was seven, so my heart wouldn’t break if I found a guy, but I didn’t cast it because then I would be sad in the end if I never found the guy I had asked for.
‘Oh, boy, I’m going off to dreamland again. Sigh, will I ever find my kind of guy?’ Well, the only thing that could be worse is the prince picking for me, well, except that we were born on the same day, but at different times, he was born about an hour before me in a room next to me, and since he’s royalty, he chooses a wife before I choose a husband, and I will be mortified since I have to stand next to him, but I doubt anyone would want me as a wife because I’m, in my Aunt Feranium’s words, “an inexcusable excuse of an abomination, no one could possibly want to even be near me, much less marry me”. Well, Aunt Feranium, you’ll get to see if your right or not in 1 week.
Well, today I have to go meet up with some of the guys here, and get some ingredients for my potions and spells. I’m hoping at least one of the guys is ok with how I am and who I am. I guess I’ll meet with guys before I get my ingredients, so I can cheer myself up afterwards.
I met with three guys for the first half hour. Each and every one of them was wealthy and smug. All I could think was, ‘I can’t wait to get away from here and finish up talking to some other guys.’ One guy, named Damien was saying, “When we get married, you will love your life.” Another named Lucas said, “No, when WE get married you will be in the laps of luxury, far more than either of these two could ever give you, Μαρία.” The third guy, named Jordan said, “We all have wealth, so why don’t we let Μαρία choose for herself?”
They all turned to me and looked expectantly. I smiled politely and said, “Well, I have quite a few more people to talk with, so I must not say who of you fine,” and I almost choked on that, “gentlemen. I’m sorry to say, I must go now to meet the others. Good day.” I smiled, got up and left before they could argue/complain/persuade me to stay longer.
I went to meet one of my friends, who was being forced by his mother to court/marry me. I saw him and waved. “Hey, Alejandro, what’s up?”
He did a slight nod of his head, telling me his mom was nearby, eavesdropping on us. He said anyway, “Not much, but you look lovely today. How are you?”
I smiled, because he was not usually like this when his mom wasn’t around. “I am fine. You don’t look so bad yourself.” He blushed, which made me smile, since he only sees me as his one of his best friends, which is the same way I feel about him. I nodded to him, letting him know his mom can no longer hear us, or see us. ‘Goodness, I love being able to do spells with little effort. I just wonder where his mom thinks we went.’
“Thanks Μαρία. So who’d you have to deal with first?”
“Three rich guys.”
He rolled his eyes. “Let me guess. Full of themselves and saying who you were going to marry?”
“Yea, well, except the one, he actually asked ME who I’d marry. It was interesting, since no one would usually care what I thought.”
“What did one of them look like?”
“One, named Jordan, who asked my opinion, had short brown hair, tan skin, about 5’ 10”. A second, Damien, has medium ***** blonde hair, dark skin, about 6’. The third, Lucas, had sort of long blonde hair, sort of pale skin, about 5’9”. Why?”
“I think they are following you.” He pointed behind me, and when I turned to see, there they were, a few tables over.
I looked back to Alejandro, smiled, and called for a waiter. “Excuse me, could you send a note and a round of drinks to those three gentlemen over there?” I pointed to the three guys, and gave the waiter 50 coins, and a tip of 20 coins, which is our currency. He smiled and lightly bowed, for the most a waiter would usually get as tip was 5-10 coins.
“What is your note?”
I told him, “Chill out and have a fine day.” He nodded and did as I asked.
When the guys got their drinks, I told Alejandro to come on. We left them there, and made sure they didn’t follow. We got to the market district, because, in truth, Alejandro was the only other person I was to meet. We got there and I showed him a list of ingredients I needed. The list went as follows:
Fresh Baby Laughter
Freshly Fallen Snow
Tear of Love
Hair of a Beauty
Sob of a Broken Heart
A Child’s Doll
Petal of a Fully Bloomed Rose
Final Breath of the Dying
He whistled low at how much I needed. I smiled; because that was the least I needed in quite a few months. We went about getting my stuff and just hung out, until we came upon Sarah, who knew me and Alejandro did not like each other, but teased us saying we did all the same.
