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  1. hopey


    You’ve just arrived in a swampy, dim town. As you look around, your gaze is met with shacks and cabins. It smells of rotted wood and wet moss. You duck and step into a tattered tent, illuminated by a series of candles suspended in the air. At the back of the tent, an old hag raises her head, “What brings you to this dingy town? she begins, then pauses to study your face—”Ah, it’s you. I’ve been expecting you. Sit,” she gestures at a cushion, “Tell me your story.” Rohana's mood was bleak, betrayed by the lack of sunshine; no glimmer filtered through the hefty storm clouds of the secluded town. The ex-queen held up the tattered ends of her dress, face set in determination as she trekked the moist, squelching earth tediously. In her worn, calf-leather shoes, the ground noisily swished at each sway of her dreary feet. The air felt moist, damp as she inhaled a shaky breath in order to refill her exasperated lungs. A glimmer across the clearing of swamp made her head incline, brown eyes of doe seething into a thin-slit leer as she slowly approached. Were her eyes betraying her? Despite the curiosity burning within, her nose would wrinkle and contort at the unfamiliar scent of elderly wood. Guided by the beckoning light, she ducked from the flap of the withered tent. She paused upon entering, eyeing the stranger with a bewildered sweep of her eyes. At her query, Rohana's stomach did uneasy twists. Attempting to remain light-hearted, the runaway Queen emits a long, collected sigh. "My story?" Rohana cooed, voice silky as she swayed; graciously accepting the cushion. The woman set herself down, letting loose of her mangled dress. It swept across her legs, sticking uncomfortably from her damp departure from the palace of Kirsi. "It begins in a dingy town akin to this one," Rohana murmured, eyes lapping around; examining the strokes of light billowing from the candle flicker. "I was only six when my father promised me to the kingdom of Kirsi; he had been swayed by the hefty coin they offered. From the moment I could walk - I had been taught to talk, dress, act, and think a certain way; a way that would be most easily agreeable... to be womanly - to know my place." Rohana's words burned in bitterness, a hand solemnly placed to her chest; fingertips absentmindedly tracing a gold pendant that shone as the candlelight licked the glossy surface. "I solely existed for the next heir... to produce a babe. I was only a mere machine for creation and it was abundantly clear that it would not be my child but his." Her jaw would clench, her hand falling to falter in her lap. Her voice seethed, oozing with hatred and loathing as she continued. The silky, well-kept tone in her voice began to wilt. "It was only recently that I discovered how much of myself was him... I was made to be compatible, I lacked a personality and thought of my own. I couldn't live with myself or the future that was bestowed wrongfully upon me." Rohana's chest felt heavy, eyes downcast as she avoids the elderly woman; shying from her eyes. "It is treason to run away from my duties, my family shall suffer in my absence but I-I couldn't I..." Rohana's voice had hiccupped, a lump forming in her throat to strangle her. The king was a cruel and unkind man that erupt destruction in his path. If she would be found, the king would string her up like a slaughtered animal on display for all to see. The thought made her blood run cold. "I want to exist on my own terms for myself." Rohana bit back the knot in her throat, words heavy in determination as she cast out a hand in a flourish. "Perhaps I'm a coward for not facing the king but I'm sure of one thing," Rohana paused, not letting sorrow teeter across her expression. The woman bore a stolid look, appearing aloof as her chin disdainfully excelled upwards; inclining sharply with confidence. "I will never fall into the clutches of any man ever again." The blonde woman seethed, taking a stand to her feet. This had only been the beginning of her journey, the runaway queen had plenty to explore; to live in her new, present self. Smirking, she boldly met the hag's eyes; gleaming with arrogance. "Upon the lucky chance I encounter that merciless and poor excuse of a king, it is not me who shall be losing their head."
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