Writing Every Day in October: Day 23

“Wait, wait, wait! You’re royalty?

Today’s got a little held up because I spent most of the day babysitting my nieces, so I’ve either been preoccupied or exhausted.

But here’s today scene.

This is another one I think I’d like to expand into a full story.

I’ve had the name ‘Queen Antiocha’ kicking around for a while and a vague conception that she’s some famous ancient monarch — probably along the lines of Realmgard’s Dido or Cleopatra — and a vague notion of what I’d want to do with the story. Basically, figure out somewhat for the ancient-era Anitocha to end up time-displaced in the current era of Realmgard.

“Wait, wait, wait!” Kat exclaims to her aunt. “You’re royalty? You’ve been my aunt for ten years, how am I only hearing this now?

Peri shrugs.

“Royalty isn’t really the word for it, Kat” she answers. “For one thing, the kingdom hasn’t even existed for almost two thousand years. And besides, my family is only descended from a minor branch of the dynasty. My ancestors were never very powerful, even back when there still was a kingdom. But, yes, I am related to Queen Antiocha.”

With the exception of several adventuring manuals and handbooks, Kat has never paid much attention to book-learning. But even she knows who Queen Antiocha is, even if she can’t remember of the details.

Queen Antiocha was the last ruler of one of the kingdoms that tried to reestablish the ancient Elven Empire after its collapse. She was supposed to be the most beautiful woman who ever lived in the history of Realmgard.

Her kingdom was destroyed and she died young and it was all very tragic and regrettable.

Or something…

Kat is sure she’s missing at least a few of the finer details. But ‘beautiful queen dies young, everybody’s sad about it’ is the gist of the story.

There all sorts of sad stories, depressing poems, and melodramatic plays about her. Of course, Kat doesn’t really pay attention to those, either.

“If this all happened two thousand years ago, how do you even know all this, Aunt Peri?” Kat asks.

“Family is very important to Elves,” Peri explains. “Most Elven families keep very precise records of their lineage. And we do not usually have many children and Elves who lost their spouses do not often remarry. Our families tend to be smaller. That simplifies thing. I could trace my family all the way to the first Elves to arrive in Realmgard.”

She smiles wryly and shrugs.

“Of course, that doesn’t mean it’s all true,” she continues. “The stories say one of my earliest known ancestors was a sea monster. I, uh, I’m not quite sure how that works.”

That sounds ridiculous, but perhaps not really that ridiculous. One of Kat’s ancestors is supposed to have been a mermaid.

“Do you ever wonder what it would be like if your family were still royal?” Kat asks.

“Not much. I have no reason to regret the life I have now,” Peri admits. “And besides, doesn’t every little girl think about being a princess?”

For what it’s worth, Kat never imagined being a princess. Well, she did, but she only ever came to the conclusion that she would have it with ever fibre of her being.

Being locked up in a castle?

Etiquette lessons?

Frilly dresses?

The thought is still enough to make Kat shudder and gag with disgust.

She feels like she needs a bath just thinking about thinking about it.

Kat looks thoughtfully at her aunt. “So, should we start calling you Your Majesty?”

“That won’t be necessary, Kat,” Peri answers.

She grins at Kat.

“By the way, Kat,” she asks. “How was your dress fitting? Amara and Isla seem very excited to start learning from me.”

“I don’t want to talk about it,” Kat mutters.

That whole “descended from a sea monster” is a reference to the legend of Merovech, founder of the Merovingian dynasty, who are kind of a big deal in Late Antique/Early Medieval history.

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