She smiled and said, “Hey lovebirds. What goes on? Oh, are you guys finally realizing you’re meant for each other and going to marry each other?”
We said in unison, “No! We are not.” Alejandro scowled while I laughed.
“Sure sounds like you’re meant for each other to me!” Sarah laughed while Alejandro’s scowl grew longer.
I said, “Sarah stop teasing, poor Alejandro couldn’t possibly take all the scowling.” ‘And the heart break, since he’s in love with you Sarah, you just never see. I’m about to tell you straight up.’ I looked over at Alejandro and smiled, since he didn’t tell me, he didn’t know I knew, even though it was written plainly on his face, he thought he was discreet.
He looked down at his feet, letting the hurt pass over his face for a brief second. “I need to get the rest of my ingredients from my list. Okay, let’s see, just a few rose thorns is all I need to get.” We went to go get them. And there, a few feet away, were the three guys again. I pointed them out to Alejandro, and he rolled his eyes. I walked straight up to them.
They acted surprise to see me, I said, “Why are you following me?”
They were all flustered, but Jordan said, “We weren’t following you!”
“Oh, really, you three, follow me, Alejandro, Sarah, you can come to.” We went into an alley way and I continued, “So you three just happened to be at the same café only a few tables away, and then be just a few feet away from me?” They nodded in unison, and I got raged. I used a spell and had them pinned against the wall behind them and asked angrily, “Who are you working for?”
They looked fearful, and Lucas said stammering, “You ought to stop, ‘cause there are witnesses.”
I looked at him, “They are the only thing keeping me in check, you idiot, now, answer my questions, why were you following me and who are you working for?”
They looked at each other, then at me, and swallowed loudly and hard. Damien said, “Sheesh, when we saw you, we thought you’d be no problem to us, but dang! We might as well tell her since she got us, and ‘cause I don’t know her limits.”
They all nodded their heads, before looking frighteningly at me. Damien continued, “We are guards, some of the finest, and I now see we are some of the most arrogant.” I rolled my eyes.
“Why were you following me?”
“We were told to act as the people that we were told to be. It seems your something of interest.”
I glared at them, “You’re lying.” They were wide eyed with fright.
“No! That’s all that we were told!”
“You two might, but he was told more, and he’s not telling.” I glared at him and came close to his face. I looked in his eyes and asked as calmly as I could, “What are you hiding?”
He would not answer, so I let them go, and said, “Don’t follow me anymore! Just leave me alone.”
They stayed in place, frozen with fear, but Jordan piped up, “Wow, with your strength in spells, Μαρία, would you ever consider joining the guard? We really need you and your strength.”
I glared at them and said, “Go!”
They ran, still not sure of my limits when I was mad. My friends burst out in laughter after the guards were well out of ear shot. They said in halting gasps, “I can’t believe you bluffed them while you were mad!”
I smiled, knowing I wasn’t someone that could harm anyone. When I get angry at someone, I always try to bluff them, I guess I’ve either gotten better, or they were not good at telling my bluff. “Well at least we learned something out of this whole episode. Now, let’s get my ingredients and get back to my house, I had a dream about a new spell last night.” I felt a pair of eyes on me, but when I looked, there was nothing there. I shrugged and thought, ‘I must be getting paranoid.’
When we got back to my house, they helped me put my ingredients away, and I showed them my new ‘Like Me’ spell. “I don’t know how long it lasts, so I won’t let it be used on either of you.” I felt the eyes on my back, I turned and saw nothing. “Do either of you two feel like someone’s watching us?”
They shook their heads no, Alejandro said, “Maybe you should do a spell for protection over yourself for whoever’s watching you.”
I nodded, and found one that was simple to do but difficult to break through and lasted a long time. I cast it over my friends as well, who smiled when they felt the spell cover them as well. Sarah said, “Ok, now, Alejandro, shoo, me and Μαρία have a few things to talk about.” She grinned wickedly, and so he left.
He said, “Bye.” And got out as quick as he could.
