In for the Rain: Short Stories, The Mirage that Holds Us

How did this happen? What did I do?

Panic had overwhelmed the young woman as she was being escorted by guards.

There are so many of the too and I can see a woman walking in front of them. Is she the princess?

They walked for a while clearly headed out of town. Minnea looked around to see all the worried faces. The people in the marketplace were all muttering to themselves. However, something seemed off. It almost looked as thought they were sympathetic towards her. She even thought she heard something about the princess is at it again. Either way this seems like a bad situation.

They arrived at what looked like a mini palace just at the outskirts of town. Minnea was led into the castle by the guards. She looked around nervously. She started to think of a way out before she was ripped from her thought by the woman who walked in front of them.

“Who are you!” The woman demanded.

“I am Minnea, A traveler. I wanted to by food from the marketplace before heading to my lodging.” Minnea tried to stay calm but this seemed so strange. She had done so much research on this place. The Mirage kingdom.  A beautiful desert oasis. Ruled by King Rahjeem and Queen Zola Gala. Surely, she couldn’t have broken some law.

“So you are not from here, interesting…” “I am princess Ishtear Gala, the 6th prince of the Mirage kingdom.” Ishtear seemed to be looking Minnea up and down. “You will do quite nicely.” She said suddenly smiling a bit lustfully. “Summon my chamber maids!”

Minnea was now not only afraid but confused.

What’s going on?

Suddenly five women walked in. “Bathe her and send her to my room.” Ishtear suddenly demanded.

“Wait! “Minnea was startled by this sudden command “Hold on, this is why I’m here?!” Minnae was furious. “What of it?” Ishtear said looking rather arrogant. “You should be happy I have chosen you to spend the night with me.” “You can’t be serious!” Minnea said as the maid escorted her away. “Oh, but I am.” Ishtear said as she walked away. “Clean her well.” She said as she chuckled to herself.

How did I get into this mess?

Minnea felt very uneasy as the maids scrubbed her. How selfish of her to do this. What kind of princess is she. “I apologize for this.” Minnea jolted from her thought as on of the maids suddenly spoke. “The princess has always been so selfish.” The woman was clearly uncomfortable with this situation. “Shush, Emma.” Another said. As they finished scrubbing her.

Darn. What am going to do…

Minnea who was now robed walked into the princess’s room. It was dimly lit but a soon a she walked in she saw her. The princess herself was also robed.

“You seriously aim to sleep with me?” Minnea asked. However, Ishtear didn’t answer. She strolled up to Minnea reaching for the belt the held the robe closed. Minnea’s heart began to race as Ishteer pulled the belt and revealed what was under it. “Very nice indeed.” She said obviously pleased by what she was seeing. “Have you no shame?” Minnea who was now feeling very uneasy tried to reason with her. “Not in the least.” Ishtear said eye still wandering up and down Minnea’s body. “Well, you shoul-.” Minnea was cut off by the sudden kiss Ishtear placed on her lips. Minnea backed away. “Enough!” “And tell me.” “How do you plan to get out of here with all of my guards?” Ishtear smirked seeing that Minnea was beat. “You may leave in the morning and resume your stay at our kingdom.”

Darn it.

Minnea laid there thinking of what happened last night. The morning sun began to shine through the windows. She glanced at the woman sleeping next to her.

What a selfish person…

Just then she heard a knock. “Who is that so early in the morning?” Minnea looked to see Ishtear had awaken. A knock came again. “Yes yes, Come in!” As the door opened however Ishtear wen pale. “Mother… What are you doing here?” Ishtear’s Mother looked at her Minnea and her Daughter. She looked disappointed, hurt even. “So, you have done such a thing…” For the first time Ishtear looked guilty.

“To think that you would do such a thing!” Ishtear’s Father paced back and forth seething in anger. “You have always been a hand full but this is just unacceptable!” “What have you got to say for yourself?” The king finally stopped squarely in front of Ishtear who hadn’t looked at him once. “Please forgive me father… I won’t happen again.” “How many time have I heard this.” The king looked extremely disappointed by this response. “ I had hoped that you would take being sent to this area as a chance to learn and practice ruling as a good leader should. But it appears that I was wrong… It pains me to say this but you are no longer fit for you crown.” “Father, no anything but that.” Ishtear looked terrified. “You haven’t shown that you have the qualities of a good leader in fact you have abused you power.” “Please, Father I will change. I will try harder.” Ishtear looked as if she was on the verge of tears. King Rahjeem looked at his wife who had sat silently. This clearly was too much or her. “You get one more chance. However, you must clean up your act. You are a future ruler.” “Yes father…” Ishtear said as she felt a great relief come over her.

Minnea sat in the foyer of the palace awaiting her fate. It had been a while since Ishtear’s parents had arrived. She still wonders how the caught wind of the situation. Though she wished they had come sooner. Just then someone came in. It was King Rahjeem. “Dear child, I apologize for my daughter’s behavior. It is absolutely appalling that she would have done such a thing.” “Please, sir.” Minnea said obviously done with this situation. “I just want to leave.” “Yes of course, I will have someone escort you back to town immediately.” The king summoned for someone. Minnea recognized the woman as one of the women who bathed her, Emma.

“Emma, please escort this young woman to town.” “Yes, sire.” Emma said with a bow as she led Minnea towards the door.

“I apologize. I couldn’t reach them fast enough.” Emma started. Minnea really didn’t feel like talking but she could sense Emma’s extreme guilt. “Don’t worry about. Sure, I am annoyed but thankfully that is about it.”

The town came into view “Well, then I will be seeing you off now, take care.” Emma said and with that Emma returned to the castle.

Minnea lay in the bed of her hotel room. She had just finished dinner and bathed.

This could have gone much better. I almost don’t want to stay here anymore.

Minnea rolled over to her side.

But I already paid for five nights…

A sigh escaped from her lips. “Well… A least rest of the kingdom seems nice…” Minnea said as she drifted off to sleep. “Hopefully the rest of my stay will be better…” Minnea said to herself as sleep had finally taken over her.

Check out my book ‘In for the Rain’ here and the short stories collection here

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