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OLAS Chapter 19: A new beginning – I

When I opened my eyes, a pleasant weight of drowsiness still enveloped me. For a moment, my mind was blank, a clean slate without worries or memories. The bed beneath me was absurdly comfortable, the sheets as soft as silk against my skin. I sank deeper into the pillows, inhaling deeply. The gentle scent of lavender floated around me, mixed with a faint salty aroma that seemed to come from far away. The sea… it must be nearby.

My gaze drifted around, still somewhat blurry but starting to adjust. The bedroom was bright and airy, decorated with impeccable taste. The walls and columns were made of moonstone, their subtle glow giving the room an ethereal quality. The floor was like a sheet of pure white ice, smooth and polished marble that reflected the light in the room. Delicate curtains floated gently in the breeze, revealing glimpses of a lush garden beyond. Sunlight filtered through their sheer fabric, casting playful patterns on the polished floor.

Tasteful adornments and elegant furnishings were arranged with precision and an effortless grace. A velvet green armchair stood near the window, beside a small table where a vase of fresh flowers rested. Floral-patterned rugs adorned the floor, adding warmth and color to the room. To my right, a vanity table with an intricately carved mirror held various bottles and brushes, each item meticulously placed.

As my gaze continued to roam, I noticed a balcony just beyond the curtains, its doors invitingly open to let in the fragrant air of the garden. On the opposite side of the room, a dark wood wardrobe stood tall and regal next to the large bed I was lying in, adorned with perfectly aligned quilts and pillows.

My eyes traveled further, and I saw another section of the room that led to what could only be described as a spacious bathing area. From my vantage point, I could see the edge of a grand bathtub, its surface gleaming in the ambient light.

My vision was surprisingly clear, sharper than it had ever been before. Every detail of the room stood out vividly, with colors more intense and vibrant than I had ever seen. What’s happening to me?

Then, like a crashing wave, the memories returned. Absinthya’s death, the sharp agony of the wound caused by Niamh, and Rohan… Rohan desperately trying to save me. I remembered him leaning over me, his stormy eyes filled with an intensity I had never seen before. And that bitter potion, the taste still lingered on my tongue, even if only in memory.

I am a pure High Fae now. The realization hit me with the force of a rising tide, filling every corner of my being.

 

 

My heavy eyelids fluttered, and I strained to focus on the faint sounds around me. The muffled murmurs of voices seemed to come from a great distance, like they were floating in from a faraway place just beyond the reach of my consciousness. Soft footsteps echoed through the room, and my heart raced as consciousness slowly returned.

“She is waking,” one voice whispered with a hint of concern, its melody woven from starlight, both beautiful and strangely unnerving.

“Quiet,” another voice hushed, a soft sibilant sound that sent a shiver down my spine. “The princess must rest and regain her strength.”

These voices were unlike anything I had heard before. Each word was a delicate chime, ringing with both beauty and danger. They resonated with a power beyond my comprehension, like ethereal whispers carried on moonbeams. These were not ordinary voices, but something ancient and mystical, belonging to a realm far greater than our own.

With a heavy sigh, I slowly opened my eyes again, still a bit drowsy, and found myself faced with two ethereal figures. One was entirely white. She seemed bathed in an ethereal glow, like moonlight on a clear night. Her dark hair fell in soft waves to her waist, contrasting intensely with her pale skin. Her eyes were deep and black, with no visible irises, like two pools of darkness.

The other female was dark as night, almost absorbing the light around her. Her long white hair was arranged in a cascade of silver strands, and her eyes were pearly white, with no visible pupils. An aura of power emanated from her, a sense of mystery that both intrigued and unnerved me.

“Who are you?” I asked, my voice hoarse and barely a whisper.

“I am Selene,” the one with dark hair spoke, her voice like the gentle chime of bells on a breeze. “And this is my sister Umbra,” she gestured towards the shadowed figure. “We are your handmaidens, here to serve and help you.”

“I-I’m Aerin…” I murmured, still feeling disoriented and confused. Where I am? 

The two handmaids exchanged a quick glance before releasing giggles, as if sharing a secret between them.

“Oh, we know who you are, princess,” Umbra said with a mysterious smile that did little to ease my growing unease.

This is ridiculous!

My fingers curled into the soft fabric of my nightgown. This wasn’t right. I deserved answers. I hated being treated like a clueless child, kept in the dark about my own whereabouts and situation. Why won’t they just tell me what’s going on? The thought burned in my mind. Frustration gnawed at me, a tight knot forming in my stomach. I took a deep breath, trying to steady myself.  No, I won’t cry. Not here, not now. I had to stay strong.

Umbra’s dark figure seemed to ripple and distort as she took a step back. Her form stretched and elongated like smoke tendrils yearning to return to their source. The darkness around her pulsed, tendrils reaching out as if to claim her. “Your bath awaits, princess,” she said, her voice an echo from a forgotten realm. She turned, her form blurring at the edges as if merging with the shadows themselves. “It will help you regain your strength,” she said over her shoulder.

“Where am I?” I asked, my voice trembling. “What place is this?”

Selene glanced at me, a flicker of surprise crossing her face before a hint of pride settled in her pitch black eyes. “You are in Numérya, Princess,” she declared in a regal tone, pride evident in her words. “In the Moon Court.”

The words hit me like a sudden bolt of lightning, making me immediately sit up in bed. Moon Court?

 

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