I looked at her, “Now why’d you do that for? He doesn’t even count as a marriage choice; it’d be too much like marrying a brother.”
She shrugged, “Does it matter? This is girl talk, now spill who you like.” She looked at me expectantly.
“I really don’t know, I’ll just go with my gut when the time comes, okay?”
She sighed dramatically, “Fine!”
I laughed, “You know, it’s not your time to pick, you have a few years, and more than a few admirers.”
She flipped her hair and laughed lightly, “I can’t help if guys like me, Μαρία!”She shrugged, "That's my image, Μαρία, I have to keep up with it, or I'll be ruined!" I laughed.
"You can be so dramatic. You know that?"
"Yea, and now I know you can be to. ‘They are the only thing keeping me in check, you idiot', nice one, especially with the idiot, it added to your tone."
I looked at the floor sheepishly. "It just came to mind, and I went with it. Was I that convincing to you?"
"Are you kidding, I thought you would of killed 'em on the spot! Your bluff is way better Μαρία."
I smiled, "Thanks Sarah."
We went about our own thoughts for an hour, until it was time for Sarah to leave. "I'll see you tomorrow Μαρία."
"Okay, see ya." I flicked my wings out, mostly because I still felt like someone was watching me. I thought about my wings, and how soon I'll have a design. I remembered a type of fairy that used to exist long ago. They were called the florescent fairies. Unfortunately they died off. They all had wing patterns of their own. Even the females had their own patterns that they kept after marriage. Their wings were always so big and elaborate.
I felt my wings tingling, so I went to my front door. There on my doorstep was the guard that I knew as Jordan. He was in his uniform. I said, “What do you want, Jordan, if that is really your name?”
He cleared his throat. He was afraid, but put up a brave front and said, “I came for you were summoned by the head of the royal guard.”
I rolled my eyes, “And why would I be summoned this late at night?”
His bravado was fading when he said, “Because the head of the royal guard wants to see you now.”
His bravado was completely gone now and he was shaking in his boots, “He just wants you to come.”
I rolled my eyes again, turned out the lights, and locked my house up. “Lets’ get this done and over with. I do need to sleep like others’, you know.” Then I felt magic welling up around me. I found them easily with my magic, and brought them out in front of me. I threw them all into a pile in front of me. “Tell me three good reasons I shouldn’t put you all in a magic hold that would leave you motionless for the rest of the night.”
They were all struggling, and I was holding Jordan with a glare. “I am tired, and would not regret it. And you all need to learn to hide your magic. That’s how I knew where you were.”
They all tried to plead for me to let them go, but with a wave of my hand, they fell silent. Jordan said stammering, “They were only supposed to be back-up in case you wouldn’t come.”
I waved my pointer finger side to side, “Tsk, tsk, tsk, not nice to play tricks with me.” I used my magic to send the pile of guards back to the palace, while I looked at Jordan and said, “I told you to leave me alone.” I flicked my hand at him, and he went flying back to the palace. I went back into my house, went to my room, and after taking a hot shower, went to bed.
The next morning, I got up and ready for the day. I was about to leave my home when my wings tingled. Someone was at the door. I looked through a peep hole and saw my friends, Sarah and Alejandro. I opened the door, and they came in talking at me. I couldn’t understand what they were saying, so I said, “Slow down, now what?”
They started laughing. Sarah said, “Apparently, you gave all the guard’s a scare. What did you do?”
I looked at them, confused for a second, and then I remembered, and told them the events of last night. They laughed, so I said, “What? I was extremely tired, I wasn’t taking their crap.” That just made them laugh harder.
Alejandro said, “Remind me not to get on your bad side, Μαρία.” He chuckled and said, “Can you teach me some of your **** kicking moves?”
I grinned devilishly and made to look like I was going to use it on him and said “Sure,” and mocked what I did with the guards without using my magic. We all laughed. There was a knock on the door. I rolled my eyes and yelled, “Who is it?”
Whoever it was just knocked again. I went to the door and looked through the peep hole. There was no one there. I motioned my friends back, away, and I used a searching spell. I calmly looked all around my house, then finally smiled. I opened my door fast and